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HEAR THIS HOUR'S UPDATE

Thursday
May162013

Slayer Reveals Details for Jeff Hanneman Memorial Celebration

David Wolff-Patrick/WireImageSlayer is giving fans the chance to say goodbye to founding guitarist Jeff Hanneman, who died May 2 of alcohol-related cirrhosis of the liver.

In a posting on their Facebook page, Slayer reveals that a Jeff Hanneman Memorial Celebration will take place on Thursday, May 23 at the Hollywood Palladium in Los Angeles from 3:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. PT.  The event will be free and open to fans of all ages on a first-come, first-in basis.

Hanneman, who had been taking time off from the band since 2011 for an unrelated medical condition, was 49.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio

Thursday
May162013

Alabama Tribute Album Shaping Up to Be a Star-Studded Release

Republic NashvilleThe multi-artist Alabama tribute album Alabama & Friends will hit stores later this year, and a slew of big-name country stars are hitting the studio with the band for the project.  According to Billboard, the Eli Young Band recorded their version of "The Closer You Get" this week in Nashville.  Rascal Flatts' Joe Don Rooney tweeted they have been working on a cover of the Alabama classic, "Old Flame."

Kenny Chesney, Tim McGraw, Jason Aldean, Trisha Yearwood and Toby Keith are also contributing their takes on Alabama hits to the project.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio

Thursday
May162013

Emeli Sande Wins Britain's Ivor Novello Awards

EmeliSande.comEmeli Sande went two for two at Thursday's Ivor Novello Awards, which annually celebrate the best in British and Irish songwriting. 

Emeli's hit "Next To Me" was named Best Song Musically and Lyrically, as well as Most Performed Work -- the latter takes into account how many times the song has been heard on the radio and on TV.   Unfortunately, she wasn't in the house to pick up her trophies, but she sure was thrilled, as she demonstrated on Twitter.

"If you followed me 2 years ago...you might remember me day dreaming about winning an Ivor!!" Emeli tweeted. "Wish I could have been there, that would have been one excited speech!"  She called the honor "the best news."

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio

Thursday
May162013

Diddy Does "Downton," and He Brings Ciroc

Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty ImagesNo, Diddy hasn't joined the cast of Downton Abbey.  But thanks to computer-generated magic from FunnyOrDie.com, the entertainment mogul appears on the show... sorta.

"Hello everyone, this is Sean Combs coming to you live from my office with some very, very exciting news about my favorite show of all time -- Downton Abbey. Yes, I am a Abbey-head -- proudly, yes yes yes!"  Of course, Diddy pronounces "Downton" as "downtown," and while that's funny, it's not nearly as funny as what happens later in the nearly five-minute clip.

When PBS airs the new season of Downton, viewers will be introduced to the show's first recurring black character.  But in the FunnyOrDie.com clip, Diddy claims that he, in fact, is the show's first.  He even has video evidence.

In a clip borrowed from an earlier episode, it appears that the woman of the house, Lady Grantham, is welcoming Diddy, or "Lord Wolcott" as he calls himself.  We won't give away all the details, but Lord Wolcott is a lot like the real-life Diddy.  He does a product placement for Ciroc during his afternoon tea with the Dowager Countess and Isobel Crawley. 

Wearing his mogul hat, Diddy also gives Lord Grantham some great investment advice, and he has a tender moment, too, with Downton Abbey helper Thomas Barrow.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio

Thursday
May162013

Report: Shakira and Usher Will Be Back on "The Voice" Next Spring

Adam Taylor/NBCThe Voice has become a game of musical swivel chairs.  Though Christina Aguilera and Cee Lo Green are expected to return to the NBC singing competition in the fall, the show isn't cutting ties with their replacements, Shakira and Usher.

Shakira has confirmed that she is leaving The Voice after the current season. There have also been reports that Usher will do the same, with Christina and Cee Lo reclaiming the chairs they occupied for the show's first three seasons.

However, Entertainment Weekly states that while Christina and Cee Lo will indeed return to The Voice in the fall, NBC is finalizing deals with Shakira and Usher to rejoin Adam Levine and Blake Shelton for the spring 2014 season. That would obviously mean that Christina and Cee Lo would go on hiatus again.

Adam, Blake and host Carson Daly will all be back for the next two seasons.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio

Thursday
May162013

Are Taylor Swift & Lena Dunham Now Dinner Buddies?

Kevin Mazur/WireImageTaylor Swift and Lena Dunham, the creator and star of the award-winning HBO series Girls, have a mutual admiration society going on Twitter, but now it appears as though they've taken their friendship offline and into -- gasp! -- the real world.

Life & Style magazine reports that both Taylor and Dunham attended the star-studded Met Gala in New York City on May 6, and then afterwards, they grabbed a late dinner together.  According to an insider, it was Lena who made the first move, telling Taylor that there was a "really cute diner" by her house, where they could have "like, salads and stuff."

Not long ago, Taylor said she was "floored" to learn that Dunham was a fan of hers. 

"When I found out that she listens to my music...it absolutely floored me," said Taylor. "It made my day, honestly.  So, I think, to me, for there to be someone with that creative of a mind and that impressive writing talent, for someone like that to listen to my music it was a real, really good day for me."

Taylor doesn't just like Dunham and Girls; she's also a fan of Dunham's boyfriend, Jack Antonoff.  He's the guitarist in the band fun., and Taylor told Billboard that they're one of her favorite bands right now.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio

Thursday
May162013

Franz Ferdinand to Release "Right Thoughts, Right Words, Right Action" in August

Domino RecordsIt’s been four long years, but now Franz Ferdinand has returned with a new release. The group is set to drop their fourth studio album, Right Thoughts, Right Words, Right Action, on August 27.

The new release will feature 10 tracks, which frontman Alex Kapranos describes as “The Intellect Vs The Soul, played out by some dumb band.”

You can order Right Thoughts, Right Words, Right Action now in a variety of formats. The release will be available as a standard CD or vinyl LP, a deluxe limited-edition two-CD or two-LP set featuring a disc of bonus live recordings, and as a limited-edition deluxe passport edition. The latter package will include a deluxe edition of each physical format of the album, a number of seven-inch and 12-inch vinyl singles, plus access to exclusive tracks and content.

Here's the track list for Right Thoughts, Right Words, Right Action:

“Right Action”
“Evil Eye”
“Love Illumination”
“Stand on the Horizon”
“Fresh Strawberries”
“Bullet”
“Treason! Animals.”
“The Universe Expanded”
“Brief Encounters”
“Goodbye Lovers & Friends”

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio

Thursday
May162013

Miranda Lambert Picks Up O Music Awards Nomination for Interactive "Fastest Girl in Town" Video

Photo Credit: Randee St. NicholasMiranda Lambert picked up an MTV O Music Awards nomination for her "Fastest Girl in Town" video in the Best Interactive Music Video category. This particular awards ceremony celebrates the intersection of music and technology.

As you may recall, Miranda released a special version of that clip that allowed fans to view multiple angles during her car chase scene with co-star Danica Patrick of NASCAR fame.  That version also allowed fans to unlock bonus content and even win items featured in the video.

The O Music Awards winners will be announced on June 19, and fans can vote for the winners at OMusicAwards.com or through the Awards Facebook and Twitter accounts.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio

Thursday
May162013

"Gangnam Style, Eh?" PSY to Co-Host Canada's MuchMusic Awards

ABC/Todd WawrychukSouth Korean sensation PSY isn't just a hit in the U.S. -- evidently, he's pretty popular in Canada as well.

The "Gangnam Style" rapper, who just performed on the American Idol finale Thursday night, will co-host MuchMusic Video Awards, Canada's answer to the MTV VMAs.   This will be PSY's debut on live Canadian TV, and he says in a statement, "I'm looking forward to seeing all my fans in Canada!" 

PSY's English isn't exactly fluent, but perhaps he'll be OK as long as he reads off a TelePrompter.

So far, the only performer who's been confirmed for the June 16 show, airing live from Toronto, is Demi Lovato.  In the U.S, the show will be simulcast on Fuse.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio

Thursday
May162013

Seekers Singer Judith Durham Recovering After Brain Hemorrhage

TheSeekers50th.comJudith Durham, lead singer of the 1960s Australian folk-pop group The Seekers, suffered a small brain hemorrhage Tuesday night after a concert by the band in their hometown of Melbourne.  According to Australia's AAP press agency, the 68-year-old felt a pressure in her head as she was walking off stage at Melbourne's Hamer Hall and when the pain hadn't subsided by midnight, her assistant called an ambulance and she was taken to a hospital.

Durham's band mates tell the AAP that Judith is "lucid and comfortable" and will be tested further in the hospital during the next few days.  The Seekers, who had recently kicked off an Australian tour celebrating the 50th anniversary of their first album, have postponed their remaining shows, which had been scheduled through a June 7 concert in Brisbane.

Seekers bassist Athol Guy tells the AAP that Durham's condition is "not as serious as we all thought at first."  He adds, "Hopefully she will get through this quite quickly."

The Seekers are best-known in the U.S. for "Georgy Girl," which reached #2 on the Billboard Hot 100 in 1967.  They also scored two top 20 U.S. hits in 1965 -- "I'll Never Find Another You" (#4) and "A World of Our Own" (#19).  In addition, "I'll Never Find Another You" was the top-selling single in the U.K. for 1965.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio

Thursday
May162013

Wade Robson Takes MJ Accusations to "Today"; Michael's Former Lawyer Responds

Photo by: Peter Kramer/NBCWade Robson says Michael Jackson was a talented artist, but he alleges that the late performer was also "pedophile and a child sexual abuser."  In an interview with the Today show's Matt Lauer, Wade stands by his lawsuit claiming that when he was a child, Michael sexually abused him.

Australian-born Wade was just a kid when he began performing alongside Michael, appearing in the King of Pop's music videos for "Black or White," "Jam" and "Heal the World."  Though Wade has previously defended Michael against sexual abuse allegations, the now 30-year-old choreographer claims that he was 7 when Michael began molesting him.  He adds that the alleged abuse continued until he was about 14.

Meanwhile, Tom Mesereau, a lawyer who represented Michael in a 2005 molestation case responded to Wade's Today show interview, telling TMZ, "This is a pathetic and an obvious grab for publicity and an attempt to put pressure on the [Michael Jackson] estate to pay him money."

But Wade said in the interview that his claims have nothing to do with money.  For 22 years Wade says he remained silent, but he tells Today that he is speaking up.  "I feel like this is the right thing to do because this is my truth," he says.

Contrary to earlier reports, Wade says, "This is not a case of repressed memory.  I have never forgotten one moment of what Michael did to me, but I was psychologically and emotionally completely unable and unwilling to understand that it was sexual abuse."

Mesereau, however, points to the fact that Robson filed a creditor's claim against Michael's estate -- "Why call yourself a creditor if it's not about money?" he says, adding that Robson has volunteered statements supporting Michael, both in and out of court.  Mesereau tells TMZ that he can't believe the truth of Robson's relationship with Michael didn't surface then.

Amid all this, Taj Jackson, the son of Michael's brother Tito, tweeted support for the King of Pop on Thursday, writing, "I was sexually abuse [sic]. By an uncle on my mom's side of the family when I was a kid. My uncle was a support system for me and my mom. He wrote a letter to her that many have seen already, u just didn't know what it was about. That is how I KNOW Wade is lying. Because I AM a survivor."

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio

Thursday
May162013

Bob Dylan Inducted into Prestigious Arts Institution but Skips Ceremony

Columbia RecordsThe American Academy of Arts and Letters held its annual induction ceremony on Wednesday at its New York City headquarters, and Bob Dylan became the first rock-era musician to be accepted into the respected institution.  According to RollingStone.com, the folk-rock legend did not attend the ceremony.

Dylan did send a statement that read, "I feel extremely honored and very lucky to be included in this pantheon of great individual artists who comprise the Academy of Arts and Letters.  I look forward to meeting all of you some time soon."

The singer/songwriter also was a no-show at a special dinner that the Academy held in April, although, to be fair, Dylan was in the midst of a busy U.S. tour at the time.

The Academy, which recognizes those who have achieved excellence in a variety of artistic areas, decided to induct Dylan as an honorary member because of his multifaceted career as both a musician and a writer.  Other luminaries who also have been welcomed as honorary members include Meryl Streep, Woody Allen and Martin Scorsese.

RollingStone.com reports that the Academy's citation honoring Dylan reads as follows: "For more than 50 years, defying categorization in a culture beguiled by categories, Bob Dylan has probed and prodded our psyches, recording and then changing our world and our lives through poetry made manifest in song -- creating relationships that we never imagined could exist between words, emotions and ideas."

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio

Thursday
May162013

Matthew Morrison Donating Some Album Proceeds to Support LGBT Equality

PressHereNow.comAs the star of Glee, one of the most gay-friendly shows on TV, it's no surprise that Matthew Morrison supports gay rights.  Now, the actor and singer is putting his money where his mouth is: he'll donate a portion of the proceeds from his upcoming album to the Human Rights Campaign in support of LGBT equality.

Some of the money from the pre-sale of Matthew's new album, Where It All Began, will go benefit the HRC.  You can pre-order it now on Amazon.com. 

The album is being released on Adam Levine's record label.  In a statement, the Maroon 5 frontman says that he and Matthew are "both huge supporters of the LGBT community," adding, "I’m glad that partial proceeds from the pre-sale of this album will go toward such a great cause."

Matthew himself says in a statement, "I’m thrilled to join HRC in their vital work to bring full equality to all Americans.  At this decisive moment, when there is so much work still ahead, I’m standing with HRC and LGBT people across the country until this fight is won."

The man known as Mr. Schue has also made a video for HRC's Americans for Marriage Equality campaign, which features prominent Americans who support gay marriage.   "Why should anyone be told their love isn't worthy of marriage, just because they're different?" he asks in the video.

Where It All Began, a collection of standards and Broadway classics, is out June 4.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio

Thursday
May162013

Queens of the Stone Age Pick a Fight with Bikers in Animated Teaser for "...Like Clockwork" Track

Facebook.com/QOTSAQueens of the Stone Age continue to unveil new installments of their creepy animated series to promote their upcoming album, ...Like Clockwork. The latest chapter features a snippet of another new cut, “If I Had a Tail.”

The video’s storyline follows a bloodthirsty driver who cruises around town killing people with her car and throwing Molotov cocktails at them. After decimating a group of bikers, a survivor from the attack chases the driver on his motorcycle and cripples her car with a rocket launcher. The clip ends with driver grabbing the biker's hand and igniting a self-destruct mechanism, which kills them both in a ball of fire.

...Like Clockwork arrives in stores on June 4.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio

Thursday
May162013

Frank Ocean, Drake Among Headliners at This Year's OVO Fest

Island Def JamFor the fourth year in a row, Drake will be returning to the city where it all started: his native Toronto.  A note posted to Drizzy's October's Very Own blog reveals the time has come for another edition of his annual OVO Fest. 

This year, the headliners include Frank Ocean and English singer-songwriter James Blake, who'll be performing Sunday, August 4, at Molson Canadian Ampitheatre.  The next day, Drake will the stage, bringing along some special guests.  Of course, their identities won't be revealed until a later date.  Fans likely won't be disappointed though, as previous years have brought out 2 Chainz, Nicki Minaj, Rick Ross and the Weeknd.

Tickets for the fourth annual OVO Fest go on sale Friday, May 24.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio

Thursday
May162013

Kanye West Says He's a "Terrible, Terrible, Terrible Celebrity"

Photo by Mike Marsland/WireImageHere's the thing about Kanye West: he doesn't limit his rants to Twitter.  No, he unleashes them during concerts, too, as was the case Wednesday night in New York City when 'Ye went in about his upcoming Saturday Night Live performance and being a "terrible, terrible, terrible celebrity."

It all happened during an event for advertisers and the press held by the television cartoon network Adult Swim at Roseland Ballroom, where surprise guest Kanye treated fans to previews of new tracks, including the one that folks have been referring to by the title "Awesome."  'Ye serenaded his pregnant girlfriend, Kim Kardashian, with the track during his set at the Met Ball in New York City earlier this month.

This weekend, Kanye is slated to be the musical guest on SNL, and he recalls somebody asking him, "...'you’re going to do like a skit about the paparazzi and s**t and like humanize yourself?'" To which, Kanye says, "I ain’t here to apologize to no motherf**kers, man. It ain’t about me humanizing myself.  At what point did I become unhuman where I had to turn myself back?"  

Kanye says he does music -- not comedy.  "I ain’t doing no motherf**king SNL skits; this my goddamn life. This ain’t no motherf*king joke," he says.  Despite his fame, Kanye wants people to know, "I ain’t no motherf**king celebrity," and even if you think that he is, he says he's the "worst" kind.

Over the years, critics have said Kanye is difficult to deal with, but apparently, he isn't trying to win a popularity contest.  "I ain't running for office. I ain’t kissing nobody’s motherf**king babies. I drop your baby and you sue me and sh*t. I’m trying to make some music that inspires people to be the best they can be. I don’t want nobody to ask nothing else of me," he declares.

Perhaps still feeling the sting of walking into a sign post while trying to shield himself from the paparazzi, Kanye adds, "I don’t want nobody running up on me with no cameras, trying to sell pictures and sh*t to magazines, asking me no dumbass questions. Throwing me off of my focus and sh*t.  Harassing you all motherf**king day.  I ain’t no motherf**king celebrity..."

Some fans may be bummed that Kanye won't be doing any acting on SNL, but at least they can look forward to his cameo in the upcoming comedy sequel, Anchorman: The Legend Continues.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio

Thursday
May162013

Bieber, Selena, Demi, PSY, Macklemore, Mariah & Bruno Compete for O Music Awards

OMusicAwards.comJustin Bieber will go head-to-head with his ex -- we think -- girlfriend Selena Gomez for this year's O Music Awards, which will be handed out June 19. 

Both Justin and Selena are nominated in the category of Fan Army FTW, which honors artists for just how fanatical their fans are.  Justin and his Beliebers are going up against Selena and her Selenators, as well as Demi Lovato and her Lovatics,  Beyonce and her Beyhive, Adam Lambert and his Glamberts and Ed Sheeran and his Sheerios.

Other nominees for this year's awards, which celebrate the intersection between music and technology, include Bruno Mars, who's up for Must Follow Artist on Twitter; Mariah Carey, who's up for Best Artist Instagram and Macklemore & Ryan Lewis, up for Best Web-Born Artist.  The most prestigious category is the Digital Genius Award, and nominees there include PSY and will.i.am.

Fans can vote for their favorites starting now through June 19 via Facebook, Twitter, or at OMusicAwards.com.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio

Thursday
May162013

Eric Clapton Reportedly About to Become a First-Time Grandfather

Surfdog RecordsCongratulations appear to be in order for Eric Clapton, who's expected to become a grandfather for the first time in the coming days.  The Daily Mail reports that the guitar legend's oldest daughter, 28-year-old Ruth Clapton, is preparing to give birth to her first child later this month.

A friend of the Clapton family tells the newspaper, "The baby is due any day and Eric is ecstatic."

The 68-year-old rocker is said to have a close relationship with Ruth, whom he walked down the aisle in September 2011 when she got married to her husband, architect Dean Bartlett.  Eric also hosted the reception at his home in Surrey, England, and performed with his band during the festivities.  In addition, Clapton's three young daughters from his current marriage to Melia McEnery reportedly served as flower girls at the ceremony.

Ruth Clapton's mother is Yve Kelly, who was working for famed Beatles producer George Martin on the island of Montserrat when she met Eric.  Eric was still married to his first wife, Pattie Boyd, when Ruth was born.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio

Thursday
May162013

Fall Out Boy, Blink-182 to Headline Riot Fest

Facebook.com/RiotFest1Riot Fest producers have scored some of the biggest names in rock to perform at their event, which is scheduled to take place September 13-15 at Humboldt Park in Chicago, IL.  Headlining the festival will be Fall Out Boy, Blink-182 and a third artist to be announced soon. 

Among the other acts set to perform at the three-day Riot Fest are Motörhead, Rancid, Dinosaur Jr., Bob Mould, Against Me!, Sublime with Rome, Violent Femmes, Taking Back Sunday and Brand New.

Tickets are available now, with three-day passes starting at $99. To see the complete artist roster and purchase tickets, head over to RiotFest.org.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio

Thursday
May162013

Demi Lovato's Summer Plans: Get Her Tonsils Removed

Hollywood RecordsDemi Lovato just released her new self-titled album, and it's on track for a #2 debut on the Billboard chart.  But don't look for the singer to hit the road this summer to support it: she's got to go under the knife.

Speaking with MTV, Demi said that she didn't have any plans to go on tour this year, and mentioned her commitment to The X Factor as one reason for that.  But then she added, "Actually, this summer, I have to get my tonsils out."  She then boasted, "I'm gonna do it without painkillers, though...'cause I'm a boss!"

It's hard to tell if she's joking.  She went on, "I got my wisdom teeth without any, I had dry socket, I broke my leg, and I was like, 'No! I'm not taking anything!'"   When the interviewer agreed that Demi was, indeed, boss, she laughed, "I'm just sayin'...come at me!"

During her chat with MTV, Demi also spoke about her long friendship with Selena Gomez.  She admitted that there had been times in the past when the two ex-Disney stars had not been that close, but that's all over now.  

"Now we're in a place where I think we realize that life is so short and when you have people in your life that love you so much, then you should always be around them," Demi said, adding, "She's gonna be a big sister and I wanna be around for that...she's talented, she's beautiful, and she will always be close to my heart."

Demi also revealed that she loves Selena's new single "Come and Get It," adding, "I went on vacation...and that's all I listened to, and when it comes on the radio, I turn it on really loud and tell everyone to shut up!"

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio