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HEAR THIS HOUR'S UPDATE

Wednesday
Jun122013

Ringo Starr's Beatles Classic "Octopus's Garden" to Become Children's Book

Rob Shanahan/Universal RecordsRingo Starr has signed a new publishing deal that will see his popular 1969 Beatles tune "Octopus's Garden" transformed in an illustrated children's book.  Scheduled to hit stores in North America this January, the book will come packaged with a CD featuring a previously unreleased instrumental track by Starr as well as audio of him reading the story.

Octopus's Garden will be illustrated by Ben Cort, an avid Beatles fan who has provided the art for Aliens Love Underpants and other books in author Claire Freedman's popular Underpants series.

Ringo offers this brief message regarding the book: "It gives me great pleasure to collaborate with Ben Cort and Simon & Schuster for the further adventures of Octopus's Garden.  Peace and Love."

Simon and Schuster UK executive Ingrid Selberg adds, "As an original Beatles fan, publishing this book is a dream come true for me... This is a beautiful and funny book that children, parents and grandparents will love sharing."

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio

Wednesday
Jun122013

Stevie Nicks: It's So Hard for Me to Meet Guys!

Photo: Kristin BurnsStevie Nicks is a rich, famous, beautiful rock star, but that doesn't mean it's easy for her to get a date.  The Fleetwood Mac singer tells New York magazine that opportunities to meet a significant other can get complicated for someone as recognizable as herself.

"Like I'm gonna go to a bar!" she laughs. "And hang out?  I mean, where am I gonna meet somebody?"

The 65-year-old artist also reveals that she often commiserates with her friend and fellow rock star Sheryl Crow about their mutual difficulty in finding a guy.  Nicks says they actually joke around about the kinds of videos they'd record for a matchmaking service if they decided to go to those lengths.  Describing one, Stevie says, "Hi! My name is Stevie Nicks, and I'm looking for somebody that is no more than five years older than me.  Please no health problems, no diabetes, no heart disease, no gout, please, no bipolar; if you're on an antidepressant, not good."

She adds that she likes a man who's tall, while noting she doesn't generally go out with younger guys.  "I guess I could go as young as 58," she says.  "And as old as 68.  Not 70.  Just 68."

Looking back on her younger days, Stevie declares, "It was a lot easier.  Because we were crazy...We moved fast and furiously in those days, and I had lots of boyfriends and lots of amazing relationships and lots and lots of fun."  And now?  Nicks says, "If that special man walked into my life, I'm the first one to say I would probably pack my bags and go with him.  But it's a very elusive thing."

That's not to say that Stevie regrets her single life.  "Most women would not be happy being me," she tells the magazine.  "People say, 'But you're alone.'  But I don't feel alone.  I feel very un-alone.  I feel very sparkly and excited about everything...Because I'll never be alone.  I'll always be surrounded by people."

Adds Nicks, "I'm like the crystal ball and these are all the rings of Saturn around me."

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio

Wednesday
Jun122013

Zac Brown Reveals the Origins of His Custom-Made Human Catapult

Southern GroundZac Brown Band went back to the beach for their latest video, "Jump Right In," and this time they came armed with a human catapult.  You can see people being thrown into the water by the contraption, which was built by the guys in front man Zac Brown's personal machine shop.

"We make knives and other stuff like human catapults," Zac says. "I called them and told 'em that I needed a human catapult, and two weeks later, there it was."

The idea for the catapult was born a few years ago when a then-unknown Zac performed on the weekends at his restaurant back in Georgia.  In order to entice customers to come back and see his set, Zac promised patrons they'd have a human catapult to launch people into the lake that weekend.

He says, "It was kind of a joke, and then it came true."

Having the power to just order up a human catapult for the "Jump Right In" video is a big milestone for Zac.

"There was a moment when I was standing out there launching people into the water thinking, 'I've made it,'" he says with a laugh.

"Jump Right In" is the latest single from Zac Brown Band's album, Uncaged, now in stores.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio

Wednesday
Jun122013

Lenny Kravitz's Design Company to Create Sets for "The Queen Latifah Show"

Roadrunner RecordsLenny Kravitz’s design firm, Kravtiz Design Inc., has just scored a very big client. The singer has revealed that his company will create the sets for rapper/actress Queen Latifah’s upcoming daytime talk-show, The Queen Latifah Show.

"It’s a thrill to be designing the set for The Queen Latifah Show,” Kravitz tells Entertainment Weekly. “This is the first time Kravitz Design has created an environment for television, which makes it a very exciting project for us.”

Kravitz adds he has a specific idea in mind for the set, which will be inspired by “Latifah’s personality and spirit.” Reps for the show note that the designs will feature “superior materials, unusual textures, and classic compositions,” as well as “bold architectural features” and “an elegant mix of materials including refined metal screens, warm woods, and organic marbles.”

You’ll get to see Kravitz’s designs when The Queen Latifah Show premieres on September 16 on CBS.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio

Wednesday
Jun122013

Beyonce Launches Limited-Edition Heat Fragrance

Facebook.com/BeyonceParfumsBeyonce has a new release -- but, sorry, it's not a new single.  She's launched a limited-edition version of her Heat fragrance, celebrating her The Mrs. Carter Show world tour.

"I love my music, I love performing, and most of all, I love and appreciate my fans," Beyonce says in a statement. "I wanted to give them a special remembrance of this tour, and I created this scent to reflect the power, passion, and playfulness I put into my performances."

The Mrs. Carter Show-inspired perfume combines the scents of mangosteen, jasmine, brassia edua loo orchid and vanilla.  The fruity, floral fragrance is packaged in a -- surprise, surprise -- blue bottle.  You can find Bey's latest release at Macy's and macys.com later this month, according to InStyle.com.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio

Wednesday
Jun122013

Demi Lovato's Birthday Wish: A Barbie Doll That Looks Like a Real Girl -- Her

Credit: RankinDemi Lovato will celebrate a milestone birthday on August 20: she'll turn 21.  And she already has a very special birthday gift in mind.

"1 of my biggest dreams, having collected Barbies since I was a kid, is to have my own Barbie," Demi tweeted.  But the singer doesn't just want a Barbie doll with a face that looks like hers.  No, she wants one with "my actual body type...Weight & height" she continued.

Then, Demi issued a call to her fans, the Lovatics, to tweet the official Barbie account and "make it happen!"  "That would be one dope 21st birthday! Hahaha," she continued. "Also, Barbie should make dolls with cellulite! After all, around 95% of ALL women have it!"

Her fans immediately sprang into action, tweeting the Barbie account with messages like, "come on give a barbie that is actually her body type :) show girls all over the world what healthy looks like!!" and "A Barbie that is proportional to would be an amazing thing for every girl who has ever had an eating disorder."

Stay tuned...maybe Demi will get her birthday wish after all.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio

Wednesday
Jun122013

Goo Goo Dolls Were Determined to Have Fun on New Album "Magnetic"

Credit: Chapman BaehlerEven hardcore Goo Goo Dolls fans would admit that the band's last album, Something for the Rest of Us, was something of a downer.  But the band is back with a new, upbeat attitude on their new disc, Magnetic, which is in stores now. 

"I just wanted to write an album that was gonna be fun," frontman Johnny Rzeznik tells ABC News Radio, explaining why the new album is so much happier than the last one.  "I was determined that I was gonna actually enjoy myself writing and recording this album.  So, we made the right decisions about things this time.  We learned from the mistakes of our last album."

Among those decisions was Johnny's choice to co-write songs with several different writers, and for the band to work with a variety of producers.  "I wanted to get a lot of other people's opinions about what we were doing and, and sort of bounce ideas back and forth so that there was a fresh perspective coming in the room every few days," explains Johnny. "It worked out really, really well."

The Goo Goo Dolls will be taking their joyous new songs on the road this summer with Matchbox Twenty: a joint tour kicks off June 25.  This is the first time the two acts have ever toured together, as surprising as that seems.  "Yeah, we can't [believe it] either," says bass player Robby Takac.  "But I'm actually kinda glad that, that we waited 'til now to do it.  It seems like this was like a great time to pair these two bands up."

He adds, "The response from the press and the ticket sales have been really great.  So, it's gonna be a really great summer for us."  It'll definitely be a great summer for Johnny Rzeznik: he plans on getting married to his longtime girlfriend in the middle of it.

And speaking of girls, who's the girl on the cover of Magnetic wearing an army helmet and holding what looks like a match between her teeth?  "The woman on the front cover just was, like, a very cool image," laughs Johnny. "That's really pretty much it." He adds, "I dunno, we've always had pretty good luck whenever we've had an interesting woman on the cover of our albums, so I'm hoping that our luck continues with this particular one."

Johnny's right: their 1998 album Dizzy Up the Girl had an unusual picture of a woman on the cover, and it was their big breakthrough, producing a string of hits, like "Slide," "Black Balloon" and, of course, "Iris."

As for the title of the album, that doesn't mean anything either: Johnny says the word "just kinda came out of my mouth" when his manager called him and demanded that he choose a title, and insisted that it be one word.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio

Wednesday
Jun122013

Graham Nash Lines Up Solo US Tour in September

Photo: Eleanor Stills2013 is turning out to be quite a busy year for Graham Nash.  In addition to his previously announced European tour dates with Crosby, Stills & Nash in June, July and August, the singer now has scheduled a series of rare solo concerts in September.  The shows, dubbed "An Evening with Graham Nash," will run from a September 11 performance in Burlington, Vermont, through a September 29 appearance in Tarrytown, New York.

Nash will be accompanied by two members of CSN's touring group, keyboardist James Raymond and guitarist Shane Fontayne.  All of the dates will take place on the East Coast.

"The chance to play my songs with two such great musicians is thrilling to me," says Graham in a statement.  "I don't do this often and I'm so looking forward to the tour.  A splendid time is guaranteed for all."

Pre-sale tickets for the shows will be available at GrahamNash.com starting Wednesday at 10 a.m. local time, while general-public tickets for some of the dates will go on sale this weekend.  For each ticket purchased to his solo gigs, Nash will donate $1 to charity.

The solo outing will coincide with the release of Nash's autobiography, Wild Tales: A Rock & Roll Life, which will be published on September 24.  Fans purchasing pre-sale tickets will have the chance to pre-order the book at Graham's website for the discounted price of $24.80.

Here are all of Nash's confirmed tour dates:

9/11 -- Burlington, VT, Flynn Center for the Performing Arts
9/12 -- Concord, NH, Capitol Center
9/14 -- Munhall, PA, Carnegie Music Hall of Homestead
9/15 -- Alexandria, VA, Birchmere
9/18 -- Boston, MA, Wilbur Theatre
9/19 -- New Haven, CT, Shubert Theater
9/21 -- Atlantic City, NJ, Golden Nugget
9/22 -- Westbury, NY, Theatre at Westbury
9/24 -- New York, NY, City Winery
9/25 -- New York, NY, City Winery
9/28 -- Wilmington, DE, Grand Opera House
9/29 -- Tarrytown, NY, Tarrytown Music Hall

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio

Wednesday
Jun122013

Country Star Trivia 

Comstock/ThinkstockWhich member of Florida Georgia Line hails from Ormond, FL? ANSWER: Brian Kelley.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio

Wednesday
Jun122013

More Big Names Set to Be Announced for Pepsi Gulf Coast Jam

Gulf Coast JamToby Keith, Brantley Gilbert, Trace Adkins, Kip Moore and Eli Young Band have already signed on to perform at the Pepsi Gulf Coast Jam this September, and even more big names will be announced this week. Festival organizers are hosting a Google Hangout Wednesday at 12:30 p.m. ET, and you can watch it all happen at GulfCoastJam.com/Media.

A few of the artists joining the bill will perform as part of the Hangout. The Pepsi Gulf Coast Jam takes place in Panama City Beach, FL September 26 through 28.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio

Wednesday
Jun122013

James Murphy Says Arcade Fire’s Next Album Will Be “Fantastic”

Merge Records/Anton CorbijnFor months now, Arcade Fire has been slowly crafting their follow-up to their 2010 Grammy-winning album The Suburbs. Former LCD Soundsystem frontman James Murphy, who is helping to produce the upcoming release, says he feels good about what they’ve recorded so far.

“The album is going great,” he tells the U.K. newspaper the Daily Star. “I’m too in the middle of it to know which way it will go in the end. But it’s going to be a fantastic record.”

Murphy adds that his approach to producing the record is anything but traditional. “They are so good they could produce themselves, so my role in the band depends on the song,” he explains. “Sometimes I’m going around making suggestions and playing instruments, other times I’m just helping the arrangements.”

A title and release date for Arcade Fire’s fourth studio album has yet to be announced.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio

Wednesday
Jun122013

Five Finger Death Punch Previews New Track, “You,” from Upcoming Double Album

Prospect ParkLess than a week after unveiling a snippet of “Dot Your Eyes,” a cut from the first installment of The Wrong Side of Heaven and the Righteous Side of Hell, Five Finger Death Punch is now offering a preview of another new track.  On Monday, the group posted a 36-second snippet of “You,” which will be available on the upcoming release.

The Wrong Side of Heaven and the Righteous Side of Hell Volume 1 will arrive at all the usual outlets on July 30 and will be available in a variety of formats, including standard and deluxe digital versions and a limited-edition box set. All versions will include the standard album, while the deluxe edition will include a 15-track live CD, PURGATORY [Tales from the Pit].  The limited-edition box set includes everything from the deluxe edition, along with a 5FDP lunch box and a free download of an exclusive new track from the upcoming release.

You can pre-order the deluxe edition of The Wrong Side of Heaven and the Righteous Side of Hell on iTunes starting June 18, but if you buy the physical version, you’ll get a limited-edition t-shirt.  The box set will also be available for pre-order on the group’s website the same day.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio

Wednesday
Jun122013

Black Sabbath Celebrates Release of New Album, "13"; Ozzy Praises Producer Rick Rubin

Vertigo/RepublicMore than 34 years after Black Sabbath last released a full-length studio effort with singer Ozzy Osbourne, the band is back with a brand-new album, 13.  The eight-song collection is packed with the heavy, infectious riffs and melodic vocals the rockers' fans have come to worship.

To celebrate the arrival of 13, Black Sabbath hosted a special "Town Hall" event that was streamed live over the Internet on Tuesday.  Osbourne and founding Sabbath bassist Geezer Butler took part in the festivities live from New York City, while guitarist Tony Iommi participated via satellite from Birmingham, England.

The album features songs that hearken back to the Rock and Roll Hall of Famers' classic sound, albeit with a modern dynamic sheen, courtesy in large part of Grammy-winning producer Rick Rubin.

Speaking before the event, Osbourne says he was very pleased with how the album came out, and praised Rubin for the way he helped the band creatively.

Osbourne recalled, "Rick Rubin was a really good guy to have do the album, 'cause he'd had a plan for it for a long time.  And, when we were writing it, coming into the studio and he'd say, 'I like that one, I'm not so sure about that one,' he guided us in the right way."

Osbourne said the band turned out a finished product of which he is proud. Calling 13 a "good all-around album," he noted, "I always felt when I left Sabbath in 1979 it wasn't a finished thing, you know? So, if for whatever reason we never do an album again, this album is going to round it off nicely. But...I'm not opposing another album."

Osbourne emphasized that he was clean in the studio as he worked on 13, despite his admission in April that he drank alcohol and took drugs during the previous year and a half. Osbourne insisted, "I've been clean and sober for about three or four months. I never let it affect my work."

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio

Wednesday
Jun122013

"The Voice" Recap: Swon Brothers, Danielle, Michelle Advance to Finals

NBCOnly three artists remain on The Voice following Tuesday night's results show, and two of them belong to Blake Shelton's team.

The Swon Brothers and 16-year-old Danielle Bradbery of Team Blake advanced to next week's finals, as did Michelle Chamuel of Team Usher.

Gone from the competition: Sasha Allen of Team Shakira, and Amber Carrington of Team Adam Levine.

The final performance show of the season will air next Monday night on NBC. The winner will be crowned the following night.

Tuesday's program was filled with musical guests -- especially familiar faces from past seasons. Tony Lucca, a second runner-up for Adam on season two, performed his single "Never Gonna Let You Go"; third-season finalist Nicholas David, a protégé of Cee Lo Green, played his song "Say Goodbye"; and season-three runner-up Terry McDermott, a former member of Team Blake, performed his single, "Pictures."

In addition, Michelle Chamuel joined Fall Out Boy for their hit, "My Songs Know What You Did in the Dark (Light Em Up)." And all of the finalists teamed up for a rendition of the Poison classic "Every Rose Has Its Thorn."

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio

Wednesday
Jun122013

BET Awards '13 Adds Performer; Music Matters Lineup Announced

Facebook.com/KendrickLamarMusicKendrick Lamar will take the stage at this year's BET Awards '13, joining previously announced performer Chris Brown.  The star-studded event takes place at the Nokia Theatre in Los Angeles on Sunday, June 30 at 8 p.m. ET/PT, and will air live on BET.

Ahead of the big show, Ray J will host the BET Awards Nomination Special: The Chosen, airing Wednesday, June 19th at 7:30 p.m. ET/PT.  Ray will be chatting with some of this year's nominees, and he'll make a surprise announcement about the BET Awards '13 show.

On top of that, the performance schedule for the all-new BET Experience at L.A. Live showcase has been revealed.  The fun gets under way Friday, June 28, with New Orleans-based lyricists The Rap Pack, hitting the Music Matters stage.  BJ The Chicago Kid, Kimberly Nichole, PJ Morton, Big K.R.I.T. and Mali Music will also perform that night.  On Saturday, June 29, the lineup includes Elijah Blake, Mateo, Jessy Wilson, Austin Brown, Ab-SoulRaVaughn, Bridget Kelly and Marsha Ambrosius.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio

Wednesday
Jun122013

Nashville Notes 

Burke/Triolo Productions/ThinkstockTaylor Swift has released the title track from her multi-platinum album, RED, as her new single to country radio.

Florida Georgia Line celebrated their latest #1 hit, "Get Your Shine On," with a private party at Sambuca in Nashville earlier this week.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio

Wednesday
Jun122013

Michael Cera on Being Smacked by Rihanna in "This Is the End": "It Looks Really Good, I Think"

PR NewswireBeyonce fans recently saw what happened to the guy who slapped her on the butt during a recent concert: she threatened to have him ejected from the show.  But when the same thing happens to Rihanna in the new comedy This Is the End, she takes matters into her own hands.

In the new R-rated comedy, in theaters Wednesday, many of Hollywood's top stars portray themselves, including Rihanna, who's seen at a raging party at James Franco's house.  During the party, a drugged-up, out-of-control Michael Cera, also playing himself, slaps Rihanna's booty -- and she responds by cursing, hauling off and smacking him.  And Cera, best known for his roles in Juno and Superbad, tells ABC News Radio that he encouraged her to hit him, well, super-hard.

While filming the scene, "she was not hitting me at first," Cera recalls.  But then, he says, "I told her I was gonna hit her harder and harder until she really hit me hard --because she hits me as a reaction to me smacking her bum.  So finally, she gave me a real one, and it looks really good, I think." 

But Rihanna's triumph is short-lived: not long afterwards, the end of the world arrives -- for real -- and she plunges to her death in an enormous hole that opens up in Franco's front yard.   Oh, and don't complain about spoilers: that scene was in the movie's trailer.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio

Wednesday
Jun122013

Stevie Nicks & Sheryl Crow: It's So Hard for Us to Meet Guys!

Rick Diamond/WireImageStevie Nicks and Sheryl Crow are both rich, famous, beautiful rock stars, but that doesn't mean it's easy for them to get a date.  The two women are friends, and they tell New York magazine that they often commiserate about how difficult it is to meet men.

"Like I'm gonna go to a bar!" laughs Stevie. "And hang out? I mean, where am I gonna meet somebody?”  And even if they do meet a man, Sheryl says, he may not want to deal with their fame. "Relationships are hard enough, but to be a strong woman who’s also in front of a large audience of people who are trying to connect with you -- it’s threatening," she says.

Stevie tells the magazine that she and Sheryl actually joke around about the kinds of videos they'd record for a matchmaking service if they decided to go to those lengths to find a guy.  Describing one, Stevie says, "Hi! My name is Stevie Nicks, and I’m looking for somebody that is no more than five years older than me. Please no health problems, no diabetes, no heart disease, no gout, please, no bipolar; if you’re on an antidepressant, not good."

"When we were really young, it was a lot easier," the Fleetwood Mac frontwoman explains. "Because we were crazy...We moved fast and furiously in those days, and I had lots of boyfriends and lots of amazing relationships and lots and lots of fun."  And now?  Stevie says, "If that special man walked into my life, I’m the first one to say I would probably pack my bags and go with him. But it’s a very elusive thing.”

That's not to say that Stevie regrets her single life.  "Most women would not be happy being me,” she tells the magazine.  “People say, ‘But you’re alone.’ But I don’t feel alone. I feel very un-alone. I feel very sparkly and excited about everything...Because I’ll never be alone. I’ll always be surrounded by people."

"I’m like the crystal ball and these are all the rings of Saturn around me," she adds.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio

Wednesday
Jun122013

Drummer Nathan Followill Says Kings of Leon Felt "No Pressure" While Recording "Mechanical Bull"

RCA RecordsKings of Leon are set to drop their sixth studio album, Mechanical Bull, on September 24.  Drummer Nathan Followill says that the band enjoyed making the upcoming release, noting that they felt “no pressure” during the recording process.

“We weren't coming off the heels of a multi-Grammy winning, multi-million selling record,” he tells MTV News.  “It was fun just to get back in there and everybody have a creative say-so, and just start from scratch.  And the result is this new record."

Followill adds that fans shouldn’t have any preconceived notions about the upcoming album. "I think a lot of people were expecting a minivan record [because] our wives are all soccer moms, and we're just out with the kids," he explains.  But, he says, the band members didn't worry about anyone's expectation but their own.  "And that's when it really does feel good, when you go to bed at night knowing you made the record you wanted to make.”

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio

Wednesday
Jun122013

New Beach Boys Box Set to Cap Off Band's 50th Anniversary Celebrations

Capitol/UMeBeach Boys fans soon will be able to get their hands on a new six-CD compilation from the band offering a multitude of unreleased tracks along with dozens of classic hits.  Made in California is due out on August 27, and is being released to mark the end of the group's 50th anniversary celebrations.

The collection will be packaged in a hardcover book designed to resemble a high-school yearbook.  The set will feature personal memories from the surviving Beach Boys, archival photos, replicas of various collectible items and handwritten messages from band members Brian Wilson, Mike Love, Al Jardine, Bruce Johnston and David Marks.  It also will include a facsimile of a 1959 high-school essay penned by Brian in which he declares that he plans to "make a name for myself in my life's work, which I hope will be music."

Speaking of music, Made in California will contain more than seven-and-a-half hours of Beach Boys recordings, spanning their entire half-century career.  The unreleased material includes demos, outtakes, alternate takes, mono mixes, updated mixes, concert performances and more.  The retrospective's sixth CD, titled From the Vaults, is made up entirely of rarities, including early radio spots, isolated tracks from the Smile sessions and 1964 live performances from the BBC.

And, of course, there are the hits -- from "Surfin' U.S.A." and "Surfer Girl" to "California Girls" and "Good Vibrations" on to later hits like "Kokomo."  Also featured are a couple of tunes from the band's 2012 reunion album, That's Why God Made the Radio.

"This box set captures the evolution of a dream which started with a family singing Everly Brothers songs around a piano, to creating the harmonies that fans would carry in their hearts for a lifetime," says Mike Love in a statement.  "I'm still floored that our stories continue to inspire new generations to catch a wave and ride it is long as it lasts."

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio