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Saturday
Jul232016

Linkin Park's Mike Shinoda Offers Thoughts on Chester Bennington's "Kept Metal Alive" Quote

ABC/Randy HolmesLinkin Park frontman Chester Bennington made headlines this week when he said that he believed the band "kept metal alive" with the success of their debut album, 2000's Hybrid Theory. Now, Linkin Park's Mike Shinoda has given his thoughts on what his band mate said.

"He basically said that pop music was ruling the world, and we made a case for (commercially) viable heavy music. NBD," Shinoda writes on Twitter, adding that he thought the quote itself was taken "out of context" by many outlets.

Bennington made the statement in an interview with the U.K.'s Metal Hammer, which asked the vocalist about the people who felt that Linkin Park wasn't a "true" metal band.

"I think that's really funny -- just those words, 'the integrity of metal,'" Bennington said. "In my opinion we actually kept metal alive." He added that many younger bands have credited Linkin Park for getting them into playing music.

"Maybe not the best choice of words, but the sentiment wasn't as outrageous as today's rock news would have you think," Shinoda now says of the quote.

Linkin Park is currently working on their seventh studio album.

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Saturday
Jul232016

"American Idol" Runner-Up's Song to Be Used to Soundtrack US Women's Gymnastics Team 

Scott Kirkland/FoxHey, remember back in 2012, Phillip Phillips' American Idol coronation song "Home" became a big hit when it was used as the theme song for the U.S. women's gymnastics team?  Well, get ready for some deja vu. 

Billboard reports that "Battles," the coronation song from season 15 runner-up La'Porsha Renae will be serving the same purpose this year in Rio.  “I wasn’t even the winner of the show, so I felt very honored to be afforded this opportunity," La'Porsha tells Billboard.

The song will appear on La'Porsha's debut album, which is due this November on Motown.  It ended up in the Olympics because American Idol producer Megan Michaels drew her father's attention to it.  He's the producer for women's gymnastics for NBC.  According to Billboard, the song will be televised at least a dozen times over the 2016 Summer Games in Rio.

"Battles" was written by Who Is Fancy, the pen name of songwriter and artist Jake Hagood, who wrote it after the tragic death of Simone Battles, a former X Factor contestant and member of the group G.R.L.  She took her own life in 2014.

La'Porsha tells Billboard that Fancy wrote the song "from a very sad and deep place," adding, "When people use their hurt and make a triumph in their song, that helps other people."  

She adds, "There was a girl who messaged me and said she was on the verge of taking her life, then 'Battles' came on just in the nick of time.  That's the impact the song has on people, and it ministers to me as well. I love 'Battles,' and I love what it's doing for people.”

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Saturday
Jul232016

Willie's Weed: Coming Soon to Colorado and Washington

Photo credit: Danny Clinch/Courtesy Shock InkIf you live in Washington or Colorado, you’ll soon be able legally to partake of Willie Nelson’s premium brand of cannabis. Willie’s Reserve is expected to be available in select stores in July in Washington, before debuting in Colorado in August.

In a press release that calls the Country Music Hall of Famer “the face of responsible marijuana use in the United States,” Willie says he always knew marijuana would be legalized. He’s just surprised it happened in his lifetime.

“I’ve smoked enough and I want to give back,” he admits candidly. “Now that legalization is spreading across the country, there’s a great opportunity to build a company that can help a lot of people. I hope it gives social justice to those who are incarcerated for doing what we’re now doing legally,” he adds.

To celebrate, Willie will do a show this Saturday at Marymoor Park in Redmond, Washington. He’ll follow with another concert July 30 at Fiddler’s Green Amphitheatre in Greenwood, Colorado.

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Friday
Jul222016

Sting Announces November Release Date for New Rock Album, "57th and 9th"

Frank Ockenfels IIISting has revealed that his recently announced studio album, 57th and 9th, will be released on November 11. A new trailer promoting the record has premiered on YouTube that features footage of the former Police frontman working in the studio and clips of him reflecting on the project.

"There are many different styles on this record," he maintains in the video. "There's a lot of rock 'n' roll, but if there's a lyrical theme that runs through it it's about searching. It's about traveling. It's about the road. It's about that pull of the unknown."

He also notes that he thinks "the album has a spontaneous feel in the way it was made," adding, "It's not that polished. It's played with energy."

In addition, Sting points out that although the material is "energetic and noisy, [it's] also thoughtful."

As the 64-year-old Rock and Roll Hall of Famer told Rolling Stone in a recent interview, 57th and 9th is "rockier than anything I've done in a while." Unidentified music from the album that's heard in the trailer is quite reminiscent of The Police.

Sting winds down his Rock Scissors Paper co-headlining tour with Peter Gabriel with a show this Sunday, July 24, in Edmonton, Canada.

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Friday
Jul222016

Eddie Vedder Rocks with Sting and Peter Gabriel in Seattle 

C Flanigan/Getty ImagesDuring their show at New York City's Madison Square Garden earlier this year, Pearl Jam invited Sting on stage to sing The Police song "Driven to Tears." Now, Eddie Vedder has returned the favor.

During his show in Seattle Thursday night, Sting, who's currently on tour with Peter Gabriel, was joined by the Pearl Jam frontman for another rousing rendition of "Driven to Tears." You can watch fan-filmed footage of the performance now on YouTube.

Not content with just singing with Sting, Vedder also joined Gabriel for a performance of his track "Red Rain." Footage of Vedder and Gabriel together is also streaming on YouTube.

Meanwhile, Pearl Jam's summer tour will continue August 5 and 7 with two shows at Boston's Fenway Park, followed by two shows at Wrigley Field in Chicago on August 20 and 22. On August 27, Vedder will play a one-off solo show at the Ohana Music Festival in California.

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Friday
Jul222016

The Weeknd Performs at Leonardo DiCaprio's Third Annual Foundation Gala

Getty ImagesThe Weeknd has skyrocketed to the A-list. The Canadian singer-songwriter performed at Leonardo DiCaprio's third-annual gala, for the Hollywood actor's Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation, in St. Tropez, France this Wednesday. 

People reported Thursday that fellow recording artists Lana del Rey and Andrea Bocelli also entertained DiCaprio's celebrity guests, who included Mariah CareyChris Rock, actor Jonah Hill and model Joan Smalls.  

The Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation was founded in 1998 to raise research funding for and awareness about issues concerning environmental issues around the globe.  

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Friday
Jul222016

Gucci Mane's New Album Is Now Available

Warner Bros. RecordsIt's been five long years, but Gucci Mane's latest studio album, Everybody Looking, is finally available everywhere today.

Recorded over a period of six days, the album comes after his early release from prison in May and features the hit singles "1st Day Out tha Feds," "Back on Road (Gucci Mane & Drake)" and "All My Children."

"1st Day Out tha Feds" garnered nearly one million SoundCloud plays in the first 12 hours of its debut on May 27. His latest single, "Guwop Home," which features Young Thug, is available to purchase on standard digital streaming platforms and its music video is currently streaming on Mane's YouTube channel.

To commemorate the arrival of Mane's new album, the recording artist has scheduled his first live performance, since leaving prison, for July 22. Called Gucci Mane & Friends, the concert will take place at the Fox Theatre in Atlanta, Georgia and will be streamed live via Revolt TV online at 8 p.m. ET.   

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

 

Friday
Jul222016

Is Jay Z's Next Album Complete?

ABC/Randy HolmesIn a recent interview with Rap Radar, music mogul Jermaine Dupri talked about his relationship with Jay Z, and revealed some exciting news about Hov's forthcoming studio album.

"I've spoken to Hov, even at the Beyonce concert...I know the name of Hov's new album and everything right now," says Dupri. After his interviewers erupt with laughter, Dupri says that the album "might be done."  

"I don't know! I'm saying it might be done," he continues.  

Jay Z's last studio album, Magna Carta Holy Grail, was released in 2013 and topped the Billboard 200 chart.

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.  

 

Friday
Jul222016

John Legend and Chrissy Teigen Take Baby Luna to Romantic "All of Me" House 

ABC/Rick RowellBaby Luna got quite the exclusive tour visit during her vacation with parents John Legend and Chrissy Teigen.

The three-month-old daughter of the celebrity couple is currently spending her first vacation in Italy with Legend and Teigen, who brought Luna to the Lake Como, Italy house where the singer's "All of Me" music video was shot and their love affair began. The singer and model married in the Lombardy region in 2013. 

On Thursday, Legend posted an adorable picture on Instagram of Luna smiling, with the caption "Someone is enjoying her first vacation." To make the special vacation even more memorable, the wedded couple recreated a scene from the music video, which Teigen also posted on Instagram, set to the chorus of "All of Me."  

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Friday
Jul222016

Songbird Serenade: Sia Joins Cast of "My Little Pony: The Movie" 

ABC/Fred LeeSia doesn't like anyone to see her face, so her new acting role is perfect for her: she'll be lending her voice to an animated character.

The "Cheap Thrills" singer will appear in My Little Pony: The Movie as Songbird Serenade, the pony pop star.  She'll also contribute two original songs to the movie's soundtrack. 

Sia's in good company: the cast also includes Orange Is the New Black star Uzo Aduba, Emily Blunt, Kristin Chenoweth, Taye Diggs and Liev SchrieberMy Little Pony: The Movie arrives October 6, 2017.

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Friday
Jul222016

Pink's Duet with Country Superstar Kenny Chesney Out Next Thursday 

Blue Chair Bay/Columbia NashvillePink is going from "Just Like Fire" to "Setting the World on Fire."  That's the name of her duet with country superstar Kenny Chesney, and it'll arrive July 28 at 5 p.m. ET.

Kenny says in a statement, "You can’t conjure a song that captures that feeling of being on the brink [of falling in love] like this does."  He adds, "I like the idea of Pink with her voice that is so strong and contains so many colors... she really makes that idea of giving into your heart, shouting out the window and whirling around in the middle of an abandoned street feel real.”

The duet appears on Kenny's upcoming album Cosmic Hallelujah, which is due this fall.  Pink is just Kenny's latest duet partner: he's also teamed up with Uncle Kracker, singer/songwriter Grace Potter, Dave Matthews and others.

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Friday
Jul222016

British Invasion: Nathan Sykes & Cher Lloyd Back with New Singles

Courtesy of Global EntertainmentNathan Sykes has released the follow-up to "Over and Over Again," his hit duet with his ex-girlfriend, Ariana Grande.

It's called "Give It Up," and it features rapper G-Eazy, the same guy who's featured on Britney Spears' new hit "Make Me."  G-Eazy also had a hit with "Me Myself and I," featuring Bebe Rexha.

Nathan's new single is now available for download and streaming. It's from his debut album, which will arrive this fall.  The former Wanted member will support his new music as the opening act on Alessia Cara's upcoming tour, which kicks off September 29 in Silver Springs, Maryland.

Meanwhile, another young British vocalist has returned: Cher Lloyd, who we last heard on Demi Lovato's single "Really Don't Care."  The "Want U Back" singer has a new single called "Activated," now available via all the usual digital outlets.

In a statement, the former X Factor U.K. finalist says, "I’ve waited two years to have creative control of my own career and finally do things my way. Returning with new music and releasing 'Activated' is such a huge deal for me. I’ve been working hard on new music and I cannot wait to reveal more to you all!"

She adds, "Now I’m ready to roll my sleeves up and show you all what I’m really made of, and to all of you who have stood by me since the start of my career, I promise you, this is just the beginning.”

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Friday
Jul222016

Attention, Sia & Bruno Mars -- Celine Dion's Waiting for You

Jason Merritt/Getty Images via ABCeline Dion is putting out a French language album next month, but she'll soon start work on a new English album -- and she expects all the big-name stars to step up and give her some great songs.

Speaking to Entertainment Weekly about the project, she says, "I can’t really talk about the other writers yet because nothing has been confirmed, but trust me, I hope that Sia and Ne-Yo and Bruno Mars and all the people that we love -- oh my gosh, I hope they write for me. Are you kidding me?" 

Sia and Ne-Yo both wrote songs for Celine's most recent album, Loved Me Back to Life.  In fact, Celine imitated Sia on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon on Thursday night.

Celine adds that she's "freaking out about" the song that Pink wrote for her.  "She’s a genuine person and [it was] so generous of her to take the time to write a song for me during the most difficult time of mine," she explains. "People have a tendency to send me really sad songs, and we do want to sing the touching songs, but life is beautiful."

And hey, maybe Zendaya wants to contribute to Celine's album, too.  She tells People magazine that she's thrilled that Celine admired her red-carpet style so much that the Canadian superstar hired her stylist, Law Roach, to engineer her own high-fashion makeover.

"First of all, just to know that she knows my name is crazy. Also, she slays my life," Zendaya gushes about Celine. "[Law and I] both were freaking out and we were both just like, ‘This is nuts.’ She is goals. So for her to recognize me from fashion because of what he did and what we’ve done together, it was a very surreal awesome moment for both of us.”

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Friday
Jul222016

Jason Aldean on William Michael Morgan: "He Could Be the Dude"

Warner Music NashvilleNewcomer William Michael Morgan is getting high praise from ACM Entertainer of the Year Jason Aldean.

“Just a really, really cool voice, and it’s very country,” Jason says, evaluating WMM’s abilities. “I think it’s really important to have those guys that are the traditionalists, that carry the flag in country music, and after hearing this guy sing I was like, ‘He could be the dude.' I love the song, I love his voice and I hope he does well because I think we need this kind of thing in the format.”

William Michael’s debut single, “I Met a Girl,” which was co-written by Sam Hunt, is currently knocking on the door to the top twenty. He recently shot the cover photo for his full-length debut on Warner Brothers, which should be out later this year.

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Friday
Jul222016

Founding Yes Singer Jon Anderson to Be Honored with 2016 Prog God Award

Courtesy of Prog MagazineEx-Yes frontman Jon Anderson will receive the prestigious Prog God prize at the 2016 Progressive Music Awards, which will take place September 1 at the Underglobe venue in London. The honor acknowledges artists who have been musical innovators throughout their careers.

"After all these years, it's just wonderful to be getting this very special award," Anderson says in a statement. "Music has guided me along to this point in my life and I'm forever excited about the new and progressive musical adventures I am given by the gods of music."

He adds, "Making music is like breathing to me, and I am blessed to be able to create music every day. A very grateful and humble thank you."

In addition to his decades fronting Yes, which he co-founded with the late Chris Squire, Anderson has collaborated with a wide variety of artists over the years. During the year alone, he's released collaborative albums with acclaimed jazz-fusion violinist Jean Luc Ponty and Swedish prog-rock guitarist Roine Stolt, and he will launch a tour later this year as part of the new group ARW with former Yes band mates Rick Wakeman and Trevor Rabin.

Meanwhile, Anderson's recently released record with Stolt, Invention of Knowledge, has been nominated for a 2016 Progressive Music Award in the Album of the Year category. Other artists that will be vying for various awards at the event include Wakeman, David Gilmour, Rush, King Crimson, Peter Gabriel, Tony Banks and Steve Hackett. You can cast your vote for your favorite 2016 Progressive Music Awards nominees at 2016.Prog.Awards.TeamRock.com. The event is organized by the U.K.'s Prog magazine.

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Friday
Jul222016

Rolling Stones Say Trump Used of Their Music During RNC Without Permission

Credit: Claude GassianIn May, The Rolling Stones demanded that Donald Trump stop playing their music at his campaign events, but you can't always get what you want. On Thursday night at the Republican National Convention in Cleveland after Trump gave his acceptance speech as his party's presidential nominee, the band's classic song "You Can't Always Get What You Want" was played at the event.

Now The Stones have issued a statement via their Twitter feed that they "do not endorse Donald Trump," and pointing out that their tune "was used without the band's permission."

The Rolling Stones are one of many artists who have complained about Trump's unauthorized use of their music, including Queen, Neil Young, R.E.M. and The O'Jays.

In other Rolling Stones news, BBC News reports guitarist Keith Richards confirmed during a U.K. radio interview Friday that Eric Clapton did indeed do some recording for the band's upcoming studio album. Richards says his fellow British guitar legend "dropped by for a couple of numbers," during the sessions, which he added made it seem "like old times down in Richmond." The Stones and Clapton's old band The Yardbirds both used to play at the Crawdaddy Club in the Richmond section of London.

In addition, Keith revealed that the new album would be "coming out in the autumn some time," and that it would feature "a lot of Chicago blues."

As for what songs would be featured on the record, Richards said, "The titles I can't reveal at the moment, for the reason that I can't quite remember them and I haven't got a list with me."

Stones guitarist Ronnie Wood first revealed in April at the opening of the group's Exhibitionism exhibit in London that his band had been working on an album featuring various classic blues covers.

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Friday
Jul222016

Celine Dion on Las Vegas: "What Amazes Me Is That I'm Still There" 

Denise TruscelloCeline Dion led the modern revitalization of Las Vegas when she launched her residency at Caesars Palace way back in 2003.  Now, everyone from Elton John to Boyz II Men to Britney Spears has a show, but Celine is sceine till there, packing them in. She says it's something she can hardly believe.

"I thought I was going to do two months, two years, three years [in Vegas]," she tells Entertainment Weekly. "My son R.C., who’s 15 and a half, we celebrated his second birthday there and I’m still performing in Las Vegas....what amazes me is that I’m still there."

She adds, "When I did my first show, everybody thought I was going to end my career there. The Titanic was going to sink a second time. But we focused, we believed and I’m thrilled to still be there because it gives me the best of both worlds: singing and being mommy."

Celine starts the latest leg of her current Vegas show, Celine, in September.  The Canadian diva admits sometimes she gets a little tired of singing her biggest hits night after night, but considers it "a good problem to have."

"Who wants to sing the same song 6,000 times? No one!" she tells EW. "For one second through my mind it’s like, 'Oh gosh, not that song again.' But then I look at them and forget that it’s been 25 years. They make it the first time every night."

As for how Celine's been coping with the loss of her husband, Rene, she tells EW, "I am more than holding up, I have to tell you. My children, my family, my fans night after night -- it feels like it’s not just one thing that’s helping me."

She says of Rene, "I feel that he is inside of us, helping us, [saying] 'Go for it!'"

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Friday
Jul222016

Drake Continues Beef with Joe Budden During Dallas Concert

Dan Martensen/eOne Entertainment GroupDrake did not go home after his Summer Sixteen concert date in Dallas on Thursday night without dissing rapper Joe Budden. "I should have brought Joe Budden up here and let him do 'Pump It Up' one time tonight. Pump, pump, pump it up. F*** them n*****," he is heard saying in a Twitter video posted by DJ Akademiks, mocking Joe's famous 2003 track, "Pump It Up."

Drake's fighting words are part of an ongoing feud between the "One Dance" artist and Budden, which began in April when Budden gave his no-holds-barred opinion of Drake's chart-topping album, Views, on an episode of his I'll Name This Podcast Later show.

"I think that that kid on that album that I heard sounds real f****** uninspired," he said. "For a n**** that is crowned King of Introspection, he's been at the top of this music game for years. What has he told you different from Take Care to this album?" he continued.

After this podcast, Drake fired back on the track "4pm in Calabasas," in which he took shots at Budden, Chris BrownPuffy Daddy and other fellow artists.

Drake is currently on the road for his Summer Sixteen Tour with Future.  

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Friday
Jul222016

John Legend and Chrissy Teigen Take Baby Luna to Romantic "All of Me" House

Trae Patton/CBSBaby Luna got quite the exclusive tour visit during her vacation with parents John Legend and Chrissy Teigen. The three-month-old daughter of the celebrity couple is currently spending her first vacation in Italy with Legend and Teigen, who brought Luna to the Lake Como, Italy house where the singer's "All of Me" music video was shot and their love affair began. The singer and model married in the Lombardy region in 2013. 

On Thursday, Legend posted an adorable picture on Instagram of Luna smiling, with the caption "Someone is enjoying her first vacation." To make the special vacation even more memorable, the wedded couple recreated a scene from the music video, which Teigen also posted on Instagram, set to the chorus of "All of Me."    

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Friday
Jul222016

Five Finger Death Punch Visits the Graves of Lost Rock Icons in "I Apologize" Video

Jason Squires/Getty ImagesFive Finger Death Punch has premiered the video for their track "I Apologize." The clip follows frontman Ivan Moody as he walks through a graveyard and pays tribute to deceased music icons, including Kurt Cobain, Lemmy, Scott Weiland and Layne Staley. You can watch the "I Apologize" video now on YouTube.

Towards the end of the video, Moody begins to dig a grave marked with his own name. Instead of lying down in it himself, however, Moody decides to throw his flask into the grave. Moody has a history of addiction, and recently completed a stint at rehab.

"The video is a dark somber metaphor that speaks for itself," writes Five Finger Death Punch on Facebook. "I don't think we need a parallel narrative to explain it or emphasize its impact as almost everyone knows someone struggling with some form of addiction. It's real for everybody. We have even been losing exceptionally bright, talented people who you'd assume know better. No matter how much support you provide, ultimately it’s everyone's own decision to face their demons or perish."

"I Apologize" appears on Five Finger Death Punch's latest album, Got Your Six. The band will be touring with Shinedown and Sixx:A.M. this fall.

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