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HEAR THIS HOUR'S UPDATE

Friday
Aug162013

Miley Cyrus Announces Release Date for New Album

Facebook.com/MileyCyrusWithout much fanfare, Miley Cyrus has announced the release date for her new album, Bangerz.

She's simply tweeted, "#BANGERZ #Oct8th."

Miley used Twitter earlier this month to announce the album title. She wrote then, "If you don't know why my record is called BANGERZ you'll know as soon as you hear it. Nothin but #BANGERZ."

We're still waiting for Miley to reveal the track listing for Bangerz.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio

Friday
Aug162013

Robin Thicke Suing to Protect "Blurred Lines"

Facebook.com/RobinThickeRobin Thicke, Pharrell Williams and Clifford Harris, Jr. -- the men behind the smash hit "Blurred Lines" -- are legally trying to head off a lawsuit that claims the song borrows heavily from two funk classics.

According to The Hollywood Reporter, the trio filed its own suit against the family of Marvin Gaye and Bridgeport Music, which owns the rights to some tracks from Funkadelic -- in case either or both sue to claim "Blurred Lines" was ripped off from either Gaye's "Got to Give It Up" and/or Funkadelic's "Sexy Ways." Both parties have claimed "Blurred Lines" shares similarities with the aforementioned tracks.

The suit, filed in Los Angeles District Court Thursday, states in part, "Plaintiffs, who have the utmost respect for and admiration of Marvin Gaye, Funkadelic and their musical legacies, reluctantly file this action in the face of multiple adverse claims...that plaintiffs' massively successful composition, 'Blurred Lines,' copies 'their' compositions."

The lawsuit declares, "Plaintiffs created a hit and did it without copying anyone else's composition."

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio

Friday
Aug162013

Debbie Rowe Back on the Stand in Jackson Wrongful Death Trial

MichaelJackson.comDebbie Rowe, Michael Jackson's ex-wife and the mother of his two oldest children, was back on the stand Thursday in Los Angeles at the Jackson wrongful death trial.

While sobbing on the witness stand, Rowe talked about her daughter Paris Jackson's recent suicide attempt. She said that since the singer died, Paris hasn't felt like she has a life anymore. 

Rowe also told the jury Michael was very shy and was embarrassed by his skin condition, vitiligo.  She said he decided to depigment his skin because he could not find decent makeup to cover up patches where his skin was losing pigment.

Michael's mother, Katherine Jackson, is suing AEG Live, the concert promoter behind his aborted This Is It tour.  She claims AEG contributed to her son's death by hiring Dr. Conrad Murray, who was convicted of involuntary manslaughter in Michael's June 2009 death for giving Michael an overdose of the powerful anesthetic propofol.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio

Friday
Aug162013

Russell Simmons Apologizes for Harriet Tubman Video

RushCommunications.comRussell Simmons has apologized for a video posted on his YouTube channel that depicted famed abolitionist Harriet Tubman making a sex tape.

In the video, an actress plays Tubman, who has sex with her white slave master in an attempt to blackmail him. It didn't take long for the backlash to grow on Twitter.

In a statement posted on GlobalGrind.com, Simmons notes that at the request of the NAACP, he agreed to remove the video from his All Def Digital YouTube channel.

Simmons continues, "My first impression of the Harriet Tubman piece was that it was about what one of [the] actors said in the video, that 162 years later, there’s still tremendous injustice. And with Harriet Tubman outwitting the slave master? I thought it was politically correct. Silly me. I can now understand why so many people are upset. I have taken down the video. Lastly, I would never condone violence against women in any form, and for all of those I offended, I am sincerely sorry."

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio

Thursday
Aug152013

Ne-Yo Talks Fostering a Legacy Benefit, Says His Mom Encouraged Him to Give Back

Photo by Simon Russell/WireImage for Malibu Red

This year, Ne-Yo's charity, the Compound Foundation, will celebrate five years of encouraging the strength and creativity of youth in foster care. He is humbled by the progress he's made so far with his organization, which donates thousands of toys to kids across the country and also provides studios and recording equipment to group homes through its Group Home Studio project.

The singer tells ABC News Radio why it was so important not to ignore the little voice in his head that told him to always give back.

"My mom always told me that you are giving blessings to be a blessing," he said.  "You know, so I knew I wanted to give back.  I just didn't know how or what I wanted to do.  That's when my manager brought to my attention child welfare kids in foster care, kids in group homes, things of that nature."

Ne-Yo's organization not only raises funds to give back to foster youth, but he also wants to make sure that everyone in the foster system is truly aware of their worth and potential. He explained why it was crucial to encourage them to pursue their passions in life.

"They feel like their circumstance is what defines them, so that's where the Compound Foundation steps in -- to let these kids know that that's not the case," he said. "Where you come from and where you go don't have nothing to do with each other."

This weekend, Ne-Yo is excited to take part in the Compound Foundation's annual Foster a Legacy event, which shines a light on exemplary individuals for their leadership in the adoption community.

The second annual benefit will honor Academy Award-winning actor Louis Gossett Jr., who is an adoptive father, and celebrity photographer Johnny Nunez, who grew up in the foster care system, for their efforts in adoption and community work.

As previously reported, the event takes place Saturday, August 17, in East Hampton, New York. It will be hosted by comedian Kevin Hart and will include a special musical performance by Estelle.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio

Thursday
Aug152013

Jake Owen Slides on Medical Glove to Protect Injured Fingers During Afternoon Water Ski Run

Twitter.com/JakeOwenJake Owen's fingers are still healing from that go-cart wreck earlier this summer, but that didn't stop him from hitting the Ohio River Thursday.  Jake slid on a medical glove and what he calls "finger condoms" for a little skiing on the water.  After the ride, Jake tweeted, "I love my life. Good friends. Good Times. Beer. Well said."

Jake sings about these kind of sun-soaked afternoons on the water in his new single "Days of Gold."  It's the title cut of his upcoming album, due out December 3.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio

Thursday
Aug152013

The Who Won't Sue One Direction over Similarities Between "Baba O'Riley" and Boy Band's Hit "Best Song Ever" 

GeffenA rumor recently started online -- and was later fueled by the British press -- claiming that The Who is planning to sue U.K. boy band One Direction over their hit "Best Song Ever," because its intro is similar to the rock legend's classic 1971 tune "Baba O'Riley."  However, Who guitarist/songwriter Pete Townshend says he's a fan of the young group, and doesn't mind the similarity at all.

In a statement to Uncut magazine, Townshend emphatically denied that he'd consider suing over the song, and added, "I like the single.  I like One Direction.  The chords I used and the chords they used are the same three chords we've all been using in basic pop music since Buddy Holly, Eddie Cochran and Chuck Berry made it clear that fancy chords don't mean great music -- not always."

Townshend went on to say, "I'm still writing songs that sound like 'Baba O'Riley' -- or I'm trying to!  It's a part of my life and a part of pop's lineage.  One Direction are in my business, with a million fans, and I'm happy to think they may have been influenced a little bit by The Who."  Townshend then joked that he's "relieved" that the members of One Direction aren't copying The Who's fashion styles from the sixties and seventies.

It should be noted that the guys in One Direction didn't even write "Best Song Ever," so they had nothing to do with the musical similarities between the two songs.  The song's producer told MTV, "At a certain point we recognized it had the same type of intro, where there's a synth and a piano, but we really tried to make sure that there was no intellectual property stolen or anything like that."

Meanwhile, whether or not "Baba O'Riley" was the inspiration for "Best Song Ever," The Who have indeed influenced One Direction, at least in some way.  The group's Niall Horan is a massive fan, and was even spotted in the audience when The Who performed in New York City last fall.  He often wears a Who T-shirt as well.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio

Thursday
Aug152013

Kelly Clarkson Headed Back to High School to Perform for Safe Teen Drivers

Jill Greenberg/RCA RecordsHigh schoolers, listen up! Kelly Clarkson could be coming to your school for a free concert if you promise to be careful behind the wheel. She's teamed up with State Farm for their Celebrate My Drive program, which asks teens to make a commitment to safe driving.

“I am excited to be a part of the Celebrate My Drive program, and to have the opportunity to positively influence thousands of teens,” Kelly says. “This program gives me the platform to engage with my fans in a unique way, and I look forward to working alongside State Farm to make a difference.”

School administrators must register their schools for the program at CelebrateMyDrive.com before October 17. Starting October 18, teens, their parents and community members can make commitments to safe driving. Schools with the most commitments have a chance to win either a cash grant or the private concert from Kelly.

The Celebrate My Drive program coincides with the U.S. National Teen Driver Safety Week, October 20 through 26.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio

Thursday
Aug152013

Martina McBride Bringing Christmas Cheer to Nashville's Ryman Auditorium December 4

Photo Credit: Randee St. NicholasMartina McBride didn't get to play Nashville on her Joy of Christmas tour last year, so she's reviving the show for one night only at the Ryman Auditorium on Wednesday, December 4. Martina and her 12-piece band will take the audience through a full set of Christmas classics, including the whimsical "You're a Mean One, Mr. Grinch" from How the Grinch Stole Christmas.

Martina says, "I'm really looking forward to bringing the show to my hometown and especially excited to be playing the Ryman again. I love performing there!"

Tickets for Martina's Joy of Christmas show at the Ryman go on sale Friday morning through Ticketmaster.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio

Thursday
Aug152013

Mark Tremonti, Dee Snider Featured on Leslie West's New Solo Album, "Still Climbing"

Provogue Records/Mascot Label GroupCreed/Alter Bridge guitarist Mark Tremonti and Twisted Sister’s Dee Snider are among the artists featured on Mountain frontman Leslie West’s upcoming album, Still Climbing, due October 29.

The 11-song collection is a sequel to West's star-studded 2011 album, Unusual Suspects, which included guest appearances by Slash, ZZ Top's Billy Gibbons and longtime Ozzy Osbourne guitarist Zakk Wylde, among others. 

"What's different on Still Climbing is that I wanted my guitars to sound as big as I look," quips West.  To achieve this, Leslie says he used four of his Dean Signature guitars, played them through his Blackstar amps "and turned them up loud and raw."

Tremonti offers up some riffs for new track "Dyin' Since the Day I Was Born," while Snider appears on a cover of "Feeling Good" by late British actor-singer Anthony Newley.

Here is the complete track list for Still Climbing:

"Dyin' Since the Day I Was Born" (with Mark Tremonti)
"Busted, Disgusted or Dead" (with Johnny Winter)
"Fade into You"
"Not over You at All"
"Tales of Woe"
"Feeling Good" (with Dee Snider)
"Hatfield or McCoy"
"When a Man Loves a Woman (with Jonny Lang)
"Long Red"
"Don't Ever Let Me Go" (with Dylan Rose)
"Rev Jones Time (Somewhere over the Rainbow)"

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio

Thursday
Aug152013

Cold War Kids to Release "Tuxedos" EP; Previews Single "Pine St."

Downtown RecordsGood news for Cold War Kids fans: the band has just announced that they’ll be releasing a new digital EP next month.

Titled Tuxedos, the upcoming release features two tracks previously unreleased in the U.S. -- "Romance Languages #2" and "Pine St.” -- as well as covers of Antony and The Johnsons’ "Aeon" and The Band’s "You Don't Come Through.” The set also features an alternative version of "Bottled Affection" from Cold War Kids' latest release, Dear Miss Lonelyhearts.    

To give you an idea of what you can expect from Tuxedos, the band has posted a stream of “Pine St.” on their Soundcloud page.

Tuxedos is scheduled to arrive at all the usual digital outlets on September 17. Here's the track list:

“Tuxedos”
“Aeon”
“Bottled Affected (Cathedral Version)”
“Romance Languages #2”
“Pine St.”
“You Don't Come Through”

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio

Thursday
Aug152013

Chris Brown's Hit-and-Run Case Dismissed

Facebook.com/ChrisBrown

Chris Brown has caught a break in the hit-and-run case stemming from a car accident this past May.

According to TMZ, the case was dismissed earlier today after Brown and the other driver reached an agreement, with the other driving seeking no money, because the damage was minor, and wanting the case to be dismissed.

Despite the agreement, the Los Angeles City Attorney sought to punish the singer, arguing that Brown had been aggressive toward the other driver and that he deserved punishment because at the time of the accident he was on probation for assaulting then-girlfriend Rihanna in 2009

But despite the City Attorney's argument the judge dismissed the case.

The singer's lawyer, Mark Geragos, tells the gossip site, "The case never should have been filed in the first place.  It's unfortunate he was being prosecuted for who he is rather than what he's done."

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio

Thursday
Aug152013

Ariana Grande & Austin Mahone to Perform on MTV VMA Pre-Show

Facebook.com/ArianaGrandeTwo of this year's hottest young artists have been tapped to perform during the MTV VMA pre-show festivities later this month.

Ariana Grande and Austin Mahone will both be on hand outside Brooklyn, New York's Barclays Center for the hour-long pre-show on Sunday, August 25, which kicks off at 8 p.m. ET/PT.   Ariana will perform her hits "The Way" and "Baby I," and in a statement, she says, "Having grown up watching the VMAs, it's a surreal thrill to be performing on the stage. I can't wait." Ariana will co-host MTV's 10 on Top this Saturday.

As for Austin, he'll perform his single "What About Love," but even more exciting, he's actually a nominee: he's up for the VMA Artist to Watch trophy.  In a statement, he says, "I am so excited to be a part of this year's VMAs.  To be nominated for the first time this year was amazing enough, but to now actually be performing for the VMAs, it's literally a dream come true." 

In addition to his duties the night of the show, Austin will perform a special concert on August 24, the day before, as part of a week-long series of free VMA-themed shows that will take place throughout New York and Brooklyn.  That same night, he'll also co-host MTV's 10 on Top.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio

Thursday
Aug152013

Katy Perry Scolds Australian Politician for Not Supporting Gay Marriage

Facebook.com/KatyPerryWhen Katy Perry called into an Australian radio station this week, she probably didn't think she'd be engaging in a civil rights discussion with a top politician.

While Katy was on the phone with Australia's 2DayFM to talk about her new single "Roar," the station connected her with Tony Abbott, the leader of Australia's Liberal Party, who may be elected prime minister in that country's upcoming election, which takes place on September 7.  Abbott gushed about how much his daughters loved Katy's music, and then asked her when she'd be coming to Australia.

"Ah, c'mon that's not a political question, let's talk about gay marriage!" Katy replied.  When Abbott noted that all of sudden, Katy seemed to be interviewing him, she exclaimed, "Yeah, buddy, that's right! Love is equal! Whoo-hoo! "

When the 2DayFM host explained that Abbott was not a supporter of gay marriage -- something Katy was likely well aware of before the call was connected -- Katy replied, "Yeah, well, um, I love you as a human being, but I can't give you my vote, then."  She added, "I still wanna meet your daughters!"

Of course, the point is moot, since Katy can't vote in Australia...she's not a citizen.  The current prime minister of Australia, Abbott's opponent, has vowed to introduce a bill legalizing gay marriage if he's re-elected.

Abbott then said he was interested in using Katy's song "Hot 'N Cold" as his campaign song, leading the singer to laugh, "I don't know if that's the best song we can pick for a politician!"  She ended the call by saying she'd like to have lunch with Abbott when she comes to Australia later this year.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio

Thursday
Aug152013

The Band Perry, Cassadee Pope and More Playing Boston Fundraiser for Wounded Vets

Republic NashvilleThe Band Perry, The Henningsens and Cassadee Pope are set to perform at the Mission Gratitude benefit concert for wounded veterans September 23 at the Symphony Hall in Boston. The show will raise funds for the Red Sox Foundation and Massachusetts General Hospital's Home Base program to support veterans with post-traumatic stress disorder and traumatic brain injuries.

Big & Rich and comedians Sarah Silverman and Darrell Hammond are also on the bill. Go to MissionGratitude.com for more details.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio

Thursday
Aug152013

Memphis and Graceland to Celebrate 60th Anniversary of First Elvis Presley Single in 2014

Business WireElvis Presley's estate is planning a yearlong series of events to mark the 60th anniversary of the recording of the late King of Rock 'n' Roll's first official single, "That's All Right."  On July 5, 1954, Elvis entered Memphis' famed Sun Studio with his band mates -- guitarist Scotty Moore and bassist Bill Black -- and cut an energetic version of the Arthur Crudup-penned tune, an event that many consider to signal the birth of the rock 'n' roll genre.

The festivities will begin on New Year's Eve with the traditional "guitar drop" at the Hard Rock Café on Beale Street.  A 10-foot-long guitar sculpture emblazoned with official "60 Years of Rock 'n' Roll" art will descend 100 feet onto the thoroughfare as the clocks strikes midnight CT.

The anniversary also will be recognized during Presley's annual birthday celebrations, that will take place from January 8 -- the date of Elvis' birth -- through January 11.  Then, on March 3, a new Graceland exhibit will debut focusing on the birth of rock 'n' roll and how Presley has made his mark on musical history and popular culture during the last 60 years.

On July 5, 2014, a worldwide celebration of the 60th anniversary of Presley's landmark "That's All Right" session will take place at Sun Studio. Details about the commemorative event will be announced soon.

To find out more details about the anniversary events, visit Elvis.com/60Years.

Meanwhile, this year's edition of Graceland's annual candlelight vigil marking the anniversary of Presley's death begins today and is expected to run into the early morning hours of tomorrow, August 16.  Fans who can't make it to Memphis to take part in memorial can watch the two hours' worth of the event, which will be streamed live on YouTube starting at 8 p.m. CT.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio

Thursday
Aug152013

Wiz Khalifa Debuts Converse Chuck Taylor Fall 2013 Collection

ConverseWiz Khalifa has unveiled his new Converse shoe line, which arrives later this month. The rapper released a video teaser for the sneaker line last month.

The upcoming Fall 2013 Converse Chuck Taylor All Star Wiz Khalifa collection features 12 different styles inspired by the rapper's style.

"I've always gravitated toward Converse because of how solid the brand is. It's clean and it's classic," Wiz Khalifa said in a press release. "I was excited to collaborate with the team at Converse because I felt they really got my individual style and vision. The sneakers in my collection are dope and I'm excited to share them with my fans."

The collaboration is the Pittsburgh native's first ever shoe line. Each pair includes Wiz's signature logo, and prices  range from 60 to 85 dollars.

Consumers will be able to purchase the new line exclusively at Foot Locker, Footaction and Converse Stores beginning August 23. You can check out the full line via Converse.com now.

In related news, Wiz recently concluded his Under the Influence tour on Sunday in Cincinnati. He is currently working on his third studio album Blacc Hollywood, due out later this year.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio

Thursday
Aug152013

Cream Drummer Ginger Baker to Play Series of NYC Club Shows This Fall

GingerBaker.comLegendary Cream drummer Ginger Baker will return to the U.S. for the first time in several years for a series of fall performances at New York City's famous jazz club The Iridium.  The 73-year-old Rock and Roll Hall of Famer will play a five-night stand at the venue, stretching from October 9 to October 13.

Baker will play two shows each night, at 8 p.m. and 10 p.m. ET.  Tickets cost $50 for general admission and $60 for preferred seating.

The engagement will mark the first time Baker has performed in the States since the release of Beware of Mr. Baker, the critically acclaimed 2012 documentary about his life.  The movie takes a candid and fascinating look at the drummer's turbulent life, volatile personality and influential and varied musical career. In addition to personal conversations with Baker, the movie features interviews with a wide variety of other rock stars, including his Cream band mates Eric Clapton and Jack Bruce.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio

Thursday
Aug152013

Blink-182’s Travis Barker, Matisyahu Featured on Michelle Obama’s Hip-Hop Album, "Songs for a Healthier America"

Facebook.com/TravisBarkerOfficial; Facebook.com/MatisyahuMichelle Obama has tapped some big names to help her create a new diet-themed, hip-hop compilation titled Songs for a Healthier America. According to The Hollywood Reporter, the 19-track set features guest appearances by a number of musicians, including Blink-182 drummer Travis Barker and Matisyahu on a track called "U R What You Eat."

Billboard reports that Songs for a Healthier America will be available as a free download starting September 30. The disc will help support the first lady’s Let's Move! campaign and encourages kids across the country to eat right and exercise.

Here is the full track list for the album:

"U R What You Eat" featuring Salad Bar (Matisyahu, Ariana Grande, Travis Barker)
"Everybody" featuring Jordin Sparks, Doug E. Fresh, Dr. Oz, Ryan Beatty, Hip Hop MD
"Let’s Move" featuring Doug E. Fresh, Artie Green, Chauncey Hawkins
"Just Believe" featuring Ashanti, Gerry Gunn, Artie Green, Robbie Nova
"Veggie Luv" featuring Monifah and J Rome
"Hip Hop FEET" featuring DMC and Artie Green
"Stronger" featuring Shayna Steele, Jeremy Jordan, Our Time Theater kids, and E Street Band guitarist Nils Lofgren
"Give Myself a Try" featuring Ryan Beatty
"Jump Up" featuring Brady Rymer and the Little band that Could
"Hip Hop LEAN" featuring Artie Green
"Pass the Rock" featuring Iman Schumpert and Artie Green
"Good Living" featuring Ashthon Jones
"Beautiful' featuring Daisy Grant and Artie Green
"Change the Game" featuring The Happiness Club, featuring Naledge
"Wanna Jump (Let’s Move)" featuring Paul Burch
"Mother May I" featuring Amelia Robinson
"We Like Vegetables" featuring Los Barkers!
"Get Up Sit Up" featuring Babi Floyd
"One Step Forward" featuring Samite

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio

Thursday
Aug152013

Miguel Arrested for Driving Under the Influence

Frazer Harrison/Getty Images via ABC

Miguel was arrested early this morning for driving under the influence on a Los Angeles freeway.

According to a public information officer for the California Highway Patrol, the singer was pulled over in Marina Del Rey at around 2:15 a.m. for speeding and tinted windows on his BMW X6.

Public Information Officer Karina Munoz confirmed to KABC-TV that Miguel was given a sobriety test and blew a .10, blood alcohol content, which is above the .08 legal limit in California.  Others in the car were not cited.

Miguel was described as "cooperative" while being arrested for DUI, then booked. Hours later, he was released a on $5,000 bail.

The singer is scheduled to appear in court on September 9.

Miguel's rep has yet to comment on the incident.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio