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– Some interesting accusations and theories flew around the internets this week regarding the Arcade Fire and their Grammy win being potentially rigged and foreknown, allegedly the reason they received a two-song slot at the close of the ceremony.  Blurt

– Reports have surfaced indicating the new direction for music consumption, as digital downloads expand in file size and quality.  CNN

– Rumors abound about a follow-up release to last week’s Radiohead 8-song release, King Of Limbs.  Sounds like a good idea to me. NME

– 90’s R&B trio Bell Biv DeVoe are apparently planning to release some new music this year, and stopped by Jimmy Fallon’s show this past Wednesday for a promo performance of their hit “Poison,” backed by the Roots.  They sucked, but the Roots were cool.  Watch it on Hulu

– British soul singer Adele is making waves with her latest album, 21, which spent last week atop the charts for the 4th week in a row.  Adele also just became the only living artist besides the Beatles to have two top-5 singles at the same time. Billboard

The king Of Limbs, the new Radiohead record, was to be released tomorrow per an announcement on the band’s website earlier this week, but is apparently already available for download today.  The band notified fans of the day-early download option in a cryptic tweet in Japanese.  In other news, I just canceled all my plans for the night and will be sitting alone in a dark room listening to it.

– Taylor Swift and Adam Young (Owl City) are now dating, and the story on how they hooked up is kinda cool. Wonderwall

– Eminem recently granted an interview to a 14-year-old high school student in Detroit who had a shot in the dark idea to feature him in a school project.  MTVnews

– Reality TV star Paris Hilton is releasing a new album this year, a follow-up to her 2006 debut.  I had no idea Hilton was a musician in any way, let alone set to release her SECOND album.  Huh.  Billboard

– Dave Grohl and the Foo Fighters also have a new record landing this year, and the project features Grohl reuniting with Nirvana staples Butch Vig and Krist Novoselic.  MTVnews

– Aretha Franklin has announced her return to live performances, beginning this May.  The 68-year-old “Queen of Soul” had been suffering from an undisclosed illness and canceled all performances for the past 6 months.  Uncut

– The Smashing Pumpkins hired a new bassist last year, and the veteran female rocker just recently revealed to them that she is one of the two young girls pictured on the band’s 1993 album Siamese Dream.  She confessed to Corgan that she didn’t tell the band this when she initially joined out of fear that such a bizarre past connection might prevent her from getting the job.  NME

– Here’s this year’s complete list of Grammy winners for those of you who are interested in that sort of thing, but not enough to google it yourself.

– Editorial:  Last March I did an open-invite clinic on playing drums/music in a church environment.  I’ve decided to make that an annual thing, and this year’s seminar will be on March 19th, so mark your calendars.  More details on that soon.

– The famed NYC experimental rock band Yo La Tengo is currently touring with a huge Price Is Right wheel onstage, filled with various potential activities for their shows.  Each evening an audience member spins the wheel and the band does whatever it lands on.  So far everybody thought the “act out an entire Seinfeld episode” option was a joke, but apparently not…  Pitchfork

– State Farm commercials?  Um, so… yeah.  Weezer has officially sold out.  Youtube

– Prince owes some Dublin promoters a whole bunch of money, and he’s not paying.  A canceled gig in Ireland last year left Prince getting sued by the MCD entertainment company, but opting to settle out of court.  Now he’s getting sued again for not following through on the settlement, with the price tag currently at 2.2 million Euro and rising.  NME

– My daughter Betty (and 5-yr-olds across the nation) will be happy to hear that Miley Cyrus is hosting SNL March 5.  I’m trying to think of who else will be happy about that…  Billboard

– Activision has discontinued the once-popular music video game Guitar Hero, which I think indicates the decline overall in music gaming, and I for one don’t see that as a bad thing.  COS

– Miles Davis fans will be happy to hear of yet another previously unreleased live recording, documenting Miles’ Bitches Brew era band and their epic performance at the Isle of Wight Festival.  AllAboutJazz

– Editorial: Risen Drums is now building their own wood and metal shells, opening up tons of options previously unavailable when they ordered shells from Keller.  I did a session yesterday with some of the new stuff: a beautiful and classic sounding mahogany 3-pc kit and a completely aluminum snare with dbl 45 bearing edges.  These drums are totally killer and ONLY available through RD.  Look for a video next week…

Aaaaaaand, “Mews” returns…

– The White Stripes are breaking up… as in, they’re disbanding.  The band announced the end of their studio and live career on Wednesday, but are promising to continuing releasing B-sides, demos, and other rare recordings.  Stereogum

– U2 is dropping a new album soon, apparently on May 27 to be exact., a German wing of Amazon, has listed the album as available on that date, although U2’s management has denied any official release date.  A new Fleet Foxes record is also set for release in May.  NME

– Mick Jagger has never performed at the Grammy Awards, but will be this year.  Jagger will be joining Raphael Saadiq and his band in a tribute to Grammy winners who have passed away in the year since the previous ceremony.  MTVnews

– This year marks the 40th anniversary of the epic British rock band Queen, and in celebration all their albums are slated for remastering, with the releases beginning this March.  Rockitout

– Editorial: Ryan Paul & the Ardent has been nominated by LOLOMG for the VitaMn Best New Band contest.  Check it out


I know this isn’t breaking news, but it’s a really interesting thing to me. I expect mergers from oil companies and other forms of big business… never really pictured it happening to companies in my line of work.  Oh well, seems like a good thing I suppose.

Get the full story at, with some additional unpacking at the Drumline blog.

PS… This would have been a great thing to include in a Mews (music news) post.  I really really really want to get the Mews posts started again.  Now I just have to actually do it instead of only wanting to do it…

Recent music news…

– Rapper Lil Wayne will begin serving his prison sentence on gun charges as soon as he completes his court date, which was canceled a few weeks ago due to an emergency dental procedure (8 root canals!), and then canceled again because of a fire in the courthouse, of all things. Obviously trying to maximize his dwindling time as a free citizen, Wayne shot 9 music videos in 48 hours last weekend.  MTV

– The Black Eyed Peas have now become the first “duo or group” to have three #1 singles off the same record since Wilson Phillips accomplished the same thing 19 years ago.  A UFC match between Carnie Wilson and Fergie is the logical next step if you ask me.  Billboard

– Prince debuted a new tune on Minnesota’s 89.3 The Current last week, giving a nod to the Twin Cities music scene and independent radio.  The tune, “Cause And Effect,” has a good chance of being cooler than the Vikings fight song he recently wrote.   Rolling Stone

– Last week a young girl named Cody landed a youtube viral video jackpot with emotional performance of her love for Disney’s Justin Beiber.  Beiber returned the favor by surprising the girl on the Jimmy Kimmel show.   Billboard

– Coldplay has announced a new record – their second album produced by Brian Eno, which is slated to hit stores by Christmas ’10.  The band is currently on tour in South America, but have already begun work on the record in a brand new London studio (rumored to be a converted church).  MTV

I’ve been meaning to resurrect my weekly “music news” installments (Mews), and this week has some cool Mews-worthy happenings, so the timing feels right. Ladies and Gentlemen, I give you, the return of the Mews…

– Thom Yorke announced today on the Radiohead blog that his solo project, to which he added official band members just last year, now has an official name and will be touring the US this Spring.  deadairspace

– The awesome free music website known as Noisetrade just got much more awesome.  Go check out the changes, and get yourself a bunch of free records while you’re at it.  Noisetrade

– To all the haters: Erykah Badu apparently used Twitter to clear some copyright permission issues with Paul McCartney earlier today.  See people?  Stop making fun of me for having a Twitter account.  I’m telling you, it’s helpful on a lot of levels.  Pitchfork

– Speaking of Twitter, Matt Chamblerlain just tweeted that he played the drums on the new Of Montreal record.  Apparently they just completed the tracks, which Chamberlain is calling “a crazy-funky-psychedelic-drum extravaganza.” Nice.  Chamberlain’s Twitter

– Nickleback lost their popularity contest with “a pickel,” and lead sing Chad Kroeger isn’t happy about it.  Comcast

– Editorial:  We just decided on a date for a clinic I’ll be giving at New Hope Church.  The day is March 13th, is open to everyone, and will center around playing drums in a church environment.  The cost will be low and maybe even nothing, so I’m hoping we can get a good group of guys who care about drums in worship services to come out for the clinic.  I’ll post official details here soon.

Recent music news…

– Thom Yorke announced the formation of a live band to play material from his solo album, The Eraser, as well as new non-Radiohead Yorke songs.  The band includes long-time Beck drummer Joey Waronker, the animated Chili Peppers bassist Flea, Radiohead producer Nigel Godrich (who NEVER plays live), and multi-instrumentalist Mauro Refosco.  Billboard

– MTV has resurrected the popular 90’s live music broadcast MTV Unplugged.  The 6-show season has already begun, with features from Adele, All Time Low, and the recent Paramore episode.

– Sub Pop Records is re-issuing the 1989 debut album from Nirvana, Bleach, with some previously unreleased live tracks from a Portland show in 1990.  You can preview one of the live tracks here.

– NYC’s Lincoln Center opened its fall season with an Ornette Coleman performance.  This is noteworthy both because Ornette is 79 years old and still blazing, but also because the traditionalist-leaning Lincoln Center and progressive-pioneering Coleman don’t normally get along.  Good for both of them.  NYTimes

– Without any real warning, JC Chasez up and announced this week that there will officially be no N’SYNC reunion.  The music world responded with a collective, “I’m sorry… who are you again?”  MTV

– Editorial: I guess some indie bands got in a fight somewhere the other day.  Don’t indie bands sometimes remind you of the “cool kids” in highschool?  You know, the ones who receive a lot of attention for no real reason and therefore have a pretty skewed perception of reality…

Interesting music news this week…

This Is It, the documentary of the prep/rehearsals for the late Michael Jackson’s London concert series, will be hitting theaters on October 28.  You can view the trailer here.  A double-disc soundtrack for the film will be released on October 27, and will contain a previously unreleased MJ single also called “This Is It.”  Billboard

– NYC’s Knitting Factory Records is set to release the full 45-album catalog of Nigerian Afrobeat pioneer Fela Kuti for the first time ever in North America.  Kuti was the main influence in African political liberation art, and his music has always been difficult to find in the US.  The release also coincides with the Broadway debut of a Jay-Z and Will Smith funded musical about Kuti’s life and art.  Pitchfork

– Kids Company, a London charity for convicted minors and “disadvantaged youth,” just received a donation to the tune of 1.5 million dollars from Coldplay.  The band was apparently very moved by the efforts of the organization and stories of their impact.  The band members have even agreed to give music lessons to the Kids Company children.  Regardless of how you feel about Coldplay’s music, you have to dig the walking and not just talking.  NME

– The word is that Justin Timberlake has been cast in the lead role in a film about Facebook called The Social Network.  Timberlake will play Sean Parker, co-founder of Napster and FB’s first President.  Production for the film begins next month.  Allmusic Blog

– Yesterday was Bruce Springsteen’s 60th birthday.  My dad also turned 60 not too long ago, but Steve Sr. has never had a sliding collision with a Super Bowl Halftime Show stage camera.  Rollingstone

– Rapper Eminem is headed to court against the tech giant Apple Inc in a dispute over download permission on iTunes, despite three separate attempts to broker a settlement between the two parties.  Billboard

Music news for the week…

– Of course everybody knows about what Kanye West did on Sunday night’s MTV Video Music Awards show, but maybe some of you haven’t seen his apology from Monday’s Leno show.  Rolling Stone

– Coldplay has settled their lawsuit with guitarist Joe Satriani, citing “under stipulation.”  Legal sources for both parties say that the agreement contains a “financial settlement.”  Billboard

– The Californian cult-indie band Pavement is reuniting… or at least they are scheduled to perform at Central Park Summerstage in Sept of 2010, which will be their first show since there official goodbye in 1999. Brooklyn Vegan

– Bobby Graham, a very prolific and respected British session player from the 60’s, passed away on Monday.  Graham played on over 15,000 tracks and was allegedly on the short list for replacing Pete Best in the Beatles before Ringo joined.  NME

– U2 is reissuing their 1984 record, “The Unforgettable Fire,” which is due out October 27 of this year.  There are apparently multiple versions of the reissue, which will include anything from B-sides and alternate mixes to never-before released tracks.  Billboard

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