MUSIC NEWS: THURSDAY, MARCH 23, 2017
WILLIE NELSON NOT ILL
Willie Nelson has played nearly a dozen shows in recent weeks and is not deathly ill, his publicist said, despite a series of reports claiming the country music legend is struggling to breathe.
A March 13 Radar Online report quoted an anonymous source saying Nelson was ``deathly ill,'' weak as a baby and unable to muster the breath to sing. The story is the basis for reports shared by other websites, including washingtonfeed.com and uconservative.net.
Elaine Schock, Nelson's publicist, denied the reports and pointed to his performances at concerts in recent weeks as evidence of the singer's health.
``He's perfectly fine,'' Schock told The Associated Press on Wednesday.
The 83-year-old took the stage before more than 75,000 people at the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo at NRG Stadium on March 18. He appeared healthy and sang well during the show. The Houston concert was part of a series of shows in Texas and Florida over the past two months.
Nelson cancelled several shows in late January and early February after coming down with a ``bad cold,'' Schock said. Nelson returned to the stage Feb. 16 to play at a San Antonio rodeo.
The singer has been the target of numerous online death hoaxes over the years. He references them in the song ``Still Not Dead,''
from his upcoming album, ``God's Problem Child,'' which is set to be released in April. Lyrics from the track include, ``The internet said I had passed away, but you can't believe a damn thing that they say.''
CHUCK BERRY ALBUM WILL COME OUT IN JUNE
Gary Clark Junior, Nathaniel Rateliff and Tom Morello of Rage Against The Machine are guest performers on the final Chuck Berry record. The album ``Chuck'' is Berry's first studio effort since ``Rock It'' in 1979. Berry's children and grandson perform on it as well. ``Chuck'' will be out June 16th.
Berry died on Saturday.
LIVERPOOL PREPARES TRIBUTE TO ``SGT. PEPPER''
You know it's a big celebration when there will be
64 choirs singing the same song. Liverpool, England, is planning a 50th anniversary celebration of the Beatles album ``Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band.'' One of the events calls for 64 choirs to sing ``When I'm Sixty-Four.'' The city has commissioned 13 artists to create works based on the 13 tracks, including a dance tribute to the title song, an ``outlandish procession'' based on ``Lovely Rita'' and a mural inspired by ``Fixing A Hole.'' The celebration runs May 25th to June 16th, with a fireworks display on June 1st, the anniversary of the album's release.
GAVIN ROSSDALE HOPES YOU ARE LOOKING TO SPY ON HIS LIFE
If you're listening to the new Bush record ``Black and White Rainbows'' hoping to find clues about singer Gavin Rossdale's divorce, he absolutely endorses your right to do that.
Rossdale says if he didn't want people to peer into his life, he would never have released the album. He says he wrote three albums'
worth of music after his divorce from Gwen Stefani. He says if he had released the first songs he wrote, it would have been -- quote
-- ``a maudlin breakup record and that's the last thing that anybody wanted.'' ''Black and White Rainbows`` is out now.
MIKE McCREADY WILL PUT OUT BOOK OF POLAROIDS
You can keep your super-ultra-hi-def camera -- Pearl Jam guitarist Mike McCready prefers his Polaroids. McCready takes Polaroid camera with him everywhere, and those photos are compiled into a new book called ``Of Potato Heads and Polaroids: My Life Inside and Out of Pearl Jam.'' ''Potato Heads`` refers to the Mr Potato Head that McCready usually took on tour and often would ask people to hold when he photographed them. Among his subjects are Lady Gaga, Macklemore and Ryan Lewis, Neil Young, Jimmy Page, Jimmy Fallon, Venus Williams, Dennis Rodman and fans of the band.
''Of Potato Heads and Polaroids`` comes out May 30th.
LOLLAPALOOZA WILL FEATURE CHANCE THE RAPPER, KILLERS, ARCADE FIRE
Chance The Rapper is fulfilling the dream of every kid who tries to make it in music: he's headlining the big hometown festival. Chance is one of the acts booked for Lollapalooza in Chicago, along with The Killers, Arcade Fire, Muse, The X-X, Lorde and Blink-182. The festival expanded to four days last year and will be four days again this time, August 3rd to 6th. Other performers include Alt-J, Run The Jewels, Cage The Elephant, Wiz Khalifa, Big Sean, The Head And The Heart, Foster The People and Migos.
ACMS ANNOUNCES MORE ENTERTAINERS
The Academy of Country Music Awards is adding more talent to the show. Newly announced performers are Lauren Daigle, Faith Hill and Tim McGraw, Sam Hunt, Rascal Flatts, Reba McEntire, Thomas Rhett, Chris Stapleton, Cole Swindell , Carrie Underwood and Keith Urban. The A-C-Ms are April 2nd.
(The Associated Press)