Local Current Blog

Today’s Music News: Pee-Wee Herman gets behind the wheel for TV On The Radio

Tunde Adebimpe of TV On The Radio says he was “blindingly nervous” to ask Paul Reubens—the comedian best known for his character Pee-Wee Herman—to star in a racing-themed video for the band’s new single “Happy Idiot.” Reubens was down, and the video is now streaming on Funny or Die. TV On The Radio’s new album Seeds will be released on Nov. 18. (Billboard)

Meanwhile, “Weird Al” Yankovic stars as Jesus in what could be an Oscar-contending short film, The Moving Picture Co. 1914. Yankovic, in “the role he was born to play” according to the cinematographer, plays an actor portraying Jesus in a 1914 silent film that’s interrupted by a chase scene. (Billboard)

U2 snuck a few vinyl copies of their new album Songs of Innocence into stores yesterday so as to be eligible for the upcoming Grammy Awards. (Rolling Stone)

Prince released two new albums yesterday, and celebrated the event with a short, livestreamed set at Paisley Park featuring a guest appearance by Kendrick Lamar. (Local Current)

Aretha Franklin took no prisoners Monday night on Letterman as she performed her new single, a cover of Adele‘s “Rolling in the Deep.” Franklin’s new album, Aretha Franklin Sings the Great Diva Classics, was released yesterday.

Billboard has details of a new Harvard Business School case study on Beyoncé‘s surprise album release last December. Among the revelations: the album was created at Beyoncé’s Hamptons house in summer 2012, with collaborators working in five or six different rooms at once. Also, the album release was so secret that production of physical copies didn’t even begin until the music and videos had been released on iTunes. 72 hours later, copies were in stores.

Plucky online retailer eMusic is canceling its agreements with major labels in order to focus exclusively on indie artists. The service—which predates iTunes by five years—had been forced to raise its prices in order to sell songs by the big artists. (New York Times)

Swedish scientists have been sneaking—not very subtly—Bob Dylan lyrics into academic papers. (Local Current)