Local Current Blog

Today’s Music News: What’s Bob Dylan’s beef with Merle Haggard?

Rolling Stone digs into Bob Dylan‘s long speech accepting his MusiCares Person of the Year award, but even they can’t understand why, after thanking many artists, Dylan chose to dis Merle Haggard by saying “Merle Haggard didn’t think much of my songs…I love Merle but he’s no Buck [Owens].” The remark seems inexplicable, since Dylan and Haggard have toured together and Haggard recently considered recording an album of Dylan’s songs. Haggard offered an olive branch via Twitter.

Meanwhile, Billboard discovered that the tribute concert wasn’t just a lean-back-and-be-serenaded affair for Dylan: he selected each performer, chose the song each artist would cover—typically songs they’d covered before, in versions Dylan liked—and instructed the backing band on how to arrange each song.

Justin Vernon and Aaron Dessner have revealed the complete lineup for this summer’s inaugural Eaux Claires Festival: it will include Bon Iverthe NationalSpoon, and many more. (Local Current)

Rob and Tony Jacob, owners of legendary Minneapolis venue Nye’s Polonaise Room, have released renderings of how the site might look after being redeveloped as a 29-story apartment building. The venue is slated to close sometime in late summer or fall, and current development proposals call for a portion of the existing Nye’s buildings and facade to be preserved so as to meet historical preservation requirements. (Star Tribune)

Chris Brown cited “scheduling conflicts” in canceling his March 3 Target Center gig, but Billboard speculates that precariously low ticket sales are actually to blame.

Faith No More will release their first album in 18 years. Sol Invictus will be released on May 19, and a world tour begins next week in Japan. (SPIN)

A perhaps unexpected inspiration Mark Ronson cites for his new album: Steely Dan. (Rolling Stone)

A new largely instrumental track and video, “How Big, How Blue, How Beautiful,” is the first material released from the forthcoming Florence and the Machine album—which still doesn’t have a title or release date, though the heavy festival schedule Florence Welch has ahead of her suggests it’s coming soon. (Rolling Stone)

Annie Lennox says she didn’t know Hozier before Grammys producer Ken Ehrlich paired the two for what became one of Sunday night’s most memorable performances, with Hozier’s “Take Me to Church” segueing into “I Put a Spell on You,” the song Lennox covers on the Fifty Shades of Grey soundtrack. (SPIN)

So this happened: a jam session featuring Jeff BridgesConan O’Brien, and Slash. (Nova.ie)

Your new Wilson Phillips are the von Trapps, four grandchildren of Werner von Trapp—the real-life member of the Trapp Family Singers who was portrayed in The Sound of Music as “Kurt.” (Rolling Stone)

Rock and Roll Hall of Famer Joe B. Mauldin, the Crickets bassist who played with Buddy Holly, has died of cancer at age 74. (Rolling Stone)