Local Current Blog

Music News: Kesha to return to stage for Bob Dylan tribute

Kesha performs in February (Katie Stratton/Getty Images)

Kurt VileEmmylou Harris, and Jason Isbell are among the big names playing a 75th birthday tribute to Bob Dylan at Nashville’s Ryman Auditorium on May 23 and 24, but the name that’s attracted the biggest notice is that of Kesha. The tribute concert will mark the pop star’s first public performance since a New York judge denied her request to be freed from a recording contract with Dr. Luke, inspiring a “Free Kesha” movement that garnered support from stars including Taylor Swift and Adele. In 2012, Kesha covered Dylan’s “Don’t Think Twice, It’s Alright” for a charity compilation. (Complex) Kesha’s also announced a few summer dates — including a June 16 show at Mystic Lake Casino.

“We Shall Overcome” copyright protection?

Now that the song “Happy Birthday” has been ruled to be in the public domain, advocates are making the case for another song: the Civil Rights anthem “We Shall Overcome,” derived from a traditional song first documented over 100 years ago. A suit filed in New York claims that the Richmond Organization and Ludlow Music, who claim publishing rights to the song — and have been collecting royalties — should properly only own the rights to a particular arrangement of the song and some additional verses. (New York Times)

Kanye ties a Ray Charles record

What do the BeatlesTaylor Swift, and Elton John all have in common? They all have fewer Hot 100 hits than Kanye West, who just notched his 75th charting song, pulling him into a tie with Ray Charles for eighth most Hot 100 hits. Ruling the roost — by a wide margin — are the Glee cast, who have collectively placed 207 songs in the Hot 100. (Worth noting: now that all song streams are counted towards the singles chart, it’s much easier than it used to be for a hit album to send multiple songs quickly up the charts.) (Billboard)

R.I.P. David Gest

Producer David Gest has died, of as-yet-undisclosed causes, at age 62. Gest is best-known as the fourth husband of Liza Minnelli. Gest and Minnelli wed in 2002 (Michael Jackson was best man, and Elizabeth Taylor was maid of honor), then separated just a year later with Gest accusing Minnelli of beating him. A divorce was finalized in 2007. (Billboard)

HAIM to rock for Girls Rock

The Girls Rock Camp Foundation has announced an April 29 benefit concert in Los Angeles. HAIM will perform at the event, and an associated VIP dinner will be hosted by Beth Ditto. Attendees will likely rub shoulders with members of the event’s honorary committee, which includes Yoko OnoTegan and Sara, and Katy Perry among many others. (Pitchfork)

Har Mar, Bad Bad Hats, more to rock Target Field

As a City Pages headline delicately puts it, “Losing Twins announce winning 2016 Midwest Music Showcase lineup.” Har Mar SuperstarBad Bad HatsAstronautalis, and many more local musicians will play for Twins fans this summer before games and between innings.

St. Vincent gets spooky

St. Vincent is writing and directing a short horror film for an upcoming anthology of scary movies directed by, and starring, women. No release date has yet been announced for the anthology, titled XX. (Pitchfork)

Musicians react to North Carolina legislation

Bruce Springsteen and Bryan Adams have now both canceled North Carolina concerts in protest over a recent law that compels transgender individuals to use bathrooms corresponding to their birth certificates. Gregg Allman and Jimmy Buffett have declined to go so far as canceling their shows in the state, but Allman has called the law “infuriating” and Buffett says it’s “stupid.”

Ticket sales move to Facebook

Music fans will soon be able to purchase tickets to some concerts on Facebook: Ticketmaster is rolling out a Facebook integration that will allow fans to buy tickets without clicking away from their feeds. (Billboard)

Gaye family liable for legal fees

A U.S. District Court judge has denied a request by the family of Marvin Gaye to force Robin Thicke and Pharrell to pay the family’s legal fees associated with their successful lawsuit over the song “Blurred Lines.” Thicke and Pharrell are liable for $5.3 million in damages, and the family were seeking to add $3.5 million in legal fees. (Billboard)

Phil Collins reshoots album covers

Phil Collins has reissued six of his solo albums, and for each reissue cover he’s had the image reshot to feature his current appearance. The albums were originally released when Collins was aged 30 to 51; he’s now 65. See all the reshot covers at Yahoo!