Local Current Blog

Music News: Snapchat criticized for 4/20 Bob Marley filter

Bob Marley performs in the late 1970s (Express Newspapers/Getty Images)

A filter allowing Snapchat users to be made to resemble late reggae star Bob Marley created a firestorm of controversy on Wednesday, with users complaining that the filter amounted to blackface and saying that it reduced Marley’s legacy to merely his association with marijuana (Wednesday being 4/20, a number commonly associated with the drug). In response, Snapchat said they developed the filter in collaboration with Marley’s estate, and that the filter “gives people a new way to share their appreciation for Bob Marley and his music.” (BuzzFeed)

Marian Anderson is so money

Singer Marian Anderson will be among the Americans depicted on new currency, the U.S. Treasury announced. The African-American contralto will appear on the back of the new five-dollar bill, likely depicted performing at the Lincoln Memorial. (YourClassical)

City Pages honors local bands

City Pages published their annual Best of the Twin Cities issue on Wednesday, and among the honors are numerous plaudits for local musiciansBruise Violet were named Best New Band, the Blind Shake won Best Live Artist, Lizzo was named Best Hip-Hop Artist, Strange Relations won Best Rock Band, Low’s Ones and Sixes was named best album of the past 12 months, and Babes in Toyland won Best Reunion.

Father John Misty to donate North Carolina concert proceeds

Father John Misty says that he will be donating the proceeds of his April 27 concert in Charlotte to a local LGBT support center — in protest of what he called the “bulls–t” HB2 bill compelling transgender individuals to use bathrooms corresponding to their sex at birth. Bruce SpringsteenRingo Starr, and Pearl Jam have all canceled North Carolina shows in protest over the bill, and other musicians including Cyndi Lauper have decided to play shows as scheduled but donate proceeds to charity. (Rolling Stone)

Freddie Mercury notebook headed to auction

A notebook used by Freddie Mercury in the last three years of his life will go up for auction on June 29, and is estimated to sell for up to $100,000. The notebook includes handwritten lyrics for numerous songs that appear on Queen’s albums The Miracle and Innuendo. (Rolling Stone)

Flaming Lips cover Bowie

On Tuesday night, the Flaming Lips appeared on The Late Show, performing David Bowie’s “Space Oddity.”

Backstage, Wayne Coyne filmed a musical tribute to some of his other favorite artists — including Led Zeppelinthe Who, and Roxy Music. (Billboard)

See the Flaming Lips this summer at Rock the Garden.

Paul McCartney remixers identified

German dance music artist Timo Maas and Canadian producer James Teej have admitted that they’re behind a mysterious white-label vinyl release containing a remix of “Nineteen Hundred and Eighty-Five” by Paul McCartney and Wings — and McCartney has given the project his approval. The limited-edition vinyl quickly became a collectors’ sensation, with copies selling on eBay for hundreds of dollars. (Billboard)

James Bay salutes Levon Helm

At a concert in Los Angeles on Tuesday night, James Bay paid tribute to the late Levon Helm of the Band. The show fell on the fourth anniversary of Helm’s death, and Bay said he thought, “Hey, what if on the 19th, four years after Levon died on the same day, everybody playing a show played a Levon song, played a Band song?” Bay then played the Band’s “Look Out Cleveland.” (Billboard)

Dave Grohl: Greek god?

Juliette Lewis has talked about what it was like to record with Dave Grohl on drums for her 2006 album Four on the Floor. “To be next to that kind of powerhouse of a player, I always joke like it was being next to Zeus,” she told Rolling Stone. “He just dug into the songs, and he has such power and is so dynamic.”