Local Current Blog

Music News: Motown animated series headed to Netflix

Stevie Wonder performs last year at Target Center (Nate Ryan/MPR)

Smokey Robinson will serve as executive music producer of a new animated series inspired by the classic catalog of Motown hits. The series, being developed for Netflix, will feature the music of Robinson, Marvin Gayethe Jackson 5Lionel Richiethe Supremesthe Temptations, and Stevie Wonder. “The latest series follows the adventures of an 8-year-old boy named Ben, who lives in the imaginary city of Motown and possesses the ability to bring street art to life,” reports Billboard. No launch date has yet been announced.

Oberst talks new music

Conor Oberst has announced a new album, written and recorded in his hometown of Omaha, Nebraska. Ruminations will be released Oct. 14. “Winter in Omaha can have a paralyzing effect on a person, but in this case it worked in my favor,” said Oberst. “I was just staying up late every night playing piano and watching the snow pile up outside the window. Next thing I knew I had burned through all the firewood in the garage and had more than enough songs for a record.” (Rolling Stone)

Some Prince estate documents to remain under wraps

Judge Kevin Eide has ruled that certain documents relating to Prince’s estate can remain under seal because they contain confidential information protected by attorney-client privilege. The ruling came in response to a request by the Bremer Trust, which is administering Prince’s estate. (Billboard)

Ms. Lauryn Hill is coming to town

Lauryn Hill has announced a tour called The MLH Caravan: A Diaspora Calling! Inspired by Hill’s Diaspora Calling! music festival, the tour will include guest performances by artists “from throughout the African diaspora.” (Billboard) The tour stops at First Avenue on Sept. 4.

Jerry Garcia art to be auctioned for charity

The Jerry Garcia Foundation is donating editions of art by the late Grateful Dead frontman to be auctioned on behalf of charitable organizations in celebration of what would have been Garcia’s 74th birthday on Aug. 1. “It is an honor to be able to share my father’s creative spirit with so many charitable organizations that support such worthy causes,” said the musician’s daughter Keelin Garcia. (Rolling Stone)

Tweedy does Sandburg

Jeff Tweedy has created a song called “Theme in Yellow,” adapted from the poem by Carl Sandburg. The song will appear on an upcoming tribute album to the late poet. Carl Sandburg’s Chicago Poems will be released on Oct. 16. (Rolling Stone)

Grimes releases new Suicide Squad song

Grimes has shared “Medieval Warfare,” a song from the soundtrack to the upcoming movie Suicide Squad. The soundtrack also includes “Standing in the Rain,” a collaboration by Dan AuerbachAction Bronson, and Mark Ronson. Hear it at Pitchfork.

Ozzy gets help

Ozzy Osbourne has entered what he describes as “intense therapy” for sex addiction. “Over the last six years, I have been dealing with a sex addiction,” said Osbourne in a statement. “I am mortified at what my behavior has done to my family. I thank God that my incredible wife Sharon is at my side to support me.” (Rolling Stone)

Coffee-shop singer accidentally jams with Matisyahu

Maui musician Kekoa Alama was playing his cover of Matisyahu’s “One Day” in a local coffee shop when a mysterious man started singing along. It turns out that the spontaneous duet partner was Matisyahu himself, in town for a music festival. (Billboard)