Local Current Blog

Today’s Music News: Michael Jackson’s Thriller to go 3D

MTV doesn’t call it the “Michael Jackson Video Vanguard Award” for nothing: the late artist was a pioneer in music video, and his 1983 video for “Thriller” is among the landmarks of the genre, voted the greatest of all time by Rolling Stone readers. Director John Landis is now creating a 3D version of the 14-minute video, due for release next year. (Rolling Stone)

The latest classic album to get the deluxe-reissue treatment is the Velvet Underground‘s self-titled third album. The five-disc set, to be released on Nov. 24, will include three different mixes of the 1969 album, two discs of live recordings, and a disc that approximates what the group’s fourth album might have sounded like based on sessions that were later scrapped. (Rolling Stone)

Prince capped the U.S. release day for his two new albums with a three-song Paisley Park show featuring Kendrick Lamar. (Local Current) The music industry is hoping the release will help rescue it from its doldrums. The back-up plan? A duets album by Lady Gaga and Tony Bennett. (Rolling Stone)

That album, Cheek to Cheek, just debuted at #1 on the Billboard album chart, setting a new record: Bennett, 88, is now the oldest person ever to have a #1 album. The previous record-holder can’t be too upset, though: it’s Tony Bennett, whose Duets II album went to the top of the charts three years ago. (Stereogum)

“This is not rocket science, people,” wrote Roger Waters in a Facebook post clarifying that he left Pink Floyd almost 30 years ago and was not involved with the group’s new album The Endless River. “Get a grip.”

Tuesday night in Minneapolis, Christine McVie publicly performed with Fleetwood Mac for the first time in 16 years. (Local Current) Meanwhile, as Stevie Nicks prepares to release her new album 24 Karat Gold next Tuesday, she’s shared “Watch Chain,” a tribute to Mick Fleetwood‘s sartorial style. (Rolling Stone)

A report commissioned by SXSW suggests that the festival should try to force unofficial shows out of its immediate proximity in Austin, so as to minimize competition for sponsors’ dollars. Will the festival will put that recommendation into action and try to ban unofficial shows? We don’t know yet. (Stereogum)

This week’s top five spots on the Billboard Hot 100 are occupied by Meghan Trainor (“All About That Bass”), Taylor Swift (“Shake It Off”), Nicki Minaj (“Anaconda”), Iggy Azalea featuring Rita Ora (“Black Widow”), and a Jessie J/Ariana Grande/Nicki Minaj collaboration (“Bang Bang”). The chart’s top five spots have now been continuously occupied by women for four straight weeks, a tie for the longest stretch of time that’s ever happened. The other four-week run by women in the top five was in 1999, when the charts were dominated by MonicaBritney SpearsDeborah CoxCherBrandyWhitney HoustonFaith EvansKelly Price, and Sarah McLachlan. (Billboard)

Postmodern Jukebox—the group responsible for ironic but accomplished covers of songs from TLC‘s “Waterfalls” to the Muppet Babies theme—have done it again with a bluegrass cover of Nicki Minaj’s hit “Anaconda.”