Local Current Blog

Today’s Music News: Lesley Gore dies at 68

Lesley Gore has died of cancer at age 68. Discovered by Quincy Jones as a 16-year-old ingenue, Gore performed the indelible 1963 hit “It’s My Party” as well as “You Don’t Own Me,” “Judy’s Turn to Cry,” and “She’s a Fool” – all top five hits, with “It’s My Party” taking Gore to number one just weeks after her 17th birthday. Though she didn’t write her early hits, later in her career Gore became a songwriter and was nominated for an Academy Award for cowriting Irene Cara‘s 1980 hit “Out Here On My Own” from Fame. (New York Times)

On Sunday night, Saturday Night Live celebrated 40 years on the air with a star-studded special that included musical performances from Paul McCartneyPaul SimonKanye West, and Miley Cyrus. An insane afterparty included Prince performing “Let’s Go Crazy” with HaimBill Murray, and Jimmy Fallon. (Local Current)

Both Prince and Paul McCartney wowed fans with Valentine’s Day performances in New York. Prince’s Saturday morning set at 23 Wall Street celebrated the 30th anniversary of Nike’s Jordan sneaker and was witnessed by a stable of stars including BeyoncéJay-ZQuestlove, NasQueen Latifah, and of course Michael Jordan. Later that day, McCartney played a surprise show at Irving Plaza for a crowd of just 1,000. (Local Current)

The Babes in Toyland reunion continued Thursday night with a show in L.A. that attracted, according to Rolling Stone, “a border-less pantheon of punk and alternative rock icons—Exene Cervenka, Patty Schemel, Brody Dalle, Eric Erlandson and various members of the Melvins and Jesus Lizard.”

Jack White published a testy letter about “GuacamoleGate,” which he says “seems to be all anyone can ask me about lately.” He says the guacamole was his tour manager’s recipe, and that he’s never even tried it; regarding the banana exclusion, White asked rhetorically, “Did it occur to anyone someone on the tour might have an allergy to them?” (Pitchfork)

In other would-be scandal news, Bob Dylan has expanded on comments in his MusiCares acceptance speech that seemed to imply that Dylan didn’t think Merle Haggard appreciated his music. Dylan explained that he was referring to an incident in the late 1960s when Dylan heard Haggard complaining about “hippies and Dylan and the counterculture and it kind of stuck in my mind and hurt, lumping me in with everything he didn’t like.” Dylan said he and Haggard are now on good terms. (Rolling Stone)

Win Butler did great in the NBA All-Star Celebrity game, though the game’s MVP award went to comic Kevin Hart. (Billboard) Meanwhile, Butler shared a mashup he made of Beck‘s “Loser” and Kanye West‘s “Jesus Walks.” (Pitchfork)

David Pajo of Slint was hospitalized last Thursday after reportedly attempting suicide. He’s expected to recover, his mother told Consequence of Sound.

Drake surprised fans Thursday night by releasing a complete new album, If You’re Reading This, It’s Too Late. (Billboard)

Willie Nelson fans are looking forward to the release of his autobiography, It’s a Long Story: My Life, on May 5. (Rolling Stone)

Lady Gaga is engaged, to Chicago Fire actor Taylor Kinney. (Star Tribune)

Here’s what it sounds like when Homestar Runner character Strong Bad‘s “Everybody to the Limit” is mashed up with “Uptown Funk.”