Local Current Blog

Today’s Music News: Merle Haggard graduates from high school at age 78

You can get a high school diploma by spending only nine days in high school—if, that is, you’re country great Merle Haggard. The superintendent of the Bakersfield, California school where Haggard spent his very brief secondary education career presented Haggard with a diploma before the “Mama Tried” singer played a show on Saturday at the nearby Fox Theater. Haggard, reported the local newspaper, looked “pleased but seemingly mystified.”

Future Islands performed new a song, “The Chase,” on The Late Show with David Letterman, dedicating the song “to all the people of Baltimore.” The new song is now available on iTunes, and will be released on vinyl on June 30. (Billboard)

On Tuesday night in Japan, Paul McCartney performed “Another Girl.” In the nearly half-century since the song’s release on Help!, the song had never before been performed live by either the Beatles or by McCartney solo. (Rolling Stone)

Alabama Shakes have their first number-one album: Sound and Color now sits atop the Billboard 200. Read Jill Riley’s review of the hit album.

Billy Spears, the Texas Department of Safety trooper who was formally reprimanded for allowing Snoop Dogg to take a photo with him, has sued his employer. Spears alleges that the Snoop Dogg reprimand was retaliation for a 2014 complaint he filed against a Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission officer who detained Spears for carrying an alcoholic beverage while off-duty at a concert. (Billboard)

The Strokes and Drake will headline the first-ever Landmark Festival in September in Washington, D.C. The event is designed to raise funds and awareness for the National Mall. (Rolling Stone)

Netflix has released a trailer for What Happened, Miss Simone? The film, which will be released on Netflix on June 26, is a documentary about the legendary singer Nina Simone. (Pitchfork)

At the Ryman Auditorium on April 28, Ryan Adams covered Bryan Adams‘s “Summer of ’69.” The acoustic cover was presumed to be a nod to the now-infamous 2002 incident when a heckler called out for Ryan to sing Bryan’s 1984 hit. (Rolling Stone)

A pair of heart-shaped glasses that were among Elton John‘s signature fashion accessories in the 1970s have been recovered after being stolen from the Rock ‘n’ Soul Museum in Memphis. An arrest warrant has been issued for Matthew Colvin, whose fingerprints were found on the specs’ display case and later told police where to find the missing glasses. (Billboard)

The East Coast salad chain Sweetgrain has started selling a salad dedicated to Kendrick Lamar: “Beets Don’t Kale My Vibe.” A portion of proceeds from the salad will go to charity. (Billboard)