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Rock News: Music's high and low notes

By JOHN SWENSON, United Press International   |   Aug. 23, 2002 at 3:00 AM   |   Comments

DISC TO HELP MUSIC EDUCATION

The Heineken Music Initiative, dedicated to supporting music education in urban communities across the country, is set to release the second volume of its "Red Star Sounds" series Oct. 1. Produced and distributed in partnership with Def Jam Records, the compact disc includes tracks from some of today's biggest artists, including hip-hop diva Foxy Brown and her new single "Stylin" -- as well as music from unsigned and up-and-coming talent Lovher, DTP featuring Shana, Ultramaximus, and Teddy Cain Jr.

The new CD also features hot tracks from Musiq, Lovher, Nore, Method Man, Loon, Baby (Cash Money Millionaires), Redman and Method Man. Mega-star Ja Rule also laid down a track for the album. Like the first volume in the series, which included contributions from Erykah Badu, Macy Gray, The Roots and India.Arie, "Red Star Sounds, Volume 2: B Sides" is designed to raise funds to support urban music-related charitable organizations.

"Following the success of the first 'Red Star Sounds' record, fans know they can expect great music from The Heineken Music Initiative series," said Scott Hunter-Smith, president of the Heineken Music Initiative. "Our partnership with Def Jam Records brings us some of the most popular talent in music and helps us make a meaningful contribution to the enhancement of music programs in our nation's cities."

"Red Star Sounds, Volume 1" was instrumental in launching the career of then unknown R&B artist Glenn Lewis and his song "Don't You Forget It."


POP GOSPEL STARS TOP SEPT. 11 CONCERT

Aretha Franklin, Al Green, Enrique Iglesias, Alan Jackson, Gloria Estefan, Josh Groban, Renee Fleming, Placido Domingo, and the National Symphony Orchestra conducted by music director Leonard Slatkin head the lineup for the Concert For America, which will be broadcast Sept. 11 by NBC as part of the network's coverage of the one-year anniversary of terrorist attacks on The World Trade Center and the Pentagon.

The event, chaired by first lady Laura Bush and hosted by Tom Brokaw, will be taped Sept. 9 at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington, D.C.

"In addition to honoring the victims and heroes of Sept. 11, the special will also use words and music to reflect on the year that has followed since the terrorist attacks, and the spirit of unity that has emerged across the country," an NBC official statement said. "Featuring the voices of everyday people, as well as famous figures past and present, the special will remember lives lost, and celebrate the resiliency of the American spirit."


LIFE IN THE FAST LANE

Joe Walsh has joined the gang of musicians featured in the NASCAR/United Parcel Service "Big Brown Truck" TV ads. In Walsh's piece, based on his signature 1978 hit "Life's Been Good," the idea is to convince NASCAR driver Dale Jarrett to trade in his racecar for a UPS truck. The ad debuts Saturday, Aug. 24, during the Sharpie 500 on the TNT cable network. Previous ads in the campaign have featured Charlie Daniels adapting "The Devil Went Down to Georgia" and Geroge Thorogood recasting "Bad To The Bone."


INDIGO GIRLS BACK ON ROAD

The Indigo Girls, Amy Ray and Emily Saliers will embark on a new leg of the "Become You" tour on Sept. 13 in Baltimore and roll through an Oct. 3 show in Ann Arbor, Mich. The Epic recording artists will be supported by Belgian modern rock act K's Choice. The Indigo Girls will warm up with Labor Day weekend performances Aug. 30 in Cary, N.C., and Aug. 31 in Asheville, N.C. The backing band is the same group that recorded the album -- Carol Isaacs (Hammond B-3, Wurlitzer, piano, accordion, penny whistle, recorder, percussion), Clare Kenny (acoustic and electric bass), and Brady Blade (drums and percussion).


CEPHAS AND WIGGINS WHOOP AGAIN

Bowling Green John Cephas and Harmonica Phil Wiggins, the foremost practitioners of the Piedmont sound in the blues, are set to release a new CD Sept. 17, "Somebody Told the Truth," on Alligator Records. The album is the third on Alligator for a duo who often have been compared to the legendary Sonny Terry and Brownie McGhee. Cephas is the guitarist/vocalist, Wiggins the whoopin' harmonica player in the Washington, D.C.-born lineup.

© 2002 United Press International, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Any reproduction, republication, redistribution and/or modification of any UPI content is expressly prohibited without UPI's prior written consent.
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