Rock News Two: The week in pop music

By PENNY NELSON BARTHOLOMEW, United Press International  |  Oct. 27, 2001 at 4:45 AM
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VH1 says it notched the network's all-time highest rating when "The Concert for New York City" aired live from New York's Madison Square Garden last Saturday.

The one-night-only, almost six-hour-long benefit was watched by 5 million total viewers and 3 million households. Approximately 16 million viewers tuned in for at least part of the show.

It was the highest-rated basic cable program for Oct. 20.

"The Concert for New York City" featured an all-star musical lineup of Paul McCartney, Mick Jagger, David Bowie, Elton John, Eric Clapton, Billy Joel, The Who, James Taylor, Destiny's Child, Backstreet Boys, John Mellencamp, Macy Gray, Goo Goo Dolls, Marc Anthony, Bon Jovi, Melissa Etheridge, Jay-Z, and Five For Fighting, plus Janet Jackson (who appeared live via satellite), and Paul Shaffer as musical director.

It raised an estimated $14 million for the Robin Hood Relief Fund.


While concerts in New York, Washington and Nashville, Tenn. garnered most of the public attention, classic rockers Styx, Journey, Bad Company, REO Speedwagon, Mark Farner, John Waite and Edgar Winter raised more than $1 million last weekend for victims of the Sept. 11 terror attacks.

Organizers said the "Volunteers For America" concert at the Hi Fi Buys Amphitheatre in Atlanta on Saturday grossed $454,000, while the concert at the Smirnoff Music Center in Dallas on Sunday took in $387,000. In addition, the sale of merchandise generated $150,000 and some items were auctioned to bring in another $40,000.

Comic actor Drew Carey emceed both shows.

The line-up in Atlanta also included Lynyrd Skynyrd. The Dallas show also featured performances by Peter Frampton, Kansas, Eddie Money and Survivor.


Sting performed a free concert in New York Thursday to celebrate the launching of Microsoft Windows XP.

The hour-long, mid-day show --- which was cybercast worldwide on MSN ( --- was dedicated to the people of New York City. It was held in midtown Manhattan's Bryant Park and capped the festivities of the Microsoft Windows XP launch three blocks away in Times Square's Marriott Marquis Theatre.

At Sting's request, Microsoft will be making a donation of software to two schools affected by the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks.


Fuel, David Lee Roth and a reunited Hooters headline the Pierre Robert 20th Anniversary Tribute Concert, to be held Nov. 21 at the First Union Spectrum in Philadelphia.

Additional artists will be announced later.

Robert is the midday personality at Philly radio station WMMR. The show marks his 20 years working in the City of Brotherly Love.

A portion of revenue from the concert will be donated to charity.


The video that singer/actress Aaliyah had just finished shooting when she was killed in a plane crash in the Bahamas Aug. 25 is ready to go, and BET has announced it will debut "Rock the Boat" on Nov. 9.

Aaliyah was one of nine people who died when the Cessna 402B they were flying on crashed and exploded 200 feet past the end of a runway at Marsh Harbor International Airport on Abaco Island.

"Rock the Boat" promotes the second single from Aaliyah's self-titled third album.

A video for the next single, "More Than a Woman," had already been produced before Aaliyah died. It's due to be released early in 2002.


Following her well-publicized nervous breakdown this summer, Mariah Carey continues to rehabilitate her career with a deal to guest star on "Ally McBeal."

Plans call for Carey to appear as a woman involved in a lawsuit filed by a dissatisfied matchmaking service customer. The episode -- in which Carey will sing "Lead the Way" from her "Glitter" soundtrack CD -- is scheduled to air on Jan. 7.

The same episode will also feature Jon Bon Jovi in the first of several planned appearances on the Emmy-winning series.

(The above two items thanks to UPI Hollywood Reporter Pat Nason)


Fans of Billy Corgan and Co. don't have much longer to wait. On Nov. 20, Virgin Records will release "Smashing Pumpkins Greatest Hits Video Collection 1991-2000," the video companion to the upcoming Smashing Pumpkins' greatest hits album "Rotten Apples."

The videotape/DVD will feature more than 18 music videos chronicling the Pumpkins' musical career. Among the highlights are the band's very first video, a clip for the song "Siva"; the MTV Awards-winning videos "Tonight, Tonight" and "1979"; and the Billy Corgan/Yelena Yemchuk-directed "Thirty-Three." There are also two live performance clips -- "Geek USA" (live from 1994) and "An Ode to No One" (live from the last show at the Metro in Chicago in December 2000); the short Jonas Akerlund-directed film "Try"; and the "Lost Tapes" documentary, which takes a look at the mystery behind the missing tapes from the "1979" video shoot.

The DVD version includes an array of extras, such as commentary about the production of the clips by the band themselves, narration by the directors who lenses the videos, never-before-seen outtakes from the shoots, and bonus behind-the-scenes documentaries.

BRITNEY SPEARS's new advanced CD sales program "Unwrapped" is giving Britney Spears' fans the chance to pre-order and experience the teen pop star's new album "Britney" before it's available on Nov. 6. Fans can log on to to pre-order the new CD and listen to it in its entirety -- two weeks before it hits stores.

A physical copy of the "Britney" CD will be sent to their mailboxes on Nov. 6, the day of the album's official release.

On Nov. 3, MTV will present a live, two-hour Britney Spears special titled "Total Britney Live" (at 1 p.m. ET/10 a.m. PT). The special will take an in-depth look at the singer and will include appearances from many of her closest family and friends.

(Web sites:,


-- Incubus's new album "Morning View" hit stores Tuesday. To promote it, the band made a series of in-store appearances this past week -- including a first-ever signing in the rockers' hometown of Los Angeles. "Morning View" is Incubus's fourth full-length album. The CD was written and recorded at a mansion in Malibu, Calif.

-- The Last Hard Men's self-titled album (on Spitfire Records) is due out Nov. 6. The Last Hard Men is comprised of Sebastian Bach, Kelly Deal of the Breeders, Jimmy Chamberlin of Smashing Pumpkins, and Jimmy Flemion of The Frogs. The CD began with the simple idea to cover Alice Cooper's "School's Out" for the original "Scream" soundtrack. Instead, the rockers ended up recording an album's worth of material. On Nov. 28, Bach, along with The Ace Frehley Band, Twisted Sister and others, will perform a benefit concert for the families of the victims of the World Trade Center attack. The show is being held at The Hammerstein Ballroom in New York City.

-- Pink has a new album coming out Nov. 20. "M!ssundaztood" (on Arista Records) is the follow-up to her debut CD, "Can't Take Me Home." Guest artists on the CD include Steven Tyler of Aerosmith and Richie Sambora of Bon Jovi on the song "Misery."

-- Two new songs from Enya are included on the soundtrack album for the upcoming film "The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring." They include the ballad "Aniron ... (I Desire)" and the end title track "May It Be." Both songs were written by Enya, whose current album "A Day Without Rain" is No. 2 on the Billboard Top 200 albums chart. The soundtrack album reaches stores Nov. 20; the movie opens nationwide Dec. 19.

-- The members of Outkast, Goodie Mob and Organized Noize have come together as Dungeon Family and are releasing an album. "Even In Darkness" (on the Arista Records label) is due in stores Nov. 20. The first single from the CD is titled "Trans DF Express."


The drummer for the rock group the Who says the band is slowly trying to put a new CD together.

Zak Starkey -- son of Ringo Starr -- tells the Sun newspaper that the driving force behind the venerable aggregation, Pete Townshend, has tons of ideas, but evolving them into a full-fledged project will take some time. Starkey says he thinks the Who is "still the best band in the world" and that playing with the group in a new and innovative project would be the thrill of a lifetime.

Starkey says he's played numerous gigs with the band, but if and when the planned CD goes through it would be the first time he's done the drumming in a studio setting. It now looks as if it might be well into next year before any new recordings are made, though.


It's safe to say that folk-rock icon Bob Dylan has told us a lot about himself and his psyche through his songs over the years. Now published reports indicate the musician is going an additional step -- starting to work on his autobiography.

Officials for the publishing house Simon & Schuster say Dylan, who turned 60 this year, wants to produce a major work in print. In fact, reports say it could be a multi-volume affair. Publication, if that is the case, could come in stages, with "book one" out as early as next year.

(The above two items thanks to UPI Feature Reporter Dennis Daily)


Quincy Jones is the Experience Music Project's featured artist of its 2001 Innovators Series.

The world-renowned musician, composer, and producer will be the focus of a four-day celebration of his musical accomplishments Nov. 9-13. Highlighting the festivities at the EMP complex in Seattle will be a star-studded tribute concert on Monday, Nov. 12, featuring performances by Jones (conducting the Seattle Repertory Jazz Orchestra), jazz bassist Stanley Clarke, and Seattle-based jazz vocalist Ernestine Anderson.

The EMP Innovators Series is an annual program designed to explore the music and legacy of an artist who has significantly changed the course or direction of popular music. Last year's featured artist was Jimi Hendrix.


"The Rocky Horror Picture Show" is returning to Broadway just in time for Halloween.

The cult musical comedy re-opens next Tuesday for a 10-week engagement at its original home, Circle in the Square Theatre. It stars Sebastian Bach, Jarrod Emick, Liz Larsen, Kristen Lee Kelly, Daphne Rubin-Vega, Jason Wooten and Terrence Mann as Dr. Frank 'N' Furter.

There will be a series of celebrity narrators, including: Dick Cavett (Oct. 30-Nov. 4, Dec. 16-Jan. 6), Cindy Adams (Dec. 4-9), Robin Leach (Nov. 6-11) Sally Jessy Raphael (Dec 11-16), Gilbert Gottfied (Nov. 13-18), Penn & Teller (Dec 18-23), MTV's Dave Holmes (Nov. 20-25) and Jerry Springer (Nov. 27-Dec. 2).

The revival opened on Broadway on Oct. 20, 2000, but closed Sept. 23, 2001, due to the disruption in theater business after the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks.

(Web site:

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