Rock News Two: The week in pop

JOHN SWENSON, United Press International


The "Terrapin Station" reunion of surviving Grateful Dead members took place in Wisconsin under heavy police scrutiny to allay the fears of local officials that Deadheads would overrun the place. The fans were ecstatic with the music played by The Other Ones, the name taken collectively by former Grateful Dead bandmates Phil Lesh, Bob Weir, Mickey Hart and Bill Kreutzmann, with the brilliant Jimmy Herring filling the lead guitar role once held by the late Jerry Garcia. The band covered lots of familiar territory, including "He's Gone," "Cryptical Envelopment," "The Other One," "Bird Song," "Lazy Lightning" and an ebullient jam segueing from "Iko Iko" into "Estimated Prophet" and back again. On Saturday night the band thrilled the fans with a climactic version of the classic "Casey Jones." The Alpine Valley event in southeastern Wisconsin failed, however, to live up to local fears. The concert came off without a hitch -- no rowdy crowds, no violence, no major drug problems and no traffic jams. Crowd control kept anyone without a ticket from even driving onto the grounds. The band now will proceed with its previously announced tour.




Everybody wants a piece of "The Osbournes." The upcoming second season of MTV's hit reality series "The Osbournes" will begin under a cloud of litigation. Two lawsuits have been filed against the family's TV show recently. MTV and its parent company Viacom, also are named in a breach-of-contract suit filed in Los Angeles Superior Court by entertainment network -- formerly Threshold claims the Osbournes' deal with MTV violates an intellectual property rights agreement between Threshold and Sharon and Ozzy Osbourne's company Monowise in December 2000. The claim states Threshold is the rightful owner of "The Osbournes" and asks for unspecified damages. Last month the Osbournes were hit with a suit from Los Angeles-based producer Gary Binkow, who claimed they stole the idea from him.


Noel Gallagher, Andy Bell and Jay Darlington of Oasis were injured in an automobile accident Tuesday in Indianapolis when the taxi they were riding in was involved in a head-on collision. They band members were treated for shock, cuts and bruises at a local hospital. An Indianapolis concert was canceled and will be rescheduled. A further examination of Gallagher following the accident established his injuries are more chronic than originally thought. Doctors at the Indiana University School of Medicine said he is suffering from the effects of whiplash and shock. Gallagher is being treated with painkilling drugs and complete rest for three days. Accordingly, the next two scheduled shows of Oasis' U.S. tour, at Philadelphia's Tower Theater Friday and Boston's Fleet Pavilion Saturday were also postponed. A decision on rescheduling will be made early next week. The band intends to resume the tour at Roseland in New York City Sunday, Aug. 11.



Grammy-winning R&B vocalist R. Kelly appeared in court Wednesday in Chicago for a hearing in the child pornography case against him. Kelly made no statements to the court. Cook County Judge Vincent Michael Gaughan conferred with prosecutors and defense attorney Edward Genson, then set a Sept. 20 court date for discovery. Kelly was surrounded by cheering fans as he left the courthouse. He was indicted by a Cook County grand jury June 5 on 21 counts of child pornography stemming from a videotape authorities say shows Kelly having sex with an underage (under 17) girl, a crime in Illinois that could bring him a 15-year jail sentence and a $100,000 fine.


EMI will release David Bowie's greatest hits album, "Best of Bowie" on Oct. 22 in 16 different versions. The 16 versions of the career-spanning greatest-hits set will be created for different markets. In the United States, "Best of Bowie" will be available in a 20-track single-disc version and a 40-song double-disc set, both ordered chronologically. Worldwide, 16 different countries will get unique versions, with track listings tailored to reflect Bowie's most popular work in the various countries. The flag of each nation will appear on the spine of its custom disc. A "Best of Bowie" DVD, with music videos and other footage, will follow Nov. 5.



Bruce Springsteen's Columbia Records compact disc "The Rising" made its entrance on Billboard's Top 200 album chart at the No. 1 spot, with 524,976 sales in its first week, according to SoundScan. The album, released on July 30, also will debut at No. 1 in Canada, Germany, Italy, Spain, Sweden, Belgium, Finland, Denmark and Norway. Last week it debuted at No. 1 in England. The record's debut marks Springsteen's biggest first week sales in the SoundScan era. Rolling Stone magazine gave "The Rising" its highest rating of five stars. Springsteen began his tour in support of "The Rising" Wednesday night at Continental Arena in East Rutherford, N.J.


The New York Post reported pop diva Britney Spears is "exhausted" and wants to quit the music business for two years. A representative for Spears denied the report, saying, "She is not taking two years off, she is trying to take six months off." The Post quoted a music industry source as saying, "Britney's lost it. She was really upset after being booed in London and Mexico and she's saying she's going to pack it in for two years. She's planning on moving back to Louisiana and living with her mother." Spears was photographed last month making an obscene gesture at photographers in Mexico after aborting a concert in Mexico City because of thunderstorms.



On Thursday, Aug. 15, Tipitina's will present the Joseph S. Clark and Booker T. Washington high school bands with instruments purchased with proceeds from the "Instruments A Comin'" benefit held April 29. The first annual event featured performances by notable New Orleans artists including Dr. John, Galactic, Cyril Neville, George Porter, Tab Benoit, Anders Osborne, Kermit Ruffins, Henry Butler and Rebirth Brass Band. The event raised $22,000 from door proceeds, an art auction and donations, with more than 1,000 patrons attending. Tipitina's created this event to generate support and awareness for music education in New Orleans' public schools and to ensure the Crescent City's unique musical heritage will continue for many generations. The presentation ceremony will take place at 11 a.m. at the original Tipitina's, 501 Napoleon Ave., in New Orleans.


Hootie and the Blowfish lead singer Darius Rucker thinks his new solo album, "Back To Then," will be a tonic for an ailing pop music scene. "The one thing I hate about a lot of today's R&B, pop and country music is that it sounds exactly alike," Rucker said. "With my songs, I want people to know it's Darius Rucker." Rucker's solo debut mines contemporary R&B and rap, with guest shots from Musiq, Lil' Mo, Snoop Dogg, Jimmy Cozier, Ryan Toby and Jazzy Jeff.



England's Yardbirds, known for featuring such legendary guitarists as Eric Clapton, Jeff Beck and Jimmy Page, are recording a new album. The band has lined up at least one British superstar guitarist to appear on the record, Brian May of Queen. Other "eminent guest performances" are on the record, according to drummer Jim McCarty's Web site. The revised Yardbirds, now led by McCarty and guitarist Chris Dreja, expect to release the album in March of 2003.


Lynyrd Skynyrd guitarist Rickey Medlocke has written four songs for the soundtrack to a film by Star Trek icon William Shatner. Medlocke also has a featured role in "Groom Lake," scheduled for late 2002 release. Medlocke wrote "Diamond Ring," which features a guest vocal by Skynyrd singer Dale Krantz Rossington, "Go For Love," "Driving Angry" and "Fire on the Mountain."


Bob Dylan returned to the scene of his most controversial moment Saturday when he brought his band to play the Newport Folk Festival for the first time since he was booed in 1965 for plugging in an amplified guitar and "going electric." Dylan opened his show in low-key fashion, playing an acoustic guitar. He and his band -- bassist Tony Garnier, guitarists Charlie Sexton and Larry Campbell, and George Ricelli on drums -- then rocked through fan favorites including "Down in The Flood" and "You Ain't Goin' Nowhere."



Superstar keyboardist Elton John will be the featured attraction at a benefit fundraising concert for former Attorney General Janet Reno's campaign for governor of Florida. John will perform at the private event Sept. 18 with a $500 cover charge. The event will be held at a hotel in South Florida eight days after the Florida Democratic primary. "We fully expect to be the nominee," said Reno spokeswoman Nicole Harburger. "I think the Democrats are going to have to raise a lot of money to compete with the Bush campaign and raise it quick -- we want to start now."

Latest Headlines