Rock News: Music's high and low notes

By JOHN SWENSON, United Press International  |  May 9, 2003 at 3:00 AM
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Lollapalooza returns with a 2003 North American tour featuring a lineup of some of music's most vital artists and a fully interactive extravaganza with a wealth of new sights, sounds and experiences. The 2003 tour kicks off July 3 in Grand Rapids, Mich.

Founded in 1991 by Jane's Addiction frontman Perry Farrell, Lollapalooza has exposed millions of people to scores of new musical artists, cultural trends, lifestyle alternatives and political points of view over its seven outings.

"Lollapalooza's mission is to be great and wonderful, to speak to people and speak for the Earth, and to embody music's power to bring people together," Farrell said. "It was created to share the bountiful gifts that our culture holds, and now it's returning to enjoy its permanent place in that culture."

Jane's Addiction returns to claim its original headlining slot, with Farrell, guitarist Dave Navarro and drummer Stephen Perkins joined by new bassist Chris Chaney, previewing new material live and with a new album, "Hypersonic," to be released on Capitol Records July 22.


Friday and Saturday, May 30 and 31, the Rebirth Brass Band will celebrate its 20-year anniversary at the original Tipitina's in New Orleans. The historic event will be filmed and recorded for future release. Born and bred in the Treme neighborhood of New Orleans, Philip and Keith Frazier formed the Rebirth Brass Band in 1983 as teenagers, affirming their place as innovators of the brass band revival movement. Many notable New Orleans musicians have joined the ranks of the Rebirth over its history, including Kermit Ruffins and Roderick Paulin. The Rebirth has

cut 10 albums for labels such as Arhoolie, Rounder and Shanachie, including the classics "Feel Like Funkin' It Up," "Take it to the Streets," "Kickin' it Live," and "We Come to Party." Tracks like "Do Watcha Wanna," "Feel Like Funkin' It Up," and "Same Thing On" are staples in the New Orleans song book reaching outside the scope of brass music. Over the past 20 years, the Rebirth has toured Europe, Japan and Africa, shared the stage with The Grateful Dead, the Meters, George Clinton and the P-Funk All-Stars, Maceo Parker, Dr. John, The Ohio Players, and Ani DiFranco, and performed at every major festival in the United States and Europe, including the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival, Roskilde, Glastonbury Festival, Montreaux Jazz Festival, North Sea Jazz Festival and the Nice (France) Jazz Festival.


Zoë/Rounder Records artist Gord Downie will be touring the United States and Canada this summer. Joining him on the road will be his band, The Country of Miracles. The dates are in support of his soon-to-be-released second solo album, "Battle of the Nudes," due June 3. Downie, who also is lead singer of The Tragically Hip, just shot the video for the first single from "Nudes," "Pascal's Submarine," in Halifax, Nova Scotia. As on his first solo album, "Coke Machine Glow" (2001), the lineup of musicians joining Downie consists of Dale Morningstar (guitar, pump organ, and other various kitchen-sink music-making items), Dave Clark (drums, percussion, tuba et al), and Dr. Pee (keyboards) from The Dinner Is Ruined; Josh Finlayson (bass, acoustic and electric guitars, background vocals) of The Skydiggers; and Julie Doiron (bass and background vocals), ex-Eric's Trip and Wooden Stars and a solo artist in her own right. The album was recorded over five days at The Gas Station on Toronto Island in May 2001, followed much later by five more fertile days at The Bathouse in Bath, Ontario, in May 2002. The album was produced by Gord Downie and Dale Morningstar, with Dave Clark & Josh Finlayson.


Nielsen//NetRatings, the global standard for Internet audience measurement and analysis, reports rap music is the most popular genre purchased by Internet users downloading music. According to the latest data from the Nielsen//NetRatings Plan service, online music enthusiasts were 111 percent more likely to purchase rap music than the average Internet user over the past three months. Dance and club music held the second spot, with downloaders 106 percent more likely to have purchased dance and club music than the average Internet surfer and 77 percent more likely to purchase alternative rock. R&B/soul music and rock rounded out the top five. Nielsen//NetRatings reports that nearly 31 million active Internet users, or 22 percent of the active Internet population ages 18 years old and up, downloaded music in the past 30 days and 71 percent of this audience purchased music in the past three months.

"Recording industry executives are devoted to finding a successful business model for selling music online," Greg Bloom, senior Internet analyst for Nielsen//NetRatings, said in a statement. "The de facto standard may be a few years away, but understanding the genres of music that sell well online and offline will be crucial to generating revenue along the way."


Celebrate Brooklyn will hold a blockbuster 25th season of music, dance, word, and film at the Prospect Park Bandshell, 9th Street and Prospect Park West in Park Slope over the course of the summer. One of New York City's longest-running, free, summer outdoor performing arts festivals, Celebrate Brooklyn attracts over 200,000 people

each summer and all performances, except ticketed benefit concerts, are free, with a $3 suggested donation. The season kicks off Thursday, June 12, with a 25th Birthday Party Gala and a concert featuring a rare and exclusive New York City performance by singer Joan Armatrading. Opening weekend continues Friday, June 13, with the kick off of the Latin Music Series, which will feature the authentic New York City salsa of Spanish Harlem Orchestra and Cuban maestro Alfredo de la Fé. Saturday, June 14, will feature Brooklynite actor and hip hopper Mos Def.

Season highlights include Rosanne Cash on June 20; Leonard Cohen Tribute curated by Hal Wilner with Rufus Wainwright, Kate and Anna McGarrigle, Martha Wainwright and other surprise guests, June 28; a screening of

"Creature From the Black Lagoon" in 3D with live music accompaniment by The Jazz Passengers July 17; and Latin alternative music by Café Tacuba (Mexico), Yerba Buena (Cuba) and Sidestepper (Columbia) Aug. 9. Daylong cultural festivals, dedicated to the music, dance, food and crafts of Africa and Puerto Rico take place on Saturday, July 26, -- the 12th annual African Festival -- and Sunday, Aug. 3 -- the 6th annual Boricua Festival.

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