Barbra Streisand will be honored for her environmental activism at the 2019 Hollywood for Science Gala, set for Feb. 21 at a private estate. The event is sponsored by the UCLA Institute of the Environment & Sustainability (IoES), which works to alleviate environmental problems and educate the next generation of leaders to ensure a healthier planet. "When I moved to LA, the air was unbreathable. Rivers were catching fire in Ohio," Streisand said in a statement. "Then public support and a number of farsighted politicians passed legislation to clean up our air and water. Now we face a planetary crisis of climate change. It is imperative for all humanity that we act now." - Billboard, 1/16/19...... Carlos Santana announced on Jan. 16 that he'll be commemorating the anniversaries of his smash 1999 Supernatural album and his 1969 Woodstock appearance with a 29-date North American tour that will get underway on June 29 in Phoenix, Ariz. Santana will be playing classics from his back catalog, and adding new songs from his forthcoming EP In Search of Mona Lisa, which is set to drop on Jan. 25. "We're always moving forward, and we have incredible new songs and melodies that will inspire you," Santana said in a statement. "I feel like a 20 year old on stage playing with this band, and they deliver on every song. When we hit the stage, we know we will touch your heart and make you dance, sing, cry, laugh and leave your baggage behind." The tour will hit most major American markets, including Los Angeles (6/24), Seattle (6/29), Denver (7/3), Dallas (7/6), St. Louis (7/12), Chicago (8/4), Detroit (8/11), Washington, D.C. (8/14) and Boston (8/20) before wrapping on Aug. 25 in Wantagh, N.Y. - Billboard, 1/16/19...... Aretha Franklin was honored with a star-studded "Aretha! A GRAMMY Celebration For The Queen Of Soul" tribute concert at the Shrine Auditorium in Los Angeles on Jan. 13. Jennifer Hudson, who will star in Franklin's biopic Respect, kicked off the tribute with an energetic "Think," before Alicia Keys and SZA performed a duet of "Day Dreaming." Celine Dion received a standing ovation before she performed Franklin's version of "A Change is Gonna Come," and Patti LaBelle's voice soared on "Call Me." Smokey Robinson took a moment to remember his good friend Franklin, who he called his "little sister." He told the packed auditorium that he still misses his longtime friend who he grew up with in Detroit. The tribute was presented by the Recording Academy and music mogul Clive Davis, who told the crowd "There will never ever be another Aretha Franklin." Franklin died at the age of 76 from pancreatic cancer in 2018 in her Detroit apartment. Some of her family members including her grandson who spoke at her funeral were in attendance at the tribute, which was hosted by filmmaker and actor Tyler Perry. - AP, 1/14/19...... In other Aretha Franklin news, a Detroit TV station is reporting that a criminal investigation has been opened as a result of the Queen of Soul's Bloomfield Township home allegedly being burglarized prior to her passing. The criminal probe reportedly also includes unauthorized use of Franklin's funds. While it's unclear exactly how much money is missing, the report was filed in June. The news comes on the heels of the IRS claiming Franklin left almost $8 million in tax debt ($3 million of which her estate asserts has been paid since her passing), in addition to legal bills and other expenses that remain unpaid. - TheRoot.com, 1/13/19...... The Rolling Stones will be among the headliners at the annual New Orleans Jazz Fest, which is celebrating its 50th anniversary in 2019. The two-weekend event runs April 25-28 and May 2-5 at the Fair Grounds Race Course in New Orleans, with a diverse lineup also featuring Katy Perry, Jimmy Buffett, Bob Seger, Santana, Van Morrison, Al Green, John Fogerty, Tom Jones, Aaron Neville, Jerry Lee Lewis, Dave Matthews Band, Gladys Knight, Alanis Morissette and Chaka Khan. The New Orleans Jazz Fest was first produced by Newport Folk Festival co-founder George Wein in 1970. For the first time, this year the event is expanding to four days each weekend. - Billboard, 1/15/19...... In other Rolling Stones news, Keith Richards has announced he'll be celebrating the 30th anniversary of his 1988 debut solo LP Talk Is Cheap with a deluxe reissue on Mar. 29. The release will include unseen photos, an 80-page hardback book and rare memorabilia, including lyric sheets, posters and a guitar pick. Talk Is Cheap features contributions from such artists as Bootsy Collins, Patti Scialfa and Richards' former Rolling Stones bandmate Mick Taylor. - AP, 1/16/19...... Classic rockers Toto's 1982 hit "Africa," which has in recent years become one of the most streamed songs in the world, will play eternally in an African desert thanks to Namibian artist Max Siedentopf who recently set up a solar-powered sound installation in the Namib Desert that will continue to play the tune on repeat. "[I] wanted to pay the song the ultimate homage and physically exhibit 'Africa' in Africa," Siedentopf told the BBC. "Some [Namibians] love it and some say it's probably the worst sound installation ever. I think that's a great compliment." Siedentopf built six speakers adjacent to each other, attached to an MP3 player with only the catchy hit on it. While the set up is incredibly durable, Siedentopf says he expects the desert's harsh weather conditions to eat away at the installation over time. As for the exact location of the exhibit, the 27-year-old artist is keeping it undisclosed for only the most dedicated Toto fans to find. So "Hurry boy, it's waiting there for you." - Billboard, 1/14/19...... Bruce Springsteen made a surprise appearance at a recent screening of the film version of his hit musical "Springsteen on Broadway." Springsteen attended the free screening Sunday at Monmouth University's Pollak Theatre. According to the Asbury Park Press, the Boss entered the 700-seat theater about 10 minutes after the show started and sat near the back with the film's director, Thom Zimny. Most people didn't notice the rock icon, who wore a baseball cap and left through a backdoor after the film ended. Springsteen used the Pollak Theatre for two rehearsal shows before he began his Broadway run in the fall of 2017. The show ran until this past December. Monmouth University also plays host to the Bruce Springsteen Archives and Center for American Music. - AP, 1/14/19...... In related news, Carole King made a surprise appearance at a fifth anniversary presentation of her Broadway show "Beautiful" at the Stephen Sondheim Theatre on Jan. 12 in New York. The packed house erupted into thunderous cheers and applause as King appeared sitting at a baby grand piano and showing all the love in her heart as she sang "Beautiful," the final song. "It's kind of miraculous that this show has lasted for five years because not many do. And it's a testament to, I think, people say the music... but the book is so good and the direction and the lighting and the sets. It's really a well put together production," King told reporters after the show. King has sung onstage during curtain calls during the show's long run but has never appeared in the show itself. In the show's final scene -- set during her famous 1971 Carnegie Hall concert -- the 76-year-old King played a much younger version of herself as she took over for Chilina Kennedy, who recently returned to the Broadway production of "Beautiful" after playing the King role in the North American tour. King and the cast then performed the show's encore number, "I Feel the Earth Move," at the curtain call as the audience danced and clapped along. The singer-songwriter held hands with Kennedy as the two took several bows and accepted flowers from the cast. "Beautiful" opened on Broadway on Jan. 13, 2014, and won the 2014 Tony Award for best actress in a musical for Jessie Mueller; the 2015 Grammy Award for best musical theater album; and two 2015 Olivier Awards, Britain's version of the Tonys. Productions have played in London, Japan and Australia and toured the United Kingdom. The North American tour is celebrating its third anniversary of sold-out runs and is currently playing at Philadelphia's Academy of Music. - AP, 1/13/19...... Elton John and his husband David Furnish have recruited rockers The Killers to headline their 27th annual Elton John AIDS Foundation's Academy Awards viewing party. IMDb.com will serve as this year's presenting sponsor, and as part of the sponsorship arrangement, the website for the first time will broadcast its annual "IMDb Live" streaming show. The four-hour show will be co-hosted by Aisha Tyler and Dave Karger. EJAF's viewing party will take place during the Academy Awards on Feb. 24, and is once again being held at West Hollywood Park. Since its inception, EJAF's Oscar party has raised more than $68.2 million for the foundation, which uses the funds to help those living with HIV/AIDS or to help fund treatment and prevention programs. - The Hollywood Reporter, 1/14/19...... Beach Boys mastermind Brian Wilson, Grateful Dead veteran Bob Weir, and country music icon Willie Nelson will headline L.A.'s first ever coastal music festival, the BeachLife Festival, set for May 3-5 at the Seaside Lagoon in Redondo Beach. "We've painstakingly curated this lineup to capture what we believe is the unique spirit of BeachLife," reads a statement from co-founders Allen Sanford and Rob Lissner. Sanford is the owner of the popular Saint Rock nightclub in Hermosa Beach, and Sanford and Lissner are the brains behind LiveList, a tech platform to stream live music performances around the world. The festival will also feature an innovative 50-seat, pop-up restaurant on the main stage with reservations starting at $150, available to be booked March 1. Organizers say the Side Stage concept will "give festival-goers access to an unprecedented upscale dining experience "just feet from headliner performances." The festival will also feature a Beyond Side Stage area with a curated wine village, a massive craft beer bar focused on LA breweries and food by celebrity chef David LeFevre. - Billboard, 1/14/19...... Country music legend Loretta Lynn's upcoming 87th birthday will be celebrated on Apr. 1 with an all-star concert at Nashville's Bridgestone Arena, it was announced on Jan. 14. Among the artists participating in "Loretta Lynn: An All-Star Birthday Celebration Concert" are Alan Jackson, Brandy Clark, Darius Rucker, Garth Brooks, George Strait, Jack White, Kacey Musgraves, Keith Urban, Little Big Town, Margo Price, Martina McBride, Miranda Lambert, Pistol Annies and Trisha Yearwood. When asked during the press conference about her status as a pioneer within the industry, Lynn responded emphatically, "It feels great. I love all of the artists coming on [the show]; I don't know all of them, but I've listened to all of [their music], and this all just feels great." Lynn, a four-time Grammy winner, has long been the undisputed Queen of Country Music, with more than 50 years of recording and touring to her name. With 17 Billboard Hot Country Songs No. 1 singles to her credit, she is also one of the most awarded musicians of all time. - Billboard, 1/14/19...... Led by such major classic rock acts as the Beatles, Pink Floyd, Fleetwood Mac, Led Zeppelin and David Bowie, vinyl album sales in the U.S. have hit their 13th consecutive year of growth. Vinyl album sales continue to be a bright spot among an otherwise bleak album sales picture. 16.8 million vinyl albums were sold in 2018, according to Nielsen Music (up 14.6 percent) -- marking the 13th consecutive year of growth for the format. 16.8 million is also a new yearly high for vinyl album sales since Nielsen Music began tracking sales in 1991. The top-selling vinyl albums artist in 2018 was the Beatles, with 321,000 copies sold of their catalog on vinyl. Their biggest seller was Abbey Road, which finishes the year as the No. 4 largest-seller, with 76,000 copies. The Fab Four also have two more titles among the year's top 15-sellers: their self-titled The Beatles ("White Album") is No. 11 (56,000) and Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band is No. 13 (50,000). The top 10-biggest selling vinyl acts of the year are rounded out mostly by classic and veteran rock acts: Pink Floyd (177,000), David Bowie (150,000), Panic! at the Disco (148,000), Fleetwood Mac (139,000), Led Zeppelin (138,000), Michael Jackson (131,000), Jimi Hendrix (119,000), Metallica (116,000) and Queen (113,000). The CD format continues to be the leader for all album purchases, while the digital format is the runner-up with 53.4 million digital albums sold in 2018 (down 20.7 percent). - Billboard, 1/12/19...... Michael Jackson's daughter Paris Jackson has reportedly checked into a treatment facility to seek professional help regarding her "physical and emotional health," taking time off after a busy working year. "After a busy year of work engagements that took her all over the globe, Paris decided that she needed to take some time off to reboot, realign and prioritise her physical and emotional health," a source close to Paris told the UK outlet Metro. "She checked herself into a treatment facility to aid in her wellness plan and is looking forward to coming out of this revitalised and ready to tackle the exciting new projects that await her," the source added. Paris was hospitalised due to depression and anxiety in 2013. In 2018, she denied reports that she had checked into rehab due to a "mental breakdown." - New Musical Express, 1/16/19...... A neighbor of Jimmy Page and Robbie Williams in west London has claimed Williams once blasted music by Led Zeppelin's rivals and dressed up as frontman Robert Plant in a bid to annoy the iconic Led Zepp guitarist. The two musicians have been at odds with each other since Williams submitted plans to add a basement gym and swimming pool to his home in west London five years ago. Page was concerned the work could damage his Grade I-listed mansion and has objected to planning proposals on several occasions. According to The Telegraph, a local resident called Johnny wrote to Kensington and Chelsea council to report Williams' behaviour, after councillors had given him planning permission. "The committee may not have been aware that Robbie Williams has been playing loud '70s rock music on outside speakers when he views Jimmy Page outside his home," the letter read. "What's been most annoying is that Mr. Williams has played rock arch-rival bands Black Sabbath, Pink Floyd and Deep Purple. He obviously knows this upsets Mr. Jimmy Page. There have also been some reports that Robbie Williams has dressed up to imitate iconic Led Zeppelin frontman and lead singer Robert Plant." A spokesperson for Williams told the paper the claims were "a complete fabrication and nonsense." - NME, 1/12/19...... It appears Paul McCartney won't be among the headliners at the U.K.'s Glastonbury festival, which takes place from June 26-30, after Sir Paul recently announced he'll be performing two U.S. shows at the Talking Stick Resort Arena in Phoenix on June 26, before heading to Las Vegas' T Mobile Arena on June 29. The Beatles legend was previously among the favourites rumoured to be headlining at the Worthy Farm classic this summer. Meanwhile in the UK, a pothole in Lancashire has become an unlikely sensation online after its questionable resemblance to Macca was first noticed. The hazardous crack in the road surface was first spotted by the Lancashire Evening Post, who were keen to point out the similarities in appearance to the Beatles icon. Upon first inspection, the gravel surrounding the hole looks extremely similar to Macca's famous mop-top hairstyle, and there's even individual stones that are making up his eyebrows, eyes, nose and mouth. Responding to the unusual photo, one user joked: "Why is no-one Fixing A Hole?" Another quipped: "Is this one of the 4000 holes in Blackburn Lancashire?" - NME, 1/15/19...... Shirley Boone, the wife of '50s music legend Pat Boone and mother of "You Light Up My Life" singer Debby Boone, died at her Beverly Hills residence on Jan. 11. She was 84. Ms. Boone, who was married to Pat for nearly 65 years, had been diagnosed with vasculitis, a condition characterized by the inflammation of one's blood vessels, under a year ago. Shirley and Pat wed in 1953, when they were both 19. She came from a country music family, as her father Red Foley is a member of the Country Music Hall of Fame, and her mother Judy Martin was also a prominent singer within the genre. "We lived a wonderful, blessed life together for 65 years," Boone, 84, told People magazine. "I've parted with my better half for a little while... but we don't die, we just move on to another place, and today was moving day. She's changed her address is all and moved to a different mansion that I expect to join her in one day." Ms. Boone was reportedly surrounded by Pat, Debby, and the couple's other three daughters when she died. She and Boone had 16 grandchildren. - New York Daily News, 1/12/19...... Veteran actress/singer/comedian Carol Channing, the lanky, ebullient musical comedy star who delighted American audiences over almost 5,000 performances as the scheming Dolly Levi in "Hello, Dolly" on Broadway and beyond, died of natural causes on Jan. 15 in Rancho Mirage, Calif. She was 97. Besides "Hello, Dolly," Ms. Channing starred in other Broadway shows, but none with equal magnetism. She often appeared on television and in nightclubs, for a time partnering with George Burns in Las Vegas and a national tour. Her outsized personality seemed too much for the screen, and she made only a few movies, notably The First Traveling Saleslady with Ginger Rogers and Thoroughly Modern Millie with Julie Andrews. Over the years, Ms. Channing continued as Dolly in national tours, the last in 1996, when she was in her 70s. Critic Tom Shales of The Washington Post once called Ms. Channing "the ninth wonder of the world." Born Jan. 31, 1921, in Seattle, Ms. Channing majored in drama and dance at Bennington College in Vermont, and later found a job in a New York revue. For several years she worked as an understudy, bit player and nightclub impressionist, taking jobs as a model, receptionist and sales clerk during lean times. Landing in Los Angeles, Ms. Channing was the hit of "Lend an Ear" in a small Hollywood theater, and she captivated audiences and critics when the show moved to New York. As the innocent gold digger in the musical "Gentlemen Prefer Blondes," her stardom was assured. One reviewer reported "she hurls across the footlights in broad strokes of pantomime and bold, certain, exquisitely comical gestures." The show's hit song, "Diamonds Are a Girl's Best Friend," became her signature number. But she returned over and over again to the surefire "Hello, Dolly," which earned her $5 million on one tour. She considered Dolly Levi "a role as deep as Lady Macbeth," ut added that the essence of her character was her unquenchable thirst for life. That description fit Carol Channing, who attributed her sunny optimism to her lifelong faith in Christian Science. Ms. Channing had two early marriages that ended in divorce -- to novelist Theodore Naidish and pro footballer Alexander Carson, father of her only child, Channing. Her son became a successful political cartoonist. Ms. Channing had reportedly suffered two strokes in the past year. - AP, 1/15/19...... Verna Bloom, the actress who portrayed the wife of the dean in the hit '70s movie Animal House, died on Jan. 9 in Bar Harbor, Maine, of complications from dementia. She was 80. In the 1978 John Landis-directed film, Ms. Bloom played Marion Wormer, who flirted with and had a drunken romp with fraternity president "Otter" Stratton. Other roles included Clint Eastwood's lover in High Plains Drifter and Mary in The Last Temptation of Christ. Ms. Bloom was born in Lynn, Mass., and graduated from Boston University in 1959. She is survived by her husband, former film critic and two-time Oscar-nominated screenwriter Jack Cocks, and a son. - AP, 1/10/19.
Seventies artists Cat Stevens (aka Yusuf), John Prine and Eagles collaborator Jack Tempchin are among the inductees for the class of 2019 Songwriters Hall of Fame. Stevens' songwriting credits include "The First Cut Is The Deepest," which he wrote five decades ago and has become a hit for multiple artists, including Rod Stewart and Sheryl Crow. Country-folk icon Prine (who recently was nominated but didn't make the cut for the 2019 Rock and Roll Hall of Fame) has become an affable songwriting guru for many of Nashville's talented younger artists, and Tempchin co-wrote songs for the Eagles and Glenn Frey's solo albums. Other 2019 SHOF inductees include Tom T. Hall, who Johnny Cash called his "all-time favorite songwriter," and Dallas Austin, who has written hits for Madonna, Boyz II Men and Pink. The new class of songwriters will officially be inducted on June 13 at the Marriott Marquis Hotel in New York City. - AP, 1/12/19...... Parlophone Records announced on Jan. 8 it is releasing a new David Bowie 7" vinyl singles box set this spring in celebration of what would have been Bowie's 72nd birthday. Spying Through a Keyhole (Demos and Unreleased Songs) features nine previously unreleased recordings, including the earliest known version of one of his most beloved songs, "Space Oddity." Though most of the tracks in the collection have familiar titles, these versions had never been released before 2018, with most comprised of solo vocal and acoustic home demos. It will be the first physical release of the songs, which were briefly available on streaming services for a limited time in December. - Billboard, 1/8/19...... Previously unseen artifacts marking the 60th anniversary of The Motown Museum will go on display at the iconic Detroit recording studio and museum in 2019. The museum announced on Jan. 11 that it will begin to display several new items the following day, including documents that show Motown label founder Berry Gordy Jr.'s repayment of the $800 family loan that helped launch the company with a recording in 1959. Scores of stars, including The Supremes, Stevie Wonder, Marvin Gaye and Smokey Robinson and the Miracles recorded hits there before the label moved its operations to California in 1972. The museum also said it has plans for more new displays throughout the year. - AP, 1/11/19...... Speaking of Detroit, hometown buddies Bob Seger and Kid Rock continued their long history of jamming with each other onstage when Kid Rock joined headliner Seger and his Silver Bullet Band for a rendition of "Rock N' Roll Never Forgets" at Nashville's Bridgestone Arena on Jan. 11. "I've known (Rock) since he started in music," Seger told the crowd, while Kid Rock said that it was "an honor to be here tonight, joining my friend and absolute musical hero here... Over 50 years, one of the best singer-songwriters in American history. Maybe his last time in Nashville. I sure hope not." Seger will continue with his North American "Final Tour" at least into May, but it could stretch into the summer and perhaps beyond. - Billboard, 1/12/19...... Movie studio MGM announced on Jan. 10 that the long-gestating Aretha Franklin biopic Respect will finally begin production in 2019 with stage director Liesel Tommy set to direct. In the lead role will be Dreamgirls star Jennifer Hudson, who was chosen by Franklin to portray her in Jan. 2018 shortly after Hudson performed a medley of Franklin's songs at Clive Davis' pre-Grammy bash. Liesel Tommy was nominated for a Tony Award for directing the 2016 Broadway production of "Eclipsed," and she is also set to direct a film adaption of Trevor Noah's autobiography. Callie Khouri, who penned 1991's acclaimed Thelma & Louise, will write the script. In other Aretha Franklin news, The Grammy Awards' Recording Academy announced on Jan. 9 that Smokey Robinson will be among the headliners of an "Aretha! A GRAMMY Celebration For The Queen Of Soul" tribute concert set for Jan. 13 at the Shrine Auditorium in Los Angeles. Robinson is the latest addition to the all-star list of performers that also includes Hudson, Celine Dion, Kelly Clarkson, Alicia Keys, John Legend, Patti LaBelle and BeBe Winans, among others. The special will be taped and broadcast later in 2019 on the CBS Television Network. - AP/Billboard, 1/11/19...... Movie studio Twentieth Century Fox announced on Jan. 9 that the Golden Globe-winning Queen biopic will be released as a sing-along in more than 750 theaters in North America beginning Jan. 11. The film, which includes some of the band's most popular songs including "We Will Rock You," "We Are the Champions" and the title track, is also being expanded from 1,000 theaters to more than 1,300 the same day. "We are delighted to give audiences the opportunity to see this outstanding Golden Globe-winning film featuring Rami Malek's amazing Golden Globe-winning performance in theaters all over the U.S. and Canada in both its original form and in a never-before-experienced 'sing-along' version," said Chris Aronson, Fox's president of domestic distribution in a statement. Meanwhile, Queen guitarist Brian May has accused British critics of sending a subtle message that Bohemian Rhapsody is not worthy of its recent awards success, despite being nominated for seven BAFTA awards (Britain's equivalent of the Oscars). May congratulated Malek on his BAFTA nomination for "Leading Actor" via Instagram on Jan. 10, but was quick to point out the film's glaring omission from the "Best Film" category days after it won the equivalent accolade at the Golden Globes. May also said he was disappointed to learn that the film wasn't nominated for its special effects. "I can only conclude that these people don't really understand what was achieved by our team. There are no explosions or rocket ships, but the re-creation of Wembley Stadium as it was in 1985 is a massive triumph." he wrote. Bohemian Rhapsody is the worst-rated film to win a Best Picture award at the Golden Globes since 1986, achieving a rating of only 62% on the Rotten Tomatoes site (the lowest Best Picture winner since Out of Africa in 1986). Nevertheless, Bohemian Rhapsody has become the highest-grossing music biopic of all-time, overtaking the Abba movie Mamma Mia! after making $600 million (£478m) at the box office. - AP/NME, 1/10/19...... Leaving Neverland, a documentary about the lives of two boys who accused Michael Jackson of sexual abuse, has been added to the lineup of the 2019 Sundance Film Festival. Produced and directed by Dan Reed, Leaving Neverland tells the stories of two boys, aged 7 and 10, who began long-running relationships with Jackson at the height of his stardom. Now in their 30s, they tell the "gut-wrenching" story of how they were sexually abused by Jackson, and how they came to terms with it years later. The two-part, 236-minute documentary, is slated to premiere on Jan. 25 in the festival's Special Events Category. Michael Jackson's estate has released a statement in response to the news, blasting the doc as "yet another lurid production in an outrageous and pathetic attempt to exploit and cash in on Michael Jackson," adding "this so called 'documentary' is just another rehash of dated and discredited allegations. It's baffling why any credible filmmaker would involve himself with this project." On Jan. 10, the King of Pop's nephew Taj Jackson also came to his late uncle's defense, posting on Twitter that he is "so tired of these lies about my uncle... I doubt the media wants to learn the truth or is even interested in it. Negativity sells. But please post below on what we all can do to expose this documentary." Sundance runs from Jan. 24 to Feb. 4 in Park City, Utah. - The Hollywood Reporter/Billboard, 1/9/19...... Revered director Martin Scorsese has revealed he will be directing a new concert documentary for Netflix that chronicles the famous 1975-76 Bob Dylan Rolling Thunder Revue tour. Rolling Thunder Revue: A Bob Dylan Story will trace the tour in which Dylan gathered an ensemble of collaborators and musicians including Joan Baez, T-Bone Burnett and Mick Ronson. Scorsese previously helmed the Dylan project No Direction Home, a 2005 Grammy-winning documentary which detailed Dylan's evolution between 1961 and 1966. The announcement comes three months after director Luca Guadagnino said that he planned to adapt Dylan's classic 1975 album Blood On the Tracks into a film. - The Hollywood Reporter/NME, 1/10/19...... The previously unseen Paul McCartney movie The Bruce McMouse Show is set to be shown in cinemas in selected cities in the UK, US, Australia and Canada beginning Jan. 21. The part concert film/part animated feature tells the story of how McCartney and his band Wings initially met Bruce McMouse, the film's animated protagonist. It also features unseen footage from Wings' 1972 European tour in support of the Red Rose Speedway album, along with animated footage that shows the family of mice who are living under the stage. - New Musical Express, 1/10/19...... Joe Jackson realized a while back that 2019 would mark 40 years since the release of his debut, Look Sharp. And yet, he says,"still don't really believe it." Perhaps that's because the acclaimed British singer-songwriter behind hits like "Steppin' Out" and "Is She Really Going Out With Him?" has been busy readying his crackling new album Fool for release on Jan. 18. Recorded at the end of his recent tour, the record, Jackson's 20th, finds him in both ruminative and rocking moods. "I'm at the point where I've been around the block a few times," he says."think I have a grip on the things that are most important in life." To commemorate the new release and his milestone, Jackson will embark on the Four Decade Tour in February, drawing on one main album to represent each 10-year period: Look Sharp, Night and Day, Laughter & Lust, Rain and Fool. He's looking forward to the trek, but still wondering where the time has gone. "Some days it feels like it's been a long time," he says, adding with a laugh, "but it doesn't seem like 40 bloody years!" - Entertainment Weekly, 1/4/19...... Billy Joel will be performing the first concert at the Baltimore Orioles' home ballpark at Camden Yards since the venue opened in 1992. Joel, who turns 70 in May, will take the stage on July 26. In a news conference on Jan. 10, Orioles Executive Vice President John Angelos expressed hope that Joel's show will be the "first of many" concerts at Camden Yards. Joel last performed in Baltimore in July 2015 at M&T Bank Stadium, home of the NFL's Ravens. It was his first stage show in the city since 1977. - AP, 1/10/19...... Several Elvis Presley items including jewelry and clothing were sold at auction at The Guest House Graceland in Memphis on Jan. 10, netting more than $600,000. The items include a red velvet shirt likely worn on stage by Presley at a 1956 show in Tupelo, Miss., which sold for $37,500. A gold and diamond ring that Presley wore on stage and gave to his father sold for $30,000. A ring Presley gave to singer J.D. Sumner sold for $22,500. - AP, 1/10/19...... On Jan. 9, original Woodstock co-founder and co-producer Michael Lang announced a 50th anniversary Woodstock concert will be held on Aug. 16-18, competing against another Woodstock tribute approximately 150 miles away. Lang says his Woodstock concret will be held at the Watkins Glen International Speedway, and claims his event will be the "only authorized commemoration of the iconic 1969 festival." In December, the Bethel Woods Center for the Arts announced that it was staging its own Woodstock tribute event at its 15,000-seat amphitheater built on the site of the original Woodstock. In a press release, Lang said, "the original site in Bethel is wonderful, but much too small for what we're envisioning" and promises his event will have a much different feel than Bethel Woods. "The Watkins Glen speedway gives us the ability to create something unlike any other commemorative event and something uniquely Woodstock," Lang said. He also noted that Watkins Glen International was also the site of Summer Jam in 1973, headlined by theAllman Brothers Band, Grateful Dead and The Band in front of 600,000 people -- a record at the time. "The Woodstock 50th Anniversary will be about sharing an experience with great artists and encouraging people to get educated and involved in the social issues impacting everyone on the planet," said Lang. "It's so inspiring to see young people today channeling their passion into causes they care about. That's something that's always been a part of Woodstock's mission, and it's a big focus at the 50th festival." - Billboard, 1/9/19...... Cher and Bette Midler were among the Pres. Donald Trump critics sounding off on Twitter following Pres. Trump's Jan. 7 Oval Office address on his demand for over $5 billion to construct a fence along the southern U.S. border. "Trump had 2 years...all branches of gov, and total corrupt power...where was his crisis then...what humanitarian crisis is he speaking of, the one where he ripped babies from mom's arms or where his administration killed 2 7 yrs. old?," Cher posted, while Midler said, "#munchausensbyproxy We're living it every day. It might be called something else; a person holds an entire nation hostage so that they will pay attention to him. What is that called?? Anyone??" - Billboard, 1/9/19...... Saturday Night Fever star John Travolta took to Instagram on Jan. 7 to share a photo of himself sporting a new shaved hair look alongside daughter Elle Bleu. "I hope everyone had a great New Year!" the actor captioned the photo. It's unclear as to whether Travolta's new bald look is for a movie role, but either way, it caught the Internet's attention. - Billboard, 1/8/19...... The Who have announced they are planning a new album and tour for 2019. In an interview with Rolling Stone, guitarist Pete Townshend disclosed that he told promoters Live Nation that he wouldn't agree to a new tour unless they band had a new songs in the works. "I said I was not going to sign any contracts unless we have new material," Townshend explained. "This has nothing to do with wanting a hit album. It has nothing to do with the fact that The Who need a new album. It's purely personal. It's about my pride, my sense of self-worth and self-dignity as a writer." The upcoming new record will be the British rockers' first since 2006's Endless Wire, which came 24 years after their previousl full studio effort, 1982's It's Hard. The untitled album, which Townshend describes as a "dark ballads, heavy rock stuff, experimental electronica, sampled stuff, and cliched Who-ish tunes," currently exists as 15 demos, all of which were written and recorded by Townshend last year. Bandmate Roger Daltrey is expected to record vocals for the tracks later this year, with a 2019 release currently planned. Daltrey, also interviewed in the same article, added: "They're all great songs. But sometimes I hear them and I think, 'I can't add anything to this to make my job as singer worthy of doing anything better than what Pete has already done.' There's at least five or six I can lay into and I'm sure they'll come out incredible. Now that I'm healed up, I'm going to spend time getting into them. Okay, so I didn't get back to him quickly at first. It doesn't mean anything! I was deaf for about three weeks. It wasn't even possible for me to bloody hear what was in them!" The US tour dates have yet to be officially announced but the jaunt will consist of a total of 31 dates and will kick off at New York's Madison Square Garden in April, with a local symphony orchestra joining the band for each performance. "I'll be 75 years old in March and this feels like a dignified way to go and do music," Daltrey said about the tour. "That's all we're really left with. We're old men now. We've lost the looks. We've lost the glamour. What we're left with is the music and we're going to present it in a way which is as fresh and powerful as ever." The first leg of the tour will see The Who play 14 shows from April onwards, with the tour resuming in September and October to visit cities in Canada and the western US. As for their UK tour plans, Townshend confirmed that the band will play festivals in the UK over the summer, with a possible tour planned on these shores for the end of 2019. Daltrey says he's still working on a biopic of late The Who drummer Keith Moon, but "it's so difficult because biopics generally don't work." "The only one I've seen that really works was the one on Brian Wilson (2014's Love & Mercy), where they used two different actors. I loved that one because it had the balls to be a movie, and I want to make a movie, not just a biopic." - New Musical Express, 1/11/19.