Of the seemingly neverending parade of British music awards, the Brits—which will be given out this year on Feb. 18—seem the most interesting to me. Not only is this year’s recipient of the “Outstanding Contribution To Music” award the Pet Shop Boys, the inevitable news reports the day after the award ceremony, regarding one musician or another involved in some form of drunken embarrassment, are old reliables, even in this tough time for the music biz. And reading the list of hopeful winners gives you an excuse to work on your “puzzled befuddlement” look, especially when you take a gander at the nominees for “International Male Solo Artist”: Beck; Neil Diamond; Jay-Z; Kanye West; and Seasick Steve. The full list of those practicing their acceptance speeches at home right now is below the cut.
The numbers for the year’s biggest tours are in, and it looks like Bon Jovi’s country-tinged Lost Highway Tour is 2008’s top grosser, pulling in $210.6 million and two million fans. And they didn’t just drive back and forth in New Jersey! They totally left the state!* In fact, New Jersey kept on rocking at No. 2: Bruce Springsteen & the E Street Band’s Magic Tour conjured $204.5 million dollars (plus $31 million not counted from last year). That’s a lot of Camaros! Full list after the jump:
A few more spoilers have started to trickle out about tonight’s American Idol pre-finale, including word that David Archuleta will reprise “Imagine” and David Cook is planning on singing U2’s “I Still Haven’t Found What I’m Looking For”–the first time a U2 song has been cleared for an Idol performance. (Perhaps this means that Bono is the big star Nigel Lythgoe was crowing about yesterday?) Also: Unlike last year, when Blake Lewis was forced to gut out “This Is My Now,” the two Davids have been given leeway to pick their own coronation songs from the songwriting contest’s top ten vote-getters. Their rumored picks, and other news bits, after the jump.
The Rick Rubin-produced Neil Diamond album Home Before Dark took the top spot on this week’s album chart, selling 146,000 copies and easily outpacing its competition. Home is somehow the first No. 1 album of Diamond’s career, which is probably more a testament to the wacky way the album charts were calibrated back in the day than it is to the fact that he’s been reaching out to the MySpace generation.
The results of this week’s round of album sales are trickling in, and it looks like Neil Diamond will take the top spot, selling in the neighborhood of 125,000 copies. Diamond’s previous album, 12 Songs, debuted at No. More »
Thanks to the sedentary demands of blogging and the 200-person capacity of New York’s Bitter End, I didn’t make it to last night’s MySpace-sponsored Neil Diamond show. But through current videotape and Flash video technology, I can feel like I was there while half-blindfolded and surrounded by people yelling “WOOOOOO”! Check out the clip of “Cherry Cherry” above–and if you have better vision than I do, you, like the Daily Swarm, may notice that Neil’s guitarist is none other than Matt Sweeney of Chavez and Zwan. Yes, really. He’s “all over” the new Neil Diamond record, too. Hey, this seems like a fine excuse to post the video for “Unreal Is Here,” doesn’t it?
Is anyone going to Neil Diamond’s MySpace show in New York City tonight? I’m debating whether or not it’d be worth even trying to get in line once I’m off the blogging clock, and trying to figure out how the demographics of Neil’s audience square with the MySpace demo. (The poster’s really pretty. More »
Not only is tonight’s American Idol Neil Diamond Night–way to keep on keeping up with your target demographic, Nigel Lythgoe!–it also represents the first evening where each of the hopefuls will warble two tracks instead of just one. Spoilers have Jason Castro singing “Forever In Blue Jeans” and “September Morn,” while rumor has it that David Archuleta is going to sing “America” and “I’m A Believer.” (You know that he’s going to pull some sort of Smashmouthy Shrek bullshit out of the air on that second one, right?)