The 2005 Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductions will be held on March 14 at New York's Waldorf-Astoria Hotel. Bruce Springsteen will induct U2, Justin Timberlake will introduce The O'Jays, B.B. King and Eric Clapton will share induction duties for Buddy Guy, Rod Stewart will induct Percy Sledge and Neil Young will host the Pretenders' induction. Cable music channel VH1 will broadcast the Hall of Fame inductions on March 19.
Just as the Backstreet Boys prepare to launch a new CD and concert tour, group member Nick Carter is in trouble with the law. March 8, Carter's car was stopped in Huntington Beach, California and officers charged the 25-year-old singer with driving under the influence. His blood alcohol level was above the legal limit of 0.08. Carter's publicist, Juliette Harris, said, "Nick Carter deeply regrets the current situation. He is on doctor prescribed medication and was unaware of its interaction possibilities." Carter's arraignment is set for April 13. The Backstreet Boys' next album will be released in July. Concerts in support of the collection are scheduled to begin on March 21 in New York.
14-year-old pop star JoJo is asking her fans to help her choose her next single. They can cast their votes on her official web site www.jojoonline.com. JoJo says, "My record company wants more singles. But I don't know because it's between three…'Never Say Goodbye,' 'Homeboy' or 'The Happy Song.'" JoJo's debut album has sold more than one million copies in the U.S. Last month, she filmed the video for her third and current single "Not That Kind of Girl." JoJo is now in Australia filming her first movie Aquamarine, which also stars Julia Roberts' niece Emma Roberts. Emma and JoJo play best friends who find a mermaid and have to figure out a way to get her back to the sea.
Rappers 50 Cent and The Game have decided to put their differences aside and try to set a better example for the rap community. Verbal exchanges allegedly led to a shooting earlier this month outside a New York radio station. A member of The Game's crew was shot and wounded while 50 Cent was making an appearance at the station. 50 Cent reportedly announced on the air that he was "kicking The Game out of his clique." Interscope Records released a joint press release, in which 50 Cent said, "I'm launching a new foundation, the G-Unity Foundation, Inc., to help people overcome obstacles and make a change for the better in their lives - to help them overcome their situations. I realized that if I'm going to be effective at that, I have to overcome some of my own. Game and I need to set an example in the community." The Game added, "I see this as a real opportunity to show the power of our community. 50 and I are proving that real situations and real problems can be solved with real talk. This can also be seen as a big step for my organization, Black Wall Street, in terms of making a difference. Maybe we can help save some lives - the way rap music saved mine."
Country singer and rodeo champion Chris LeDoux died of complications from liver cancer on March 9. He was 56. LeDoux retired from the rodeo in 1980 and pursued a full-time music career. He influenced many younger Country singers, including Garth Brooks, who mentioned LeDoux in his 1989 debut single "Much Too Young (To Feel This Damn Old)." He credited Brooks with reviving his struggling career. In 1999, LeDoux joined the roster at Capitol Records, which Garth also records for. He's been in poor health since 2000, when he underwent a liver transplant. In 2004, he was diagnosed with cancer of the bile duct and began radiation treatments last November. LeDoux leaves behind a wife and five children.
On March 18, the Force of Nature Concert for Tsunami Aid will take place in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. Among the international stars taking part in the event are the Backstreet Boys, the Black Eyed Peas, Boyz II Men, Lauryn Hill and Wyclef Jean. Proceeds will go to rebuilding efforts in regions devastated by the December 26 tsunami in Southern Asia.
The 2005 South By Southwest Music and Media Conference will take place March 16-20 in Austin, Texas. This year's event will feature more than 1300 artists performing at over 50 venues. The festival will also offer more than 60 panels and workshops. Rock legend Robert Plant will be the keynote speaker. He'll make his appearance at the Austin Convention Center on March 17.
Nominations for Canada's 2005 Juno Awards were recently announced. This year's top contender is rock star Avril Lavigne. Her five nominations include Artist of the Year, Songwriter of the Year, and Album of the Year and Pop Album of the Year for Under My Skin. Jazz singer Diana Krall earned four nominations, including two for her latest album The Girl in the Other Room. The Canadian Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences will present its 2005 Juno Awards on April 3 in Winnipeg, Manitoba.
Michael W. Smith leads the nominees for the 36th annual Gospel Music Association Dove Awards, which will be held on April 13 at Nashville's Grand Ole Opry House. His eight nominations include Artist of the Year, Pop/Contemporary Album of the Year for Healing Rain and Song of the Year for the album's title track. Other leading contenders include gospel rock band Casting Crowns with seven mentions, sibling Southern gospel group the Crabb Family with six nominations and Israel Houghton, Switchfoot, MercyMe and Matthew West, which each received five nods.
TOUR DATES AND INFORMATION:
On March 19, Velvet Revolver will kick off a North American tour in support of its debut album Contraband. The album has sold nearly two million copies in the U.S. since its release last June. The rock quintet will begin its tour in Phoenix, Arizona. Stops are scheduled in 37 U.S. and Canadian cities before the trek wraps up in West Palm Beach, Florida on May 25.