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Bono, Geldof Among Nobel Peace Prize Nominees


U2's Bono and former Boomtown Rats frontman Bob Geldof made the short list for this year's 2006 Nobel Peace Prize. Geldof earned his nomination for organizing the 2005 "Live 8" benefit concerts, which he staged to pressure the G8 to cancel Third World debt. Bono was nominated for his fight against world poverty. The award will be handed out at a ceremony in Oslo, Norway on December 10.

Later this year, Columbia Records will mark Tony Bennett's 80th birthday with the release of a duets album. The collection will feature pairings with the Dixie Chicks, Elton John, Tim McGraw, Barbra Streisand, James Taylor, Bono, Billy Joel, and many others. Bennett will turn 80 on August 3. The duets album is due out on September 26.

29 years after scoring his first Number One hit on the U.K. singles chart, Leo Sayer is finally back on top of that list with "Thunder in My Heart Again." The song is a remake of his 1977 single "Thunder in My Heart," but this time is credited to dance remix DJ Meck featuring Leo Sayer. Leo's U.S. Number Ones, "You Make Me Feel Like Dancing" and "When I Need You," both topped the pop chart in 1977.

Country superstar Kenny Chesney hit the high seas this week. The cruise will take many Country stars and their fans to the Bahamas on two ships - one departed from Port Canaveral and the other from Miami. Both left on February 27 and return on March 3. Other performers joining Chesney on the cruise include Big Kenny of Big & Rich, Chris Cagle, Julie Roberts, Little Big Town, Dierks Bentley, Catherine Britt, Hot Apple Pie, Blue County and Country comedian Cledus T. Judd. The festivities will include a private concert by Kenny Chesney on a secret Bahamian island.

On February 28, Columbia Records will release Bruce Springsteen & the E Street Band's February 18, 1975 concert at London's Hammersmith Odeon. The double CD, Hammersmith Odeon: London '75, is Springsteen's first complete concert to be released on compact disc. In other news, Springsteen is currently completing a new studio album. The collection, tentatively titled The Seeger Sessions, features Springsteen covering songs made famous by folk legend Pete Seeger.

MUSICAL EVENTS/FESTIVALS/BENEFITS:

The 2006 Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo began on February 28. The three-week event will feature concerts by some of the top names in Country and pop music. They include George Strait, Alan Jackson, Hilary Duff, Maroon 5, Sheryl Crow, Toby Keith, Gretchen Wilson and Brooks & Dunn, among others. This year's lineup also features some rhythm-and-blues, rock and Latin artists. A complete schedule is available at www.rodeohouston.com

On March 1, the 16th annual Tibet House Benefit Concert will be held at New York's Carnegie Hall. Scheduled to appear at the Tibet House fundraiser were Phillip Glass, Allen Toussaint, Laurie Anderson and Damien Rice. A portion of the proceeds will go to a musicians fund in New Orleans.

AWARDS PRESENTATIONS/WINNERS

The 20th anniversary Soul Train Music Awards will be presented on March 4 in Pasadena, California. R. Kelly leads the nominees with mentions in three categories. Double nominees include Mariah Carey, Gwen Stefani, Black Eyed Peas, Kanye West, Missy Elliott, Keyshia Cole, Charlie Wilson, Bobby Valentino and John Legend. Legend will receive this year's Sammy Davis Jr. Entertainer of the Year award. R. Kelly will be given Soul Train's first Stevie Wonder Award for songwriting. Wonder will be on hand to present the honor. In addition, Jamie Foxx and Destiny's Child will receive the Quincy Jones Awards for outstanding career achievements. The Soul Train Music Awards will air in syndication in late March.

Canadian rock group Nickelback leads the nominees for the 2006 Juno Awards, Canada's equivalent of the Grammys. The band earned six mentions, including Album of the Year for All The Right Reasons. Other top contenders include jazz singer Diana Krall and pop crooner Michael Buble, who each received five nominations. The Canadian Recording Academy has announced that this year's Canadian Hall of Fame inductee is multi-platinum pop/rock star Bryan Adams. The 2006 Juno Awards will be held on April 2 in Halifax, Nova Scotia.

TOUR DATES AND INFORMATION

Country groups Little Texas, BlackHawk and Restless Heart will begin their "Triple Threat Tour" on March 3 in Reno, Nevada. Twenty cities are currently scheduled throughout 2006, but shows may be added into 2007.

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