On April 22, the President's Committee on the Arts and the Humanities will hand out its 2002 National Medal of Arts and National Humanities Medals. Two musicians are among this year's recipients, cellist Yo-Yo Ma and Country legend Johnny Cash. The ceremony will take place at Constitution Hall in Washington, D.C., with a reception to follow at the White House. First Lady Laura Bush serves as the Honorary Chairperson of the committee.
Patti LaBelle will receive the inaugural MusiCares Heart Award from the Philadelphia chapter of the National Academy of Recording Arts & Sciences, April 22. The honor recognizes the legendary singer's contributions to the local music industry and various charitable causes. The chapter will also hand out its 2002 Heroes Awards. Recipients include jazz guitarist Pat Martino, rapper Eve and producer DJ Jazzy Jeff.
Rhythm-and-blues singer R. Kelly has written and recorded a tribute to the soldiers who are fighting the war against terrorism. Soldier's Heart will be released on April 23. Proceeds from sales of the single will go to Army Emergency Relief. The organization provides financial assistance to active and retired military personnel and their families.
April 24, the Democratic National Committee (DNC) will host a fundraising concert at the Apollo Theater in New York. Headliners will include Michael Jackson, Tony Bennett, Ruben Blades, BeBe Winans and K.D. Lang. Former President Clinton is scheduled to appear. The event will kick off the DNC's nationwide voter registration drive.
The Arms Wide Open Foundation, founded by Scott Stapp of the rock group Creed, has teamed with Comfort Zone Camp to hold a 3-day weekend camp for children who lost parents in the September 11 attacks. The camp, which provides bereavement services to the children, will be held April 26 - 28 at Camp Mason in Blairstown, New Jersey. Stapp's foundation will also send 15 parent-child groups to the U.S. Space Camp in Titusville, Florida in late July.
NEW ALBUM RELEASES, APRIL 23:
The 33rd annual New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival will begin this week at the Fair Grounds Race Course. This year's festival dates are April 26-28 and May 2-5. Lenny Kravitz, Melissa Etheridge, Bonnie Raitt, Taj Mahal, Ladysmith Black Mambazo, Counting Crows and Wynton Marsalis are just a few of the artists scheduled to appear at this year's event.
On April 27 the 2nd annual Fan Nation festival will take place in Irvine, California. The event will feature concerts by Sheryl Crow, the Goo Goo Dolls, newcomer Ryan Adams, Jewel and Five For Fighting. Styled after Nashville's annual Fan Fair event, Fan Nation will also offer the chance for fans to meet the artists and get autographs.
The Gospel Music Association will present its 33rd annual Dove Awards on April 25 in Nashville, Tennessee. Professional football player Kurt Warner and gospel star Yolanda Adams will host the ceremony. This year's leading nominees include Steven Curtis Chapman, Nicole C. Mullen, Toby McKeehan, Rebecca St. James, Third Day, Michael W. Smith and Kirk Franklin. Awards will be handed out in 41 categories. Winners are chosen by the Gospel Music Association's 5,000 members. The ceremony gets its national network debut with a live broadcast on PAX-TV.
The 2002 Juno Awards, Canada's equivalent of the Grammys, were presented on April 14. This year's top winners were jazz singer/pianist Diana Krall and rock band Nickelback. Krall took home the Best Artist honor and the Best Album and Best Vocal Jazz Album awards for The Look of Love. Nickelback received the Best Group and Best Single awards for How You Remind Me. Other winners included Shaggy (Best-Selling International Album for Hotshot), David Usher (Best Pop Album for Morning Orbit), Carolyn Dawn Johnson (Best Country Artist), Glenn Lewis (Best R&B/Soul Recording for Don't You Forget It), and Daniel Lanois, who received the Jack Richardson Best Producer award. Lanois was also inducted into the Canadian Music Hall of Fame.
On April 27, Latin pop star Enrique Iglesias will kick off a European concert tour in Lisbon, Portugal. The trek is in support of his latest album, Escape. Shows are also scheduled throughout the U.K., Germany, Ireland, Switzerland, the Netherlands and France.