Sade Begins US Tour in Baltimore
Nigerian pop singer Sade begins her first national tour since 2001 on June 16. The trek starts in Baltimore, Maryland and continues to 38 more North American cities through August 30. Sade’s tour is in support of her “Soldier of Love” album, which debuted at Number One on the Billboard 200 and has sold more than one million copies in the U.S.
Garth Brooks Among Songwriters Hall of Fame Inductees
On June 16, Garth Brooks, John Bettis, Leon Russell, Allen Toussaint and the songwriting team of Billy Steinberg and Tom Kelly will be inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame. The 42nd annual induction and awards dinner will take place at New York’s Marriott Marquis Hotel. Songwriters Hall of Fame Chairman Jimmy Webb released a statement that says, “We are inspired by the striking caliber and range of the 2011 Songwriters Hall of Fame class. John, Garth, Leon, Billy, Tom and Allen each represent a unique breed of artist, warmly respected by their peers and revered by all lovers of song. As songwriters, their work has forever enriched our world's music.” During the ceremony, legendary singer Chaka Khan will be honored with the Howie Richmond Hitmaker Award. Webb says, “Chaka Kahn’s signature voice and unique vision have influenced the sound of popular music in a way that has endured. We are proud to bestow this well-deserved honor upon her.”
Apollo Theater Honors Stevie Wonder
Stevie Wonder will be in New York on June 13 to be inducted into the Apollo Theater’s Legends Hall of Fame. The event includes a concert featuring Wyclef Jean, Yolanda Adams, Melanie Fiona, Raphael Saadiq, Paul Schaffer, and Chick Corea, among other special guests. Previous inductees include Michael Jackson, Aretha Franklin, Ella Fitzgerald, Quincy Jones, Smokey Robinson, James Brown, Gladys Knight, Little Richard and Patti LaBelle.
Shania Twain Releases New Single
Country-pop star Shania Twain’s first new single in six years will be released on June 12. “Today Is Your Day” will be exclusively available on iTunes following the world premiere of the song during the finale of her Oprah Winfrey Network docu-drama series, Why Not? with Shania Twain. In other news, Shania has announced that she’ll begin a two-year engagement in Las Vegas on December 1, 2012. Her show, called “Shania: Still the One,” will take place at the Caesars Palace Colosseum, the same venue used by Celine Dion and Elton John.
Idol McCreery Signs Record Deal
2011 American Idol winner Scotty McCreery and runner-up Lauren Alaina have signed recording deals with Mercury Nashville/19 Recordings/Interscope. Both are in Nashville to take part in the CMA Music Festival. While in Music City, Scotty and Lauren are spending time in a studio working on their debut albums, which are expected to be released within the next few months.
Scherzinger to Replace Cole as X Factor Judge
Former Pussycat Doll Nicole Scherzinger has been chosen to replace Cheryl Cole as a judge on the U.S. version of The X Factor. FOX-TV will launch the singing competition in September. Cheryl was also dropped from judging the U.K.’s X Factor, a job she’s had since 2008. Reports now indicate she’s in the running to host the upcoming U.K. version of The Voice.
iTunes to Release Beatles Anthology Albums
On June 14, The Beatles’ three Anthology albums will be released as digital downloads on iTunes. Originally released in 1995 and 1996, the collections will debut on the site in three different versions. They’ll be sold individually, as a three-volume box set and a 23-track “Anthology Highlights” album. In addition, the 155 tracks are available for paid download for $1.29 each. On May 31, iTunes began offering an “Anthology” video introduction and a 50-minute “Meet The Beatles” radio show for free streaming at www.iTunes.com/TheBeatles.
New Album Releases / June 14:
“Dream With Me” by Jackie Evancho
“All Things Bright and Beautiful” by Owl City
“Pieces of Me” by Ledisi
“15 Minutes” by Barry Manilow
“What’s It All About” by Pat Metheny
“Standing on the Rooftop” by Madeleine Peyroux
“Marc Broussard” by Marc Broussard
“Wild and Free” by Ziggy Marley
“Time Together” by Michael Franks
“Greatest Hits II: The South Has Risen Again” by Molly Hatchet
“Now That’s What I Call Country, Volume 4” by various artists
On June 14, legendary Country Alabama will host “BAMA RISING: A Benefit Concert for Alabama Tornado Recovery.” The show will take place in Birmingham, Alabama, with proceeds going to victims of the April 27 storms that devastated the Southern state. Also on the bill are Brad Paisley, Sara Evans, The Blind Boys of Alabama, Martina McBride, Dierks Bentley, Rodney Atkins, Darius Rucker, and Sheryl Crow, among others.
The inaugural Rapids Jam Music Festival will take place June 16-18 in Roanoke Rapids, North Carolina. Performers include Willie Nelson, Lady Antebellum, Sugarland, Darius Rucker, Jamey Johnson, Lee Brice, Randy Houser, Colt Ford, and more. Over 100,000 music fans are expected to attend the event.
The 2011 “Show Me Music and Arts Festival” will be held June 17-19 in Springfield, Missouri. In addition to three days of concerts, the event will feature a Comedy Tent Stage with nationally touring comedians, a Chef’s Pavilion Stage featuring three top Food Network chefs, a Kid Zone with rides, games and entertainment, and an arts and crafts area with over 30 exhibitors. The festival will include performances by One Republic, Train, Tim McGraw, Trace Adkins, Little Big Town, and many others.
Look Who's Going On Tour!
On June 16, Britney Spears kicks off her “Femme Fatale” world tour in Sacramento, California. She’ll be supporting her new album of the same name. Nicki Minaj will open shows on the 31-date North American leg, which wraps up on August 14 in Toronto. Britney will begin international dates in St. Petersburg, Russia on September 22.
On June 16, Country star Keith Urban will kick off his 56-city “Get Closer 2011 World Tour.” North American dates begin in Mobile, Alabama. Shows will feature Keith’s many hits, as well as songs from his latest album, “Get Closer.” He says, “Even as we were writing for the album, I could tell right away that these songs were gonna soar in concert. The foundation that we build the tour’s production upon will be as it’s always been, ensuring the clearest and strongest connection possible with the audience.” U.S. and Canadian concerts wrap up on October 15 in Minneapolis, Minnesota.
On June 18, Country trio Rascal Flatts launches its “Flatts Fest” tour in Bristow, Virginia. The festival tour will offer interactive pre-show activities and contests that include a karaoke challenge, a wedding chapel, scavenger hunt, carnival games and food, and more. Special guests on the 23-city tour are Sara Evans, Easton Corbin and Justin Moore.