Singer Kelly Clarkson and Brandon Blackstock arrive on the West Front of the Capitol in Washington, Jan. 21, 2013, for the President Barack Obama's ceremonial swearing-in ceremony.
Singer Kelly Clarkson and Brandon Blackstock arrive on the West Front of the Capitol in Washington, Jan. 21, 2013, for the President Barack Obama's ceremonial swearing-in ceremony.

Pop singer Kelly Clarkson married Reba McEntire’s step-son Brandon Blackstock at Blackberry Farm in Walland, Tennessee on October 20.  She scrapped earlier plans to have a big wedding for an intimate ceremony that was attended only by Blackstock’s two children, 11-year-old Savannah and 7-year-old Seth.  In other news, Clarkson’s first Christmas album, “Wrapped In Red,” drops on October 29.  The album features her versions of 12 holiday classics, plus two original songs.

Michael Jackson is Forbes' Top-Earning Dead Celebrity

FILE - Michael Jackson at a press conference at Lo
In this March 5, 2009 file photo Michael Jackson announces that he is set to play ten live concerts at the London O2 Arena in July, which he announced at a press conference at the London O2 Arena.

has released its annual Top-Earning Dead Celebrities list.  Michael Jackson tops the list with $160-million earned from October 2012 - 2013.  Rounding out the Top 5 are Elvis Presley ($55-million), Charles Schulz ($37-million), Elizabeth Taylor ($25-million) and Bob Marley ($18-million).

Pearl Jam Tops Billboard 200

American rock band Pearl Jam debuts at Number One on this week’s Billboard 200 chart with “Lightning Bolt.”  The album is the group’s first studio set since 2009.  This marks Pearl Jam’s fifth chart-topper.  According to Nielsen SoundScan, “Lightning Bolt” sold 166,000 copies in its opening week.  Also making impressive entries on the Billboard 200 this week are Paul McCartney’s “New” (Number 3), The Avett Brothers’ “Magpie and the Dandelion” (Number 5), Scotty McCreery’s “See You Tonight” (Number 6), Willie Nelson’s “To All The Girls…” (Number 9) and Let’s Be Still’s “The Head and the Heart” (Number 10).

CeeLo Green Pleads Not Guilty to Sex Assault Charge

Grammy Award winning R&B singer and "The Voice" TV
Grammy Award winning R&B singer and "The Voice" TV judge CeeLo Green (L), confers with attorney Blair Berk in Clara Shortridge Foltz Criminal Justice Center in Los Angeles, California, Oct. 21, 2013.

“The Voice” judge CeeLo Green (real name Thomas DeCarlo Callaway) is in trouble with the law.  On October 21, he was charged with one felony count of “furnishing a controlled substance” to a date.  The woman also accused Green of sexual assault, but prosecutors said there was insufficient evidence to file rape charges.  According to a statement from the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s office, Green “allegedly slipped ecstacy to a 33-year-old female while the two were dining at a downtown Los Angeles restaurant sometime between July 13 and July 14, 2012.”   Green pleaded not guilty and was released on $30,000 bail.  He’s scheduled to return to court on November 20.  If Green is found guilty, he faces four years in prison.

Janelle Monae Tapped for Billboard's Rising Star Award

FILE - In this Aug. 12, 2013 file photo, American
FILE - In this Aug. 12, 2013 file photo, American R&B and soul musician, composer and record producer, Janelle Monae poses for a portrait at Dream Downtown, in New York.

Pop singer Janelle Monae will receive Billboard’s Rising Star Award at the 2013 Billboard Women in Music event.  Monae said, “Being recognized for your hard work and passion is always humbling and encouraging.  I feel honored Billboard has taken note of my journey in the music industry thus far.  I hope by receiving this award I’m encouraging aspiring artists to stay true to their own artistic visions and never give up.”  Pink was previously announced as this year’s recipient of the Woman of the Year honor.  The Billboard Women in Music ceremony will take place December 10 in New York.

Kenny Rogers Among Country Music Hall of Fame Inductees

Bobby Bare, left, Jack Clement, center, and Kenny
Bobby Bare, left, Jack Clement, center, and Kenny Rogers, right, pose for photographers in the Country Music Hall of Fame in Nashville, Tennessee, April 10, 2013.

On October 27, Nashville’s Country Music Hall of Fame will hold its annual induction ceremony.  This year’s inductees are Kenny Rogers, Bobby Bare and the late “Cowboy” Jack Clement.  Rogers will be inducted to the Modern Era Artist category, Bare enters the Veterans Era Artist category and Clement will be added to the Non-Performer category.  Kyle Young, director of the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum said, “I find it remarkable that all three 2013 honorees were born in the 1930s during the worldwide Great Depression and commercial country music's formative years.  They were present for the birth of rock ‘n’ roll, the ‘60s folk revival, the ascent of hard country and the rise of sophisticated pop country with a global impact.”

New Album Releases / October 29:

  •  “Drinks After Work” by Toby Keith
  • “The Essential James Taylor” (2-CD anthology) by James Taylor
  • “The Studio Albums 1972-1979” (six vinyl albums box set) by the Eagles
  • “Christmas Songs” by Bad Religion
  • “Good Wine and Bad Decisions” by Julie Roberts
  • “A Restless Heart Christmas” by Restless Heart
  • “This Is What I Do” by Boy George
  • “Reflektor” by Arcade Fire

Musical Events / Festivals / Benefits

The Voodoo Experience 2013 music festival takes place November 1-3 in New Orleans, Louisiana.  Pearl Jam, Macklemore & Ryan Lewis, Calvin Harris, Paramore, The Cure, Kid Rock and Nine Inch Nails are among nearly 100 artists performing at this year’s event.  In addition to the many concerts, the Voodoo Experience offers interactive art installations and food and craft vendors.

Star Birthdays

October 27 - Singer Lee Greenwood celebrated his 71st birthday.  Greenwood is best known for his 1984 Top 10 patriotic anthem “God Bless the U.S.A.”  Since 1983, he has taken seven songs to Number One on the Country chart.

Country singer Brad Paisley performs in the State
Country singer Brad Paisley performs in the State Dining Room of the White House in Washington July 21, 2009. (File photo)

October 28 - Country star Brad Paisley turned 41.  Paisley arrived on the Country scene in 1999 with his debut album, “Who Needs Pictures.”  The West Virginia native’s nine albums have produced 18 Number One songs, including “He Didn’t Have To Be,” “Then” and “Remind Me.”  On November 6, Paisley will co-host the 47th annual Country Music Association Awards with Carrie Underwood.  This is their sixth consecutive year hosting Country music’s biggest night.

Country-rock singer and fiddler Charlie Daniels celebrated his 77th birthday.  He formed The Charlie Daniels Band in 1971.  The group had a Number One hit in 1979 with “The Devil Went Down To Georgia.”  The song brought Daniels his first and only Grammy Award.  In 2005, Daniels was honored with an Icon Award from the performing rights organization BMI for his contributions to Country music.

Gavin Rossdale arrives at the world premiere of "M
Gavin Rossdale arrives at the world premiere of "Monsters University" at the El Capitan Theatre on June 17, 2013, in Los Angeles.

October 30 - Rock singer Gavin Rossdale will turn 46.  Rossdale leads the British band Bush.  The group formed in London in 1992.  A decade later, Bush went on hiatus, but reunited in 2010 to record its latest album “The Sea of Memories.”  Rossdale married No Doubt’s lead singer Gwen Stefani in 2002.  They have two sons, 7-year-old Kingston and 5-year-old Zuma.  Stefani hasn’t confirmed rumors that she’s pregnant with their third child.

November 1 - Big Kenny of Country duo Big & Rich celebrates his 50th birthday.  Born Kenny Alphin in Culpeper, Virginia, he worked as a real estate developer before pursuing a career in music.  In the mid-1990s, Big Kenny moved to Nashville where he met singer John Rich.  The duo’s 2004 debut album, “Horse of a Different Color,” sold more than three million copies in the U.S.  Last year, Big & Rich released its first new album since 2007.  “Hillbilly Jedi” produced the Top 20 hit, “That’s Why I Pray.”  Big & Rich are currently working on their fifth studio album.

Nelly, center, and Brian Kelley, left, and Tyler H
Nelly, center, and Brian Kelley, left, and Tyler Hubbard, of musical group Florida Georgia Line, perform at ACM Presents: Tim McGraw's Superstar Summer Night at the MGM Grand Garden Arena, April 8, 2013, in Las Vegas.

November 2 - Rap star Nelly (real name Cornell Haynes Jr.) turns 39.  Nelly’s 2000 debut album, “Country Grammar,” brought him three Grammy Awards and sold nine million copies in the United States.  His follow-up release, “Nellyville,” moved six million copies and included two Number One hits, “Hot In Herre” and “Dilemma.”  Earlier this year, Nelly released his seventh album, “M.O.”  In addition to his solo career, Nelly has collaborated with a host of other artists.  They include Janet Jackson, Keri Hilson and Country duo Florida Georgia Line.

Awards Presentations / Winners

From left Tico Torres, Jon Bon Jovi, David Bryan,
From left Tico Torres, Jon Bon Jovi, David Bryan, and Richie Sambora from US rock band Bon Jovi share a laugh backstage in Munich, June 12, 2011

has announced the finalists for the 10th annual Billboard Touring Awards.  In the Top Tour category are Bon Jovi, Bruce Springsteen & the E Street Band and Cirque du Soleil’s “Michael Jackson Immortal.”  Top Draw finalists include Pink, Bruce Springsteen and Bon Jovi.  Bruno Mars, Luke Bryan and One Direction are nominated for the Breakthrough Award, which honors an artist who headlined for the first time and ranked among the year’s top tours.  The 2013 Billboard Touring Awards will be presented on November 14 in New York. (Complete list of nominations are listed at )

Look Who's Going On Tour!

On November 1, Country singer Justin Moore begins his “Off the Beaten Path” tour in Springfield, Missouri.  The U.S. headlining tour is scheduled to run through April 2014.  Opening acts include Randy Houser and Josh Thompson.  Moore is supporting his new CD “Off the Beaten Path,” which debuted at Number One on the Top Country Albums chart and at Number 2 on the all-genre Billboard 200.