Music News Digest: Week Of August 12, 2012

August 19, 2012 by Amy Gold

During the week of August 12, 2012, Aretha Franklin was inducted into the Gospel Music Hall of Fame, some 75,000 fans paid tribute to The King on the 35th anniversary of his death, and The Who performed at the closing ceremonies for the London Olympics.

On a sad note, fans mourned the suicide of Bob Birch, Elton John's long-time bassist.

August 13, 2012: The Who Performed At The London Olympics Closing Ceremony

The London Olympics ended on Sunday, August 12, and the closing ceremonies were partially aired on NBC. Some of the acts which were not shown included The Who, who performed such classic songs as "My Generation" and "Baba O'Riley."

Source: The Who, Spice Girls Perform at London Olympics Closing Ceremony | Music News | Rolling Stone

August 13, 2012: Kraftwerk Performed At Way Out West 2012

Way Out West is a music festival that has been held annually in Gothenburg, Sweden since 2007. This year's festival took place on August 9-11. Featured acts included the electronic music group, Kraftwerk, famous for the 1974 hit, "Autobahn."

Source: Way Out West 2012: Florence, Black Keys, Kraftwerk + More Light Up Sweden - Music Festivals |

August 13, 2012: Neil Young And Crazy Horse Performed At Outside Lands Music Festival In San Francisco

Outside Lands has been held annually for the past five years in San Francisco's Golden Gate Park. This year's rock music festival took place August 10-12, and Neil Young And Crazy Horse was one of the main attractions.

Source: Metallica, Neil Young, Jack White Rock Outside Lands | Music News | Rolling Stone

August 14, 2012: George Jones Prepares For One Last Tour In 2013

Legendary country singer George Jones announced that he will be making one last tour in 2013 before retiring from performing. The 81-year old singer is also planning a new album with Dolly Parton.

Source: George Jones gets set for 1 last road tour in 2013 | Entertainment | The Seattle Times

August 15, 2012: Alice Cooper Joined Cast Of 'Rock of Ages' For One Night

Alice Cooper made a surprise on-stage appearance on August 14 in the "Rock Of Ages" musical in London's West End. He performed his classic "School's Out," marking the anniversary of this song topping the UK charts 40 years ago this week.

Source: Alice Cooper joins 'Rock of Ages' cast for 1 night - CBS News

August 15, 2012: Bruce Springsteen Kicks Off Tour At Boston's Fenway Park

On August 14, Bruce Springstten and his E Street Band kicked off their North American tour in Boston at Fenway Park. As part of his show, Springsteen performed The Standells' garage band classic, "Dirty Water," a song about Boston and the city's (then) polluted waters of the Boston Harbor and Charles River.

Source: Bruce Springsteen Kicks Off New Tour Leg at Fenway Park | Music News | Rolling Stone

August 15, 2012: Sunset Strip Music Festival Pays Tribute To The Doors

This year's Sunset Strip Music Festival paid tribute to The Doors on August 16 with original band members Ray Manzarek, Robby Krieger and John Densmore in attendance. It was at the Sunset Strip where this legendary LA-based band got its start.

Source: Sunset Strip Music Festival aims spotlight on the Doors -

August 16, 2012: Fans Gathered At Graceland For Candlelight Vigil On The 35th Anniversary Of Elvis Presley's Death

Some 75,000 fans paid homage to The King on the 35th anniversary of his death in a candlelight vigil held annually at Graceland. This year, Priscilla and Lisa Marie Presley were also in attendance and they expressed their appreciation to the crowd.

Source: Elvis candlelight vigil surprise guests: Priscilla and Lisa Marie -

August 16, 2012: Robert Wayne Birch, Elton John's Bassist, Passes Away

Bass player Robert Wayne ("Bob") Birch, a long-time member of Elton John's band, died on August 15 at 56 of an apparent and unexpected suicide at his home in the San Fernando Valley. Birch is survived by his wife, Michelle, and son, Jonathan.

Source: Elton John bassist Bob Birch, 56, found dead in L.A.

August 17, 2012: Aretha Franklin Is Inducted Into The GMA Gospel Music Hall of Fame

"Queen Of Soul" Aretha Franklin has been inducted into the GMA Gospel Music Hall of Fame. The induction ceremonies took place on August 14 at Trinity Music City Auditorium in Hendersonville, TN.

Source: Aretha Franklin, Ricky Skaggs join Gospel Hall of Fame

August 18, 2012: John Lennon's Killer To Get Seventh Parole Hearing

New York State's Department of Corrections announced that John Lennon's killer, Mark David Chapman, will have his seventh parole hearing this week. Chapman is currently serving a 20-year-to-life prison sentence for shooting Lennon outside his New York City apartment building on December 8, 1980. Since 2000, Chapman has come up for parole every two years.

Source: John Lennon's killer to get seventh parole hearing this week | Reuters

August 18, 2012: New CD Release: Two Sides: The Very Best of Mike Oldfield - Mike Oldfield

Mike Oldfield is best known for "Tubular Bells" which was part of the score for the 1973 horror movie, "The Exorcist." This 2-CD set is a retrospective of the musical works by this multi-instrumentalist, composer, arranger, and producer that covers Oldfield's many diverse styles.

For more information and to purchase this CD, go to

August 18, 2012: New CD Release: Icon - Merle Haggard

This 11-track CD is a compilation of songs from the late 1970s-early 1980s by this country music icon. Included are two of Haggard's drinking songs, "Misery and Gin" and the chart-topping "I Think I'll Just Stay Here and Drink," plus "If We're Not Back In Love by Monday" and "From Graceland to the Promised Land."

For more information and to purchase this CD, go to

August 18, 2012: New Book Release: Still the Greatest: The Essential Songs of The Beatles' Solo Careers - Andrew Grant Jackson

"Still the Greatest" pays tribute to the songwriting talents of each ex-Beatle during their respective solo careers. Since the Beatles broke up, they have collectively released some 70 albums totalling around 900 songs. Jackson assesses these works and highlights those he thinks are the best.

For more information and to purchase this DVD, go to