Music News Digest: Week Of March 31, 2013

April 7, 2013 by Amy Gold

During the week of March 31, 2013, Michael Jackson's wrongful death trial began in Los Angeles. The late singer's family filed a $40 billion suit against concert promoter AEG Live, claiming this company was negligent.

Also this week, two Beatles' albums made the news. A signed copy of "Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band" album sold at auction for a whopping $290,500, and "Let It Be ... Naked" was added to iTunes.

Paul McCartney, the Rolling Stones, Cheap Trick, and Billy Joel have all announced new show dates for this year. Also, one of the Rolling Stones' shows in London sold out in an astounding three minutes, a feat which is not the first for this legendary band.

The Kinks were inducted into the Ultimate Classic Rock Hall Of Fame, Elton John and Bernie Taupin received the Johnny Mercer Award from the Songwriters Hall of Fame, and the Andantes, a female sessions trio that provided vocal backup for many top Motown hits, were given public recognition by the Motown Museum in an exhibit. The late and great James Brown will be getting his own YouTube official channel which will feature rare concerts and other memorabilia. Also, President Obama will be honoring Al Green and other Memphis soul artists at a concert which will take place at the White House on April 9, 2013 and will be televised on PBS on April 16.

Finally, congratulations go to Tina Turner for her engagement to her long-time boyfriend, music producer Erwin Bach.

April 1, 2013: Signed Copy Of Beatles' 'Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band' Sells For $290,500 At Auction

An autographed copy of the classic Beatles' album, "Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band," sold at Heritage Auctions in Dallas, TX for a whopping $290,500. This rare album was signed by all four members of the Fab Four, and the signatures are believed to be authentic and date from around the time of the album's release (June 1, 1967).

Source: Autographed Copy of Beatles' 'Sgt. Pepper's' Fetches $290,500 | Billboard

April 1, 2013: Restored Steinway Returned to Motown Museum

A Steinway grand piano used by Motown artists in the 1960s was recently restored and now sits in its rightful place at the Motown Museum in Detroit. The funds used to restore this vintage piano, which was originally built in 1877, were raised by Paul McCartney.

Source: Piano returns to Motown museum after McCartney funded fix-up | CTV News

April 1, 2013: Michael Nesmith Interviewed By Rolling Stone

Michael Nesmith was recently interviewed by Rolling Stone. The former Monkee discussed his 2013 tour, which is currently in progress, and also his nearly 50-year long career and his time with the Monkees.

Source: QA: Michael Nesmith on Solo Tour and Being the 'Difficult Monkee' | Music News | Rolling Stone

April 1, 2013: Paul McCartney To Perform In Boston

Paul McCartney, who will be going on tour later this year, will be performing at Boston's Fenway Park on July 9, 2013. Tickets for this show go on sale April 5. McCartney also has shows scheduled for this summer in Poland, Italy, Austria, and Brazil, and he will be performing at this year's Bonnaroo festival in Manchester, TN.

Source: Paul McCartney Returning to Fenway Park for Summer Tour | Music News | Rolling Stone

April 1, 2013: Kinks Inducted Into Ultimate Classic Rock Hall Of Fame

The Kinks became the first band to be inducted into this year's Ultimate Classic Rock Hall Of Fame. This famed band, which was formed in 1964 by brothers Ray and Dave Davies and disbanded in 1996, beat out the Beatles by a very small margin for this fan-voted honor.

Source: The Kinks Inducted Into Ultimate Classic Rock Hall of Fame

April 2, 2013: Michael Jackson Wrongful Death Trial Begins

The wrongful death trial for Michael Jackson began on April 2, 2013 in Los Angeles. A $40 billion suit was filed by Jackson's family against concert promoter AEG Live, claiming the company was negligent and responsible for the singer's death. AEG Live was the company behind Jackson's "This Is It" concert series which was to take place at London's O2 Arena beginning in July, 2009. Jackson died on June 25, 2009 from an overdose of Propofol which was administered to him by Dr. Conrad Murray who is currently serving a 4-year prison sentence for involuntary manslaughter. AEG Live denies any wrongdoing, arguing that it was Jackson and not the company who hired Murray.

Source: Michael Jackson $40 Billion Wrongful Death Trial Begins - Music, Celebrity, Artist News |

April 2, 2013: Elton John-Bernie Taupin Team To Receive Honors From Songwriters Hall of Fame

The famed songwriting team of Elton John and Bernie Taupin, who penned over 30 albums and a long string of top hits that include "Rocket Man," "Crocodile Rock," "Goodbye Yellow Brick Road," and "Daniel," will be receiving the Johnny Mercer Award at this year's induction ceremonies which will take place on June 13, 2013 at New York's Marriott Marquis Hotel. This award is given to those songwriters who are in the Songwriters Hall of Fame and have amassed a large body of high quality work. Elton John and Bernie Taupin were both inducted in 1992.

Source: SongHall - Elton John And Bernie Taupin To Receive Johnny Mercer Award At 2013 Annual Gala

April 3, 2013: Tina Turner To Marry Erwin Bach

Tina Turner will be marrying her boyfriend, music producer Erwin Bach. The wedding will reportedly take place at Lake Zurich near the couple's home in Zurich. A long-time resident of Switzerland, Turner recently became a Swiss citizen and gave up her US citizenship.

Source: Tina Turner and Erwin Bach 'get engaged' | The Sun |Showbiz

April 3, 2013: Rolling Stones Announce Tour Dates In North America

The Rolling Stones have announced nine shows for 2013 in the US and Canada. These shows will start in early May in Los Angeles at the Staples Center and end on June 18 in Philadelphia at the Wells Fargo Center.

Source: Rolling Stones Announce '50 and Counting' North American Tour Dates | Billboard

April 3, 2013: Beatles 'Let It Be ... Naked' Album Is Added To iTunes

'Let It Be ... Naked' is a remixed and remastered version of the Beatles' classic 1970 album, "Let It Be." This album, first released in 2003, presents the songs in "Let It Be" without all the overdubs and studio chatter between most of the tracks in the original album. 'Let It Be ... Naked' is now being made available for the first time as a digital download on iTunes.

Source: The Beatles Add 'Let It Be . . . Naked' to iTunes | Music News | Rolling Stone

April 4, 2013: Motown Museum Pays Tribute To The Andantes

The Andantes were a female sessions trio who provided backup for Marvin Gaye, Mary Wells, Stevie Wonder, the Four Tops, Martha Reeves & the Vandellas, the Supremes, and other big name Motown bands and artists during the 1960s-1970s. From 1989 -1992, they also provided backing vocals for former Motown artists as part of the Ian Levine Motorcity Records project. The Motown Museum paid tribute to the Andantes by setting up an exhibit highlighting their many contributions to the famous Motown sound.

Source: Motown's unsung female trio finally gets acclaim - San Jose Mercury News

April 4, 2013: Billy Joel Not Retiring After All

Earlier this year, when asked by various reporters about possible future tours, Billy Joel had indicated that he might be calling it quits - but now, it looks as if his plans for retirement have been shelved, at least temporarily. As for the near future, Joel will be very busy during the month of April. He will be headlining the Stone Music Festival in Australia April 20-21, 2013. He will also be playing at the Jazz Fest in New Orleans, a 10-day event that starts on April 26, 2013.

Source: Billy Joel Not Retiring, Mulling Complete Album Concerts | Music News | Rolling Stone

April 4, 2013: White House To Host Memphis Soul Tribute With Al Green

President Obama is well known to be a big fan of Memphis soul music and Al Green in particular. This month, he will be hosting a show at the White House featuring Al Green and other artists, including Mavis Staples, Booker T. Jones, and Justin Timberlake. This event takes place on April 9, 2013 and will be televised on PBS on April 16 at 8 PM.

Source: Obama to host Memphis soul tribute with Al Green, Justin Timberlake -

April 5, 2013: Rolling Stones Hyde Park Show Sells Out In Three Minutes

The Rolling Stones will be giving a show at London's Hyde Park on July 6, 2013. When tickets to this show went on sale April 5, it sold out in an astounding three minutes. This is not the first time in recent history that this legendary band has sold out one of its shows in such a short time. During their 50th anniversary tour last year, the Stones sold out two shows at London's O2 Arena that took place last November in only seven minutes.

Source: W.E.N.N Rolling Stones London Show Sells Out In Three Minutes

April 5, 2013: Paul McCartney Adds More Tour Dates

Paul McCartney will be launching a world-wide tour later this year, and he has added two more dates. One show will take place in Tulsa, OK at the BOK Center on May 29, 2013, and the other will take place in Washington D.C. at the Nationals Park on July 12. Tickets for both shows go on sale April 12.

Source: Paul McCartney Adds Tour Dates | Music News | Rolling Stone

April 5, 2013: Cheap Trick Announces Upcoming Shows

Cheap Trick will be giving two shows this April to celebrate the 35th anniversary of the band's live album, "At Budokan." One show will take place in New York at the John Varvatos boutique on April 28, 2013, and the other will take place in Los Angeles at the El Rey Theatre on April 30. Both concerts will be streamed live.


April 5, 2013: James Brown Gets Official YouTube Channel

The late and great James Brown will be getting his own YouTube official channel by an arrangement between Shout! Factory and the estate of James Brown. This YouTube channel will debut on April 5, 2013. Videos will include Brown's concert in Boston following Martin Luther King, Jr.'s assassination and other historic concerts.

Source: James Brown Getting YouTube Channel Filled with Rare Concert Footage | The Wrap Media

April 5, 2013: Rolling: Stones Add More Tour Dates

The Rolling Stones announced that they will be adding two more shows to their 2013 itinerary. These additional shows will take place in Chicago and Toronto. Mick Taylor, a former Rolling Stones member, will be one of this band's touring guest artists.

Source: They're Rolling: Stones Add 2 Shows To Their Tour : NPR

April 6, 2013: New CD Release: The Wheel Of Hurt (Deluxe Edition) - Margaret Whiting

Margaret Whiting had a very long string of pop hits from the mid 1940s through the late 1960s. In 1966, she had her last Top 40 hit with "The Wheel Of Hurt" which also topped the Adult Contemporary charts that same year. This CD is a remastering of her album by the same name, which opens with this top charting song. This 25-track CD has an additional 13 singles that include Whiting's German version of the title song.

For more information and to purchase this CD, go to

April 6, 2013: New CD Release: Singles Collection 1962-1972 - Martha Reeves & Vandellas

This 3-CD box set contains every single, both A- and B-sides, released by Martha Reeves & the Vandellas. Besides all their long-familiar classic hits, this comprehensive 82-track collection also includes an entire disc's worth of songs from the vaults of Motown that appear on CD for the very first time.

For more information and to purchase this CD, go to

April 6, 2013: New CD Release: Singles Collection 1964-1972 - Four Tops

This comprehensive 3-CD box set contains every single, both A- and B-sides, by the Four Tops, presented in chronological order. Besides all the radio hits, this set also includes 14 UK singles plus Italian versions of "Walk Away Renee," "I Can't Help Myself (Sugar Pie, Honey Bunch)," and "Reach Out I'll Be There."

For more information and to purchase this CD, go to