Music News Digest: Week Of September 29, 2013

October 6, 2013 by Amy Gold

During the week of September 29, 2013, the verdict came in after five months at trial for the wrongful death lawsuit filed by the family of Michael Jackson against concert promoter AEG Live (see video below). The jury determined that the company was not culpable for the death of Jackson and will not have to pay damages to the Jackson family.

Also that week, Paul McCartney answered a long-lost fan letter to the Beatles from half a century ago ago.

Dave Davies announced a solo tour which will begin this November. Also, the popular Queen musical, "We Will Rock You," is set to make its North American debut later this month.

Bruce Springsteen will be publishing a photo book spanning his career over the past 30+ years later this month. This November, David Bowie will be releasing an expanded version of his latest album, "The Next Day," and Eric Clapton is also set to release a new album, "Crossroads Guitar Festival 2013." This December, the Velvet Underground will be re-releasing the critically acclaimed 1968 album, "White Light/White Heat," and the Doors will be releasing a new Blu-ray/DVD, "R-Evolution."

Finally, it was announced that Todd Rundgren will be honored with the Les Paul Award early next year. Also, Badfinger's 1972 hit, "Baby Blue," experienced a renewed popularity with all-time high sales figures after being played in the closing credits of the series finale of AMC's "Breaking Bad."

September 30, 2013: Paul McCartney Responds To Lost Fan Letter After Half A Century

Fifty years ago, two teenage girls recorded a message on tape and sent it to the Beatles, but it never made it to the Fab Four. Years later, the tape turned up at a flea market where it was purchased by historian David McDermott. The BBC program, "The One Show," tracked down the two women and reunited them at the Beatles Story exhibition in Liverpool where they were presented with a very nice reply letter from Paul McCartney.

Source: Paul McCartney Responds to Lost Fan Letter, 50 Years Later | Music News | Rolling Stone

September 30, 2013: Todd Rundgren To Receive Les Paul Award

Todd Rundgren will be presented with the Les Paul Award which was created in 1991 to honor those who have demonstrated excellence in the creative application of audio and music technology. The award ceremonies will take place on January 24, 2014 at the 29th Annual Technical Excellence & Creativity Awards in Anaheim, CA.

Source: Todd Rundgren To Receive Les Paul Award

September 30, 2013: David Bowie To Release Expanded Version Of 'The Next Day' Album

David Bowie will be adding new material to his latest album, "The Next Day," which will be released as a 3-CD collector's edition on November 5, 2013. This newest collection, titled "The Next Day Extra," will include the original 14-track album plus a second disc with previously unreleased songs and a DVD with videos of songs from the album.

Source: David Bowie Expanding 'The Next Day' With James Murphy Remix | Music News | Rolling Stone

October 1, 2013: Badfinger's 'Baby Blue' Popularity Renewed In 'Breaking Bad' Series Finale

After the airing on September 29, 2013 of the final episode of AMC's "Breaking Bad," in which Badfinger's "Baby Blue" was played during the closing credits, sales for this song rose to levels never before seen in this song's history. Vince Gilligan, the creator of "Breaking Bad," explains his choice of this bittersweet classic 1972 hit which many believe provide a fitting end to the demise of the show's main character, Walter White.

Source: Why 'Breaking Bad' Chose Badfinger's 'Baby Blue' | Movies News | Rolling Stone

October 1, 2013: Velvet Underground To Reissue 'White Light/White Heat' Album

The Velvet Underground is scheduled to reissue the critically acclaimed "White Light/White Heat" on December 3, 2013, the 45th anniversary of this album. Besides the original album tracks, this 3-CD reissue will also include previously unreleased versions of favorite songs and a live performance from April 30, 1967 at the Gymnasium in New York.

Source: Velvet Underground to Reissue 'White Light/White Heat' for 45th Anniversary | Music News | Rolling Stone

October 2, 2013: The Doors Dig Up Rare Footage For Upcoming DVD

The Doors have unearthed some rare footage from the 1960s which will be included in a new Blu-ray/DVD titled "R-Evolution." This collection, which is due on December 3, 2013, will include early TV appearances and short films that feature songs by the Doors.

Source: The Doors Digging Up Rare Footage | Music News | Rolling Stone

October 2, 2013: Michael Jackson Concert Promoter Cleared in Wrongful Death Suit

After five months at trial for the wrongful death lawsuit filed by the family of Michael Jackson against concert promoter AEG Live, the jury decided in favor of the company. The jury determined that while AEG Live did hire Conrad Murray, Jackson's doctor at the time of his death who is serving a prison sentence after his 2011 conviction on involuntary manslaughter charges, it rejected the contention that the doctor was unfit or incompetent. It also determined that AEG Live was not culpable for the death of Jackson and will not have to pay damages to the Jackson family.

Source: Jackson family loses wrongful death suit against concert promoter - NBC

October 3, 2013: Queen Musical To Launch First North American Tour This Month

The musical based on songs by Queen, titled "We Will Rock You," first debuted in 2002 in London and since then, it has had a long and successful run in many European countries as well as Japan, Australia, Russia, and South Africa. This musical is set to make its North American premier in Baltimore, MD on October 15, 2013. Over the next year, it will run in over a dozen states and Canada, ending in Los Angeles next summer.

Source: Queen Musical Aims to Rock You on National Tour - ABC News

October 3, 2013: Eric Clapton Prepares 'Crossroads Guitar Festival 2013' For Release

The Crossroads Guitar Festival is a music festival and benefit concert organized by Eric Clapton featuring various guitar greats. This event has been held every three years since 2004, and the most recent concert took place last April at Madison Square Garden. "Crossroads Guitar Festival 2013" is set to be released on November 19, 2013 as a video and as a CD box set. This collection, which includes 45 songs plus behind-the-scenes footage, will feature performances by Eric Clapton, the Allman Brothers, Keith Richards, John Mayer, Blake Mills, and Gary Clark Jr.

Source: Eric Clapton Readies 'Crossroads Guitar Festival 2013' for Release | Music News | Rolling Stone

October 3, 2013: Dave Davies To Begin Tour This November

Dave Davies of the Kinks announced that he will be touring North America this fall beginning November 12, 2013 in New York. Other shows will take place in Annapolis, MD, Englewood, NJ, Niagara Falls, NY, and Chicago before he finally wraps up on November 19 in Evanston, IL. Davies' program will include classic Kinks songs and solo material, both old and new.

Source: Kinks Guitarist Dave Davies Reveals Solo Tour Plans

October 3, 2013: Bruce Springsteen Photo Book To Be Published This Month

A photo book covering Bruce Springsteen's career, titled "Bruce Springsteen in Focus 1980-2012," is scheduled to be released on October 12, 2013. This book includes around 250 photos of Springsteen curated by photographer Debra L. Rothenberg who has followed the singer for more than 30 years.

Source: New Springsteen Photo Book Due This Month