Music News Digest: Week Of December 1, 2019

December 9, 2019 by Amy Gold

During the week of December 1, 2019, Queen took two top spots in Billboard's year-end Top Rock Albums chart for 2019. The legendary rockers topped this chart with their 2018 "Bohemian Rhapsody" soundtrack and also reached no. 10 with "Greatest Hits I II & III - The Platinum Collection." Elton John's "Diamonds," The Beatles' "Abbey Road," and Creedence Clearwater Revival's "Chronicle - The 20 Greatest Hits" came in at nos. 3, 7, and 8, respectively. Queen also reached no. 2 on Billboard's 2019 Top Rock Artists chart, with The Beatles, Elton John, Fleetwood Mac, The Rolling Stones, The Eagles, Billy Joel, and Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers landing at nos. 5, 7, 11, 12, 13, 18, and 20, respectively.

Also that week, Rod Stewart topped the Billboard Classical Albums chart with "You're In My Heart," making this his first-ever entry on that chart. This album features new arrangements of many of his classic hits backed by the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra.

As previously announced, Linda Ronstadt and Earth Wind & Fire are among this year's recipients of the prestigious Kennedy Center Honors. The awards ceremonies, to take place December 8, 2019 in Washington, D.C., will be aired December 15 on CBS.

December 5, 2019 is the 50th anniversary of the original release of The Rolling Stones' album, "Let It Bleed." This platinum-certified recording, which peaked at #3 on the Billboard 200 in 1969, features such classics as "Gimme Shelter" and "You Can't Always Get What You Want."

Also, December 6, 2019 marks the 50th anniversary of the infamous Altamont Speedway Free Festival in Northern California. This concert featured (in order of appearance) Santana, Jefferson Airplane, The Flying Burrito Brothers, Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young, and The Rolling Stones. A number of violent altercations occurred that included the stabbing death of 18-year-old Meredith Hunter by members of the Hells Angels who had been hired to provide security for the event. This incident was captured on camera and became the central scene in the 1970 documentary, "Gimme Shelter."

Newly-Announced Tours & Shows:
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Newly-Announced Recordings:
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(For more information about the above news items, please see below for a list of sources with links.)