Chris Brown -- "My Bad"; MCA Fighting Cancer; "Thriller" About to Topple the Eagles
Headlines: Five months after his arrest for assaulting then-girlfriend Rihanna, Chris Brown finally issued an apology. The two-minute video is about what you'd expect -- he's very sorry, nobody's more disappointed in him than himself, he's continuing to try to make himself a better person. We'll see if this is the beginning of the public forgiving him and eventually re-embracing him as a performer or if it's his last video that anyone cares about. Sad news in Beastie Boys land, which is a land in which you just don't expect sad news to come from. But MCA (Adam Yauch) announced yesterday that he has cancer of the salivary gland. The good news is that the rare cancer was caught early and is very treatable; read up on WebMD. Obviously, the band has canceled all tour dates and has also pushed back the release of its upcoming album, "Hot Sauce Committee Pt. 1."
Well, it's something -- in the wake of Michael Jackson's death and the increased demand for his music, "Thriller" is on the verge of becoming the best-selling album of all time. That will, mercifully, end the reign of terror imposed by the Eagles' "Their Greatest Hits 1971-1975," which has ruled with a dull, iron fist for the past decade. The rehearsal footage for Jackson's "This Is It" tour is a hot item, with Sony appearing to be the front runner with a $50 million bid for the 1,200 hours of rehearsal footage. 1,200 hours! That's even longer than the director's cut of "Andrei Rublev"! The first officially licensed Grateful Dead sample goes to ... Animal Collective. Of course it does. The band members are big Dead fans and this only helps to cement their status as the Big Jam Band of the Future. Speaking of, have you been following former Sleater-Kinney guitarist/current NPR blogger Carrie Brownstein's mission to get into Phish? It's pretty much a wrap now, but some entertaining reads as she immersed herself in the band's catalogue, met up with fans, all that.
Nominations for the Mercury Prize -- the U.K.'s album of the year award -- have been announced. Florence and the Machine, Kasabian, Bats for Lashes and La Roux are the favorites. Literally. At least according to one bookie. Blink-182, who will roll into Merriweather Post Pavilion next month as FreeFest headliners, of course, are about to start their reunion tour. And they plan on leaving the experimenting to the stage design, which is in the hands of the same dude who has done stuff for Kanye West and Daft Punk. As for the songs: "We're going to be playing all of the singles, and all of our favorite songs from our past records," Mark Hoppus told Rolling Stone. Ne-Yo tells bloggers to "go to hell." Aren't cramped, lonely studio apartments close enough? Thomas Jordan of Geggy Tah -- don't worry, you're not supposed to remember -- is suing the Clipse crew, claiming that one of the songs from the band's never-officially-released debut steals from a Geggy Tah song. John Fogerty is working on a new album of old songs. Not his own songs, but some classic American fare from the likes of Buck Owens and the Everly Brothers. Some Springsteen dude will guest.
Live Last Night Mini Report: I went to see the Radar Bros. -- probably Merge Records' least famous current band -- at my favorite bar, Galaxy Hut. I once saw the band play for me and my friend (that was it) at the Metro Cafe 10 years ago. If you know me, you've probably heard me tell that story too many times. The band has never really shifted from its dirgey, slowcore tunes, and that's what I like about 'em. They do that one thing better than almost anyone, and every few years there's a new batch of songs to prove it. There's one song of theirs that I love more than any other -- "Shoveling Sons" from 1999's "The Singing Hatchet." I was so ready to shout for it at some point in the evening. So what do they open with? "Shoveling Sons," of course. Don't worry, I yelled for another song later and they played it. What service.
In today's paper: Allison Stewart gets a gold star for making her way through new albums by both Demi Lovato and Brooke Hogan. Plus Quick Spins of Jordin Sparks, Sugar Ray and Wye Oak. Singles File features Rakim and Mission of Burma. Nice.
Video of the Day: Coldplay - "Strawberry Swing"
There's a lot going on here. In the video, that is.
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