Quick Hits: Grammy Awards, Ozzy Osbourne, The X Factor, Rock on the Range, Missy Elliott & Timbaland, Paul McCartney & Elton John, Damon Albarn & Flea, Killswitch Engage, Veer Union, Luscious Jackson, Deftones, MTV Video Play Awards, Juno Awards
February 8, 2012

Foo Fighters

The Grammys have added another interesting collaboration to the mix as Chris Brown, Deadmau5, Foo Fighters, David Guetta and Lil Wayne will team for a special performance highlighting dance/electronica music for the first time ever on the 54th Annual Grammy Awards. The segment will take place across from Staples Center at the Nokia Plaza @ L.A. Live in a special outdoor tent. The surviving members of The Beach Boys will also perform together at the Grammys, as part of a joint appearance with Maroon 5 and Foster The People. It will be their first performance together in two decades. The Grammys also announced performances from nominees The Civil Wars, Diana Krall, Maceo Parker, and Joe Walsh.
     Additional performers and special segments will be announced soon, but so far the list includes Adele, Jason Aldean and Kelly Clarkson, Tony Bennett and Carrie Underwood, Coldplay and Rihanna, Alicia Keys and Bonnie Raitt, Bruno Mars, Paul McCartney, Nicki Minaj, Katy Perry, Bruce Springsteen And The E Street Band and Taylor Swift. The Grammy Awards will take place on Sunday, February 12 in Los Angeles and will be broadcast on the CBS Television Network from 8–11:30 p.m. (ET/PT).

SiriusXM Radio has announced that Ozzy’s Boneyard, the new Classic Hard Rock and Metal music channel will launch with a full slate of content featuring Ozzy Osbourne, his family members, bandmates and other musicians tonight (2/8) at 6:00 pm ET. For the first time, Ozzy will discuss the recent news of Black Sabbath guitarist Tony Iommi’s lymphoma diagnosis during a one on one conversation with SiriusXM host Jose Mangin tonight at 7:00 pm ET on Ozzy’s Boneyard, channel 38. Ozzy’s Boneyard will also present Ozzy himself counting down his personal top 10 rock guitarists of all time. 
The channel will also include the regular specials "The Diary of a Madman," Ozzy’s thoughts on everything from music to life itself, and "God Bless the Prince of Darkness," the special featuring musicians, Osbourne family members and other notables talking about their appreciation of Ozzy. Listeners will also hear guest DJ specials, concerts and classic hard rock and metal music from artists like Black Sabbath, Metallica, AC/DC, Jimi Hendrix, Pantera and Van Halen.

Simon Cowell has shot down the rumors that Beyonce and Mariah Carey may be new judges on The X Factor. In an interview with Extra that will air Wednesday night, Cowell told Terri Seymour that Beyonce would probably be too expensive for the show, and Mariah is too busy with her newborn twins. As for rumors that Beyonce was offered a nine-figure salary, Cowell said: "The budget for the show is $100 million. That would never ever happen. It's absolute nonsense. No one is going to pay $100 million for someone. I genuinely haven't had a conversation with her about it. Not at all." He added that while he would love to have Mariah join the show, she's not on the list of candidates either. "You have to work five days a week and all the traveling, so she will not be on the list," he said. "I adore her, love her, but you can't expect someone who has just had two kids, has a record career to make the kind of commitment we would need on this show."

Anthrax and In This Moment have been added to this year's Rock On The Range lineup, which already boasts Incubus, Rob Zombie, Shinedown, Five Finger Death Punch, Slash, Megadeth, Chevelle, Cypress Hill, Mastodon, Theory of a Deadman, Volbeat, The Darkness, Halestorm, Lacuna Coil and many more. The festival will be held from May 18-20 at Columbus Crew Stadium in Columbus, OH.

Missy Elliott

The dynamic duo of Missy Elliott and Timbaland will return in June, each with a new solo album. "Me and Missy are both coming with our albums at the same time, and it will be in June," Tim recently told MTV News. "Right now, we're preparing to get both our videos, our first singles, shot kinda at the same time. We want to do it as a movement and spontaneously." It's been three years since Timbaland released Shock Value II and seven years since Missy dropped The Cookbook. However, she has been working as a songwriter and producer for Keyshia Cole, Monica and Jazmine Sullivan, and Missy is also a guest vocalist on J. Cole's next single, "Nobody's Perfect."

Red Hot Chili Peppers have been added as a headliner for the Hangout Music Fest, taking place May 18-20 at Gulf Shores, AL. As previously reported, Dave Matthews Band and Jack White will also headline the three day festival, with Wilco, The Flaming Lips, Chris Cornell and many, many more artists on board as well.

A number of stars will perform in front of Buckingham Palace on June 4 to celebrate Queen Elizabeth II's Diamond Jubilee. Paul McCartney, Elton John, Shirley Bassey, boy band JLS and Tom Jones have already been tapped for the celebration, and concert organizers said that many more stars, including some from America and Australia, will also be on the bill, according to Billboard.com. The event is a centerpiece in the queen's Diamond Jubilee celebrations, which have already kicked off to mark her 60 years on the throne.

The new project from Gorillaz/Blur mastermind Damon Albarn, Red Hot Chili Peppers bassist Flea and Afrobeat drummer Tony Allen – dubbed Rocketjuice and The Moon – is gearing up to release their debut album. According to an article in this month's issue of MOJO magazine, the self-titled album will arrive in the U.K. on March 12, though it's unclear when the U.S. release date might be. Spanning 18 tracks, the album was recorded Albarn’s Studio 13 in London with additional parts added in Paris, Berlin and Chicago. It features guest appearances from Erykah Badu, Malian musician Fatoumata Diawara, West Africa rapper M.Anifest and others.

Killswitch Engage has reunited with their original vocalist, Jesse Leach, and the band is currently working on a new album. "This change is very exciting. We know you're going to love it," the band said in a statement. "This is truly a new era in KsE history and it is ready to shred your face off. So, please help us in welcoming Jesse back into the KsE family; he is a rare and great talent, a fact that older KsE fans have known for years. Here is to a killer new record and a bright future. The five of us cannot wait to write this record and play shows together and bring that feeling to our fans. It's been far too long." The band is set to perform at the New England Metal and Hardcore Festival on April 22, as well as some European summer festivals. More tour dates will be announced shortly.

Vancouver Rock outfit The Veer Union revealed that its sophomore album, Divide The Blackened Sky, will hit stores on March 27, courtesy of Rocket Science Ventures. The band will unleash the 10-track full-length just days before embarking on a U.S. tour with My Darkest Days. "Our new record, Divide The Blackened Sky, is a much darker and heavier effort than our previous works," said vocalist Crispin Earl. "It depicts all the hard times we have been through over the last couple of years." A lyric video for the new single, "Bitter End," can be streamed now on YouTube. "Bitter End" will hit the iTunes store on February 14.

Luscious Jackson has begun work on their first album of new material since 1999's Electric Honey. The band has opted to skip the traditional label route this time and they are funding their new project via PledgeMusic, a site that helps bands connect with their fans and offers unconventional rewards in exchange for donations. The group is still in the process of recording, but RollingStone.com is offering a stream of the upbeat new track "Are You Ready?" right here. "It's nice to have no big, huge labels pressures and all that stuff. It's something that we see as a cottage industry, that we can build," singer/bassist Jill Cunniff told Rolling Stone. "We will be doing some concerts when we're ready. We're going to finish this album – and try to finish it in six months – and then figure out when we can do some concerts. It's not going to be everything we used to do, but we’re going to see what we can do."

After more than three years in a coma, Deftones bassist Chi Cheng is continuing to show signs of improvement. In a video posted on OneLoveForChi.com, the website created to help raise funds for his medical bills, Cheng is seen moving his legs on command. "here is a video juan (deftones tour manager) sent me of chi lifting his leg by request," the site reads. "it's little baby steps like this that bring chi closer to recovery. he just has to keep trying and working hard at the little things. eventually more progress will be made." Cheng was originally injured in a car accident on November 4, 2008.

MTV International has revealed the winners of the 2011 MTV Video Play Awards, recognizing the most played videos across MTV channels around the world. Jessie J, Adele, Katy Perry and Jenifer Lopez all earned Double Platinum Awards in 2011, and Lady Gaga, Britney Spears and Rihanna each scored a hat trick of Platinum Awards. David Guetta has become the first ever winner of four MTV Video Play Awards in one year, taking home Platinum Awards for "Who’s that chick" [feat. Rihanna], "Without You" [Feat. Usher], "Where Them Girls At" [feat. Flo Rida and Nicki Minaj] and "Sweat" [Snoop Dogg vs David Guetta], racking up an impressive count of over 45,000 video plays in 2011. Bruno Mars followed closely behind with over 40,000 video plays, becoming the first ever act to win two Double Platinum Awards for "Grenade" and "The Lazy Song." The top music videos were aired over 765,000 times across 60 international MTV channels (excluding all MTV U.S. channels) in 2011.

The nominees for Canada's Juno Awards were unveiled in Toronto on Tuesday, and Drake, Feist, Michael Bublé, City and Colour and Deadmau5 will face off for Artist of the Year. The category of Album of the Year will be a contest between Drake's Take Care, Avril Lavigne's Goodbye Lullabye, Nickelback's Here and Now, Justin Bieber's Under the Mistletoe and Buble's Christmas. The International Album of the Year category gave nods to Adele, Coldplay, Lady Gaga, LMFAO and Rihanna. The 2012 Juno Awards will be held in Ottawa on April 1.

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Nicki Farag,
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Def Jam Recordings

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