Quick Hits: New Year's Rockin' Eve, VH1 Divas, AC/DC, Bruce Springsteen, Neil Young, Spotify, Beastie Boys, Christmas In Washington, Kyuss
November 29, 2012

Taylor Swift, Carly Rae Jepsen and Neon Trees will be in Times Square for Dick Clark's New Year's Rockin' Eve, along with host Ryan Seacrest. The ABC countdown show will kick off at 10 p.m. on the east coast, and after midnight they will send things over to Fergie, who will handle the West Coast party with performances from Brandy, Karmin, Pitbull, OneRepublic and Flo Rida. More performances will be announced soon.


Kelly Clarkson
VH1 has added more performers to its upcoming traditional VH1 Divas special. Set for December 16, Kelly Clarkson, Melanie Fiona, Canadian indie rockers Metric and, surprisingly, Pitbull have joined the female-centric lineup. The special will honor dance music divas, including the late Whitney Houston. Ciara, Miley Cyrus, Demi Lovato, Kelly Rowland and Jordin Sparks were already announced as performers on VH1 Divas.

After long being a hold out from iTunes, AC/DC finally agreed to sell their music via the digital retailer last week, and the veteran group saw some big results. The band's entire catalog, along with two iTunes-exclusive box sets, became available on Monday, November 19, and by the week ending November 25, AC/DC's 25 albums moved 48,000 downloads while its songs shifted 696,000 in the U.S., according to Nielsen SoundScan. Its biggest selling digital album was Back in Black, with 15,000 downloads, and the most popular single song download was "Thunderstruck," selling 85,000.

Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band will be touring this summer in Europe in support of this year's album Wrecking Ball.  The tour starts May 26 in Munich, Germany and continue for two months until the final show in Belfast, Northern Ireland on July 20.  Springsteen is set to headline Rock In Rio in Brazil on September 13th.  A little more locally, he will also be playing at the Hurricane Sandy benefit, 12-12-12, at New York's Madison Square Garden on December 12.  Tickets for that go on sale December 3 through Ticketmaster at noon.

Neil Young & Crazy Horse have announced that they will perform a special benefit concert on December 6 at Borgata Hotel Casino & Spa in Atlantic City, NJ, with proceeds going to aid victims of Superstorm Sandy. Proceeds will go to the American Red Cross Hurricane Sandy relief effort, and tickets go on sale Friday, November 30.

Spotify has announced their top streamed songs for this year and Gotye's hit "Somebody I Use to Know" has taken the gold, being the service's most streamed song. Carly Rae Jepsen's "Call Me Maybe" and fun.'s "We Are Young" took second and third respectively. David Guetta's "Nothing But the Beat" was the most globally streamed album, and he took the title of most streamed male artist. Rihanna was the most streamed female artist, and Coldplay was the most streamed group.

The Beastie Boys are taking heat for their first two albums Licensned to Ill and Paul's Boutique. The plaintiff is the go-go band Trouble Funk, with their label TufAmerica that filed the lawsuit. Rolling Stone reported that "TufAmerica alleges copyright infringement, unjust enrichment and misappropriation; the label seeks punitive damages and a permanent injunction on the sale of the two records containing the samples." The Beastie Boys responded stating that there's no "substantial similarity" between the tracks, and questioned the twenty year gap between the release of the albums and the lawsuit. The Hollywood Reporter reports that TufAmerica argued the samples are "concealed . . . [to] the casual listener" and that the only way to notice a similarity is with "careful audio analysis." The Boys dismissed the claim, saying that "Because Plaintiff admits that the casual observer cannot identify Plaintiff's musical compositions and sound recordings ... there can be no substantial similarity."

For his second time, Conan O'Brien will be hosting TNT's Christmas in Washington special. The special will be benefiting the Children's National Medical Center. Each year the President and First Lady attend the concert; this year they will be seeing performers Diana Ross, Smash star Megan Hilty, Demi Lovato, Chris Mann from The Voice, and American Idol winner Scotty McCreery. And what would any large-scale concert be without a special closing performance of "Gangnam Style" by PSY? The concert will taped at the National Building Museum in Washington D.C. on December 9.

Former Kyuss members Brant Bjork, John Garcia and Nick Oliveri have announced a new project called Vista Chino. The group, comprised of the three founding members of Kyuss plus guitarist Bruno Fevery, are currently recording new material in anticipation of a 2013 worldwide release that will coincide with major touring plans. Meanwhile, Oliveri also has been in the studio with his other former band, Queens of the Stone Age, to record vocals on one song for the band's next album.




 
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Jon Zellner
SVPP, iHeartMedia

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