Quick Hits: Billboard Music Awards, Global Citizen Tickets Initiative, Beastie Boys, Kanye West, KoRn, Monster Energy Rock Allegiance Tour, Against Me!
May 2, 2013

Nicki Minaj
More performers for the Billboard Music Awards have been announced. Lil Wayne is set to perform with Nicki Minaj, and Ne-Yo will be performing with Akon and David Guetta. Other new additions for the May 19 performance include Jennifer Lopez, Chris Brown, Ed Sheeran, and Icona Pop. With Tracy Morgan as the host, performances will take place in Las Vegas and will be aired on ABC at 8 p.m. ET. Other previously announced performers include Taylor Swift, Bruno Mars, Miguel, Justin Bieber, Pitbull, Christina Aguilera, Selena Gomez, The Band Perry, Macklemore & Ryan Lewis, Kacey Musgraves and Prince.

Pearl Jam, Beyoncé, Jay-Z, Bruce Springsteen, Kanye West, Rihanna, Neil Young, One Direction, Fleet Foxes, Tony Bennett, Kings Of Leon, John Mayer, the Bonnaroo Music and Arts Festival, Coachella, Outside Lands, Sasquatch! Music Festival, the Voodoo Music + Arts Experience and many more have joined the Global Citizen Tickets Initiative, a new program designed to incentivize social activism with concert tickets. Music fans can take a variety of social actions ranging from signing petitions to calling their representatives, to earn points they can use to win free tickets to concerts. More information can be found at globalcitizen.org/tickets.

The life of the late Adam "MCA" Yauch of the Beastie Boys will be honored with two events to mark the legacy that he helped bestow upon the musical world. According to multiple reports, in Brooklyn Heights, the Palmetto Playground will be renamed tomorrow (5/3) to “Adam Yauch Playground." The drive to rename Yauch's childhood park was sparked by fans on social media, with Bikini Kill frontwoman Kathleen Hanna in the forefront. Hanna is the wife of Beastie Boys member Adam Horovitz. Other than the renaming ceremony, the second (and free) MCA Day will be rocking in Brooklyn's Littlefield. Rare photos and fan art will be displayed as DJ JS-1, Pat Poon, Operator EMC, and DJ Skizz spin Beastie tracks. Yauch passed away one year ago from throat cancer.

Like a zombie rising from the digital ground, Kanye West revived his Twitter account to say simply, "June Eighteen." Many postulated that he was cryptically announcing the date of his new album, which Hot 97's Peter Rosenberg described as "dark." Journalist Elliott Wilson then tweeted, "Chris Atlas at Def Jam confirmed. Kanye West. New album. 6.18.13." though he later rescinded his claim, saying, "Clarity: Kanye West album release date has NOT been confirmed. Apologies to Chris Atlas." It would seem likely that West is bound to debut a new song from his upcoming album when he appears as the musical guest for the season finale of Saturday Night Live on May 18.

After having dabbled in the electronic dubstep scene, KoRn is ready to go back to its roots on its next album. Guitarist and original band member Brian "Head" Welch is recording in-studio with the band for the first time since the 2003 album Take a Look in the Mirror. Welch told Rolling Stone, "We knew we would have a blast playing together, because we love each other so much, but we really wanted to make sure the music felt right before we committed to making a whole album together. But since we got in the studio, everything just started pouring out, now I can't wait until our fans hear this stuff!" Korn's new, still untitled album, is due late summer. They will also start a world tour on May 15.

The Monster Energy Rock Allegiance Tour announced that they will be featuring four Rock bands from four different countries this year: Volbeat, HIM, All That Remains and Airbourne. This will be the third installment of Monster Energy's Rock Allegiance. Specific tour dates for the summer trek will be announced soon.

Bassist Andrew Seward has split with Punk rockers Against Me! In a message on the band's website, Seward says, "I’ve left AM!. No drama here. I reached a point where I need to focus on other things. Respect to singer/guitarist Laura [Jane Grace] and [guitarist] James [Bowman]. The last 10 years ruled." The group is slated to release a new album this year, but is currently without a rhythm section, as drummer Jay Weinberg also left Against Me! a few months back.

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Mark Adams
San Francisco

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