Quick Hits: Linkin Park, Drake, Rise Against, NAACP Image Awards, Rihanna, Jane's Addiction, Muse, Prince, Usher, Hollywood Undead, The Strokes, Trey Anastasio
January 13, 2011


Linkin Park

Linkin Park's Music for Relief charity and Causecast have teamed up for Download to Donate for Haiti v2.0, a campaign featuring free music to support the ongoing recovery of Haiti. Download to Donate for Haiti v2.0 encourages people to make a one-time $10 donation to the continued rebuilding of Haiti via cell phone (text RELIEF to 41010) or through Downloadtodonate.org. As a thank you, donors receive a one-year subscription to a growing catalogue of music donated by hundreds of artists including Linkin Park, Alanis Morissette, All-American Rejects, The Crystal Method, Kimberly Caldwell, Lupe Fiasco, Metric, One eskimO, Slash, Switchfoot, Thrice and more.

Drake has begun work on new songs with the xx member Jamie Smith and Florence Welch of Florence and the Machine. It looks like the rapper's collaboration with Smith is intended for his own second album, Take Care, while his work with Welch is slated to appear on her next record. Drake told the BBC that "Jamie is probably one of the most exciting producers I've ever heard," and that he and Welch have been hanging out in London, where last weekend she joined him onstage to sing Alicia Keys' part in his song "Fireworks." No release dates have been set for either Florence and the Machine or Drake, but their albums are likely to come out by the end of this year.

Rise Against plans to release a new album, Endgame, on March 15. The lead single, "Help Is On The Way," officially impacts radio on January 25 but will land this Monday, January 17. Longtime producers Bill Stevenson and Jason Livermore – who have produced three of the band’s last five albums – are once again at the helm, and frontman Tim McIlwrath told Consequence Of Sound that, "We're living under this black cloud of doom. Everything's spiraling out of control. The record is all about that."

Sade, Usher, Kanye West and Willow Smith are among the multiple nominees in the music categories for this year's NAACP Image Awards. Sade picked up four nominations while West and Usher each earned two. Smith landed a nod for Best New Artist along with B.o.B., Bruno Mars, Jason DeRulo and Nicki Minaj, as well as Outstanding Music Video for her debut single "Whip My Hair." Other multiple nominees include Cee Lo Green, Alicia Keys, and John Legend and The Roots. The telecast of the NAACP Image Awards will air March 4 on Fox.


Rihanna is set to appear on the cover of Vogue magazine, according to a new tweet from the singer. "Just wrapped my first American Vogue cover shoot with [photographer] Annie Leibovitz...Rah!" Rihanna wrote on her Twitter, though it's unclear when the issue will hit news stands. Rihanna also recently shot a video for Nicki Minaj's "Fly."

Jane's Addiction has been hard at work on a new album in a Los Angeles studio with produer Rich Costey (Muse, Interpol) and TV On The Radio's Dave Sitek, who plays bass and is co-writing songs with the band. Singer Perry Farrell says that the next LP — tentatively titled The Great Escape — sounds unlike anything else the group has ever created. "It's a strange mixture of that post-punk Goth darkness that Jane's had with what's going on today with groups like Muse and Radiohead," he told Rolling Stone. "As much as I want to appease fans and make old Jane's fans love me, I just can't help myself from moving forward." Farrell hopes to have a single out in March, and the album in stores sometime in the summer.

Muse frontman Matt Bellamy and actress Kate Hudson are expecting a baby together. The couple has been dating since the spring of 2010. "It [the pregnancy] was not planned, but they are excited and embracing it," a source told Us Weekly, adding that Hudson is "happy for [her son] Ryder to finally have a brother or sister."

Prince has added a fourth Madison Square Garden show to his Welcome 2 America New York residency, on the heels of four New York area shows this past December and a sold out show scheduled for January 18. The new show will take place on Febraury 7 with tickets going on sale this Saturday, January 15.


Usher

Due to illness, Usher was forced to postpone his concert at O2 World in Berlin on January 12. He has been treated by doctors for a sinus complication that affected his balance and he is already feeling better, according to his website. The show has been rescheduled for Thursday, January 13. "I am truly sorry to all my fans in Berlin who were inconvenienced by tonight's postponement of the show," Usher said. "I was ill and felt that I would not have been able to give them the show that they properly deserve."

Hollywood Undead will return on March 15 with their second album, American Tragedy, featuring the new single, "Hear Me Now." Beginning on January 20 in Reading, PA, fans can catch the group on tour with Avenged Sevenfold, Stone Sour and New Medicine for The Nightmare After Christmas Tour.

The Strokes have confirmed their first five concerts of 2011, and they're pretty spread out geographically. The band's dates are: March 12 in Las Vegas; July 16 in Lisbon, Portugal; July 14-17 at Spain's Benicassim Festival; and August 13 and 14 at Japan's Summer Sonic fest. The band also recently announced that their new album will be out on March 22.

Trey Anastasio will do an intimate theater tour with the Trey Anastasio Band starting on February 18 in Portland, ME. Anastasio will play his first solo dates in Colorado and California since 2006, wrapping up the tour with a two-night stand at Denver's Ogden Theatre (March 1 & 2) and shows at the Music Box in Los Angeles (March 4) and the Fox Theatre in Oakland, CA (March 5). This also will be Anastasio's first tour with full acoustic and electric sets since 1999.




 
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