Monday, February 21, 2011

Music Notes: Adele on Letterman Tonight; The Cars Record New Album; Music Exec. Rails Against Grammys

* A day ahead of the U.S. release of her new album "21," Adele is performing on the Letterman show tonight, Feb. 21st. She performed a live webcast tonight for the show, which I didn't know about until it had already happened. You might be able to find the Adele live webcast archived here. (See the video for "Rolling in the Deep," the first single from "21," above.)

* New Wave rockers The Cars have recorded a new album. Rolling Stone says that "Move Like This," the band's first album in 24 years, will be released on May 10th. The album features all the original surviving members of The Cars—Ric Ocasek, drummer David Robinson, guitarist Elliot Easton, and keyboardist Greg Hawkes. Original bassist Benjamin Orr (who sang two of their top hits, "Just What I Needed" and "Drive") died in 2000. No word on whether they'll play any concerts, though Ocasek says in the article that it "might be fun to do a couple of shows."

* A longtime record exec is cranky over some of the Grammy Awards given out last week. Steve Stoute, who seems to be especially known for his experience in hip-hop, took out a full-page ad in the New York Times Sunday to slam the ceremony as an “awards show [that] has become a series of hypocrisies and contradictions.” He was miffed that artists like Eminen and Kanye West didn't win more, citing their longtime influence, and also complained that teen pop star Justin Bieber didn't win. "How is it that Justin Bieber, an artist that defines what it means to be a modern artist, did not win Best New Artist?"

Stoute's argument seems to be that sales and popularity should win out over artistic merit. Isn't that the opposite of what the Grammys are supposed to be about? (OK, we know they don't live up to that ideal all that often, but still, his complaint seems pretty off base.)

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