Billboard Bits: Kanye West, John Legend, Starbucks

Kanye West will stage a benefit concert for his charitable foundation Aug. 24 at Chicago's House of Blues. At the gig, West will perform material from his upcoming Def Jam album, "Graduation," and giv

Kanye West will stage a benefit concert for his charitable foundation Aug. 24 at Chicago's House of Blues. At the gig, West will perform material from his upcoming Def Jam album, "Graduation," and give the audience a peek at the staging for his fall Glow in the Dark tour. Surprise celebrity guests are also promised.

Among the initiatives to be funded by the show is the Loops Dreams Teacher Training Institute in Chicago, which will encourage the incorporation of hip-hop into Chicago Public Schools curriculum. Beforehand, West will meet with 200 local students during soundcheck.

-- Jonathan Cohen, N.Y.






In other benefit news, John Legend will headline the third Hot Stove, Cool Music event on Aug. 24 at Boston's Fenway Park. Also on the bill are Buffalo Tom, Kay Hanley and a handful of bands featuring members of the Boston Red Sox executive team.

Proceeds will benefit the Foundation To Be Named Later, which raises funds for disadvantaged youth. Comedian Mike O'Malley will host.

-- Jonathan Cohen, N.Y.






Starbucks Entertainment is tapping the iTunes store as the exclusive outlet for several new releases. The new record label plans to release EPs from emerging artists Rissi Palmer, Alice Russell and WinterKids in digital form on the "Starbucks Entertainment" dedicated area in iTunes.

Today (July 17), it debuted Palmer's "Country Girl." Russell's "Under the Munka Moon" arrives July 24, followed by "Marzipan & Ribbons" from the WinterKids on July 31.

-- Antony Bruno, Denver