Grammy Red Carpet News: Diamond, Snoop, Sugarland

Billboard's Mitch Peters chatted with a host of big names on the red carpet prior to the 51st annual Grammy Awards to find out what new and exciting projects they have in the works. For the full video interviews, click here.


On the heels of his 2008 No. 1 album debut "Home After Dark," Neil Diamond "just started writing" for his third consecutive collaboration with producer Rick Rubin. And while "Dark" and its 2005 predecessor, "12 Songs," were largely stripped-down, drum-less affairs, Diamond said, "I think we'll maybe take a little turn -- a little direction change for fun. It all starts with the songs. The songs that come our are the ones we have to work with."


Snoop Dogg is eyeing a September release for his next album, "Malice in Wonderland." The rapper told Billboard that longtime collaborator Dr. Dre will have a hand in the project. "We're in the process of trying to help him with the 'Detox' record and working on mine at the same time." The sound? "So far, so hood." Snoop added that fans should "keep your eyes and ears open for Snoop Dogg. I'm coming to a hood near you." Snoop's new MTV show, "Dogg After Dark," premieres Feb. 17.


Sugarland has begun writing new material, and so far, the sound is a bit different than what fans have come to expect from the country duo. "We've written like six songs and none of them are country songs yet," said guitarist Kristian Bush. "It's growing, baby! It's growing. It's so good," said singer Jennifer Nettles. The group is heading to Europe in March for its first tour there, and will play North American arenas and stadiums from April through October.


Young Jeezy told Billboard he's working on his next album but was mum on specifics. "I'll have some features but I kinda want to hold that up for a minute," he said. Jeezy said he's not worried about the continual sales decline for hip-hop because he's "an entrepreneur," citing endorsement deals with Belvedere vodka and Adidas. "I'm hustling!," he said.


The Eagles continue to tour long and hard in support of their smash 2007 album "Long Road Out of Eden," which has sold 3.2 million copies so far. "I thought it would do fairly well, but it did extremely well," group member Timothy B. Schmit said. Schmit is working on "a little solo thing" but said the Eagles are not in the studio or writing at present.


Good Charlotte's Benji Madden told Billboard the group is shooting for a fall release for its next Epic album. Expect "more straightforward rock, maybe taking it back to our first or second record," he said. Madden is especially psyched for the song "Love Ain't Easy," which he promises is "really catchy. We love the catchy hooks." Good Charlotte may tour later this year with new Interscope band All Time Low, whose frontman, Alex Garskath, joined Madden on the red carpet.

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