Billboard Bits serves up the best bite-sized nuggets of music news and gossip.
Maroon 5's Levine Slams 'American Idol'
In a new interview with Out Magazine, Maroon 5 leader and "The Voice" coach Adam Levine calls his reality show competition "American Idol" a "cultural institution," but blasts the show for not promoting gay and lesbian contestants. "What's always pissed me off about "Idol" is wanting to mask that, for that to go unspoken," says Levine. "C'mon. You can't be publicly gay? At this point? On a singing competition? Give me a break." ( Idolator)
John Mellencamp Finalizes Divorce
Rock veteran John Mellencamp and model Elaine Irwin have officially divorced after an 18-year-marriage. The couple, which shares two teenage sons, separated last September and filed for divorce on Jan. 14. ( People)
'Spider-Man' Broadway Star Signs On to Jeff Buckley Biopic
Reeve Carney, who stars as Spider-Man/Peter Parker in Broadway's "Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark," has signed on to portray singer-songwriter Jeff Buckley in an upcoming biopic. The 28-year-old will be directed by Jake Scott ("Welcome to the Rileys"). ( Hitfix)
Vampire Weekend Settles with 'Contra' Album Model
After Ann Kirsten Kennis sued indie rock group Vampire Weekend for putting an old photo of her on their "Contra" cover, the former model has settled with the band for an undisclosed amount. Meanwhile, Vampire Weekend and XL Recordings are suing photographer Richard Brody for misrepresenting his rights to the photograph. ( Vulture)
"Breaking Dawn" Soundtrack Gets November Release
"The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn - Part 1 - Original Motion Picture Soundtrack," a mouthful of a soundtrack that features music from this fall's highly anticipated "Twlight" film, will be released on Nov. 8 through Chop Shop/Atlantic. "Breaking Dawn" hits theaters on Nov. 18, while the soundtrack's track listing will be revealed in the coming weeks.
Wavves Announces New EP, Ghost Ramp Label
Skuzz-pop outfit Wavves will follow the 2010 full-length "King of the Beach" with the "Life Sux" EP, which will be the first release on the new Ghost Ramp imprint founded by group leader Nathan Williams. The six-song release will feature Fucked Up and Best Coast.
(Reporting by Jason Lipshutz)