Billboard Bits: Green Apple Fest, Daniel Johnston, GWAR

Mickey Hart & Bela Fleck to headline free concerts during New York's Green Apple Music & Arts Festival , London pays tribute to Daniel Johnston and GWAR celebrates its 20th anniversary.

Mickey Hart and Béla Fleck will headline a pair of free concerts next weekend as part of the Green Apple Music & Arts Festival in New York. Hart will perform with Baaba Maal and the Mutaytor on an April 21 bill that includes Umphrey's McGee and Martin Sexton. The following day (Earth Day), Fleck and his band, the Flecktones, will cap a daylong show that will feature Assembly of Dust, Jonah Smith and Ben Taylor.

The concerts are part of Earth Fair, which will be held on the city's Vanderbilt Ave. between 42nd and 45th streets. Friday's runs from noon to 7 p.m., while the Saturday event starts at 11 a.m. and ends at 5 p.m.

As previously reported, the four-day Green Apple Music & Arts Festival will kick off with the sixth annual Jammy Awards on April 20. More information can be found at greenapplefestival.com.

-- Barry A. Jeckell, N.Y.






Teenage Fanclub, Vic Chestnutt, Spiritualized's Jason Pierce, James Yorkston and Howe Gelb will pay tribute to pop savant Daniel Johnston tonight (April 14) in London. The Texas-bred musician will be on hand for the event at the show at Barbican Hall.

Johnston is also slated for an intimate performance on May 4 at Spaceland in Los Angeles, his first show in the city in nearly five years.

"Welcome To My World," a Johnston's first greatest hits compilation, will be released April 18 via his own Eternal Yip Eye Music label. The release includes "Laurie" and "The Lennon Song," tracks that were previously unavailable on CD.

All of the activity comes on the heels of the documentary "The Devil and Daniel Johnston," released into theaters on March 31 through Sony Pictures Classics.

-- Katie Hasty, N.Y.






Stalwart horror metal act GWAR will celebrate its 20th anniversary this year with a new album, a retrospective DVD project and,
as previously reported, a stint on the summer's Sounds of the Underground tour.

Produced by Devin Townsend (Strapping Young Lad), the studio album is due in August via DRT Entertainment and is tentatively titled "Go to Hell." The DVD -- "Blood-Bath and Beyond" -- will recap the band's career with previously unseen historical footage of the notorious act hosted by the band's Sleazy P. Martini and Oderus Urungus.

Following the Sounds of the Underground run, GWAR is planning a fall headlining tour that promises to be their "biggest and sickest."

-- Barry A. Jeckell, N.Y.