Manchester Attack

Billboard Bits: Tom Vek, Pointer Sisters/Natalia, Go-Betweens

News on Tom Vek, Pointer Sisters/Natalia, Go-Betweens

Singer/songwriter Tom Vek has been tapped to perform his single "C-C (You Set the Fire in Me") on an upcoming episode of the Fox series "The O.C.," has learned. The performance will take place in the show's fictional venue the Bait Shop and will be taped in Los Angeles later this month. The episode is expected to air during "sweeps week" in February.

Vek is presently in London recording his second studio album, which will be the follow-up to last year's Star Time International effort "We Have Sound."

-- Jonathan Cohen, N.Y.

Veteran U.S. R&B act the Pointer Sisters hve been enjoying unexpected chart action in Belgium. The Pointers teamed with Ariola/Sony BMG Flemish pop vocalist Natalia to remake Eurythmics' 1985 hit "Sisters Are Doing It for Themselves." The Ariola single peaked at No. 2 on the Nov. 2 Flanders Ultrapop chart. The two acts subsequently announced nine joint dates at Antwerp's 15,000-capacity Sportpaleis, beginning tonight (Jan 6).

The unsigned Pointer Sisters now consist of original members Anita and Ruth Pointer, plus Ruth's daughter Issa. Natalia first joined them onstage during a May 2004 Antwerp show, after which PSE co-founder Jan Van Esbroeck suggested uniting for full-length concerts. "I was a big Pointer Sisters fan," Natalia says. "To be onstage with them was one of the milestones in my career."

Natalia was a 2003 finalist in Flemish commercial TV channel VTM's "Pop Idol" franchise, "Idool." Her 2003 debut album, "This Time," shipped platinum (30,000 units). Sony BMG says 2004's follow-up "Back for More" has shipped nearly 100,000 units.

-- Marc Maes, Antwerp

Australian rock outfit the Go-Betweens are the subject of the DVD/CD "That Striped Sunlight Sound," due Jan. 24 via Yep Roc. The DVD portion features a recent show taped in the group's Brisbane, Australia, hometown as well as new acoustic recordings by principal members Robert Forster and Grant McLennan of tracks from throughout the group's 30-year-career. The audio from the Brisbane show is reprised on the CD.

Forster and McLennan will return to live duty with a Jan. 16 acoustic show as part of the
2006 Sydney Festival, which will also feature performances by Elvis Costello, Four Tet, Antony and the Johnsons, Jean Grae and Saul Williams, among others.

-- Jonathan Cohen, N.Y.