Latin Conference & Awards

Billboard Bits: Fuji Rock, Willie Nelson, Cinderella

News on Fuji Rock, Willie Nelson, Cinderella

SigurSigur Ros, Mercury Rev, the Pogues, the reunited Dinosaur Jr. and Fatboy Slim are among the first acts to sign on for Japan's annual Fuji Rock Festival. The event will be held July 29-31 at the Naeba Ski Resort about 2 hours outside Tokyo.

Other confirmed artists include the Music, the Coral, Dresden Dolls, Kaiser Chiefs, the Bravery, Cake, the Beach Boys, Yonder Mountain String Band, Steel Pulse, Aqualung and Juliette and the Licks. For ticket information, visit Fuji Rock's official Web site.

-- Steve McClure, Tokyo

nelsonWillie Nelson's Jan. 9 tsunami relief concert in Austin, Texas, will be released on CD and DVD to raise further funds for victims of the natural disaster in the Indian Ocean. Distributed by Texas Roadhouse restaurants and Lost Highway, "Willie Nelson -- Songs for Tsunami Relief" will be available through traditional retailers and

The event, which raised more than $130,000 for relief efforts, featured sets by Nelson, the Joe Ely Band, Spoon, Patti Griffin, Alejandro Escovedo, Jon Dee Graham, Bruce Robison and Kelly Willis, plus a guest appearance by the Dixie Chicks' Natalie Maines. Proceeds from the sale the CD and DVD will benefit C.A.R.E. and UNICEF.

In other news, Nelson recently cancelled Australian tour dates after being diagnosed with acute laryngitis. He has U.S. shows scheduled beginning Thursday (March 3) in Grand Prairie, Texas, and a Scotland/England/Ireland tour opening March 25 with a five-night stand in Glasgow.

-- Barry A. Jeckell, N.Y.

QuietCinderella, Ratt, Quiet Riot and FireHouse will band together this summer on the Rock Never Stops tour. The 1980s rock scene veterans will be out from late May through August, according to Cinderella's
official Web site. At deadline, the first confirmed show is a June 18 gig in Kelseyville, Calif.

In the cases of Cinderella and Ratt, the bands will be supporting recent best-of collections, while FireHouse last year issued a new studio album, "Prime Time," via the independent Pony Canyon label. Quiet Riot is said to be working on a new studio album.

Here are the Rock Never Stops tour dates:

June 18: Kelseyville, Calif. (Konocti Harbor Resort & Spa)
June 22: Lemoore, Calif. (The Palace Indian Gaming Center)
June 23: Highland, Calif. (San Manuel Indian Bingo & Casino)
July 8: Tampa, Fla. (St. Pete Times Forum)
July 9: Savannah, Ga. (Red Gate Farms)
July 15: Lincoln, Neb. (Pershing Auditorium)
July 16: Cadott, Wis. (Chippewa Valley Festival Grounds; RockFest)
July 17: Beloit, Wis. (Beloit Riverfest)
July 21: Uncasville, Conn. (Mohegan Sun Casino)
July 28: Hampton Beach, N.H. (Hampton Beach Casino Ballroom)
July 29: Atlantic City, N.J. (Trump Marina)
July 30: Reading, Pa. (Sovereign Center)
July 31: Westbury, N.Y. (North Fork Theatre @ Westbury)
Aug. 3: Toronto (Docks)
Aug. 13: West Allis, Wis. (Wisconsin State Fair)

-- Barry A. Jeckell, N.Y.