Billboard Bits: Pete Rock, Newton-John, Mike Peters

News on Pete Rock, Newton-John, Mike Peters

PeteVeteran hip-hop producer Pete Rock is in the studio working on a new album, "Soul Survivor 2," for London-based BBE. Due in early 2004, the album will feature appearances by Talib Kweli, Angie Stone, Jill Scott, Little Brother and Big Tigger, among others. The original "Soul Survivor" was released in 1998 by RCA; Rock's last album was 2001's "PeteStrumentals."

Rock has also teamed American Urban Radio Networks to launch the new syndicated show, "The New Pete Rock Old Skool Mix." The show, which debuted the week of Aug. 11, will feature Rock's extensive collection of classic soul records.

"I always wanted to do a syndicated show," Rock tells Billboard. "I was fortunate to meet [the show's executive producer] Jeffrey Goines, and he offered me that opportunity." Rock describes the show's content as driven by "the stuff that inspired me to get into music."

-- Rashaun Hall, N.Y.

OliviaAustralian singer Olivia Newton-John has postponed her North American tour to be by her ailing mother's side. Postponements began Tuesday in Albuquerque, N.M., and shows in Los Angeles, Santa Rosa, Calif., San Francisco, Seattle, Portland, Ore., and Jacksonville, Ore., are also affected.

Newton-John, who was touring in support of her recent album, "2", is slated to resume her North American schedule Sept. 29 in Seattle. She has dates on tap through Nov. 21 in Macon, Ga.

-- Jason MacNeil, Toronto

MikeMike Peters has a full slate of live appearances on tap through the rest of 2003. This weekend in North Wales, the singer/guitarist is playing eight sets representing each phase of his nearly four-decade career. Dubbed Alarmstock, the sold-out acoustic shows will take place tomorrow (Aug. 23) and Sunday at the William Aston Hall in Wrexham.

Next month, he will begin another Dead Men Walking U.K. tour. Along with Peters, the nearly two-month outing will feature his Coloursound bandmate/Cult guitarist Billy Duffy, the Sex Pistols' Glen Matlock, former Stray Cats drummer Slim Jim Phantom and Spear Of Destiny's Kirk Brandon.

In November, Peters will front an incarnation of the Alarm for a month of weekly residency dates in New York, Los Angeles, Chicago and the Boston area. For tour dates and details on his myriad projects, visit

-- Barry A. Jeckell, N.Y.