An in-depth look at the musical highlights of the April 21-27, 2003, TV schedule.
Madonna, Madonna, Madonna! It seems like she's going to be everywhere you look on TV this week, starting on Tuesday, the same day her new Maverick album, "American Life," is released. In the morning, she'll be cozying up to Matt Lauer, Katie Couric, and the newly trim Al Roker on NBC's "Today," and in the evening she'll be featured on the network's "Dateline" news magazine.
That same night, MTV's "Madonna On Stage & On the Record" will find the artist performing some of her new songs for the first time in an intimate setting, and chatting with Carson Daly, John Norris, and fans about the album.
On Thursday, the former "Material Girl" will guest-star on NBC's "Will & Grace," playing a peculiar office worker who shares many of the same eccentricities as Megan Mullally's character, Karen. (Fans will note that Mullally interviewed Madonna for VH1's recent "Madonna Speaks" special.) Lastly, watch for Madonna to close out the week with an appearance on the syndicated "Live! With Regis & Kelly" daytime show. Phew!
If Madonna's busy schedule is a bit confusing, then maybe the steady gig the White Stripes plan to hold down is more up your alley. Look for them on NBC's "Late Night With Conan O'Brien" every night this week! That's right, Monday through Friday, Detroit's lo-fi blues duo will be bangin' out tracks from the new V2 album "Elephant" on Conan's stage. Can't stay up late? No big deal: Comedy Central rebroadcasts every episode the following night at 7 p.m. ET (with Friday's "Late Night" airing on Monday).
Don't worry if Madonna and White Stripes aren't for you, as there's lots more action to look out for on the glowing box of love. Of course, there's weekly favorite "American Idol." First of all, can you believe it was Kimberly Caldwell that got the axe? Once you come to grips with that, on Tuesday the field of six competitors will go for it once again. Find out who the millions of voters decide should leave the pack on Wednesday night's results show.
And you know that you are curious about "Michael Jackson's Private Home Movies." Fox is counting on America's interest in the mysterious superstar who will share his private life through real-life footage that's never been seen before outside of his family. Be sure to block out two hours on Thursday night for that one.
On Tuesday night, NBC's "Frasier" will find Elvis Costello playing a street singer. And Sunday on "The Simpsons" (Fox), David Byrne will lend his voice to an episode dubbed "Dude, Where's My Ranch." Look for Byrne to produce Homer's hit song about his hatred for goody-goody neighborino Ned Flanders.
And on NBC's "American Dreams," Sunday's episode of the nostalgic drama will find B2K with Marques Houston guest starring the Temptations and performing the classic "My Girl." You'll also see Meg lying to her best friend Roxanne because she's going to a sleepover with the popular girls (gasp!).
Also on Sunday, CMT will prove that spring break beach scenes aren't just for rappers and pop stars as you can see the thousands that congregated to check out Rascal Flatts performing for free in Daytona Beach, Fla. "Rascal Flatts: Melt on the Beach" will feature the popular young country act performing for the sun worshippers taking time out from school to blow off some steam.
And lastly, if you're looking for a bit of nostalgia, don't miss the Grateful Dead's 1978 performance on "Saturday Night Live" showing Thursday night on E! As an added bonus, the episode was hosted by underrated comic genius Buck Henry.