Billboard Bits: Sundance, Foo Fighters, Springsteen
News on Sundance, Foo Fighters, SpringsteenA star-studded crowd turned out last night (Jan. 22) at Harry O's in Park City, Utah, to watch Beck, Ben Lee, and DJ Z-Trip serenade an HBO party as part of the annual Sundance Film Festival. Beck's mostly acoustic set eventually gave way to electric versions of such songs as "Nicotine and Gravy," while the encore featured a medley of favorites from Nelly, Prince, Tom Tom Club, and Busta Rhymes, with DJ Z-Trip assisting on turntables.
Earlier in the night, Phantom Planet drummer Jason Schwartzman joined Lee for a portion of his set, which concluded with Liz Phair taking the mic for Dramarama's "Anything, Anything." The event was sponsored by Levi's, Cornerstone Promotions and The Fader magazine, and drew such film stars as the Culkin brothers, Salma Hayek, and Chloe Sevigny.
An even more unusual assemblage was making music at Cisero's the night before. Actress Gina Gershon belted out a set with former Guns N' Roses members Slash, Izzy Stradlin, Duff McKagan, and Matt Sorum that included the Guns staple "It's So Easy" and the Rolling Stones' "Sympathy for the Devil." As previously reported, Gershon will star as the leader of an all-girl band trying to make it big in the Los Angeles rock'n'roll scene in the film "Prey for Rock & Roll," due later this year in U.S. theaters.
-- Jonathan Cohen, N.Y.
Dates have begun trickling out for the Foo Fighters' spring North American tour, which will feature support from the Transplants. The only dates announced so far are April 17-18 at Universal Amphitheatre in Los Angeles. The Foos are also rumored to be one of the headliners for the annual Coachella Valley Music & Arts Festival, to be held in late April in Indio, Calif.
For now, the group is in the midst of appearances at the Big Day Out tour in Australia, which runs through early February. From there, the Foos head to Japan for shows in Osaka (Feb. 7), Tokyo (Feb. 8), and Fukuoka (Feb. 10). A Feb. 22 appearance on NBC's "Saturday Night Live" is also confirmed.
Foo Fighters are touring in support of their latest RCA album "One by One," which debuted in November at No. 3 on The Billboard 200 and has sold 541,000 copies in the U.S., according to Nielsen SoundScan. Latest single "Times Like These" rockets 40-23 in its second week on Billboard's Modern Rock Tracks chart. First single "All My Life" is up for Grammys in the best hard rock performance and best rock song categories.
-- Jonathan Cohen, N.Y.
Bruce Springsteen and his wife, singer/E Street Band member Patti Scialfa will headline a benefit concert Feb. 20 in Somerville, Mass. The event, which will benefit DoubleTake magazine, will be held at the 900-capacity Somerville Theatre, which, at deadline, had no information regarding tickets for the show, according to the venue's Web site. A report in today's (Jan. 23) Boston Herald suggested tickets will be priced at $1,000 and $5,000.
According to its official Web site, the New York-based quarterly literary magazine's mission "is to present compelling, insightful stories -- real and imagined -- that open windows onto the human experience." The site also notes that the eight-year-old magazine, which has an office in Somerville, "has temporarily suspended publication pending further funding."
-- Barry A. Jeckell, N.Y.