Billboard Bits: Nick Cave, Jerry Douglas, Andre Agassi

News on Nick Cave, Jerry Douglas, Andre Agassi

NellyEpitaph-associated Anti Records has entered into a licensing arrangement with the U.K.-based Mute label to handle the U.S. release of upcoming projects by Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds. Also home to Tom Waits, Merle Haggard, Solomon Burke, and Daniel Lanois, Anti will release its first Cave album in early 2003.

Label president Andy Kaulkin expressedpride at signing Cave in a statement. "Cave's voice sends shivers up my spine and the Bad Seeds are the sum total of everything great and mysterious about rock and roll."

Last year Cave and his band released "No More Shall We Part" via Reprise. The set debuted No. 9 on Billboard's Heatseekers chart and No. 17 on the Top Internet Albums chart.

-- Barry A. Jeckell, N.Y.

NellyDobro master Jerry Douglas will hit the road next week on a month-long solo tour. The 14-date trek will take the artist from Somerville, Mass., on Oct. 11 through to Charleston, W.Va., on Nov. 10.

Although best known as of late for his role as a member of Alison Krauss' band, Union Station and his work on Lost Highway's "O Brother, Where Art Thou?" soundtrack, Douglas will be out in support of his acclaimed solo album "Lookout for Hope." Released in May by Sugar Hill Records, the album reached No. 10 on Billboard's Top Bluegrass Albums chart and No. 5 on the Top New Age Albums tally.

-- Barry A. Jeckell, N.Y.

NellySaturday night's Andre Agassi Foundation's Grand Slam for Children concert fundraiser pulled in $5.6 Million for at-risk children. The sold-out crowd at Las Vegas' MGM Grand Garden Arena was treated to performances by Babyface, Elton John, India.Arie, Martina McBride, Carlos Santana, and Rod Stewart, as well as comedians Dennis Miller, Robin Williams, and Jamie Foxx.

Specific charities that will benefit from the event are the Andre Agassi Boys & Girls Club, the Assistance League of Las Vegas' Operation School Bell, Child Haven, Cynthia Bunker Memorial Scholarship Fund, the Las Vegas Inner-City Games, Class! Publications, Las Vegas Sun Summer Camp, Boys Hope/Girls Hope of Nevada, the I Have a Dream Foundation, and the Andre Agassi College Preparatory Academy, a model charter school in West Las Vegas.

-- Barry A. Jeckell, N.Y.