Billboard Bits: Keith Urban, Elvis Presley, Popa Chubby
News on Keith Urban, Elvis Presley, Popa ChubbyCapitol has moved up the release of country singer Keith Urban's third album, "Golden Road," from a previously scheduled Nov. 5 bow to a new date of Oct. 8. The set is preceded by the single "Somebody Like You," which is climbing Billboard's Top Country Singles & Tracks chart. The cut is No. 22 in its sixth week on the tally.
Once again, Urban turned to Trey Fanjoy ("But for the Grace of God," "Your Everything") to direct the video for the track, which will receive its world premiere tomorrow (Aug. 7) on CMT, and features a special appearance by an as-yet-unrevealed guest. "I've been sworn to secrecy," Urban said in a statement. "If I told you who was in it, I'd have to kill you. But she -- oh, did I say that? Well alright, she was positively great to work with, and I can't believe how comfortable she made me feel. The scenes we shot were effortless. This video was a breeze to make and I'm glad the song at radio already seems to be connecting with people."
"Golden Road" is the follow-up to 1999's "Keith Urban," which peaked at No. 17 on Billboard's Top Country Albums chart. That set has sold 550,000 copies in the U.S., according to SoundScan.
-- Barry A. Jeckell, N.Y.
As fans prepare to commemorate the 25th anniversary of Elvis Presley's death, Tomato Records is gearing up for the Aug. 13 release of "Elvis Presley/Roots Revolution: The Louisiana Hayride Recordings." The 16-track set compiles the King's live radio performances from the mid-1950s, augmented by new musicians to enhance the sounds of the instruments on his performances of such classics as "That's All Right, Mama," "Baby, Let's Play House," "Blue Moon of Kentucky," and "Maybellene."
The label enlisted bassist Paul Nowinski, guitarist Jon Paris, and drummer Steen Wolf to re-record the existing parts of the recordings that Elvis' band -- guitarist Scotty Moore, bassist Bill Black, and drummer D.J. Fontana -- played at the time of the "Louisiana Hayride" broadcasts. Tomato promises that no embellishment to the arrangements was made, and all musical enhancements were made using period instruments to replicate the sound of the original recordings.
"We approached this much like that of restoring a master painting," Tomato's Kevin Eggers said in a statement. "Our intent was to bring out the original colors and energy of the music. Great care was taken to make sure the musical enhancements were 100 percent faithful to the original parts played by Elvis, Scotty, Bill and D.J."
-- Barry A. Jeckell, N.Y.
A van driven by blues guitarist Popa Chubby (aka Ted Horowitz) overturned last Friday, injuring Horowitz and two band members, keyboard player Dave Keyes and drummer Rod Gross. The band was on its way to a festival show in Rochester, N.Y. Horowitz suffered a broken collarbone and a dislocated shoulder, and Keyes was treated for minor injuries. Gross, the most seriously injured, has been hospitalized for skull, wrist, and elbow fractures, and was released from intensive care today. Bassist Kris Jefferson was not traveling with the band at the time.
The band's planned European tour, scheduled to begin this week, has been cancelled. Chubby's most recent release, "The Good, The Bad, and the Chubby" was released on San Francisco's Blind Pig Records last month.
-- Steven Graybow, N.Y.