News on Barenaked Ladies, Bon Jovi, Marcus Miller, Billy Higgins

Barenaked LadiesBarenaked Ladies fans will have the opportunity to purchase tickets to the band's upcoming North American tour via a special Internet pre-sale offer. Beginning May 10 at 7 a.m. ET through 10 p.m. PT, half of the available tickets in all price ranges for the tour will be sold to fans who register at www.bnl.ticketmaster.com.

All remaining tickets will go on sale to the public between May 12 and June 3, depending on the market. The pre-sale does not include July 21-22 shows in Mansfield, Mass., or the July 24 stop in Burgettstown, Pa., as those shows go on sale Saturday (May 5) to the general public.

The Barenaked Ladies' tour in support of their latest Reprise album, "Maroon," kicks off July 12 in Toronto, and closes with a pair of shows Aug. 25-26 in Clarkston, Mich. "Maroon" debuted at No. 5 on The Billboard 200, and was certified platinum one month later by the Recording Industry Association of America for U.S. sales of 1 million copies. The set has sold 946,000 copies in the U.S., according to SoundScan.


-- Barry A. Jeckell, N.Y.







Bon JoviThe secret is out: Jon Bon Jovi will give the commencement address at Monmouth University in West Long Branch, N.J., later this month. School officials had wanted Bon Jovi's appearance to be a surprise for the Class of 2001, but confirmed this week that the 39-year-old New Jersey native will attend the May 16 ceremony and also receive an honorary degree.

"We're honored and pleased that he has agreed to give the keynote address. It is going to be a very special day," university spokesman Frank Di Rocco said.

Bon Jovi's current world tour in support of last year's "Crush" album (Island) drops in on Columbus, Ohio, tonight (May 4) and Cleveland tomorrow (May 5). A live album, "One Wild Night -- Live 1985-2001," is due May 22.

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Jazz bassist/producer/composer Marcus Miller has scheduled a quartet of live dates in support of his upcoming 3 Deuces/Telarc album "M2." The brief run will open May 30 in San Francisco and close June 4 outside of Washington, D.C. in Alexandria, Va.

Due out May 22, "M2" features appearances by Herbie Hancock, Branford Marsalis, and Lucy Pearl vocalist Raphael Saadiq. For the live dates, Miller will be backed by keyboardist Leroy "Scooter" Taylor, trumpeter Michael "Patches" Stewart, saxophonist Roger Byam, guitarist Dean Brown, and drummer Gerry Brown.

Here are Marcus Miller's upcoming tour dates:
May 30: San Francisco (Bimbo's 365)
June 1: Los Angeles (House of Blues)
June 3: New York (B.B. King's Blues Club)
June 4: Alexandria, Va. (Birchmere)


-- Barry A. Jeckell, N.Y.







Jazz drummer Billy Higgins died Wednesday in Los Angeles of liver failure, Billboard Bulletin reports. Higgins, who had been awaiting a second liver transplant, was 65. The artist came to fame as a member of Ornette Coleman's band in the 1950s. He performed extensively and is credited with playing on more than 700 recordings, including Coleman's iconoclastic 1960 set "Free Jazz."


-- Steve Graybow, N.Y.







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