Billboard Bits serves up the best bite-sized nuggets of music news and gossip.
New Michael Jackson Music in the Works
Producer Rodney "Darkchild" Jerkins has announced plans to work on a project involving unreleased Michael Jackson songs. In an interview with VladTV.com, Jerkins said that it could take a while to overcome "a lot of the red tape" in order to work on the songs, but that "there's definitely going to be unreleased Michael Jackson." Jerkins co-wrote and co-produced multiple tracks on Jackson's final studio album, 2001's "Invincible." (VladTV.com)
Jessica Simpson in Talks with 'Idol'
As the "American Idol" judge rumors continue to swirl, Jessica Simpson is reportedly the latest candidate to replace Simon Cowell. According to TMZ, Simpson has met with "Idol" execs several times and there is "mutual interest" in her joining the show. Paula Abdul aside, Simpson is the first woman to be named as a potential new "Idol" judge in a pool that includes Elton John, Justin Timberlake, Donald Trump, Bret Michaels, Usher, and Howard Stern have all allegedly been considered. (TMZ)
Die Antwoord Member Rejects 'Dragon' Movie Role
Yo-Landi Vi$$er, the female member of South African rave-rockers Die Antwoord, has turned down the starring role in David Fincher's upcoming remake of Stieg Larsson's bestselling novel "The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo." Vi$$er said that the project was "not something I want to do." (Vulture)
Rihanna Opens Up About 'Love the Way You Lie'
Rihanna opened up to Access Hollywood about the personal experience of recording Hot 100 chart-topper "Love the Way You Lie" with Eminem. "It's something that, you know, [Eminem and I have] both experienced, you know, on different sides, different ends of the table," she said. The singer also signed on to make her feature film debut in "Battleship," the Peter Berg-directed naval drama set for a May 2012 release. (Access Hollywood, Variety)
Neil Young Digging Up Lost Albums
Neil Young will unveil four lost albums that date back to the 1970s as part of his "Archives Volume 2" series. Young's official website has revealed the upcoming release of "Homegrown," "Oceanside-Country," "Chrome Dreams" and "Odeon-Budokan Live," the latter of which is a concert recorded with Crazy Horse in England and Japan in 1976. The albums will initially be released on vinyl. (via Spinner)
Mike Posner Gets Sirius Radio Show
Mike Posner will host a weekly radio program on Sirius XM Radio beginning Sept. 10. According to a press release issued by Sirius XM, Posner will Posner "will play the jams he likes and talk about his life" on "The Mike Posner Show," which will air Friday nights at 9:00 pm on Sirius XM's Faction channel. Posner's debut album, "31 Minutes to Takeoff," is scheduled for an Aug. 10 release.
The Cars Hint at Reunion
It's been 23 years since new wave legends the Cars recorded together, but the band hinted at a reunion on their official Facebook page. A photo of the surviving members (singer Ric Ocasek, keyboardist Greg Hawkes, drummer David Robinson and guitarist Elliot Easton) in a Boston studio has been posted with the note, "Anyone in the mood for a reunion by The Cars?" The group hasn't recorded together since 1987, when their sixth studio album, "Door to Door," was released. (via RollingStone)
(Reporting by Jason Lipshutz, Monica Herrera and Megan Vick)