As football fans tune into this weekend's conference championship games, they will be entertained not only by the gridiron action, but by some top-shelf music artists. A halftime performance by Sheryl Crow will take place in the midst of Sunday's (Jan. 27) AFC Championship game between the favored Pittsburgh Steelers and the New England Patriots. Television coverage of that game at Pittsburgh's Heinz Field begins at 12:30 p.m. ET on CBS.
Country artists Mark Chesnutt, Tracy Lawrence, and Joe Diffie will team up for the Rockin' Roadhouse tour this summer. An itinerary is still being finalized, but the trek is due to begin June 20 and last through Dec. 31, encompassing more than 75 dates at arenas, amphitheaters, fairs, festivals, and "any suitable venue with a mega-crankin' sound system and ice cold beer on tap," according to organizers.
California-based rockers Adema and Earshot have been added to the lineup for this year's SnoCore Rock tour, which, as previously reported, will also feature Alien Ant Farm, Fenix TX, and Glassjaw. Earshot will open all dates of the tour, set to begin Feb. 15 in Providence, R.I., while Adema will join the cast at a March 1 show in New York and play through the trek's completion. Alterna-rock duo Local H will also briefly join the tour for the first three dates.
Louise Goffin likens the feeling of making her solo album, "Sometimes a Circle" (due Feb. 26 via DreamWorks), to a person who has worn tight clothes his or her entire life, and then suddenly puts on something comfortable.
An Albuquerque, N.M., judge has issued an arrest warrant for country singer Carlene Carter after she failed to show up for arraignment last month on a felony drug charge. Although the Bernalillo County district attorney's office said that Carter doesn't have an attorney of record in the heroin-possession case, the 46-year-old entertainer said her lawyer is taking care of the matter. "Everything's fine," she said in a telephone interview from her Tesuque home.
Atlanta rapper Cee-Lo, a founding member of veteran hip-hop group Goodie Mob and contributor to southern rap supergroup Dungeon Family, will release his debut solo album, "Cee-Lo Green and His Perfect Imperfections," April 2 via Arista. Cee-Lo has previously collaborated with the likes of Outkast, Common, Lauryn Hill, and Carlos Santana.
Alan Jackson's "Drive" (Arista Nashville) speeds to the top of The Billboard 200 after selling a potent 423,000 units -- the highest January debut in the SoundScan era -- and bounces Creed's "Weathered" (Wind-Up) to No. 2 after eight weeks at the top. "Drive," which also opens at No. 1 on Billboard's Top Country Albums chart, marks Jackson's best-ever showing on the charts.
With eight nominations each, Steven Curtis Chapman, Nicole C. Mullen, Toby McKeehan, and Rebecca St. James lead the field for the Gospel Music Association's (GMA) 33rd annual Dove Awards. Michael W. Smith earned seven nominations, while Kirk Franklin, Selah, producer Brown Bannister, newcomer Shaun Groves, and Third Day each grabbed five nods.
In a day of high-profile lobbying, Don Henley, Courtney Love, Carole King, Beck, Stevie Nicks, and Sheryl Crow, along with the Deftones, Steve Berlin (Los Lobos), Paul Doucette (matchbox twenty), and Dexter Holland (Offspring), met with state lawmakers yesterday (Jan. 23) in Sacramento, Calif., in the latest effort to repeal the state's "seven-year" statute. The law exempts musicians from the seven-year limit on entertainment contracts and allows record labels to sue artists for damages from undelivered albums.
As first tipped here last November, 'N Sync will tour North American arenas this spring in support of its 2001 Jive album, "Celebrity." The full itinerary has not yet been unveiled, but dates are so far confirmed for nine shows, beginning March 3 at the Rose Garden in Portland, Ore. The group's stadium run last year grossed more than $90 million, according to Billboard sister publication Amusement Business.
Former Led Zeppelin bassist John Paul Jones will release a new album in the U.K. on Feb. 18 and take part in a charity concert in Manchester, England, on Sunday (Jan. 27), both featuring special guests. The album, "The Thunderthief," is due out from Discipline Global Mobile, the label founded by King Crimson's Robert Fripp, who also plays on the album.
Despite earlier denials, Virgin Records has ended its relationship Mariah Carey. In a brief statement released today (Jan. 23), the label's EMI parent announced the multi-album contract, which would have paid the singer a reported $100 million, was amicably settled for $28 million.