1. Buddy DeFranco, Renowned Jazz Clarinetist, Dead at 91

    December 26, 2014 6:44 PM EST Renowned jazz clarinetist Buddy DeFranco -- who collaborated with Frank Sinatra , Billie Holiday and other top singers and musicians of his era -- has died at the age of 91, his family said Friday. DeFranco's family told The Associated Press that the famed musician died Wednesday…

  2. Top 20 Christmas Rap Songs

    December 25, 2014 8:15 AM EST No one has the type of holiday spirit as a rapper. From Kanye West to Run-D.M.C. , they're spins on Christmas classics or originals range from the hilarious, weird to serious, but all stay true to themselves. Busta Rhymes -- whose Jim Carrey-featured "Grinch" song merely…

  3. Luke Bryan Leads Latest Hot Tours Tally

    December 24, 2014 2:40 PM EST Bryan's That’s My Kind of Night tour was the highest-grossing tour by a country artist in 2014 Country superstar Luke Bryan tops the weekly slate of top-grossing touring artists (see below) with the final 2014 box office stats reported from his That’s My Kind of Night Tour that wrapped…

  4. Gregg Alexander Reflects on Joe Cocker's Peerless Talent & Ridiculous Rock Hall Snub

    December 23, 2014 9:50 AM EST I can still remember the first time I heard Joe Cocker sing, which is what they always say is the sign of a truly great singer or song: if you can remember the first time. I was in a "music appreciation class" (whatever the hell that is) before I even hit my teens and our teacher…

  5. Renee Fleming to Make Broadway Debut

    December 23, 2014 1:21 AM EST Renee Fleming is no stranger to the Metropolitan Opera or Carnegie Hall stages. But the world-renowned soprano and four-time Grammy winner will venture for the first time to Broadway in the spring, when she'll star as -- what else? -- a celebrated diva in Joe DiPietro's new comedy…

  6. Music in TV and Film, 2014: 'Frozen' Dominates, Singing Battles Go Lukewarm

    December 22, 2014 12:58 PM EST Throughout the week, Billboard will be publishing pieces from our staff writers, each an outstanding authority on their specific area of coverage. From Nashville to Miami, the industry at large, publishing and retail, and the year in touring, we'll be taking comprehensive looks at the…

  7. Warner Music Canada President Steve Kane on His Hall of Fame Induction, Inviting Robert Plant to His Basement

    December 22, 2014 12:16 PM EST Ahead of his induction into the Canadian Music Industry Hall of Fame next spring, Steve Kane talks about hitting up the record store every Saturday and his 15,000-strong music collection. Every Friday, Warner Music Canada president Steve Kane posts to his Facebook page a message like…

  8. Queen's Brian May on Adam Lambert: 'He Can Sing Higher Than Freddie'

    December 22, 2014 3:06 AM EST Adam Lambert always maintained that in his role as touring frontman for Queen , he wasn't emulating the late Freddie Mercury . But when it comes to vocal skills, the American Idol season-eight star can more than hold his own, said Queen guitarist Brian May in a recent interview, noting…

  9. Op-Ed: Steve Wariner on Why Dottie West Should Be a Country Music Hall of Fame Member

    December 21, 2014 12:30 PM EST Over the past year, The 615 has offered opinions concerning who the next members of the Country Music Hall of Fame should be. In July, we made our case for Don Rich, the longtime sideman for Buck Owens , in the Instrumentalist category. Just a few weeks ago, we told of the great…

  10. Warwick Rowers Sing Christmas Carols… in Their Underwear

    December 19, 2014 7:29 PM EST What better way to celebrate the holidays than with a gaggle of athletes singing Christmas carols in their underwear? Members of the Warwick Rowers (famed for their annual pinup charity calendar) stopped by the offices World of Wonder Productions ( RuPaul's Drag Race , I Am Britney…

  11. U.S.-Cuba Musical Relations: A Timeline of Milestones

    December 19, 2014 5:15 PM EST Before President Obama's announcement Wednesday that the U.S. would be restoring diplomatic relations with Cuba, there were five decades of a rocky musical relationship that displayed artistic triumphs, personal tragedies and the diplomatic power of music. See our timeline below: 1959 …

  12. The Year in Rock 2014: Rebound From a Rough Year?

    December 19, 2014 12:45 PM EST After decades of leading the pack, the cultural rebound of rock, alternative, or whatever we want to call it depends on learning to play by new sets of rules. I promise this will not be a “rock is dead” story. We’ve already had that conversation far too many times, and besides, it’s far…

  13. Ardent Studios Founder John Fry Dies at 69

    December 18, 2014 10:30 PM EST John Fry , the producer and engineer who founded Memphis' famed Ardent Studios and the Ardent Records label, has died at the age of 69. It was Fry who once said that, "Your moods are affected by your surroundings. I think there is something that operates in Memphis...and at Ardent…

  14. Bobby Shmurda Pleads Not Guilty to Gun, Drug Charges

    December 18, 2014 5:36 PM EST Up-and-coming rapper Bobby Shmurda appeared in a New York City court on Thursday (Dec. 18) to face charges he moonlighted as a gun-toting member of a street gang that was behind several shootings, one fatal, during turf wars over drug trafficking. Shmurda (real name: Ackquille Pollard)…

  15. 'Maybe the Adrenaline Keeps Me Going': Landau Management's Barbara Carr on Working with Springsteen for 34 Years

    December 18, 2014 11:46 AM EST "Couldn't get along without you, Barb," Bruce Springsteen said of Barbara Carr when inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame 15 years ago. Any Springsteen fan worth their salt knows his longtime manager and former producer, Jon Landau . Less visible (by choice) is Carr,…

  16. Metallica to Rock the Ice for 'Night of Hockey Mayhem'

    December 18, 2014 1:36 AM EST Metallica is bringing its heavy brand of rock to the ice. The Hall of Famers have declared Jan. 21 as “Metallica Night,” on what will otherwise be a contest between the hometown San Jose Sharks and their NHL rivals the LA Kings.  In a post on the metal band’s Website , the rockers are…

  17. Watch Out Boy! Hall & Oates Took on a 'Maneater' 32 Years Ago Today

    December 17, 2014 10:12 AM EST “Watch out boy, she’ll chew you up.” On this day in 1982 (Dec. 18), Hall and Oates started a four week run at No. 1 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart with their song “Maneater,” giving the world this valuable piece of advice: “I wouldn't if I were you." In the music video for this…

  18. Sony Hack Reveals Snapchat Wanted a Record Label, Too Much Money From Vevo

    December 17, 2014 8:59 AM EST The leak of Sony Entertainment's internal documents, most recently the email account of Sony Entertainment chairman and CEO Michael Lynton , has revealed high-level talks between that company and Snapchat, the messaging service that turned down billions from Facebook earlier this year…

  19. Ray Price Remembered by Wife Janie, One Year After His Death

    December 16, 2014 6:55 PM EST Today marks the one-year anniversary of the death of Country Music Hall of Fame member Ray Price . For his widow, Janie, it was as if the world had seemingly come to an end. "It was actually four months before I could even leave my home," she says. "I just honestly stayed…

  20. Joan Jett on Her Rock Hall Induction: 'It's a Roiling Pot of Emotions'

    December 16, 2014 4:34 PM EST Last April, Joan Jett was one of four women who played with Nirvana during its Rock and Roll Hall of Fame induction at Brooklyn's Barclays Center. "Maybe it reminded people I'm out there," Jett quipped on Tuesday (Dec. 16). Maybe so. Jett and her band the Blackhearts…

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