Australia Live Bits: Danger Mouse's 'Rome' With Jack White, Norah Jones; Elton John; The Cure
Australia Live Bits: Danger Mouse's 'Rome' With Jack White, Norah Jones; Elton John; The Cure

EMI Australia is hoping the lure of free coffee will heat up this week's promo launch for the new Danger Mouse and Daniele Luppi collaboration, "Rome," featuring Jack White and Norah Jones.

The music major will be pouring it on when it hosts a listening party this Friday, Saturday and Sunday (May 13 - 15) mornings at a "pop-up" coffee store in inner-city Sydney.

It's a sweet deal, but there's a slight catch. The freebies will be dished out to the first 50 people to check in via Facebook Places or Foursquare at the venue, the Winery Laneway in Surry Hills.

The Danger Mouse initiative was created by EMI Australia's bespoke digital music platform, The In Sound From Way Out.

It's not the first time EMI Australia has served up a tasty treat in support of a U.S. artist signing. Last year, the music company teamed with Baskin Robbins to dish out free ice cream in support of the Katy Perry album "Teenage Dream". Perry's album peaked at No. 1 on the ARIA albums chart and is certified double platinum (140,000 units).

The announcement of Elton John's five-date 15th Australian tour this week was a late Mother's Day present. But the announcement from promoter Michael Chugg sent tongues wagging for what it didn't explain. The British pop legend will tour Australia this year, with a run of dates starting Nov. 30 at the Brisbane Entertainment Centre and visiting the Hunter Valley, Melbourne, Adelaide and Perth through December. Surprisingly, no date has been announced for Sydney, the country's largest market.

Chugg Entertainment has cited "scheduling constraints and venue availabilities" for the Sydney swerve, but all parties were "looking to find a solution and time window for a Sydney performance in his 2011 Australian Tour."

Elton has a special relationship with Australia. It was in Australia where the Rocket Man wed in 1984, his tours have broken house records, and he was the first host of the ARIA Awards in 1987.

The talk now has it that Elton might again host this year's 25th annual ARIAs, which are typically held in late November. At present, no one is confirming anything. But online chatter would suggest that Sydney's venues are booked up later this year for dates by the Foo Fighters or possibly Lady Gaga. The latter doesn't seem a stretch; Lady Gaga's worldwide manager Troy Carter recently told this reporter that his ward would visit Australia at least once this year. "Oh yeah, we're coming to Australia," Carter said. "We'll make a couple of trips. We're going to stay there for a while when we come."

One act who will definitely - and improbably -- be playing Sydney this year is the Cure. Robert Smith's iconic and moody British rock act will reform to play at the Vivid Festival, which starts later this month at the Sydney Opera House. The Cure will perform their first three albums, "Three Imaginary Boys" (1979), "Seventeen Seconds" (1980) and "Faith" (1981), with the original line-ups playing each show. This year's May 27-June 13 Vivid Live arts program is curated by Steve Pavlovic, founder of the Modular People record label, touring company and international brand.