News on Fernandez/Chayanne, Freakwater & More
Latin star Alejandro Fernandez earlier this month recorded a live, acoustic album at a concert held at Teatro de la Rivera in Madrid. Guest artists included flamenco singer Diego "El Cigala" (known for his album "Lagrimas Negras" with pianist Bebo Valdes); Amaia Montero, lead singer of La Oreja de Van Gogh (with whom Fernandez sings his hit "Me Dedique a Perderte"); and singer Malu, who guests on another classic, "Contigo Aprendi."
The set will be issued in October on CD/DVD by Sony BMG, preceded by a single in August. Also eyeing an August single is Chayanne, whose upcoming studio album is slated for release in the fall. He will preview the new song during his upcoming tour  with Fernandez and Marc Anthony, which begins Aug. 17 in Houston.
-- Leila Cobo, Miami
Veteran Americana act Freakwater will release its first new album in six years, "Thinking of You," Sept. 13 via Thrill Jockey. The 12-track set is a collaboration with labelmates Califone, whose members join core Freakwater artists Cathy Irwin, Janet Bean, David Gay and Jon Spiegel in various combinations on each cut.
"Double Clutch" features guitar work from Jim Elkington, singer/guitarist of fellow Thrill Jockey band the Zincs. Another track, "Cathy Ann" was originally intended to appear on Freakwater's last album, "End Time." Says Bean, "I love singing with Catherine, and I miss it. I sort of view it like tennis: you can play it into your 80's; you just play it a little slower."
The group is expected to tour later this year, but for now, its only scheduled show is Aug. 13 at Pickathon in North Plains, Ore.
-- Jonathan Cohen, N.Y.
Robbers On High Street have signed on as the opening act for singer/songwriter Brendan Benson's summer tour. The trek will begin July 26 in Los Angeles; beforehand, Robbers On High Street will play solo gigs July 15 in New York and July 21 in Indianapolis.
The group is touring in support of its latest New Line album, "Tree City." As previously reported, album track "Love Underground" can be found on the upcoming soundtrack to "The Wedding Crashers," as well as on the July 25 episode of HBO's "Six Feet Under."
Here are Brendan Benson/Robbers On High Street tour dates:
July 26: Los Angeles (El Rey)
July 27: San Diego (Casbah)
July 28: Tempe, Ariz. (Clubhouse)
July 30: Denver (Larimer Lounge)
Aug. 1: Minneapolis (400 Bar)
Aug. 3: St. Louis (Blueberry Hill)
Aug. 4: Indianapolis (Birdy's)
Aug. 5: Newport, Ky. (Southgate House)
Aug. 6: Chicago (Metro)
-- Jonathan Cohen, N.Y.