Billboard Bits: Bob Dylan, Okkervil River, Boards Of Canada

News on Bob Dylan, Okkervil River, Boards Of Canada

Bob Dylan will on May 3 unveil his XM Satellite Radio show "Theme Time Radio Hour With Your Host Bob Dylan." The first installment will based around the theme of "weather" and will also find Dylan sharing stories and answering questions submitted by fans via email.

According to XM, future shows will be devoted to such themes as "dance," "police," "cars" and "whiskey," and also feature guests such as Elvis Costello, actor Charlie Sheen and comedians Penn Jillette, Sarah Silverman and Jimmy Kimmel.

Dylan is in the midst of a spring/summer North American tour, many dates on which will feature Merle Haggard. The trek next visits St. Louis tomorrow (April 20).

Okkervil River has signed a European deal with Virgin/EMI, which will on April 28 combine its album "Black Sheep Boy" and the EP "Black Sheep Boy Appendix" into a double-disc set. The releases were originally issued in North America by Jagjaguwar, to which Okkervil River remains signed. The European edition will feature the single "The Next Four Months," which did not appear on the original pressing.

The band will kick off a 24-date European tour in Brussels on April 29. Okkervil River is also tapped to play a free July 13 show at New York's Castle Clinton.

While writing material for the follow-up to "Black Sheep Boy," Okkervil River recorded dozens of new songs during a February session. But a Jagjaguwar spokesperson says for now, the tracks are "for the vaults and the vaults alone."

-- Jonathan Cohen, N.Y.

Originally scheduled for a June 6 release via Warp, Boards Of Canada’s new “Trans Canada Highway” EP has been bumped up a week to May 30. In addition to the studio version of “Dayvan Cowboy” from the group’s 2005 album “The Campfire Headphase,” the EP features an Odd Nosdam remix of that cut plus the new songs “Left Side Drive,” “Heard From Telegraph Lines,” “Skyliner” and “Under the Coke Sign.”

Fans who purchase the EP from independent retail outlets will receive a bonus DVD featuring the “Dayvan Cowboy” video, which is partly set to footage of Joseph Kittinger’s record-breaking 1960 skydive from an altitude of nearly 110,000 feet.

-- Jonathan Cohen, N.Y.