Billboard Bits: The Who, Bob Geldof, BSOJC

News on The Who, Bob Geldof, BSOJC

JohnA Vespa ET2 scooter signed by the Who's Pete Townshend and Roger Daltrey, as well as the band's late bassist John Entwistle, is up for auction in conjunction with Virgin Megastore North America's ongoing "2002 Best of British" promotion. Fans can place a bid on the scooter online via

Proceeds from the auction will be donated to the Teenage Cancer Trust in tribute to Entwistle, who died suddenly last Thursday. In addition, for any Who album purchased during the "Best of British" promotion, Virgin will donate one dollar to the charity, which focuses on the needs of U.K. teenagers and young adults with cancer, leukemia, Hodgkin's, and related diseases. Customers will also be able to make a donation to the organization when making purchases at Virgin Megastores.

-- Barry A. Jeckell, N.Y.

Bob Geldof will release "Sex, Age & Death," his first solo album since 1993's "The Happy Club" (Polygram), Aug. 27 in North America via Koch. Released internationally last October via the Eagle Records label, the 10-track set was written over the course of five tumultuous years in the life of the former Boomtown Rats leader. That time included the death of his ex-wife Paula Yates, which followed the death of her lover Michael Hutchence. "I don't discuss those things because I literally can't," Geldof says. "I can't show you my soul. Some things are unsayable. But maybe you try to articulate the unspeakable in music." Geldof -- who is perhaps best known for his charitable work through Band Aid and Live Aid -- toured Europe earlier this year in support of "Sex, Age & Death," and will perform at English festivals July 26 in Wiltshire and July 27 in Weymouth. No North American dates are currently scheduled.

Actor-turned-recording artist Billy Bob Thornton makes a guest appearance on "Distance Between," the forthcoming sophomore album by the Bastard Sons Of Johnny Cash, due Aug. 27 via Ultimatum Music. Thornton -- who last year released his Lost Highway debut album, "X" -- performs on the San Diego-based band's version of the folk traditional "Long Black Veil," featured on "Distance Between." Thornton visited the modern honky-tonk band as it was recording at the Paramour Estate in the Silver Lake section of Los Angeles. Their impromptu rendition of "Long Black Veil" is also featured as an enhanced track on "Distance Between," with both audio and video of the session. Produced by noted recording engineer Mark Howard (Bob Dylan, Luscious Jackson), "Distance Between" is the follow-up to its acclaimed 2001 set, "Walk Alone." The band will support the 12-track set with a tour set to kick off in August, on which the Bastard Sons Of Johnny Cash will co-headline with alt-country artist Jesse Dayton.