Billboard Bits: Jagger, Scapegoat Wax, R&B Foundation

News on Mick Jagger, Scapegoat Wax, R&B Foundation

Mick JaggerIn anticipation of the Nov. 20 release of his latest solo album, Virgin has established the online Mick Jagger Preview Jukebox. The site features 90-second clips of all of the tracks on Jagger's "Goddess in the Doorway," his first solo album since 1993's "Wandering Spirit."

Also launched today (Nov. 6) is Jagger's own official Web site, The site features clips from the album, as well as news, a bio, and a forum for fans to discuss their thoughts on the Rolling Stones frontman.

As previously reported, Jagger will be the subject of a one-hour documentary, "Being Mick," that will air Nov. 22 on ABC in the U.S. and the U.K.'s Channel 4. The program features never-before-seen footage of Jagger, as well as appearances by Bono, Pete Townshend, Wyclef Jean, and Lenny Kravitz, all of whom worked on "Goddess."

Jagger is set to perform Dec. 2 on the My VH1 Music Awards '01, along with Creed, Sting, Nelly Furtado, Lenny Kravitz, Destiny's Child, and No Doubt.

-- Barry Jeckell, N.Y.

Scapegoat WaxScapegoat Wax (real name: Marty James), who released his critically acclaimed debut album, "Okeeblow," earlier this year through the now defunct Grand Royal label, has signed a worldwide recording deal with Disney-owned Hollywood Records. The label plans to re-release a new version of "Okeeblow" in March 2002 with several new tracks on which James is currently working. A U.S. tour with Nortec Collective is due to run from Nov. 26 through Dec. 16.

"Marty grew up listening to Steely Dan and Tupac on the same mix tape," Hollywood VP of A&R Geoffrey Weiss said in a statement. "This is a guy who understands music in a completely instinctive way, who has no boundaries, who writes, sings, plays, and performs like a great artist."

As previously reported, the Beastie Boys-founded Grand Royal label closed its doors after eight years, citing "mounting debts, decreasing assets, and exceedingly harsh industry conditions." The label's roster has included such acts as At The Drive-In, Atari Teenage Riot, Ben Lee, BS 2000, and Luscious Jackson. Another Grand Royal artist, Sean Lennon, recently signed with Capitol.

-- Barry Jeckell, N.Y.

The Motown/Universal Music Group (UMG) Fund has been established to provide financial assistance grants to R&B artists and their surviving spouses formerly affiliated with UMG or any of its wholly owned labels. The fund will be used to provide health, welfare, and medical expenses, to be dispensed by a special R&B Foundation committee, which received the fund's initial $2 million donation.

"The goal of the Motown/Universal Music Group Fund is to ensure that we can assist artists in need who were at any time associated with Universal's family of labels," said UMG president/COO Zach Horowitz in a statement. "This will help raise the quality of their lives in recognition of their many contributions to our company and the world of music.

The $2 million gift is expected to allow the fund to generate monies for the needs of artists in perpetuity. Among the many labels affiliated with the UMG are A&M Records, ABC Dot, ABC Paramount, Argo, Blue Thumb, Cadet, Casablanca, Checker, Chess, Commodore, Coral, Decca, Def Jam, Def Soul, Duke, Dunhill, Geffen, Gordy, GRP Records, Interscope, Island, MCA, Mercury, Motown, Peacock, Polydor, Rare Earth, RSO, Soul, Tamla, Uni, Universal Records, and Verve.

Artists interested in applying for grants from the fund should contact the R&B Foundation directly (1555 Connecticut Ave., NW, Washington, D.C. 20036-1124; 202-588-5566;

-- Barry Jeckell, N.Y.