Short Takes for March 21-27, 2011

Our weekly compendium of short stories as published daily in the left column of our site.

Sunday, March 21

R.E.O. Speedwagon has joined the growing group of artists that will allow fans to buy recordings of shows as soon as they are done playing. They will also be available through

The Nashville Film Festival has announced that their opener will be Bloodworth, the new film starring Kris Kristofferson, Val Kilmer, Dwight Yoakam, Frances Conroy and Hillary Duff.

The Manhattan Transfer has been forced to cancel their upcoming tour of Japan due to the current situation.

Monday, March 22

Yoko Ono, Sonic Youth, Lou Reed and others will team up on March 27 at New York's Miller Theatre at Columbia University for a benefit concert for those hit by the recent Japanese earthquake and tsunami.

Ono will also perform at a separate Japan benefit on April 9 at the Japan Society with Reed, Laurie Anderson, Phillip Glass and others.

Chuck Leavall, keyboardist for the Rolling Stones, has a new book on sustainable, smart growth, entitled Growing a Better America which he will discuss at the National Press Club on March 29.

Bob Geldof will receive an honorary doctorate from the Ben-Gurion University in Israel in recognition of his work to end hunger in Africa.

Tuesday, March 23

Carly Simon has signed with BMG/Chrysalis to handle her U.S./Canada rights, including administration and collection of royalties.

Tommy Lee of Motley Crue will have a new series on the Syfy Channel, Culture Shock with Tommy Lee. The series will see Lee looking into secret societies.

Jimmy Buffett dropped in unannounced at a wedding in the Florida Keys on Saturday and performed an impromptu three-song set (Brown Eyed Girl, You Can't Always Get What You Want, Margaritaville).

Yoko Ono has lit up her Imagine Peace Tower in Reykjavik, Iceland for the first time since December. The beam of light is normally lit to mark the annual birthday and anniversary of the death of John Lennon but was just re-lit to mark what would have been the couples 42nd wedding anniversary.

Wednesday, March 24

Rosanne Cash tweeted a remembrance on the passing of Elizabeth Taylor. "Every year Elizabeth Taylor sent my dad a telegram (yes, telegram) for his birthday. It said: 'Remember, I'm younger than you!' (by 1 day)."

Alan Parsons is in the studio producing a new group known as the SubClones. Who they are is a closely guarded secret, although a press release says they are "well-respected, highly experienced and remarkably talented musicians."

Tom Jones, Irma Thomas, Dr. John and Allen Toussaint are all guesting on the upcoming album by actor Hugh Laurie. The set was recorded in New Orleans and will be out in Europe on May 9 and the U.S. in the fall.

Thursday, March 25

Randy Safuto of Randy & the Rainbows wrote on his Facebook yesterday "Today I lost a dear friend Kenny Arcipowski of Randy and the Rainbows. Rest in peace." Arcipowski was part of the original 1962 version of the group that hit it big with Denise. There are no further details on his passing.

Friday, March 26

Mercury Records in the U.K. whose artists include U2 and Metallica, has dropped releases of singles on CD or vinyl. A spokesperson said they would only release on if "it is guaranteed to make a profit. With physical formats now accounting for just over one percent of the overall singles market we are being more cautious."

A final demolition notice was issued this week for the childhood home of Ringo Starr in Liverpool. A campaign continues to try to prevent the tearing down of the house.

Motley Crue's Vince Neil is in trouble again with Las Vegas police. TMZ said the authorities were called during a casino show when Neil started yelling and, allegedly, getting physical with his ex-girlfriend. As of now, no charges have been filed.

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