Big News

Dion to release new album, 'Girl Friends', on March 8

Keeping The Blues Alive Records

Dion will release the new album Girl Friends on March 8, which has him collaborating with a lineup of female performers, including Carleen CarterMaggie RoseRory BlockShemekia Copeland and Debbie Davis.

He also teams up with guitarist Susan Tedeschi on the just-released second single from the album, “Soul Force.” It follows the previously released tune "An American Hero," featuring Carter.

You can listen to “Soul Force” now via digital outlets and watch the video on YouTube

“I wanted the best music possible. So, I wrote up a batch of duets for me and my ‘girl friends,’ the women who inhabit my headphones — the women who make me turn up the volume when they drop into my radio,” Dion shares in a commentary about the record, titled “The Feminine Genius.” “You’ll hear the feminine genius in every groove of this record, and you won’t forget any of it.”

Here is the track list for Girl Friends. It is available for preorder now.

“Soul Force” with Susan Tedeschi
“I Aim to Please” with Danielle Nicole
“Stop Drop and Roll” with Valerie Tyson
“Do Ladies Get the Blues” with Christine Ohlman and Debbie Davis
“An American Hero” with Carlene Carter
“Don't You Want a Man Like Me” with Rory Block
“Sugar Daddy” with Christine Ohlman
“Endless Highway” with Randi Fishenfeld
“I Got Wise” with Maggie Rose
“Hey Suzy” with Sue Foley
“Mama Said” with Shemekia Copeland
“Just Like That” with Joanne Shaw Taylor

Copyright © 2023, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Tom Petty estate and RR Auction settle dispute over alleged stolen property

Gary Gershoff/Getty Images for Songwriters Hall Of Fame

The estate of Tom Petty and RR Auction have reached an agreement over a planned auction the estate argued contained items stolen from the late Rock & Roll Hall of Famer.

Back in May, the Petty estate threatened to take legal action over the auction, noting the items up for sale, including jackets, hats, vests and autographed memorabilia, were taken from a secure storage archive.

But in a joint statement obtained by ABC Audio, both sides now report that “all concerns regarding the recent offering of personal clothing and items of the rock star have been resolved without litigation.” 

“The Petty family is grateful that RR Auction facilitated the safe return of the items, which have been returned to the Petty family's secure archives," the statement explains, "and there is currently no belief RR Auction committed or knew of any wrongdoing regarding the disputed ownership of the items." 

The statement concludes by sharing that as part of their “gratitude” to RR Auction, the Petty family “has agreed to a select few of the belongings to be offered for auction through RR Auction.” It notes, “The family supports the upcoming sale and verifies the authenticity of the items to be offered.”

Those select items are part of RR Auction’s Marvels of Music auction, and include Petty’s ornate space-themed vest, a plaid flat cap and brown suede chelsea boots, as well as a signed copy of Damn the Torpedoes and a signed portrait taken by Richard E. Aaron.

Copyright © 2023, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

David Lee Roth shares new holiday song, “Talking Christmas Blues”

Rachel Murray/Getty Images for The Brent Shapiro Foundation

David Lee Roth has found a unique way to get into the Christmas spirit. The former Van Halen frontman just dropped the new holiday tune “Talking Christmas Blues,” although he’s not really singing in it.

The track has Roth basically offering up a stream of consciousness on a bizarre holiday, set to an acoustic guitar and harmonica.  

“Late last night I had a crazy dream, Santa Claus dropped in on me,” he shares. “Santa cracked a jar, we all got trashed, elves got thrashed, places got smashed up. Events unfolded, tragedy happened, igloo got flattened.” 

In the song, he name drops Oprah Winfrey and at one point mentions needing to light a Menorah for Hanukkah. He also offers up a toast, sharing, “Like a Hallmark Hall of Fame card, Merry Christmas from David Lee.”

The song follows Roth's solo take on Van Halen's "Jump," released earlier this month, and his original tune "Wash and Fold," which dropped last month.

Copyright © 2023, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Cher hits the metaverse with new game on Roblox

Gamefam & Warner Music Group

You might think that Cher has done everything in the entertainment world, but she's just launched her first foray into the metaverse.

Starting December 8, in partnership with Gamefam and Warner Music Group, a game featuring Cher will be in Harmony Hills, her record label's world on the metaverse platform Roblox. The four-week event offers fans the opportunity to win virtual merchandise inspired by some of the legendary diva's iconic looks, including diamond antlers, tinsel hair, winter fairy wings and a winter crown.

You can win these items by completing a series of holiday-themed weekly challenges. The concept is that a mischievous elf has mixed up all the presents in Harmony Hills, and you have to find and get them back to their owners. 

When you enter the game, you can interact with Cher, whose music will be heard at various locations, like a bakery, cafe, roller rink and nightclub. The songs come from her new holiday album, Christmas, including "DJ Play a Christmas Song," "Drop Top Sleigh Ride" and "Angels in the Snow."

During the first part of the game, which runs through December 14, Cher's in-game avatar will guide players to deliver the mixed-up presents to their rightful owners. During part two, which runs from December 15 to December 21, players will recover stolen Christmas tree ornaments.

Part three, from December 22 to December 28, involves putting the ornaments back on the tree correctly, and the final part, which runs from December 29 to January 5, involves a snowball fight.

Copyright © 2023, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Tom Petty’s “Love Is A Long Road” gets streaming bump from 'Grand Theft Auto' trailer

Rick Diamond/Getty Images

More fans are discovering Tom Petty’s “Love Is A Long Road" thanks to Grand Theft Auto.

The song, from Petty’s 1989 solo album, Full Moon Fever, is featured in the trailer for Grand Theft Auto VI. Billboard reports that since the trailer first leaked on social media Monday, December 4, on-demand streams for the song increased from between 4,000 and 5,000 daily to 78,000. After the trailer’s official release on Tuesday, December 5, it was up to 376,000 streams.

That’s not all, almost 1,000 digital copies of the song were sold, compared to negligible amounts prior to the trailer’s debut.

“Love is a Long Road” isn’t actually the first Petty song to be used for Grand Theft Auto. As Petty’s official Instagram page pointed out, “Runnin’ Down A Dream,” also from Full Moon Fever, was used in Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas.

Copyright © 2023, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Billy Joel announces only European show of 2024 in Cardiff, Wales

Jason Kempin/Getty Images

Billy Joel is headed overseas next year, but he’s not launching a full tour. In fact, he’s only playing one show.

The Rock & Roll Hall of Famer just announced he’ll headline Principality Stadium in Cardiff, Wales, on August 9, with special guest Chris Isaak. This is the first time Billy has played Cardiff, and he's billing the concert as his “only European show of 2024.” 

Tickets go on sale Friday, December 15, at 10 a.m. 

Billy only played one show overseas in 2023 as well. In July, he headlined British Summertime Hyde Park in London.

In the meantime, Billy still has some U.S. dates to wrap up in 2023. He and Stevie Nicks are set to play Phoenix, Arizona’s Chase Field on Friday, December 8. He has two more solo shows on the books as well: December 19 at New York’s Madison Square Garden and December 31, aka New Years Eve, at Long Island, New York’s UBS Arena. A complete list of Billy dates can be found at

Copyright © 2023, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Queen surprises fans with “Friends Will Be Friends” encore in latest episode of 'Queen the Greatest Live'

Queen Production Ltd.

Queen continues their look at the encore in this week’s episode of Queen the Greatest Live, this time looking back at a surprise they had in store for their audience during 1986’s Magic Tour.

While Queen classics “We Will Rock You” into “We Are The Champions” became the standard encore for the band during 1977’s News of the World tour, during the Magic Tour, they tried something different.

Instead of going right from one song into the other, the band decided to follow up “We Will Rock You” with another song, “Friends Will Be Friends.” This week’s clip shows their performance of the track at Wembley Stadium in July 1986.

The new encore was such a success, the band kept it as part of their shows through August, their final shows with frontman Freddie Mercury

Next week on Queen the Greatest Live: "We Will Rock You.”

Copyright © 2023, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Viva Las Vegas: Bruce Springsteen to play Vegas for the first time in over 20 years

Courtesy of AEG

Bruce Springsteen has just added a Las Vegas date to his 2024 tour. He and the E Street Band will play T-Mobile Arena on Friday, March 22.

This will be the first time Springsteen has played a show in Las Vegas in over 20 years. The last time he hit Sin City was in August 2002, when he played the Thomas & Mack Center.

Tickets go on sale Thursday, December 14, at 10 a.m. PT.

In September, Springsteen was forced to push the remaining dates of his U.S. tour to 2024 to give him time to recover from peptic ulcer disease. The rescheduled dates are due to kick off March 19 in Phoenix, Arizona. A complete list of dates can be found at

Copyright © 2023, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Dusty Hill’s most-played bass is now the second-highest selling bass in auction history

Courtesy Juliens Auctions

An auction of the late ZZ Top bassist Dusty Hill's instruments, wardrobe pieces, memorabilia and more kicked off Thursday, December 7, at Julien's Auctions, with one of his bass guitars going for big bucks.

The late rocker’s signature 1953 Fender Precision bass sold for $393,700, more than three times the auction house’s highest estimate.  

The instrument, the most played of Hill’s guitar collection, is now the second-highest bass ever sold at auction. Only Beatle Paul McCartney’s Yamaha BB-1200 bass sold for more, back in 2021. A Fender Mustang, owned by The Rolling Stones’ Bill Wyman, is just behind Dusty’s bass at three. 

"Dusty would be so pleased to know his bass is between a Beatle and a Rolling Stone!,” Dusty’s wife commented. 

Other items sold include: Hill’s fur bass from ZZ Top’s “Legs” video, for $317,500; Hill’s MTV Moonman for Best Group Video for “Legs," for $25,400; a custom sky-blue wool suit jacket, which Dusty wore on the cover of the album Fandango!, sold for $11,430; and a black leather motorcycle jacket with custom painted skeletons and silver spikes sold for $13,000.

The three-day auction continues Friday, December 8, and Saturday, December 9, in Dallas, Texas, and online at Julien’s Live. A portion of the auction proceeds will be donated to the Recording Academy's charitable foundation, MusiCares.

Copyright © 2023, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

On This Day, December 8, 1980: Beatle John Lennon is killed in New York City

On This Day, December 8, 1980...

Legendary Beatle John Lennon was shot and killed outside his New York City apartment building, The Dakota. He was 40.

Earlier in the day, Lennon signed a copy of his album Double Fantasy for a fan as he and wife Yoko Ono were leaving for the recording studio. When he returned later that evening, the same fan, Mark David Chapman, shot him twice. The musician was rushed to the hospital where he died.

Chapman did not go on trial for Lennon’s murder, instead pleading guilty to second degree murder. He was sentenced to 20-years-to-life in prison and became eligible for parole in 2000, but he still remains in jail.

No funeral for Lennon was held, but his cremated remains were scattered in New York’s Central Park, not far from The Dakota. A memorial for Lennon, Strawberry Fields, was later created in the area.

Copyright © 2023, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

New book gives insight into San Francisco concerts by The Who

Schiffer Publishing

A new book focusing on two classic performances by The Who will be released early next year.

Teenage Wasteland: The Who at Winterland, 1968 and 1976 takes a look at how things changed for the band in the almost 10 years that passed between the two concerts at San Francisco’s Winterland Ballroom.

A description of the book notes, “These two years represent a screen grab of the band taken in its purest form: live, and harder than ever, right before and right after the huge success The Who struggled to live with in the years between.”

The two shows were worlds apart for the band, with the February 1968 concert attended by only a few hundred fans, while less than 10 years later, in March 1976, the 5,000-capacity theater was sold out.

The book offers fans a glimpse inside both shows with the use of firsthand accounts, previously unpublished photos taken by fans at the show and more.

Teenage Wasteland: The Who at Winterland by Edoardo Genzolini, with a foreword by Joel Selvin, will be released February 28 and is available for preorder now.

Copyright © 2023, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Documentaries on John Lennon, Carlos Santana & more eligible for Oscar nominations

Briarcliff Entertainment

Documentaries about John LennonCarlos Santana and Blood, Sweat and Tears all have a chance for an Oscar nomination this year. 

The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences just announced the films eligible for a nomination in the Documentary Feature Film category, and several music docs made the cut. 

Films that could possibly land a nomination include The Lost Weekend: A Love Story, about Lennon’s relationship with May Pang; Carlos, about guitarist Carlos Santana; and What the Hell Happened to Blood, Sweat and Tears?, about the band’s 1970 State Department-sponsored tour of Iron Curtain countries Yugoslavia, Romania and Poland.

Also in the running for a possible nomination is Joan Baez: I Am Noise, about folk singer Joan Baez, and Little Richard: I Am Everything, about the legendary musician Little Richard.

Nominations for the 96th Academy Awards will be announced Tuesday, January 23. The Oscars will air on ABC, Sunday, March 10.

Copyright © 2023, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Peter Gabriel has “another album’s worth of stuff” waiting to be finished

Scott Legato/Getty Images

Peter Gabriel recently released i/o, his first album of new material in 13 years, but it sounds like fans may not have to wait too long for his next one.

In an interview with U.K. paper The Times, Gabriel says now that he’s done touring he’s "having a sabbatical." But after that, “There is another album’s worth of stuff in the can that needs to be finished.”

He’s also working on what he calls a “brain project,” which is about a device that reads minds.

“Some of these current songs will fit into the brain project, as I want to have some familiar songs in it when it is finally assembled,” he says. 

Later in the interview, Peter talks about why he decided to check out his former band Genesis’ final concert at London’s Wembley Arena in 2022.

“I had put so much of my life into getting Genesis going in the early years, it felt wrong not to be there when the guys decided to close the book,” he says. “It was a strange night for them and for me, full of memories, sadness and warmth.”

But fans shouldn’t expect Gabriel to now add Genesis tunes into his live shows. 

“I know that the music that means the most to you as a teenager tends to retain its hold on you throughout your life. I do occasionally have thoughts about doing a version of a couple of those songs that have a lot of me in them,” he says. “But then my attention gets caught by something new and exciting.”

Copyright © 2023, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Rick Wakeman reliving 2023 London Palladium shows with new box set

Fragile Records/Esoteric Recordings

Yes keyboardist Rick Wakeman is releasing a new live box set capturing his sold-out two-night stand at the London Palladium earlier this year. 

Live at the London Palladium 2023 features recordings of Wakeman’s February 22 and 23 concerts in their entirety. For the shows, Wakeman performed new arrangements of his classic tunes, backed by both the English Rock Ensemble and the English Chamber Choir. It includes performances of Wakeman's solo work, as well as classic Yes tracks and the premiere of three-part "The Yes Suite," a medley of themes taken from Yes music.

The set is broken down into four CDs centered around Wakeman's solo albums: The Six Wives of Henry VIIIThe Myths and Legends of King Arthur and the Knights of the Round Table, Journey to the Centre of the Earth and Classic Yes.

Live at the London Palladium 2023 will be released February 16 and is available for preorder now.

Copyright © 2023, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Elton John debuts new “Step into Christmas” holiday cards

Craig Sjodin/ABC

Elton John is really leaning into the holiday spirit this year. Not only has he released his 1973 Christmas song “Step into Christmas” digitally for the first time, he’s now teamed up with an artist for a new line of holiday cards inspired by his music. 

The "Step into Christmas" holiday cards were hand drawn by illustrator Reggie O’Connell and feature caricatures of Elton in a Santa hat, with sayings like “Step into Christmas,” “Hold Me Closer Tiny Prancer” and “My Gift Is Yule Song.” 

"Creating this batch of Elton-themed holidays cards was an incredible undertaking that began with a few puns and an abundance of ideas,” O’Connell shares. “Tapping into Elton’s unique, fabulous energy while staying true to my own cartoony style presented a fun challenge that ultimately came together in the end.” 

He adds, “It was truly a joy illustrating these cards and I hope that you will all consider this an official invitation to step into Christmas!"

Copyright © 2023, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

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