· Speaking of covers, the beloved Sympathy for the Record Industry label has just issued I've Lived a Rich Life by Monsieur Jeffrey Evans, formerly of The Gibson Brothers and '68 Comeback. This solo adventure - acoustic guitar and cowboy hat - is a live recording from Memphis and features originals and covers of material by Buddy Holly, Gene Vincent, Alex Chilton, and Warren Smith.
· And more cover news from the Keb Mo camp - hot off his new theme for the Martha Stewart Living TV show. His upcoming family-oriented album, Big Wide Grin, will feature his bluesy take on the Sesame Street theme, "Big Yellow Taxi" by Joni Mitchell, "Isn't She Lovely" by Stevie Wonder, and "America the Beautiful."
· Long out-of-print and highly desired, eight classic Beach Boys albums will be reissued by Capitol Records in special two-fer packaging this Tuesday in honor of the group's 40th anniversary. Eight more albums will be re-issued under the plan on April 10, all freshly digitally remastered in the HDCD process with track-by-track annotations, bonus tracks, and alternative mixes.
· Nick Cave has announced a short string of solo concert appearances beginning March 21 in New Orleans. The tour sets the stage for his new album with The Bad Seeds, No More Shall We Part, due April 10 on the Reprise label.
· Fans of SpinArt Records recording artists Apples in Stereo can hunt down an MP3-only release of the band's new live-from-Chicago album at (http://www.emusic.com). Apples in Stereo front man Robert Schneider is holed up working on his upcoming solo project Symphonie Fantasique, which will feature songwriting collaboration from Andy Partridge of XTC.
· The quirky indie label Shrimper Records has announced that later this month it will release for the first time on CD its ultra-rare, previously cassette-only collection of Prince covers as performed by Dump - the Yo La Tengo side project of James McNew. Entitled The Skinny Mofo with the High Voice, this new CD issue will contain the original seven tracks of funky mischief plus five more.
· Tired of brainless Lolitas dancing in front of your id every living, breathing second of the day? Wake up your upper crust libido, as the Decca Records label takes the next step in selling of the "girl group." The label's new artist Bond and the March 20 album Born feature classical music performed and marketed under the camera's cheesecake soft focus. They're beautiful, they're sexy, they play classical string quartet, and they're pouting at me!
The Tonight Show with Jay Leno hosts Collective Soul tonight, Sevendust and Sugar Ray on Thursday, and Jennifer Lopez and Lucy Pearl on Friday; The Late Show with David Letterman welcomes Jill Scott and Janet Jackson on Monday; The Late Late Show With Craig Kilborn features the fantastic Grandaddy on Thursday overnight; and Saturday Night Live's musical guest this weekend is Don Henley.
New Releases Coming Tuesday, March 13:
... and like the winds, young grasshopper, are subject to change.
Alkaline Trio - Hell Yes (Lookout)
The Anomoanon - The Anomoanon (Palace)
The Applicators - What's Your Excuse (Cornerstone/R.A.S.) fem punk rock
Baha Men - 2 Zero 0-0 (Mercury) domestic re-issue of the group's previous Japan-only CD
Bastard Sons Of Johnny Cash - Walk Alone (Ultimatum) featuring a cover of Merle Haggard's "Silver Wings"
Book of Love - I Touch Roses: The Best of (Reprise) featuring hits, remixes, and three new tracks from this iconic 1980s new-wave dance band
Bill Bruford's Earthworks - The Sound of Surprise (Discipline) new jazz from the King Crimson master drummer
Michael Burks - Make It Rain (Alligator)
Johnny Cash & the Tennessee Two - Roads Less Traveled: The Rare & Unissued Sun Recordings (Varese Sarabande) Cash's early bare-bones acoustic work with producer Sam Phillips from 1954 to 1958
Clutch - Pure Rock Fury (Atlantic)
Dubchek - Down Memory Gap Lane (Unitone) classic UK dub from the duo of David Barnett and Papa Dee
Euphoria - "Sweet Rain" (Six Degrees) CD single of "guitaronica" - acoustic slide guitar and progressive beats
Fairweather - If They Move ... Kill Them (Equal Vision)
Thaddeus Hogarth - Trying to Believe (Spinning) soulful R&B featuring the core groove of Hammond B3 organ, Fender Rhodes, and wah-wah guitar
King Britt - Presents Sylk 130 Re-Members Only (Six Degrees) with guests Martin Fry of ABC, Alison Moyet, Pos and Trugoy of De La Soul, Kathy Sledge of Sister Sledge, and Grover Washington Jr.
King Cobb Steelie - Mayday (Ryko) organic dub nominated for Canada's Juno Award for Best Alternative Album of last year
Louchie Lou & Michie One - Seven Years of Plenty (Interscope) featuring the Hawaiian hit single "10 Out of 10"
Matmos - A Chance to Cut Is a Chance to Cure (Matador) this one sounds fascinating - a promise of collage-based audio imagery featuring recordings of actual operating-room dialogue
Over the Rhine - Films for Radio (Virgin/Backporch)
Lionel Ritchie - Renaissance (Island)
The Rutles - All You Need Is Cash (Rhino) DVD re-issue of this 1978 cult classic spoof on The Beatles conceived by Monty Python's Eric Idle
Bob Schneider - Lonelyland (Universal) formerly of Austin, Texas' Ugly Americans
Semisonic - All about Chemistry (MCA) with guest Carole King, who wrote the single "One True Love"
Skindive - Skindive (Palm Pictures) with production and mixing by Adrian Sherwood of On-U Sound and Dave "Rave" Ogilivie
The Soft Boys - Underwater Moonlight ... and How It Got There (Matador) re-issued as a two-CD or three-LP set with lots of rarities added to this 1980 classic from Robyn Hitchcock and Kimberly Rew
Swag - Catch-All (Yep Roc) featuring Ken Coomer of Wilco, Jerry Dale McFadden of Sixpence None the Richer, Robert Reynolds of the Mavericks, Tom Petersson of Cheap Trick, and Not Lame recording artist Doug Powell