Music

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Wanted singer Tom Parker diagnosed with an inoperable brain tumor
Wanted singer Tom Parker diagnosed with an inoperable brain tumor
Credit: Tom Parker courtesy of Instagram

The singer of the band The Wanted, Tom Parker, age 32, has announced on his Instagram that he has been diagnosed with an inoperable brain tumor.

He stated that "There’s no easy way to say this but I’ve sadly been diagnosed with a Brain Tumour and I’m already undergoing treatment". In an interview, he said that he has started radiotherapy and chemotherapy treatment to prolong his life.

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Eddie Van Halen, revered guitarist and co-founder of rock band Van Halen, has died of cancer
Eddie Van Halen
Eddie Van Halen Credit: National Museum of American History Smithsonian Institution (Creative Commons Attribution 2.0)

Eddie Van Halen, virtuoso guitarist and co-founder of the popular rock band Van Halen, has died Tuesday at the age of 65. The musician had been undergoing treatment for throat cancer.

Celebrity news website TMZ, which first broke the news of his death, said Van Halen died at St Johns Hospital in Santa Monica on Tuesday surrounded by his family.

Eddie's son, Wolfgang, wrote on Twitter: "I can’t believe I’m having to write this, but my father, Edward Lodewijk Van Halen, has lost his long and arduous battle with cancer this morning."

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Spotify implements search using song lyrics on mobile apps
Spotify implements search using song lyrics on mobile apps
Credit: Courtesy of Twitter

Spotify has implemented a new feature for iOS and Android phones. Users can now search for song lyrics and Spotify will automatically show the matching songs. The new feature is called "Lyrics match" and according to Spotify designer Lin Wang has been shipped to the phones already.

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Fans mourn death of legendary Indian singer SP Balasubrahmanyam
Singer SPB performing in Singapore
Singer SPB performing in Singapore Credit: Sundar / Wikimedia Commons (Creative Commons Attribution ShareAlike 4.0)

Famous Indian singer SP Balasubrahmanyam died on Friday after being in intensive care following a Coronavirus infection. He was 74.

Balasubrahmanyam recorded over 40,000 songs in his 50-year-long career, for which he held a Guinness world record. He later become the singing voice for Bollywood superstars.

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K-pop group BTS will be debuting next music video in Fortnite
K-pop group BTS will be debuting next music video in Fortnite
Credit: Screenshot YouTube

Epic Games has announced that the choreopgraphy video for the single "Dynamite" by the K-pop group BTS will be first shown in the online game Fortnite.

On September 25th players will be able to see the video ingfame on Fortnite’s party royale island. In addition, two new ingame emotes that were "choreographed by BTS" will go on sale starting September 23rd.

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Lady Gaga wins five prizes and receives special award at MTV Video Music Awards
Lady Gaga wins five prizes and receives special award at MTV Video Music Awards
Credit: Screenshot MTV Twitter

The US musician Lady Gaga won a total of five awards at the MTV Video Music Awards in her hometown New York on Monday night. For her Artist*of the Year win she received a special Tricon Award to honor her commitment as an activist as well as her artistic work.

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Jack Sherman, former guitarist of the Red Hot Chili Peppers, dies aged 64
Jack Sherman, former guitarist of the Red Hot Chili Peppers, dies aged 64
Credit: ToshiroKitty.WereWolf at en.wikipedia / Wikimedia Commons (Creative Commons Attribution ShareAlike 3.0)

Jack Sherman has died on August 20 at the age of 64. His cause of death has not been disclosed as of yet.

"We of the RHCP family would like to wish Jack Sherman smooth sailing into the worlds beyond, for he has passed. Jack played on our debut album as well as our first tour of the USA. He was a unique dude and we thank him for all times good, bad and in between. Peace on the boogie platform," the band said in a post to Instagram.

Sherman was the guitarist of the Red Hot Chili Peppers from 1983 to 1984 and co-wrote much of the band's second album "Freaky Styley".

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Co-founder of music Lollapalooza suggests concerts and festivals won't happen until 2022
Co-founder of music Lollapalooza suggests concerts and festivals won't happen until 2022
Credit: unsplash.com / Ana Beatriz

According to Marc Geiger, one of the founders of the renowned music and art festival Lollapalooza, has stated in the Bob Lefsetz Podcast that he believes festivals and concerts will return "late 21, more likely 22".

He added that "super-spreader events" such as a music festival would not be a good idea during the Covid-19 pandemic as "the world has a very long, forced timeout".

Lollapalooza has announced to host an online festival as a replacement for the cancelled version this year.

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Neil Young is suing Donald Trump over use of his music at campaign rallies
Neil Young in 2011
Neil Young in 2011 Credit: Ross from hamilton on, Canada / Wikimedia Commons (Creative Commons Attribution 2.0)

Neil Young has filed a claim in US federal court in the Southern District of New York against Donald Trump for copyright infringement over the use of his music at Trump's campaign rallies, which the artist refers to as a "campaign of ignorance and hate". The lawsuit further names two songs specifically: "Rockin' In The Free World" and "Devil's Sidewalk" that both have been used "numerous times at rallies and political events for the entertainment and amusement of those attending those rallies and political events."

"This complaint is not intended to disrespect the rights and opinions of American citizens, who are free to support the candidate of their choosing. However, [Young] in good conscience cannot allow his music to be used as a ‘theme song’ for a divisive, un-American campaign of ignorance and hate," so the complaint.

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Peter Green, blues guitarist and Fleetwood Mac co-founder, dies at age 73
Peter Green with Fleetwood Mac in 1970
Peter Green with Fleetwood Mac in 1970 Credit: W.W.Thaler - H. Weber, Hildesheim / Wikimedia Commons (Creative Commons Attribution ShareAlike 3.0)

Peter Green has died "peacefully in his sleep" at age 73. Green, who was an English blues rock singer-songwriter and guitarist, co-founded Fleetwood Mac with drummer Mick Fleetwood in 1967. He left the band four years later, though Mick Fleetwood told the Associated Press in 2017, that Green deserved the "lion’s share of the credit for the band’s success."

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Valve co-founder Gabe Newell organizes free concert in New Zealand to thank for hospitality during Covid-19 lockdown
Valve co-founder Gabe Newell organizes free concert in New Zealand to thank for hospitality during Covid-19 lockdown
Credit: Dota 2 The International (Creative Commons Attribution 2.0)

The co-founder and president of Vale, having developed Counter-Strike, Half-Life. Dota 2, Portal and the gaming client and platform Steam, decided to stay in New Zealand when Covid-19 started spreading. He now announced on the television channel TVNZ 1 that he is organizing a free event together with his partner Teagan Klein and the Aston Martin racecar driver Alex Riberas from Spain to thank the people from New Zealand for their generosity and kindness.

The event will host live music from multiple bands and have workshops, food trucks, art installations and other activities.

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Taylor Swift announces new surprise album "Folklore"
Screenshot of @taylorswift's album release announcement
Screenshot of @taylorswift's album release announcement Credit: @taylorswift via Instagram

Taylor Swift has announced the surprise debut of her 8th studio album called "Folklore" which will be released tonight at midnight, featuring collaborations with Bon Iver, Aaron Dessner and William Bowery.

"Most of the things I had planned this summer didn’t end up happening, but there is something I hadn’t planned on that DID happen. And that thing is my 8th studio album, folklore. Surprise 🤗Tonight at midnight I’ll be releasing my entire brand new album of songs I’ve poured all of my whims, dreams, fears, and musings into," so Swift in a post on Instagram.

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Rapper Logic retires from music signs streaming deal with Twitch
Logic, MTV Video Music Awards 2018
Logic, MTV Video Music Awards 2018 Credit: MTV (Creative Commons Attribution ShareAlike 3.0)

After being an active streamer on Twitch since latest 2016, rapper Logic has announced that he is retiring from music stating that "it came to a point where I felt forced, like I had to do certain things". He has now announced that he has signed a deal to stream a set amount of hours exclusively on Twitch earning seven figures.

While his passion for video games is known he also states that "I’m a musician, I’ll always be one. I’m still gonna, like, rap on songs that probably won’t come out".

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Nigeria: Musician Mr Eazi raises $20 million for African music creatives
Mr Eazi
Mr Eazi Credit: YouTube (Reproduction)

Nigerian singer and entrepreneur Mr Eazi raised $20 million with his Africa Music Fund. The musician wants to offer funding and financial support for African music creatives. One of his main investors is Pan-African seed fund 88mph.

Mr Eazi said: "Artists cannot go to banks to get money for their music because financial institutions don't understand how to secure intellectual property. They get it for physical properties but not for music. So, because not a lot of people understand the music business, there is no finance product for musicians."

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Neil Young publishes open letter to Donald Trump
Neil Young performing with Paul McCartney on October 8, 2016
Neil Young performing with Paul McCartney on October 8, 2016 Credit: Raph_PH / Wikimedia Commons (Creative Commons Attribution 2.0)

Neil Young, who previously voiced his aversion over the president's usage of his music, has published an open letter to Donald Trump on the official Neil Young Archives website.

Young writes: "Dear Mr. President: Although I have repeatedly asked you to please not use my music because it indicates that I support your agenda, you have always played my songs anyway at your gatherings, with no regard for my rights, even calling me names on twitter. I did notice that you played my music at your latest rally in Dakota despite my previous requests."

Young, who has condemned Trump and his actions on multiple occasions, further states that he wouldn't sue Trump as he was in charge of the Covid-19 response and wouldn't want to distract him from "protecting and saving American lives". He ends the letter with the suggestion that Trump might listen to his song "Looking For a Leader 2020," as Young believes "it would be an interesting addition to your next rally."

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Neil Young tweets "This is NOT ok with me" regarding Trump using his songs
Neil Young tweets "This is NOT ok with me" regarding Trump using his songs
Credit: Raph_PH / CC BY (Creative Commons Attribution 2.0)

A tweet by @NeilYoungNYA retweeted a video of footage of Trump's visit to Mount Rushmore, adding "This is NOT ok with me." He later added a second Tweet, stating "I stand in solidarity with the Lakota Sioux & this is NOT ok with me." Trump played three Neil Young songs during his speech at the Mount Rushmore National Memorial.

"Donald Trump was not authorised to use ‘Rockin’ In The Free World’ in his presidential candidacy announcement," so an official statement from Neil Young's management.

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New York Broadway to remain closed until end of 2020
Broadway theatre, New York City
Broadway theatre, New York City Credit: unsplash.com/Sudan Ouyang

The Broadway in New York City will remain closed for the remainder of the year and are not expecting to open their doors until late Winter or early Spring 2021. The Broadway League, the organisation representing theatres, issued a statement that ticket holders would get a refund or could exchange their tickets for a future date.

All Broadway theatres have been closed since March 12, calling the closure "the only intermission."

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Bob Dylan becomes the first artist ever to have Top 40 Album in every decade since the 60s
Bob Dylan at the "In Performance At The White House: A Celebration Of Music From The Civil Rights Movement" concert in the White House, Feb 2010
Bob Dylan at the "In Performance At The White House: A Celebration Of Music From The Civil Rights Movement" concert in the White House, Feb 2010 Credit: The White House from Washington, DC / Public domain

Bob Dylan's newest album "Rough and Rowdy Ways" debuted at Number 2 in the Billboard 200 charts. With his latest album hitting the Top 10 of the charts, Dylan becomes the first artist ever to have an album in the Top 40 Billboard 200 charts in every decade since the 1960s.

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The Rolling Stones threaten Trump with legal action for unauthorised use of their music
The Rolling Stones live in concert in Paris, 2017
The Rolling Stones live in concert in Paris, 2017 Credit: Raph_PH / CC BY (Creative Commons Attribution 2.0)

The Rolling Stones have released a statement on Saturday, that the band are taking "further steps to exclude him using their songs at any of his future political campaigning". The Trump campaign previously used the Stones' song "You Can't Always Get What You Want" during their 2016 campaign, and again at last week's Tulsa Rally despite "cease & desist directives to Donald Trump in the past."

The band said they were working with the giant performing rights organization BMI and have notified the Trump campaign " that the unauthorized use of their songs will constitute a breach of its licensing agreement." According to BMI, there hasn't been a response from the Trump campaign yet.

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Kurt Cobain's MTV Unplugged guitar sold in auction for 6 million dollars
Kurt Cobain's MTV Unplugged guitar sold in auction for 6 million dollars
Credit: Julien's Auctions

The guitar from the Nirvana frontman, an acoustic-electric Martin D-18E, was originally produced in 1959. The value of 6,010,000 dollars sets a new worldwide record for a guitar sale.

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Forces' Sweetheart Dame Vera Lynn dies at age 103
Vera Lynn in 1972
Vera Lynn in 1972 Credit: Punt / Anefo / CC0 (Creative Commons CC0 Waiver)

Dame Vera Lynn, whose live performances of her hit songs including We'll Meet Again and The White Cliffs of Dover entertained front-line troops during the Second World War, has died at age 103.

Dame Vera, affectionately known as a Forces' Sweetheart, became the oldest artist to top the UK album chart in 2020 when We'll Meet Again was referenced by the Queen during a speech to the British public who were struggling with being separated from friends and loved ones during the lockdown imposed as a response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Leading the tributes, Prime Minister Boris Johnson said that Dame Vera's "charm and magical voice entranced and uplifted our country in some of our darkest hours". Opposition leader Sir Keir Starmer added that "her songs still speak to the nation in 2020 as they did in 1940".

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Rapper Scarface says that he still suffers from Covid-19 consequences three months after infection
Scarface
Scarface Credit: Jeremy Perez Photos. (Creative Commons Attribution 2.0)

The rapper Scarface has given an interview with Fox 5 DC in which he stated that he still suffers from consequences of his Covid-19 infection in March.

According to him his kidney functions haven't gotten back, he hasn't gotten his "full taste back and sense of smell yet" as well as general strength stating that he is "still a little weak". He also indicated that his lungs fully recovered and that he is "glad to be alive".

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Coachella Festival has been cancelled due to Covid-19 pandemic
Coachella Logo
Coachella Logo Credit: Coachella

According to Riverside County officials, the Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival and Stagecoach Country Music Festival have been cancelled. On June 10 Dr Cameron Kaiser the Riverside County Public Health Officer has signed an order to cancel the popular festivals over concerns of a second Covid-19 wave. This comes after the festivals had been moved to October after a similar order in March. The festivals were planned to sell 250,000 and 85,000 tickets respectively.

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Fans of K-Pop band BTS match $1 million donation to Black Lives Matter
Fans at the BTS world tour concert 'Love Yourself' in Los Angeles
Fans at the BTS world tour concert 'Love Yourself' in Los Angeles Credit: LG (Creative Commons Attribution 2.0)

In just 24 hours the fans of the K-Pop band BTS which call themselves "BTS ARMY" have matched the $1 million donation of the band for the Black Lives Matter cause. Under the hashtag #MatchAMillion the fans had tweeted and called for matching donations, reaching over 490,000 tweets. The matching donation of over $1 million will be split between several organizations that support Black Lives Matter and the fight against racism.

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K-Pop band BTS donates one million dollar to Black Lives Matter
BTS during the Love Yourself concert in Nagoya, 13 January 2019
BTS during the Love Yourself concert in Nagoya, 13 January 2019 Credit: I DARE U JK / CC BY (Creative Commons Attribution 3.0)

South Korean K-Pop band BTS together with the band's management company Big Hit Entertainment has donated one million dollar to Black Lives Matter. Neither the band nor Big Hit Entertainment didn't announce the donation but confirmed it after Kailee Scales, managing director of Black Lives Matter, told Variety that they were "moved by the generosity of BTS and allies all over the world who stand in solidarity in the fight for Black lives".

BTS shared a message on Twitter earlier this week, stating "We stand against racial discrimination. We condemn violence. You, I and we all have the right to be respected. We will stand together. #BlackLivesMatter".

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Kanye West announces that he'll pay the college tuition for George Floyd's daugther

A representative for Kanye West has announced that the artist has set up a 529 education plan to fully cover college tuition for Gianna Floy, the daughter of George Floyd who was murdered by the police. His death and the deaths of Ahmaud Arbery and Breonna Taylor have sparked protests against racism and police brutality across the United States and other countries. West has also donated $2 million to support the families of the three killed people.

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Music industry announces Blackout Tuesday in support of protests in the US
Foo Fighters Tweet about #blackouttuesday
Foo Fighters Tweet about #blackouttuesday Credit: Twitter (Reproduction)

Famous musicians like the Foo Fighters, Mick Jagger, Peter Gabriel and Billy Bragg have announced that they will partake in a "Blackout Tuesday" protest under the hashtag "#TheShowMustBePaused" in order to support the ongoing protests against racism and police brutality in the United States. Musician Billy Bragg urged people on his Twitter to "Take a day out to reflect on what actions we need to collectively take to support the Black community".

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Bolivian orchestra finally going home after months in Germany
Orquesta Experimental de Instrumentos Nativos
Orquesta Experimental de Instrumentos Nativos Credit: OEIN (Reproduction)

Musicians of the Orquesta Experimental de Instrumentos Nativos plan to go back to Bolivia after being stranded for about 80 days in the Rheinsberg Palace, a castle in Germany.

The orchestra had arrived in Germany on March 10 to perform at a music festival, but their three planned performances were cancelled in the days that followed, and as Bolivia's government announced it would close its borders, the orchestra scrambled to get home but failed.

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Spotify launches group feature to synchronize music with friends
Spotfy app
Spotfy app Credit: Heidi Fin

The music and podcast streaming service Spotify has launched a new feature called "group session" that enables users to scan a host tag provided by the app and then synchronize what is played in real-time. The feature is currently in beta and users share the basic controls like playing, pausing, skipping and queuing.

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Charity rejects $200,000 donation from rapper 6ix9ine

The rapper 6ix9ine had announced through an Instagram post, that he intends on donating $200,000 to the campaign No Kid Hungry which combats hunger and poverty issues in the United States. But the non-profit organization Share Our Strength, which runs the campaign, has publically declined the donation because of their policy to not accept "funding from donors whose activities do not align with our mission and values". He was previously convicted for multiple crimes, some of which involved minors.