Music in the news

Singled out

British label Mercury Records, which is home to such prestigious artists as U2, Arcade Fire and Elton John, has announced that it will be opting to go all digital. Barring “exceptional circumstances,” the label will no longer be releasing singles on vinyl or CD, according to a report from the Press Association. Such exceptional circumstances would include charity releases and a minor contribution that it will be making for the internationally celebrated Record Store Day, taking place on April 16. The decision is not surprising, as physical sales now make up around one per cent of all singles sales, with just under 3,000 CD and vinyl purchases in the U.K. top 50 singles chart.

Hagar jumps off the deep end

Former Van Halen vocalist Sammy Hagar recently admitted to some things that may make him, in his own words, “sound like a crazy person.” Among said things? Being abducted by aliens. In an interview with, the 63-year-old rocker discussed his new book, Red: My Uncensored Life in Rock. During the interview, he reveals that a passage in which he recounts a dream involving contact with extraterrestrials in California is, according to him, based on reality. He said that the aliens “plugged” into him. “It was a download situation… or, they uploaded something from my brain, like an experiment.” If you’d like to read the rest of the interview, you can check it out at

Mental Manager Music

Former Velvet Underground frontman Lou Reed’s manager Tommy Sarig was arrested last week on suspicion of aggravated harassment. The news comes just after New York police confirmed they had been looking into allegations that he had threatened a consultant. Sarig was detained after Adrian Smith, an employment consultant hired to find an assistant for Reed, filed an official complaint. Smith claims that Sarig threatened him when he tried to collect the $11,500 that he was owed. Reed’s manager could face up to a year in prison if he is found guilty.

What’s black and white and Radiohead all over?

To celebrate the physical release of their latest album, The King of Limbs, Radiohead will be giving away copies of their new newspaper for free all around the world. The paper now has its own dedicated website, where fans can find the distributor nearest to them. From the website: “Radiohead have produced a newspaper which will be given away, free, gratis, without cost to the consumer by accredited vendors from a multitude of locations WORLDWIDE! […] Our dedicated teams of newspaper delivery people will be handing out copies of THE UNIVERSAL SIGH to anyone who wants one, until we run out!” Montreal’s drop point will be outside the HMV store at Peel and Ste-Catherine Sts. The Canadian release date for The King of Limbs is March 29.

Jack Bauer’s kind of music

“She Will Be Loved” hitmakers Maroon 5 recently put themselves to the test by writing a new song in 24 hours with some help from their fans. The experiment, a Coca-Cola-funded music project titled ‘Inspired By You,’ promised that the “lyrics, riffs and rhythms for the new single will be inspired by you, the fan.” Secluding themselves away in a London studio, the band was given fans’ tweeted suggestions live via a giant virtual wall projected into the studio. The newly minted single will be available for free download from Coke’s website on April 1, with the soft drink giant pledging to make a donation to RAIN, a charity that supplies fresh water to Africans in need, after the first 100,000 downloads.


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