For The Record: Quick News On The Boston Red Sox, Outkast, Lil Scrappy, Christina Aguilera, Limp Bizkit & More

Boston Red Sox fans at Fenway Park for game 1 of the World Series — as well as the 20 million people expected to watch the game on TV Saturday night — will get to hear the “The Star-Spangled Banner” sung by cave-mouthed Beantowner Steven Tyler. “It’s been an amazing year for the Sox,” the Aerosmith frontman said in a statement, “and I can’t wait to show the world how we do it in Boston.” … Meanwhile, several members of the Red Sox team, fresh from their ALCS win against archrivals the New York Yankees, joined Godsmack onstage at a private party near Fenway Park Thursday to celebrate. Ball players Johnny Damon, Mark Bellhorn, Kevin Millar, Dave McCarty and others helped sing the finale “I Stand Alone.” “For us, it’s all about Boston right now,” frontman Sully Erna said in a statement, “and having them perform with us was just simply amazing.” …

Outkast‘s Big Boi is trying to single-handedly save the struggling football program at Middle Tennessee State University. The MTSU Blue Raiders are just 2-4 this season, and attendance is at an all-time low. According to NCAA rules, in order for a football program to remain in the top I-A division, it must average 15,000 fans a game. MTSU has averaged only about 14,000 for their first two home games. So the college scheduled a free Big Boi concert immediately following this weekend’s home game against Idaho. The only catch — students must first sit through the entire game. … Lil Scrappy was questioned Thursday by police in Carrollton, Georgia, about a shooting in a local club. Two people were wounded after an altercation broke out at Club 31 in Carrollton. According to reports, an argument led to a fight between people onstage and shots were fired. The “No Problem” rapper was questioned and released. …

Gwen Stefani has finally narrowed down which of her many collaborations made the cut for her forthcoming solo album, Love, Angel, Music, Baby, due November 23. She’s teamed up once again with Eve on a track produced by Dr. Dre called “Rich Girl.” Also on the album are songs with the Neptunes, Tony Kanal, Andre 3000, Wendy and Lisa, and Peter Hook and Bernard Sumner of New Order. … Christina Aguilera has ventured into the fashion world before — inspiring Versace and modeling D-Squared2 in Milan — but now she’s going full throttle and designing her own line. She’ll be launching a children’s and ‘tween apparel line in Europe now that she’s signed an agreement with British-based Basic Box Ltd. The line will include clothes as well as accessories and is expected to launch in the spring. …

The City of Angels is apparently “too comfortable” for Limp Bizkit. The band is packing its bags and heading “up north” to an undisclosed studio to begin recording its fifth album, according to a post on limpbizkit.com. The as-yet-untitled LP will feature the return of guitarist Wes Borland, who left the band prior to last year’s Results May Vary, and producer Ross Robinson, who worked on 1997’s Three Dollar Bill, Y’all. As for Borland’s long-awaited solo album, it’s 75 percent done, the guitarist wrote on his own Web site, and he hopes to resume work on it after the Limp album is done, probably in mid-January. … Bono began his appearance at the World Affairs Council of Oregon — where he was scheduled to talk about the AIDS crisis in Africa — on a lighthearted note. The singer announced that a briefcase full of notes and lyrics for U2‘s album October, which was stolen from him 23 years ago when the band played in a Portland club, was returned. According to The Oregonian, Bono called the returned notes “an act of grace.” Turns out the missing papers — stolen by a group of women hanging out with the band backstage at the club — were in the attic of a rental house in Tacoma, Washington. U2 fan Cindy Harris found the notes in 1981 but didn’t know how to contact the band to return them. In 2003, she and a friend managed to track down U2’s management to return the briefcase. …

Britney Spears got an extension to reply to a lawsuit that had been due Friday (October 22). A Salt Lake City judge had ordered the singer to respond to the complaint filed by Zoller Laboratories (the maker of Zantrex-3, which Spears was photographed spilling in an airport a year ago), but all parties agreed on Thursday that she could have more time to respond to the pre-emptive lawsuit filed by the drug maker, which claims she’s threatened to sue them for using her image without permission. Spears now has until November 24 to reply. … Ween have been forced to cancel their upcoming Midwest tour due to “a problem within the band that requires an immediate intervention for the health, welfare and safety of one of its members.” Posting on the Ween Web site, band manager Greg Frey wrote that “for this member, years of touring have taken their toll … This is very sad, but if something is NOT done now, the consequences could be even more dire than the cancellation of these dates.” No further information was provided, but Frey wrote that all tickets will be refunded. The tour was scheduled to begin October 31 in Boulder, Colorado. …

After a few months’ rest, the Strokes are back to capturing their cool on record. The band has begun recording its third album in New York with producer Gordon Raphael, who worked on the first two. … Camper Van Beethoven have run into a bit of hard luck while on tour north of the border. On Wednesday morning, as the bandmembers slept at Montreal’s Hotel Lord Berri, thieves broke into their van, stealing 11 guitars, some amps and most importantly, multi-instrumentalist Jonathan Segel‘s violin, which, according to a post on the band’s Web site, “has been with Camper for 20 years now, and has great sympathetic value.” There is a $1,000 reward for information which leads to the recovery of the band’s gear. …

New York State Attorney General Eliot Spitzer is on a payola crusade and is going after major labels for influencing which songs get played on the radio, according to a New York Times article in Friday’s edition. Citing sources, the Times claimed the four major labels were served with subpoenas to turn over their contracts with independent radio promotion companies, which pitch new music to stations. … Eddie Vedder has been added to the lineup for Neil Young‘s annual Bridge School Benefit, scheduled for Saturday and Sunday in Mountain View, California. The Pearl Jam singer joins a roster that includes Young, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Paul McCartney, Sonic Youth, Ben Harper, Tony Bennett, Los Lonely Boys and Tegan & Sara. …

The Polyphonic Spree shot scenes this week for an upcoming episode of “Las Vegas.” In the show, airing December 6, Molly Sims‘ character wants to join the 23-member group. … The release date for Jet‘s upcoming DVD has been moved to November 23. Meanwhile, the Australian rockers have added a Halloween show in Chicago, which will be their final U.S. date of the year. The Donnas, who are joining the band at special radio shows in New York and Atlanta on October 29 and 30, respectively, will also open in Chicago. …

Madonna has signed on to voice a character in the animated movie “Arthur,” based on a series of children’s books by French filmmaker Luc Besson, who is directing. Madonna will voice Princess Selenia, a character who travels with 10-year-old Arthur to a mysterious forbidden city. … Vendetta Red‘s second major-label release, Sister of the Red Death, produced by Howard Benson (Hoobastank, P.O.D.), is due in early 2005. The Seattle rockers will preview the new material on a headlining tour beginning October 25 in Houston, as well as on a supporting trek with Chevelle through mid-November. …

10.21.2004

The dirt just got thrown on the Yankees‘ graves and already Damon Dash is tossing his 2004 authentic A-Rod jersey. But he’s got a good reason to: Roc-A-Fella Records has aligned itself with MLB.com and will participate in a celebrity auction for charity. Several artists from the Roc, including Kanye West and N.O.R.E., are donating their very own sports gear for the cause. …

Destiny’s Child, Usher, Ashlee Simpson and Chingy are among the headlining performers for the upcoming Radio Music Awards, airing live from Las Vegas on NBC October 25 at 9 p.m. Also on the bill for the RMA show — to be co-hosted by Carson Daly and Molly Sims — are Ciara, Ryan Cabrera, Alanis Morissette and Janet Jackson, who is being honored with a Radio Legend Award. … Ashlee Simpson and Ciara (via their singles “Pieces of Me” and “Goodies”) also make an appearance on the next and 17th volume of Now That’s What I Call Music! Now 17 also includes tracks by Nelly (“My Place”), Terror Squad featuring Fat Joe (“Lean Back”), the Beastie Boys (“Ch-Check It Out”), Franz Ferdinand (“Take Me Out”), Black Eyed Peas (“Let’s Get It Started”) and others. The LP hits stores November 2 … Simpson, meanwhile, is moving on with her next single, which will be the title track from her debut album, Autobiography. She’ll shoot the video for the song November 1-2. …

The Game finally has a release date for his album — January 18 — but he doesn’t have the title he originally picked. The G-Unit rapper’s N.W.A Volume 1 is now going to be called The Documentary. … The Hip-Hop Summit Action Network (HSAN) will honor the community work of Mary J. Blige, Ludacris and the Ludacris Foundation, Anheuser-Busch Inc. and MTV’s Choose or Lose campaign at its second annual Action Awards benefit dinner. The event, to be held October 28 at the Lighthouse in New York, will raise proceeds for the HSAN. The organization debuted the Action Awards last year, honoring the works of Jay-Z and P. Diddy, among others. …

Sean Paul, Kevin Lyttle and newcomer Rupee are among those featured on the soundtrack to “After the Sunset.” Due October 26, the reggae-inspired soundtrack to the Pierce Brosnan and Salma Hayek film will also feature classic reggae tracks from Shaggy, Dawn Penn and Junior Murvin. Atlantic Records and New Line Cinema will donate 10 percent of the profits generated by the soundtrack to the Caribbean Tourism Organization Relief Fund, established by the Caribbean Tourism Organization to provide monetary support to the victims of hurricanes Frances, Ivan and Jeanne. … Following years of slumping sales mostly blamed on piracy and illegal file-sharing, the music industry is showing signs of improvement. In the first half of 2004, CD shipments increased by more than 10 percent from the same six-month period the year before, the first time that has happened in five years. The industry isn’t exactly celebrating just yet, however — CD shipments are still down by 9.3 percent when compared to 2001. …

One of Kurt Cobain‘s idols, Sonic Youth singer/guitarist Thurston Moore, has written the liner notes for the forthcoming Nirvana box set, With the Lights Out, due November 23. … Moby is working on not one, but two albums. He’s written so many songs that he’s hoping his record label will agree to release both LPs in March. He describes the first CD as being more song-oriented (“Some conventional. Some not. But songs.”) and the second as being more ambient. “Ambient might be a dirty word in some circles, but I love the idea of subtle, melodic, atmospheric music that can exist in the fore or background,” he posted on his Web site, hinting that he might also cover New Order‘s “Temptation.” …

Sixteen-year-old Skye Sweetnam has been tapped to open for pop heartthrob Ryan Cabrera on his three-week tour that begins November 2 in Columbus, Ohio. Sweetnam hits the road in support of her first album, Noise From the Basement, and Cabrera is touting his debut, Take It All Away. … After taking it back to 1985 for their latest single, Bowling for Soup have delved a bit further into pop culture’s archives, recording a remake of the “Gilligan’s Island” theme song for the TBS reality series “The Real Gilligan’s Island.” The song (and the TV show) will premiere on November 30. … A.J. McLean of the Backstreet Boys is planning a line of sunglasses and jewelry to launch next year, according to his mother, Denise. “He is in negotiations now with a couple of people,” she posted on her Web site. …

For the third time, the release date of Judas Priest‘s long-awaited new album has been pushed back, from January 4 to February 1. The as-yet-untitled LP will be the band’s first in 15 years with singer Rob Halford at the helm. … Three months after dropping their greatest-hits set, The Greatest Songs Ever Written (By Us), on November 9, NOFX will start a single-of-the-month club. Details have yet to be finalized, though fans may be given the chance to create artwork for the 7-inch singles. …

Half-British, half-American, all sleazy guitar-and-drums duo the Kills have a new album due in stores in February, but in the meantime, you can catch them on a brief U.S. tour, beginning November 20 in Cambridge, Massachusetts, and ending December 4 in Seattle. … In case you missed it the first time around, the Go-Go’s are reissuing their last record, God Bless the Go-Go’s, originally released in 2001 as their first album of new material since 1984’s Talk Show. God Bless is out November 2. …