U2 Tour Set to Begin March 28 in San Diego
Irish rock band U2 is set to explode on the road at the end of March, just in time for a beleaguered concert industry desperate for a major buzz-generating tour. The band will begin its worldwide Vertigo tour March 28 at the San Diego Sports Arena, Billboard has learned. Details will be provided in a Jan. 24 announcement. Tennessee rock band Kings of Leon will open the first leg. Conservative estimates put the Vertigo tour's gross potential at $225 million-$250 million from as many as 110 shows. U2's Elevation tour in 2001 grossed $143 million from 113 shows worldwide, playing to more than 2.1 million fans. The first U.S. leg will wrap in Boston in late May. The tour, in support of its latest release, "How to Dismantle an Atomic Bomb," is routed to accommodate multiple shows in many markets. History suggests quick sellouts. In 2001, U2 rang up six sellouts at Chicago's United Center that grossed a combined $9.6 million. The band also notched four sellouts in 2001 at Boston's FleetCenter ($5.6 million) and at Earls Court in London ($4.5 million). Two sellouts at Dublin's Slane Castle drew 157,418 and took in $6.7 million. Following two months of U.S. shows, the Vertigo tour will hit some 30 European stadiums, beginning June 10 in Brussels. The band will stay in Europe through mid-August, then return to North America for another run of 30 arena dates. Ticket prices will average $90, with $49.50 at the low end and $165 at the high end. Last time out, the range was $45-$135. As on the Elevation tour, the arena floor will be general admission for about 1,700 seats, depending on the building. And, again like Elevation, the tour will feature unique production elements. "This tour will be not unlike the last production, in that the lowest- priced tickets will be on the floor," said U2 manager Paul McGuinness. "The best seats are the cheapest, and we want people to get excited. Read Full Article
Jesse McCartney's Beautiful Soul Goes Gold
Hollywood Recording artist Jesse McCartney has officially reached gold sales status today after merely 16 weeks. Jesse's single and title track "Beautiful Soul" is currently the #5 most played song in the country according to the Top 40 BDS radio chart this week, with an audience of over 45 million! Jesse's album is #34 on Billboard's Top 200 chart this week as well, up from #45 last week. The momentum for an even bigger week is building with A/C stations quickly adding "Beautiful Soul" and multiple TV appearances this week including "Breakout Stars Week" on MTV's "TRL" and ABC's "The View." Jesse McCartney is currently shooting episodes for the second season of The WB's hit show "Summerland," which will premiere Monday, February 28 (9:00 - 10:00 p.m. ET). Jesse plays Bradin Westerly, a teen overcoming his grief over the loss of his parents as he builds a new life in Southern California and helps his aunt Ava (Lori Loughlin) care for his siblings. About to turn 18 this spring, Jesse is already an accomplished actor, having garnered two Emmy nominations for his portrayal of Adam Chandler, Jr. on "All My Children." Jesse began performing at age seven in the musical "Oliver," and performed on Broadway in the "King & I" by age ten, and opposite Roger Daltrey in "A Christmas Carol." Up next, Jesse McCartney will be announcing his spring and summer tour plans. Read Full Article
Avril Lavigne Helps Kelly Clarkson Become A Pop 'Princess'
Soundtrack song 'Breakaway' penned by Canadian songwriter. Avril Lavigne has had harsh words for pop singers in the past, but her words for Kelly Clarkson could not have been better suited. Along with producer Matthew Gerrard, Lavigne wrote Clarkson's new single, "Breakaway," which "fits my lifE perfectly,'' the original ''American Idol'' told. The song is so autobiographical that for the video Kelly decided to act out most of the lyrics, with the help of an actress portraying a younger version of herself. Directed by Dave Meyers (Missy Elliott, Britney Spears), the video begins with the 8-year-old version of Clarkson singing from the back seat of a car as she watches a Texas thunderstorm out the window. "Grew up in a small town/ And when the rain would fall down/ I just stared out my window," Clarkson sings. The video then flashes to present-day Kelly arriving on the red carpet for the premiere of "The Princess Diaries 2: Royal Engagement," the movie that features the song. "Since it's a movie tie-in, the idea stems from trying to figure out a new way of addressing the film-footage requirement they put on you, so we came up with the idea of her attending the premiere, which is very much something she will do in real life," Meyers said. "And 'Princess Diaries' sort of parallels the humble kid who stumbles across the riches." Clarkson's the star of the premiere, but with the flash of a camera bulb, the video switches back again, showing the little girl praying by her bedside as she sing the chorus: "I'll spread my wings and I'll learn how to fly/ I'll do what it takes 'til I touch the sky/ ... I'll take a risk/ Take a chance/ Make a change/ And break away." "We tied [the premiere] in with how she grew up as a kid, her first flight where she's afraid of turbulence, just some of the human qualities behind a pop star," Meyers explained. "It's so rare you get to see who these people are. In Kelly's case, I felt the song was so telling and emotional that it would be a good opportunity." Read Full Article
What's Up With The Outkast Movie?
The Director Spills It All. Oh, it'll come out, all right. But it won't be called 'My Life in Idlewild.'
For all the talk about the Outkast movie in recent years, few details have actually surfaced. But now that the HBO-produced movie starring Andre 3000 and Big Boi is finished shooting, we went after its director, Bryan Barber, the group's longtime go-to video director, to fill us in. Yes, it's really coming out. "Probably mid-June," Barber said. "The rumor is that it'll hit theaters first. I'm not supposed to spread the rumor, but I am." No, it's not really called "My Life in Idlewild." "I was kidding around when I said that title, because where it takes place is called Idlewild," Barber said. "I didn't think anyone would like it. Originally it was called 'Speakerboxxx' and I might still call it that. 'Speakerboxxx' is what the film is. It's actually the first part to another film I wrote, 'The Love Below,' which I wrote for Andre." However, it's not really based on Big Boi's album. "I had this idea in my mind for two years and wrote it loosely based on my life and wrote their parts loosely based on some of our experiences together as well," Barber said. "Basically, Dre and Big Boi have coinciding stories. Big Boi's in a love triangle and has to choose between his dream of being a businessman and his family. And Dre's is more of a tragic love story. He falls in love with someone from out of town, which motivates him to follow his dream." Read Full Article