The Current: Music News

The Current Music News

Every weekday, join hosts Jay Gabler and Jade as they chat about how the Coronavirus is impacting the music industry. While they put their best social distancing practices to use, they’ll discuss the latest headlines, how the venues are faring, and where you can find the best virtual concerts of the day. The Current Music News is an essential daily watch for fans of all genres of music to stay connected to the music and each other. Follow us on Facebook or Subscribe to our YouTube channel to get the latest episodes.

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Music News: Dave Grohl on why concerts will return: 'We need each other'


A crowd cheers for Foo Fighters at Rock in Rio, 2019.

It's going to take a lot for live music to come back amidst a pandemic, but in a passionate essay Dave Grohl says that eventually, it must. Also today: Doja Cat tops the Hot 100 and brings Nicki Minaj along for her first chart-topper; how older musicians are coping; and Billy Joel calls on New York to rise up together.

Music News: Soul star Betty Wright dies at 66


Betty Wright performs in Florida, 2017.

Soul star Betty Wright has died at 66, and Uptown Records founder Andre Harrell has passed at 59. Also, a rare tribute from Bob Dylan and an innovative recording studio on wheels. Plus, Jill Scott and Erykah Badu pit their catalogs against each other.

Music News: Bob Dylan announces new album 'Rough and Rowdy Ways'


Bob Dylan's album 'Rough and Rowdy Ways.'

Bob Dylan has announced his first new album of original songs in eight years. Also today: deepfake music is getting dangerously on point, Soundgarden tussle with Vicky Cornell, Live Nation says fans are holding on to their tickets, and Weezer play the 'Simpsons' theme.

Music News: 'My Boy Lollipop' singer Millie Small dies at 73


Millie Small, age 16, in 1964.

Millie Small, the Jamaican singer who had an early ska hit with 'My Boy Lollipop,' has died after suffering a stroke. Also today: the Pitchfork Music Festival calls off this year's event; Guns N' Roses are publishing a children's book; Peloton pays millions for copyright infringement; and a load of vintage MTV goes up online.

Music News: Beat the final boss for an encore? Get ready for more concerts in video games


Fans battle a malevolent demon during a virtual Kill the Noise show.

After the wild success of Travis Scott's Fortnite concert, get ready for more stars to play virtual shows in multi-player video games. Meanwhile, Arkansas is preparing to host a socially-distanced concert IRL, while fans staying in quarantine will be able to watch documentaries about Wilco and the Beastie Boys. Plus, Mick Jagger shows off his shelter-in-place recreation for charity.

Music News: Stranglers keyboardist Dave Greenfield dies of COVID-19


Dave Greenfield (far right) with the Stranglers in 1977.

Dave Greenfield, keyboardist in the Stranglers, has died of coronavirus at age 71. Also, catalog albums by artists like Fleetwood Mac and Mariah Carey are bumping back up the chart; a new baby for Grimes; a Prince guitar and other rock memorabilia go up for auction; and a little kid in pajamas may have written the song of the summer.

Music News: Missouri allows concerts to resume, but venues remain closed


The Starlight Theatre in Kansas City, Mo.

There's tension in Missouri as the governor says concerts may resume, while venues opt to remain closed. Also, disco drummer Hamilton Bohannon has died at 78; Great Scott has closed in Boston; Florence Welch is playing a virtual Met Gala party as big names book a telethon to support NYC; and Germany's trying drive-in raves.

Music News: Afrobeat drummer Tony Allen dies at 79


Tony Allen plays Glastonbury in 2010.

Tony Allen, a drummer who helped define the sound of Afrobeat, has died of an aneurysm at age 79. Also: the MusiCares COVID-19 relief fund has dried up, Sirius XM debuts a Prince channel, and 'Weird Al' Yankovic plays Ted Nugent on 'Reno 911.'

Music News: Nervous fans in 'no rush' to return to concert venues


The Varsity Theater in Minneapolis.

Music fans are eager to return to concert venues - but they're also understandably worried about COVID-19, and a new survey indicates most plan to wait a while to return to crowded venues. Also: a tide of happy songs is coming, Record Store Day's splitting into three 'drop' days, St. Vincent's hosting a shower-stall podcast, and Billie Joe Armstrong covers 'I Think We're Alone Now' with his kids.