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ENTERTAINMENT
March 14, 2014 | By Randall Roberts, Los Angeles Times Pop Music Critic
Concert season kickoff in Los Angeles this year boasts a few rare sightings, the most notable of which is New York singer and pianist Billy Joel, who arrives for the first concert of his classics here in years. Joel's been doing these sorts of shows as part of a monthly residency at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, so by the time he arrives at the Hollywood Bowl May 17 for the first of three nights the rust should be mostly knocked from his joints. Another curio, a French chanteuse and former first lady of France, Carla Bruni, will arrive in Los Angeles in the capacity for which she first gained renown: as a vocalist updating the classic French pop sound (that and as a supermodel)
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ENTERTAINMENT
March 14, 2014 | By James Rainey
At just 21, a kid from the San Fernando Valley named Jim Berk began work as a music teacher at Carson High School. Within a couple of years, the teacher, not much older than some of his students, had turned a woebegone marching band into one of the best in Southern California. Then Berk moved to struggling Hamilton High School to launch a music magnet program. It gained national acclaim and so many new students that officials reversed their threat to close the Westside campus. "The Wunderkind of education" the Times dubbed him in 1992.
ENTERTAINMENT
March 14, 2014 | By August Brown
“If I forgot anybody, sorry, I just smoked before I came out here,” Lil Wayne said to guffaws from the overflowing room at the Austin Convention Center during the 2014 South by Southwest festival. “Shoutout to Willie Nelson.” Game recognizes game.  Wayne was tasked with rattling off all the artists currently on his label Young Money, and it sounded like he got them all. The list was an implicit torch-passing: Wayne has announced that his next album “Tha Carter 5” might be his last.
ENTERTAINMENT
March 13, 2014 | By Charles McNulty, Los Angeles Times Theater Critic
A show about the late Weimar era vocal troupe the Comedian Harmonists bearing the title "Harmony" had better have memorable singing, and on that score this musical by Barry Manilow and his writing partner Bruce Sussman doesn't disappoint. In solos, duets and ensemble numbers especially, the voices soar on lilting melodies that strive to conjure the glory days of the American musical, that period bookended between Rodgers & Hammerstein and Kander & Ebb. The show's numbers may not evoke those easy-listening Manilow hits of the 1970s, but they have an ingratiating beauty that serves to remind that the man who made famous the Bruce Johnston lyric "I am music.
NATIONAL
March 13, 2014 | By August Brown and Matt Pearce
AUSTIN, Texas - Rashad Charjuan Owens was a music producer with hopes of stardom. He lived in Killeen, Texas, about 70 miles from this city's famed South by Southwest Conference, the annual festival where the worlds of music, film and technology blur. Police said an officer on drunk-driving patrol tried to stop a gray sedan about 12:30 a.m. Thursday. But the car took off, weaving, then accelerating the wrong way on a one-way street. It went through police barricades that were set up on Red River Street to protect pedestrians, then dashed through the entertainment district, where the bands X and TEEN had just wrapped up. Rapper Tyler the Creator was scheduled to perform at 1 a.m. During the chaotic flight under pursuit by the police, the vehicle - which authorities said may have been stolen - hit a moped, a taxi and a bicyclist, then went onto a sidewalk and hit a van, police said.
ENTERTAINMENT
March 13, 2014 | By Randy Lewis
Wednesday's incident at the South by Southwest Music Conference in Austin, Texas,  in which two people were killed and nearly two dozen others injured by a suspected drunk driver who police say drove into a crowd outside a club while trying to evade officers, was just the latest tragedy to hit during a heavily populated music event. Here are a dozen others, from Pukkelpop to Altamont. 2012: Radiohead, Toronto: A drum technician was killed when a stage roof collapsed in fair weather before the English band was scheduled to perform.
ENTERTAINMENT
March 12, 2014 | By Mikael Wood
AUSTIN, Texas -- A great many of the panel discussions at this year's South by Southwest conference offer variations on a question that goes right to the heart of our digital age: How are musicians supposed to get paid when music is so readily had for free? On Wednesday afternoon, experts including Mike Herring, CFO of the Internet streaming service Pandora, examined the matter in a conversation titled "Will Artists Make Money on Big Music Platforms?" The verdict? It's unclear.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
March 12, 2014
Wendy Hughes Australian actress dies at 61 Wendy Hughes, 61, an Australian actress best known to American audiences for her performance in the 1979 film "My Brilliant Career," died of cancer Saturday in Sydney, her family said. Hughes began her rise to stardom during a renaissance in the Australian film industry in the 1970s and '80s, beginning with "My Brilliant Career," in which she played Aunt Helen to the headstrong heroine portrayed by Judy Davis. The film swept the Australian Film Institute awards and in the U.S. was nominated for an Oscar and a Golden Globe.
ENTERTAINMENT
March 12, 2014 | By David Horsey
Female country singers are complaining that their music is being pushed off the airwaves by a new crew of young, male, “bro-country” musicians singing interchangeable songs about dirt roads, pickup trucks, girls in tiny cutoff jeans and beer, lots of beer. Carrie Underwood is leading the charge, telling Billboard magazine that the country music business seems to have very limited room for new female musicians, but that it's different for the guys. “There seem to be so many male singers out there who can be viewed as similar, and there seems to be plenty of room for all of them,” Underwood said.
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