.

Digest: Grammys to Pay Tribute to Aretha; The Strokes Give Away New Song

Also: Rihanna, Lenny Kravitz to perform at NBA All-Star Game; new Steve Miller Band LP

February 9, 2011 10:55 AM ET
Aretha Franklin performing in 1970.
Aretha Franklin performing in 1970.
Jan Persson/Redferns

Grammy Awards Will Include Aretha Franklin Tribute
Christina Aguilera, Jennifer Hudson, Yoland Adams, Martina McBride and Florence and the Machine's Florence Welch will take part in a tribute to Aretha Franklin at the Grammy Awards on Sunday. Franklin is recovering from surgery for an undisclosed ailment. [Grammy.com]

The Strokes Release Free Single
The Strokes will be giving away an MP3 of their new single "Under Cover of Darkness" on their website today. The free download will only be available for 48 hours. [NME]

Rihanna and Lenny Kravitz to Perform at NBA All-Star Game
Rihanna has been announced as the half-time show performer at the NBA All-Star Game on February 20th in Los Angeles. Lenny Kravitz will also be on hand to perform his new single "Come On Get It" during the player introductions. [Billboard]

Steve Miller Band Announces New Album
The Steve Miller Band is set to release their new album Let Your Hair Down on April 19th. The album will include the last recorded performances of Miller's harmonica player Norton Buffalo. The band will support the record with tour dates in February and April, including a run of gigs with special guest Gregg Allman. [Steve Miller Band]

Bad Religion and Rise Against Unite For New Tour
Punk rockers Bad Religion and Rise Against are teaming up for a 29-date North American tour. The trek will kick off at the The Joint in Las Vegas on April 5th and wrap up at Downsview Park in Toronto on July 9th. [Brooklyn Vegan]

MORE: Dashboard Confessional Extend 10th Anniversary Tour; Kinks to Release Expanded Reissues

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Song Stories

“San Francisco Mabel Joy”

Mickey Newbury | 1969

A country-folk song of epic proportions, "San Francisco Mabel Joy" tells the tale of a poor Georgia farmboy who wound up in prison after a move to the Bay Area found love turning into tragedy. First released by Mickey Newbury in 1969, it might be more familiar through covers by Waylon Jennings, Joan Baez and Kenny Rogers. "It was a five-minute song written in a two-minute world," Newbury said. "I was told it would never be cut by any artist ... I was told you could not use the term 'redneck' in a song and get it recorded."

More Song Stories entries »
 
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