<p>The Band Perry</p>

The Band Perry

Credit: AP Photo

HitFix Interview: The Band Perry at Grammy rehearsal on Nicki Minaj and more

The best new artist nominees discuss what made their parents cry

It’s been quite the year for The Band Perry, who are up for Best New Artist on Sunday night at the 54th annual Grammy Awards. Over the last 12 months, the group has scored two No. 1 country hits, and seen the trio’s breakthrough hit, “If I Die Young” sweep last fall’s Country Music Assn. Awards.

The brother/sister act, composed of Kimberly, Reid and Neil Perry, have dreamt of coming to the Grammys their whole lives and now find themselves sitting on the second row Sunday night. “We’re not leaving until we meet Paul McCartney and Bruce Springsteen,” said Kimberly on Friday, right after the band’s rehearsal with Glen Campbell.

“It’s so surreal. We just keep having pinch me moments,” said Perry of performing with Campbell, who is receiving a Lifetime Achievement Award from the Grammys this year. “He’s such a dear soul. He loves his music he loves his guitar.”

Even since being diagnosed with Alzheimer’s Disease earlier this year, Campbell has continued to perform, sometimes with more agility and focus than others, but Perry says  she and her brothers Reid and Neil are prepared for whatever happens on stage. “It’s kind of like if one of use needs to jump in” during a song. They will be joined by Blake Shelton on Sunday.

Though the Perry siblings weren’t born for Campbell’s heyday, their parents were and are huge Campbell fans who raised their kids on his music.  When asked how their parents reacted to seeing their kids play with Campbell, Kimberly said that at the first rehearsal, she didn’t know where her parents had gone. “They were in the hallway, bawling their eyes out. They were watching one of their heroes and their kids play together.” 

The band, who flew right out from rehearsal for Friday and Saturday night shows with Brad Paisley, were unsure of their chances to win Best New Artist. “We don’t have our hopes up yet,” Neil said. “It’s a lot of great artists.”

Plus, having scoped out the seating situation, Kimberly wondered if it was significant that Nicki Minaj’s seat was closer to the stage than hers. The Band Perry is up against Minaj, Skrillex, Bon Iver and J. Cole.  Regardless, she knew she would have a good time. “I’m sitting beside Jay-Z!,” she exclaimed. “We love him.”

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Watch Bruce Springsteen's bleak video for 'We Take Care Of Our Own'

Watch Bruce Springsteen's bleak video for 'We Take Care Of Our Own'

The clip primes the pump for the live shows

In case folks haven’t gotten the message from the lyric video or just from listening to Bruce Springsteen's new song, “We Take Care Of Our Own,” the song’s video, released today, drives the point home.

It’s a stark affair shot in black and white to heighten the feeling of bleakness and isolation.  None of the band E Street Band appears in the clip, instead images of Springsteen playing in an abandoned house and on a roof top are interspersed with shots of everyday folks, walking the streets, seemingly downtrodden, as the lyrics appeal on the screen.

[More after the jump...]

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<p>Clay Aiken in a promotional photo for &quot;The Celebrity Apprentice&quot;.</p>

Clay Aiken in a promotional photo for "The Celebrity Apprentice".

Credit: NBC

Clay Aiken sets release for 'Steadfast' to coincide with 'Celebrity Apprentice'

Set includes tracks from 'Tried and True' and new tunes

Eager to capitalize on Clay Aiken’s upcoming appearance on “Celebrity Apprentice,” Decca will release “Steadfast” from the former “American Idol” contestant on March 29.

“Steadfast” is a rehashing of 2010’s “Tried and True,” a set which featured Aiken interpreting such pop standards as “Can’t Take My Eyes Off Of You,” “Misty,” and “Suspicious Minds.”

In addition to many of those tracks, “Steadfast” includes a new original track, first single “Bring Back My Love,” as well as versions of “Breaking Up Is Hard To Do” and “Who’s Sorry Now.”

Aiken’s stint on “Apprentice” begins Feb. 19, alongside such other “celebrities” as Aubrey O’Day, George Takei, Teresa Guidice, Debbie Gibson and Penn Teller.


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Bruce Springsteen names Clarence Clemons' replacement(s)
Credit: AP Photo/Alex Brandon

Bruce Springsteen names Clarence Clemons' replacement(s)

It turns out it does take an army to replace the Big Man

Three days before Bruce Springsteen & The E Street Band take the stage for the Feb. 12 Grammy Awards, the Boss has announced the expanded line-up for the band, and, most importantly, how they will deal with the loss of saxophonist Clarence Clemons.

It turns out it takes an army to replace (and we use that term loosely) the Big Man. As many fans had suspected, Springsteen will use a full horn section:  trombonist Clark Gayton, trumpeters Curt Ramm and Barry Danielian, and, in a nice touch, sax duties will be handed by Eddie Manion and Clemons’ nephew Jake. As fans know, Gayton, Ramm and Manion have all played with Springsteen in years past.

Singers Cindy Mizelle and Curtis King, both of whom have toured with the band before, will join the rest of the E Street Band: pianist Roy Bittan, guitarist Nils Lofgren, vocalist Patti Scialfa, bassist Garry Tallent, guitarist Steven Van Zandt, drummer Max Weinberg, violin/vocalist Soozie Tyrell and keyboardist Charlie Giordano (who replaced Danny Federici after his 2008 passing).

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'The Voice's' Adam Levine starts 222 Records with 'Glee's' Matthew Morrison
Credit: AP Photo/Chris Pizzello

'The Voice's' Adam Levine starts 222 Records with 'Glee's' Matthew Morrison

First album will be out this Spring

Maroon 5’s Adam Levine has started 222 Records. “The Voice” mentor’s first signing comes from another TV show:  “Glee’s” Matthew Morrison.

“Starting my own label ha been a long-time goal of mine,” Levine told Billboard. “Great things are in store for [Matthew] with this release.” No word on who is distributing 222.

Last Spring, Morrison released an album on Mercury that included a duet with Elton John. The new set will come out in this Spring. Morrison will next be seen in “What To Expect When You’re Expecting.”

Maroon 5, who are nominated for a Grammy, will perform on this Sunday’s Grammy Awards as part of the Beach Boys reunion along with Foster the People.

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<p>Madonna performs at the Super Bowl on Sunday.</p>

Madonna performs at the Super Bowl on Sunday.

Credit: AP Photo/Chris O'Meara

Kelly Clarkson shows her strength on the Billboard Hot 100, as does Madonna

'American Idol' winner scores her third No. 1 with 'Stronger'

Kelly Clarkson scores her third chart topper on the Billboard Hot 100 as “Stronger” pushes its way to the summit this week.  But will she have to fight off a huge charge from Madonna?

The “American Idol’s” season one winner's third No. 1, and first from the album of the same name, pushes Adele’s “Set Fire To the Rain” out of the top spot, as that title drops to No. 2. But the big news is that Madge’s first single, “Give Me All Your Luvin’,” from her forthcoming album “MDNA” surges onto the Hot 100 at No. 13. The track received a huge push from Clear Channel’s pop radio stations, which pumped the song every hour for 60 hours Friday through Sunday.

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<p>Lady Gaga's &quot;Born This Way&quot;</p>

Lady Gaga's "Born This Way"

Predicting the 2012 Grammy Awards: Album of the Year

Is Adele a lock?

Album of the Year is the last award presented on the Grammy Awards telecast for good reason: it’s the fairest award of them all and the one that every artist dreams of winning  Here are the contenders for the 54th annual Grammy Awards, which will air Feb. 12 at 8 p.m. on CBS.

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Train rolls on with new album, 'California 37'

Train rolls on with new album, 'California 37'

Set kicks off with first single, 'Drive By'

Rock group Train is keeping up the Golden State theme. Following 2009’s multi-platinum “Save Me, San Francisco,” the band returns with “California 37” on April 17.

The album, as well as first single, the infectious “Drive By,” was produced in San Francisco and Los Angeles with Butch Walker and Espionage. The tune has skyrocketed up the charts and is already at No. 17 on the adult top 40.

[More after the jump...]

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<p>Adele in &quot;Rolling in the Deep&quot;</p>

Adele in "Rolling in the Deep"

Predicting the 2012 Grammy Awards: Song of the Year

Adele and Kanye West face off

The Grammy for Song of the Year is one of the most coveted awards. Unlike Record of the Year, which salutes the performer and producer, Song of the Year goes to the songwriter. Therefore, a good rule of thumb when trying to differentiate between the two often-confused categories is to think about how the nominated song sounds stripped down to just a singer and a piano or acoustic guitar. Does it still work on that level with all bells and whistles removed? If so, it’s a good candidate. Below are this year’s contenders.

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<p>The Fray</p>

The Fray

Credit: AP Photo

Hitfix Interview: The Fray's Isaac Slade on what he learned from U2's Bono

Why new album, 'Scars & Stories,' almost never was

As The Fray came together to work on what would become its third Epic album, “Scars & Stories,” the quartet had a collective dark night of the soul; one that could have spelled the end for the multi-platinum piano rock act best known for radio smashes such as “How To Save A Life” and “Over My Head (Cable Car).”

They were in the studio working up songs for “S&S,” out today, and “all four of us were coming of age,” says co-founder/lead singer Isaac Slade. “I was turning 30. We were trying to figure out who we are, what we want to do, how long we want to be in a band. We were partly excited that we get another chance, but partly afraid we were going to be irrelevant. It was a bad, bad week.”

[More after the jump...]

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