Music News: George Clinton plays surprise Paisley Park show


George Clinton performs at Paisley Park
George Clinton performs at Paisley Park on April 20, 2017 (Paisley Park Studios/Steve Parke)

The four-day Celebration 2017 started Thursday at Paisley Park, and it kicked off with a musical performance by a legend who hadn't been previously announced as part of the lineup: George Clinton, who took the Paisley stage with P-Funk. Clinton was a major influence on Prince, and later became a collaborator, appearing on Graffiti Bridge and releasing two albums on Paisley Park Records. At Celebration, Clinton played hits including "Atomic Dog," "Up for the Down Stroke," "Flashlight" and "One Nation Under a Groove." (Star Tribune)

Prince was king of the charts last year, selling more albums than any other artist in 2016 — besting even Adele. According to Billboard,

His best-selling titles last year were the The Very Best Of Prince (668,000 copies), followed by Purple Rain (498,000) and 1999 (169,000). 4Ever, the new greatest hits album that came out Nov. 20, 2016, scanned 67,000 copies, making it Prince's seventh-largest-selling album of 2016. So far in 2017, it is the largest seller with 56,000 copies, almost double that of Purple Rain (29,000).

Among his songs, "Purple Rain" was his best-selling title last year with 621,000 downloads, followed by three titles with between 335,000-345,000 sales each: "Little Red Corvette," Let's Go Crazy" and "Kiss." In 2017 so far, "Little Red Corvette" comes in fourth, with "Purple Rain" leading the way with 34,000 song downloads and "Let's Go Crazy" and "Kiss" in the second and third spots.

"Deliverance," the title track to a Prince EP that the label RMA was planning to release on Friday, is back up for sale online directly from RMA — despite a restraining order handed down on Wednesday. As RMA interprets that order, "The Federal Court located in Minnesota has temporarily enjoined the release of the remaining unreleased tracks on the Deliverance EP. The court order has not enjoined the released single 'Deliverance.' Therefore the 'Deliverance' single will continue to be sold." (New York Times)

'70s rock gods touring together

Earth, Wind & Fire are teaming up with Chic for a summer tour that stops at the Xcel Energy Center on July 27. Each stop "will have a specialized seating configuration towards the front to allow for dancing," reports Rolling Stone.

Bill Murray pairs with classical musicians

There seems to be no end to eccentric enterprises for Bill Murray to engage in. He's just announced an tour called New Worlds, in which songs and literary readings by Murray will be paired with chamber music. According to the New York Times, "the program has him singing Stephen Foster's 'Jeanie With the Light Brown Hair' and songs from West Side Story, and reading Whitman and Hemingway while [cellist Jan] Vogler’s trio — which includes Mira Wang, his wife, on violin, and Vanessa Perez at the piano — plays Schubert, Bach, and Piazzolla." The short international tour won't come to Minnesota, but will be in Chicago on Oct. 10.

Haim tease...something

According to a teaser video posted to social media, something is happening with Haim on April 27. A new single? A new album? A new puppy? Time will tell. (Billboard)

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