Music News: Israel ambassador requests Lorde meeting after show cancellation


Lorde performs at Coachella on April 16, 2017.
Lorde performs at Coachella on April 16, 2017, in Indio, Calif. (Kevin Winter/Getty Images for Coachella)

Israel's ambassador to New Zealand has asked Lorde for a meeting to discuss her decision to cancel a scheduled show in Tel Aviv.

"It is regrettable that you have canceled your concert in Tel Aviv and have disappointed all your fans in Israel," wrote the ambassador, Itzkah Gerberg, in an open letter to the New Zealand musician. "Music is a wonderful language of tolerance and friendship, which brings people together. Your concert in Israel could have spread the message that solutions come from constructive engagement that leads to compromise and cooperation."

He described Lorde's decision to cancel her show as a succumbing to "a small fanatic group" of activists calling for a boycott of Israel over its treatment of Palestinians in the occupied territories. Lorde has not commented on her decision since an initial statement that read in part, "I pride myself on being an informed young citizen, and I had done a lot of reading and sought a lot of opinions before deciding to book a show in Tel Aviv, but I'm not too proud to admit I didn't make the right call on this one." (Rolling Stone)

Solange cancels New Year's performance due to health concerns

Solange has canceled a planned New Year's Eve performance at the Afropunk festival, citing her ongoing treatment for a nervous system disorder. The singer-songwriter gave South African fans her "ABSOLUTE WORD" that she will play the festival when she's feeling better. (Billboard)

Wrote, deleted and re wrote this like 5 times... Still not sure what exactly or how much I want to share... However it’s so important to me for the people in South Africa, a place that has tremendous meaning to me and that has given me SO SO MUCH, to know why I won’t be performing at Afro Punk this NYE. The past five months I have been quietly treating, and working through an Autonomic Disorder. It been a journey that hasn’t been easy on me... Sometimes I feel cool, and other times not so cool at all. It’s a complicated diagnoses , and I’m still learning so much myself, but right now, my doctors are not clearing me for such an extended lengthy flight, and doing a rigorous show right after. I can’t put into words how saddened and sorry I am that I am unable to perform for you guys this NYE, there is simply no other place I wanted to be than there with my family to bring in 2018 with you.......but I give you my ABSOLUTE WORD I will come back with AfroPunk and deliver this it is so extremely important to me to connect with the people who have so closely inspired me in so many ways. I can’t thank Afro Punk enough for their support, and to all of the other festivals this past summer/fall who have known about my health, kept it confidential, and gone out of their way to make me feel supported while doing these shows. As a part of the self care that I’ve tried to encourage this past year, it needs to start with myself, and I’m looking forward to doing a better job of this 2018. This past year has been one of the most fulfilling of my life... Performing this record and experiencing the energy exchange with you guys has been astounding, and I’m so excited about continuing to do the work I feel so absolutely humbled and appreciative to be doing next year. It gives me life.

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Rihanna calls for end to gun violence in wake of cousin's death

Barbados resident Tavon Kaiseen Alleyne spent Christmas with family, including his cousin Rihanna. Then, on Dec. 26, Alleyne died after receiving multiple gunshot wounds while walking near his home. Rihanna paid tribute on Instagram, sharing photos of the two together and calling for an end to gun violence. (Billboard)

Last Jedi soundtrack climbs the chart

Legendary composer John Williams’s soundtrack to Star Wars: The Last Jedi was released along with the movie on Dec. 15. This week it lands at number 12 on the Billboard 200, and if it's like most other Star Wars saga soundtracks, it will eventually reach the top ten. The lone exception? 1983's Return of the Jedi soundtrack, which for some reason peaked at number 20. The highest-charting soundtrack in the series remains the original Star Wars score, which spent three weeks at number two in 1977, as the music became a pop culture phenomeno. (Billboard)

Bono: "Music has gotten very girly"

Rock has lost its capacity to express masculine anger, opines Bono in a new Rolling Stone interview. "I think music has gotten very girly. And there are some good things about that, but hip-hop is the only place for young male anger at the moment — and that's not good." He added a reminisce about the music he heard, and made, in his teens. "When I was 16, I had a lot of anger in me. You need to find a place for it and for guitars, whether it is with a drum machine — I don't care."

As Billboard puts it, "When major players in music culture have opinions to express about the climate of music today, it is interesting to see whether or not you may share the same sentiments." With respect to the rising but insufficiently recognized tide of female rockers, that would be interesting indeed.

Lady Gaga takes a ride in a shopping cart

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