Music News: Leslie Odom Jr. to sing 'America the Beautiful' at Super Bowl


Leslie Odom Jr. in the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade.
Leslie Odom Jr. hangs out with Grover in the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade, 2017. (Dia Dipasupil/Getty Images)

The Super Bowl lineup is finally complete. Not the teams playing in the game — that unimportant detail will be determined shortly. No, we're talking about the lineup of musicians performing during the Feb. 4 broadcast from U.S. Bank Stadium in Minneapolis. Justin Timberlake will handle halftime duties, Pink will sing the National Anthem, and we've just learned that Leslie Odom Jr. will sing "America the Beautiful."

Odom is best-known as a member of the original Hamilton cast, earning a Tony and sharing in a Grammy for his performance as Aaron Burr. He'll be back in Minneapolis on March 23 and 24, when he'll be singing with the Minnesota Orchestra. (Billboard)

Seal accused of sexual misconduct

Actor Tracey Birdsall has accused her former neighbor Seal of groping her and trying to force a kiss when she went to his house to retrieve a salad spinner she had lent to the singer. A representative for Seal says the singer "vehemently denies" the allegations. (Rolling Stone)

Former Ataris bassist indicted on conspiracy and fraud charges

Bassist Michael Davenport has been indicted on federal charges of conspiracy and fraud. Davenport is best-known as one of many former members of the pop-punk band the Ataris, who he played with from 1998 to 2005. Reportedly, Davenport and a co-conspirator "allegedly cheated about 100,000 people out of funds totaling $27 million," reports Uproxx.

According to the indictment, Davenport and his partner, operating under the business name American Standard, "placed ads on Craigslist for 'pre-foreclosure' houses that were for sale at values that were far below-market. However, whenever anyone called American Standard to respond to the ad, they were forced to pay $199 to access information about the property. Little did the customers know that there wasn't actually a house for sale, and they had just paid almost $200 for, well, no reason." If convicted, Davenport, 49, could face decades in prison.

During Davenport's time with the Ataris, the band were perhaps best-known for their "Boys of Summer" cover that changed — to Don Henley’s dismay — the line "Deadhead sticker on a Cadillac" to "Black Flag sticker on a Cadillac."

"If you noticed," said Henley in 2016, "we haven't heard much from the Ataris since then."

Celebrities turn out for Shane MacGowan's birthday

The recent loss of Dolores O'Riordan lent a bittersweet tinge to a star-studded 60th birthday celebration for Shane MacGowan of the Pogues. On Tuesday night in Dublin, a who's who of Irish musicians turned up to cover Pogues songs in MacGowan's honor. Among the attendees: Bono, Sinéad O'Connor, Nick Cave, and many others. Oh, and for some reason Johnny Depp was there too. (Billboard)

Congrats to Kanye and Kim

On Monday, Kanye West and his wife Kim Kardashian welcomed their third child. Wrote Kardashian in a blog post: "Kanye and I are happy to announce the arrival of our healthy, beautiful baby girl. We are incredibly grateful to our surrogate who made our dreams come true with the greatest gift one could give and to our wonderful doctors and nurses for their special care."

The name of the couple's newest child hasn't yet been announced, but it's going to be hard to top North West and Saint West. (Pitchfork)

Brian Wilson gets an A

Back when he was a high school student in the 1950s, Brian Wilson got an F on a music assignment: a composition that eventually evolved into the Beach Boys hit "Surfin'." Vanessa Landesfeind, the current principal of Wilson's alma mater, has corrected the injustice: she changed the grade to an A. (Pitchfork)

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