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Music News: Eaux Claires festival isn't announcing lineup

In 2016, a fan hoped that Kanye West would make a surprise appearance at Eaux Claires. He didn't.
In 2016, a fan hoped that Kanye West would make a surprise appearance at Eaux Claires. He didn't.Nate Ryan/MPR

by Jay Gabler

April 25, 2018

If you've been waiting for the Eaux Claires Music & Arts Festival lineup to be revealed before deciding whether or not to buy tickets...better make that decision now, because the lineup will not be announced before the festival happens on July 6 and 7. That's right, we'll find out who's playing the festival only when they actually take the stage.

"We're not trying to be tricky, not trying to be cool," festival co-founder Justin Vernon told the Star Tribune. "We're not trying to sell more tickets. In fact, it's definitely not helping us. I don't care about that. I care about surprising people — and having people remember that their art and their music is not just a commercialized commodity."

The festival organizers have been dropping hints on social media, leading fans to guess that attendees might see performances by the likes of Patti Smith, Sharon Van Etten, and Phoebe Bridgers, along with festival stalwarts like the National, Low, and Francis & the Lights. Vernon won't officially confirm any of those bookings, though, so take those guesses for what they are.

ECHO Awards are no more

For years, the ECHO Awards have been among the biggest music prizes in Germany; they've been called "the German Grammys." Now, the ECHOs are no more. The country's recording industry leaders are completely hitting reset on their annual awards in the wake of this year's ECHO for best hip-hop album going to Kollegah and Farid Bang, a duo with anti-Semitic lyrics.

The executive board of Germany's Music Industry Association says that it's dissolving all committees that run the awards and beginning the process of designing an entirely new series of annual awards with new criteria. It's likely that the new awards will put a greater emphasis on jury evaluation, whereas the ECHO Awards relied heavily on consumer-driven metrics. (Stereogum)

Fleetwood Mac talk about Lindsey Buckingham split

Did he jump or was he pushed? A little of both, it seems. In their first interview since parting ways with Lindsey Buckingham, the continuing members of Fleetwood Mac say that the split with Buckingham had to do with tour scheduling.

Stevie Nicks said that Buckingham didn't even want to start rehearsing for a Fleetwood Mac tour until fall 2019. "That's a long time. I just did 70 shows [on a solo tour]. As soon as I finish one thing, I dive back into another. Why would we stop? We don't want to stop playing music. We don't have anything else to do. This is what we do."

The Mac's new lineup, with guitarists Mike Campbell (the Heartbreakers) and Neil Finn (Crowded House) stepping in for Buckingham, will play St. Paul's Xcel Energy Center on Oct. 22. (Rolling Stone)

Kanye calls Trump his "brother"

Kanye West, who's recently emerged from a year-and-a-half spent largely out of the public eye and started tweeting up a storm, shocked many fans on Wednesday when he posted a series of messages and photos enthusiastically supporting President Donald Trump.

The rapper has long been known to think favorably of the president, but Wednesday's tweets were more unambiguously favorable than statements West has previously made. Trump himself shared one of West's tweets, writing, "Thank you Kanye, very cool!" The president's happiness was understandable: he's had scant support from West's hip-hop peers, with Trump's highest-profile musician supporters being Kid Rock and Ted Nugent.

West's wife Kim Kardashian, who publicly supported presidential candidate Hillary Clinton, reiterated that she doesn't share her husband's political views, but supported him nonetheless. (BuzzFeed)

Royal Wedding to be released on vinyl

Think you're pulling out all the stops for your upcoming nuptials? Prince Harry and Meghan Markle might have just given you a new bar to reach for when it comes to hipster wedding perks. Their May 19 ceremony will be recorded and almost immediately released online, with vinyl and CD copies hitting stores less than a week later.

All this, and there aren't even confirmed appearances by Elton John or the Spice Girls! Although those pop icons are all expected to attend the ceremony, only classical and choral artists have been announced as performers at Windsor Castle.

Although this Royal Wedding is being released more quickly than ever before, it's not the first Royal Wedding to be released on record: the wedding of Harry's brother Prince William was recorded and released, and so was the wedding of their parents Prince Charles and Princess Diana in 1981. (Billboard)