Music News: Bluegrass Hall of Fame announces grand opening

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An architect's rendering of the planned Bluegrass Music Hall of Fame.
An architect's rendering of the planned Bluegrass Music Hall of Fame & Museum in Owensboro, Ky. (Bluegrass Music Hall of Fame & Museum)

The Bluegrass Music Hall of Fame & Museum has announced the grand opening of its new $15 million building in Owensboro, Ky. In a celebration held from Oct. 18-20, the new museum will celebrate the legacy of bluegrass with performances by artists including Sam Bush and the Yonder Mountain String Band. Doors will officially open to the public on Saturday, Oct. 20.

The organization, which has been inducting honorees since 1991, has been operating out of a smaller Owensboro space known as the International Bluegrass Music Museum. (Billboard)

Tyka Nelson shares plans for Prince estate

Prince’s sister Tyka Nelson has spoken at length with Rolling Stone regarding future plans from her brother's estate.

She says that some rumored projects, like a hologram tour and a Broadway musical, were no more than rumors. She does, however, say that the estate is now considering projects including a Prince-themed hotel, new Prince clothing and merchandise through a deal with an unnamed "large retailer," Prince music licensed for movies or TV shows, and of course extensive releases from the Vault.

Nelson says she's helping the estate exercise oversight of how her late brother's music is used, consistent with what might have been his wishes. For example, what if there's a request to soundtrack a sex scene with a Prince song? "The money sounds really good, but would my brother approve of something like that? He may not want 'Let's Go Crazy' in a sex scene. 'Darling Nikki,' that's what you do! Or 'Do Me, Baby'!"

Beth Ditto issues statement of support for trans community

Beth Ditto, who has described herself as a "fat feminist lesbian," has issued a statement of support for the trans community, posing for an Instagram photo with her bassist Teddy Kwo, who is trans. Ditto calls Kwo "a ray of sunshine at my side," saying that she felt compelled to speak out "in the wake of London Pride."

That's a reference to a July 7 protest, during London Pride, by a group calling themselves trans-exclusionary radical feminists — TERFs, for short. The group distributed transphobic pamphlets and waved signs with slogans like, "Transactivism erases lesbians."

"Yes, we do try and make sure everyone is respected and supported and still navigate an entire movement with so much at stake BUT WE KEEP TRYING," wrote Ditto, who will be touring the U.S. as an opener for Sam Smith next month. (Billboard)

In the wake of London pride and with all of the anti trans rhetoric there that was trying to overshadow the beauty of our movement and celebration of our struggle, with all of the anti woman, anti trans, homophobia , racism , classism (the list goes on )causing fear to surge through all of my friend’s and loved one’s veins right now. I am so proud to say I always have a ray of sunshine at my side . Being in the open. Being seen and heard. I remember we are strong and resilient human beings with a lot to lose. But also we’ve always had a lot to give. Yes, giving gets exhausting. Yes, it’s difficult to always be the ones to take the high road. Yes!we do try and make sure everyone is respected and supported and still navigate an entire movement with so much at stake BUT WE KEEP TRYING !I just want to remind US! that no one has ever given movements ANYTHING. We always had to take care of ourselves. And look out for each other until the battle was won. And although it feels so bleak, don’t forget that! Don’t forget all the movements that came before. We only can see the result of them. There was turmoil, infighting, debate, fall outs on the inside all the way. But still they pressed on. And succeeded. We have to do the same. I need all of y’all! Thank you for being out there and just fucking living your reality and truths. #visibility #strengthineachother

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U.S. ambassador to U.K.: We can work it out

With friction increasing between the United States and longtime ally the United Kingdom, America's U.K. ambassador Woody Johnson seems to have been trying to send a message of reconciliation as President Donald Trump arrived at the ambassador's residence, Winfield House, last Thursday. The song that greeted him? The Beatles’ "We Can Work It Out." As they say, life is very short. (Billboard)

Ariana Grande plays God

No, but literally. In an eye-popping video for her new song "God is a Woman," Ariana Grande more or less remakes the Old Testament in her own image. The video includes scenes of Grande standing in the cosmos and straddling the Earth (complete with some provocative twiddling of hurricanes), swimming nude in a swirling pastel sea, standing amidst crowds of seemingly devout women, climbing down from a mountain covered in writhing female bodies, and throwing a Viking hammer through a skylight so the sun pours down through a giant pair of women's legs. Oh yeah, and she poses as God on the Sistine Chapel ceiling...and also, for some reason there are screaming groundhogs. Then there's Madonna — yes, Madonna — reading Ezekiel 25:17 (the "strike down upon thee with great vengeance" verse made famous in Pulp Fiction) with "sisters" substituted for "brothers."

Grande's new album Sweetener comes out Aug. 17. (Vulture)


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