Senior Arts & Entertainment Correspondent
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Mar 8, 2013

Can Bowie turn acclaim and hype into record sales?

LONDON, March 8 (Reuters) – He caught the music world
napping in January with his first new song in a decade and soon
had critics searching for superlatives to describe his new album
“The Next Day”.

The next big question for David Bowie and his remarkable
comeback is whether the element of surprise and subsequent
acclaim will turn into record sales.

Mar 7, 2013

New films test if Land of Oz still paved with gold

LONDON (Reuters) – The entertainment industry has long viewed The Land of Oz as a road paved with gold, and two major new movie projects will test the public’s appetite for yet more spin-offs from L. Frank Baum’s novel published 113 years ago.

Not every project based on the American author’s adventures in Oz has been a hit – even with Michael Jackson as Scarecrow, the 1978 adaptation “The Wiz” suffered poor reviews.

Mar 5, 2013

Bieber apologizes to angry fans for late UK show

LONDON (Reuters) – Canadian singer Justin Bieber apologized on Tuesday after fans booed him for turning up nearly two hours late to a London concert, blaming technical issues for his late performance.

The 19-year-old teen idol had been scheduled to take the stage at London’s O2 Arena at 8.30 p.m. but said in a Twitter message that the time was pushed back to 9.35 p.m. due to “some technical issues”.

Mar 4, 2013

Central Asian art on show, Sotheby’s eyes new market

LONDON, March 4 (Reuters) – Central Asia and the Caucasus
get a rare moment in the artistic limelight this week as
Sotheby’s stages a London exhibition of works from the 1960s to
the present day, hoping to generate interest in artists from an
often overlooked region.

Lying either side of the Caspian Sea with China to the east,
Russia to the north and Iran to the south, countries like
Azerbaijan, Uzbekistan and Georgia have plenty in common, not
least subservience to Moscow during the Soviet era.

Feb 28, 2013

Rolling Stones hope to play Glastonbury festival, Ronnie Wood says

LONDON (Reuters) – The Rolling Stones picked up two prizes at the NME Music Awards in London on Wednesday, and guitarist Ronnie Wood said the band hoped to play at Britain’s Glastonbury music festival in June.

The Stones won for best live act and best film, and Wood was on hand to accept a pair of irreverent “middle finger” statuettes.

Feb 28, 2013

Rolling Stones lead winners at NME music awards

LONDON (Reuters) – The Rolling Stones picked up two prizes at the NME Music Awards in London on Wednesday one for best live act and the other for best film, and veteran guitarist Ronnie Wood was on hand to accept a pair of irreverent “middle finger” statuettes.

The veteran British rock group — comprising Wood, Mick Jagger, Keith Richards and Charlie Watts — is one of four acts to be nominated four times for the annual awards, organised by NME music magazine.

Feb 26, 2013

Bowie is back to best on new album, UK critics say

LONDON (Reuters) – David Bowie’s first album of new music in a decade sees the influential musician back to his best, British critics said in reviews rushed out on Tuesday, two weeks before its release.

“The Next Day”, which hits stores in Britain on March 11 and a day later in the United States, could even be the “greatest comeback in rock’n'roll history”, according to The Independent’s Andy Gill.

Feb 26, 2013

Music sales post small rise in 2012, first since ’99

LONDON (Reuters) – The music business broke a 12-year losing streak in 2012, posting a small but symbolic 0.3 percent rise in trade revenues to $16.5 billion, figures from the International Federation of the Phonographic Industry (IFPI) showed on Tuesday.

The slight increase will come as a relief to record label bosses who have watched the value of sales plummet from a peak of $28.6 billion in 1999, as illegal downloads and a reluctance to embrace the digital age hit revenues hard.

Feb 21, 2013

UK’s BRIT Awards slammed as celebration of bland

LONDON (Reuters) – “Sensible” and “sober” are words not normally associated with rock and roll, but they summed up how music critics viewed Wednesday night’s BRIT Awards ceremony at the London O2 Arena.

Viewing figures for commercial broadcaster ITV1, which aired British pop’s biggest night live, were the highest for a decade, so organizers, advertisers and the acts who performed were unlikely to care too much about what experts thought.

Feb 20, 2013

Singer Emeli Sande in line for big prize at BRIT awards

LONDON (Reuters) – Scottish singer Emeli Sande is favourite to win the coveted British album of the year honour later on Wednesday when the BRIT Awards are handed out in London.

Sande, whose profile received a major boost when she took part in the opening and closing ceremonies at the London Olympics last year, has been nominated for three prizes on British pop’s biggest night.

    • About Mike

      "I cover arts and entertainment across Europe, Middle East and Africa, ranging from film festivals like Cannes and awards shows like the BRITs and from books and theatre to art, opera and industry stories. My previous postings include Moscow, senior correspondent in Central Asia and deputy bureau chief in Pakistan and Afghanistan. I also covered the conflicts in Afghanistan and Iraq."
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