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Mads PerchWe're sending out a whole lotta love to Robert Plant, who celebrates his 70th birthday today. While the founding Led Zeppelin frontman Plant hasn't performed live with his old band mates since their memorable London reunion concert in December 2007, the singer remains a very active touring and recording artist.

Plant released his latest solo album, Carry Fire, in October 2017 and has been busy promoting the record by touring with his current backing band, The Sensational Space Shifters.

Plant first and foremost will always be known for his contributions to Led Zeppelin, the band that helped define hard rock and heavy metal. His banshee wail and seductive stage moves have inspired and influenced countless other singers, from Whitesnake's David Coverdale to Josh Kiszka of the up-and-coming hard-rockers Greta Van Fleet.  The music he made with the band continues to be the soundtrack to fans' lives worldwide.

After Led Zeppelin's 1980 breakup following the death of drummer John Bonham, Plant launched a successful solo career, and also released a pair of collaborative albums with Zeppelin guitarist Jimmy Page during the 1990s.

Among the highlights of Plant's post-Led Zeppelin career, though, was his 2007 duets album with bluegrass star Alison Krauss, Raising Sand, which won an impressive five Grammy Awards.

Plant will launch a new U.S. trek with The Sensational Space Shifters next month. The tour gets underway with a September 9 headlining performance at the 2018 LouFest in St. Louis and is mapped out through an October 1 show in Austin, Texas.

Robert also is expected to take part in Led Zeppelin's 50th anniversary celebrations this fall, but don't hold get your hopes up for another reunion performance -- Plant's been adamant about not playing again with his old band mates.

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Jamie McCarthy/Getty ImagesThe funeral for The Queen of Soul will be held in her hometown of Detroit on August 31.

Aretha Franklin’s publicist announced Friday that the music legend's homegoing service, which is limited to friends and family, will take place at the Greater Grace Temple in the Motor City.

However, there will be public viewings on August 28 and 29 at the Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History, also in Detroit, from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m.

Franklin will be buried at Woodlawn Cemetery in Detroit, along with her father, Rev. C.L. Franklin; brother Cecil Franklin; sisters Carolyn Franklin and Erma Franklin; and nephew, Thomas Garrett.

Franklin died Thursday at her home in Detroit from pancreatic cancer. She was 76.

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ABC/Paula LoboAn album, a tour, a gig in the Hamptons, and now...a cartoon. That's the ever-unfolding story of collaborators Sting and Shaggy, who turned their musical bromance into the joint album 44/876, released in April.

The animated video is for "Just One Lifetime," a groovy reggae tune. The clip features cartoon versions of Sting and Shaggy dancing on a beach, with other animated characters. The look is much more old school than modern, and would fit in just fine in a '70s-era Saturday morning cartoon lineup.

You can catch the animated "Just One Lifetime" video on YouTube.

The pair hit the road this fall on their joint tour. All ticket info is available at

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Gus Stewart/RedfernsJust call him Slowhand Santa: Eric Clapton is set to release Christmas album.

Billboard reports Happy Xmas will arrive October 12, and will feature classic holiday songs as reworked by the legendary guitarist. 

Happy Xmas will also contain an original Clapton Christmas tune called "For Love On Christmas Day."

Clapton tells Billboard, "I had in my head that these holiday songs could be done with a slight blues tinge, and I started to figure out how to play the blues lines in between the vocals." 

He reveals that, once he nailed the guitar parts, "one of the most identifiable songs on the album, the one that became the foundational style, is 'Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas.'"

One of the songs, Clapton's take on "Jingle Bells," is dedicated to the memory of the late superstar deejay Avicii, who died earlier this year.  According to Billboard, Clapton was a great admirer of his.

Happy Xmas' cover features a color illustration of Santa Claus, drawn by Eric himself.

Preorders are being taken now for a $60 deluxe edition boxed set, which includes the CD, a 7-inch picture flexi-vinyl, a USB copy of the album that doubles as a Santa-shaped Christmas ornament, and a dog-shaped Christmas ornament. You can check out the deluxe edition at

Happy Xmas track listing:

1. "White Christmas"
2. "Away In A Manger (Once In Royal David’s City)"
3. "For Love On Christmas Day"
4. "Everyday Will Be Like A Holiday"
5. "Christmas Tears"
6. "Home For The Holidays"
7. "Jingle Bells (In Memory Of Avicii)"
8. "Christmas In My Hometown"
9. "It’s Christmas"
10. "Sentimental Moments"
11. "Lonesome Christmas"
12. "Silent Night"
13. "Merry Christmas Baby"
14. "Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas"


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Taylor Hill/Getty ImagesSales of Aretha Franklin's back catalog have spiked nearly 1600% following her death Thursday at age 76, Billboard reports.  

On Thursday alone, sales of Franklin's albums and digital song downloads rose from 8,000 the previous day to a whopping 134,000. Digital song downloads accounted for 89% of sales, with 115,000 songs. Physical album sales totaled 19,000 units.

Here are Aretha Franklin's top-selling songs on August 16:


"Respect" (16,000)
"A Natural Woman (You Make Me Feel Like)" (13,000)
"I Say a Little Prayer" (10,000)
"Chain of Fools" (8,000)
"Think" (8,000)
"Freeway of Love" (4,000)
"Until You Come Back To Me (That’s What I’m Gonna Do)" (4,000)
"I Knew You Were Waiting (For Me)" (with George Michael) (4,000)
"I Never Loved a Man (The Way I Love You)" (3,000)
"Bridge Over Troubled Water" (3,000)

And here are Aretha's top-selling albums on August 16:

30 Greatest Hits (10,000)
Amazing Grace (2,000)
Queen of Soul: The Best of Aretha Franklin (1,000)
Soul Queen (1,000)
The Best of Aretha Franklin (1,000)

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Scott StrebleCan't make it to Connecticut for Farm Aid 2018? No problem. AXS-TV is once again making it easy to catch the "music with a mission" event, by broadcasting this year's show live from Hartford on Saturday, September 22.

In Farm Aid tradition, this year's show features sets from organizer and founder Willie Nelson, as well as appearances by Farm Aid board members Neil YoungJohn Mellencamp, and Dave Matthews. Country stars Chris Stapleton and Kacey Musgraves, plus many others, are also slated to perform, with all artists donating their appearance fees to the cause.

The Farm Aid broadcast caps off an AXS Saturday Stack dedicated to the Farm Aid organizers, beginning at noon ET with three, count 'em, three segments of Dan Rather's The Big Interview, featuring Neil Young, Willie Nelson, and John Mellencamp. 

At 3 p.m. ET, AXS will broadcast a 90-minute Mellencamp concert from Chicago, called Plain Spoken: John Mellencamp, which features "Pink Houses," "Cherry Bomb," and "Small Town," among others.

Next up, at 4:30 p.m. ET, a Willie Nelson: Soundstage show, which AXS promises will deliver "an intimate, career-spanning set."

Dave Matthews' Weekend On the Rocks will air at 5:30 p.m. ET and will include selections from the DMB's four-day run at the Red Rocks Amphitheatre in 2005.

Farm Aid 2018 itself will air live from the XFINITY Theater in Hartford, CT, will air from 7 p.m. to midnight ET on Saturday, September 22.


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ABC/Richard CartwrightRoger Daltrey is a rare rock star: He's been married for almost fifty years and has never had a drug problem. In an interview with Rolling Stone, the Who frontman says a couple of simple rules have kept him on the straight-and-narrow.

The singer married his wife, Heather Taylor, in 1971. Though he admits "[it's] not easy," he thinks his marriage "survived because I was always honest with her [about] whatever had gone on during the tour."

Daltrey says he wasted no time getting "on the first bloody plane back to her" after each Who tour, adds that he "worship[s] the ground she walk[s] on."

As for that other big rock star cliche -- drugs and rehab -- Roger says his clean living was a lucky combination of preference and necessity.

"I had to [stay clean], so I could keep the others in line," he says, and then jokes, "You try getting three people on acid from the Monterey Pop Festival all the way to London!"

The singer also notes that he saw "so many people...[become] complete a**holes" on drugs, and realized he never wanted that to happen to him.

Daltrey also believes that his relatively drug-free life was due to his desire to preserve his voice, which, after all, is his instrument.

Daltrey, who'll release his autobiography in October, wraps a two-month solo tour tomorrow night in Indio, CA. The Who is currently on a break, but Daltrey promises, "We haven't ever thought of [retiring]." 

However, Roger says he would like to retire one particular song from the Who's set: "Won't Get Fooled Again."

"That’s the only song I’m bloody bored s**tless with. I don’t know why, but I’m being honest," he says.


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ABC NewsIn his first interview since the death of his childhood friend, Aretha Franklin, Motown legend Smokey Robinson recalled on ABC's Good Morning America Friday the first time they met in Detroit.

"I hear a piano being played and I hear this little voice singing," Robinson, 78, said. "And I look in, and there's Aretha sitting there at the piano, singing and playing, almost like she sang and played in her adult life.

"But she was probably about five years old or so and she just had 'it.'"

"Aretha and I were just tight," he said of Franklin, who died Thursday at the age of 76. "We had a wonderful, wonderful friendship that lasted throughout her entire life. Up until the day before yesterday, Aretha was my longest friend on earth."

Robinson added that the topics of fame and showbiz rarely came up in conversation between him and Aretha, and the other future stars who were their neighbors in Detroit, such as Diana Ross and The Four Tops.

“There were a lot of us in that neighborhood, and those of us who were blessed enough to get our wish or our dream to be in show business, we just always had regular relationships."

Robinson added that there was much more to the Queen of Soul than simply her musical talent.

"Aretha had a great sense of humor," he said, adding, "She could throw down in the kitchen! She cooked me many a meal....She was just a great person, great cook, great woman."

Meanwhile, on ABC's Nightline Thursday night, chart-topping songwriter Diane Warren, who penned a number of songs for the Queen of Soul, said, "Aretha Franklin elevated anything she sang to 20 levels beyond what that song was...Listen to the soul that was dripping out of every note."

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Andrew Lipovsky/NBCJimmy Fallon may have let "Sweet Emotion" take over last night when Aerosmith rocked The Tonight Show. At the end of their high-energy performance of "Mama Kin," Fallon outro'ed the band, plugged their upcoming Las Vegas residency, and then blurted, "Catch them performing Monday on the VMAs!"

That information hasn't been reported anywhere else.  If that turns out to be the case, Aerosmith will be the hardest rockers on the least so far. The pop and hip-hop heavy broadcast is set to include Ariana Grande, Panic! At the Disco, and rappers Nicki Minaj, Cardi B and Post Malone, among others.

The MTV VMAs will air live from New York City's Radio City Music Hall on Monday at 9 p.m. ET/PT.

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Credit: RankinForget about selling albums and t-shirts: Rod Stewart is now auctioning off his furniture.

The British paper The Guardian reports that on September 11, a collection of Stewart's furnishings are going on the auction block. Among the more than 60 lots: gilt and bronze side tables, a teak armchair with a faux leopard print cushion, figurines, 19th century mirrors and bronze wall sconces.

The items are reportedly from Rod's mansion in Essex, U.K., which he's put on the market. The auction director says in a statement, "We all have a good sort-out once in a while and that is the case with Sir Rod Stewart in this instance. He has accumulated many things over his lifetime and has decided now is the time to have a bit of a clear-out."

The director adds, "He lives locally to us and we are selling items of his including settees, lighting and furniture. The items are all very glitzy and glamorous and there is lots of gold – all very rock 'n' roll.”

You can check out photos of some of the items over at the BBC's website.

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Taylor Hill/Getty ImagesWhile Aretha Franklin was known to the world as the Queen of Soul, her family knew her as a loving, family-oriented matriarch. After her passing Thursday from advanced pancreatic cancer, Franklin's nephew, Vaughn Franklin, spoke to ABC's Nightline about the singer's family life.

"When our parents passed away, my auntie became the matriarch of the family. She took the nieces and nephews -- especially myself -- under her wing," Franklin said. "She took care of us."

He went on to explain that his Aunt Aretha was so much more than just an incredible singer.

"When she walked off stage, she was an auntie, she was a mother, she was a grandmother, she was a cousin." Franklin said. "She was everything to the family, and the family meant a lot to her."

In her final days, Franklin even had the opportunity to say goodbye to his aunt and surrogate mother. 

"We had the chance to just sit together," he said. "I had a chance to really open up and tell her how I felt and thanked her for being so important to me and taking me under her wing as an aunite and loving me the way she did."

Franklin said he would never forget Aretha's Christmas parties, to which she invited all the family members so everyone could be together. He also reminiscenced about the time she hosted a party and had truckloads of sand delivered to her backyard so they could have a beach-party theme. 

Aretha Franklin was a singing legend around the world but to her family and friends, she also known for her cooking.  Vaughn Franklin said her peach cobbler especially was memorable and she was always happy to teach him how to make it. 

As for claims Aretha Franklin was occasionally a diva, her nephew said that term never bothered him or the family. 

"She didn't want anyone thinking of her as the Queen of Soul when we were together," he said. "It was auntie."

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Kinks frontman Ray Davies revealed in recent interviews that he'd like to get his old band back together.  Now the singer/songwriter tells BBC Radio 2 that he's still hoping to organize a reunion, but says it's not up to him.

"It's down to Dave [Davies], the guitar player, my brother, and Mick Avory, the drummer," Ray explained during a chat with radio host Chris Evans. "They haven't been in the same room since 2005. So, the first thing's to get them in the room together."

Tensions between Dave and Mick date back to the early years of The Kinks, and their conflicts reportedly led to Avory exiting the band in 1984.

Ray added about his attempts to get the two musicians to commit to a reunion, "It's like negotiations for the United Nations. If I can get them to talk it would be great."

Meanwhile, the 74-year-old Rock & Roll Hall of Famer said that the "most important thing" for him with regard to a Kinks reunion would be for the band to create new original music.

"The Kinks have got a great legacy and everything, but to me it's always about making new music," he maintained. "If the music's good anything could happen."

Ray added that he always has been open about collaborating with his Kinks band mates again, "because they're great players."

Referencing the just-announced expanded reissue of the group's 1968 album The Village Green Preservation Society, Davies notes, "Anyone listening to…this new compilation will see it's a special band and they should make more music."

The reissue will be released in multiple configurations on October 26. Ray also released a new solo album, Our Country: Americana Act II, in June.

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Justin Sullivan/Getty ImagesAs the world mourns the passing of Aretha Franklin, her labelmates Sister Sledge have fond memories of the Queen of Soul.

“There is no one like Aretha, and no voice like hers,” Kim Sledge tells ABC Radio. “She always lives on...because of all the wonderful music she’s given the world.”

Kathy Sledge, who sang lead on the group's hits, including "We Are Family," remembers Aretha's compassion. 

“I will personally never, ever forget how she was the first person to passionately reach out to my family at our sister Joni’s untimely death," she says in a statement. "How she was a constant comfort for us in our time of need."

"We love you Aretha," Kathy continues. "You will forever be the reigning Queen of our Heart and Soul. Take your crown!”

One of the highlights of Sister Sledge’s career was performing along with Aretha for Pope Francis in 2015 at the World Festival of Families Congress in Philadelphia.

Kim remembers she and her sisters were in awe of the iconic singer. “That’s a true legend. She’s an icon. She is the Queen of Soul,” Kim says.  “Just to see her perform, to be around the presence of someone like that.”

As Kim reminisces about Franklin, she compares her to another icon who they got to share a stage with: The Godfather of Soul. 

“I put her in the same category with James Brown,” she says. “We’ve got these greats, we have grown so much and learned so much from.”

“Standing in the corner, watching them, seeing how they dealt with the audiences, their rapport, their professionalism,” Kim adds.   

For Kim Sledge, Aretha was the ultimate vocalist. “I was, like, number one fan."

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Mike Smith/NBCJust a reminder that Aerosmith will rock The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon this evening.

The program, which airs at 11:35 p.m. ET on NBC, also will features guest appearances by pop superstar Ariana Grande and comic actor Nick Kroll.

Aerosmith's Tonight Show performance comes a day after the band's appearance on NBC's Today show, during which the rock legends announced plans for a Las Vegas residency next year at the Park Theater at the new Park MGM resort.

"We want to bring a show in there that we really can't do when we're on the road on a regular tour," guitarist Joe Perry explained to Today host Savannah Guthrie. "So we want to bring a show that still has Aerosmith and all the guts of Aerosmith but has a whole other element to it than we've ever been able to do before."

Singer Steven Tyler added, "We're gonna keep it raw. We're gonna keep it who we are. There's gonna be no changes…It's gonna be beautiful and rocked out, and we're gonna get a chance to use some special effects that haven't been used before."

After the interview, Aerosmith played two of their classic tunes -- "Sweet Emotion" and "Love in an Elevator" -- to the crowds gathered in New York City's Rockefeller Plaza. You can watch both performances on

Aerosmith's "Deuces Are Wild" residency opens in Las Vegas April 6, 2019 and includes 18 performances -- nine in April, five in June and four in July.

Visit and for more details.

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Solaiman FazelJanet Jackson dropped a tease of her Caribbean flavored new single, “Made for Now” featuring reggaeton star Daddy Yankee, on Thursday.

Janet posted on Instagram a short clip of the video, which was shot recently in New York City. She’s wearing a blue top hat and blue denim jacket with a long flowing white skirt, as Daddy Yankee joins her at a street festival.

The video features dancers from Ghana, Nigeria, Grenada and Trinidad, as well from as the United States. 

The youngest member of the Jackson family is releasing the song on her own label, Rhythm Nation Records, through a brand new distribution deal with Cinq Music.

The company posted on Instagram, “#cinqmusic is the new home of @janetjackson and the party starts this Friday 08/17 with the help of @daddyyankee #madefornow #newsigning #icon"

The track is produced by Harmony Samuels, who's also worked with Mary J. BligeJennifer Lopez, and Ariana Grande. This will be Janet’s first new music since she released her Unbreakable album in 2015.

The full video is scheduled to debut Friday, and Janet will also perform the song that night on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon.

Janet’s next performance will be September 29 at the Global Citizen Festival in New York City. 

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Gilbert Carrasquillo/GC ImagesMadonna is celebrating her 60th birthday today by releasing a never-before-seen video of her 2018 MET Gala performance.

The performance, witnessed exclusively by guests of the star-studded soiree back in May, is now on YouTube for all to experience.

Following the MET Gala’s theme of “Heavenly Bodies: Fashion and the Catholic Imagination,” the performance begins with religious imagery and chanting monks. Madonna appears in a hooded monk’s robe at the top of the museum’s stairs and launches into “Like a Prayer.”

She then removes to the robe to reveal a white, Joan of Arc-inspired outfit and begins singing a new track, “Beautiful Game,” while surrounded by female dancers also dressed in white. For her final song, she sings a haunting cover of Leonard Cohen's “Hallelujah.”

And as previously announced, Madonna is also raising money for the children Malawi in honor of her birthday. Madonna teamed up with Facebook and Ripple -- a global payment company -- to encourage fans to donate to Raising Malawi, her charity foundation that helps orphans and vulnerable children in that African nation. The fundraiser runs until August 31.

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National Portrait Gallery, Smithsonian Institution © Milton GlaserThe Smithsonian's National Portrait Gallery will pay tribute to Aretha Franklin -- who died of cancer today at age 76 -- by putting a lithographic poster of the Queen of Soul on display in the museum's "In Memoriam" area on Friday morning.

The poster, which was created in 1968 by acclaimed graphic designer Milton Glaser, will remain on view through this Wednesday, August 22.  In the poster, Glaser used a kaleidoscopic palette of colors and unique geometric shapes to help depict Aretha's energetic performance style.

Franklin, who was widely considered to be among the greatest singers of her generation, was recognized by the National Portrait Gallery in 2015 with the Portrait of a Nation Prize. Coinciding with the honor, Franklin gave a performance at the American Portrait Gala event that included renditions of her classic songs "Respect," "Think" and "Chain of Fools."

In addition to viewing the poster at the gallery, you can check out a high-res version of the piece at

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Barry Brecheisen/WireImageOn Saturday, the Oprah Winfrey Network will take a trip down memory lane to honor the late, great Aretha Franklin. Franklin died on Thursday from advanced pancreatic cancer. She was 76.

OWN will re-air the Queen of Soul's 1999 television interview from The Oprah Winfrey Show. In the episode, Oprah talks to Franklin about her life, career and her autobiography, Aretha: From These Roots.

On that episode, the iconic singer also performed a number of songs, including "Think," "Respect," and "Miss Clawdy Medley,"  a medley of songs honoring her father, minister C.L. Franklin. She also paid homage to her gospel roots by singing the soulful "We Need Power."

The Oprah Winfrey Show special featuring Aretha Franklin airs this Saturday, August 18 at 8:00 p.m. ET on OWN.

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Credit: William ClaxtonAfter visiting Europe earlier in the year, Bob Dylan is now in the middle of a tour of the Far East, Australia and New Zealand -- but come the fall, he'll be bringing his show back to the U.S.

The folk-rock legend's stateside tour kicks off October 4 in Phoenix, Arizona, and is mapped out through a November 17 concert in Atlantic City, New Jersey.  Tickets for all the shows are available now, except for the Atlantic City concert, which goes on sale to the public starting this Friday, August 17.

Bob's next show takes place Saturday in Sydney, Australia, and his Down Under trek wraps up August 28, in Christchurch, New Zealand.

Last month, Dylan released an archival compilation called Live 1962-1966: Rare Performances from The Copyright Collections as a two-CD set and digital download. The 28-track album features various concert performances dating from the early years of the Bob's career.

Here are all of Dylan's upcoming U.S. shows:

10/4 -- Phoenix, AZ, Comerica Theatre
10/5 -- Tucson, AZ, Tucson Music Hall
10/7 -- Albuquerque, NM, Kiva Auditorium
10/9 -- Midland, TX, Wagner Noël Performing Arts Center
10/10 -- Irving, TX, The Pavilion at the Toyota Music Factory
10/12 -- Tulsa, OK, River Spirit Casino Resort
10/13 -- Thackerville, OK, WinStar World Casino and Resort
10/14 -- Sugar Land, TX, Smart Financial Centre
10/16 -- Lafayette, LA, Heymann Center
10/17 -- Mobile, AL, Mobile Saenger Theatre
10/19 -- St. Augustine, FL, St. Augustine Amphitheatre
10/20 -- Clearwater, FL, Ruth Eckerd Hall
10/21 -- Sarasota, FL, Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall
10/23 -- Fort Myers, FL, Barbara B. Mann Performing Arts Hall
10/24 -- Fort Lauderdale, FL, Broward Center for the Performing Arts
10/26 -- Orlando, FL, Walt Disney Theater - Dr. Phillips Center for the Performing Arts
10/27 -- Macon, GA, Macon City Auditorium
10/28 -- Chattanooga, TN, Tivoli Theatre
10/30 -- Huntsville, AL, Mark C. Smith Concert Hall - Von Braun Center
10/31 -- Knoxville, TN, Tennessee Theatre
11/2 -- Asheville, NC, Thomas Wolfe Auditorium
11/3 -- Durham, NC, Durham Performing Arts Center
11/4 -- North Charleston, SC, North Charleston Performing Arts Center
11/6 -- Savannah, GA, Johnny Mercer Theatre
11/7 -- Augusta, GA, The Bell Auditorium
11/9 -- Charlotte, NC, Ovens Auditorium
11/10 -- Roanoke, VA, Berglund Performing Arts Theatre
11/11 -- Richmond, KY, EKU Center for the Arts
11/17 -- Atlantic City, NJ, Hard Rock Hotel

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Holiday!  Celebrate! Madonna is marking her 60th birthday today!

According to her Instagram, she appears to be celebrating her milestone in Marrakesh, Morocco.  But in the past year, she's made a major life change by moving herself and her four youngest children to Lisbon, Portugal.  As she told Vogue, "I like to put myself in uncomfortable situations and take risks."  That's pretty much what she's been doing her entire career.

"One of the things that always impressed me, personally, about Madonna is how courageous she is," says Dr. Jason Hanley, VP of Education for the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.  "She could have just laid back on a comfortable thing with the dance music she had started in, but she found new ways of thinking about her music."

"She innovated music videos...she innovated world tours and live stage shows in ways that people had not done before, these massive arena shows in the '80s," Hanley adds. "I think so many people try to be like Madonna now. If you think of how many artists that are out there -- whether it's a Demi Lovato or even a Taylor Swift -- a lot of artists are trying to achieve that...and I think Madonna has served as an icon for so many artists for years."

Explaining her presence in the Rock Hall, Hanley notes, "Madonna is somebody who continued to be so productive and innovative over the years....she really is somebody who pushed music forward." 

Madonna, the top-selling female recording artist of all time, will continue her journey later this year when she releases a brand-new album, inspired, she says, by the musicians she met in Portugal.  She's also been working with Mirwais [meer-WEH], the producer behind some of her biggest records of this millennium.  A world tour may follow, no doubt stuffed with spectacle and Madonna's trademark controversy.

Beyond her status as a singer, songwriter and producer, Madonna is also an actress, director, businesswoman and humanitarian.  For her 60th birthday, she's asked fans to donate to Raising Malawi, her charity foundation that helps orphans and vulnerable children in that African nation. The fundraiser, hosted on her Facebook page, runs through August 31.

Here's a handy list of just a few of some of Madonna's honors:

Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductee

Songwriters Hall of Fame inductee

20 MTV Video Music Awards, plus the MTV Artist of the Decade Award

16 Guinness World Records

Seven Grammy Awards

Five Billboard Music Awards

Three People's Choice Awards

Two Golden Globe Awards

Two Kids' Choice Awards

GLAAD Excellence in Media Award

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