Monday Music News Feb20

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Monday Music News

The legendary Johnny Cash – whose music has influenced everyone from The White Stripes to Elvis Costello to Chris Cornell – is set to be honored in 2012, the year that would’ve seen his 80th birthday, with a series of celebrations and tributes. For starters, Arkansas State University is supporting the restoration of the house that Cash grew up in, which of course reflects his early beginnings as well as historical insights into American life during the Great Depression. Columbia Records will release a series of Cash archive titles beginning with Bootleg IV: The Soul of Truth, which will hit stores on April 3rd. And a new Johnny Cash museum is set to open in downtown Nashville, Tennessee and will contain a plethora of memorabilia as well as items donated by Cash’s family; the museum will be located right on Nashville’s main road, Lower Broadway.

Mumford & Sons’ new tour film, Big Easy Express, follows the band on their unique 2011 Railroad Revival U.S. Tour, which found them hitting the road – er, tracks – on a specially commissioned train, along with fellow bands Old Crow Medicine Show and Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeroes. The train, 15 vintage railcars from the ’50s/’60s, housed all the band members and crew, and of course took them (most of the way) to the venues on the trek. The film will premiere at this year’s SXSW Fest (March 9-17), but you can sneak a peek at the trailer now at http://vimeo.com/36034618. And more music from Mumford is on the way, with singer Ben Lovett and crew ‘finally’ starting work on songs for what will be their second album.

And U.S. President Barack Obama is taking something of a hipster approach to the beginnings of his 2012 campaign for reelection, that being the release of his official music playlist, which he’s sharing via Spotify. Unlike previous presidents, whose musical campaign selections were mostly of the, erhm, oldster variety, many of the tracks included on Mr. Obama’s list may surprise you – in addition to the expected Motown and retro folk-soul tunes (Aretha Franklin, James Taylor, Electric Light Orchestra, Al Green), which he’s already professed admiration for, he’s also picked Florence and the Machine’s “You’ve Got the Love,” Wilco’s “I Got You,” Arcade Fire’s “We Used to Wait,” and additional tracks by U2, Noah and the Whale, and No Doubt.

PYXIS POINTS | Noel Gallagher will drop the first new tracks from his High Flying Birds follow-up set next month, starting with “Shoot a Hole in the Sun” | Orbital will release their latest album, Wonky, their first since 2004’s Blue Album, on April 1 |  Speaking of Orbital, the 2012 Cambridgeshire Secret Garden Party lineup has been announced, and will host live sets from Orbital themselves as well as The Duke Spirit, Baxter Dury, and the also aforementioned Edward Sharpe | In other festival news, this summer’s Benicassim Festival (Spain) have announced much of their roster, too – it’s set to include performances from The Stone Roses, Crystal Castles, Bombay Bicycle Club, and Florence and the Machine, among others | Two tracks from Radiohead’s back catalogue, “Jigsaw Falling Into Place” and “Everything in Its Right Place,” are set to be reworked into classical compositions by minimalist composer Steve Reich, who will include the songs in his Radio Rewrite performance piece | and The Chemical Brothers’ performance film Don’t Think is now set for a dual DVD and CD release on March 27, in 7:1 surround sound. – Kristi Kates