Odds & Ends: Fab. T-Birds, Johnny Cash Tribute, The Divine Miss M & More

Fabulous Thunderbirds tell Rush Limbaugh to stop playing the band’s music; more artists added to “We Walk The Line” Johnny Cash tribute concert; reality TV show to give mere mortals opportunities to sing with the stars, the ACM Awards loads up on talent; and Bette Midler will receive a lifetime achievement award.

Fabulous T-Birds vs Limbaugh

The Fabulous Thunderbirds is the latest band to tell conservative radio talk show host Rush Limbaugh to keep his hands off of their music.

Photo: George Tazzini / PhotosFromToday.com
Mohegan Sun, Uncasville, Conn.

Limbaugh has been playing music on his program ever since his national radio show launched in 1988, with songs often used to accompany his rants.

Limbaugh’s latest episode of outrageousness began last week. Commenting on Georgetown law student Sandra Fluke’s appearance before Congressional Democrats to speak about health insurance issues regarding birth control, Limbaugh called the Georgetown law student a “slut” and a “prostitute.”

Earlier this week Peter Gabriel said he wanted his music off of Limbaugh’s program. Gabriel became irked when he learned that Limbaugh had played his 1980s hit “Sledgehammer” while slamming Fluke. Then Rush (the band) found out Limbaugh had been using the band’s music over the years and had their lawyer send him a letter ordering a stop to the music.

Now the Fabulous Thunderbirds has sent notice to the radio talker and the syndication company that distributes his show, ordering the radio star to stop playing the band’s music. Evidently the hit “Tuff Enuff” along with other Fab. T-Bird tunes have been played on Limbaugh’s program.

“I was mortified by his attack on this young woman,” Fabulous Thunderbirds frontman Kim Wilson said. “Why is he using my music? I’ve been very open about my politics, which includes equal rights for men and women.”

Crow, Nelson, To Walk The Line

Sheryl Crow and Willie Nelson have joined the all-star tribute to the Man in Black.

Photo: AP Photo / The Forum
Bluestem Center for the Arts, Moorhead, Minn.

Set for April 20 in Austin, Texas, at Austin City Limits Live At The Moody Theatre, “We Walk The Line: A Celebration Of The Music Of Johnny Cash” already has a talent-heavy lineup with Kris Kristofferson, Chris Cornell, Ronnie Dunn, John Hiatt, Amy Lee, Shooter Jennings, Lucinda Williams, Ray LaMontagne and Jamey Johnson.

Of course, an all-star tribute needs an all-star band. Led by producer Don Was, the house band will include Buddy Miller, Kenny Aronoff, Ian McLagan and Greg Leisz.

A percentage of the net proceeds will go to Charley’s Fund, which helps fight the good fight against fatal children’s disease Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy. Click here for tickets and here for more information about “We Walk The Line.”

Photo: AP Photo
Fundraising Concert for U.S. Rep. Dennis Kucinich, Cleveland, OH

Summertime ‘Duets’

Although you might be a pretty good warbler when you’re singing in the shower, do you think you have what it takes to sing with the stars?

From the same folks who brought you “Dancing With The Stars,” a new program debuting on ABC this summer will combine amateur vocalists with established singers. The winner will receive a recording contract from Hollywood Records.

Called “Duets,” Kelly Clarkson, Jennifer Nettles, Lionel Richie and Robin Thicke are the pros tapped for the show, reports Variety. So far, no start date has been announced.

Photo: Bob Mussell
Darien Lake Performing Arts Center, Darien Center, N.Y.

ACM Awards Lineup Announced

The 47th annual Academy of Country Music Awards revealed its performance lineup today.

Co-hosted by Reba and Blake Shelton, this year’s ACM Awards will feature performances by Jason Aldean, Luke Bryan, Kenny Chesney, Eric Church, Toby Keith, Miranda Lambert and Tim McGraw.

Produced by Dick Clark, the ACM Awards takes place at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vega Sunday, April 1 at 8 p.m. ET.

The Divine Miss M Gets Her Due

Bette Midler will be the recipient of the Sammy Cahn Lifetime Achievement Award at the Songwriters Hall Of Fame’s 43rd annual induction and awards dinner scheduled for June 14 at the Marriott Marquis Hotel in New York City.

“Bette Midler captivated the world early in her long career with her stylish presentation and unmistakable voice, making each song her own, and turning them into pure gold,” Songwriters Hall Of Fame Chairman Jimmy Webb said. “It will be our great pleasure to honor her at our annual awards gala with the Sammy Cahn Lifetime Achievement Award.”

Photo: AP Photo
Darlene Love and Bette Midler perform at the R&R Hall of Fame induction ceremony.

Midler, who used to describe herself as “trash with flash,” will be in good company when she receives the award. Past recipients include Les Paul, Patti LaBelle, Dick Clark, Gloria and Emilio Estefan, Neil Diamond, Motown Records founder Berry Gordy, Tony Bennett, Neil Sedaka, Quincy Jones and Peter, Paul & Mary.