• MySpace.com and Verizon Wireless are sponsoring a song contest entitled "Calling All Bands." The winning unsigned band will have their song, music video, ring tone and ring back tone released on Verizon Wireless.
As it happens, the initial submission period will expire on March 1, just as this issue hits the streets, so we hope some Kentucky bands submit a song. Afterwards, 15 semi-finalists will be selected from all submissions and the MySpace community of friends and fans can listen and vote online for their favorite band from the contest page during the period from March 13 to March 22. The top five semifinalists will be announced on March 24 and the winner on March 29. According to Lori Riddle Ebernez, who brought the contest info to our attention, there 686 Kentucky bands registered on MySpace, so, assuming that a number of those bands submit a song, there should be many opportunities to vote on one or more of your favorites.
• For all you Celebrity Impersonators, Look- and Sound-alikes and Tribute Artists, there's a convention just for you at the Rising Star (Ind.) Casino April 2-5. Put together by Bill and Phyllis Duke, former owners of the Scottsburg Jamboree, now owners of the Junction Jamboree in Lebanon Junction. For more information, log onto www.risingstarconvention.com.
• Jeremy Podgursky of The Pennies is a Performance Finalist in the 2005 International Songwriting Contest.
• According to Rolling Stone, My Morning Jacket will release rare recordings of tracks off their first two albums, The Tennessee Fire and At Dawn, on May 16th. The band is scheduled to play a couple of festivals in April, assuming Jim James is over his bout of pneumonia.
Butler, Derek L., 38, of Louisville, died on January 30, 2006, as a result of injuries suffered in a collision with a police cruiser. He was the Minister of Music at the Word Church, Hill St. Baptist Church for 26 years, and a musician at Portland Memorial Baptist Church.
• Loeffler, Robert "Bob," 54 died in Louisville on February 18. He was a member of the Celtic band Ten Penny Bit and director of the Rainbow Show Puppet Theatre
• Robinson, Nathan "Nate", 24, died on February 7, 2006 from injuries suffered in an automobile crash. Robinson was a guitar player and recording engineer who had toured with Travis Meeks and Days of the New. He had also played with Catch Kennedy, am Sunday, Ray Rizzo, the Java Men and Todd Hildreth.
• Wells, Joe Louis, 68, of Louisville, passed away at home on Wednesday, February 15. He was known as the "Jazzman" and was the lead singer of the Original 26th Street Tavern Blues Band.