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From mezcal to music, Toby Keith keeps expanding his empire

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Country singer Toby Keith poses on the red carpet before the Songwriters Hall of Fame ceremony in New York June 18, 2015. REUTERS/Shannon Stapleton By Vernell Hackett NASHVILLE (Reuters) – Country music artist Toby Keith does not just want his fans to listen to his music. He wants them to drive his truck, drink his mezcal liquor, eat his food and bet on his race horses. With estimated earnings of…

Taylor Swift dominates American Music Award nominations

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Singer Taylor Swift arrives at the 2015 MTV Video Music Awards in Los Angeles, California August 30, 2015. REUTERS/Mario Anzuoni LOS ANGELES (Reuters) – Taylor Swift led the field on Tuesday with six nominations for the 2015 American Music Awards, closely followed by British singer-songwriter Ed Sheeran and Canada’s The Weeknd. Swift, Sheeran and The Weeknd, who all have dominated the music charts this year, will compete for the biggest…

Murray mixes music dreams, darker matter in Afghan war comedy “Rock the Kasbah”

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Cast members (L-R) Zooey Deschanel, Bill Murray, Kate Hudson, and Bruce Willis arrive for the premiere of the film “Rock the Kasbah” in New York October 19, 2015. REUTERS/Lucas Jackson NEW YORK (Reuters) – Bill Murray plays a has-been rock music manager whose fortune changes while on tour in Afghanistan in “Rock the Kasbah”, taking the time-honored route of using comedy to tackle more serious matters. Murray plays Richie Lanz,…

Justin Bieber returns, triumphs at MTV Europe Music awards

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Canadian singer Justin Bieber poses with his awards during the MTV EMA awards at the Assago forum in Milan, Italy, October 25, 2015. REUTERS/Alessandro Garofalo By Marie-Louise Gumuchian MILAN (Reuters) – Canadian pop singer Justin Bieber made a triumphant return to the European stage at the MTV Europe Music Awards in Milan on Sunday, scooping five prizes at the major music event. Bieber, who performed his “What Do You Mean?”…

Record producer’s music A-Z: Madagascan royalty to dead racehorses

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Veteran music producer Joe Boyd poses in front of his vintage record collection in London, October 20, 2015. REUTERS/Jeremy Gaunt By Jeremy Gaunt LONDON (Reuters) – A is for “Ain’t Misbehavin’”, a jazz classic partly written by a Madagascan royal; G is for “Greenville”, a Lucinda Williams country putdown redolent of 20th-century Russian Acmeist poetry. Veteran music producer and author Joe Boyd is nothing if not eclectic in “Joe Boyd’s…

Thousands of N.Y. students to get $10 ‘Hamilton’ musical tickets

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Lin-Manuel Miranda, actor and creator of the of the play “Hamilton,” addresses the audience after the plays opening night on Broadway in New York in this August 6, 2015, file photo. REUTERS/Lucas Jackson/Files By Katie Reilly NEW YORK (Reuters) – Some 20,000 New York City public high school students will be offered cut-rate $10 tickets to attend performances of the hip-hop musical sensation “Hamilton,” the hottest show on Broadway, in…

Chris Stapleton, Luke Bryan, Miranda Lambert win big at Country Music Association Awards

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Miranda Lambert performs “Bathroom Sink” at the 49th Annual Country Music Association Awards in Nashville, Tennessee November 4, 2015. REUTERS/Harrison McClary NASHVILLE (Reuters) – The divorce of country music superstars Blake Shelton and Miranda Lambert might be final, but it was Lambert who came out on top at Wednesday’s Country Music Association Awards, copping a top prize while her ex went home empty-handed. Lambert, 31, accepting her record sixth consecutive…

Katy Perry’s $135 million tops Taylor Swift as highest music earner

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Katy Perry performs during the halftime show at the NFL Super Bowl XLIX football game between the Seattle Seahawks and the New England Patriots in Glendale, Arizona, February 1, 2015. REUTERS/Lucy Nicholson NEW YORK (Reuters) – She didn’t make as many headlines, nor sell as many albums, but Katy Perry handily beat Taylor Swift to become the highest-earning woman in music this year, according to Forbes. Perry, 31, earned $135…