This Week In Music: A-ha Passes A Billion Views, Joey Kramer Passes Muster, Pop Smoke Passes

Joey Kramer with Aerosmith performs during the Bud Light Super Bowl Music Fest Day 2 at State Farm Arena on Friday, February 1, 2019, in Atlanta. (Photo by Robb Cohen/Invision/AP) AP Images

Sometimes, it takes a couple tries before a song or a group catches fire. That was underlined once again this week with news that A-ha’s Take On Me rotoscopic video has now surpassed one billion views on YouTube.

Although it’s not the only video to surpass that enormous total, it has one of the more unique stories behind its ascent to the top of the charts.

Elsewhere in music, there was tragedy this week in Hollywood as an up and coming rapper was shot dead, and one of rock’s greatest bands finally reunited with a key member.

This week in music:

SECOND TIME’S THE CHARM: A-ha’s classic song Take On Me had a tepid original version of the song, and its video failed to ignite much passion. But Warner Bros. executive Jeff Ayeroff realized that the band’s lead singer Morten Harket was one of the best-looking men in rock ‘n roll, and authorized a video that would take advantage of that. The rest is history, as the song, powered by the video, became a No. 1 hit in 36 countries. A-ha is still laughing all the way to the bank, starting a tour this week in Australia.

GO-GO IS DC OFFICIAL:  It took years and a lot of wrangling, but Washington, DC Mayor Muriel Bowser signed a new law this week making go-go the official music of the city, according to the Washington Post.

OZZY CANCELS TOUR: Ozzy Osbourne had to postpone his plans for a tour to start in May, and said he will seek treatment for his Parkinson’s Disease ailments in Switzerland. The 71-year-old Osbourne also revealed that a fall last year has left him in constant pain, as it re-aggravated an old injury

WIMMER WONDERLAND: North America’s independent festival producer, Los Angeles-based Danny Wimmer Presents has raised what’s described as a significant investment round from Ron Burkle’s investment firm The Yucaipa Companies. The company is in acquisition mode for smaller festivals, claiming it had deal sheets in place for four indie promoters and festivals. It plans a big push in country music, reports indicate. Among its existing portfolio:  Sonic Temple Art + Music Festival in Columbus, Ohio; Aftershock in Sacramento, California; Epicenter in Charlotte, North Carolina; Welcome To Rockville in  Daytona Beach, Florida and the Trifesta series in Louisville, Kentucky which includes Hometown Rising Country Music & Bourbon Festival, Louder Than Life and Bourbon & Beyond.

JOEY KRAMER BACK: Aerosmith drummer Joey Kramer returned behind the kit this week after the band snubbed him for the Grammys, sparking a lawsuit. Kramer was the band’s drummer at the group’s Deuces Are Wild residency at the Park Theater Las Vegas at the MGM Grand. It was Kramer’s first appearance since an April 2019 accident.

POP SMOKE DIES:  The music world was stunned this week at the apparent execution murder of Brooklyn rapper Pop Smoke at a home in the Hollywood Hills. Police sources claim the murder appeared to be gang-related. It ends his blossoming career, which will be remembered by the summer hit, Welcome to the Party.



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