Dancing About Politics: Trey Anastasio, Dr. John, SMAP


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The Boston Herald interviews Dr. John. "Did Katrina make you a political artist?" asks Jed Gottlieb. "I’ve been at that political stuff since the second record I made," replies the Night Tripper, adding, "People outside of New Orleans have no idea what it’s like in the city. Half the population is missing. And the other half has been beat so bad from every direction, from the government, from the insurance companies."

The Phoenix New Times sees what happens "When Tragedy and Politics Turn into Popular Music," from Shona Laing's "Glad I'm Not a Kennedy" to R.E.M.'s "Exhuming McCarthy."

A survey by a UK music-industry pressure group warns that 80% of British kids use file-sharing services on a weekly basis. Meanwhile, a European report discovers that one-third of all Europeans have never used the Net.

Trey Anastasio records "You Want to Stay High," a catchy, Beatles-y plea for moderation, with the Fab Faux's Rich Pagano. Hear it here.

SMAP (Sports Music Assembles People), a Japanese blend of Menudo and the Monkees, endorses the country's ruling Liberal Democratic Party on the eve of national elections expected to be dominated by the opposition Democratic Party of Japan.