1. Fleetwood Mac Go On Tour
Fleetwood Mac will head out on their first world tour in a decade in April. The band – who are presently comprised of the classic Rumours-era lineup aside from the retired Christine McVie – promise to play all of their biggest hits, plus, possibly, a good chunk of songs from Tusk.
2. Beyoncé Performs At The Super Bowl
This is going to be the greatest Super Bowl half time show of all time, because she is Beyoncé. If you have any doubt about this, they will be totally shattered midway through Super Bowl XLVII on February 3rd, because she is Beyoncé.
3. My Bloody Valentine Finally Release New Music
My Bloody Valentine haven’t put out new music since their highly influential masterpiece Loveless came out in 1991. The group have at long last completed an album of new songs and will release it through their website early in 2013. This is basically the best news ever for fans of hazy indie rock, but expectations are so high that many are bound to be disappointed if the band puts out anything less than totally brilliant and game-changing.
4. “Matilda” Opens On Broadway
Matilda, the stage musical based on Roald Dahl’s 1988 novel, has been both massively popular and hugely acclaimed throughout its run on the West End in London. The show will hit New York in 2013, with previews beginning at the Shubert Theater on March 4th.
5. James Murphy Produces The New Arcade Fire Album
LCD Soundsystem mastermind James Murphy is co-producing Arcade Fire’s fourth album, which is set to come out sometime in the first half of 2013. The band is unlikely to take on the dancey rhythms of LCD, but with Murphy on board, it’s a given that the record will sound impeccable.
6. Lady Gaga Unleashes “ARTPOP”
Lady Gaga will unveil her new project, ARTPOP, gradually over the course of 2013. It’s going to be a very ambitious undertaking, including two new albums and a special app, on top of the usual extravagant videos, touring production, and costumes. A lot is riding on ARTPOP – if it’s a commercial success, it will cement Gaga as one of pop’s most unstoppable divas, but if it flops, she may spend the rest of her career as a cult artist.
7. Nicki Minaj, Mariah Carey, and Keith Urban Join “American Idol”
The 12th season of American Idol is already notable for a clash between new judges Mariah Carey and Nicki Minaj at an audition in Charlotte a few months ago. It remains to be seen whether or not the two divas will bicker throughout the season, or if country star Keith Urban will bring anything to the dynamic of the show’s new panel of judges.
8. A$AP Rocky Makes His Debut
Harlem rapper A$AP Rocky is stepping up to the big leagues of hip-hop with his first proper album Long Live A$AP, out January 15th. The first two singles, “Goldie” and “Fuckin’ Problem,” are already hits, but the record’s best songs – the slow, stoned Clams Casino track “LVL” and the hazy A$AP-produced cut “Suddenly” – are unlikely to make it to the radio.
9. Trent Reznor Launches A Streaming Music Service
Nine Inch Nails’ Trent Reznor has partnered with Beats By Dre to launch a new streaming audio service that may or may not be called Daisy in the first half of 2013. Not much is known about the service, but it will be focused on helping listeners discover new music, both through Pandora-like algorithm programming and an editorial staff who will curate new and old music.
10. Tegan And Sara Go Pop
The twin duo’s seventh album Heartthrob will be their most pop-oriented record yet, at least going on the sound of its first single, “Closer.” They’ve been a huge cult act for years, but 2013 could be the year they become household names.
11. Phoenix Get Experimental
The French rock band Phoenix will release their fifth album – and their first since hitting the big time with “1901” and “Lisztomania” – in April. “It’s very experimental, it’s very minimal music,” says lead singer Thomas Mars. “There’s something a little frustrating when you do pop music… We’d like to go somewhere else, we want to change that DNA.” The band haven’t announced a title for the record just yet.
12. Dave Grohl Teams Up WIth Pretty Much Everyone For “Sound City”
Dave Grohl’s documentary about Sound City Studios in Los Angeles – the place where Nirvana’s Nevermind was recorded, among many other classic albums – will premiere at the Sundance Film Festival in February. The film should be cool, but the soundtrack should be amazing, as it features all-new collaborations between Grohl and superstars like Paul McCartney, Stevie Nicks, and Trent Reznor.
13. Shakira And Usher Become Judges On “The Voice”
Shakira and Usher will replace Christina Aguilera and Cee Lo Green on the next season of The Voice. This should be pretty interesting, at least in that it’s hard to imagine what the dynamic between those two singers could be like, and it’s even harder when you factor in Adam Levine and Blake Shelton.
14. “Smash” Tries To Reinvent Itself
Smash was so widely mocked in its first season that the show’s creator, Theresa Rebeck, was fired. The new season will expand its scope beyond the show-within-a-show premise to be about the world of Broadway, so star Megan Hilty will stick around, and Jennifer Hudson will join the cast as a diva of some other production. It’s going to be a risky season – if the show gets worse, it may lose more of its audience, but if it gets too good, it may lose the small legion of people who obsessively hate-watch it.
15. Vampire Weekend Will Return
Vampire Weekend’s third album doesn’t have a solid release date yet, but it’s almost certain to come out in 2013. “Unbelievers,” a new song that they debuted on Jimmy Kimmel Live back in October, will probably be on it.
16. The Rolling Stones Are Probably Going To Headline Coachella
This isn’t officially confirmed just yet, but someone in the Rolling Stones camp slipped up and included a Coachella slot in the forthcoming tour dates section of the band’s mobile app. Whoooooops, but totally awesome all the same.
17. Taylor Swift Will Get A New Boyfriend
This is inevitable. Also inevitable: They will break up, and she will write a song about it, and he will feel a deep string in his heart every time it is played on the radio sometime in the not-so-distant future. And so it goes.
And There’s More!
There’s so much coming that we could either never predict – who could have ever seen “Gangnam Style” or “Call Me Maybe” coming a year ago? – or have not yet been confirmed. But there’s a lot of superstar artists likely to put out new music in 2013, including U2, Kanye West, Beyoncé, Mariah Carey, Daft Punk, Adele, Spoon, Pearl Jam, Skrillex, and maybe just maybe, D’Angelo. Also, there’s a really good chance that R. Kelly might actually make good on his promise to put on a stage production of his Trapped in the Closet saga! There is so much to look forward to, seriously.