Sharp Notes May 30 2001

Back to Rockville. R.E.M. and MTV celebrated their 20-year anniversaries together when the Athens trio recently returned as one of the few acts to make a second appearance on "MTV Unplugged." R.E.M. taped 17 songs during the session, including tracks from their new Reveal release. Only "Losing My Religion" was reprised from the first show, in 1991. The special airs July 19.

Atlanta's Lovett School Jazz Ensemble took third place in the prestigious Essential Ellington High School Jazz Band Competition and Festival, held in New York City. Stutz Wimmer, director of the ensemble, accepted the trophy and an award of $4,000.

Turban renewal. Folky-soulstress India Arie has gotten the nod to be Sade's opening act for 30 dates on a North American trek in late summer. The show hits Atlanta's Philips Arena Aug. 27. Arie's debut album, which has gone gold, peaked at No. 10, and is now at No. 37, on Billboard's Hot 200.

Dancing queen. Jennifer Walker, who owns Atlanta's Pleazure Productions, has been named one of the "30 Women of Dance" by DMA (Dance Music Authority) magazine. Walker is profiled in the July issue of the contemporary dance periodical.

Re-mixed up. Everything But the Girl's Ben Watt and Tracey Thorn have chosen Atlanta's Ananda Project for inclusion on the latest installment of their Back to Mine mix series on Ultra Records. The duo compiles the finest in late-night house and down-tempo hip-hop on the set, which hit stores May 29. Along with Ananda's tune, "Cascades of Colour," the compilation includes remixed tracks by Beth Orton, Slick Rick and even Donny Hathaway.

Wave goodbye to King Lear Jet's keyboardist/flutist Andrea Schocet. A former member of Injun, Space Crime Quintet and the Yum Yum Tree, Schocet will be moving to New York City in June, but not before playing a final gig with SCQ May 31 at MJQ.