CNN launches 'The Music Room'

There's more music in the air. CNN International today announced the launch of a new weekly programme The Music Room.

The show features some of the world's best musical talent, from unknowns to Grammy winners, performing live and explaining the inspiration behind their work, according to an official release.

Sponsored by Toyota, The Music Room features in-depth coverage of the world's leading artists and bands as well as a showcase of upcoming talent, joining artists on the road and in the studio while exploring their craft and inspirations, their plans and sometimes their frustrations, the release says.

The launch show of The Music Room features two of the divas of R&B, Nelly Furtado and Alicia Keys, as well as a visit to the New York home of Rob Thomas of Matchbox Twenty. International artists appearing on forthcoming shows in interviews or performing live in The Music Room studio include Moby, Michael Stipe, Hikaru Utada, Fatboy Slim, Natalie Imbruglia, Coldplay, Gorillaz, Manu Chao, The Strokes, No Doubt, Kylie Minogue, Chemical Brothers, Daft Punk, Alanis Morissette, Ja Rule, and Usher.

The Music Room is a half-hour weekly show that airs at 7 pm on Sundays reachung 172 million households around the world, the release says. Regular features of the programme include a look at rising stars and emerging talent in 'Breaking Through', coverage of music from around the world in the Global Beat!, and regular visits to the world of dance and electronic music with the Beat Club feature.

The show features charts from a number of countries in the Americas, Europe and Asia as well as covering the best of the new album releases and delves deeper into the music industry and issues such as copyright piracy, artists' relationships with record labels and the latest technology. The programme will also be visiting festivals around the world over the next few months, including the Caracas Pop Festival and the Winter Music Conference in Miami (the top gathering for DJs and dance music).

Anchoring The Music Room is 24-year-old Sasha Rionda, a Swiss Mexican who speaks Spanish, English, German and French. Prior to joining 'The Music Room' in March 2002, Rionda was a correspondent for the Latin American network Cinecanal for whom she reported from New York and Las Vegas. She has also appeared as a guest host for the Wild On the Beach Australia program on the North American entertainment network E!

The Music Room is also backed by a dedicated website,, featuring special articles on the artists appearing in the show, background information, biographies and program details.

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