LIZ PHAIR, in L.A., moving into the final stretch of her long-in-the-works fourth album, due next year. Fellow singer/songwriter Michael Penn is producing some of the tracks; Pete Yorn has pitched in on the writing side.

LOU REED, in New York, putting finishing touches on POEtry, a two-CD soundtrack to his musical theater collaboration with Robert Wilson, based on Edgar Allan Poe’s work. Willem Dafoe recites most of Wilson’s text while Reed contributes 13 new songs; other guests range from Steve Buscemi to David Bowie.

BONNIE RAITT, in L.A., wrapping up Silver Lining, a first-quarter 2002 release recorded with her touring band and coproducers Mitchell Froom and Tchad Blake.