Friday, February 27, 2015

George Harrison Tree Replanted In Los Angeles After Beetles Ate Predecessor

A shrubby yew pine which in theory can withstand ice, drought and above all beetles has replaced the original George Harrison tree, which succumbed last year to a beetle infestation.

Relatives and admirers gathered in Griffith Park, Los Angeles, on Wednesday for a planting ceremony on what would have been the late Beatle’s 72nd birthday.

“We never expected to be doing this again,” said Paula Greenfield, who helped organize the original planting in 2002 and galvanised support for this one.

Several hundred people attended, including Harrison’s sister, Louise, sister-in-law, Linda Arias, and councilman Tom LaBonge. A local band played several of his songs, including Here Comes the Sun and Give Me Love, on what turned out to be a balmy, cloudless day.

The 10ft replacement is of a species that withstood the ice age and can better resist insect infestations. California’s drought is blamed for beetles devouring the original Canary Island pine.

“They hollowed it out,” said Greenfield. “When I saw the pictures I thought, ‘No, this has to be photoshopped.”

Park workers swiftly felled the pine to avoid others becoming contaminated, leaving the city to mourn what some called rock music’s most ironic dead tree.

The musician would probably have mourned the loss but appreciated the irony, said Greenfield. “George Harrison had a wonderful, wonderful and according to some people wicked sense of humour,” she said. “And he was a gardener. He would have understood.”

Harrison died from cancer in Los Angeles on 29 November 2001, aged 58. The pine was planted in his honour the following year in Griffith Park, which covers about 4,300 acres north of Hollywood.

In 2004 the city council proclaimed George Harrison Day in Los Angeles and embedded a bronze plaque in a granite slab beside the tree. It said: “In memory of a great humanitarian who touched the world as an artist, a musician and a gardener.” It also included a Harrison quote: “For the forest to be green, each tree must be green.”

Harrison was a keen gardener at Kinfauns, his home in Surrey in the 1960s, then at Friar Park, a dilapidated estate he bought in 1970s as the Beatles were breaking up. He worked with a team of gardeners to restore and landscape the grounds.

“In the garden you see all the seasons come and go,” he said in a 1981 Good Morning America interview. “Whatever you do can affect it all but at the same time the flowers don’t answer you back, don’t give you no trouble. It’s very nice.”

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

LA Greek Theatre Named Best Small Outdoor Venue For 15th Time

The Greek Theatre in Los Angeles was named North America’s “Best Small Outdoor Venue of the Year” for the 15th time at the Annual Pollstar Awards. This marks 11 consecutive wins for the historic venue under the stewardship of Nederlander Concerts.

“The Greek had a record-breaking year and we are honored that the industry, once again, recognized our hard work, passion and dedication to this iconic venue,” said Alex Hodges, CEO of Nederlander Concerts.

The Greek Theatre’s 2014 season was one of the busiest seasons in over a decade with 75 events.  The wide range of headline acts crossing all music genres included such music stars as nine-time Grammy Award-winner John Legend, alt-J, La Ley, Sara Bareilles, legendary French singer Charles Aznavour, Massive Attack, Alejandra Guzmán and the number-one selling duo, Daryl Hall and John Oates, plus many more.

Other highlights included multiple night sell-outs with two performances by multi-Grammy Award winner Sam Smith, two-time Grammy Award-winning songstress Lorde, Jack Johnson and two-time Hall of Fame inductees Crosby, Stills and Nash, who were just a few of the many headlining artists who graced the famous stage over the six month season.

Each year Pollstar invites a cross section of international music business professionals to make the nominations for The Pollstar Concert Industry Awards. The awards honor artists, management, talent buyers, venues, support services and more for their professionalism, achievements and abilities. Winners are determined by votes from the international readership of Pollstar Magazine.

This year’s nominees for the Best Small Outdoor Venue award included the Santa Barbara Bowl (another Nederlander exclusively booked venue), Greek Theatre (Berkeley, CA), Filene Center at Wolf Trap (Vienna, VA), Meadowbrook (Gilford, NH), St. Augustine Amphitheatre (St. Augustine, FL) and The Woods at Fontanel (Whites Creek, TN).  The Greek Theatre’s General Manager, Rena Wasserman was also nominated for “Facility Executive of the Year.”

Currently, Nederlander is actively programming the Greek’s 2015 season and has already announced Damien Rice (April 24), Nightwish (May 1), The Decemberists (May 2), The Moody Blues (May 5), Franco De Vita (May 9), The Piano Guys (May 15), Willie Nelson & Family – Alison Krauss & Union Station featuring Jerry Douglas (July 18) and Ben Harper & The Innocent Criminals (Sept. 18).  Additional shows will be announced on March 6 as part of the venues annual subscription program.

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

First Two Bad Company Albums Remastered & Expanded

Bad Company has influenced bands from Bon Jovi to Five Finger Death Punch, who recently had a #1 hit with their cover of the song "Bad Company."  They have also helped shaped the sound of an entire rock era with iconic powerhouse rock anthems "Can't Get Enough," "Rock Steady," along with the ever popular ballads "Ready for Love," "Seagull," and  Grammy®-nominated "Feel Like Makin' Love." The British rockers recently unearthed the original multi-track tapes from their first two albums and discovered previously unreleased tracks, takes, and mixes from those sessions. 

For the first time ever, the band has remastered Bad Company (1974) and Straight Shooter (1975) using the original tapes to create new Deluxe Editions. It was paramount to founding member Paul Rodgers that the CD and LP be copied from the original tapes to guarantee the best sound possible. Each set includes a newly remastered version of the original album, along with a number of rare and unreleased recordings. The CD versions of these Deluxe Editions include all of the newly discovered bonus tracks, while their 180-gram vinyl counterparts offer a selection of the bonus material.

Singer, songwriter and multi-instrumentalist Rodgers, along with guitarist/songwriter Mick Ralphs, bassist Boz Burrell, and drummer Simon Kirke recorded the band's eponymous debut in November 1973 using Ronnie Lane's mobile studio at Headley Grange, the former poorhouse where Led Zeppelin recorded frequently. When Bad Company was released the following year, the album went to #1 in America during the band's first U.S. tour and was eventually certified 5x platinum thanks to hits like "Can't Get Enough," "Bad Company," "Ready for Love," and "Movin' On."

The second disc of the Deluxe Edition features 12 tracks, including eight previously unreleased recordings such as the demo for the ballad "The Way I Choose," a take of "Bad Company" recorded right before the album version, and an unedited version of "Superstar Woman," a song that Rodgers later recorded in 1983 for his solo album Cut Loose. Also featured is the single edit of "Can't Get Enough," and the b-sides "Little Miss Fortune" and "Easy On My Soul."

The band released its second album Straight Shooter in April 1975, 40 years to the month of the new deluxe edition. The album rose to #3 on the U.S. album chart and was certified 3x platinum behind the hit singles "Feel Like Makin' Love" and "Good Lovin' Gone Bad" as well as the rock radio staple "Shooting Star."

Of the 14 bonus tracks, all are previously unreleased except the b-side "Whiskey Bottle." Among the standouts is a stripped-down version of "Shooting Star," a remix of "Good Lovin' Gone Bad" with alternative guitar and vocals tracks, as well as two lost gems, never released before: "See The Sunlight" and "All Night Long."

Bad Company Deluxe Editions
Track Listings
Bad Company (1974)

Disc One
1. "Can't Get Enough"
2. "Rock Steady"
3. "Ready For Love"
4. "Don't Let Me Down"
5. "Bad Company"
6. "The Way I Choose"
7. "Movin' On"
8. "Seagull"

Disc Two
1. "Can't Get Enough" (Take 1)*
2. "Little Miss Fortune" (Demo Reel 1)*
3. "The Way I Choose" (Demo Reel 1)*
4. "Bad Company" (LMS Studio Reel 2-73 Session)*
5. "The Way I Choose" (Version 1 Inc. F/S)
6. "Easy On My Soul" (Long Version)
7. "Bad Company" (LMS Studio Reel 8-73 Session)*
8. Studio Chat/Dialogue
9. "Superstar Woman" (Long Version)*
10. "Can't Get Enough" (Single Edit)
11. "Little Miss Fortune" (B-side of "Can't Get Enough")*
12. "Easy On My Soul" (B-side of "Movin' On")*

Straight Shooter (1975)

Disc One
1. "Good Lovin' Gone Bad"
2. "Feel Like Makin' Love"
3. "Weep No More"
4. "Shooting Star"
5. "Deal With The Preacher"
6. "Wild Fire Woman"
7. "Anna"
8. "Call On Me"

Disc Two
1. "Good Lovin' Gone Bad" (Alternate Vocal & Guitar)*
2. "Feel Like Makin' Love" (Take Before Master)*
3. "Weep No More" (Early Slow Version)*
4. "Shooting Star" (Alternate Take)*
5. "Deal With The Preacher" (Early Version)*
6. "Anna" (Alternate Vocal)*
7. "Call On Me" (Alternate Take)*
8. "Easy On My Soul" (Slow Version)
9. "Whiskey Bottle" (Early Slow Version)
10. "See the Sunlight"
11. "All Night Long"
12. "Wild Fire Woman" (Alternate Vocal & Guitar)*
13. "Feel Like Makin' Love" (Harmonica Version)
14. "Whiskey Bottle" (B-side of "Good Lovin' Gone Bad" )

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Lou Reed Not A Beatles Fan

Lou Reed said he "never liked" the Beatles and thought they were "garbage"....

Audio footage has emerged of late Velvet Underground singer Lou Reed labeling the Beatles as "garbage".

The clip is part of PBS' animated 'Blank On Blank' project, a series of videos which combine the audio of old interviews with famous artists with newly sketched animation.

As Rolling Stone report, the latest unearthed interview dates back to 1987 and sees Reed sharing his opinion on both the famous four and the Doors.

"When [bands] did try to get 'arty,' it was worse than stupid rock & roll," Reed says in the interview. "What I mean by 'stupid,' I mean, like, the Doors... I never liked the Beatles [either]. I thought they were garbage. If you say, 'Who did you like?' I liked nobody."

Reed also described the purpose of the Velvet Underground as being to "elevate the rock'n'roll song and take it where it hadn't been taken before". Watch the full 'Blank On Blank' interview below.


Reed passed away from liver disease on October 27, 2013 at the age of 71.

Reed's death leaves Cale and drummer Moe Tucker as the only surviving members of the pioneering New York art-rock group. Cale and Reed founded The Velvet Underground in 1965. They later enlisted guitarist Sterling Morrison, who died in 1995, and singer Nico, who contributed four songs to the band's debut and died in 1988.

The band released two albums together under the original line-up – 1967's The Velvet Underground & Nico and 1968's White Light/White Heat before Cale was replaced by Doug Yule later that year. They then released their self-titled third album in 1969, before 1970's Loaded, Reed quitting before 1973's Squeeze.

As well as his time in The Velvet Underground, Reed also had great success as a solo artist, with his second solo album 'Transformer' spawning world-renowned hits ''Walk On The Wild Side" and "Perfect Day."

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

'Fender Legends' Painting To Be Unveiled On Rock Legends Cruise III

"I've always been a huge music fan and thought that it would be a personal challenge to depict some of the great music legends that I have always admired," states fine artist Marc Lacourciere, who will be unveiling his latest, and perhaps greatest, painting titled, "Fender Legends," on board this week's Rock Legends Cruise III.

Lacourciere, considered one of the world's most sought after fine artists, has combined his passion for music with an extraordinary artistic talent to create the ultimate expression of musical performance art.

Over the years, he's painted everyone from Aerosmith to ZZ Top... many a rock notable from A to Z, including the Beatles, the Doors, Led Zeppelin, Pink Floyd and the Rolling Stones.  

It's now the beginning of 2015 and to kick off the year, the artist is proud to announce his unique collaboration with the iconic musical instrument manufacturer, Fender, and his new "Fender Legends" painting honoring the greats.  

Two years in the making, Marc Lacourciere's "Fender Legends" painting features music pioneer Leo Fender and the following guitarists:

Jeff Beck    
James Burton
Eric Clapton
Kurt Cobain
Robert Cray
Sheryl Crow
Bob Dylan    
David Gilmour
Buddy Guy
George Harrison
Jimi Hendrix
Dusty Hill
Buddy Holly
James Jamerson
Mark Knopfler
Yngwie Malmsteen
Johnny Marr
Marcus Miller
Tom Morello
Malina Moye
Brad Paisley
Jaco Pastorius
Bonnie Raitt
Keith Richards
Bruce Springsteen
Joe Strummer
Pete Townshend
Keith Urban
Stevie Ray Vaughn
Muddy Waters
Brian Wilson
Ronnie Wood

Truly an epic tribute featuring some of the greatest legends to ever strap on, or plug in, a Fender guitar!

All immortalized on canvas to celebrate Fender's rich history and the artists that helped create it.
 
There will be 32 highly-collectible individually embellished artist proof (Exhibition Edition) canvases in all, numbering 1 through 32, each measuring 40" x 53".  

All licensed prints come framed with a Certificate of Authenticity (C.O.A.) and begin at $7500 (S & H not included).

What makes these prints even more collectible is the fact that each piece features an individual sketch on the back of one of the artists featured, making each truly unique... no two are the same.

In addition to the 32 prints offered to the public, a special "Leo Fender" print (with sketch) numbered "O" was created and is already spoken for...

As the official artist for all three Rock Legends Cruises, Lacourcierec will be donating partial proceeds from this week's onboard auction (and partial proceeds from sales through March 1, 2015) to the Native American Heritage Association, the charitable organization hosting, and benefiting from, the Cruise.

On the original Rock Legends Cruise in the fall of 2011, he did a painting of ZZ Top, the featured headliner, that was followed by a painting of Foreigner who headlined RLC II in January of 2013.

This year, a painting of Alice Cooper will also be displayed. Cooper will not only be rocking the boat but, signing one of the  "Welcome to my Nightmare" prints for charity.  

In addition to the Fender painting, other unveilings include two new art pieces on board RLC III including a non-music painting titled, "Spiritual Harmony."

For additional information on artist Marc Lacourciere, please see his official websites at www.musicfineart.com and www.motormarcart.com.

Monday, February 16, 2015

Crosby & Nash Headline Benefit Concert For Seva Foundation

Crosby & Nash and their band will play a show on Saturday, April 11th at the Nourse Theatre in San Francisco, California. Joel Rafael will open the show and Wavy Gravy will host. All proceeds will benefit Seva Foundation.

Ticket prices are $50 - $125 and all seats are reserved. A very limited amount of VIP tickets are available. These are $500 each and include a front row center orchestra seat, a collectible laminate pass, a meet & greet reception after the show and a limited edition event poster.

As a duo, longtime creative partners David Crosby and Graham Nash bring out the best in each other, their distinct yet complementary styles balancing an equation that delivers a seamless and inspiring musical whole. Two-thirds and one-half, respectively, of Crosby, Stills & Nash, and Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young, these Rock and Roll Hall of Famers are legendary for their airtight and crystal-clear vocal harmonies, as sublime when delivered by simply these two together as they are from the larger configurations. It is a sound that’s one of the true touchstones of the rock ‘n' roll era.

Joel Rafael has been writing and performing folk music since 1978. Over the past four decades he has released a stunning collection of eight Americana albums, and has opened for acts such as Rick Danko, Emmylou Harris, John Lee Hooker, John Stewart, Laura Nyro and Taj Mahal. He has collaborated with artists such as Crosby, Stills & Nash, Jackson Browne and Rosie Flores.

Originally known as Hugh Romney, Wavy became famous in the counter culture movement when he stood on the stage of the original Woodstock concert and announced...." What we have in mind is breakfast in bed for 400,000!" Over the past three + decades, Wavy’s primary focus has been Camp Winnarainbow, a circus and performing arts camp for children that he co-directs with his wife Jahanara and raising FUN’ds for the Seva Foundation, which he co-founded in 1978 with Larry Brilliant, Ram Dass and a group of public health professionals. Wavy is also know as a Ben & Jerry's ice cream flavor. Through his good work on behalf of the planet and its least fortunate residents, Wavy Gravy has achieved his own brand of sainthood.

Tickets for the Benefit For Seva are available at http://www.cityboxoffice.com/eventperformances.asp?evt=2016

Friday, February 13, 2015

The Queen Has John Lennon's MBE And Beatles Fans Want It Back To Where It Once Belonged

The MBE medal that John Lennon famously rejected and returned to the Queen in 1969 has been found in the most unusual of places — a dusty old drawer in Buckingham Palace.

What’s more, fans of the Beatles believe that the iconic medal is an important part of Beatles memorabilia and are calling on none other than Yoko One to storm the palace gates and get back what once belonged to her famous husband.

Not that John Lennon would want it, of course. The British Honours system troubled Lennon immensely, because, like many, he grew to regard it as symbolic of the antiquated class, inherited privilege, and grossly disproportionate distribution of wealth which still exists in Britain to this day.

Not that any such trivia troubles his lesser talented Beatle bandmate, Sir Paul McCartney, who has accepted with glee and unfurrowed brow award after award from his “betters.”

Likewise, Sir Mick Jagger campaigned vigorously for the honour to become a knight, but fellow Rolling Stone Keith Richards just dismissed his bandmate’s treasured ambition in one word: “ludicrous.”

To be fair, the old lush had a valid point. Jagger may have taken his place at Queen Elizabeth’s round table alongside such battled-hardened warriors as Sir Elton John, Sir Cliff Richard, Sir Paul McCartney, and Sir Bruce Forsyth, but let’s face it, if you were gong to war, would you want this sorry shower leading the way?

The thin white Duke that is David Bowie has turned down both a CBE and a knighthood, and summed it up perfectly by explaining, “I would never have any intention of accepting anything like that. I seriously don’t know what it’s for. It’s not what I spent my life working for.”

John Lennon, on the other hand, did initially accept a MBE in 1965 after the Fab Four were invested as Members of the British Empire in the Queen’s Birthday Honours in 1965, after topping record charts around the world. As the Beatles were little more than a bouncy little boy-band back then, we can forgive Lennon his eagerness to jump like an eager lap dog at the honor.

Four year later, and a Lennon who had longer hair, more sophisticated drugs, a radicalized soul, and the weight of worldwide fame behind him, decided that by accepting the MBE he had sold out to the establishment, and the only course of action left to him was to return the offending article forthwith.

So after collecting it from his Aunt Mimi’s mantelpiece, where it had taken pride of place for the previous four years, on November 25, 1969, Lennon finally returned his medal of honor to Her Majesty with an explanatory letter.

“Your Majesty, I am returning my MBE as a protest against Britain’s involvement in the Nigeria-Biafra thing, against our support of America in Vietnam and against ‘Cold Turkey’ slipping down the charts. With Love, John Lennon.”

It’s never been ascertained if the Queen of England is a Beatles fan or not, and if so, if her favorite mop top was Lennon or McCartney. We’ll never know for sure just how hard Her Highness took such a snub, but we do know that years after the event, Lennon remained very proud of his revolutionary gesture.

“Lots of people who complained about us getting the MBE received theirs for heroism in the war. They got them for killing people. We deserved ours for not killing people. In a way it was hypocritical of me to accept it. But I’m glad I did really, because it meant that four years later I was able to use it to make a gesture.”

Four decades later, and after a campaign to find Lennon’s returned MBE, Beatles fans have located it in a cabinet at the Chancery Department of the Royal Household, where it has lain untouched for years.

Purple Revolver reports that it is still in the presentation case bearing the name John Winston Lennon, and has been stored along with his protest letter. Beatles history experts regard it as one of the most important pieces of Beatles history and are calling for the medal to be put on permanent display at “Mendips”, the childhood home John shared with his Aunt Mimi in Woolton, now operated by The National Trust.

One Beatles fan in Liverpool was particularly vocal about where the medal belongs.

“Let’s hope Yoko will agree that John’s medal should be displayed in his home town. We completely respect John’s decision to return the MBE but we also believe that showing it to the public would be appropriate since it would raise awareness of John’s campaign for peace.

“We are urging Yoko to put in a request to Buckingham Palace for them to return the medal to her. What she then does is her decision, but we would be delighted to have it on display in Liverpool

“It would be fitting to return the medal to the mantelpiece at Mendips. The Royal Household is sitting on a unique piece of Beatles history and it should not be left to gather dust in a draw.

“The medal is a vital piece of Beatles memorabilia and should be exhibited for John’s fans to see.”

A Buckingham Palace spokeswoman confirmed that the MBE has been located and that it remains the property of John Lennon’s estate.

“It has been retained since the day Mr Lennon returned it but a decision over whether the medal could go on display in a museum is not up to us. It would be up to Yoko Ono as she is the custodian of John Lennon’s estate.”

Beatles fans everywhere are delighted that the medal has not been melted or put in a box and re-cycled as previously thought, and although Lennon didn’t appear to think a lot about the medal, Beatles fans, who no doubt consider themselves “classless, clever, and free,” have a different viewpoint altogether.

“John’s memory will live on for ever in his music but this MBE is a very precious memento.”

Thursday, February 12, 2015

Authorized Jeff Beck Book In The Works

Guitarist Jeff Beck has signed an exclusive publishing deal with the London-based Genesis Publishing Group.  Plans to release a high quality ‘signed, limited-edition’ book are in the works for release in the last quarter of 2015.  In addition, Beck is hard at work on an officially sanctioned documentary and is currently penning his own autobiography. 

Beck would like his fans to know, that while others may release un-authorized documentaries and biographies, these forthcoming works will be the only authorized versions by the guitarist himself.

Beck's career took off in the mid-1960s, after replacing Eric Clapton as lead guitarist for The Yardbirds on the recommendation of his friend Jimmy Page. Over the years, Beck has collaborated with Stevie Wonder, Diana Ross, Mick Jagger, Tina Turner, Roger Waters, Les Paul, Jon Bon Jovi, Stanley Clarke, Herbie Hancock and Joss Stone among many others.

Beck has twice been inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame: once with The Yardbirds in 1992 and once as a solo artist in 2009. He has won numerous Grammy Awards, including two at the 2011 Grammy Award Celebration when he won Best Rock Instrumental Performance for “Hammerhead” and Best Pop Instrumental performance for “Nessun Dorma,” both from his last studio album, Emotion & Commotion.

Recently, in London, Beck participated in The Poppy Appeal song "No Man's Land," a tribute to the men and women that served in World War I, resulting in four performances, culminating in the NFL pre-game entertainment that was broadcast from Wembley Stadium. The song featured singer Joss Stone on vocals and a gospel choir with vocals arranged by Antonia Wilson.

In the meantime, the Live In Tokyo DVD was released last November and reached #1 on the Billboard DVD chart.  For Beck, 2015 will include both solo tour dates as well as co-headlining dates with ZZ Top and will complete work on his new studio album, expected later this year.

Joining Beck on both the solo and double-bill tour are his band -- Jimmy Hall on vocals, Rhonda Smith on bass, Jonathan Joseph on drums and Nicolas Meier on guitar.

Jeff Beck Solo Dates
April 13 - The Capitol Theatre - Port Chester, NY
April 15 - The Paramount - Huntington, NY
April 16 - The Paramount - Huntington, NY
April 17 - The Paramount - Huntington, NY
April 18 - The Capitol Theatre - Port Chester, NY
April 19 - Orpheum Theatre - Boston, MA
April 21 - Ulster Performing Arts Center - Kingston, NY
April 22 - Bergen Performing Arts Center - Englewood, NJ
April 24 - Count Basie Theatre - Red Bank, NJ
April 25 - The Strand – Capital Performing Arts Center - York, PA
April 26 - The Palace Theatre - Greensburg, PA

With ZZ Top
April 30 - Cedar Park Center - Cedar Park, TX
May 1 - Winstar Casino - Thackerville, OK
May 2 - Cynthia Woods Mitchell Pavilion - The Woodlands, TX
May 3 - Concrete Street - Corpus Christi, TX
May 7 - MidFlorida Credit Union Amphitheatre - Tampa, FL
May 8 - Cruzan Amphitheater - West Palm Beach, FL
May 9 - St. Augustine Amphitheatre - St. Augustine, FL
May 10 - Verizon Wireless Amphitheatre - Alpharetta, GA

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Jethro Tull's 'Minstrel In The Gallery: 40th Anniversary La Grande Edition' Coming In May

Jethro Tull notched its sixth gold record in 1975 with its eighth studio album, Minstrel In The Gallery. Its elaborate production is reminiscent of the band's 1972 classic Thick As a Brick and its songs rock as hard as anything in the band's vast and storied catalog. To mark the occasion of the album's 40-year anniversary, Parlophone will present several new versions of the record.

Minstrel In The Gallery: 40th Anniversary La Grande Edition will be available as a limited edition 2CD/2DVD set on May 5.

Highlights from the set include:

  • Original album and seven bonus tracks (six previously unreleased), two mixed to 5.1 surround, and all to stereo by Steven Wilson.
  • Flat transfers of the original LP mix at 96/24 (plus "Summerday Sands").
  • Flat transfer of the original quad mix of the LP (plus "Summerday Sands").
  • An eight-minute film of the band performing "Minstrel In The Gallery" in Paris from July 1975. 
  •  Presented in a case-bound DVD book that includes an 80-page booklet featuring an extensive history of the album, track-by-track annotations by Ian Anderson, recollections by roadie Kenny Wylie, Maison Rouge maintenance engineer Pete Smith, and string section member Liz Edwards, plus lyrics, tour itinerary, and rare and unseen photographs.  

A new stereo remix of Minstrel In The Gallery will also be released on a single CD, digitally and on 180-gram vinyl as a limited edition pressing.

When it was originally released, Minstrel In The Gallery became the band's fifth consecutive U.S. Top 10 album, peaking at #7, and at #29 in the U.K. It was also the last to feature the longtime lineup of Ian Anderson, Martin Barre, John Evans, Barrie Barlow and Jeffrey Hammond-Hammond.

For this anniversary edition, the album has been expanded with the B-side "Summerday Sands," several studio outtakes, as well as alternate session material done for a BBC broadcast of the album's title track, "Cold Wind To Valhalla," and "Aqualung." The second disc features a live recording of the band performing at the Olympia in Paris on July 5, 1975, a few months prior to the release of Minstrel In The Gallery. During the show, the band played songs from several of its albums, including War Child (1974) and Aqualung (1971), as well as an early performance of "Minstrel In The Gallery." It was mixed to 5.1 and stereo by King Crimson guitarist Jakko Jakszyk.

Minstrel In The Gallery: 40th Anniversary La Grande Edition

Track Listing

Disc One: New Steven Wilson Stereo Remix
1.    "Minstrel In The Gallery"
2.    "Cold Wind To Valhalla"
3.    "Black Satin Dancer"
4.    "Requiem"
5.    "One White Duck / 010  = Nothing At All"
6.    "Baker St. Muse"
a.    "Pig-Me And The Whore"
b.    "Nice Little Tune"
c.    "Crash-Barrier Waltzer"
d.    "Mother England Reverie"
7.    "Grace"
8.    "Summerday Sands"
9.    "Requiem" (Version 1)*
10.    "One White Duck" (Take 5)*
11.    "Grace" (Take 2)*
12.    "Minstrel In The Gallery" (BBC version)*
13.    "Cold Wind To Valhalla" (BBC version)*
14.    "Aqualung" (BBC version)*

Disc Two - Live At The Palais Des Sports, Paris,  July 5, 1975 (A Jakko Jakszyk Stereo Mix)
1.    "Introduction (The Beach Part 11)"
2.    "Wind Up"
3.    "Critique Oblique"
4.    "Wond'ring Aloud"
5.    "My God"
a.    Flute Solo Including: "God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen/Bouree/Quartet"
b.    "Living In The Past"
c.    "My God" (Reprise)
6.    "Cross-Eyed Mary"
7.    "Minstrel In The Gallery"
8.    "Skating Away On The Thin Ice Of The New Day"
9.    "Bungle In The Jungle"
10.    "Aqualung"
11.    Guitar Solo
12.    "Back-Door Angels"
13.    "Locomotive Breath"
with improvisation and including "Hard Headed English General" and "Back-Door Angels" (Reprise)

* Previously Unreleased

The DVDs will feature the DTS & DD 5.1 surround mixes as well as the 96/24 PCM stereo mix and an eight minute film of the band recorded in Paris in July 1975.

Tuesday, February 10, 2015

George Thorogood, Brian Setzer To Co-Headline U.S. Spring Tour

For the first time in more than 20 years, fans will be able to catch two legendary acts on the road together this summer on the George Thorogood And The Destroyers / Brian Setzer’s Rockabilly Riot Tour 2015, as they co-headline a national U.S. tour from May 27-June 20. 

The tour begins in Red Bank, New Jersey, and will hit such cities as New York, Baltimore, Detroit, Chicago (Elgin), Milwaukee, Denver, and more.

Setzer says, "Blues and Billy with a kick! Where else you gonna see this?!?”

Thorogood adds, “I am looking forward to working with Brian again.  He is a great American artist and a true rock & roller in the classic rockabilly fashion!"

Brian Setzer, iconic guitarist, songwriter vocalist and three-time Grammy-award-winner, is a "Musician's Musician" credited with continually taking chances with innovative and daring musical styles, while single-handedly resurrecting two forgotten genres of music (rockabilly in the ‘80's and swing in the '90's). Along the way, he has scored chart-topping hits, sold 13 million records and received the Orville H. Gibson Lifetime Achievement Award throughout his decorated career as founder/leader of the Stray Cats, his 18-piece Brian Setzer Orchestra, and as a solo artist. He is consistently cited as one of the world’s greatest living guitarists, and has a best-selling, extensive line of elite Gretsch signature model guitars bearing his name. Brian appeared in the 1987 film, La Bamba (the biographical film written following the life and career of Chicano rock 'n' roll star Ritchie Valens), portraying rockabilly pioneer Eddie Cochran. In 2002, Brian earned the distinct honor of being one of the few musicians to be animated in an episode of “The Simpsons,” an episode which also featured rock 'n' roll legends Mick Jagger and Keith Richards. That same year, Setzer was personally requested to induct Chet Atkins into the 17th Annual Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.

Setzer recently released his new album, Rockabilly Riot!: All Original, a straight-ahead rockabilly album from start to finish with 12 new songs featuring Setzer’s trademark twang and fretboard fire, on Surfdog Records. Last October (2014), Setzer earned the distinct honor of being asked by the Smithsonian Museum in Washington, D.C. to donate a replica guitar evocative of his original 1959 Gretsch 6120 “Stray Cat” guitar, joining an elite collection of musical instruments at the museum including John Coltrane’s saxophone, Dizzy Gillespie’s trumpet, Prince’s Yellow Cloud electric guitar and the Van Halen “Frank 2” guitar played and made famous by Eddie Van Halen.

George Thorogood And The Destroyers – whose lineup includes Jeff Simon (drums, percussion), Bill Blough (bass guitar), Buddy Leach (saxophone), and Jim Suhler (rhythm guitar) – performed more than 100 live concerts last year, touring the U.S. and Canada with their powerhouse rock with bar band roots, unchained attitude, and a fierce love of their country and blues history. Over the course of 16 studio albums during the last four decades, George and The Destroyers have stormed the charts with six Gold and two platinum selling albums. They have performed more than 8,000 live shows, and have sold more than 15 million albums. From their first show at Lane Hall, through legendary appearances on SNL and Live Aid, the opening slot on the Rolling Stones historic ’81 tour, their own record-breaking 50/50 tour, or any of their current 100+ shows per year – the band is known worldwide as road warriors.

Prior to the Thorogood/Setzer tour, Thorogood and his band will embark on the “George Thorogood And The Destoyers:  Badder Than Ever” tour which begins on February 27 in Burlington, Vermont, and concludes on April 26 at Stagecoach Festival in Indio, California.

George Thorogood And The Destroyers / Brian Setzer’s Rockabilly Riot Tour 2015 is as follows:

5/27/15 - Count Basie Theatre - Red Bank, NJ                  
5/29/15 - Beacon Theatre - New York, NY                    
5/30/15 - CMAC - Canandaigua, NY                
5/31/15 - Pier Six Pavilion - Baltimore, MD                    
6/5/15 - DTE Energy Music Theatre - Detroit, MI                          
6/6/15 - Grand Victoria Casino - Elgin, IL (Chicago)            
6/8/15 - Riverside Theater - Milwaukee, WI                    
6/9/15 - Surf Ballroom - Clear Lake, IA                      
6/10/15 - McGrath Amphitheatre - Cedar Rapids, IA                  
6/12/15 - Jackpot Junction Casino - Morton, MN                        
6/16/15 - Sandia Resort & Casino - Albuquerque, NM              
6/19/15 - Thunder Valley Casino - Lincoln, CA                        
6/20/15 - Mountain Winery - Saratoga, CA    

Monday, February 9, 2015

Rock Dominates The Grammys

AC/DC ripped the lid off the Grammys on Sunday with a high-energy opener that found singer Brian Johnson, 67, and guitarist Angus Young, 59, in top form. Many still-active rock legends took part, including 72-year-old Paul McCartney, Electric Light Orchestra, whose leader Jeff Lynne is in his late 60s, and Prince, 56. Prince also presented the coveted Album of the Year award to Beck Hansen, who is a relative rock 'n' roll spring chicken at 44.

The Grammys were peppered with plenty of young music stars, like Best New Artist winner Sam Smith, 22, who also won Song of the Year and Record of the Year; and Best Country Album winner 31-year-old Miranda Lambert. Performers included Beyoncé Knowles, already living legend at 33, with Katy Perry, 30, Rihanna, 26, and Ariana Grande, 21, not far behind. And music's most promising star is, of course, 25-year-old Taylor Swift, who did not need to perform to make her presence felt.

Notice anything about that list of up-and-comers? None them has ever even attempted to strap on a Les Paul and just freakin' rawk out. It's not just a Grammy thing. The truth is, you'd be hard-pressed to name a single bona fide rock star — we're talking face-melting guitar licks, larger-than-life personality and the kind of feral, subversive song that can change your life, man — who was born after 1980. And most certainly not at the Grammys.

Here's a couple of clips to show you who rocked the Grammys...

After an impassioned introduction from host LL Cool J, AC/DC took the stage with Chris Slade behind the kit, drumming for the hard rock band for the first time since 1994.

The first cut was the title track from AC/DC's 2014 album Rock Or Bust. For a second show-opening song, AC/DC dipped into the classics, rocking through "Highway to Hell," complete with some guitar theatrics from Angus Young.

Slade was brought back into the fold after old drummer Phil Rudd became estranged from the group when he was charged with threatening to kill an man in his employ in late 2014.



The night's second performance from a classic rock act was Jeff Lynne with a revamped lineup of Electric Light Orchestra. Richard Tandy was the only other ELO member from the band's heyday on stage to perform renditions of "Evil Woman," (Paul McCartney was caught on camera rocking out to this one), followed by "Mr. Blue Sky" featuring pop star Ed Sheeran.


Earlier in the broadcast, George Harrison was recognized by Smokey Robinson and Nile Rodgers with a Lifetime Achievement Award. Blues guitarist Buddy Guy, a winner of six Grammys, was also the recipient of a  Lifetime Achievement Award.

The late Johnny Winter also won Best Blues Album for his Step Back album.

Friday, February 6, 2015

Guitar Legend Adrian Belew Presents Newest Music In An App - FLUX by belew™

Guitarist, singer and songwriter Adrian Belew has just released his newest music – and it’s like nothing you’ve experienced before. FLUX by belew is music that is never the same twice...think about that for a moment. This new revolution in music provides listeners with a mobile “listening experience” that blends music and art all in one accessible iOS application. Now you have access to hundreds of combinations of new Adrian Belew songs, snippets and sound bites that have been cut up, randomized and reassembled in a way that's surprising and unique. The app embodies the future of technology and taps into what we love most about the Internet and social media: it’s always changing and moving forward. Developed in Amsterdam by MOBGEN and recorded by Belew himself, the musical roulette engine within FLUX by belew randomly connects sounds and beautiful visuals together using different algorithms to produce endless variations.

“I wanted to involve art and nature in the recordings – not just songs and music but also the feeling of life itself, where things are different all the time,” says Belew. He intends to keep adding to FLUX to make it truly an ever-evolving experience.

Adrian’s newest music in the FLUX by belew app is currently available for iPhones and iPads through the iTunes store for $9.99.

For more information go to http://bit.ly/flux_belew

FLUX:FX is a multi-effect audio processor app for the iPad that lets you ‘play’ your effects. Innovative, intuitive and exciting, FLUX:FX lets you manipulate any audio signal into something entirely new, and redefines the possibilities of audio design and live performance in an app with an almost unlimited range of effect options. FLUX:FX is a truly authentic digital platform for designing your sound. Featuring more than 30 modular effects blocks, a master Performance view with 1-touch interaction, an advanced Edit view with multi-touch and full assignment possibilities, and an innovative Sequencer view to bring motion to the audio signal, this app allows the user to easily create previously unheard sounds. Fully compatible with Audiobus, Inter-App Audio and MIDI, FLUX:FX is made to connect seamlessly with existing live rigs and studio workflows.

Full details on the FLUX:FX application can be found at flux.noii.se.

Wednesday, February 4, 2015

Todd Rundgren To Release 'Global,' His 25th Solo Album

Prolific musical experimenter, premier league pop craftsman, tireless producer, runt, wizard and true star Todd Rundgren will release his new studio album Global on the Esoteric Antenna label via Cherry Red on Monday, April 6th internationally and Tuesday, April 7th in the USA (via MVD Entertainment).

Global is Todd Rundgren's 25th solo studio album (and that's not including the two albums he recorded with his first band The Nazz, and the 9 albums he recorded with his band Utopia). Todd’s latest musical vision is a contemporary fusion of styles - rock, soul and EDM – which continues the tradition of boundary-breaking works from this visionary genius.

Global provides tacit proof that the veteran singer, songwriter and producer refuses to sit still and play it 45+ years into his remarkable career, but rather, continues to try bold yet accessible new approaches - while all the while never sacrificing his songcraft, and remaining unmistakably "Todd."

With the release of Global,  Rundgren will tour in support of the release beginning in the USA on April 10th, and continuing through mid-June, with plans to perform in the UK and Europe in the early autumn. And for record collectors, a 180g-vinyl edition of the album will be released on April 27th.

The full track listing for Global is:

  1. Evrybody
  2. Flesh & Blood
  3. Rise
  4. Holyland
  5. Blind
  6. Earth Mother
  7. Global Nation
  8. Soothe
  9. Terra Firma
  10. Fate
  11. Skyscraper
  12. This Island Earth

The first leg of Todd Rundren's US tour is listed below. The second leg, continuing through mid-June, will be announced shortly.

APRIL
10 - Park City, UT@The Egyptian Theatre  
11 - Park City, UT@The Egyptian Theatre
12 - Park City, UT@The Egyptian Theatre
14 - Colorado Springs, CO @ Pikes Peak
17 - Kansas City, MO @ Harrah's KC
18 - Little Rock, AR - Spirit of Harmony Foundation Event @ Clinton Library
19 - Little Rock, AR @ Rev Room
21 - Milwaukee, WI @ Pabst Theatre
22 - Chicago, IL @ The Vic Theatre
23 - Grand Rapids, MI @ Intersection
25 - Pittsburgh, PA   @ Stage AE
26 - Northfield, OH @ Hard Rock
27 - Late Show with David Letterman"
28 - Buffalo, NY @ Town Ballroom
29 - State College, PA @ The State Theatre
         
 MAY
1 - Newton, NJ @ Newton Theatre
2 - Stafford Springs, CT @ Palace Theatre
3 - Boston, MA @ Wilbur Theatre
5 - NY, NY  @ Highline Ballroom
6 - NY, NY  @ Highline Ballroom
8  - NY @ Turning Stone
9  - Plymouth, NH @ Flying Monkey PAC
10 -  Norfolk, CT @ Infinity Music Hall
12  - Ridgefield, CT @ Ridgefield Playhouse
13  - New Hope, PA @ Havana New Hope
14  - Alexandria, VA @ Birchmere
16  - Wilmington, DE @ World Café Live
17  - Annapolis, MD @ MD Hall for the Creative Arts
20  -  Atlanta, GA @ Center Stage
22  - Ponte Vedre, FL @ Ponte Vedre Concert Hall
23  - Ft. Lauderdale, FL @ Culture Room

FOR MORE INFORMATION VISIT:

www.facebook.com/toddrundgren
www.facebook.com/thetoddstore
www.trconnection.com

Tuesday, February 3, 2015

The Yardbirds Announce New Lineup, Tour

Which British band once included three of the greatest guitarists of all time? That would be The Yardbirds. Eric Clapton, Jeff Beck and Jimmy Page all served time in the group, with Beck and Page as members at the same time for a little while.

The Yardbirds are back with a new lineup, ready to rock. Founding member and drummer Jim McCarty is the keeper of the flame, and he has a real surprise for you. He’s brought back the Yardbirds’ first guitarist, Top Topham! He was in the band before Clapton and had to leave because his parents didn’t approve of his career choice. Top was an art student and had to continue with his studies. Enter another art student from the same secondary school, Eric Clapton, and you know what happened from there. But, Top is now happy to leave his paintbrush home and play the blues.

The rest of the Yardbirds now also includes bassist Kenny Aaronson (Bob Dylan, David Gilmour), Myke Scavone (singer, Ram Jam) on blues harp, vocals and percussion along with lead guitarist and singer John Idan who was on The Yardbirds’ critically acclaimed 2003 album, Birdland.

Jim McCarty is a textbook on rock history unto himself. The Rock & Roll Hall of Fame member co-founded The Yardbirds in London in 1963 with singer Keith Relf, rhythm guitarist Chris Dreja, bassist Paul Samwell-Smith and lead guitarist Top Topham. They first called themselves the Metropolitan Blues Quartet and then the Blue-Sounds before settling on The Yardbirds as a tribute to jazz sax legend Charlie Parker, and the hobos who hung around the London train yards waiting to hop a freight. Top left and was replaced by Eric Clapton. The band’s first album “Five Live Yardbirds” was recorded at London’s Marquee Club and really captured the group’s manic live sound. After a few pop singles, Clapton split and Jeff Beck came aboard. Then Jimmy Page joined up, first as a bass player, then took over lead guitar when Jeff left to start a solo career. When the entire rest of the group quit in 1968, Page went on to form Led Zeppelin.

When The Yardbirds first came to America, they were shocked that the kids had never heard of the American blues and R&B artists that were worshipped in the UK. But, thanks to The Yardbirds’ versions of Bo Diddley’s “I’m A Man,” Howlin' Wolf’s “Smokestack Lightning” and Chick Berry's “Too Much Monkey Business,” those original artists finally got airplay on white radio in the U.S.A.

To celebrate the 25th anniversary of The Yardbirds in 1985, Jim hooked up with Chris Dreja and Paul Samwell-Smith for a pair of shows at London’s Marquee Club where the band recorded its debut album. They had such a good time that they put together a new band, Box of Frogs and recorded two albums under the name with some help from Jimmy Page and Jeff Beck.

And, here we are today with Jim and The Yardbirds back again. This lineup is very exciting, especially with Top Topham back in the group after playing a few gigs last year with a different edition of the band. The Yardbirds are hitting the road. More dates to be announced shortly.
 
Yardbirds Tour Dates:

Friday, April 3 - Norfolk, CT - Infinity Hall
Saturday, April 4 - Uncasville, CT - Mohegan Sun
Monday, April 6 - New York, NY - BB King Blues Club & Grill
Thursday, April 9 - Bethlehem, PA - Musikfest Cafe
Friday, April 10 - Beverley, MA - Larcom Theatre
Saturday, April 11 - Plymouth, NH – The Flying Monkey
Sunday, April 12 - Newton, NJ – The Newton Theatre