Friday, July 20, 2018

Beatles' 'All You Need is Love' Adapted For Children's Picture Book

Two new children’s books will add pictures to the words of the Beatles' John Lennon and Paul McCartney.

Simon & Schuster Children’s Publishing announced Thursday (July 19) that the series will begin with “All You Need Is Love,” featuring illustrations by Marc Rosenthal. It comes out in January through the imprint Little Simon. The second book will be announced at a future date.

The books will be released through a licensing agreement with Sony/ATV Music Publishing and Sony/ATV’s Global Licensing Agent, Epic Rights. Other picture books have been based on Beatles songs. In 2014, Ringo Starr collaborated with illustrator Ben Cort on an adaptation of “Octopus’s Garden.”

Thursday, July 19, 2018

David Bowie's 'Loving The Alien (1983 - 1988)' Box Set Coming In October


Parlophone Records have announced David Bowie Loving The Alien (1983 - 1988), the fourth in a series of boxed sets spanning his career from 1969.

The follow-up to the awarding winning and critically acclaimed David Bowie Five Years (1969-1973), David Bowie Who Can I Be Now? (1974-1976), and David Bowie A New Career In A New Town (1977-1982) will be released on October 12.

David Bowie Loving The Alien (1983 - 1988) will contain a brand new production of the 1987 album Never Let Me Down by Bowie producer / engineer Mario McNulty with new instrumentation by Bowie collaborators Reeves Gabrels (guitar), David Torn (guitar), Sterling Campbell (drums), Tim Lefebvre (bass) as well as string quartet with arrangements by Nico Muhly and a guest cameo by Laurie Anderson on "Shining Star (Makin' My Love)."

The 11-CD box, 15-LP vinyl set, and standard digital download boxed set is named after the opening track from the Tonight album and includes newly remastered versions of Bowie's most commercially successful albums Let's Dance, Tonight, Never Let Me Down (Original and 2018 Versions), the live  Glass Spider (Live Montreal '87), the previously unreleased Serious Moonlight live set, a collection of original remixes entitled Dance, and the non-album / alternate version / b-sides and soundtrack music compilation Re:Call 4.

Exclusive to each of the boxed sets is Never Let Me Down (2018), a new production of the 1987 album. The seeds of this new reimagining of the albums were first sown in 2008 when Bowie asked McNulty to remix the track "Time Will Crawl" and record new drums by longtime Bowie drummer Sterling Campbell along with strings. The track was issued on the iSelect compilation to much acclaim and, in the notes for that record, Bowie remarked "Oh, to redo the rest of that album."

Fast-forward to early 2018, McNulty entered Electric Lady Studios in New York with Campbell, Lefebvre on bass, who was in the Blackstar band, and Gabrels and Torn on guitars. All of the musicians had a history with Bowie, so were a perfect fit for what now sound like brand new songs. Muhly, whom McNulty first met when they were both interns working for Philip Glass in 2001, has handled the string arrangements.

The new re-workings have revealed Never Let Me Down as a very strong collection of songs with a dark thematic thread running through them. Fans listening to Never Let Me Down (2018) would be forgiven for thinking that they were listening to a brand new "lost" Bowie record. A radio edit of the new 2018 version of "Zeroes" is available now as digital single and will be released as a double a-side limited edition 7" picture disc, paired with a radio edit of "Beat On Your Drum" (2018), on September 7.

This 2018 version of the album will also feature newly "remixed" artwork reflecting the album's subject matter and features unseen images from the original cover photographic session from the archive of Greg Gorman.

Also in each box is the never before released Serious Moonlight live album recorded in Montreal in 1983. Originally mixed at the time by Bob Clearmountain, the double album captures Bowie on what at that time was his most successful tour. The artwork features shots taken by photographer Denis O'Regan.

Also included is the 2-CD/3-LP Glass Spider (Live Montreal '87) album, making its debut on vinyl (which is exclusive to the LP box). The tour's innovative set and marriage of music and theatre has been cited as a big inspiration to acts in the 2000s. Speaking in 1991 about Glass Spider, Bowie said, "It was the first time I'd had the opportunity to spend that kind of money and do shows like that! The first time since Diamond Dogs, anyway ... I thought, Right! Let's really spend some money! I had all these thwarted dreams of what I'd tried to do with rock 'n roll in the early 70s."

Exclusive to each box is Re:Call 4 and Dance. The former a new compilation featuring remastered contemporary single versions, non-album singles, album edits, b-sides and songs featured on soundtracks such as Labyrinth, Absolute Beginners, and When The Wind Blows

Dance features 12 contemporaneous remixes, some of which are appearing on CD and vinyl for the first time, and is named after an unreleased Bowie remix album that was originally slated for release in November 1985.

The physical boxed set's accompanying book, 128-pages in the CD box and 84 in the vinyl set, will feature rarely seen and previously unpublished photos by photographers including O'Regan, Gorman, Herb Ritts and many others as well as historical press reviews and technical notes about the albums from producers/engineers Nile Rodgers, Hugh Padgham, McNulty and Justin Shirley-Smith.

The CD box set will include faithfully reproduced mini-vinyl versions of the original albums, and the CDs will be gold colored rather than the usual silver. The vinyl boxed set has the same content as the CD set and is pressed on audiophile quality 180g vinyl. As well as Never Let Me Down (2018), Dance and Re:Call 4, both Serious Moonlight  (Live '83) and Glass Spider (Live Montreal '87).


Wednesday, July 18, 2018

Tommy Shaw Of Styx Charts Solo Live Set

Sing For The Day!, Tommy Shaw’s solo 2016 concert performance with the Contemporary Youth Orchestra, made a grand debut on four of Billboard’s charts last week, including #5 on the “Classical Albums” chart. It also debuted at #5 on the “Classical Crossover Albums” chart, #6 on the “Top DVD Music Videos” chart, #8 on the “Music Video Sales” chart, and #49 on the “Rock Albums” chart. Sing For The Day! was released June 29 via Eagle Rock Entertainment on Blu-ray, CD, and Digital Audio / Video. It jumped to #2 in its second week on the “Top DVD Music Videos” chart.

“I’ve gotten used to being part of the Classic Rock family of bands,” explains Shaw, “but the news of debuting at #5 on the ‘Classical Albums’ chart is something I never anticipated! It was a magical evening of music I’ll never forget.”

Filmed before an enthusiastic audience at the intimate Waetjen Auditorium in Cleveland, Sing For The Day! presents unique versions of such classics as “Blue Collar Man,” “Girls With Guns,” and “Too Much Time On My Hands.”

Under the direction of principal conductor / founder Liza Grossman, with accompaniment by guitarist/musical director Will Evankovich, the Cleveland-based Contemporary Youth Orchestra blended seamlessly with Shaw to create a one-of-a-kind experience.

The songs of Styx, Tommy Shaw, and Damn Yankees are infused with the energy of the finest high-school-aged musicians in Ohio, as evidenced by such performances as the epic duel between Shaw’s guitar licks and a prodigious young violinist / CYO alum Lavinia Pavlish on “Renegade.”

Additionally, the set includes a special version of the Styx classic “Crystal Ball” featuring the debut of a lost verse that was never recorded.

Sing For The Day!, a retrospective look at some of my favorite songs I’ve written and co-written, performed with  Contemporary Youth Orchestra, now remixed in glorious 5.1, takes them all to a higher place I’d never imagined," Shaw says.

This show also marked the 10-year anniversary of Styx’s original 2006 performance with the Contemporary Youth Orchestra -- One With Everything (previously released via Eagle Rock Entertainment on multiple formats).

Tuesday, July 17, 2018

Brian Setzer Announces 15th Anniversary 'Christmas Rocks!' Tour

Iconic guitarist, songwriter, vocalist and three-time Grammy-Award winner Brian Setzer and his 19-piece Orchestra have announced the details for their 15th anniversary "Christmas Rocks! Tour," presented for the fourth consecutive year by SiriusXM. 

Hitting 25 cities, the annual holiday extravaganza will launch November 16 at the State Theatre in Setzer's adopted hometown of Minneapolis, and wrap December 22 in Los Angeles at the Microsoft Theater (full itinerary below).

Supporting the tour will be Lara Hope and the Ark-Tones. View the Christmas sizzle reel below.


The public on sale date is Friday, July 20 at 10:00 a.m. local time, with the following presales:

Fan Club Presale: Tuesday, July 17th at 10:00 a.m. local time through Thursday, July 19th at 10:00 p.m. local time. Be the first to get tickets by signing up for Brian's fan club here.

SiriusXM Presale: Tuesday, July 17th at 10:00 a.m. local time through Thursday, July 19th at 10:00 p.m. local time

Local Presale: Wednesday, July 18th at 10:00 a.m. local time through Thursday, July 19th at 10:00 p.m. local time

"People tell me all the time what joy I bring them over the holidays," Setzer says. "I don't take this for granted. People don't say something like that unless they mean it. When we get a standing ovation at the end of the Christmas show, it means something just a little extra."

The group's set list will feature music off their latest Christmas album Rockin' Rudolph (available now as a limited-edition box set, CD, vinyl or download), plus music off their three previous best-selling holiday albums and original material from Brian Setzer.

 Catch BSO's 15th Anniversary "Christmas Rocks! Tour" in the following cities:

11/16 - State Theatre - Minneapolis, MN
11/17 - Riverside Theater - Milwaukee, WI
11/18 - Fox Theatre - Detroit, MI
11/20 - Taft Theatre - Cincinnati, OH
11/21 - Hard Rock Live - Northfield, OH
11/23 - Foxwoods Resort Casino - Mashantucket, CT
11/24 - Academy of Music - Philadelphia, PA
11/25 - Count Basie Theatre - Red Bank, NJ
11/27 - NYCB Theatre at Westbury - Westbury, NY
11/28 - Bergen PAC - Englewood, NJ
11/30 - The Anthem - Washington, DC
12/01 - Ovens Auditorium - Charlotte, NC
12/02 - Ryman Auditorium - Nashville, TN
12/05 - Ruth Eckerd Hall - Clearwater, FL
12/07 - Hard Rock Live - Orlando, FL
12/08 - BJCC Concert Hall - Birmingham, AL
12/10 - Verizon Theatre at Grand Prairie - Grand Prairie, TX
12/12 - Jones Hall - Houston, TX
12/13 - Wagner Noël Performing Arts Center - Midland, TX
12/15 - Celebrity Theatre - Phoenix, AZ
12/17 - Paramount Theatre - Denver, CO
12/18 - Eccles Theater - Salt Lake City, UT
12/20 - Gallo Center for the Arts - Modesto, CA
12/21 - Fantasy Springs Resort Casino - Indio, CA
12/22 - Microsoft Theater - Los Angeles, CA

Visit briansetzer.com for more information and to purchase tickets.

Friday, July 13, 2018

Nathan Whitlock, Brother Of Bobby Whitlock, Passes

On July 5, 2018, Nathan Whitlock, brother of Derek and the Dominos co-founder Bobby Whitlock, passed away unexpectedly.

Born in Newport, AR, on January 30, 1959, Nathan Whitlock made a name for himself as "Nate the Rat" in the wrestling world, as well as the manager of Jerry Lawler.

An accomplished guitarist and musician, Nathan specialized in rockabilly.

His brother Bobby said: “Nathan was loved by all, and I will miss him dearly.”

Nathan Whitlock is survived by brother Bobby Whitlock, sister Debbie Wade, his niece Ashley de las Flores, and two nephews Tim Whitlock Kelly and Beau Whitlock.

Thursday, July 12, 2018

Supertramp’s Roger Hodgson Begins 'Breakfast In America' World Tour

Roger Hodgson, known for all of the classic Supertramp mega-hits that he wrote, composed and sang, embarks on a new world tour that kicked off June 12 in Austria and ends on November 18 in Vancouver.

The enduring appeal of Hodgson’s compositions -- songs like “Give a Little Bit,” “The Logical Song,” “Dreamer,” “Take the Long Way Home,” “Breakfast in America,” “It’s Raining Again,” “School,” “Hide in Your Shell,” “Fool’s Overture,” “Had a Dream” and “In Jeopardy” -- continues to thrill and be celebrated by multi-generations.

Roger Hodgson co-founded Supertramp almost five decades ago. Album sales for the band now exceed 60 million. Their hugely successful album Breakfast in America will celebrate its 40th anniversary next year.

Touring consistently to packed and appreciative  audiences worldwide, Hodgson continues to be honored by critics and fans alike for his music and performances as well as his philanthropy. 

ROGER HODGSON
2018 Tour Dates:

Go to http://www.rogerhodgsonstore.com/vip-tour-upgrades/ for VIP  Packages on Roger’s Store

USA and Canada
Jul 13 - Sugar House Casino, Philadelphia, PA, USA 
Jul 14 - Spyglass Ridge Winery,  Sunbury, PA, USA 
Jul 15 - American Music Theatre, Lancaster, PA, USA 
Jul 17 - Maryland Hall for the Creative Arts, Annapolis, MD, USA
Jul 18 - Bergen Performing Arts Center, Englewood, NJ, USA 
Jul 20 - Les Grandes Fetes TELUS in Parc Beausejour, Rimouski, Canada 
Jul 21 -  La Fete du Lac des Nations Festival, Sherbrooke, Canada 
Jul 24 -  Humphreys Concerts by the Bay, San Diego, CA, USA 
Jul 25 -  The Pacific Amphitheatre, Costa Mesa, CA, USA 
Jul 27 - Chukchansi Gold Resort and Casino, Coarsegold, CA, USA 
Jul 28 - Snoqualmie Casino, Snoqualmie, WA, USA 

EUROPE
Aug 9 -  Sildajazz International Jazz Festival, Haugesund, Norway 
Aug 11 - Summar Festivalurin, Faroe Islands, Denmark 
Aug 14 - Calle de la Plaza do Toros, Alicante, Spain 
Aug 16 - Tio Pepe Festival, Jerez de la Frontera, Spain 
Aug 17 - Plaza do Toros de Ubeda, Úbeda, Spain 
Aug 18 - Cap Roig Festival, Palafrugell, Spain 
Aug 20 - Kunstrasen Bonn Gronau, Bonn, Germany
Aug 21 - Open-Air Parkbuhne im Clara Zetkin Park, Leipzig, Germany 
Aug 23 - Stadtpark Open Air, Hamburg, Germany 
Aug 24 - Amphitheater, Hanau, Germany 
Aug 25 - Seaside Festival, Spiez, Switzerland 
Aug 26 - Weserwiesen Open-Air, Beverungen, Germany 
Aug 28   Musical Theater, Bremen, Germany 
Aug 29 - Giebener Kultursommer, Giessen, Germany 
Aug 31 - Sauerlandpark, Hemer, Germany 
Sept 1 -  Rosengarten, Mannheim, Germany 
Sept 2 -  Zeltfestival Ruhr, Bochum, Germany 
Sept 4  - Kurpark Classix, Aachen, Germany 
Sept 6  - Kultur & Kongresszentrum Liederhalle, Stuttgart, Germany 
Sept 7  - Munich Philharmonic, Munich, Germany 
Sept 8  - Berlin Tempodrom, Berlin, Germany 

CANADA and USA

Oct 26 - Grand Theatre, Québec, Canada 
Oct 27 - TD Place, Ottawa, Canada 
Oct 29 - Theatre St-Denis, Montréal, Canada 
Oct 30 - Place des Arts, Montréal, Canada 
Oct 31 - Theatre St-Denis, Montréal, Canada 
Nov 2  - Casino Rama Resort & Casino, Rama, Canada 
Nov 3  - Casino Rama Resort & Casino, Rama, Canada 
Nov 6  - Potawatomi Hotel & Casino, Milwaukee, WI, USA 
Nov 7  - Potawatomi Hotel & Casino, Milwaukee, WI, USA 
Nov 8  - Potawatomi Hotel & Casino, Milwaukee, WI, USA 
Nov 9  - Potawatomi Hotel & Casino, Milwaukee, WI, USA 
Nov 12 -  River City Casino & Hotel, St. Louis, MO, USA 
Nov 13 -  River City Casino & Hotel, St. Louis, MO, USA 
Nov 15 - Grey Eagle Resort & Casino, Calgary, Canada
Nov 16 - River Cree Resort & Casino, Enoch, Canada 
Nov 17 - River Rock Casino Resort, Vancouver, Canada
Nov 18 - Hard Rock Casino, Vancouver, Canada 

Roger Hodgson on tour: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WMLNeSbtVN0 

Roger Hodgson Official Sites 
http://www.RogerHodgson.com
https://www.Facebook.com/RogerHodgson
https://www.Twitter.com/RogerHodgson
https://www.YouTube.com/RogerHodgson
https://www.Instagram.com/RogerHodgson

Wednesday, July 11, 2018

Tom Petty Box Set To Be Released In September

On September 28, Reprise Records will release An American Treasure — a career-spanning Tom Petty box set. The 60-track set unveils dozens of previously unreleased recordings, alternate versions of classic songs, rarities, historic live performances and deep tracks that spotlight Petty’s remarkable depth and evolution as a revered and tremendously influential songwriter, recording artist and performer. An American Treasure marks the first release of Tom Petty music since the artist’s tragic passing in October 2017.

The first single from An American Treasure is “Keep A Little Soul” — a previously unreleased recording from 1982 sessions that resulted in Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers’ classic album, Long After Dark. Watch the video featuring rare never-before-seen footage of the band below. The song is also available with box set pre-order at https://wbr.lnk.to/AmericanTreasure. To add to the celebration of this announcement, a newly redesigned website at www.TomPetty.com has been launched.


Petty’s daughter Adria and his wife Dana were the primary catalysts for the commission, creation and release of An American Treasure­ — a tribute and love letter pointing to the music in between the hits, and a strong musical portrait of the person they know in their hearts. Adria and Dana Petty both serve as the project’s executive producers, and, together with Tom’s band mates of 45 years, Heartbreakers Mike Campbell and Benmont Tench, and his studio collaborator, Ryan Ulyate, curated the box set’s track list from Petty’s rich song catalog. Campbell, Tench and Ulyate also produced An American Treasure.

The creation of An American Treasure was a true labor of love, as Adria and Dana Petty explain, “Everyone involved in this project chose each track with tremendous care and deep respect for the body of work Tom Petty created over the course of 40 years.  He also accumulated a wealth of unreleased music in his vaults, and we have collectively uncovered one gem after another that will keep us all listening and discovering new facets of Tom’s talent for many years to come.  We can’t wait to share with Tom’s fans this musical portrait of an artist who deeply affected our culture and indelibly touched the lives of fans the world over.”

The custom cover artwork for An American Treasure was created by prominent American artist
Shepard Fairey from an image of Petty by renowned photographer Mark Seliger.

An American Treasure will be released in multiple formats:

An American Treasure: Deluxe Edition — A 4-CD set that features all 60 tracks, plus a 52-page booklet with rare and previously unseen photographs of Tom, his band mates, family and friends. The booklet also features detailed track-by-track liner notes by noted journalist and Tom Petty aficionado Bud Scoppa, who drew upon his previous interviews with Tom and new conversations with Mike Campbell, Benmont Tench and Ryan Ulyate, as well as Adria and Dana Petty.

An American Treasure: Super Deluxe Limited Edition — A 4-CD set that features all 60 tracks and an 84-page hardbound book expanded from the Deluxe Edition to include many additional photographs and an essay by renowned author Nicholas Dawidoff – written especially for An American Treasure – that speaks to Tom Petty’s presence in our lives and influence on our culture for more than 40 years.  This special package also includes a newly-created lithograph of Shepard Fairey’s cover artwork, as well as custom reproductions of Tom Petty’s handwritten lyrics to four songs featured in this collection and a numbered certificate of authenticity.

An American Treasure: Vinyl Edition — A 6-LP set that features all 60 tracks and a 48-page booklet containing all of the photographic and editorial elements found in the CD Deluxe Edition.  This set also includes the Nicholas Dawidoff essay.  This special Vinyl Edition will be released on Friday, November 23, but is available for pre-order now.

An American Treasure: Standard Edition — A 2-CD set that features 26 career spanning tracks chosen from the Deluxe editions, as well as Bud Scoppa’s detailed track-by-track.

All newly released recordings on An American Treasure have been mixed by Ryan Ulyate from pristine transfers of the original studio multitrack masters. All 60 recordings have been re-mastered for this collection by Chris Bellman at Bernie Grundman Mastering.

Monday, July 9, 2018

Joe Satriani Announces G4 Experience V5.0: Rocks The Desert

Joe Satriani has officially unveiled Joe Satriani Announces G4 Experience V5.0: Rocks The Desert, set for January 3-7, 2019 at Hotel Zosa in Palm Springs, CA.

The guitarist’s fifth annual event will boast the most illustrious and diverse roster of special guests instructors in G4 history, including Rock and Roll Hall of Famers Neal Schon (Journey, Santana) and Rick Nielsen (Cheap Trick), Carlos Alomar (David Bowie), Bumblefoot (Guns n’ Roses) Kiko Loreiro (Megadeth), and Lari Basilio.

“The students that have come to the first four G4 Experiences have been as unique and eclectic as you could imagine so for G4 Experience V5.0 I’ve put together a team of instructors that really reflects that diverse nature,” says Satriani. “The lineup this year is probably our best yet. It’s so exciting, getting to be so totally immersed and getting to be so close to these great players. You never know what’s going to happen and at the end of the week you’ll think, I went somewhere beautiful, I had fun, I made some new friends, and I grew as a musician. And there’s nothing better than that.”

In addition, Satriani will be joined at G4 Experience V5.0: Rocks The Desert, by his own crack touring band, Mike Keneally (guitar and keyboards), Bryan Beller (bass), and Joe Travers (drums), all of whom will also serve as instructors and accompaniment for each night’s all-star concert.

Presented annually by Dreamcatcher Events, Joe Satriani Announces G4 Experience V5.0: Rocks The Desert, is an all-inclusive event with a jam-packed schedule sure to keep guests involved from morning until the wee hours of the night.

Joe Satriani Announces G4 Experience V5.0: Rocks The Desert,will feature four days and night of activities, including multiple workshops led by each instructor, access to fully loaded jam rooms, meet-and-greets, and exclusive nightly concert performances. A variety of guest packages are available, with all registrations including accommodations, three amazing meals a day, parking, Wi-Fi, and an exclusive welcome kit from D’Addario (alcoholic beverages are not included). Musical gear is not provided – guests are asked to please bring their own instruments.

Complete information and registration details can be found now at g4experience.com.

Sunday, July 8, 2018

Heart's Ann Wilson Releases Song From Forthcoming Solo Album

Photo Credit: Kimberly Adamis

Singer Ann Wilson of Heart has released "I Am the Highway" as the first track from Immortal, her new album due September 14 on BMG. The album features 10 tracks that pay tribute to some of Wilson's influences and friends who've recently passed and whose music poignantly lives on.

"I Am The Highway," an Audioslave song that was sung by the late Chris Cornell and written with his bandmates, is available across all digital platforms, and is also available as an instant-grat track with album pre-orders. To access the song, go here.

"The song is strong, confident, spiritual," Wilson says. "It's about a person who refuses to be tied down to the mundane, who is constantly looking for freedom and independence on a more universal scale, not just ordinary everyday reality. It was the cry of a soul, and it's a beautiful song. Chris and I were friends; we had a lot in common, we were both outsiders in a way. He left us with amazing music." Below, check out an acoustic performance of the song Wilson did with Warren Haynes and  Jake Shimabukuro at a Christmas show in 2017.


For Immortal, which marks her debut for BMG, Wilson has teamed with original Heart producer Mike Flicker (Dreamboat Annie, Magazine, Little Queen, Dog and Butterfly and Bebe Le Strange, among others).

"Mike was the first producer to believe in me," the singer notes. "He was my first teacher in the studio and knows how to provide that special support needed to bring out my soul in the recording process. It is exciting to work with him for the first time since 1980. I have traveled many, many miles since then but the old feeling is still there and fresh on Immortal. He has fearlessly helped me bring my ideas to life once again and it's been a great collaboration."

Wilson chose the album title Immortal after revealing some working titles early on in the project.

"The original working titles evolved as the concept for the album evolved; a little bit at a time," she explains. "As my understanding of what I had undertaken grew and clarified, I realized a larger truth; that the souls may have departed but the songs will forever be their resonances. These are the poets of our time and their expressions must be handed down. Poetry is lasting and elemental like carvings in rock."

The finely etched tracks that comprise Immortal cover a lot of musical ground, with many highlights including songs by Leonard Cohen ("A Thousand Kisses Deep"), Amy Winehouse ("Back to Black"), David Bowie ("I'm Afraid of Americans"), Lesley Gore ("You Don't Own Me") and Tom Petty ("Luna").

Wilson says the criteria for choosing this collection of songs was easy. "First of all, I had to love them! They had to be songs I could get inside of authentically as a singer. Lyrics are important to me but the most important thing is always the marriage of words and melody that makes the song magic!"

With sexism at the forefront of the national conversation, Wilson says this did factor into the inclusion of "You Don't Own Me" by Lesley Gore.

"'You Don't Own Me' was originally an early feminist anthem in the 1960s and 70s. Since then the idea of self possession has grown to be more universal...This song is about refusing to be objectified and owned. By anyone."

Immortal includes some very special guests as well. "Warren Haynes plays on Tom Petty's 'Luna' and 'You Don't Own Me,'" Wilson reveals. "Ben Mink is featured on Leonard Cohen's 'A Thousand Kisses Deep' and Amy Winehouse's 'Back to Black.' They are both musicians and great people whom I admire. It's always a pleasure and an honor to work with them. Their souls shine through on these songs!"

The full Immortal track listing is as follows:

"You Don't Own Me" (Lesley Gore)
"I Am the Highway" (Chris Cornell, Audioslave)
"Luna" (Tom Petty)
"I'm Afraid of Americans" (David Bowie)
"Politician" (Cream) in honor of Jack Bruce
"A Thousand Kisses Deep" (Leonard Cohen)
"Life in the Fast Lane" (Joe Walsh, The Eagles) in honor of Glenn Frey
"Back to Black" (Amy Winehouse)
"A Different Corner" (George Michael)
"Baker Street" (Gerry Rafferty)

Ann  Wilson's headlining solo dates are currently underway and run through July 15 in Aspen, CO. Then, she joins the much-anticipated "Stars Align Tour" with Jeff Beck and Paul Rodgers, which kicks off July 18 in West Valley City, Utah and stops in over 20 cities across the U.S. and Canada including Dallas, St. Louis, Chicago, Toronto and Nashville, before wrapping August 26 in Tampa. For a full listing on tour dates, go here.

Wilson's set list this summer will include songs from Immortal. The songs will also be featured in her first-ever solo television special (details TBA), taped this past April at the Arcada Theatre in St. Charles, IL, to coincide with the album's release.

Check out Ann Wilson's tour dates, beginning with headlining dates, followed by shared bills with Jeff Beck, Paul Rodgers and Cheap Trick:

07/09 - Elsinore Theatre - Salem, OR
07/11 - Britt Pavilion - Jacksonville, OR
07/12 - Tachi Palace - Lemoore, CA
07/14 - Route 66 Casino - Albuquerque, NM
07/15 - Belly Up - Aspen, CO
07/18 - USANA Amphitheatre - West Valley City, UT*
07/20 - Five Point Amphitheatre - Irvine, CA*
07/22 - Mattress Firm Amphitheatre - Chula Vista, CA*
07/24 - Smart Financial Centre at Sugar Land - Houston, TX*
07/25 - The Pavilion at Toyota Music Factory - Dallas, TX*
07/28 - Hollywood Casino Amphitheatre - St. Louis, MO*
07/29 - Huntington Bank Pavilion at Northerly Island - Chicago, IL*
07/31 - DTE Energy Music Theatre - Detroit, MI*
08/01 - Budweiser Stage - Toronto, ON*
08/03 - Blue Hills Bank Pavilion - Boston, MA*
08/04 - BB&T Pavilion - Camden, NJ*
08/07 - Artpark Amphitheatre - Lewiston, NY**
08/08 - Riverbend Music Center - Cincinnati, OH*
08/10 - Ruoff Home Mortgage Music Center - Indianapolis, IN*
08/11 - Heinz Hall for the Performing Arts - Pittsburgh, PA**
08/12 - PNC Bank Arts Center - Holmdel, NJ*
08/14 - Northwell Health at Jones Beach Theater - Wantagh, NY*
08/17 - Nashville Municipal Auditorium - Nashville, TN*
08/19 - PNC Music Pavilion - Charlotte, NC*
08/20 - Wolf Trap - Vienna, VA**
08/23 - Daily's Place - Jacksonville, FL*
08/25 - Coral Sky Amphitheatre - West Palm Beach, FL*
08/26 - MIDFLORIDA Credit Union Amphitheatre - Tampa, FL*
09/21 - Thunder Valley Casino Resort - Lincoln, CA***

*  With Jeff Beck & Paul Rodgers
** With Jeff Beck Only
*** With Cheap Trick

Thursday, July 5, 2018

Robert Plant Praises 8-Year-Old Girl's Drumming On Led Zeppelin Song

Yoyoka Soma, an 8-year-old fan from Japan, did her part to break the internet after perfectly playing one of the toughest drum parts in Led Zeppelin's repertoire.

The video, uploaded to YouTube back in January, shows the young girl ferociously and flawlessly playing the drum part in "Good Time Bad Times," the first song on the band's debut album (played by the late John Bonham).

The video began making the rounds in late June after Zeppelin's lead singer, Robert Plant, commended the performance in an interview.

"How fantastic," he said on the CBC Radio program Q. The singer praised Yoyoka's technical skills, saying, "And the thing is, it's like falling off a log for her." Plant, with a smile on his face, added, "It's great, isn't it really?! Well, I know where she can get good job."

Plant was also asked what he thought Bonham would think of the clip, to which he responded: "I think he would be so amazed. I think he would be so chuffed. It's great."

Soma submitted the video to the 2018 Hit Like A Girl drum contest, where she wrote in her entry that Bonham was one of her favorite drummers. "As a drummer, I enjoy being groove, tones and try to support vocalists carefully. My dream is to be the best drummer in the world. In addition, I want to be an artist who can do anything: playing all instruments, recording music, mixing the sound and designing the CD album jackets," she said in a statement along with her entry. "As I am aiming at overseas activities, I am studying English conversation. I want to become friends with people all over the world through my musical activities!"

Check out Yoyoka's full performance and Plant's reaction below.




Tuesday, July 3, 2018

Paul McCartney Announces First Dates Of New Tour

Paul McCartney has announced the first dates of his 2018 #FreshenUpTour. The four shows will take place in Canada after McCartney's new album, Egypt Station, drops on September 7.

“We’ve always had such a fantastic time playing shows in Canada, " McCartney says. "We can’t wait to return in September for what should be another special run of shows. We are looking forward to freshening up our show and playing some of our songs from the new album alongside those songs we know you like to hear. Get ready to rock Canada!”

Tour dates are as follows:

September 17 –  - the Videotron Centre - Quebec City, QC
September 20 –  - Bell Centre - Montreal, QC
September 28 –  - Bell MTS Place - Winnipeg, MB
September 30 –  - Rogers Place - Edmonton, AB

The PaulMccartney.com verified presale will take place on Tuesday, July 10,  10:00 a.m., local time.

Register for your chance to buy presale tickets by going here.

Registration closes Sunday, July 8, 10:00 p.m. ET.


Monday, July 2, 2018

Bay City Rollers Bassist Alan Longmuir Passes At 70

Alan Longmuir, the bass guitarist in Scottish pop group The Bay City Rollers, has died following a short illness.

The 70-year-old died in hospital ‘surrounded by loved ones,’ only a fortnight after he was flown home from Mexico where he had contracted an illness.

Confirming the musician’s death, close friend Liam Rudden said: “Having worked closely with Alan for the last seven years I am devastated by the news he has left us.

“Alan was one of the most gentle, generous and kind-hearted people I have ever known.”

Rudden, the writer and director of I Ran With The Gang, added: “He touched the lives of everyone he met with a smile that made them feel special, insisting that despite his amazing adventures in life he was still just ‘a plumber from Edinburgh’."

Mr Longmuir founded the Bay City Rollers at the end of the 60s with younger brother Derek, before the band achieved huge success during the 1970s with number one songs including "Bye, Bye Baby" and "Give A Little Love."

He was replaced as bass guitarist at the height of their fame in 1976, but returned to the band in 1978 and later performed at reunion shows at Glasgow Barrowlands in 2015.

Friday, June 29, 2018

Yes, Featuring Jon Anderson, Trevor Rabin, Rick Wakeman, Releasing Live Show From The Apollo

On September 7, 2018, Eagle Vision will release Yes, 50th Anniversary Live At The Apollo on DVD, Blu-ray Disc, CD and vinyl.

In 2016, Jon Anderson, Trevor Rabin and Rick Wakeman combined their incredible talents and the heritage of Yes to take to the road for a series of concerts celebrating the band’s musical legacy from the seventies to the nineties.

Yes, featuring Jon Anderson, Trevor Rabin, Rick Wakeman, brought their live show to the UK in early 2017, including this sell-out performance, captured live at the Manchester Apollo.

With a setlist embracing the spectrum of their career, including classics “Roundabout,” “Owner Of A Lonely Heart,” “And You And I,” “Hold On,” “Heart Of The Sunrise,” “Rhythm Of Love,” “I’ve Seen All Good People,” “Awaken” and many more, the band were on superb form.

Wakeman’s keyboard sorcery wove its spell alongside Rabin’s masterly guitar skills and founding member Jon Anderson’s unique vocal and lyrical prowess to create a special night of musical alchemy for their fans. This glorious show captures the true, enduring nature of this ever-powerful band.

Grammy-Award winners Yes have sold more than 35 million albums and have been inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.

Thursday, June 28, 2018

Creedence Clearwater Revival Celebrate 50th Anniversary With 'Fortunate Son' Video

Craft Recordings proudly announces the 50th anniversary of Creedence Clearwater Revival. It was in the summertime half a century ago that CCR, a group that would reach sky-high success while retaining a resolutely rootsy, earthbound sound, released their debut album. This marked the beginning of an incredible legacy that was formed over just four years of unbridled creative output (1968-1972).

CCR's canon has become a staple in the Great American Songbook. Songs like "Bad Moon Rising," "Down on the Corner," "Have You Ever Seen the Rain," "Proud Mary," and "Up Around the Bend" have been ingrained into the pop-cultural consciousness-not just as classic rock staples, but as American standards.

As the United States speeds towards another anniversary of its own on July 4th, Craft is kicking off the CCR50 campaign by releasing an official music video (the first ever) for one of the band's most enduring classics, "Fortunate Son," a song as vital now as ever. Check it out below.


Beyond its anti-war sentiment, "Fortunate Son" is an anthem for the 99%ers, condensing a critique of elitism and class privilege into three simple, but powerfully defiant words: It Ain't Me. Craft partnered with director Ben Fee (Band of Horses, The War on Drugs, The Lumineers, Aesop Rock) to give a whole new generation a visual entry point into the world of Creedence.

The song already has an undeniable place in history as one of the most visceral, attention-grabbing protest tunes of the Vietnam era. With the new video, Fee extends the reach of "Fortunate Son" even further. "For me, protest right now is just showing pure positivity in the face of division and anger." Says Fee, "I wanted to highlight the community and positivity that everybody shares...I wanted to show what America feels like when you actually hit the road and drive throughout the states."

Though the Vietnam war is decades away in the rearview mirror, the people CCR were speaking for in the song are still the heart and soul of America, and they're still the underdog, facing a whole new set of challenges. So, Fee turned the video into a celebration of their indomitable spirit, giving viewers a glimpse of the broad array of characters comprising the patchwork that is our country at its core.

In spotlighting the diversity and unconquerable spirit of America's so-called 99%, Fee created a concept as relevant to today's world as it is to the original 1969 setting of "Fortunate Son." "I met so many beautiful people," says Fee of the folks he shot for the video. "I went to the Taos Pueblo people, into their land, and met with the war chief, and they were very big fans of CCR. They were so welcoming because they knew the song and the band, and they really loved the idea of protest through positivity."

Fee's video road trip took him across the country, from Los Angeles to Miami and all points in between. The footage captures people across America of diverse ages, cultures, ethnic backgrounds and locations (including Florida, Louisiana, Texas, New Mexico, California, Washington and Hawaii) to document the true spirit that makes up the fabric of the United States, for which CCR have been the soundtrack for 50 years.

In addition to the video, the half-century celebration will continue in the coming months to fill out the CCR story even further. Craft will be honoring the band's musical legacy via a diverse array of media, products and events; including a special release coming this fall. The fête will also provide fans with new ways to engage with CCR online-sharing their memories, streaming new content, and diving deeper into the band's legendary history. Stay tuned to CCR50.com for more details, coming soon.

In the meantime, you can dig in to more from the Creedence Clearwater Revival catalog (and build your July 4th playlists) via Apple Music (click here for the Essentials) or Spotify (click here for This Is).

Tuesday, June 26, 2018

Ray Davies Says The Kinks Are Reuniting

In characteristically whimsical fashion, Kinks frontman Ray Davies told the BBC Monday that the group will be getting back together to record a new album after more than 20 years apart — although he seemed to hedge his bets by taking a call from drummer Mick Avory during the interview and saying he would see him in the pub later, then quipping: “The Kinks are getting back together…in the pub at least.”

However, Davies, 74, said during the interview with Channel 4 News that he was “making a new Kinks album” with brother Dave Davies and Mick Avory.

“We’ve been talking about it because I’ve got all these songs that I wrote, then the band — not broke up, we parted company — and I think it’s kind of an appropriate time to do it.” Video of the interview has apparently been removed from the BBC’s site, but Davies’ quotes appear in an article there and in other British publications. A rep for Davies had no further information on a Kinks reunion. The singer will release “Our Country: Americana II,” his second album in collaboration with the Jayhawks, on Friday.

In the BBC interview, Davies said he was inspired by the Rolling Stones, who completed and eight-date British tour last week. He noted that a Kinks reunion “won’t be well-organized like the Stones.” He continued, “Great band, great at organizing their careers and Mick [Jagger] has done an incredible PR job and it’s kind of inspiring to see them doing it — but the Kinks will probably play in the local bar,” he added.

The famously fractious group — whose founding members include Davies, his brother Dave, Avory and bassist Pete Quaife, who died in 2010 — formed in 1963 and rocketed to stardom the following year via their third single, “You Really Got Me.” A string of classic singles — including “All Day and All of the Night,” “A Well-Respected Man,” “Waterloo Sunset,” “Lola” and more — followed throughout the decade; the group remained a successful recording and touring act well into the 1980s and were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1990.

However, the group and particularly the Davies brothers were renowned for their arguments both on and offstage. Quaife left in 1966, returned, then left for good in 1969; Avory left in the mid-1980s; the Davies brothers last performed together in 1996 but both have continued to tour and record as solo acts in the years since.

“The trouble is, the two remaining members, my brother Dave and Mick, never got along very well. But I’ve made that work in the studio and it’s fired me up to make them play harder, and with fire,” Ray Davies said. “So if I can recapture those moments…”

Friday, June 22, 2018

Monkees Tour Canceled Due to Mike Nesmith Illness

If you have tickets to see the Monkees on tour this month, you'll have to keep those tickets until the new year.

The remaining four dates of The Monkees Present: The Mike & Micky Show tour, starting with Thursday night's (June 21) scheduled show at the Keswick Theater in Philadelphia, were canceled because of a health issue for Mike Nesmith. The shows will be rescheduled for January. The show featured the duo of Mike Nesmith and Micky Dolenz performing a mixture of well-known and “deep tracks” from the Monkees' catalog.     

The Monkees issued a statement late Thursday: “Michael Nesmith had a minor health issue today in advance of his tour date in Philadelphia tonight. He visited a local medical facility and, although the issue was not serious, was advised to rest for the next week, so unfortunately the remaining four dates on The Monkees Present: The Mike & Micky Show tour have been postponed until a later date. Nesmith has been dismissed from the hospital and is traveling back to his home in Carmel Valley. He is in good spirits and thanks all the fans for their support and understanding. He looks forward to getting back on the stage again soon.”

The remaining dates were Friday at the Beacon Theatre in New York City, Saturday at the Paramount in Huntington, N.Y., and Monday at the Count Basie Theatre in Red Bank, N.J.

Earlier, tour manager Andrew Sandoval posted on his Facebook page, “I am sorry to report that the final four dates of The Monkees Tour will be postponed till January. Michael Nesmith has not been feeling well and will be recuperating in the meantime. We will return to the good clean fun as soon as possible.”  In a separate post, Sandoval also shot down a TMZ report, saying Nesmith had not collapsed onstage nor was he at the Keswick on Thursday at all.

During the tour, which was originally scheduled for 20 dates, the two Monkees performed an assortment of well-known and lesser-known songs including “Daydream Believer,” “Pleasant Valley Sunday,” “Listen to the Band,” “I'm a Believer,” “Good Clean Fun,” “Different Drum” (a song Nesmith wrote which was later a hit for The Stone Poneys with Linda Ronstadt), “For Pete's Sake,” “St. Matthew,” “Porpoise Song (Theme From 'Head'),” “Circle Sky,” “Auntie's Municipal Court” and “Me & Magdelena” from their most recent album, Good Times!

Thursday, June 21, 2018

Foreigner Reunion Show With Original And Current Members Coming To Sturgis Buffalo Chip

During the latest stop on their “Juke Box Heroes” tour in Syracuse, New York, Foreigner  – Mick Jones (lead guitar), Kelly Hansen (lead vocals), Tom Gimbel (rhythm guitar, sax, vocals), Jeff Pilson (bass, vocals), Michael Bluestein (keyboards), Bruce Watson (guitar) and Chris Frazier (drums) – announced the first-ever ticketed reunion concert featuring original members to take place on August 4, 2018, at The Sturgis Buffalo Chip in Sturgis, South Dakota. 

Lou Gramm, Dennis Elliott, Al Greenwood, Ian McDonald and Rick Wills will join Mick Jones and the rest of Foreigner's current lineup to rock through some of the best-selling songs from the band’s 10 multi-platinum albums and 40 years of enduring top ten hits. 

While original members have joined the band for surprise appearances in the past, never before have they announced a ticketed reunion. For tickets to Foreigner's performance on Chip's Wolfman Jack Stage as part of the 9-day annual event known as "The Largest Music Festival in Motorcycling,"® please visit www.buffalochip.com.

“It’s been incredible to have Lou, Dennis, Al, Ian and Rick join us for some surprise appearances throughout the past few years," said Jones. "It always brings back special memories. But now, for the first time, we are letting our fans know we’ll be making history together at The Buffalo Chip on August 4th with a Foreigner reunion concert, and we hope they’ll come on down to Sturgis and join us!“

This announcement comes on the heels of the 40th Anniversary of the Foreigner’s best-selling album, Double Vision, and the band is working on a very special release to celebrate the momentous occasion.

Foreigner is also charting new territory on the album charts, as their latest album, Foreigner with the 21st Century Symphony Orchestra & Chorus has topped the Billboard Classical Album Chart for multiple weeks, and continues to sell out tour dates across the world. This album has also inspired Foreigner Live At The Symphonya new 60-minute concert special airing on PBS TV stations across the country in June and July. Please check local PBS listings for air dates in your city.

Sony Music’s innovative merchandising company The Thread Shop has partnered with Foreigner to launch a new line of band merchandise which will be sold at the group’s current US tour date. Additionally, The Thread Shop worked hand-in-hand with Foreigner to relaunch the band’s online store. This new line of merchandise will be available at Foreigner tour stops across the US, as well as online. From classic logo zip hoodies and Juke Box Hero iPhone cases to Head Games and Double Vision raglan t-shirts, Foreigner’s hits have been memorialized in this fresh new line of gear. Click https://store.foreigneronline.com/store/to purchase!

Wednesday, June 20, 2018

Slash Ft. Myles Kennedy & The Conspirators Announce New Album, Concert Dates

Slash Ft. Myles Kennedy & The Conspirators have announced the release their new album, Living The Dream, set for release on September 21 via Slash’s own label Snakepit Records in partnership with Roadrunner Records.

Living The Dream is Slash’s fourth solo album, and third with singer Myles Kennedy, drummer Brent Fitz, bassist Todd Kerns, and second guitarist Frank Sidoris.

For Living The Dream, Slash and his band re-teamed with producer Michael “Elvis” Baskette (Alter Bridge, Iggy Pop, Incubus). The group are currently putting the finishing touches on the album's 12 songs. The band’s previous albums World On Fire and Apocalyptic Love, debuted in the Top Ten on 12 charts globally, spawned three #1 hit singles at U.S. Rock Radio and earned worldwide praise.

VintageRock.com. in its review, cited World On Fire as "minimal filler and maximum rock and roll from every side of the spectrum."

The group have announced they’ll kick off a U.S. headlining tour beginning September 13 in Los Angeles. Citi is the official credit card of the “Living The Dream” tour, and Citi cardmembers will have access to presale tickets beginning Tuesday, June 19, at 10:00 a.m. local time through Thursday, June 21 at 10:00 p.m. For complete details, visit citiprivatepass.com.

Slash fanclub presales are on sale now, with general onsales starting Friday, June 22, at 10:00 a.m. Each ticket purchased online to a headlining show will include a digital copy of Living The Dream.

All tickets are available at http://www.slashonline.com.

The full concert itinerary (see below), encompasses three festival appearances: Sunday, September 16 at KAABOO Festival, Friday, September 28 at Louder Than Life Festival and Sunday, October 14 at Aftershock Festival.

Following are Slash Ft. Myles Kennedy & The Conspirators 2018 tour dates:

09/13 - Whisky A-Go-Go - Los Angeles, CA
09/15 - The Van Buren - Phoenix, AZ
09/16 - KAABOO Music Festival - Del Mar, CA
09/18 - The Depot - Salt Lake City, UT
09/19 - Fillmore Auditorium -  Denver, CO
09/21 - Paradise Cove Magaritaville - Tulsa, OK
09/22 - Winstar World Casino - Thackerville, OK
09/24 - Stubb's Walter Creek Amphitheater - Austin, TX
09/26 - House of Blues - Houston, TX
09/28 - Louder Than Life Festival - Louisville, KY
09/29 - Four Winds Casino Resort - New Buffalo, MI
10/01 - Wellmont Theater - Montclair, NJ
10/02 - The Fillmore Silver Spring - Silver Spring, MD
10/04 - Casino Rama - Rama, ON
10/05 - Pier 17 @ South Street Seaport - New York, NY
10/06 - Wolf's Den @ Mohegan Sun - Uncasville, CT
10/09 - The Paramount - Huntington, NY
10/10 - Electric Factory - Philadelphia, PA
10/11 - House of Blues - Boston, MA
10/14 - Aftershock Festival - Sacramento, CA

Tuesday, June 19, 2018

John McLaughlin, Jimmy Herring Releasing Live Album From 2017 Tour

“This recording of the final set at the Warfield Theatre brings to full circle the amazing advent of The Mahavishnu Orchestra In 1971, and its renaissance on this night in San Francisco.” mused the boundary-shattering guitarist John McLaughlin, regarding Live In San Francisco, the upcoming live release. 

On his farewell tour of America, which comprised 25 concerts, McLaughlin invited Widespread Panic guitarist Jimmy Herring and his band The Invisible Whip to explore the timeless music he had created four decades ago. Check out the teaser below.


On September 21, Abstract Logix issues Live In San Francisco, recorded during a sold-out concert at the historic Warfield Theatre, a beloved venue last visited by John McLaughlin 36 years ago. 

Accompanied by the 4th Dimension – Ranjit Barot (drums, konokol), Gary Husband (keyboards, drums), and Etienne M’Bappé (bass) – and The Invisible Whip – Kevin Scott (Bass), Matt Slocum (Clavinet and B3), Jason Crosby (Fender Rhodes, Violin, Vocals) and Jeff Sipe (Drums) – The Meeting of the Spirits tour featured a nine-piece orchestra that further amplified the seminal music McLaughlin created in the 70s, documented in the albums Birds Of Fire, Inner Mountain Flame and Visions Of Emerald Beyond.

So connected are the nine members that the interplay approaches telepathic levels, making for powerfully evocative performances without any wasted gestures. Longtime fans will be thrilled to hear favorites like “Eternity’s Breath” (from Mahavishnu’s 1973 Visions of Emerald Beyond) and “Trilogy” (from 1973’s Between Nothingness And Eternity) reexamined through the lens of both the bands’ unparalleled sensitivity and astounding power.

As such, Live In San Francisco offers a tantalizing document of the Meeting of the Spirits Tour.

“Playing these timeless compositions with John and The Fourth Dimension was a life changing experience!” said Jimmy Herring.

A very limited Collector’s Edition and a Double Vinyl Set will be released directly by Abstract Logix and is available for pre-order until June 24 at http://www.abstractlogix.com/store.

You can order the CD in Europe directly at the Mediastarz shop.
.
Live In San Francisco track listing:

Meeting of the Spirits (8:53)
Birds of Fire (7:50)
A Lotus on Irish Streams (7:13)
The Dance of Maya (10:09)
Trilogy (13:01)
Earth Ship (8:59)
Eternity’s Breath Part 1 & 2 (9:39)
Be Happy (7:05)

Friday, June 15, 2018

Neil Diamond Performs, Honored With Johnny Mercer Award at Songwriters Hall Of Fame Gala

Neil Diamond may have retired from touring due to Parkinson’s disease, but the singer didn’t let that stop him from giving a cheery and memorable performance at the 2018 Songwriters Hall of Fame ceremony.   

Diamond, who was officially inducted into the Hall in 1984, earned the Johnny Mercer Award on Thursday and closed the multi-hour event in New York City with a rousing rendition of “Sweet Caroline.” 

He was happy and excited onstage, performing an extended version of the iconic song, backed by a band and the audience of songwriters and music industry players who sang along.

The 77-year-old, who announced he was diagnosed with Parkinson’s in January and canceled planned concerts, barely spoke at the event, where John Mellencamp, Alan Jackson, Kool and the Gang and Jermaine Dupri were inducted as the Hall’s 2018 class.   

Thursday, June 14, 2018

Longtime Elvis Presley Drummer D.J. Fontana Passes

D.J. Fontana, a rock 'n' roll pioneer who rose from strip joints in his native Shreveport, Louisiana, to the heights of musical history as Elvis Presley's first and longtime drummer, has died at 87, his wife said Thursday.

Karen Fontana told The Associated Press that her husband died in his sleep in Nashville on Wednesday night. She said he'd been suffering complications from breaking his hip in 2016.

"He was loved by everybody all over the world. He treated everybody like everybody was his friend," she said.

Presley's former wife, Priscilla Presley, issued a statement calling Fontana "a tremendously talented musician and a wonderful man."

Fontana, a member of the Rock Hall of Fame, was the last surviving member of Elvis' original core of musicians. He met Presley and the others on the Louisiana Hayride, a popular and influential radio and TV country music program based in Shreveport. Staff drummer Fontana asked to join his group for a session broadcast in October 1954.

A regional act at the time, the 19-year-old Presley had been recording and touring since the summer with guitarist Scotty Moore and bassist Bill Black, the musicians Sun Records founder Sam Phillips brought in after Elvis turned up at the Memphis, Tennessee-based label's studio.

"The Blue Moon Boys," as they called themselves, had been playing a blend of blues, pop and country that was unique at the time, but it was missing something crucial.

"Elvis and Scotty and Bill were making good music, but it wasn't rock n' roll until D.J. put the backbeat into it," the Band's Levon Helm told The Associated Press in 2004.

Elvis returned often to the Hayride. In 1955 Fontana became a permanent member of the group, working with Presley through much of the 1960s.

Influenced by such big-band drummers as Buddy Rich and Gene Krupa, Fontana was admired by Helm, Ringo Starr, Max Weinberg and others for his power, speed and steadiness, which he honed during his time with the Hayride.

"I heard Scotty and Bill and Elvis one night and knew that I couldn't mess up that sound," Fontana said. "I think the simple approach comes from my hearing so much big band music. I mixed it with rockabilly."

Fontana was there for Presley's first wave of success, from such hit singles as "Hound Dog" and "Jailhouse Rock" to his increasingly frenzied live shows and hip-shaking appearances on "The Ed Sullivan Show" and other TV programs.

He played on many soundtracks — and was occasionally seen on camera — for Presley's '50s and '60s movies.

He was on the "comeback" Christmas TV special of 1968 that featured Presley and fellow musicians jamming on a tiny stage before a studio audience, with Fontana keeping time on a guitar case. Widely cited for reviving Presley's career, that show was his first live performance in years and the last time Moore and Fontana worked with Elvis, who died in 1977.

"Elvis would always want to go back and talk about the early days when there were four of us in a car, Me, Scotty, Bill and Himself," Fontana told the fan site Elvis Australia.

"He told me one day, he said, 'You know, I wish I wasn't Elvis.' And that struck me funny — even back then. You know he kinda wanted to get away for a while. I think he should have retired for about seven or eight years, and then come back — you know. And then he might still be with us."

Fontana also played on Starr's solo album "Beaucoups of Blues," and worked with country artist Webb Pierce and rockabilly star Gene Vincent, among others. More recently, he and Moore were joined by Helm, Keith Richards and other guests for the 1997 Presley tribute album "All the King's Men."

In 2000, he played on Paul McCartney's cover of an early Presley hit, "That's All Right."

Born in 1931, Dominic Joseph Fontana began playing drums as a teen in his high school marching band and would jam with his cousin while listening to big-band recordings.

By his early 20s he performed at strip joints and spent enough time around the Hayride that he was hired full time, although at first he was asked to play behind a curtain because country audiences scorned drums.

Presley's Sun Records contract was purchased by RCA Victor late in 1955; he became a sensation around the country, and beyond.

During an interview with Elvis Australia, Fontana recalled a 1957 show at a Canadian football stadium, when Presley did his best to honor the owners' wishes to keep the crowd off the grass and away from the stage.

"So Elvis came on, did a few songs, and said: 'We'd like for you to get back in your seats.' Which they did, very orderly. Until the last song, and here they come again," Fontana said.

"Elvis left the stage, and here we were with 20,000 people! The stage turned over, but we finally got all the equipment in the car, which was right behind the stage. The car was surrounded by kids, and they were shaking the car."

Tuesday, June 12, 2018

Pink Floyd Drummer Nick Mason Releasing Boxed Sets Of His Three Solo Albums

For the first time in over 20 years, Pink Floyd drummer Nick Mason's three solo albums -- Nick Mason's Fictitious Sports, Profiles, and White Of The Eye will be available in both CD and vinyl boxed sets. Scheduled for release on August 31 through Warner Music, these limited edition boxed sets will be available shortly before Mason tours Europe with his acclaimed new band Nick Mason's Saucerful Of Secrets.

A co-founding member of Pink Floyd, Mason is the only constant member of the group, performing on all of their albums as well as all of their live shows. In May of this year, Nick debuted his new band Nick Mason's Saucerful Of Secrets with four intimate shows in London (Camden Dingwalls on May 20 and The Half Moon in Putney on May 21, 23 and 24) to an incredible reception.

Unattended Luggage is a further celebration of Nick Mason and his undeniably significant contribution to music. The set contains:

Nick Mason's Fictitious Sports - Mason's debut solo album which was originally released in 1981 and saw him collaborate with a variety of different musicians including Robert Wyatt and Carla Bley.

Profiles - A collaboration with 10cc guitarist Rick Fenn, it was Mason's second album outside of Pink Floyd and was released in 1985 as "Mason + Fenn." This is a mainly instrumental album except for tracks "Lie For A Lie," which features vocals from Maggie Reilly and Pink Floyd bandmate David Gilmour and "Israel," sung by UFO keyboardist Danny Peyronel.

White Of The Eye - A soundtrack for a British thriller movie of the same name, Mason once again collaborated with Fenn. Originally released in 1987, in conjunction with the film's release, this is the first time the record has been made available for over 20 years, and the first time it will appear on CD.

Mason says, "These recordings hold a very special place for me in my musical life. 'Fictitious Sports' developed initially from working with Mike Mantler, Carla Bley, and Robert Wyatt on a couple of their projects, and benefited enormously from a whole crew of great musicians that I was introduced to by them at Grog Kill Studios in Woodstock."

"Profiles and White Of The Eye were an extension of working with Rick Fenn on some advertising and short documentary film soundtracks, which then developed into something more."

"Listening back after 30 odd years, I'm delighted they are getting the reissue treatment. I'm rather hoping that sales will be sufficient to damage the market in the original rare vinyl versions!"

Unattended Luggage will be available in both 3-CD and 3-LP boxed sets. Pre-orders are available from https://lnk.to/NickMasonULMP.

Nick Mason's Fictitious Sports, Profiles, and White Of The Eye will all be available individually as downloads and through streaming platforms.

Nick Mason's Saucerful Of Secrets will be touring through Europe in September. Tickets are on sale now from www.thesaucerfulofsecrets.com.

Wednesday, June 6, 2018

Ringo Starr Announces New Book At Paris Press Conference

During a press conference in Paris, France, Sir Ringo Starr announced a new book of photos due out this fall. Titled Another Day in the Life (after a certain song…) the volume will feature images taken by Starr, coupled with commentary and anecdotes from through his legendary life and career.

“I love taking photos of random things, and seeing how they all fit together,” Starr said. “Whether it’s at home or on the road, certain things catch my eye. It’s not always the big picture that matters, but the corner of something, things other people might not notice. I love working with Genesis and had so much fun putting this collection of images together — some taken by me and some collected along the way. I hope you enjoy it too.”

This latest tome is Starr’s third collection of photography, following the bestselling Postcards From The Boys (2003) and Photograph (2013). will present a previously unpublished collection of his photographs, captioned with his own thoughts and anecdotes, in addition to contributions from Paul McCartney, Joe Walsh and a host of other friends.

Fans can also expect the book to include quirky observational images and behind the scenes photos taken during events such as Ringo’s acceptance of a Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award and his return to New York’s Plaza Hotel, 50 years after The Beatles first visited the US.

That’s not all that’s happening in Starr’s world. On Wednesday, the indomitable stickman (and rock’s latest knight of the realm) launched his first European tour in seven years at the L’Olympia theatre in Paris — where the Beatles first played in January 1964. This time around he’s joined by his trusty team of crack players who make up the All-Starr Band, including new member Graham Gouldman of art-rockers 10cc.

Tuesday, June 5, 2018

Unknown Copy Of Prince’s Rare ‘The Black Album’ Surfaces Online

Another copy of Prince‘s super rare The Black Album has surfaced.

The album was supposed to be released in 1987 as The Funk Bible, Prince’s 16th album. However, the singer had a ‘spiritual epiphany’ and demanded all 500,000 copies be destroyed, as he said the content was ‘evil’.

He later gave permission for it to be released on CD and cassette – but never vinyl.

Five vinyl copies surfaced in the States last year, and now another has appeared in Canada, after a Canadian former employee of Columbia Records’ pressing plant held onto one of the records .

“In 1987 he was working at Columbia Records Canadian pressing plant in Canada,” explains former Warner Bros executive vice president and rare record dealer Jeff Gold, of Recordmecca.

“When The Black Album was pulled and the copies that had been made marked for destruction, he kept one copy for himself. He never realised its rarity or value until reading about the discovery of the U.S. copies in Rolling Stone and contacted me.”

Gold helped the owner list the record online on Discogs for $27,500 – as it’s not sealed and has been played several times, that’s much less than the previous pristine editions, where one sold for $42,298.

It looks like the latest copy has sold already, in case you were about to take out a loan.

Monday, June 4, 2018

Felix Cavaliere And Gene Cornish's Rascals Announce Tour Dates

Felix Cavaliere and Gene Cornish, founding members of The Rascals, are teaming up for the first time in five years for a run of summer and fall tour dates.

Commencing July 18 in Stamford, CT, Felix Cavaliere And Gene Cornish's Rascals will stop in Westbury, Alexandria, Anaheim, Saratoga, Cleveland, New York City (October 26 at Town Hall), and Louisville, among other markets. 

Joining the guys on this new journey will be drummer Carmine Appice (Modern Drummer Hall of Fame, 2014, and Classic Drummer Hall of Fame, 2013). 

Cavaliere and Cornish cite the fans and their love of the group's timeless songs as reasons for going on tour.

"I had an epiphany while performing in Hawaii last year," says Cavaliere. "It's not about me -- it's about the fans. It's about the music. I spoke with Gene and he agreed that we can't take any of this for granted anymore."

Cornish, who first worked with Cavaliere and future Rascals singer, Eddie Brigati, in Joey Dee & The Starlighters in 1964, echoed those feelings. 

"There's something magical that happens when we're on stage together," Cornish says. "We're going to celebrate these songs for as long as the fans allow us to and give the fans a chance to see us perform live."

Members of the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame, Grammy Hall of Fame, Vocal Group Hall of Fame and Songwriters Hall of Fame, The Rascals are widely considered the best 'blue-eyed soul' group to come out of the 1960s and their music, the soundtrack of a generation. 

The Rascals have 17 Top 20 hits, seven Top 10 hits, and three No. 1 hits, including "Groovin'," "Good Lovin'," and "People Got To Be Free," the latter of which is celebrating the 50th anniversary of its release this year.

"Gene and I both thought there's no way we can replace our brother Eddie, and Dino expressed that he didn't want to do it," Cavaliere adds. "We both thought of Carmine at the same time."

During his first phone call with Cornish, whose resume includes Vanilla Fudge, Cactus, Rod Stewart, Beck Bogert & Appice, Ozzy Osbourne and Pink Floyd, wasted no time saying "I'm in."

"I grew up watching The Rascals on Ed Sullivan, I'm a huge fan," says Appice. "These songs are the soundtrack to so many peoples' lives. I'm looking forward to sharing the music with life-long Rascals fans, and to new generations of fans."

Felix Cavaliere And Gene Cornish's Rascals Tour Dates

07/18 - "Wednesday Night Live" at Columbus Park - Stamford, CT
07/20 - NYCB Theatre at Westbury - Westbury, NY
07/21 - Count Basie Presents RWJ Barnanas Health Arena - Toms River, NJ
08/16 - The Birchmere - Alexandria, VA
08/17 - Casino Rama Orilla, - Ontario, Canada
08/24 - City National Grove of Anaheim - Anaheim, CA
08/25 - The Mountain Winery - Saratoga, CA
09/09 - Hard Rock Rocksino - Northfield, OH
09/21 - Mayo Performing Arts Center - Morristown, NJ
09/22 - Park Theatre - RI Center for the Performing Arts - Cranston, RI
10/25 - Ridgefield Playhouse - Ridgefield, CT
10/26 - Town Hall - New York, NY
10/27 - Lynn Auditorium - Lynn, MA

11/04 - The Louisville Palace Theatre - Louisville, KY

For more information, visit http://www.felixcavaliereandgenecornishsrascals.com/.



Thursday, May 31, 2018

Heart's Ann Wilson Releasing New Solo Album In September

Photo Credit: Kimberly Adamis

Singer Ann Wilson, known as one of rock's most distinctive and powerful vocalists with Heart, will release a new solo album on September 14, marking her debut for BMG. Entitled Immortal, the album features 10 songs that pay homage to some of the singer's favorite songs and artists, all of whom have passed away in recent years.

For the new release, Wilson has teamed with original Heart producer Mike Flicker (Dreamboat Annie, Magazine, Little Queen, Dog and Butterfly and Bebe Le Strange, among others). The Rock and Roll Hall of Famer will perform some of the album's songs when she tours North America this summer with Jeff Beck and Paul Rodgers for the "Stars Align Tour" (see below for full upcoming tour itinerary).

The songs will also be featured in Wilson's first-ever solo television special (details TBA), taped this past April at the Arcada Theatre in St. Charles, IL, to coincide with the album's release.

Wilson chose the album title Immortal after revealing some working titles early on in the project.

"The original working titles evolved as the concept for the album evolved; a little bit at a time," she explained. As my understanding of what I had undertaken grew and clarified, I realized a larger truth; that the souls may have departed but the songs will forever be their resonances. These are the poets of our time and their expressions must be handed down. Poetry is lasting and elemental like carvings in rock."

The finely etched tracks that comprise Immortal cover a lot of musical ground, with many highlights including songs by Leonard Cohen ("A Thousand Kisses Deep"), Amy Winehouse ("Back to Black"), David Bowie ("I'm Afraid of Americans"), Lesley Gore ("You Don't Own Me") and Tom Petty ("Luna").

Wilson says the criteria for choosing this collection of songs was easy. "First of all, I had to LOVE them! They had to be songs I could get inside of authentically as a singer. Lyrics are important to me but the most important thing is always the marriage of words and melody that makes the song magic!"

With sexism at the forefront of the national conversation, the singer says this did factor into the inclusion of "You Don't Own Me." "'You Don't Own Me' was originally an early feminist anthem in the 1960's and 70's. Since then the idea of self possession has grown to be more universal...This song is about refusing to be objectified and owned. By anyone."

Immortal includes some very special guests as well. "Warren Haynes plays on Tom Petty's 'Luna' and 'You Don't Own Me,'" ANN reveals. "Ben Mink is featured on Leonard Cohen's 'A Thousand Kisses Deep' and Amy Winehouse's 'Back to Black.' They are both musicians and great people whom I admire. It's always a pleasure and an honor to work with them. Their souls shine through on these songs!"

Producer Mike Flicker brings an important element to Immortal.

"Mike was the first producer to believe in me," Wilson says. "He was my first teacher in the studio and knows how to provide that special support needed to bring out my soul in the recording process. It is exciting to work with him for the first time since 1980. I have traveled many, many miles since then but the old feeling is still there and fresh on Immortal. He has fearlessly helped me bring my ideas to life once again and it's been a great collaboration."

The Immortal track listing is as follows:

"A Different Corner" (George Michael)
"A Thousand Kisses Deep" (Leonard Cohen)
"Back to Black" (Amy Winehouse)
"Baker Street" (Gerry Rafferty)
"I Am the Highway" (Chris Cornell, Audioslave)
"I'm Afraid of Americans" (David Bowie)
"Life in the Fast Lane" (Joe Walsh, The Eagles) in honor of Glenn Frey
"Luna" (Tom Petty)
"Politician" (Cream) in honor of Jack Bruce
"You Don't Own Me" (Lesley Gore)

The "Stars Align Tour" with Jeff Beck and Paul Rodgers kicks off July 18 in West Valley City, Utah, and makes stops in over 20 cities across the U.S. and Canada including Dallas, St. Louis, Chicago, Toronto and Nashville, before wrapping August 26 in Tampa.

Check out Ann Wilson's upcoming tour dates, beginning with headlining dates, followed by shared bills with Jeff Beck, Paul Rodgers and Cheap Trick:

07/06 - Snoqualmie Casino - Snoqualmie, WA
07/07 - Admiral Theatre - Bremerton, WA
07/09 - Elsinore Theatre - Salem, OR
07/11 - Britt Pavilion - Jacksonville, OR
07/12 - Tachi Palace - Lemoore, CA
07/14 - Route 66 Casino - Albuquerque, NM
07/15 - Belly Up - Aspen, CO
07/18 - USANA Amphitheatre - West Valley City, UT*
07/20 - Five Point Amphitheatre - Irvine, CA*
07/22 - Mattress Firm Amphitheatre - Chula Vista, CA*
07/24 - Smart Financial Centre at Sugar Land - Houston, TX*
07/25 - The Pavilion at Toyota Music Factory - Dallas, TX*
07/28 - Hollywood Casino Amphitheatre - St. Louis, MO*
07/29 - Huntington Bank Pavilion at Northerly Island - Chicago, IL*
07/31 - DTE Energy Music Theatre - Detroit, MI*
08/01 - Budweiser Stage - Toronto, ON*
08/03 - Blue Hills Bank Pavilion - Boston, MA*
08/04 - BB&T Pavilion - Camden, NJ*
08/07 - Artpark Amphitheatre - Lewiston, NY**
08/08 - Riverbend Music Center - Cincinnati, OH*
08/10 - Ruoff Home Mortgage Music Center - Indianapolis, IN*
08/11 - Heinz Hall for the Performing Arts - Pittsburgh, PA**
08/12 - PNC Bank Arts Center - Holmdel, NJ*
08/14 - Northwell Health at Jones Beach Theater - Wantagh, NY*
08/17 - Nashville Municipal Auditorium - Nashville, TN*
08/19 - PNC Music Pavilion - Charlotte, NC*
08/20 - Wolf Trap - Vienna, VA**
08/23 - Daily's Place - Jacksonville, FL*
08/25 - Coral Sky Amphitheatre - West Palm Beach, FL*
08/26 - MIDFLORIDA Credit Union Amphitheatre - Tampa, FL*
09/21 - Thunder Valley Casino Resort - Lincoln, CA***

*  With Jeff Beck & Paul Rodgers
** With Jeff Beck Only
*** With Cheap Trick