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8/4/1967 Pink Floyd releases Piper at the Gates of Dawn

 

Pink Floyd's debut album was released on this day in 1967 in the UK.  The album would not get its US release until October in a version that nixed three of the tracks on the English release and added See Emily Play.  All but two of the songs on the original release were written by Syd Barrett.  At the time, the lineup of the band included Barrett, Richard Wright and Nick Mason.  The album was recorded between February and April at Abbey Road Studios in London.

 

Other Noteworthy Classic Rock events on August 4 include...

 

1968 Day two of the Newport Pop Festival in Costa Mesa, California.

 

1975 Robert Plant, wife and children injured in car crash on Isle of Rhodes. 

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1979 A tribute concert to Lowell George is staged by Bonnie Raitt, Jackson Browne and Emmylou Harris.

 

1979 Led Zeppelin plays Knebworth in the group's first UK concert in four years.

 

1984 Phil Collins marries Jill Tavelman.  Eric Clapton and Robert Plant perform during the reception.

 

1987 John Mellencamp releases The Lonesome Jubilee.  

 

2010 Jim Morrison's handwritten lyrics for LA Woman sell for $20,680 at UK auction.

 

2015 Paul Simon makes an unannounced appearance with Billy Joel during the last concert at the Nassau Coliseum.


R.I.P Molly Hatchet co-founding guitarist Steve Holland

 

Steve Holland, the sole surviving original member of Molly Hatchet, has died.  He joined the Jacksonville, Florida based band in 1974  after meeting fellow guitarist Dave Hlubek and remained with the group until 1983. No cause of death was announced, but Holland was saddled with a number of haelth problems in recent years.


Stones 1989 come-back concert to DVD

The Rolling Stones ended a seven year touring hiatus with a triumphant come-back concert in Atlantic City, New Jersey in 1989 that included appearances by Eric Clapton, Izzy Stradlin and John Lee Hooker. That Steel Wheels era concert gets released for the first time on September 25th.

 

 


Robert Plant solo compilation due in October

 

Robert Plant has announced an anthology culled from his post Led Zeppelin solo career.  The 30 song, double disc  collection drops on October 2nd.

 


Joe Bonamassa serves-up Royal Tea

 

Joe Bonamassa' next solo studio album Royal Tea was inspired by his British heroes Jeff Beck, John Mayall & The Bluesbreakers, Eric Clapton, Led Zeppelin and Cream. Recorded at the legendary Abbey Road Studios, the album will be released on October 23rd.
 

Royal Tea brings Bonamassa full-circle. "This whole adventure," admits Joe, "was a bucket-list thing for me." This album reconnects the 43-year-old with the guitar-slinging kid from upstate New York, who stumbled across the best of British blues music in his dad's vinyl collection – whose influences have shaped him to be the player he is today. "I would have been about twelve years old, and it was the sound I heard in my head. Like, 'OK, I'm in. That's what I want to be'."

 

The ten original tracks on Royal Tea were co-written by Joe and a cast of homegrown notables including former Whitesnake guitarist Bernie Marsden, ex-Cream lyricist Pete Brown and piano man Jools Holland. "Writing this record in London has done its job," reflects Bonamassa. "It really does sound inherently British. Bernie and I, we finish each other's sentences. We're cut from the same cloth." Bonamassa's long-standing producer Kevin Shirley and regular touring band flew in for the recording sessions, which included Anton Fig (drums), Michael Rhodes (bass) and Reese Wynans (keyboards).


Fleetwood Mac's early years get boxed

 

Fleetwood Mac became a musical juggernaut with the release of the group's self-titled album in July of 1975 and Rumours in February of 1977, but the early years for the group included a number of solid albums that are overshadowed by the ones that followed. A new box set due September 4 will delve into those albums and include a number of bonus tracks and a 1974 studio concert. The studio albums with bonus tracks covered in the remastered recordings include The Play On (1969), Kiln House (1970), Future Games (1971), Bare Trees (1971), Penguin (1973), Mystery To Me (1973) and Heroes Are Hard To Find, and a live recording from the Record Plant in December, 1974.


Peter Green dies

 

Peter Green,the co-founding guitarist of Fleetwood Mac, passed away in his sleep in the early morning hours today. One of the most highly regarded guitarists of his time, Green started playing guitar at 10, but he played bass in his first two bands and started in his third, the Tridents, as the bassist before turning some heads when he got to play lead guitar filling in for Eric Clapton on a short string of dates in 1965 with John Mayall's Bluesbreakers. When EC left the Bluesbreakers the following year, Mayall brought Green in on a full-time basis. In 1967 Green parted ways with Mayall to form Peter Green's Fleetwood Mac featuring Jeremy Spencer and dummer Mick Fleetwood.

 

Among the songs Green wrote for the early era Fleetwood Mac are Black Magic Woman, Oh Well and Albatross.

He left the band after joining a commune in Germany during a 1970 European tour, but rejoined for a 1971 reunion tour that also included Spencer, who had left the band at about the same time Green had.

 

Following that tour, Green resumed a reclusive life for the better part of the decade and was musically engaged on only a sporadic basis through the following decades. It would be 1997 before he resumed a musical career, forming a band with Cozy Powell that released several albums over a seven year period. In 2009, he formed Peter Green and Friends.

 

Last year, Mick Fleetwood organized a tribute to his early band mate.

 

RIP, Peter Green


Nils Lofgren sets 2020 live release

 

Grin, Crazy Horse and E Street Band veteran Nils Lofgren has set August 21 as the release date for a 16 song double live album recorded with his solo group at number of stops on a recent tour.   As for the next album reuniting Bruce with the E Street Band. Lofgren characterized material the E Street Band is working on to be on a par with the best songs the band and Springsteen have ever recorded.


Nick Mason shares another early Floyd classic.

Nick Mason's Saucerful Of Secrets continues to dish out versions of early Floyd classics. Astronomy Domine is the latest the drummer has posted.

 

 


Dave Mason revisits a classic

Dave Mason assembled quite the lineup to accompany him on a recent reboot of his classic from Traffic's second album.

 


Billy Joel's surprise impromptu street performance

A Long Island couple that had set an old upright piano at the curb in hopes someone would cart it away were amazed to find Billy Joel banging out a ragtime tune on it. The Piano Man pronounced the instrument just needed tuning and refinishing and urged them to donate it instead of dumping it.

 

 


Joan Jett - Jeepster

Joan Jett from the recently released T-Rex tribute album.

 

 


AC/DC breaks down songs on 1980 release

Most of the doubters that AC/DC would even survive let alone ever again thrive following the demise of Bon Scott were at least willing to admit that Brian Johnson had a damn good set of pipes when he made his debut with the band 40 years ago this month on Back In Black. The group is revisiting that great album with a series of videos on each song, starting withYou Shook Me All Night Long,?

 

 


The Osbournes cook-up a new tv show

 

The Travel Channel is rolling out a show featuring Ozzy, Sharon and son Jack Osbourne called The Osbournes Want To Believe. The 8 episode season opens at 10pm (eastern) on August 2, Each edition will feature Jack presenting video evidence of paranormal events for his parents to judge the validity of.

Jack says, "My parents have always lived on the edge, even when it comes to the supernatural. I'm convinced they just haven't seen enough evidence, so I'm making them watch the most undeniable footage caught on camera, including a few from my own personal experiences."

 


Moody Blues bassist shares new song

Moody Blues bassist John Lodge, his wife and son teamed with former Yes lead singer Jon Davison on this new song in Lodge's Florida home studio.

 

 


Rock Hall of Fame cancels live 2020 induction ceremony

 

The already delayed 2020 Rock Hall of Fame induction has now been cancelled. John Sykes, the new Chairman of the Foundation, announced that the Hall and HBO will replace the traditional ceremony with an HBO special honoring the inductees by telling each band or artist's "...stories of their incredible contributions to music and impact on a generation of artists that followed them.

The program honoring the Doobie Brothers, T-Rex, Nine Inch Nails and the others gaining entry this year will air on HBO and stream on HBO Max starting November 7 at 8pm.


Progress made on new Scorpions release

 

Scorpions members are working together toward completing an album begun last year. Klaus Meine says the disruption caused by the pandemic has complicated the creative process but told Pat's Soundbytes Unplugged that he and Rudolf Schenker and Matthias Jabs managed to spend some time together in the studio in May and June before shifting into a Zoom mode. Drummer Mikkey Dee, who joined the group from Motorhead after Lemmy Kilmister's death, contracted the virus while in Sweden but has recovered.


Charlie Daniels dead at 83

 

An elder statesman of Southern Rock has died. Charlie Daniels, the venerable leader of the CDB, died of a hemorrhagic stroke today at 83. A road warrior for decades, Daniels and his band worked its way from from roadhouses to arenas and stadiums and became an unlikely but significant player on three Bob Dylan albums. Called on to contribute a guitar part on one song during a Bob Dylan Nashville Skyline album session in Nashville, Daniels was packing up and moving out when Dylan interrupted his departure by announcing "I don't want another guitar player. I want him."

The surging popularity of Southern Rock in the 1970's propelled Daniels and his band to great heights. amassing multiple awards and selling close to 15 million albums. Success never went to that head under the giant hat, he never lost his appreciation for his fans and did a lot of good through the funds raised during his Volunteer Jam benefit concerts.

RIP Charlie D.


Allman Betts Band second album has a retro look

 

The Allman Betts Band will release Bless Your Heart on August 28th. We like the throwback touch of album cover art that replicates the wear an lp that's been around a long time for the second album from band fronted by descendants of Allman Brothers Band.

 


Let there be Rock

We hope our US based friends are finding ways to make this July 4th holiday enjoyable despite the awkward circumstances most are contending with. Crankin' up some great tunes always helps.

 

 


Robbie Robertson turned down Dylan album offer

 

Bob Dylan wanted Robbie Robertson to play on his Rough and Rowdy Ways album, but the former Band guitarist turned down the invite citing other commitments. Speaking with Rolling Stone, Robertson said he would have loved for it to happen but was "...slammed with work" related to his own album's release and the scoring he was doing for Martin Scorsese on The Irishman.
He apparently declined the offer after a phone call from Dylan that included him reading Robbie some lyrics, and said he planned to let Dylan know, "God, I'm sorry I Wasn't available then, but let's see if we can cause some trouble down the line."
Had it worked out, it would have been Robertson's first studio session with Dylan since the Band backed Bob on Planet Waves in 1974.


Benny Mardones dies at 73

 

 

He always went out of his way to let fans know how much he appreciated their interest in him and hs music.  We will miss him.  RIP Benny.  From his obit...

 

BENNY MARDONES DIES AT 73
After Battle with Parkinson’s Disease

I am deeply saddened to announce that Benny Mardones, artist and writer of 3x Billboard Charted Record “INTO THE NIGHT”, has died at 73, says long time friend and record producer, Joel Diamond.

 

Benny died peacefully at his home in Menifee, CA on June 29, 2020 with his loving wife at his side. He died from complications of Parkinson’s disease.  Benny was born Ruben Armand Mardones in Cleveland, Ohio on November 9,1946. 

 

"I have lost my husband and the love of my life. Not a day went by without Benny telling me how much he loved me. When he knew the end was coming and near coma, he would ask me to come close and struggle to sing “I’ve Got You” (click: https://youtu.be/zfJuJcfTLx4). For the last 12 years he would often surprise me with the most beautiful bouquet of flowers and a note attached saying in Danish “Jeg Elsker Dig” (I Love You)," said Jane.


Benny was raised in Savage, Maryland and later moved to Syracuse, NY, where he became their “Hometown Hero”. He then moved to Woodstock, NY, and most recently for the past 20 years has resided in Southern California. Benny joined the Navy right after high school and fought in the Vietnam War.Benny Mardones is a name you might not be familiar with, but as soon as you hear the first “signature” chords (click: https://youtu.be/m20bgdHdNk8) of "Into The Night", you will instantly know the song and the artist. He exploded onto the music scene in 1980 and was quickly nicknamed "The Voice," a title earned because of his incredible range as well as his soulful and passionate performances. "Into The Night" has been played over 8 Million times and to this day is still one of the most frequently played rock tunes in America.


As part of his legacy, Benny’s final wish and his ultimate gift was to donate his body after-death to Parkinson’s for advanced medical research and education.

A Memorial Service will be announced in the near future.
 

"Life has a beginning and an end for all of us, but one thing that will always be said of Benny Mardones is that he definitely squeezed the tube-of-life completely dry", said  Joel Diamond.

 

 


Ringo Starr announces online 80th Birthday bash

 

Ringo Starr's 80th birthday celebration goes online July 7 with virtual appearances from guest including Paul McCartney, Joe Walsh, Peter Frampton, Elvis Costello, Steve Earle, Gary Clark Jr., Keb Mo, Ben Harper, Michael McDonald and Willie Nelson.

The event streams on Ringo's YouTube Channel and is free to view, with a donation optional.


1964 Janis Joplin, Jorma Kaukonen recording

 

As big a drag as this global health crisis has proven to be, having to cut back a lot of collective engagement activities has created a lot more time to devote to exploring online rabbit holes like YouTube. It's amazing how many unexpected things turn up. This morning, we followed a lead from Best Classic Bands via Music Fest News that led to this 1964 recording of Jefferson Airplane and Hot Tuna guitar great Jorma Kaukonen and Janis Joplin working through some tunes together.

 



Led Zeppelin I original artwork goes sky high at auction

 

The latest indication that wealthy people not spending money on lavish vacations, expensive restaurants and the other perks of having lots of discretionary income are eager to buy rare collectibles is word that the original artwork for Led Zeppelin's debut album has sold at auction for close to $325,000. Created by art student George Hardie for the equivalent of about $1,200, the stipple tracing of a photo of the Hindenburg airship disaster of 1937 had been expected to top out at about $30,000 at the Christie's auction. The now 76 year-old artist who became an academic lecturer on illustration says the original was found in a folder at the bottom of a chest in his studio. The label applied to the outside of the folder by a partner of the artist when it was tucked away read, "G's pension fund".

 

MORE LED ZEPPELIN INSIGHTS


ZZ Top and Jeff Beck could combine in studio

 

Billy Gibbons added a tantalizing tidbit to his previous assurances that ZZ Top is working on new material with the intention of putting out a new album after this prolonged period of not being able to tour or record together. Speaking with Live Signing, the Top guitarist said, "We're getting ready to go back in the studio" and added that there's a good chance Jeff Beck will join him, Dusty Hill and Frank Beard when they do. The two guitar greats got together in London about a year ago and have stayed in touch since. Billy credits Beck as "... a guy that not only is still doing it like we'd like to do it - he is inventing things on the guitar that probably wasn't really designed to be done and yet he's doing it."

 

MORE ZZ TOP INSIGHTS



Kurt Cobain guitar shatters auction record

 

The 1959 Martin D-18 guitar Kurt Cobain played during Nirvana's 1993 MTV Unplugged set shattered the previous record amount paid for an iconic guitar when it brought a top bid of $6 million Saturday (6/19). Just 7 bidders were vying for the guitar during the final round of bids according to Julien's Auctions. The previous high bid for an individual guitar was set when David Gilmour's Black Stratocaster sold for $3.95 million.


Todd Rundgren launches streaming TV show

 

Todd Rundgren is riding out the physical distancing at his home in Kauai, Hawaii, where he has passed the time developing a streaming TV series he will premiere on his 72nd birthday this coming Monday (6/22). Future episodes of The Todd's Honest Truth will stream at onlocalnation.com every other week starting on July 3.

Rundgren told the Oakland Press he researched streamed offerings of other musicians during the pandemic and found most to be 'slack and low energy'. He plans a more impressive presentation. He'll have to if he expects fans to pony-up the $15 per episode cost to view each one.


2020 Bruce Hornsby album due August 14

Bruce Hornsby has a new release due on August 14th that will include a demo he and the late, great Leon Russell recorded together 25 years ago. Non-Secure Connection draws on a range of styles and subjects that the former leader of The Range, the Noisemakers and informal member of the Grateful Dead observes is consistent with hem feeling his music "...has never been a part of any trend that defied any era of music during my 34 years of doing this."