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Noteworthy Now Archives for 2010-01

AC/DC Plan Tribute to Bon Scott

During a radio interview in New Zealand, Brian Johnson of AC/DC said the band would like to come up with a way to honor Bon Scott around the time of the anniversary of his death that is respectful and avoids coming off as a 'sensation seeking thing'.  Johnson says his predecessor, who died Feb. 19 1980 after a night of heavy drinking, is '...still a part of the band, he's still a part of us.'  He indicated that the band hopes to meet with Scott's mother and brother when the AC/DC tour plays Perth in western Australia.


Grammys Marginalize Rock

The Grammy Awards Sunday (1/31) was so full of smoke & mirrors it's little wonder most musicians are so cynical about the annual industry schmooze fest.  Jon Stewart's jokes making light of the event and some of the ego centric celebs in the house went over like Lady GaGa at a bluegrass festival.  Elton John opened with a bizarre duet with her Bon Jovi did a medley, Green Day performed with the cast of a new musical, and Dave Matthews played.  The only Classic Rockers on stage were Jeff Beck, brilliant in a brief tribute to Les Paul, Leon Russell, who sat in with the Zac Brown Band, Stevie Nicks, guesting with Taylor Swift, and presenters Carlos Santana and Ringo Starr. Grammys went to Green Day (Rock Album), Bruce Springsteen (Solo Rock Performance), Neil Young (Best Box Set), Jeff Beck (Rock Instrumental), Kings of Leon (Rock Song), and hard rock and metal awards went to AC/DC and Judas Priest.

Neil Young Honored in LA

Crosby, Stills & Nash, John Mellencamp, Jackson Browne, John Fogerty, Dave Matthews, James Taylor, Leon Russell, Elvis Costello, Sheryl Crow, T-Bone Burnett, Lucinda Williams and Norah Jones honored Neil Young with a 2 hour performance of his songs Friday night (1/29) in LA for an audience that included Brian Wilson, Nicole Kidman and husband Keith Urban, and Tony Bennett.  The occasion was the annual MusiCares Person of the Year ceremony.  In thanking the performers Young commented, "I forgot how many songs I've written.  I'm worn out.  Some of those songs, I listen to them and I go, 'Oh my God, what am I gonna do now?'"   Young, who seldom attends award ceremonies, could stick around until Sunday, when it's possible he will pick-up his first Grammy award.


Joe Walsh vs Joe Walsh

A Republican candidate for Congress having the same name he does is something Joe Walsh of the Eagles can't do much about.  But Joe Walsh the politician using a song Joe Walsh the musician has rights to is, at least in the mind of the guitarist, who waged a tongue-in-cheek campaign for President himself in 1980. Lead The Way, the painfully lame song congressional candidate Walsh posted on YouTube is a straight rip from Walk This Way, the song Joe Walsh recorded while a member of the James Gang.  Candidate Walsh, a self-proclaimed Tea Party conservative, says his use of the song does not violate copyright because it is a parody.  Guitarist Joe Walsh is not amused.


Face 2 Face With Green Monster?

Live Nation has not confirmed a report in the Boston Herald that the Billy Joel Elton John Face 2 Face tour will take over Fenway Park on July 24.  The promoter has not denied it either, apparently.  If the date firms, the piano men will join Bruce Springsteen, Jimmy Buffett, the Rolling Stones, the Dave Matthews Band, the Police, Phish, Paul McCartney and Neil Diamond as artists that have played the historic ball park.  The Red Sox will be in the middle of a west coast road trip that weekend, playing the Mariners on that date in Seattle.


Hopes for a Better Hendrix Park

Plans to convert the small childhood home Jimi Hendrix grew up in failed to come together fast enough to save the small bungalow, but another group now hopes to make improvements to a Seattle park dedicated to the guitar great.  The Friends of Jimi Hendrix Park held an open house in a former school building adjacent to the site Thursday (1/28) to review a conceptual plan for expanding the park, and to solicit input and dollars from people interested in making the space a more fitting tribute to Hendrix.  The group is optimistic that a statue of Hendrix, now located on Capitol Hill in the city, can be relocated to the park, which is in the neighborhood the legendary guitarist was raised in.

Joe Perry Reached Out to Rodgers

Behind the scenes at last November's Classic Rock Roll of Honor event in London, Joe Perry reportedly talked with Bad Company vocalist Paul Rodgers about stepping into Steven Tyler's role in AerosmithClassic Rock Magazine reports it has confirmed the approach, saying Perry asked the magazine's editor to introduce him to Rodgers.  Another magazine staffer at a table next to the pair claims he heard Perry issue the invite for Rodgers to join AerosmithPaul's range might not seem like the best match for the material until you consider how well he did on Freddie Mercury vocals during his stint with Queen.  Still, taking the job of a legend that's alive is a lot tougher than accepting an offer from band mates of one who is dead.  A known entity taking the place of Tyler still seems like a lose/lose proposition for the band, fans and anyone willing to do it.


Buffett a Welcome Tailgate Crasher

Fans arriving at the New Orleans Superdome early for the Saints exhilarating win over the Vikings Saturday (1/23) got an extra thrill when lifelong Saints fan Jimmy Buffett joined a local band on a flatbed near one of the parking lots for a couple of songs.  Buffett, arriving for the game with the producer of the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival, spotted someone wearing one of those wacky visors with a wig implanted in it, a favorite with Saints fans because anyone wearing one resembles coach Sean PaytonJimmy, scheduled to rendevous with Payton after the game for a celebration if the Saints won, decided he had to have one.  The owner offered to give it up if Buffett sang a song with the Creole String Beans.  He obliged, jumping onto the flatbed and doing two - Sea Cruise and Margaritaville.  See it here.

Ringo & Santana Pass Out Hardware Sunday

Ringo Starr, Carlos Santana, Alice Cooper and Mick Fleetwood are in the ranks of presenters of Grammy awards Sunday (1/31) in LA.  Jeff Beck is part of a tribute to the late Les Paul, and Jon Bon Jovi  takes a page from the play book of fellow Jersey Rocker Bruce Springsteen by letting the audience decide what song his band should do.  The Dave Matthews Band and Elton John will also perform. Grammy contenders include Bob Dylan, Bruce Springsteen, Eric Clapton & Steve Winwood, Neil Young, Jeff Beck, Judas Priest, U2, Metallica, Steve Vai, John Fogerty and the Dave Matthews BandNeil Young, who has never won a Grammy of his own, gets honored Friday (1/29) as MusiCares Person of the Year during an event at the LA Convention Center. (story)

Attention Shoppers: Steven Tyler In Aisle 5

Amid ongoing reports that Aerosmith is sticking to the plan to at least temporarily replace Steven Tyler, Tyler, or someone that does a convincing impersonation of him, is doing pop-up performances in peculiar places in the part of the country the Aerosmith lead singer has reportedly been undergoing rehab.  Tyler, or his body and voice double, appeared at a karaoke night in Palm Desert, CA last week. (story)  That was followed by an even more bizarre incident over the weekend.  According to and TMZ, a person believed to be Tyler gulped gas from a helium tank used to fill balloons and sang acapella versions of Dude Looks Like A Lady and I Don't Want To Miss A Thing at a Home Depot store in southern California.  If it is Tyler and this is his comeback strategy, a second opinion might be a good thing.

Van Morrison Retaliates

Van Morrison posted another message on his web site addressing the controversy triggered by an earlier posting on the site.  The singer discounted the original post, which claimed he was the father of a newly born child, in a statement attributing the story on his site to a hacker. A subsequent statement included a claim Morrison did not even know the mother of the child.  After it quickly became evident he did, a follow-up release said the denial he knew the woman had been a mistake.  Apparently realizing how badly his damage control attempts have backfired, Morrison has now posted a message that ends with, 'My private life is just that, it is private. I have, in my long career, never spoken about it and I'm not about to start doing so now.  My public communications will always be through my music which is what I am known for.'

Who In Medley Mode for Miami

Super Bowl XLIV is missing the major market matchup the NFL might prefer, but the choice of half time band is causing plenty of excitement.  Booking the Who to entertain the crowd in Miami and the tens of millions viewing the game on television sparked protests from groups over a run-in Pete Townshend had over child pornography charges a few years ago (story). The  guitarist tells Billboard the band will do a 'mash-up' of hits during the the break.  Also likely to be in attendance is Jimmy Buffett.  The singer, whose Margaritaville brand beer, LandShark, landed naming rights to the stadium for the regular season, was part of the New Orleans coach Sean Payton's post game celebration following the Saints OT win over the Vikings in the NFC title game to secure a franchise first trip to the Super Bowl, which they enter as underdogs to the Indianapolis Colts.    MORE WHO INSIGHTS    MORE JIMMY BUFFETT INSIGHTS

AC/DC Pumps Iron

The decade has started strong AC/DC.  The Black Ice album and tour have both done mondo business for the veteran Aussie Rockers.  The band also released one of the best box sets ever put together, including a limited edition that came packaged in a working amplifier. (details)  Now comes word that another compilation is on the way, this one being released in advance of the May 7 premier of Iron Man 2, the sequel that features several AC/DC. The lead video for the 15 song album is Shoot To Thrill. Filmed last month during the Buenos Aires stop on the Black Ice World Tour, the video, which also includes some footage from Iron Man 2, makes its debut Tuesday. (1/26)  The release date for the Iron Man 2 Soundtrack is April 19.


Springsteen Gets Long Encore in Cleveland

The Rock Hall Of Fame special Springsteen exhibit was slated to close this spring.  Instead, From Asbury Park to the Promised Land will continue in Cleveland through the rest of 2010.  The display includes everything from hand scrawled lyrics and the table he wrote many of them at to his battle worn 1952 Fender, a guitar so special to Bruce that he had his guitar tech drive it to the museum from New Jersey personally.  Springsteen is also turning over more items to the hall that might get fans back for a second look, including his first car, a 1957 Chevy Bel Air convertible, and the most recent honor he received, the medal from the Kennedy Center Awards he was given just a few weeks ago.
Toldeo Sun


Knock, Knock, Knockin' on Obama's Door

On Feb 10, Bob Dylan and John Mellencamp will join several other performers for an event in the East Room of the White House celebrating the music of the Civil Rights Movement.  Morgan Freeman and Queen Latifah will emcee the evening, which is being presented as part of Black History Month.  Between musical performances by Dylan, Mellencamp,  the Howard University Choir, Jennifer Hudson, John Legend and the Blind Boys of Alabama, excerpts from Civil Rights writings and speeches will be presented.  The event, which will be televised the following night on PBS affiliates, will stream live online the night of the event at starting at 5:15p, Eastern.



Scorpions Begin Long Exit

Scorpions has taken the unusual step of announcing the group is disbanding years before it actually happens.  An announcement on the group's web site says the German Hard Rock veterans feel the forthcoming album, Sting In The Tail, measures up to the best work it has ever done and, accordingly, band members have decided to put an end to the band at the conclusion of the upcoming world tour, a trek the site says will include five continents and last 'over the next few years.'  The tour opens May 7 in the homeland city of Leipzig.  Clips of two songs from the forthcoming album can be previewed on the band's site.


Tyler Takes the Mic Karaoke Night

Patrons of the Tilted Kilt in Palm Desert, California got to hear what could turn out to  be the only 2010 performance of Steven Tyler backed by AerosmithTyler, reportedly undergoing substance abuse treatment at the Betty Ford Clinic in Rancho Mirage, arrived at the club accompanied by management according to The Desert Sun.  The club DJ told the paper he was warned not to approach Tyler about participating in karaoke night.  That proved unnecessary when Tyler bailed out two singers who had warned those present that their attempt at the Aerosmith song I Don't Want To Miss A Thing would 'totally suck'.  Tyler took the mic and did the song justice before making a hurried exit to get clear of the place before the crowd people in the bar had texted on their cell phones arrived.


Geils Band Blast for Boston Charity

On the weekend a global telethon raised around $60 million to help quake victims in Haiti, Bay State musicians got busy for that cause and another at both ends of the state.  James Taylor did a fund raising concert in the Berkshire Mountain community of Great Barrington, MA that netted a half a million dollars for the Haiti relief effort.  The Convention Center in Boston rocked  Saturday night (1/24)Joey Kramer of Aerosmith emceed a party that featured what Peter Wolf has said could be the last reunion of the J. Geils Band.  The event, which raised around $2 million for Big Brothers & Big Sisters, included an auction of a Kramer drum set Celtics co-owner Wyc Grousbeck had previously bought from the Aeosmith drummer.  The skins brought $30k at the event.
Boston Globe


Ticketmaster Live Nation Green Light

Bruce Springsteen and a number of other artists call it a travesty.  Irv Azoff claims it will create a synergy that is great for bands and fans.  The opinion that matters most to the merger of Ticketmaster and Live Nation was issued Monday (1/25) by the Department of Justice.  After the ticketing firm and the promoter/venue operator/management company cleared a couple of low hurdles tossed in front of the plan by the DOJ, the agency issued its approval of the plan, turning a deaf ear to critics that say the decision amounts to a government stamp of approval on a monopolistic empire rife with conflicts of interest that will cost consumers.  For his part, Azoff contends the combination will '...provide great services to Artists, Buildings, Teams and most importantly, fans.' Sounds a lot like the health care debate... but with a beat you can dance to.


Bruce Back at Stone Pony

Bruce Springsteen followed his Friday night single song performance during the Hope For Haiti telethon with a 27 song set Saturday (1/23) night at a legendary E Street Band venue.  The Stone Pony in Asbury Park, NJ was the site of the show, with proceeds reportedly going to the Ranney School.  Attendance was apparently limited to parents and students of the school, faculty and staff and a few friends of The Boss, including Brian Williams of NBC News and actor Hugh Jackman.  Joined by wife Patti Scialfa and special guest Southside Johnny, and backed by Bobby Bandiera's band, Bruce delivered a a set that included We're Havin' A Party and The Fever.  


Billy Gibbons Helps Conan Go Out Loud

Conan O'Brien joined unannounced guests Billy Gibbons of ZZ Top and Ben Harper on Will Ferrell's send-up of Free Bird to end Conan's seven month run hosting the Tonight ShowNeil Young, who earlier in the show did a solo acoustic version of Long May You Run, made an early exit to appear on the Hope For Haiti telethon for a duet with Dave MatthewsO'Brien and his guests pummeled NBC all week for the network's decision to oust him as host so Jay Leno could return to it.  Tom Hanks and Conan got some good jabs in during the final show too before O'Brien expressed his sincere appreciation to the network for all of the opportunities it had given him during their long association, but he left little doubt that he intends to launch a new show.


Bay Area Tribute to Harmonica Great

Norton Buffalo was tremendously talented and very unassuming, a combination that earned him the admiration and friendship of a lot of great musicians and music fans in the Bay Area.  News that cancer had taken the great harp player in October set plans in motion for a tribute concert to raise money for the family of the man who had always been so generous with his time and talent. Friday night (1/22) a number of artists Buffalo enjoyed and performed with, including Steve Miller, the Doobie Brothers, Bonnie Raitt, Elvin Bishop and George Thorogood performed to honor their friend at what Raitt proclaimed 'Buff-a-palooza'.  Steve Miller, who Buffalo recorded and toured with for 33 years, had the full house in Oakland's Fox Theatre bellowing every chorus in tribute to the man who was absent but also powerfully present.

No Gabriel With Genesis at RHOF

Peter Gabriel has told Rolling Stone that any performance involving Genesis members at the Rock Hall Of Fame induction will not include him.  The man who fronted Genesis during the era many fans remain convinced the band produced material superior to the songs that later brought it great commercial success may not even attend the induction.  He is preparing for his New Blood Tour, a series of solo dates being billed as Peter Gabriel, orchestra, no drums, no guitars.  The ceremony welcoming Genesis, Jimmy Cliff, The Hollies, The Stooges and, sadly, ABBA to the RHOF takes place March 15 at the Waldorf Astoria in New York City.  It will be carried live on the Fuse Network.

Bruce Hornsby Musical in the Making

The Virginia Stage Company plans to premier a musical that Bruce Hornsby has been working on for some time.  SCKBSTD, marquee shorthand for Sick Bastard, will premier Jan. 18 of 2011 for a two week run in Norfolk.  Hornsby, a Williamsburg, VA native, weaves southern culture and characters into many of his songs, so the idea of working on a series of songs about a stranger moving into a small town in southeastern Virginia was a natural progression.  The occasional Grateful Dead contributor collaborated with Chip DeMatteo and author McLeod Chapman on developing the story line.


Bruce, Bono, Sting, Young Sing for Haiti

The global telethon to raise funds for earthquake devastated areas of Haiti aired on multiple US  networks Friday (1/22). Bruce Springsteen did a rendition of We Shall Overcome from New York.  Bono and the Edge of U2 joined Rhinna and Jay Z in London on StrandedSting, backed by The Roots, did Driven To Tears and Neil Young, fresh from taping the last Tonight Show hosted by Conan O'Brien, teamed with Dave Matthews for a version of the Hank Williams song Alone And Forgotten.  Hope For Haiti used the collective reach of the MTV family of channels and ABC, CBS, NBC, FOX, CNN, HBO and CMT in the US for the 2 hour special.  


UK Festival Gains Acts

A July festival showcasing Classic Rock artists in London continues to grow.  The latest additions to the High Voltage Festival in Victoria Park July 22 are Randy Bachman and Fred Turner from Bachman, Turner Overdrive and upstate New York guitar great Joe Bonamassa. ZZ Top, Emerson Lake & Palmer, Foreigner, Focus, Asia, Black Label Society and former Genesis member Steve Hackett are also in the lineup. The BTO veterans faced legal challenges to using 'Overdrive' or 'BTO' in their name (story), so they will tour and record  as simply Bachman Turner.  Bonamassa recently started working with Jason Bonham, Glenn Hughes and KISS, Alice Cooper keyboard wizard Derek Sherinian to form a new group under the name Black Country.

Wood May Go It Alone

News that the Rolling Stones do not plan to tour in 2010 disappointed more than fans.  A Stones tour would have provided Ron Wood some refuge from the relentless London tabloid coverage his wild lifestyle has attracted and a means of recouping a portion of the fortune his recent divorce set him back.  Faced without a tour and reportedly under pressure from within the band to get his act together, Wood is now said to be considering a solo tour.  The best possible scenario for the embattled guitarist would be having Rod Stewart finally agree the time was right for the long anticipated Faces reunion.  That appears about as likely as Ekaterina Ivanova deciding not to cash in on selling stories about the stormy relationship she and Wood had.


Imagine No More Photos

Dovedale Jr. School sits just around the corner from a street that gained notoriety beyond its Liverpool neighborhood when a song about it joined Strawberry Fields Forever on a single the Beatles released early in 1967.  Penny Lane later appeared on Magical Mystery Tour. While the school John Lennon and George Harrison attended attracts far fewer tourists than places they frequented after becoming Beatles, it still draws more than school officials are comfortable with.   Concern for the privacy and safety of children at the school has prompted them to post signs prohibiting photos of the playground.  The wordless signs simply display a camera with a X imposed over it.  Officials stress that photos of the school itself are fine, so long as no children are in them.


Beck Back With New Album

Guitar master Jeff Beck follows-up his North American concert dates with Eric Clapton (story) with the release of Emotion & Commotion, his first studio album of new material in 7 years.  The April 13 release covers a wide range of styles, including some tracks that have the guitar virtuoso backed  by a 64 piece orchestra.  Don't take the addition of strings to mean Beck is backing away from Rock.  He says the orchestra was brought in because he liked the idea of '...bringing together these seemingly contradictory sounds on different kinds of non-classical music.'  After the three dates that combine the talents of the two former Yardbirds guitarists, Beck is off to South Korea, Hong Kong, Australia and Japan.  He opens a US tour at the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival May 1.


Bruce & Bono on Quake Relief Telethon

The global telethon to raise funds for earthquake devastated areas of Haiti that airs Friday (1/22) will include performances by Bruce Springsteen from New York and Bono and the Edge of U2 doing a song written for the relief effort with rapper Jay-Z in London that will be available as a benefit download.  Hope For Haiti will use the collective reach of the MTV family of channels and ABC, CBS, NBC, FOX, CNN, HBO and CMT in the US for the 2 hour special.   George Clooney hosts the LA feed. CNN's Anderson Cooper taking the lead in Haiti.  The commercial free event, which will funnel all donations to several relief organizations active in the massive effort to help in areas decimated by the quake.


Stroke Hits Charlie Daniels

Rapid recovery wishes to one of the hardest working men in show business, Charlie Daniels.  The gentle giant of Southern Rock was snowmobiling near his vacation home in southwestern Colorado on Friday (1/15) when he suffered what is being described as a mild stroke. After initial treatment in Durango, Daniels was transferred by air to Denver's Swedish Medical Center.  He busted out of there Sunday.  Knowing Charlie, he'll have little patience for the idea of sitting around recuperating.  Sure enough, his web site says the leader of the CDB looks forward to starting yet another year of barnstorming the country on his tour bus, starting Feb. 27 in Florida.


Carlos Santana's MLK Day

The foundation Carlos Santana and his former wife, Deborah, founded in 1998 makes grants to community organizations working to improve children's education and nutrition, and to increase their opportunities to enjoy the arts.  The group funded Martin Luther King Day activities Monday (1/18) at a middle school in Sausalito, California's Marin City named in honor of the slain civil rights leader.  Teaming with GrowingGreat, the Milagro Foundation got volunteers to install garden boxes, lay out raised planting beds for growing fresh vegetables and plant fruit trees and vines. Although in Marin County, one of the wealthier counties in the Golden State, Marin City is nearly 95% low income.  The community will see the addition of a new Farmers Market this spring that will improve access to fresh, healthy food.


Mellencamp Says "Hoosier Daddy, Ravens?"

The swagger of the Baltimore Ravens was reduced to a dejected stroll to the locker room after the lopsided whipping laid on them by Peyton Manning and the Indianapolis Colts Saturday (1/17).  There to take in the divisional-round play-off rout froma team suite was another star that could be headed for a career year, John Mellencamp.  Three Mellencamp projects are in the works for 2010:  the box set retrospective On The Rural Route 7609, No Better Than This, an album of new material recorded in historic settings, and Ghost Brothers of Darkland County, his collaboration with author Stephen King that includes Elvis Costello and Kris Kristofferson. He might also have to kick butts the way the Colts kicked butt thanks to his son's Facebook campaign to get him to stop smoking. (story)


Morrison Backs Out of US Shows

2009 was a dream year for Van MorrisonAstral Weeks performances in Hollywood, New York and London got great reviews, as did the CD and DVD releases culled from the sets.  Enter 2010.  The veteran Irish singer has been confronted with claims he fathered the child of his tour manager (story), and now is being challenged by a 42 year-old woman to submit to a DNA test to prove that he is not her father, too.  Morrison had to respond to the first claim after it appeared as an announcement on his own web site. Contradictions in the statement only added to his problems.  He then announced plans to sue a tabloid for its coverage of the story.  It has all taken a toll on the intensely private Morrison.  he has cancelled Jan. 24 & 25 concerts in Dallas and Ft. Worth Texas due to 'severe exhaustion'.

McCartney May Marry Again

The Daily Mail is reporting that Sir Paul McCartney might be headed down the aisle for a third time. The UK paper's web site cites reports that Paul proposed to Nancy Shevell, a woman he has known more than 20 years.  The 48 year old Shevell, a business woman, is the daughter of a wealthy family McCartney met while vacationing in the US. Shevell is said to have gained a degree of respect and confidence from Paul's family and inner circle that second wife Heather Mills never did.  His marriage to Mills imploded, ending in an costly divorce in 2008.  McCartney's first marriage, to Linda Eastman, was as solid a marriage as Rock has ever seen.  She died in 1998 of breast cancer.  Paul, Nancy, Ringo Starr and actor Woody Harrelson had lunch together Saturday (1/16) at The Terrace in Hollywood.


State of Aerosmith Update

Joe Perry has weighed in on where things currently stand with Aerosmith, and they seem not to have changed from where things stood before Steven Tyler went into rehab.  Speaking with Darryl Sterdan in an interview on the Toronto Sun web site, Perry reiterated that the band has had virtually no contact with Tyler, and that plans to audition singers to fill-in or replace him are still on the table.  He maintains that Tyler still faces leg and foot surgery that is likely to keep him sidelined 'about a year and a half'.  The guitarist declined to identify any candidates the band might be considering to fill Tyler's shoes, but did say he feels comfortable calling the band Aerosmith with or without Tyler in it.  Tyler, and a lot of Aerosmith fans, might take issue with that.


Stones Son Spars following Party

Reports emerged from London early Tuesday (1/18) that Tyrone Wood, the 26 year old son of Ron Wood of the Rolling Stones, got into an altercation with his brother-in-law during a birthday party marking the 18th birthday of Mick Jagger and Jerry Hall's daughter at a club.  Georgia May Jagger just landed the top modeling position for designer Versace. (story)  According to reports on the Mirror web site, things nearly came to blows between Wood and Jack Macdonald as the two left the party at around 2:30 in the morning.


Boss Does Unannounced NJ Appearance

The E Street Band being on break does not keep Springsteen from feeding his desire to play live - especially when a good cause is involved.  Saturday night (1/16) Bruce made what has become a fairly regular unannounced appearance at the annual benefit to raise funds in the fight against Parkinson's Disease.  Appearing at the Light Of Day concert at the Paramount Theatre in Asbury Park, Bruce spent more than an hour on stage with Joe Grushecky & the Houserockers in a set that included Atlantic City, Darkness On The Edge of Town, Johnnny 99 and Pink Cadillac.  Earlier he jumped on stage to do a song with Willie Nile, who was a special guest during the tour ending E Street Band concert last November in Buffalo. (story)


MTV Organizing Haiti Relief Telethon

HTML clipboard <!-- a:visited { color: #B6B03C } --> MTV Networks is coordinating a global telethon to raise funds for relief efforts in earthquake devastated areas of Haiti.  Hope For Haiti aims to use the collective reach of the MTV family of channels and ABC, CBS, NBC, FOX, CNN, HBO and CMT for a 2 hour special that will be anchored from Los Angeles and Haiti on Friday (1/22).   George Clooney will host the LA feed, with CNN's Anderson Cooper taking the lead in Haiti.  Musicians and celebrities are being recruited to appear during the commercial free event, which will funnel all donations to several relief organizations active in the massive effort to help in areas decimated by the quake.


Clapton Fender Guitar Phone

The 3G Fender, a new model HTC Android phone being offered by T-Mobile, arrives Jan. 20 pre-loaded with several Eric Clapton songs.  The carrier has been a sponsor of EC's Crossroads festivals. The guitar themed handset sports the famous Fender Guitar sunburst finish and includes an assortment of embedded features, including one that can create ringtones from a song as it is playing.  It will sell to the tune of $179.99 with the usual strings attached: plus taxes and fees and a 2 year contract and qualifying voice and data plan are required.


Jazz Fest Adds Simon & Garfunkel

The New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival has landed the only 2010 performance Paul Simon and Art Garfunkel plan to do together in the US.  The reunion of the duo at the end of last year for the Rock Hall of Fame anniversary concerts in New York City sparked speculation that a full US tour could be in the offing for 2010.  The annual New Orleans festival spans two weekends and multiple venues, and will present hundreds of performers.  Rockers in the 2010 lineup include the Allman Brothers Band, Pearl Jam, The Black Crowes, Van Morrison, Jeff Beck, Dr. John, The Levon Helm Band, Widespread Panic, Elvin Bishop, Elvis Costello, Gov't Mule, Derek Trucks and Blues Traveler.   Dates for the massive celebration in and around the Crescent City are April 23-25 and April 29-May 2.


The Big Man Has Back Surgery

Down time for E Street Band members was pretty scarce until recently.  Springsteen and his band were globe trotters for the better part of two years doing the Working On A Dream tour.  With the band on indefinite hiatus, Clarence Clemons decided the time was right to tend to the back problem that was causing the E Street Band sax player trouble.  Clemons had surgery Wednesday (1/13) in a New York hospital.  His Twitter site said he looks forward to being able to dance again.  It was obvious that the Big Man was in some big pain, especially during the last leg of the tour when he needed a stool to help him get through marathon sets.


Them Crooked Vultures Tech Smart

Them Crooked Vultures has made great use of the internet spread awareness and build excitement about the band. The cryptic web page announcing the arrival of the band has morphed into one of the best band web sites going.  Creating networking channels on the site to encourage fan interaction is just one example of how this new group of veteran musicians is tapping the potential of the internet to amp-up the buzz about itself.  TCV concert dates on the site list the registered fans attending each show - and provides a forum for their reviews.  Multiple social networking sites are also tied in - as are regular postings of well produced live footage to YouTube.  A December '09 studio concert version of Nobody Loves Me & Neither Do I rocks here.

Trio of Hendrix Discs Due

Two previously unreleased Jimi Hendrix concert discs drop Jan. 25.  Live In Paris features material recorded in 1967 & '68.  The other disc is from a concert in Ottawa in March of 1968.  A more intriguing release is due in March.  Valleys of Neptune will include songs recorded during the last two studio sessions the Jimi Hendrix Experience did before Jimi parted ways with Noel Redding and Mitch Mitchell.  Many of the tracks, recorded at London's Olympic Studios and the Record Plant in New York City, have been available as bootlegs, but the March 8 release promises greatly improved quality of the songs, one of which is Sunshine Of Your Love, the song the other great power trio of that era, Cream, released on Disraeli Gears in November, 1967.


Jagger's Daughter Versace Top Model

She’s got her father's lips, her mother's legs, and everything in between looks fabulous in denim or silk, plus she has enough personality to power a medium size city, so making Gloria May Jagger the face, body and spokesmodel of Versace was hardly a high risk decision.  The 17 year-old daughter of Mick Jagger and Jerry Hall, already the veteran of some very successful fashion campaigns, will fill the lenses of fashion photographers and ad pages for Versace in 2010.  Every father of a voluptuous young lady Mick ever lusted after has gotta be thinking what comes around goes around.


Beijing Show of Peace Developments

Planners behind the Show of Peace, a massive concert marking the 40th anniversary of Earth Day in the Birds Nest Stadium in Beijing, held a press conference in the city Wednesday (1/13). Promoters confirmed their plan to make the April 17 concert free, relying on sponsorships, merchandise sales and broadcast rights to cover all expenses.  Jimmy Page, one of the first to agree to play the concert (story), has been actively involved in promoting the event. Dozens of A-List artists are identified as 'targeted' to appear on the event web site, including Aerosmith. confirms that Joe Perry plans to play the concert, but says Aerosmith will not.


Clapton Signs On for Ono Reunion

Eric Clapton will participate in a one-off reunion of the Plastic Ono Band on Feb. 16 at the Brooklyn Academy of Music in New York.  The session that brings together Yoko, Klaus Voorman and EC will reportedly also include a number of artists not associated with the original band, including Paul SimonClapton appeared with the Plastic Ono Band in the fall of 1969 in Toronto, and again at a December concert in London.  Songs from those concerts were included on Live Peace in Toronto and Sometime In New York CityEric also performed with John Lennon, Yoko Ono and Keith Richards as the Dirty Mac during the fabled Rolling Stones Rock and Roll Circus in 1968, with Yoko writhing in a sack through a portion of the set.


Motor City Car Show Draws Bob Seger

Detroit auto makers hava a lot to prove in 2010.  The industry as a whole has to put the brakes on eroding market share, and everyone but Ford, which took no bailout money, has to make their case that the money was well spent.  One guy who probably does not need convincing was  at the Detroit Auto Show Monday (1/11)Bob Seger, who has owned several of the best muscle cars to ever roll off Detroit assembly lines, was especially drawn to the high performance display of SMS Supercars, a company operated by one-time Indy driver Steve Saleen that specializes in boosting the performance specs of cars produced by the Big Three. Saleen, who like every gear-head his age likes Seger, said Bob wants to check out the new Camaro he is working on.
Detroit Free Press

Yellow Submarine Screens in 3D

If you get queasy at sea, a dose of Dramamine may be a good idea before you go to see the remake of Yellow Submarine.  The performance-capture technology director Robert Zemeckis used so effectively to make action jump off the screen in the 2009 remake of A Christmas Carol is coming to Pepperland.  In addition to 3D, the 2010 version of the Beatles iconic 1968 animation movie will include live actors in the roles of John, Paul, George and RingoThe Hollywood Reporter says negotiations are underway with the four British actors Zemeckis wants in the lead roles for the film.

Mick Fleetwood Returns to Roots

Fleetwood Mac recorded some outstanding albums before the 1975 release of the self-titled album that set them on course to become one of the most popular groups of that or any other era.  Some early classics turn up on on set lists, but most got set aside as songs that would get lost in translation if the present day lineup of the band tried to do them live.  Fortunately, Mick Fleetwood missed playing them as much as early fans of the band missed hearing them.  The result was Blue Again, the Grammy nominated CD showcasing the Mick Fleetwood Blues Band doing early gems Oh Well, Albatross, Black Magic Woman, and a slew of staples from the years Fleetwood Mac was a blues band.  An 18 song DVD of the concert set, recorded in October 2008 in the UK, comes out Jan. 26.


Floyd & Police Drummers Beat For Peace

Drummers converged on 10 Downing Street Saturday (1/9) to urge the British Prime Minister to step up efforts to avert another crisis in the Sudan.  Nick Mason of Pink Floyd and Stewart Copeland of the Police have joined The Sudan365, a campaign to pressure world leaders to help reverse the slide toward civil war in the Sudan.  The Drum Beat for Peace encourages drummers from countries throughout the world to join in spreading awareness about the threat by participating in a drum beat relay similar to the passing of the Olympic torch.


Deep Purple Member Goes Classical

Jon Lord, the founding keyboard player of Deep Purple, is putting the finishing touches on a classical tribute album to Sir John Mortimer, a UK author and play writer who died a year ago.  The album project grew out of a piece he was commissioned to write for solo flute and strings.  The suite for flute, piano and orchestra Lord composed in tribute to Mortimer is featured on an album titled To Notice Such Things that Lord will release March 22.  Lord and Mortimer became friends in the late 1990's, and Lord collaborated with Mortimer on the music for one of the dramatist's stage productions.


Guitar Greats Mass in Mass

Boston Blues-Rock harp legend James Montgomery has always been a live wire.  The concept of relaxing has never had much appeal for him. When not performing or jamming, he's organizing or promoting gigs and informal jam sessions.  Artists he really wants to see he sometimes just books himself.  Boston area Blues-Rock fans have Montomery to thank for the chance to witness a rare session featuring several guitar greats at Mechanics Hall in Worcester Friday (1/15).  Officially, it is a Johnny Winter concert.  But thanks to Montgomery and his great connections with Boston area musicians, Brad Whitford of Aerosmith, Boston's Barry Goudreau and six string sensation Johnny A are all expected to join the Texas guitar great on stage.


Furthur Warm-Up Dates Big Draw

Furthur, the latest incarnation of the Grateful Dead, has done a series of unadvertised warm-up dates at a 225 seat Masonic Hall and a small theater in Marin County, just across the Golden gate Bridge north of San Francisco. The group reunites Bob Weir and Phil Lesh and brings on board John Kadlecik, an exceptional guitarist that earned his tie-dye stripes as a member of the Dark Star Orchestra, the band that recreates entire Grateful Dead concerts with uncanny accuracy.  Low-dough ($25) tickets for the shows got scarce instantly, but that did not deter thousands of Deadheads from descending on the village of Mill Valley with hopes of scoring one. The series wraps with shows in the Masonic Hall Monday and Tuesday (1/11&12).

Landmark Status for Doors Hangout

The Venice West Cafe in the SoCal coastal city near LA was a hangout for Beat Generation poets and musicians.  In the 60's it drew Jim Morrison and other members of the Doors to 7 Dudley Avenue.  The non-descript building no longer houses the cafe.  The Piccolo Restaurant occupies the space now.  But a plaque identifying the location that music, verse, art and social and political activism co-mingled and influenced American culture could be approved by March.  A Cultural Heritage Commission unanimously voted to designate the address for historic cultural monument status. The recommendation gets reviewed by a committee of the City Council and, if approved, would be voted on by the whole body.


Zeppelin & Stones Rock UK Mail

Last October we revealed details on plans underway in England to issue postage stamps featuring the cover art of several UK artists.  Thursday (1/7) the series of stamps went into circulation.  Snail mail in Great Britain can now be sent bearing the artwork of Led Zeppelin IV, London Calling from the Clash, The Rise & Fall of Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders From Mars by David Bowie, The Division Bell from Pink Floyd, the Rolling Stones album Let It Bleed and five other album covers.  Jimmy Page was on hand to help draw attention to the Royal Mail campaign to encourage something as increasingly rare as dropping a needle on vinyl - picking up a pen to write a letter.


Hendrix Goes 3D in Vegas

Sony used its new alliance with the Jimi Hendrix estate to create a jaw dropping demonstration of the electronic giant's new 3D TV display technology at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas.  CEO Howard Stringer announced the distribution partnership with Experience Hendrix Wednesday (1/6), and then used 3D enhanced footage of Hendrix performing at the 1969 Woodstock festival to demonstrate the 'monolithic design' series of Sony Bravia Televisions due to hit the marketplace in March.  Plans are also underway to upgrade the company's PlayStation consoles for 3D.  3D displays, tablet style PC panels and the rapidly expanding capabilities of  smartphones using new operating systems have created the most buzz at the annual gathering of tech fanatics in the desert.


Grammy Museum Scores Ringo

200 lucky people grabbed up tickets for an intimate performance Ringo Starr will do Jan. 19 at the Grammy Museum in LA featuring songs from his new solo release Y Not. The album, which includes contributions from Paul McCartney, Joe Walsh and Gary Wright, is the first solo project the former Beatle has produced himself (story).  It has a release date of Jan 12.  Starr will be backed by Ben Harper and his group the Relentless 7 for the special performance, which will follow an interview by museum director Robert Santelli.  Tickets for the exclusive mini-concert were gone within minutes of going on sale.


Tyler Bows Out of Anti-Drug Benefit

A scheduled appearance by Steven Tyler at a Concord, NH benefit to support efforts to reduce substance abuse among young people has been scuttled.  Organizers of the Jan. 23 event at the Capitol Center for the Arts hope to be able to reschedule once the Aerosmith front man is good-to-go after dealing with his own relapse. (story)  Dream On: An Intimate Evening with Steven Tyler was to include a couple of live songs, concert footage, Tyler speaking with the audience about his personal experience with addiction, and a Q&A session.  Tickets for the event in the small theater had sold out in just a few hours after going on sale in October (story).


Eclectic Bowie Tribute Lineup

With almost 30 artists involved in a David Bowie tribute album, it is hard to understand why there is not a better representation of well known Rock musicians Bowie influenced during his remarkable career.  The May release includes dozens of artists that most Bowie fans will be hard pressed to even recognize, acts like Exitmusic (Space Oddity), VOICEsVOICEs (Heros), A Place to Bury Strangers (Suffragette City).  The few familar names are far from the kind of A-List artists we would have expected: model, singer, political wife Carla Bruni does Absolute Beginners, Duran Duran covers Boys Keep Swinging and John Frusciante, the Red hot Chili Peppers recently departed guitarist, joins a group called Swahili Blonde on Red Money.   Strange Glue

Allman Brothers Move Uptown

The Allman Brothers Band has booked an extended stay in New York City since 1989. 2010 is no exception, but a scheduling conflict at the Beacon Theater is forcing the party to move uptown.  The ABB has reserved the United Palace Theater, a 3200 seat venue at 175th & Broadway, for eight shows starting on March 11.  Last year's run of 15 dates at the smaller Beacon featured dozens of guests, including Billy Gibbons of ZZ Top, Bob Weir & Phil Lesh of the Grateful Dead and a two night appearance by Eric Clapton.  Tickets for the run of dates go on sale Jan. 15.


Yoko Ono Plans Book

Yoko Ono is quoted as saying she is in the early stages of putting together a book about her life with John Lennon. Contact Music's web site quotes the 76 year-old Ono as vowing to have the book completed within a five year time frame.  Yoko, a nearly constant companion to the former Beatle during the last decade of his life, has been maligned as the cause of the Beatles break-up, a contention she has always dismissed but has never refuted in detail.


Dave Davies Open to Kinks Reunion

Tensions between Ray and Dave Davies have kept the Kinks from reuniting time and time again.  While things have eased some between the bickering brothers, enough resentments remain that they may never share the same stage again.  As 2009 wound down, Ray seemed increasingly upbeat about getting the band back together. (story)  Now, his bro is sounding receptive too.  Dave Davies closed a recent interview with Stay Thirsty Media by saying he is 'sure me and Ray will work on something as the Kinks once again.'  There were also enough complaints about his brother in the session to make a reunion still seem like a long shot, most of them having to do with his anger over Ray wanting to control everything and refusing to 'allow or give me the room to express myself and my ideas.'


Cruise Line Turns to Todd to Drum-up Biz

Carnival Cruise Line will market its fleet of floating pleasure palaces using Bang On The Drum, the great anthem against the daily grind from the 1983 Todd Rundgren album The Ever Popular Tortured Artist Effect.  The ads appear on morning network news programs and a number of hit shows, including NCIS, The Mentalist and, of course, The Office.  Each one aims to depict ways a Carnival Cruise lets people cut loose the shackles of their regular routine. No matter how you feel about the use of songs in commercials, you have to admit this matches up with the message better than most.  Rock doesn't stop at the dock on a number of cruises.  A Beatles theme cruise sails early in 2010. (story) One ship features a laser show synchronized to a Rock soundtrack on every voyage. (story

Stones May Not Tour in 2010

Ron Wood has shown no indication he intends to curb his appetite for young women and nights on the town. (story)  The reported release by the Rolling Stones of a statement that there are ' plans at the moment for the band to tour in 2010' could be intended to put added pressure on Wood while giving the group the option to change that on a moment's notice if the member who could use the gigs the most gets his act together. The Daily Mail story attributing the quote to an official statement from the band comes as 21 year-old Ekaterina Ivanova goes increasingly public with allegations against her former lover that include claims involving drug use.


Ginger Baker Wins Civil Suit

A young woman Ginger Baker at his New Zealand bank struck him as just the right person to hire as his personal secretary. The former Cream drummer regrets his notion to the tune of around $330,000, the amount he claims Lindiwe Noko cleaned out of his account at the bank.  Her trial on charges related to the claim ran into so many delays that Baker filed a civil suit seeking his money.  The bank will return around $31,000 plus interest to Baker for failing to prevent Noko from altering account settings that would have notified Baker of the withdrawals as they occurred. The woman, who claims she and Baker were involved romantically,  owes Baker more money as a result of the suit, and was fired by the bank after her arrest Dec. 7 in on charges related to claims by two other bank customers.

Van The Man in UK Tabloids

HTML clipboard <!-- a:visited { color: #B6B03C } -->  The first indication Van Morrison was the father of a baby boy born to a Gigi Lee came on the singer's own web site.  It was followed by a categorical denial, purportedly from Morrison, claiming the story had been posted on his site by a hacker (story).  The rebuttal even went so far as to say Morrison did not even know the woman.  Morrison may or may not have been involved in conceiving a child with with Ms. Lee, but the claim attributed to the singer that he did not even know Lee was discredited immediately.  She is reportedly his tour manager and  is involved with several of his business enterprises.  A representative for Morrison hastily said the suggestion he did not know her was an error.  UK tabloids, to the relief of Ron Wood, are having a field day with the story. Acquaintances of Lee, meanwhile, maintain she has said nothing to suggest he is not the father of the child.

Groups Target Townshend

Some child abuse prevention groups do not think the NFL should be satisfied with the explanation Pete Townshend of the Who used after a 2003 inquiry into his use of a web site that included sexually explicit images of children.  Townshend, who contends he was a victim of sexual abuse during his childhood, said he viewed the online site in 1999 while doing research for an autobiography.  British authorities settled the matter by issuing a caution to Townshend and placing him on a sex offender watch list in the UK for a period of 5 years.  The founder of one of the groups told the Florida Sun Sentinel 'The Who is a great band. Pete Townshend is the only issue here.'  Some contend the campaign to ban the band from the NFL title game in Miami is just a publicity ploy.


Soundgarden Ending 12 Year Hiatus

Chris Cornell has revealed via his Twitter account that Soundgarden will get back together in 2010.  News the Seattle rockers will reunite was also posted on the home page of a developing web site in the form of the notice 'The 12 Year Break is is Over and School is Back in Session'.  The band was in the forefront of groups expected to be their generation's biggest bands over the long-term when it fell apart in 1997 amid the usual in-fighting.  Cornell produced three solo albums after the split, as well as three as a member of Audioslave, the group that emerged from Rage Against the Machine after its lead singer, Zack de la Rocha, bailed out in 2000.


U2 & Springsteen Top Tours of 2009

U2 and Bruce Springsteen managed to draw massive crowds despite the economic turmoil during 2009 that had some tours resorting to 2 for 1 ticket deals to fill seats.  Even after easing back on ticket prices to lure more fans toward the end of their long tours, U2 and Bruce compiled impressive totals for the year.  The U2 360 Tour brought in $123 million, while the Springsteen Working On A Dream trek did $94.5 million in tickets.  The combined drawing power of Billy Joel and Elton John was strong enough to secure the number three spot for the two piano men, with $88 million in sales.  While Springsteen is off the road indefinitely, U2, and Joel & Elton John have dates planned for 2010.



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