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Noteworthy Now Archives for 2012-08

U2 and Former Spider-Man Director Settle

The legal battle being waged by the former Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark director over compensation for creative contributions she made to the Broadway production of the U2 scored musical has been settled - somewhat.  A deal described as 'tentative' leaves the possibility the case can be reopened within a two month period if terms are not being met.  Those terms are not being released. Julie Taymor had set a figure of $1 million for compensation and damages in a suit filed last November following her dismissal from the project. Bono and The Edge of U2 were identified as having suggested Taymor take over the production in a counter suit.  The trial had been expected to open in January.


Springsteen Makes The Post Season

Bruce Springsteen
steps to the plate in promos airing on FOX TV and between innings at major league ballparks to promote post season coverage of Major League Baseball.  The videos will intersperse clips of Bruce and the E Street Band doing Land of Hope and Dreams with footage of Derek Jeter, Mark Teixeira, Justin Verlander, Josh Hamilton, Bryce Harper, Albert Pujols and other heavy hitters (and pitchers) from the MLB ranks.
Glory Days, from the 1984 blockbuster album Born In The U.S.A., started with a reference to a '...big baseball player back in high school' Bruce was friends with that never made it to the Big Leagues.  Joe DePugh shared a funny story with Vermont Public Radio about Bruce's brief and far less glorious days as a kid playing baseball in Jersey.





Stones Reportedly Book NY & LA Dates

Rolling Stones
tour plans may be firming up.  Reports are emerging that the band will do two dates apiece at the Barclays Center, a newly opened 19,000 seat arena in Brooklyn, and at London's O2 Arena.  The four shows could net the band as much as $25 million, according to one source.  Virgin head honcho Richard Branson and Australian Paul Dainty are being identified as co-promoters of the dates.
The band gathered in a recording studio in Paris during recent days.  Whether the sessions were just rehearsals or involve recording new material has not been revealed.


Eddie Van Halen Under The Knife

Eddie Van Halen
is suffering from a bout of Diverticulitis, a severely painful inflamation caused by pockets or leisions of the colon.  The guitarist underwent emergency surgery Wednesday (8/29) to adress the problem.  He will be sidelined long enough to force the band to reschedule November dates in Japan.  Full recovery can take four to 6 months, a time frame that could have the guitarist ready to take the field at the New Orleans Superdome if rumors that Van Halen will provide Super Bowl halftime entertainment prove true.



Aerosmith Expands Another Dimension

Music From Another Dimension
, the first album of original studio material from Aersomith in more than a decade, will come out in more than one edition November 6.  The group has announced plans for a deluxe edition that will package the new release with concert video of the band performing the classics Train Kept A-Rollin, Same Old Song and Dance and Rats In The Cellar, audio of three additional studio recordings of songs not on the regular album, and interview clips featuring band members. The bonus tracks are Up On A Mountain, Sunny Side of Love and Oasis.  Titles on the standard release include Lover Alot, Street Jesus, We All Fall Down and Freedom Fighter, a track that includes Johnny Depp on background vocals.


Stones Tune-Up In Paris

Members of the Rolling Stones have been logging time in a Paris recording studio amid reports that the announcement about concert plans is near. A photo of Mick Jagger perched on a drum stool and surrounded by a dozen guitars, a couple of amps and some mic stands is the latest indication that the band is serious about mounting some sort of a 50th Anniversary tour. Don't be surprised if the number of shows is limited and comprised of multiple night stands in a few cities. Comments from various members in recent years make it likely that the kind of marathon globe trotting tours of their past are a thing of the past. The idea of New York, Chicago, Atlanta & LA with simulcasts available in other markets might be just the ticket. HenneMusic

Isaac Causes Cancelation of Skynyrd GOP Gig

GOP delegates looking forward to a Lynyrd Skynyrd concert in Tampa Sunday night (8/26) will have to find some other way to entertain themselves while much of Florida hunkers down in preparation for the onslaught of Isaac, the tropical storm that is expected to gain hurricane force before slamming into the Gulf Coast of the Sunshine State.  The pricey concert had been expected to rake in a considerable amount of money to support the Republican ticket headed by Mitt Romney, who Skynyrd's lead singer, Johnny Van Zant, backs in the November election.


Is Robert Plant Ready To Wail Again?

One of Rock's mightiest voices got toned way down when Robert Plant teamed with Alison Kraus and followed their Raising Sand collaboration with a Roots Rock project called the Band Of Joy.  Both top notch releases were met with only limited enthusiasm from fans eager her Plant really cut loose like he did with Zeppelin.  That faction just might find his next effort a bit more exciting.  The former Zep front man, now working on a new album and a new group called Sensational Space Shifters, recently did a gig at the Forum in London and says someone remarked that it was good to hear him using his 'big voice' for the first time in a long while.  Calling it '...good to get it out again', Plant remarked that reverting to it was a case of using '...the right colors for the right picture.'  While he did not reveal much about the dozen tracks he thinks will be on the Sensational Space Shifters album, he did promise ' sentimental stuff.'


Joe Elliott Deals With Voice Issues

Def Leppard's recent appearance at the Saratoga Performing Arts Center in Saratoga Springs, NY ended with a lot of fans disappointed that the group did not repsond to calls for an encore.  That decision generated some social media chatter and speculation about the matter - prompting Joe Elliott to add a post to the group's web site expalining why they elected not to do one. The lead singer's post attributed the decision to a a '...hacking cough' that developed following the opening date of the tour in Boston that '...just ripped the hell out of my voice'.  Attempts to get his pipes back in form with lemon tea and steam were only partially successful, resulting an a Saratoga show that had him '...ploughing through it as best I could', until,  near the end of the set, '....there was barely anyting left in the tank and it was starting to hurt'.  Facing the scenario where doing the encore could put future shows at risk, Elliott decided not to go there.  It's too bad the group did not return to the stage, give a brief explanation and do an instrumental.


5 Year-Old Bangs Big Time On Zep Classic

Bonzo woulda loved to see and hear this.  A 5 year-old from Ohio pounds out his driving drum parts to the Led Zeppelin classic Rock & Roll during a showcase club performance with the other members of his School Of Rock band Jester.

Demolition Averted, Plans Develop For Ringo's House

A lengthy battle to prevent developers from demolishing the boyhood home of Ringo Starr finally won, the Liverpool council is accepting proposals on what comes next for the modest brick building on Madryn Street.  If a plan emerges that draws visitors and investment in surrounding properties, additional old homes in the area could be spared the wrecking ball.  Many remain optimistic that the National Trust, which already protects and manages childhood homes that John Lennon and Paul McCartney grew up in will step in and do the same for the house on Madryn Street.


Mick Fleetwood's Maui Restaurant Opens Grandly

Mick Fleetwood, Aerosmith's Steven Tyler and guitarist Jonny Lang collaborated as M.O.B. on a version of Sharp Dressed Man for a ZZ Top tribute album released recently.  The Fleetwood Mac drummer reported that the sessions were so much fun that he hoped they would get together to play live.  Thursday (8/23) they did - at Fleetwood's On Front Street, a new restaurant and live music venue in Maui operated by Fleetwood.  The Grand Opening event raised money for a children's charity on the Hawaiian isle.


Levon Helm Tribute Comes Together

A concert celebrating the life and music of Levon Helm at the Izod Center in East Rutherford, New Jersey on October 3 is drawing a lineup plenty of the late drummer's fans will want to be there to hear. Amy Helm and the Levon Helm Band will be joined by Gregg Allman, Warren Haynes, Bruce Hornsby, Joe Walsh, Ray LaMontagne, Lucinda Williams, John Hiatt, Marc Cohn, Robert Randolph, Mavis Staples, Patty Griffin, Eric Church and My Morning Jacket in tribute to the founding drummer of the BandHelm's daughter called the concert a way to '...continue to honor his legacy by creating a musical landmark at the Barn', the recording studio and performing space where her father held Midnight Ramble concerts.  Amy added, 'We are deeply moved that so many musicians and friends of Levon's are coming together to celebrate his life an his music, and to help us keep his musical spirit and vision alive in the Midnight Rambles.'


Lennon's Killer Remains a Nowhere Man

The man that murdered John Lennon outside of the Dakota apartment building in Manhattan 33 years ago will remain inside a New York prison.  A Parole board ruled Thursday (8/23) that Mark David Chapman is still unfit for release.  The ruling said that releasing Chapman would be '...incompatible with the welfare of the community'.  Lennon's murderer is currently incarcerated at the Wende Correctional Facility in Alden, New York where he is serving a sentence of 20 years to life for the December, 1980 murder of Lennon as the former Beatle returned home from a recording studio.

Lawsuit Naming Neal Schon & Journey Dismissed

Tareq Salahi named both Neal Schon and Journey in a suit after his wife, Michaele, started dating the guitarist and traveling with the band.  The jilted husband claimed the affair was a publicity ploy to drive album and ticket sales. Whether or not that was the case, the appearance his former wife made with Schon in the above video was sure to stir things up.
In granting a divorce decree on Monday (8/20), a Virginia Circuit Court judge also dismissed the $50 million suit the former Real Housewifes show's husband had filed against Schon and Journey.  The guitarist issued a statement through a spokesman reading, 'I was never concerned about the $50 million lawsuit as I knew it was always about their divorce. It's over. I win, she's with me.'  The headline hungry former couple triggered a tabloid feeding frenzy after crashing the inagural ball for President Obabma.  Tareq can now concentrate on his latest pursuit, winning the race for governor of Virginia.


Hornsby Scores New Spike Lee Film

Bruce Hornsby has signed on as the musical producer for the next film project by director Spike Lee. Oldboy,  a South Korean movie that gained a cult following in the wake of its 2004 release, is being reworked for Western audiences with Josh Brolin (No Country for Old Men) in the lead role and Samuel L. Jackson appearing in a small role, reprising a scene involving a the claw end of a hammer and teeth in  the original movie deemed a bit too over-the-top graphic to include in the remake.  Hornsby said that even though he has been advised by Lee that the music should be on the dark side, he plans to balance things out with some less sinister sounding tunes.

Doors & Beatles Roust Mars Rover

NASA mission control members in charge of deciding what musical cues would be used to activate Mars robot Curiosity made selections that include eveything from Anthrax to Frank SinatraEric Blood of the Space Administration said on Reddit that the Mars mission team included Good Morning, Good Morning from Sargent Pepper's and Break On Through by the Doors, along with Come Fly With Me by Sinatra and the theme from Mission Impossible. He added that the distant machine seems to be, '...less cranky with a good wake-up song.' Aren't we all?

Red Rocker Selling White Muscle Car


Sammy Hagar needs space in his garage.  The odd-car-out is a 2007 Shelby GT500 Mustang.  In addition to low mileage on the odometer and the kind of care an avid car enthusiast gives his rides, the car has had other Rockers behind the wheel.  Fellow former Van Halen member Michael Anthony and Red Hot Chili Peppers drummer Chad Smith drove the car when shuttling to and from recording sessions with Hagar on the second Chickenfoot album.  Sammy says he'd rather have a Redheaded fan end up driving the Mustang than have it end up in a collection, so he is parting with it at its Blue Book value of $36k instead of selling it through a celebrity auction.  In addition to leather and power everything, the car comes loaded with a Shaker 1000 sound system.  Would-be buyers interested in putting it on the road instead of on display better know how to use a clutch - the GT comes with a 6 speed manual tranny.



Lennon Killer Parole Hearing

A maximum security prison in Alden, New York will be the scene this week for the seventh parole hearing for Mark David Chapman, the man that murdered John LennonChapman reportedly told the parole board during his hearing two years ago that he shot Lennon because he '...wasn't thinking clearly' and believed that his act would help him '...become somebody'.  Chapman, apparently found religion during recent years of his incarceration,  characterized his actions as the result of '...a horrible decision to end another human being's life, for reasons of selfishness', adding he only '...became a murderer and murderers are not somebodies.'
The parole board in 2010 concluded that Chapman's release '...remains inappropriate ...and incompatible with the welfare of the community.'



Bruce Knocks Boston's Sox Off

While some grumbling has been heard about ticket prices for some general admission stops on the Bruce Springsteen tour, you'd be hard pressed to find anyone that's gone to any of the shows that doesn't feel they got more than their money's worth from The Boss and his band.  Fans in Boston were treated to consecutive nights in the city's baseball cathedral, Fenway Park this week, each of which were good enough to make even the most die-hard BoSox fan banish all thoughts about what a miserable season the regular occupants of the fabled field are having this season.  Both nights, Bruce and the band emerged to Take Me Out To The Ballgame. Over the two nights he and the E Street Band played 59 songs, some tailor made for the setting, including Dirty Water, the Standells tribute to Boston that is in regular rotation during Sox home games.  Other covers Bruce and the band busted out included Knock On Wood, the great Detroit Medley (which many probably expected Peter Wolf of the J. Geils Band to join the lineup for but he didn't), an acoustic Who'll Stop The Rain (which didn't), Summertime Blues, Quarter To Three, Boom, Boom and tour staple Twist & Shout


Nick Mason Stands By Olympics Performance

Nick Mason, the lone member of Pink Floyd accompanying young UK singer Ed Sheeran on the Floyd classic Wish You Were Here during the closing ceremony at the London Olympics, sent the singer a message advising him to disregard '...PF fans getting outraged at people not realising (sic) the song was not your new release', and adding, '...I just wanted to go on record to suggest they chill on this.'  Mason encouraged Sheeran to share his message, which he did on his Facebook page.  Mason also thanked Sheeran for doing '...a really great version of the song' as well as for giving him a '...great day out!'

Our take; Sheeran did a fine version and any Floyd fan venting should direct it at missing members of the band that left everyone wishing they were there.



Elton John, Billy Joel Bass Player Dead

Robert Wayne Birch, a bass player that toured extensively with Rock piano greats Elton John and Billy Joel, apparently took his own life. The musician's body was found Wednesday (8/15) near Los Angeles according to TMZ.  The site reports that the scene yielded no note or evidence that someone other than Birch fired the shot that killed him.  An investigation is underway, but an assistant from the coroner's office reportedly told Reuters the incident is '...being investigated as a possible suicide' - the kind of statement that is unlikely to be issued if anything at the scene indicates another cause of death is involved.

Nugent Drummer Faces Golf Cart DUI Charge

"Wild" Mick Brown added proof his nick name is fitting if allegations about his condition and actions in Bangor, Maine on the evening of July 8 prove true. Police have charged the drummer for Ted Nugent with driving to endanger, theft and assault after he allegedly commandeered a golf cart reserved for the use of Waterfront Concerts and drove it around Front Street in a manner authorities contend exposed others to the risk of serious injury.  Brown was apprehended by event security staff members after the drummer reportedly shoved a police officer trying to apprehend him after Brown went on a joy riding, authority eluding escapade that at one point included a couple of female passengers.  The drummer remains free on $4,000 bail pending trial or alternate resolution of the matter.

Gregg Allman Feature on PBS News Hour (Video)

Few bands have a history with as many triumphs and tragedies as the Allman Brothers Band.  The group and individual members have peered over the abyss and somehow managed to persevere.  That Gregg Allman is even around to have written a book that chronicles his individual and the group's shared history is remarkable.  The legendary musician sat and talked about his past and some of the highs and lows that make the ongoing success of the group such a compelling story.

As this story was unfolding, we got word that former Allman Brothers Band guitarist Dickey Betts has been forced to postpone a series of solo dates to be with his wife Donna, who contracted a staph infection and will require surgery in Sarasota, Florida.


Waterloo Sunset London Olympics (Video)

US viewers were deprived of the most poignant musical moment of the closing ceremony of the London Olympics because NBC decided the vacuous pop of boy band One Direction was more important than Ray Davies doing a Kinks classic that generations of Brits consider one of the best songs about their homeland ever written. If you were stuck with the NBC feed, here's what you missed.

Steely Dan's Fagen Back With Solo Effort

Steely Dan
veteran Donald Fagen will release his fourth solo project on October 16.  Sunken Condos includes nine tracks - eight originals and a cover version of Out of the Ghetto by soul monster Isaac Hayes. The recent Fagen studio sessions featured some veteran studio contributors to Steely Dan records, including brass players, Freddie Washington and Jon Herrington.


GNR Lands Vegas Residency

Guns 'N Roses
has chronic problems getting to venues to take the stage on time.  Maybe having the stage an elevator ride away instead of a flight and limo away will help.  The group has signed to do a three week stretch of a dozen dates at The Joint, the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino venue on the strip in Vegas.  The Appetite For Democracy series launches Halloween night and continues through November 24.  Paul Davis, VP of Entertainment for the Hard Rock brand, gushed that the series will put fans '...up close and personal' with the group, giving them a '...truly unique Guns N' Roses experience.'  The most unique experience of all could be the band hitting the stage within an hour of the scheduled show time.


NBC Takes Flack For Delaying Who Olympics Performace

NBC, already under fire over which Summer Olympic events the network covered and when it fed the coverage, ended the games on a sour note for many by pre-empting Ray Davies of the Kinks performance of Waterloo Sunset and deciding to delay showing the Who medley for an hour so the network could run the pilot of a new sitcom and local newscasts.  The fact the sitcom (Animal Practice) was even worse than a number of the pop acts the network did televise during the ceremony only made matters worse for NBC.  One Twitter user tweeted 'Doing a Twitter search for Animal Practice right now is like tapping a keg of pure hate.'
The backlash wiped-out any points the network and event organizers scored with viewers for the unannounced appearance of Brian May and Roger Taylor of Queen and the unannounced but widely expected (story) of Nick Mason of Pink Floyd accompanying Brit pop sensation Ed Sheeran on Wish You Were Here
Organizers were unable to convince the Rolling Stones to appear during the opening or closing ceremony and it is reasonable to assume a number of other top UK Rockers were asked to participate but declined.

Ronnie Dio Childhood Home on EBay


Ronnie James Dio
was born in New Hampshire, but the future Elf, Rainbow and Black Sabbath member spend the majority of his childhood in Cortland, New York, a town of around 20,000 on Route 81 between Syracuse and Binghamton. Dio owned one of the houses his family lived in up until just a few years before his death last May of stomach cancer.  The modest two story home's current owner says his family has outgrown the place and he'd like to a fan of the late musician to have the chance to buy the house Dio partied in with friends and the nearby garage Ronnie and early band mates jammed in.  The house on Dio Way - a street renamed in Dio's honor by the city in 1988 - is listed until August 31 with a minimum bid of $90,000.



Aussie Swimmers Sync to AC/DC (Video)

Back In Black and Thunderstruck might seem more suitable as background music for boxing or some other full contact Olympic sport, but the women of the Australian Synchronized swim team decided the hard Rockin' tunes of fellow Aussies AC/DC made a solid soundtrack for their routine at the London Olympics.  The judges were not nearly as enthusiastic about the performance as Rock fans in the crowd; the team only managed a last place finish in the competition, but the bathing beauties from Down Under score high marks from us for the bold decision. Cue to about 1:30 in this video from a practice in a Brisbane pool to get a glimpse.

Can Rockers Resist Olympics Closer?

London Olympics organizers attempting to get opening or closing ceremony performance commitments from a number of Rockers got shot down by several, most notably the Rolling Stones.  They did manage to get Paul McCartney for the opener and to slot Pete Townshend and Roger Daltrey in Sunday's (8/12) closing ceremony (story).  Rumors about a possible appearance by members of Pink Floyd circulated and were dismissed, but that still appears possible (story)Mick Jagger attended some track & field events with his son but was mum on doing anything beyond being a spectator.
So, the question: with this being the last and largest world-wide event being staged on home turf in the lifetimes of so many pivotal (and in many cases egotistical) members of British Rock, have more of them committed to a surprise performance?  Pulling it together and pulling it off without word getting out would be monumentally difficult - but it is exactly the kind of thing the Brits would love to spring on an audience.  And imagine the possible array of participants.  Probably not going to happen... but if it did, what a moment it would produce!

Classic Rock Performances on PBS

This weekend, Public TV's My Music series launches a revolving feature that includes Rock performances filmed during appearances on the Ed Sullivan ShowEd Sullivan's Top Performers on PBS includes songs done on the CBS Sunday night variety program that was one of the few mass media outlets featuring emerging Rock acts in the mid 1960s. Included in the lineup of shows to run Saturday are performances by the Rolling Stones, Doors, the Beatles and Creedence Clearwater Revival. Network censors famously wrangled with some acts over lyrics - forcing the Stones to substitute 'some time' for 'the night' when singing Let's Spend The Night Together and making an unsuccessful bid to prevent Jim Morrison from singing about getting higher when the Doors performed Light My Fire.
A CD compilation containing more than 100 songs performed during the years the Sullivan Show ruled the Sunday night TV roost adds performances by the Beach Boys, Van Morrison, the Who, Janis Joplin, the Byrds, James Brown and many more is also getting released.

Posthumous Jon Lord Release Announced

The death of keyboardist Jon Lord just under a month ago (story) triggered an outpouring of acclaim for the monster musician and great innovator the charter member of Deep Purple was.  A recording of Lord that includes contributions from Deep Purple guitarist Steve Morse, Joe Bonamassa and Iron Maiden's Bruce Dickinson will be released September 25.  The Abbey Road recording features the Rock greats performing an updated version of Lord's Concerto for Group and Orchestra with the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic.  Before his death from pancreatic cancer, Lord proclaimed it to be the definitive recording of  a piece he had performed regularly with Deep Purple and a number of times with other musicians after leaving the group.


Who May Fake Olympics Performance

Suggestions that Pete Townshend and Roger Daltrey will resort to lip-syncing to a pre-recorded performance during their appearance at the closing ceremony of the London Olympics has some fans grumbling.  Roger Daltrey has reportedly as much as confirmed that the Who will 'mime' the performance, and blames it on the logistical impossibility of being able to drop a true live performance into the middle of a massive event involving thousands of athletes.  The group's last major sporting event appearance, a performance during the Superbowl, was pretty rough around the edges, but it's hard not to think that fans of the band not prefer a slightly ragged live show to a polished but fake performance.


Mellencamp Son Suits-Up With Duke

Hud Mellencamp, the son of Hoosier Rocker John Mellencamp, earned top honors as a Golden Gloves boxer in Indiana.  He decided to hang-up his gloves when he enrolled at Duke as a freshman.  But the 5'11" 165 pounder will be wearing #17 if workouts earn him a spot on the Duke roster for the upcoming ACC football season.  The younger Mellencamp was home schooled and has no scholastic football experience, but the head coach credits him for wanting earn a position in the team's defensive unit.  If Hud had chosen basketball, we might have gotten the chance to see him compete against Bruce Hornsby's son, a sophomore hoops player at the University of North Carolina, Asheville.

Johnny Depp Jams With Aerosmith

Johnny Depp laid down some guitar licks when Aerosmith ripped through Train Kept a-Rollin' during the Bad Boys from Boston's Monday night (8/7) appearance at the famed Hollywood Bowl.  Depp, who also played with the band a couple of months back at a post-premier party for the movie Dark Shadows, also jumped on stage to join the Black Keys during the MTV Movie Awards presentations.



Amazon Exec Victim of Petty Scam

Brian Valentine's plan to gift his bride a Tom Petty live performance at the couple's wedding reception was music to the ears of Chad Christopher Lund.  The FBI says Lund, a 44 year-old Las Vegas man, posed as a booking agent for Petty and collected a down payment of $165,000 from the Amazon executive for the performance.  Lund has been charged with felony fraud charges resulting from the investigation into the scam, which began after Valentine, a VP with Amazon, went online to look into contacting someone connected with booking concerts for his bride-to-be's favorite artist.  That search led to a site allegedly operated by a Lund firm that included Tom Petty on a list of acts it was able to book.  In an e-mail replying to Valentine's expressing interest in booking Petty, Lund allegedly claimed a 'relationship' between his firm and the artist that would allow him to negotiate a deal. The criminal complaint contends Lund later reported to Valentine that he had talked Petty reps '...down to a price of $330,000' for the performance and instructed the exec to wire half that amount to his bank to secure the date.  He then reportedly gave Valentine the name and e-mail contact of the Petty representative Valentine would arrange the details of the booking through - a man Valentine was never able to contact.  The bad news came when Valentine contacted Tony Dimitriades at Petty's management firm, a man whose signature appeared on the contract Valentine had been provided, informed Valentine he had not signed it and that management had '...never heard of Chris Lund or his agency' and had no knowledge of any private booking for Seattle in July.
The story had a happy ending for the couple.  Valentine was able to arrange for Petty to play the reception through Dimitriades.


Elton A Chipper Jones Fan

We knew Elton John follows cricket and soccer, but news that his time living in Atlanta made him an avid Atlanta Braves baseball fan came as something of a surprise.  The team's commemorative program honoring Chipper Jones on his long career in a Braves uniform includes a reflection written by EJ, who draws a parallel to Jones not being in the lineup (he is retiring at the end of the season) to Lennon without McCartneyElton goes on to describe himself as '...spellbound by the skill and beauty of the game' as Jones played it and passes along the appreciation he and others have toward the extraordinary infielder and hitter for having given them the chance to witness '...true greatness'.  He closes by imploring Jones to maintain a connection with baseball because his '...experience and knowledge will be beneficial to so many players', and, 'Simply put, baseball without Chipper Jones is unthinkable.'


ZZ Top Welcomes Fans to Futura

ZZ Top
has finally got a release date set for La Futura. The first studio release from the Texas trio in nine years will arrive September 11.  The eagerly anticipated album marks a return to the gritty, low down sound fans grew to love the band for during its early days, but also takes full advantage of modern recording techniques and equipment to infuse tracks with an edgy intensity.  Billy Gibbons thinks they've struck just the right balance, saying, 'We thought long and hard about what this album should be.  We wanted to recall the directness of our early stuff but not turn our backs on contemporary technology. The result of this melding of the past and the present is, of course, La Futura.' If I Gots To Get Paid and a few other tracks released in a preview EP are a good indication, the Top has nailed it.
ZZ Top is touring Europe until early August, when Gibbons, Dusty Hill and Frank Beard return to open a US tour on August 14 in Bakersfield, California.


HBO Secures Rolling Stones Doc

HBO will televise a Rockumentary this fall that chronicles the transformation of the Rolling Stones from a pub band into a group that would shatter concert attendance records at the largest venues in the world.  The film, which is being directed by Brett Morgan (The Kid Stays in the Picture), is being put together with the full cooperation and participation of the current lineup of the band as well as former members Mick Taylor and Bill WymanMorgan told Rolling Stone that the process of piecing together this inside look at arguably the greatest band in Rock history involved , '...looking under every rock, going through their archives' and promises to include never released music and the most candid, in-depth interviews ever granted by band members.


Guitarist Suing Geils Band Over Name

A story that seemed inevitable came our way today with a report that guitarist John Geils, the 'J. Geils' of the Boston Blues-Rock band that recently regrouped and announced a tour, is filing suit to prevent his former band mates from touring or recording as the J. Geils Band.  The news that papers were being filed requesting a court to block continued use of the name comes just a couple of weeks after a release served notice that legal action could result if Peter Wolf and other members of the group ignored a request to cease using the name (story).

Frampton Injured in fender Bender

Peter Frampton was stuck in traffic on California's Rt. 101 Tuesday (7/31) when his car was hit from behind by a driver he claims was distracted because she was texting at the time of the accident.  Frampton took to his Twitter account to tweet "Texting woman driver just ran into the back of me while I was stationary in traffic" and added, "People put the phones down."  A follow-up post from the guitarist read "Back and neck not good. Going to ER after my flight today".  Frampton was scheduled to fly to Minnesota to open a new tour leg on Friday.


Springsteen Eclipses Record in Helsinki

While Olympic records were being broken in London, Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band was establishing a collective best of its own at a former Olympic venue.  The Tuesday (7/31) concert in Helsinki's Olympic Stadium clocked out at 4 hours and 6 minutes - a new mark for the longest live set the band has ever performed.
Early arrivals got even more bang for their buck when Bruce emerged before the band took the stage to perform a 5 song pre-show acoustic set (and no, that did not factor in the 4+ he and the band delivered!)

Acoustic Set
I'll Work For Your Love
Leap of Faith
No Surrender
For You
Blinded By the Light

Full Band Set list
Rockin' All Over the World
Out in the Street
Loose Ends
We Take Care of Our Own
Prove It All Night
Wrecking Ball
Death to My Hometown
My City of Ruins
Does This Bus Stop at 82nd Street?
Be True
Jack of All Trades
Downbound Train
Because the Night
Lonesome Day
Darlington County
Light of Day
Shackled and Drawn
Waitin' on a Sunny Day
Back in Your Arms
The Rising
Land of Hope and Dreams
We Are Alive
Born in the U.S.A.
Born to Run
Detroit Medley
Glory Days
Dancing in the Dark
Tenth Avenue Freeze-out
I Don't Want to Go Home
Higher and Higher
Twist and Shout
(And yes, Helsinki let him Finnish!)  Backstreets


Floyd Rumored at Olympic Closing

Ed Sheeran
, a 21 year-old singing sensation in the UK, apparently claimed he will perform Wish You Were Here at the closing ceremony of the London Olympics with at least two of the surviving three members of Pink Floyd.  The 21 year-old reportedly made the remark after reports emerged that he would be singing with the Who Sheeran was quoted as having told Australia's Radio Nova, 'A lot of people think I'm doing a song with the Who but I'm not - I'm doing a song with Pink Floyd.' Of course, he might have just been jerking their chain.  Newsday contends that a band spokesperson issued a categorical denial of the claim.


Stones Tour Won't Include Wyman

If the Rolling Stones are planning on Bill Wyman making an appearance with them it had better be in London.  The bass player, who has joined his former band mates for informal rehearsals in recent weeks, says, 'I don't fly, so there's no way I'll go on any tour.Wyman left the Stones late in 1992 and has never been replaced - the band opting to rely on various fill-ins for toruing and recording purposes.  Expectations are that the band will do live shows in 2013, although the number and nature of the concerts remain unknown - or at least unannounced.


Garcia Side Gig Compilation Announced

A 4 disc set capturing club concerts performed at the Keystone in Berkeley, California by Jerry Garcia and keyboard companion Merl Saunders in July of 1973 is scheduled to be released September 25th.  The Keystone and Matrix (a San Francisco club once operated by Marty Balin of the Jefferson Airplane) dates included John Kahn on bass, and Bill Vitt behind the drums.  The club shows gave the Garcia a forum to cover a range of styles in front of audiences not expecting to hear any Grateful Dead material.  During the course of any set, Garcia, Saunders and company would cover Motown, Blues, Rockabilly, Reggae, Jazz and Funk.  Garcia's versatility impressed Saunders who likened him to Eric Gale in the shared ability to comfortably cover so many genres of music. 'Anything he played was very musical'  He knew how to do a rhythm on any kind of tune - Gospel, Blues, Jazz. I was amazed.'
Keystone Companions/The Complete 1973 Fantasy Recordings presents remastered songs from the live sets performed July 10 & 11 in the order they were done those nights and includes seven tracks not previously released. One highlight of the collection finds mandolin great David Grisman, a member another Garcia side band, Bluegrass outfit Old & in the Way, joining the group on Dylan's Positively 4th Street.
The September release will include liner notes by David Gans in a booklet with vintage photos, a poster and a coaster.


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