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Noteworthy Now Archives for 2012-09

Lynyrd Skynyrd Folds in Vegas

Less than a year after its opening (story), the Lynyrd Skynyrd BBQ & Beer restaurant in the Excalibur resort in Las Vegas has gone out of business.  The first sign of trouble at the eatery came in the form of a lawsuit filed by a contractor claiming non-payment for electrical work done for the restaurant.  The company established to run the restaurant reportedly filed Chapter 11 bankruptcy papers Wednesday (9/26) listing liabilities between $1 and $10 million dollars. $425,000 of that is apparently lease fees the company owes to Excalibur.  The band performed at the restaurant's grand opening last December.


Ron Wood's Ex Unload Stones Memorabilia

A lot of personal items belonging to Ron Wood and his former wife went up for bids in Beverly Hills Thursday (9/27). In addition to furnishings from homes the Faces and Rolling Stones guitarist and Jo Wood shared, the auction featured plenty of unique memorabilia, including custom finished guitars, tour clothing and original paintings Ron did of Eric Clapton and Bob Dylan.  A bit of a spat over the sale between the former couple reportedly developed just prior to the Julien's Auction, with a spokesman for the guitarist telling Reuters that Ronnie had told his ex he did not want to participate in the sell-off and said he was '...shocked and disappointed that this auction is being misrepresented as a joint sale.'
Partial proceeds from the auction will go to MusiCares, the Grammy administered charity that offers support to musicians facing tough times or seeking substance abuse treatment.


Zeppelin Members Mum on Reunion (Video)

Jimmy Page, John Paul Jones and Robert Plant last shared the same stage in 2007 when Led Zeppelin participated in a London tribute concert for the founder of Atlantic Records, Ahmet Ertegun.  The three were together again last week, but only for a press event to officially announce therelease on DVD of that performance.  Titled Celebration Day, the film will get a limited number of theatrical screenings starting October 17 and be available in multiple CD, DVD and Blu-ray configurations on November 19.  While willing to talk about the release, the trio of surviving Zeppelin members was abruptly dismissive of any attempt to get them to discuss the prospects for another reunion.  Robert Plant fired back at one person that posed a question on the subject, 'Have you seen the film? Did you enjoy it? Then we've done our job, haven't we?'





Heart Honored On Hollywood Walk

Heart now occupies star number 2,481 on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.  Ann and Nancy Wilson were on hand for the ceremony marking the addition of their commemorative section of sidewalk, which happens to be right in front of the Musician's Institute at 6752 Hollywood Blvd.  Jerry Cantrell and Mike Inez of Alice In Chains took part in the ceremony for their fellow Seattle musicians on Tuesday morning (9/25).


Skynyrd Still Flies Rebel Flag

Gary Rossington is in damage control mode over comments he made recently on CNN about the Confederate flag.  A backlash in response to the guitarist's remarks about the standard erupted after Rossington, the sole remaining original member of the Southern Rock band, talked about being uncomfortable the negative implications of the use of the flag, which gets prominently displayed at Skynyrd concerts.  Rossington said that the KKK and skinheads had '...kinda kidnapped the Dixie or Southern flag from its traditional and the heritage of the soldiers', and added the group did not want fans attending shows to get the impression '...we agreed with any of the races stuff or any of the bad things.'
So many fans reacted negatively to the CNN story that Rossington issued a statement assuring them that the flag will continue to have a presence at the group's concerts and that, 'Myself, the past and present members (that are from the South), are all extremely proud of our heritage and being from the South', and that, even though certain groups use the flag in ways he doesn't support, ''The Confederate flag means something more to us, Heritage, not Hate.'



Farm Aid Rocks Hershey, PA

A cool, sunny day greeted the 30,000 fans that flocked to HersheyPark Stadium to hear Neil Young, John Mellencamp, Dave Matthews, Willie Nelson and others perform in the annual benefit to raise money and awareness for family farmers. The 27th edition of Farm Aid was one of the smaller gatherings the annual event has produced, but the performers and those that filled most of the field were pleased to be able to add to the more than $40 million the event has raised to assist farmers hard hit by the financial risks of being small producers in a business dominated by corporate giants.

Springsteen's Mom Twists & Shouts

The closing night for the E Street Band's  inaugural run of dates at MetLife stadium proved to be one of the more unusual shows Bruce and crew have done in some time.  Delayed by severe storms in the vicinity, the band took the stage at 10:30 Saturday (9/22) to open the last of three homecoming dates with Wilson Pickett's In The Midnight Hour.  3+ hours later the concert would end in the early hours of the morning of Springsteen's 63d birthday with his mother, Adele, along with other family members coming on stage to present Bruce and his brother-in-law Michael Scialfa (husband of Patti) with a birthday cake before all of them launched into a show-closing rendition of Twist & Shout.  A 2am burst of fireworks brought the party to a close.
Bruce and the band will get some down time until the Wrecking Ball tour resumes with an October 19 show in Ottawa. The last leg of the tour is scheduled to take place in Glendale, AZ on December 6.


Roger Waters Joins Levon Helm Concert

Roger Waters
recently wrapped-up a globe trotting marathon that brought The Wall tour to multiple continents, but the Pink Floyd veteran plans to make at least one more on-stage appearance before year's end.  He has added his name to the impressive list of musicians slated to appear at the Izod Center at the Meadowlands ON October 3rd in a fund-raising tribute to the late Levon Helm. Helm's daughter, Amy, 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. Proceeds from the concert will go towards supporting ongoing performances at The Barn, the recording studio/live venue Levon Helm hosted Midnight Ramble concerts in during the last years of his life.



Slash Embarrassed by Bare-Assed Remark About David Bowie

An off-hand remark during a phone conversation to promote his new solo album with an Australian radio station has Slash feeling regrets about having brought it up.  His original comment was construed as a young Slash having interrupted an intimate occasion between his mother and David Bowie. In expressing his regrets over the stir his remark triggered, Slash phrased it as having'...walked into the bedroom when they weren't fully dressed', and adds, '...I had no idea it was going to get blown up. It became this big headline and it was very awkward.  I'm embarrassed because I'm sure David didn't appreciate it. An my mum, rest in peace, probably wouldn't have dug it either.'

Hendrix Legacy Endures

Two days after his final public performance - a London club appearance with Eric Burdon, Jimi Hendrix left this life. But the trail blazing accomplishments in his all to brief career guaranteed that no matter how many guitar greats made their mark after him, Hendrix would never be surpassed as the most innovative player to ever plug in an electric guitar.  Chas Chandler, bass player with the Animals, convinced Jimi to return to the UK with him so Jimmy Page, Jeff Beck, Eric Clapton, Keith Richards and other British guitar greats could experience first hand what an amazing player he was. Beck would say that seeing Hendrix play that first set was so mind boggling that he contemplated just quitting. 
Recently, reports emerged that in the months before his death Jimi was considering taking his music in a new direction. That comes as no surprise, and of all the great Rock musicians that died young in the years before and after Hendrix did on September 18, 1970, there is not one we would have been more fascinated to watch continuing to evolve.


Hagar The Man in Roseville, California (Video)

Sammy Hagar gets the VIP treatment almost anywhere he goes, but the Red Rocker is especially appreciated in the town of Roseville, California.  Roseville celebrated the opening of one of Hagar's new restaurants on Saturday (9/15) by proclaiming it Sammy Hagar Day in the town.  The former Montrose, Van Halen and current Chickenfoot Rocker returned the favor by doing a sold-out concert that raised more than $40,000 for local charities and has teamed with a middle school in the community to let them do fundraising by selling guitars students make in wood shop through  Sammy Hagar's Rockin' Island Bar and Grill.  The eatery and bar will have its Grand Opening 9/22.
Hagar says he loves Roseville because it has retained the character so many towns and cities have lost by replacing old buildings with new condos and office buildings that make places increasingly 'generic' and 'soulless'.



Thin Lizzy Regroups

Guitarist Scott Gorham, Brain Downey (drums) and Darren Wharton (keyboards) have recruited Ricky Warwick (Almighty) to take on the challenge of filling the shoes of the late Phil Lynott in a new edition of Thin LizzyMarco Mendoza (bass) and Damon Johnson, guitarist from the Alice Cooper band complete the revived lineup.  Previous contributors Vivian Campbell of Def Leppard and Whitesnake veteran John Sykes are not onboard this time around.
Plans are for the group to start recording in LA at the start of September with producer Jerry Shirley guiding the project.  Gorham says he's excited about what the future holds, telling Hot Press, 'You have six guys that are chomping at the bit. We can't wait to get this thing going.'

Soundgarden Returns With New Album (Video)

Soundgarden seemed on the verge of becoming a band that could prove to be both trail blazing and mass appeal over the long haul when, like other bands that emerged in the 80's and seemed to have that potential, internal conflicts led to its demise.  Attempts by members to find a good fit or satisfactory results in other groups fell short, eventually leading them to decide to have another go at it together.  We get the chance to hear whether the Seattle group can reclaim its potential to be a long term and influential group on November 13 when Soundgarden releases King Animal, its first album of new studio material in 15 years.  In the meantime, here's a video taste of what to expect.

AC/DC Buenos Aires Concert Double Disc

A December, 2009 concert played to around 200,000 AC/DC fans in Bueno Aires will get released November 20 in  double CD and 6 side vinyl editions. Live At River Plate is the Hard Rockin' Aussie outfit's first live album in two decades and delivers thunderous versions of a number AC/DC anthems, including Back In Black, Dirty Deeds Done Dirt Cheap, Thunderstruck, The Jack, Hell's Bells, You Shook Me All Night Long, T.N.T, Whole Lotta Rosie, Highway To Hell and For Those About To Rock (We Salute You).


Clapton Looks to Sell Multi-Million Dollar Painting

One great thing about being a Rock superstar is the added resale value already valuable possessions attain.  Eric Clapton reaped the benefits of that when he sold several of his rare shotguns a few years ago. Now, the guitar great stands to cash in at several times the original price he paid for a painting by German artist Gerhard Richter in 2001.
Abstraktes Bild (809-4), a 1994 oil painting Clapton reportedly bought along with two others by Richter for $3.4 million during a Sotheby's auction in  New York City, is included in works being offered in a Sotheby's auction being held in London on October 12.  The low end estimate of the painting's value is $14.5 million.


Assault Charge leveled Against Grateful Dead Drummer

Mickey Hart reportedly faces assault charges in connection with claims made by a tour bus operator for one of the two former drummers for the Grateful Dead.  A story posted by TMZ indicates the warrant naming the drummer stems from an incident  that took place while The Mickey Hart Band was in Harrodsburgh, KY on September 8.  According to documents TMZ claims to have obtained acces to, the alleged victim maintains Hart's manager told him that he was wanted on the bus for a 'talk'.  The man then claims he was shoved and punched before being ordered to leave the bus.  Hart (Michael Hart) calls the story '...completely false and without any basis whatsoever'.



Neil Young's Second 2012 Release Due

While most of his contemporaries don't record at all or come out with new projects only a couple of times a decade, Neil Young remains one of the few veteran performers fans can count on for new music on a regular basis. This year, the eclectic 'Godfather of Grunge' reunited with his long ago backing band Crazy Horse to produce a pair of rough hewn albums. Americana, a collection of early American folk songs, arrived in the Spring.  Psychedelic Pill will get released October 30.  Like the earlier release, there's no effort made to polish the recordings on the follow-up.  Psychedelic Pill captures things just as they went down in the studio, complete with impromptu starts and finishes on songs, all of which come across with a generally raw, unrefined feel fans have come to expect from Young.  Many are long, including a 27 minute + track appropriately titled Drifting Back.  Guitarist Frank Sampedro summed the sessions up by telling Rolling Stone, 'It's us jamming and having lots of fun' - something else a number of Young's contemporaries rarely do these days.


Disc One:
1 Driftin' Back (27:36)
2 Psychedelic Pill (3:26)
3 Ramada Inn (16:49)
4 Born in Ontario (3:49)

Disc Two:
1 Twisted Road (3:28)
2 She's Always Dancing (8:33)
3 For the Love of Man (4:13)
4 Walk Like a Giant (16:27)


Zeppelin Rumors Escalating

A social media fueled feeding frenzy is developing around Led Zeppelin.  The probably valid  point in the rumors currently circulating is that the group's 2007 O2 Arena reunion concert will be released on DVD and Blu-ray this fall.  Speculation that the release will be accompanied by another live appearance by the legendary group's three surviving members is the wild card.  The Sun reports that Jimmy Page has been overseeing production of the release of the '07 O2 concert and that the package will be in stores world-wide on November 22. 
Reunion possibilities seem remote at best - but recent performances and remarks by Robert Plant about rediscovering his 'big voice' just might be an indication he's become more receptive to the idea.


Bon Jovi Burgler Confesses

A 22 year-old entered a guilty plea to charges he burglarized Middletown, New Jersey homes in a string of break-ins that netted him more than $300,000 worth of jewelry and other items.  Police alleged the haul from the series of March and April burglaries included items removed from a home belonging to Jon Bon Jovi.  Papers filed in the case indicate that as much as $100,000 worth of jewelry was taken from the Rocker's home. Nicholas Tracy was charged with the crimes after being apprehended in connection with a later break-in.  A guilty plea entered in the case on Tuesday (9/4) could result in a sentence of up to five years behind bars when he is sentenced October 12.  Tracy also faces other charges relating to burglaries committed in the Toms River area of New Jersey during the same period.


Ringo Starr Pre-Beatles Band Songs Due Out

Before becoming a Beatle, Ringo Starr kept the beat for Rory Storm & The Hurricanes.  Although that group did some live recording sessions with the future mop-top, tapes of songs that included Ringo could not be accounted for - until recently.  The BBC is reporting that recordings made at the Jive Hive, a Liverpool club, and at Storm's house in 1960 have been discovered in the basement of a home a sister of Storm lived in. Plans call for the UK release of the material.  Starr's camp issued a statement claiming that Ringo only appeared on two recordings by the band, Bring Me No More Blues and Fever. Starr contends material being touted as including him was actually recorded after he'd left to join the Beatles but adds, 'I dont know who the drummer was but I hope Rory fans enjoy it anyway'. Rory Storm won't be of any assistance clearing the matter up. He passed away 40 years ago.



Wrigley Fans Treated to Expanded E Street Lineup

Fans taking in the first concert Bruce Springsteen has done at Wrigley Field in Chicago got to see a couple of extras join the E Street Band starting lineup when Pearl Jam's Eddie Vedder and Tom Morello came out on stage Friday night (9/7)Morello has already put in a number of appearances with Bruce during the current tour to reprise parts he contributed to the Wrecking Ball album.  Vedder, who attended the Springsteen concert in Philly on Monday but did not take the stage, joined Bruce in Chicago on Atlantic City, Tenth Avenue Freeze-out and Twist & Shout during the 28 song 3 and a half hour concert at the venerable old NL ballpark.  Morello was in the mix on the last two of those plus Death To My Hometown, Jack Of All Trades and Ghost of Tom Joad.


Heart on CBS Sunday Morning

The September 16 edition of CBS Sunday Morning will include a feature on the Wilson sisters of Heart.  The segment features an interview session with Ann and Nancy in the Vancouver house they grew up in and some concert footage from a Heart show in the Canadian city.
Fanatic, the new album from the group, is slated for an October 2 release.  Kicking And Dreaming, an in-depth book profiling the Wilsons and their band, will be available September 18.



Rock Hall Assembles Chuck Berry Tribute

Given all the Rockers that have exited the stage of life, it's startling to know that Chuck Berry is still around.  Now 85, the Rock pioneer gets honored with an American Masters concert by the Rock Hall of Fame October 27 in Cleveland.  Sharing the stage with the first man ever inducted into the Hall will be Joe Bonamassa, Ernie Isley of the Isley Brothers, Duke Robillard, Earl Slick, New York Dolls veteran David Johansen and Motorhead's Lemmy Kilmister.  Additional guests for the State Theatre concert are expected to be announced.

Aerosmtih Confirms Sammy Hagar Overtures

Guitarist Brad Whitford says he and Joe Perry and Joey Kramer put some serious thought into recruiting someone to fill the vacancy Steven Tyler left when the Aerosmith front man went AWOL after falling off the stage in Sturgis and then elected to put a judging position on American Idol ahead of rejoining his band once he'd gotten over his injuries.  One of the candidates that got 'serious' consideration was former Montrose and Van Halen front man Sammy Hagar.  Appearing on That Metal Show with Kramer, Whitford said that Hagar, who these days does lead vocals with the band Chickenfoot, was '...really excited' at the prospect of signing with them.  Whitford concedes that replacing Tyler would likely also have resulted in a '...putting a different name on' the veteran Boston group - something the J. Geils Band may be forced to do now that former guitarist John Geils wants Peter Wolf and the others to stop using his name in promotiong appearances.


New Studio Tracks in Stones Package

The Rolling Stones will unleash a Best Of collection November 13 titled GRRR! that will include two recently recorded tracks the group laid down in a Paris recording studio. Doom and Gloom and One Last Shot will get packaged with Stones classics in either a 50 or 80 track compilation.  Announcement of the release comes as fans await details on 50th Anniversary tour plans from a group that hasn't toured in four years or released new studio material in considerable longer than that. The announcement today did not include confirmation of earlier reports that the band will do London and New York shows in November.



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