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Noteworthy Now Archives for 2017-09

John Fogerty steps up for Vets

John Fogerty was front and center in support of a new Veterans crisis intervention center in Las Vegas.  In addition to contributing time and money to support the efforts to bring the center online, John attended the groundbreaking ceremony Thursday (9/28) to make some remarks and perform.  Before Creedence Clearwater Revival's emergence as one of the more socially conscious groups of the 60's, Fogerty spent sime in the Army National Guard.  He stood in opposition to the Vietnam War, but his loyalty to those who served has always held firm, saying, 'Humanly, how can anyone be against veterans? It's inconceivable. These are the people that defend our coungtry and defend our rights in ways most of us probably couldn't come up with or even understand.  There's bravery and herosim there.' Fogerty played a new song he co-wrote with Brad Paisley and also did the CCR classic Fortunate Son.  
The goal is to have the 3500 square foot crisis center up and running by Veterans Day.  The facility will supplement other services available in the Veterans Village.



McCartney & Joel combine on Beatles songs (watch)

Tuesday night's (9/26) Paul McCartney concert at the Nassau Coliseum featured a pair of Beatles songs that paired Sir Paul with Billy Joel.






Aerosmith's Tyler ailing

"Unexpected medical issues" have caused Aerosmith to cancel dates on their current tour while the lead singer seeks "immediate care". No specifics have been released about his condition or the problem Tyler is facing. The fact the dates in Brazil, Chile, Argentina and Mexico are being cancelled rather than postponed could be telling, but the band's official web site does relay word that a full recovery is expected and that he should be good to go "soon".  The singer's message to fans expressing his disappointment about the need to cancel indicates he flew back to the states on a doctor's order following the concert in São Paulo and adds, "I am not in a life threatening condition, but I need to deal with this right away, and get some rest and medical care immediately in order to sustain and maintain my future performances."



Paul McCartney fires up the Carrier Dome

Fans attendng Paul McCartney's first ever concert in Syracuse Saturday (9/23) hoped the music would be hot and knew the venue would be. The lifetime naming rights for the Syracuse University dome were awarded to the Carrier Corporation. At the time Carrier locked that deal in, the world leader in air conditioners was one of the largest employers in Syracuse. Ironically, the Carrier Dome has none, making it a terribly uncomfortable place to attend any event when the outside temp is above 75.  Gone are the days late September Syracuse days can be counted on to be relatively cool.  The McCartney date fell in the middle of a two week stretch the city and region were in the middle of a two week stretch of daily highs in the mid 80's.  The uncomfortable conditions proved undaunting to Sir Paul and the multi-generational legion of fans that came close to filling the venue the now 75 year old Rocker cancelled a scheduled concert at when he was 51 due to mediocre ticket sales.     

The 39 song, 3 hour long show delivered by a band being cooled by discreetly placed but powerful fans seemed to meet or beat the expectations of nearly everyone that attended.  There was a moment during the hot evening that things threatened to get even hotter - in a very dangerous way. A jet of pyro-generated flame during Live and Let Die ignitied some rigging above the stage.  Rapid response by crew members averted what could have brought a wonderful evening to a tragic close.


Jackson Browne's tribute to Gregg Allman (watch)

Thursday night (9/21) at the Laid Back Festival, Jackson Browne did the song by Gregg Allman that Duane considered his younger brother's finest tune in tribute to the festival founder.




Three years ago, Browne and Allman did the song together.


Springsteen puts a charge into Laid Back Festival (watch)

The Laid Back Festival at the PNC Bank Arts Center in Holmdel NJ got an extra jolt of energy Thursday night (9/21) courtesy of Bruce Springsteen, who emerged to perform two songs (Tenth Avenue Freeze Out and It's Been A Long Time) with E Street Band member Steven Van Zandt's own outfit Little Steven and the Disciples of Soul, joined Jackson Browne on  Take It Easy, and then took part in an all-hands-on-stage encore with Peter Wolf bounding out to lead everyone through a version of the J. Geils Band's Freeze Frame.  












KISS reunites with Simmons & Frehley (watch)

Gene Simmons and Ace Frehley took the stage with KISS for the first time in more than 15 years when the group  played a benefit concert for The Children Matter in St. Paul, MN Wednesday night (9/20).  The pair of original members did Parasite, Cold Gin, Shock Me and broke into the inevitable encore Rock And Roll All Night as dozens of fans crowded around the band on stage.














Springsteen warms-up for Broadway at NJ college

Monmouth College is the home of the Bruce Springsteen archives. Tuesday night (9/19), it apparently was also the scene of a dress rehearsal for Bruce's multiple month residency in Broadway's Walter Kerr Theatre.  The unannounced performance was an invitation only affair that the University declined to confirm or deny.  Semi-confirmation it took place came in a non-specific social media reference by Patti Scialfa's brother who wrote, 'It's easy sometimes to forget what true genius is, until its right in front of you."  The audience in the 700 seat Pollack Theater on the Long Branch, New Jersey campus of Monmouth was limited to about 200.  Capacity at the Walter Kerr Theatre is just under 1,000.



John Lennon's widow sour about lemonade

Yoko Ono is threatening to file suit against a small UK company marketing a series of flavored beverages under the name John Lemon.  Even though the company insists it does not use images or likenesses of John Lennon, lawyers for Ono contend that it has used some and made inferentail references to Lennon in some social media posts that, in the process, infringed on the John Lennon trademark registered with the European Union.  The company's owner does not think the claim has merit, but says fighting the suit is beyond him company's means because an unfavorable decision could leave it responsible for covering Ono's legal expenses as well as its own.  Making matters even stranger, the John Lemon trademark was apparently filed withthe EU two years before the John Lennon one was.



Eddie Vedder joins street performers outside Wrigley (Watch)

The Cubs sit atop the NL Central with just over a week left in MLB's regular season.  That's cause for celebration for one of the team's highest profile fans, Eddie Vedder.  The Pearl Jam lead singer took to the sidewalk outside Wrigley Field to join a couple of street musicians on a version of his band's song Courduroy Friday (9/15) and was at it again on Sunday, that tim sitting in on drums.




United Nations recruits Bob Weir

Bob Weir likes to keep up on social-political matters and has lobbied formally and informally for environmental and social reforms he believes in.  The former Grateful Dead veteran will be doing it in a more official capacity now that the United Nations has named him a Goodwill Ambassador.  Weir takes on the role of helping the international body inform the public and advance the cause the positive role counteracting climate change can have in reducing poverty while promoting sustainability.  A ceremony honoring the newest Goodwill Ambassadors takes place Sunday (9/17) during the 8th annual Social Good Summit in New York City.



Springsteen joins McCartney at MSG (Watch)

Bruce Springsteen and Steven Van Zandt of the E Street Band took the stage to join Paul McCartney on I Saw Her Standing There during Paul's Madison Square Garden encore Friday (9/15).

KISS reunites with Frehley & Simmons for Hurricane Harvey benefit

Gene Simmons and Ace Frehley will rejoin KISS in a benefit to assist Gulf Coast families with young children hammered by Hurricane Harvey. The reunion will take place on September 20 at  CHS Field in St. Paul MN. Proceeds go to The Chidren Matter to help speed restoration of normal lives for the 10,000 children in the Houston area displaced by the storm.  It will mark the first time in more than 15 years the pair has been back on stage with the band in concert.

New life for a legendary recording studio

A New York City recording studio where many great albums were recorded has been spared the fate of several former studios that have gone the way of condos or the wrecking ball in recent years.  The Power Station had been renamed Avatar by its more recent owners.  When they sought an interested party to take it over that would commit to continue operating it as a studio, Boston's Berklee College of Music jumped at the opportunity. Renamed the Power Station at BerkleeNYC, the studio will, in addition to serving as a traditional recording studio, hos educational programs and live performances for intimate size audiences.  New York Mayor Bill de Blasio gave Pete Muller much of the credit to bringing the deal to fruition, saying  'Renovating this amazing, historic music venue is a powerful nod to New York City as a continuing center for innovative art, culture and creativity.  I commend Berklee and Trustee Pete Muller for their investments, their vision, and for the public performing space that will benefit many budding and future New York recording artists.'

The former ConEdison power plant opened as a studio in 1977.  The list of albums recorded there includes major albums from Bruce SPringsteen (Born To Run), the Rolling Stones (Tattoo You), Bob Dylan (Infidels), David Bowie (Scary Monsters & Let's Dance), and many, many more.


Stage swallows James Hetfield

James Hetfield was in the middle of Metallica's song Now That We're Dead during group's concert Monday (9/4) at the Ziggo Dome in Amsterdam when he averted a brush with it when he fell through into an open trap door in the stage.  He was assisted up out of the opening, telling the audience after completing the song 'I'm okay. My ego, not so much. But we're fine. Hurt my feelings'.  


Keith Richards Ferrari hits the block

A mint condition 1983 400i Ferrari that Keith Richards bought while the Rolling Stones were recording in Paris goes up for auction on Saturday (9/9).  In Keith's stable of exotic rides since being shipped back to London after the band finished recording the album Dirty Work, the car is almost certainly the most pristine a Ferrari of that style and vintage anywhere in the world.  With just 3.6km on the odometer (2,200 miles), the car is valued at $225,000 and is expected to bring close to or possibly more than that during the RM Sotheby's Ferrari sale.  In addition to the car itself, the high bidder gets the original sale materials, including the warranty card that designates the Stones guitarist as the owner.



Steely Dan's Walter Becker dies (updated)

Walter Becker who, with Donald Fagen were the core members and provided the creative genius of Steely Dan, passed away Sunday (8/3) at 67.
The Queens, New York born Becker took up the saxophone during his school years but set that aside to become a guitarist. Becker became a proficient guitarist with help from Randy Wolfe, who later changed his name to Randy California and was a founding member of the band Spirit.
Becker met Walter Fagen while the two were enrolled at Bard College.  For a time, the two were in a band named Leather Canary that had Chevy Chase on drums.  Becker and Fagen ditched Bard before graduating and set out to become professional song writers and, briefly, were members of Jay and the Americans under assumed names.
In 1971, the two relocated to the west coast and soon after arriving formed Steely Dan.  Jeff 'Skunk' Baxter, Denny Dias (guitars) and Jim Hodder (drums) rounded out the band.  Becker contributed some guitar at the outset, but his primary instrument was bass.  Once the band acquired the services of bassist extraordinaire Chuck Rainey, Becker was free to shift entirely to guitar, and made his recording debut as Steely Dan's guitarist on Pretzel Logic (1974).



Steely Dan as a band was soon distilled down to Becker and Fagen, giving the pair the option to base which musicians they worked with on the nature and style of each album.  Taking this approach allowed them to fine tune the sound for the studio but made concerts difficult, and Steely Dan became one of the least regular touring acts in Rock during Becker & Fagen's most active years of releasing popular albums.  The two dissolved their writing partnership in 1981, the year after releasing Goucho, the final Steely Dan album released during the consecutive years of the collabortation of Becker and Fagen.  Free of the pressures and obligations of needing to reinvent the band each time they did an album, the pair eventually began to tour somewhat regularly. 

Walter Becker contended with a number of health issues, including injuries sustained when he was struck by a taxi while crossing the street in New York in 1978 and substance problems.  He got that in check after the final album was released and went on to produce albums for Rickie Lee Jones (Flying Cowboys), Michael Franks, China Crisis.


Becker and Fagen reunited in 1993 for a tour after Becker had produced Fagen's album Kamakirird.  The following year, Fagen returned the favor, producing Becker's 11 Tracks of Whack.  They then collaborated as Steely Dan, releasing Two Against Nature (2000), an album that collected four Grammy Awards, including Album Of The Year.

Becker & Fagen were inducted into the Rock Hall OF Fame in 2001.


A cause of death has not been released. News of his passing was not a shock as it was common knowledge that he had health issues, but the circumstances under which we learned of his death because numerous sites seem to have announced it before it actually happened.  

We always await substantiation before firing off a story. So, when people in a position to know cast doubts about reports that emerged going into the weekend that Walter Becker of Steely Dan fame had passed away and a chorus of claims of a hoax grew, we awaited verification.  His passing was confirmed. But the assuming the date of death indicated on his web site is accurate, the initial reports of his death were false.  While many repudible people and sites got duped into spreading news of his death prematurely, the misinformation had to have started with someone.  We hope whoever that was feels remorse over having made a difficult time for Becker's loved ones and friends even more painful.




















Springsteen Broadway residency adds 10 weeks

E Street Band members will have more time on their hands than they assumed. Bruce Springsteen's fall  series of solo dates in a Broadway theater has generated such a frenzy of anticipation that 10 additional weeks of performances have been added.  The Boss had been scheduled to will sing songs and spin yarns at the 950 seat Walter Kerr Theatre from October 12 - November 26.  It has now been announced that the closing night won't come until three days into the second month of 2018.

In an effort to thwart bots and scalpers, Ticketmaster has developed a system designed to limit sales to individuals that have an established history of having purchased tickets in patterns that makes them verifiable as legitimate fans.  The ticket seller's Verifiable Fan registration will be re-opened until September 3 for the additional dates.  People that registerd for the initially announced dates that did not get the opportunity to buy tickets do not need to register again.




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