Metallica has put its tour on hold while James Hetfield grapples with substance issues. With Hetfield turning his attention to rehab, the group expressed its support of him and appreciation for understanding to fans in Australia and New Zealand holding tickets for dates that will need to be rescheduled.
“We fully intend to make our way to your part of the world as soon as health and schedule permit. We’ll let you know as soon as we can. Once again, we are devastated that we have inconvenienced so many of you, especially our most loyal fans who often travel great distances to experience our shows. We appreciate your understanding and support for James and, as always, thank you for being a part of our Metallica family.”
Robert Hunter, the lyricist/songwriter that helped craft several songs in the Grateful Dead catalog of material, has died at 78. Born Robert Burns in 1941, Hunter befriended Jerry Garcia and was in bluegrass groups with the future Grateful Dead lead guitarist. Hunter's contribution to the group's albums were judged to be so significant that he got inducted into the Rock Hall Of Fame as a member of the Dead in 1994, becoming the only non-performing inductee of a band to date to enter the Hall.
Songs Hunter co-wrote for the Dead include:
Playing in the Band
Touch of Grey
Uncle John's Band
Box of Rain
Friend of the Devil
China Cat Sunflower
It was inevitable that Classic Rock musician passings would become increasingly frequent, but we made it through the first several months of 2019 with only a few high profile musician loses. Within a couple of days we have now lost two highly regarded players. Eddie Money died on Friday (9/13), and we learned today that Ric Ocasek of the Cars died today in New York City. Ocasek was pronounced dead in his lower Manhattan apartment shortly after 4pm. The 2018 Rock Hall Of Fame inductee and front man for the Cars was 75.
We're sad to pass along the news that Eddie Money has passed away. Just diagnosed recently with stage 4 esophageal cancer, Eddie died peacefully this morning according to a statement from his family that included, "It is with heavy hearts we say goodbye to our loving husband and father. We cannon imagine our world without him. We are grateful that he swill live on forever through his music."
We pass along our condolences to Eddie's wife and family. He was one of the most enthusiastic and enjoyable people in Rock to spend time with.
Jimmy Johnson, guitarist with the legendary Muscle Shoals Rhythm Section, affectionately dubbed The Swampers in Lynyrd Skynyrd's Sweet Home Alabama, passed away Thursday (9/5). Johnson's credits include engineering Brown Sugar and Wild Horses on Sticky Fingers, the Rolling Stones album recorded in Muscle Shoals. Most notably, Johnson and fellow Swampers Roger Hawkins (drums), David Hood (bass) and keyboard player Barry Beckett made up the rhythm section on a slew of records recorded by Soul and R&B greats Wilson Pickett, Aretha Franklin, Etta James, Arthur Conley, Clarence Carter, Otis Rush the Staples SIngers and others, but his r guitar work can be heard on songs recorded by Skynyrd, Bob Seger, Bob Dylan, Boz Scaggs, Rod Stewart, Traffic, Joe Cocker, JJ Cale, Linda Ronstadt, Leon Russell, Jimmy Cliff, Paul Simon, Jimmy Buffett, Glenn Frey, and dozens of other Rockers.
Fans of great guitarists gather in Dallas September 20 & 21 to feast their ears on Eric Clapton's annual showcase of six string wizardy to raise money for his treatment center to help those struggling with substance dependency. The 2019 Crossroads Giutar Festival is booked into the American Airlines Arena, but those not lucky enough to be there to catch performances by EC, Jeff Beck, Jimmie Vaughan, Bonnie Raitt, Peter Frampton, Robert Cray, Albert Lee, Buddy Guy, the Tedeschi Trucks Band and many others will be able to watch it via a live pay-for-view streams from some cableandsatellite providers for $39.95 per evening for home viewing or at a host of public places carrying the feed. Eric will be on stage with a number of his guests on both nights.