Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Autobiography of the late-Andy Fraser of Free Published

by Music-News.com Newsdesk

Andy Fraser, bass guitarist and songwriter in Free, the co-writer of international number one hit All Right Now, leaves behind a much-praised musical legacy. Fraser's autobiography, All Right Now: Life, Death and Life Again, was completed shortly before his death earlier this year. It gives a candid account of both a personal and a rock n' roll history: from joining Free as a teenager, to massive musical success, to personal conflict and ultimate acceptance of his homosexuality, to his later diagnosis with AIDS and cancer.

Fraser's opening page of his autobiography exemplifies the depth of his diagnosis and his inspiration for the book's name:
I used to be very ill. Back in the early 90s I had a viral load of 3.4 million and was down to one T-cell. Any doctor will tell you they are insane numbers.
Thankfully for Fraser and other HIV+ individuals, drugs and treatments have developed significantly since the 1980s. Fraser was able to regain a level of health which allowed him to live a normal live and continue his work in music. Fraser's memoir is an inspirational story of his voyage of self-discovery, and its pages spark with the electricity of rock n' roll. As his book asks: "How many seventeen-year olds have stood on stage at Madison Square Gardens, looked down on a riotous crowd of 20,000?"

Andy Fraser joined the group Free at the age of 15. A precocious talent, he was still a teenager when he co-wrote the band's biggest hit record, All Right Now. The record was a number one smash in over 20 countries worldwide and has been recognised by official industry bodies for radio plays in the millions. The song is widely regarded as a rock classic.

Away from the stage, Fraser's autobiography paints the picture of a loving husband and father. but one under the shadow of a secret. He publically addressed his sexuality after false rumours of his death in the early 2000s. By this time, comfortable in his sexuality, Fraser used the opportunity to inspire a new album and to challenge discrimination.

Co-written with author Mark Hughes, and featuring contributions from Island Records' Chris Blackwell, All Right Now: Life, Death and Life Again serves as a tribute to, and celebration of, a rock n' roll great.

Fraser died at the age of 62 in March of this year, following a battle with AIDS and cancer.

All Right Now: Life, Death and Life Again is available now.

Review: "The Purple Album" - Whitesnake Covers Deep Purple

by Andy Snipper, Music-News.com

From the opening blast of Burn, this album drives hard, fast and with huge power. Whitesnake plays the songs of Deep Purple, interesting concept and it takes someone like David Coverdale to make this a re-imagining of the classic songs rather that a weak ‘tribute’.

Coverdale was urged, apparently, by the late Jon Lord, to reimagine his work with Deep Purple and this album only contains tracks from his time with the band but frankly I don’t want to hear Coverdale covering Hush or Smoke On The Water.

To take that track Burn, it is a classic and you approach a new version with trepidation but the band give it their all, staying true to the original but never trying to repeat it lick for lick – what would be the point. Tommy Aldridge’s drums pound like a steam hammer while new guitarists Reb Beach and Joel Hokstra rip a new solo into the number Michael Devlin’s basslines are taut and driving while Coverdale does what he does better than almost anyone else – that man wails.

Of course, you cannot get away from Whitesnake’s sound but the songs are so strong that the listener can fall into the trap of hearing this as a new band, full of piss and vinegar, but also remind just how great a band Deep Purple were.

Even when the volume is turned down and they play acoustic and bring up the emotional content – Sail Away for example – Coverdale’s vocal is intense and powerfully restrained.

The classic tracks are here – Mistreated is magnificent, powerful and as fresh as they could have wished for and Coverdale really carries the vocal, Stormbringer is immense and dense, you feel the tornado around you and the fear and excitement is palpable.

Soldier of Fortune sounds utterly modern with the sensitive guitar and vocal feeling just right for today with the advent of the mercenaries and Private Armies proliferating in the Middle East.

My personal favourite is one of Purple’s lesser tracks Lay Down, Stay Down – just balls out rock with no attempt at redemption.

To be honest, I would still go back to my originals time and again but this is one of the best attempts to interpret these maligned and often ignored tracks.

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Almanac: May 26, 2015

Crystal Visions - The Very Best of Stevie Nicks
  • 1886 - Al Jolson (d. 1950)
  • 1904 - George Formby (d. 1961)
  • 1920 - Peggy Lee (d. 2002)
  • 1926 - Miles Davis (d. 1991)
  • 1939 - Jaki Liebezeit (Can) (76)
  • 1940 - Levon Helm (Band) (d. 2012)
  • 1940 - Ray Ennis (Swingin' Bluejeans) (75)
  • 1944 - Verden Allen (Mott the Hoople) (71)
  • 1945 - Garry Peterson (Guess Who) (70)
  • 1946 - Mick Ronson (d. 1993)
  • 1948 - Stevie Nicks (Fleetwood Mac) (67)
  • 1949 - Hank Williams, Jr. (66)
  • 1958 - Wayne Hussey (Mission, Sisters of Mercy) (57)
  • 1959 - Dave Robinson (BlackHawk) (56)
  • 1964 - Lenny Kravitz (51)
  • 1967 - Kristen Pfaff (Hole) (d. 1994)
  • 1972 - Alan White (Oasis) (43)
  • 1975 - Lauryn Hill (Fugees) (40)
  • 1976 - Justin Pierre (Motion City Soundtrack) (39)
  • 1977 - Mark Hunter (Chimaira) (38)
  • 1978 - Jaheim (born Jaheim Hoagland) (37)
  • 1981 - Isaac Slade (Fray) (34)

  • 1933 - Jimmie Rodgers - Lung hemorrhage (35)
  • 1968 - Little Willie John - Heart attack (30)
  • 1977 - William Powell (O'Jays) - Cancer (35)

Coal Miner's Daughter: A Tribute To Loretta LynnOn This Day:
  • 1969 - John Lennon and Yoko Ono began an eight-day bed-in in Montreal.
  • 1974 - Over 1,000 concert goers required first aid during the frenzy at a London David Cassidy concert.
  • 1982 - The Rolling Stones started a U.K. and European tour in Aberdeen, Scotland.
  • 1990 - David Bowie was sued by his ex-wife for $56 million.
  • 1995 - Flavor Flav was sentenced to three months in prison for firing a gun at a neighbor. 
  • 1996 - A fire at the residence of Eric Clapton caused over $1 million in damage. 
  • 1999 - The Manic Street Preachers refused to play a show the celebrate the opening of the Wales parliament because of the presence of Queen Elizabeth II. 
  • 2000 - Tommy Lee of Motley Crue was jailed for five days after violating his probation by drinking alcohol. 
  • 2001 - Loretta Lynn opened her Coal Miner's Daughter Museum.
  • 2009 - A judge ruled that half of the assets of James Brown would go to a chartable trust, a quarter to his last wife and son and a quarter to his six children. The ruling ended a three-year battle.

  • 1994 - Michael Jackson and Lisa Marie Presley
  • 2014 - Gabe Saporta (Cobra Starship) and Erin Fetherston

  • 1964 - As Tears Go By - Marianne Faithfull (with Jimmy Page on guitar and John Paul Jones on bass)
  • 1966 - Yellow Submarine - Beatles

  • 1973 - Smoke on the Water - Deep Purple

  • 2002 - CMT Crossroads - Elton John, Ryan Adams

Number Ones - U.S. Singles:
  • 1945 - Sentimental Journey - Les Brown (9 weeks)
  • 1962 - Stranger on the Shore - Mr. Acker Bilk (1 week)
  • 1973 - Frankenstein - Edgar Winter Group (1 week)
  • 1984 - Let's Hear It For the Boys - Deniece Williams (2 weeks)
  • 2007 - Buy U a Drank (Shawty Snappin') - T-Pain Featuring Yung Joc (1 week)

1967-1970 (Blue) RemasteredNumber Ones - U.S. Albums:
  • 1973 - 1967-1970 - Beatles (1 week)
  • 2007 - Call Me Irresponsible - Michael Buble (1 week)

Number Ones - U.K. Singles:
  • 1966 - Paint It Black - Rolling Stones (1 week)
  • 1979 - Sunday Girl - Blondie (3 weeks)
  • 1996 - Three Lions - Baddiel, Skinner & The Lightning Seeds (1 week)
  • 2002 - Without Me - Eminem (1 week)

DestinationNumber Ones - U.K. Albums:
  • 2002 - Destination - Ronan Keating (1 week)

Monday, May 25, 2015

B.B. King's Family to Challenge Will; Two Daughters Allege Their Father Was Poisoned

Let the games begin.

Less than two weeks after the passing of blues great B.B. King, there are already legal challenges to his legacy.

Five of King's daughters, Patty King, Michelle King, Karen Williams, Barbara King Winfree and Claudette King Robinson, along with other heirs, are set to challenge the existing will and, specifically, the appointing of King's former business manager LaVerne Toney as executor to the estate.

Members of the family had previously filed petitions alleging that Toney had misappropriated money while King was still alive and had committed elder abuse; however, a court ruled that there was no evidence against Toney on the financial charge and police refused to move forward on the abuse.

In addition to the lawsuit, two of the daughters, Karen and Patty, are alleging that their father was poisoned by Toney and his personal assistant, Myron Johnson. The accusation proved significant enough that authorities had King's embalmed body taken to the morgue on Sunday where another autopsy was performed by the Clark County coroner. Results are not expected from the tests for up to eight weeks.

Las Vegas police have also confirmed that an investigation of the charges is ongoing.

B.B. King died May 14 from complications of type 2 diabetes.

Set List: Neil Diamond Plays the Hollywood Bowl

Neil Diamond played two nights at the Hollywood Bowl in Los Angeles on Tuesday and Saturday with a 24-song, 2-1/2 hour show.

While much of the set remains the same since he opened the tour, there are a few changes including the additions of Kentucky Woman, Crunchy Granola Suite, Morningside and Pretty Amazing Grace and performing only one song from his latest album, Melody Road, instead of three, but the biggest change may have been his leaving Brother Love's Traveling Salvation Show out of the set list which has been a regular part of Diamond's show since 1970.

The set list was the same for both nights.

Main Set
  • I'm a Believer (from Just For You, 1967)
  • Love on the Rocks (from The Jazz Singer, 1980)
  • Hello Again (from The Jazz Singer, 1980)
  • Pretty Amazing Grace (from Home Before Dark, 2008)
  • Kentucky Woman (single, 1967)
  • You Got to Me (from Just For You, 1967)
  • Girl You'll Be a Woman Soon (from Just For You, 1967)
  • Play Me (from Moods, 1972)
  • Red Red Wine (from Just For You, 1967)
  • Beautiful Noise (from Beautiful Noise, 1976)
  • If You Know What I Mean (from Beautiful Noise, 1976)
  • Brooklyn Roads (from Velvet, Gloves and Spit, 1968)
  • Shilo (from Just For You, 1967)
  • The Art of Love (from Melody Road, 2014)
  • Forever in Blue Jeans (from You Don't Bring Me Flowers, 1978)
  • Cherry, Cherry (from The Feel of Neil Diamond, 1966)
  • Crunchy Granola Suite (from Stones, 1971)
  • Morningside (from Moods, 1972)
  • Holly Holy (from Touching You, Touching Me, 1969)
  • I Am ... I Said (from Stones, 1971)
  • Cracklin' Rosie (from Tap Rood Manuscript, 1970)
  • Sweet Caroline (from Brother Love's Traveling Salvation Show, 1969)
  • America (from The Jazz Singer, 1980)
  • Heartlight (from Heartlight, 1982)

Preview: "Rio: Deluxe Edition" - Duran Duran

Artist: Duran Duran
Title: Rio: Deluxe Edition
Release Date: June 23, 2015
Label: Rhino/Parlophone
Format(s): CD, 2-CDs, 2-LPs, DD

by Music-News.com Newsdesk

Duran Duran set sail aboard a 70-foot yacht in the iconic music video for Rio, the title track from the British quintet's second album release in 1982.

That hit single, along with others like Hungry Like the Wolf and Save A Prayer, propelled the album into the Top 10 and kept it on the US Billboard 200 chart for 129 weeks. Today, Rio has been certified double platinum and is widely considered to be one of the greatest albums of the Eighties.

Parlophone will have you dancing on the sand this summer with Rio: Deluxe Edition. The two-CD set will be available at retail outlets on June 22 (U.K.) and 23 (U.S.). The collection features the US and UK original vinyl track list, plus a generous selection of alternative mixes, demos and B-sides. All of the music was originally issued in 2009 as part of a limited edition release on EMI that's now out of print. This new version will be presented in a digipak.

A single-disc version featuring the music from the first disc of the Deluxe Edition will also be released the same day.

When Rio was released in May 1982, it featured nine tracks mixed from the original master tapes. Six months later, a second version of the album was re-released in North America that replaced many of the original mixes with remixes by producer David Kershenbaum. The first disc of this new collection includes the original album, plus five Kershenbaum remixes for songs like Hungry Like The Wolf, Hold Back The Rain and Lonely In Your Nightmare, enabling the listener to program their CD player to play the original or North American vinyl tracklistings.

In August 1981, four months before going into EMI's Manchester Square Studio, Simon Le Bon (vocals) Nick Rhodes (keyboards), Andy Taylor (guitar), John Taylor (bass) Roger Taylor (drums) recorded several demos for Rio. The second disc opens with four of those recordings, including an early version of New Religion.

Rio: Deluxe Edition also brings together various non-album tracks like the original 7" version of My Own Way and a live performance of the 1981 hit Careless Memories that was issued as the B-side to Hungry Like The Wolf. Additional highlights include Kershenbaum's remixes - dubbed Night Versions - of  Rio, My Own Way and more.

Track List:

2-CD Version (single CD version includes just disc 1)

Disc 1
  • Rio
  • My Own Way
  • Lonely In Your Nightmare
  • Hungry Like The Wolf
  • Hold Back The Rain
  • New Religion
  • Last Chance On The Stairway
  • Save A Prayer
  • The Chauffeur
  • Rio (US Album Remix)
  • My Own Way (Carnival Remix)
  • Lonely In Your Nightmare (US Album Remix)
  • Hungry Like The Wolf (US Album Remix)
  • Hold Back The Rain (US Album Remix)
Disc 2
  • Last Chance On The Stairway (Manchester Square Demo)
  • My Own Way (Manchester Square Demo)
  • New Religion (Manchester Square Demo)
  • Like An Angel (Manchester Square Demo)
  • My Own Way (7'' Version)
  • Like An Angel (2009 Remastered Version)
  • Careless Memories (Live)
  • The Chauffeur (Blue Silver) [Early Version]
  • My Own Way (Night Version)
  • Hungry Like the Wolf (Night Version)
  • Rio (Night Version)
  • New Religion (Carnival Remix)
  • Hold Back The Rain (Carnival Remix)
  • Simon's Christmas Message 1982

2-LP Version

LP 1
  • Rio
  • My Own Way
  • Lonely In Your Nightmare
  • Hungry Like The Wolf 
  • Hold Back The Rain
  • New Religion
  • Last Chance On The Stairway 
  • Save A Prayer 
  • The Chauffeur 
LP 2
  • Rio (US Album Remix)
  • My Own Way (Carnival Remix)
  • Lonely In Your Nightmare (US Album Remix)
  • Hungry Like The Wolf (US Album Remix)
  • Hold Back The Rain (US Album Remix)

Set List: Rolling Stones Open Their North American Zip Code Tour in San Diego

by Paul Cashmere, Noise11

The Rolling Stones have kicked off the Zip Code tour of the USA in zip code 92010, San Diego.

Unlike the warm-up show at the Fonda Theatre in Hollywood last week, the first official Zip Code show offered no real surprises. With the exception of Moonlight Mile, all of the songs for this show were performed during the Stones 2014 Australian tour. Moonlight Mile was added back last week in Los Angeles but before then had not previous been played since 1999.

The special guest choir for You Can’t Always Get What You Want was the Bob Cole Conservatory Choir (luckily not the Bob Dole Conservatory Choir) from San Diego.

The Rolling Stones, San Diego, May 24, 2015:

Main Set
  • Jumping Jack Flash (single, 1968)
  • It's Only Rock and Roll (from It’s Only Rock N Roll, 1974)
  • All Down The Line (from Exile On Main Street, 1972)
  • Tumblin Dice (from Exile On Main Street, 1972)
  • Doom and Gloom (from GRRR, 2012)
  • Bitch (with Gary Clark Jr) (from Sticky Fingers, 1971)
  • Moonlight Mile (from Sticky Fingers, 1971)
  • Can’t You Hear Me Knocking (from Sticky Fingers, 1971)
  • Street Fighting Man (from Beggars Banquet, 1968)
  • Honky Tonk Women (single, 1968)
  • Slipping Away (from Steel Wheels, 1989)
  • Before They Make You Run (from Some Girls, 1978)
  • Midnight Rambler (from Let It Bleed, 1969)
  • Miss You (from Some Girls, 1978)
  • Gimme Shelter (from Let It Bleed, 1969)
  • Start Me Up (from Tattoo You, 1981)
  • Sympathy For The Devil (from Beggars Banquet, 1968)
  • Brown Sugar (from Sticky Fingers, 1971)
  • You Can’t Always Get What You Want (from Let It Bleed, 1969)
  • Satisfaction (from Out Of Our Heads, 1965)
The next Rolling Stones show will be on May 30, 2015 in Columbus, Ohio.

Last week, the Rolling Stones played a warm-up show for 1200 fans at the Fonda Theatre in Los Angeles including Dave Stewart, Jack Nicholson and Bruce Willis.