Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Short Takes - Neil Young, David Gilmour, Keith Richards

Neil Young's 2003 concept album, Greendale, is being turned into a graphic novel from Vertigo (a division of DC Comics). The book will be written by Joshua Dysart.

David Gilmour's concert film, Remember the Night (see our July 6 story) will premier three nights before it's DVD release in 111 theaters in the United States and 54 in Canada. The event will occur on Saturday, September 15 at 3 PM, with an exclusive one-song performance before the movie and a Question and Answer session after. The show will be broadcast to the theaters in HD with Gilmour based in London.

Keith Richards has signed with publisher Little Brown and Company for his autobiography. He'll receive $7.3 million. The book is scheduled for the Fall of 2010.

Good news from two that were ailing over the weekend. Paul Stanley says that he is "absolutely fine" and is back to painting and going to the gym. He'll be back in the studio with Kiss later this week.

He wrote on his website, "Like many, I have had a rapid heart beat condition most of my life and I never have had any type of restrictions. When I've had an episode, although momentarily disrupting and taxing, it has no residual effect. This is nothing new and my doctors have known about it.

"In short, it doesn't change, hasn't changed and won't change my life."

Ozzy Osbourne's hospital stay was strictly outpatient. He rejoined Ozzfest on Monday in Kansas City after having a blood clot in his leg surgically removed.

Radio station K-Earth in Los Angeles has put together a nice lineup for their 35th anniversary show. Celebrating with them will be Chicago, the Doobie Brothers, War, the Stylistics and the Four Tops. K-Earth programs the music of the 60's and the 70's.

Vintage Clip - Robert Gordon with Link Wray - Baby Let's Play House

One of the most exciting new releases of this week is It's Now or Never by Robert Gordon, Chris Spedding and the Jordinaires.

For thirty years, Robert Gordon has been one of the greatest of the artists keeping Rockabilly alive. He started in the early Punk scene but soon switched to his first love with the help of ex-Strangeloves member Richard Gottehrer, who hooked him up with the great Link Wray.

Here's Gordon and Wray, from 1977, with Baby Let's Play House.

AC/DC Going Digital

AC/DC is finally going to make their music available for the digital market. Their entire catalog will be available exclusively through Verizon's VCast Music service through March 2008 when the albums will be made available to other services.

In addition, the albums can only be purchased in their entirety, something that was a major sticking point for the group's entrance into the digital domain. The only exception is You Shook Me All Night Long, which will be available as a single track.

Verizon also has obtained the rights to sell 18 of the tracks as ringtones and ringback tones and will be broadcasting special events like the group's Live at Donnington concert via VCast TV.

Joe Walsh Dishes on New Eagles Album

Joe Walsh has told Billboard that the new Eagles album is "almost out. We're just finishing vocals and mixing it. We're all finally signing off on it." The album will be the first of all new material since 1979's The Long Run.

According to Walsh, he, Don Henley, Glenn Frey and Timothy B. Schmidt have all contributed new music for the album which "go in some really, really new, different directions. It's hard to compare to anything that I hear out there now."

Obviously, Walsh's contributions lean towards Rock 'n' Roll, including one track with an extended guitar solo in the middle.

Walsh also says that the band plans on touring "extensively" in 2008.

What hasn't been discussed lately is the marketing plans for the album. Back on February 7, we reported that, per Don Henley, the album would be sold exclusively at Wal-Mart for the first year. Since that time, there have been no further announcements on the arrangements.

Meanwhile, Walsh has some solo stops over the next couple of months and is thinking about another solo project. He tells Billboard, "I don't think I would cancel being an Eagle and resurface with a solo career. I love being in the Eagles, and we're not really done yet."

Controllers of Graceland Looking to Make Major Overhaul

The managers of Elvis Presley's Graceland mansion are looking at a major overhaul of the complex, to the tune of $250 million. Among the changes would be a new visitor's center the size of a football field, a convention hotel and high-tech museum displays.

To accomplish the overhaul will take a great deal expertise. Graceland takes in about $27 million a year and the Elvis business brings in $40 million. That will mean that the construction will need funding sources and even public support.

Graceland and Elvis Presley Enterprises is controlled by CKX Corp. Top investors want to buyout the shareholders for about $1.3 billion and take the company private. One of those investors is Simon Fuller, creator of American Idol whose very successful 19 Entertainment is another subsidiary of CKX. The company also owns the rights to Muhammad Ali's name and image.

Monday, July 30, 2007

Short Takes - Ozzy Osbourne, Jimmy Nelson, Otis Redding

Ozzy Osbourne had, what is being called, a minor outpatient procedure at Rose Medical Center in Denver late Saturday night and was released early Sunday. While there are no confirmations about the nature of the procedure, NBC affiliate KUSA-TV has said that it was to remove a blood clot in his leg.

Blues singer Jimmy Nelson died on Sunday in Houston at the age of 88.

Nelson first recorded in 1948 for Olliet Records. His career peaked three years later on Modern Records' subsidiary RPM, when his "T" 99 Blues (as Jimmie Nelson and the Peter Rabbit Trio) hit the top of the R&B charts.

He was never able to place a record on the charts again, but did record for a number of labels into the mid-60's, along with being a studio musician. After his wife's death in 1992, he approached the Houston Blues Society to help him get back to playing music. A number of independent albums followed, including 2005's The Legend with Duke Robilard.

Dreams to Remember: The Legacy of Otis Redding, a 90-minute full length performance by Redding will be released on DVD September 28. The disc will include sixteen full performances along with a 40 minute documentary. The DVD comes from Reelin' in the Years Productions and Stax Records on the 40th anniversary of Redding's death and the 50th anniversary of the Stax Label.

Frank Zappa has had a street named after him in Berlin, Germany. Frank Zappa Strasse is on the eastern outskirts of the city.

IMAX announced on Monday that the Martin Scorsese concert film of the Rolling Stones, Shine a Light, will be released into large-screen theaters this fall along with standard theaters.

Crossroads Guitar Festival Highlighted by Collaborations

Saturday's Crossroads Guitar Festival in Chicago brought together some of the finest guitarists working in music today. The 11-hour concert at Toyota Park saw everyone from Buddy Guy to Eric Clapton to newer artists like Derek Trucks tear up the stage.

The real highlight of the show was the numerous collaborations by artists as they joined each other's sets. Vince Gill not only played his own music, but brought out artists like Sheryl Crow, Alison Krauss, Willie Nelson and Albert Lee. Robert Cray worked with Jimmie Vaughan, B.B. King and others. Derek Trucks had wife Susan Tedeschi join him along with Johnny Winter.

Eric Clapton's was the longest set of the day at 95 minutes. He opened as he has on other stops on his tour with music from Derek and the Dominoes, including Tell the Truth, Got to Get Better in a Little While and Why Does Love Got to Be So Sad. Derek Trucks played with Clapton through most of his set, including a salute to George Harrison on Isn't it a Pity and a tip of the hat to Bo Diddley on Who Do You Love, also featuring Robbie Robertson.

Clapton then told the crowd “I’ve been dying to play with this person for twenty-five years, and now the time has come” as he brought Steve Winwood on stage (as rumored) for a Blind Faith trifecta of Presence of the Lord, Can't Find My Way Home and Not My Cross to Bear, along with Traffic songs Pearly Queen and Dear Mr. Fantasy. He closed out the set with Cocaine and Crossroads.

Buddy Guy was the final performer of the day, followed by a two-song jam with Clapton, Higb Mayer, Vaughan, Winter and Robert Randolph.

Highlights from the show will be released on DVD November 6.

Vintage Clip - Cream - Crossroads

On this date in 1966, Cream played their first live gig in Windsor, England.

To salute that milestone and this past Saturday's Crossroads Guitar Festival, we present a vintage performance of the song Crossroads by Eric Clapton, Jack Bruce and Ginger Baker.

New Releases for Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Our weekly look at notable new releases.

CDs

Carlene Carter
- Platinum Collection (WEA International Import)

Twenty track collection of music from her country period of the late-80's and 90's.

Deep Purple - Come Taste the Band (Friday Music)

Deep Purple's last album for Warner Brothers sees release on CD for the first time in twenty years. Newly remastered.

Deep Purple - Made in Europe (Friday Music)

A remastered recording of the last work of Ritchie Blackmore with the group.

Robert Gordon, Chris Spedding & the Jordanaires
- It's Now or Never (Rykodisc)

Gordon and guitarist Chris Spedding present their favorite Elvis Presley songs. It's mainly rock with just a few quiet spots like their take on Peace in the Valley. Backup is provided by the legendary Jordanaires.

Louvin Brothers - Tragic Songs of Life/Satan Is Real (Raven Australia Import)

Tragic (1956) and Satan (1960) are released on a single CD for the first time. Includes the 1959 hit Knoxville Girl.

Bob Marley & the Wailers
- Roots, Rock, Remixed (Quengo Fontana)

An album of remixes of classic Marley songs by a number of notable DJ's. Full story and track listing here.

Garnet Mimms - Is Anybody Out There (Import)

The first new album of material from Mimms and many years. Special guests include P.F. Slan, Felix Cavaliere, Buddy Miller and Marty Brown.

Elvis Presley - Viva Las Vegas (RCA)

1980's live performance by Presley.

Raspberries
- Live on the Sunset Strip (Rykodisc)

2004 show by the original lineup. Full story and track listing here.

Johnny Rivers & His L.A. Boogie Band - Last Boogie in Paris - The Complete Concert (Shout Factory)

Concert taped at Paris' Olympia Theater at the end of Rivers 1973 comeback tour. The show was released in Europe the next year with an edited set list. This is the first time the entire concert has been released.

Southside Johnny & the Asbury Jukes - Jukebox (Leroy Records Import)

Four CDs of previously r
unreleased material, including demos, outtakes and live recordings along with a 40-page booklet with a history and never before seen pictures.

Various Artists - Cosimo Matassa Story (Proper Box Import)

Four CD/120 track overview of Cosimo Matassa's career as one of the most prolific producers in New Orleans from the late-40's through the early-70's. Includes the hits and lesser known music of Fats Domino, Shirley & Lee, Lloyd Price, T-Bone Walker, Smiley Lewis, Little Richard, Clarence Frogman Henry and many, many more.

Various Artists - Complete Motown Singles, Vol. 7: 1967 (Hip-O Select)

This superb series chronicling every Motown single (including B-sides and alternate mixes) reaches 1967 in this five-CD/120 track set.

Various Artists - Red Bird Story (Snapper UK Import)

Three-CD box set chronicling the Red Bird label of the early 60's. Contains ninety hits and rarities from the Dixie Cups, the Shangri-Las, Barry Mann, Jeff Berry, Ellie Greenwich, the Ad-Libs and many more.


DVDs

Archies
- The Complete Series (Classic Media)

Yes, I know this is pushing it a bit, but it's you chance to see the "original" performances of hits like Bang-Shang-a-Lang.

Lovin' Spoonful with John Sebastian - Do You Believe in Magic (Standing Room Only)

TV performances of their greatest hits along with
John Sebastian Commentary on Childhood and Musical Influences, Greenwich Village and the Folk Scene, Forming the Lovin' Spoonful, Songwriting. Reflections: John Sebastian and Denny Doherty (Mamas and Papas) pay tribute to Zal Yanovsky. "Tower of Song" interview with Zal Yanovsky.

Ratt - Videos From the Cellar: The Atlantic Years (Rhino Records)

A compilation of Ratt videos plus bonus commentaries.

Collector's Report - Three Presley 78's Bring Big Bucks

Collector's Report reviews the top selling 45's, LP's and 78's each week on eBay. The purpose is to see what is selling in the area of rare records and to track average prices. LPs will not include Classical issues.

The following are the top sellers for the week of July 22 to July 28, 2007

45's
  1. 2 Minutes to Midnight/Rainbow's Gold - Iron Maiden (Toshiba-EMI Japan PRP-1136) - Ex-/Ex- - $5,100.00 (1 bid)
  2. What More Do You Want/How It Feels - Gene Toones (Simco 30,000 Promo) - VG+ - $3,100.00 (11 bids)
  3. I Wanna Tell My Baby/My Lover Come Back - Precisions (D-Town 45DT-1033) - VG - $1,439.00 (9 bids)
  4. Surfin' Down the Swanee River/Shoot the Curl - The Honeys (Capitol 4952) - VG++/VG+ picture sleeve - $1,377.00 (17 bids)
  5. Rockin' Rochester U.S.A./Lemon Lime - The Tempests (Lifetime 1010) - VG+ - $1,325.00 (17 bids)
  6. Baby Can't You See/I'm Still Hurt - Little Tommy (Sound of Soul 104) - VG - $1,275.00 (17 bids)
  7. Bari Track/I Have Faith in You - Doni Burdick (Sound Impressions SIR 6807) - VG++ - $1,185.50 (24 bids)
  8. Milkcow Blues Boogie/You're a Heartbreaker - Elvis Presley (Sun U-141) - "Worn but good" - $1,100.99 (45 bids)
  9. Can I Sit Next to You, Girl/Rockin' in the Parlour - AC/DC (Albert Productions AP-10551) - First release from Australia - NM - $1,057.44 (15 bids)
  10. Love is a Trap - Cleveland Robinson, Jr. - $1,025.00 (22 bids)
LPs
  1. Blonde on Blonde - Bob Dylan (Columbia C2141 Mono Promo) - White label promo with timing label on cover - M- - $3,650.00 (23 bids)
  2. Help - Beatles (Capitol MAS 2386 Mono) - Still Sealed - $2,650.00 (15 bids)
  3. White Album - Beatles (Apple SWBO-101) - Still Sealed - $2,027.99 (20 bids)
  4. Barney - Barney Wilen (RCA 430053) - M-/VG++ - $2,027.43 (16 bids)
  5. Quiet Kenny - Kenny Durham (New Jazz MONO 8225) - NM/NM - $1,601.76 (9 bids)
  6. Dark Side of the Moon - Pink Floyd (Capitol) - Acetate - VG++ - $1,438.00 (20 bids)
  7. Lead Me Home - The RFD - M-/M- - $1,388.00 (17 bids)
  8. The Collection - Beatles (MFSL) - Set Number 312 - M - $1,325.00 (18 bids)
  9. Modern Art - Art Pepper Quartet (Intro ILP-606) - M-/M- - $1,243.99 (17 bids)
  10. Mono Collection - Beatles (Parlaphone) - Set Number 308 of 1000 - "Excellent Condition" - $1,200.00 (1 bid)
78's
  1. That's Alright/Blue Moon of Kentucky - Elvis Presley (Sun 209) - E- - $760.00 (2 bids)
  2. Roll, Tumble & Slip/Train Time - Delta Joe (aka Sunnyland Slim) - VG+ - $747.99 (19 bids)
  3. Good Rockin' Tonight/I Don't Care if the Sun Don't Shine (Sun 210) - Elvis Presley - "Some light surface scratches and smudges" - $711.99 (21 bids)
  4. I Forgot to Remember to Forget/Mystery Train - Elvis Presley (Sun 223) - "Good condition with light scuffs and small scratches" - $701.00 (10 bids)
  5. The Jazz Scene - Norman Granz (Mercury 2199) - Set Number 554 of 5,000 - 6 discs with art prints - NM- - $500.00 (1 bid)

Saturday, July 28, 2007

Short Takes - ABBA, Jonathan King, David Bowie

ABBA fans may be a bit disappointed when they see the film version of Mama Mia. Reports from the set say that the title song has been reduced to just short snippets in the film according to the group's original guitarist, Lasse Wallander, who is on the film's soundtrack. Evidently director Phyllida Lloyd is not a fan of the song or of Knowing Me, Knowing You which has been axed entirely.

The film stars Meryl Streep, Pierce Brosnan, Julie Walters, Amanda Seyfried, Christine Baranski, Colin Firth, Bill Nighy and Stellen SkarsgÄrd.

Jonathan King, who is best known to Americans for the 60's hit Everyone's Gone to the Moon, is causing controversy by writting and recording a new song that takes the position that British serial killer Harold Shipman was a victim of the media.
Police will inflate and the law says it's fine
to accommodate tabloids with a solid headline
But a real psycho monster who's killing for fame
would leave notes for acclaim to establish his name
King, who went on to act and produce artists like Genesis, saw his career come crashing down in 2001 when he was convicted of sex offenses against five children aged 14 and 15. He served 3-1/2 years of a seven year sentence, being released in March 2005.

David Bowie is planning to re-release his 1993 album The Buddha of Suburbia in early October. The new release will be a two-CD set. Despite only moderate sales for the original album, Bowie considers it one of his favorites.

Dwight Yoakum to Salute Buck Owens on Next LP

Dwight Yoakum has announced that his next album, Dwight sings Buck, will be his way of saluting one of his greatest influences, Buck Owens.

Yoakum told CMT, "After his death, it was the clearest way I could express my love for him and acknowledge the depth of our friendship."

Some of the proceeds from the album will go to the Buck Owens American Music Foundation, an organization that preserves Owens' legacy.

The song selection includes eleven top five country hits, eight of which reached number one. Close Up the Honky Tonks will be the first single. The album, from New West, hits stores on October 23.

The track list:
  • My Heart Skips A Beat
  • Foolin' Around
  • I Don't Care (Just As Long As You Love Me)
  • Only You
  • Act Naturally
  • Down On The Corner Of Love
  • Cryin' Time
  • Above And Beyond
  • Love's Gonna Live Here
  • Close Up The Honky Tonks
  • Under Your Spell Again
  • Your Tender Loving Care
  • Excuse Me (I Think I've Got A Heartache)
  • Think Of Me
  • Together Again

Vintage Clip - Johnny Cash - I Walk the Line

Today we go back 51 years to 1956. Johnny Cash, who already had three hits under his belt, finally hit number one on the country charts with I Walk the Line. Later in the year, the song peaked at number 17 on the pop charts.

This clip is of a 23-year-old Cash singing the song on the Tex Ritter Show.

Paul Stanley Pulls Out of Show After Heart Scare

Paul Stanley, singer and guitarist for Kiss, pulled out of a show in California Friday night after suffering a rapid heartbeat.

The group was rehearsing at a casino in San Jacinto, Calforina when Stanley's heart suddenly jumped to 190 beats per minute (60 to 80 is normal). When it didn't slow for over an hour, paramedics were called in. Stanley wrote on his site that they started him on an IV and gave him medication to momentarily stop his heart and bring back a normal rhythm.

The condition, Tachycardia, can cause palpitations, shortness of breath, chest pain, dizziness, lightheadedness and fainting.

Paul was told that it would be risky to perform, so Gene Simmons and the rest of the group played as a trio and dedicated the show to Stanley.

Stanley's current condition is not known.

Chart Watch - 7/28/07 - Reba Gets 55th Top 10

Our weekly recap of classic artists on the current music charts. Chart highlights:
  • Bon Jovi spends their fifth week as the best selling album by a classic artist as Lost Highway drops from 6 to 10.
  • Crowded House drops out of the Top 100 albums after just one week.
  • Reba McEntire has her 55th top 10 country single with the Kelly Clarkson duet Because of You. She is now tied with Dolly Parton for the female artist with the most top 10 country hits.

Top 100 Albums
  1. Lost Highway - Bon Jovi - Down from 6 (5 weeks)
  2. Memory Almost Full - Paul McCartney - Down from 26 (9 weeks)
  3. The Police (2CD Anthology) - Police - Down from 33 (7 weeks)
  4. Black Rain - Ozzy Osbourne - Up from 67 (9 weeks)
  5. The Mix-Up - Beastie Boys - Down from 59 (4 weeks)
  6. New Maps of Hell - Bad Religion - Down from 35 (2 weeks)
  7. Collection - Traveling Wilburys - Down from 64 (6 weeks)
  8. Love - Beatles - Down from 94 (35 weeks)
  9. Instant Karma: The Amnesty International Campaign to Save Darfur - U2, R.E.M., Aerosmith, Jackson Browne, Mick Fleetwood, more - Down from 74 (6 weeks)

Top 50 Singles
  • None

Top 50 R&B Albums
  1. Something To Talk About - Eddie Levert, Sr. and Gerald Levert - Down from 22 (6 weeks)
  2. In My Songs - Gerald Levert - Down from 38 (23 weeks)

Top 50 R&B Singles
  1. DJ Don't - Gerald Levert - Up from 38 (15 weeks)
  2. In My Songs - Gerald Levert - Down from 46 (29 weeks)

Top 25 Country Albums

  • None

Top 25 Country Singles
  1. Wrapped - George Strait - Down from 4 (20 weeks)
  2. Because of You - Reba McEntire with Kelly Clarkson - Up from 12 (10 weeks)

Top 25 Pop Catalog Albums
  1. Greatest Hits - Journey - Down from 2 (716 weeks)
  2. Cross Road - Bon Jovi - Down from 6 (232 weeks)
  3. Greatest Hits - Bob Seger & the Silver Bullet Band - No change (661 weeks)
  4. Very Best of: Sounds of Summer - Beach Boys - Up from 11 (209 weeks)
  5. Back in Black - AC/DC - Up from 19 (788 weeks)
  6. Dark Side of the Moon - Pink Floyd - Up from 13 (1,564 weeks)
  7. Chronicle: The 20 Greatest Hits - Creedence Clearwater Revival - Up from 18 (548 weeks)
  8. Turn It on Again: The Hits - Genesis - Down from 7 (17 weeks)
  9. Greatest Hits - James Taylor - Down from 10 (682 weeks)
  10. Metallica - Metallica - Up from 28 (804 weeks)
  11. Legend - Bob Marley & the Wailers - Up from 23 (904 weeks)
  12. Greatest Hits - Queen - Up from 26 (692 weeks)
  13. Greatest Hits - Boston - Down from 15 (23 weeks)
  14. Early Days & Later Days: The Best of - Led Zeppelin - Re-entry (189 weeks)

Top 40 British Albums
  1. Collection - Traveling Wilburys - No change (6 weeks)
  2. Essential - Barbra Streisand - Up from 25 (2 weeks)
  3. The Complete American Songbook 1-4 - Rod Stewart - Up from 18 (3 weeks)
  4. The Police (2CD Anthology) - Police - Down from 22 (6 week)
  5. Time on Earth - Crowded House - Down from 19 (3 weeks)

Top 40 British Singles
  • None

Last.FM Top 20 Tracks by Classic Artists
  1. Californication - Red Hot Chili Peppers - No change - 9,097 listeners
  2. Dani California - Red Hot Chili Peppers - No change -8,500
  3. Scar Tissue - Red Hot Chili Peppers - Up from 4 - 8,175
  4. Enter Sandman - Metallica - Up from 5 - 7,888
  5. Nothing Else Matters - Metallica - Down from 3 - 7,859
  6. Otherside - Red Hot Chili Peppers - No change - 7,797
  7. Master of Puppets - Metallica - No change - 7,513
  8. Stairway to Heaven - Led Zeppelin - Up from 9 - 7,222
  9. Under the Bridge - Red Hot Chili Peppers - Down from 8 - 7,085
  10. By the Way - Red Hot Chili Peppers - No change - 7,007
  11. Wish You Were Here - Pink Floyd - No change - 6,940
  12. One - Metallica - No change - 6,491
  13. Comfortably Numb - Pink Floyd - No change - 5,964
  14. Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds - Beatles - New - 5,951
  15. Bohemian Rhapsody - Queen - Down 1 - 5,896
  16. Money - Pink Floyd - Down 1 - 5,831
  17. Let It Be - Beatles - Down 1 - 5,688
  18. Time - Pink Floyd - New - 5,504
  19. Eleanor Rigby - Beatles - New - 5,388
  20. Snow (Hey Oh) - Red Hot Chili Peppers - Down 3 - 5,375

Last.FM Top 20 Classic Artists
  1. Beatles - No change - 57,522 Listeners
  2. Red Hot Chili Peppers - No change - 56,144
  3. Metallica - No change - 44,102
  4. Pink Floyd - No change - 37,242
  5. Led Zeppelin - No change - 32,019
  6. Queen - No change - 31,634
  7. U2 - No change - 30,785
  8. Cure - No change - 29,712
  9. David Bowie - No change - 27,473
  10. Rolling Stones - No change - 25,811
  11. Depeche Mode - No change - 24,968
  12. Bob Dylan - No change - 24,586
  13. Johnny Cash - No change - 23,539
  14. R.E.M. - No change - 22,890
  15. Iron Maiden - No change - 22,380
  16. Doors - No change - 21,793
  17. AC/DC - Up from 18 - 21,595
  18. Beastie Boys - Down from 17 - 20,938
  19. Madonna - No change - 20,808
  20. Clash - No change - 20,343

Friday, July 27, 2007

Short Takes - Ray Davies, Nils Lofgren, Stooges

For the second time, prosecutors have dropped charges against the man accused of shooting Kink's founder Ray Davies in the leg. The reason? Davies didn't show up in court again. Davies was shot on January 4, 2004 when he chased a man who had just stolen a friends purse.

Davies has stated that the prosecutors only gave him a few days notice on his need to be in court and that it wasn't enough time to get from New Orleans to London.

Davies said, "I am very disappointed with the way this case has been handled. I intend to pursue it further."

Nils Lofgren's new single, Whatever Happened to Muscatel?, was co-written by author Clive Cussler.

He tells Billboard, "We wrote this song about these great old liquors that have fallen by the wayside. It started with us wanting to write this corny country song, but we went to work on it and it's not a corny country song anymore -- it's quite cool."

The two live about five minutes away from each other in Arizona and have been friends since Lofgren tracked Cunsler down during a 1989 tour with Ringo Starr's All-Star Band.

The single, along with all of Lofgren's latest work, is available at his website.

The Stooges have announced that they will be playing their Fun House in its entirety at the Las Vegas Vegoose Festival on October 27 and 28.

England's Status Quo will star in the movie Care Factor Zero, set on Thailand's Orient Express. Reports say that the movie will end with a concert in Bangkok.

Ronald Isley is scheduled to go to jail for tax evasion on August 7; however, his fans are petitioning to have President Bush pardon the singer, pointing out that he has been a law abiding taxpayer since 1956. Well, at least for those years when he wasn't.

Songwriter and singer Lawton Williams passed away Thursday of respiratory failure at the age of 85.

Williams is probably best known for writing Bobby Helms' 1957 hit Frauline, which was also recorded by the likes of Kitty Wells. Other songs included Color of the Blues (George Jones, Elvis Costello), Geisha Girl (Hank Locklin) and Shame on Me (Chuck Jackson, Bobby Bare).

A U.K. poll done in conjunction with the opening season at London's new O2 venue says that the perfect rock and roll supergroup would be Freddie Mercury, Jimi Hendrix, Elton John and Phil Collins. The second best per the poll would be Bono, Eric Clapton, Stevie Wonder and Ringo Starr.

The Return of Two Disco Divas

Two of the big female vocalists of the Disco era are returning with their first new releases in many, many years.

Evelyn "Champagne" King, who burned up the charts in the 70's with Shame, will be releasing her first new album in ten years on August 28 via RNB Entertainment Group/Jaggo Records/Fontana. Open Book is co-produced by Preston Glass (Aretha Franklin, Diana Ross) and King's husband, Freddie Fox. All of the songs were written by King, Fox and Tony Haynes.

King lost her father, mother and brother during 1997. She says, "It's been a long journey to a new CD, but that doesn't mean I stopped. By the grace of God and fans, I still held my head up, kept working and now have a new chance at life and music."

Also returning to the stores is Thelma Houston. Houston lost her contract with MCA twenty-two years ago and kept active touring throughout Europe, Asia, Australia and the U.S., but it wasn't until 2005 that she thought about reentering the studio. Her pet project was a recording of her favorite songs previously recorded by some of her favorite male vocalists.

The indie album, A Woman's Touch, has only been available at Houston's appearances, but Shout! Factory has picked it up and will be releasing it nationally on August 14. Songs on the album include Marvin Gaye's Ain't That Peculiar and Distant Lover, Al Green's Love and Happiness, Sting's Brand New Day and Sylvester's Dance (Disco Heat)/You Make Me Feel (Mighty Real).

The track list for Houston's album:
  • Wake Up Everybody
  • Never Too
  • Brand New
  • Ain't That Peculiar
  • By the Time I Get To Phoenix
  • Distant Lover
  • Lave And Happiness
  • Medley: Dance (Disco Heat)/You Make Me Feel (Mighty Real
  • That's the Way Of the World
  • Please Send Me Someone To Love
Continue looking for Houston out on the road, where she still does 150 performances per year.

Vintage Clip - Chuck Berry - Maybelline

On this date in 1955, Chuck Berry's Maybelline entered the R&B charts. Four weeks later, it would hit number one and stay there for eleven weeks.

This performance of the song is from a decade later in front of a rather staid audience.

New Led Zeppelin Best of and Movie Remasters Coming in the Fall

Atlantic/Rhino and Warner Home Video will be releasing new and revamped material from Led Zeppelin this fall.

First up on November 13 is a new two-disc best of called Mothership. The tracks for the CD were chosen by the three living members of the group and include material from all eight of their albums.

As is the case with so many albums now, Mothership will be released in a number of configurations.
  • Two-Disc set
  • Deluxe and Collector's Editions with a DVD featuring live content (no word on the difference between the two)
  • 4-Disc vinyl set
The track list for Mothership:
  • Good Times Bad Times
  • Communication Breakdown
  • Dazed and Confused
  • Babe I'm Gonna Leave You
  • Whole Lotta Love
  • Ramble On
  • Heartbreaker
  • Immigrant Song
  • Since I've Been Loving You
  • Rock and Roll
  • Black Dog
  • When the Levee Breaks
  • Stairway to Heaven
  • The Song Remains the Same
  • Over the Hills and Far Away
  • D'Yer Maker
  • No Quarter
  • Trampled Under Foot
  • Houses of the Holy
  • Kashmir
  • Nobody's Fault But Mine
  • Achilles Last Stand
  • In the Evening
  • All My Love
On November 20, Atlantic/Rhino will release a new version of the soundtrack album for the film The Song Remains the Same. It will have all of the original tracks plus the never released Black Dog, Over the Hills and Far Away, Misty Mountain Hop, Since I've Been Loving You, The Ocean and Heartbreaker.

On the same day, Warner Home Video will release a new version of the movie with, for the first time, all fourteen songs from the original concert plus unreleased performances of Over the Hills and Far Away, Celebration Day, The Ocean and Misty Mountain Hop. The DVD will also have an interview with Robert Plant and manager Peter Grant.

The DVD will be available in standard, Blu-Ray and HD-DVD formats. A deluxe edition will also be released with the soundtrack, a T-Shirt with the original album art and memorabilia reproductions.

The set list from the DVD:
  • Rock and Roll
  • Celebration Day
  • Black Dog
  • Over the Hills and Far Away
  • Misty Mountain Hop
  • Since I've Been Loving You
  • No Quarter
  • The Song Remains the Same
  • The Rain Song
  • The Ocean
  • Dazed and Confused
  • Stairway to Heaven
  • Moby Dick
  • Heartbreaker
  • Whole Lotta Love

Thursday, July 26, 2007

Short Takes - Keith Richard, Sex Pistols, John "Uncle John" Turner

Keith Richard's autobiography is a hot commodity in the world of publishing. Two publishers, Harper-Collins and Little Brown are left in the bidding, with both sitting at $7.3 million.

The final choice is now going to be determined by who each proposes as editor and their planned marketing campaigns. At this point, no one is even sure how much Richards cares as his main goal was to beat Eric Clapton's $5 million advance for his autobiography, coming out this fall.

Virgin Records will be re-releasing the Sex Pistols classic, Never Mind the Bollocks...Here's the Sex Pistols, on October 29, exactly thirty years after the original release. It will be available on special heavy vinyl with a bonus single of the song Submission. This is the configuration of the first 50,000 copies of the album after the song was accidentally left off the original pressing.

The groups first four singles (Anarchy in the U.K., God Save the Queen, Pretty Vacant, Holiday in the Sun) will also be released on 7" vinyl with reproductions of the original picture sleeves.

Texas blues drummer John "Uncle John" Turner passed away on Thursday in Austin, Texas at the age of 62. His death was from complications with hepatitis C.

Turner was a childhood friend and bandmate of Johnny Winter, being instrumental in Winter's forming his original blues band and staying with it until 1970.

After splitting with Winter, Turner moved to Austin where he formed Karckerjack with a young Stevie Ray Vaughan. Throughout his career, he was also active as a studio musician, playing with the likes of B.B. King, Muddy Waters, Lightnin' Hopkins, Freddie King and Jimi Hendrix.

A benefit concert is planned on August 1 at Antone's in Austin. Johnny Winter, Tommy Shannon and other have committed to appear.

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