Saturday, March 31, 2012

Singer/Songwriter Eric Lowen of Lowen & Navarro Dies at 60

Dan Navarro (left) & Eric Lowen
Eric Lowen who, with musical partner Dan Navarro, wrote the Pat Benatar classic We Belong along with recording numerous albums, passed away on Friday, March 23 at the age of 60. He had been battling ALS, also known as Lou Gehrig's Disease.

A statement on the Lowen & Navarro site said:
Eric Lowen
October 23rd, 1951 - March 23rd, 2012

Eric Lowen peacefully ended his nine-year standoff with ALS (aka Lou Gehrig's Disease), surrounded by family and awash in love, gratitude and beautiful music. We all appreciate the support and well wishes that have come his way these many years, and will always hold dear the shining example he was, and still is, to us all.
The duo started in the early-80's as songwriters, scoring early on with Benatar's We Belong along with music for artists like the Bangles, the Temptations, the Four Tops, Dave Edmunds and David Lee Roth.

By the late 80's, they decided to try to break into recording themselves with the albums Walking on a Wire (1990) and Broken Moon (1993). Continuing to record through the decade, they made the decision to move to a more folk-oriented sound and starting their own label, Red Hen Records.

In 2004, Lowen was diagnosed with ALS; however, the duo threw themselves into their work, releasing the album All the Time in the World. Over the next five years, they would record two more albums and played more than 250 shows before Lowen became too incapacitated from the disease to continue.

As a salute to the duo, artists like Jackson Browne, the Bangles, Keb' Mo' and Eddie From Ohio came together to record Keep the Light Alive: Celebrating the Music of Lowen & Novarro. The album benefited the Eric Lowen Trust, the ALS Association and Angie's Quest.

Joe Jackson's Next Album to Be Tribute to Duke Ellington

Joe Jackson takes on one of American jazz's greatest on June 26 when he releases The Duke. The album, on Razor & Tie, is a tribute to the great Duke Ellington.

"I revere Duke Ellington, but I didn't want this to be a reverent album," Jackson said, but don't look for straight up recreations of songs like Take the A Train and Sophisticated Lady. Jackson is putting his own reverent but special spin on the music. Per the press release "Jackson filters the material through his own musical imagination while exploring an assortment of unexpected grooves and textures. The resulting album is a seamless fusion of sounds and styles, whose abundant sense of playfulness is consistent with Ellington's boundary-breaking attitude."

Jackson added "Ellington didn't consider his own arrangements to be sacred. He constantly reworked them, sometimes quite radically. So I think my approach is in the spirit of the man himself."

Joining Jackson on the album are Iggy Pop (It Don't Mean a Thing (If It Ain't Got That Swing)), Sharon Jones (I Ain't Got Nothin' But the Blues), Sussan Dayhim (Caravan in Farsi) and Zuco 103 (Perdido). Jackson, himself, takes on such Ellington classics as I'm Beginning to See the Light, Mood Indigo and I Got It Bad (and That Ain't Good). Overall, 15 of the Duke's songs are mined on ten tracks.

Jackson's backing band includes violinist Regina Carter, bassist Christian McBride, guitarist Steve Vai, drum Ahmir "Questlove" Thompson and other members of the Roots, guitarist Vinnie Zummo and percussionist Sue Hadjopoulos.

Weird Al Yankovic Suing Over Digital Royalties (But Not for the Standard Reason)

Weird Al Yankovic is upset over some digital royalties, but it's not totally due to the whole "sale vs. license" reason.

Along with underpaid royalties on download sales, Yankovic is suing Sony over royalties that they collected when they took an equity stake in YouTube back in 2006 in exchange for the use of their company's music/videos. Al's contention is that, when the agreement took place, his video for White & Nerdy was one of the most viewed pieces on YouTube so "a portion of Sony's equity share in YouTube is directly apportionable and allocable to White & Nerdy, as well as other content created by Yankovic."

He is looking for $2 million in underpaid royalties and another $2.5 million from the Sony/YouTube deal.

Yankovic has brought in the big guns for this one, the law firms Gordon, Gordon & Schnapp (New York) and King & Ballow (Nashville). Richard Busch is a partner in the latter where he was responsible for the initial lawsuit between Eminem's F.B.T. Productions and Interscope that set the precedent for all the current lawsuits over download royalties.

Busch told the Tennesseean "The question becomes what proportion of revenues should artists be receiving when record labels are making money off them in non-traditional ways. There are numerous issues on the cutting edge that are similar and relate to revenues being received by the record labels, such as advertising, general advances, and lawsuit settlements, for example, that artists have a right to share in. I would expect claims like this, if not identical, to be made as the landscape evolves."

Watch: Paul McCartney, Ron Wood, Roger Daltrey & Paul Weller Perform Get Back

Paul McCartney brought Ron Wood, Roger Daltrey and Paul Weller on stage with him Thursday night to close the Teenage Cancer Trust benefit at Royal Albert Hall, London.

New Revelation: Cocaine Found in Houston's Hotel Room; Cissy Says She's Proud of Whitney

Despite previous reports that no drugs were found in Whitney Houston's hotel room on the day she died, it has now been revealed that authorities did find "white, powdery remnants."

The music icon passed away at the age of 48 in a bathtub at a Beverly Hills hotel room on February 11.

Following toxicology results, officials revealed that Whitney died of drowning, but a sustained use of cocaine also contributed to her death. Blood tests indicated that she used the narcotic "immediately prior to her collapse."

Although there were reports that her hotel room was cleaned before law enforcement arrived, TMZ reports that cocaine was in fact found.

Official documents show that police unearthed "white, powdery remnants" in the room. Sources have informed the website that the powder was subsequently tested and proven to be cocaine.

TMZ claims that the police department will not investigate rumours that someone sanitised the room before their arrival, as they're convinced the substance wasn't disposed of.

Previously, sources involved in the investigation claimed that police found no illicit substances. Several pills were found on the premises though, including prescription drug Xanax, premenstrual relief medicine Midol and pain reliever Ibuprofen.

Authorities are currently in the final stages of their investigation.

Whitney's mother, Cissy Houston still "has her moments" of deep sorrow as she mourns her daughter. She admits that the grieving process is challenging.

"I have my moments," she told MY9 News. "I'm not there yet. I don't think I'm any more courageous than anyone else. I am a true believer in God, if I could bring her back I would, but that's not possible."

Blood tests confirmed that Whitney used cocaine minutes before her death.

Cissy is sad that her daughter began using again, but she won't hold herself at fault for her daughter's decision.

"I know I did the best I could," she explained. "I don't blame myself. I know I did the best I could for everything."

Cissy remembers her daughter's achievements, not her adversity.

"I'm very proud of my daughter," Cissy said. "She accomplished a whole lot in the short time that she had here, She was a very wonderful person."

Cissy's full interview will air on 10 O'Clock News on MY9, a New Jersey based news channel, Monday April 2.

Chart Watch America: Springsteen Takes Back Top Album By a Veteran Artists

Our weekly recap of veteran artists on the current American music charts. Chart highlights:
  • Bruce Springsteen has taken back the top selling album by a veteran artist as Wrecking Ball only drops 4 to 6. Last week's leader, Guns N' Roses Greatest Hits dropped 3 to 151. It had made a huge jump up the charts last week after it was offered for 25 cents at both Google Play and Amazon.
  • Only one new album by a veteran artist made this week's album chart, Opus Collection by Billy Joel. The Starbucks exclusive opens up at 80.
  • Madonna's Girl Gone Wild makes a big leap up the Dance/Club Play Chart from 20 to 7. Give Me All Your Lovin' drops 1 to 6.
TW = This Week, LW = Last Week, N = New, R = Returning to Chart. The highest charting entry by a veteran artist is shown in red.

Chart Date April 7, 2012 


Top 200 Albums
TW LW Title Artist
1 N The Hunger Games: Songs From District 12 Soundtrack
2 2 21 Adele
3 N Port of Morrow Shins
4 1 Up All Night One Direction
5 N The OF Tape Volume 2 Odd Future
6 4 Wrecking Ball Bruce Springsteen
9 6 Whitney: The Greatest Hits Whitney Houston
41 20 The Bodyguard Whitney Houston
44 17 I Look to You Whitney Houston
50 35 A Different Kind of Truth Van Halen
56 34 Duets II Tony Bennett
59 29 Whitney Houston Whitney Houston
74 48 Voice of Ages Chieftans
80 N Opus Collection Billy Joel
85 63 Kisses on the Bottom Paul McCartney
95 69 My Love is Your Love Whitney Houston
102 61 Triple Feature: I'm Your Baby Tonight/My Love is Your Love/Just Whitney Whitney Houston
108 126 20th Century Masters: The Millennium Collection: The Best of Lynyrd Skynyrd
111 79 Just Whitney Whitney Houston
112 136 20th Century Masters: The Millennium Collection: The Best of Lionel Richie
115 133 Chronicle: 20 Greatest Hits Creedence Clearwater Revival Featuring John Fogerty
118 113 20th Century Masters: The Millennium Collection: The Best of Etta James
121 76 I'm Your Baby Tonight Whitney Houston
122 146 Legend: The Best of Bob Marley & the Wailers Bob Marley & the Wailers
123 150 Greatest Hits Journey
126 137 20th Century Masters: The Millennium Collection: The Best of Temptations
127 138 Ultimate Hits: Rock and Roll Never Forgets Bob Seger & the Silver Bullet Band
129 91 Old Ideas Leonard Cohen
131 153 20th Century Masters: The Millennium Collection: The Best of Barry White
133 155 20th Century Masters: The Millennium Collection: The Best of Three Dog Night
139 158 20th Century Masters: The Millennium Collection: The Best of Eric Clapton
143 176 VH1 Storytellers Johnny Cash & Willie Nelson
148 117 The Wall Pink Floyd
151 3 Greatest Hits Guns N' Roses
157 159 Flashback With the Monkees Monkees
158 174 The Very Best of Neil Diamond
162 179 20th Century Masters: The Millennium Collection: The Best of Aerosmith
171 170 20th Century Masters: The Millennium Collection: The Best of Jackson 5
177 191 Super Hits Johnny Cash
178 R Greatest Hits Motley Crue
180 R I'm With You Red Hot Chili Peppers
189 184 Super Hits Willie Nelson
191 200 An Afternoon in the Garden Elvis Presley
192 172 Icon George Strait
195 R Dark Side of the Moon Pink Floyd
197 R Licensed to Ill Beastie Boys
Dropped Out:
X 100 Hell in a Hand Basket Meat Loaf
X 156 Release Me Lyle Lovett
X 167 Duets: An American Classic Tony Bennett

The balance of the American charts are after the cut.

Friday, March 30, 2012

Preview: Spirit in the Room - Tom Jones

Artist: Tom Jones
Title: Spirit in the Room
Release Date: May 21, 2012 (Europe), Date TBD (North America)
Label: Island Records
Format(s): CD, DD

Tom Jones has announced that his upcoming album, Spirit in the Room, will be released on May 21 via Island Records. The LP is the follow up to 2010's acclaimed collection of songs Praise and Blame.

Praise and Blame saw Tom mark a return to his roots and emerge with a powerful body of work drawn from the American spiritual repertoire. Now moving forward with Spirit In The Room, Tom draws on an evocative range of compositions executed with an unprocessed passion that make them his own.

An interpretation of Tom Wait's Bad As Me, a wonderful rendition of Odetta's Hit Or Miss, the front porch blues of Vera Hall Ward's Travelling Shoes and a stunning reading of the other-worldly Charlie Darwin by Low Anthem all chart his progression.

Ever busy Tom has also graced a recent single on Jack White's Third Man label .

Track List:
  • Tower of Song
  • (I Want to) Come Home
  • Hit or Miss
  • Love and Blessings
  • Soul of a Man
  • Bad as Me
  • Dimming of the Day
  • Travelling Shoes
  • All Blues Hail Mary
  • Charlie Darwin

Details Announced for Paul Simon's 25th Anniversary of Graceland

Paul Simon's landmark album Graceland is being celebrated with a variety of special events, releases and broadcasts.

Graceland, released in 1986, sold over 14 million copies worldwide and won huge critical praise, going on to win the Grammy for Album of the Year in 1987 and Song of the Year for the title track in 1988. Simon toured behind the album, with South African musicians who were part of the original recording, for almost five years.

Up first will be the broadcast premier of the documentary Under African Skies this Spring on A&E. Directed by Joe Berlinger, the film premiered at the Sundance Film Festival and has played at a number of other festivals throughout the country, including SXSW. Along with the A&E presentation, the film will continue to tour the festival circuit.

Legacy Recordings will then be releasing the album in a number of different versions on June 5:
  • Special Graceland 25th Anniversary Collector's Edition Box Set – a 2 CD/2 DVD set which including the remastered original album, the Under African Skies documentary film extended interviews, the original 1987 "African Concert" from Zimbabwe, three original music videos and the iconic Saturday Night Live performance of Diamonds on the Soles of Her Shoes. The box set also features the audio narrative The Story of Graceland as told by Paul Simon, replicas of an original Graceland poster and a handwritten lyrics pad, plus a deluxe 80-page book featuring new and archival photos and interviews with Paul Simon. The box set also includes a special short audio documentary of Simon discussing the making of the record.
  • The official Graceland 25th Anniversary Edition CD/DVD – an exclusive two disc set featuring the remastered original album with five bonus tracks and audio documentary, and Under African Skies film with bonus features, three original music videos and Saturday Night Live performance of Diamonds on the Soles of Her Shoes.
  • Under African Skies Blu-ray Disc – the feature documentary in state-of-the-art 5.1 sound with bonus extended interviews.
  • Graceland 25th Anniversary Edition Vinyl – This audiophile edition is remastered on 180-gram 12" vinyl and includes an art-quality collectible Graceland poster and a download card with the full album plus three bonus tracks. It will be available beginning Saturday, April 21 at independent retailers worldwide participating in Record Store Day.
  • An ultra-deluxe Graceland 25th Anniversary Edition Box Set package - The ultimate Graceland set includes the boxed set, the 180-gram 12" vinyl and a signed and numbered autographed commemorative poster--will be available direct-to-consumers during a limited time exclusive offer on the official Paul Simon website (

Thursday, March 29, 2012

ZZ Top Hitting the Road with 3 Doors Down and Gretchen Wilson

In what has to be one of the more unusual tour combos for the summer, ZZ Top, 3 Doors Down and Gretchen Wilson will be out on The Gang of Outlaws Tour.

The tour opens May 25 in Manchester, NH and runs through the end of June. ZZ Top are expected to play music from their four decades together along with music from their upcoming untitled album.

The dates:
  • 05/25 - Manchester, NH - Verizon Arena
  • 05/26 - Atlantic City, NJ - Etess Arena
  • 05/27 - Mashantucket, CT - MGM Grand Theater at Foxwoods
  • 05/30 - Scranton, PA - Toyota Pavilion (ZZ Top and 3 Doors Down only)
  • 06/01 - Winston Salem, NC - Joel Coliseum
  • 06/02 - Fayetteville, NC - Fort Bragg
  • 06/03 - Fredericksburg, VA - Celebrate Virginia Live!
  • 06/05 - Richmond, VA - Innsbrook Pavilion
  • 06/06 - Simpsonville, SC - Charter Amphitheatre at Heritage Park
  • 06/08 - St. Augustine, FL - St. Augustine Amphitheatre
  • 06/09 - Atmore, AL - Wind Creek Hotel & Casino Amphitheater (ZZ Top and 3 Doors Down only)
  • 06/10 - Alpharetta, GA - Verizon Wireless Amphitheatre
  • 06/12 - Hollywood, FL - Hard Rock Live at Seminole Hard Rock Hotel
  • 06/15 - Estero, FL - Germain Arena
  • 06/16 - Orlando, FL - Universal Orlando Resort Music Plaza Stage (ZZ Top and 3 Doors Down only)
  • 06/17 - Clearwater, FL - Tropicana Field
  • 06/19 - Southaven, MS - Snowden Grove Park & Amphitheater
  • 06/20 - Nashville, TN - Bridgestone Arena
  • 06/22 - Baton Rouge, LA - Baton Rouge River Center
  • 06/23 - The Woodlands, TX - Cynthia Woods Mitchell Pavilion
  • 06/24 - Dallas, TX - Gexa Energy Pavilion
  • 06/26 - Des Moines, IA - Wells Fargo Arena
  • 06/27 - Clarkston, MI - DTE Energy Music Theatre
  • 06/29 - Hinckley, MN - Grand Casino Amphitheatre

Preview: The Flaming Lips and Heady Fwends - Flaming Lips

Artist: Flaming Lips
Title: The Flaming Lips and Heady Fwends
Release Date: April 21, 2012
Label: N/A
Format(s): 2-LPs

The Flaming Lips will release an all-star vinyl record titled The Flaming Lips and Heady Fwends for Record Store Day 2012.

The limited edition vinyl release will feature collaborations with Nick Cave, Coldplay and Yoko Ono plus more from Bon Iver, Ke$ha and Biz Markie, Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros, Tame Impala, Prefuse 73, Jim James of My Morning Jacket, Lightning Bolt, Neon Indian, Erykah Badu and New Fumes.

Some of the tracks have been previously released but all sold out as soon as they went on sale.

The two-vinyl 12-inch LP collection will be available for Record Store Day on April 21, 2012.

Track List:

Side 1
  • 2012 (featuring Ke$ha and Biz Markie)
  • Ashes In The Air (featuring Bon Iver)
  • Helping The Retarded To Know God (featuring Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros)
Side 2
  • Supermoon Made Me Want To Pee (featuring Prefuse 73)
  • Children Of The Moon (featuring Tame Impala)
  • That Ain’t My Trip (featuring Jim James of My Morning Jacket)
  • You, Man? Human? (featuring Nick Cave)
Side 3
  • I’m Working At NASA On Acid (featuring Lightning Bolt)
  • Do It! (featuring Yoko Ono)
  • Is David Bowie Dying? (featuring Neon Indian)
Side 4
  • The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face (featuring Erykah Badu)
  • Thunder Drops (featuring New Fumes)
  • I Don’t Want You To Die (featuring Chris Martin of Coldplay)

Berklee College of Music to Bestow Honorary Degrees to the Eagles, Alison Krauss

The Berklee College of Music in Boston annually bestows honorary doctorates to some of the most influential artists in music. This year, they have chosen the Eagles, Alison Krauss and Mulatu Astatke, known as the father of Ethio-jazz.

Per Berklee's press release, the degrees are given to recognize artists "for their achievements and influence in music, and for their enduring contributions to American and international culture. Past recipients include Duke Ellington (the first, in 1971), Dizzy Gillespie, Smokey Robinson, Steven Tyler, Aretha Franklin, Quincy Jones, Juan Luis Guerra, Paco de LucĂ­a, David Bowie, the Edge, Gloria and Emilio Estefan, Chaka Khan, Bonnie Raitt, Ahmet Ertegun, Kenneth Gamble, and Leon Huff."

The degrees will be given at the May 12 commencement ceremony at Agganis Arena at Boston University. In addition, the students from the school will present a commencement eve concert performing the music of the honored artists.

The Berklee press release biographies of the honorees are after the cut:

Sons of Syliva Robinson Plead Guilty to Tax Evasion

Sylvia Robinson had both a big recording career and built a recording empire. As a singer, she was part of Mickey and Sylvia who hit with Love is Strange in 1957 and returned to the charts in 1973 with the hit Pillow Talk. She then went on to be a founder of Sugar Hill Records which released the first mainstream rap hit (Rapper's Delight by the Sugar Hill Gang) and gave starts to many early rappers such as Grandmaster Flash and the Furious Five.

Robinson passed away last year and her sons inherited the royalties from their parent's label along with income from handling other artist's copyrights. Unfortunately, they never paid taxes on a lot of the money and have now plead guilty to tax evasion.

Joseph Robinson, Jr. (50), Leland Robinson (46) and Rhondo Robinson (41) entered their pleas in a Newark court for not filing taxes between 2005 and 2007. Estimated unpaid taxes are $1.3 million.

The penalty can be up to two years in prison and a $200,000 fine for each defendant. They will be sentenced on July 10.

Peter Gabriel to Release a Special Edition of So in September; Career Spanning Set Out in Italy

Peter Gabriel and Real World have announced that they will be releasing a special edition of Peter Gabriel's landmark album, So, in September.

The announcement on Gabriel's website:
'So' is one of the most important albums in Peter's career and we're delighted to announce that in September 2012 we will be releasing the 'So' 25.½ re-issue.

There's a lot of work to be done at Real World to bring you this special edition so please register your interest below to be updated with all the latest news and pre-order information. To start you off we can reveal that 'So' has been completely re-mastered.
To signup for the updates go to Gabriel's site.

In other Gabriel news, the singer's back catalog has been given a complete remaster and reissue in Italy in conjunction with the magazine TV Sorrisi e Canzoni and the newspaper Corriere della Sera.
The albums are being released on a weekly basis and includes the studio albums, soundtracks and live DVDs. The list of included items:
  • New Blood & Storage box for the entire set
  • Peter Gabriel 1 & New book with an interview and overview of Gabriel's career
  • Peter Gabriel 2
  • Peter Gabriel 3
  • Peter Gabriel 4
  • So
  • Us
  • Ovo
  • Up
  • Scratch My Back
  • Plays Live (Double CD )
  • Secret World Live (Double CD )
  • New Blood Live in London (DVD)
  • Still Growing Up (Double DVD)
  • Growing Up (DVD)
  • Play the Videos (DVD)
  • Birdy
  • Passion

George Jones Hospitalized

Country legend George Jones has been hospitalized in Nashville for an upper respiratory infection. There is no word on severity other than his publicist's statement that he was only in for observation and that it was not pneumonia.

Jones, 80, was last hospitalized a little over a year ago after undergoing a routine physical. No reason was given with Jones later saying "I just decided I didn’t want to drive back to Franklin in this cold weather so I guess I’ll stay here overnight and go home tomorrow!"

George recently cancelled a March 23 show in Peoria, IL although it is not known if the cancellation is related to the hospitalization.

Gladys Knight to Star in New Syndicated Series, First Family

Photo: Entertainment Studios
Gladys Knight has been showing off her skills on Dancing With the Stars but, on the side, the soul veteran has also been signing on to play in the new syndicated series First Family.

The show, being produced by Byron Allen and Entertainment Studios, focuses on an African-American family living in the White House and stars Knight, John Witherspoon, Jackee Henry, Marla Gibbs, Paul Rodruguez and Christopher B. Duncan. Knight plays the mother of the president.

Allen explained "There’s a huge shortfall of quality family sitcoms, and we are 110 percent committed to filling that enormous void. Our number one priority is to deliver the highest quality content in the sitcom genre, and this initial 104-episode order is a big step in the right direction." The show will debut this fall.

Elton John & David Furnish Want Child Number Two

It looks like Elton John loves being a new father.

The music legend and his long-term partner David Furnish are already parents to 14-month-old son Zachary.

It has been claimed that Elton is keen for the newest addition to have a different biological father to Zachary, so both he and David will be blood fathers.

"The wheels are in motion. David and Elton have never hidden their desire to extend their family, and believe the time is right for another child. By the end of this year, or the beginning of next year, there will be a fourth member of the John-Furnish clan," a source told British newspaper The Mirror.

"They are incredibly excited and loving every minute of parenthood."

The couple tied the knot in a civil partnership in 2005. Zachary was born to a surrogate mother in California on Christmas Day 2010.

David gushed about the couple's baby at the time.

"For many years we have talked about fulfilling one of our greatest wishes by becoming parents. And now this wish has been granted to us, we feel so blessed and lucky," he said.

At the time of Zachary's birth it was reported that Elton had been recorded as the tot's father at the local register office in Los Angeles - although both parties insist they don't know which one of them is Zachary's biological dad.

Both claim they 'contributed' to the process.

"For the time being we don't have a clue who the biological father is. We look at him every day and at the moment he has Elton's nose and my hands," David said.

A spokesperson for Elton refused to comment on the family reports last night.

No Queen With Adam Lambert as England's Sonisphere Cancelled

This year's Sonisphere Festival at Knebworth, England, scheduled for July 6 to 8, has been cancelled, shutting down the appearance of Queen fronted by former American Idol Adam Lambert.
The festival was cancelled amid concerns for Live music's viability in troubled economic times.

The organisers stated:
It is with very heavy hearts and much regret that we announce the cancellation of Sonisphere Knebworth 2012.

Putting the festival together in what is proving to be a very challenging year was more difficult than we anticipated and we have spent the last few months fighting hard to keep Sonisphere in the calendar. Unfortunately circumstances have dictated that we would be unable to run the festival to a standard that both the artists and that Sonisphere's audience would rightly expect.

We want to express our deepest regrets to the artists and to thank all the staff, suppliers and contractors who worked so hard with us to try and pull off what has proven to be an impossible task and we know how much they share in our disappointment. We also want to send a huge thanks to the Sonisphere fans who stuck by us and we are so sorry that we can't fulfil what we set out to do.

Ticket holders will automatically receive a full refund direct from their ticket agents.

Team Sonisphere.
Other veteran artists scheduled to appear included KISS and Faith No More.

Willie Nelson and Snoop Dogg Team Up on New Nelson Album

Willie Nelson is joined by rapper Snoop Dogg on the song Roll Me Up and Smoke Me When I Die, a track on Nelson's upcoming album Heroes.

These pot-loving rascals have teamed up before, Nelson appearing on Snoop’s Doggumentary track Superman. Snoop appears on a track, and Nelson also has Merle Haggard, Lukas Nelson and Sheryl Crow in as guests.

Snoop said of the collaboration, “I fell in love with his music as a kid. Willie’s got long hair with braids, he likes to do the herbal essence. So it was natural for me and him to come together.”

They join forces on the self-explanatory Roll Me Up and Smoke Me When I Die, which was almost destined to be the title track to Willie’s new album.

Nelson said: “We were going to name the album that title, but we decided there might be a couple more conservative outlets out there that wouldn’t appreciate it.”

The album will be released May 15.

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Bobby Brown Charged With Three Misdemeanors; Having Hard Time According to Friend

Bobby Brown has officially been charged with three misdemeanors in his Monday arrest. He'll face two counts having to do with the DUI and one for driving on a suspended license.

Brown is going through a 'difficult time' at the moment, a close friend of his ex-wife Whitney Houston says.

The 43-year-old singer was arrested under suspicion of DUI on Monday afternoon and after spending a few hours in jail was bailed out for $5,000.

Kim Burrell, who was a close friend of the late singer, told the New York Daily News that Bobby deserves some sympathy right now.

"I support Bobby," Kim told the publication.  "He spent 17 years in a relationship and marriage with Whitney, so why wouldn't he be going through some difficult times right now?"

Kim added that grieving people "sometimes do these things" because they are not thinking properly.

"He happens to be a public person who's getting through a private moment, and the whole world is hearing about it," Kim added. "And he has my full, 100% support to get better."

"He's coping, and unfortunately everything is raised up a notch because of Whitney's death."

Bobby had initially been pulled over near his Encino, California home for talking on his cell phone.

"Officers, when contacting him, noted intoxication on him, the smell of alcohol, and they performed some field sobriety tests," CHP Officer Tiana Reed said.

A source said that Bobby had alcohol in his system from the night before but he has apparently now been urged by those close to him to start attending AA meetings to help his case.

"It could have been worse," the insider added. "It could have been really, really bad behaviour, with all his irate-ness and craziness."

Bobby walked out of Whitney's funeral following a seating dispute which came a week after her death on February 11. They had one daughter together; Bobbi Kristina Brown, 19.

Bobby served five days in jail in 1996 in a drink driving case and did more time behind bars in 2000 after traces of cocaine were found in his system after a court-mandated drug test.

The Nighthawks Prepare Damn Good Time for May 15 Release

One of the great Americana roots bands, the Nighthawks, will release their new album, Damn Good Time on May 15 via Severn Records. The album is the followup to the superb live album, Last Train to Bluesville, which won the Blues Music Award for Acoustic Blues Album of the Year.

“This is a totally cool moment to be into my 41st year as a Nighthawk, the last of the originals, as we release our first album with the band as it is today, the band I have been working toward since early 1972,” says Mark Wenner. “Paul Bell and Johnny Castle are deep into a decade with the band. Mark Stutso, after two years of hard road and 500 shows, at last appears on his first album as a Nighthawk. Singing lead on five tunes and involved in the creation of four, he and Johnny are a magnificent groove machine. And the harmonies! I dreamed of them, too, when I began dreaming of a band like this.”

Going into their fifth decade, The Nighthawks are blessed to have three strong lead singers, and they take advantage of the unique qualities of the trio of Wenner, Stutso and Castle. The wide array of originals and covers demonstrates The Nighthawks’ great strength as a true American roots music band. They roar through a repertoire of everything from blues and soul to rock and rhythm and blues on Damn Good Time. Bassist Johnny Castle contributes the romping Bring Your Sister, and also sings on a version of Jimmy McCracklin’s Georgia Slop. The band also taps into the songbooks of good friends and kindred spirits Billy Price and Norman Nardini, and serves up spirited takes on classics from Elvis (Too Much), Nat King Cole (Send for Me) and Wilbert Harrison (Let’s Work Together), as well as a raucous Smack Dab in the Middle.

In addition to their stellar catalogue of acclaimed albums released since 1974, The Nighthawks have long enjoyed wonderful touring and recording relationships with some of the best and brightest names in roots and blues music. On their 1978 release, Jacks and Kings, they backed up such blues all-stars as Pinetop Perkins, Luther “Guitar Junior” Johnson, Calvin Jones and Bob Margolin, and backed up John Hammond on his Hot Tracks album. The Nighthawks have toured with John Hammond, as well as John Lee Hooker, Hubert Sumlin, Elvin Bishop, Tracy Nelson and Eddie Hinton, and have played with such national treasures as Muddy Waters and Carl Perkins. Over the years, several other star artists have become de facto members of the band at various times, including Gregg Allman, Warren Haynes and Bob Margolin.

Earl Scruggs (1924 - 2012)

Country and bluegrass pioneer Earl Scruggs has passed away in a Nashville hospital at the age of 88.

Scruggs was born in Shelby, NC and started playing the banjo at the age of four, an instrument that would fill his days during the depression and after his father died. Originally, he played using two fingers but, by the age of ten, he had evolved to a three-finger style that would eventually revolutionize bluegrass music and become known as "Scruggs Style Picking."

Scruggs started his professional career in 1945 with Bill Monroe's Blue Grass Boys but, in 1948, he left Monroe's group along with the guitar player, Lester Flatt to form a duo that would become one of the landmarks of bluegrass music. Originally calling themselves the Foggy Mountain Boys, they would eventually change their names to simply Flatt & Scruggs.

The duo became popular among both bluegrass and country fans. They scored their first hit in the late-40's with Foggy Mountain Breakdown and eventually had six top ten country records including the 1962 number 1 The Ballad of Jed Clampett.

Earl was always interested in stretching the boundries of his banjo playing within other music genres, playing with artists from Bob Dylan to King Curtis. He broke up with Scruggs in 1969 and formed the Earl Scruggs Revue with his two sons.

The Revue continued his experimentation with other genres as they took on rock and other forms of music. Seven of their albums went on to make it on the country charts.

Flatt and Scruggs were inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame in 1985, he was given the National Heritage Fellowship in 1989 and was one of the inaugural members of the International Bluegrass Hall of Fame in 1991. Other honors include the National Medal of Honor (1992), two Grammys and a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.

Scruggs wife, Louise, passed away in 2006. The couple had been married for 58 years.

Chart Watch Britain: Paul Weller Debuts at Number 1 With Sonik Kicks

Paul Weller debuts at the top of this weeks British Album chart with Sonik Kicks. The album is his fourth number 1 as a solo artist, after Stanley Road (1995), Illumination (2002) and 22 Dreams (2008). Previously he had gone to the top while a member of the Jam with The Gift (1982) and as a member of the Style Council with Our Favourite Shop (1985).

No new albums by veteran artists debuted for the week.

Chart Date March 31, 2012

Top 200 Albums

TW LW Title Artist
1 N Sonik Kicks Paul Weller
2 9 Nothing But the Beat David Guetta
3 1 In My Dreams Military Wives
4 2 Our Version of Events Emile Sande
5 3 21 Adele
9 5 Wrecking Ball Bruce Springsteen
12 11 Gems: The Very Best of Michael Bolton
17 10 Tuskegee Lionel Richie
27 16 The Very Best of Gilbert O'Sullivan
32 20 Essential Whitney Houston
35 51 Celebration Madonna
48 70 Number Ones Bee Gees
52 60 Rumors Fleetwood Mac
53 42 Beyond the Sun Chris Isaak
63 58 18 Hits ABBA
64 45 Hell in a Handbasket Meat Loaf
75 R Greatest Hits Bruce Springsteen
84 72 Piece of the Action: The Best of Meat Loaf
92 88 Ultimate Collection Eurythmics
94 54 The Very Best of Bread
95 89 The Very Best of Nina Simone
96 83 Old Ideas Leonard Cohen
97 40 The Ultimate Collection Doris Day
Dropped Out:
X 59 Duets & Duets II Tony Bennett
X 78 How About I Be Me (and You Be You) Sinead O'Connor
X 85 Back to Front Lionel Richie
X 90 The Greatest Hits and More Doris Day
X 93 At Last: The Best Etta James
X 100 The Singles Clash

Early Sales Numbers Have Madonna at Number 1, Lionel Richie a Surprise Number 2

Even though Madonna continues to have a problem beating out Lionel Richie at iTunes and Amazon, physical sales of her album MDNA look to be making her the ultimate winner on next week's charts.

Hits Daily Double, the sales prognosticators, are seeing Madonna moving between 325,000 and 350,000 units of her new album before the end of the week, a number that should place her squarely at number 1. The sales figure also exceeds the opening week for her last album, Hard Candy, which moved 280,000.

The industry as a whole is very surprised that Lionel Richie's Tuskegee is racking up big sales that should end in the 140,000 to 160,000 range. That number could go a bit higher depending on the immediate reaction to his performance on Sunday night's ACM Awards (the charts "close" at midnight that night) but it won't be enough to pass Madonna.

Hits Daily Double estimates that sales of albums for the year is up 1% while sales of individual tracks is up 6%.

It's Lucky Seven For Jerry Lee Lewis

Keep running that play 'til you get it right.

Jerry Lee Lewis has married for the seventh time and, once again, he's keeping it in the family. Lewis married Judith Brown on March 9 in a secret ceremony in Natchez, Mississippi. Brown is a caretaker and the ex-wife of Jerry's cousin Rusty. It also turns out that Rusty's older sister is Myra Gale Brown whom Jerry married in 1957 when Myra was 13. The marriage is credited with being responsible for the downfall in Lewis' career.

Lewis' marriages:
  1. Dorothy Barton (February 1952 to October 1953) - Lewis was 14 when they married
  2. Jane Mitchum (September 1953 to October 1957) - Lewis married his second wife 23 days before the divorce from his first was final.
  3. Myra Gale Brown (December 1957 to December 1970) - Myra was 13 at the time although Lewis and his management said she was 15. The December date was their second ceremony as the first was held, once again, before his divorce from Mitchum was final. The couple had two children.
  4. Jaren Elizabeth Gunn Pate (October 1971 to August 1983) - Pate drowned in the couple's swimming pool.
  5. Shawn Stephens (June 1984 to August 1984) - Lewis lost Stephens when she died of a heroin overdose.
  6. Kerrie McCarver (1985 to 2004) - The couple had one child together.
  7. Judith Brown (2012 - )

Watch: Aerosmith Re-Announces Tour; Says New Album Due This Summer

Aerosmith had their press conference in Los Angeles this afternoon, as promised over the weekend by Joe Perry, and there wasn't a whole lot being announced that already wasn't known.

The talked about their upcoming Global Warming Tour which had been announced via press release on Monday.

The band did announce that their upcoming album, the first in eight years, will be wrapping up soon and fans should expect it during the summer. Steven Tyler said "We've been underground for four months, doing what we do best. We got two more songs to finish."

Jump to the 14 minute point on this video to see Aerosmith's comments.

Brian May and Roger Taylor Unveil Their Tribute "Queen Extravaganza Tour"

If you can't actually see Queen live, members Brian May and Roger Taylor hope that you will settle for their new touring tribute show, The Queen Extravaganza.

Taylor's idea was to the create the ultimate Queen concert experience in an electrifying road show that celebrates the band's music and legacy performed by some of the best new music talent out there today. Taylor personally takes the role of producer and music director.

To guarantee the touring show matches the fabled design and excitement of Queen at its live best, Taylor has enlisted a heavyweight production team headed by stage designer Mark Fisher. Fisher has been responsible for some of the most memorable rock concerts ever staged, including The Wall for Pink Floyd, every Rolling Stones show since 1989, and, working with lighting designer Willie Williams, every U2 concert.

The Queen Extravaganza touring band, four vocalists and five musicians (two guitars, bass, drums and keyboards), were hired after an intensive 12 week online audition search. The buzz surrounding the public auditions sparked worldwide interest with video submissions generating more than 10 million views.Television host Ellen DeGeneres was so impressed with the level of talent, that she invited one hopeful to perform his audition on her show. That contestant, Nashville's Marc Martel, secured himself a place in the final band. The rest of The QE band includes vocalists and QE contestant Jennifer Espinoza along with addition vocalists Yvan Pedneault and Jeff Scott Soto; bassist Francois Olivier Doyon; guitarists Brian Gresh and Tristan Avakian; drummer Tyler Warren and keyboardist & musical director Brandon Ethridge

In a show which will run just over two hours of playing time, The QE band will perform close on 40 true Queen classics drawn from a list of the band's biggest all-time chart hits – Bohemian Rhapsody, Another One Bites the Dust, Crazy Little Thing Called Love, Under Pressure, We Will Rock You/We Are the Champions, A Kind of Magic, Radio Ga Ga, Somebody to Love, Killer Queen - as well as highlighting some of the band's finest heavy-duty rock based anthems which have long been at the core of their live performances, so audiences can also expect a healthy dose of early period Queen with songs such as I'm In Love With My Car, Tie Your Mother Down, Seven Seas of Rye, and In the Lap Of The Gods among them.

Production values will be boosted with the inclusion of never-before-seen video footage.
"The Queen Extravaganza will not be like a traditional tribute show," says Taylor. "It is a brand new show specially designed to enable these new fans, together with fans of old, to celebrate the music of Queen in a heart stopping event."

Adds Taylor, "It's going to be very spectacular, it's going to be very visual, there are going to be some shocks and some tremendous surprises. It will be a rock celebration in the Royal tradition.

The North American tour dates:
  • May 26 - Quebec - Grand Theatre du Quebec
  • May 27 - Montreal - St. Denis
  • May 29 - Toronto - QE Theatre
  • May 31 - Detroit, MI - Fox Theatre
  • June 1 - Chicago, IL - House of Blues
  • June 2 - Minneapolis, MN - The Brick
  • June 5 - St. Louis, MO - The Pageant
  • June 7 - Philadelphia, PA - Theatre of Living Arts
  • June 8 - Washington, DC - 9:30 Club
  • June 9 - Wallingford, CT - Oakdale
  • June 10 - Bethlehem, PA - Event Center
  • June 11 - Boston, MA - House of Blues
  • June 12 - Huntington, NY - Paramount Theatres
  • June 15 - Tampa, FL - Louis Lykes Ferguson Hall
  • June 17 - Orlando, FL - The Plaza Live
  • June 19 - Dallas, TX - Grand Prarie
  • June 20 - Houston, TX - House of Blues
  • June 23 - Las Vegas, NV - House of Blues
  • June 24 - San Diego, CA - Humphrey's
  • June 25 - Los Angeles, CA - Club Nokia
  • June 26 - San Francisco, CA - Regency
  • June 28 - Seattle, WA - Showbox
  • June 30 - Vancouver - Orpheum
  • July 2 - Calgary - Jack Singer
  • July 3 - Edmonton - Jubilee

Robin Gibb Back in Hospital for More Surgery

Robin Gibb has been forced to under additional intestinal surgery over the weekend.

A statement released to the media today says that the 62-year-old Bee Gees star is continuing to have health issues.

The singer said earlier this month that he was "beating cancer" but it appears that he is still having to deal with medical problems.

"On Sunday 25 March, Robin Gibb underwent further intestinal surgery," the statement read.

"He is currently recovering in hospital and therefore, for the time-being, all existing commitments prior to The Titanic Requiem concert, have had to be cancelled."

The Titanic Requiem is Robin's first classical work that he wrote with his son R.J.

Robin is set to have the world premiere of the music on April 10 at Central Hall in London where he is also due to debut a new song called Don't Cry Alone.

The musician had undergone chemotherapy for the treatment of liver cancer last year. He has had repeated health problems due to a twisted bowel and his brother Maurice died nine years ago from the malady at the age of 53.

Madonna and Deadmau5 Bury the Hatchet

Madonna and Deadmau5 have traded Tweets to settle their differences over the Material Girl's supposed reference to the drug ecstasy.

While introducing DJ Avicii at Miami’s Ultra Music Festival, Madonna asked the crowd “How many people in this crowd have seen Molly?”

Outspoken electro producer Deadmau5 took it to be a slang reference to party drug MDMA, better known as ecstasy, and used Facebook to criticise Madonna for perpetuating the stereotype of the electronic music scene’s dependence on drugs.

Madonna did her “one day of Twitter” to plug her new album MDNA and responded to Deadmau5’s criticism by posting an old photo of her in mouse ears and a speech bubble which reads: “From one mouse to another, I don’t support drug use and I never have. I was referring to the song called Have You Seen Molly written by my friend Cedric Gervais who I almost worked with on my album.”
Deadmau5 tweeted back, “@MadonnaMDNAday sure. regardless, just be a little more aware of what you *should* represent at EDM events, and ill watch my mouth.”

Madonna came back with “Communication is always best. You should have called me first, we could have cleared it up ‘privately.’ See you on the road.”

Then Deadmau5 wrapped it up by tweeting, “well there you have it kids. i’ve said what i needed to say, which ill still stand by, and so did she. life goes on. no more talk of that.”

Review: Further On Up the Road: The Chrysalis Years 1976-1983 - Robin Trower

by Andy Snipper

Back in the mid-seventies, when Prog was seeing its power wane, when Punk was rearing its spotty head and when people had forgotten what a great guitarist sounded like, Robin Trower was laying down music that crossed boundaries and stuck two languid fingers up at the trendies.

He was often derided as being a Hendrix copyist – totally untrue as just about everybody was influenced in one way or another by James Marshall – but the people who loved his music were many and during the time he was signed to Chrysalis he created some exceptional and enduring music.

This three CD set gives the listener six of the albums he produced then and they range from the sublime – Bluebird is one of the most beautiful songs imaginable – to the classic and some that haven’t dated so well – there aren’t too many of those.

His playing and THAT guitar sound, psychedelic Blues heavy on wah wah and phasing but deliciously picked out, set him aside from almost anyone else and it really is in evidence on albums like In City Dreams. Jimmy Dewar’s vocals are as individual as Trower’s playing and thee were massively successful in the States with In City Dreams.

The other two essential albums of the six are the two he made with Jack Bruce. B.L.T. and Truce are harder rock and less spacey/funky but the combination of Jack Bruce’s vocals and basslines with Trower rocking out was stunning then and holds up today. The songs, written mainly by Terry Reid and with some by Trower and Bruce with Pete Brown are amongst the best material that Jack Bruce made and it is easy to hear why they still work together.

Trower is almost one of the ‘forgotten’ stars of British Blues and rock, he is still working today and producing some superb music, but reissues like this can only serve to put him back where he deserved to be - thank heavens he dropped the mullet though.

Preview: Shape Shifter - Santana

Artist: Santana
Title: Shape Shifter
Release Date: May 15, 2012
Label: Starfaith Records
Format(s): CD, DD, Vinyl

Santana will release their 36th album, Shape Shifter, on May 15 via Starfaith Records. The album follows up 2010's cover album, Guitar Heaven: The Greatest Guitar Classics of All Time.

Carlos Santana dedicated the album to Native American Indians, acknowledging Australia's 2008 apology to the Aborigines, and President Obama's signing of the 2009 Native American Apology Resolution. He says, "I encourage any and all countries (that have not as yet done so) to acknowledge the first people of their land, and make this a collective global effort."

Shape Shifter comprises mostly original compositions that Carlos has been stashing away for such an instrumental project, long awaited by fans, and he conceived the album's sequence as thoughtfully as its track selection. The songs flow together as the magical sustain of Carlos' guitar, and the spirit behind every note, makes music that breaks through all cultural and language barriers, the music of Santana.

The title track opens the album, beginning as a mellow acoustic groove, with Carlos channeling Native American spirits through chanting. The track builds to soaring heights—in addition to Carlos' driving lead, the song features Dennis Chambers on drums, Chester Thompson on keyboards, and Benny Rietveld on bass (they are the musical foundation on many of the tracks).

Other highlights include a mid-tempo cover of Toure Kunda's Dom, Carlos and the Toure brothers' collaborations have also included Africa Bamba from the GRAMMY-winning album, Supernatural. Angelica Faith, which Carlos co-wrote with Thompson, is a signature Santana ballad in the tradition of Samba Pa Ti and Europa. With Mr. Szabo, Carlos pays homage to Gabor Szabo, whose music he brought to the fore in 1970, when he fused the Hungarian jazz guitarist and composer's Gypsy Queen with Peter Green's Black Magic Woman on Abraxas.

Collaborations include Never the Same Again, which Carlos wrote with producer Eric Bazilian, and In the Light of a New Day, which began as a demo that Narada Michael Walden shared with Carlos. Spark of the Divine—often played on tour to introduce songs including Black Magic Woman, leads in to Macumba in Budapest, the first of two songs Carlos co-wrote and produced with Walter Afanasieff The song vamps into a classic Santana Latin jam featuring Raul Rekow on congas and Karl Perazzo on percussion. The second, Eres La Luz, the only track featuring vocals, highlights the irresistible Latin groove that embodies the world music essence of Santana.

Shape Shifter closes with two songs that are collaborations between Carlos and his son, musician Salvador Santana, who plays piano on both, including the rousing Canela. The final track, Ah, Sweet Dancer, is a song Carlos first heard in a taxicab in Germany.  He tracked it down in a local record store and began performing it regularly on tour. The recording features only soulful solos from father and son, offering elegant closure to Shape Shifter.

Track List:
  • Shape Shifter
  • Dom
  • Nomad
  • Metatron
  • Angelica Faith
  • Never The Same Again
  • In The Light of a New Day
  • Spark of the Divine
  • Macumba in Budapest
  • Mr. Szabo
  • Eres La Luz
  • Canela
  • Ah, Sweet Dancer

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Watch: The Video for Lionel Richie and Shania Twain's Endless Love

Lionel Richie has dipped back into his catalog on the new album Tuskegee, covering many of his top hits with stars from the world of country. To take on his biggest hit, Endless Love, he brought in Shania Twain who has been a bit silent for the last few years. The result may be more dynamic than the original, with Diana Ross, which topped the charts for nine weeks in 1981.

Bobby Womack Out of the Hospital, Surgery Upcoming

Bobby Womack has been released from the hospital where he was being treated for pneumonia; however, he will have to undergo surgery for colon cancer "later this month."

Womack's illness was revealed over the weekend by friend Bootsy Collins who wrote about both the pneumonia and cancer on his Facebook page. Because the information was made public, Womack's people felt it was necessary to post an update on Bobby's Facebook page:
Because of stories circulating regarding the health of soul icon Bobby Womack, we felt it necessary to set the record straight. We're pleased to let everyone know that Bobby was released from hospital yesterday afternoon following a successful recovery from pneumonia. Bobby has cancer and is scheduled to undergo surgery later this month. Bobby stated, “My family, friends and I are looking forward to a successful surgery and speedy recovery. I want to thank all of my fans for their prayers, love and well wishes. I look forward to seeing all of you on the road in support of my new release.”

Bobby Womack makes his return to the world of recorded music later this summer with a new Damon Albarn, Richard Russell and Bobby Womack produced album on XL Recordings titled The Bravest Man In The Universe.

1989 Grateful Dead Show to Play in Cinemas on April 19

For the second year in a row, a rare archived Grateful Dead show will be shown exclusively in theaters. The Grateful Dead Second Annual Meet-Up at the Movies 2012 will present the July 18, 1989 show from Alpine Valley Music Theater.

This iconic concert, featuring Jerry Garcia, Bob Weir, Brent Mydland, Phil Lesh, Bill Kreutzmann and Mickey Hart, was recorded the night after the Dead’s legendary Downhill from Here performance in East Troy, WI. Dead Heads in attendance will experience the two-and-a-half hour concert in its entirety, including fan favorites, as well as a rare split of Sugar Magnolia, Dear Mr. Fantasy, and Hey Jude Medley. Before the start of the concert, movie theater audiences will also be treated to a slideshow of rare photos of the band by Jim Anderson and John Cantamessa, along with a previously unreleased live track recorded in Hartford, Conn. in July of 1974. Additionally, before the show time, Fathom will feature a handful of the top submissions from the recent Dead Covers Project, which encouraged fans to upload videos of their covers of Dead tracks to This is the second annual Grateful Dead fan meet-up following last year’s successful event, which sold out in several locations across the U.S.

Fathom Events is broadcasting the show digitally to over 550 theaters across the U.S. “During this second annual Dead Head meet-up, fans can re-experience this never-before-released live performance recorded at one of the band’s favorite tour stops,” said Shelly Maxwell, executive vice president of NCM Fathom Events. “This unique concert event in movie theaters will be a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for Grateful Dead fans.”

The set list from that night's show:

Set 1
  • Touch of Grey
  • Jack Straw
  • Jack-a-Roe
  • New Minglewood Blues
  • Friend of the Devil
  • Stuck Inside of Mobile
  • Bird Song
  • Promised Land
Set 2
  • Sugar Magnolia
  • Scarlet Begonias
  • Man Smart/Woman Smarter
  • Eyes of the World
  • drums
  • China Doll
  • Dear Mr. Fantasy
  • Hey Jude Reprise
  • Throwin' Stones
  • Sunshine Daydream
  • Quinn the Eskimo

To see the theaters showing the concert, go to Fathom's site.

David Bowie's Ziggy Stardust Gets Commemorative Plaque in London

The 40th anniversary of David Bowie's album Ziggy Stardust was celebrated on Tuesday in London with the unveiling of a commemorative plaque on Heddon Street in London. Gary Kemp from Spandau Ballet did the honors.
The Crown Estate unveiled the plaque marking the 40th anniversary of the album, The Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust and The Spiders from Mars. The plaque was unveiled at 23 Heddon Street, just off Regent Street, London, W1, where the photograph on the front cover of the album was taken, a fact little known until now.

Unveiling the plaque Gary Kemp said: :Ziggy was the ultimate messianic rock star, and with him David Bowie successfully blurred the lines not just between boys and girls, but himself and his creation. Bowie was Ziggy come to save us, and I bought him hook, eyeliner and haircut. It seems right that it should be the job of a fan boy and I am very honored."

Part of The Crown Estate's ongoing vision for the development of Regent Street and surrounding areas, Heddon Street today is completely different from that of 1972, when the album cover was created. Now one of Regent Street's main Food Quarters, it has been transformed into a pedestrianised courtyard ideal for al fresco dining with restaurants including Momo, Aubaine, Below Zero, The Ice Bar, Strada, Piccolino's, Strawberry Moons and The Living Room.

Back in 1972, the Bowie album depicts "Ziggy" outside on a cold wet January night with his foot resting on a step outside 23 Heddon Street. The late Brian Ward, had rented a space upstairs in the building as a makeshift photographic studio, and had already shot 17 pictures when he persuaded Bowie to step outside onto Heddon Street. The other band members thought it too cold and declined to join him for the picture. Wearing the green jumpsuit that he later wore on the BBC 2 TV show The Old Grey Whistle Test, Bowie posed for the photograph. The images were shot using Royal 'X ' Pan black and white film and then lovingly hand coloured by artist Terry Pastor. In the finished image, Ziggy's jumpsuit is coloured blue.

"It was cold and it rained and I felt like an actor," Bowie recollected. "We did the photographs outside on a rainy night and then upstairs in the studio we did the Clockwork Orange look-a-likes that became the inner album sleeve."

The iconic image cover catapulted David Bowie to international stardom, creating an army of pop stars with spikey hair and edgy alter egos, a trend which later evolved into the glam rock movement for which Ziggy was the poster boy. This plaque pays homage to an enduring iconic creation of British Pop, meaning fans from all over the world can visit the place where the dynamic character of Ziggy was immortalised on camera.

Stevie Nicks to Mentor on American Idol; Sets New Leg of Tour With Rod Stewart

If you wonder why Fleetwood Mac aren't getting together anytime soon, just look at Stevie Nicks' schedule. She has two TV appearances this week followed by a continuation of her tour in support of her latest album, In Your Dreams.

Wednesday night, Nicks will mentor on American Idol. She will be working with the contestants along with series regular Jimmy Iovine who has regularly worked with Stevie throughout her solo career. Then, on Thursday night, she will appear as herself in the NBC sitcom Up All Night.

The next leg of her tour starts on June 29 in Wantagh, NY and, beginning July 20, she will be joined by Rod Stewart in a repeat of their co-headlining tour from last year.

The dates for the tour are below. Additional dates will be announced in the near future.
  • 06/29 - Wantagh, NY - Nikon @ Jones Beach
  • 06/30 - Holmdel, NJ - PNC Bank Arts Center
  • 07/10 - Boston, MA - Bank of America Pavilion
  • 07/20 - Cleveland, OH - Quickens Loans Arena (with Rod Stewart)
  • 07/21 - Cincinnati, OH - Riverbend Music Center (with Rod Stewart)
  • 07/24 - Nashville, TN - Bridgestone Arena (with Rod Stewart)
  • 07/27 - Washington, DC - Verizon Center (with Rod Stewart)
  • 07/28 - Pittsburgh, PA - Consol Energy Center (with Rod Stewart)
  • 07/30 - Milwaukee, WI - Bradley Center (with Rod Stewart)
  • 08/01 - Greensboro, NC - Greensboro Coliseum (with Rod Stewart)
  • 08/03 - Orlando, FL - Amway Center (with Rod Stewart)
  • 08/04 - Ft. Lauderdale, FL - BankAtlantic Center (with Rod Stewart)
  • 08/08 - Tulsa, OK - BOK Center (with Rod Stewart)
  • 08/09 - Houston, TX - Toyota Center (with Rod Stewart)