|Classic KFMC Rock News|
For Feb 07 -10, 2014
Toto Releasing New Live Album and Video in April; Planning Tour with Michael McDonald This Summer
Last year, Toto celebrated its 35th anniversary with a 29-city European tour that included an electrifying show in Lodz, Poland. That concert was recorded for a new video and audio release from the veteran pop-rock act that will hit stores on April 29.
35th Anniversary Tour -- Live in Poland will be available in a variety of configurations, including a two-CD set, a DVD, a Blu-ray, and a deluxe version gathering all of the aforementioned discs, along with a 60-page book. The release features more than two hours of performances from a show Toto played on June 25, 2013. Among the songs the band performs are such hits as "Rosanna," "Africa," "Hold the Line," "I Won't Hold You Back" and "I'll Be Over You," as well as many lesser-known gems.
The video versions of the Live in Poland release also will include behind-the-scenes footage captured during the trek. You can check out a clip of Toto performing "Hold the Line" now on YouTube.
In other news, Toto has been working on a new studio album that it's planning to release sometime next year.
"The repertoire is coming together so naturally it is as though we never took a break from creating as Toto in the studio," says singer/keyboardist David Paich in a statement. "For the fans who have been waiting patiently and continually showing the band support and love over the last decade or so, this one's for you. Collectively we can't wait to share these recordings with the world."
Toto also has plans for a joint North American tour with Michael McDonald that will take place this August and September. First up for the group, though, is a Japanese trek that kicks off April 23 in Nagoya.
Jimi Hendrix Biopic to Get US Premiere Wednesday at SXSW Fest;
With the new Jimi Hendrix biopic, JIMI: All Is by My Side, scheduled to get its premiere U.S. screening this Wednesday at the South by Southwest Film Festival in Austin, Texas, clips from the movie have started to pop up online. The flick, which debuted this past September at Canada's Toronto International Film Festival, stars Andre Benjamin -- aka Andre 3000 of the hip-hop duo OutKast -- as Hendrix.
RollingStone.com currently features an exclusive clip showing Jimi and his British girlfriend Linda Keith, played by Imogen Poots, at a New York City diner, while Animals bassist and Hendrix manager Chas Chandler, portrayed by Andrew Buckley, implores the guitar legend to come to London to play music. In the minute-and-a-half scene, Hendrix intensely explains his musical philosophy and aspirations.
"It's not about style. I want my music to go inside the soul of a person," says the Jimi character. "For me, it's colors. I want people to feel the music the same way I see it."
Another clip, which can be seen at EW.com, shows Hendrix and Keith at a London club shortly before Jimi was to fly back to the U.S. to play the famed Monterey Pop festival. The rock icon asks Keith to accompany him to the festival, even though he's involved with another woman. He tells Linda that he wrote the song "Red House" for her, and she responds by pointing that her old boyfriend, Keith Richards of The Rolling Stones, wrote "Ruby Tuesday" for her when they broke up.
"I've got all these men writing songs to me," she says. "And then I go home and listen to them alone."
JIMI: All by My Side will be shown at 9 p.m. local time on Thursday at the Paramount Theatre in Austin. The film was written and directed by John Ridley, who also penned the screenplay to this year's Academy Award winner for Best Picture, 12 Years a Slave.
Documentary About Bruce Springsteen's High Hopes Album to Premiere on HBO in April
A new documentary focusing on the making of Bruce Springsteen's latest studio album, High Hopes, will premiere on HBO on Friday, April 4, at 9:30 p.m. ET/PT. The half-hour show includes behind-the-scenes footage from the recording sessions, as well as new interviews with Springsteen and Rage Against the Machine guitarist Tom Morello, who collaborated closely with the Boss on the project.
Bruce is featured discussing various aspects of the recording, including the unique contributions Morello brought to the proceedings. In addition, the special offers performance footage from Springsteen and his E Street Band's 2013 tour of Australia, on which Morello joined them as a fill-in for the group's longtime guitarist Steven Van Zandt, who took time off to film his Netflix series Lillyhammer.
During the trek, Morello's guitar playing inspired the Boss to invite the modern rocker to add his innovative musicianship to a variety of unreleased tracks Springsteen had amassed during the past decade or so. The resulting album was High Hopes, which was released in January and proceeded to top the charts in the U.S. and 19 other countries. Morello wound up on eight of the record's 12 tracks, and even contributed co-lead vocals to an updated version of the 1995 Bruce tune "The Ghost of Tom Joad."
Morello has continued to tour with Springsteen and the E Street Band in 2014, and will be with the rockers when they launch a new U.S. leg in April.
Allman Brothers Band's 2014 Beacon Theatre Residency to Offer "a Lot of Surprises"
The Allman Brothers Band is gearing up to launch its latest, and possibly last, annual residency at New York City's Beacon Theatre. The legendary Southern rock outfit kicks things off on Friday night, and has a total of 14 shows scheduled at the famed venue through March 29.
The Allmans also are planning to commemorate their 45th anniversary during the Beacon run, which promises to be something of a bittersweet celebration since the group's future is uncertain beyond the end of 2014, when the band's longtime guitarists Warren Haynes and Derek Trucks will be leaving to focus on their own projects.
Haynes and founding Allmans drummer Butch Trucks sat down with ABC News Radio this week to chat about the band's 2014 concerts at the Beacon Theatre. Warren reveals that in conjunction with the 45th anniversary, "There's going to be a lot of surprises, even to us," adding that "there are going to be people who show up and wind up on stage unexpectedly."
Continuing about the special guests, Haynes says there are "a lot of people that have expressed interest in coming -- some people that are already lined up and some that will just kind of come out of the woodwork."
Warren also says fans who attend the Beacon shows can expect to be treated to a different set list every night.
"The mission is to play as many songs over the 14 nights as possible," he explains. "Obviously that's not quite as important as playing the ones we play well, but we do love the challenge of seeing how many songs we can play."
While he won't divulge specific tunes, Haynes reports that the Allmans' Beacon sets will feature "some songs the band hasn't played for a long time," as well as "a few covers" and revamped renditions of more familiar Allmans tunes.
Butch Trucks, meanwhile, tells ABC News Radio that what he's most looking forward to about the Beacon residency is, simply, getting to play there again.
"There's nothing like it. The Beacon [is] like being home," he declares. "The acoustics are incredible. The crowd is incredible. We just don't have bad nights there."
Like Warren, Butch points out that he also enjoys the fact that the band gets to play so much different material during the residency.
"People come many nights and…we're there for 14 shows this year, so we can experiment a lot more and play tunes that we don't play all the time," notes Trucks. He adds that nobody has brought any brand-new tunes for the group to work up, although the Allmans have prepared "about four or five [songs] that nobody's heard in years."
The Allman Brothers Band's 2014 Beacon Theatre concerts are nearly completely sold out. The shows are scheduled for March 7, 8, 11, 12, 14, 15, 18, 19, 21, 22, 25, 26, 28 and 29.
Queen + Adam Lambert Announce North American Tour; Brian May Says, "We Can Be at a New Peak with Adam"
We knew the announcement was coming. Now Queen and Adam Lambert have confirmed they're hitting the road together for a North American tour.
Lamberthas performed with the legendary British rock group on a number of occasions, both in the U.S. and overseas, but he and Queen have never actually toured in the U.S. That changes beginning June 19 at Chicago's United Center, the first of 19 dates in all in the U.S. and Canada, wrapping July 20 at the Merriweather Post Pavilion in Washington, D.C.
When he performs with Queen, Lambert stands in for the band's founding lead singer, Freddie Mercury, who died in 1991 of AIDS-related illness. They first joined forces in 2009 for a performance of "We Are the Champions" on American Idol. In the summer of 2012, Queen + Adam Lambert performed six shows in Europe, and this past fall, they also performed at a multi-artist show in Las Vegas.
"I'm honored to be able to pay my respects to Freddie's memory," Lambert said in a statement. "He's a personal hero of mine, and I am deeply grateful for the chance to sing such powerful music for fans of this legendary band." Queen guitarist Brian May kept his comment succinct: ""Let's ROCK those beautiful arenas JUST ONE MORE TIME!
When May says "just one more time," he isn't kidding. He tells ABC News Radio that this is likely going to be the last time he and drummer Roger Taylor head out on tour together as Queen. "Speaking for only Roger and myself, I don't know how much more we will be able to do this," he says. "So we looked at each other and thought, y'know, 'Should we go for this one more time? Just the one more?'"
Lambert says that what really provided the impetus for the tour was that one-off show that he, May and Taylor did in Las Vegas last fall. "It just felt perfect, it just felt like it was totally in the cut, it was really really good and we figured we had to bring it to more people," he tells ABC News Radio. "And so I'm really excited that this worked out. I feel very humbled and very excited at this opportunity...and lucky. I feel lucky."
May says what gave him and Taylor even more motivation to do the tour was the prospect of returning to all those legendary venues that they had once rocked with Freddie Mercury.
"For us, Madison Square Garden and the Forum in L.A., that's magical nostalgia in a sense for us, but much more than nostalgia, because that's what we do, and that's when we were at our peak and I think we can be at a new peak with Adam," May explains. "For Adam, he hasn't done these things but he's played with us, he knows us and he's the man. He's the guy to pull this off. He's incredible."
Both May and Taylor feel that there is no question that Mercury would have heartily approved of the job that Lambert does fronting the band.
"It goes without saying, really," notes May. "Freddie admired quality and talent and I know Freddie would gasp at some of the stuff that Adam takes on."
"I don't even think about it when we're on [stage] there to be honest, you know, it feels right, it feels comfortable, in a good way, and I don't mean complacent," he adds. "I just mean it feels good and everything is at maximum potential." (AUDIO IS ABC 1-ON-1)
So far, the set list hasn't been decided upon, but you can expect all of Queen's biggest hits, as well as some deeper cuts.
Tickets for Queen + Adam Lambert go on sale Friday, March 14 via the Live Nation mobile app and at Livenation.com. American Express Card Members get early access beginning Monday, March 10 in the U.S., and Tuesday, March 11 in Canada.
Here's the Queen + Adam Lambert itinerary:
6/19 -- Chicago, United Center
6/21 -- Winnipeg, MTS Centre
6/23 -- Saskatoon, Credit Union Centre
6/24 -- Edmonton, Rexall Place
6/26 -- Calgary, Scotiabank Saddledome
6/28 -- Vancouver, Pepsi Live at Rogers Arena
7/1 -- San Jose, SAP Center
7/3 -- Los Angeles, The Forum
7/5 -- Las Vegas, The Joint
7/6 -- Las Vegas, The Joint
7/9 -- Houston, Toyota Center
7/10 -- Dallas, American Airlines Center
7/12 -- Detroit, The Palace of Auburn Hills
7/13 -- Toronto, Air Canada Centre
7/14 -- Montreal, Bell Centre
7/16 -- Philadelphia, Wells Fargo Center
7/17 -- New York, Madison Square Garden
7/19 -- Uncasville, CT, Mohegan Sun Arena
7/20 -- Washington, D,C, Merriweather Post Pavilion
Paul Rodgers, Dave Mason Among New Additions to Rock Legends Cruise III Lineup
Paul Rodgers is among the latest artists to join the impressive lineup of the Rock Legends Cruise III, which is scheduled to take place in February 2015. Along with the founding Free and Bad Company singer, other newly added performers for the seafaring music festival include Dave Mason's Traffic Jam, The Outlaws, Molly Hatchet and Triumph frontman Rik Emmett.
The third installment Rock Legends Cruise also will include performances by such previously announced stars as The Doobie Brothers, Alice Cooper, 38 Special, Blue Oyster Cult, Edgar Winter, The Marshall Tucker Band, Ten Years After, Uriah Heep, Savoy Brown, Pat Travers Band and ex-Lynyrd Skynyrd drummer Artimus Pyle.
The nautical extravaganza is scheduled to embark from Fort Lauderdale, Florida, on February 19, 2015, and will stop off in Nassau in the Bahamas two days later before returning to port on February 23.
Each act will play two or three concerts during the journey. The trip also will feature meet-and-greets and Q&A sessions, and offer such activities as onboard surfing, basketball, boxing, golf, rock-climbing and gourmet dining.
Money raised by the Rock Legends Cruise III will help support the Native American Heritage Association, which helps support Native American families that live on reservations in South Dakota and Wyoming. Visit RockLegendsCruise.com for more details.
Bruce Springsteen Tapped to Headline NCAA's March Madness Music Festival in Dallas
Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band have signed on to headline the finale of the 2014 NCAA March Madness Music Festival, scheduled for April 4-6 at Reunion Park in Dallas. The free three-day event is being held in conjunction with the NCAA Men's Final Four college basketball championship games.
Springsteen and his group will perform on April 6 at a concert called the Capital One JamFest. The lineup for that event also includes pop-rock act .fun.
The March Madness fest will kick off April with the AT&T Block Party, headlined by country singer Jason Aldean. It also will include an April 5 event called the Coke Zero Countdown Concert, offering an afternoon performance by country superstar Tim McGraw, a live broadcast of the first semifinal game of the tournament, and an evening show by modern rockers The Killers.
No tickets are required to attend the NCAA March Madness Music Festival, which is open to the public on a first-come, first-served basis. Additional performers for all three events will be announced soon. Visit NCAA.com/MusicFest for all the latest details on the event.
Springsteen and the E Street Band's March Madness fest show takes place two days before the group's previously announced U.S. tour kickoff date in Cincinnati. The trek is plotted out through a May 17-18 stand in Uncasville, Connecticut.
Former Pearl Jam Exec Sentenced to 14 Months in Prison for Stealing from the Band
The former chief financial officer of Pearl Jam's management company has been sentenced to 14 months in prison for embezzling more than 300 thousand bucks from the band over three years, the Seattle Times reports.
In handing down the sentence against Rickey Charles Goodrich, Superior Court Judge Roger Rogoff said, "There is nothing more devastating to an organization than someone who takes money from the inside. Goodrich, whose attorney argued that he deserved probation, will be allowed to remain out of custody for two weeks so he can get his affairs in order. In two weeks, Goodrich will once again appear before Rogoff for his formal sentencing.
As previously reported, last year prosecutors charged Goodrich with 33 counts of theft for allegedly stealing $380,000 from the bands accounts during his tenure as CFO of Curtis Inc. Prosecutors said Goodrich used money from company accounts to pay his debts and used band credit cards to pay for personal expenses, such as visits to wineries, restaurants, hotels and spas, and for plane tickets. Goodrich pleaded guilty in December to six counts of first-degree theft; by that point, he'd already paid back $125,000.
Pat Benatar Set to Tour with Rick Springfield This Summer
Pat Benatar and her husband and longtime guitarist Neil Giraldo are set to team up with another late-'70s/early-'80s pop-rock star, Rick Springfield, for a series of U.S. concerts this summer. Billboard reports that the trek is scheduled to kick off June 29 in Raleigh, North Carolina, and is plotted out through a July 25 show in Saratoga, California.
Springfield happens to have a close connection with Benatar's husband, who played guitar on the original version of Rick's breakout 1981 hit "Jessie's Girl." He tells Billboard that he's wanted to tour with Benatar and Giraldo ever since that time.
"I always thought it would be a kick-ass tour with the boy/girl thing and us both having high-energy rock and roll shows," Springfield declares. "I am very excited for the dates. We both have a big catalog of familiar songs so I think the audiences will definitely get it."
Reminiscing about his and Benatar's heyday, Rick notes, "I remember hearing [Pat's hit] 'Heartbreaker' on the radio around the time I was writing my first album [1980's Working Class Dog] so it's a kind of complete circle thing."
Prior to the tour with Springfield, Benatar and Giraldo will serve as a support act on Cher's Dressed to Kill spring trek. Those dates run from a March 22 show in Phoenix through an April 12 performance in Detroit. Pat and her husband also have a number of headlining shows scheduled in March, April and July.
Here's a complete list of Benatar's 2014 tour dates, according to BenatarGiraldo.com and Billboard.com:
*3/22 -- Phoenix, AZ, US Airways Center
*3/24 -- Houston, TX, Toyota Center
3/25 -- Austin, TX, ACL Live at The Moody Theater
*3/26 -- Dallas, TX, American Airlines Center
*3/28 -- North Little Rock, AR, Verizon Arena
*3/29 -- Tulsa, OK, BOK Center
*3/31 -- Nashville, TN, Bridgestone Arena
4/1 -- Lexington, KY, Lexington Opera House
*4/2 -- Pittsburgh, PA, CONSOL Energy Center
*4/4 -- Washington, D.C., Verizon Center
*4/5 -- Uncasville, CT, Mohegan Sun
*4/7 -- Toronto, ON CanadaAir Canada Centre
4/8 -- Tarrytown, NY, Tarrytown Music Hall
*4/9 -- Boston, MA, TD Garden
*4/11 -- Indianapolis, IN, Bankers Life Fieldhouse
*4/12 -- Detroit, MI, Joe Louis Arena
4/26 -- Tacoma, WA, Emerald Queen Casino
4/27 -- Worley, ID, Coeur D'Alene Casino Resort Hotel
**6/29 -- Raleigh, NC, Red Hat Amphitheater
7/2 -- Hampton, NH, Hampton Beach Casino Ballroom
7/3 -- Lincoln, RI, Twin River Casino - The Event Center
**7/5 -- Atlantic City, NJ, Revel Casino Hotel
**7/6 -- Canandaigua, NY, CMAC
**7/8 -- Cincinnati, OH, PNC Pavilion
7/12 -- Greenville, WI, Greenville Lions Park
7/13 -- Carterville, IL, Walker's Bluff Winery
**7/16 -- Kansas City, MO, Starlight Theatre
**7/17 -- Mulvane, KS, Kansas Arena
**7/19 -- Phoenix, CA, Comerica Theatre
**7/20 -- Valley Center, CA, Harrah's Rincon - The Events Center
7/23 -- Costa Mesa, CA, Pacific Amphitheatre
**7/25 -- Saratoga, CA, The Mountain Winery
* = with Cher
** = with Rick Springfield.
Bruce Springsteen's Live Cover of The Bee Gees' "Stayin' Alive" Receives Kudos from Barry Gibb
When Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band launched into their Australian tour finale Wednesday in Brisbane, they treated fans to a soulful and jubilant rendition of The Bee Gees' disco classic, "Stayin' Alive." Now the Boss and his group's interpretation of the chart-topping 1978 hit has gotten a big thumbs-up from the man who wrote it, Bee Gees frontman Barry Gibb.
In a message posted on his Twitter feed Thursday, Gibb wrote, "Dear Bruce Springsteen, just been blown away by your Stayin' Alive. You brought it back to life. Thank you!"
Throughout his Australian outing, Bruce had been featuring songs by a variety of artists that hailed from Down Under, including AC/DC's "Highway to Hell," INXS' "Don't Change," The Easybeats' "Friday on My Mind," and The Saints' "Just Like Fire Would." Springsteen's studio rendition of the last tune, of course, appears on his new album, High Hopes.
The Boss and the E Street Band wrapped up the current overseas leg of their 2014 tour with a show Sunday in Auckland, New Zealand. They launch a U.S. trek on April 8 in Cincinnati. Springsteen announced earlier in the week that Rage Against the Machine guitarist Tom Morello will continue to accompany the group on all of its upcoming shows.
The Who's Roger Daltrey Reveals Status of Keith Moon Biopic; Says Band's Next Tour Will Be Its Last
Over the last few years, little has been heard about the long-gestating film Who frontman Roger Daltrey has been planning to produce about his band's late drummer, Keith Moon. However, in a new fan Q&A published in U.K. music magazine Q, Daltrey reveals that the project finally may be moving forward again.
"I'm back on it, and I'm back to the first draft of the script, which I've always loved," says the singer, referring to a script written by John Lahr, who's perhaps best known for penning Prick Up Your Ears, the 1978 biography of late British playwright Joe Orton.
Roger reports that he doesn't know yet who will portray Moon, "but it has to be someone new." He also points out that when plans for the film initially got under way 20 years ago, he "had Robert Downey Jr. lined up" for the lead role. He adds, "I had the whole damn thing down. But the script was only 60 percent there, and all the people wanted at the time was 'Carry On Keith.'"
Answering a separate question about Moon, Daltrey discusses the biggest misconception about the drum legend, who died in 1978 at age 32 from an overdose of pills meant to treat his alcohol-withdrawal symptoms. Roger explains, "People don't realize that he was a Shakespearean character. Yes, he was a genius on drums, but he was also a very troubled man. Things we find funny about him weren't really funny at all. But because of the force of his personality everyone ends up laughing."
Daltrey also addresses The Who's reported intention to stop touring after their next trek, which is slated to launch sometime in 2015. The singer, who just turned 70 on Saturday, says that unlike previous "farewell" outings the band has announced, "This will be the last one." He adds, however, "that doesn't mean we won't play anymore shows ever." He points out that The Who's 2013 trek "was great but, at our age, we can't be doing with all the schlepping around."
Paul McCartney, Brian May Help Promote U.K. Concert for Cancer Charities
Paul McCartney and Queen guitarist Brian May are among the stars who are pitching in to help promote an upcoming U.K. benefit show that will help raise awareness and funds for local cancer charities. The third annual Concert at the Kings is scheduled to take place May 31 at The Kings Arms, a pub in the English hamlet of All Cannings.
Photos of McCartney, May and Brian's frequent collaborator Kerry Ellis posing in specially designed "Rock Against Cancer" T-shirts are being circulated as part of a social media campaign to bring attention to the event. The lineup for this year's concert includes The Boomtown Rats, The Troggs, Dire Straits spinoff group The Straits, Steve Harley & Cockney Rebel and U.K. soul singer Paul Young's Americana outfit Los Pacaminos.
The Concert at the Kings is organized by three All Cannings residents who have all battled cancer -- Sweet guitarist Andy Scott, Kings Arms landlord Richard Baulu and sound engineer John "Grubby" Callis. Previous benefits have featured performances by May and his Queen band mate Roger Taylor, Jeff Beck, Mike and the Mechanics, Midge Ure, 10cc, The Sweet, Kiki Dee, Dr. Feelgood, Georgie Fame and The Strawbs.
"We're hugely grateful for this fantastic support to put the concert on the map," says Baulu in a statement. "It's a great boost for the cause to have such rock giants in our campaign T-shirts."
Proceeds from this year's Concert at the Kings will be donated to Macmillan Cancer Support and the Above and Beyond charity, which aids the oncology department of the Bristol, U.K., hospital system. Visit ConcertattheKings.co.uk to learn more about the event.
Former KISS Guitarist Bruce Kulick Thinks the Band's Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Induction Is "Awesome"
At least one former KISS member is issue-free about the band's impending induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. Ex-KISS guitarist Bruce Kulick -- who spent 12 years with the group during their non-makeup period -- tells ABC News Radio that he thinks the induction is "a long time coming...[and] awesome."
KISS fans were disappointed to learn that the band doesn't plan to perform at their Rock and Roll Hall of Fame induction ceremony, reportedly because of difficulties determining which incarnation should take the stage. Kulick gives those notoriously ardent fans credit for making the induction happen, noting that they've been "petitioning...for years" for the group's inclusion. He declares, quite simply, "the people have spoken."
Kulick parted ways with KISS when the band reunited with original members Peter Criss and Ace Frehley in 1996. Even so, he's remained friends with Gene Simmons and Paul Stanley, as well as current KISS drummer Eric Singer -- all of whom can be seen on Kulick's recent wedding video, posted on his website. The guitarist married girlfriend Lisa Lane on January 4.
After leaving KISS, Kulick became a member of Grand Funk Railroad in 2000 and continues to play with that group. The band's next appearance will be at the House of Blue in Atlantic City, New Jersey, on March 21. You can check out all of the veteran rockers' upcoming dates at GrandFunkRailroad.com/Tour.
Sammy Hagar, Vince Neil and Others to Attend Rocking Las Vegas Charity Event Thursday
Sammy Hagar will join Alice Cooper, Slash, Vince Neil, Todd Rundgren, Matt Sorum, INXSs J.D. Fortune, Lisa Loeb and System of a Downs John Dolmayan in Las Vegas Thursday night at a fundraising concert/cocktail party in honor of Chef Kerry Simon.
Simon, who was once dubbed the rock and roll chef by Rolling Stone magazine, is suffering from a rare illness known as Multiple Systems Atrophy, or MSA. Its often described as a much more severe form of Parkinsons Disease, and there is no cure. Simon is hosting the event to draw attention to the ailment, and to raise money to fight it.
The event, dubbed Kerry Simon Says Fight MSA, is being held in conjunction with the Keep Memory Alive organization.
The fundraiser, which will be held at the Keep Memory Alive Center, also will feature a silent auction and a live auction.
The night will also feature a superstar lineup of big-name chefs as well as Bill Murray, who used to work with Simon at a Little Caesars Pizza when they were both much younger.
Hagar has known Simon since the 90s. Any time I was anywhere, says the former Van Halen frontman, we got together. He cooked. I played rock and roll. He came to the show. I went to the restaurant afterwards and had a party.
As for Thursday's event, Hagar predicts some interesting musical collaborations. First of all, he says, Matt Sorum and Slash are not gonna let me play Rock Candy, I can guarantee you, without getting up there, you know, and doing it. And once everybody gets in that room together, I cant imagine whats gonna happen.
But Hagar knows that the real reason for the event is to shed some light on a deadly disease, explaining, I love what Kerrys doing with this. Its making people say 'wow.' And then if a guy needs a petition or something, the more people are aware of it the more people will sign the petition. And then pretty soon you get things done. (AUDIO IS ABC 1-ON-1)
For more information on Multiple Systems Atrophy, check out MSAAwareness,org.
Neil Young to Release Car-Themed Memoir This Fall
Neil Young is planning to release a follow-up to his 2012 memoir Waging Heavy Peace sometime in the fall. The as-yet-untitled book will focus on the folk-rock legend's passion for cars, and will include stories about the different automobiles he's owned throughout his life.
The new tome also will include Young's reflections on the importance of clean energy and on the negative effects emissions from older cars have had on the environment. In addition, the book will include original illustrations created by the 68-year-old Rock and Roll Hall of Famer. Blue Rider Press, which is publishing the memoir, describes it as "an eclectic amalgam of memories, artwork and political ponderings from one of the most genuine and enigmatic artists of our time."
Young spoke with ABC News Radio about the upcoming book back in December of 2012, and revealed at the time that he'd already written "almost 110,000 words." He also reported that he planned to "transcend from autobiography and memoir mode into fiction" after completing this project.
Waging Heavy Peace was published in September 2012, also by Blue Rider Press, and reached #2 on The New York Times Hardcover Nonfiction Best Sellers list.
Duane Allman Biography Written by His Daughter to Be Published Next Week
A new memoir about Duane Allman written by the late Allman Brothers Band guitarist's daughter, Galadrielle, will be published this Monday, March 3. In the book, titled Please Be with Me: A Song for My Father Duane Allman, Galadrielle shares her own experiences growing up as the only child of the influential musician, who was killed in a motorcycle crash when she was just two years old. She also includes stories and information about her dad that she collected from family members, band mates and musical collaborators.
The 400-page memoir is available as a hardcover volume and as an ebook. In a video trailer for Please Be with Me, Galadrielle says, "Duane Allman's story is more than a tragedy, it's a true romance. He fell in love with his guitar and gave his heart away."
About taking on the writing of the book, she explains, "I dreaded pursuing his story as a reporter would, asking uncomfortable questions and following every lead. I couldn't imagine interviewing my family, but I knew that if I didn't, I would never be satisfied."
She adds, "Learning about him changed my life completely. A missing piece that I thought could only be had by knowing him has been returned to me, assembled from all the gathered fragments word by word.
Galadrielle describes the memoir as "my song of love, built around the lost chord."
Commenting about Please Be with Me, Allmans frontman and Duane's younger brother Gregg Allman says, "I thought I knew everything there was to know about him, but Galadrielle's deep and insightful book came as a revelation to me, as it will to everyone who reads it."
Ann Wilson Says Heart's New Concert Video Offers "a Really Interesting Look" at the Band
A new concert video from Heart titled Fanatic Live from Caesars Colosseum hits stores on Tuesday. The release, which is available as a CD/DVD package, a standalone DVD, a Blu-ray and a digital video, features highlights from a July 2012 show that the band played in Windsor, Canada.
The show took place shortly before Heart's latest studio album, Fanatic, arrived in stores, and featured performances of five songs from that record, as well as such hits as "What About Love," "Even It Up," "These Dreams," "Alone," "Crazy on You" and "Barracuda."
"It's a shot of what our band is like live -- who were are, what we sound like, our new songs and our old songs…and everything in between," says frontwoman Ann Wilson, speaking with ABC News Radio about the new video. "It's just a really interesting look at Heart, after all these years."
Heart always has mixed hard-hitting songs with gentler, more melodic tunes, but Wilson notes that the material from Fanatic "was surprisingly rocking." That includes the album's title track, which Heart used to kick off the concert video.
"The song 'Fanatic' was perfect to start out with, because you walk out there and you say, 'Hi, we're here,' in a way that can't be ignored," Ann explains. "Everybody kind of [had] their eyes opened wide, you know?"
The singer also points out that Caesars Colosseum was an excellent venue for Heart to be captured in concert. "They had great lights and it just lent itself to being filmed," Ann maintains. "It was a big, showy place."
One interesting aspect of the Fanatic Live concert was that the band was accompanied on select tunes by a string ensemble that was led by the album's producer, Ben Mink. Wilson says she appreciates how a real string section enhances the Heart sound, pointing out that "it really meshes very well with our music."
Looking ahead to what's in store for Heart, Ann reports that she and her sister, guitarist Nancy Wilson, have been amassing material for a follow-up to Fanatic.
"There definitely are some notebooks full of new songs and…Nancy and I are always in dialogues about what do we do next, who do we do it with," she tells ABC News Radio. "[So,] you can look to a new album from us within the next little while." Being a bit more specific about when the next record might arrive, Ann adds, "It takes a while to make an album, for it to develop and actually become reality. So, it won't be this year -- maybe next year."
Meanwhile, Heart will embark on a new series of spring U.S. tour dates scheduled to run from a March 25 concert in Lancaster, Pennsylvania, through an April 27 show in Phoenix. The band will follow that up with a Canadian summer trek with special guest Jason Bonham. That outing, which kicks off June 14 in Montreal, will feature Bonham joining Heart at each performance for a closing set of Led Zeppelin covers.
Here is the list of songs featured on Heart's Fanatic Live from Caesars Colosseum video:
"What About Love"
"Even It Up"
"Dog and Butterfly"
"Dear Old America"
"Crazy on You"
Mötley Crüe's Tommy Lee Is Engaged
Never let it be said that Tommy Lee isn't a romantic. The Mötley Crüe drummer is about to take his fourth walk down the aisle.
Lee tweeted on Monday, "There comes a time in a man's life when you just know your partner is for LIFE!! Say hello to my fiancée and soon to be wife @SOFIofficial." @SOFIofficial would be 30-year-old German singer and dancer SOFI, aka Sofia Toufa, who tweeted in response, "I'm something that rhymes with Beyonce!!!!!" That of course would be "fiancée."
Lee, who's 51, has been married three times before, most recently to actress Pamela Anderson, whom he divorced in 1998 after three years of marriage that produced two sons and a notorious sex tape.
No word yet on when the couple will wed, but Lee will certainly have more time than usual to spend at home with his new bride. Mötley Crüe announced late last month that they're calling it quits after 33 years together as a band. Their swan song is a 72-date tour, beginning July 2 in Grand Rapids, MI and ending November 21 in Vancouver, BC.
Roger Daltrey's Album with Ex-Dr. Feelgood Guitarist Now Set for April Release in the US
A new U.S. release date has been announced for Going Back Home, the collaborative album The Who's Roger Daltrey has recorded with Wilko Johnson, former lead guitarist of the influential U.K. pub-rock group Dr. Feelgood. The 11-track collection is scheduled to arrive in stores on April 8, and will be issued on the famous Chess Records label, which was relaunched by Universal Music Enterprises specifically for this record.
As previously reported, Daltrey and Johnson recorded the album late last year, several months after Wilko was diagnosed with terminal pancreatic cancer. Ten of Going Back Home's 11 songs were written or co-written by Johnson, either while a member of Dr. Feelgood, as a solo artist or with one of his post-Feelgood groups. The album also includes a cover of the 1965 Bob Dylan tune "Can You Please Crawl Out Your Window."
In celebration of the album's impending release, Daltrey and Johnson will play a one-off concert this Tuesday at the O2 Shepherd's Bush Empire in London. In addition, the veteran rockers will take part in a special interview event on Thursday at an as-yet-unannounced London venue.
Billy Joel Poised to Tie His Own Madison Square Garden Record
Back in 2006, Billy Joel set a record by selling out 12 consecutive shows at New York's Madison Square Garden; he was the first solo artist to do so on a single tour. Now, the Piano Man is poised to tie his own record.
Billy has just announced that he's added a 12th show to his current residency at the legendary New York City venue. The previous 11 shows he's put on sale have all sold out. This 12th show will take place Thursday, December 18, and tickets go on sale Friday, February 28 at 10 a.m.
When he first announced his residency at the Garden -- the venue calls it a "music franchise -- Billy said he'd continue to play one show a month there "as long as there is interest." The residency began on January 27; his next show is scheduled for March 21. In between, he's been performing select dates around the country, and he'll continue to do so, in arenas and stadiums, throughout the year.
KISS Won't Perform at Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony
KISS fans who waited a long time to see their band inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame will be disappointed to learn the band will not perform at the ceremony.
KISS has announced on its website they will not play at the April 10 induction ceremony at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York. Why? Apparently there was a dispute over which KISS lineup would take the stage.
On Friday night, former member Ace Frehley claimed on a syndicated radio show that Gene Simmons and Paul Stanley rejected the idea of a reunion with the original lineup, which also included Peter Criss. The band denies that was the case.
In its statement posted on Sunday, the band says, "Our intention was to celebrate the entire history of KISS and give credit to all members including long time [sic] present members Tommy Thayer and Eric Singer, and additionally Bruce Kulick and Eric Carr all who have made this band what it is, regardless of the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame's point of view."
The statement continues, "Although KISS has moved forward far longer without them, Ace and Peter are at the very foundation of what we have built and this would all be impossible had they not been a part of it in the beginning. It is over 13 years since the original lineup has played together in make-up and we believe the memory of those times would not be enhanced. Contrary to claims made through the media we have never refused to play with Ace and Peter."
KISS says it made the decision to not perform at all because of an "emotional situation where there is no way to please everyone."
The original lineup played together from 1973 to 1980, and again from 1996 to 2000.
The band's statement didn't mention two other former members: Vinnie Vincent and the late Mark St. John.
Ticket Details Announced for 2014 Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony
If you'd like to attend the 29th annual Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony on April 10 in Brooklyn, New York, you'll soon have the chance to reserve your seats at the Barclays Center. Tickets for the big event will go on sale to the general public at Ticketmaster.com on March 1 at 10 a.m. ET, while American Express Card members will be able to purchase pre-sale tickets beginning this Monday at 9 a.m. ET.
As previously reported, this year's inductees are KISS, Nirvana, Peter Gabriel, Daryl Hall and John Oates, Linda Ronstadt, and Cat Stevens. In addition, Bruce Springsteen's backing group, The E Street Band, will receive the Award for Music Excellence, while The Beatles' late manager, Brian Epstein, and early Rolling Stones manager Andrew Loog Oldham will be recognized with Ahmet Ertegun Awards, presented to non-performers.
2014 is the third consecutive year, and fourth year overall, the Rock Hall ceremony has been made open to the public. Information about the event's performers, presenters and special guests will be revealed soon. A special featuring highlights from the show will premiere on HBO sometime in May.
In conjunction with the 2014 induction ceremony, an exhibit celebrating this year's honorees will open at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum in Cleveland. Visit RockHall.com to find out the latest details on the event, as well as information about tickets.
Jeff Beck Says He's Close to Finishing a "Really, Really Good Studio Album"
After wrapping up his joint tour with Beach Boys mastermind Brian Wilson last fall, Jeff Beck now is setting his sights on finishing a new solo album. The guitar legend tells Rolling Stone that he's developed a whole new sound while working on the project, although he's reluctant to reveal too much about it.
"I think I'd rather save the surprise," he notes. "But it's not Western style, if you know what I mean."
The British blues-rock virtuoso says that, for a number of reasons, the new record is "a very important album for me."
Beck explains, "I think I've drawn attention. I've worked, worked, worked for the last three years. Now is the time really." He adds that, with his 70th birthday approaching this June 24, "I thought it was time for a really, really good studio album I had control over and time to do properly instead of a budget problem."
Jeff is planning to have the album completed by the time he launches his 2014 world tour on April 4.
"We've done most of the track cutting in big studios," he reports about the record, which will be his first studio effort since 2010's Emotion & Commotion. "We're now off mixing, overdubbing and aligning stuff -- all the crap you have to do with Pro Tools."
Meanwhile, Beck eventually will be appearing on another upcoming album, Wilson's in-the-works solo project, but he tells Rolling Stone "you better ask Brian" about when that record will see the light of day.
"We left the studio with half-finished tracks -- three, four tracks I was supposed to be on and they're still unfinished," he explains. Jeff says he feels "it was a bit stupid" that Wilson and his camp scheduled their joint tour before the record was completed.
"They should have done the album, had a killer album, and then gone out on the road," he maintains. "But I think they wanted to grab me while I was still available."
Speaking of joint treks, Beck says he wouldn't be against hitting the road with his one-time Yardbirds band mate and old friend Jimmy Page. However, he points out that the Led Zeppelin legend is a hard man to pin down.
"If you could talk Jimmy into appearing somewhere," declares Jeff. "He appears at the most unlikely events and then disappears again."
That being said, Beck notes that he and Page "have such a great laugh when we're together and if he ever comes up for grabs, then it'd make a good package."
Beck's 2014 tour schedule is mapped out all the way through late July and includes shows in Japan, Australia, South Korea, the U.K., Ireland and mainland Europe. No word yet if he plans to visit North America this year.
Crew Member for Gregg Allman Biopic Killed in Train Accident on the Set
A second camera assistant working on the Gregg Allman biopic Midnight Rider was killed on Thursday in Wayne County, Georgia, after being struck by a freight train on the set of the movie.
Four other people were also hurt in the accident -- one suffered serious injuries.
A witness told Variety the crew was filming a dream sequence on a railroad trestle when a train unexpectedly crossed the bridge.
The film will star William Hurt as an older version of the Allman Brothers Band frontman, and All American Rejects singer Tyson Ritter as a younger version. Allman is an executive producer on the movie.
Ex-Yes Frontman Jon Anderson Kicking Off Acoustic Solo Tour This Weekend
Former Yes singer Jon Anderson currently is taking part in a new themed cruise called Progressive Nation at Sea that set sail for the Bahamas on Tuesday, and when that event wraps up this weekend, he'll head out on a solo acoustic tour of North America. That trek gets under way Sunday in Austin, Texas, and is plotted out through an April 23-24 stand in Londonderry, New Hampshire.
Fans attending the shows can expect to hear Anderson perform plenty of his classic Yes songs, as well as material from his solo releases and even a few cover tunes. One song he's been including in his recent concert is a rendition of the Beatles classic "A Day in the Life," which he "for some reason" plays on a ukulele.
He explains to ABC News Radio that he chose the tune after a friend of his from Chicago suggested he add a Fab Four song to his live repertoire.
"I thought to myself, 'OK, I'll do '[A] Day in the Life' on the ukulele,'" he recalls with a laugh. "So, I started practicing, and I do it now." He adds it's great to perform the tune in concert because "you can get everybody singing along [because] everybody knows it."
Anderson says he's particularly excited about a pair of special events that he'll be playing in early April in Woodstock, New York, with the Paul Green Rock Academy. Jon describes the shows as "a wonderful get-together" at which he'll perform alongside various young musicians. The Rock Academy is a Woodstock-based program founded by Green, who also created the School of Rock franchise.
Meanwhile, while Anderson has been enjoying performing solo, he tells ABC News Radio that watching Robert Plant in concert recently with his current group The Sensational Space Shifters has got him considering the possibility of forming his own new band. He says that while the idea is appealing to him, he's not sure about how he'd go about it.
"It's one of those delicate things," Anderson admits. "Do you get into a band, and how are you going to perform Yes music if you do it? Do you jump into new music?...The whole concept is such a big operation, you start thinking about it, you know." He adds, "We'll see what happens."
Here are all of Anderson's confirmed upcoming North American tour dates:
2/23 -- Austin TX, One World Theatre
2/24 -- The Woodlands, TX, Dosey Doe -- The Big Barn
2/26 -- Dallas, TX, Kessler Theater
3/14 -- Aspen, CO, Wheeler Opera House
3/27 -- Newton, NJ, The Newton Theatre
3/29 -- Port Washington, NY, Jean Rimsky Theater
3/30 -- Newark, NJ, New Jersey Performing Arts Center -- Victoria Theater
4/2 -- Glenside, PA, The Keswick Theatre
4/3 -- Bethlehem, PA, Musikfest Cafe
4/5 -- New York, NY, B.B. King Blues Club & Grill
4/8-9 -- Woodstock, NY, Bearsville Theater (with The Paul Green Rock Academy)
4/11 -- Niagara Falls, NY, Seneca Niagara Casino and Hotel -- The Bear's Den
4/12 -- Albany, NY, Empire State Plaza Performing Arts Center -- The Egg Swyer Theatre
4/13 -- Ridgefield, CT, The Ridgefield Playhouse
4/17 -- Rockport, MA, The Rockport Shalin Liu Performance Center
4/19 -- Oakville, Canada, Oakville Centre for the Performing Arts
4/22 -- Woonsocket, RI, Stadium Theatre
4/23-24 -- Londonderry, NH, Tupelo Music Hall
Paul McCartney to Be Honored with NME's Songwriter's Songwriter Award
Paul McCartney will have to clear a little space in his well-stocked trophy shelf next week, as the rock legend will be presented with a newly created honor called the Songwriter's Songwriter Award at the U.K.'s NME Awards 2014. The former Beatles star will be on hand to accept the prize at the ceremony, which is scheduled to take place February 26 at the O2 Academy Brixton in London.
The one-off honor will acknowledge and celebrate Sir Paul's career contributions to the world of music.
"We've spoken to the biggest and best musicians around, and they've told us: Paul McCartney is the world's ultimate songwriter," says NME editor Mike Williams. "Paul's enduring and stunning talent is worth celebrating, and I'm incredibly honored that NME are giving him the special, one-of-its-kind Songwriter's Songwriter award to recognize that."
McCartney also has a chance to take home another award at the event, as he's been nominated in the Best Solo Artist category alongside David Bowie and four others. You can check out all of this year's NME Awards nominees, and vote for your favorites, at NME.com/AwardsVote. Voting is open until this Friday.
Meanwhile, McCartney joins a list of already-announced 2014 NME honorees that also includes Blondie, who will receive the Godlike Genius prize.
Paul Stanley of KISS Slams Rock & Roll Hall of Fame, Calls Institution "Elitist"
Don't expect Paul Stanley and his band mates to KISS up to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame now that they're set to be inducted into the institution. The singer tells the U.K.'s Classic Rock that he doesn't feel honored to be included in the Hall.
"Their attitude is elitist and it doesn't reflect the public," Stanley says. He adds that the Hall's vote to induct KISS -- more than 15 years after the band first became eligible for induction -- "was done begrudgingly and because it had become absolutely ludicrous that they were choosing to ignore us."
Stanley's attitude doesn't mean that he'll boycott the ceremony or throw a tantrum when he gets on stage, though. "It means a lot to the fans and I understand it because its validation for them," he said. "So for that reason I accept graciously and accept on their behalf."
KISS fans hoping for an onstage jam with Stanley, Gene Simmons and original members Ace Frehley and Peter Criss might be disappointed. Though Stanley says he thinks that the two estranged members "deserve and belong up there," he says that when it comes to actually plugging in and playing, "I have no plans at the moment...and that includes playing with Ace and Peter or anyone else. My plan at the moment is to go and accept the award. Anything else, well see how it unfolds."
This year's Rock and Roll Hall of Fame induction ceremony will take place April 10 at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, NY.
David Crosby Reschedules Remaining Solo Tour Dates After Undergoing Heart Procedure
David Crosby has been forced to reschedule most of his upcoming solo tour dates after undergoing a heart procedure this past Friday, Valentine's Day. A message on the 72-year-old folk-rock legend reports that his doctors performed a cardiac catheterization operation and angiogram following the results of a routine stress test.
The physicians discovered that Crosby's left anterior coronary artery was 90-percent blocked and placed two stents in the vessel so that blood will be able to flow more freely to the singer's heart. David is expected to make a complete recovery. He didn't have a heart attack, but doctors were convinced that he would have if he hadn't had the procedure.
"I am very glad that I listened to my doctors and my family. It seems I am once again a very lucky man," says Crosby in a statement. "I'm sorry to have to move the dates, but I promise the music will be good when we do play them."
Prior to his health scare, Crosby had already rescheduled four concerts on his current solo tour -- February 3 and 4 dates in Vienna, Virginia, were moved to March 25 and 16; and February 8 and 9 in Chicago were pushed back to July 20 and 21. All of these shows apparently will go on as planned. Meanwhile, Crosby's two performances in San Francisco have now been pushed back from February 20 and 21 to April 20 and 21. Lastly, David's five-show run at the Troubadour in Los Angeles has yet to be rescheduled.
Meanwhile, no word yet whether Crosby, Stills & Nash's March U.S. tour will be affected by David's health issues.
Here is Crosby's full upcoming solo tour itinerary:
3/16 -- The Barns at Wolftrap Vienna, VA (previously 2/4)
3/25 -- The Barns at Wolftrap Vienna, VA (previously 2/3)
4/20 -- San Francisco, CA, Great American Music Hall (previously 2/20)
4/21 -- San Francisco, CA, Great American Music Hall (previously 2/21)
7/20 -- Chicago, IL, City Winery (previously 2/8)
7/21 -- Chicago, IL, City Winery (previously 2/9)
Still to be rescheduled:
2/23 -- Los Angeles, CA, The Troubadour
2/24 -- Los Angeles, CA, The Troubadour
2/25 -- Los Angeles, CA, The Troubadour
2/26 -- Los Angeles, CA, The Troubadour
2/27 -- Los Angeles, CA, The Troubadour
Jackets Worn by Starr & Harrison in Beatles' Help! Movie Being Auctioned Next Month
The U.K.'s Omega Auctions has organized a massive Beatles memorabilia sale for March 20, which coincides with the 50th anniversary of the release of the band's chart-topping hit "Can't Buy Me Love." Among the auction's many highlights are a pair of jackets Ringo Starr and the late George Harrison wore while filming the Fab Four's 1965 movie Help!
The rare items, which also can be seen on the cover of The Beatles' Help! album, are expected to fetch as much as 70,000 pounds -- more than $116,000. In the movie, Starr and Harrison wore the jackets in scenes that were filmed in the Austrian Alps, where the band members had fled in an effort to escape the evil cult that was after a sacrificial ring that had come into Ringo's possession.
Omega Auctions official Paul Fairweather says of the jackets, "As Beatles clothing goes, these have got to be amongst the Holy Grail for any Beatles collector. They feature on one of their most recognizable album covers and I have a feeling these could really fly off the block!"
"The Beatles Collection" auction will feature more than 200 lots in total, including rare vinyl and many other pieces of memorabilia.
The sale will take place at the Adelphi Hotel in Liverpool, England, and also will viewable live online. A full catalog of items being auctioned will be available on February 28.
U2's Album Still a Work in Progress, Larry Mullen Says Process is "Relentless"
U2 fans hoping for a definitive release date for the band's new album-in-progress will need to wait a little longer. In a long interview with The Hollywood Reporter, the band members confirm that work is certainly coming along, but the process is slow.
Drummer Larry Mullen says, "We're slow learners. We need to be creative, on the cutting edge, challenged, and it's really hard going, it's relentless, and we're relentless, and we have a history of breaking engineers, producers. I mean, people come out of working with U2 and just go, 'I just don't know what's happened; it feels like a lifetime has passed by.' And that's just the way we work."
Bono hints that there's an end in sight. The singer says, "The album won't be ready till it's ready. But right now, people are walking a little differently -- well, they're not walking, they're running as if to a finish line. There's a couple of songs that are part of the story we haven't quite finished. We know we have to spend a couple of years taking these songs around the world, so they'd better be good."
Even though U2's recent release of "Invisible" as a fundraiser for the (RED) charity was a giant success, Bono said in a recent USA Today interview that the band would be selecting a different tune as a first single from the new album. He explained that U2 picked "Invisible" to contribute to the AIDS fundraising campaign simply because "it's the first one we finished."
U2 will perform its Academy Award-nominated song "Ordinary Love," which the band wrote for the film Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom, live at the Oscars on March 2.
Paul Rodgers Says Recording Soul Covers Album "Felt Like Coming Home"
Last week saw release of The Royal Sessions, Paul Rodgers' first solo studio album since 2000's Electric. For the project, the founding Free and Bad Company frontman traveled to Memphis' famed Royal Studios and recorded a collection of classic soul, blues and R&B tunes with a group of veteran local musicians.
"It's all music that I remember from my youth," Rodgers tells ABC News Radio. "A lot of Stax [Records] material -- Otis Redding, Sam & Dave, Isaac Hayes. You know, these people really influenced me when I was growing up…in my singing and my songwriting, and so it was really nice to have the opportunity to go to Memphis and record these songs with these amazing players."
Although he's known first and foremost as a rock artist, the British singer notes that the music on The Royal Sessions "has always been in back of everything I've done in many respects." He adds, "So, it was good to come full circle back to it, and it felt like coming home."
Rodgers explains that he developed an immediate rapport with the studio musicians, some of whom played on the original versions of the songs he recorded for The Royal Sessions. Paul points out that when he went into the studio for the first session, his collaborators didn't know who he was.
"They had been told that I was a singer and a songwriter, and I was just coming in for some sessions, so there [were] no preconceived ideas on anybody's part," he says. "They didn't know me, I didn't know them, and we just simply communicated musically. And from the get-go it really felt comfortable. We were speaking the same language."
Rodgers tells ABC News Radio that he rarely listens to his own albums after he finishes them, but The Royal Sessions has been an exception. He credits the excellent sound quality of the recording, which was made entirely on analog equipment, as well as the playing of the session guys.
"The musicians weave such an incredibly magical spell between themselves [and] there are little interplays," he declares. "I've listened to the record a hundred times and I'd suddenly [notice,] 'Oh wow, I didn't hear that before.'…There's so much subtlety and taste between them, and conversation."
Rodgers will kick off a short tour in support of The Royal Sessions on April 29 in Englewood, New Jersey. He reports that those shows will include a couple of songs from the album, but mainly will feature classics from Bad Company, Free and his earlier solo catalog. Paul says he'd love to take his Royal Sessions collaborators out on the road with him, but currently has no plans to so. He will play a few songs with the guys when he heads back to Memphis for a CD release party scheduled this Saturday at the Stax Museum of American Soul Music.
As a thank-you to Memphis for all the great music the city has produced, Rodgers is donating all of the proceeds raised by the album to the Stax Music Academy, a school that provides music education to young people from the area.
The Royal Sessions is available for purchase a 10-track standard CD and digital download, a 200-gram audiophile vinyl LP and Amazon exclusive deluxe CD with three bonus tracks.
George Thorogood & the Destroyers to Head Out on 40th Anniversary Tour Later This Month
George Thorogood and his longtime backing band, The Destroyers, will mark their 40th anniversary this year with a major North American tour. The trek is scheduled to get under way February 27 in Las Vegas, and currently is plotted out through a July 20 show in Mankato, Minnesota.
The outing is made up of three separate legs: a February-March stint that will hit cities in the Southern and Western U.S.; an April-May series of Canadian shows; and a June-July stateside run that will visit the Northeast and Midwest. Thorogood and the Destroyers' are supporting a pair of 2013 releases with the new tour -- their Icon compilation CD and the Live at Montreux 2013 DVD and Blu-ray.
In honor of Thorogood's 40th anniversary, a couple of fellow legendary rockers have issued statements paying tribute to the singer/guitarist.
Ex-Guns N' Roses guitarist Slash says, "George Thorogood's genuine style and attitude continue to inspire me as he and The Destroyers rock on into their 40th year. He has been a hero of mine since I first heard his music in the '70's, and is one of the baddest rock 'n' roll songwriters/electric slide guitar players ever."
Steve Miller, meanwhile, declares, "For 40 years, I've had the privilege and pleasure of sharing the stage with George many times, and what started as admiration has grown into a deep love and respect for the man, his music, his band and his spirit. He is truly an original."
George Thorogood and the Destroyers are coming to the area !
7/18 -- Sioux Falls, SD, Sioux Falls Jazz Festival
7/19 -- Walker, MN, Moondance Ranch Jam Festival
7/20 -- Mankato, MN, Vetter Stone Amphitheatre
Will Ferrell Accepts Drum Challenge from Red Hot Chili Peppers' Chad Smith
The drum challenge is on. Last week Red Hot Chili Peppers drummer Chad Smith challenged his celebrity look-alike Will Ferrell to a drum battle. Now the comic actor has accepted the challenge.
Ferrell jumped on a recent Redditt Ask Me Anything session with the drummer to respond to the challenge. "I graciously accept your invitation to a drum battle," the actor wrote. "If we can raise $300,000 for Cancer For College I will face off with you in the greatest drum vs. cowbell showdown the world has ever seen. We can do it on stage at a Red Hot Chili Peppers concert or in front of a mutually convenient public library. Your call."
The pair have yet to set a time or date for the epic showdown.
The Doors' Robby Krieger Shares New Details About Planned Ray Manzarek Tribute Concert
Doors drummer John Densmore recently told ABC News Radio that the tribute concert he and guitarist Robby Krieger are planning to honor their late band mate Ray Manzarek likely won't t