Rock 'n' Roll

Los Lobos to Perform at The White House

"In Performance at the White House: Fiesta Latina" is a concert hosted by the President and Mrs. Obama on the South Lawn of the White House that will be broadcast by PBS.  The sixty-minute program, to be taped live by WETA Washington, D.C., on October 13, will celebrate Hispanic musical heritage and airs on the final day of National Hispanic Heritage Month, October 15, 2009 at 8 p.m. ET, on PBS stations nationwide.  (Check local listings.)  It will also be broadcast on Telemundo, the American Spanish-language television network, on Sunday, October 18 at 6 p.m. ET, and on V-me, the national Spanish language network partnered with public television, on Friday, December 25.  The program, part of the WETA "In Performance at the White House" series, will include Chicano rock band Los Lobos, Marc Anthony, Jimmy Smits, Pete Escovedo, Gloria Estefan, José Feliciano, George Lopez, Thalía, Tito "El Bambino", and the Bachata music group Aventura, with Sheila E. leading the house band.  Further talent information may be announced in the coming days.

"In Performance at the White House" has been produced by WETA since 1978 and spans every administration since President Carter's.  The series began with an East Room recital by the legendary pianist Vladimir Horowitz.  Since then, "In Performance at the White House" has embraced virtually every genre of American performance: pop, country, gospel, jazz, blues, theatre and dance among them.  The series was created to showcase the rich fabric of American culture in the setting of the nation's most famous home.

The evening concert will be streamed live by the White House on www.WhiteHouse.gov and available to stream on the series website on pbs.org after the broadcast.

VIRGIN/EMI TO RELEASE 'JETHRO TULL: LIVE AT MADISON SQUARE GARDEN 1978'

On October 20, Virgin/EMI will release a classic Jethro Tull concert for the first time, in DVD/CD and digital audio collections. Filmed and recorded live in New York City on October 14, 1978, Jethro Tull: Live At Madison Square Garden 1978 features more than 90 minutes of music and video presented in 5.1 DTS and Dolby Surround©.

Jethro Tull: Live At Madison Square Garden 1978, documented during Tull's “Heavy Horses" tour, includes stellar performances of many of the band's most popular songs, including “Aqualung,” “Locomotive Breath,” “Songs From The Wood,” “Thick As A Brick,” “Heavy Horses,” and many more.  This concert also marked the first time a rock act was beamed live from America on British television.

Jethro Tull has released 30 studio and live albums, selling more than 60 million copies since the band first performed at London's famous Marquee club. Tull's founder, the influential singer and flautist Ian Anderson, will tour to 20 U.S. cities in October and November, following a tour of the U.K. this month.

Creedence Clearwater Revival boxed 'The Singles Collection' ready on Nov. 3

Creedence Clearwater Revival's golden era of hit singles (fall of 1968 through spring of 1972) rivals that of any band in rock 'n' roll history.  The Southern-flavored quartet from El Cerrito, Calif., turned out 17 hits in a 44-month stretch, nine of them in the Top 10, five of them in the Top 5.

On November 3, Fantasy Records will release The Singles Collection, a two-CD, one-DVD box with a slip case, containing all of the band's U.S. singles -- 30 songs in all. Top 5 smashes like "Bad Moon Rising," "Green River," "Down on the Corner," "Travelin' Band," "Who'll Stop the Rain," "Run Through the Jungle," "Up Around the Bend," "Long As I Can See the Light" and "Lookin' Out My Back Door" are joined by seldom-heard singles that never charted ("Porterville" and "Call It Pretending" on Fantasy's Scorpio subsidiary, and later singles "Tearin' Up the Country" and "45 Revolutions Per Minute [Parts 1 & 2]").

The 30 songs, (which are presented in their original single mixes, manyost of them in mono --- are making their CD debut), housed on two CDs, will be joined by a DVD containing four never-before-available, long-pre-MTV music videos: "I Heard it Through the Grapevine," "Bootleg," "I Put a Spell on You" and "Lookin' Out My Back Door." Also included in the package are a poster featuring the dozens of international single sleeves, and a 16-page booklet with liner notes by former Rolling Stone editor Ben Fong-Torres, who lived and wrote in the Bay Area during CCR's golden half-decade.

Fantasy will also manufacture a limited edition collectors' version of The Singles Collection featuring actual vinyl 45 rpm singles with reproductions of the original Fantasy label design and housed in their rare picture sleeves-- the ultimate holiday gift for Creedence fans.

The members of Creedence Clearwater Revival, of course, hailed from the suburbs of Oakland the little town of El Cerrito, lappeding up music on the radio through the late ' '50s and '60s, and eventually signed to a small, open-minded jazz label in Berkeley called Fantasy Records. Originally known as the Tommy Fogerty & the Blue Velvets and then The Golliwogs, the band's break came with its swampy 1968 cover of Dale Hawkins' "Suzie Q," which notched #11 on Billboard's pop singles chart. Starting on San Francisco's free-form rock radio stations, the song crossed over top Top 40, putting Creedence on the map. As Fong-Torres notes, "radio needed acts like CCR -- reliable producers of solid tunes laden with hooks."

Even in the South, radio was taken with CCR. DJ Scott Shannon, then on Memphis' WMPS-AM, was a Dale Hawkins fan and thought Fogerty nailed it. "His voice and his mixes were perfect for Top 40," he said. "It just screamed out of the AM radios."

But it wasn't just the radio. CCR songs began popping up in movies and TV shows -- several dozens of them, in fact. "Bad Moon Rising" has shown up the most often (including in An American Werewolf in London), and "Fortunate Son" has been heard in films ranging from The Manchurian Candidate (2004) to Live Free or Die Hard (2007).

"I used to say in 1968 that I wanted to make records they would still play on the radio in ten years," John Fogerty said in early 1993, on the eve of Creedence Clearwater Revival's induction into the Rock 'n' Roll Hall of Fame.

Forty years later, the music sounds as fresh and vital as ever.

Jim McPherson: A Promise Kept

The story of Jim McPherson is the story of what might have been – a legendarily gifted musician whose untimely passing robbed us of an unknowable wealth of music. He earned considerable recognition for the Jefferson Starship’s hit “Jane,” which he co-wrote with David Freiberg, but that was only a tiny bit of his creative outpouring.   Against all odds, a fine collection of his songs has been preserved and now assembled.  It’s a message in a bottle, a fragment of an artist’s life from twenty years ago, with performances by some of the Bay Area’s finest musicians - -

 

jimJim grew up on the West Side of Chicago in the 1950s, the golden era of the urban blues, and they became a part of his musical DNA, passing from the radio into his bones.  He got “the fever,” as the saying had it.  As a young boy he played violin, attending the Mozart School of Music, but soon moved on to drums, bass, keyboards and guitar: he mastered them all.  After attending college in Idaho, Jim transferred to San Jose State in California, which put him right in the Bay Area music scene of 1964.  There he met up with Dennis Carrasco, Bob Rominger, and Roger Hedge, his musical collaborators for the next several years.  Their first band was the Trolls, which morphed into the popular and respected Stained Glass, with several singles on RCA Records, including “My Buddy Sin” and “A Scene In-Between.”   The Glass recorded two albums for Capitol, Crazy Horse Roads and Aurora; Tom Bryant joined the group as Rominger and Hedge left. The band later evolved into Christian Rapid. Though he was always a team player – and one of the finest bass players around – Jim was most definitely the musical leader of all these outfits, contributing the vast majority of their material.

 

Jim left San Jose in 1971 and moved to Marin County along with many other like-minded exiles from the era of San Francisco in the ‘60s.  He’d been working with Frank Werber (who’d managed the Kingston Trio to fame and fortune), but Frank was retiring, and sent him to the manager of the Quicksilver Messenger Service, Ron PoltePolte recalled that Jim came by one day, pulled out an acoustic guitar, and “charmed me in 15 minutes…he was accomplished, like a terrific magician.  I was completely taken.”  So Ron sent him to John Cipollina.

 

Jim met up with John Cipollina and joined John’s first post-Quicksilver Messenger Service venture, a band called Copperhead.  David Weber, Gary Phillipet and Pete Sears had already been recruited. Pete later went on to join the Jefferson Starship and was replaced by Hutch Hutchinson. Gary Philippet and Kent Housman wrote the single “Roller Derby Star” for the Copperhead album, and Jim’s ‘Chameleon’ was on the flip side.   Though his visibility was not as high as in the past, Jim was actually Copperhead’s main songwriter, his talents as quirky and notable as before.

 

He recorded with various other groups in the Bay Area and began work on a solo album at The Barn, on Mickey Hart’s ranch in Novato, California, laying down a considerable amount of strong material before his rapidly failing health ultimately hindered his ability to complete it.

 

Hart was so impressed with Jim’s songwriting and performance skills that he put together a band to showcase it – one of the fond memories of early-80s Bay Area music, High Noon, which featured Jim on vocals, keyboards, and rhythm guitar, Mickey Hart on drums, Bobby Vega on bass, Merl Saunders on vocals and keys, Vicki Randle on vocals, percussion, and rhythm guitar (lots of switching around in this band!), Michael Hinton on lead guitar, and Norton Buffalo on harp and vocals.  Two of he songs on this CD, “Left Out in the Cold,” which was co-written with Merl, and Jim’s “Cross the Bridge,” are performed here by High Noon and were graciously earmarked for it.  Also during this era, Jim’s friendship with bass player Bobby Vega solidified in, and they wrote several tunes together, one of which, “The Real Deal,” is included in this project.

 

Jim performed frequently with Merl Saunders, and together they also wrote the song “Play the Paris Blues,” which was heard on the television series “Simon and Simon.”  Merl recorded the tune with Dr. John and it was Dr. John’s part that found its way onto the San Francisco-based show “Nash Bridges.”

 

The years passed, but interest in these songs has remained high – mostly from musicians in the know.  Finally, the right elements fell into place.  Twenty-four years after she promised her husband Jim to complete his legacy, Executive Producer Evy McPherson explained, “This CD celebrates a completed life, and that changes its scope.  If Jim had been around, this CD might have been very different.  But in these circumstances, I felt it had to represent all of his many dimensions – so there are blues songs, country songs, love songs, even a funk song…Because he could do anything.”

 

We can speculate on what might have been – but here in A Promise Kept you have what he was able to do – and it is genuine treasure, the work of a truly superlative songwriter.  Your ears will tell you so.

Eagles Radio Hosted by Joe Walsh Debuts Interviews w/ Ringo Starr & More Labor Day Weekend

The virtual airwaves are heating up this fall as "Eagles Radio Hosted by Joe Walsh" kicks off an incredible series of features that can only be found on the band's official Artist Personal Experience online radio station.  As traditional radio segues into their yearly Labor Day countdowns of songs, the Eagles promise-and deliver-something new and exciting.  Beginning September 4th, A.P.E.

Zack Borer Band Chosen Again To Play Side Stage - Nikon At Jones Beach

On the heels of an incredible performance at Nikon at Jones Beach Theater’s Side Stage just two weeks ago, the zAck borer band has again been selected to perform during yet another Platinum-selling, award-winning artist’s tour on Friday August 7th.  For a complete listing of bands and headliners performing at the Jones Beach Theater on this date, visit www.livenation.com/venue/nikon-at-jones-beach-theater-tickets/

zack“I am excited that we have been chosen to perform on the same nights as such talented artists I’ve always looked up to,” said zAck borer.  “We’re more focused and determined than ever before and are looking forward to returning to Jones Beach to share the new music we’ve been working on all summer.”

zAck’s ongoing unsigned journey finds him in the running to be named the MTV Video Music Awards’ “Best Breakout Artist in NYC.” Fans are encouraged to vote for zAck’s song “That’s The Way” by August 14th at
http://www.ourstage.com/judge?channel=207-mtv-vma-best-breakout-nyc. The top 3 finalists will battle it out at a MTV2 & Time Warner Cable VMA weekend pre-party. The winning band will be revealed locally the night of the VMAs and showcased nationally on MTV2’s Rail N Rock or Sucker Free!

In addition to the Jones Beach side stage shows, fans of the band and music lovers alike can catch the zAck borer band in New York City at the following dates and locations:

* August 27, 2009 – 9PM, The Bitter End, 147 Bleecker Street, New York 10012
* September 19, 2009 – 9PM, dromNYC, 85 Avenue A, New York, 10009

"...As a 25 year old dude who mostly likes rap music I found it to be one of the most enjoyable full albums that I have heard in a while"-- Westsidewill- Wild Off The Air (July, 2009) Full album review here:
http://westsidewill.com/newblog/2009/07/23/zack-borer-home-album-review/

LIVING COLOUR Announce North American Tour

Living Colour have announced North American tour dates in support of their new album The Chair In The Doorway. The highly anticipated 28-date run will be bookended by performances at The Highline Ballroom in New York City, as they appear August 10 opening for The Roots at their weekly Tuesday night jam session and then again on October 30 for their own headline performance. In between, the band will hit 19 states around the U.S., including a return to The Key Club in Los Angeles on September 24, The Regency Grand Ballroom in San Francisco on September 25 and The Double Door in Chicago on October 4. They'll cross the border for a show in Toronto at Lee's Palace on October 3.

 

living-colourThe Chair In The Doorway, set for release September 15 on Megaforce Records, was recorded at Sono Studios just outside of Prague in the Czech Republic. Renowned producer Count (Galactic, Lyrics Born, No Doubt) was onboard to helm the sessions, while Ron St. Germain (U2, Mos Def, Muse) mixed the album. The 11-track collection is Living Colour's most personal collection of songs yet with razor sharp lyrical observations and kinetic jams that seamlessly weave elements of metal, funk and soul. Vernon Reid described the album as, "an unintentional concept record about life and how we are all in this thing together."

 

Living Colour formed out of New York City in the mid-'80s. Their incendiary performances at CBGBs became the stuff of legend. The Rolling Stones' Mick Jagger, who witnessed one of these shows, was so impressed that he insisted upon producing a demo for the fledgling band and later helped them score a record deal. Living Colour's debut album Vivid went double platinum and garned the band a Grammy Award. Around this same time, the band's founder, Vernon Reid, helped form the Black Rock Coalition to help create opportunities for African-American musicians playing rock music in a largely segregated music business. The results of these efforts paired with Living Colour's own success helped pave the way for artists like Ben Harper, Rage Against The Machine and TV On The Radio. In 2007, Living Colour's hit song "Cult Of Personality" was selected for Guitar Hero III. The game has gone onto sell over 14 million copies, introducing the band to a new generation of fans.

 

Upcoming Living Colour tour dates are:
 
August 10 | The Highline Ballroom | New York, NY (w/ The Roots)
September 1 | The Birchmere | Alexandria, VA
September 2 | Bottle & Cork | Dewey Beach, DE
September 3 | World Cafe Live | Philadelphia, PA
September 4 | The Crazy Donkey | Farmingdale, NY
September 6 | Infinity Hall | Norfolk, CT
September 8 | Tupelo Music Hall | Londonderry, NH
September 9 | FTC @ Stage One | Farfield, CT
September 10 | Johnny D's | Somerville, MA
September 11 | Mexicali Live | Teaneck, NJ
September 12 | Rams Head Tavern | Annapolis, MD
September 14 | The Loft | Atlanta, GA
September 15 | HOB Orlando | Lake Buena Vista, FL
September 16 | Jannus Landing | St. Petersburg, FL
September 18 | Emo's | Austin, TX
September 19 | Granada Theatre | Dallas, TX
September 20 | Warehouse Live | Houston, TX
September 23 | Canes Bar and Grill | San Diego, CA
September 24 | The Key Club | West Hollywood, CA
September 25 | Regency Grand Ballroom | San Francicso, CA
September 26 | Berbatis Pan | Portland, OR
September 27 | Studio Seven | Seattle, WA
September 30 | Fine Line Music Cafe | Minneapolis, MN
October 2 | The Magic Bag | Detroit, MI
October 3 | Lee's Palace | Toronto, Ontario
October 4 | Double Door | Chicago, IL
October 5 | The Grog Shop | Cleveland, OH
October 30 | Highline Ballroom | New York, NY

California '66 Revue tour brings Electric Prunes, Love & Moby Grape

Three premiere bands of the Los Angeles psychedelic era of the late ’60s will join forces August 4-18, 2009 for the California ’66 Revue tour. The Electric Prunes, Love and, for the April 12-18 dates, Jerry Miller from Moby Grape will bring the spirit of Sunset Strip and San Francisco in the late ’60s up the East Coast and into Canada and the Midwest.

Miller joined the tour when Sky “Sunlight” Saxon of The Seeds, originally booked, passed away unexpectedly on June 25. The tour will continue in Saxon’s memory.

According to promoter Patrick Hand, “A major reason I'm promoting this tour is that the Electric Prunes are the best rock band in the world right now. Just listen to 'Feedback.' They sound like 20-year-olds. The Electric Prunes are the only band from the 1960s who are putting out better music now than then.  And the music they put out then was pretty damn good.”

The current incarnation of Love is led by Johnny Echols, lead guitarist in the classic 1966-68 lineup, and will be backed by Baby Lemonade, the latter-day psychedelic L.A. band that accompanied Love founding member Arthur Lee from 1993 until his 2005 death. Jerry Miller will perform songs from his tenure with Moby Grape as well as other eras of his 50-year recording career.

The tour begins in August 4 at Johnny Brenda’s in Philadelphia and ends on August 18 at the Birchmere outside Washington, D.C. Other tour cities include New York, Chicago, Toronto, Montreal, Cleveland, Detroit, Philadelphia and Pittsburgh.

love“We wanted to do a few shows in intimate venues to see if there is still interest in this genre, and we’ve already passed that test,” adds Hand. “If the public is as enthusiastic in attending the shows as the clubs have been in booking, then I have no doubt we’ll be back on the road again, in the West Coast and the U.K.”
 

About the artists:

The Electric Prunes: In 1966, a sonic blast of feedback, tremolo and fuzz emerged from the confines of a Los Angeles garage. The Electric Prunes’ electrifying single “I Had Too Much To Dream (Last Night),” widely recognized as one of the first psychedelic hit records, heralded a transition period in popular music. Their combination of psychedelia and bluesy grit offered a unique auditory experience that was a far cry from the pop music popular at the time. A cut from the band’s Mass in F Minor concept album was selected for the soundtrack of the classic road movie Easy Rider. Unlike many of their contemporaries, the Electric Prunes were capable of reproducing their distinctive recording sounds in live performances. They continue to perform across the world, stewarded by founding members Mike Tulin and James Lowe.
 
• Love: Led by the late singer/songwriter/guitarist Arthur Lee, this interracial Los Angeles band was among the most influential and original of its era. Love’s creative impact on other artists from the mid-’60s right up to this very day outweighs the commercial success of their brief but highly productive heyday. The 1967 epic Forever Changes, a suite of songs using acoustic guitars, strings and horns recorded while the band was falling apart as the result of various abuses, is widely cited as one of rock’s all-time greatest albums. Since Arthur Lee’s death in 2005, the legacy of Love has been carried forward by its founding guitarist/songwriter Johnny Echols along with Baby Lemonade.
 
Jerry Miller, who Eric Clapton is reported to have called the “best guitar player in the world,” is best known as the lead guitarist in late ‘60s San Francisco three-guitarist band Moby Grape, which signed to Columbia and recorded four albums between 1966-69. He co-wrote with member Don Stevenson the classics “Hey Grandma” (covered by the Move) and “Murder in My Heart for the Judge” (covered by Three Dog Night and Lee Michaels.) Earlier in his career, Miller played with Bobby Fuller in his predecessor band to the Bobby Fuller Four. Following the Grape’s 1970 dissolution, Miller joined two Grape bandmates in the Rhythm Dukes, and later shared the stage with Jimi Hendrix, The Doors, Eric Clapton, Taj Mahal and Robert Plant. Originally from the Pacific Northwest, Miller is once again based in his hometown of Tacoma.
 

grapeCALIFORNIA ’66 REVUE DATES
Tuesday, August 4 PHILADELPHIA, PA Johnny Brenda’s
Wednesday, August 5 HOBOKEN, NJ  Maxwell’s
Thursday, August 6 FAIRFIELD,CT Quick Center; benefit for WPKN-FM radio (with guests the Blues Magoos)
Friday, August 7  CAMBRIDGE, MA  Middle East
Saturday, August 8 MONTREAL, QU  Theater Plaza; affiliated with the “Teenbeat Takeover Woolly Weekend.”
Sunday, August 9 NEW YORK, NY  B.B. King’s
Monday, August 10  FOXBORO, MA  Patriot’s Place
Wednesday, August 12 CHICAGO, IL  Double Door*
Thursday, August 13 MILWAUKEE, WI Shank Hall*
Friday, August 14 TORONTO, ON  Lee’s Palace*
Saturday, August 15 DETROIT, MI  The Magic Bag*
Sunday, August 16 CLEVELAND, OH  Beachland Ballroom*
Monday, August 17 PITTSBURGH, PA  Hard Rock Café*
Tuesday, August 18 ALEXANDRIA, VA (DC AREA)  Birchmere*

* denotes dates with Jerry Miller from Moby Grape on bill.

The Fabulous Thunderbirds play Colorado Springs, July 24

For over thirty years, The Fabulous Thunderbirds have been the quintessential American band. The group's distinctive and powerful sound, influenced by a diversity of musical styles, manifested itself into a unique musical hybrid via such barnburners as “Tuff Enuff” and “Wrap It Up.”

thunderbirdsFounding member Kim Wilson spearheads the group as it evolves into its newest incarnation. “We started as a straight blues band.” vocalist and harmonica player Wilson says. “We now incorporate a mixture of a lot of different styles. We're an American music band and we're higher energy than ever before.” The Fabulous Thunderbirds features Jay Moeller on drums, Johnny Moeller and Mike Keller on guitar, and Randy Bermudes on bass.

Wilson’s musical talents have garnered him multiple Blues Awards and Grammy Nominations. The Blues Foundation 2008 blues Music Awards named Wilson "Instrumentalist - Harmonica" category.  In 2006, he was named “Contemporary Blues Male Artist of the Year” in 2006, and “Lookin’ for Trouble!” was named Blues Song of the Year in 2004. Wilson has contributed to the work of many other great artists such as the legendary Muddy Waters (who called him his “son”), contemporary artist Bonnie Raitt, guitar legends Stevie Ray Vaughn and brother Jimmy Vaughn, and Martin Scorsese’s movie “The Blues." With his current movie project “Cadillac Records,” Wilson continues to focus on the music he loves.

With over 20 albums recorded and millions sold, Kim Wilson and The Fabulous Thunderbirds tour the world performing their own unique style of music. Ranging from pop anthems like “Powerful Stuff” which was featured in the Tom Cruise movie “Cocktail," to the low down blues of "Chicago," this brand of honest music brings fans back time and again.

Having shared the stage with The Rolling Stones, Joe Cocker, Carlos Santana and blues legends BB King and Buddy Guy and countless others, The Fabulous Thunderbirds continue to tour Europe and the North America, bringing more great music to their fans worldwide.

Their new CD (tentative title “Pay Back Time”) is to be released in mid-2009.

Grand Funk Railroad to play Elitch Gardens, May 16

Grand Funk Railroad will be playing the Elitch Arena, in Elitch Gardens, in Denver on May 16 at 7 PM.  Tickets to the show are free with the price of admission to the gardens.   There are different kinds of tickets to the Gardens, from daily tickets to season passes. The venue phone is 303-595-4386, and the web site is http://www.elitchgardens.com.

Formed in 1969, Grand Funk was born out of the ashes of Terry Knight & The Pack, another band from Flint, Michigan.  Currently the group includes original founding members Don Brewer (vocals and drums, writer and singer of the hit, "We're An American Band") and bassist Mel Schacher.  Joining Don and Mel are true "ALL-STARS"-- Max Carl (38 Special, Jack Mack and the Heart Attack, Max Carl and Big Dance), lead guitarist Bruce Kulick (12 years with KISS and credits with Michael Bolton, Meatloaf and Billy Squier), and keyboardist Tim Cashion (Bob Seger and Robert Palmer).

Together, Brewer and Schacher have created a dynamic and multi-talented five piece band that will not only carry on the tradition of Grand Funk hits, but also has the potential to create a new chapter in the legacy of Grand Funk Railroad.  With Grand Funk reforming in 2000, this new chapter in the band's biography is being written daily.  Both seasoned Grand Funk lovers and contemporary rock fans-- discovering the group for the first time on CDs and VH-1-- will be able to see and hear firsthand that Grand Funk Railroad's train is back on track.