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Classic blues singer Alberta Hunter reissued on RockBeat Records

It’s difficult to decide which was the most remarkable facet of pioneering blues chanteuse Alberta Hunter’s incredible career. Was it her role in the vanguard of the “classic blues” movement of the early 1920s, when she recorded prolifically for Paramount and other labels during the industry’s first foray into the idiom? Her entertainment of grateful U.S. troops during not one war, but two? Or her heartwarming late 1970s/early 1980s comeback on the New York cabaret circuit after more than two decades away from singing professionally, when she was well into her 80s? One fact is inescapable: when she died on October 17, 1984 in New York at age 89, Hunter was a genuine star once more.

In 1974, the singer had largely retired from music due to health concerns. But musical pursuits called once again when club owner Barney Josephson invited her to star for six weeks at the Cookery, his hip Greenwich Village cabaret, in October 1977. The live recording of a subsequent 1981 Cookery performance resulted in Downhearted Blues: Live at the Cookery, which will be released on both CD and 180-gram vinyl August 30, 2011 on RockBeat Records, a new label focused on quality reissues and new recordings by heritage artists, distributed by eOne Distribution. Musicologist Bill Dahl contributed liner notes. (The title was previously available on CD, but has been re-mastered and will now be available on CD and 180-gram vinyl for the first time.)

Born on April 1, 1895 in Memphis, Hunter was weaned on W.C. Handy’s pioneering blues. By 16 she was in Chicago in the midst of a celebrated five-year residence at the city’s Dreamland club, singing in front of King Oliver & His Creole Jazz Band with Louis Armstrong. Hunter made her recording debut in 1921 for Black Swan Records, one of the first black-owned labels, with “How Long, Sweet Daddy, How Long” b/w “Bring Back the Joys.” From there she went to Paramount Records, cutting half a dozen sides including the original “Down Hearted Blues,” which she wrote with piano accompanist Lovie Austin and forcefully revisited on the 1981 live album.  (Bessie Smith, the immortal Empress of the Blues, ended up scoring a bigger hit with the song in 1923.) Hunter continued to record prolifically for Paramount, backed by Fletcher Henderson and, on 1923’s “Stingaree Blues,” Fats Waller.

Having conquered Chicago, Hunter moved to New York in 1923. She recorded for Gennett, OKeh, RCA Victor and Columbia. During this time she ventured to jazz-obsessed France in 1927, where she co-starred with Paul Robeson in a production of Showboat and recorded into the ’30s for HMV. When she returned to the U.S., she recorded for ARC, Decca and Bluebird.  She hosted a radio program in the ’30s and Broadway welcomed her back in 1939, when she shared the stage with Ethel Waters in Mamba’s Daughters. When World War II broke out, Hunter boldly served her country in the USO, entertaining troops across the globe. She continued into the Korean conflict.

There were scattered post-war sessions. But when her beloved mother died in 1954 and after starring in a Broadway flop, Hunter bowed out of performing to train as a nurse. Upon graduation in 1957 at age 62 — an age at which many folks contemplate retirement — she began a new career at a New York hospital. Other than recording a couple of Chris Albertson-produced LPs cut two weeks apart in 1961 (Songs We Taught Your Mother, a set for Prestige Bluesville also featuring Victoria Spivey and Lucille Hegamin) and Chicago: The Living Legends for Riverside, she kept a determinedly low profile for more than two decades — afraid the hospital would learn how far past mandatory retirement age she was and let her go.

In 1974, Hunter was forced out of her job by hospital regulations. It was October 1977 when Cookery’s Josephson invited her to headline his room. Next, legendary A&R man John Hammond cut an album’s worth of her classics (with a few new ones) for the Columbia soundtrack of director Alan Rudolph’s 1978 film Remember My Name. Dick Cavett and Mike Douglas invited her to brighten their TV talkfests, 60 Minutes profiled her, and Columbia recorded three more albums.

The live recordings that form Downhearted Blues: Live at the Cookery are from one of her many triumphant evenings at the club. Her sense of swing and theatricality remained impeccable, with longtime pianist and arranger Gerald Cook and sturdy upright bassist Jimmy Lewis providing sterling accompaniment. Hunter glided through saucy double-entendre-loaded numbers (“Handy Man,” “Two-Fisted Workin’ Man”), time-honored standards (a rip-roaring “I Got Rhythm,” the tender “Georgia On My Mind”), and the touching ballads “The Love I Have From You” (from Remember My Name) and “You’re Welcome To Come Back Home.”

Leon Russell @ Boulder Roots & Blues Summit

Leon Russell is a music legend and perhaps the most accomplished and versatile musician in the history of rock 'n roll. In his distinguished and unique 50 year career, he has played on, arranged, written and/or produced some of the best records in popular music.

Leon has played on pop, rock, blues, country, bluegrass, standards, gospel, and surf records. As a session musician, arranger, producer, singer, songwriter, pianist, guitarist, record company owner, bandleader, and touring musician, he has collaborated with hundreds of artists, including Glen Campbell, Joe Cocker, Willie Nelson, Edgar Winter, George Harrison, Eric Clapton, Bob Dylan, Ringo Starr, John Lennon, J.J. Cale, David Gates, Bruce Hornsby, Hal Blaine, Tommy Tedesco, Bobby "Boris" Pickett, B.B. King, Freddie King, Bill Wyman, Steve Cropper, Carl Radle, Chuck Blackwell, Don Preston, Jesse Ed Davis, Rita Coolidge, Gram Parsons, Barbra Streisand, Ike & Tina Turner, Ricky Nelson, Herb Alpert, Frank Sinatra, Aretha Franklin, Ann-Margret, Dean Martin, Marvin Gaye, Dave Mason, Steve Winwood, and groups such as Delaney & Bonnie and Friends, The Monkees, The Astronauts, The Accents, The Fencemen, The Ventures, The Beach Boys, The Byrds, Jan & Dean, Gary Lewis & The Playboys, Paul Revere & The Raiders, The Rolling Stones, The Ronettes, The Crystals, The Nitty Gritty Dirt Band, The Everly Brothers, The Righteous Brothers, The Flying Burrito Brothers, The Tractors and on and on and on.

Born in southwest Oklahoma in 1942, Leon began piano lessons at age 4. He was playing in Tulsa nightclubs at the age of 14. After graduating from high school, Leon's band, The Starlighters, went on the road with Jerry Lee Lewis. Leon left Tulsa at the age of 17 for Los Angeles where he began playing in the L.A. clubs and eventually became one of the best session musicians in Hollywood. He worked with the best Hollywood producers and top musicians in the business. Leon became part of an elite group of studio musicians called the Wrecking Crew and played on hundreds of hit records in the 1960's. He was part of studio groups such as The Routers and The Super Stocks. The Routers recorded the huge hit "Let's Go" and The Super Stocks recorded surf and hot rod tunes. In 1964, Leon was a member of the the house band on the Shindig! show on ABC television which showcased the top pop acts. Leon built a recording studio in his home in 1967 where he and Marc Benno recorded songs which were released on two critically acclaimed records as the 'Asylum Choir'.

Leon co-produced, arranged, and played piano, organ, and guitar on Joe Cocker's second album, 'Joe Cocker!' in 1969. He also recorded and toured with 'Delaney & Bonnie & Friends'.

Leon founded Shelter Records with partner Denny Cordell and released Leon's first solo album, "Leon Russell" in May, 1970. It included Beatles George Harrison and Ringo Starr, Rolling Stones Bill Wyman and Charlie Watts, Steve Winwood, Eric Clapton, and Klaus Voorman. The album contained classic Leon songs, 'A Song For You', along with 'Hummingbird', and 'Delta Lady'.

Shelter Records was home for not only Leon but many other artists such as Freddie King, Don Nix, J.J. Cale, Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers, The Gap Band, Dwight Twilley and Phoebe Snow. Leon played on and produced three Shelter albums for blues guitarist Freddie King.

As a songwriter, Leon's songs have hit the charts across all genres and have been covered by a diverse range of artists. Ray Charles recorded 'A Song For You', B.B. King had a hit with 'Hummingbird', The Carpenters with 'Superstar' and Joe Cocker with 'Delta Lady'. The Carpenter's cover of "Superstar", written by Leon and Bonnie Bramlett, went to #2 on the pop music charts. George Benson won the "Record of the Year" Grammy in 1976 for his cover of Leon's song, "This Masquerade", and it became the first song in music history to hit #1 on the jazz, pop and R&B charts.

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More Info / Buy Tickets

National Jazz Museum in Harlem Jan. 3 - Jan. 9, 2011

The electric bass was actually Christian McBride’s first instrument. He began playing at age 8 when Jaco Pastorious was the bass guitar's standard bearer, having created masterpieces with the group Weather Report as well as his eponymously titled first solo recording. Jaco Pastorious transformed the bass guitar into an instrument of fine art, and there are few better, if any, to discuss Pastorious than McBride. This will be a night to remember - whatever you do, make it to this free class, and bring a friend.

Tuesday, January 4, 2011
Jazz for Curious Listeners
Christian McBride Hosts: My Musical Heroes
7:00 – 8:30pm
Location: NJMH Visitors Center
(104 E. 126th Street, Suite 2C)
FREE | For more information: 212-348-8300
Christian’s Subject: Jaco Pastorious, Electric Bass Innovator
Friday, January 7, 2011

Signed to Sony Classical at the age of 17, Eldar has since established himself as one of the most brilliant and virtuosic solo jazz pianists of his generation. The possessor of a unique style, this is a rare solo performance in New York City. Along the way, Eldar’s had the good fortune to work with masters such as Dr. Billy Taylor, Dave Brubeck, Michael Brecker, Herbie Hancock, among others. The performance space is a wonderful place to hear acoustic music – no microphones, just a lot of wood to give the sound depth and warmth. This is a wonderful way to break in the New Year with live music!

Harlem in the Himalayas
Eldar, Pianist
7:00pm
Location: Rubin Museum of Art
(150 West 17th Street)
$18 in advance | $20 at door |
For tickets: RMA Box Office or call 212-620-5000 ext. 344

MIKE + RUTHY'S FOLK CITY Tonight At Cornelia Street Café

Mike + Ruthy's Folk City is the new 4th-Wednesday series at Cornelia Street Cafe. This month Mike + Ruthy will be inviting the family on stage for a heart-warming evening of American roots music! Jay Ungar and Molly Mason achieved international acclaim when their performance of Jay's composition, Ashokan Farewell, became the musical hallmark of Ken Burns' The Civil War on PBS. When the whole family band gets together, they'll have your toes tapping with everything from cajun to celtic fiddle tunes and favorites from the golden age of country and swing. reservations strongly reccommend.

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Wed  Oct 27th 8:30PM      
MIKE + RUTHY'S FOLK CITY, (JAY UNGAR & MOLLY MASON FAMILY BAND)
(Jay Ungar, violin, mandolin; Molly Mason, guitar, piano; Ruthy Ungar, violin, guitar; Mike Merenda, banjo, percussion)

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CORNELIA STREET CAFÉ
29 Cornelia Street, NYC, New York    212-989-9319
http://www.corneliastreetcafe.com

Kids of Widney High Release Full-Length Documentary

“After I take over the world, I want to learn how to play the bass,” says effervescent, long-time Kids of Widney High member Cain Fonseca. One of nine singer/songwriters, Cain is a young adult from East LA with developmental disabilities who—along with the rest of the Kids—writes, records, and performs his own unique brand of rock music.

Begun in 1988 at special-education high school Joseph P. Widney High, the Kids grew out of an adaptive songwriting class that is still in operation today and continues to churn out specialized musicians and singers, some of whom have formed their own permutation of “Kids of Widney High”-esque bands.

Having in the past been compared to the likes of: Daniel Johnston, Wesley Willis, Langley Schools Music Project, and Florence Foster Jenkins, the Kids of Widney High have been covered in both concert performances and on album recordings by such hot bands as: the Yeah Yeah Yeahs, the Aquabats, and Osaka Popstar (comprised of members of: the Ramones, the Misfits, and Black Flag). They also boast a dedicated fanbase that includes everyone from Marilyn Manson and Fiona Apple to actor James Garner and filmmaker Spike Jonze. Playing the LA leg of the Warped Tour some years back, a prominent record producer handed to the Kids their first album—made by an earlier lineup of members—that had at one time been owned by Kurt Cobain.

In the past, the Kids have worked with musical luminaries Jackson Browne (who assisted them with the recording of the second of four albums they have out to date), Mr. Bungle/Faith No More frontman Mike Patton (who took them on their first tour along with Bungle, and who put out a Kids album on indie pioneering label Ipecac), and various producers/writers from South Park who worked with the Kids and a similar group, MTV’s How’s Your News, on a television pilot some years back. The Kids were also prominently featured in comedic hit film The Ringer starring Johnny Knoxville and Katherine Heigl.

Having now broadened their artistic endeavors to encapsulate: fine art, films, music videos, short documentaries of their own, creative writings, poetry, and fashion designs, the Kids decided upon taking their first headlining, full-length tour up the West Coast (from Los Angeles to Seattle and back) two summers ago. Along the way, the Kids played a number of gigs at high-profile venues, made time for local print/online media syndicates and radio shows, exhibited their artwork and short films, and read their writings (including one oration at Beat epicenter City Lights in San Francisco).

Sponsored in part by Sony PlayStation, this tour was also an opportunity for the majority of Kids members—all of whom come from financially challenged backgrounds—to see a world outside of the city of Los Angeles. But, as Kids member (and self-proclaimed “class clown”) Peewee proudly intones, “We’re not here to tell a sob story. No! We’re having fun. Are you having fun?”

Act Your Age: The Kids of Widney High Story is a vibrant, life-affirming, funny, and wholly compassionate film that explores just what happens when a specialized group of artists such as the Kids of Widney High finally take to the road as they visit new cities and peoples, teaching their fans about the changing world of the disabled community at large. Along the way, the Kids fight, they love, they grow apart and together, they party—as do all raucous rock bands on such rapid-fire tours!—and come out the other end, as Kids frontman Shelly Goodhope says of himself, “A better man.”

Supplemented by over ten years of footage from various venues, fans, groupies, and the Kids themselves, Act Your Age is also an incredibly intimate portrait of a subculture that has been for far too long misunderstood and, ultimately, disenfranchised in the eyes of the general mainstream public.

Comparable to such independent mainstay music documentaries as: Dig!, End of the Century, and Fugazi’s Instrument, Act Your Age: The Kids of Widney High Story is a poignant and often funny look at a group of artists who are ready to challenge conventional notions about persons with disabilities and contemporary art in America today.

It’s time for everyone to see the world through the eyes of a Kid!

Learn more about The Kids of Widney High at:

www.KidsOfWidneyHigh.com.

www.YouTube.com/ProfKlickberg

www.MySpace.com/TheKidsOfWidneyHigh

Also, be sure to check out the FREE preview.  Here is information on the preview:

ACT YOUR AGE: THE KIDS OF WIDNEY HIGH STORY
Monday, October 18th & 7PM
99 minutes + Q&A with filmmaker and KOWH member
CU Campus, ATLAS 102
Trailer | Website | Youtube

Danielle Ate the Sandwich Releases New Album and Tours Coast to Coast

Danielle Ate the Sandwich is the musical persona of singer/songwriter and ukulele/guitar player Danielle Anderson. Born in Nebraska and living in Colorado since 2000, Danielle’s beautiful voice and unique songwriting are impossible to deny, but one glance at her chosen moniker and it’s clear she doesn’t take herself too seriously. Danielle Ate the Sandwich likes to have fun on record, onstage, and in life. And it’s infectious.

Described by Denver's Westword as, "cripplingly enchanting… her lyrics tell the story of a generation uncertainly coming of age in an age of uncertainty," Danielle might as well be the spokesperson for this brave new world. Part of a young breed of artists who are finding fame in new places, Danielle wasn’t discovered in a coffeehouse like her idols; she was ushered into stardom by YouTube.

A few years ago Danielle started making home videos featuring hokey skits and sweet acoustic songs. Her disarming charm and natural talent captured the hearts of fans around the world. She now has over 3.5 million views and 25,000 subscribers on YouTube and has toured the country, played the Mile High Music Festival, and performed at Colorado’s legendary Red Rocks Amphitheatre.

Though she may crack fun at everyone including herself and tell a few dirty jokes during the show, Danielle’s music is full of depth, nuance, and subject matter ranging from sex changes and death to hot dogs. She’s fiercely intelligent and witty as hell but completely disarming, and she’s not afraid to bust out covers like Hall & Oates’ “Rich Girl,” Miley Cyrus’ “Party In The U.S.A.” and TLC’s “Waterfalls.”

Danielle has certainly made more than a few fans by reworking popular songs until they feel like her own, but it’s her refreshing original material that keeps them coming back. In the summer of 2010 she released Two Bedroom Apartment, her third album and first effort in a professional studio. Upon its release, the album quickly shot to #5 on iTunes’ singer/songwriter chart, confirming the YouTube buzz and welcoming a new star to the indie world. Danielle Ate the Sandwich will be on tour this fall and winter, details below.


Danielle Ate the Sandwich Tour Dates

09/24/10 Denver, CO Lannie’s Clocktower Cabaret
09/25/10 Colorado Springs, CO The Loft
10/08/10 Englewood, CO Gothic Theatre
10/11/10 Los Angeles, CA Hotel Cafe
10/15/10 Eugene OR Uketoberfest Eugene Uke Festival
10/16/10 Santa Cruz, CA The Crepe Place
11/04/10 Vienna, VA Jammin Java
11/05/10 Easton, MD Stoltz Listening Room @ The Avalon Theatre
11/06/10 Brooklyn, NY Little Field Arts Center
11/08/10 New London, CT Oasis Room @ The Garden Arts Center
11/11/10 Clinton, NY The Barn at Hamilton College
11/13/10 Philadelphia, PA Tin Angel
11/21/10 Charleston, WV Mountain Stage

Elizabeth & the Catapult return with a new album "The Other Side of Zero" & Fall Tour Dates

“If I had to compare our albums,” says Elizabeth Ziman, the singer/songwriter/keyboardist behind Elizabeth & the Catapult, “I’d say Taller Children has the sarcastic lightness of a Woody Allen film, and the new record’s more like Kubrick or Lynch—a little darker, a little more tongue-in-cheek.”
Not that any of these shifts are a surprise. After all, Elizabeth learned how to manipulate moods through music at an early age, whether that meant performing a wildly-expressive piano piece or belting out bizarre harmonies in New York’s world-renowned Young People’s Chorus.
And now this: The Other Side of Zero, an Elizabeth & the Catapult album that started with a Lincoln Center song cycle—performed last spring after a commission from NPR’s John Schaefer—and a cover-to-cover study of Leonard Cohen’s Book of Longing collection. As the latter’s pages sunk in, Elizabeth couldn’t help but draw parallels between Cohen’s failure to meet Buddhist goals in a monastery and her own coming-of-age struggles in the big city. (The New York native grew up in the heart of Greenwich Village.)
She also wrote Elizabeth & the Catapult’s rawest set of recordings yet, including the clanging chords and galloping groove of “The Horse and the Missing Cart,” the sputtering, string-grazed percussion of “You and Me,” “We All Fall Down, the Buddhist twist on a classic love song, “Julian Darling,” a wake up call to a friend and the hopeful but heartbroken contrasts of “Thank You For Nothing.” And then there’s the title track. Led by a lean, winding piano line, it builds to a spine-tingling crescendo alongside the honey-dipped harmonies of Gillian Welch and Dave Rawlings—a collaboration that was completely unplanned. Not that you’d notice, considering how seamless it sounds.
Unlike their thoroughly-demoed debut—an album that took two years to complete—the Zero sessions boiled down to a month of recording with producer Tony Berg (Peter Gabriel, Phantom Planet, Jesca Hoop) and such respected sidemen as guitarist Blake Mills and Tom Waits’ longtime touring keyboardist, Patrick Warren. The result was rough but refined, bruised but beautiful, as if Berg had placed a mic in a room and walked away, letting Elizabeth and drummer/multi-instrumentalist Danny Molad do their thing.
As Molad puts it, “The record is more blatantly honest, even rude at times..." Elizabeth continues, "Even the happiest sounding pop songs on this record have a tinge of regret and darkness to them…And thank goodness for that. Ultimately that’s the only way I’d feel comfortable singing them. I’m drawn to the ambiguity like a menacing smile.”
Elizabeth & the Catapult Fall Tour Dates
Sept 25 - Variety Playhouse - Atlanta, GA #
Oct 2 - Rusty Rudder - Dewey Beach, DE    
Oct 7 - Bates College - Benjamin Mays Center - Lewiston, ME    
Oct 11 - 7th Street Entry - Minneapolis, MN *
Oct 12 - Cactus Club - Milwaukee, WI *   
Oct 13 - Schubas - Chicago, IL *   
Oct 14 - Radio Radio - Indianapolis, IN *  
Oct 15 - The Brillobox - Pittsburgh, PA *   
Oct 16 - Black Cat - Washington, DC *
Oct 22 - Cornell University, Just About Music Residence Hall - Ithaca, NY    
Oct 23 - Rockwood Music Hall - NY, NY    CMJ
Oct 28 - The Red Room @ Cafe 939 - Boston, MA    
Nov 4 - NightCat - Easton, MD
# w/ Aimee Mann
* w/ Jukebox the Ghost

Leon Russell, Fri Sept. 17 @ Boulder Theater

The ultimate rock & roll session man, Leon Russell's long and storied career includes collaborations with a virtual who's who of music icons spanning from Jerry Lee Lewis to Phil Spector to the Rolling Stones. A similar eclecticism and scope also surfaced in his solo work, which couched his charmingly gravelly voice in a rustic yet rich swamp pop fusion of country, blues and gospel. Born Claude Russell Bridges on April 2, 1942, in Lawton, OK, he began studying classical piano at age three, a decade later adopting the trumpet and forming his first band. At 14, Russell lied about his age to land a gig at a Tulsa nightclub, playing behind Ronnie Hawkins & the Hawks before touring in support of Jerry Lee Lewis. Two years later, he settled in Los Angeles, studying guitar under the legendary James Burton and appearing on sessions with Dorsey Burnette and Glen Campbell. As a member of Spector's renowned studio group, Russell played on many of the finest pop singles of the 1960s, also arranging classics like Ike & Tina Turner's monumental "River Deep, Mountain High"; other hits bearing his input include the Byrds' "Mr. Tambourine Man," Gary Lewis & the Playboys' "This Diamond Ring," and Herb Alpert's "A Taste of Honey."
In 1967, Russell built his own recording studio, teaming with guitarist Marc Benno to record the acclaimed Look Inside the Asylum Choir LP. While touring with Delaney & Bonnie, he scored his first songwriting hit with Joe Cocker's reading of "Delta Lady," and in 1970, upon founding his own Shelter Records imprint, he also organized Cocker's legendary Mad Dogs and Englishmen tour. After the subsequent tour film earned Russell his first real mainstream notoriety, he issued a self-titled solo LP, and in 1971 appeared at George Harrison's Concert for Bangladesh following sessions for B.B. King, Eric Clapton, and Bob Dylan. After touring with the Rolling Stones, Russell increasingly focused on his solo career, reaching the number two spot with 1972's Carny and scoring his first pop hit with the single "Tight Rope." While the success of 1973's three-LP set Leon Live further established his reputation as a top concert draw, response to the country inspired studio effort Hank Wilson's Back was considerably more lukewarm, as was the reception afforded to 1974's Stop All That Jazz. 1975's Will O' the Wisp, however, restored his commercial luster, thanks in large part to the lovely single "Lady Blue."
In June of 1975, Russell married singer Mary McCreary; the following year the couple collaborated on The Wedding Album, issued through his newly formed Paradise Records label. Also in 1976, the Russell-penned "This Masquerade" earned a Grammy Award for singer George Benson. He and McCreary reunited for 1977's Make Love to the Music, and upon completing the solo Americana, Russell teamed with Willie Nelson for 1979's Willie & Leon. He then spent the next two years touring with his bluegrass band, the New Grass Revival, issuing a live LP in 1981; although Paradise shut down later that year, the label was reactivated for 1984's Hank Wilson, Vol. II and Solid State. Russell spent the remainder of the decade largely outside of music and did not resurface until issuing the Bruce Hornsby produced Anything Can Happen in 1992. Hank Wilson, Vol. 3: Legend in My Time. Face in the Crowd appeared a year later.
21+ / Gold Circle: $51.00 / Reserved: $41.00 / GA: $30.00
On sale July 30
Tickets will be on sale through the Boulder Theater box office
Internet 24-7 at www.bouldertheater.com
Phone: During box office hours 303-786-7030

Rusty Anderson: Born On Earth out August 3rd

Los Angeles-based Rusty Anderson, lead guitarist for the Paul McCartney Band, will release his sophomore album, Born On Earth, late this summer, having recently inked a distribution deal with Megaforce. Anderson's album will hit stores on August 3, 2010.

Born On Earth is a loosely conceptual album that looks at modern life, contemplating what it's like, as individuals and in communities, to be alive in this era and on our planet. Musically, the album ranges from the howling, guitar-heavy title-track opener to the dreamy, power-pop of "Timed Exposure;" from the jaunty, folk-y "Where Would We Go?" to the evocative, cascading, hammer dulcimer-accented yearnings of "Baggage Claim;" and from the grand modern rock of "New Beginning" to the driving, spacey build of "Under A White Star." Throughout the album, Anderson's free, expressive guitar playing anchors the songs, whether gentle, acoustic picking or crushing riffs or a searing solo. Recognized and counted on for his virtuosic skills, it's his innate understanding of a song's needs and his use of restraint in playing that sets him apart.

This hard-wired, understated skill has made Anderson an invaluable player for a stellar laundry list of top artists that includes: Elton John, Willie Nelson, Joe Cocker, Stevie Nicks, Neil Diamond, Gwen Stefani, Regina Spektor, Nelly Furtado, Cat Stevens, Jewel, and Matthew Sweet. And, of course: Sir Paul McCartney, with whom he has toured and recorded since McCartney's 2001 album, Driving Rain. In the past nine years, Anderson has played countless shows across the world as an integral part of the Paul McCartney Band - Rolling Stone has written, "McCartney's four-piece band handled the broad range of his music seamlessly, with fiery guitar work from Rusty Anderson" - as well as on McCartney's albums Chaos and Creation in the Backyard (2005) and Memory Almost Full (2007). He also appears on four of McCartney's live DVDs.

Born and raised in La Habra, CA, Anderson first picked up the guitar at age 8 and is largely self-taught, inspired by the music of Jimi Hendrix, The Beatles, Genesis, The Mothers of Invention, and Mick Ronson. He formed his first band, Eulogy, at age 13 and soon was opening for bands like The Police, The Runaways, Van Halen, and Quiet Riot in southern California. Since then - in addition to lending his ample artistry to other musicians in the studio - Anderson has played in a number of bands, notably Animal Logic (with The Police's Stewart Copeland and legendary bassist Stanley Clarke) and '90s alternative rockers Ednaswap, who released four major label albums and wrote the hit single "Torn" (later covered by Natalie Imbruglia).

Anderson's debut solo album, Undressing Underwater, was released in 2005.

Track listing for Born On Earth:

  1. Born On Earth
  2. Timed Exposure
  3. Baggage Claim
  4. Private Moon Flower
  5. Julia Roberts
  6. Under A White Star
  7. Where Would We Go?
  8. New Beginning
  9. These Are The Days
  10. Funky Birthday Cake
  11. Intro

Coretta Scott King Died This Week At The Age Of 78

Coretta Scott King -- (1927-2006)- for the Grateful Web

Coretta Scott King was the wife of slain civil rights leader Martin Luther King, Jr. She gained an international reputation as an advocate of civil rights, nonviolence, international peace, full employment, and equal rights for women. She died at the age of 78.  She embodies everything good about human beings and were not for her, MLK's voice would not have shined so bright.

King remained largely in the wings of her husband's fight for civil rights, while participating in the Montgomery, Alabama, bus boycott and efforts to pass the 1964 Civil Rights Act.

After her husband was shot and killed on April 4, 1968, King stepped up efforts to promote nonviolence, fight poverty and began work establishing the Martin Luther King Jr. Center for Nonviolent Social Change in Atlanta. She also led the Coalition of Conscience, which sponsored the 20th Anniversary March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom in 1983.