Posted by Administrator on March 11th, 2015
A superior court in Jesup, Georgia ruled on Mar. 10 that the first assistant director of the ill-fated Greg Allman biopic Midnight Rider was guilty of involuntary manslaughter and criminal trespass. Hillary Schwartz was sentenced to 10 years' probation and a $5,000 fine. Under the terms of her probation, Schwartz cannot serve as a director, producer, first A.D. or any department head responsible for crew safety on any film or TV production. Schwartz, after pleading not guilty when she was indicted in Sept. 2014, waived her right to a jury and received a bench trial. Schwartz was the fourth defendant in the criminal case over the Feb. 2014 train collision that killed camera assistant Sarah Jones during the Midnight Rider shoot and the safety protocols Schwartz and other crew members should have followed. The other three defendants -- director Randall Miller, his producer and wife, Jody Savin, and executive producer Jay Sedrish -- faced the same charges. Miller was previously sentenced to two years in jail, a $20,000 fine and 360 community service hours. Sedrish received 10 years' probation and a $10,000 fine. Charges agains Savin were dropped. Until recently, Schwartz was part of their case, but her case was separated from theirs in February. - The Hollywood Reporter, 3/10/15...... A Los Angeles jury ruled on Mar. 10 that singers Robin Thicke and Pharrell Williams' runaway 2013 hit "Blurred Lines" copied Marvin Gaye's 1977 single "Got to Give It Up," and ordered the pair to pay $4.8 million to Gaye's family. The suit was brought by Gaye's children Nona, Frankie and Marvin Gaye III, who inherited the copyright to the soul legend's music following his death in 1984. Nona, who wept as the verdict was read, said: "Right now, I feel free. Free from... Pharrell Williams and Robin Thicke's chains and what they tried to keep on us and the lies that were told." The trial in L.A. US District Court came as a result of a pre-emptive August 2013 lawsuit filed by Thicke and Williams who, fearing the Gayes would be litigious, sought to affirm that "Blurred Lines" is "strikingly different" to "Got to Give It Up." US District Judge John Kronstadt denied their request and said a jury must decide "the intrinsic similarity of the works." Robin Thicke performed a medley of songs in court as evidence that many tracks share similar chords and melodies without necessarily copying one another. His performance included tracks by artists including U2, Bob Marley and the Beatles. "While we respect the judicial process, we are extremely disappointed in the ruling made today, which sets a horrible precedent for music and creativity going forward," said Thicke and Williams' lawyer, Howard E. King. "We are reviewing the decision, considering our options and you will hear more from us soon about this matter." It is estimated that Pharrell and Thicke have earned over $3 million each from the profits of the Grammy-winning single. - New Musical Express, 3/11/15...... AC/DC has released a video for "Rock the Blues Away," their third single from their most recent studio album, Rock or Bust. Directed by David Mallet, the clip shows the Aussie headbangers rocking out in a small, sweaty club in Los Angeles. "Rock the Blues Away" follows clips for "Play Ball" and the title track of Rock or Bust, which has sold nearly 2.8 million copies since its Nov. 2014 release. AC/DC's 2015 world tour behind Rock or Bust kicks off May 5 in Holland, and wraps on Sept. 28 in Los Angeles at Dodger Stadium. The band has also been confirmed as headliners at this year's Coachella Music & Arts Festival, which runs from Apr. 10-17. - Billboard, 3/10/15..... Kraftwerk co-founder and frontman Ralf Huëtter filed a trademark infringement lawsuit on Mar. 9 against eZelleron Inc., the makers of an energy supply unit for mobile electronic devices. The Dresdon-based eZelleron has been taking advantage of fuel cell technology to raise more than $1.5 million on Kickstarter.com for a portable power plant that it says can be recharged within seconds and provide weeks of charge for iPhones, tablets and GoPro cameras. Written up in many tech publications, the tech product is called "Kraftwerk." Huëtter, whose band owns a trademark registration on "Kraftwerk" that covers quite a bit of territory, claims that "consumers are likely to assume that there is a connection, association, or relationship between the famous electronic Music band and a charger for portable musical-playing devices." Kraftwerk was honored with a Grammy lifetime achievement award in 2014. - The Hollywood Reporter, 3/9/15...... Jackson Browne made a surprise appearance during Crosby, Stills & Nash's World Tour 2015 on Mar. 5 in Tokyo, Japan, jamming with the famous folk-rock trio on "Crow on the Cradle," the b-side to Browne's 1982 hit single "Somebody's Baby." Opening with "Carry On," CSN and their backing band played to a packed crowd of 5,200 in Hall A of Tokyo's Forum, also treating fans to such chestnuts as "Our House," "Long Time Gone," "Helplessly Hoping," "Guinevere," Almost Cut My Hair," and "Wooden Ships." CSN's 41-date tour will also hit The Philippines, Singapore, the US, the UK and eight continental European countries. Browne, in the midst of his own world tour, also played two dates in Tokyo on Mar. 11 and 12. - Billboard, 3/9/15...... Singer/songwriter Emmylou Harris will be among the 2015 recipients of Sweden's prestigious Polar Music Prize during a ceremony set for Stockholm on June 9. Harris, who started performing in Scandinavia early in her career, said she loved to travel and was looking forward to a trip to Sweden but "I just hate packing and flights." The Polar Music Prize was founded in 1989 by Stig "Stikkan" Anderson, the manager and music publisher of Abba. A well-known lyricist, he also was the co-writer on many early Abba hits. - Billboard, 3/10/15...... Seventies artists Rod Stewart and Yoko Ono were among those tweeting their support for International Women's Day on Mar. 8. "Women worldwide walk miles everyday to get water. Let us walk in solidarity this week for #InternationalWomensDay," Stewart tweeted that day, while Ono posted "Inspiring Change for #InternationalWomensDay." The annual event champions equal rights for women and celebrates advocates of the cause, with marathons and marches staged around the world. - Billboard, 3/8/15...... Paul McCartney has added a second London date to his upcoming May tour of the UK. After tickets for shows in London (5/23) and Liverpool (5/28) went on sale on Mar. 9 and sold out within an hour, a second show at the O2 in London was scheduled for May 24. McCartney will also play Birmingham on May 27. He last performed at The O2 in Dec. 2011, and the upcoming O2 show will coincide with the 50th anniversary of "Yesterday." "'Yesterday' feels like it has taken on a life of its own over the years," Sir Paul said of the landmark tune. "The song still is and always has been an important part of our live show. It's always very emotional for me to hear crowds singing it so loudly at my concerts and I'm looking forward to singing it along with the audience at the O2 in May." - NME, 3/9/15...... Led Zeppelin's Jimmy Page has prevailed over singer Robbie Williams in the pair's feud over Williams' plans to develop his mansion, which is next door to Page's west London home. Williams has now withdrawn plans to develop his mansion, which Page said he feared would "have an effect on decorative finishes of my house." At least one other neighbour is believed to have also objected to Williams renovation proposal. A spokesperson for Williams declined to comment. - NME, 3/8/15...... The New York metal band Tragedy: All Metal Tribute to the Bee Gees & Beyond has released a headbanging cover of John Travolta and Olivia Newton-John's 1978 No. 1 hit "You're the One that I Want" from their movie smash Grease. The result is hilarious and arguably even more heartwarming than the original, not least for the visual pun unleashed on the line "it's electrifying." - Billboard, 3/8/15...... Albert Maysles, an Oscar-nominated director and cinematographer best known for helming the troubling 1970 concert documentary Gimme Shelter which chronicled a fan being killed by a Hells Angels security man during a Rolling Stones performance, died on Mar. 5 of natural causes at his home in Manhattan. He was 88. Mr. Maysles and his brother David Maysles also directed Grey Gardens, a profile of Jacqueline Onassis' eccentric cousins "Big Edie" and "Little Edie" Bouvier, which was remade as a Tony-winning Broadway play and as an award-winning 2009 HBO drama that starred Drew Barrymore and Jessica Lange. Just prior to Gimme Shelter, they filmed Salesman (1969), which covered six weeks in the lives of four door-to-door Bible salesmen, and also collaborated on such direct cinemas as What's Happening! The Beatles in the U.S.A. (1964), With Love From Truman (1966) and Meet Marlon Brando (1966), which premiered at the New York Film Festival. In 1968, they made Vladimir Horowitz: The Last Romantic, and the following year, they shot Horowitz Plays Mozart, also for TV. Gimme Shelter stood as a stark and more enduring counterpoint to the documentary Woodstock, a depiction of the glorified 1969 free concert whose own dark side was left out in its preconceived, celebratory style. Mr. Maysles, who was also the choreographer on D.A. Pennebaker's Monterey Pop documentary, won three Emmys, two for his work with his brother on The Last Romantic and Soldiers of Music (1991) and one for Abortion: Desperate Choices (1991). Mr. Maysles had reportedly been battling cancer. - The Hollywood Reporter, 3/6/15.
Paul McCartney has reportedly contributed vocals to an LP by a new "supergroup" comprised of shock-rocker Alice Cooper, Aerosmith guitarist Joe Perry, and actor/musician Johnny Depp called Hollywood Vampires. In an interview with Rolling Stone, Perry said Macca and his drummer, Abe Laboriel Jr., dropped into the L.A. studio where the Hollywood Vampires, who were assembled in 2014 and named after the notorious mid-'70s partying gang that included Cooper, John Lennon, Ringo Starr, Keith Moon and Harry Nilsson, among others, to split lead vocals with Cooper on the McCartney-penned Badfinger hit "Come and Get It." "He knew all the chords, the lyrics, everything," Perry says. "He didn't have any cheat sheets. It was like he'd been playing it his whole life. Me and Alice and Johnny were standing there and looking at each other and I tell you -- if there's any ego-leveler in a room, it's Paul. It doesn't matter who you are or what you've done. If Paul's in the room, he's there. It was hard to focus on playing." Paul reportedly chose the song as a tribute to Badfinger's Pete Ham and Tom Evans, who took their own lives. The upcoming Holllywood Vampires LP, produced by Cooper's longtime producer Bob Ezrin, is being dedicated to "all the friends we've lost to drugs and alcohol over the years and getting people to come in and cover the songs their friends wrote," according to Perry. The Hollywood Vampires has confirmed just the one live date, at the Rock in Rio festival this September, though Perry says more dates will likely be added that month. It's unlikely McCartney will join the band on the road, though there's a chance he'll be joined with his mates on stage sometime this year. He's just extended his own touring itinerary with three shows this May at London's O2 (5/23), Birmingham (5/27) and his hometown of Liverpool (5/28). The London arena show will coincide with the 50th anniversary of his song "Yesterday," and they mark his first concerts in his homeland since he played the Royal Albert Hall in 2012. - Billboard, 3/6/15.
Brian Wilson has announced a new North American tour this summer in support of his new solo album No Pier Pressure. The Beach Boys legend, supported by his former bandmate Al Jardine and BB lieutenant Blondie Chaplin, will launch the tour on June 18 in Saratoga, Calif. Other major markets on the 17-city tour include San Diego, Los Angeles, Dallas, Atlanta, Nashville, Philadelphia, Boston, Toronto, Detroit, Chicago, Denver, Las Vegas, and Seattle. No Pier Pressure, due in April, will be Wilson's 11th solo studio album, and in March a new Brian Wilson biopic, Love & Mercy, will premiere at the SXSW film festival in Texas on Mar. 15. On Mar. 30, Wilson will be honored with an all-star "Brian-Fest" benefit tribute concert at the Fonda Theatre in Los Angeles. Al Jardine, Heart's Ann Wilson, Norah Jones, Boz Scaggs and Wilson Phillips will be among the headliners at the event, which will benefit the Sweet Relief Musicians Fund. - Billboard, 3/5/15...... In other touring news, Pink Floyd guitarist David Gilmour announced he'll tour the U.K. and Europe this September behind his upcoming, as yet-untitled fourth solo studio album. Kicking off at the historic Pula arena Roman ampitheatre in Croatia on Sept. 12, Gilmour's six-city tour also includes stops in such exquisite venues as Italy's Verona arena (9/14), Italy's Florence Teatro Le Mulina (9/15), France's Orange Theatre Antique (9/17), and Germany's Oberhausen Konig-Pilsener-arena (9/19), before wrapping with a three-night stand at the UK's Royal Albert Hall on Sept. 23, 24 and 25. Gilmour's new set follows the release of the well-received final Pnk Floyd LP, The Endless River, in 2014. His previous three solo efforts include a 1978 self-titled debut, 1984's About Face, and 2006's On an Island. Gilmour hasn't toured since. - Billboard, 3/5/15...... As the condition of Grammy-winning country/pop star Glen Campbell continues to deteriorate, his two oldest children are attempting to wrest control of his medical and financial decisions away from his wife of 32 years, Kim Campbell. Debby Campbell-Cloyd and Travis Campbell claim their stepmom is keeping their father "secluded from the rest of the family" which has been "prohibited from participating in his care and/or treatment," according to a petition filed in a Nashville court in January. The petition asks a judge to appoint conservators and a guardian to protect Glen Campbell's interest. Campbell, 78, is in the late stages of Alzheimer's disease and living at a Nashville long-term care facility. Campbell revealed he had Alzheimer's disease in 2011, but he went on to record two albums and play more than 150 concerts. - AP, 3/4/15...... Officials in Chicago have ruled that Grateful Dead fans won't be allowed to camp out during three 50th anniversary "farewell" concerts this summer scheduled over the Fourth of July weekend at Soldier Field. A spokesman for the venue, Luca Serra, told the Chicago Tribune that safety was a top consideration in the decision not to grant permits to fans requesting overnight permits to camp out in parking lots surrounding Soldier Field. Roughly 60,000 to 70,000 people are expected to attend each sold-out concert. Soldier Field doesn't usually have events later than 11 p.m., after which tailgating isn't allowed, and Serra says there will be increased security with police and fire crews for traffic management. Tickets for the "Fare Thee Well" series of shows sold out in minutes on Mar. 1, but Deadheads with deep pockets can score tickets from such outlets as Stubhub for anywhere from $1,350 to a whoppiing $116,000 for premium seats. The shows will feature Phish guitarist Trey Anastasio joining original members of the Grateful Dead -- the "core four" of Bob Weir, Phil Lesh, Mickey Hart, and Bill Kreutzmann. - AP/Billboard, 3/3/15...... As Crosby, Stills & Nash kick off a tour of Asia on Mar. 5, David Crosby has been very active on Twitter in recent days, replying to fans' questions, theories and remembrances with honest responses delivered in marathon online sessions. Among the 73-year-old folk-rocker's frank opinions are that rapper Kayne West is "an idiot and a poser...has not talent at all" and the Beach Boys' Mike Love "quite possibly the biggest jerk in rock 'n' roll." Crosby, who is approaching 7,000 tweets and 35,000 followers, adds that things he loves include Bonnie Raitt, Little Feat, Jimmy Page, Stevie Wonder and Neil Young's new Pono music service. His dislikes include Punk Rock, Phish, Jim Morrison, Terry Melcher and fried eggs on hamburgers. - Billboard, 3/5/15...... A feature-length Led Zeppelin film of classic live footage from the band's '70s glory years will be screened in select U.S. theaters for one night only on Mar. 30. Fathom Events Classic Music Series presents Led Zeppelin, a 105-minute collection of Zeppelin performances, will premiere at 7:30 p.m. (local time) throughout the U.S. on March 30 in a multitude of cities, from New York to Fargo, N.D., to Fairbanks, Alaska. The show contains footage from a Jan. 1970 at London's Royal Albert Hall, a July 1973 at New York's Madison Square Garden, a May 1975 show at London's Earl's Court, and a 1979 concert at England's Knebworth festival. Meanwhile in other Zeppelin-related news, Jimmy Page is ramping up his feud with one of his west London neighbors, singer Robbie Williams, who has been planning to make changes to the garden and the layout of his house, as well as replacing the roof of its glass studio. As a result, Page hired architects, structural engineers and town planners to put together reports arguing why the renovation should not go ahead. "Similar schemes have been carried out on other properties in the area locally and each time the level of vibration during the works has caused concern about the effect on decorative finishes of [my] house," Page reportedly told the Kensington And Chelsea Council in a letter. "The work now proposed is much nearer than other major excavations carried out so far and the consequences for the building fabric and decorative finishes... may well be catastrophic if this project is allowed to proceed," he added. Williams bought his £17.5 million mansion next to Page, previously owned by late director Michael Winner, in 2013. - Billboard/New Musical Express, 3/2/15...... As the vinyl LP format continues its rebirth among younger generations of music fans, Universal Music has announced it will roll out vinyl albums of three popular movies of the '70s -- Boogie Nights, Car Wash and Animal House --- on Apr. 14. It will be the first-ever LP release for Boogie Nights, and other movie soundtracks being released by Universal include a picture disc of O Brother, Where Art Thou?, Little Shop of Horrors and Silence of the Lambs. - Billboard, 3/3/15...... Singer-songwriter Victor Willis of the Village People has finally prevailed in his legal battle to remove a formerly credited French songwriter named Henri Belolo from many of the '70s disco troupe's most famous songs written by Willis and Jacques Morali, including "Y.M.C.A." On Mar. 5, a California jury decided that Belolo's name should be removed from 13 Village People songs, which will for a royalty bump up from a 12-20 percent rate. As a co-owner, he also enjoys licensing rights on the songs. The case had been closely followed in the music industry because it dealt with a portion of copyright law passed in the mid-1970s that allows authors to terminate copyright grants. "I'm excited that the world will now know that 'Y.M.C.A.' is all-American, not French," Willis said after the ruling. - The Hollywood Reporter, 3/5/15...... Rock & Roll Hall of Fame members Hall & Oates have filed a lawsuit against a Brooklyn granola company named Early Bird Foods for calling one of their hipster-friendly products "Haulin' Oats." The name and mark Haulin' Oats is an obvious play upon Plaintiff's well-known Hall & Oates mark, and was selected by defendant in an effort to trade off of the fame and notoriety associated with the artist's and plaintiff's well-known marks," the "Rich Girl" duo's suit states. The Red Hook-based company was founded by a former manager of Brooklyn's renowned Franny's restaurant, and promises customers superior granola products. Hall & Oates are demanding Early Bird stop using the "Haulin' Oats" name and are also seeking damages. - Pagesix.com, 3/4/15...... A rotating display of Elvis Presley memorabilia and artifacts rarely seen outside his famed Memphis, Tenn., Graceland mansion will open this summer at the Westgate hotel-casino in Las Vegas, where the King of Rock & Roll first played almost 59 years ago and spent months performing in the 1970's. The very showroom where Presley performed several hundred sold-out shows when the hotel was first known as The International, and later as the Las Vegas Hilton, will be revamped to look much like it did when Elvis performed there -- complete with semi-circular booths. The exhibit -- all 28,000 square feet -- will be the largest Presley display outside Memphis. - AP, 3/1/15...... A plane piloted by actor and aviation enthusiast Harrison Ford crash-landed at a Los Angeles golf course on Mar. 5, with Ford sustaining head injuries and cuts. Patrick Butler of the Los Angeles Fire Department said the patient, whom he did not identify, was "alert, conscious and breathing." and in "fair to moderate" condition after being transported to a local hospital. Ford's son Ben Ford, an L.A. chef, later tweeted that he was at the hospital with his father. "Dad is ok. Battered, but ok! He is every bit the man you would think he is. He is an incredibly strong man," he wrote. He added: "Thank you all for your thoughts and good vibes for my dad." Ford, 72, was piloting a World War II-era single-engine training plane when it crashed west of the airport shortly after it took off from Santa Monica Airport, a Federal Aviation Administration spokesperson said. The Star Wars and Raiders of the Lost Ark star is expected to recover fully from his injuries. - The Hollywood Reporter, 3/5/15...... Actor Sylvester Stallone reportedly broke up an unscripted fight on the set of his upcoming Rocky spin-off, Creed, on Mar. 1 when the film was shooting in Aston, Penn. Actor/boxer Tony Bellew, who plays a character called Pretty Ricky, reportedly left the ring in the middle of filming, and lunged at the actor portraying his corner coach in the movie, throwing punches at him. Stallone was among those who jumped in to break up the fight, and it is unclear what started the confrontation. In Creed, Stallone's Rocky Balboa is a trainer and mentor to the grandson of his former rival Apollo Creed. - WENN.com, 3/2/15...... Chris Rainbow, a singer whose credits include a string of hit albums with the Alan Parsons Project and a stint in Camel, has died. He was 68. "It was with great sadness that I read today of the passing of Chris Rainbow. He was an amazing talent and an integral part of the Project sound," Alan Parsons posted on his website. "[Keyboardist and co-writer] Eric [Woolfson] and I used to call him the 'One Man Beach Boys.' I will always remember his funny stories, his mimicking ability and his hilarious catch phrases. Sessions with him were always filled with laughter. I will miss him greatly," Parsons added. Rainbow began working with the Alan Parsons Project on 1979's Eve, and although he usually sang lead on only one song per album, he was frequently called upon to provide multitracked background vocals in the studio until Parsons dissolved the group after 1987's Gaudi. The cause of Rainbow's death has not been revealed at this point.