Thursday, February 27, 2014

Favorite Seventies Artists In The News

Posted by Administrator on February 27th, 2014

Englebert HumperdinkPop crooner Engelbert Humperdinck has announced he'll release Engelbert Calling, a 2-disc, 23 track duets album featuring such artists as Elton John, Smokey Robinson, Johnny Mathis, Willie Nelson, Kiss' Gene Simmons and Wynonna Judd, among others, on March 17 in the U.K. and later this spring in the U.S. "I figured this'll be my 80th album, and I've never done a duets album, so it was kind of a change for me," Humperdinck says. "It was a big change and a great honor to work with all these legendary people. All of (the songs) are pretty personal; I wouldn't have chosen them if I didn't particularly like them. They all have a certain significance attached to them that relates to my life and to (the other singers)," adds Humperdinck. Among Humperdinck's seven Top 40 hits of the 1960s was the No. 4 "Release Me (And Let Me Love Again)," and in 1976 he had another Top 10 hit with "After the Lovin'." He also starred in his own musical variety TV series in 1970. - Billboard

Unreleased studio mixes of Led Zeppelin's 1975 classic Physical Graffiti will be among a treasure trove of classic rock artifacts is up for auction in March at the Marvels of Modern Music auction. The demo reels feature early versions of tracks like "Kashmir," "Custard Pie," and "In the Light." In some of the demos, the drums are the only instrument in the mix to make it to the final product, as guitars and vocals were redone later, with additional orchestration added. In other words, these are quite different from the recordings Led Zeppelin fans have become familiar with. Other items also on the block from producer Ron Nevinson's collection are Elvis Presley's sequined "American Eagle" cape from his 1973 Aloha from Hawaii performance, demos from Bad Company's self-titled 1974 debut, a 1973 Eric Clapton demo reel and John Lennon's 1965 Rolls Royce registration and famous wire-rim glasses. - Billboard

Mike LoveGeorge HarrisonOn Feb. 25, what would have been his 71st birthday, George Harrison was honored by friend and fellow musician Mike Love of the Beach Boys on the previously unreleased track "Pisces Brothers." Written in 2004, but released not released until now, "Pisces Brothers" was inspired by a trip Love and the Beatles took to India in 1968 to learn from the spiritual teachings of Maharishi Mahesh Yogi. Donovan and Mia Farrow also accompanied the group. "This being the 50th anniversary of the Beatles coming to America, I wanted to commemorate this incredibly significant trip we all took together to India, at the Maharishi's invitation," Love said in a statement. "It was enormously influential on all of us, most especially George. The song is really sentimental for me, and meant to honor George Harrison's remarkable contribution to music. And how, in this one moment in time, we got together, as the song says, not [for] fortune or for fame, but for enlightenment." The title refers to the astrological sign the pair share, with Love continuing to practice the Transcendental Meditation techniques learned in India to this day. - Rolling Stone

Dave Davies of the Kinks returns to London to perform his first UK concert for 13 years at the Barbican Hall on Apr. 11. The concert will see him celebrating the 50th anniversary of the revolutionary guitar sound he created, which launched the Kinks to international stardom. In other Kinks-related news, Natalie Hynde, the daughter of former Kinks frontman Ray Davies and Pretenders frontwoman Chrissie Hynde, has been found guilty of "besetting," or causing difficulty to, a test-drilling site in Balcombe, England. The 32-year-old, along with 55-year-old Simon Medhurst, had superglued themselves together around the drill site's gate on July 31st to create a "striking and symbolic" media image, according to The BBC, to raise awareness about fracking (a technique to fracture shale rock and retrieve natural gasses within). Hynde and Medhurst both denied wrongdoing. - Noble PR/Rolling Stone

Jim Lange, the first host of the popular game show The Dating Game, died at his home in Mill Valley, Calif., on Feb. 25 after suffering a heart attack. He was 81. Though Lange had a successful career in radio, he is best known for his television role on ABC's The Dating Game, which debuted in 1965 and on which he appeared for more than a decade, charming audiences with his mellifluous voice and wide, easygoing grin. He also played host to many celebrity guests, including Michael Jackson, Steve Martin and Arnold Schwarzenegger, among others. Even a pre-Charlie's Angels Farrah Fawcett appeared on the program, introduced as "an accomplished artist and sculptress" with a dream to open her own gallery. - AP

Ace FrehleyPeter CrissPaul StanleyGene SimmonsKiss announced on Feb. 23 that the band won't be performing at their Rock and Roll Hall of Fame induction ceremony in April because disputes over the lineup stirred up ill will among the band's members. "This is understandably an emotional situation where there is no way to please everyone," Kiss on the band's website. "To bring this to a quick end, we have decided not to play in any line-up and we will focus our attention on celebrating our induction into the Rock and Roll Hall Of Fame." Original member Ace Frehley revealed to a New York radio station on Feb. 21 that the original lineup would not be performing at the ceremony, and said that he was not willing to perform alongside the newer members. Also, Peter Criss said that he and Frehley "have been denied a performance with Gene [Simmons] and Paul [Stanley] for our Rock and Roll Hall of Fame induction," and called the situation "disgraceful." According to the band's statement, however, there was no plan to exclude Frehley and Criss from the performance. "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," the statement said. - Billboard

The U.S. Postal Service will unravel several lines of celebrity-adorned stamps over the next two years, including numerous music-related stamps such as Janis Joplin and Jimi Hendrix in 2014 and a James Brown stamp next year. 2015 will also see a re-release of Elvis Presley's 29-cent tribute from 1993 -- the Postal Service's best-selling stamp ever. A stamp for John Lennon has been planned for an as-yet-unannounced date. Because some of these proposed stamps betray previous stamp guidelines (such as the subject being American, in the case of John Lennon), this new direction has become controversial among older philatelists. - Billboard

Bruce SpringsteenBruce Springsteen will release four unreleased songs on a 12" vinyl EP entitled American Beauty for Record Store Day on April 19. Three of the tracks -- "American Beauty," "Mary Mary" and "Hey Blue Eyes" -- were recorded during the High Hopes sessions with producer Ron Aniello, but ultimately discarded. The origin of the other song, "Hurry Up Sundown," is unknown. It's unclear if the material on American Beauty will ultimately be offered to fans in any non-vinyl format. Springsteen and his E Street Band wrapped a tour of Australia on Feb. 26. They opened their tour-closing show in Brisbane with a cover of native Aussies the Bee Gee' classic "Stayin' Alive," and The Boss encored with a solo rendition of "Thunder Road," right before giving a nod to Aussies AC/DC with "Highway to Hell," accompanied by Eddie Vedder. - Rolling Stone

Veteran TV journalist Garrick Utley has died of cancer at 74, NBC said on Feb. 21. Mr. Utley began at NBC News in 1963, and for three decades handled a wide variety of assignments. Early on, he reported from Vietnam on the escalating conflict. In later years, he moderated Meet the Press. In between, Mr. Utley anchored Weekend Today and the Sunday Nightly News, as well as two different newsmagazines in two different decades with four different titles. - AP

Neil YoungNeil Young has announced plans for a pair of solo acoustic concerts at Los Angeles' Dolby Theater on March 29 and 30. While Young is notoriously unpredictable, it's likely that these shows will be similar in format to his recent Carnegie Hall stand, which focused heavily on his 1960s and 1970s catalog. Big hits like "Old Man" and "Heart of Gold" were mixed in with deeper cuts like "A Man Needs a Maid" and "Flying on the Ground Is Wrong." This summer, Young will tour Europe with Crazy Horse in early July for a month-long run of concerts. Meanwhile, Young's next album will be released on the Third Man Records label owned by Jack White. Young has said that the record will be released in March and described it as "An unheard collection of rediscovered songs from the past recorded on ancient electro mechanical technology captures and unleashes the essence of something that could have been gone forever." This fall, Young will release a new memoir that will interweave stories about the musicians's love of cars with recollections from his life, according to Blue Rider publishers. It will be the follow-up to his 2012 memoir, Waging Heavy Peace. - Rollling Stone

Elton John and former Commodores member Lionel Ritchie will be among the headliners at this summer's Bonnaroo festival in Manchester, Tenn. Also topping the bill at Bonnaroo, which is set for June 12-15, will be Jack White, Kayne West, Phoenix, Arctic Monkeys, Frank Ocean, The Flaming Lips and Vampire Weekend. - Billboard

Speaking of modern groups, alternative rock outfit The Nearly Deads have announced dates for "The Survival Tour," running March 8 - 21. Kicking off in Milwaukee, with a co-headlining slot at the inaugural LIAN Riot Music Series, the band then synchs up with Providence, RI rockers It Lives, It Breathes, from March 9 - 21, as they storm Chicago, Allentown, Baltimore, Springfield, Harrisonburg and other cities along the East coast. Crowned victors in the John Lennon Songwriting Contest and a Converse Battle of the Bands competition, The Nearly Deads has received significant airplay on MTVu, FUSE, BlankTV, Vevo and YouTube. More info can be found on their Facebook page. - 1888 Media

Jeff Beck says he plans to wrap the recording of his first studio LP since 2010 by the time he kicks off his next tour April 7 in Tokyo. Beck, 69, says the new LP is "a very important album for me" and that "it's not Western style." Beck spent last fall on the road with Brian Wilson, where he added a new dimension to Beach Boys classics like "Surf's Up" and "Our Prayer." - Rolling Stone

David BowieDavid Bowie urged Scotland to "stay with us" and vote against independence in the country's upcoming referendum in his acceptance speech at this year's Brit Awards on Feb. 19. The ceremony took place at London's O2 Arena earlier this evening, with Bowie winning Best International Male. However, the reclusive rocker was not at the venue to pick up his award, and instead sent supermodel Kate Moss, who read out his acceptance speech, to pick up the prize on his behalf. Meanwhile, a major new exhibition of music memorabilia, featuring Bowie's ripped Ziggy Stardust shirt, will take place in honour of the historic British music venue Aylesbury Friars from March 1. Featuring rare memorabilia relating to Bowie, Lou Reed, Genesis, The Ramones, Talking Heads, The Clash, Roxy Music and Queen, "The Evolution of Friars" music exhibition includes concert posters, original photographs, paraphernalia from Friars' archives, and musical instruments and equipment used by some of the most prestigious names to pass through Friars' doors. The exhibition will be housed at the Buckinghamshire County Museum. - New Musical Express/Noble PR

Leon RussellLeon Russell will release Life Journey, a covers album featuring material by such acts as Billy Joel, Robert Johnson, Duke Ellington and Hoagy Carmichael, on Apr. 1, the day before his 72nd birthday. "This is a record of my musical journey through this life," Russell writes in the liner notes. "It reflects pieces of things that I have done and things I never did." Russell adds he is excited to take the LP on the road, which he might play with a full string section live. "The charts are not written for a call band in Cleveland -- they're difficult," Russell says. "It can't be rehearsed the day of the show." Russell has had several health scares in recent years and writes, "I'm [nearing] the final exit of my journey," in the liner notes, but he insists he's feeling good nowadays. "I'm 71 and I can still walk. I've got bad foot problems, so I try not to walk more than 50 feet because its very painful for me to stand up and walk. But it beats the alternative, I guess." - Rolling Stone

Frank ZappaA strain of acne causing bacteria has been named after Frank Zappa. Scientists at at Italy's Centre for Sustainable Agro-Ecosystems and Bioresources have named the Propionibacterium acnes "type P. Zappae" after the experimental rock musician, who passed away in 1993. Researchers found a form of the bacteria in grapevines and elected to call it Zappae in tribute to the star, according to USA Today. Their report states that it came about from the unique transfer of human bacteria onto a plant. Zappa's widow Gail Zappa responded to the honor by saying, "For me this is just an extension of Frank's means of gluing things together, making sense of the universe. It's strictly conceptual continuity." P. Zappae is not the first time that Zappa has inspired the name of a new discover. The musician has provided inspiration for a mollusk, a new type of fish plus jellyfish and spiders in the past 40 years. There is also an asteroid named 3834 Zappafrank after the rock legend. - New Musical Express

A new book has revealed that tax breaks were the reason behind Abba's flamboyant stagewear in their 1970s heyday. Abba: The Official Photo Book, which hits stores on March 10, explains that the legendary pop band wore outrageous outfits because tax deductions for performance clothes were only allowed if the items were "in no way suitable for everyday wear." Last year Agnetha Faltskog hinted that Abba could reform in 2014. In recent years she had been seen as the main barrier to the Swedish quartet reforming, but told German newspaper Welt Am Sonntag that she, Anni-Frid Lyngstad, Bjorn Ulvaeus and Benny Andersson were considering doing something special in 2014 to mark the 40th anniversary of first hit "Waterloo." "Of course it's something we're thinking about," she said. "There seem to be plans to do something to mark this anniversary in some way. I can't say at this point what will come of them." - NME

Legendary rock bands Chicago and REO Speedwagon will be co-headlining a tour this summer that will take the bands through major metropolitan areas across the United States, including New York City, Boston, Dallas, Phoenix, Detroit and more with even more dates to be announced soon. - Entertainment Weekly

David CrosbyRock legend David Crosby underwent heart surgery during the second week of February after his doctor discovered a blocked artery and performed a cardiac catheterization procedure. The Crosby, Stills & Nash star is expected to make a full recovery, but he has been forced to postpone a string of upcoming California shows to concentrate on his health. "I am very glad that I listened to my doctors and my family. It seems I am once again a very lucky man. I'm sorry to have to move the dates, but I promise the music will be good when we do play them," said Crosby, 72. An upcoming CSN tour is scheduled to begin in early March and is expected to continue as planned. -

Paul McCartney will attend the NME Awards to collect a special, one-off prize: Songwriter's Songwriter. Nominated by fellow artists, the special award marks McCartney's outstanding contribution to pop music, celebrating his unparalleled career and lasting impact on the music world. McCartney will accept his award in person at the O2 Academy Brixton on Feb. 26. - New Musical Express

Legendary English rock band Deep Purple is set to make its Israeli acting debut in an upcoming local TV series. The new scripted series, Atlantica, revolves around an aspiring underdog rock band from Jerusalem, managed by a high-school history teacher played by popular Israeli comedian and rock enthusiast Tal Friedman. In the series' final episode, Deep Purple lead singer Ian Gillan and bassist Roger Glover will have speaking parts as the aspiring Jerusalem rockers locate their idols and beg to join them on stage. - Billboard

Performing in Melbourne, Australia, on Feb. 15, Bruce Springsteen was joined onstage by Eddie Vedder of Pearl Jam for a cover of AC/DC's "Highway to Hell." Vedder also performed "Darkness On The Edge of Town," the second song of the set, with Springsteen and his E Street Band. - NME

Speaking of AC/DC, the band has revealed plans to enter the studio later this year in order to record their first new album since 2008's Black Ice. AC/DC will also be heading out on a 40th anniversary tour, says frontman Brian Johnson. Johnson adds the band would be heading to a Vancouver studio in May to record their 16th studio album. - NME

Bob Casale, one of the founding members of Devo, has died at the age of 61. Casale passed away on Feb. 17 from health complications which led to heart failure, according to Since Casale died without a will or insurance, the band has established a fund on the crowdfunding site with the goal of raising $100,000 for Casale's family. Formed in Ohio in 1972, Devo released their debut album, Are We Not Men? We Are Devo! in 1978 and are best known for their 1980 single "Whip It." - Billboard

John LydonFormer Sex Pistols frontman John Lydon (aka Johnny Rotten) has announced he'll publish a new autobiography in October. Written by Lydon along with music journalist Andrew Perry, the book is "basically about the life of a serious risk-taker" according to Lydon. The as-yet untitled autobiography will follow Lydon's 1994 book Rotten: No Irish, No Blacks, No Dogs, which was co-authored with Kent and Keith Zimmerman. - NME

British '70s vocalists Tom Jones and Cliff Richard will be opening for '90s UK singer Morrisey when he plays stateside this summer. Morrisey will be performing at the Los Angeles Sports Arena on May 10 and Brooklyn's Barclays Center on June 21 - New Musical Express

The jackets worn by the Beatles in their 1965 film Help! are expected to fetch up to $115,000 when they are put up for auction in March. The iconic items of clothing will go under the hammer at Omega Auctions in March. Taken from director Richard Lester's private collection, staff at the auction house have estimated that they will attract offers of between $82,000 and $115,000 when the bidding opens. - New Musical Express

John Henson, the son of the late The Muppets creator Jim Henson, died on Feb. 14 of a heart attack at age 48, representatives for the Jim Henson Company said on Feb. 15. Henson, a shareholder and board member of the Jim Henson Company died at home, where he was with one of his daughters, the company said in a statement. He lived in Saugerties, New York, said company spokeswoman Nicole Goldman in an email. John Henson worked as a puppeteer for the Muppets, often playing the role of Sweetums. Jim Henson died in 1990 at age 53, and his wife Jane Henson, who helped create the Muppets, died in 2013. - Reuters

Tony IommiPosting on his official website on Feb. 12, Black Sabbath guitarist Tony Iommi says the band is "too busy" to record a new album. "[There was] plenty of interest in the [13] album still and endless questions about what we're doing next. Well, it's shows in the US, Canada and Europe, so far too busy with that to be thinking about more recording," Iommi wrote. - NME

Ralph WaiteVeteran character actor Ralph Waite -- who many knew best from his time as the family patriarch on The Waltons, though he also had regular roles in more recent series like Bones and NCIS -- died on Feb. 13 at his Palm Desert, California, home, according to Steve Gordon, his family accountant. He was 85. Mr. Waite was already a Hollywood veteran with parts in movies like Cool Hand Luke and Five Easy Pieces, plus TV series such as Bonanza when he landed the role of John Walton Sr. The Waltons struck a chord with many viewers during its run from 1972 to 1981, with Mr. Waite being a constant on that show as well as in several TV movies to follow. Mr. Waite was twice nominated for an Emmy, first in 1977 for supporting actor in a comedy or drama series for Roots and the next year as lead actor in a drama for his Waltons' role. Mr. Waite also tried his hand at politics, running unsuccessfully as a Democrat for a U.S. representative seat that includes Palm Springs -- narrowly losing in 1990 and again in 1998 to Mary Bono, the widow of former congressman and Sonny and Cher star Sonny Bono. - CNN

The Beatles TV special The Night That Changed America: A Grammy Salute, which aired on CBS on Feb. 9 exactly 50 years after the Fab Four's historic Ed Sullivan Show appearance, delivered an impressive 13.95 million viewers for the network. The special, which featured interviews and performances with surviving Beatles Paul McCartney and Ringo Starr, along with tributes from such artists as John Legend, Alecia Keyes and Maroon 5, came in second place to NBC's coverage of the XXII Olympics games, which garnered 29.06 million viewers. - AP

Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band have announced they will follow-up their tour of South Africa and Australasia with a fresh batch of American dates this spring. Kicking off April 8 in Cincinnati, Springsteen will hit markets in Ohio, Tennessee, Georgia and Florida, among others, before wrapping with a pair of shows at the Mohegan Sun casino in Uncasville, Conn. Springsteen is on the road in support of his latest album High Hopes. - Billboard

The Kinks' Ray Davies and folk singer Donovan are both set to be inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame. They will be joined by songwriters Graham Gouldman, who wrote for the Yardbirds, Mark James, who wrote "Suspicious Minds" and "Always on My Mind" for Elvis Presley, and Jim Weatherly, who wrote a number of hits for Gladys Knight and the Pips. The induction ceremony will take place at the Marriott Marquis Hotel in New York City on June 12. - Rolling Stone

Debby HarryBlondie has revealed that they rejected an offer to perform at the Sochi Olympics because of Russia's violations against human rights, including the country's recent anti-gay laws. On her Twitter account, Blondie frontwoman Debbie Harry published a scan of the printed offer to perform at the Red Rocks festival in Sochi during the Olympics on Feb. 13, on which she wrote: "Pass. Human Rights." The offer was to perform a 45-minute set for a 25,000-people crowd at one of the Olympics' main venue, Sochi Medals Plaza. The Russian media reported that Blondie's slot is to be taken by the Latvian band Brainstorm and Russian singer Diana Arbenina. - Billboard

The Doors' Robby Krieger has been working on getting a bunch of musicians together to memorialize fellow band member, Ray Manzarek, who died in 2013. "We want to bring together those who Ray either idolized or guys who idolized Ray, maybe at the Greek or The Hollywood Bowl for a big concert this summer," he told The Hollywood Reporter. "We've teamed up with Live Nation and they are helping us get it all together. We just want it to be the best it can be." Krieger has sent out letters to many musicians to check their availability to participate. "That's the hard part, coordinating everyone's schedules," he said. "To get everyone together on one day, in the summertime, when they are not on tour for a big venue, that's the challenge." - Billboard

Mick JaggerKeith RichardsRock veteran Keith Richards has become a grandfather again for the fifth time. Richards' daughter Angela and her partner Graham Whitney welcomed their second child, Otto, earlier this week. The couple already has a two-year-old daughter, called Ava Melody. The Rolling Stones star, 70, now has five grandchildren -- his son Marlon has three kids. Meanwhile, Stones frontman Mick Jagger is set to become a grandfather and a great-grandfather in the same year after it emerged his daughter Jade is pregnant at the same time as her 21-year-old, Assisi. Jade shocked her fans on Feb. 11 by announcing she is six months pregnant, just five months after daughter Assisi confirmed her own baby news. It means Mick Jagger is likely to welcome a fifth grandchild in May months after becoming a great-grandfather for the first time. -

Queen's Greatest Hits has become the first album to sell six million copies in the UK. The record breaking album was first released over 30 years ago, in 1981, and now the UK's Official Charts Company has confirmed that the album has broken the six million sales mark. Of the albums total sales, 124,000 copies were downloaded digitally with the rest coming through physical sales. Chart Company data estimates that the album can now be found in one of four British households. - NME

The Jacksons are readying their first album since 1989, according to Jackie Jackson. "It sounds like Jacksons music, with today's sounds," Jackie explains. "People still want to hear that Jackson 5 harmony; we can't get away from where we came from. That's what they want to hear. But there's a lot of new flavors we can combine that with. Something like Bruno Mars' 'Treasure,' that's like on old Jacksons song. When I first heard that song I said, 'That could have been on one of ours!' The Jacksons are working with a number of contemporary artists and producers, though none are being identified yet. The set will be the first new Jacksons release since 1989's 2300 Jackson Street. - Billboard