Posted by Administrator on May 15th, 2014
Kerri Kasem, the daughter of legendary TV and radio personality Casey Kasem, is adamant her father has been "kidnapped" by his wife Jean Kasem and believes he might be at a Native American reservation in Washington state. On May 12, a Los Angeles judge ordered an investigation into the whereabouts of 82-year-old Kasem, who suffers from advanced Parkinson's disease and can no longer communicate verbally but does recognize family and friends, after an attorney for Jean Kasem claimed he has "no idea" where the entertainer is, except that he is no longer in America. Kerri Kasem, who has been seeking a temporary conservatorship, was appointed her father's caretaker by the judge, and says she is taking the necessary steps to file a missing persons report for her ailing dad. Kerri also claims that Jean has refused her and her siblings access to their father, and that she's extremely concerned for her father's health. Casey Kasem, who for decades hosted radio music countdown shows American Top 40 and Casey's Top 40, retired in 2009. Besides the famed countdown shows, he was also the voice of Shaggy in the cartoon Scooby-Doo and an announcer for NBC. He was a popular DJ and occasional actor before American Top 40 began in 1970. Jean Kasem, 60, was an actress with roles in Ghostbusters and Cheers. - WENN.com, 5/14/14.
Stevie Nicks, who is preparing to head out on tour with a reunited Fleetwood Mac, says she's in the midst of finishing up a new solo album tentatively titled 24 Karat Gold: Songs From the Vault. According to Nicks, the album will feature lost and stray tracks that she's written and recorded through the years, but never made it onto an album. The selections for 24 Karat Gold, also the title of a widely bootlegged Nicks album available on YouTube, were all newly recorded, and co-produced by Nicks, Dave Stewart and Waddy Wachtel. During her acceptance speech for a BMI Icon Award in Los Angeles on May 13, Nicks said she recorded "18 tracks in three weeks" for the new album, and that it's the "fastest I have ever recorded." 24 Karat Gold, which Nicks hopes to release in October via Warner/Reprise, will be the followup to Nicks' 2011 studio effort, In Your Dreams, which was also co-produced by Stewart. It debuted and peaked at No. 6 on the Billboard Hot 200 chart and has sold 199,000 in the U.S., according to Nielsen SoundScan. Fleetwood Mac, meanwhile, is also working on new music and will kick off a concert tour starting Sept. 30 in Minneapolis. It will be the band's first trek with singer/songwriter Christine McVie since The Dance Tour in 1997. - Billboard, 5/14/14.
Bob Dylan surprised fans on May 12 when he posted a cover of a 1954 hit for Frank Sinatra, "Full Moon and Empty Arms," on his official website. A spokesman for the rock legend says the track is "definitely from a forthcoming album" of cover songs that Dylan will release later in 2014. While the rep wouldn't confirm an album title, Dylan posted a jazz LP-influenced image of himself with the phrase "Shadows in the Night." "Full Moon and Empty Arms" has been covered by everyone from Robert Goulet to The Platters, but Sinatra's rendition remains the most famous. Dylan's last few albums were strongly inspired by popular music from this era. The 72-year-old musician will kick off a European leg of his Never Ending Tour on June 16 in Cork, Ireland. It will run though July 17 in Pori, Finland. - Rolling Stone, 5/13/14.
Ozzy Osbourne was honored for his continued sobriety on May 12 at the 10th annual MusiCares MAP Fund Benefit, a night that saw performances from Osbourne, Metallica, Beth Hart and Keb Mo. Beth Hart performed the Black Sabbath hit "Changes" in honor of the co-founding Sabbath vocalist, and Metallica performed Ozzy's solo hit, "Diary of a Madman." The Eagles' Joe Walsh, a recovering substance abuser himself, also spoke at the event in support of Ozzy and other recovering musicians. Walsh, who recalled touring with Osbourne when the former was in the James Gang and the latter was fronting Black Sabbath the first time, said it's "really a battle to get sober." "It's the hardest thing I've ever had to do and Ozzy is a real buddy and he has his set of demons, but he's stacked up some days of consecutive sobriety here and he's never been better," he said later in an interview with Billboard. "He's a new guy and I'm just so happy he hasn't fallen on the side of the road. He's still up and going, nobody knows why or how, but power to him. He's got a clear head and he's a powerful guy when he's sober." Walsh also says he is recording a solo album, and that the Eagles have some new material in the works, but doesn't say if those will ever see the light of day. "We've got some stuff in the can," he says, adding, "I've got a blues album." The Eagles will also be back to tour the west coast this fall, according to Walsh. - Billboard, 5/13/14.
An online Bruce Springsteen museum will feature 300 artifacts when it launches in June at BlindedByTheLight.com. The date coincides with the 30th anniversary of his platinum-selling 1984 album Born in the U.S.A., and collects handwritten lyrics, concert posters, report cards and more, with more to be added in subsequent months. The site's Facebook page currently features images of a number of Springsteen artifacts, including a passport photo, his driver's license and the lyrics to a song called "Henry Boy" that would become "Rosalita." The site's founder, Michael Crane, has previously contributed to exhibits at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and intends to offer up contest prizes on the site every six months. The first offering is original album artwork autographed by Springsteen, with Crane noting that he would give away the singer's 1957 Chevy Bel Air Convertible, in which Springsteen wrote "Born to Run." Springsteen and the E Street Band are currently on a tour that ends on May 18 in Connecticut. - Rolling Stone, 5/12/14.
Motown legend Smokey Robinson has announced he'll release an album of duets with such musician friends as Elton John and James Taylor, among others. Entitled Smokey & Friends and due in September via Verve Records, the LP is helmed by music producer and American Idol judge Randy Jackson, and draws from Robinson's extensive catalog of hits as a member of the legendary Miracles, as a solo artist and as the writer of classics the Motown icon penned for other acts, including Marvin Gaye and the Temptations. Elton John will harmonize with Robinson on the 1965 classic "The Tracks of My Tears," which John calls "the greatest pop song ever written." Inducted into the Grammy Hall of Fame and the Library of Congress, the single peaked at No. 2 R&B and No. 16 pop. Taylor contributes to the Gaye signature hit "Ain't That Peculiar," another R&B/pop classic from 1965 that was produced by Robinson, who also co-wrote the song with fellow members of the Miracles. Additional "Smokey & Friends" collaborations featuring contemporary and classic artists will be announced soon. - Billboard, 5/14/14.
Robert Plant says his forthcoming solo LP will "sound right at a Jamaican party." "It's really a celebratory record, but it's very crunchy and gritty, very West African and very Massive Attack-y," Plant recently told Rolling Stone magazine about as-yet-untitled album. "There's a lot of bottom end, so it might sound all right at a Jamaican party, but I'm not sure it would sound all right on NPR." Plant added he will be on the road with his backing group, the Sensational Space Shifters throughout much of the summer and his future plans are unclear, though he has been talking with Alison Krauss about recording a follow-up to their successful 2007 LP Raising Sand. On May 2, Plant cancelled his upcoming tour of Spain in July due to "scheduling conflicts," which contradicts some online reports that he was cancelling the tour due to "exhaustion." Meanwhile in other Led Zeppelin-related news, Jimmy Page was honored with a doctoral degree from the Berklee College of Music in Boston on May 10. The iconic guitarist delivered the commencement address to nearly 900 Berklee graduates, telling them that "their love of music will sustain them through the unexpected twists and turns that lie ahead." Page also participated in a private listening session for the upcoming reissue of the Led Zeppelin catalog this summer on May 13 at New York City's Crosby Street Hotel. Dressed in a loose black suit and scarf, fielded questions from about 40 journalists and industry members who gathered to hear eight selections that spanned the three albums -- Led Zeppelin, Led Zeppelin II and Led Zeppelin III -- that will arrive June 3. - Rolling Stone/New Musical Express/Billboard, 5/12/14.
In conjunction with Michael Jackson's latest posthumous LP Xscape, the SiriusXM radio network has announced it will launch The Michael Jackson Channel, an exclusive, limited-run station focused on music from Jackson's iconic solo career -- from his breakout 1979 LP, Off the Wall, up to his latest release. Sirius says users of the network will gain access to Xscape's eight previously unreleased songs, and that the channel will include "reflections and stories" from those producers involved with the LP. The Michael Jackson Channel is set to launch Monday, May 12th at 5:00 p.m. EST, running through Monday, May 26th via satellite on XM channel 50. Fans can also gain access by using the SiriusXM Internet Radio App on smartphones and other connected devices, and via siriusxm.com. On May 14, a video for the Jackson/Justin Timberlake collaboration "Love Never Felt So Good," the first single off of Xscape, was released. It intersperses footage of Jackson's many music videos among frames of Timberlake and a crowd of young dancers who are singing along and attempting the most memorable moves from the videos. - Rolling Stone/The Hollywood Reporter, 5/12/14.
H.R. Giger, a surrealist painter whose designs inspired the creature in the 1979 sci-fi classic Alien and whose otherworldly and often grotesque art graced album covers for Emerson, Lake and Palmer, Debbie Harry and Danzig, died on May 12 following hospitalization for falling down the stairs in his Zurich home. He was 74. Giger earned renown for his monochromatic dystopian landscapes and perverse monsters, and many of his paintings featured genitalia in the art, while others found machines fused to organic beings. "My paintings seem to make the strongest impression on people who are, well, who are crazy," Giger said in a 1979 interview. "If they like my work they are creative... or they are crazy." His 1976 lithograph, "Necronom IV," was the basis for the Xenomorph creature that debuted in Ridley Scott's 1979 space horror Alien and appeared in its many sequels. He won the Academy Award for Best Achievement for Visual Effects for Alien in 1980 and contributed designs to 1986's Poltergeist II: The Other Side, 1992's Alien 3, 1995's Species and 2012's Prometheus, among other films. He was inducted into the Science Fiction and Fantasy Hall of Fame in 2013. Prog-rock trio Emerson, Lake and Palmer's 1973 album Brain Salad Surgery featured complex packaging that allowed fans to open up its industrial, skull-like visage to see a woman's face. He also designed the cover of Debbie Harry's 1981 album Koo Koo, using her face in the art. Giger opened his own museum in Gruyeres, Switzerland, in 1998, to display his paintings and sculptures. It also includes art by the likes of Salvador Dali and Ernst Fuchs. - Rolling Stone, 5/13/14.
Peter Gabriel has canceled a planned May 10 concert in Kiev, Ukraine, over security concerns in the Eastern European country, which has been experiencing ongoing political turmoil. "Due to the on-going unrest in Ukraine it has become clear that the security of the touring personnel and equipment cannot be guaranteed during the planned visit to the country and this has presented us with significant logistical difficulties that we have been unable to resolve," a statement on Gabriel's official web site reads. "Any delays or damage as result of the situation in Ukraine would not be insured and would also potentially jeopardize future shows on the tour, something which we feel we also have to consider," it continued. According to the statement, there are hopes that the situation will resolved "in a positive and peaceful fashion" and the singer would still be able to perform in Ukraine "in the not-too-distant future." Gabriel, who was recently honored with an induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame on Apr. 10 at Brooklyn's Barclays Center, is the latest in a string of international acts, including Depeche Mode and Aerosmith, who have canceled or postponed their Ukrainian or Russian shows in the past year due to the turmoil in Ukraine and strained relations between Russia and the country. - The Hollywood Reporter, 5/9/14.
Jimmy Page's self-titled 2010 "photographic autobiography," which was published as a limited edition in 2010, will hit major bookstores in October with a price tag of around U.S. $54. Jimmy Page by Jimmy Page, a photographic essay he personally created to tell his story for the first time, will be published by Genesis Publications, home of rock biographies from such music icons as Ringo Starr, Eric Clapton and David Bowie. Page's book tells his story as the founder/guitarist of Led Zeppelin in his own words, combined with a handpicked selection of 650 photographs. He arranged the content into a narrative order and oversaw the design of the book. "I've been asked on a number of occasions to do a written book and I thought of the other side of the coin. I thought it would be unique to have an autobiography in photographs, charting my whole musical journey. It was important to include every milestone along the way, so people who were fans of the music have got a real testament of the times," the musician said in a statement. Jimmy Page reveals never-before-seen photographs, working visas, memorabilia and every one of his passports, saved throughout his life. Jimmy's passport stamps were used to verify all tour dates, making the tome an authoritative historical account. Originally conceived as a limited edition of only 2,500 copies worldwide, the first printing of Jimmy Page sold out within weeks of release. In the spring of 2010, it became the fastest-selling book in Genesis Publications' 40-year history, even at a price tag of £445 (more than $750). Meanwhile, Page is set to receive an honorary doctorate from the prestigious Berklee School of Music on May 10, joining previous recipients the Eagles, B.B. King, Steve Winwood, Dizzy Gillespie, George Martin and Bowie. And in a new interview with Rolling Stone magazine, Page confirmed that Led Zeppelin were working on new material without original vocalist Robert Plant after their reunion concert in 2007 -- and Plant stated he thought the band would have been a good idea. Page said that he and bassist John Paul Jones played their one-off comeback show at London's O2 in December 2007 "having been led to believe there would have been more shows". Insisting he doesn't know why Plant changed his mind, Page added that he, Jones and late drummer John Bonham's son Jason Bonham worked with replacement singers including Aerosmith's Steven Tyler and Alter Bridge's Myles Kennedy. Page confirmed that bassist Jones joining Them Crooked Vultures with Josh Homme and Dave Grohl effectively killed the reformation. "That was a pretty definitive statement," he said. - The Hollywood Reporter/New Musical Express, 5/9/14.
Members of the Cars, Blondie, the Romantics and the Chesterfield Kings have formed a new "supergroup" called the Empty Hearts who will release a debut album on Aug. 5. The Cars' Elliot Easton, Blondie drummer Clem Burke, Romantics lead singer Wally Palmar and Chesterfield Kings bassist Andy Babiuk say their new project is an attempt to get back to the garage and play straightforward rock 'n' roll. Also helping out on the debut is former the Faces pianist Ian McLagan and Ramones producer-engineer Ed Stasium. Savoy Label Group's 429 Records will release The Empty Hearts, which was recorded without a deal or with little sense of whether the recordings would ever be released, on Aug. 5, which will be followed by an October-November tour of the U.S. Meanwhile speaking of Blondie, the New Wave icons have announed a show at London's O2 Shepherd's Bush Empire venue on June 30, following a previously announced date in Sheffield on June 29. Blondie will release new album Ghosts Of Download on May 12, the followup to their 2011 LP Panic Of Girls. The album is included in a double CD package called Blondie 4(0) Ever, with the second CD featuring a selection of the their greatest hits. - Billboard/New Musical Express, 5/8/14.
"Xscape," the title track from Michael Jackson's new posthumous album, was released for online streaming on May 9. Xscape, which drops on May 13 in the US and a day earlier in the UK, features eight unreleased Jackson songs worked on by contemporary artists and producers. The single "Xscape," which has entered the Billboard Hot 100 pop chart at No. 20, follows the previously released Timbaland-produced track "Chicago," which was originally titled "She Was Lovin' Me" when Jackson first recorded it in 1999, and it was meant to appear on his 2001 album Invincible but didn't make the cut. In April, another track from the Jackson album, "Love Never Felt So Good," was released, originally recorded by the late pop star in 1983 and written by Paul Anka. Meanwhile, the estate of Michael Jackson has created a spot to be featured at the upcoming 2014 Billboard Music Awards on May 18 in Las Vegas which it promises will present MJ "like you've never seen him before." The ABC television network will broadcast the show live from the MGM Grand Garden Arena and Yahoo.com will be streaming the red carpet show. - Billboard, 5/7/14.
An electric 1962 Rickenbacker guitar owned and played in the studio by George Harrison is headed to auction. The late Beatles legend's Rickenbacker 425 will be up for grabs on May 17 at Manhattan's Hard Rock Cafe, where it's estimated to fetch up to $600,000. According to the Julien's Auctions website, Harrison purchased the guitar in 1963 at Fenton's Music store in Mount Vernon, Illinois, during a two-week trip to visit his sister, Louise. While the Rickenbacker 425 isn't as easily recognizable as some of his other guitars (including his various Gretsch models, 12-string Rickenbacker or Fender Telecaster), Harrison did use the axe onstage during the Fab Four's first appearance on the TV show Ready Steady Go! in October 1963 and on Thank Your Lucky Stars in December 1963. He also played the guitar on the band's week-long tour of Sweden and during Abbey Road studio sessions for "I Want to Hold Your Hand" (which also featured the recording of "This Boy.") The auction will also feature a rare copy of Beatles '65 signed by each of the Beatles which is expected to bring up to $300,000. The auction will also feature more rock memorabilia, including Jimi Hendrix's Sears Silvertone electric guitar, which is estimated to sell for $100,000. Meanwhile in other Beatles-related news, the band's 1964 movie A Hard Day's Night will be screened in more than 50 cities across the US over the Fourth of July weekend to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the film's premiere at London's Pavilion Theatre in 1964. - Rolling Stone/AP, 5/9/14.
Pres. Barack Obama shared a table with Bruce Springsteen and filmmaker Steven Spielberg at a fundraising gala in Washington, D.C., on May 7 celebrating the USC Shoah Foundation, which Spielberg established 20 years ago to collect video testimonies from survivors of the Holocaust and other genocides. Inspired by the making of Schindler's List, the video archive Spielberg created now includes more than 50,000 personal accounts and is available to schools across the globe. Springsteen provided musical entertainment, tucking his black tie into his white shirt to perform two songs with his acoustic guitar, and the president accepted the foundation's Ambassador for Humanity award at the private event at the Century Plaza Hotel. Also present at the event, which was hosted by Conan O'Brien, were Barbra Streisand and Samuel L. Jackson. - AP, 5/8/14.