Posted by Administrator on June 13th, 2014
Radio and television personality Casey Kasem died on June 15 in a California after battling Lewy Body disease, a form of dementia. He was 82. Born Kemal Amin Kasem in Detroit, Mich. on Apr. 27, 1932, the wholesome-voiced Mr. Kasem began his career in nearby Flint before becoming an announcer on Armed Forces Radio Korea Network in 1952. Upon his return, he went on to work at radio stations in California, Ohio and New York before launching "American Top 40" in July 1970, hosting that show until 1988, and then a revived version from 1998 until 2004, when Ryan Seacrest took over. From 1988 until 1998, Mr. Kasem hosted a show called "Casey's Top 40," ending the program with "Keep your feet on the ground and keep reaching for the stars." "I just didn't want to say goodbye. Every station I was at, I never said goodbye," he later explained to the New York Times of his famous sign-off. "I don't know why." In addition to his career as a disc jockey, Mr. Kasem also had a colorful TV career, which included doing the voice for Shaggy on Scooby-Doo as well as voice-overs for many commercials. A devout vegan, Mr. Kasem supported animal rights and environmental causes, as well as political organizations that spoke to him. Originally of Lebanese origin, he felt it was important to improve Arab-Jewish relations. In recent years, his health declined and in 2013, his daughter Kerri said he was suffering from dementia. Around that time, his three oldest children and brother launched a claim that his wife Jean was not letting them see their father. A court denied a petition his daughter Julie launched to take care of her father in October 2013, but in May 2014 Kerri was granted conservatorship amid a battle with Kasem's second wife, her stepmother, Jean. - ABC News, 6/15/14.
The Songwriters Hall of Fame honored Kinks frontman Ray Davies, '60s pop legend Donovan, and '70s Philly soul greats Gamble & Huff during its 45th annual induction ceremony in New York on June 12. Davies was unable to attend due to the recent death of his sister Joyce, but he delivered a gracious speech via video, noting the "ups and downs" of his career -- "as anyone who's seen a Kinks concert can attest" -- and thanked "my friend Jon Bon Jovi," who'd just given a warm and very funny induction speech. Bon Jovi also performed a medley of Kinks hits, including "Celluloid Heroes," "You Really Got Me," "Low Budget" and "All Day and All of the Night," and noted that Davies' compositions are songs "which people can relate to, whether they're a factory worker in Birmingham or a teenager in New Jersey." Rising singer Miguel paid tribute to Philadelphia International founders Kenneth Gamble and Leon Huff, whose more than 3,500 songs over 50 years include the Supremes' "I'm Gonna Make You Love Me," Harold Melvin & the Blue Notes' "If You Don't Know Me By Now," The O'Jays' "For the Love of Money" and the song Miguel performed, Billy Paul's "Me and Mrs. Jones." Donovan performed "Catch the Wind" as a duet with Rosanne Cash (who sang stunningly) before being joined by the house band for his first hit, the psychedelic classic "Sunshine Superman." Also honored during the ceremony were former 10cc member Graham Gouldman, who also penned several hits for such '60s groups as the Hollies and Herman's Hermits, and "Suspicious Minds" songwriter Jim Weatherley. Speaking of the Kinks, Ray Davies has told London's Sunday Times that he has recently met with his brother Dave Davies about a potential Kinks reunion. "I met Dave only last week to talk about getting together again. We've also spoken a few times on the phone and emailed," Ray said. Dave Davies confirmed the face-to-face contact on Facebook on June 8, posting, "Ray & Dave Davies have started meeting about a potential The Kinks reunion, but we're not quite there yet." The Kinks last performed together in 1996. - Billboard/Rollling Stone, 6/13/14.
Beach Boys mastermind Brian Wilson is pushing back at detractors who have been putting out bad vibes about his current recording project. According to a recent Rolling Stone article that Wilson re-published on his official website, his new LP will feature contributions from such artists as Lana Del Rey, Frank Ocean, Kacey Musgraves, and actress/singer Zooey Deschanel. "This project blows my mind," Wilson is quoted as saying. "I had no idea we could pull this off!" But not all of Wilson's fans are impressed by the idea, and the revered producer/songwriter has responded on his Facebook page: "To my fans: it kind of bums me out to see some of the negativity here about the album I've been working so hard on. In my life in music, I've been told too many times not to f--- with the formula, but as an artist it's my job to do that -- and I think I've earned that right. I'm really proud of these new songs and to hear these great artists sing on them just blows me away. I love what we've done. I would think that after making music for more than fifty years, my fans would understand that I'll always do what's in my heart -- and I think that's why you are my fans. So let's just wait until the album comes out because I think you just might dig it as much as I do." It is unclear whether all or some of those recordings will see the light of day, and Wilson has yet to announce a release date. - Billboard, 6/11/14.
Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers' upcoming new Reprise Records album, Hypnotic Eye, is now available for pre-order at itTunes and www.TomPetty.com. All those who pre-order the album in any format from either of these outlets or are a member of the band's Highway Companions Club, will receive downloads of five tracks from the album in advance of the July 29 release date. Three of those tracks will be delivered immediately beginning today with one more to follow on both June 24 and July 15. The initial advance tracks include "American Dream Plan B," which is currently streaming on Soundcloud and at RollingStone.com, and "U Get Me High," which was sent to radio stations on June 10. It's the band's first album since 2010's Mojo, which was their first in eight years. Petty and the Heartbreakers' 2014 tour behind the new LP gets underway on Aug. 3 at Viejas Arena in San Diego, and includes stops at the Outside Lands Music and Arts Festival in San Francisco (8/9) as well as dates at Boston's Fenway Park (8/20), New York's Madison Square Garden (10/10), Anaheim's Honda Center (10/7) and L.A.'s The Forum (10/10). Every ticket on the tour includes a free download of Hypnotic Eye, which has been described as "maximum rock & roll" and "a decisive return to the concise '60s-rock classicism of his first great New Wave era albums." - The Hollywood Reporter, 10/10/14.
Paul McCartney announced on June 9 that he is rescheduling several U.S. tour dates on his "Out There" tour as he continues to recover from a virus he received treatment for in May. The Beatles' legend says stops scheduled for mid-June will be postponed to October. "I'm sorry, but it's going to be a few more weeks before we get rocking in America again," McCartney said in a statement. "I'm feeling great, but taking my docs' advice to take it easy for just a few more days. Look forward to seeing you all soon." McCartney was supposed to kick off the U.S. leg of his tour on June 7, but instead his first show will be July 5 in Albany, N.Y. Sir Paul, who will celebrate his 72nd birthday on June 18, says he's taking his doctor's advice and will take more time to rest. In late May, he cancelled his "Out There Japan Tour 2014" because of his illness and hospitalization in Tokyo. At the time, his rep said, "He will make a complete recovery and has been ordered to take a few days rest." U.S. tickets for the seven original June dates will be honored at the new dates. The 19-date tour, which will also hit such major markets as Pittsburgh, Chicago, Kansas City, Salt Lake City, Los Angeles, Phoenix, San Francisco, New Orleans, Dallas, Atlanta, Nashville, and Jacksonville, wraps up Oct. 28 in Louisville. Paul's postponed tour dates has also left promoters scrambling to adjust their schedules. Meanwhile in other McCartney news, a new Macca biography by Q magazine contributing editor Tom Doyle titled Man on the Run: Paul McCartney in the 1970s claims McCartney once threatened to kick his wife Linda McCartney out of his '70s band Wings and that he was "depressed, heavy-drinking" and "self-sedated with marijuana" following the Beatles' breakup in 1970. - Billboard, 6/9/10.
The Allman Brothers Band has announced the upcoming reissue of its classic 1971 live album At Fillmore East will be expanded into a six-disc box set, The 1971 Fillmore East Recordings, and 15 previously unreleased performances. The ABB originally compiled the album from four sets recorded over a weekend in March 1971, and the new box set also includes a complete performance recorded at the venue that June. For that performance, promoter Bill Graham handpicked them to headline the Fillmore East's final night. Featuring liner notes by "Allmanologist" John Lynskey, The 1971 Fillmore East Recordings will drop July 29. The release comes months before the Allman Brothers play what could be their final concerts at New York City's Beacon Theatre in October. Meanwhile, a documentary of a 1972 Grateful Dead concert at Bremen, Germany's Beat Club will get theatrical screenings across the U.S. on July 17 as part of the annual "Grateful Dead Meet-Up at the Movies." The screening will feature a complete live studio performance with remastered audio. In addition to performances of a shorter version of the Dead's European tour song selection, the film will include all the in-studio banter that took place the day it was filmed. In related news, another icon of '60s psychedelia, the Jefferson Airplane, are preparing for an expansive merchandising campaign based on the band's "free your head" image, just in time for their 50th anniversary. The deal is expected to launch in 2015 based on two platforms: more affordable products, including "buttons, incense, stickers, decals and metal jewelry" and higher-end items such as "handbags, scarves, T-shirts, tops, sleepwear and other accessories, home dcor, stationery/paper goods, collectibles, gifts and novelty and publishing." Jefferson Airplane's manager, Bill Thompson, who owns the band's rights along with lead singer Grace Slick, also claims to be "in conversations" with Sony Music about potential re-releases of the band's LPs. - Rollling Stone, 6/11/14.
Neil Young became the victim of a Twitter porn hack over the second weekend in June, with his social networking account taken over by pornographic tweets and NSFW images. John Hamm, the CEO of Young's PonoMusic company, says that Young's account is now back in the control of the singer's management and has been restored with all pornographic tweets deleted. On June 7 a message from the account read: "Please disregard my last few tweets. This account was hacked, but it has now been resolved and taken care of." In May, Young released a surprise covers album, A Letter Home, on Jack White's Third Man Records featuring covers of tracks by such artists as Willie Nelson, Bob Dylan, Bruce Springsteen, The Everly Brothers and more. Young recorded the album in a refurbished 1947 Voice-o-Graph vinyl recording booth at the Third Man shop in Nashville, Tenn. Young is scheduled to play two U.K. dates in July: London's Hyde Park on July 12 and the Liverpool Echo Arena on July 13 with his band Crazy Horse. - New Musical Express, 6/9/14.
Legendary actress Ruby Dee, an Oscar-nominated thespian whose career in film and on stage spanned four decades, died on June 11 at her home in New Rochelle, N.Y. She was 91. In the course of her accomplished career, Ms. Dee collected acclaim and awards including an Emmy and a Grammy. Ms. Dee also won an Obie Award in 1971 for her portrayal of Lena in Athol Fugard's Boseman and Lena (1970) and a Drama Desk Award for Wedding Band (1974). She had an impressive stage career, including a highly praised performance in "Purlie Victorious" (1963). Also on stage, Ms. Dee was notable as the proud working-mother Ruth in "A Raisin in the Sun" (1961). In 1988, she starred with Denzel Washington and Paul Winfield in "Checkmates" on Broadway and was inducted into the Theatre Hall of Fame. Along with her late husband, Ossie Davis, Ms. Dee was honored with the Screen Actors Guild's Life Achievement Award in 2001. In related news, Detroit music producer Don Davis who went on to helm one of America's biggest black-owned banks, died on June 12 at age 75. He leaves behind a litany of hits -- including work with his cousin Johnnie Taylor on the No. 1 '70s smash "Disco Lady" and Marilyn McCoo and Billy Davis Jr. on their hit "You Don't Have to Be a Star (To Be in My Show)." In 1981, he took over the struggling First Independence Bank, eventually rebuilding it to more than $200 million in assets and the 12th-biggest African-American owned bank in the U.S. - The Hollywood Reporter, 6/12/14.