Wednesday, March 2, 2016

Favorite Seventies Artists In The News

Posted by Administrator on Mar. 7th, 2016

A U.S. district judge ruled on Mar. 7 that the Amazing Grace documentary featuring 1972 concert footage of music icon Aretha Franklin can't be screened or released without the singer's permission. Much of the footage from the documentary was shot by late director Sydney Pollack at the New Missionary Baptist Church in Los Angeles and, according to court documents, "the footage was taken with the express understanding that it would not be used commercially without agreement and consent by Ms. Franklin." In Sept. 2015, Franklin requested an emergency injunction that stopped screenings of the film at the Telluride Film Festival, claiming that 80 percent of the film features her and her performance. The court made permanent a temporary restraining order that agreed with Franklin's claim that the film "violates her contractual rights, her intellectual property rights, her rights to use and control her name and likeness, and represents an invasion of her privacy." However an attorney for Alan Elliott, the defendant in the case, says the ruling absolutely does not mean the film won't be released. "This is in furtherance of the parties' efforts over the last few months to get a deal done so the world can see this great film," he said. - The Hollywood Reporter, 3/7/16...... Bob DylanBob Dylan announced on his official website on Mar. 7 that his upcoming 37th studio album, another album of cover standards, will be titled Fallen Angels, and he'll kick off a summer 2016 tour behind the new LP with a two-night stand in Woodinville, Wash., on June 4 and 5 at the Chateau Ste. Michelle Winery. Other key dates include Berkeley, Calif. (6/9); Santa Barbara, Calif. (6/11); San Diego (6/13-14); Morrison, Col. (6/19); Indianapolis, In. (6/25); Nashville, Tenn. (6/26); Lenox, Mass. (7/2); Vienna, Va. (7/5-6); Queens, N.Y. (7/8); Philadelphia (7/13); Boston (7/16); and Portland, Me. (7/16) before wrapping in Gilford, N.H. on July 17. No release date was given for the new album on the site, however it states "For every pair of tickets purchased, you will receive a redemption code to receive a Compact Disk of Bob Dylan's forthcoming album Fallen Angels (Not available for Indianapolis and Boston.)" Opening for Dylan on the tour will be Mavis Staples. Meanwhile in other Dylan news, Barbara Streisand has reached out to the New York Times to tell her side of the story of a note from her to Dylan that is included in the recently announced Dylan archives that will be archived and displayed at a permanent Oklahoma residence. "I was so touched to find out (Bob) had saved a note from me," Striesand said via a spokesperson. "It prompted me to go back into my own archive and retrieve a letter I had saved from him. As I remember it, first he sent me flowers and a lovely note, asking me if I would like to sing with him. In return, I sent him the note that's in his archive, thanking him for the flowers and the invitation. But for whatever reason, it never happened at the time." The note is from the late '70s/early '80s period, and a few years earlier Dylan was rumored to be one of the male performers under consideration for the role opposite Streisand in her 1976 film A Star Is Born. - Billboard, 3/7/16...... A letter penned by John Lennon in 1951 that is thought to be the earliest known letter written by the late Beatles legend is set to be sold at auction in April. The letter by the 11-year-old Lennon is a thank-you letter to his aunt, which thanks her for his Christmas presents that included a towel with his name on and a book about ships. The letter will be sold by online auction house, closing on Apr. 3. It is part of an auction collection that includes around 300 items. - New Musical Express, 3/7/16...... Patti LaBellePatti LaBelle and late Earth, Wind & Fire principal Maurice White were among the honorees at the BET Honors at on Mar. 5 at the Warner Theatre in Washington, DC. LaBelle said above all she is thankful for the recognition from BET. "It means everything great," the "Lady Marmalade" singer said. "I've done the show about three times performing and then for me to be honored tonight, I am just so wonderfully blessed." LaBelle added fans can expect her new, jazz-flavored album out by the end of the year. "I've finished it, and it will be released in about six months," she said. - Billboard, 3/7/16...... Sinead O'Connor and Ava Cherry were among the performers paying tribute to David Bowie at a cancer fund-raising concert at the Metro in Chicago on Mar. 4. O'Connor fronted the Bowie tribute band Sons of the Silent Age (a group which takes its name from a track on Bowie's "Heroes" album) for covers of the rock icon's "Life on Mars" and "Sorrow" (originally a hit for The Merseys). Cherry, a former collaborator and backing vocalist for Bowie, performed "Young Americans" at the sold-out concert, which raised funds for cancer research. Money raised from the concert will go toward immunotherapy research, a treatment that uses your body's own immune system to help fight cancer. Bowie died Jan. 10 after a battle with liver cancer at age 69. Meanwhile, Bowie was honored by The Who at their concert on Mar. 3 at New York's Madison Square Garden. A message displayed on the Garden's big screens prior to The Who's performance read: "David Bowie. Friend of The Who. Son of New York. Tonight we will distinctly miss David Bowie, longtime fan of The Who. He's told the story of how he climbed the fence at London's Roundhouse to sneak backstage and give Pete Townshend a copy of his new 1969 album, David Bowie. He covered I Can't Explain and Anyway, Anyhow, Anywhere on his Pin Ups album. Nearly every year at MSG, he sat in the first row right beside the stage. We'll miss our friend, a true icon of music and art, and a brilliant innovator." Bowie, a resident of New York City, was a regular guest and performer at MSG. - Billboard, 3/7/16...... In other The Who news, the band returned to US late-night television for the first time since 1967 on Mar. 4 when they performed "Who Are You?" on The Tonight Show with Jimmy Falllon. The Who last performed on American TV in 1967 on The Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour. The band is promoting their The Who Hits 50! North American tour, which resumed on Feb. 27 at Detroit's Joe Louis Arena after being postponed for almost six months after lead singer Roger Daltrey was diagnosed with viral meningitis. - New Musical Express, 3/5/16...... Two vinyl releases of David Bowie's music will be re-issued to coincide with the UK's Record Store Day 2016. Bowie's official Facebook page announced on Mar. 7 that the pair of Bowie re-issues will come in the form of a "Station to Station" single "TVC15" and the second, 1970's The Man Who Sold The World album (which is also reportedly being reissued with original German artwork). Record Store Day runs on Apr. 16. - NME, 3/7/16...... Elton John is among several high-profile celebrities who have signed an open letter calling on world leaders to fight for gender equality across the globe. The letter, released on Mar. 6, states that some 62 million girls around the world are denied the right to education, 500 million women can't read and 155 countries have laws that discriminate against women. "Nowhere on earth do women have as many opportunities as men. Nowhere," the letter states. "The fight for gender equality is global." Others signing the petition include Mary J. Blige, Oprah Winfrey, Charlize Theron, Meryl Streep, Tina Fey, Amy Poehler, Robert Redford, Ashley Judd, Patricia Arquette, Muhammed Ali and Colin Ferrell. Meanwhile, on Mar. 2 Elton co-headlined a Hillary Clinton fundraiser with Katy Perry at Radio City Music Hall in New York. John played an eight-song set that included "Tiny Dancer," "Your Song" and "Still Standing," which he dedicated to Clinton. "This is a very important year for America and she's the only hope you have," Elton said at the event. - AP/Billboard, 3/6/16...... Joe WalshPaul RodgersVeteran rockers Joe Walsh and Bad Company announced on Mar. 3 that they'll be hitting the road in the US together beginning on May 12 in Dallas for a 25-city "One Hell Of A Night" tour. "I had always hoped that we would do something together and so here we are 30 years later finally touring together, Bad Company frontman Paul Rodgers said in a statement. "It has taken us this long so I wouldn't miss this. Unless you want to wait 30 more years for our next tour in 2046! There is only one Joe Walsh, he is such a unique person and an uber talented singer, songwriter and musician." The tour, which wraps on July 3 in Nashville, will also include stops in Morrison, Col. (5/15); Los Angeles (5/20); Phoenix, Ariz. (5/22); New Orleans (5/26); Tampa, Fla. (5/28); Holmdel, NJ (6/11); Wantagh, NY (6/14); Kansas City, Mo. (6/20); Chicago (6/23); Pittsburgh (6/28); Charlotte, NC (6/30) and Atlanta (7/1). The tour, in which Walsh and Bad Company will rotate the finishing slot for each performance, will be Walsh's first since his friend and former Eagles bandmate Glenn Frey died Jan. 18. Bad Company, currently comprised of Rodgers, vocalist Mick Ralphs and drummer Simon Kirke, is expected to announce the release of a classic live album soon. - Billboard, 3/3/16...... The operators of an Elvis Presley exhibit in Las Vegas that opened at the Westgate Las Vegas Resort in 2015 amid great fanfare have "left the building" amid a leasing dispute that involves hundreds of the King's artifacts. The hotel-casino says it's holding the valuables from the Elvis attraction after the operator, Exhibit A Circle LLC, defaulted on its 10-year lease with the off-Strip property. Westgate said its casino shuttered the space on Mar. 4 after it was told the operators were leaving. "They notified us they were shutting down. We closed the facility," Westgate's chief operating officer Mark Waltrip said. "We weren't going to let them pack up in the middle of the night." Waltrip said the casino spent millions of dollars outfitting the space and wants to recoup money owed as part of the leasing agreement, and meanwhile, Elvis Presley Enterprises, which loaned hundreds of Elvis memorabilia and artifacts to the attraction, says it will seek court intervention to get the items back. Poor marketing and promotional efforts have been blamed for the attraction's lack of financial viability. - AP, 3/2/16...... John CaleFormer Velvet Underground member John Cale has revealed that he will be performing the VU's classic Velvet Underground & Nico album in Paris in April with a band comprised of special guests including the Libertines and more. Cale says the Nico LP will be performed in its entirety t the Philharmonie de Paris on Apr. 3. - NME, 3/3/16...... Alice Cooper's manager Shep Gordon says he's generally pleased with the depiction of his client in HBO's new series VInyl, about the early '70s record business. But Gordon says the scene in episode 3 in which an A&R exec tries to convince Cooper's character, played by Dustin Ingram, to leave the band that bears his name for a solo career never happened, although Cooper did eventually split from the band, following the success of the 1973 album Billion Dollar Babies. "If you got a million miles away to Mars, then it was accurate," Gordon quips. "But in that moment, it wasn't. I think the story has been told over and over again. It didn't come out of an A&R guy's thing. It really came out of each of the guys having the desire to do their own things." Gordon adds that he likes how Vinyl depicts how artists were often seen as commodities. "It was very rare to find someone on the business side who really dealt with an artist as an artist," he says. "That was one of my biggest challenges." - Billboard, 3/4/16...... Media mogul Rupert Murdoch married actress/model Jerry Hall, the former girlfriend of Rolling Stones frontman Mick Jagger, on Mar. 5 during a private ceremony at St. Bride's church in London. Murdoch, who has been married three times previously and is 84 years old, said he was "the happiest man in the world." The star-studded guest list included actor Michael Caine, Irish rocker Bob Geldof, and composer Andrew Lloyd Weber. Murdoch, executive chairman of News Corp and owner of 21st Century Fox Inc, and Hall, 59, posed for photographs after the service at the historic church, but simply smiled and made no comment to the waiting media. - Reuters, 3/5/16...... Lana Rae Meisner, the wife of former Eagles member Randy Meisner, was found dead at the couple's home in Los Angeles on Mar. 6. LAPD detectives say Lana Rae accidentally shot herself as she was "moving a rifle that was stored inside the closet when it accidentally went off." Hours before the incident, police had been summoned to the residence after a domestic violence call, but left without incident. Randy Meisner has been cleared of any wrongdoing in his wife's death. Celebrity gossip site reported that Lana Rae had called the police to report her husband, who she said was "acting erratically" and in possession of a BB gun, according to law enforcement sources. Randy Meisner was taken to hospital on Mar. 7 after "acting in an altered state," according to TMZ. Meisner was a member of the Eagles from 1971-77, when he was replaced by Timothy Schmidt. - NME, 3/7/16...... Gayle McCormickGayle McCormick, a big-voiced singer who scored the Top 5 hit "Baby It's You" in the late 1960s with the soul/psych rock band Smith before going solo in the '70s, died on Mar. 1 in suburban St. Louis following a lengthy battle with cancer. She was 67. McCormick began her career in the mid-1960s in St. Louis as the featured singer in a well-known local band called Steve Cummings and The Klassmen. By 1969 she had moved to Los Angeles and joined a group that had recently changed their name from The Smiths to simply Smith. Before long, the band and its striking frontwoman caught the eye of "Runaway" singer Del Shannon, who helped them get signed to Dunhill Records. In July 1969, the band released A Group Called Smith, a tight-knit set of mostly rock covers that peaked at No. 17 on Billboard's Top LPs chart. Their biggest hit was Burt Bacharach's "Baby, It's You," previously recorded by The Shirelles and the Beatles, which rose to No. 5 on the Hot 100. While riding the wave of that hit, McCormick and the band made appearances on The Ed Sullivan Show, American Bandstand and elsewhere. In the summer of 1969, Smith's cover of The Band's "The Weight" was included in Easy Rider soundtrack album -- the original was heard in the actual film -- and in 2007, "Baby, It's You" got renewed attention when director Quentin Tarantino featured it in his film, Death Proof. After Smith disbanded in 1970, McCormick was signed to a solo deal by Dunhill, which led to her self-titled debut in 1971. Though unable to match the early success of Smith, the set's standout single, the dance-ready "It's a Cryin' Shame," did reach No. 44 on the Hot 100. McCormick then lost interest in the music business, married a carpenter and moved to Hawaii before ending up back in St. Louis a few years later. - Billboard, 3/4/16...... Former First Lady and actress Nancy Reagan, the wife of the 40th US president Ronald Reagan, died at her home in Los Angeles of congestive heart failure. She was 94. As first lady during Ronald Reagan's eight years in the White House, Mrs. Reagan was known as the "Just say no" spokeswoman of anti-drug campaigns and as a fierce protector of her husband, both personally and politically. When Ronald Reagan was shot in a 1981 assassination attempt, Mrs. Reagan never left the hospital where the president was treated until he was released. After she and her husband left Washington, Mrs. became his protector again as he struggled with Alzheimer's disease until his death in 2004. Afterward, she remained a staunch guardian of his image and legacy. Mrs. Reagan is survived by Patti Davis and Ron Reagan -- her two children with Ronald Reagan -- and Michael Reagan, a son from Ronald Reagan's first marriage to Jane Wyman. Maureen Reagan, Ronald Reagan's daughter with first wife Jane Wyman, died in 2001. Mrs. Reagan will be buried at the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library in Simi Valley, Calif., next to her husband, Ronald Wilson Reagan, who died on June 5, 2004. - CNN, 3/7/16...... Bud Collins, a colorful tennis broadcaster who pioneered tennis journalism, died on Mar. 4 at hishome in Brookline, Mass. He was 86. Mr. Collins, known for his kaleidoscopic clothing and encyclopedic knowledge of the sport, was a favorite son of Boston who led the way for print journalists to become broadcasters. Mr. Collins wrote for the Boston Globe for 50 years and worked in the NBC booth from 1972 until the network let him go in 2007. For viewers, he was as much a part of NBC's coverage of Wimbledon as strawberries and cream. - The Hollywood Reporter, 3/4/16.

A secret archive of Bob Dylan memorabilia is set to go on display at the Brady Arts District in Tulsa, Okla., which also houses the Woody Guthrie Center. The University of Tulsa and The George Kaiser Family Foundation paid an estimated $15-20 million for the memorabilia, a vast collection that includes more than 6,000 letters, notebooks, handwritten lyrics, instruments and much more. On arrival in Oklahoma, the process of cataloguing the items will take two years. According to a press release, some of the items include a notebook filled with lyrics circa Dylan's Blood on the Tracks period, his wallet from 1966 containing Johnny Cash's address and phone number and a business card from Otis Redding, and a leather jacket worn by Dylan at his 1965 Newport Folk Festival appearance. The Brady Arts District also houses the Woody Guthrie Center, and Dylan's items will be displayed alongside a rare copy of the Declaration of Independence, a cache of Native American art, and the papers of folk icon Woody Guthrie. "I'm glad that my archives, which have been collected all these years, have finally found a home and are to be included with the works of Woody Guthrie and especially alongside all the valuable artifacts from the Native American Nations. To me it makes a lot of sense and it's a great honor," Dylan said in a statement. - New Musical Express, 3/2/16...... Yoko OnoYoko Ono was released from a Manhattan hospital on Feb. 27 after being admitted there a day earlier for treatment for flu-like symptons. Ono, 83, spent the night at Mount Sinai West Hospital after someone in her The Dakota residence on the Upper West Side called 911 and said the artist had "slurred speech" and was "possibly having a stroke." Ono was then transported to hospital by ambulance where she was diagnosed with the flu. Ono's son Sean Lennon tweeted that night that she was "really fine," and on the following day he tweeted "She's home and running about as usual. Just the flu in the end. I may go get a flu shot now..." Mount Sinai West Hospital, formerly known as Roosevelt, is the same facility where her husband, John Lennon, died after being shot by an assassin on Dec. 8, 1980. Meanwhile, Ono has revealed her favorite Beatles album in a new interview with US Weekly magazine. "I don't know if people will hate me for saying this, but I always preferred 'The White Album' to 'Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band'," Ono said, but quickly added "Don't get me wrong, I love 'Pepper's' too." - AP/New Musical Express, 2/27/16...... In related news, John Lennon's boyhood stamp collection is set to go on display at the World Stamp Show, which will be held in New York City from May 28-June 4. Lennon's interest in philatey was sparked as a child when a relative reportedly handed down a half filled book of collectors stamps. The collection has been housed at the The Smithsonian National Post Museum since 2005, and the majority of it is filled up with United States and New Zealand postage stamps that the iconic rocker collected in later life. In 2005, a curator with the Smithsonian noted there weren't many rarities in John's collection: Typically, young boys aren't interested in rarity," he said. "They tend to concentrate on geography and colors. If they come back to collecting when they have more time and money, that's when collections become exceptional." - NME, 3/2/16...... Tom PettyThe Songwriters Hall of Fame announced on Mar. 2 that Tom Petty, Elvis Costello, Marvin Gaye and Nile Rodgers and Bernard Edwards of Chic will be inducted into their organization during the 47th Annual SHOF Induction and Awards Dinner at the Marriott Marquis Hotel in New York City on June 9. SHOF co-chairs Kenneth Gamble and Leon Huff, a famous songwriting team themselves, noted that the 2016 inductee roster "is a beautiful mosaic of the best of late 20th Century popular music...with creators of Rock & Roll, Soul/R&B, Country and Funk/Dance represented." Gamble and Huff are serving their first year as co-chairmen of the SHOF. Gaye and Edwards will be inducted posthumously. - Billboard, 3/2/16...... The Rolling Stones have announced they will play a free concert in Havana, Cuba on Mar. 25, becoming the biggest act to play Cuba since its 1959 revolution. A massive audience is expected when the Stones play Havana's Ciudad Deportiva, just three days after US Pres. Barack Obama visits the carribean nation. Although Cuba once persecuted young people for listening to rock music, then seen as a tool of Western capitalism, it has since dropped that policy, and its government has increasingly allowed large non-official gatherings. "We have performed in many special places during our long career but this show in Havana is going to be a landmark event for us, and, we hope, for all our friends in Cuba too," the band said in a statement. - AP, 3/1/16...... Around $6.2 million was raised on Feb. 28 at Elton John's annual AIDS Foundation Oscar Viewing Party at The City of West Hollywood Park in West Hollywood, Calif. Elton, who performed with his band at the event for the first time in nearly a decade, noted he remembered the first one, which was held 24 years ago, very well. "We raised about $300,000 and we thought we were the best thing since sliced bread," he said. Also performing was Mary Wilson of The Supremes, and other attendees included Mariah Carey, Ashlee Simpson, Boy George, Brandy, Brittany Snow, Dave Grohl, Dave Navarro, Heidi Klum, Hillary Swank, Kelly Osborne, Lana Del Ray, Mary J. Blige, Trey Parker, Vince Vaughn and Zooey Deschanel, among others. A day earlier, Elton and his band shut down Hollywood's Sunset Strip with a pop-up performance in front of the old Tower Records building, was also live streamed exclusively on John performed an hour-long, 12-song set of old and new hits alike to thank the city of West Hollywood for its support of his AIDS Foundation and its Academy Awards Viewing Party. - The Hollywood Reporter, 3/1/16...... Freddie MercuryLegendary vocalist Freddie Mercury of Queen will be honored with a commemorative Blue Plaque at his West London home. Mercury, who died of AIDS in 1991, had a London residence in Feltham, west London, and is among the list of celebrities and famous contributors to culture that are to be honored this year with the Blue Plaque. More than 900 Blue Plaques have been installed across the UK to date, and an app is being developed which will guide people to the homes of Blue Plaque honorees including Mary Shelley, Ian Fleming and Mozart. Meanwhile, shooting is expected to start in June on a long-planned Freddie Mercury biopic, with Ben Whishaw set to play the rock star. - New Musical Express, 2/26/16...... Former Cream drummer Ginger Baker has canceled all upcoming tour dates with his band Airforce 3 after being diagnosed with "serious heart problems." "Just seen doctor big shock. no more gigs for this old drummer. everything is off. of all things i never thought it would be my heart," Baker posted on his blog. Upon hearing the news, several fans commented on Baker's Facebook page that the drummer should give up smoking. His team responded to many of those comments to say that Baker "gave up smoking months ago." - Billboard, 2/28/16...... Def Leppard announced on Feb. 29 that they'll kick off a massive 55-city North American tour on May 1 by headlining the Moonstone Festival in Orlando, Fla. REO Speedwagon and Tesla have been named as supporting acts for many of the dates, and two nights early in the tour -- on May 4 in Lafayette, La. and May 5 in Corpus Christi, Tex. -- will also feature Styx. The tour wraps on Oct. 10 in Cedar Rapids, Ia. - Billboard, 2/29/16...... Iggy Pop recently posed as a nude model for a life drawing class at the New York Academy of Art. The Feb. 21 event was organized by the Brooklyn Museum in conjunction with British artist and Turner Prize winner Jeremy Deller. Portraits from the session will be on display at Brooklyn Museum later this year, as part of an exhibition titled "Iggy Pop Life Class." The drawings will then embark on a tour of different galleries and museums. On Mar. 18, Pop will release his new solo album, Post-Pop Depression. - NME, 3/1/16...... Roger DaltreyThe Who resumed its US "The Who Hits 50!" tour on Feb. 27 in Detroit at the city's Joe Louis Arena. At the end of the nearly two-hour show, frontman Roger Daltrey -- whose bout with viral meningitis caused some 2015 shows to be postponed and pushed the entire second North American leg of the tour off for almost six months -- offered thanks to "you nice people who supported me last year... We never gave up." Though he sounded strained in certain points of the 20-song set, Daltrey performed with robust confidence, right up to the lung-busting scream in "Won't Get Fooled Again." The show was shortened and tweaked a bit from the 2015 edition, dropping staples such as "I Can't Explain" and the mini-opera "A Quick One (While He's Away)," and pacing the set with instrumental breaks. For instance, the Quadrophenia instrumental "The Rock" was inserted before the vocally demanding "Love Reign O'er Me." Guitarist Pete Townshend proclaimed "Roger, you sang f---ing great!," and earlier joked that "We are not just senior citizens... We are wise, wonderful, worthy wankers!" - Billboard, 2/28/16...... Former The Runaways guitarist Lita Ford claims in her new memoir, Living Like a Runaway, that Led Zeppelin singer Robert Plant once approached her to replace Zeppelin bassist John Paul Jones when Jones left the band for a while in 1975. Ford says that after a Runaways gig in L.A., Plant "asked me if I could play bass." "'For who?' I asked. 'Led Zep.' He might have been drinking or pulling my leg, but he seemed to be dead serious in the moment." Ford never heard back from Plant, but Jones did leave Led Zeppelin around the same time. The Runaways guitarist covered Led Zeppelin's "Rock And Roll" for a tribute album released in 1997. Meanwhile, Plant and his band the Shape Shifters have been confirmed to head the UK's Wilderness Festival in Oxfordshire on August 4-7. - NME, 2/27/16...... Country music icon Merle Haggard has been admitted to a California hospital for treatment of a recurring bout of double pneumonia. Haggard's publicist said in a statement that the "Okie From Muskogee" singer has had to postpone his concert dates in March. Haggard, 78, had returned to the stage in February after cancelling some dates because he was still feeling weak from a previous case of pneumonia in both lungs. The statement said that his doctors wanted him to take one more month off the road to rest and recover. - AP, 3/2/16...... Robin WilliamsOfficials in California have dubbed the tunnel north of the Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco The Robin Williams Tunnel in commemoration of the beloved actor, comedian and longtime Bay Area resident. Signs were erected to officially mark the passageway on Feb. 29. The $3,000 signs were privately funded. Sarah Michelle Gellar, who played Williams' TV daughter on the CBS sitcom The Crazy Ones, hailed the tribute on Instagram. "I guess I know who is on the other end of the #rainbow#robinwilliams," Gellar wrote in reference to the tunnel, noting, "It's the former Waldo tunnel in SF." Residents previously referred to the U.S. Highway 101 tunnel as the "Waldo tunnel" because it cuts through the Waldo Grade. Its famed rainbow arches invoked memories of Williams' multi-colored suspenders on the sitcom, Mork & Mindy, prompting Belvedere, Calif., resident Julie Wainwright to campaign for a name change following the actor's death nearly two years ago. - USA Today, 2/2/16...... Legendary Los Angeles DJ and media personality Charlie Tuna died in his sleep on Feb. 19. He was 71. Tuna was the morning drive-time radio personality for numerous formats and stations across a four decade career, and his voice set the tone for KROQ-FM as the influential station tweaked its format for a rock audience. Tuna was presented with his star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame in 1990 and a string of accolades followed, including recognition from his home state Nebraska Broadcasters Association with entry into the Hall of Fame in 1999. He was voted as a Top 10 radio personalities in L.A. on several occasions and in 2008 was inducted into the National Radio Hall of Fame. Tuna was also announcer for various TV shows ranging including America's Top 10 with Casey Kasem and he hosted the internationally syndicated Cinema, Cinema, Cinema for 30 years. "His was a life well-lived," a statement on his website reads, "and he will always be remembered for the joy, laughter and love of music he brought to many throughout the world with his presence on the radio. All who knew him will sadly miss him." - Billboard, 2/29/16...... Lennie Baker, a longtime member of the '50s revival group Sha Na Na who sang lead on the rock and doo-wop group's hit "Blue Moon," died on Feb. 24 at South Shore Hospital in Weymouth, Mass., where he had been briefly hospitalized after developing an infection. He was 69. Baker spent 30 years touring with Sha Na Na as a vocalist and saxophone player. He sang lead on "Blue Moon," which he performed at Carnegie Hall and around the world, and often said it was his favorite tune. Baker left the group in 2000 and was living on Martha's Vineyard at the time of his death. Another former Sha Na Na member, Dennis Greene, died in September. - AP,2/26/16...... George KennedyGeorge Kennedy, the beefy character actor best known for playing cops, soldiers and blue-collar authority figures in such famous films as Cool Hand Luke, Airport and the Naked Gun films, passed away on Feb. 28 at his home in Boise, Idaho. He was 91. "He passed Sunday morning, due to old age and some health issues," according to his grandson, Cory Schenkel. Mr. Kennedy broke through with 1967's Cool Hand Luke, in which he played Dragline, a convict who resists, and then becomes friendly with, Paul Newman's Luke character. The marvelous thing about that movie was that as my part progresses, I changed from a bad guy to a good guy," Kennedy said in 1978, according to the Hollywood Reporter. "The moguls in Hollywood must have said, 'Hey, this fellow can do something besides be a bad guy.'" The performance won him an Oscar for Best Supporting Actor. Later numerous film credits include Airport (1970), Earthquake (1974) and Modern Romance (1981), and he also had a number of TV roles, including starring in the short-lived '70s series Sarge and The Blue Knight. Late in life, Kennedy wrote a memoir, Trust Me, in which he described growing up lonely in New York and the joy he found in acting. "I considered the time I spent acting a gift from the beyond," he told interviewer Brad Berkwitt. "It was what I could do best." - CNN, 2/29/16...... Winston "Merritone" Blake, a Jamaican musicologist, producer, and owner/operator of Merritone Music, succumbed to complications from asthma on Feb. 27 at a Kingston hospital. He was 75. Merritone is Jamaica's oldest continually operational sound system, founded in 1950, prior to the emergence of the island's indigenous popular music forms and its prolific recording industry. In 1973 Merritone Blake and his brothers Trevor, Tyrone and Monte pened Kingston's landmark Turntable Club, which enjoyed a 28-year run. Reggae legend Bob Marley went there often, as did many prominent musicians, politicians and other professionals. - Billboard, 3/1/16.

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