Friday, December 26, 2008

Barenaked Ladies Assembling Boxed Set

Has it really been that long? In 2009, the quirky Canadian rockers Barenaked ladies will celebrate the 20th anniversary- with plans for a boxed set of old and new music and possibly a tour.

It has been a tumultuous year for the band’s two lead singers. Steven Page is on six months probation after being arrested and charged with cocaine possession in Fayetteville, NY. Singer Ed Robertson has had his troubles as well, in August he survived a float plane crash as well as losing his mother to cancer on December 13.

Drummer Tyler Stewart admits that the quintet is looking forward to the end of 2008 and hopes the New Year will be better.

“Adversity, if it doesn’t kill you it makes you strong, I guess,” Stewart recently explained to “We’ve rallied through adversity before. In some ways I’m looking forward to getting together and making some great music based on all these intense and emotional experiences. That’s when we feel the most alive, the most energetic.”

Stewart goes on to say, “The guys have been working individually on stuff, and together,” and expects an early summer return to the studio, maybe in early summer, but adds that “Maybe we’ll get some inspiration and jump in before that.”

In the meantime, BNL have been immersed in preparing the 20th anniversary boxed set that will include rarities, demos and unreleased material and some “really complex stuff” that was written by former keyboardist Andy Creegan.

“It’s a bit of a pat on the back,” Stewart says. “Like, hey you’ve done a lot. But is also, OK, now what else can we do? How can we move forward from here, because we feel like we’re not done yet by any means.”

The band is planning a 20th anniversary tour, likely to kick off in May of 2009.


• Gordon (1992)
• Maybe You Should Drive (1994)
• Born on a Pirate Ship (1996)
• Rock Spectacle (1996).
• Stunt (1998)
• Maroon (2000)
• Everything to Everyone (2003)
• Barenaked for the Holidays (2004)
• Barenaked Ladies Are Me (2006)
• Barenaked Ladies Are Men (2007)
• Snacktime! (2008)

Barenaked Ladies - Brian Wilson

Classic Rock Videos

The Moody Blues - Nights in White satin´67

Sultry `Santa Baby' singer Eartha Kitt dies at 81

Eartha Kitt

Eartha Kitt was daringly sexy and always flirtatious onstage, but, offstage Kitt described herself as shy and almost reclusive. This sultry vixen passed away after a long battle against colon cancer on December 25 (Christmas Day), 2008. She was 81.

EARTHA KITT was an international star who gives new meaning to the word versatile. She has distinguished herself in film, theater, cabaret, music and on television. Miss Kitt is one of only a handful of performers to be nominated for a Tony (three times), the Grammy (twice), and Emmy Award (twice). She regularly enthralls New York nightclub audiences during her extended stays at THE CAFÉ CARLYLE and these intimate performances have been captured in her newest recording, Eartha Kitt, Live at The Carlyle.

Miss Kitt's distinctive voice has enthralled an entirely new generation of fans. Young fans loved her as YZMA, the villain, in Disney's animated feature THE EMPEROR'S NEW GROOVE, (2001 Annie Award for Best Vocal Performance / Animated Feature). Miss Kitt was also featured in the sequel, THE EMPEROR'S NEW GROOVE II and reprised the role in the popular Saturday morning animated series THE EMPEROR'S NEW SCHOOL for which she received a 2007 and 2008 Emmy Award for Outstanding Performer in an Animated Program and a 2007 and 2008 Annie Award for Best Vocal Performance in an Animated Television Production.

Eartha Mae Kitt was ostracized at an early age because of her mixed-race heritage. At eight years old, she was given away by her mother and sent from the South Carolina cotton fields to live with an aunt in Harlem. In New York her distinct individuality and flair for show business manifested itself, and on a friend's dare, the shy teen auditioned for the famed KATHERINE DUNHAM DANCE TROUPE. She won a spot as a featured dancer and vocalist and before the age of twenty, toured worldwide with the company. During a performance in Paris, Miss Kitt was spotted by a nightclub owner and booked as a featured singer at his club. Her unique persona earned her fans and fame quickly, including Orson Welles, who called her "the most exciting woman in the world". Welles was so taken with her talent that he cast her as Helen of Troy in his fabled production of DR. FAUST.

Back in New York, Miss Kitt was booked at The Village Vanguard, and soon spotted by a Broadway producer who put her in NEW FACES OF 1952 where every night she transfixed audiences with her sultry rendition of Monotonous. Her show stopping performance in NEW FACES, which ran for a year, led to a national tour and a Twentieth Century Fox film version.

Broadway stardom led to a recording contract and a succession of best-selling records including Love for Sale, I Want to Be Evil, Santa Baby and Folk Tales of the Tribes of Africa, which earned her a Grammy nomination. During this period, she published her first autobiography, THURSDAY'S CHILD. Miss Kitt then returned to Broadway in the dramatic play MRS. PATTERSON, and received her first Tony nomination. Other stage appearances followed, as did films including THE MARK OF The HAWK with Sidney Poitier, ANNA LUCASTA with Sammy Davis, Jr. and ST LOUIS BLUES with Nat King Cole.

In 1967, Miss Kitt made an indelible mark on pop culture as the infamous CATWOMAN in the television series, BATMAN. She immediately became synonymous with the role and her trademark growl became imitated worldwide.

Singing in ten different languages, Miss Kitt has performed in over 100 countries and was honored with a star on The Hollywood Walk of Fame in 1960. In 1966, she was nominated for an Emmy for her role in the series, I SPY. In 1968, Miss Kitt's career took a sudden turn when, at a White House luncheon hosted by Lady Bird Johnson, she spoke out against the Vietnam War. For years afterward, Miss Kitt was blacklisted in the U.S. and was forced to work abroad where her status remained undiminished. In December 2006 she returned to Washington and lit the National Christmas Tree alongside President and Mrs. George W. Bush

In 1974, Miss Kitt returned to the United States, with a triumphant Carnegie Hall concert and, in 1978, received a second Tony nomination for her starring role in the musical, TIMBUKTU. Miss Kitt's second autobiography, ALONE WITH ME, was published in 1976 and I'M STILL HERE: CONFESSIONS OF A SEX KITTEN was released in 1989. Her best-selling book on fitness and positive attitude, REJUVENATE! (IT'S NEVER TOO LATE), was released by Scribner in May 2001.

Live theater is Miss Kitt's passion. In 2001, Broadway critics singled her out with a Tony and Drama Desk nomination for her role as Dolores in George Wolfe's THE WILD PARTY. Over the last few years, she has starred in National Tours of THE WIZARD OF OZ and Rogers & Hammerstein's CINDERELLA. In December 2003, Miss Kitt dazzled Broadway audiences as Liliane Le Fleur in the revival of NINE, THE MUSICAL. In December 2004, she appeared as The Fairy Godmother in The New York City Opera production (Lincoln Center) of CINDERELLA. She also starred in the off-Broadway production of MIMI LE DUCK (2006) and The Westport County Playhouse production of THE SKIN OF OUR TEETH (2007).

Miss Kitt remained devoted to performing in front of live audiences, from intimate cabarets to concert halls with local symphonies. Recent engagements include appearances with The Atlanta Symphony, The Portland Symphony, Detroit's Music Hall, D.C.'s Blues Alley, Seattle's Jazz Alley, Palm Beach's Kravis Center for the Performing Arts, The Mohegan Sun, Sarasota's Van Wetzel Center for the Performing Arts Festival. She was especially proud to have brought her one-woman show to the 51st Annual JVC Newport Jazz Festival and the Miami Beach JVC Jazz Festival.

In February 2007, Miss Kitt returned to London after a 15 year absence for a remarkable series of sold-out performances at The Shaw Theater. She returned to Great Britain in 2008 to critical raves at London’s Place Pigalle and to headline the prestigious Cheltenham Jazz Festival .

On January 17 2007, Miss Kitt turned eighty years old and marked the occasion at Carnegie Hall with a celebratory concert, JVC Jazz presents EARTHA KITT AND FRIENDS.


Six Alan Parsons Project Albums Getting Extended Editions

Alan Parsons and Eric Woolfson are personally overseeing production of six of the Alan Parsons Project's albums for release on January 27 through Arista/Legacy. The releases follow up the March 2007 updates of I Robot and Eye in the Sky, completing the restoration project of all Arista issued titles (Tales of Mystery & Imagination was issued on Mercury).

Between the six albums, there are over forty previously unreleased tracks that include demos, instrumental versions, rough mixes and variations on the arrangements. Each release will also include an essay by Jerry Ewing of Classic Rock magazine and annotations of the bonus tracks by Parsons and Woolfson.

The track lists:

Pyramid (1978)
• Voyager
• What Goes Up
• The Eagle Will Rise Again
• One More River
• Can't Take It With You
• In The Lap Of The Gods
• Pyramania
• Hyper-Gamma-Spaces
• Shadow Of A Lonely Man
• Voyager / What Goes Up / The Eagle Will Rise Again (Instrumental Version)
• What Goes Up/Little Voice (Early Version Demo)
• Can't Take It With You (Early Version Demo)
• Hyper-Gamma-Spaces (Demo)
• The Eagle Will Rise Again (Alternate Version - Backing Track)
• In The Lap Of The Gods (Part 1 - Demo)
• In The Lap Of The Gods (Part 2 - Backing Track Rough Mix)

Eve (1979)
• Lucifer
• You Lie Down With Dogs
• I'd Rather Be A Man
• You Won't Be There
• Winding Me Up
• Damned If I Do
• Don't Hold Back
• Secret Garden
• If I Could Change Your Mind
• Elsie's Theme from The Sicilian Defence (The Project That Never Was)
• Lucifer (Demo)
• Secret Garden (Rough Mix)
• Damned If I Do (Rough Mix)
• Don't Hold Back (Vocal Rehearsal Rough Mix)
• Lucifer (Early Rough Mix)
• If I Could Change Your Mind (Rough Mix)

The Turn of a Friendly Card (1980)
• May Be A Price To Pay
• Games People Play
• Time
• I Don't Wanna Go Home
• The Gold Bug
• The Turn Of A Friendly Card (Part One)
• Snake Eyes
• The Ace Of Swords
• Nothing Left To Lose
• The Turn Of A Friendly Card (Part Two)
• May Be A Price To Pay (Intro - Demo)
• Nothing Left To Lose (Basic Backing Track)
• Nothing Left To Lose (Chris Rainbow Overdub Vocal Compilation)
• Nothing Left To Lose (Early Studio Version with Eric's Guide Vocal)
• Time (Early Studio Attempt)
• Games People Play (Rough Mix)
• The Gold Bug (Demo)

Ammonia Avenue (1984)
• Prime Time
• Let Me Go Home
• One Good Reason
• Since The Last Goodbye
• Don't Answer Me
• Dancing On A Highwire
• You Don't Believe
• Pipeline
• Ammonia Avenue
• Don't Answer Me (Early Rough Mix)
• You Don't Believe (Demo)
• Since The Last Goodbye (Chris Rainbow Vocal Overdubs)
• Since The Last Goodbye (Eric Guide Vocal - Rough Mix)
• You Don't Believe (Instrumental Tribute To The Shadows)
• Dancing On A Highwire/Spotlight (Work In Progress)
• Ammonia Avenue Part 1 (Eric Demo Vocal - Rough Mix)
• Ammonia Avenue (Orchestral Overdub)

Sterotomy (1985)
• Stereotomy
• Beaujolais
• Urbania
• Limelight
• In The Real World
• Where's The Walrus?
• Light Of The World
• Chinese Whispers
• Stereotomy Two
• Light Of The World (Instrumental)
• Rumour Goin' Round (Demo)
• Stereotomy (Guide Vocal)
• Stereotomy (Reprise)

Gaudi (1987)
• La Sagrada Familia
• Too Late
• Closer To Heaven
• Standing On Higher Ground
• Money Talks
• Inside Looking Out
• Paseo de Gracia
• Too Late (Eric Woolfson Rough Guide Vocal)
• Standing On Higher Ground/Losing Proposition (Vocal Experiments)
• Money Talks (Chris Rainbow/Percussion Overdubs)
• Money Talks (Rough Mix Backing Track)
• Closer To Heaven (Sax/Chris Rainbow Overdub section)
• Paseo de Gracia (Rough Mix)
• La Sagrada Familia (Rough Mix)


Music News & Notes

Zombi Posts Two Preview Tracks from Upcoming Album Spirit Animal

Ambient, cinematic acoustic/electronic duo Zombi has pair of preview tracks from Spirit Animal, its new album set for a February 3 North American release via Relapse.

True to form, the tunes — “Spirit Animal” and “Spirit Warrior” — showcase a sound that fits horror films and any number of other retro soundtracks. The songs are a bit more focused on modern rock sounds than the older material, and they certainly pack a punch.

Head to the duo’s MySpace page to hear the new songs.


Best of 2008: Rolling Stone's Reissues

David Fricke of Rolling Stone Magazine has released his list of 2008’s best reissues. This proves to be a very eclectic list including the legendary country star Hank Williams, alt-rocker Robyn Hitchcock, rock gods U2, an album of Boogie Woogie & Blues Piano featuring Albert Ammons, Meade Lux Lewis, Cripple Clarence Lofton among others, reggae’s Augustus Pablo, jazz singer Nina Simone as well as the late Beach Boy Dennis Wilson. Here is the top ten:

1. Pacific Ocean Blue - Dennis Wilson

2. The Unreleased Recordings - Hank Williams

3. Let Me Be Your Sidekick: The Influence of Jimmie Rodgers - Various Artists (including Rick Nelson, Bob Dylan, Pete Seeger and more)

4. Boy - U2

5. Luminous Groove - Robyn Hitchcock & the Egyptians

6. Boogie Woogie & Blues Piano - Various Artists (including Meade Lux Lewis, Albert Ammons, Cripple Clarence Lofton, more)

7. To Be Free: The Nina Simone Story - Nina Simone

8. The Jerry Ragovoy Story: Time is On My Side 1953-2003 - Various Artists (including Dusty Springfield, Miriam Makeba, Garnet Mimms, more)

9. Cold Fact - Rodriguez

10. The Mystic World of Augustus Pablo: The Rockers Story - Augustus Pablo


Top 5 lists in Music this week:


"Single Ladies (Put a Ring on It)," Beyonce. Music World/Columbia.
2. "Live Your Life," T.I. feat. Rihanna. Def Jam/Grand Hustle/IDJMG/Atlantic. (Platinum)
3. "Just Dance," Lady GaGa feat. Colby O'Donis. Streamline/KonLive/Cherrytree/Interscope.
4. "Heartless," Kanye West. Roc-a-Fella/Def Jam/IDJMG.
5. "Womanizer," Britney Spears. Jive/Zomba.
(From Billboard magazine)


1. "Fearless," Taylor Swift. Big Machine.
2. "A Different Me," Keyshia Cole. Imani/Geffen/IGA.
3. "Intuition," Jamie Foxx. J/RMG.
4. "Circus," Britney Spears. Jive/Zomba.
5. "I Am Sasha Fierce," Beyonce. Music World/Columbia/Sony Music. (Platinum)
(From Billboard magazine)


1. Madonna
2. Celine Dion
3. Tina Turner
4. AC/DC
5. Coldplay
(From Pollstar)