Saturday, January 31, 2009

Classic Rock Videos

The Beatles - Till There Was You

Rock & Roll Tidbits

"I'm A Believer,” the Monkees’ follow-up to their number one hit, "Last Train To Clarksville" was a million seller before it was even released, due to over 1 million advance orders.

Although many fans thought that the Beatles "Lucy In The Sky With Diamonds" was about LSD, John Lennon would later say that he got the inspiration for the song from a picture that his son Julian had painted at school.

John Lennon deliberately wrote nonsense words to "I Am The Walrus" to throw off listeners who tried to find hidden meanings in his lyrics.

It’s said that Beatle George Harrison really appreciated the true talent of the Spice Girls. “The good thing about them,” the quiet Beatle mused, “Is that you can look at them with the sound turned down.”

In 1956, Micky and Sylvia recorded the million selling "Love Is Strange.” After the duo split in 1961, Micky Baker would write several guitar instruction books, including the best seller "Jazz Guitar.” Sylvia Vanderpool co-founded All Platinum Records and co-wrote The Moments 1970 gold record "Love On A Two Way Street.”

To say Kurt Cobain was a bit sloppy is an understatement. Routinely, his house was littered with garbage and rotting food. When the Cobain’s tried to hire a maid, she ran out of their house screaming that “Satan lives here!”

When Alice Cooper and his band mates auditioned for musician Frank Zappa, he put his hands over his ears and screamed: “Alright, alright I’ll sign you! I’ll sign you! Just stop playing!” He wanted the band to become a comedy act called Alice’s Cookies.

Alice Cooper’s band invited a prospective manager to attend on of their gigs and soon after the group started playing, the crowd of more than 3,000 people got up and left. This actually impressed the manager, he stated, “Do you know how hard it is to get three thousand people to do anything all at once!”

David Bowie proposed to his first wife Angie with the words: “Can you handle the fact that I don’t love you?”

Rocker John Mellencamp was born with spina bifida, a potentially crippling neural tube defect that required surgery and a lengthy hospitalization.

Despite having a long list of hit records to her credit, there were two more that Cher could have had. In 1973 she was offered "The Night The Lights Went Out In Georgia,” but turned it down. Vicki Lawrence took it to number one. She also had first crack at "Angie Baby" in 1974, but again felt it wasn't her kind of song. Helen Reddy's version would top the US chart.

The Strawberry Alarm Clock had a 1967, number one hit with "Incense and Peppermints.” As a part of their live act, drummer Randy Seol played the bongos with his hands on fire.

Apparently playing guitar for Fleetwood Mac drove musicians crazy. Guitarist Peter Green would cry while watching the TV news, wore white robes onstage and fought very hard to give all the band’s money away to charity. In fact, when the band’s manager tried to present Green with a royalty check, Green attached him with an air rifle and was sent away to a mental hospital.

Fleetwood Mac guitarist Jeremy Spencer was a bit eccentric. He traveled with a tiny bible sewn into the lining of his coat and he filled condoms with milk and would hang them from the pegs of his guitar. In Hawaii, he left the hotel where they were staying, stating: “I’ll be right back.” However, he changed his name to Jonathan and joined a religious cult known as the “Children of God.”

In 1972, Fleetwood Mac guitarist Danny Kirwan got so stressed out that five minutes before a gig, he vanished into a bathroom, bashed his head against the all, smashed his guitar, and stated: “I’m not going on.” He wound up watching the gig from the soundboard and was later admitted to a mental institution.

Before Neil Young joined Crosby, Stills and Nash, the original trio had already asked George Harrison, Eric Clapton and Steve Winwood to become the fourth member of their group.

Paul Simon took the title of his song "Mother and Child Reunion" from the name of a chicken-and-egg dish he saw on a Chinese restaurant's menu.

Trent Reznor of Nine Inch nails really disliked Axl Rose. According to Reznor, the Guns N’ Roses front man was surrounded by people who said things like: “Yes, Mr. Rose, that does smell good, can I flush it for you?”

If you listen carefully to Marvin Gaye's 1971 smash "What's Going On,” you can hear former Detroit Lions Mel Farr and Lem Barney talking and singing in the background.

During the recording of Ted Nugent's 1976 album "Free For All,” singer / guitarist Derek St. Holmes left the band for personal reasons. A singer named Marvin Aday, who would one day be known as Meat Loaf, replaced him on five songs.

Album Cover Art

Continuing the series about album cover art, let's look at a 1972 LP from Dianne Davidson. When I first saw it, I was impressed with the amount of color, check it out

Music News & Notes

Nash & CSN News

On his way to Rolling Stone headquarters in New York to talk about his new three-CD career spanning box set, Graham Nash was thinking about a song he wrote more than 40 years ago. “I was seduced by a beautiful woman down in Long Island,” Nash says. “She was married. The song is a confession to a friend.”

The song is one of 64 tracks on "Reflections," which will trace Nash's career from the Hollies, through the many incarnations of Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young, to his recent solo work.

“I went through 44 versions of the set before I settled on this one,” he stated. “It was painful for me because I’m not for introspection or resting on my laurels. A lot of the musical soundtrack to my life is on this box set.”

Nash also plans on hitting the road this summer for Crosby, Stills and Nash’s 40th anniversary tour. The iconic trio are also in the early stages of recording a new covers album under the guidance of legendary producerRick Rubin.


White Stripes Auction

White Stripes drummer Meg White is donating a drum kit to auction off as part of a fundraiser for Detroit music scene legend Jim Shaw. Shaw was recently diagnosed with cancer.

The drum kit, which is from the Stripes' 2003 video "The Hardest Button To Button," will be auctioned off online. Besides the drum kit, the auction includes photographs and other pieces of art.

For more details about the benefit, visit the Jim Shaw Fundraiser MySpace page.

Jim Shaw MySpace


Country Star Rich Pens Song For Autoworkers

Country super star John Rich — of the duo Big & Rich — has written a song/anthem called "Shuttin' Detroit Down" to help the embattled auto workers in their time of need. Rich premiered it this week on Detroit's WYCD-FM and has been performing it during a radio station tour.

The Detroit Free Press reported on Friday that the host of the "AfterMidNite" country program that is heard on more than 250 outlets says the initial reaction to the song have been strong. A Warner Bros. spokeswoman says it rushed a copy of the song to radio stations and had no idea it would explode.

The chorus begins, "In the real world, they're shuttin' Detroit down, while the boss-man takes his bonus and jets on out of town."

Now, if he would donoate the proceeds to help laid off auto workers......


Springsteen calls Wal-Mart deal a mistake

The Boss is owning up to a mistake.

In an interview with The New York Times, Bruce Springsteen says he shouldn't have inked an exclusive deal with Wal-Mart. Starting this month, the giant retailer started selling a Springsteen greatest-hits CD.

Some lontime fans were critical because Springsteen has been a longtime supporter of worker's rights and Wal-Mart has faced criticism for its labor practices. Springsteen's marketing team didn't explore the issue as closely as it should have and that he "dropped the ball on it," he told the New York Times for a story that will be published in the Sunday editions.

According to the boss: "It was a mistake. Our batting average is usually very good, but we missed that one. Fans will call you on that stuff, as it should be."

"Millions of Springsteen fans have counted on Wal-Mart over the years to deliver his music into their lives, and we it will continue to offer those fans this 'Greatest Hits' exclusive and his other popular albums at unbeatable prices," Wal-Mart said in a statement, adding: "We are proud of the good jobs, benefits and career opportunities we provide to more than 1.4 million U.S. associates who choose to work at Wal-Mart and serve our customers every day."

Springsteen released his new CD "Working on a Dream" this week and will be performing the halftime show at the Super Bowl.


Germany's RITUAL To Release New Album In March - Jan. 30, 2009

German hardcore band RITUAL will release its new album, "Beneath Aging Flesh And Bone", on March 17 via Reflections Records. According to a press release, RITUAL has "created a record that combines melody, heaviness, anger and angst to an absolute hardcore masterpiece." "Beneath Aging Flesh And Bone" is "the best, the smartest, the most reflected and above all, the darkest material that RITUAL has written so far."

The CD comes in a deluxe digipack and LP in gatefold sleeve and in the following colors:

* 250 x transparent blue vinyl
* 250 x transparent blue/black splatter vinyl
* 500 x solid white vinyl

For more information, visit


Grammy Awards

Kid Rock, Robert Plant & Alison Krauss, Rihanna, and U2 are the latest performers announced for the 51st Annual Grammy Awards.

They join previously announced performers Kenny Chesney, Coldplay, Jennifer Hudson, Jonas Brothers, Lil Wayne, Paul McCartney (with special guest drummer Dave Grohl of Foo Fighters), Katy Perry, Radiohead, T.I. and Justin Timberlake, Carrie Underwood, and Jay-Z, Lil Wayne, T.I. and Kanye West in a special performance of their hit single "Swagga Like Us."


Punk Singer Dies

John McCarthy, the singer for '80s Boston punk metal pioneers Post Mortem, has died at age 40. The group's guitarist John Alexander wrote on Myspace, " He was/is one of my oldest friends. An interesting character with many great stories to tell, he will be missed..... We had just finished recording the music for a new Post Mortem record (John wrote most of the words for it.) The vocals were not done and John was planning on doing his vocals in February. His goal of making another Post Mortem record has ended. This band was everything to him. I think we'll finish it up somehow and dedicate it to him....."


Super Furry Animals LP

Super Furry Animals are putting the finishing touches to their ninth studio album and it will be released this Spring. The album will first be released digitally on March 16 through the band's official website, with a physical format following on April 13 for the UK and April 21 for the US.


Metallica Working Hard

Metallica bassist Robert Trujillo recently spoke with LiveDaily. During the interview the topic of the band's future was brought up and Robert let drop that they are already working on new musical ideas. Here is that part of the exchange:

LiveDaily: What do you see for the future of Metallica? You have one more album left on your deal with Warner Bros., correct?

Trujillo: Basically, I don't know the technical details. I can only tell you this: outside of the business side of things — which is probably what you're asking me — on a creative level, the sky's the limit. To me, "Death Magnetic" is only a launch pad. We're already jamming on new ideas and new riffs. There's a rhythm-section thing that I'm feeling with Lars that I'd like to dive into even more so with the future. It's great to be playing thrashy, heavy riffs again, too. That's one of the things with this band — there's no shortage of musical ideas. When you check out some of the other bands that have been around for so many years, sometimes the hardest thing is to stay motivated. Sometimes bands will end up playing almost like — how do you say it? — a tribute scenario where they're playing all the hits all the time. That's cool. But the future of [that type of] band doesn't seem as interesting. I think we still got it in us to create interesting music and to get even better with it. That's kind of fun.