Led Zeppelin – “Celebration Day”

October 18th, 2012 by

By: Michael D. Vogel

© October 16, 2012. Michael D. Vogel. All Rights Reserved.

Published in:

Examiner.com – October 18 , 2012

The greatest rock & roll band in history with over 300 million records sold, brings the MOST DEMANDED TICKET IN MUSIC HISTORY TO THE MASSES!

There was no tour. There wasn’t a 6 night stand of warm-up gigs in small venues to get ready for the concert either – there was only one night! And that one night is about to be a reality for millions of rock & roll fans around the world; for those who won the lottery and received a pair of the limited number of “golden tickets” to see the historic performance now is a chance to relive that one special night in all of its glory. For the rest of us, when word leaked out that there could be a possible release of the performance, we held our breath hoping for the best and waited with anxious anticipation. That day is now here as Led Zeppelin’s history making single night reunion concert honoring the life of Atlantic Records co-founder Ahmet Ertegun will be hitting theaters across the globe for a limited run beginning October 17, with premieres in London, Los Angeles, and New York City, followed by the audio/video release in multiple formats in November. Celebrating the sheer magnitude and power of the band, “Celebration Day” will go down for many historic things, one of which and most importantly, it is a definitive (and quite possibly one of the very best) performances by one of rock’s most renowned artists.

(Led Zeppelin – Celebration Day Trailer – ledzeppelin)

Back-story: The legendary concert was recorded on December 10 2007, at London’s O2 Arena. A one-off show, with several studio rehearsals and a run-thru the night before, but the concert was it – one night only! There would be no re-doing a song after it was all over.  Every song was one take, just like the show.

O2 Arena - London (Thomas Nugent)And quite a show it was. A ‘Tour-de-force’ does not even give the full description of the magnitude and power of the performance put on by the greatest rock & roll band in history! Forget that the original three are in their mid 60’s, with Jason Bonham taking his late father’s place behind the drum, the band put on a performance with youthful exuberance that undeniably rocked harder than kids half their age. After all, this was the concert that even the legendary Pete Townshend pulled out when he heard Led Zeppelin would be performing, saying, “they really don’t need me.”

The 2007 concert itself was a benefit to commemorate the life of music executive Ahmet Ertegun, the co-founder of Atlantic Records, with proceeds from the show earmarked for college scholarships for students in the USA, UK and Turkey (Ertegun’s home). As the event began to take shape, it was Ahmet‘s widow herself that ultimately Led Zeppelin - Celebration Day (Official poster-Shepard Fairey)convinced Robert Plant, Jimmy Page and John Paul Jones to reconvene one more time. Filling in for late drummer John Bonham at that concert was his son, Jason, whose performance was “absolutely monumental,” Page said. “Nobody else could have done it.” Plant added “It was peculiar, it was strange at times, but at the same time it was very rewarding for all of us.”

With this being the first full-length concert since the death of drummer John Bonham in 1980, the concert was sure to have an enormous draw. “I knew it was going to sell out quickly,” commented Jimmy Page, “but the tidal wave of euphoria that preceded the gig, the anticipation, went beyond what I could possibly have imagined. We’d had a few shambolic appearances in the past, like ‘Live Aid,’ so if we were ever going to come back together; we were going to do it properly and stand up and be counted.”

Record setting: The historic performance attracted nearly 20 million fans from all over the world, with over one million registering for tickets alone. According to the Guinness Book of World Records (2009), the concert holds the world record for the “Highest Demand for Tickets for One Music Concert” with 20 million requests for the reunion show being received online.

Due to the enormous demand, a special online lottery system was then implemented through the website Ahmettribute.com, for fans to enter a random drawing for the coveted tickets. Eight thousand fans were then selected for the 16,000 tickets that were made available to the public, with all proceeds going to Ertegun’s own charity. Led Zeppelin Concert At O2 Arena -Concert Ticket (Cat Gillon/Getty Images)Unfortunately, the system became overwhelmed by the massive request onslaught and crashed almost immediately following the announcement. The response was so far beyond anyone’s expectation that the promoter even predicted the concert would have the “largest demand for one show in history.”

Being a one night only historic event on the grandest of scales, many concert goers, as evidenced by the amount of tablets and smart phones being held aloft by the audience, recorded the concert themselves. Some sophisticated bootleg versions of the show have even made their way to Internet, including a wide-screen DVD version complete with a surround sound audio track mixed from 10 different audience recordings of the show.

(Led Zeppelin – “Rock and Roll” teaser (Celebration Day) – ledzeppelin)

Rumors immediately began circulating that a professional recording, shot by over a dozen cameras, was being made of the show for possible release, and Zeppelin fans across the globe rejoiced. The following year though, Page had cast doubt saying a release wasn’t guaranteed as the project required mixing and would be a “massive job to embark on.”  Page remained uncertain whether it would actually see the light of day as late as 2010, but continued to work on mixing the album on and off; using only minimal overdubs and corrections, as both the performance itself and the recording were high quality. Even bassist John Paul Jones agreed that he would like to see it released commercially, but that there was no timeline for it. But then, on September 9, 2012, the band updated their Facebook page followed by a simple audio track posted to YouTube, and since a full scale reunion tour seemed highly unlikely, widespread speculation pointed to the possibility that the concert recording might soon be ready for release. The final proof came when details were accidentally leaked that the album was finished, with a limited engagement in theaters followed by home release towards the end of the year.

Premiere: On October 15, 2012, 44 years to the day of the debut of “Jimmy Page’s New Yardbirds,” at Surrey University in the UK, Los Angeles fans were treated to an exclusive showing of the film, 2 days prior to the official movie premiere around the world. By the over enthusiastic response each song received, the 2 hour plus concert had delivered everything that had been promised.

Gary Moore - Get The Led Out (KLOS) The host for the premiere was Gary Moore, longtime host of the extremely popular “Get The Led Out” nightly radio program on Southern California’s premiere rock station 95.5 KLOS/Los Angeles. Moore, who also attended the concert in London, offered this reflection of the concert and movie. “Now everybody can see for themselves what I’ve been raving about for nearly five years. The film puts you right on stage with the boys, letting you see priceless facial expressions and nuances with the instruments you couldn’t see otherwise. No band ever faced higher stakes for a one-off show than Zeppelin did that night and they nailed the hell out of it!

To hear Gary Moore’s interview with Dick Carruthers – Here!

So how does a band decide on the songs to be played at such a significant event, a band that has a body of music the size and magnitude of Led Zeppelin? All the requisite songs are there, played to an extremely enthusiastic crowd that ate up every note as if it were their last meal. Setting the tone, the show begins with “Good Times, Bad Times” and never looks back. Of special note was the first and only performance of “For Your Life,” a song that really brought the crowd, both at the concert and those in the movie theater to their feet. Other highlight performances included fan favorites “Rock And Roll” and “Black Dog,” a redefining version of “No Quarter” and “Ramble On,” plus signature songs “Stairway To Heaven” and “Kasmir,” as well as “Dazed And Confused” which Plant describe as “…some songs are just required – this is one of them…

(Led Zeppelin “Black Dog” (Celebration Day) ledzeppelin)

The production of the movie saw some improvements and corrections from the live performance itself. For example, some of the songs are in a slightly lower key/register for Plant’s vocals, which isn’t that unusual, as he often sang songs lower than the LP versions back in the day as well. In addition, there was also some sound mixing problems to begin the  live show, which have since been cleaned up and/or edited out for the theatrical and home releases.

John Paul Jones, Robert Plant, Jimmy Page, Jason Bonham (Dario Cantatore/Invision/AP)Never say never: Following the official theatrical debut of the film on September 21 at the Odeon West End in London; the surviving members of the band appeared at a press event to promote the release. The band answered questions afterward; but when asked about the possibility of more reunion performances, the trio would not commit.

Although it is highly unlikely a full set of reunion shows will ever happen, the potential of one-off shows seems to remain a remote possibility as Plant’s final thoughts on the subject leave the door open to the idea of the band getting back together again.  While not giving the definitive “no” Plant did offer that “the tail should never wag the dog” but did acknowledge their fans’ desire to see Zeppelin play again, continuing, “If we’re capable of doing something in our own time, that will be what will happen.” He also reflected back on the show saying that he very pleased with how he and his old band mates performed at that 2007 reunion concert.

(Led Zeppelin: Celebration Day Press Conference (London 9/21/12) – ledzeppelin)

Led Zeppelin - Celebration Day (Cover - Shepard Fairey) The film hits theaters today with home release on November 19. The cover art and promotional art for the “Celebration Day,” was once again designed by Shepard Fairey, who also designed the cover for 2007’s Greatest Hits release “Mothership.” The album will be released to all music and digital retailers in a variety of packages too, some just in time for “that perfect gift” for your favorite Zep-head. A standard edition consisting of one DVD or Blu-ray bundled with two soundtrack Compact Discs will be issued, as well as a special packaging triple vinyl LP to be released in December. A deluxe edition will also be issued that will include bonus video from rehearsals and news footage from the BBC. Additionally, there will also be a music-only Blu-ray with high-resolution HD sound and no video available.

Reviews: The critics have had nothing but praise for the show too! New Musical Express (NME) said “Celebration Day” “proves that they can still perform to the level that originally earned them their legendary reputation.” Sasha Frere-Jones of The New Yorker added “the failed gigs of the nineteen-eighties and nineties have been supplanted by a triumph, and the band should be pleased to have done Ertegun proud with such a spirited performance,” while Marc Lee from The Daily Telegraph, who rated “Celebration Day” with five out of five stars, said “Celebration Day is a celebration of rock ‘n’ roll at its most moving, magical and magnificent.”

(Led Zeppelin “Kashmir” teaser (Celebration Day) ledzeppelin)

Mission accomplished:Have you seen the film? Did you enjoy it? Then we’ve done our job, haven’t we?” Jimmy Page concluded at the recent press conference, putting the final exclamation mark on a concert that will go down in the history books as one of the greatest – until the next show! ^m^

Celebration Day” track listing (source: Wikipedia)

  1. “Good Times Bad Times” (John Bonham, John Paul Jones, and Jimmy Page)
  2. “Ramble On” (Page and Robert Plant)
  3. Black Dog” (Jones, Page, and Plant)
  4. “In My Time of Dying”/”Honey Bee” (Bonham, Jones, Page, and Plant/Muddy Waters)
  5. “For Your Life” (Page and Plant)
  6. “Trampled Under Foot” (Jones, Page, and Plant)
  7. “Nobody’s Fault but Mine” (Page and Plant)
  8. “No Quarter” (Jones, Page, and Plant)
  9. “Since I’ve Been Loving You” (Jones, Page, and Plant)
  10. “Dazed and Confused” (Page)
  11. “Stairway to Heaven” (Page and Plant)
  12. “The Song Remains the Same” (Page and Plant)
  13. “Misty Mountain Hop” (Jones, Page, and Plant)
  14. Kasmir” (Bonham, Page, and Plant)

First Encore

  1. “Whole Lotta Love” (Bonham, Willie Dixon, Jones, Page and Plant)

Second Encore

  1. Rock And Roll“/”Celebration Day” (intro) (Bonham, Jones, Page, and Plant/Jones, Page, and Plant)

Members: John Paul Jones – bass; Jimmy Page – guitars; Robert Plant – vocals, Jason Bonham – Drums

Producer: Jimmy Page

Film Director: Dick Carruthers

Origin: London, England, United Kingdom

Website: ledzeppelin.com

Facebook: /ledzeppelin

YouTube: /ledzeppelin

Discography: (source: Wikipedia)

– For a comprehensive list, see Led Zeppelin discography

Studio albums

You may also like:Aerosmith, Cream, Jeff Beck, Jimi Hendrix, Black SabbathBonham, Humble Pie, Kingdom Come, Queen, Rush, AC/DC, Alice Cooper, Bad Company, Deep Purple, Free, Gov’t Mule, Grand Funk Railroad, Great White, Guns N’ Roses, Lenny Kravitz, Mötley Crüe, Mott the Hoople, Savoy Brown, Soundgarden, T. Rex, Ten Years After, The Cult, The Pretty Things, The Who, Van Halen, Whitesnake, Zebra, The Allman Brothers Band

© October 16, 2012. Michael D. Vogel. All Rights Reserved. This originally appeared on the Vogelism blog at http://www.vogelism.com authored by Michael D. Vogel. This article may be shared or reprinted as long as the entire copyright message, including the source location of this article, accompanies it.

Dwight Twilley – “Soundtrack”

February 7th, 2012 by

By: Michael D. Vogel

© February 7, 2012. Michael D.Vogel. All Rights Reserved

Published in: Examiner.com – June 28, 2012

Dwight Twilley - Black signature

 Dwight Twilley  Soundtrack (Varèse Sarabande)

Dwight Twilley - Soundtrack (album cover)

What you should know: – Hailing from Tulsa, Oklahoma, Dwight Twilley plays songs that are filled with guitar-pop melodies, producing an auditory freshness a la The Beatles. Emerging from the post – MTV nebula of artists, Twilley has proven he has the unique ability of writing effervescent songs that are not only refreshing but also possess steady growth appeal; qualities that continue to keep Dwight’s songs fresh and vibrant 20+ years after the video music revolution began.

With a career that has spanned the better part of five decades, Dwight Twilley’s latest album, and 12th studio release, recounts the sonic story of his life with an air of realism that only comes from personally traveling down the long and winding road of rock & roll itself. Those life experiences are highlighted throughout Soundtrack, as told by an artist that is still has a lot to say and express musically!

Soundtrack picks up where 2010’s Green Blimp left off, complete with pop guitars, soulful piano chords and melodic hooks, demonstrating Dwight’s ability to craft timeless power-pop songs into a sound that is subtle and restrained, yet deeply personal as well.

Dwight Twilley - Soundtrack (banner)

It is by no coincidence that the album has the title of Soundtrack either, as Twilley was asked to write songs for a possible documentary film about his career. It is those songs that would evolve into the Soundtrack album, the most openly introspective of his career. Songs like the reflective “Good Things Come Hard” considers where his life has taken him and at what price to achieve success, whereas “The Cards Will Fall” laments the demise of a relationship that was a long time in coming. Others are more personal to Dwight’s own life experiences, with tracks like “Tulsa Town” that reflect back to the days of his youth, “Bus Ticket” that talks of the idealistic dreams of a young man ready to leave home and take on the world and “My Life” which see Twilley waxing poetically about his career. In all, Soundtrack is another body of work that showcases Dwight’s songwriting beauty and grace.

(Dwight Twilley – “My Life” – DwightTwilley

The influence The Beatles have on Twilley is undeniable, so it is only fitting that the auto-biographical songs on Soundtrack are constructed around Beatlesque-type melodies. And as is customary, the late Bill Pitcock IV shares guitar duties with Twilley, while Taylor Hanson (Hanson, Tinted Windows) provides keyboards and Susan Cowsill (The Cowsills) adds backing vocals, marking three generations of musicians present on the album.

It’s Dwight Twilley, nothing more needs to be said, except wait until you hear the rest of the album! ^m^

Favorite Tracks: – “My Life,” “Tulsa Town,” “Out In The Rain,” “The Cards Will Fall,” “Bus Ticket,” “Good Things Come Hard” and “You Close Your Eyes”

Dwight Twilley - White signature

Members: Dwight Twilley – vocals, acoustic & electric guitars, bass, piano & keyboards, percussion and harmonica; Bill Pitcock IV – guitar, bass and horns; Doug Wiley – Drums.

GuestsSusan Cowsill, Bingo Sloan, Pat Savage, Taylor Hanson,Jimmy Karsten and David White

ProducerDwight Twilley and Kevin Lane Keller

Origin: Tulsa, Oklahoma

Website: dwighttwilley.com

Facebook: /dwight-twilley and /dwighttwilleyfanworld

YouTubehttp://www.youtube.com/artist/Dwight_Twilley

Twitterhttp://twitter.com/#!/DwightTwilley

Discography: (source: Wikipedia)

– For a comprehensive list, see Dwight Twilley

The Dwight Twilley Band

Solo

You may also like: – Phil Seymour, Susan Cowsill, Nick Lowe, John Hiatt, The Kinks, Paul McCartney, Wilco, Flamin’ Groovies, The Beach Boys, Jayhawks, Jimi Hendrix, The Rolling Stones, Ringo Starr, Ten Years After, Dawes Jethro Tull, The Doors

For more on Dwight Twilley.

© February 7, 2012. Michael D. Vogel. All Rights Reserved. This originally appeared n the Vogelism blog at http://www.vogelism.com authored by Michael D. Vogel. This article may be shared or reprinted as long as the entire copyright message, including the source location of this article, accompanies it.

7Horse – “Low Fuel Drug Run”

February 7th, 2012 by

By: Michael D. Vogel

© February 7, 2012. Michael D.Vogel. All Rights Reserved

Published in: Examiner.com – August 19, 2012

7Horse (banner)

7Horse - Let The 7Horse Run (album cover)7Horse  “Low Fuel Drug Run”

From The Release Let The 7Horse Run (Los Gatos/Rent A Label)

What you should know: – 7Horse is the rhythm section of dadaJoie Calio and Phil Leavitt, who show that versatility is the name of the game. The Los Angeles/Seattle duo has an organic, textured sound that instantly makes them stand out from the crowd. The first single from the band’s debut album Let The 7Horse Run is a pounding rocker that merges romping drums with rollicking guitars while conjuring up images of Hunter S. Thompson and bringing a whole new spin to a tale of musical debauchery. Blending the traditional with the visionary, “Low Fuel Drug Run” boasts decidedly folk rock vibes with a super-sized shot of rhythm & blues. With driving verses and not-so-subtle choruses “Low Fuel Drug Run” showcases the vocal harmonies of guitarist Joie Calio and drummer Phil Leavitt, giving the song all the necessary ingredients to be the sleeper hit of the summer.

(7Horse – “Low Fuel Drug Run – 7HorseTheBand)

7Horse (band photo)You may not immediately understand, but you will be instantly hooked. “Low Fuel Drug Run” is a diatribe into the self, laced with intimations of excessive personal hedonism. Full of images of decadence, “Low Fuel Drug Run” takes you on a musical journey, one where you must leave the world behind, becoming completely absorbed within the song itself. The ultimate ego saga, “Low Fuel Drug Run” is all about addressing your own vanity. With so much geared towards immediate satisfaction, the line that separates fantasy from reality are often nothing more than blurred. 7Horse’s “Low Fuel Drug Run” takes those lines and makes them even more unfocused, making the first single from their debut album a fresh and slightly twisted addition to the Alternative/pop music scene. 7Horse is currently out on tour in support of their debut album “Let The 7Horse Run” and winning over crowds up and down the west coast and all throughout the Midwest with their high energy sets.  ^m^

7Horse (banner - album cover & photo)Members: Phil Leavitt – drummer/singer and Joie Calio – guitarist/singer

Producer: Scott Gordon, Gregory Haldan and Jon Chi

Origin: Los Angeles and Seattle

Website: 7horsemusic.com

Facebook: /7Horse

Discography: (source: Wikipedia)

– For a comprehensive list, see dada discography

Studio Albums 7Horse

dada

EPs

  • A Friend Of Pat Robertson (Digital Download, 2006)

Live Albums

You may also like:– School of Fish, Crash Test Dummies, The Ocean Blue, Bettie Serveert, The Cranberries, Hootie & the Blowfish, Gin Blossoms, Spin Doctors

© February 7, 2012. Michael D. Vogel. All Rights Reserved. This originally appeared n the Vogelism blog at http://www.vogelism.com authored by Michael D. Vogel. This article may be shared or reprinted as long as the entire copyright message, including the source location of this article, accompanies it.

Rush – “Time Machine 2011: Live in Cleveland”

February 7th, 2012 by

By: Michael D. Vogel

© February 7, 2012. Michael D. Vogel. All Rights Reserved

Published in: Examiner.com – May 2, 2012 

Rush - Time Machine (Banner)

Rush – Time Machine 2011: Live in Cleveland” (Roadrunner)

What you should know: – Fresh off their Time Machine tour, rock stalwart Rush are already back in the studio working on their 20th studio album, Clockwork Angels slated for release June 12th. Two tracks have already made their way to radio over the past year, but not wanting to keep the fans waiting; the trio brought mic’s along for the Time Machine tour, capturing the Cleveland shows in the spring of 2011. The result is an extensive 2-disc set; a massive 26 live track masterpiece, featuring, start to finish, one of the bands biggest albums. With the 30th anniversary of the release of the Rush’s four million plus (in the US alone) selling album Moving Pictures, the band decided to play the entire 1981 release during each night’s concert along the tour.

(Rush – Time Machine Trailer – )

Rush - Time Machine: Live in Cleveland 2011 (album cover) Time Machine 2011: Live In Cleveland captures Rush‘s sold-out concert on April 15, 2011, at the Quicken Loans Arena in Cleveland, Ohio. The band felt it was important to honor the city that first supported them outside of their hometown of Toronto. That mark of distinction belongs to Cleveland’s rock station, WMMS-FM – The Buzzard, and specifically disc-jockey/music director Donna Halper, who put “Working Man” into the station’s music rotation. (The band even included her in the liner notes to their 1974 self-titled debut album as a thank you.) Accordingly, since past live albums have always seen the band record outside of the United States, it was decided that this live recording would therefore be done in Cleveland.

From the first note of “The Spirit of Radio” one can’t help but be amazed by the awe-inspiring aural quality of Time Machine 2011: Live In Cleveland. As is standard practice for the Toronto trio, Geddy Lee (vocals/bass), Alex Lifeson (guitar) and Neil Peart (drums) create sound perfection –and make it look easy!

Alex Lifeson's steampunk-inspired Hughes & Kettner cabinets, specially designed for the Time Machine tour The double live CD features all the requisite hits, several deeper album cuts, like the title track from “Presto” plus “Workin’ Them Angles” and “Faithless” from the bands last studio album Snake & Arrows, as well as a taste of music from the forth-coming “Clockwork Angels” album with two new songs Caravan and UBU2.” In addition, to commemorate the 30th anniversary of its release, the band performed the Moving Pictures album in its entirety, which was an easy addition considering songs like “Tom Sawyer,” “Red Barchetta,” “YYZ,” and “Limelight,” have been concert staples for the band for many years already.

(Rush – “Tom Sawyer” Time Machine Tour 2011: Live In Cleveland [Official] – Rounder Records)

For the encore, the concert wraps up with a performance of “La Villa Strangiato.” But Rush was far from over! The shows final number see’s the band crank-up one of their workhorse songs and ultimate crowd favorites, helping to make the whole musical extravaganza complete. “Working Man,” starts with an unassuming lighthearted reggae beat before launching into an all-out auditory assault with all its fist-pumping, foot stomping and crowd-singing rock & roll glory!

(Rush “Working Man” – Time Machine Tour: Live In Cleveland [Official] –  Rounder Records)

To truly appreciate the musical proficiencies of the band though, one must really see Rush live in concert. But for those who aren’t able to, Time Machine 2011: Live In Cleveland is the next best thing. After all, a Rush concert is designed as a complete audio and visual experience where each element of the show is meticulously crafted; from the lights and sounds to the images you see while the band plays, to help maximize the live concert experience. Compliment your Time Machine 2011: Live In Cleveland CD with the DVD of the concert as well in order to get the most out of your listening and viewing experience. ^m^

(Rush “Limelight” – Time Machine Tour: Live In Cleveland [Official] –  Rounder Records)

Favorite Tracks: – “Faithless,” “Workin’ Them Angels,” “Caravan,” “The Spirit of Radio,” “Free Will,” “Working Man,” “Closer To The Heart,” “2112 Overture/The Temples of Syrinx,” “Far Cry” and “La Villa Strangiato.” ^m^

Rush - Time Machine Tour (Banner)

Members: Alex Lifeson – guitar, Geddy Lee – bass, keyboards, vocals, Neil Peart – drums, percussion

Producer: Pegi Cecconi

Origin: Toronto, Ontario, Canada

Website: rush.com

Facebook: /rushtheband

YouTube: /RushVEVO

Discography: (source: Wikipedia)

– For a comprehensive list, see Rush discography Studio albums

You may also like:- Asia, Queen, Blue Öyster Cult, Electric Light Orchestra, Peter Gabriel, Galactic Cowboys, Kansas, The Police, Queensrÿche, Thin Lizzy, Voivod, Zebra, Watchtower, Dream Theater, GTR, U.K., Dire Straits, Marillion, Boston, It Bites

© February 7, 2012. Michael D. Vogel. All Rights Reserved. This originally appeared n the Vogelism blog at http://www.vogelism.com authored by Michael D. Vogel. This article may be shared or reprinted as long as the entire copyright message, including the source location of this article, accompanies it.

It’s All In The Spin…

October 25th, 2011 by

– Rock Formats Music Reviews (10.25.11)

By: Michael D. Vogel

© October 25, 2011. Michael D. Vogel. All Rights Reserved

Published in:

Revved Magazine – October 25, 2011

Examiner.com – December 2, 2011 

 

Songs

Stevie NicksSecret Love

From The Release In Your Dreams (Reprise)

Members: Stevie Nicks – vocals; Lindsey Buckingham – guitar, vocals; Glen Ballard – guitar, keyboard, piano; Mike Bradford – bass; Tom Bukovac – electric guitar; Mike Campbell – bass, drums, guitar, keyboards, percussions; Rob Cavallo – guitar; Mick Fleetwood – drums; Waddy Wachtel – guitar

Producer: Dave Stewart & Glen Ballard

Origin: Phoenix, AZ

Website: stevienicks.net

Facebook: /stevienicks

YouTube: /StevieNicks

What you should know: – Stevie Nicks has definitely got that certain something. Whether it’s solo or with 1998 Rock & Roll Hall fame inductee’s Fleetwood Mac, her distinctive voice has been a fixture of contemporary music for the past 40+ years. Her voice and song-writing skills have always been her most powerful instruments, composing some of rock radio’s biggest and most memorable songs, including “Rhiannon,” “Stand Back,” “Landslide” and “Edge Of Seventeen.” Throughout her career, Stevie has maintained her signature style, one that has always held a certain natural and unique synthesis of diverse rock and ethereal personalities blended into one magical musical cacophony.

The first track from In Your Dreams, her 7th solo album, and first since 2001’s Trouble In Shangri-La, is “Secret Love,” a fresh, radio-friendly track, delivered with a stunning level of emotion that spotlights her flowing vocal style, combined with the song’s majestic melodies, creating a sound that is unparalleled at Rock radio.

Stevie will be wrapping up her 2011 US tour in Las Vegas in October with a few additional shows scheduled for Australia the following month. Former Eurythmic and In Your Dreams co-producer Dave Stewart will be joining the tour for these special performances. The “In Your Dreams” tour will make stops in Melbourne, Adelaide, Perth, Sydney, Newcastle, Brisbane, Wollongong and Canberra. Not to be discounted are the ever present rumors that Fleetwood Mac will tour again in support of a new album – plans, that have been put on hold for the moment while Stevie and Lindsey Buckingham tour in support of their individual solo efforts. ^m^

Lenny KravitzStand

From The Release Black and White America (Roadrunner Records/Atlantic Records/RRP)

Members: Lenny Kravitz – vocals, acoustic, electric guitar, piano, synthesizer, bass, drums; Craig Ross – acoustic & electric guitar

Producer: Lenny Kravitz

Origin: New York, NY

Website: lennykravitz.com

Twitter: @lennykravitz

Facebook: /lennykravitz

YouTube: /lennykravitz

What you should know: – With songs like “Are You Gonna Go My Way,” “Fly Away,” “Believe” and “Let Love Rule,” to name only a few of the many hits that have come from 8 albums and yielded more than 38 million records sold worldwide, it is fair to say that radio has had a long standing relationship with Lenny Kravitz. A New York City native, Lenny Kravitz has proven he has the groove, swagger and guitar chops to bring it with the best of them. One of the première musicians/singer/song-writer of the current rock era, Lenny has tirelessly developed and promoted his image and music to be defined solely by its individual qualities and uniqueness.

On its initial week, Black and White America, the latest release from Lenny Kravitz, debuted at #18 on Nielsen SoundScan’s sales chart, selling just under 20,000 copies. Not a bad beginning for an album that has seen only one radio single so far – “Come On Get It,” the album’s lead track, was performed in front of a nationally televised audience during the 2011 NBA All-Star Game. With that being said, it’s now time to delve deeper into another brilliant album from the four-time Grammy Award winning artist’s 9th studio album and first released under a new multi-album deal with Atlantic/Roadrunner Records.

The second single from Black and White America is “Stand,” a funky and seductive fusion of sound that puts Lenny’s full range of abilities on display. Radio programmers have already responded to the poppy single, making this rockin’ lil piece of ear-candy a Top 30 track on Billboard’s Adult Top 40 chart. While “Stand” may be a nice pop song, it also comes with a message, “we all have the power to face our demons,” Lenny sings. Timely and inspirational, “Stand” showcases all the best elements of Lenny’s unique style, while reinforcing the theme for the album – the dynamics of growing up in an interracial environment. “This is what I know and how I had to live,” Lenny states. “It’s where we are in America with a lot of people having to deal with the fact that it’s not just white America–it’s black and white America, and everything in between.”

In concert with Black and White America’s release, Lenny has been center stage, scoring four highly coveted opening slots for U2 on their sold-out US stadium tour this past summer as well as performances on the “Today” Toyota Concert Series, “AOL Sessions” and “YouTube Presents,” in addition to tours of South America and Europe, and rounded out by a full-scale trek of the United States, Europe, Australia and Japan.

If you haven’t already, there is no better time than the present to make a “Stand” for Lenny’s unique brand of 70’s R&B/Funk/Soul (with a bit of rock guitar thrown in for good measure) – one listen is all you’ll really need! ^m^

12 Stones Bulletproof

From The Release Only Human (Executive Music Group)

Members: Paul McCoy – vocals; Eric Weaver –guitar, vocals; Justin Rimer – guitar; Mike McManus – drums, percussion, vocals; Brad Reynolds – bass

Producer: Skidd Mills & 12 Stones

Origin: Mandeville, LA.

Website: 12stones.com

Twitter: @12stones

Facebook: /12stones

YouTube: /12stonesvideo

What you should know: – In 2002, Rock radio was introduced to the adrenaline-infused sounds of 12 Stones, a band that was signed to Wind-up Records within 15 months of forming. With lead vocalist Paul McCoy earning a Grammy in 2003 for his duet with Amy Lee on Evanescence’s “Bring Me To Life,” the band was already off to a good start. In the following years, 12 Stones released three critically acclaimed studio albums and an EP under the Wind-up Records banner, while having several songs prominently featured in the movie trailers for Pirates Of The Caribbean: Dead Man’s Chest, Elektra, The Scorpion King and Daredevil as well as the official theme song of the WWE’s Judgment Day 2002 pay-per-view extravaganza. But, despite all this, plus a handful of radio tracks and combined sales in excess of 2 million albums sold, the band announced in 2010 that they were leaving their label home of nine years, stating “We felt it was time for a change. We have a vision for this band that we feel is best pursued elsewhere.” Not to be deterred by this decision though, 12 Stones announced via their Twitter and Facebook pages that a new, full-length album would still be released in 2011.

Radio programmers and fans alike are expecting big things to happen with 12 Stones most recent release, Only Human, their 4th studio album. With every step, the band continues to build on a rapidly growing cult fan-base at both Rock and Alternative radio. Their latest record, and first release for their new label, Executive Music Group, is no exception! After just one listen to the lead single from Only Human, it is easy to see why the new album picks up where Anthem For The Underdog left off.

Both melodic and aggressive at the same time, “Bulletproof” is a hypnotic first sampling that showcases 12 Stones rapidly developing cohesive skills as songwriters and musicians. “Bulletproof,” the opening offering from Only Human, is pure power rock, with an emphasis on power! This is one track that is sure to grab the attention of rock and alternative radio listeners alike, and have the coming back for more!

The band is currently out on the road in support of Only Human. ^m^

 

Albums

Heart

From The Release Red Velvet Car (Legacy)

Members: Ann Wilson – vocals, flute; Nancy Wilson – acoustic & electric guitars, mandolin, autoharp, vocals; Ben Mink – acoustic, electric & lap steel guitars, viola, keyboards; Craig Bartock – dobro; Ric Markmann – bass; Ben Smith – drums and percussion; Geddy Lee – whistle

Producer: Ben Mink

Origin: Formed in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada, the band calls Seattle, WA. home.

Website: heart-music.com

Twitter: @officialheart

Facebook: /heart

YouTube: /thebandheart

What you should know: – If you are in the mood for some passionate, soul-searching music, then what could be better than a new record from Heart? Crafting some of Rock radio’s most enduring tunes, including “Magic Man” & “Barracuda” to name a few, it has become a tradition from these Seattle rockers – the sisters Wilson and company to produce kick *ss rock albums!

With a career that has spanned over four decades and produced Top 10 hits from hard rock and metal to folk rock and adult contemporary, Heart are firmly rooted in most radio formats. A career that began with the album Dreamboat Annie in the 70’s, has set the stage for a string of Top 10 albums on the Billboard charts that has continued through their most current release, Red Velvet Car – confirming why Heart are among the most commercially lasting rock bands of all time.

Long time rock radio favorites, Heart return with their 13th studio album, Red Velvet Car, an album which see’s the band revisit their hard rock and acoustic roots of the late 70’s. The first studio album in six years, Red Velvet Car, is a slow burning yet dynamic rocker, filled with songs about life and love, that builds with a certain power and force throughout each song as well as across the entire album.

With tracks like “WTF,” the album’s title track – “Red Velvet Car,” “Wheels” and “Hey You” as examples, Heart demonstrate once again their range and depth, not only as singers and musicians, but as song writers too, picking up right where their last album, 2004’s Jupiter’s Darling, left off.

Whether acoustic or electric, Nancy Wilson’s dynamic rockin’ arrangements will delight fans from rock radio and adult contemporary alike. Red Velvet Car is also filled with vibrant vocals and irresistible melodies showcasing Ann Wilson’s strong vocal style that serve to further reinforce why she is among rock’s elite female vocalists.

Family heritage aside, the long awaited new album from the Seattle sisters has been worth the wait! Debuting at #10 on the Billboard 200, Red Velvet Car is the bands first top 10 album in more than 20 years – the last being 1990’s Brigade. The album also landed at #3 on the Billboard Rock Albums chart, making Red Velvet Car the most successful chart debut for any Heart album in their career. Individually, the album has already yielded the tracks “Hey You” and “WTF,” which have both seen some chart success at Adult Contemporary radio.

Released with various track listing in different countries, Red Velvet Car was issued with 10 tracks in the United States, while the European CD and U.S. download versions both contain 2 additional tracks. The Japanese version and a few exclusive download versions also include the track “Listening,” an additional 13th song, which some exclusive download versions have opted to replace with a live version of “Crazy On You,” recorded in 2010, instead.

At last count, Heart has sold over 30 million records worldwide and is ranked #57 on VH1’s “100 Greatest Artists of Hard Rock.”

Favorite Tracks:Red Velvet Car,” “Wheels,” “WTF,” “Safronia’s Mark,” “Death Valley” and “Hey You.” ^m^

Syd Barrett

From The Release An Introduction To… (Capitol)

Members: Syd Barrett – guitar, vocals + various guest artists

Producer: Joe Boyd, Syd Barrett, Peter Jenner, Malcolm Jones, Roger Waters, David Gilmour & Rick Wright

Origin: Cambridge, England

Website: sydbarrett.comand pinkfloyd.com

Twitter: @pinkfloyd

Facebook: /pinkfloyd

YouTube: /OfficialPinkFloyd

What you should know: – Syd Barrett’s time in music was all too brief, but the impact he had will last forever. A founding member of Pink Floyd, Syd Barrett was the lead singer, guitarist and principle songwriter during the bands early, psychedelic years. Syd’s influence included the musical direction of the band as well as their method and presentation. He also helped select the band’s name – by juxtaposing the first names of Pink Anderson and Floyd Council, two popular blues singers of the time. Responsible for most of the band’s debut album, Piper At the Gates Of Dawn, Syd was out of the band, replaced by David Gilmour, by the second album, A Saucerful Of Secrets, due to erratic behavior, appearing on only a few tracks from their sophomore album.

Containing his first demos, including 15 previously unreleased tracks, “An Introduction To…” is a “Best Of” compilation covering Syd’s career from 1967-1970, including his contributions to the early Pink Floyd-era soundscapes as well as his post-Floyd solo material. The remixed and remastered album, overseen by the bands legendary six-stringer David Gilmour, is filled with lush, stoney grooves and slow-burn psychedelic rhythms.

Highlighting Syd’s musical genius, the album captivates from the first track, Pink Floyd’s debut single, “Arnold Layne” and continues with a deceiving yet contagious elegance through the final track, the Barrett solo era “Bob Dylan Blues.” Included on the compilation is “See Emily Play,” the second single recorded by Pink Floyd, and supposedly inspired by a girl Barrett saw playing in the woods, a place where he had fallen asleep after a psychedelic trip. Barrett later recanted the story saying it was all a publicity stunt. Regardless, “See Emily Play” is included on the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame’s 500 Songs that Shaped Rock and Roll list.

Co-produced by Syd Barrett, Roger Waters, David Gilmour, Rick Wright, Peter Jenner, Malcolm Jones and Joe Boyd, the album sheds light on the music of Pink Floyd during their early years, including the first six remastered tracks that either appeared on or were recorded around the time of Piper At the Gates Of Dawn. Rounding out the album is “Bob Dylan Blues,” a recording, that, until recently was thought to be lost until Gilmour discovered the tapes. Subsequently, the song was released in 2001 on The Best of Syd Barrett: Wouldn’t You Miss Me? collection. Considered to be one of the best tribute songs ever written about Bob Dylan, the song has seen an immense rise in popularity since its discovery and release.

A couple of notes of interest include the renaming of the track “She Took a Long Cold Look” to “She Took a Long Cool Look” and the added bass to “Here I Go,” as there was none originally recorded for the song. In addition, familiar to Floyd fans is conceptual artist Storm Thorgerson, who designed the album’s cover art, featuring various images that relate to the songs on the album. As an added bonus for those who purchased a physical copy of the album, or the digital download via iTunes, is the previously unreleased marathon instrumental “Rhamadan.”

An Introduction To…” is a must have for any Floyd fan as well as a great piece to compliment the forth coming Pink Floyd remastered box set, Discovery.

Favorite Tracks:Arnold Layne,” “See Emily Play,” “Apples and Oranges,” “Terrapin,” “She Took a Long Cool Look” and “Bob Dylan Blues.” ^m^

 

On Deck:

– Song Reviews

Def Leppard – “Undefeated”

Whitesnake – “Love Will Set You Free” 

Queensrÿche – “Get Started” 

– Album Reviews

Warren Haynes – ‘Man In Motion’ 

Gregg Allman – ‘Low Country Blues’ 

 

For more artist interviews, features and music reviews – go here.

 

© October 25, 2011. Michael D. Vogel. All Rights Reserved. This originally appeared on the Vogelism blog at http://www.vogelism.com, authored by Michael D. Vogel. This article may be shared or reprinted as long as the entire copyright message, including the source location of this article, accompanies it.