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Beatle Paul and friend Steve Winwood help Eric Clapton

by Steve Smith, 2/1/2013

Eric Clapton’s 21st solo studio album, “Old Sock,” comes out March 21. Beatle Paul McCartney sings and adds the bass part to EC’s take on the 1931 standard, “All of Me.” The album includes two Clapton originals but the remaining 10 songs are among his all-time favorite songs.

Eric hears Paul's guitar partsThe man many consider rock’s greatest guitarist recorded the album with a few guests: his Blind Faith bandmate Steve Winwood plays organ on the late Thin Lizzy guitarist Gary Moore’s “Still Got the Blues.” In addition, Chaka Khan sings on “Get On Over” and his old pal JJ Cale adds vocals and guitar to Jimi Hendrix’s “Angel.”

Clapton will tour the U.S., mostly hitting cities in the Midwest and the south behind the album beginning March 14 in Phoenix and culminating in Pittsburgh on April 6.

After the tour, he’ll host another Crossroads Guitar Festival, his fourth since 2004, which will benefit his rehab center on the Caribbean island of Antigua. The fest will be April 12-13 at Madison Square Garden. The performers set thus far include Jeff Beck, The Allman Brothers Band, Booker T, B.B. King, Buddy Guy, Vince Gill, Los Lobos, Keith Urban, Jimmy Vaughn, Albert Lee, Taj Mahal, veteran British jazz-prog rock guitarist Allan Holdsworth, English guitarist-friend of everyone Andy Fairweather Low, John Meyer, American jazz guitarist Earl Klugh, former Band guitarist Robbie Robertson (Clapton wanted to join The Band in 1969), Robert Cray, Robert Randolph, Doyle Bramhall II, Keb’ Mo, Jonny Lang, Sonny Landreth, jazz guitarist John Schofield and Gary Clark, Jr.

He’ll spend May and June touring Europe and Great Britain, including a seven-night stand at his home away from home, the Royal Albert Hall from May 17-26.

Coachella Fest lineup announced

The Coachella Music Festival, held with identical lineups on consecutive weekends, April 12-14 and April 19-21, announced its lineup.

Though the festival is loaded with indie and unsigned acts, numerous veteran artists will perform. They include veteran English alt rockers Blur, former Velvet Underground singer-guitarist Lou Reed, Sparks, Tegan and Sara, former Smiths guitarist Johnny Marr, reggae performer Lee Scratch Perry, former Dead Kennedys frontman Jello Biafra, French alt band Phoenix, Icelandic ambient rockers Sigur Ros, English New Wavers New Order, a reunion of Wisconsin alt rockers The Violent Femmes, veteran punks The Descendents, South Wales prog-rockers Man (formed in 1968), The Red Hot Chili Peppers, Aussie alt rockers Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds, long time punks Social Distortion, Australian world fusion group Dead Can Dance, OMD (Orchestral Maneuvers in the Dark), resurgent ’60s folkie Rodriguez, The Three O’clock, and Moby.

Some of the well-known newer acts include Maroon 5, Modest Mouse, Grizzly Bear, Franz Ferdinand, Vampire Weekend, Lumineers, Yeah Yeah Yeahs, and Band of Horses.

Did Sheryl Crow know ex-fiance Lance Armstrong was juicing?

Sheryl Crow began dating the now-disgraced cycling champ Lance Armstrong in 2005 and announced their engagement. However, by 2006 it was all over, as the pair broke up. So, did Crow know her ex was doping despite years of denials and lawsuits against those who said he was?

Since Armstrong confessed his sins on Oprah Winfrey’s show, she’s given one interview, to “Entertainment Tonight.” Without admitting that she knew about it or not, all Crow said was, “I think that honesty is always the best bet and that the truth will set you free. To carry around a weight like that would be devastating in the long run.”

Celebuzz is alleging that she knew. The website says she was named not once, but twice, in affidavits that were submitted to the United States Anti-Doping Association. Furthermore, she was present “in the room” when Armstrong told or requested to teammate Frankie Andreu that he participate in his doping cover-up, Andreu said in his affidavit, according to the website.

In other Crow news, she’s going country. Her next album, her eighth since 1993, will be a country album. The untitled CD will be released later this year. However, she performed the first single from the album, “Easy” recently on “Jimmy Kimmel Live.” She said that she believes that if her older songs were just being released for the first time in 2013, a lot of her songs would get airplay on country radio stations.

Last Andrews Sister dies

Big Band singer Patty Andrews, the last surviving member of The Andrews Sisters, the legendary trio that included siblings Maxine and LaVerne, died of natural causes at age 94 at her home in Northridge, California. LaVerne died in 1967 and Maxine in 1995.

The Andrews Sisters provided the sounds and the look of the World War II era, recording such eternal hits as “Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy,” “Rum and Coca Cola,” and their debut single in 1938 that zoomed to No. 1, Sammy Cahn and Saul Chaplin’s “Bei Mir Bist Du Schoen,” that was immediately followed with “Nice Work If You Can Get It,” by George and Ira Gershwin.

During the war, they traveled the world, tirelessly entertaining Allied soldiers, while doing all they could to encourage citizens here to buy war bonds that helped finance the battle with Japan, Italy and Germany. The also entertained the soldiers here, in New York City at the Stage Door Canteen and at the Hollywood Canteen, and when they weren’t onstage singing, they volunteered there, serving them meals and dancing with them.

Hipster jumping jive Big Band jazz was the music of that era and The Andrews Sisters were there with hits like 1940′s “Beat Me, Daddy, Eight to the Bar” and 1941′s “Scrub Me, Mama, with a Boogie Beat.”

The trio that began performing in 1932 registered 19 gold records and several dozen Top 10 singles during their heyday, 1938-1951. They were inducted into the Vocal Group Hall of Fame in 1998. However, no surprise here given its voting history, they have been thus far overlooked in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in the wing devoted to influential artists.

And influence, they did. With their hip-yet-down-to-earth and approachable look, and close harmonies over infectious melodies and beats, the trio was hugely influential, inspiring the likes of The Lennon Sisters, The Four Freshmen, The McGuire Sisters, Barry Manilow, The Pointer Sisters, The Manhattan Transfer and Bette Midler. The Devine Miss M recorded her own version of “Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy” in 1973 that proved so popular (it was her first No. 1) that it generated new generations of interest in Patty, Maxine and Laverne and their hits, leading to a major resurgence for them, and it became Midler’s theme song.

The sisters fit in beautifully with Abbott and Costello in such World War II-era comedies as “Buck Privates,” and “In the Navy.” Universal also cast them in the leads in their own pleasant vehicles, such as “Private Buckeroo,” in 1942, with former cowboy star Dick Foran and once and future Stooge Shemp Howard.

The Andrews Sisters broke up in 1951 when Patty quit to sing with another group. The fact that she didn’t tell Maxine and LaVerne in person, leaving them to get the news from a gossip columnist, resulted in no contact with her for the next two years. It was a rough time for the gals as Patty sued LaVerne for a larger share of their parent’s estate, and Maxine attempted suicide.

However, by 1956, things were better and the three reunited, and stayed that way, touring constantly and playing Las Vegas incessantly until LaVerne’s death from cancer in 1967 at age 55. Patty and LaVerne carried on as a duo for one more year. Maxine became a dean and teacher at a small college and Patty, who wasn’t crazy about working with Maxine, couldn’t wait to get out as a solo act.

A 1974 World War II-themed Broadway musical, “Over Here!,” reunited the two surviving sibs and Patty won a Tony Award. Afterward, each carried on successful solo careers with Maxine becoming a cabaret star and Patty touring and making regular appearance as a judge on TV’s zany “Gong Show.”

The two lived close to each other in the San Fernando Valley but according to sources, only saw each other two times from the day “Over Here!” closed in 1974 until Maxine’s death 21 years later, in 1995. Those occasions were in 1982 after Maxine suffered a heart attack and Patty paid her a hospital visit, and the final time, when they received their star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame in 1987.

Patty’s first marriage was to producer Marty Melcher, who left her for Doris Day. Their divorce was finalized in 1950. She married once more, the following year, to the trio’s conductor and arranger, Walter Weschler. That marriage lasted until his death in 2010.

New Kids, 98 Degrees, Boyz II Men super tour

A 28-show arena tour featuring ’90s superstar boy band vocal groups New Kids on the Block, 98 Degrees and Boyz II Men will run from May 31 at the Mohegan Sun Arena in Uncasville, Connecticut through July 13 at the Target Center in Minneapolis. “The Package Tour” includes a July 5 stop at the Staples Center.

New Kids were put together in 1984 in Boston and had a highly successful decade-long run before calling it quits in 1994. The quintet led by Donnie Wahlberg, Jordan Knight and his brother Jonathan reunited in 2008. They’ve sold more than 80 million records and will release a new album, “10,” in April. It’s their first album in five years and second in 19 years.

The group is used to hooking up with other major vocal groups for giant tours. In 2011-2012 New Kids teamed with The Backstreet Boys for a wildly successful arena tour. New Kids and The Backstreet Boys are both set to receive stars on this Hollywood Walk of Fame later this year.

Los Angeles soul and pop harmonizers 98 Degrees, i.e., brothers Nick and Drew Lachey, Jeff Timmons and Justin Jeffre, enjoyed a good ride from 1996 through 2005 or thereabouts as without making any official announcements, the simply went on a prolonged hiatus and took off in different directions that included Jeffre’s unsuccessful run for mayor of Cincinnati. The foursome that has sold more than 10 million records and hit the Top 40 singles chart eight times officially reunited last year.

Boyz II Men began singing together in Philadelphia in 1988 as a quartet. In the ’90s, the group that now operates as a trio logged four No. 1 singles, each going platinum. Four other singles went Top 5.

The 1992 single, “End of the Road,” written by the team of L.A. Reid, Kenneth “Babyface” Edmunds and Daryl Simmons went No. 1 on the Hot 100 pop chart and the R&B chart as well as attaining that position across the globe including in the U.K., New Zealand, the Netherlands, France and Australia.

Its’ 13 weeks at No. 1 on the Hot 100 broke Elvis Presley’s record. Two years later, that record was broken by another of its singles, “I’ll Make Love to You,” which was at No. 1 for 14 weeks. The following year, Boyz II Men did it again, this time with Mariah Carey, when “One Sweet Day” ruled the Hot 100 singles chart for 16 weeks.

On March 3, the trio begins a long-term weekend residency at the Mirage in Las Vegas, the hotel and casino announced. The most successful male R&B singing group in recording history will perform 78 weekend shows through the year before and after The Package Tour.

A rarity: Streisand to sing at the Oscars

Barbra Streisand first sang at the Academy Awards in 1977. It was also her last. That night, she sang, “Evergreen,” from her film, the third version of the classic Hollywood story of fame and tragedy, “A Star is Born.” She wrote the music to the song with Paul Williams handling the lyrics. That night, she won the Oscar for Best Original Song.

Thirty-six years later, she’ll once again sing at the Academy Awards, the show’s producers said in a statement. The Oscars will be telecast live on ABC on Feb. 24.

Julio Iglesias and Jose Feliciano inducted

The new Latin Songwriters Hall of Fame announced its first six inductees and Jose Feliciano and Julio Iglesias were among them, according to the Hall’s CEO, songwriter-producer Desmond Child, who co-wrote “Livin’ la Vida Loca” for Ricky Martin, and wrote “Dude (Looks Like a Lady)” for Aerosmith and wrote Bon Jovi’s “You Give Love a Bad Name” and “Livin’ on a Prayer,” both with Jon Bon Jovi and Richie Sambora, among many other hits dating back to the ’70s. The induction ceremony will take place in Miami at the New World Center on April 23.

Among the many Spanish language hits Feliciano wrote is the holiday standard, “Feliz Navidad”. Iglesias has also penned several Spanish language hits, including “Hey,” whose English language version was also a hit.

Fleetwood Mac adds more tour dates

Fleetwood Mac added 13 shows to its upcoming U.S. tour, including shows on July 3 at the Staples Center in Downtown Los Angeles and July 5 at the Viejas Arena in San Diego. Earlier, the band announced gigs on May 25 at the Hollywood Bowl and on May 28 at the Honda Center in Anaheim. This is The Mac’s first tour since 2009.

Rolling Stone asked singer-guitarist Lindsay Buckingham about the group’s recording plans. He said, “When Stevie (singer Nicks) was on the road, and not long after her mother had passed away, Mick (drummer Fleetwood), John (bassist McVie) and I got together and we cut a bunch of tracks, and they turned out great. They were all done in Stevie’s keys. They were done with her in mind. Subsequently, Stevie and I have gotten together, and she’s sung on two of those. There’s also another track that dates back to Buckingham-Nicks (before they joined Fleetwood Mac in 1974) that Stevie and I built from scratch. There’s a lot of stuff there. Some of this we will do in the show. We’re not pushing it. We’re just going to wait and see what everybody wants to hear.”

Eagles Timothy B. Schmit’s cancer and recovery

Timothy B. Schmit, singer-bassist for The Eagles since 1977 (after seven years in the country-rock pioneer band Poco), is recovering from throat and neck cancer that was detected in October and surgery in November. In a message on his website, Schmit thanked his fans for their good wishes and provided an update.

“I went through what the doctors called ‘major surgery.’ The truth is I was only bedridden during my three-night stay in the hospital. I was up and about right after, starting with daily walks on the streets of Manhattan.

“After another week I received a clean bill of health and headed for home on the west coast. My voice is coming along nicely, and as many of you know, I was able to perform with The Eagles before the new year. So All is good.

“I discovered a problem and took care of it; simple as that.”

The group’s Feb. 1 gig in Atlantic City is one of only two concerts set so far this year. The other is on March 23 at the MGM Grand Arena in Las Vegas.

In other Eagles news, a new documentary on the band, “The History of The Eagles Part 1″ premiered at the Sundance Film Festival. Both parts 1 and 2 will air on Showtime on Feb. 15 and 16.

Mike Nesmith solo tour

With his brief reunion tour with The Monkees completed, Mike Nesmith announced on his Facebook page that he’s undertaking a 17-date, month-long U.S. tour that will kick off March 21 in Nashville. The jaunt wraps April 17 in Alexandria, Virginia, across the Potomac River from Washington, DC.

Nesmith and his three-man band will also play Los Angeles on March 24.

While the cities and dates have been set, none of the venues have been announced. On this tour, Nesmith will perform the songs he’s written and recorded as a solo artist.

Crosby, Still and Nash at Lincoln Center

Crosby, Stills and Nash will join The Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra and its trumpeter-Musical Director Wynton Marsalis for two concerts at the Center in New York City. The first, The Jazz at Lincoln Center’s 2013 Annual Gala Concert, a private benefit, is on May 1. A second concert, on May 3, will be a public gig. Marsalis will arrange CSN’s songs for the orchestra.

Gill, Gatlin, Milsap, Kenny Rogers set for cruise

The inaugural Holland America Country Music Cruise, Jan. 19-26, 2014, sets sail from Ft. Lauderdale with four Caribbean stops, including Half Moon Cay in the Bahamas. The country artists on the cruise include Vince Gill, Kenny Rogers, Larry Gatlin and The Gatlin Brothers, Patty Loveless, Jo Dee Messina, Ronnie Milsap, and Restless Heart.

George Jones to team with Dolly Parton

At 81, country legend George Jones has announced his farewell tour that runs through 2013 and includes mostly stops throughout the south with a few in the Midwest.

As he makes plans for complete retirement, he says he about to record his final album of new songs and he’s asked an old friend to write several songs for the project. That person, Dolly Parton, has agreed.

“I love Dolly, always have. She’s writing most of the songs and we all know what a great songwriter she is. I’m just writing for her to tell me what to sing and when to sing it,” he tells Billboard. He says he wants to be remembered, “as a singer who stayed true to country music and did it my way.”

Ray Price accepts Blake Shelton’s apology

A generational country music brouhaha began when 36-year-old contemporary country star and “The Voice” coach Blake Shelton said on GAC’s “Backstory: Blake Shelton” of classic country music, “Nobody wants to listen to their grandpa’s music. And I don’t care how many of these old farts around Nashville going, ‘My God, that ain’t country!’ Well that’s because you don’t buy records anymore, jackass. The kids do, and they don’t want to buy the music you were buying.”

Country legend Ray Price, who at 87, still records and performs dozens of shows each year, took exception. Price retaliated on his Facebook page, writing, “It’s a shame that I have spent 63 years in this business trying to introduce music to a larger audience and to make it easier for the younger artists who are coming behind me. Every now and then some young artist will record a rock and roll type song, have a hit first time out with kids only. This is why you see stars come with a few hits only and then just fade away believing they are God’s answer to the world. This guy sounds like in his own mind that his head is so large no hat ever made will fit him. Stupidity Reigns Supreme!!!!!!! Ray Price (Chief “Old Fart” & Jackass”) P.S. you should be so lucky as us old-timers. Check back in 63 years (the year 2075) and let us know how your name and your music will be remembered.”

Shelton, who actually prides himself on his knowledge of the history of country music and the artists who came before him realized that what he said offended one of his all-time heroes. He issued a heartfelt apology (“I absolutely have no doubt I could have worded it better (as always ha!) and I apologize to Mr. Price and any other heroes of mine that it may have offended,” and did so again and again afterward in tweets as he tried to explain himself.

Price accepted Shelton’s apology. Again on his Facebook page, Price posted, in part, “I have accepted Blake Shelton’s apology to me personally. I think Blake is a fine young man with a big future in Country Music. I agree that he should be given a chance to restore his credibility with the millions of fans who were deeply offended by those hurtful words and renaming us all as ..well, you know what he said. I would regret it if the words I have spoken would in any way harm Blake personally or his career and his chances for the future. Best of luck to you, Blake. Thanks All. Ray Price.

Manilow too ill for Broadway opening

A serious bout of bronchitis forced Barry Manilow to postpone his long-awaited return to Broadway, reports Playbill. Five performances at the St. James Theatre, including the official opening night were rescheduled.

One reviewer on the Huffington Post blog said that the 69-year-old Manilow’s first show back found the performer still “clearly not at full steam or at times even half steam.” However, the writer asked, “Did it matter to the fans? It did not.” He added, “But he’s a showman.”

Tina Turner to become Swiss citizen

Tina Turner has lived in Switzerland for the past 18 years, so she decided to make her move permanent. The 73-year-old pop and soul legend has applied to Swiss citizenship, taken and passed the written Swiss civics test and passed the interview, according to her local newspaper. The paper also said that the Swiss government has approved her application. Turner, who lives in a suburb of Zurich, will also relinquish her American citizenship, according to a representative of the singer.

A Taylor Swift story

Good-hearted musicians frequently grant the wishes of ill fans. For 17-year-old Taylor Swift fan Kayla Kincannon, who has battled brain cancer the past year, she got more than she hoped for.

Kayla and her father were flown to Tennessee to meet the 23-year-old country superstar. The girl was treated to lunch with Swift and her mother, Andrea Swift. “This was no quick meet and greet photo op,” Kayla’s dad wrote on her blog. Kayla, her dad, Swift and her mom sat and talked for two hours and had lunch.

Swift gave Kayla a gift basket and then signed pictures. Dad wrote of Swift, “She is the sweetest, most down to earth person I have ever met. This was more than we ever expected! This was the best day ever for her and all of us!”

Jimmy Page, supermodel!

At 69, guitar god Jimmy Page has a new career: supermodel. American menswear fashion designer Johnny Varvatos is using Page and young hotshot guitarist Gary Clarke, Jr., together in a new ad campaign photographed by noted rock music photographer Danny Clinch. In past fashion campaigns, Varvatos has used former Jam and Style Council leader Paul Weller, Green Day, Alice Cooper, Iggy Pop, Joe Perry and Slash as models.

Morrissey hospitalized on tour; dates cancelled

Morrissey, the outspoken opinionated former singer for English indie rock band The Smiths, was hospitalized while on tour in Royal Oak, Michigan, near Detroit. The Detroit news reports that he has been treated and discharged.

Six concerts have been cancelled, including a show at the famed Surf Ballroom in Clear Lake, Iowa, site of the final concert for Buddy Holly, Ritchie Valens and The Big Bopper. The singer’s publicist said that he is suffering from a bleeding ulcer. He is expected to resume his tour on Feb. 9, at the Cosmopolitan Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas. Morrissey will play the Balboa Theatre in San Diego on Feb. 27 and the Staples Center in Downtown L.A. on March 1. His tour ends March 9 in San Francisco at the Regency Ballroom.

Leroy “Sugarfoot” Bonner, The Ohio Players frontman, dies.

Leroy “Sugarfoot” Bonner, frontman for funk and soul outfit, The Ohio Players, died at age 69 of an unknown cause in his hometown of Dayton, Ohio. Some reports say he had been battling cancer.

The Ohio Players formed in 1959, but didn’t have their first hit until “Funky Worm” hit No. 1 on Billboard’s R&B chart in 1973 on its way to selling more than a million copies and being certified gold. The band released three platinum and two gold albums in the mid-’70s, and scored two singles that went to No, 1 on the Hot 100 pop chart as well as the R&B chart, “Fire” in 1974 and “Love Rollercoaster” the next year. One more big single, “Who’d She Coo?” in 1976, marked the end of the group’s hit-making days. Bonner and The Ohio Players continued to perform until 2002.

Bobby Engemann of The Lettermen dies

Bobby Engemann, an original member of the soft pop vocal group The Lettermen, died in Provo, Utah, at age 78 after contracting pneumonia following open heart surgery, according to a post on the group’s Facebook page. The post said he battled various health problems in recent years.

Engemann was one of three original Lettermen, who were known for their smooth, tight harmonies. Together, Engemann, Jim Pike and Tony Butala, recorded eight Top 10 adult contemporary hits between 1961-1967, including “When I Fall in Love” in 1961 that reached No. 1 on the adult contemporary chart and also hit No. 7 on the Hot 100 pop chart. Engemann left the group in 1967. A version of The Lettermen led by Butala continues to perform. The Lettermen, that recorded 11 gold records, were inducted into the Vocal Group Hall of Fame in 2001.

Geldof reforms Boomtown Rats

Irishman Bob Geldof was granted an honorary knighthood by Queen Elizabeth for his charitable services creating Live Aid. The 61-year-old is far better known for that than for fronting Dublin punk band The Boomtown Rats.

Nevertheless, he’s rejoining that band after 26 years for a one-off gig at the Isle of Wight Festival on June 16, according to the UK’s Express. Other members of the band continued to tour under that name for years.

The band formed in 1975 and scored three Top 10 LPs and five Top 10 singles in the UK from 1978-1980. However, their only US hit, “I Don’t Like Mondays,” that Geldof wrote after reading about a mass shooting at an elementary school in San Diego in 1979 by a remorseless 16-year-old girl, peaked at No. 73 (it hit No. 1 in the UK, Ireland, and Australia and No. 3 in New Zealand and No. 4 in Canada). The song’s title is a quote from the girl after she was asked why she did it.

English ska band The Specials are coming to America

The 11-man band’s six-date tour kicks off March 11 in Chicago and runs through their March 23 show at the Warfield in San Francisco. It includes stops on March 18 at the Club Nokia in Downtown L.A. and March 19 at the San Diego House of Blues.

The band formed in Coventry in 1979, broke up in 1984; and reformed in 1996 only to call it quits again in 2001. They reformed again four years ago and have been going strong since. The band is best known here for it’s minor hits “Rat Race” in 1989, “Ghost Town” the next year and “It’s You” in 1997.

Hank Williams’ 90th birthday

To celebrate legendary country pioneer Hank Williams‘ 90th birthday, his estate is making more than 200 live performances and recording available to TV production companies, ad agencies and movie houses. This marks the first time they have been made available for licensing, reports GAC (Great American Country).

Williams wrote and/or recorded 35 Top 10 country and western singles before his Jan. 1, 1953 drug and alcohol-related death in the back seat of a car in Oak Hill, West Virginia, at age 29 as he was being driven to a New Year’s Day concert in Canton, Ohio. Among the classic songs he wrote were “Hey, Good Lookin’,” “Your Cheatin’ Heart,” “I’m So Lonesome I Could Cry” “Move It On Over,” “Jambalaya (On the Bayou),” and “Cold, Cold Heart.”

Men Without Hats first Euro tour in 20 years

Canadian New Wave band Men Without Hats began its first European tour in 20 years this week in London, according to its website. The two-week 12-concert tour wraps Feb. 16 in Goteborg, Sweden. Men Without Hats biggest hit, “Safety Dance,” was a Top 10 hit in the US, the UK and Canada.

The song was a tongue-in-cheek protest of bouncers who were ejecting pogo dancers from clubs.

Brian May PETA Man of the Year

Queen guitarist Brian May, a well-known animal rights activist in Britain, has been named U.K. Man of the Year from PETA (People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals), according to NME (New Musical Express). The 65-year-old Rock and Roll Hall of Famer was accorded the honor in part for his role in a campaign against the British government to cull its badger population.

P-Funk leader George Clinton gives up songs

Parliament Funkadelic leader George Clinton, 71, gave up the royalty rights to four songs under an agreement with his lawyers, the firm of Hendricks & Lewis, to settle a bill he owed the firm even after he paid them $340,000, reports TMZ. The songs are the hit “One Nation Under a Groove,” as well as “Hardcore Jollies,” “The Electric Spanking of War Babies,” and “Uncle Jam Wants You.”

New Releases

Among the recently released albums, digital reissues and deluxe box sets are a remastered “Johnny Winter And – Live At The Fillmore East 10-3-70″ with ex-McCoys leader Rick Derringer; the 18-track “Passione (Deluxe Edition),” the first studio album in four years from opera and pop singer Andrea Bocelli that see him sing duets with Jennifer Lopez, Nelly Furtado and legendary French chanteuse Edith Piaf; “Heartthrob,” the seventh studio album from Canadian alt pop twin sisters Tegan and Sara; and “Get Up! (Deluxe Edition CD/DVD) from Claremont-based singer-guitarist Ben Harper and blues harp player Charlie Musslewhite.

“Love, Charlie,” from former GAP Band frontman Charlie Wilson; “Til Your River Runs Dry,” the first studio album in seven years from Animals singer Eric Burdon; “Feeling Mortal,” the first studio album in four years from 76-year-old country outlaw Kris Kristofferson; “Finally Home,” the debut album from Blue Sky Riders, led by Kenny Loggins; and “Love Songs,” a compilation album from Beyonce, Kelly Rowland and Michelle Williams, better known as Destiny’s Child, that features “Nuclear,” their first new song in nine years.

“A Time for Love,” produced by George Duke, is R&B singer Jeffrey Osborne’s first album since 2005 and it features a duet with Chaka Khan on Frank Loesser’s Christmas standard, “Baby, It’s Cold Outside”; an import reissue, “Cirrus,” from jazz vibraphonist and marimba player Bobby Hutcherson; a 2-CD, “Texas Flood (30th Anniversary Collection” from Stevie Ray Vaughn and Double Trouble, includes a live disc 2 from Philadelphia in 1983; “No Fairy Tale,” from contemporary folk rocker Lisa Loeb, includes two songs written by Tegan and Sara; and “Adam Ant is The Blueblack Hussar in Marrying The Gunner’s Daughter” is the English New Wave pop star’s first album in 18 years;

A 2-CD, “Live in Paris 1975,” from the “Burn” and “Stormbringer”-era version of Deep Purple with David Coverdale and Glenn Hughes; a 2-LP on 1 CD deal, “The Year of the Cat & Modern Times (Remastered)” from Al Stewart; an import reissue of jazz saxman Ronnie Laws’ 1977 LP, “Friends & Strangers”; “Get Moving,” from Ella Jenkins, the 88-year-old First Lady of Children’s Music; and a remastered import of Sergio Mendes 1966 non-Brasil ’66 instrumental album, “Great Arrival.”

“Playlist” is a new budget-priced series of “The Very Best of” featuring 14 tracks each from The Box Tops, Harry Nilsson, Sara Evans, Accept, Leslie West and Mountain, and The Doobie Brothers live.

New re-issues on vinyl includes blues guitar great Albert King’s 1962 debut LP, “The Big Blues”; and Deep Purple’s 1984 comeback LP, “Perfect Strangers” (2-LP here).

Box sets include a 3-CD “Rumours-Expanded Edition” sees Fleetwood Mac celebrate the 35 anniversary of the album that sold more than 40 million copies with a CD each for the standard album, live versions and demos and alt takes; and “Live in Europe 1969: The Bootleg Series Vol 2 (3 CDs/1 DVD)” from jazz trumpet legend Miles Davis.

New DVDs include a reissue of “Liberace: The World’s Greatest Showman” with guests Sammy David, Jr., Jack Benny, and Groucho Marx; and “Neil Sedaka in Concert.”

Now Playing

Classic acts from the ’50s, ’60s and ’70s continue to perform. Here’s what one of them is doing:

Country pop band Exile, best known for its #1 pop hit, “Kiss You All Over,” kicked off its 50 Years in Music tour at the KCI Expo Center in Kansas City. The 31-date jaunt runs through April 28 in Marshalltown, Pennsylvania, and mostly visits venues through Texas and the Midwest.

In addition to “Kiss You All Over,” the band recorded ten #1 hits on the country charts between 1984-1987, including “Woke Up in Love,” “Give Me One More Chance,” and “Crazy for Your Love.” In 2008, the on-again, off-again band reformed and last year released an EP of their first songs in a couple of decades.


Steve Smith writes a new Classic Pop, Rock and Country Music News column every week. Contact him by email at Classicpopmusicnews@gmail.com.

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Posted by Goodhelp

Retired rocket scientist and part-time brain surgeon. Ok, I also took some time out (four years!) to serve in the US Navy as a journalist. Continued a radio career in Seattle and southern California. Streaming radio and assorted podcasting keeps me busy. What a strange trip it’s been and continues to be!