Waky Music News
Ron Howard is going back in time with the Beatles. The Oscar-winning director is making plans to produce and direct a feature-length documentary about the Fab Four. Howard says the still-untitled movie will cover the Beatles' performance years between 1960 and 1966 with concert footage and up to a dozen songs. Surviving Beatles Paul McCartney and Ringo Starr are reportedly on board with the project, as are Yoko Ono and Olivia Harrison, the widows of late Beatles' members John Lennon and George Harrison. Howard says he's "excited and honored" to be making the film about the legendary British foursome, adding, "Their impact on popular culture and the human experience cannot be exaggerated."
Last February marked the 50th anniversary of the Beatles' first appearance on "The Ed Sullivan Show." The 1964 appearance became a watershed moment in the history of rock and roll.
The Everly Brothers will be the subject of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame's next Music Masters series. The week-long event will explore the pioneering duo's influence on popular music through panel discussions, interviews, films, and educational programs, and come to a close with a tribute concert. Country star Rodney Crowell has been tapped as the show's musical director. The lineup hasn't been announced yet. The Rock Hall's 19th annual Music Masters Series featuring The Everly Brothers will take place in Cleveland from October 20th through the 25th.
Don Everly says he feels "honored and proud" to receive such recognition, and knows his late brother Phil would feel the same way. He also admits it "has cost many tears and taken many miles and several decades to arrive at this point," and he wishes Phil were here to share this moment with him. Phil died back in January, just a few weeks before his 75th birthday.
Eric Clapton continues to mull over retirement. But the rock legend admits he's not sure if that's possible for him. He tells "Rolling Stone" he'll likely release at least one more album. Eric explains that he was planning a new studio project, but when J.J.Cale passed away he put his own music aside in favor of a Cale tribute album. He says he'll probably return to that abandoned album, and might even support the disc with some shows intended to bring his touring career to an end. But the guitar icon doesn't know if he'll be able to stop performing live. He says it all depends on whether he's "content to just go into the studio now and then and play at home for the family."
Clapton says he still plays guitar "for a fair bit of time" almost every day. He adds that it's all improvised, and he'll "play into the unknown," but songwriting is a challenge for him. He explains that he's "easily distracted" and forgets what he's written, so he'll "put them down as a voice memo" then "lose the memo." Clapton's last release was 2013's "Old Sock."
Peter, Paul, and Mary's Peter Yarrow and Judy Collins are among the stars who'll be paying tribute to the late Pete Seeger this weekend. They're just two of the artists on the lineup for Sunday's "A Memorial Concert for Pete and Toshi Seeger," taking place at the Damrosch Park Bandshell at New York's Lincoln Center. Tom Chapin and Holly Near are also slated to perform, while Harry Belafonte and Pete's one-time Weavers bandmate Fred Hellerman will speak at the event. The special show will be streamed online at Watch.LincolnCenter.org starting at 4:00 p.m. Eastern.
The memorial concert is just one of several events taking place over the next five days in honor of Pete and his wife Toshi. "Seeger Fest" gets under way Thursday with a special screening in New York City of the documentary "Pete Seeger: The Power of Song." On Friday, the Seeger family will host a memorial for Pete in Poughkeepsie, New York. Different community events are slated for Saturday, including a square dance in Olivebridge, New York to commemorate how Pete and Toshi met back in 1939. Another concert, in New York's Central Park, will wrap up "Seeger Fest" on Monday. Pete died in his sleep at a New York hospital back in January at the age of 94. Toshi passed away last July at the age of 91, bringing an end to their 70-year marriage.
Kansas has a new lead vocalist. The band has tapped singer-keyboardist Ronnie Platt to take over for departing frontman Steve Walsh. Drummer Phil Ehart says in a Facebook post that Ronnie is "a perfect fit musically and personally," adding that Ronnie's "passion for the band and the music, as well as his musicianship, is exceptional." Platt admits becoming Kansas' frontman fulfills "a lifelong dream." But he explains that he won't try to replace Steve, because "no one can do that. Walsh gave notice to Kansas at the end of June that he was leaving. The band initially appealed to their one-time lead singer John Elefante, who took over after Walsh's departure in 1981, but he declined the offer. Steve is remaining with the group through the summer, and will play his last show with Kansas in Sioux City, Iowa on August 16th. Ronnie will play his first show with Kansas in Oklahoma City on September 12th.
Alice Cooper's former guitarist , Dick Wagner, is recovering from surgery after undergoing an operation to open up an artery. Robert posted on his Facebook that "prayers are welcome right about now." The 71-year old rocker played on several Alice Cooper's albums including 1975's "Welcome To My Nightmare" and has also worked with many other stars over the course of his career, including KISS, Lou Reed, Hall & Oates, and Meat Loaf.
Jackson Browne has new music on the way…for the release of "Standing in the Breach," a10-track collection that includes a mix of both personal and political tunes. The album is due October 7th -- two days before Jackson's 66th birthday. He'll launch his trek a few weeks earlier. Browne's ten-date U.S. tour, featuring him with his full band, will begin in Washington, DC on September 14th. The group will then head overseas for a short UK run in November. "Standing in the Breach" is Jackson's first CD in six years, following 2008's "Time the Conqueror."
Browne is currently on a solo acoustic tour, which will come to an end in Baltimore, Maryland on August 23rd. He'll be in Madison, Wisconsin on Wednesday. Jackson Browne's Fall U.S. Tour Dates…October 17 - Columbus, Ohio, at the Palace Theatre October 18 - Indianapolis, Indiana, at the Murat Theatre.
Cher could end up with one of the highest-earning concert tours of 2014. "Billboard" says the superstar's "Dressed To Kill" tour has already grossed about 55-million-dollars at the end of its first leg, and is expected to continue a successful run. Since kicking off in March, over 610-thousand people have attended a total of 49 completely sold-out shows. Pat Benatar and Cyndi Lauper both joined Cher for several months as opening acts as well. Cher is currently in the midst of a one-month break, but she'll be back on the road for a second North American leg relaunching on September 11th in Albany. The tour will officially come to an end in early November.
Weird Al Spoofs Robin Thicke's "Blurred Lines," "Word Crimes" Weird Al is giving a new generation his version of "Schoolhouse Rock" grammar lessons. For his latest cover, he's taking on Robin Thicke's "Blurred Lines" with a song called "Word CrimesAl's educational spoof video includes lessons on the difference between the words "less" and "fewer"; the real meanings of "I could care less" and "literally"; and when to use "its" and "it's" with a possessive apostrophe. The parody star also takes cues from Robin's controversial video, flashing the words "Weird Al Yankovic Has A Big Dictionary" on the screen just as it ends. Robin himself tweeted a link to the video, sharing his favorite lyric from the parody when Al advises that "you should never write words with letters unless you're seven, or your name is Prince." More covers are expected to arrive throughout the week. Al tackles Iggy Azalea's "Fancy" and Lorde's "Royals," among others. He has already released his video for "Tacky," a cover of Pharrell Williams' "Happy." All are included on his latest album "Mandatory Fun."
Billy Joel has lost his mom. "Newsday" says family and friends were with Rosalind Nyman Joel when she passed away Sunday at a hospice facility on Long Island, New York, at the age of 92. The arts were always important to Rosalind, who encouraged her son's love of music. Billy's song "Rosalinda's Eyes," from his album "52nd Street," was a tribute to his mother. In 1986 the rocker established the Rosalind Joel Scholarship for the Performing Arts for City College of New York students in honor of his parents' first meeting. Rosalind met Howard Joel while working on a student musical at the college in 1942. The Joel family is asking those wanting to remember Rosalind to make a donation to The Little Shelter in Huntington, New York.
One month after his death, radio legend Casey Kasem has not yet been laid rest. A rep for Kasem's daughter Kerri Kasem tells TheWrap.com Casey's widow Jean is holding up the burial process. Danny Deraney says Casey's remains are still in a Washington state mortuary and have not yet been claimed, even though Kerri gave the body back to Jean after Casey's death. After a long illness and a bitter family feud over his care, the "American Top 40" host passed away on June 15th at the age of 82. A private memorial was held in his honor in Los Angeles on June 21st, although Jean Kasem did not attend.
Sin City is getting ready for the KISS Army. "USA Today" says the veteran rock band will set up residency at the Hard Rock Hotel in Las Vegas. KISS frontman Paul Stanley says the band will "pump it up that much more" in Vegas, adding that "if KISS is on steroids, this is a double dose." Resort executive Chas Smith adds that the facility will be ready, and the band's presence will be felt "from the performances on stage to wrapping the hotel with KISS stuff to having team members wearing KISS shirts." The first "Kiss Rocks Vegas" show is set for November 5th. Tickets start at around 50 dollars a seat, and go on sale this Friday.
Loverboy is back with new music. The band's new offering, "Unfinished Business," is the group's first release in seven years, following 2007's "Just Getting Started." Guitarist Paul Dean says the title really does sum up the project. He explains that the album is filled with tracks they'd "recorded over the years," and the group "just decided to complete them." Dean adds that the disc is Loverboy's thank you to the fans who've supported the group "all this time." "Unfinished Business" arrives in stores Tuesday, while the group continues their summer tour. Loverboy's next show is coming up in Napa, California on Wednesday.
Eddie Money says he has some new music on the way. The singer tells Billboard.com it's "very hard rock 'n' roll," adding that he's already written "about five or six really good songs" for the project. He adds that it has his distinctive sound. Money admits he doesn't have "the greatest rock 'n' roll voice in the world," but when one of his songs come on the radio "you know it's Eddie Money." He says the album, which he's calling "Shake That Thing," will likely be released by the end of the year. The disc will be Eddie's first collection of new studio material since 2007's "Wanna Go Back."
Lifetime's controversial biopic about the late Whitney Houston now has its Bobby Brown. The network has cast Arlen Escarpata to portray the New Edition singer in the upcoming movie. The 33-year-old Belize-born actor, whose credits include small roles on shows like "The Client List" and CBS' "Extant," will star opposite "America's Next Top Model" alum Yaya DaCosta, who'll play Whitney. Lifetime has released its first promotional photo of the two together in character along with the casting news. Directed by Angela Bassett, the movie is expected to focus on the late star's life in the early 90s and chronicle her rise to fame.
The Houston family has expressed its displeasure at the project. Whitney and Bobby's daughter, Bobbi Kristina, in particular has directed some harsh language toward Bassett in a Twitter rant against the movie.
A spoiler alert for "Archie" comic fans: Archie Andrews will reportedly die a heroic death in the next "Life With Archie" issue. It's been known for a few months now that the beloved Riverdale resident would meet his maker this summer, but the details of Archie's death had not been revealed until now. Published panels show Archie taking a bullet, reportedly to defend his gay pal Kevin Keller from an attack in the double-sized "Life With Archie No. 36," set to hit newsstands Wednesday. The commemorative issue and its follow up are expected to mark the end of the series that focuses on adult versions of the Archie character and his Riverdale friends.
Archie Andrews is one of the longest running comic book characters, dating back almost 75 years through various Archie Comics publications.
Neil Young is scrapping a concert in Israel as violence escalates. The veteran star was scheduled to play in front of about 30-thousand people in Tel Aviv this week, but police shut the show down because it could create a security risk. Militants have fired hundreds of rockets into Israel since last week. Israel continues to respond to those attacks with airstrikes and has warned residents in Gaza to clear out as it plans to launch more military actions.
Roger Waters is likely glad that Neil Young won't be performing in Tel Aviv this week, although he might not be satisfied with the reason for the cancellation. The former Pink Floyd frontman says in a weekend Facebook post that he appealed to Young in January to not perform in Israel, and he's now making that "private letter" public. In his letter Waters says he finds it "hard to believe" Young -- who sings "of love and humanity and compassion" -- would with his presence "encourage and legitimize" the Israeli government's treatment of indigenous Palestinians. Waters equates the situation with South Africa under apartheid. He asks Young to "stand on the same moral ground now" and support "the brave people of Israel and Palestine, Jewish and Arab alike who oppose the Israeli government's brutal policies." Roger even offers to take Neil to the region to see for himself what is happening.
Waters says he sent his letter to Young via Young's manager, but "never received a reply of any kind." Young was scheduled to perform with Crazy Horse in Tel Aviv this Thursday. The show was reportedly cancelled by local authorities due to the escalation of violence in the area.
Journey and the Steve Miller Band will be performing in the Chicago area a little later than originally planned. The weather forced the groups to postpone their show Saturday in Tinley Park, Illinois. Journey explains in a Facebook post that "extreme rain" hit the area Saturday morning, leaving both the amphitheater's parking lots and the surrounding streets under water, while more rain was expected Saturday night. The group adds that the conditions made traveling to the venue "extremely difficult," and would have created a parking nightmare for concertgoers. They say they consulted with local police, and for safety reasons came to "the difficult decision" to postpone the show.
Journey and the Steve Miller Band, who are touring this summer with Tower Of Power, intend to reschedule the concert. A new date hasn't been announced yet, but Saturday's tickets will be honored at the at the make-good show. Fans can also get refunds starting Monday at 10:00 a.m. Central Time by returning their tickets to the place of purchase.
Some members of the Jackson family have booked a new reality show on Reelz. The network has announced a new six-part series called "Living With The Jacksons," which will center around Alejandra Jackson -- the ex-wife of Jermaine Jackson. She is the mother of Jermaine's two sons Jaafar and Jermajesty, and she also has two children with Jermaine's brother Randy Jackson, Genevieve and Randy Jr. The show will also feature Donte Jackson, the young man who Alejandra raised and was the adopted son of Katherine and Joe Jackson . Reelz says the show will document their lives as they make the transition to living outside the Jackson family compound for the first time. "Living With The Jackson" arrives later this year.
The Kinks' Dave Davies says producers of a new BBC documentary are promising to make things right. The rocker says in a Facebook post that he's been assured "the errors in it will be corrected." The film chronicles the history of the guitar in rock music. Davies takes exception to a number of points made in the film, including the claim that Led Zeppelin's Jimmy Page played the guitar solo on "You Really Got Me." Dave says in his post that The Kinks "never used ANY other guitarists on any Kinks hits." He adds that he "invented the distorted guitar sound and played the solo" on the group's 1964 breakthrough hit. Allegations that Page played on the song have been circulating for decades. It's a claim that Page himself denied more than 40 years ago.