Monthly archives: February, 2009

U2 ‘No Line On The Horrizon’ Album Review

With only a week left for the release of U2’s 12th studio  album, I was lucky enough to hear it and am providing a review.  Keep in mind that I am a U2 fan and have been since 1979.  However, I have not drank the kool-aid of every release, every album, and every artistic decision…


THE LAST VEGAS JOINED BY RICK NIELSEN OF CHEAP TRICK TO PERFORM ‘I’M BAD’ SINGLE

 
TRACK IS FREE “SINGLE OF THE WEEK” AT iTUNES

The excitement continues to build for Chicago-based THE LAST VEGAS, who last year were cited by SPIN as “Best Discovery” in the magazine’s SXSW 2008 coverage.


Armed with their blazing single “I’m Bad”–currently the FREE iTunes “Single of the Week” (which “combines rock, glam and garage for an ass-kicking sound,” Billboard, 1/10/09)–THE LAST VEGAS is now in the midst of the “Saints of Los Angeles 2009 Tour” with Mötley Crüe, Hinder and Theory Of A Deadman.  When the tour rolled into Rockford, IL last Sunday (2/15) at MetroCentre, the band were joined onstage by Cheap Trick’s guitarist Rick Nielsen, who performed an incendiary version of “I’m Bad” with them.


            THE LAST VEGAS–Adam Arling (guitar), Nathan Arling (drums), JohnNY Wator (guitar), Danny Smash (bass) and Chad Cherry (lead vocals)–were hand-picked by Mötley Crüe as part of Guitar Center’s On-Stage program and awarded a record and management deal, giving the band an unprecedented opportunity.  They recorded their full-length CD in Los Angeles with veteran rock producers DJ Ashba (Sixx:A.M., Mötley Crüe), Marti Frederiksen (Aerosmith, Mötley Crüe, Ozzy Osbourne) and Nikki Sixx of Mötley Crüe and Sixx:A.M.  The CD Whatever Gets You Off will be issued this spring via Eleven Seven Music (exact release date TBA).


            Onstage is where THE LAST VEGAS–who built a huge fan and media buzz in their native Chicago, then toured 17 countries and independently sold 10,000 copies of their self-titled debut CD–deliver high-energy spectacles, with a deliciously …


THE CRYSTAL METHOD ANNOUNCE NEW STUDIO ALBUM WITH ‘DIVIDED BY NIGHT’ DUE 5-12-09 on TINY e RECORDS

 
FIRST SINGLE “DROWN IN THE NOW” FEATURING MATISYAHU; OTHER GUESTS INCLUDE EMILY HAINES, JUSTIN WARFIELD, JASON LYTLE, PETER HOOK, SAMANTHA MALONEY, LMFAO AND MEIKO


With their upcoming album Divided By Night, electronic music pioneers THE CRYSTAL METHOD (TCM) are dropping what may be their masterwork.  Bolstered by the innovation, flexibility and craftsmanship that have made the duo of Ken Jordan and Scott Kirkland club culture icons, the pair’s fourth studio effort–due out May 12, 2009 via Tiny e Records–is easily its most inventive and accomplished to date. 


Launched with the momentous first single “Drown in the Now,” The Crystal Method’s infectious collaboration with mic master Matisyahu, makes a unique and memorable musical statement. “We met Matisyahu at a festival in British Columbia last July,” Scott Kirkland explains. “His tour manager approached us about him joining us onstage for a song and we thought it was a cool idea. He came by our trailer and we played him ‘High Roller’ off Vegas [the duo’s 1997 album] and he thought it was great. He came out with us about an hour later and his performance was magical. From there we knew we wanted to work with him. He delivered something unique that helped create a great vibe for the rest of the album.”


Elsewhere, “Kling to the Wreckage” is equally breathtaking, albeit remarkably different, as She Wants Revenge frontman Justin Warfield puts his fierce delivery atop an exhilarating soundscape. High caliber guests on Divided By Night–in addition to Matisyahu and Warfield–include …


SAVE VALENTINE’S BY TAKING YOUR DATE ON THE 3 HOUR TOUR

Are you in the greater Los Angeles Area? Did you blow it by not planning anything only to find that every restaurant in town is booked solid and FTD and 1800FLOWERS cant get em there in time now? Do yourself a favor, go to the grocery store, buy a nice card and put 2 tickets to the 3 HOUR TOUR in it, and I gaurantee you will come out like a champ after all is said and done.

What is the 3 Hour Tour you ask? No, it is not some bike race up the coast. No, it is no some wierd reproduction of Gilian’s Island, it is probably the BEST LIVE MUSIC you will get in one place and sitting for your buck.  Yes, on a yacht in Newport Harbor with some of the most talented singer songwriters in the biz.

So clickety click the link for more info and email to reserve your tickets . . . you and your date will thank me later …


PERFORMING RIGHTS ACT RE-INTRODUCED TO CONGRESS

A Grammy Town Hall meeting tonight (Feb. 6) sought to kick off a grassroots movement aimed at passage of the Performance Rights Act, a bill re-introduced two days ago that would require U.S. terrestrial radio stations to pay performance royalties to artists, musicians and master recording owners.

A bi-partisan group of the bill’s House of Representatives co-sponsors – House Judiciary Committee Chairman John Conyers (D-Mich.), Rep. Darrell Issa (R-Calif.) and Rep. Marsha Blackburn (R-TN) – joined Supremes singer Mary Wilson and veteran manager Simon Renshaw onstage at the Los Angeles Convention Center.

Also in the crowd at the Recording Academy event were Sam Moore, an early advocate for performers’ royalties from radio; songwriter Lamont Dozier; and Josh Groban. Representatives from SoundExchange, indie labels’ body A2IM and the RIAA, as well as labor unions such as AFTRA, were also in attendance.

Conyers said the performance rights compensation issue had been taken up in two dozen Congresses since the 1920s. What is turning the tide now, Conyers and others said, have been the successes in getting performers’ compensation from satellite and Internet radio; bi-partisan sponsorship of the Performance Rights Act; simultaneous chairman-level sponsorship of the bill in both the House and Senate (the latter under Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-VT); and an organized music industry coalition (under the umbrella of MusicFIRST) in support.

“It’s never gotten this far in our history,” Recording Academy VP of advocacy and government relations Daryl Friedman told Billboard.

Advocates …


LIVE NATION AND TICKETMASTER MERGER HAS BEEN CONFIRMED

The announcement the music industry has been waiting for has come: a definitive merger agreement between Live Nation and Ticketmaster to create Live Nation Entertainment.

The move combines Live Nation, the world’s largest concert promotion firm, with Ticketmaster’s industry dominating ticketing company, also bringing into the fold the numerous artist and venue relationships encompassed by both companies. The merger also scuttles one of the most well-known names in live entertainment in Ticketmaster.

The companies will be combined in a tax-free, all-stock merger of equals with a combined enterprise value of approximately $2.5 billion. Under the agreement, Ticketmaster shareholders will receive 1.384 shares of Live Nation common stock for each share of Ticketmaster they own, subject to certain adjustments defined within the agreement.

Live Nation and Ticketmaster shareholders will each own approximately 50% of the combined company. According to the announcement, the new company anticipates generating approximately $40 million of operating synergies through the combination of their ticketing, marketing, data centers and back-office functions. The merger agreement was approved by both companies’ boards of directors.

Here are the canned quotes from three of the principles in the deal:

Barry Diller, chairman of Ticketmaster Entertainment, said, “It was less than two months ago that Ticketmaster ended its 10-year partnership with Live Nation, and I’m extremely glad we could reunite with this combination. No different from any other industry, the challenges are all around every aspect of live entertainment. Being able to put Live Nation and Ticketmaster …


51st GRAMMYS: SPECIAL BO DIDDLEY TRIBUTE TO FEATURE BUDDY GUY, B.B. KING, JOHN MAYER, AND KEITH URBAN


TERENCE BLANCHARD, NEIL DIAMOND, M.I.A., SMOKEY ROBINSON, ROBIN THICKE, ALLEN TOUSSAINT AND STEVIE WONDER ADDED TO STELLAR LINEUP FOR 51ST ANNUAL GRAMMY® AWARDS

Kate Beckinsale, Blink 182, Natalie Cole, Zooey Deschanel, Diddy, Morgan Freeman, Green Day, Dwayne Johnson, John Legend, Leona Lewis, LL Cool J, Jason Mraz, Emily Procter, LeAnn Rimes, and will.i.am Are Latest Presenters Announced for Music’s Biggest Night® Live on CBS Sunday, Feb. 8


SANTA MONICA, Calif. (Feb. 05, 2009) — Two-time GRAMMY® winner and current GRAMMY nominee Terence Blanchard, GRAMMY winner and 2009 MusiCares Person of the Year Neil Diamond, current nominee M.I.A., GRAMMY winner Smokey Robinson, current nominee Robin Thicke, 2009 Recording Academy Trustees Award recipient Allen Toussaint, 25-time GRAMMY winner and current nominee Stevie Wonder, and a tribute to Bo Diddley featuring current nominees Buddy Guy, B.B. King, John Mayer and Keith Urban are the next round of performers announced for the 51st Annual GRAMMY® Awards.


They join previously announced performers Adele; Chris Brown; Kenny Chesney;


51ST ANNUAL GRAMMY® AWARDS PRE-TELECAST CEREMONY ON SUNDAY, FEB. 8, TO BE STREAMED LIVE ON GRAMMY.COM

SANTA MONICA, Calif. (Feb. 2, 2009) — The 51st Annual GRAMMY® Awards Pre-Telecast Ceremony will take place on GRAMMY Sunday, Feb. 8, from 1 – 3:45 p.m. PT at the Los Angeles Convention Center. The ceremony is the non-televised event where a majority of GRAMMY categories are awarded, and it has grown into its own celebrated affair with guest presenters and live performances.  Presented with full production values appropriate for the GRAMMY Awards, the Pre-Telecast is now attended by thousands, including many nominees, and occurs just hours before the live telecast at 8 p.m. ET/PT on CBS. The Pre-Telecast Ceremony will be streamed live internationally on www.grammy.com, under the GRAMMY Live section, beginning at 1 p.m. PT, and will remain on the Web site for 30 days following the event.
 
Hosting and performing at the Pre-Telecast will be current GRAMMY nominees Wayne Brady and Tia Carrere. Additional live performances include Latin GRAMMY-winning folk/jazz singer Lila Downs, GRAMMY-winning classical artist Hilary Hahn, and current GRAMMY nominee Heavy D. Presenting GRAMMY Awards in approximately 99 categories will be four-time GRAMMY-winning gospel singer Yolanda Adams, producer/host of “Millennium of Music” radio show Robert Aubry Davis, GRAMMY-winning songwriter/producer Lamont Dozier, GRAMMY-winning children’s folk artists Cathy Fink & Marcy Marxer, comedian Alex Raymundo, and actor Blair Underwood.
 
The Pre-Telecast Ceremony is produced by John Cossette Productions, and the musical director for the pre-telecast is Larry Batiste.  
 
Music’s Biggest Night® will take place live on Sunday, Feb. 8, at STAPLES Center in Los Angeles and …


Live Nation and Ticketmaster merger could happen as early as next week

Ticketmaster Entertainment and Live Nation — two of the most powerful
companies in the music business — could be merging as soon as next
week, according to a report in the Wall Street Journal.


The announcement arrives on the heels of Live Nation, the world’s largest concert promoter, launching its own ticketing company last month.


The boards of each company have not yet approved a
deal and a merger would require review by antitrust authorities,
according to the paper, which cited unnamed people familiar with the
situation.


It was not clear which company would be acquiring the
other, but the new company would be reportedly be called Live Nation
Ticketmaster. The deal would not involve any cash transfer.


Details about the structure of the new company have
not been set in stone, and it was unclear what titles would be held by
Ticketmaster CEO Irving Azoff and Live Nation CEO Michael Rapino,
according to the Journal. But it was expected that both executives
would remain at the new company.


The merger of Live Nation with Ticketmaster
Entertainment would bring together the largest concert promoter with
the most powerful ticketing and management firm.


Last year, Ticketmaster acquired Front Line
Management, which has a roster of more than 200 acts, including the
Eagles, Neil Diamond and Christina Aguilera, among many others. In
January, the bulk of Live Nation’s 10-year contract with Ticketmaster
expired and the company launched an in-house ticketing company.



BONNAROO MUSIC AND ARTS FESTIVAL ANNOUNCES 2009 LINEUP TICKETS TO GO ON SALE SATURDAY FEBRUARY 7 AT 12PM EASTERN

BRUCE SPRINGSTEEN AND THE E STREET BAND, PHISH, THE BEASTIE BOYS, NINE INCH NAILS, TV ON THE RADIO, WILCO, AL GREEN, DAVID BYRNE, SNOOP DOGG, MERLE HAGGARD, ERYKAH BADU, MGMT, BON IVER, THE DECEMBERISTS, LUCINDA WILLIAMS AND MORE






February 3, 2009, New York, NY — Superfly Productions and A.C. Entertainment are excited to announce the initial lineup for the 2009 Bonnaroo Music and Arts Festival. The eighth annual four-day camping and music festival will be held on June 11 – 14 on the same beautiful 700-acre farm in Manchester, Tennessee, 60 miles south of Nashville. Every year Bonnaroo seeks to make history by offering unique and exclusive performances by rock’s greatest legends as well as its most significant newcomers. A full list of confirmed acts follows, and more will be announced in the coming weeks. The final Bonnaroo 2009 lineup will total over 120 bands and over 20 comedians performing on 13 stages over four days. …