Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Joan Osborne news

Over the President's Day holiday, I listened to Joan Osborne's '90s hit "One of Us" for the first times in years. This press release about her next album arrived around that time. Here are the details...

Joan Osborne is set to release her 8th studio recording Love and Hate on April 8. The 12 song collection will be released via Entertainment One Records. In support of the album Osborne will embark on an extensive U.S. tour (tour dates are listed below).

She wrote or co-wrote the songs on Love and Hate. “These songs resonate especially deep for me. I feel like I’ve grown so much as a songwriter, using simpler and simpler language, getting to the heart of the matter in a purer way.”

Osborne also co-produced Love and Hate with Jack Petruzzelli and recorded the album in the woods of Pennsylvania and her current hometown of New York City. The pair previously collaborated for Osborne’s Bring It On Home, which was Grammy nominated in the Best Blues Album Category last year.

Of the concept behind Love and Hate, the singer explains, “The image I keep coming back to is that of a beam of white light: we think it’s one thing, but when you shine it through a prism, you see that it’s made up of many different colors, different frequencies. Love isn’t just one thing either; it can be made up of faith and passion, power struggles, humor, anguish, deep spirituality, lust, anger, everything on that spectrum. People we love can bring out the very best and the absolute worst in us, and we can do that to them, too. Love is always a risk.”

Tour dates:

April 3 Bay Shore, NY Boulton Center
April 4 South Orange, NJ SOPAC
April 6 Beacon, NY Town Crier Café
April 9 Wilkes-Barre, PA Kirby Center
April 11 Ewing, NJ Trinity UMC
April 12 Annapolis, MD Rams Head
April 15 Alexandria, VA Birchmere
April 17 Natick, MA The Center For the Arts
April 18 Londonderry, NJ Tupelo Music Hall
April 19 Lebanon, NJ Lebanon Opera House
April 25 Norfolk, CT Infinity Hall
April 26 Philadelphia, PA World Café Live
May 15 Austin, TX One World Theater
May 17 Cherokee, TX Cherokee Creek Music Fest.
May 29 – June 1 Seattle, WA Jazz Alley
June 5 San Francisco, CA Kanbar Hall

Monday, February 24, 2014

Echo & the Bunnymen confirm album, tour details

I'm really looking forward to this album...

Meteorites, Echo & the Bunnymen's 12th studio album and first since 2009, will be released April 28 in the UK and June 3 in the U.S via 429 Records. 

Produced by Youth (Killing Joke, The Verve), the album contains 10 new songs by co-founders Ian McCulloch and Will Sergeant along with Gordy Goudie (guitar) and Stephen Brannan (bass). In conjunction with the album’s release, the band will embark on a tour of Europe and the UK beginning in May (see confirmed dates below).

Says McCulloch: “’Meteorites’, the new Bunnymen album…at long last we’ve made the worthy successor to ‘Crocodiles,’ ‘Heaven Up Here,’ ‘Porcupine’ and ‘Ocean Rain.’ ‘Meteorites’ is what Echo and the Bunnymen mean and are meant to be—up there in heaven--untouchable, celestial, beautiful and real. It has changed my life”

Track listing:

1) Lovers On The Run
2) Is This A Breakdown
3) Holy Moses
4) Meteorites
5) Explosions
6) Icarus
7) I Loved The Devil
8) Constantinople
9) Market Town
10) New Horizons

2014 Confirmed Tour Dates:

5/2 Leamington Spa , UK Assembly Rooms
5/6 Paris, France Alhambra
5/7 Antwerp, Belgium Trix
5/8 Utrecht, Holland Tivoli
5/10 Oxford, UK Academy
5/11 Wolverhampton, UK Wulfrun Hall
5/13 Newcastle, UK Tyne Theatre
5/14 Manchester, UK Ritz
5/16 Edinburgh, UK Queens Hall
5/17 London, UK Shepherd’s Bush Empire
5/18 Bristol, UK Academy
5/20 Liverpool, UK Philharmonic Hall

Eagle Rock Entertainment news

Some interesting titles are on the way. I'm especially interested in The Who since I reviewed Roger Daltrey live last year. Read more from the press release...

Eagle Rock Entertainment will release The Who’s Tommy. Sensation – The Story Of Tommy on DVD, Blu-ray, and digital formats on March 11.
Fully supported and endorsed by The Who, Sensation – The Story Of Tommy explores the background, creation, and impact of this seminal album. Through brand new interviews, the film unveils the history and cultural impact of Tommy through new interviews with Pete Townshend and Roger Daltrey, archive interviews with the late John Entwistle, contributions from engineer Bob Pridden, artwork creator Mike McInnerney, plus others involved in the making of the album, as well as journalists who assess the album’s historic and cultural impact.
Originally aired on BBC TV in August 2013, this version includes additional material not featured in the TV broadcast, as well as a bonus 33-minute feature from the 1969 German TV show “Beat Club.” This feature, which includes previously unreleased footage, includes tracks from the album and interviews with band members.
The direct-to-consumer store for Sensation – The Making Of Tommy is now live at, which includes exclusive bundles with the DVD or Blu-ray, T-shirt, and a 18X24 poster. Fans have until February 20 at 12:00PM EST to pre-order one of several bundles, and have his or her name included on the poster.
For a sneak peak of Sensation – The Making Of Tommy, here are some video clips:
“Making People Feel” -
“Screening Interview” -

On March 25, dual-film SD Blu-rays - Joni Mitchell’s Woman Of Heart And Mind + Painting With Words And Music and Lou Reed’s Classic Albums: Transformer + Live At Montreux 2000 - will be re-issued in upscaled standard definition with uncompressed stereo and DTS-HD Master Audio surround sound. 
The Woman Of Heart And Mind documentary tells the story of Mitchell's life and career. It is paired with the concert film Painting With Words And Music, captured at Los Angeles’ Warner’s Lot, in a specially set up auditorium displaying a gallery of her own paintings.
Filmed in 1998, Mitchell plays in the round with a small band, performing tracks from across her career, like “Big Yellow Taxi,” “Crazy Cries Of Love,” and “Amelia.”
Classic Albums: Transformer, part of Eagle Rock’s documentary series, explores the creation and recording of Reed’s legendary Transformer album through interviews with those involved, archive footage, and meticulous in-studio breakdowns of the songs.
Live At Montreux is mostly comprised of songs from his 2000 album Ecstasy, but also includes fan favorites like “Perfect Day” and “Dirty Blvd.” On this performance, Reed is backed by his longtime band Mike Rathke (guitar), Tony “Thunder” Smith (drums), and Fernando Saunders (bass).
These two SD Blu-rays continue Eagle Rock’s recent catalog re-issues of classic music films with enhanced video and sound. The label has also recently released SD Blu-rays of The Bee Gees’ One Night Only and The Scorpions’ Moment Of Glory.
Track Listing:
Joni Mitchell - Painting With Words & Music:
1.) Big Yellow Taxi
2.) Just Like This Train
3.) Night Ride Home
4.) Crazy Cries Of Love
5.) Harry’s House
6.) Black Crow
7.) Amelia
8.) Hejira
9.) Sex Kills
10.) The Magdelene Laundries
11.) Moon At The Window
12.) Facelift
13.) Why Do Fools Fall In Love
14.) Trouble Man
15.) Nothing Can Be Done
16.) Song For Sharon
17.) Woodstock
18.) Dream Land
Lou Reed - Live At Montreux 2000:
1.) Paranoia Key Of E
2.) Turn To Me
3.) Modern Dance
4.) Ecstasy
5.) Small Town
6.) Future Farmers Of America
7.) Turning Time Around
8.) Romeo Had Juliette
9.) Riptide
10.) Rock Minuet
11.) Mystic Child
12.) Tatters
13.) Twilight
14.) Dirty Blvd.
15.) Dime Store Mystery
16.) Perfect Day

Rave-Ups' Podrasky back after long absence

Jimmer Podrasky, the singer/guitarist best known as a member of critically acclaimed LA roots rock band the Rave-Ups, returns with his first solo album in 23 years. 

The Would Be Plans is due out digitally March 4 from Chief Injustice Records. 

A chance Facebook posting in 2010 reunited Jimmer and his Pennsylvania childhood pal Ed Sikov, who wound up executive-producing the new album. 

A lot had happened to Podrasky since he and his band were major-label artists, featured in "Pretty in Pink" and "Beverly Hills 90210." He had, in no particular order, lost both of his parents, logged time as Shannen Doherty's fiancé, fathered and raised a son (Chance) with Molly Ringwald's sister, got laid-off his day job and been forced to live hand-to-mouth, and accidentally endured a hellish weekend trapped in L.A. County's mental-health system.

But another serendipitous connection-with, of all people, former "Brady Bunch" star Robbie Rist (who played Oliver) eventually led Podrasky back to the recording studio.

The path led directly to the labor-of-love project that became
The Would Be Plans once Jimmer connected with former Smash Mouth (and current Dwight Yoakam) drummer Mitch Marine, who became the record's producer and recruited the supporting players.

Among them are Wallflowers organist Rami Jaffee, pedal-steel player Marty Rifkin (Bruce Springsteen, Tom Petty) and mixer Dave Leonard (K.D. Lang, Tony Bennett, the Neville Brothers). Recording was done at the Station House in Echo Park and other Los Angeles studios.

Songs range from the country-ish "Satellite" and effervescent pop of "(She Has) Good Records" to the harmonica-fueled folk-rock opening track, "The Far Left Side of You." 

To launch the release of The Would Be Plans, Jimmer Podrasky is set to appear at Lucy's 51 (located at 10149 Riverside Drive, Toluca Lake, CA) on March 5. 

He will return on March 19 to inaugurate a series of songwriter tribute nights during which he will perform as well as host.

The Would Be Plans is currently available for sale at

Eric Carmen retrospective due next month

Arista/Legacy Recordings has announced the release of The Essential Eric Carmen, a 30-track retrospective of the singer/songwriter’s career.

The two-disc set arrives in stores on March 25 and is available now for pre-order on iTunes ( By pre-ordering, you will receive the new track “Brand New Year” instantly.

Remastered from the original analog recordings, The Essential Eric Carmen reaches back to the Cleveland-based artist’s first recordings out of the teenage garage and then travels through his hits, both with power pop icons Raspberries (“Go All The Way,” “Overnight Sensation (Hit Record),” “I Wanna Be With You”) and as a solo artist (“All By Myself,” “Never Gonna Fall In Love Again,” “She Did It,” “Hungry Eyes,” “Make Me Lose Control”). 

The Essential Eric Carmen also includes “Brand New Year,” Carmen’s first new recording in more than 15 years. The track, which has received over 35K plays to date since its initial offering as a free download this past Christmas Eve, is streaming now at Legacy Recordings’ official SoundCloud, See below for track listing.

“It would be a mistake to think of this release as just another compilation,” Carmen recently noted. “I can tell you that you have never really heard most of these songs until you've heard them on this package. It is the closest to what I envisioned for most of these 30 tracks that I have ever experienced.”

The collection starts with 1969’s “Get The Message,” making its digital debut, one of the original three sides cut by Carmen’s first signed band, Cyrus Erie, for Epic Records. Raspberries came together soon thereafter and immediately influenced rock ‘n’ roll.

Some of the band’s finest American power pop moments are included, from their million-selling debut, “Go All The Way,” to “Ecstasy,” recorded live at Los Angeles’ House of Blues during 2005’s sold out Raspberries Reunion Tour. Carmen's solo material follows throughout this set.

The Essential Eric Carmen compilation was produced by Legacy Recordings’ Timothy J. Smith and overseen and advised by Eric Carmen, who also contributed original liner notes.

Track Listing:

Disc One

Get The Message (w/ Cyrus Erie)+
Go All The Way (w/Raspberries)
I Wanna Be With You (w/Raspberries)
Let’s Pretend (w/Raspberries)
Tonight (w/Raspberries)
Overnight Sensation (Hit Record) (w/Raspberries)
My Girl
All By Myself
Never Gonna Fall In Love Again
Last Night
Starting Over (Live 1976) *
That’s Rock N’ Roll (Live 1976) *
Run Away
Love Is All That Matters

Disc Two

Boats Against The Current
Marathon Man
She Did It
Nowhere To Hide
Change Of Heart
Hey Deanie
Desperate Fools
It Hurts Too Much
Tonight You’re Mine
The Way We Used To Be
Hungry Eyes
Make Me Lose Control
Ecstasy (Live 2005) (w/Raspberries)
Brand New Year **

+ Previously Unreleased Digitally
* Previously Unreleased
** Previously Unreleased New Recording

Bonus Q&A with Switchfoot

Here is more from my interview last month with Switchfoot guitarist Drew Shirley, who was heading up the 5 freeway to an in-store appearance in Long Beach at the time. 

Q: What has the early feedback been from fans on the new album and film?
The setup has been better for this album than any we ever had. With the movie out, people are really getting interested. 

Q: What can you tell me about your using a gas can guitar you found in Africa on "Love Alone is Worth the Fight?"
Over there, you buy gas in these tin cans. That’s how they’re delivered. And they make these tin cans into guitars because they resonate pretty well. This guy made a neck and some pickups for it. I played it in the studio with a slide. It adds a lot of vibe and interesting sounds. 

Q: How did using fewer guitars change your approach to writing the music? 
I found myself layering background vocals, working on drum parts or just staying out of it for a little while [laughs] to see what happens.

Q: Are those your kids doing background vocals on “Who We Are?”
Yeah. They’re not all mine [laughs]. A couple are. Actually, they’re all the band Switchfoot’s kids. It was a very cool memory. That song is very special to us. It not only talks about identity and what more wraps up identity in such a crazy way than your son or daughter? It also reminds us of home when we play it.

Q: The song “BA55” has quite a dark, intense vibe with the bits of scorching guitar. Is that one of your favorites?
I really like that - especially the end backwards guitar solo that has the Led Zeppelin flange on it.

Q: Neal Avron and Mike Elizondo returned to work on this album, having previously done "Vice Verses." What was it like working with them again?
They know how to bring out the best in us and how to manage us in the studio. We all really like to produce and we all like to be working on stuff and taking a stab at it. They help us all do things in a timely manner, in an articulate way. Make sure we don’t accidentally erase things on the computer.

Q: One part of the film I particularly enjoyed was when the band played a metal fest Down Under and came across like a fish out of water.
That happens sometimes. We just want to play music in whatever place we can and make new fans in those areas. It’s funny: the people that come up to you at those shows in dreads, high heels, makeup and tight leather pants and say, ‘I love your band. I have all your albums.’ And I’m like, ‘whoa. I never would’ve expected that.’ It’s all good. It’s music. It’s cool for us to be in that environment.

photo by Chris Burkard
Q: You’ve referred to yourself as a “tone collector” before. Are the other guys usually open to letting you explore varied sonic terrain when you record?
Yeah. That’s one of the cool things about having your own studio. We’ve recorded the last three albums there. You get to know the gear and the room. You get to amass amps and pedals and have things all in one place where you can use them the way they’re supposed to be used. You’re able to try stuff. I would usually be there later into the evening, just trying to make sounds and try some new ideas.

Q: Speaking of sounds, you have a new tube amplifier company called Revival. What prompted you to start that?
I love guitars and amps. It’s something I’ve collected and done for awhile. My guitar tech at home has been making me amps for the last couple years. We just decided to start a company and let people hear [what we like]. I play guitar for my profession. To have my own guitar amp company is a great legacy and thing to be able to share and mentor other players with tone. Show some people how get the sounds I get. I like to ... give away what I know to someone else coming up. Having an amp company is a way to do that for me. We’re probably going to launch the web site soon.

Q: Will there be several different models on offer?
Yeah. We’ve got an 8” combo, a 12” combo and a head and cabinet. The white amp, we were inspired by an old amp from the ‘50s.

Q: Are you taking orders now?
I don’t think we’ll open it to the public just yet because we’re dealing with pros and tastemakers right now. People in the industry, guitar player friends. The list got really long fast when we said we had some ready. They’re almost all spoken for. I believe the next run we’re going to offer to the public on the web site.

Q: Turning to some local background info, what initially lured you to Riverside to attend Cal Baptist U?
I had a friend who went there. He said, ‘I had a great experience at that college.’ I thought I’d go check it out. It was just far enough from San Diego to where I could still drive home and do laundry.

Q: When you were a member of All Together Separate here in Riverside, what was your take on the IE music scene at the time?
There were a few ska bands and a lot of emo bands when that was starting as a title genre. When that sort of movement happened, I think Riverside had at least three or four good up and coming bands. Being in a suburb of LA, I went to tons of shows in LA and Hollywood.

Q: After ATS had run its course, were the Foreman Brothers aware of your work and then asked you to join their band?
Yeah. We were friends for awhile before that band broke up. It was really uncanny the way it happened because Jon said, ‘do you want to play a few shows with us on guitar?’ I said I was going to be free for awhile because my band decided to break up. It was really incredible timing.

Q: Has San Bernardino station KCXX/103.9 FM always been a big Switchfoot supporter?
We’ve played shows for X103.9 multiple times. I used to listen to them and still do on my drives through [the IE].

Q: And you did a holiday charity drive show for them at M15 in Corona last month.
That was really fun. An interesting venue right off the freeway.

Q: When you perform in the IE, do any of your old college pals turn up?
It’s funny: ex-girlfriends and people like that.

Q: Since you’re a collector of fine footwear, do you get excited whenever Switchfoot teams up with Macbeth for a new signature shoe?
I do. Just got a new pair of ‘em last night at the in store and saw it for the first time. It’s really low profile. They’ve been a great company to work with and they’re just around the corner from my studio. It’s pretty handy when you need to stop in for a new pair of kicks. It’s our second shoe with them. 


Friday, February 21, 2014

Linda Ronstadt's best duets compiled on new album

Linda Ronstadt Duets will be available on April 8.
Rhino Records brings together 14 of the singer's memorable musical partnerships, along with a previously unreleased collaboration with Laurie Lewis, for a new collection that was created with help from Ronstadt and her longtime manager, John Boylan.
The album will arrive just days before Ronstadt is inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame on April 10. The honor recognizes her role as a pioneering female artist and pays tribute to her exceptional musical legacy, which has earned 12 Grammy Awards, two Academy of Country Music Awards and one Emmy.

Last year, Ronstadt released her best-selling memoir Simple Dreams and also revealed that she had been diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease, which left her unable to sing.
Several songs on this collection are also Grammy winners. Ronstadt won her first in 1976 for a cover of Hank Williams’ “I Can’t Help It (If I’m Still In Love With You)” that featured Emmylou Harris and appeared on what many consider her masterwork, Heart Like a Wheel (1974). Another Grammy-winner featured on Duets is “Somewhere Out There,” which Ronstadt recorded with James Ingram in 1986 for the soundtrack to An American Tail.
It also includes two of her most successful collaborations, both of which feature Aaron Neville. The Grammy-winning songs “Don’t Know Much” and “All My Life” originally appeared on Ronstadt’s triple-platinum album Cry Like a Rainstorm, Howl Like the Wind (1989). 
In 1976, she and Don Henley sang the Warren Zevon-penned track “Hasten Down The Wind,” which was the title track to Ronstadt’s Grammy-winning, #1 album. It was her third consecutive million-selling album, an accomplishment no other female artist had achieved at that point.
Duets also spotlights a number of Ronstadt’s more recent collaborations, like “Sisters” with Bette Midler, which appeared on Bette Midler Sings the Rosemary Clooney Songbook (2003).
That same year, Ronstadt partnered with Carl Jackson on “The New Partner Waltz,” for the Grammy-winning tribute album Livin’, Lovin’, Losin’: Song of the Louvin Brothers. DUETS also includes three tracks from Adieu False Heart – a Grammy-nominated album Ronstadt recorded in 2006 with Cajun-music singer Ann Savoy – including a cover of the 1966 hit, “Walk Away Renée.” 
Track Listing:
1.“Adieu False Heart” with Ann Savoy
2.“I Can’t Get Over You” with Ann Savoy
3.“Walk Away Renee” with Ann Savoy
4.“The New Partner Waltz” with Carl Jackson
5.“I Never Will Marry” with Dolly Parton
6.“Pretty Bird” with Laurie Lewis*
7.“I Can’t Help It (If I’m Still in Love With You)” with Emmylou Harris
8.“Hasten Down The Wind” with Don Henley
9.“Prisoner In Disguise” with J.D. Souther
10.“I Think It’s Gonna Work Out Fine” with James Taylor
11."Don’t Know Much” with Aaron Neville
12.“All My Life” with Aaron Neville
13.“Somewhere Out There” with James Ingram
14.“Sisters” with Bette Midler
15.“Moonlight In Vermont” with Frank Sinatra
*previously unreleased