Wednesday, September 26, 2018

Eric Church tour dates for 2019

photo: Anthony D'Angio
Eric Church’s upcoming album Desperate Man is due Oct. 5. His 2019 Double Down Tour will include two very different nights of music as well as a stadium-sized tour stop in Nashville, Tennessee, more than doubling the capacity where he previously set Bridgestone Arena’s attendance record upon the finale stop of his Holdin’ My Own Tour in 2017.

In keeping with Church's commitment to giving his fan club -- known as the Church Choir -- priority access, they will be able to purchase tickets during the fan club presale. To keep scalpers at bay and to ensure tickets end up in the hands of real fans, after the fan club presale, tickets will be sold during Ticketmaster’s Verified Fan presale. All fans interested in priority access to tickets should get verified. Registration began last Friday, Sept. 21.

Tickets inside Church’s stage will be made available exclusively to Church Choir members and only through the brand new Eric Church app. Church is taking full control of the very best seats inside the stage and offering them using cutting edge technology. Church Choir members will also have the opportunity to take advantage of exclusive hotel deals in all Double Down Tour cities plus additional surprises related to the tour. More information is available at

Desperate Man is available for preorder now, with the title track, "Heart Like A Wheel" and "Monsters" available upon preorder.

Tour dates:

January 18, 2019 Omaha, NE CHI Health Center+
January 19, 2019 Omaha, NE CHI Health Center+
January 25, 2019 St. Louis, MO Enterprise Center+
January 26, 2019 St. Louis, MO Enterprise Center+
February 1, 2019 Boston, MA TD Garden+
February 2, 2019 Boston, MA TD Garden+
February 8, 2019 Minneapolis, MN Target Center+
February 9, 2019 Minneapolis, MN Target Center+
February 15, 2019 Detroit, MI Little Caesars Arena+
February 16, 2019 Detroit, MI Little Caesars Arena+
February 22, 2019 Cincinnati, OH U.S. Bank Arena*
February 23, 2019 Cincinnati, OH U.S. Bank Arena*
March 1, 2019 Kansas City, MO Sprint Center+
March 2, 2019 Kansas City, MO Sprint Center+
March 8, 2019 Toronto, ON Scotiabank Arena+
March 9, 2019 Toronto, ON Scotiabank Arena+
March 15, 2019 Greensboro, NC Greensboro Coliseum+
March 16, 2019 Greensboro, NC Greensboro Coliseum+
March 22, 2019 Chicago, IL Allstate Arena*
March 23, 2019 Chicago, IL Allstate Arena*
March 29, 2019 Milwaukee, WI Fiserv Forum+
March 30, 2019 Milwaukee, WI Fiserv Forum+
April 12, 2019 Dallas, TX American Airlines Center*
April 13, 2019 Dallas, TX American Airlines Center*
April 19, 2019 Cleveland, OH Quicken Loans Arena*
April 20, 2019 Cleveland, OH Quicken Loans Arena*
April 26, 2019 Greenville, SC Bon Secours Wellness Arena*
April 27, 2019 Greenville, SC Bon Secours Wellness Arena*
May 3, 2019 Pittsburgh, PA PPG Paints Arena+
May 4, 2019 Pittsburgh, PA PPG Paints Arena+
May 10, 2019 Denver, CO Pepsi Center*
May 11, 2019 Denver, CO Pepsi Center*
May 17, 2019 Los Angeles, CA STAPLES Center*
May 18, 2019 Los Angeles, CA STAPLES Center*
May 25, 2019 Nashville, TN Nissan Stadium#
June 28, 2019 George, WA The Gorge Amphitheatre#
June 29, 2019 George, WA The Gorge Amphitheatre#
+on sale October 5 at 10am local time
*on sale October 12 at 10am local time
#on sale October 19 at 10am local time

Out on Friday: Sam Phillips' 'World on Sticks'

Sam Phillips scored a top 30 alt-rock hit in 1989 with "Holding on to the Earth," off "The Indescribable Wow," which was produced by ex-husband T Bone Burnett. In 2016, her tune "Reflecting Light" also made inroads.

Now, the veteran is back with 10th studio album, World on Sticks, made in between creating music for television (Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life for Netflix and The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel for Amazon).

Musicians Jay Bellerose (drums), Jennifer Condos (bass), and Eric Gorfain (multi-instrumentalist/arranger) were joined by special guests Jon Brion (bass/guitar), Chris Bruce (guitar) and The Section Quartet (strings).

"Troubles on the outside can be reflections of troubles on the inside. We hand big business and big tech the keys when we accept their definitions and dreams of the good life, of beauty, of success, instead of creating our own. As I wrote these songs I wanted to look at our lost connections...with nature, with mystery, with other humans and parts of ourselves," Phillips explains.

"Watching a tree suffer through the California drought last summer made me feel for him. I wondered if it was painful or difficult for him to sprout leaves in the spring after such a dry year. I spent a few minutes with him every day. As I was standing in front of him, the words 'Walking Tree' popped into my head. I imagined this was his name for me...a name that reached out with empathy for my conflicting desires to be both rooted and free. Maybe he felt for me because of my short life and fast-spinning mind...not taking enough time to realize that I'm here to be a loving part of all this," she says.

Harm done to the environment is a reoccurring concern throughout the album. "American Landfill Kings" was written after Phillips' father died and she was cleaning out his home.

"At the end of my dad's life, his dementia manifested itself as hoarding and chaos where he lived. If one person in a small place could leave behind so much unwanted, unusable stuff, how much more trash are the rest of us assembling in our lives? This is deeply affecting the way I look at owning and collecting things. I don't want to leave behind another American landfill when my time on the planet is up," states Phillips.

In a video for the single "How Much Is Enough", Sam collaborated with writer/director Dave Rygalski (former writer for both David Letterman and Jay Leno) stringing together jittery film clips of word and picture collages she made using vintage album covers. Phillips calls the agitated footage "jittervids" and Rygalski set them to the song's sly question.

Produced by Sam Phillips
Recorded and mixed by Eric Gorfain
All songs written by Sam Phillips, except "World on Sticks", "I Want to Be You" and "Continuous Limit" written by Sam Phillips and Jay Bellerose

Track listing:

1. Walking Trees
2. World on Sticks
3. Tears in the Ground
4. American Landfill Kings
5. How Much Is Enough
6. Different Shades of Light
7. I Want to Be You
8. Roll em
9. Teilhard
10.Continuous Limit
11.Candles and Stars

Stephen Kellogg sees 'Objects in the Mirror'; on tour now

Stephen Kellogg has shared a new single, “Symphony Of Joy,” from his forthcoming Will Hoge-produced full-length Objects in the Mirror due out Nov. 23. Written with his wife and four daughters in mind, “Symphony Of Joy” encourages women to not let society hold them back while inspiring men to support them as allies in their fight, all with an optimistic outlook for the future. Kellogg recently announced an extensive tour of intimate solo shows for this November and December, as well as a full-band run in Spring 2019. Please see below for full tour details.


Track listing:

1. All The Love That Comes To Me
2. High Highs Low Lows
3. Love Of My Life
4. Objects In The Mirror
5. Easy Money
6. Prayers
7. Symphony Of Joy
8. Song For Daughters
9. Orion
10. I Will Always Have Your Back
11. Right There With You
12. Irish Goodbye

Tour dates:

September 28 — Los Angeles, CA @ Hotel Cafe
September 30 — Novato, CA @ Cookout Concert Series
October 11 — Waltham, MA @ Charles River Museum of Industry & Innovation
October 13 — Overland Park, KS @ Kansas International Film Festival
October 14 — Overland Park, KS @ Kansas International Film Festival
October 19 — Northampton, MA @ Academy of Music Theatre*
November 21 — Boston, MA @ City Winery+
November 23 — Philadelphia, PA @ The Locks at Sona+
November 24 — New York, NY @ City Winery+
November 29 — Fort Collins, CO @ The Elizabeth Hotel
November 30 — Colorado Springs, CO @ Friends HC's
December 1 — Boulder, CO @ eTown Hall~
December 4 — Nashville, TN @ Bluebird Cafe
December 5 — Charlotte, NC @ The Evening Muse+
December 6 — Atlanta, GA @ City Winery+
December 8 — Cedar Rapids, IA @
December 9 — Des Moines, IA @ Flying Mango+
December 10 — Des Moines, IA @ Flying Mango+
December 13 — Evanston, IL @ SPACE+
December 14 — Orion Charter Township, MI @ 20 Front Street+
December 16 — Rochester, NY @
December 15 — Spring Lake, MI @ Seven Steps Up+
December 26 — Portland, ME @ One Longfellow Square+
December 27 — Pawling, NY @ Daryl's House Club+
December 28 — Annapolis, MD @ Rams Head On Stage+
December 29 — Fairfield, CT @ Fairfield Theatre (Stage One)+
March 20 — Cleveland, OH @ Music Box Supper Club^
March 21 — Ann Arbor, MI @ The Ark^
March 23 — St. Paul, MN @ Turf Club^
March 26 — Seattle, WA @ The Triple Door^
March 27 — Portland, OR @ Wonder Ballroom^
April 6 — Denver, CO @ Bluebird Theater^
April 19 — Cambridge, MA @ The Sinclair^
April 20 — Jersey City, NJ @ White Eagle Music Hall^
*appearing with Barefoot Truth
+with support from Taylor Carson
~with support from Dave Tamkin
^Spring 2019 full-band tour

The Eagles box set, 'Legacy,' due in November

The Eagles' LEGACY will be available in two versions on Nov. 2. The first one has 12 CDs and includes all seven of the band's studio albums, three live albums, and a compilation of singles and b-sides. It also includes two concert videos: Hell Freezes Over (DVD) and Farewell Tour: Live From Melbourne (Blu-ray).

A vinyl version of LEGACY will also be available the same day. It has all the music from the CDs on 15 LPs, but none of the videos. Both sets are housed in slipcases and accompanied by a 54-page hardbound book that's filled with rare and unseen photos, memorabilia, and artwork that encompasses the band's entire career.

Grammy-winning mastering engineer Bob Ludwig remastered Hell Freezes Over and Millennium Concert especially for LEGACY. Both albums - along with several tracks from the Singles and B-Sides compilation - are being released on vinyl for the first time ever as part of this collection, save for a small European vinyl pressing of Hell Freezes Over around its original release in 1994. In addition, the double-album Eagles Live is making its long-awaited return to vinyl in this set after being out-of-print for decades.

LEGACY follows the Eagles through the different stage of the band's storied career, from the country-rock of early albums like Desperado and the superstar success of Hotel California, to the band's 1994 reunion Hell Freezes Over and its most-recent studio album, 2005's Long Road Out of Eden. All of the band's hits, deep cuts and fan favorites are here, including "Take It Easy," "Already Gone," "Hotel California," "Please Come Home For Christmas," "Heartbreak Tonight" "No More Cloudy Days," and "Get Over It."

The Eagles - Don Henley, Joe Walsh and Timothy B. Schmit, with Deacon Frey and Vince Gill - are in the midst of their extensive 2018 North American tour that began in March and continues through December.

CD/DVD/Blu-ray Listing:

Eagles (1972)
Desperado (1973)
On The Border (1974)
One of These Nights (1975)
Hotel California (1976)
The Long Run (1979)
Eagles Live (1980)
Hell Freezes Over (1994)
Millennium Concert (2000)
Long Road Out of Eden (2007)
Single and B-Sides (2018):
1. "Take It Easy" (Single Version)
2. "Get You In The Mood" (Non-LP B Side)
3. "Outlaw Man" (Single Version)
4. "Best Of My Love" (Single Version)
5. "One Of These Nights" (Single Edit)
6. "Lyin' Eyes" (Single Edit)
7. "Take It To The Limit" (Single Edit)
8. "Please Come Home For Christmas"
9. "Funky New Year"
10. "Hole In The World"

DVD: Hell Freezes Over (1994)
Blu-ray: Farewell Tour: Live From Melbourne (2005)

LP Listing:

Eagles (1972)
Desperado (1973)
On The Border (1974)
One of These Nights (1975)
Hotel California (1976)
The Long Run (1979)
Eagles Live - Double LP (1980)
Hell Freezes Over - Double LP (1994)
Millennium Concert - Double LP (2000)
Long Road Out of Eden - Double LP (2007)
Single and B-Sides (2018)

The Beatles news: 'White Album' 50th anniversary reissue

November 1968 was when The Beatles released its landmark double LP (soon to be better known as ‘The White Album’).

On Nov. 9, The Beatles will release a suite of ‘White Album’ packages (Apple Corps Ltd./Capitol/UMe). The album’s 30 tracks are newly mixed by producer Giles Martin and mix engineer Sam Okell in stereo and 5.1 surround audio, joined by 27 early acoustic demos and 50 session takes, most of which are previously unreleased in any form.

“We had left Sgt. Pepper’s band to play in his sunny Elysian Fields and were now striding out in new directions without a map,” says Paul McCartney in his written introduction for the new ‘White Album’ releases.

This is the first time The BEATLES (‘White Album’) has been remixed and presented with additional demos and session recordings. The album’s new edition follows 2017’s universally acclaimed Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band Anniversary Edition releases. 

To create the new stereo and 5.1 surround audio mixes for ‘The White Album,’ Martin and Okell worked with an expert team of engineers and audio restoration specialists at Abbey Road Studios in London. All the new ‘White Album’ releases include Martin’s new stereo album mix, sourced directly from the original four-track and eight-track session tapes. Martin’s new mix is guided by the album’s original stereo mix produced by his father, George Martin.

“In remixing ‘The White Album,’ we’ve tried to bring you as close as possible to The Beatles in the studio,” explains Giles Martin in his written introduction for the new edition. “We’ve peeled back the layers of the ‘Glass Onion’ with the hope of immersing old and new listeners into one of the most diverse and inspiring albums ever made.”

The BEATLES (‘White Album’) releases include:

Super Deluxe: The comprehensive, individually numbered 7-disc and digital audio collections feature:

CDs 1 & 2: The BEATLES (‘White Album’) 2018 stereo album mix
CD3: Esher Demos
- Esher Demo tracks 1 through 19 sequenced in order of the finished song’s placement on ‘The White Album.’ Tracks 20-27 were not included on the album.
CDs 4, 5 & 6: Sessions
- 50 additional recordings, most previously unreleased, from ‘White Album’ studio sessions; all newly mixed from the four-track and eight-track session tapes, sequenced in order of their recording start dates.
- 2018 album mix in high resolution PCM stereo
- 2018 DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 album mix
- 2018 Dolby True HD 5.1 album mix
- 2018 direct transfer of the album’s original mono mix

Deluxe: The BEATLES (‘White Album’) 2018 stereo album mix + Esher Demos

The 3CD; 180-gram 4LP vinyl box set (limited edition); and digital audio collections pair the 2018 stereo album mix with the 27 Esher Demos.
Standard 2LP Vinyl: The BEATLES (‘White Album’) 2018 stereo mix
180-gram 2LP vinyl in gatefold sleeve with faithfully replicated original artwork

The minimalist artwork for ‘The White Album’ was created by artist Richard Hamilton, one of Britain’s leading figures in the creation and rise of pop art. The top-loading gatefold sleeve’s stark white exterior had ‘The BEATLES’ embossed on the front and printed on the spine with the album’s catalogue number. Early copies of ‘The White Album’ were also individually numbered on the front, which has also been done for the new edition’s Super Deluxe package.

Six CDs and Blu-ray disc are housed in a slipsleeved 164-page hardbound book, with pull-out reproductions of the original album’s four glossy color portrait photographs of John, Paul, George, and Ringo, as well as the album’s large fold-out poster with a photo collage on one side and lyrics on the other.

The book contains rare photographs, reproductions of handwritten and notated lyrics, previously unpublished photos of recording sheets and tape boxes, and reproduced original ‘White Album’ print ads. The book’s written pieces include new introductions by Paul McCartney and Giles Martin, and chapters covering track-by-track details and session notes reflecting The Beatles’ year between the release of ‘Sgt. Pepper’ and recording sessions for ‘The White Album,’ the band’s July 28 1968 “Mad Day Out” photo shoot in locations around London, the album artwork, the lead-up and execution of the album’s blockbuster release, and its influence, written by Beatles historian, author and radio producer Kevin Howlett; journalist and author John Harris; and Tate Britain’s Senior Curator of Modern and Contemporary Art Andrew Wilson.

For the Deluxe 3CD, an embossed digipak has the fold-out poster and portrait photos, plus a 24-page booklet abridged from the Super Deluxe book. Presented in a lift-top box with a four-page booklet, the limited edition Deluxe 4LP vinyl set presents the 2LP album in a faithful, embossed reproduction of its original gatefold sleeve with the fold-out poster and portrait photos, paired with the 2LP Esher Demos in an embossed gatefold sleeve.

Preorder The BEATLES (‘White Album’):

Watch a brief trailer video for The BEATLES (‘White Album’):

The BEATLES (‘White Album’)


Super Deluxe [6CD+1Blu-ray set / digital audio collection]

CD 1: The BEATLES (‘White Album’) 2018 Stereo Mix
Back in the U.S.S.R.
Dear Prudence
Glass Onion
Ob-La-Di, Ob-La-Da
Wild Honey Pie
The Continuing Story of Bungalow Bill
While My Guitar Gently Weeps
Happiness is a Warm Gun
Martha My Dear
I’m so tired
Rocky Raccoon
Don’t Pass Me By
Why don’t we do it in the road?
I Will

CD 2: The BEATLES (‘White Album’) 2018 Stereo Mix
Yer Blues
Mother Nature’s Son
Everybody’s Got Something to Hide
Except Me and My Monkey
Sexy Sadie
Helter Skelter
Long, Long, Long
Revolution I
Honey Pie
Savoy Truffle
Cry Baby Cry
Revolution 9
Good Night

CD 3: Esher Demos
Back in the U.S.S.R.
Dear Prudence
Glass Onion
Ob-La-Di, Ob-La-Da
The Continuing Story of Bungalow Bill
While My Guitar Gently Weeps
Happiness is a Warm Gun
I’m so tired
Rocky Raccoon
Yer Blues
Mother Nature’s Son
Everybody’s Got Something to Hide
Except Me and My Monkey
Sexy Sadie
Honey Pie
Cry Baby Cry
Sour Milk Sea
Child of Nature
Mean Mr. Mustard
Polythene Pam
Not Guilty
What’s the New Mary Jane

CD 4: Sessions
Revolution I (Take 18)
A Beginning (Take 4) / Don’t Pass Me By (Take 7)
Blackbird (Take 28)
Everybody’s Got Something to Hide
Except Me and My Monkey (Unnumbered rehearsal)
Good Night (Unnumbered rehearsal)
Good Night (Take 10 with a guitar part from Take 5)
Good Night (Take 22)
Ob-La-Di, Ob-La-Da (Take 3)
Revolution (Unnumbered rehearsal)
Revolution (Take 14 – Instrumental backing track)
Cry Baby Cry (Unnumbered rehearsal)
Helter Skelter (First version – Take 2)

CD 5: Sessions
Sexy Sadie (Take 3)
While My Guitar Gently Weeps (Acoustic version – Take 2)
Hey Jude (Take 1)
St. Louis Blues (Studio jam)
Not Guilty (Take 102)
Mother Nature’s Son (Take 15)
Yer Blues (Take 5 with guide vocal)
What’s the New Mary Jane (Take 1)
Rocky Raccoon (Take 8)
Back in the U.S.S.R. (Take 5 – Instrumental backing track)
Dear Prudence (Vocal, guitar & drums)
Let It Be (Unnumbered rehearsal)
While My Guitar Gently Weeps (Third version – Take 27)
(You’re so Square) Baby, I Don’t Care (Studio jam)
Helter Skelter (Second version – Take 17)
Glass Onion (Take 10)

CD 6: Sessions
I Will (Take 13)
Blue Moon (Studio jam)
I Will (Take 29)
Step Inside Love (Studio jam)
Los Paranoias (Studio jam)
Can You Take Me Back? (Take 1)
Birthday (Take 2 – Instrumental backing track)
Piggies (Take 12 – Instrumental backing track)
Happiness is a Warm Gun (Take 19)
Honey Pie (Instrumental backing track)
Savoy Truffle (Instrumental backing track)
Martha My Dear (Without brass and strings)
Long, Long, Long (Take 44)
I’m so tired (Take 7)
I’m so tired (Take 14)
The Continuing Story of Bungalow Bill (Take 2)
Why don’t we do it in the road? (Take 5)
Julia (Two rehearsals)
The Inner Light (Take 6 – Instrumental backing track)
Lady Madonna (Take 2 – Piano and drums)
Lady Madonna (Backing vocals from take 3)
Across the Universe (Take 6)

Blu-ray: The BEATLES (‘White Album’)
Audio Features:
PCM Stereo (2018 Stereo Mix)
DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 (2018)
Dolby True HD 5.1 (2018)
Mono (2018 Direct Transfer of ‘The White Album’ Original Mono Mix)

Deluxe [3CD digipak / 180-gram 4LP vinyl box set (limited edition) / digital audio collection]

The BEATLES (‘White Album’) 2018 Stereo Mix
Esher Demos
Standard 2LP Vinyl [180-gram]
The BEATLES (‘White Album’) 2018 Stereo Mix

Wednesday, September 19, 2018

Ohana Festival 2018 headed to Dana Point in Southern California next week

OHANA FESTIVAL will return to Doheny State Beach in Dana Point, CA for a third year this month with performances from Eric Church, Eddie Vedder, Mumford & Sons, Beck, Norah Jones, Yeah Yeah Yeahs, Amos Lee, Liz Phair and others (full line-up below).

The three-day festival--set for Friday, September 28, Saturday, September 29 and Sunday, September 30--takes place near one of Southern California's major beaches.

Concertgoers can participate in fun sponsor activations, while also enjoying a variety of libations including beer (Pacifico), wine (JaM Cellars), cider (Angry Orchard), vodka (Tito's), aperitif (Aperol) and spiked sparkling water (Truly) in the craft wine and beer garden, plus non-alcoholic offerings: cold brew coffee (Califia) and coffee fruit drinks (Bai). Attendees can also sample KIND snacks, see the latest cars from JEEP and try on Maui Jim Sunglasses and footwear (OluKai).

Tickets for OHANA are available at Ticket prices start at $99.75 + fees for a single day pass. A variety of ticketing options can be found on the website.

A portion of the proceeds from OHANA will benefit the San Onofre Parks Foundation (a California non-profit that cooperatively works with the California State Parks to develop, preserve and enhance the recreation and experience of California's unique and beautiful coastal parks) and the Doheny State Beach Interpretive Association (DSBIA), the non-profit cooperating association of Doheny State Beach dedicated to the protection of the park's beaches, facilities, marine refuge and historical and cultural stories.

These challenges are met through DSBIA's fundraising efforts and active support of the park's educational, interpretive, conservation and restoration programs. DSBIA was established in 1982, and is one of the oldest cooperating associations in the California State Parks System.

The full 2018 Ohana lineup: Eric Church, Eddie Vedder, Mumford & Sons, Norah Jones, Yeah Yeah Yeahs, Amos Lee, Liz Phair, Young the Giant, Nikki Lane, Bahamas, Switchfoot w/ Rob Machado, John Doe Folk Trio, Plague Vendor, Andrew Macmahon & The Wilderness, Hiss Golden Messenger, The White Buffalo, NoMBe, Fantastic Negrito, The War + Treaty, Lauren Ruth Ward, Allan Rayman, Dave Hause, Nick Hakim, Kevin Devine, Billy Raffoul, Timmy Curran, Lilly Hiatt, The Palms, Desure, Ambar Lucid, The Alive, Pow Pow Family Band, and Jonny Roundhouse.

Monday, September 17, 2018

The Zombies concert review: Rancho Cucamonga, Calif.

photo: William Vasta/Lewis Family Playhouse
The Zombies launched the 13th entertainment season at Lewis Family Playhouse in rocking fashion on Saturday night.

Filled with concertgoers of all ages, the intimate Rancho Cucamonga, Calif. venue (capacity: 560 seats) was the perfect place to witness the celebrated English rock band, whose 1968 album “Odessey and Oracle” has been widely acclaimed as a masterpiece by musicians ranging from Foo Fighters’ Dave Grohl, the Lemon Twigs and Portugal. The Man to Brian Wilson, The Bangles’ Susanna Hoffs and the late Tom Petty.

Before the live proceedings got underway, a pre-show party featured a raffle of gift baskets, a DJ spinning pop and rock tunes from various eras, scrumptious hors d’oeuvres and mini dessert cakes. After about an hour, the sounds of Brian Setzer Orchestra’s “Jump, Jive ‘n’ Wail” and Michael Jackson’s “Billie Jean” were enough to lure some people out to the small dance floor. One young gal seemed to have era confusion and sported a fake mustache and ‘80s-styled sunglasses! Kudos to the decorators, who adorned the room with Sixties-centric lava lamps, a peace sign made of flowers and large dessert table letters that spelled out L-O-V-E.

“This is such a beautiful theater. We’ve heard a lot about it from our road manager,” raved Zombies lead singer Colin Blunstone, early in the group’s excellent 90-minute set. Indeed, I hadn’t been to a show at the Playhouse (part of the Victoria Gardens Cultural Center) show since Kenny Loggins in ‘08 and had forgotten what a gem it is.

The Zombies kicked off the concert with a lively “Road Runner” and perfectly sublime “The Look of Love” (by Bo Diddley and Burt Bacharach/Hal David, respectively), then it was onto their own material, starting with 1965 single “I Want You Back Again.” Smiling ear to ear, Blunstone sang with arms outstretched, the musicians added high flying backing vocals and Rod Argent delved into the first of many tasty keyboard spotlights. Also, from the same year, came “I Love You,” a vinyl single B-side (and a top 20 U.S. hit for People! In 1968). Blunstone’s dramatic vocal outbursts were a wonder to behold.

“Sanctuary,” from Argent and Blunstone’s 2002 duo album “Out of the Shadows,” brought drummer Steve Rodford over to the side of Argent’s keyboards to play some small bongos with brushes on the relaxed Latin-tinged groove.

A brawny “Moving On” and rollicking “Edge of the Rainbow,” from the band’s aptly-titled most recent studio effort “Still Got That Hunger,” fit nicely with the older material. Yet when the musicians played “Tell Her No” (#6 U.S., 1964), the crowd really responded in kind. The same was true for a fine cover medley of Smokey Robinson’s “You’ve Really Got a Hold on Me” and Sam Cooke’s “Bring it on Home to Me,” which fit like a glove and the audience clapped along.

Before a mini-block of songs from “Odyssey and Oracle,” Argent recounted how the album suddenly started gaining popularity in the late ‘70s when Paul Weller of The Jam began talking up its merits in interviews and others followed suit.

The sprightly “Care of Cell 44,” baroque pop of “This Will Be Our Year,” “I Want Her, She Wants Me” (featuring Argent on rare lead vocal) and big hit “Time of the Season” all sounded splendid as ever. The latter saw the keyboardist do a vigorous solo and an even longer prog-rock-styled one during the Argent band’s AOR radio classic “Hold Your Head Up.” Toward the end, The Zombies played a strong “She’s Not There” and the Argent band’s “God Gave Rock ‘n’ Roll to You” for a swaying, good-time finish.

Remaining Zombies U.S. tour dates:

9/18 Seattle, WA
9/20 Los Angeles, CA (opening for Arcade Fire)
9/21 Palm Springs, CA (acoustic duo/podcast interview)

The Zombies and Colin Blunstone will also perform at On the Blue Cruise (Nassau, Bahamas and Isle of Labadee), alongside Todd Rundgren, Justin Hayward of The Moody Blues, Dave Mason, Steve Hackett, Alan Parsons, Procol Harum, Al Stewart, Poco, David Pack, Vanilla Fudge, Stephen Bishop, Rick Derringer and others, Feb. 10-15, 2019. Go to for more info.

Selected upcoming Lewis Family Playhouse events:

In the Mood (1940s musical revue), Nov. 10
Brian McKnight, Nov. 16
Jane Lynch’s “A Swingin’ Little Christmas feat. Kate Flannery,” Nov. 17
The Nutcracker, Dec. 1-2, 8-9
Blind Boys of Alabama: A Christmas Celebration, Dec. 15
A Peter White Christmas feat. Rick Braun and Euge Groove, Dec. 16
Under the Streetlamp: Hip to the Holidays, Dec. 20

For more venue season information, go to

First Aid Kit news

First Aid Kit has released another new EP, ‘Tender Offerings’ via Columbia Records. It features songs that were recorded during the Ruins album sessions and is available both digitally and physically as a limited 10”. Watch the lyric video for the EP’s title track HERE.

The duo is currently in the US for The Rebel Heart Tour. The 21-date trek kicked off last week and includes a headline show at the Greek Theatre in Los Angeles, CA on Wednesday, September 26. M. Ward is special guest in LA and San Francisco, CA. They performed “Fireworks” from their latest album Ruins on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert. See it HERE.

For tickets and more information, visit


I’ve Wanted You
Tender Offerings
All That We Get


09/18 Austin, TX ACL Live at The Moody Theater+
09/19 Dallas, TX South Side Ballroom+
09/21 Albuquerque, NM Sunshine Theater+
09/22 Phoenix, AZ The Pressroom+
09/23 Las Vegas, NV Life is Beautiful Festival
09/25 San Diego, CA The Observatory North Park+
09/26 Los Angeles, CA Greek Theatre+^
09/28 San Francisco, CA The Masonic+^
09/29 Napa, CA JaM Cellars Ballroom+
10/01 Seattle, WA Paramount Theatre+
10/02 Vancouver, BC Queen Elizabeth Theatre+
10/03 Portland, OR Arlene Schnitzer Concert Hall+
+Julia Jacklin supporting
^M. Ward supporting

Jill Sobule back with long-awaited new album

“Nostalgia can be wonderful and amazing. It’s OK to look back. But then you gotta get the f-out of there,” says Jill Sobule, on the theme of her new album, Nostalgia Kills (out now).

Listen here, and check out Jill’s video “I Don’t Wanna Wake Up,” written after a breakup, “the night a friend gave me some mushrooms, so I was mircodosing.” adds Sobule. On Nostalgia Kills, she is “exorcising some junior high school demons.

"There were things that happened in my life -- the death of a parent, a breakup, a move. I was my own procrastinatrix, is what I call it,” Sobule told Billboard. “But I think those kind of jostle you back into the creative mode, and I started loving music again -- loving listening, loving writing and the original spirit of why I did this in the first place, I suppose.”

Produced by her good friend, Australian singer-songwriter Ben Lee, with a supporting cast of players that included John Doe (X), Wayne Kramer (The MC5), Petra Haden (That Dog), Roger Joseph Manning Jr. (Jellyfish), and Richard Barone (The Bongos), Nostalgia Kills was pulled from 100 songs, representing nearly a decade’s worth of material since the release of her last proper solo album, California Years (2009).

Looking back is a new experience for Jill Sobule. Ever since she first caught mainstream attention with her 1995 song “I Kissed a Girl” — the first song about same-sex romance ever to crack the Billboard Top 20 (and no relation to the later Katy Perry tune) — she’s always pushed forward, exploring new sounds and subject matter with each passing album and refusing to be pigeonholed by her early hits (which also include the ‘90s alt-rock anthem “Supermodel,” featured in an iconic scene in the film Clueless).

For all its graceful, funny and heartbreaking explorations of awkward youth and grown-up regrets, Nostalgia Killsis as of-the-moment as anything in Jill Sobule’s catalog. Through her own experiences, she explores issues our society still collectively struggles with (LGBTQ rights, teen mental health, our unhealthy obsession with staying forever young) and gently skewers our tendency to dwell on the past at the expense of addressing the present. As she sings on the title track: “We look at ourselves in a long row of mirrors/We get smaller and smaller with each passing year/We have to keep moving or die.”

Tour dates:

Sept 20 Evanston, IL Space
Sept 21 Ann Arbor, MI The Ark
Oct 4 Los Angeles, CA Largo at the Coronet
Nov 9 St. Louis, MO Duck Room at Blueberry Hill
Nov 17 Boulder, CO Etown Hall
Dec 22 Hopewell, NJ The Hopewell Theater
Feb 1 Marblehead, MA Me & Thee Coffeehouse

White Lies ready 'Five' album and Euro tour for next year

Exciting news. I was pleased to see the band, which I first interviewed for their debut album, again at Coachella a few years back. Read on for more info...

White Lies have announce details of their new album entitled Five due for release on Feb. 1, 2019, marking a decade of their existence while cementing their new home at [PIAS] Recordings. The band have also shared a new recording, "Time To Give". Listen to it HERE.

The band will embark on a European tour starting in January. Ticket pre-sale starts on Wednesday via the White Lies mailing list before going on general sale at 9 a.m. BST on Friday. Full European dates listed below.

Regarding Five, the band explains; “This is a milestone record for White Lies. It marks our decade as a band, which has pushed us to expand our sound and reach new territory artistically - it marks the start of a new and exciting chapter for us."

The writing and recording process took place in both sides of the Atlantic including Los Angeles, where they worked on new material with old acquaintance Ed Buller - producer of two previous White Lies albums including the band’s chart-topping debut To Lose My Life and third release Big TV. 

Engineer James Brown (Arctic Monkeys, Foo Fighters), along with renowned producer Flood, who can also be heard contributing synths and keys on a couple of tracks, and Grammy Award recipient Alan Moulder (Smashing Pumpkins, Nine Inch Nails, The Killers), having worked on the band’s first two albums, returned to mix the album.

Featuring lyrics from bassist and primary songwriter Charles Cave, Five will be available on ltd edition vinyl, vinyl, CD and digitally. He says, “I guess it’s true what they say, Five really IS the magic number.”

White Lies are: Harry McVeigh (lead vocals, guitar), Charles Cave (bass, b/vocals) and Jack Lawrence-Brown (drums)


1/13 - BRIGHTON Concorde UK
2/3 - LEEDS Academy UK
2/4 - NEWCASTLE Boiler Shop UK
2/7 - LIVERPOOL Olympia UK
2/8 - MANCHESTER Albert Hall UK
2/9 - NOTTINGHAM Rock City UK
2/11 - EDINBURGH Liquid Rooms UK
2/13 - CAMBRIDGE Junction UK
2/14 - LONDON Forum UK
2/15 - BIRMINGHAM Institute UK
2/18 - AMSTERDAM Paradiso NL
2/19 - NIJMEGEN Doornroosje NL
2/22 - COLOGNE Kantine DE
2/23 - BOCHUM Matrix DE
2/24 - HAMBURG Markthalle DE
2/26 - STOCKHOLM Berns
2/27 - OSLO Rockefeller Music Hall NO
3/1 - AARHUS Train DK
3/3 - BERLIN Huxleys DE
3/5 - WARSAW Proxima PL
3/6 - POZNAN Zamek PL
3/7 - PRAGUE Roxy CZ
3/8 - VIENNA Ottakringer Brauerei AT
3/10 - ZAGREB Culture Factory HR
3/11 - BOLOGNA Estragon IT
3/12 - LAUSANNE Docks CH
3/13 - ZURICH Dynamo CH
3/15 - MUNICH Neue Theatre DE
3/16 - LEIPZIG Werk 2 DE
3/18 - WIESBADEN Schlachthof DE
3/19 - PARIS Trabendo FR
3/20 - LUXEMBOURG Den Atelier LU
3/21 - EINDHOVEN Effenaar NL

Five track listing:

1. Time To Give
2. Never Alone
3. Finish Line
4. Kick Me
5. Tokyo
6. Jo?
7. Denial
8. Believe It
9. Fire And Wings

Friday, September 14, 2018

Little Steven and the Disciples of Soul news

Little Steven and the Disciples of Soul's SOULFIRE LIVE! is available now in a physical format via his Wicked Cool Records and UMe. It was recorded last year in North America and Europe during Steven's first world tour in nearly two decades.

The 3CD collection includes 24-tracks released digitally in April alongside an exclusive third disc highlighted by superstar guest performances recorded throughout the trek, including Bruce Springsteen, Richie Sambora, Peter Wolf, and Jerry Miller (of Moby Grape). 

Rolling Stone premiered the live video of Little Steven's performance of "Can I Get A Witness," featuring Richie Sambora. Recorded last year at the famed Orpheum Theatre in Los Angeles, the video captures Little Steven and his 15-piece band, the Disciple of Soul's shows which will be on full display on the Blu-Ray coming later this year.

Fans can now pre-order ahead of their release later this year, SOULFIRE LIVE! as a unique 7LP vinyl box set (ships Dec. 14) and on Blu-Ray (ships Feb. 1) exclusively at Little Steven's just-launched new webstore.

The vinyl box set will incorporate an exclusive bonus LP capturing Little Steven's extraordinary surprise set at Liverpool's legendary Cavern Club recorded November 2017 during his band's sold out European tour.

An intimate lunchtime gig saw Little Steven and the Disciples of Soul paying tribute to The Beatles with rocking renditions of "Magical Mystery Tour," "Good Morning, Good Morning," "Got To Get You Into My Life," and "All You Need Is Love," alongside iconic songs famously performed by the nascent Fab Four, including "Boys" (originally by The Shirelles), "Slow Down" (by Larry Williams) and "Soldier Of Love" (first recorded by Arthur Alexander).

"Playing in the same venue where The Beatles started their careers was a childhood dream of mine come true," says Little Steven. "This was a band that set me on course for a life of music. For my rock 'n' roll religion, The Cavern is the first sacred site. It was an honor - no, make that an epiphany - to perform there."

The SOULFIRE LIVE! Blu-ray video edition will include Little Steven and the Disciples of Soul's complete Cavern Club concert alongside video performances of each song on the 3CD/vinyl set, exclusive interviews, and behind-the-scenes footage. In addition, the Blu-ray edition will feature a special documentary about the Cavern Club performance that sees Little Steven honored with a brick in the club's hallowed Wall of Fame before leading his band through swift rehearsals of Beatles songs mere minutes ahead of their performance. The Blu-ray and vinyl box are available to pre-order now on Little Steven's just-launched new web store:

On the exclusive live third disc are special guest appearances from some of Little Steven's closest friends, collaborators, and favorite artists, including Moby Grape's "Can't Be So Bad" performed with the band's founding member, Jerry Miller; "Can I Get A Witness," performed with Richie Sambora; J. Geils Band's "Freeze Frame" with vocals from its singer Peter Wolf; and "Tenth Avenue Freeze-Out" and Little Steven's own "I Don't Want To Go Home," both joined by Bruce Springsteen.

Disc 3 also includes the Disciples of Soul's takes on Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers' "Even The Losers," AC/DC's "You Shook Me All Night Long," John Lennon's "Working Class Hero," The Allman Brothers Band's "It's Not My Cross To Bear," The Animals' "We Gotta Get Out Of This Place," and The Ramones' "Merry Christmas (I Don't Want To Fight Tonight)."

SOULFIRE LIVE! was produced and arranged by Stevie Van Zandt; the album was mixed by Bob Clearmountain and mastered by Bob Ludwig.

In related concert news, Little Steven and the Disciples of Soul will show solidarity with and say thank you to hard-working teachers across North America with a landmark headline tour introducing TeachRock, the Rock and Roll Forever Foundation's free, multimedia, K-12 interdisciplinary curriculum which meets prevailing standards in English Language Arts, Social Studies/History, the Fine and Performing Arts, and also includes STEAM and advisory material.

The "Soulfire Teacher Solidarity Tour 2018" begins in October in Pennsylvania and continues into December. All shows on sale now. For complete details and tickets, please visit The concerts are free for educators of all types (and a guest) - teachers are invited to sign up at

Each show on the tour will also see Little Steven and his Teach Rock staff hosting free professional development workshops designed to engage educators with techniques and content through which they can comfortably use music to inspire students, even if they've never touched an instrument. In many locations, the workshop will also count towards continuing education hours and license renewal.

The Little Steven and the Disciples of Soul Teacher Solidarity Tour Professional Development Experience will offer an introduction to the curriculum, and include material suitable for K-12 teachers of all disciplines, interdisciplinary best practices, and group activities. In addition, the one-hour workshops will see a personal visit from Little Steven, with attendees also receiving a teacher-only edition "Teacher Solidarity Tour" t-shirt, a certificate of attendance, and tickets for the educator and a guest to that evening's Little Steven and the Disciples of Soul concert.

"This is a little different than the professional development experience you may be used to," says Little Steven. "This is a rock 'n' roll experience."

Little Steven unveiled the details with a personal video announcement, streaming now at the official Teach Rock YouTube channel HERE.

Steven Van Zandt's Rock and Roll Forever Foundation is a 501(c)(3) organization that integrates arts throughout K-12 classrooms via rich, standard-aligned lesson plans and hands-on teacher workshops, all delivered to educators and districts at no cost. TeachRock is a standards-aligned arts integration curriculum that uses the history and culture of popular music to engage students in all disciplines.

From social studies and language arts to geography, STEAM, general music, and more: Teach Rock has engaging and meaningful material for every K-12 classroom, and it's all shared with teachers and students at no cost. Teach Rock is endorsed by the National Council for the Social Studies, the National Association for Music Education, and the National Council for Geographic Education, with partners including Scholastic Inc., PBS, Reelin' in the Years, ABC News, Rock's Backpages, New York University's Steinhardt School, and the Grammy Museum. For lesson plans and additional information, please visit

"Music will forever be humanity's most effective and consistent source of inspiration and motivation," says Little Steven, "and, we have learned, music turns out to be our most solid common ground for establishing communication between teachers and students which is where education begins."

Soulfire Live Track listing-

Mike Stoller Intro
I'm Coming Back
Blues Is My Business Intro
Blues Is My Business
Love On The Wrong Side Of Town
Until The Good Is Gone
Angel Eyes
Some Things Just Don't Change
Saint Valentine's Day Intro
Saint Valentine's Day
Standing In The Line Of Fire Intro
Standing In The Line Of Fire
I Saw The Light
The City Weeps Tonight Intro
The City Weeps Tonight

Down And Out In New York City
Princess Of Little Italy Intro
Princess Of Little Italy
Leonard Peltier
I Am A Patriot
Groovin' Is Easy
Ride The Night Away Intro
Ride The Night Away
Bitter Fruit
Checkpoint Charlie Intro
Checkpoint Charlie
I Don't Want To Go Home
Out Of The Darkness Intro
Out Of The Darkness

Even The Losers
Can't Be So Bad (Feat. Jerry Miller)
You Shook Me All Night Long
Working Class Hero
We Gotta Get Out Of This Place
Can I Get A Witness (Feat. Richie Sambora)
It's Not My Cross To Bear Intro
It's Not My Cross To Bear
Freeze Frame (Feat. Peter Wolf)
The Time Of Your Life
Tenth Avenue Freeze-Out (Feat. Bruce Springsteen)
I Don't Want To Go Home (Feat. Bruce Springsteen)
Merry Christmas (I Don't Want To Fight Tonight)

Tour dates:

18 - Wilkes Barre, PA - Kirby Center
20 - Rochester, NY - Kodak Center
23 - Atlantic City, NJ - Hard Rock Hotel & casino
24 - Pittsburgh, PA - Homestead Music Hall
29 - Wabash, IN - Honeywell Center
31 - Milwaukee, WI - Pabst Theater

2 - Burnsville, MN - Ames Center
3 - Green Bay, WI - Meyer Theatre
5 - Chicago, IL - Center
7 - Tulsa, OK - Brady Theater
9 - Detroit, MI - Detroit Music Hall
10 - Peoria, IL - Monarch Theater
12 - Louisville, KY - Mercury Ballroom
14 - Columbus, OH - Newport Music Hall
16 - Northfield, OH - Hard Rock Rocksino
17 - Morgantown, WV - Metropolitan Theatre
26 - Oklahoma City, OK - Tower Theatre
28 - Omaha, NE - Holland Performing Arts Center
30 - Denver, CO - Gothic Theatre

1 - Salt Lake City, UT - The Depot
3 - Vancouver, BC - Vogue Theatre
5 - Snoqualmie, WA - Snoqualmie Casino
7 - San Francisco, CA - The Fillmore
8 - Stateline, NV - Harrah's Lake Tahoe
11 - San Diego, CA - House of Blues
12 - Anaheim, CA - House of Blues
14 - Las Vegas, NV - House of Blues
16 - Phoenix, AZ - Van Buren

Q&A with Rod Argent of The Zombies

BMG/The Bloom Effect PR
The Zombies perform at Kaaboo Festival in Del Mar today, Lewis Family Playhouse in Rancho Cucamonga on Saturday, The Greek Theatre in LA on Thursday and Ace Hotel & Swim Club in Palm Springs on Sept. 21.

There was so much great material from my interview with band member Rod Argent last month that didn’t make it into the feature article in various SoCal newspapers like the OC Register (see elsewhere on this blog), that I decided to post the rest of it here.

The legendary keyboardist, vocalist, songwriter, and producer is best known for co-founding The Zombies and later, Argent (“Hold Your Head Up,” “God Gave Rock ‘n’ Roll to You”). His impressive resume also includes session and/or production work on albums by The Who ('Who Are You'), Tanita Tikaram (1988’s worldwide best seller 'Ancient Heart'), The Hollies, Roger Daltrey, Matthew Sweet, Nanci Griffith, Jules Shear, Zombies bandmate Colin Blunstone and others.

Q: Where have I reached you today, Rod?

In the U.K., in Hampshire. I’ve lived here for the last 3 ½ years now. I was in my previous place, North of the river in England, for 38 years. I’m a newcomer to this bit.

Q: This Southern California touring run one of your biggest in a while, right?

Not necessarily in the U.S. But in California, it is. On the West Coast, it’s the longest run, I think. We’ve actually done five tours of the States in the last two years. In March, we did a fairly extensive tour, but it was on the East Coast.

Q: You’re playing a wide range of different sized venues out here. Do you think your music translates better in one type of place or another?

Do you know what? I’ve got to the stage where I enjoy every size venue; I honestly do. From the largest festival to the much more intimate surroundings, I really do enjoy them all. I feel comfortable with our current band in every size venue. There’s nothing that worries me. As long as I feel that we’ve had the proper soundcheck that we always try to get, so we’re in control technically with what’s going on, I’ve got absolute faith in the band to carry out the concert beautifully in any setting.

Q: Your pairing with Arcade Fire at the Greek in L.A. is very intriguing. Any idea whether they're big Zombies fans?

Apparently, they are. I hope I’m not putting words in their mouths when I say that. I don’t know an awful lot about Arcade Fire, but our American management were excited that they got in touch with our management company and said they particularly wanted us to be on the show with them. That’s very nice. It’s fantastic when contemporary stars reach out to us in that sort of way.

We’ve just been to Europe to do a couple big festivals in Berlin and Amsterdam. The day before we were to leave, we had Portugal. The Man, who were doing a big concert in London at the O2, who got in touch with our management and said, ‘would there be any chance of them meeting us on this particular day?’ It happened to be the day before we left. It meant us all stopping our preparations getting ready for going away to Europe, but we were very happy to do it because they’d just had a No. 1 single all over the world with “Feel it Still.” I love that single; I really do…They were absolutely lovely. We had a great hour and a half with them in London. They hired a room in a hotel. We had a drink and long chat with them and it was great. Then we rushed back and got ready the next morning for Europe.

photo: Maggie Clarke
Q: The last time I caught The Zombies in concert was when you played Stagecoach 2017. Do you still thrive on trying to win over crowds that might not consist of your average classic rock listeners?

It’s very strange that wherever we play, and strangely enough, this is true outside Britain, that are obviously a lot of classic rock fans in the audience, people that have followed us all the way through and we adore playing to them. It’s fantastic. But there’s always a young sizable component in the audience and usually several young bands coming along to see us. That’s very energizing as well.

Talking about winning over younger fans: About two years ago, we played in the Philippines. We played there many many years before to 40,000 people a night, a residency for 10 nights in 1967. A lady, a prominent person in society in Manila, came along and she’d been at the original series of concerts. She brought her granddaughter, who was 18 years old. They came backstage and I was speaking to this girl and she said, ‘I was brought here kicking and screaming, but I came to keep my grandmother company. You played a song and I loved it – "A Rose for Emily." She’s never heard it before and she was in tears.

We play "Time of the Season," and the place goes wild. Then we might follow that with a track from our ‘Still Got That Hunger’ album - which against all expectations actually made the Top 200 album sales in Billboard – and the [audience] responds and gives energy back on that with almost the same amount.

Q: Back in the day, The Zombies sometimes performed "Soulville," which Aretha Franklin recorded for a 1964 Dinah Washington tribute album called 'Unforgettable.' Did you ever share a stage with Aretha in the ‘60s?
Never met her. The song "New York" mentions Patti Labelle turning us onto the music of Aretha and Nina Simone, who we’d never heard of either at Christmas 1964. I did meet Nina Simone when we were 18 years old…two or three years layer I was backstage at a concert at the Royal Albert Hall in London and Nina was walking through the door. It might have been Janis Joplin and Yes…I had a few words with her and she was the sweetest person…I bought all of Nina’s albums after Patti turned us onto her.

Q: Through the years, The Zombies have covered several Motown and R&B songs. Were you and Colin big followers of that music when it first came out?

Huge, absolutely huge! So many of the English bands around that period were…One reason was that Liverpool became a conduit for the introduction of so much black music from America because of the merchant seamen. It is a major seaport, Liverpool. So, the merchant seamen ships coming back from sailing from New York, they would bring [things] back. There wasn’t this segregation of race stations that there was very much at that time in the US. So, a lot of white kids never heard the great black music because they were listening to so-called white stations.

We didn’t think in those terms at that time over here. All this mix of great Motown and early rural blues, people like Muddy Waters, John Lee Hooker, the black artists that were considered at the time by the hip black population of America as being from the past, it was a rediscovery for them. Also, the Motown stuff as it was coming through, The Beatles loved it and it was a real melting pot.

I still have a huge love for early Ray Charles and still play it now…We loved Nina’s more jazz approach. The wonderful places she would take her music and the early Motown stuff. I just feel that was a fantastic time for music and jazz too. I was knocked sideways by the Miles Davis Group of around 1958-59 with John Coltrane and Cannonball Adderly.

The first modern jazz record I bought was ‘Milestones.’ That turned out to be his first modal experiments before ‘Kind of Blue.’ It was just an explosion of wonderful music. For me, that was a vintage black period of invention. It seemed like a magical time in every form of music. Even classical music. It was a great time to be around. A lot of that black music came via Liverpool. Jazz, R&B, early country blues, urban blues – all that came though one conduit, it all got mixed up together. I think that was one reason why a lot of the English bands had the multitude of influences they did.

Q: As you initially started doing the ‘Odessey and Oracle’ 40th (and then 50th) anniversary tours, did you rediscover anything about the album? Maybe reconfirming you really did create something that rivaled the Beatles and Beach Boys' more innovative efforts?

Like everyone else at the time, we were absolutely in love with The Beatles. You had to be there at that time to realize how revolutionary it seemed. And musically, how honest and revolutionary it felt. When we made records, we just thought we were being The Beatles in a way. We were putting our own musical ideas in there. We didn’t really realize how much originality there was there.

Looking back on it, I really think it was pretty original because there were all these unconscious influences flying around indirectly that we never thought of ourselves as incorporating. I loved the Miles Davis stuff. I didn’t imagine that any of that was finding its way into our records.

When I first met Pat Metheny, he said "She’s Not There" was the record that made it feel there was a way ahead for him. He said all the modal stuff. I thought, ‘there’s no modal stuff.’ I played the opening chords again and what I thought was a very simple two chord sequence, I realized I’d superimposed a modal series of chords over that without even thinking about it. It was purely intuitive. Even classical music, which I love now and loved then, some of those things found their way indirectly. We just thought we were playing rock and roll. In the end, I do feel there was a lot of originality there.

[There’s] a book that has recently come out that our management and BMG put together. We had nothing to do with it. It’s a fantastic book; beautifully produced. When I saw, unbeknown to us completely, all those endorsements from artists we adored like Brian Wilson, who said he loved our harmonies, I thought, ‘what!?’ Unbelievable. Then some nice words from Susanna Hoffs, Carlos Santana, Graham Nash. I didn’t know any of those things.

Q: During the last decade or two, "Time of the Season" has been a very popular song for rappers and DJs to sample. Do you make an effort to hear their final results?

We do try. When Eminem did "Rhyme or Reason" on his album, my publisher phoned up and said, ‘Eminem has used a huge sample including vocals and everything from "Time of the Season." I thought that was amazing. It’s not like I’m particularly conversant with Eminem’s stuff because rap to me was the point in modern music where I did start to betray my age because it started to feel I was losing touch with things a bit.

She said, ‘I think we should approve it.’ I said, ‘Fine, send it through.’ She said, ‘The trouble is he doesn’t like his stuff to be on the Internet at all before it comes out.’ I said, ‘How am I gonna approve it if I can’t hear it?’

[They put it on an email that he and Colin could only access for 2 hours].

Do you know what? I loved it because it wasn’t just a rip-off. He used a huge amount of it. Where our chorus is ‘It’s the time of the season for loving,’ he wrote ‘There’s no rhyme of no reason for nothing.’ It was a soundalike with all the vowels and the rhythm was the same, but it was totally turned upside down. I thought that was really clever. He had all the rhythm of the original and the feeling, but completely inverted.

That’s the opposite of a rip-off. I honestly did love that. I haven’t heard the Post Malone one. I do fear that I might not like it.

[Rod was at a BMI Awards ceremony to receive a 7 million airplay award for "Time of the Season" and a rap group also getting an award had one member who told Rod how much he liked the Zombies' song].

They have hit on that, which is brilliant.

Q: How about actual Zombies covers? Do you take time to listen to those? Last year Ronnie Spector released an interesting take on "Tell Her No," for example.

I enjoyed it. Ronnie was an idol of mine when we were young. It feels fantastic that people like that are actually covering us. Colin and I did an acoustic set at the Cutting Room in New York a few years ago. I later found out she was there for the whole set. Art Garfunkel too. The trouble with being 73, onstage without my glasses, I can’t recognize facial characteristics of people offstage.

[Art was next to the stage, clapping enthusiastically.]

Q: The Zombies are among a handful of acts from the British Invasion that are still going strong today. Does that give you a sense of pride?

What makes me proud is honestly we’re not doing it to try and make a quick buck. When Colin and I got back together again in the early 2000s and first came over to America again, we didn’t expect to make any money. In fact, we [funded] those first 2-3 tours ourselves. It was just through the buzz of playing. We hadn’t expected that. To be playing live again and feeling we had a great band behind us, it felt brilliant. That honestly was the reason we did it then are why we are doing it now. We’re very happy to play any or all of the old stuff, that’s great. But only in the context of feeling that we can energize ourselves by creating new stuff as well and playing it to people and getting a response to it.

We’re out there now for the same reasons that we were when we were 18. Through the enthusiasm of playing and still getting enthusiastic about music we’re creating and making. That’s what makes me proud - the fact we can go out there with that in mind. Which would include a few new songs and getting a great reaction on those too. I’m not putting down anyone who just goes back and recycles their hits. That’s great too. That’s not why we’re doing it. To be able to make a success of this reincarnation by taking this course makes Colin and I very proud.

Q: I thought your 2015 studio album ‘Still Got That Hunger’ was very strong. Were you satisfied with how it turned out and was received overall?

We were very satisfied. Before we recorded that, we’d done a series of 'Odessey and Oracle' concerts. Half of that album we’d never played through with the current band. You need the extra overdubs on the original to make some songs work. We had to expand the band to do that. We had such a ball hitting all those new old songs in terms of live performance we thought, 'Why don’t we do the next album by going back to the way we used to record in 1964?’

We had no choice then - all being in the room together, not using a click track or sync code to overdub synths, to make it as organic and honest as possible. We thought we’ll do this by getting Colin to sing guide vocals and replace those the following week, do it all over a 2-week period, and the producer has another week to mix it so the whole thing will be done in three weeks…we enjoyed the process so much in the opening 5 days, where we finished all the tracks, we recorded a song in three hours the way we used to do in the ‘60s.

In essence, the lead vocals were the guide ones Colin put down and we didn’t replace any of the solos. It became about recapturing a performance the way things were done in the ‘60s…There was no alternative then. It was very organic which meant we could do anything onstage. That’s one of the reasons we all felt it was very strong because it had that essence of feeling.

Q: Is there any new music ahead in the future?

Definitely. I’ve started to work with 2-3 new ideas of new songs. We’ve got 3-week [American] tour. Then we go to Europe. After that, I hope we can put our minds to a new album. I think it will get put out on BMG [which] put out a coffee table book with amazing photos, including rare ones and not the awful ones that always seem to make the rounds.