Happy Birthday to "The Boss" -- Bruce Springsteen -- who turns 68 on Saturday (September 23rd)!!! Springsteen has been rehearsing for his upcoming 77-date "Springsteen On Broadway" run at New Jersey's Monmouth University in West Long Branch and will kick off his "Great White Way" stand on October 3rd at New York's Walter Kerr Theatre. The acoustic show will feature Springsteen alone on guitar or piano, and is expected to be sharing stories throughout the night -- and even reading passages from his 2016 bestselling memoir, Born To Run.
Springsteen and Steve Van Zandt made headlines back on September 15th, when they took the stage with Paul McCartney at Madison Square Garden for not one -- but two -- runthroughs of the Beatles' classic "I Saw Her Standing There."
"The Boss" has contributed a new track to the upcoming movie, Thank You For Your Service starring Miles Teller. The song is Springsteen's version of the standard called "Freedom" -- also known as "Some Say Freedom Is Free."
This week, Springsteen released his December 8th, 1978 E Street Band concert from The Summit in Houston, Texas, with all proceeds going to go to MusiCares Hurricane Relief Fund. The Houston show originally appeared as part of the Darkness On The Edge Of Town box set. Also out now is archival concert -- King's Hall: Belfast, UK - March 19th, 1996. The collection features a typical 23-song acoustic show "The Boss" performed during his massive solo tour in support of 1995's The Ghost Of Thom Joad album. Rolling Stone reported the Springsteen archive has been expanded to encompass 25 new recordings, which be now be issued on a monthly basis.
Last month, Springsteen took a deep dive into his archive for two vault releases packaged as a bundle. Palace Theatre - Albany, NY - February 7, 1977 and Auditorium Theatre - Rochester, NY - February 8, 1977, are never-before-heard mono soundboard recordings of the E Street Band captured live during Springsteen's infamous "lawsuit tour" during the period where his legal issues with ex-manager Mike Appel prevented him from recording his long-awaited followup to Born To Run. The band was augmented by the Miami Horns, which first joined the Born To Run tour in August 1976.
- It was a year ago this week, that Springsteen issued a companion compilation album to his autobiography, Born To Run, titled Chapter And Verse, featuring five previously unreleased early cuts by such pre-fame bands as the Castiles, Steel Mill, and the Bruce Springsteen Band, marking the first time these early outfits have had their music released officially. The album also includes such legendary Springsteen tracks as "Born To Run," "4th Of July, Asbury Park (Sandy)," "Badlands," "The River," "Living Proof," "The Rising," "Brilliant Disguise," and "Born In The U.S.A.," among others.
- In 2015, Springsteen released his latest box set, The Ties That Bind: 'The River' Collection. In addition to most of the November 5th, 1980 Tempe, Arizona concert, the four-CD/three-DVD multimedia set features the full 1980 The River double album, and the original 1979 The Ties That Bind single album Springsteen originally intended to release -- but scrapped.
- The set also includes two full CD of outtakes -- a handful of which have made their way out on various Springsteen collections, a new documentary by Thom Zimny, plus pre-tour production rehearsal footage. The collection led to Springsteen hitting the road and performing The River in its entirety with the E Street Band on a tour, which saw him play his longest ever shows in North America.
- In 2014 Springsteen scored his 11th career Number One album with High Hopes. The collection, which is his 18th studio set, was released on January 14th and sold 99,000 copies in its first week, according to Nielsen SoundScan. Having previously tied with Elvis Presley -- who also had 10 LP chart-toppers -- for the third most Number One albums, Springsteen has now bumped "The King" to fourth place, and now sits behind Jay-Z, who has 13 Number One albums, and the Beatles who lead the way with 19 albums having hit the top spot. In April 2014, Springsteen followed the set up with American Beauty, a four-song EP originally released as a vinyl-only release as part of Record Store Day.
- Bruce Springsteen says that there's always been a form of interactive journalism in his songs, in which his fans can experience situations that differ from their lives first hand: "My job was always to put you in somebody else's shoes and have you walk a while in those shoes. You're out there, and you feel what's in the air out there, and you feel what's on people's minds. People are looking for ways to try to get a handle and make sense of what's happening." :
October 3, 4, 5, 6, 7 - New York, NY - Walter Kerr Theatre
October 10, 11, 13, 14 - New York, NY - Walter Kerr Theatre
October 17, 18, 19, 20, 21 - New York, NY - Walter Kerr Theatre
October 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 31 - New York, NY - Walter Kerr Theatre
November 1, 2, 3, 4 - New York, NY - Walter Kerr Theatre
November 7, 8, 9, 10, 11 - New York, NY - Walter Kerr Theatre
November 14, 15, 16, 17, 18 - New York, NY - Walter Kerr Theatre
November 21, 22, 24, 25, 26 - New York, NY - Walter Kerr Theatre
December 5, 6, 7, 8, 9 - New York, NY - Walter Kerr Theatre
December 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 19, 22, 23 - New York, NY - Walter Kerr Theatre
December 26, 27, 28, 29, 30 - New York, NY - Walter Kerr Theatre
January 9, 10, 11, 12, 13 - New York, NY - Walter Kerr Theatre
January 16, 17, 18, 19, 20 - New York, NY - Walter Kerr Theatre
January 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 30, 31 - New York, NY - Walter Kerr Theatre
February 1, 2, 3 - New York, NY - Walter Kerr Theatre
AUDIO: BRUCE SPRINGSTEEN ON KEEPING HOLD OF HIS ROOTS
AUDIO: ERIC CARMEN ON BRUCE SPRINGSTEEN
AUDIO: BONO ON SPRINGSTEENS INTEGRITY
AUDIO: PETER AMES CARLIN ON BRUCE SPRINGSTEEN LOSING CLARENCE CLEMONS
AUDIO: PATTI SCIALFA ON 1999-2000 E STREET BAND REUNION TOUR
AUDIO: ROY BITTAN ON BRUCE SPRINGSTEEN BEING A SURVIVOR
AUDIO: JON LANDAU ON BRUCE SPRINGSTEEN DISCARDING HITS
AUDIO: MAX WEINBERG ON BRUCE
AUDIO: DANNY FEDERICI ON BRUCE SPRINGSTEEN CHANGING HIS MIND
AUDIO: GARY TALLENT ON JOINING BRUCE SPRINGSTEEN
AUDIO: STEVE VAN ZANDT ON E STREET BAND BEING INSPIRED
AUDIO: BRUCE SPRINGSTEEN ON THE MISSION OF THE E STREET BAND
AUDIO: BRUCE SPRINGSTEEN TALKS ABOUT WRITING FOR THE E STREET BAND
AUDIO: BRUCE SPRINGSTEEN SAYS HIS SONGS ARE MEANT TO BRING PEOPLE TOGETHER
Gene Simmons was joined onstage by fellow Kiss co-founder Ace Frehley on Wednesday night (September 20th) for a trio of the band's early classics, marking the first time the pair has shared a stage in over 16 years. The Gene Simmons Band headlined the Children Matter Benefit Concert at St. Paul, Minnesota's CHO Field with Frehley, Cheap Trick, and former Eagles guitarist Don Felder. All proceeds went to the victims of Hurricane Harvey.
Blabbermouth reported that Simmons introduced Frehley by stating: "Before you were born -- there he is -- 1973, in New York City, this guy and I and two other guys put together a band we never saw onstage -- let's hear it for Ace Frehley." Frehley and Simmons shared vocal duties on "Parasite" from the 1974's Hotter Than Hell, "Cold Gin" from the band's self-titled 1974 debut, and "Shock Me" from 1977's Love Gun. The evening ended with all the performers joining forces onstage for a run through of "Rock And Roll All Night." Simmons co-wrote two new songs with Frehley for Frehley's upcoming album.
- Although at the band's 2014 Rock Hall induction, Gene Simmons and Paul Stanley refused to perform with Ace Frehley and Peter Criss, relations between the original foursome definitely began to thaw. That night, Ace Frehley was the only member to come back and talk to the press after the photo ops: "Well, most of my influences are older than me. I’m one of the older inductees (laughs), y’know? I grew up with the Who, Jimi Hendrix, Jeff Beck, Eric Clapton, and Led Zeppelin. Y’know, those were the guys that influenced me. I influenced a lot of those guys that are getting inducted — guys like Nirvana, Pearl Jam, and everybody else. But I’m so happy to be here, y’know, it’s been 15 years (since the first) could’ve inducted us, y’know? But 15 years later they did. I’m just thrilled to be here and I’m in good company." :
September 26 - Sugar Land, TX - Smart Financial Centre At Sugar Land
September 27 - Irving, TX - Pavilion At The Irving Music Factory
September 28 - Rogers, AR - Walmart AMP
September 30 - Gretna, LA - Gretna Heritage Festival
AUDIO: ACE FREHLEY ON ENTERING THE ROCK HALL
Robert Plant spoke to Rolling Stone about the state of his career and the constant callbacks to his past. Plant will release Carry Fire -- his 11th solo album -- on October 13th and has a 14-date tour of the UK and Ireland set for November with his band, Sensational Space Shifters. When pressed about the difference between him and his peers who tend to rest on their back catalogues while on tour, Plant explained, "Anyone who gets tangled up in music and performance wants to keep it going. But by which means do you do it? Cramming the stuff into the suitcase again and playing live? Or is it creativity, another adventure, and trying to impress people who often want to hear how it was rather than how it is? That's what I've been trying to do. After we lost John (Bonham) in 1980, I waited two albums before I went on tour, and when I did, I didn't play any (Led) Zeppelin stuff."
Plant was asked about how it felt in 1983 finally hitting the road as a solo artist in support of his second album, The Principle Of Moments: "Like my world had collapsed. But what happened in the first place when you didn't have a game? You had to go out and make one. So I've shifted around over the years. That way, I keep interested and excited in what I do."
- Plant revealed that he's keeping his attentions far away from Donald Trump and the Presidential scandals: "I got to a point where I could no longer watch. The media makes it such a garish feast. I just decided that there's a process that will sort itself out and rectify itself in due course. Which it will. I keep my head down and dissolve into books."
- With he, Jimmy Page, and John Paul Jones, spending so much time together during the recent court case regarding the "Stairway To Heaven" copyright, Plant was asked if it felt like "old times" to which he laughingly answered: "Um, well, what was once a steady date becomes a cup of coffee. That's basically how it turned out, a cup of coffee from time to time. But nothing intimate."
- This coming December 10th marks a decade since Led Zeppelin's incredible one-off reunion concert at London's O2 Arena. Plant was asked how he remembers the night: "It was magnificent. We hit a home run that night, which is something that we were really fearful of. There was probably more riding on that than we would care to believe. Our performance was crucial, but we could reproduce sound in a much more reliable way, so we could be kickass, and sound kickass. Some of those horrific gigs way back were lacking in quality."
- As for whether fans can ever expect him to publish his memoirs, Plant said: "Never. What I know between my ears here is priceless. It's magnificent, sometimes tearful, but mostly cheerful. There have been highs and lows and a lot of adventure, and I keep it hid."
- Robert Plant admits that no matter what he does, there will always be a cross-section of fans that rate it against his work with Led Zeppelin: "The Led Zeppelin myth has been extended now by the mission and the cult. And so, everybody goes, 'Oh, but Zeppelin was much better than that.' Maybe it'll happen to me, too, but I've kind of taken the essence of Zeppelin, and I am the singer of Led Zeppelin. And I've taken the essence of the changes of Led Zeppelin and brought it up to date. So, I could never, ever hope to top it. I could never expect to be taken as. . . taken to the hearts of people quite like Led Zeppelin was, because I'm only a part of it."
- Robert Plant & Sensational Space Shifters next perform on November 16th in Plymouth, England.
AUDIO: ROBERT PLANT ON INITIAL SOLO RECORDINGS AND SHOWS
AUDIO: ROBERT PLANT ON COMPETING WITH LED ZEPPELIN
The music industry is already buzzing over the new Abramorama documentary Clive Davis - The Soundtrack Of Our Lives, which is based on Davis' 2013 autobiography. On September 27th, Davis along with director Chris Perkel, will appear at L.A.'s Cinerama Dome/ArcLight Hollywood for a screening and post-show Q&A. The soundtrack, featuring tracks from all of the artists who appear in the film and whom Clive Davis worked with over the past 50 years, drops on September 29th. Apple Music begins steaming the film on October 3rd, and a nationwide theatrical run also begins early next month.
As president of Columbia Records, Clive Davis discovered, signed, and/or nurtured the greatest artists of the century including Bob Dylan, Simon & Garfunkel, Janis Joplin, Donovan, Santana, Chicago, Blood Sweat & Tears, Barbra Streisand, Aerosmith, Billy Joel, and Bruce Springsteen. Upon launching Arista Records in the 1970's, he did the same for the Grateful Dead, Barry Manilow, the Eurythmics, Aretha Franklin, Eric Carmen, Melissa Manchester, the Bay City Rollers, Run-D.M.C., Krokus, Dionne Warwick, Paul Davis, Patti Smith, Air Supply, the Alan Parsons Project, Carly Simon, the Kinks, Whitney Houston, and many more.
- Clive Davis is currently chief creative officer of Sony Music Entertainment, and played a crucial role in the careers of Alicia Keys, Toni Braxton, Sean "Puff Daddy" Combs, Pink, TLC, Usher, The Notorious B.I.G. -- along with overseeing some of this generation's most timeless and enduring work at J Records.
- Clive Davis looked back at the incredible roster he created for Columbia Records: "All of my signings at Columbia Records -- beginning with (Janis) Joplin -- were all rock artists, and that's why I'm in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. I had signed Chicago and Santana and Aerosmith and Earth, Wind, & Fire, etc."
AUDIO: ALICIA KEYS ON CLIVE DAVIS ALLOWING HER TO BE AUTHENTIC
AUDIO: KENNY G ON WORKING WITH CLIVE DAVIS
AUDIO: BARRY MANILOW SAYS CLIVE DAVIS IS RESPONSIBLE FOR HIS HIT ALBUM
AUDIO: MANILOW ON MEETING CLIVE DAVIS
AUDIO: PATTI SMITH ON HER RELATIONSHIP WITH CLIVE_DAVIS
AUDIO: ROD STEWART SAYS CLIVE DAVIS IS GREAT TO WORK WITH
AUDIO: ERIC CARMEN ON 'ALL BY MYSELF' BOMBING LISTENER'S TEST
AUDIO: CARLOS SANTANA ON REUNITING WITH CLIVE DAVIS
AUDIO: CLIVE DAVIS ON EARLY ARISTA ROSTER
AUDIO: CLIVE DAVIS ON HIS COLUMBIA ACTS
It was 43 years ago on Sunday (September 24th, 1974) that Mike McCartney teamed up with older brother Paul McCartney and released the longtime fan favorite McGear album. McGear -- which was the younger McCartney's stage name since the early '60s when he co-founded the legendary British comedy trio the Scaffold -- was Mike's second mainstream rock release following his 1972 solo debut Woman, which featured a portrait of the McCartney's mother Mary on the cover. Woman, like McGear, continues to be a global cult favorite garnering new fans with each new generation.
To many, McGear was a Wings album in all but name, especially seeing as how Paul didn't release a new album that year. The main difference was that Mike and Paul co-wrote most of the material between themselves with Mike taking the lead vocals and Paul handling production duties. Fans were amazed at the quality of Mike's singing, which at times sounded like a perfect amalgam of his brother and old friend Ringo Starr. Mike's wit and comedic touch is evident all over the album.
- The album's lead single "Leave It" was one of only two songs on the set solely written by Paul. Mike explained that the song set the tone for the entire album: "It wasn't gonna be an album. It started, our kid (Paul) was sayin' 'What are you doin'?' And I said 'I left Scaffold, Scaffold have finished so I'm writing a few kids ideas for children's books and a few song ideas.' And he said, 'Oh, why don't you come down and we'll see if we can knock something out? You could do a single. Just sit 'round and see what comes out.' So he brought his guitar out, and he started strumming, and this song evolved from the evening and then Lin stared to do little harmonies on it. It just came into the room."
- Although McGear was a commercial flop, the album is revered as being a pop masterpiece regardless whose brother produced it. Sadly, Mike McCartney has never committed himself to another full album of solo music since then.
AUDIO: MIKE MCCARTNEY ON THE CARPENTERS AT MCGEAR SESSION
AUDIO: MIKE MCCARTNEY ON 'LEAVE IT'
Out today (September 22nd) is Byrds co-founder Chris Hillman's new album, Bidin' My Time, which was produced by Tom Petty. The album, which is Hillman's first album in over a decade, features contributions from surviving Byrds co-founders Roger McGuinn and David Crosby. On the album, Hillman, who went on to form the Flying Burrito Brothers with fellow Byrd-mate Gram Parsons, has enlisted the help of Petty and fellow Heartbreakers Mike Campbell, Steve Ferrone, and Benmont Tench, long time collaborator John Jorgenson, and the album's executive producer and co-founder of the Desert Rose Band, Herb Pedersen.
Crosby, Hillman, and Pederson team up on a remake of the Byrds' classic 1965 track, "The Bells Of Rhymney." McGuinn joins Hillman for a new take on late-Byrds frontman Gene Clark's "She Don't Care About The Time" -- a tune that served as the flip side to the band's second chart-topper, 1965's "Turn, Turn, Turn."
- Hillman also reworked "Old John Robertson," first featured on 1968's The Notorious Byrd Brothers, to write "New Old John Robertson." In yet another Byrds nod, "Here She Comes Again" was co-written by Hillman and McGuinn, and until now, had only been released on a live album issued in Australia. Hillman has also tackled covers of the Everly Brothers' "Walk Right Back" and Tom Petty's "Wildflowers."
- Chris Hillman recalled to us the process of getting Tom Petty involved with the album: "(Laughs) After I had a conversation with Tom in the fall -- November -- I said, 'Are you sure you want to do this?' He says, 'Well, do you want me to?' and I said, 'Yeah, but can you make the commitment?' and he said, 'Well, do you want me to do this?' (laughs) I said, 'Of course -- I . . I'd love to work with you!' He said, 'Great, we'll use my studio and everything.' I told him the budget we had, which wasn't very much, and he said, 'That'll be interesting' when he heard the amount of money (laughs) we had to work with. I've never had as much fun recording as and I think a lot of it has to do with there was really no pressure attached." :
September 22 - New York, NY - City Winery
September 23 - Fall River, MA - Narrows Center for the Arts
September 24 - Boston, MA - City Winery
September 26 - Alexandria, VA - The Birchmere
September 29 - Duluth, GA - The Red Clay Theatre
October 1 - Nashville, TN - City Winery
October 4 - Newport, KY - Southgate House Revival
October 5 - Kent, OH - Kent Stage
October 6 - Chicago, IL - Old Town School of Folk Music
October 7 - Edwardsville, IL - The Wildey Theatre
October 12 - Bakersfield, CA - Buck Owens' Crystal Palace
October 13 - Berkeley, CA - Freight & Salvage
October 16 - West Hollywood, CA - The Troubadour
October 26, 27, 28 - Park City, UT - The Egyptian Theatre
November 8 - Baton Rouge, LA - Red Dragon Listening Room
November 9 - The Woodlands, TX - Dosey Doe Barn
November 10 - Austin, TX - Texas Union Theater
January 27 - Thousand Oaks, CA - Scherr Theatre
AUDIO: CHRIS HILLMAN ON DAVID CROSBY
AUDIO: CHRIS HILLMAN ON WORKING WITH TOM PETTY
It was 52 years ago today (September 22nd, 1965) that The Supremes recorded their Number One hit, "I Hear A Symphony." The song was written by Holland-Dozier-Holland -- the team responsible for the group's previous Number Ones, including "Back In My Arms Again," "Baby Love," and "Come See About Me."
Prior to releasing "I Hear A Symphony," the Supremes' string of five straight Number Ones was broken when their single "Nothing But Heartaches" stalled at a disappointing Number 11. Co-writer Lamont Dozier recalled that the failure of that single to dent the Top Ten forced Motown founder Berry Gordy to look outside the songwriting team to find the Supremes next hit. That spurred the team into producing a future classic.
Dozier recalls that, "It was humiliating. . . it taught us humility (and) we started frantically looking for new ideas. . . Brian (Holland) was playing this melody. . . it was sounding sort of classical to me. . . Eddie (Holland) took it and ran with the lyrics." "I Hear A Symphony" hit Number One on November 20th, 1965, knocking the Rolling Stones' "Get Off My Cloud" out from the top spot and going on to hold the position for two weeks.
- Although Holland-Dozier-Holland were never too self-congratulatory with their many Motown successes, years after its release Brian Holland says that the lyrics to "I Heard A Symphony" actually reduced him to tears: "Only one song ever really got me. I talked to my brother about it years ago, it was 'I Hear A Symphony.' Somehow, I was coming out of a health club, and it was on the radio. And then I just start taking in the lyrics, (I) pulled over and my eyes started tearing up, y'know what I mean. There were some hell of a lyrics on that, man. 'Cause it kept going on and building. What he did, he built upon top of emotion on top of emotion -- which really got me. 'I hear a symphony. . . as you talk to me. . . (laughs) as you touch me. . . as you. . .' Y'know what I mean? You just build upon emotion and it really got to me." "; Martha & the Vandellas' "Nowhere To Run," "Heatwave" and "Jimmy Mack"; and the Supremes' Number One hits "Where Did Our Love Go," "Baby Love," "Stop! In The Name Of Love," "Come See About Me," "Back In My Arms Again," "You Can't Hurry Love," "You Keep Me Hangin' On," "Love Is Here And Now You're Gone," and "The Happening."
- On October 11th, Diana Ross kicks off a nine-date Las Vegas run at the Encore Theater At Wynn Las Vegas.
- Mary Wilson of The Supremes will next perform on October 20th in Ridgefield, Connecticut at Ridgefield Playhouse.
AUDIO: BRIAN HOLLAND ON THE EMOTION OF 'I HEAR A SYMPHONY'
AUDIO: EDDIE HOLLAND ON HOW HOLLAND-DOZIER-HOLLAND WORKED
AUDIO: LAMONT DOZIER ON SONGWRITING IN THE 60S
AUDIO: MARY WILSON I HEAR A SYMPHONY