True to his words on the hunt for exotic guitar brutalities, ‘Guitar God’ Steve Vai, has shared his inner feelings about the track ‘Innerness’ from his upcoming album. The latest post from Steve, on the social media site reads:
“Sometimes I sit in the studio and get an idea, work on it and when I listen to it back, it surpasses my expectations. That’s what just happened here at the new Harmony Hut and I’m blown away. Painfully beautiful piece called “Innerness”. The new record is starting to take shape from audio gold. I just can’t wait for you to hear it.
I know it’s taking me a long time. It always does. So sorry about that.
With anticipation building up for the new 2011 Steve Vai album, the eager fans know that this is definitely worth waiting. Meanwhile as announced in the official Steve Vai website, ‘“The Bodhi Tree” VaiTunes #7 is now available online for download on all the major digital music retailers
iTunes, Amazonmp3, Rhapsody, Napster, eMusic, Lala.com, IMVU, Shockhound, Amie Street, LimeWire Store and the Nokia Music Store. ‘The Bodhi Tree digital booklet PDF‘ is also available on the VaiTunes page.
Image Courtesy: Vai.com
“What we’ve got here is…failure to communicate.” The chart topping Guns N’ Roses hit single, ‘Civil War’ starts with the recording sample of Strother Martin’s speech and goes about questioning every intention and aspect of a war. As the 150th anniversary of Civil war is marked and remembered in America, the question still remains unanswered, ‘When will America recall its troops from Iraq and Afghanistan?’
Some people may support war, just to defend their gullible mindset, which was projected to them by the likes of Bush government. The supporters of war are either oppurtunitists or slaves to their fears. It is time that the unnecessary war carried by the American military comes to an end.
If you find rockstars to be of double standards, talking about the world issues and living a luxurious life, then you got to open your mind to hear and understand the artistic expression of these musical geniuses. World peace may look like an unfulfilled wish for humanity but in the recent times we have seen the revolution by people who brought the real ‘Change’ as opposed to the presidential promises of ‘Change’.
As the song goes-
“My hands are tied
For all I’ve seen has changed my mind
But still the wars go on as the years go by
With no love of God or human rights
‘Cause all these dreams are swept aside
By bloody hands of the hypnotized
Who carry the cross of homicide
And history bears the scars of our civil wars”
With all the human rights flouted, it is time that America brings a closure to its outsourced Civil War.
PA asserts Megadeth’s Dave Mustaine did NOT collapse in Russia, but not without a Charlie Sheen joke
Megadeth frontman Dave Mustaine’s Personal Assistant, Rikki, churned out a passionate post to assert that the singer did NOT collapse in Russia. In the March 20 piece posted on Megadeth.com, presses that “DAVE MUSTAINE NEVER COLLAPSED IN RUSSIA. Not ON stage, not back stage, not ever. He was NOT rushed to the hospital,” among busting other metal myths but not without a Charlie Sheen joke.
“Dave addressed his health issues himself, and I have no idea where anybody got the idea that there was a collapse because simply put, it is NOT TRUE. Anybody who was at that show can verify that, and as his personal assistant, as his right hand out here on the road, I want to testify to anybody who doubts it, this never happened. It’s really pathetic that people have to play the telephone game and spread bulls*&t rumors to trump up some fantasy that they have played out in their heads,” the PA writes in the blog post titled, ‘DAVE MUSTAINE IN GOOD HEALTH; RUMOR OF HOSPITALIZATION UNTRUE’.
“Please pass the word along to anyone who may say other wise, and to fellow Megadeth fans, and to people who claim to know otherwise,” she goes on to urge, before reiterating the “candid and honest” rockstar’s revelations that the trouble was due to kidney stones, “quite a normal thing, and extremely painful.”
Bashing the rumor mills, the post says, “Something as strongly worded as “collapse” can come across as way more dramatic and blown out of proportion than you may realize.”
In the ensuing argument, Rikki goes on to bust some popular myths about musicians accompanied with an unexpected and hilarious swipe at the scandalous ‘Two and Half Men’ star, Charlie Sheen.
“You heard it here first: Britney Spears does NOT have 2 heads (though Charlie Sheen, I’m not so sure), Ozzy does not eat bats for breakfast on a daily basis, and Dave Mustaine did NOT collapse in Russia.”
The new Foo Fighters’ single track, ‘Rope’ is out to revive the rock band’s hard rocking style. This song definitely carries the Foo Fighters signature sound and is intensifying the wait for the new album for the hungry fans.
So until we wait in anticipation, the new single ‘Rope’ will definitely loop in your playlist.
Click to listen to the new single ‘Rope’ by Foo Fighters.
Layne Thomas Staley (August 22, 1967 – April 5, 2002) was an American musician who served as the lead singer and co-lyricist of the rock group Alice in Chains, which was formed in Seattle, Washington in 1987 by Staley and guitarist Jerry Cantrell. Alice in Chains rose to international fame as part of the grunge movement of the early 1990s. The band became known for its distinct vocal style, which often included the “snarl-to-a-scream” vocals of Staley, as well as the harmonized vocals of Staley and Cantrell. Staley was also a member of the supergroups Mad Season and Class of ’99. He struggled throughout his career with severe drug addiction, which caused his death in April 2002.
(Info from wikipedia)
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Love is the cure and Love is the disease! This valentine’s day, LexicalPixies recommends some of the best love songs, woven with the magic of love and melody by some of the greatest bands and artists.
1. Love will keep us alive
Album: Hell Freezes Over
“I was standing
All alone against the world outside
You were searching
For a place to hide
Lost and lonely
Now you’ve given me the will to survive
When we’re hungry…love will keep us alive
When we’re hungry…love will keep us alive”
Sung by the bassist of Eagles, Timothy Bruce Schmit, this track on solace and sustenance of love is a must-hear song for Valentine’s day.
2. Can’t Fight This Feeling
Band/Artist: REO Speedwagon
Album: Wheels Are Turnin’
“I can’t fight this feeling any longer.
And yet I’m still afraid to let it flow.
What started out as friendship,
Has grown stronger.
I only wish I had the strength to let it show.”
This love ballad by REO Speedwagon describes an evolution of a friendship into love. The song stands the test of time to prove that true love and friendship can not be separated.
Band/Artist: Bryan Adams
“Baby you’re all that I want
When you’re lyin’ here in my arms
I’m findin’ it hard to believe
We’re in heaven”
This power ballad will make you believe that true love is heaven. Pixies strongly recommend the unplugged version of the song.
4. You’re Still the One
Band/Artist: Shania Twain
Album: Come on Over
“Looks like we made it
Look how far we’ve come my baby
We mighta took the long way
We knew we’d get there someday
They said, “I bet they’ll never make it”
But just look at us holding on
We’re still together still going strong”
A perfect song for couples who have been through hell and still staying together.
Band/Artist: Guns N’ Roses
Album: G N’ R Lies
“Shed a tear ’cause I’m missin’ you
I’m still alright to smile
Girl, I think about you every day now
Was a time when I wasn’t sure
But you set my mind at ease
There is no doubt
You’re in my heart now”
One among the best songs of G’N R, Patience is the medicine for couples going through a rough patch.
6. Can’t Stop Lovin’ You
Band/Artist: Van Halen
“I can’t stop loving you
And no matter what I say or do
You know my heart is true
Oh, oh, I can’t stop lovin’ you”
A classic love ballad written by all the members of Van Halen hails the kind of unique and pure love that is everlasting.
7. You and I
Album: Pure Instinct
“You and I just have a dream
to find our love a place
where we can hide away
you and I were just made
to love each other now
forever and a day”
A melody that will quickly turn very personal for couples in love.
8. Coming Back to Life
Band/Artist: Pink Floyd
Album: The Division Bell
“Lost in thought and lost in time
While the seeds of life and the seeds of change were planted
Outside the rain fell dark and slow
While I pondered on this dangerous but irresistible pastime
I took a heavenly ride through our silence
I knew the moment had arrived
For killing the past and coming back to life”
This song describes the kind of love that has brought several back to life.
9. I Live My Life For You
Album: 3 (Three)
“Y’know you’re everything to me and I could never see
The two of us apart
And you know I give myself to you and no matter what you do
I promise you my heart”
Sway with this love song by the American rock band Firehouse on the beautiful promise of love.
10. More than Words
Album: Extreme II: Pornograffiti
“Saying I love you
Is not the words I want to hear from you
It’s not that I want you
Not to say, but if you only knew
How easy it would be to show me how you feel
More than words is all you have to do to make it real
Then you wouldn’t have to say that you love me
Cos I’d already know”
As the title suggests, this ‘Extreme’ song urges lovers to show feelings of love with actions, in turn making them real .
The Valentine’s Day just got special for music lovers in LA as the ‘Sweet and Low’ rockers Augustana will be performing alongside Lucinda Williams at Bardot on February 14.
Announcing this on Facebook, Augustana wrote, “Hey LA friends, we’re going to be joining the incredibly talented Lucinda Williams for It’s A School Night at Bardot on February 14th (Valentine’s Day)! You can RSVP on their website… See you then!”.
Those interested in attending can RSVP on It’s A School Night website.
Augustana has over 170,000 fans on Facebook.
While the gig comes as a great news for the Augustana and Lucinda Williams’ fans in LA, most of the comments on the social networking site were from the disappointed ones.
“GRRRR! I live on the east coast but would be there in a heartbeat if I could! That would be my dream valentine’s day!!” wrote Emily Tennant.
Korey Vallance wrote, “Yet another reason I wish I lived in LA.”
However, one question in the comments threads that did strike us was from Todd Zilla, who asked, “new record any time soon?”
We hope Augustana would heal the thousands of aching hearts who have missed all the recent shows and the one coming up on Valentine’s Day by just releasing a new album.
With all the buzz around the tenth and the latest season of the American Idol, Steven Tylor, who along with Jennifer Lopez, is the new entrant on the judging panel is enjoying a lot of the attention. All through Thursday, Steven Tyler and American Idol related search terms dominated the Google Trends list. On Twitter, the lead singer of Aerosmith took a spot on the Trending Topics list.
If you are one among the thousands of loyal rock worshipers who cringed at the idea of Tyler selling himself to reality TV, you are not alone. According to media reports, the band members of Aerosmith were not too happy with Tyler choosing to go on the American Idol.
“Aerosmith band members weren’t too happy with Steven Tyler’s foray into that type of musical activity, however, especially Joe Perry, and they said as much back then, but Steven chose to push forward anyway,” the Examiner reported.
When he was questioned as to why he chose to appear on American Idol, Tyler told Howard Stern that his feet were killing him and he needed to rest. The singer, who is famed for songs like ‘Dude looks like a lady’, ‘Amazing’, ‘Crazy’, ‘Crying’, ‘Angel’, ‘Dream on’, ‘Love in an elevator’, ‘Nine Lives’ and ‘Permanent Vacation’, had undergone several surgeries on his feet after some of the aging star’s dance moves did not fit in well with his body.
It is a known fact that Tyler continues to struggle with drug problems. As recent as 2009, the Aerosmith front man was forced to get off the stage after drugs resulted in a broken shoulder. He also received 19 stitches on his head after a fall.
However, Tyler’s honesty with the media has earned him brownie points.
In another report, the Examiner observes, “Tyler’s brazen honesty about his addiction issues and his falling out with fellow Aerosmith band member Perry because he wasn’t “too good” to do “Idol” is all refreshingly different from most cover-your-backside press speak by celebrities.”
According to the latest reports, Tylor is still feuding with Perry despite the reports that the band is getting together this weekend to record new material. Public verbal attacks continue. Tyler was recently quoted as saying, “(We last spoke) a long time ago, on tour. I think he’s bummed out I’m sober. Joe is missing in action. I texted him 20 minutes ago: ‘Hey Joe, where are you?’ He’s angry with me for what? Because I took f**king Idol? What a crock of s**t.”
Tyler now sits along side another new judge, the pop singer Jennifer Lopez and the only remaining member from the original judging line-up, Randy Jackson on the tenth season of American Idol. The rock star is said to be far more ‘nice’ than Simon Cowell, who was known for his mean remarks.
“The show isn’t attempting to replicate Cowell, but is opting for a sweeter, gentler judges’ panel. Based on an audition sample given to the media, Lopez seems to be a nurturer, a less loopy Paula Abdul. Tyler is a bit of a wild card. You never quite know what’s going to come out of his mouth,” noted Access Atlanta.
Artist: Alter Bridge
Label: Universal Republic Records (UK, US, Australia, Japan)
Release: October 8, 2007 (to December 4, 2007)
Myles Kennedy — lead vocals, backing vocals, rhythm guitar
Mark Tremonti — lead guitar, backing vocals
Brian Marshall — bass guitar
Scott Phillips — drums, percussion
Songs written and composed by Myles Kennedy, Brian Marshall, Mark Tremonti, and Scott Phillips.
Song Title (Duration)
1. Ties That Bind (3:19)
2. Come to Life (3:51)
3. Brand New Start (4:54)
4. Buried Alive (4:35)
5. Coming Home (4:19)
6. Before Tomorrow Comes (4:06)
7. Rise Today (4:21)
8. Blackbird (7:58)
9. One by One (4:20)
10. Watch Over You (4:19)
11. Break Me Down (3:56)
12. White Knuckles (4:24)
13. Wayward One (4:43)
Best Buy Version
14. The Damage Done (3:45 )
15. New Way to Live (5:40)
14. We Don’t Care At All (3:42)
For the clueless, Alter Bridge was born out of the demise of Creed in 2003-04, caused due to internal turmoil. The then-former Creed members, lead guitarist Mark Tremonti, bassist Brian Marshall, and drummer Scott Phillips were joined by lead vocalist and rhythm guitarist formerly of The Mayfield Four, Myles Kennedy, to form the band.
Alter Bridge has so far released three albums: One Day Remains (2004); Blackbird (2007) and AB III (2010). Even though One Day Remains, released on August 10, 2004 by Wind-up Records, received mixed reviews; with the album’s lead single, ‘Open Your Eyes’, the band had made a notable entry. Selling 750,000 copies worldwide, the album achieved gold status – albeit lower than Creed’s multi-Platinum success.
Amid pressures seeking reunion of Creed alongside criticisms that Alter Bridge sounds like Creed with a different singer, the band managed to bring out Blackbird, featuring the already-popular singles ‘Rise Today’ and ‘Watch Over You’, in October 2007.
“The material we’ve been working on is really aggressive and I think it’s the best work we’ve ever done. We can’t wait to get back in front of our loyal fans later this year,” said Tremonti of the album while announcing the record deal with Universal Republic.
The album is, in deed, the best the band has produced so far. Following the first album of acquaintance, Blackbird portrays a band in its prime. The album reflects the coming of age of the band. The guitar and drumming prowess coalesced to perfection with strong nailing vocals – makes it an absolute treat. Moreover, considering that it was produced in a time as recent as 2007, the metal artistry is commendable. No single song needs a mention, it is one of those albums you can just listen on queue and on loop for days.
The album was later followed by AB III, after the band took a break due to Creed’s reunion tour and new album. Meanwhile, Kennedy started working on a solo album and with Slash on his self-titled album, with whom he throughout 2010 as his lead vocalist. Despite these factors, Alter Bridge continued to write music through 2009 and began recording their third album in February 2010. In August 2010, RoadRunner Records announced that the AB III would be released under its label. The band continued to impress even with the third album.
However, for the pure power in the music and the sheer skill in the art, Blackbird has won the accolades of being the first Album Recall of the Month for January 2011 on LexicalPixies.
A little about Album Recall, as the title suggests we aim at introducing or recalling one album from the past, near or far, every month. Please feel free to make your suggestions via comments.
Links and Resources:
Two rock bands are set to release their Live albums on the same day this year. On March 22, 2011, rock fans will be treated to two new albums – both Live – of Greenday and the recently reunited Soundgarden.
The Punk rockers will release their brand-new live album, titled ‘Awesome As Fuck’, on Reprise Records. GuitarWorld.com reported that the set includes a CD plus bonus DVD, features explosive performances captured during the band’s 2009-2010 World Tour in support of their Grammy Award–winning album ’21st Century Breakdown’.
The track-listing for ‘Awesome As Fuck’ is as follows:
1. 21st Century Breakdown – (London, England)
2. Know Your Enemy – (Manchester, England)
3. East Jesus Nowhere – (Glasgow, Scotland)
4. Holiday – (Dublin, Ireland)
5. Gloria – (Dallas, Texas)
6. Cigarettes and Valentines – (Phoenix, Arizona)
7. Burnout – (Irvine, California)
8. Pasalaqua – (Chula Vista, California )
9. JAR – (Detroit, Michigan – August 23rd 2010)
10. Holden Caulfield – (New York, New York)
11. Geek Stink Breath – (Saitama-shi, Japan)
12. When I Come Around – (Berlin, Germany)
13. She – (Brisbane, Australia – December 8th 2009)
14. 21 Guns – (Mountain View, California)
15. American Idiot – (Montreal, QUE)
16. Wake Me Up – (Nickelsdorf, Austria)
17. Good Riddance – (Nickelsdorf, Austria)
DELUXE ALBUM BONUS TRACKS (ALL DIGITAL RETAILERS EXCEPT iTUNES)
1. Letterbomb – (Chula Vista, California)
2. Christie Road – (Hartford, Connecticut)
iTUNES BONUS TRACKS
1. Letterbomb – (Chula Vista, California)
2. Christie Road – (Hartford, Connecticut)
3. Paper Lanterns/2000 Light Years Away – (Alpharetta, Georgia) (iTunes Exclusive)
1. 21st Century Breakdown
2. Know Your Enemy
3. East Jesus Nowhere
5. Static Age
7. Boulevard of Broken Dreams
9. Geek Stink Breath
10. Welcome to Paradise
11. When I Come Around
13. 21 Guns
14. American Eulogy
15. Jesus Of Suburbia
16. Good Riddance
Meanwhile, Soundgarden is also working towards releasing their first ever Live Album, titled ‘Live on I5’, on the very same day. According to GuitarWorld, ‘I5’ is a reference to the Interstate 5 which runs up and down the West Coast. The selection will include tracks like ‘Spoonman’, ‘Rusty Cage’, ‘Burden In My Hand’, and ‘Black Hole Sun’, performed by Chris Cornell solo.
“Happy New Year! We’re pleased to tell you that we are going to be releasing our first-ever live album taken from the west coast leg of our tour in 1996. The album will be called Live on I5 and you can get it on March 22nd. We had always intended to release this as a live record and now it’s time to unleash the fury!” the band said on the official website, Soundgardenworld.com on January 13.
Tracklisting in full:
2. Searching With My Good Eye Closed
3. Let Me Drown
Tracks 1-3: Recorded live at Crosby Hall, Del Mar Fairgrounds, Del Mar, CA – November 30, 1996
4. Head Down
Recorded live at Mercer Arena, Seattle, WA – December 18, 1996
Recorded live at Crosby Hall, Del Mar Fairgrounds, Del Mar, CA – November 30, 1996
6. Rusty Cage
Recorded live at Pacific National Exhibition Forum, Vancouver, BC, Canada – December 7, 1996
7. Burden In My Hand
Recorded live at Salem Armory, Salem, OR – December 8, 1996
8. Helter Skelter
9. Boot Camp
Tracks 8 and 9: Recorded live at Crosby Hall, Del Mar Fairgrounds, Del Mar, CA – November 30, 1996
10. Nothing To Say
Recorded live at Mercer Arena, Seattle, WA – December 18, 1996
11. Slaves And Bulldozers
13. Fell On Black Days
Tracks 11-13: Recorded live at Henry J. Kaiser Convention Center, Oakland, CA – December 5, 1996
14. Search And Destroy
Recorded live at Mercer Arena, Seattle, WA – December 18, 1996
15. Ty Cobb
Recorded live at Crosby Hall, Del Mar Fairgrounds, Del Mar, CA – November 30, 1996
16. Black Hole Sun
Recorded live at Mercer Arena, Seattle, WA – December 17, 1996
17. Jesus Christ Pose
Recorded live at Henry J. Kaiser Convention Center, Oakland, CA – December 5, 1996
Here is a wallpaper calendar for January 2011 inspired by the Pink Floyd song ‘The Embryo’
“All this love, is all I am
a ball is all I am
I’m so new compared to you
and I am very small
Warm glow, moon gloom
always need a little more room
waiting here seems like years
never seen the light of day
All around I hear strange sounds
come gurgling in my ear
red glow light and darkened night
I feel my dawn is near
Warm glow, moon gloom
always need a little more room
whisper low, here I go
I will see the sunshine show”
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High Times, the monthly magazine that advocates the legalization of marijuana, has dished out never-seen-before pictures of Reggae god Bob Marley with the herb on the occasion of the 420th issue.
The New York-based magazine decided to release the unpublished outtakes from the photo shoot that Bob Marley did for the cover of September 1976 issue ahead of the release of the book – Bob Marley and the Golden Age of Reggae (Titan Books). The book documents “the golden age of reggae.”
In 1975 and 1976, underground photojournalist Kim Gottlieb and her husband, Island Records publicity head Jeff Walker toured Jamaica and held exclusive meetings in Los Angeles with reggae luminaries such as Peter Tosh, Bunny Wailer, Toots Hibbert, Burning Spear, Jacob Miller, Third World, and Lee ‘Scratch’ Perry, besides Bob Marley.
High Times has released five unpublished photos of Bob Marley with marijuana. In one the artist is examining the “photo props” at the shoot. In two other photos Bob Marley is accompanied by Bob and Wailers percussionist Seeco Patterson. While in the fourth Bob is seen standing as he “chops up herb for another spliff”, the fifth one shows “Bob in contemplation”.
In the piece Jeff Walker recalls, “During some down time between the Roxy and the Santa Barbara County Bowl, Kim and I went to Bob’s hotel to shoot a private session for the now-iconic HighTimes cover that would feature Bob smiling over a mound of herb. His delight that afternoon is pretty evident in these never-before-seen photos of that session.”
“Two days later, as the sun set on Bob Marley as he neared the end of his outdoor concert at the Santa Barbara County Bowl, none of us could have imagined what lay ahead in the next few years – from the attempt on Bob’s life in his home as he was rehearsing for the “Smile Jamaica” concert (meant to help simmer down a very tense political climate in Kingston) to the diagnosis of the cancer that would eventually take his life way too soon. But on that day in Santa Barbara, in an idyllic setting, Bob was at the peak of his powers, and his legend would only continue to grow.”
Bob Marley died on 11 May, 1981.
‘Guitar God’ Steve Vai has dived into work right at the start of the new year. The three time Grammy Award-winner posted on Facebook that he was in search of “guitar brutalities” while wishing all his fans a Happy New Year.
“Hey Folks, Happy New Year again… and again… and forever!” the Italian American rockstar greeted.
Vai, who released Where the Other Wilds Are in 2010 following the 2009’s Where the Wild Things Are, has revealed that the new year will also bring in another album.
“I am just right now starting to work on a new record… right… now!
I’m diving into the infinity shelf and letting it run all over the place. Looking for exotic guitar brutalities.
I’ll keep you posted on the preposterous.
Thanks for tuning in,” the post on the social media site added.
Earlier, the Guitar International Magazine awarded the title of Guitar DVD of the Year to ‘Steve Vai Live in Minneapolis: Where the Wild Things Are’.
“Seeing Steve Vai live is an experience all unto itself, and his latest live release Where the Wild Things Are couldn’t have captured that essence any better. Though the album was released at the end of 2009, this baby had some legs and continued to amaze and inspire viewers throughout the past 12 months, so we decided to include in the 2010 edition of the awards,” the magazine said on the 2-hours-40-minutes-and-27 tracks DVD.
Besides this, Vai grabbed the ‘Guitar Concert of the Year Award’ for performances on the Experience Hendrix Tour, which “allowed fans to see some of their favorite players pay tribute to a man that has inspired countless millions of guitarists and fan across the globe over the past four decades.”
The Philanthropist has also reminded aspiring guitarists that they need to get their entry into the Steve Vai scholarship competition by Friday, January 7 to be considered. The Guitar Institute, part of London’s Institute of Contemporary Music Performance, has tied up with Steve Vai for the scholarship.
Speaking to Roadrunner Records on ‘The Year In Review’, Dream Theater’s revered guitarist John Petrucci said the biggest lesson learned in 2010 was – “Don’t let your drummer fill in for another band.”
Drummer Mike Portnoy, who also founded and led the band, left Dream Theater in Sep 2010. Portnoy had been working with Avenged Sevenfold since the death of drummer James ‘The Rev’ Sullivan before he released a statement announcing his decision.
“After 25 years, I have decided to leave Dream Theater….the band I founded, led and truly loved for a quarter of a century,” he said.
In the statement, the drummer repeatedly expressed his ever-lasting love and commitment for the band, fearing that his move would be misinterpreted by many.
“After having had such amazing experiences playing with Hail, Transatlantic and Avenged Sevenfold this past year, I have sadly come to the conclusion that I have recently had more fun and better personal relations with these other projects than I have for a while now in Dream Theater… Please don’t misinterpret me, I love the DT guys dearly and have a long history, friendship and bond that runs incredibly deep with them…it’s just that I think we are in serious need of a little break…” he said, calling DT his baby that he nurtured.
Portnoy not only brought in drumming prowess but also wrote lyrics for several of Dream Theater’s songs. He also co-produced the last six Dream Theater albums with Petrucci.
However, when the drummer went back to Dream Theater in Dec 2010 after Avenged Sevenfold and him part ways, the door was shut on him.
“The band has decided to carry on into 2011 without me…I had a great time with them throughout 2010, but it was their choice to end the relationship at the end of 2010 as was always the initial plan,” he said announcing that his time with Avenged Sevenfold had come to an end.
On Dec 16, 2010, he posted on his Facebook: “Fairly recently, I reached out to the guys (Dream Theater) to try and make amends and offered to reconcile for the sake of having peace back in our lives…(plus I know how much it meant to alot of the fans…)
“I figured it was still possible to try and save us because they hadn’t made any announcements yet or begun any public activity with another drummer…but sadly, they declined my offer (well, actually their lawyer did…they didn’t even tell me themselves….) […] I tried, and the door is now shut…the ball is now in their court, not mine…”
Following that Deep Purple guitarist and founder of Dixie Dregs, Steve Morse announced in an interview that he was working on an album with Mike Portnoy, along with Dave LaRue and Neal Morse. Now, Portnoy’s fans can only wait and watch if this Morse album would give birth to a full-fledged band.
A recent tweet said, “MP, Steve Morse, Neal Morse, Dave LaRue & Casey McPherson…we begin tomorrow! The musical potential is off the charts! Very exciting….”
On Dec 13, Dream Theater announced that it has picked a replacement for Portnoy but refused to reveal any details.
“Well, auditions went great and we do have someone but we are spending some time getting everything in order before making an official announcement. Let me just say that we are all incredibly excited about our choice and just bursting at the seams to let the world know!” Petrucci said.
The band is scheduled to hit the studio in January 2011.
Although the fans are frustrated over the band’s decision to keep the drummer’s name a secret, the fact that an album will be out soon has got them excited. Besides Petrucci has also vowed to appease the fans with the upcoming album and tours.
“To use all my creative resources in making the next DT album and tour the best possible and to be more connected with our fans,” the guitarist told Roadrunner Records.
In 2010, the progressive metal band also had the opportunity to play with their heroes, Iron Maiden, “taking a step back from headlining to play an opening set”.
It is beyond doubt that true artists live forever. But, reminding us yet again that it is the true fans and followers who consecrate immortality on to the artists, the crowd-sourced Johnny Cash video has grabbed a spot on this year’s Grammy Nominations.
‘The Man in Black’ has been resurrected by the The Johnny Cash Project, which gave Cash’s final studio recording, ‘Ain’t No Grave’, with a nothing-like-anything-before video. It is a collective, or crowd-sourced, music video put together using the drawings submitted by the denizens of the web.
Now, ‘Ain’t No Grave / The Johnny Cash Project’ figures on the list of nominees for 53rd annual Grammy Awards under the category Best Short Form Music Video, alongside tracks like Eminem & Rihanna’s ‘Love The Way You Lie’ (Explicit Version), ‘Stylo’ of Gorillaz, Mos Def & Bobby Womack, Cee Lo Green’s ‘F*** You’ and Lady Gaga’s ‘Bad Romance’.
The Johnny Cash project does face a huge competition. Take for instance the YouTube views of the other contenders, ‘Bad Romance’ has more than 300 million views, ‘F**k You’ has attracted 32 million views while ‘Love The Way You Lie’ has pocketed around 200 million on the video sharing website.
Nevertheless, the Cash nomination stands class apart. For one, the artist’s work has been featured seven years after his death in 2003. The video is created by fans across the world and refreshes itself with every new contribution.
The Johnny Cash Project:
Video director Chris Milk is the man behind the commendable project, produced by Radical Media.
Speaking about how the project was born in Portugal at an art and technology conference back in 2009, where he met Aaron Koblin, who now heads up Google Creative Lab’s Data Arts Team, is quoted as saying in Mashable, “We knew that we would need an artist that had a certain level of universal love for them already existing, and that’s a difficult thing on the Internet nowadays because you only have to go a couple of pages deep to find millions of haters of everything.”
The Johnny Cash Project has a dedicated website, where fans can use a specialized drawing tool to contribute a frame or frames to the video.
“A UNIQUE COMMUNAL WORK, A LIVING PORTRAIT OF THE MAN IN BLACK” – reads the website.
“Through this interactive website, participants may draw their own portrait of Johnny Cash to be integrated into a collective whole. As people all over the world contribute, the project will continue to evolve and grow, one frame at a time.”
According to the video [Watch Official Video], “To date, over 250,000 people from 172 countries have participated in an online video to construct Johnny Cash’s final music video.”
We continue to love how internet is changing how the world works in almost every way possible. The medium has not only provided the true blue Johnny Cash fans an opportunity to be part of the brilliant musician’s legacy, but has also, consequently, brought him back to life to give the “stars” of the day a run for their money.
Our digital artist is current trying hand on the Johnny Cash Project. If we get our frames up there, we will surely share it with you all. In case, you have already got your art featured or are trying to, share your story with us – tell us about your inspiration and love for ‘The Man in Black’.
In the follow-up of our post on Alice Cooper entering the Rock n’ Roll Hall of Fame, here is a list of must have tracks…
Alice Cooper, the grand daddy of rock music and the Godfather of bands like Megadeth, is a must listen for anyone who has a taste for rock music, particularly shock rock, heavy metal and hard rock. Ranking #20 on VH1’s ‘100 Greatest artists of Hard Rock’ Cooper continues to rock the fans with his career span of about four decades.
This holiday season the shock-rock legend hit the headlines by serving up a magical Chirstmas Pudding concert with the band’s original line-up amid the news that Alice Cooper was one among the 2011 inductees into the Rock n’ Roll Hall of Fame.
Alice Cooper has given numerous hits for rock lovers and here are some of his ultimate tracks which, finally, took the band into the Hall of Fame and should definitely be on your music playlist:
Album: School’s Out
Alice Cooper mentioned in an interview that he wanted to capture the last three minutes of the last day of school. He wanted to capture the feeling of a slow fuse burning in a song. Everything else is pretty evident in the song. The burning of the school is one of those images that will always remain fresh in many rock fans memories.
“School’s out for summer,
School’s out forever
School’s been blown to pieces”
No More Mr. Nice Guy
Album: Billion Dollar Babies
A song that made Alice Cooper reach the #1 spot on US and UK charts. It was basically written by Cooper about the reactions he received from his mother’s church group for his shock rock influenced stage shows.
“No more Mister Nice Guy
No more Mister Clean
No more Mister Nice Guy
They say he’s sick, he’s obscene”
Album: Love It to Death
A perfect rock anthem for a confused teenager. The song depicts the struggles of a teenage mind as it captures the angst of those glorious years.
“Lines form on my face and my hands
Lines form on the left and right
I’m in there middle
the middle of life
I’m a boy and I’m a man
I’m eighteen and I like it”
One of the biggest hits of Alice Cooper topping US and UK charts. The song is all about forbidden love.
“I hear you calling and it’s needles and pins (And pins)
I want to hurt you just to hear you screaming my name
Don’t want to touch you but you’re under my skin (Deep in)
I want to kiss you but your lips are venomous poison
You’re poison running through my veins
You’re poison, I don’t wanna break these chains
Is It My Body
Album: Love It to Death
The band shifted focus from psychedelic rock and refined its sound to produce this hit track.
“What have I got
that makes you want to love me
Is it my body
or someone I might be
or somethin’ inside me”
This song is a tribute to Jim Morrison from Alice Cooper. It also happens to be an attempt to progressive rock from the shock-rock band.
“I wear lace
And I wear black leather
My hands are lightning upon my gun”
Alice Cooper’s traditional Christmas Pudding concert this year turned special for two reasons: the announcement that ‘No More Mr Nice Guy’ will be among those inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall Fame, and the reunion of that classic Alice Cooper lineup to honor the 10th anniversary of Pudding.
Alice Cooper is among the 2011 inductees, a list that includes Neil Diamond, Dr John, Darlene Love, Tom Waits, Jac Holzman, Art Rupe and Leon Russel.
The shock-rock legend, however, had no idea that the yearly pudding feast is going to get double tasty this year.
“The great thing about it, was I asked the guys to come in for this before I knew anything about the Hall of Fame. Before we were nominated, we were gonna do this. So everything happened while we were all here in our hometown, where we started,” media reports quote Cooper as saying backstage at the Comerica.
Speaking to Free Press days ahead of the concert, Cooper attributed his entry into the Hall of fame to his made-in-Detroit history.
“We weren’t about peace and love; we were too abrasive for LA,” said Cooper.
“We thought the whole world should be about Ferraris, switchblades and blondes and it was in Detroit that people were screaming for us to turn it up. And we did,” the 62-year-old is quoted as saying on Wednesday, while rehearsing for his annual Phoenix-based Christmas Pudding concert with members of his classic lineup including drummer Neal Smith, Michael Bruce and Dennis Dunaway.
“I am so proud to say I’m from Detroit, but more than that – it’s where we belong. When I heard bands like the Stooges, MC5 and Ted Nugent’s Amboy Dukes, we were among kindred spirits. It was a brotherhood. And outsiders, although they may take a step backward when they see us, they definitely respect Detroit artists,” he added.
Cooper along with the other artists will be inducted during a ceremony March 14, 2011 at the Waldorf-Astoria hotel in New York City.
“I haven’t thought too much about the ceremony, but we’ll probably play ‘School’s Out’ and “Eighteen,’ the two anthems I imagine people want to hear most. And if Jeff Beck or Paul McCartney want to come out, we might let them play …Are you kidding? We’d pass out,” he remarked.
Last year, eleven artists were inducted into the Hall of Fame including ABBA, Jimmy Cliff, Genesis, The Stooges and The Hollies.
Although we are kicking ourselves for not being among the lucky thousands who had the pleasure of watching the original line-up of Alice Cooper stir up ‘Music, Magic and Mayhem’, the induction of Alice Cooper into the Hall of Fame would probably remain one of the highlights of the year. Alice Cooper, for us, is one among the legends – recalling whom we often end up grumbling- “They don’t make music like this anymore”. Growing up listening to Alice Cooper made us understand anger and respect rebellion.
Don Van Vliet, better known as Captain Beefheart, is no more. The avant-garde rockstar and abstract artist died at the age of 69 in California following complications from multiple sclerosis.
The Michael Werner Gallery in New York, which has represented him for over two decades and where many of Captain Beefheart’s works are nestled, confirmed the death in a statement. Van Vliet was “one of the most original recording artists of his time”, the gallery is quoted as saying in media reports.
“Don Van Vliet was a complex and influential figure in the visual and performing arts.”
“He is perhaps best known as the incomparable Captain Beefheart who, together with his Magic Band, rose to prominence in the 1960s with a totally unique style of blues-inspired, experimental rock & roll.”
“This would ultimately secure Van Vliet’s place in music history as one of the most original recording artists of his time. After two decades in the spotlight as an avant-garde composer and performer, Van Vliet retired from performing to devote himself wholeheartedly to painting and drawing.”
“Like his music, Van Vliet’s lush paintings are the product of a truly rare and unique vision,” the statement added.
Captain Beefheart, the avant-garte rocker
With his absurdist rock n’ roll derieved from the musical styles of jazz, blues and psychedelia, besides other genres, Captain Beefheart carved a niche for him in the world of pop-culture. Under the name of Captain Beefheart, he recorded music with members of the Magic Band till 1982. The band’s line-up, however, changed frequently. Trout Mask Replica is widely considered as Beefheart’s masterpiece.
His close creative relationship with another music legend, Frank Zappa, who was his former high school classmate, also helped him create pieces that went on to redefine popular music.
Now popular bands and artists like Oasis, Red Hot Chilli Peppers and The White Stripes have named Beefheart as one of their prominent influences.
RHCP Guitarist John Frusciante had, in the past, revealed that Van Vliet was a prominent influence on the band’s 1991 album Blood Sugar Sex Magik. He also shared that during his drug induced absence, he “would paint and listen to Trout Mask Replica”. His debut solo album Niandra Lades and Usually Just a T-Shirt (1994) also derieved inspiration from Captain Beefheart. Also, in their last concert of their 2006 tour, RHCP played the Captain Beefheart composition Peon as final encore. [Watch Video]
Joan Osborne, who also cites Captain Beefheart as an influence, covered Beefheart’s (His) Eyes are a Blue Million Miles, which appears on Early Recordings.
During the now famous 1997 Radio 1 interview, with his brother Liam Gallagher, Noel Gallagher, the guitarist for Oasis requested numerous Captain Beefheart tracks to be played.
Soundgarden, the Seattle band with Chris Cornell as the lead singer, covered Dropout Boogie frequently during their early career.
The White Stripes also released a single, titled Party of Special Things To Do, comprising of Beefheart’s Party of Special Things to Do, China Pig and Ashtray Heart.
In another very honorable mention, in 2008, Led Zeppelin’s front man Robert Plant is understood to have rubbished new music produced by bands such as Radiohead and RHCP, and insisted that he “wanted to listen to Captain Beefheart”.
“Radiohead and the Chilis are two of the biggest and best groups in the world. But it seems they don’t compare to Beefheart in Plant’s mind,” a source was quoted as saying in the Jan 2008 reports.
Don Van Vliet, the abstract artist
Though Don Van Vliet produced sketches and paintings as he pursued his music career, he effectively stopped recording in 1982 to take up art more seriously and in turn to be considered as a serious artist. Nevertheless, he remained the same abstract expressionist as a painter as he was as a musician.
Dr. John Lane, director of Museum of Modern Art, San Francisco, had said in the 1990s that the self-taught artist’s painting “has that same kind of edge the music has.”
His works have had numerous exhibitions at the New York gallery. The works almost always attract high prices. Recently, one of his paintings on sale at the Michael Werner Gallery fetched $40,000 (£26,000). [See Gallery]
“Now a whole generation of younger artists has become obsessed with his work, like Thomas Houseago and Aaron Curry,” gallery managing director Gordon VeneKlasen was quoted as saying on an ArtInfo blog published December 1.
In the later years, Don Van Vliet was unable to paint due to multiple sclerosis.
Don Van Vliet a.k.a Captain Beefheart was one among the distinct breed of true artists with talent, skill, philosophy and most importantly attitude [Suggested reading: Captain Beefheart’s 10 Commandments of Guitar Playing].
Beefheart’s works did not appeal to the masses and saw a small following, yet he has etched a place for himself in the world of art with his larger-than-life character and his works that even today continue to inspire and influence.
The death of Captain Beefheart comes as a huge pain as the world stands to lose yet another versatile and radical thinker, diminishing further the number of true artists present in the world.