Daily Archives: April 11, 2017

Panic! At the Disco's Brendon Urie Joins 'Kinky Boots' Cast

Panic! At the Disco‘s Brendon Urie will take on the lead role in the Broadway production of Cyndi Lauper‘s musical, Kinky Boots, according to The Hollywood Reporter.

Urie will play Charlie Price, the protagonist who inherits his father’s failing shoe factory and partners with a drag queen named Lola (played by J. Harrison Ghee) to produce a line of high-heeled boots that help save the company. The musician will make his debut at the Al Hirschfeld Theatre May 26th and will perform through August 6th.

The gig marks Urie’s first major acting role, though Panic! At the Disco’s music and live show have always been imbued with plenty of theatricality. In a video posted to Twitter, Urie said, “This has been on my bucket list for the longest time and it really is a dream come true. I’m just so incredibly excited to be joining Kinky Boots on Broadway – that’s wild. Plus you guys get to see me in those heels now.”

Kinky Boots is based on the 2005 British movie of the same name and debuted on Broadway in 2013. Lauper penned the music and the lyrics, while Broadway vet Harvey Fierstein wrote the book. The production won six Tony Awards, including Best Musical and Best Original Score for Lauper.

Panic! At the Disco released their most recent record, Death of a Bachelor, in 2016. The group has a handful of live dates left on their current tour, which wraps April 15th at the BB&T Center in Sunrise, Florida.

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Dead Weather Detail First Live LP, Concert Film

The Dead Weather will release their 2009 concert at the Mayan Theater in Los Angeles as a live album and concert film for Third Man Records’ Vault Package #32.

The latest installment of Third Man’s long-running series will also include the final Dodge and Burn seven-inch single, featuring “Three Dollar Hat” b/w “Lose the Right” on black and yellow vinyl. The band has released every song from their 2015 record as a seven-inch single through previous Vault Packages, and the new release will also come with a custom case to house all six 45 RPM discs.

The Dead Weather: Live at the Mayan marks the Dead Weather’s first live LP (they released an EP, Live at Third Man Records West, in 2009). Jack White’s longtime studio cohort Vance Powell mixed the live audio, while Vern Moen directed the concert film. The show took place August 26th, 2009, a little over a month after the Dead Weather released their debut album, Horehound.

The setlist boasts album favorites like “Treat Me Like Your Mother,” “I Cut Like a Buffalo” and “Hang You From the Heavens,” a snippet of which is available to preview. It also features a live version of the Dead Weather’s cover of Bob Dylan’s “New Pony,” plus renditions of Them’s “You Just Can’t Win” and the West Coast Pop Art Experimental Band’s “A Child of a Few Hours Is Burning to Death,” both of which were released as Horehound b-sides.

Live at the Mayan will be pressed on 180 gram vinyl and the concert film will arrive on DVD. The Vault Package will also come with a reproduction screen print of Methane Studios’ original poster for the 2009 gig.

Fans can sign-up for the Vault Package #32 via the Third Man website. The subscription deadline is April 30th. 

The Dead Weather Live at the Mayan Track List
1. “60 Feet Tall”
2. “Hang You From the Heavens”
3. “You Just Can’t Win” (Them cover)
4. “So Far From Your Weapon”
5. “A Child of a Few Hours is Burning to Death” (West Coast Pop Art Experimental Band cover)
6. “No Hassle Night”
7. “Will There Be Enough Water?”
8. “I Cut Like a Buffalo”
9. “Treat Me Like Your Mother”
10 “New Pony” (Bob Dylan cover)

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Guitarist J. Geils Dead at 71

John Warren Geils Jr., better known as J. Geils, the guitarist of the the J. Geils Band, was found dead in his home in Groton, Massachusetts Tuesday. He was 71. Rolling Stone has confirmed Geils’ death. According to Groton Police, “a preliminary investigation indicates that Geils died of natural causes.”

“At approximately 4 p.m., Groton Police responded to a home on Graniteville Road for a well-being check,” Groton Police said in a statement. “Upon arrival to the house, police located a man who was unresponsive. He was declared dead at the scene … The Groton Police Department is investigating the death, as is standard procedure in all unattended deaths, however foul play is not suspected at this time.”

The J. Geils Band released a slew of albums during the Seventies and early Eighties. With vocalist Peter Wolf at the helm, the band became best known for singles like “Centerfold,” “Love Stinks,” “Come Back” and “Freeze-Frame,” which have since become rock radio mainstays.

On Facebook, Wolf shared a short message about his former bandmate, writing, “Thinking of all the times we kicked it high and rocked down the house! R.I.P. Jay Geils.”

Formed in Worcester, Massachusetts in 1967, the J. Geils Band became fast local favorites and released their self-titled debut in 1970. They broke through on the Billboard 200 in 1973 with their record Bloodshot, and over the course of the next decade honed a sound that blended blues rock, R&B, soul and pop. During the Seventies, the J. Geils Band would release eight studio albums and two live records while touring relentlessly – but they wouldn’t hit their commercial peak until the beginning of the next decade.

In 1980, the J. Geils Band released Love Stinks, their first platinum-selling record, while the following year they notched a Number One with their 12th album Freeze-Frame. That album featured the group’s only chart-topping hit, “Centerfold,” while its title track also reached the Top 10 of the Billboard Hot 100.

However, the band began to fall apart in the aftermath of its success. Wolf left to pursue a solo career and did not appear on the J. Geils Band’s final album, 1984’s You’re Gettin’ Even While I’m Gettin’ Odd. The J. Geils Band officially split in 1985, but began to play the occasional reunion show in 1999. In 2012, however, Geils officially quit the group and sued his bandmates for conspiring to go on tour without him and unlawfully using the band’s trademarked name.

Outside of the J. Geils Band, Geils remained busy as a musician. In the mid-Nineties, he released two albums with his band Bluestime and during the 2000s, he returned to his jazz roots with three solo records. 

The J. Geils Band – “Love Stinks”

The J. Geils Band – “Centerfold”

The J. Geils Band – “(Ain’t Nothin’ But A) House Party”

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Watch Paul Oakenfold Perform on Mount Everest

Celebrated British DJ Paul Oakenfold hosted the “highest party on Earth” Tuesday, spinning a set at the base camp of Mount Everest, which sits at 17,600 feet. Oakenfold streamed parts of the performance on Facebook Live and plans to release a live album and documentary chronicling the trek and performance.

The Everest trip is the first installment of Oakenfold’s new SoundTrek series, in which he’ll stage performances in unexpected places around the globe, showcasing music from each locale and highlighting critical issues facing local communities. 

Oakenfold plans to donate funds from his Everest performance to the Himalayan Trust and Supporting Nepal’s Children – both of which are assisting survivors of the devastating 2015 earthquake in Nepal – while he’s also gifting his DJ equipment to the local community. Proceeds will also benefit the U.K. groups, Youth Music and the Mayor’s New Music Fund.

Following his Mt. Everest performance, Oakenfold will continue his Generations world tour with another North American leg that kicks off April 28th in Cleveland and wraps June 9th with a set at the Spring Awakening Music Festival in Chicago.

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Hybrid Studios and Orange County Production House Hold ReverbNation Sweepstakes

Hybrid StudiosSANTA ANA, Calif., April 11, 2017 /PRNewswire/ — Hybrid Studios and their subsidiary production company, Orange County Production House, are holding their annual sweepstakes through ReverbNation. The winning band or artist wins two days of recording in Hybrid’s Studio A with full…


NetEase Cloud Music Completes A Round Financing of RMB 750 Million, Sending It into the "Unicorn Club" with an Estimated Value of RMB 8 Billion

LogoHANGZHOU, China, April 11, 2017 /PRNewswire/ — NetEase Cloud Music, a popular online music platform in China, held a press conference in Shanghai on April 11 to disclose that it has reached 300 million users and that the company recently completed the A round financing, which, according…


Hear Mac DeMarco's Gauzy New Slow Jam 'On the Level'

Mac DeMarco unveiled a slinky and pensive new song, “On the Level,” from his upcoming album, This Old Dog, which arrives May 5th. 

“On the Level” boasts the steady groove, bubbling bass and cool key stabs of a timeless slow jam, though its chief instrumental trait is a recurring synth riff that straddles the line between sweet and queasy. DeMarco’s soft croon completes the song’s gauzy pop vibe, while his lyrics touch on the album’s larger themes of family: “Boy, this could be your year/ Make an old man proud of you/ Forget about the tears.”

“On the Level” follows previously released album cuts “My Old Man” and “This Old Dog.” DeMarco recently directed a video for the latter, in which a handful of actors wearing theatrical canine masks enjoy a day wandering around Los Angeles.

This Old Dog follows DeMarco’s 2014 LP, Salad Days, and his 2015 mini-album, Another One. The musician is scheduled to play Coachella the weekends of April 14th and 21st before embarking on a North American tour May 9th in Burlington, Vermont.

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AT&T AUDIENCE Network® Announces Artist Lineup for Exclusive AUDIENCE Music Concerts

Sheryl Crow performs on AT&T AUDIENCE NetworkEL SEGUNDO, Calif., April 11, 2017 /PRNewswire/ — AT&T* is giving DIRECTV and U-verse customers more music programming every Friday at 9 p.m. ET/PT on AT&T AUDIENCE Network.
The network just wrapped another production of original and exclusive performances for its AUDIENCE…


Extraordinary Families To Honor Lee Daniels, This Is Us, Howard Kaufman And Kim Kopp & Lisa McFann At Awards Gala On April 26

LOS ANGELES, April 11, 2017 /PRNewswire/ — Extraordinary Families, a nonprofit dedicated to improving the lives of children and families in child welfare, hosts its second annual Awards Gala on April 26, 2017 at the Beverly Hilton Hotel, Beverly Hills. The evening honors award-winning…


Yes' Rick Wakeman on Rock Hall Speech: 'I Just Wanted to Have a Bit of Fun'

Pearl Jam were the clear audience favorites at Friday’s Rock and Roll Hall of Fame induction, but no speech elicited a bigger response than that given by Rick Wakeman. The Yes keyboardist – on tour this year with bandmates Jon Anderson and Trevor Rabin – passed up the chance to run down the usual laundry list of thank-yous and instead opted for a mini stand-up routine, in which he cracked wise about losing his virginity, encountering his dad at a strip club and his recent prostate exam. We caught up with Wakeman backstage following the hilarious speech to discuss his background in comedy, the true meaning of prog and why he’ll never again take the stage with former Yes bandmate Steve Howe.

How long did it take you to write that speech? What made you take that angle?
Well I’ve got loads of stuff because I do a lot of corporate … I do a lot of TV stuff in England. I do a lot of comedy stuff. So I’ve got a huge pool of one-liners and general stories and you can just weave them into what you want. I don’t like self-gratification so I didn’t want to go “Oh, how great the band has been” and all that kind [of thing] because people are very kind. People have said that anyway, which is really very nice. So I just wanted to have a bit of fun, really.

So this was like the greatest-hits of your speeches?
Far from it. That’s just … I was part of a huge comedy show in England called Grumpy Old Men. I was in every one for seven years plus. … I do a lot of comedy [appearances] – half stand-up and half music and I’ve enjoyed doing it. For an event like this I thought long and hard: Do I go on and thank all the different guys in the band that I’ve played with? Everyone is going to say that. A lot of it is understood so I thought I’d just have a bit a fun, but I’m never blue. I never do that.

Did the other guys know your speech beforehand?
No, they didn’t know what I was going to say, but they know what I do. We had one breakdown on the ARW tour, so Jon just threw me the mic, so I did a 15-minute standup. So they know what I do.

So how does it feel to be inducted into the Hall of Fame?
It’s wonderful. It’s really, really nice. I mean it’s for the music. It’s Yes’ music that’s been inducted. I mean I know for a fact that, thankfully, Yes music has influenced lots of bands and lots of people, which is lovely. I was influenced by lots of bands and people, and if other people have created their own music and we’ve helped a little bit along the way by influencing them then that’s what it’s all about. That’s how music moves forward. So it’s lovely to be inducted in. I have a daughter who lives in Cleveland so it gives me another excuse to go and see.

So Rush got into the Hall of Fame, now you guys. Do you think prog is finally getting its due? 
You know the thing I’ve said for years, all prog is, is knowing the rules and breaking them. It’s breaking the format. I mean, when prog started, 90 percent of records were made to a format. You know, intro, verse, chorus, chorus, solo, intro out, verse out, whatever. What prog did was break that mold and said, “No, it doesn’t have to happen like that.” The interesting thing that I think is absolutely wonderful is you can pretty much tune to any station in any city and hear the records that run through and none of them have got a format; they’ve all got a style of their own and that’s thanks to prog breaking the mold and saying, “You don’t have to do that. Do what’s in your heart and your musical brain. Don’t do it because it’s a format.” So I think there’s hardly a record that you hear on the radio or hear playing that hasn’t got a small percentage – even if it’s two or three percent – of prog in it.

“All prog is, is breaking the format.”

Absolutely. It’s become a big influence.
Yeah. I think it’s settled down now and sort of sorted out the wheat [from the chaff]. I mean all of us in prog bands got accused of overblowing or getting too pompous or too much, which we all did, but that’s only because we’re trying to explore to see how far we could go. And I think when [it], I don’t want to say comes to an end but reaches the end of that race like, “OK, we’ve taken prog in this level and this technology as far as we can go,” then I think you can look back and go, “OK, these are the pivotal moments musically within the career of a band.” But you can’t find that out until you’ve been there and done it.

What was it like playing with all those guys again tonight?
Well, I play with Trevor and Jon all the time so …

When was the last time you played with Steve?
Oh, I haven’t played with Steven for 12 years. I was just up there playing music. We didn’t rehearse too much.

I was going to ask, was there any rehearsal?
No, there was a little bit of a rehearsal but not a lot. But because the way Jon, Trevor and I play with Lou [Molino, drums] and Lee [Pomeroy], we played a lot different than the other guys did. … So we didn’t really want to take too much notice on that. It was a one-off. Never to happen again.

One last question: What is the state of your album with Trevor and Jon?
Oh, we’re doing well. We’ve got three pieces that are well down the line that we’re really pleased with and which we’re working on. Hopefully by summer we should have them there. But we’re not going to rush – we want them to be as good as we possibly can make them. That’s the crucial thing. 

The complete tale of prog rock legends Yes in a seven-minute animated video. Watch here.

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