Friday, March 28, 2008

Video: Salt in My Tears by Martin Briley

I haven't heard this song since I saw on MTV when it still played nothing but videos. Speaking of which...

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Dr. Pepper and Guns N' Roses

I'm not sure where to file this (Reuters):
Many have tried, but so far nobody has been able to pry the decade-in-the-works Guns N' Roses album "Chinese Democracy" from the hands of lone remaining original member Axl Rose. Now, Dr Pepper thinks it's up to the challenge. The soft drink company says it will give a free can of Dr Pepper to "everyone in America" (excluding ex-Guns members Slash and Buckethead) if "Chinese Democracy" arrives anytime during the calendar year 2008.

Rose responded on his band's web site ( that the band was "surprised and very happy to have the support of Dr Pepper." But the offer did not prompt him to rise to the challenge.

I love that response from Axl so much I can barely contain myself. Who knew he was a Pepper? Not giving a can to Buckethead is a sweet move, but I think Slash should get one. And Izzy, obviously.

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Rod Stewart Panties, Baby Bibs, Etc.

Thanks to mediabistro for this:
Rod Stewart and his licensing firm, Signatures Network, are either complete geniuses or utterly lost when it comes to promoting their brand. We recently checked out his online store to see what his newly launched clothing line offers.

A trip though the Rod Stewart Online Store revealed the following items:

  • You know this means, don't you? It means that for the first time a singer can get his own panties thrown on stage. Ooh la la!
  • Fleetwood Crow?

    This is kind of funny (from Billboard via Reuters via Yahoo):
    Sheryl Crow's recent claim that she would be working with Fleetwood Mac surprised a lot of people -- including the members of the classic rock group. Crow, 46, who's friendly with Mac's Stevie Nicks, told the AOL music website earlier this month that she and the band "definitely have plans for collaborating in the future, and we'll see what happens."

    "I think we were all a little surprised (Crow) was announcing that to the world with such certainty," Fleetwood Mac principal Lindsey Buckingham, 58, told with a laugh.

    It's really not that funny, but the headline in the story makes you think it is. It sounds like they had talked to her about being a "foil" to Stevie Nicks but nothing had been decided. I think Tom Petty would be a better foil, and I've always wanted to hear Michael Stipe and Stevie Nicks sing together, but I guess Sheryl Crow would be fine. I would like to take this opportunity to say that I have definite plans for collaborating with Brian Eno in the future.

    Friday, March 21, 2008

    Elvis Costello: Future Retro

    Here's something interesting from Yahoo/Billboard/Reuters:
    Elvis Costello's next solo studio album, curiously dubbed "Momofuku," will arrive April 22, and plans are for the set to be released only on vinyl, with a digital download code included in the package.
    The confusing thing is that a vinyl release would normally be Overt, but including a download code should probably be Advanced. I'm inclined to say that this is Advanced because of the title of the record, but I'll wait to judge until I hear the music. The only problem is that I don't have a turntable that is download-ready.

    Thursday, March 20, 2008

    Boston to Tour

    From a press release:
    The legendary band BOSTON will headline the outdoor festival at Marina Parkon Friday, June 6 in Thunder Bay, Ontario, at one of the Canadian stops of the Great Race 2008. The 'round-the-globe motor sports event will be making a pit stop in Thunder Bay as a part of its centennial anniversary. The show kicks off a summer of stadium, concert and festival dates that will span the United States and Canada.

    BOSTON will be bringing two new recruits on tour this year. Singer/songwriter/guitarist Michael Sweet, veteran Stryper frontman will both sing and trade riffs with Gary and Tom on guitar. Unexpected phenomenon Tommy DeCarlo, the fan that posted his BOSTON covers on his page and ended up on stage, will also be belting out the classics that skyrocketed the band to worldwide fame.

    Many remember where they were when they first heard "More Than a Feeling" or "Hitch a Ride" on the airwaves back in 1976. BOSTON's self-titled first album has sold over 17 million copies to date, and was the highest selling debut of all time. It remains a rock classic, and has seen a resurgence in sales after it was remastered by Scholz, along with their second album, "Don't Look Back," in 2006. "Amanda," off 1986's Third Stage, shot to the top of the charts and held a record-breaking stay at #1, in spite of being the only hit single that year not accompanied by a TV video.

    With over 30 million albums sold worldwide, hits like "Peace of Mind," "Smokin'," and "Rock and Roll Band" are still as ubiquitous on rock and roll radio as they were when they were new. Coinciding with the summer tour is a fully re-mastered Greatest Hits CD (Sony Legacy.) Lead-off singles from all five BOSTON albums will be included, as well as new photos from throughout the years and liner notes written by Tom Scholz.

    BOSTON will be performing many of their classics, including some fan favorites that have not been on the set lists for many years. For complete show itinerary updates, band bios and photos, visit

    That's no way to treat the "nicest guy in rock'n'roll." I mean, I'm okay with the MySpace guy, but Stryper? Even I can't get behind that.

    Wednesday, March 19, 2008

    All Dave, Toda La Noche

    Since we're talking Diamond Dave, why not a little "Yankee Rose" in Spanish?

    Thanks to the wondrous Philco Bros.

    VIdeo: David Lee Roth "Runnin' With The Devil" Vocal Track

    Thanks glassesface!

    Runnin' With Advancement

    Nothing to report on today, so I just want to take a moment to reflect on the genius of the lyric "I found the simple life ain't so simple" and the brilliance of the delivery of "You better find yourself a friend, my friend."

    Hopefully something great will happen today so I can write about it tomorrow. Story of my life...

    Monday, March 17, 2008

    David Byrne's Survival Strategies for Emerging Artists — and Megastars

    David Byrne has put together a little something for bands, record companies, and people like me, I guess. It talks about the "changing" landscape of the music business. As usual, he has many, many interesting things to say. So many that I will forget about that and just show you the charts, amateurishly arranged. (Go to Imperiumi for the whole story.)

    Friday, March 14, 2008

    SXSW: Lou Reed Down on MP3s, Zoo Animals

    As you probably know, the Advanced embrace technology. So that's why this article from Reuters surprised me:
    Lou Reed is lashing out at new modes of audio technology, saying that "people have got to demand a higher standard" than current MP3 music files. The edgy rocker delivered the keynote speech at the South By Southwest Music Festival + Conference, which is underway in Austin, Texas.


    In typically glib and dry-witted form throughout the wide-ranging 55-minute conversation, the bespectacled Reed bemoaned the current state of audio and other digital technologies, noting that "it's like the technology is taking us backwards. It's making it easier to make things worse.

    "Here's our song reduced to a pin drop -- what, what, what?!" Reed explained. "It's like if no one knows any better or doesn't care, it's gonna stay on a really, really low level and people who like good sound are gonna be thought of as some kind of strange zoo animal."

    He goes on to talk about hope for a better technology, so I guess he's just Advanced beyond MP3s and is ready for the next thing. One last bit:

    During the session, Reed said he plans to stage the "Berlin" shows in Europe this summer but not in the United States. The "Berlin" concert concept "wasn't an audition to do more of these things" with any of his other albums, though he said 1992's "Magic and Loss" and 1978's "Street Hassle" would be good candidates if he did want to try it again.

    Please, please do "Street Hassle"! And one last thing from his talk, this from the Dallas News:

    "I have a B.A. in dope. I have a Ph.D. in soul."


    Thursday, March 13, 2008

    More on Advancement

    It should be noted that not just any musician can be Advanced, even if they were once great and then seemingly "lost it." There are prerequisites:

    • You must have been an innovator in your youth
    • You must have had a career longer than fifteen years
    • You must have alienated your original fans
    • You must be completely nonironic
    • You must be unpredictable

    This last point deserves some extra attention.

    Advanced Artists are unpredictable because they make decisions that are truly unexpected rather than simply the opposite of what is expected. For instance, if Bob Dylan says that he would never feature a sax solo in a song of his, it wouldn't be Advanced for him to change his mind and get David Sanborn to sit in on a session (though the Advanced do like David Sanborn). His doing a Victoria's Secret commercial, however, was Advanced. Extremely Advanced. This is true because in the first example, Dylan fans would be able to explain away the sax solo as just another example of his rebelliousness. But the commercial, as Dylan could have easily predicted, saddened his fans and gave his critics another excuse to mourn the further decline of the Voice of a Generation. In reality, this was not some sort of Galilean recanting, but another step in Dylan's own Advanced continuum. Of course being Advanced, Dylan was going to do the commercial regardless of how it would be perceived.

    Tuesday, March 11, 2008

    Video: Lou Reed Inducts Leonard Cohen Into Rock Hall of Fame

    Here's a comment from a YouTuber about this clip:
    That was probably the most boring induction into the Hall of Fame, but then again it's Leonard Cohen being inducted by Lou Reed, so that in itself is a yawn fest.

    But I prefer Mark's comment:
    cough *Lou Reed wearing a leather suit* cough

    Here's the clip:

    Bauhaus Reunion

    From NPR, for some reason:

    In 2005, the band decided to get together due to what Ash calls "irresistible offers from large corporations," in the form of the promoter of the Coachella music festival. The band's drummer, Kevin Haskins, recalls, "I think a band just dropped out, and I think he thought, 'Oh, there's no way they're going to do it.' ... Give it a go ... and, you know, it was a really good offer."


    [O]n the new album, Go Away White, there are moments when that old chemistry reignites. The record's opening track is a pretty un-Bauhaus-sounding, almost jaunty rock tune with a Taxman bass line called "Too Much 21st Century." From there, the band settles comfortably and effectively into its familiar, spare, rock-in-a-minor-key gloom grooves. Unfortunately, in the second half, the songs start to dissolve into slow, maudlin, melodramatic self-indulgence.

    Ash says the record was written and recorded in only 18 days: "This was us four in one big room, for want of a better word, jamming until the magic started happening."

    But the magic didn't last very long. Says Ash, "There were conflicts in the studio, big time, I'm not going to deny that, and it sort of broke the band up. I think the old term is 'musical differences.' "

    There's lots of good Advanced stuff here (selling out, reunions, "Taxman" bass lines), but they kind of blew it there in that last bit. I guess we'll have to wait for another "really good offer" to get Bauhaus back together again.

    Monday, March 10, 2008

    R.E.M. to Debut Album on iLike

    From digital music news:
    R.E.M. will soon debut their next album exclusively on iLike, according to information confirmed this morning. The release, Accelerate, will be streamed on the Facebook application starting March 24th, ahead of a formal in-store of April 1st.

    The band, carried by Warner Music Group, currently boasts an iLike friend total of 299,000. That is likely to increase following the exclusive stream, a major win for the application. R.E.M., which first gained fame in a decidedly non-digital era, carries a fan base that is probably less familiar with the iLike application.
    I hope iLike it.

    Friday, March 07, 2008

    Andrew W.K. and the McLaughlin Group: Oh!

    Stereogum has the story:
    Nowadays The McLaughlin Group is working on a whole other level. The crazy analogies, the bald faced aggression -- it's not simple discourse anymore. The McLaughlin Group is operating on a level that is bigger than just words. That's why Fair Game is thrilled to welcome songwriter and rock star Andrew W. K., who was so inspired by Mclaughlin's artistry -- his poetry -- that he's used it as the basis for a new rock song.
    Stereogum of course has the MP3. I'd like to hear Andrew W.K. do a song based on the poetry of Andrew Dice Clay.

    Thursday, March 06, 2008

    Lou Reed Takes Berlin Out on Tour

    Lou Reed is taking Berlin to Europe (antiMUSIC):

    Lou Reed returns to Europe this June to perform the entirety of his 1973 landmark album. The European dates will see Reed performing with a 30-piece ensemble including his band, a string and horn section and a children's choir.

    The European tour starts June 23rd in Cork, followed by dates in Northern Ireland, Scotland, England, France, Switzerland, Germany, Austria, Denmark, Sweden, Poland, Belgium and Spain. Due to popular demand for this prestigious show, Berlin will make a special return visit to Brussels and Paris.

    Reed will perform three dates in the UK, including the prestigious London Royal Albert Hall on June 30th. He will also perform 'Berlin' at the Edinburgh Playhouse on June 25th, followed by the Nottingham Opera House on June 26th.

    'Berlin' 2008 European Dates:

    June 23 Cork Marquee
    June 24 Belfast Waterfront
    June 25 Edinburgh Playhouse
    June 26 Nottingham Royal Centre
    June 28 Paris Salle Pleyel
    June 30 London Royal Albert Hall
    July 03 Munich Philharmonie
    July 06 Hamburg CCH - Congress Centrum
    July 07 Copenhagen Opera House
    July 09 Stockholm Annexet
    July 11 Tallin Saku Arena (Estonia)
    July 12 Latvia Riga Arena
    July 14 Warsaw Towar
    July 16 Brussels Bozar
    July 19 Lisbon Campo Pequeno
    July 20 Loule Moinumento Dujarte Pacheco
    July 21 Malaga Terral Festival
    July 22 Madrid Conde Duque
    July 25 Girona Portaferrada Festival
    July 26 Benidorm Bullring

    I knew I should have booked my Estonia trip for July!

    Wednesday, March 05, 2008

    EMI to Reissue David Bowie in Desperate Ploy

    Maybe not desperate, but here's the story (The Times online) so you can judge for yourself:
    David Bowie and Pink Floyd albums will be targeted by EMI’s revamped catalogues and compilations division to try to develop new sources of growth in the struggling British music major.

    The idea is to develop the success that EMI has had in repackaging music from the Beatles and Queen and build on a business that EMI said accounted for as much a third of its overall recorded music sales, and somewhat more of its profits.

    In an sign of the importance that Terra Firma, EMI’s owner, attaches to reviving the corporate back catalogue, the private equity group has put Stephen Alexander in charge of the division. He is a close colleague of Guy Hands, the private equity group’s boss.

    Mr Alexander, on his first day in the job, said that EMI had “not unversally applied” the treatment that it had given to the Beatles. “If you look at the recordings of David Bowie, it’s not clear that we have done them anything like justice,” he said.

    The article goes on to say that it might be hard to convince Bowie to allow them to rerelease familiar material, but Advanced Artists usually embrace this strategy. And as you'll see here, there is a real dearth of David Bowie CDs out there.

    But what I'd like to know is what EMI is going to do with Tin Machine.

    Monday, March 03, 2008


    The period before an artist becomes Advanced is called the "Overt" stage. It is called this because during this period the artist is trying to be innovative (or "weird" in Advanced parlance) in an obvious way. A good example of this would be David Bowie's Ziggy Stardust days. It doesn't take much imagination to recognize that a guy in kabuki makeup with shaved eyebrows wants to be seen as weird. (Of course there were hints of Advancement in his Overtness: you can't help but appreciate a space-alien rocker playing an acoustic twelve-string onstage, plus the music happened to be fantastic.) But what were we to make of the cover of "Dancing in the Streets" he did with Mick Jagger? Was that weird? If so, what kind of weirdness was it? What was he hoping to accomplish? Your guess is nearly as good as mine.

    Please don't misunderstand: Overt does not mean "bad." It just means that the artist hasn't Advanced yet. No one could ever say The Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders From Mars was bad, but it was definitely Overt. All Advanced Artists go through an Overt period, and it is during this period when they make their groundbreaking, brilliant music. In other words, the music is great, it's just not Advanced. So when I say that Radiohead are Overt, I don't mean that they aren't any good. They are, and if they split up, Thom Yorke could become Advanced. But if that never happens and they just keep making interesting music they will be one of the all-time-great Overt bands.

    One final thing about Overtness: There are plenty of Overt artists, but just because you're Overt doesn't mean you can become Advanced. You have to be Overt and great, too, and for at least fifteen years. Karen O of the Yeah Yeah Yeahs could make music for 50 years and never be Advanced because her band just isn't good enough (plus she misbehaved at my karaoke show).