Wicked Cool RecordsThe Empty Hearts, the star-studded band that includes founding members of The Cars, Blondie and The Romantics, have released a fifth advance song from their forthcoming sophomore album, the aptly titled The Second Album, which will hit stores on August 28.
The track, "Well, Look at You," is available now as a digital single and via streaming services, and you also can check it out at YouTube and the group's Bandcamp page. All of The Empty Hearts' music is heavily influenced by the sounds of the 1960s, with the new song adding some soul-flavored horns to the mix -- courtesy of The Uptown Horns.
The other tracks from The Second Album that have been released are "The World's Gone Insane," "The Best That I Can," "Coat-Tailer" and "Remember Days Like These," the latter of which features a guest appearance by Ringo Starr on drums.
The Empty Hearts feature Cars guitarist Elliot Easton, Blondie drummer Clem Burke, Romantics singer/guitarist Wally Palmar, and bassist Andy Babiuk of veteran garage-rock band The Chesterfield Kings.
The Second Album is available for pre-order now on multiple formats. Here's the full track list:
"Coat-Tailer" "Remember Days Like These" (featuring Ringo Starr) "Well, Look at You" "Jonathan Harker's Journal" "Sometimes S*** Happens for a Reason" "The Best That I Can" "If I Could Change Your Mind" "Come On and Try It" "The World as We Know It, Moves On" "The Haunting of the Tin Soldier" "Death by Insomnia" "The World's Gone Insane" "Indigo Dusk of the Night"
Thirty TigersHall & Oates member John Oates and his Americana side project The Good Road Bandwill release a new concert album, Live in Nashville, digitally and via streaming services on September 18.
The album, which was recorded this past January at the legendary Nashville venue Station Inn, features Oates and his band performing selections from their 2018 studio effort Arkansas, along with four new original tunes. The live record also finds John paying tribute to his own childhood on a rendition of Don Gibson's "Oh Lonesome Me," which was the first song he learned to sing and play on guitar when was was just six years old.
Arkansas features various songs associated one of Oates' musical heroes, blues legend Mississippi John Hurt, including covers of tunes by such American roots-music greats as Jimmie Rodgers, Blind Blake and Emmett Miller, plus two original compositions.
The Good Road Band is made up of a collective of respected session musicians, among them the acclaimed mandolin player Sam Bush.
"[Live in Nashville] represents a full-circle moment for me," says Oates, who's been quarantining with his family in his Nashville home during the COVID-19 pandemic. "It feels like the culmination of the Arkansas project, being able to bring these guys back, and to be able to make this record after touring and playing so many shows together."
Oates has posted a lyric video featuring footage of him and The Good Road Band at Station Inn playing a version of Miller's 1924 tune "Anytime" -- a song featured on both Arkansas and Live in Nashville -- on his official YouTube channel. The black-and-white clip is has altered to look like a grainy silent film.
Reprise RecordsNeil Young has officially released his updated live acoustic version of his politically charged 2006 song "Lookin' for a Leader."
The new rendition, which features lyrics that take aim at current U.S. president Donald Trump and call for him to be voted out of office, can be heard and viewed at the folk-rock legend's Neil Young Archives website. The track also is available via various digital service providers and at Neil's official YouTube channel.
Young's performance of "Lookin' for a Leader 2020" comes from the latest installment of his "Fireside Sessions" livestream series, which was dubbed the Porch Episode. As the name suggests, the entire episode features Neil singing songs from his porch.
In one of the song's verses, Neil sings, "Just like his big new fence, this president's goin' down/ America's movin' forward, you can feel it in every town/ Scared of his own shadow, building walls around our house/ He's hidin' in his bunker; something else to lie about."
The original version of "Lookin' for a Leader" appeared on Young's 2006 album, Living with War, and focused on the then-current president, George W. Bush.
All six "Fireside Sessions" episodes can be viewed at the "Hearse Theater" section of Young's website. All the installments have been shot by Neil's wife, Daryl Hannah, at their Colorado residence while in lockdown because of the COVID-19 pandemic.
MPL/Capitol/UMeThe 13th and latest installment of Paul McCartney's ongoing Archive Collection reissue campaign, a remastered and expanded version of his 1997 album Flaming Pie, was released today.
The reissue is available in multiple formats and configurations, including a five-CD/two-DVD/four-LP Collector's Edition, a five-CD/two-DVD Deluxe Edition, and three-LP, two-LP and two-CD sets.
Flaming Pie was co-produced by McCartney, George Martin and Jeff Lynne. The record, which peaked at #2 on the Billboard 200, included contributions from McCartney's wife Linda, his son James, Ringo Starr and Steve Miller.
The Collector's Edition CDs feature a remastered version of the original album, plus 32 bonus tracks, including previously unheard demos, rough mixes, B-Sides and Flaming Pie at The Mill -- an hour-long spoken-word CD featuring McCartney giving a tour of his home studio.
The LPs include a half-speed-mastered version of Flaming Pie; an LP of home recordings; and a disc featuring "The Ballad of the Skeletons," Paul's 1996 collaboration with poet Allen Ginsberg, which also featured avant-garde composer Philip Glass and Patti Smith Group guitarist Lenny Kaye.
The DVDs feature the In the World Tonight documentary, music videos, interviews, performances, behind-the-scenes footage and more.
Also included in the package are six silkscreened Linda McCartney art prints, and a 128-page book containing unpublished photos by Linda, an essay about the making of the album, track-by-track information, and new interviews with McCartney, Starr, Lynne, Miller and others.
While the original song had a country twang, this new version contains rocking guitars and pounding drums. It also features some slight tweaks to the lyrics, though the straightforward chorus stays the same.
"Don't you think it's time we put a woman in the White House/With a whole new attitude/We could use a little female common sense/Down on Pennsylvania Avenue," Sheryl sings.
"When I first recorded this song 8 years ago, I was hopeful that we, as a nation, would seize the moment and put a Woman in the White House," she says in a statement. "That did not happen -- but our movement of strength grows as we take to the streets and make our voices heard."
Crow adds, "We must not stop there. It is time for us to show up to the polls, be seen and heard as the great leaders we are."
While there isn't a female presidential candidate this year, Democratic Presidential nominee Joe Biden has vowed to choose a woman as his running mate.
Cleopatra RecordsJethro Tull frontman Ian Anderson has lent his flute talents to a new version of the 1971 Badfinger hit "Day After Day," which also features guitar by veteran English rocker Terry Reid and accompaniment from the U.K.'s Manchester String Quartet.
The new version of the song, which is available now as a digital single and via streaming services, is built around archival vocals that founding Badfinger member Joey Molland recorded in the early 1990s.
"Day After Day" was written and originally sung by late Badfinger singer/guitarist Pete Ham, and was the band's highest-charting song ever in the U.S., peaking at #4 on the Billboard Hot 100. The Beatles' George Harrison produced the original track and contributed a slide-guitar solo to it.
"Like many of my contemporaries, I remember 'The New Beatles,' as Badfinger were unfortunately dubbed by the U.K. press," Anderson notes. "Great songwriting and production by George Harrison. [This version of 'Day After Day' is] brought to life here by the Manchester String Quartet, alumni of the Northern Royal College of Music. I tried to find a few harmonies and simple counterpoints to interject into their splendid performance. For me, an elegant and nostalgic experience."
Adds Reid, "It was great to go back and listen to this song again and get to play guitar on it as I've always loved the band and this song. I got to hang out with Joey back in the day and he's a really great guy and a fine musician. Playing on this song brought back some great memories of a musical era that will never be forgotten by me and many others."
You can check out the new version of "Day After Day" now at YouTube.
Sony LegacyAlan Parker, acclaimed British filmmaker whose many credits include the 1982 movie adaptation of Pink Floyd's concept album The Wall, died Friday after a lengthy illness, according to The Hollywood Reporter. He was 76.
A versatile filmmaker, Parker was known for moving fluidly through various genres -- from the Civil Rights struggle-themed Mississippi Burning through lighter, more music-oriented movies including 1980's Fame, the aforementioned Pink Floyd: The Wall, the beloved 1991 film The Commitments, and the Madonna-starring 1996 big-screen adaptation of the stage musical Evita.
Among Parker's other noteworthy films: Bugsy Malone, Midnight Express, Birdy, Angel Heart and Angela's Ashes.
Two of Parker's movies received Oscar nominations for Best Film and Best Director -- Mississippi Burning and Midnight Express.
Pink Floyd: The Wall won two BAFTAs, the U.K. equivalent of the Academy Awards, for Best Original Song and Best Sound.
Tim Whitby/Getty ImagesIn a wide-ranging, Hollywood Reporter oral history about the making of the groundbreaking 2000 movie X-Men -- complete with backstage drama, lawsuits, and sexual abuse allegations against director Bryan Singer -- was buried an interesting nugget: Michael Jackson tried to get himself to play Professor Xavier in the film.
The role of the powerful mutant eventually went to Patrick Stewart, who already bore a striking resemblance to the comic book character he eventually played throughout the series.
The trade notes that 20th Century Fox "never seriously considered" the late King of Pop for the part, but explains that the superstar -- who at that moment was "already in the thick" of his own sex abuse allegations -- lobbied hard for himself.
Producer Lauren Shuler Donner recalls the star walking into studio offices wearing sunglasses and refusing to shake hands. "I said to him, 'Do you know Xavier is an older white guy?'" Shuler Donner recalls. "And Michael said, 'Oh yeah. You know, I can wear makeup.'"
As proof, the trade notes, Jackson reportedly presented the studio execs with a short film Ghosts, "in which the pop star morphed into a 60-something white mayor railing against a well-meaning performer who entertains local children with magic tricks."
Sony Music EntertainmentAs part of her ongoing series of Friday releases commemorating the 30th anniversary of her debut album, Mariah Carey has dropped a bunch of nostalgic content featuring three hits from her second album: "Emotions," "Make It Happen" and "Can't Let Go".
First, there are new Emotions and Make It Happen remix EPs on all the streaming services right now. The Make It Happen one features three different versions of the song, as well as two live takes: One from New York's Madison Square Garden and one from one of theVH1 Divas Live specials.
The Emotions EP features five different versions of the song, including a nearly eight-minute-long club mix by C&C Music Factory's David Cole and Robert Clivillés.
In addition, Mariah has released a video of her performance of "Can't Let Go" on the British TV show Top of the Pops. It's available on YouTube now. Mariah calls it "Still one of my favorite songs to this day."
Originally released in 2004, the collection includes songs from GN'R's massive 1987 debut Appetite for Destruction through their 1993 covers album "The Spaghetti Incident?", plus the group's version of the Rolling Stones classic "Sympathy for the Devil," which was recorded for the Interview with the Vampire soundtrack.
The vinyl edition also will feature the 1986 song "Shadow of Your Love," which was released for the first time as part of the 2018 Appetite reissue box set. Three versions of the two-LP release will be available -- a standard black-vinyl edition, a colored-vinyl edition that's silver with red-and-white splatter, and a picture- disc version available exclusively from the band's official store.
The Greatest Hits compilation peaked at #3 on the Billboard 200 and has gone on to be certified five-times platinum in the U.S.
Here's the Greatest Hits vinyl track list:
"Welcome to the Jungle" "Sweet Child O' Mine" "Shadow of Your Love" "Patience" "Paradise City" "Knockin' on Heaven's Door" "Civil War" "You Could Be Mind" "Don't Cry (Original Version)" "November Rain" "Live and Let Die" "Yesterdays" "Ain't It Fun" "Since I Don't Have You" "Sympathy for the Devil"
Discussing the inspiration behind the "Charlie Patton Highway," Plant says, "I spent time in the hill country of north Mississippi around Como, dropping back to Clarksdale, the incredible center of Black music talent over the years. I weaved my car through the Delta back roads, listening to the remarkable protestations of Mississippi AM radio. I was looking at my world and my times from this unfamiliar place and found myself exposed to a nightmare world of half-truths."
As previously reported, Digging Deep is a 30-track retrospective that will be available as a two-CD set, as well as digitally and via streaming services. The album's previously released material includes two or more songs from nearly all of Plant's solo albums, spanning from 1982 Pictures at Eleven through 2018's Carry Fire.
The other unreleased tracks are "Nothing Takes the Place of You," a song that Plant recorded for the 2013 film Winter in the Blood; and a duet version of the classic Charlie Feathers rockabilly tune "Too Much Alike" with Patty Griffin.
The announcement of the forthcoming compilation coincided with the launch of the third season of Plant's popular Digging Deep podcast series. New episodes will debut every other week on various streaming services.
UMeJust in time for the Showtime premiere of their self-titled documentary tonight, The Go-Go's have released their first new song in almost 20 years, "Club Zero," which is available now as a digital single and via streaming services.
You also can check out the pop-punk gem at the band's official YouTube channel.
"Club Zero" was self-produced by The Go-Go's and created by the group via email exchange. The music was recorded in San Francisco, while singer Belinda Carlisle's lead vocals were laid down in Los Angeles.
The Go-Go's documentary premieres tonight on Showtime at 9 p.m. ET. Besides telling the story of the famed all-female band's turbulent and triumphant career, the film also features a segment on the making of "Club Zero" and shows the group playing the tune live.
The film was directed by Alison Ellwood, whose previous projects include the recent Epix docuseries Laurel Canyon and 2013's History of the Eagles documentary.
ABC/Eric McCandlessElton John's classic concert series, which he's been hosting on his YouTube channel for the past few weeks, is wrapping up later in the day on Friday with a show that Elton calls "one of the most memorable concerts of my career."
This classic concert video is a combination of two nights that Elton did in 2000 at New York's Madison Square Garden, one of his favorite places to play. Joining him for the show were a slew of famous guests, including Billy Joel, Bryan Adams, Mary J. Blige, Kiki Dee, Irish pop star Ronan Keating and more.
In addition to playing hits from his entire career, Elton also performed a version of The Beatles' "Come Together," a song he'd never before played live.
Among the performances you'll see: Adams joining Elton for "Sad Songs (Say So Much)," "Don't Go Breaking My Heart" with Kiki Dee, "Goodbye Yellow Brick Road" with Joel, "Your Song" with Keating, and "I Guess That's Why They Call It the Blues" with Blige.
The show premieres today -- Friday, July 30 -- at 3 p.m. ET on Elton's YouTube channel. As with all of the shows in Elton's classic concert series, fans are asked to raise funds for the Elton John AIDS Foundation COVID-19 Emergency Fund, either with a direct donation or by buying exclusive merch.
Blue Élan RecordsFounding Yes frontman Jon Anderson's latest solo album, 1000 Hands, gets its official label release today. To celebrate the star-studded record's arrival, Anderson will host an exclusive livestreaming event this Sunday, August 2, at his official Facebook page and at Blue Élan Records' YouTube channel.
The event, which begins at 3 p.m. ET, will feature the 75-year-old Rock & Roll Hall of Famer performing songs from 1000 Hands with his current backing band and being interviewed about the project. Fans can submit questions for Jon to answer during the online special at his Facebook page.
The album is available digitally, on CD and as a deluxe two-LP, 180-gram vinyl package.
As previously reported, Anderson started the album that became 1000 Hands about 30 years ago with a group of musicians that included Yes bassist Chris Squire and drummer Alan White, but shelved the initial recordings to focus on his famous band and other musical endeavors.
A few years ago, veteran producer and pianist Michael Franklin, who earlier had worked on orchestrations for some tracks, convinced Jon to revisit the project and complete the unfinished songs. Over the course of two years, Anderson worked on the album at Franklin's studio in Orlando, Florida.
Franklin also recruited various guests artists to contribute to the record, including Yes guitarist Steve Howe, Jethro Tull's Ian Anderson, Journey's Jonathan Cain, Rick Derringer, Deep Purple's Steve Morse, the Tower of Power horn section, and jazz greats Chick Corea, Billy Cobham and Jean-Luc Ponty.
"With all the love in the world, I am so grateful for the worldwide release of 1000 Hands, which took a lifetime to create. Well, it seems like that!" Anderson says. "Many thanks to all the truly wonderful people who worked on this unique album."
The Go-Go's in 1981; Credit: Paul NatkinThe Go-Go's, the new documentary about the famous all-female rock group of the same name, gets its television premiere tonight on Showtime at 9 p.m. ET. In conjunction with the film's TV debut, the first new Go-Go's song in almost 20 years, "Club Zero," gets released today as a digital single.
"[I]t's a cool song," bassist Kathy Valentine tells ABC Audio. "We wrote it together from remote places, and we recorded it remotely too…[T]he band got together and recorded the track, and then [singer] Belinda [Carlisle] did her vocals at another time."
The documentary features new interviews with all five Go-Go's members -- Valentine, Carlisle, guitarist Jane Wiedlin, keyboardist/guitarist Charlotte Caffey and drummer Gina Schock -- both individually and together.
Valentine notes that the group interview was done at one of the Los Angeles-based band's main stomping grounds, The Whisky a Go Go.
[W]e all met up in Los Angeles and we went to the Whisky a Go Go and went inside," Kathy notes, "and they filmed us working on the new song and did some interview stuff."
The Go-Go's emerged from the late-1970s L.A. punk scene to become the most successful all-female rock band ever, as their 1981 debut album, Beauty and the Beat, spent six weeks at #1 on the Billboard 200. By 1985, however, conflicts and the pressures of fame led the group to break up, although the band members have put aside their differences to reunite multiple times over the years.
"It's a really good story," Valentine says of the documentary, noting that she's happy with the film because, in addition to the drama, "[i]t really tells a lot about our accomplishments and the good stuff that happened."
U2 is known for supporting a variety of charitable efforts around the world, and now the Irish rockers have made a significant donation to help the global live-music industry, which is suffering greatly during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Billboard.com reports that the Rock & Roll Hall of Famers have just given $1.5 million to aid the live-music biz. This follows a 10 million euro -- about $11.8 million -- donation that the band gave toward COVID-19 relief efforts in Ireland back in April.
Included in the $1.5 million sum is a 200,000 euro -- about $237,000 -- donation from U2 for Ireland's live-music industry as part of the Songs from an Empty Room concert special that aired this past week on Irish TV. That event included the recently reported shot-at-home video performance of Led Zeppelin's "Stairway to Heaven" by Bono and The Edge that they dedicated to members of their Irish road crew.
Courtesy of Deniece WilliamsLegendary songbird Deniece Williams recently shared her new single, "When You Love Somebody," from her upcoming album, Gemini.
The groovy R&B track matches up perfectly with her soulful voice, but this would also be the song to turn her project around completely.
"Actually, I have to admit that this song kind of changed my project because the project I was originally going to start on was a jazz project," Deniece tells ABC Audio. "Because I hadn't done jazz, you know I had a lot of success in R&B, a lot of success in pop, a lot of success in the gospel genre but what was left on my heart was to do a jazz project."
But as things progressed and changed, Williams noticed some of the songs fit more into the pop or R&B genre, thus the album name Gemini. Williams hopes this album will give people a closer look at who she truly is.
"I want people to have an overview of who I am as an artist and as a woman," she explains. "The experiences just take me wherever — experiences that I'm going through, experiences that friends are going through, experiences on how I was raised on the different artists, that I love. So that's the feel of this project so that you get a total overview of who I am."
Gemini will arrive by either the end of August or beginning of September, Williams says. This gives fans enough time to savor her illustrious five-decades long career and a bevy of multi-platinum hits such as "Let's Hear It for the Boy," "It's Gonna Take a Miracle," "I Surrender All," and 1984's "Black Butterfly."
Courtesy of Craft RecordingsR.E.M.'s 1999 headlining performance at the U.K.'s famed Glastonbury Festival will be streamed globally via the band's official YouTube channel starting next Thursday, August 6, at 3 p.m. ET.
The free video stream of the concert will be viewable for just 72 hours.
The show took place on June 25, 1999, on the festival's Pyramid Stage following a day of performances by bands including Blondie, Bush and Hole.
"Hole did such a great set, I was like -- 'I've got to ramp this up, I've got to be great,'" frontman Michael Stipe recalls about the concert. "I think it was maybe a moment for R.E.M. and the U.K. where we had kind of been forgotten or pushed aside by younger bands, and that was a particular moment at Glastonbury where I think we pulled ourselves back to the front of the line and actually proved, this is what we're capable of. It was a great show for us!"
The concert featured a lengthy set that boasted a mix of old and new R.E.M. tunes, among them "The One I Love," "Losing My Religion," "Everybody Hurts," "Man on the Moon," What's the Frequency, Kenneth?" and "It's the End of the World as We Know It (And I Feel Fine)."
Adds Stipe, "I felt triumphant every time we played Glastonbury. The band really stepped up. It's such a beloved and legendary event that, y'know, whatever stars are aligned for us personally and as a group; we managed to show the best of ourselves at each of the shows we played there."
The audio of R.E.M.'s 1999 Glastonbury show was included on the 2018 live box set R.E.M. at the BBC.
ABC AudioIn a new post on her official Facebook page, Stevie Nicks shares a recent journal entry in which she implores people to wear masks and take action to help speed the end of the COVID-19 pandemic.
In the note, dated July 17 though just posted, the Fleetwood Mac singer writes that she's just recovered from a stomach ache and, as she listens to music, is happy to be "feeling slightly euphoric and inspired to be alive and still be able to feel young and safe here in my house."
She then notes that while she currently feels hopeful, happy and safe, "Tomorrow when I wake in the afternoon, the news will negate all this goodness until tomorrow night, late when I come back to this place where everything is possible."
Nicks then encourages people to "wear a mask and stay in as much as possible," and to "make it your mission to do all that you can to stop the virus before someone you know falls really ill."
She continues, "In order for us all to get back to our former lives -- we must all change into spiritual warriors -- we must make it our mission to fight this virus."
Stevie adds, "I want to sing for you again. I want to put on those high black suede platform boots and dance for you again. I want you to forget the world and sing with me. Please don't give up on humanity and let this virus win this war. It's up to us now…because nobody is helping us. Nobody is coming to our rescue."
Nicks finishes her entry by paraphrasing the Rolling Stones song "Wild Horses": "I may have my freedom…But I don't have a lot of time."
Eagle Rock EntertainmentThe Rolling Stones will issue a previously unreleased 1989 concert film, Steel Wheels Live -- Atlantic City, New Jersey, and companion album in multiple formats on September 25.
The show, which took place in December 1989 at Atlantic City's Convention Hall, featured guest appearances by Guns N' Roses' Axl Rose and Izzy Stradlin, Eric Clapton, and blues legend John Lee Hooker. The concert, which was part of the tour supporting The Stones' Steel Wheels album, featured a lengthy set that included performances of five songs from the record, as well as classics and select covers.
Rose and Stradlin joined The Stones for a rendition of the 1968 gem "Salt of the Earth," Clapton and The Stones played the blues standard "Little Red Rooster" together, and then Eric and Hooker accompanied the band on a version of John Lee's "Boogie Chillen."
Steel Wheels Live -- Atlantic City is available as a DVD/two-CD set, a standard-def Blu-ray/two-CD collection, a limited-edition four-LP colored-vinyl set, and in various digital formats.
In addition, a limited-edition six-disc version will be sold featuring the Steel Wheels Live DVD, SD Blu-ray and double-CD, as well as a DVD featuring The Stones' performance at the Tokyo Dome during the same tour, and the Steel Wheels Rare Reels CD, which includes live versions songs that weren't part of the trek's core set list.
Also, a limited-edition 10-inch vinyl picture disc featuring a version of "Rock and a Hard Place" from Steel Wheels Live -- Atlantic City, and a performance of "Almost Hear You Sigh" from the Tokyo Dome concert will be released September 26 in conjunction with the 2020 Record Store Day campaign.
Here's the Steel Wheels Live -- Atlantic City track list:
Intro "Start Me Up" "Bitch" "Sad Sad Sad" "Undercover of the Night" "Harlem Shuffle" "Tumbling Dice" "Miss You" "Terrifying" "Ruby Tuesday" "Salt of the Earth -- featuring Axl Rose & Izzy Stradlin "Rock and a Hard Place" "Mixed Emotions" "Honky Tonk Women" "Midnight Rambler" "You Can't Always Get What You Want" "Little Red Rooster" -- featuring Eric Clapton "Boogie Chillen" -- featuring Eric Clapton & John Lee Hooker "Can't Be Seen" "Happy" "Paint It Black" "2,000 Light Years from Home" "Sympathy for the Devil" "Gimme Shelter" "It's Only Rock 'n' Roll (But I Like It)" "Brown Sugar" "(I Can't Get No) Satisfaction" "Jumpin' Jack Flash"