Errols Weekly Music Update.

March 27, 2009

Weekly Update – 03/27/2009

U2 at Giants Stadium on Thurs. Sept. 24. Tickets on sale this Mon. Mar. 30 at 10:00 a.m. $55 – $250.

Metallica at Madison Square Garden on Sat. Nov. 14. Ticket info to follow but right now it looks like general public tickets will be on sale Sat. Apr. 11. I’m so in!!! (It’s karma again- Van Halen played Garden on Nov. 13, 2007 and AC/DC played there on Nov. 13, 2008; both were phenomenal so you know Metallica is going to blow the roof off the Garden).

Indigo Girls at the Central Park Summerstage on Tues. June 16. Tickets on sale today at noon. $37.50

Ben Harper and Relentless 7 at Music Hall of Williamsburg (66 North 6th Street in Brooklyn) on Fri. May 8. Also appearing at Webster Hall in NY on Tues. May 5. Tickets on sale today at noon. $35.

Incubus at Mohegan Sun on Sun. Aug. 2. Tickets on sale Sat. May 30 at 10:00 a.m. $45.

Montgomery Gentry at Mohegan Sun on Sun. July 12. Tickets on sale tomorrow morning at 10:00 a.m. $40.

Al Green has added another date at BB Kings and it will be on Fri. Rocktober 16. Pre-sale tickets for American Express cardholders only on now until Wed. Apr. 1 at 10:00 a.m. General public on sale Wed. Apr. 1 at 10:00 a.m. $175.

The Shins at Terminal 5 on Mon. May 18. Tickets on sale today at noon. Pre-sale for American Express cardholders only on now through 11:00 a.m. this morning. $39.50.

The Beach Boys at the Capital One Theater at Westbury NY on Wed. July 29. Tickets on sale today at 12:30 p.m.(Live Nation Event)

Franki Valli at The Music Box at Borgota in Atlantic City on Fri. – Sun. May 8 – 10. Tickets on sale tomorrow at 10:00 a.m. (Live Nation Event)

The Regeneration Tour featuring Wang Chung, Cutting Crew, Berlin, ABC and Heaven 17 at the Roseland Ballroom on Thurs. June 18. Pre-sale on now for Citi card holders. General public tickets on sale tomorrow at 10:00 a.m. $38. ($40 day of show).

Duff McKagan will be at the Susquehanna Bank Center in Camden NJ on Sun. May 17 for his “Loaded” tour. No ticket info as of yet.

The Offspring with Sum 41 will be at Roseland Ballroom on Mon. July 8 and Starland Ballroom on Sun. July 7. Ticket information to follow.

The Meat Puppets at Mercury Lounge in NYC on Thurs. & Fri. June 11 and 12. Pre-sale tickets for American Express cardholders on through 11:00 a.m. this morning. General public on sale at noon. $16.

Korn with Shadows Fall and Dark Day Sunday at the Chevrolet Theater in Wallingford CT. Tickets on sale this morning at 10:00 a.m. (Live Nation Event).

Phish at the Meadows Music Center in Hartford CT on Fri. Aug. 14. Tickets on sale at noon tomorrow. (Live Nation Event).

Night Ranger at BB Kings on Mon. Aug. 17. Tickets on sale tomorrow morning at 10:00 a.m. $27.50

Other items:

There is “lots of buzz” surrounding the release of “Crack the Skye” by Mastodon. I have to admit that this may be the album to pull me in. I like the tune “Divinations” – you can catch the video on MTV- that’s how I came across the tune-yes the video is cool, the ending is weird and somewhat disturbing but I guess it has to be for metal, right? Rolling Stone put a four star rating on the album and every outlet that I have scanned has all given a thumbs way up. Many consider this to be their “breakout” album. Like I said, the bait is there for me-the question is will I bite? There is a standard version and a deluxe version which is a “score” of the album with instruments only.

Papa Roach has released “Metamorphosis” and judging by the 30 second sample from I-Tunes, it sounds pretty good. It seems the “die-hard” fan is very upset with the change in the direction of the band. (according to them). But as I always say- bands will “branch out” somewhat and make changes that will not please every fan but sometimes it has to be done. Overall the I-Tune listeners give it a four star rating.

I came across a band called “Cage The Elephant” and I have to tell you my first impression is very favorable, I like their sound- it is full of energy. I would say they could be the modern day “Joe Jackson.” The one thing I don’t like is the stupid cursing in the songs, especially on “Back Stabbin’ Betty.”

Look for a new commercial for Dr. Pepper next week starring Gene Simmons as he was picked to represent their new Dr. Pepper Cherry flavored soda. Gene will be in his ”demon” get-up and his son, Nick, will also star in the commercial.

Did you catch Condoleezza Rice on the Jay Leno show this past Tuesday? She said that her favorite “music’ (band) is Led Zeppelin. That’s right- Led Zeppelin!! How cool is that?

Tool will embark on a national tour this summer. No dates announced as of yet. They will supposedly join the Lollapalooza Event this Aug. 7-9 at Grant Park in Chicago. This event lineup will be announced on April 21.

It’s confirmed: Jason Newsted will perform with Metallica at their Rock and Roll Hall of Fame induction ceremony on Sat. Apr. 4 (live on FUSE). That is great news!!!

Prediction: The final two contestants on American Idol this year will be Adam Lambert and Allison Iraheta with Lambert ultimately winning by a close vote.

Chickenfoot, featuring Sammy Hagar, Michael Anthony, Joe Satriani and Chad Smith have released their first two tracks off of their upcoming debut album. Sounds smoking hot with heavy riffs from Satchmo.Check it out at http://www.chickenfoot.us/

Marilyn Manson’s “The High End of Low” will be released on May 26. The first single “Arma…geddon” will hit radio on April 13.

This week’s I-Pod shuffle landed on “Hand of Doom” from the album that marked the beginning of a genre now known as Metal: the historic, monumental, colossal, immense epic titled “Paranoid” by the legendary Black Sabbath. Of course I had to treat myself again with another dose of this 42 minute classic album. Sabbath fans know that the band wanted the album name to be “War Pigs” but record company executives at Warner Records did not want to upset any supporters of the Vietnam War and changed the name of the album to “Paranoid.” The song “Paranoid” was the last song supplied to this album as Warner wanted eight songs and according to Mr. Bill Ward, drummer, they performed and produced the song in a whole 25 minutes. The song was to be “filler” and turned out to be a huge hit for them. “Paranoid” the album has sold over 4 million copies in the U.S. alone with virtually no radio airplay, especially when it was first released. Critics back in 1970 lambasted it and was only recently that the more current critics call it a landmark album that sculpted heavy metal music forever.

Side one starts off with the Mr. Tony Iommi’s classic guitar sound that takes you to a battle ground with its slow trudging sound surrounded by the sound of alarms which paint of picture of an imminent confrontation of some sort. Then a young man’s voice, Mr. Ozzy Osbourne, comes on like he is in the West Wing surrounded by world leaders and declares “Generals gathered in their masses, just like witches at black masses, evil minds that plot destruction…” The incomparable “War Pigs.” Every time you hear it you get chills, right? The drumming by Mr. Ward is flat out spectacular in this song (and throughout this album and his career) accompanied by the electrifying guitar work by Mr. Iommi. The stop and starts, twist and turns started here and definitely influenced so many bands in this genre that I would say that they are the “Beatles” of the heavy metal scene. Think of Metallica’s twist and turns, blazing riffs that suddenly take a different route, where do you think they received this from? That’s right Black Sabbath. Track # 2 is the filler, “Paranoid” which is less than three minutes but packs a wallop of a punch. This is where “head-banging” started as you can not but help slamming your head north to south, east to west and directions you never thought possible. No matter how many times I hear this song, I get totally pumped and you have to make your ears bleed when you listen to this song. This song was later covered by Megadeth. “Planet Caravan” is a psychedelic tune that leaves you wanting more. It is a haunting sort of song (not like “Black Sabbath”) which showcases their ability as melodic musicians. They definitely influenced Soundgarden because if you listen to “Head Down” or “Blow Up the Outside World” you can feel Planet Caravan in their somewhere. Of course this classic tune was covered by Pantera-one of the friggin’ most pulverizing metal bands ever. (On a side note Pantera also covers “Hole in the Sky” from Sabbath’s “Sabotage.”). Side one ends with arguably their most popular song- “Iron Man.” I have to admit that I have heard this song so many times over the years that on occasion I have to be in the “mood” for it. If I have not heard it in a long time I’m sucked back in and listen to the nearly six minute masterpiece. How can you not love the beginning with the bass drum beating slowly with that distinctive swelling sound from Iommi’s guitar as Ozzy in a deep voice states “I am Iron Man.” OK I’m in… the drum work is fantastic, Mr. Ward sometimes gets over looked as one of the best drummers of his time. It was like a shortstop who tried to make the All Star game for the National League during the time when Ozzie Smith played that position for the Cardinals for which seemed like an eternity. Mr. Ward had to deal with Mr. John Bonham for many years and even though I still say John was the best ever doesn’t mean that Bill was a slouch-on the contrary- he is/was phenomenal.

Side two starts off with “Electric Funeral” which is much less heralded than the other tracks on the disc but make no mistake: this tune flat out rocks. The arrangement is great as the song changes gears more than a few times and Ozzy is at the top of his game with his vocal splashing along side the high pitch guitar work of Mr. Iommi. If you listen carefully you can hear the nice bass work from Mr. Geezer Butler and before you know it, the song ends and you’re like what??? Track two, the aforementioned “Hand of Doom” is the “dark horse” of this album and could be the best track on this classic disc. It has sort of a bluesy R&B twist to it, then transforms into heavy metal at its best. The song takes a dramatic turn about two minutes into it and quickly picks up the pace as Ozzy perfectly sings along to the driving guitar sound as your head bounces up and down. You then try to turn into an “air-drummer” as Bill’s constant pouncing on the skins makes you stand up and notice. Then just as quickly, Geezer slows things down again about five minutes into it and there it is again- that R&B twist. Hold on for the ride as the roller coaster begins as you increase speed like you’re going down a hill then just like that you are headed back up a monstrous hill slowing things down a bit. The song does end on an uphill as you drift off with the slow groove. Classic, I need to listen again. “Rat Salad” is the instrumental song that most likely influenced Rush, as they always seemed to have an instrumental tune on their discs. The song is over before you know it and thus leads to my personal favorite track on the album- the last song “Jack the Stripper/Fairies Wear Boots.” I can’t even put into words how great this song is. This is one of the best songs, if not the best song ever recorded by Black Sabbath and many others for that matter. I bow in admiration, (and everyone else should as well) like they did in “Wayne’s World” because I (we) are not worthy. I remember when Sal and I went to see Saliva a few years back and they played this song for the crowd before Saliva hit the stage and to my pleasant surprise all of the kids knew the song word for word. I felt like a proud father, it gave me goose bumps. Everyone from Geezer, Bill, Ozzy and Tony are at the top of their game for this one and making a better song than this one would be like someone breaking Joe DiMaggio’s 56 game hitting streak-ain’t happening. (Think I like this song?)

Whew, well Ok I’m not even going to ask if this album is in your library, I’m going on the assumption that it is and won’t take no for an answer. Seriously folks, if you don’t have this one there is something seriously wrong. ‘Nuff Said!!

My favorite “old school” song of the week is “Stuck in the Middle with You” by Stealers Wheel. Now tell me, when was the last time you heard this song? I caught it the other day on an “oldies” station (which by the way plays the music that I grew up with, so yes I’m officially old). Very cool song.

Pete Yorn has released a new single this week called “Don’t Wanna Cry.” I like it, check it out!!

Back on this day in 1965 the Supremes had the number one hit with “Stop in the Name of Love.”

Back on this day in 1974, John Denver had the number one hit with “Sunshine on My Shoulders.” (Love that song).

Back on this day in 1979, Eric Clapton married Patti Boyd, ex-wife of George Harrison, whom he wrote the song “Layla” about. Harrison had penned “Something” for her. Two giant masterpieces written for Ms. Boyd.

If it is your birthday today you share the same birth date with Mariah Carey, Tony Banks (Genesis) and the late legendary Sarah Vaughan.

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March 20, 2009

Weekly Update – 03/20/2009

Pete Seeger’s 90th birthday will be celebrated at Madison Square Garden on Sun. May 3. Artists to perform are Pete himself, Richie Havens, Bruce Springsteen, Bob Dylan, John Mellencamp, Eddie Vedder, Joan Baez, Warren Hayes, Dave Matthews and many more. Pre-sale tickets for American Express Cardholders only begins Mon. Mar. 23 at 9:00 a.m. and goes to Sun. Mar. 29 until 9:00 p.m. General public on sale Mon. Mar. 30 at 9:00 a.m. $19 – $250 (with most being $90, his age)

Nine Inch Nails with Jane’s Addiction at PNC Arts Center on Sat. June 6 and Jones Beach on Sun. June 7. Tickets on sale today at noon. (Live Nation Event)

Chicago with Earth Wind & Fire at the Borgota Event Center in Atlantic City on Fri. & Sat. June 12 & 13. Tickets on sale tomorrow at 10:00 a.m. (Live Nation Event) Also appearing at Madison Square Garden on Wed. June 17. Pre-sale tickets begin this morning at 10:00 a.m. on go until 10:00 p.m. this Sun. Mar. 22. The password is HEEWF. General public on sale Mon. Mar. 23 at 10:00 a.m. $35 – $99.50

Kenny Chesney at Jones Beach on Wed. June 24. Tickets on sale tomorrow morning at 10:00 a.m. (Live Nation Event).

Andrea Bocelli at Madison Square Garden on Thurs. June 18. Pre-sale tickets for American Express cardholders only begins on Sunday at 9:00 a.m. and runs to Fri. Mar. 27 at 9:00 p.m. General public on sale on Mon. Mar. 30 at 10:00 a.m. $79.50 – $354.50

Patty Smyth & Scandal at BB Kings on Sat. June 13. Tickets on sale this morning at 10:00 a.m. $30.

Al Green at BB Kings on Sat. Rocktober 17. Pre-sale tickets for American Express cardholders only begins next Wed. Mar. 25 at 10:00 a.m. until the following Wed. Apr. 1 at 10:00 a.m. General public on sale Wed. Apr. 1 at 10:00 a.m. $175. (Al- Are you kidding me? $175 per seat Do you know we’re in a recession? I love the guy but $175? I’m stunned).

Taylor Swift at Mohegan Sun on Fri. Aug. 28. Tickets on sale this morning at 10:00 a.m. $49.50 – $59.50.

Other items:

Coldplay has announced a summer tour and the closest they will be to the Tri-State area (so far based on the announcement) is The Meadows in Hartford (Sat. May 23) CT, Hershey Park in PA (Sun. May 24).

Lynyrd Skynyrd is headed back to the studio for the first time since 2003 and will tour again with Kid Rock this summer. The “Rock and Rebels” tour will be coming to a town near you. Speaking of Mr. Kid, he is currently in the studio and is “hot” in his words as he says he will probably release a new disc very soon. I’m in!!

The music of Pearl Jam will be featured on the CBS show “Cold Case.” The show’s producers will choose 16 songs from their entire catalog for the two-part season finale to be shown on May 3 and May 10. This is the first time any one has had free reign to choose from PJ’s catalog.

VH1 is reviving the show “Behind the Music”- a show that I watched religiously when it use to be on Sunday nights. Scott Weiland and Lil Wayne have agreed to tell their stories. I will be watching again.

Last week I told you about Carrie Underwood covering Motley Crue and supposedly Nikki Sixx has stated that he wants to collaborate and write songs with her. “She’s a pop singer and I’m a pop writer” says the Sixx man.

Prediction: U2’s song “I’ll Go Crazy If I Don’t Go Crazy Tonight” off of their new release “No Line on the Horizon” will be the biggest song during the upcoming summer season.

These are my new favorite songs of the week, in no particular order: “I Told You So” by Carrie Underwood featuring Randy Travis. It is a beautiful song with the perfect mixture of that high and low pitch blending into something smooth. It’s mind boggling to me on how big a star Miss Underwood has become, already a member of the Grand Ole Opry and now singing a duet with a Country legend. They did a wonderful job performing it together live for the first time on American Idol, she really has an amazing voice and I just get mesmerized by her every time. “Then” by Brad Paisley is destined to become a first dance wedding song from a gentlemen’s point of view. This song will tug at your heart and has a pleasing melody. He also did a nice job on American Idol. “Manhattan from the Sky” by Kate Voegele has a catchy hook and is a nice pop song. It will be all over the radio very soon. Sounds like Michele Branch.

OK this week’s I-Pod shuffle landed on “The Band Wore Blue Shirts” from Mr. Joe Jackson and you know I had to go and listen to a heavy dosage of “I’m the Man” but also “Look Sharp.” Now I have never done this but I can’t really call either album a “classic” and I also can’t do a perfect album side for either because there is at least one song on all four sides that I can’t call “perfect”; I have to remain true to my standards. However, combining these albums together, there are more than enough songs to say that he put out some “classic tunes” in 1979. Both albums were released in 1979. “Look Sharp” in April and “I’m the Man” later on in Rocktober. Can you imagine that? The closest anyone does these days is maybe a year in between albums. Any way, this week I will tell you what songs I have put on my I-Pod from these two albums. I own the original albums (back in 1979) and then later on purchased the CD’s, so you know I am a huge fan for both. I am telling you right now folks, Joe Jackson has made some really cool music in his career. He has done most everything from rock, punk, new wave, big band & swing (“Jumpin’ Jive”-which I love also) jazz and anything else you can think of and he’s still performing. My love of his music was the beginning of his career when he exploded on to the new wave (or whatever you want to call it) scene and he was the first person that I went to see in concert at the age of 15 in New York’s Central Park. Joe- “You Da Man!!”

Look Sharp

“One More Time”-The opening guitar (Mr. Gary Sanford) and bass (Mr. Graham Maby) lines will hook you right in. You slide right into the drums (Mr. Dave Houghton) as Joe’s distinctive voice rolls in and before long you are dancing around the room. “Say you’re leaving..one more time..” It has a funky sound and I typically “air-guitar” the bass part. Great way to start off the album.

“Sunday Papers”-This was my first introduction to Mr. Jackson. When I first heard it on the radio back in 1979 I had to find out who produced that kind of sound. How freakin’ great is this song? Again the bass part shines on this classic tune. Joe had a way of expressing himself and his lyrics tell a story in almost every song he does. “Well I got nothing against the press, they wouldn’t print it if it wasn’t true…” I can’t get this song out of my head once I hear it, what about you?

“Is She Really Going Out With Him”- This song hit home for me at the time and this is one of my personal favorites from Joe. “Pretty women out walkin’ with gorillas down my street” Again how cool are the lyrics? The arrangement of this song is top notch and sounds as fresh today as it did 30 years ago. (did I just write that? 30?? OMG)

“Throw It Away”- This is the punk, new wave I was talking about. This song explodes from the beginning and stays that way until the end. Joe’s piano work puts the touch on this tune as you will have to listen to it again as it is only 2 minutes and 49 seconds long.

“Baby Stick Around”-This song is pure fun, like most of his early compositions. This is a hand clapping song as you form a circle on the dance floor and everyone takes turns doing something silly in the middle- you know what I’m talking about.

“Look Sharp”- FRIGGIN’ PHENOMENAL SONG!! It is cranking right now and this could be the coolest and slickest song he’s ever written. Mr. Houghton’s drum skills shine brightly and the song takes many different twists and turns, especially the part when Joe and Dave duel each other with the piano and drums. “Big Shot, thanks a lot… got to go it’s getting late.” There is no other way to listen to this song: LOUD!!

“Pretty Girls”- Another cool song, the man exudes coolness, what can I say? This song flat out rocks, rolls and has to get you out of your seat. This is perfect song when you are cleaning around the house. Sorry Joe I know that ain’t cool but at least I stop when I’m cleaning to dance around the room when I hear it.

“Got The Time”- This could be considered a “thrash” song as you will be head banging in no time. Actually the thrash metal band Anthrax covers it on their “Persistence of Time” album. The bass work is fantastic. I usually jump around in a circle like I am in a mash pit. This was a boot camp song for us back at MBIA-thanks Nick!!

I’m The Man

“On Your Radio”-Now when this song hit the airwaves it was right around the same time that Donna Summer had a song with the same title and of course when I was 14 disco was out, so you know who had the better song, right? (Of course I like her version now).This ranks up high as one of my favorite Joe Jackson song. The chorus is addictive and I can’t stop singing it. The lyrics are so good that I feel like putting down the whole song right now but I won’t bore you. When’s the last time you have heard this song? Put it on now baby!!

“Kinda Kute”- This was purposely done to be a ‘pop’ song and it definitely worked for me as this is a super solid tune. “You make a guy feel humble I make a fool of myself again.” The bass work will have you sliding across the floor while moving your shoulders up and down. “I’m the guy with the big feet but plenty of nerve..” Joe’s work on the piano is flawless and you can feel his passion as he belts out the song.

“It’s Different for Girls”- this low key, almost sullen song has a way of hooking you in, especially when his voice rises to get your attention. “No not love she said.. you’re all the same.”

“I’m the Man”- THIS IS MY FAVORITE JOE JACKSON SONG!!! I know every lyric and this would be my pick to sing at a karaoke bar. I can’t get enough of this song. It has it all for me- drums, guitar, passion and head banging at its best!! “Kung Fu well that was one of my good ones…” This song drives my wife crazy as I always play it as loud as I can and she says all he says is “I’m the Man”. I admit that this song can make you mad if you are not in the mood for it. But I am always in the mood for it!!! I usually get dizzy by the end of the song as I am just constantly dancing around in a circle and bouncing my head up and down. This was a boot camp classic as well.

“The Band Wore Blue Shirts”- This song takes you back down to earth after the exhilarating “I’m the Man” but it doesn’t mean that you can’t like it. This is the “dark horse” song on this album and if you listen closely you will be amazed on how good it really is.

“Don’t Wanna be like That”- traditional Joe Jackson sound and hand clapping is a must!! I would love to perform the video for this song. This is one of his best songs, period end of story!!

“Friday”- How many times did WNEW FM radio station in New York play this song back in the day? Yes, especially on Friday’s!!It has an infectious groove that starts, stops and turns in so many ways that it is hard to keep up. It even has a “disco” part in the middle. Listen LOUD!!!

Ok now I know some of you maybe thinking that if I had thrown “Happy Loving Couples” on the “Look Sharp” album I could have a “perfect” album side and I can’t argue with you, but something held me back on proclaiming that side one is indeed perfect. Joe Jackson has his foot steps planted in rock & roll history and his library is extensive, so do yourself a favor: familiarize yourself with this man and his music- you will not be disappointed.

I had a heavy rotation of Alice In Chains this week in my car and I-Pod. I like their albums but many of the songs by Layne were just too weird for me to call one album a total classic. “Dirt” comes the closest in my opinion. (easy now AIC fans). My favorite album from them is “Jar of Flies.” Here are my top 10 songs from AIC:

10.     We Die Young– Ironic song title isn’t it? After I saw these guys open for Van Halen back in the day, I ran out to the store and bought Facelift. This song kicks off the album and flat out rocks.

9.     It Ain’t Like That– Heavy grunge with that distinctive guitar work from Jerry Cantrell. Funky groove with a slow driving beat that will have you doing a slow “head-bang” motion and then Jerry explodes with the guitar solo.

8.     Angry Chair– Yes I know this is a Staley song-I didn’t say all his songs were weird- well yes this one is to but I love it. The vocals are what pulls me in and of course Jerry’s guitar playing is spot on. The arrangement of this song is very good, listen to it.

7.    Whale & Wasp– When Jar of Flies came out I couldn’t believe it was AIC and I immediately fell in love with the CD and this is one of my favorites. This instrumental only song really hits the spot!!

6.     Down In A Hole– Even though I have heard this song millions of times, I still have to put it in my top 10. Layne’s passion bleeds through the speakers-that is the best part of this song. AIC background vocals are always good and especially in this song.

5.     Would– This heavy rocker can compete with anything. Listen to this in your car with the windows down and of course blasting your ears off, you won’t be disappointed.

4.     Them Bones– You want to talk about heavy? Phew this song kicks my ass every time I hear it. I can’t get enough of it. Saw Jerry do this at Giants stadium way back when he opened for Metallica.

3.     Dam That River– Have to have this right here because “Them Bones” & “Dam That River” are the best one-two punch to ever kick off an album. Now of course the lyrics are not too nice but this song flat ROCKS!!!

2.     Again– Every time I hear this song all day long all I say is “Hey.” I think this is one of Layne’s best piece of work with his vocals. The driving beat with his distinctive voice reels you in. “Yeah!!”

1.     Don’t Follow– I stop in my tracks whenever I hear this song. The pure beauty of this tune gets me and now unfortunately it makes me think of Layne and what a shame it was to lose him at such a young age. But at least we can listen to him and think of the good times.

Now I know there are more songs to pick from but that’s why lists are great in my opinion because it gets you thinking and some will agree while others will vehemently disagree. I like to hear the dissenting views. The band is still relevant today and hopefully they will continue the catalog so we can do a top ten list with their new material with Mr. DuVall on vocals.

The New York Dolls have reunited with Todd Rundgren-who produced their debut album- and they will work on a new collection of work to be released hopefully this year.

Sadly back on this day in 1991, Eric Clapton’s four year old son, Conor, died when he fell out a window and inspired the song “Tears In Heaven.”

Back on this day in 1990, Gloria Estefan injured her back when the bus she was traveling in was hit by a tractor. I remember that, I can’t believe that was 19 years ago.

Back on this day in 1969, John Lennon married Yoko Ono and a year later on the same date David Bowie married Angela Barnett.

If it is your birthday you share it with the following: Chester Bennington (Linkin’ Park); Nick Wheeler (All American Rejects); James McDonnell (Stray Cats); Jimmie Lee Vaughn (you should know); Carl Palmer (ditto)

March 13, 2009

Weekly Update – 03/13/2009

U2 at Giants Stadium on Thurs. Sept. 24. At Gillette Stadium in Foxboro Mass on Sun. Mar. 20. Ticket information to follow.

Jimmy Buffet & the Coral Reefer Band at Jones Beach on Wed. Aug. 26. Tickets on sale this Mon. Mar. 16 at 10:00 a.m. $56 – $156.

Nickelback at Jones Beach on Wed. July 15 and at PNC Arts Center on Tues. July 21. Tickets on sale tomorrow morning at 10:00 a.m. (Live Nation Event).

Dave Matthews Band at Jones Beach on Tues. & Wed. July 21 & 22. Tickets on sale this morning at 9:00 a.m. (Live Nation)

Taylor Swift with Kellie Pickler at the Madison Square Garden on Thurs. Aug. 27. Pre-sale tickets for American Express cardholders only on now through 10:00 p.m. tonight. General public on sale tomorrow at 10:00 a.m.$24.50 – $79.50.

Aretha Franklin at Radio City Music Hall on Thurs. Sept. 17. Pre-sale tickets for American Express cardholders only begins today at 10:00 a.m. until next Thurs. Mar. 19 at 10:00 p.m. General public on sale next Fri. Mar. 20 at 10:00 a.m. $54.50 – $94.50.

Depeche Mode at Madison Square Garden on Mon. Aug. 3. Pre-sale on now for Citi card holders only until 10:00 p.m. tonight. General public on sale this Mon. Mar. 16 at 10:00 a.m.$49.50 – $129.50.

The Doves at Terminal 5 on Thurs. June 4. Pre-sale on now for American Express cardholders until 10:00 a.m. General public on sale today at noon. $32.

Cake at Terminal 5 on Fri. May 29. Tickets on sale now. $35.

MGMT at Unisoul Circus in Prospect Park (next to Wollman Rink) in Brooklyn on Wed. July 1. Pre-sale on now for American Express cardholders until 10:00 a.m. this morning. General public on sale today at noon. $30

James Morrison at the Webster Hall of on Thurs. Apr. 30. Pre-sale for American Express cardholders ends today at noon. General public on sale today at noon. $20

Explosions in the Sky at Central Park Summerstage on Tues. June 30. Pre-sale tickets for American Express cardholders only until noon today. General public on-sale tomorrow at noon. $25.

India Arie at the Manhattan Center Grand Ballroom on Fri. May 1. Pre-sale tickets for American Express cardholders only until 11:00 a.m. this morning. General public on sale today at noon. $48.

Yanni at Radio City Music Hall on Fri. & Sat. May 1 & 2. Pre-sale tickets on sale this morning at 9:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m. tonight. The password is HEYANNI. General public on sale tomorrow at 9:00 a.m. $55 – $125..

Tesla at The Chance in Poughkeepsie NY on Mon. Apr. 27; Also appearing at Toad’s Place in New Haven CT on Tues. Apr. 28 and the Wellmont Theater in Montclair NJ on Fri. May 1. Ticket info to follow.

The Fabulous Thunderbirds at BB Kings on Wed. Aug. 5. Tickets on sale Tues. Mar. 17 at 6:00 p.m.  $25 ($30 day of show).

Other items:

Have you heard Seether’s version of the 1984 hit “Careless Whisper” by Wham? I played the song for my wife without telling her who it was. As she is listening, she says “I know this song” and while she’s singing the lyrics word for word she is surprised that she likes the version because she says “it’s heavier than the original.” When I told her it was Wham’s hit she was shocked. (She has no idea who Seether is). I tell you, I like this version better than the original. Take a listen for yourself at http://www.imeem.com/seether

Carrie Underwood has covered the Motley Crue classic “Home Sweet Home” and I-Tunes has released it as a single. If you purchase the song before March 16, part of the proceeds from the sale of this song will go to The Humane Society of the United States. This is the “send-off” song for this year’s American Idol Contest as each contestant is voted off. I am a fan of this cover and have purchased it!!

Speaking of American Idol, I was happy that Anoop Desai was given another chance to be the lucky # 13 in the contest but after his performance on Tuesday night, he really deserved to be one of the two contestants that were voted off. I was surprised that Megan Joy Corkey made it through with her awkward cover of “Rockin’ Robin.” Simon was especially weird this week with his comments; he didn’t appear to be focused on the musical aspects of the contestants at all.

My new favorite song of the week is “Kiss A Girl” released by Keith Urban off of his upcoming album “Defying Gravity” which will issued on March 31. This is the second single, the first “Sweet Thing” came out in November.

My favorite “old school” song of the week is “I Saw the Light” by Todd Rundgren. The man has some big big hits and he is still going strong, probably at a theater near you very soon. Look for him!!

CD Review: “No Line on The Horizon” by U2 released Tues. Mar. 3, 2009

OK I have to admit I was swept up in all the frenetic wave of promotion for U2’s eleventh studio album- “No Line on the Horizon.” I have to say that they must have a good publicist team because they were every where last week: Mayor Bloomberg temporarily renamed a NYC street after the band, they appeared on the Late Night show with David Letterman for five straight nights (a first for this show) and then they topped it off with a free show in the Bronx (Fordham University) last Friday morning which was broadcast live on ABC’s “Good Morning America.” (GMA) Despite the media blitz, which was very appealing, the main factor on purchasing this album was do to my family’s enthusiastic response to their performance on GMA. They stated that the new songs were good and their concert was real impressive. This was the deciding factor which pushed me to click on the “yes” button to the phrase “Are you sure you want to download No Line on the Horizon?”

As I mentioned last week, I don’t get all the fuss made about this band but freely admit that I recognize their place in rock and roll history. I do admire and appreciate all the humanitarian efforts that Bono passionately participates in. He is a sincere and noble individual. Part of the reason for my not understanding the hoopla surrounding this band is due to my opinion that many of their albums in the past 15 years have not been that memorable. (and I know I just pissed off many U2 fans out there who maybe have jumped off my page and swore that they won’t come back). However, this album has clearly made up for all that and due to the inspiring & substantive effort by the boys from Ireland, I am back on the bandwagon. As the first quarter of 2009 approaches its end, this is clearly the best album for the year so far.

The album cover is very cool and the disc kicks off with the title track. It starts off with what seems to be “feedback- like” sound from The Edge on guitar as Bono awaits his entrance, the transition is real smooth and the song really kicks into gear once Larry Mullen Jr. pounds his way into your ears. You will be singing the line “I know a girl” throughout the day once you hear this song more than once. Track two, “Magnificent” starts off with a “White Stripes-ish” bass sound and then quickly turns into that very familiar sound that U2 fans are accustomed with. This song is being depicted as one of their best songs ever from many fans and critics alike. I’ll admit that it is “epic-like” and is a very inspiring song but I’m not ready to name it the best song on the album. (On a side note-it is also very hard to pick the best song on the album because there are many to pick from). With that I will say that “Moment of Surrender” is one of my favorites on the album. “I tied myself with wire to set the horse free” exclaims Bono in his passionate manner. I love the chorus “At the moment of surrender.. of vision over visibility..I did not notice the passers-by and they did not notice me.” This song is hypnotic and you will find yourself drifting off into a serene place. Track four, “Unknown Caller” is the “dark horse” on this album; it will definitely creep up on you before long and just may become your favorite track on the album. Very cool lyrics.. “I had driven to the seen of the accident and I sat there waiting for me..” The Edge has a notable guitar solo which drives the song home.

The album starts to pick the pace up a bit with “I’ll Go Crazy If I Don’t Go Crazy Tonight.” This is a fun song and sure to be a fan favorite at the live shows. If you listen carefully you can hear a tinge of Journey as part of the song sounds like part of “Faithfully.” Track six, “Get On Your Boots” (the first single released) has really grown on me and it is musically stirring as the arrangement is top notch. To me, this has a Lenny Kravitz feel to it and the song takes off when Bono shrieks “Let Me in the Sound” and Mr. Mullens applies a funky drum beat to enhance the quality. The Edge rips in and makes you glide your feet with his guitar playing. “Stand Up Comedy” keeps the upbeat part of this album going as you dance around the room singing “C’mon people stand up for your love.” This song is filled with a psychedelic funky beat that is infectious. Again the arrangement is top notch and both Adam Clayton (bass) and The Edge shine brightly on this “sure to be a radio hit.” Track eight, “Fez: Being Born” is U2 the way they are suppose to sound in 2009. This song is so contemporary and utilizes rap along with a classical touch that sets it apart from any song on the album. “White as Snow” takes the pace down a bit but it is my favorite track on the album. This is a beautiful song and I love it when Bono screams out “To Sleep the night shooting out the stars.”

Track ten, “Breathe” reminds of me of something that the Who might perform, it has a heavy drum beat with a rocking guitar riff, sprinkled with piano as Bono rips off a “rap-like” style to keep up with the pace. This is destined to be a fan favorite as well on their upcoming tour. The Edge again is at the top of his game on this tune as the whole band puts it together so well that you don’t want the song to end. This “classic” album ends with the emotional “Cedars of Lebanon.”The lyrics really hit home.

So there it is my adventure back into the world of U2. Yes it was a quick decision to dive into this album but after giving it a few listens, I am hooked. If you listen closely there is a message that eventually emerges and lets you know that despite all the real life experiences in the world right now, there is opportunity for optimism. It’s up to us people, U2 has led us to the water and before you know it, there is no line on the horizon.

Prince is following in the footsteps of U2 and will perform three nights in a row on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno beginning on Mon. Mar. 25 – Wed. Mar. 27. This is anticipation of his two new releases scheduled for Sun. Mar. 29: “LOtUSFLOW3R” and MPLSoUND” Both CD’s along with a third by Bria Valente will available exclusively through Target for a price of $11.98 (can’t beat that). He will also perform on Jay’s last show, scheduled for Thurs. May 28.

Jack White is giving Warren Hayes as run for his money as he is now starting his third band- The Dead Weather- includes Alison Mosshart of the Kills, Dean Fertita of Queens of the Stone Age and Jack Lawrence of the Greenhornes. Fertita and Lawrence also play alongside Jack in The Raconteurs. The Dead Weather debut album is expected in June.  Mr. White will be playing the drums for this band and Alison will sing lead on most tracks.

Keeping pace with those who seem to be everywhere… Bret Michaels is set to release a “tell-all” book on his life experiences. “Roses and Thorns” is due out in June. How does he have time to write a book as he is working on a solo album, getting ready to tour with Poison and seems to be on every show on VH1, no?

From the pages of “Say it Ain’t So”… the Wall Street Journal ran an article this week accusing some artists of cavorting with Ticket Master to retain tickets to their respective show(s) and then sell to the public through Ticket Exchange. The tickets are sold at a much higher value than face and Ticketmaster along with the artists, split the profit. Named acts include Van Halen, Bon Jovi, Elton John and Billy Joel. The only one that surprises me is Billy Joel, I thought he wasn’t an “uptown” guy.

Chris Daughtry is set to release his second album either in June or July. He has some help from Chad Kroeger and Richard Marx. That’s right I said Richard Marx. Apparently Daughtry mentioned Marx’s name and Chad called him up and the next thing you know, Richard appeared at the studio where Chris was recording. Daughtry says he is a huge fan of Mr. Marx.

From the pages of “Did you Know?”.. Did you know that Sammy Hagar made $80 million from selling an 80% share in his Cabo Wabo brand tequilas? Ooohh Faaa!!!

Back on this day in 2006, Black Sabbath, Blondie, Lynyrd Skynyrd, Miles Davis and the Sex Pistols were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. The Sex Pistols did not attend the ceremony and turned down the induction. Punk until the end!!

Back on this day in 1967, The Beatles had the number one hit with “Penny Lane.”

Back on this day in 1978, The Bee Gees had the number one hit with “Night Fever.”

If it is your birthday today, you share the same birth date with Adam Clayton of U2 and Neil Sedaka.

March 6, 2009

Weekly Update – 03/06/09

Aretha Franklin at the Capital One Theater in Westbury NY on Sat. April 11. Tickets on sale this Sunday at noon. (Live Nation Event).

Nickelback at Jones Beach on Wed. July 15 and PNC Arts Center on Tues. July 21. Tickets on sale next Saturday at 10:00 a.m.  (Live Nation Event).

Dave Matthews Band at Jones Beach on Tues. July 21. Ticket info to follow. (Live Nation Event).

The Fray with Jack’s Mannequin at PNC Arts Center in NJ on Fri. June 19 and at Jones Beach on Thurs. June 25. Tickets on sale Fri. March 20 at 10:00 a.m. (Live Nation)

Ian Anderson at the Beacon Theater on Tues. Rocktober 13 performing the acoustic songs of Jethro Tull and solo material. Tickets on sale tomorrow at noon. $44.50 – $125.

John Prine and Justin Townes Earl at the Beacon Theater on Fri. May 15. Tickets on sale this morning at 10:00 a.m. $40 – $75. American Express cardholders only can get them up until 9:00 a.m. this morning

Unwigged & Unplugged with Christopher Guest, Michael McKean (aka “Lenny” from Laverne & Shirley) and Harry Shearer will perform an acoustic set of music from Spinal Tap and The Folksmen (from “A Mighty Wind”) at the Beacon Theater on Tues. May 26. Tickets on sale this morning at 10:00 a.m. $39.50 – $59.50.

Indigo Girls at the Highline Ballroom on Wed. April 15. Tickets on sale today at noon. $40 ($45 day of show)

Lady Sovereign at Highline Ballroom on Tues. May 5. Tickets on sale today at noon.$15 ($18 day of show).

Eric Hutchinson at Highline Ballroom on Thurs. May 7. Tickets on sale today at noon. $20 (I like his song called “Rock N Roll” and the video as well. His album “Sounds Like This” is very good and I bet you’d have a lot of fun at this show- for $20 you can’t beat it.)

Mastodon at the Music Hall of Williamburg Brooklyn on Sun. May 10. Pre-sale for American Express cardholders ends this morning at 11:00 a.m. General public on sale tomorrow at noon. $20

The Tragically Hip at Nokia Theater on Fri. May 8. Pre-sale tickets for American Express cardholders only until noon today. General public on-sale at noon. $35.

Chris Botti at the Beacon Theater on Thurs. June 4. Pre-sale tickets for American Express cardholders only until 8:00 a.m. this morning. General public on sale today at 10:00 a.m.$40 – $75.

Andrew Bird at Radio City Music Hall on Thurs. June 18. Pre-sale tickets for American Express cardholders only until 9:00 a.m. this morning. General public on sale today at 11:00 a.m.$34.50 – $44.50.

The Toadies at The Fillmore New York at Irving Plaza on Wed. May 27. Tickets on sale this morning at 10:00 a.m. (Live Nation) apx. $20-$30.

Nine Inch Nails and Jane’s Addiction at PNC Arts Center on Sat. June 6 and Jones Beach on Sun. June 7. Ticket info to follow.

Ozomatli at The Fillmore New York at Irving Plaza on Fri. Mar. 20. Ticket info to follow.

Paul McCartney with Ringo Starr, Eddie Vedder, Donovan, Sheryl Crow, Ben Harper and others at Radio City Music Hall on Sat. Apr. 4. Tickets on sale this Monday at 11:00 a.m. for this benefit (David Lynch Foundation) concert called “Change Begins Within” set to raise funds to teach 1 million at-risk children to meditate- giving them long life tools to overcome stress. $79.50 – $504.50.

Other items:

Shinedown fans have voted and the next single to be released from their smash album “The Sound of Madness” will be “The Sound of Madness.” This song rocks, especially with the driving bass and bass drum in the beginning, I can picture Rocky punching the hanging meat in the freezer. C’mon people get on board already!!

I can’t ignore U2’s release of “No Line on the Horizon” this past Tuesday. As I mentioned Rolling Stone gave it a whopping 5 star review-which means it’s an instant classic. I don’t know what it is about this band, I started out liking them with War and Joshua Tree, etc. but I slowly lost my grip and really have not made my way back. I know and respect the fact that these guys are legends but sometimes I can’t understand all the fuss that surrounds them, especially with many of their recent albums-which have been “just OK.” Maybe this is the one that will bring me back, who knows?

Speaking of U2, they will perform a free concert at Fordham University this morning which will be televised on Good Morning America.

The Beatles will join the gaming ranks with the worldwide Wed. Sept. 9 release of “The Beatles: Rock Band” which will be available for the Wii, Playstation and X-box consoles. I can wait!!

I know this is not directly related to music but I am so upset that ABC has decided to cancel the new series “Life on Mars.” Wow, talk about not giving a show a chance. This show is the best show to come out since “24” in my opinion and the music played in the episodes makes it that much better. The cast is stellar and the writing is spectacular. Send in your protests now to ABC.

Drowning Pool is back with a new singer and a new album- “The Loudest Common Denominator.” Sounds pretty heavy but according to I-Tune listener’s the most popular songs are the two songs they re-recorded on an acoustic basis-“Shame” and “37 Stitches.”

This week’s I-Pod shuffle landed on “Born in the 50’s” from The Police off of their debut album, “Outlandos d’Amour” and I was blown away on how good this song is. Do you ever not hear a song in a long time and once it hits your ears again, it’s like.. well, the chocolate syrup on top of your banana split. So you know I had to go back and listen to their first album which is a classic and in my opinion-their best work ever. As many of you are aware, I was a huge Police fan “back in the day” and was devastated when Sting left the band to pursue a solo career. (Springsteen fans: you have Sting to blame for him leaving the E-Street band- many years ago as Sting convinced him he could do it on his own). To this day I do not own one song from Sting with respect to his solo career, call me a baby-say what you will-but other than Metallica losing out to Jethro Tull for best metal album way back when-this still gets me heated. Some other fact you should know- since I was a “youth” back in the 1980’s, I use to jump off a group’s “band wagon” once I thought a band became too popular or in my warped mind- “sold out.” So when “Synchronicity” was released I dove off, never mind jump! And even though, at the time, I loved “Every Breath You Take” I could not go against my rules and I did not purchase the album. (Yes of course I have the song now- not the album but that song. “King of Pain” drove me to a ledge because of its popularity [and how many times it was played on the radio that summer] and is one of my most disliked Police songs ever- yes I blame it on Sting). Ok I’m back.

The album starts off with the “punk-grunge like” song “Next to You.” You have to listen to this song (and the album) with the volume cranked up to….LOUD!!! Stewart Copeland is a phenomenal drummer and his bashing of the sticks throughout this song makes me want to become a drummer. Similar to Rush, the three piece band creates a sound that appears to be created by more than a trio. Andy Summers keeps it simple but crisp and clean on guitar. Sting’s vocals dragged me in when I first heard this song and I was hooked on their sound because back in 1978, there wasn’t anyone that created the same kind of music they arranged. This song is so good and short that I have to replay it again. Again a good set of headphones and you’re off for a good ride… Track #2 is the funky reggae sounding “So Lonely.” I can’t get enough of this song and this takes me back to my sophomore days at Brooklyn Tech with my good friend- Karen. She loved this song, how can you not? Sting’s bass work gets me all the time. On the first song I wanted to play drums and now I want to play bass. Andy’s guitar solo meshed with Sting’s bass playing is top notch. Then when Sting takes over on vocals you can feel his passion and I just have to play it that much louder!!!

Roxanne” is arguably their most popular song ever recorded and who can forget Eddie Murphy with his headphones on in jail singing this classic in “48 Hours?” Andy kicks it off with the very distinctive guitar chords as Stewart is just waiting to get into the act. This song sounds as fresh today as it did in 1978. Listen to the whole arrangement of this track and tell me you are not impressed. The background vocals with the driving drum beats is what makes this song great in my opinion. Track #4-“Hole in My Life” goes back to the reggae/blues fusion that makes this song groove the way it does. Sting and Stewart shine brightly in this highly infectious song that will have your head bopping up and down as you pretend to play bass guitar. Side 1 ends with the highly energized punk style “Peanuts” which is topped off with a great guitar solo by Andy- man does he wail away or what?- then its back to the driving beats of Mr. Copeland. The song ends in a frenzy as Sting is howling “Oh No No…”

Side two begins with my all time favorite Police song and that is “I Can’t Stand Losing.”I can’t get enough of this song, I love the lyrics- “I guess you call it cowardness but I’m not prepared to go on like this…” Again there is a heavy influence of reggae music in this tune and mixed with the “punk-rockish” twinge, it really distinguished itself from any other song in 1978. Track #2 –“Truth Hits Everybody” is my second favorite Police song ever. You have to listen to this very LOUD!!! The whole song moves- the guitar, bass and drums- along at such a frantic pace that this could be considered a “head-banging” song but probably identifies with the punk side. This is a perfect “boot camp” song or for any other workout. If you want to be pumped up- put this on!! “We Were Born in the ‘50’s” keeps the head-banging and foot-stomping going strong as Sting’s bass playing is spectacular on this track. “They screamed when the Beatles sang…born in the ‘50’s..”This is another great song for your exercise regiment. The chorus is addictive and you’ll be singing it all day. “Be My Girl- Sally” is probably the most bizarre song I have ever heard (besides “No Anchovies Please” by the J. Geils Band off of their “Love Stinks” album). It really reminds me of something The Marx Brothers would have recorded if they were a rock band in the 1970’s. Now I won’t talk about the content of Andy Summers narration of his friend Sally but you can kind of guess. The last song on this classic album is the mostly instrumental- “Masoko Tanga.” (with Sting singing some incoherent lyrics) If this song doesn’t get you out of your seat, nothing will. I don’t know what he is singing about but the beat is all I care about. This song has reggae written all over it and all you need to know is that it will flat out make you want to dance.

A couple of favorite songs this week, in no particular order: “By Your Side” by the Black Crowes from the album titled “Three Snakes and One Charm.” This ranks high up there as one of my all time favorite songs from the Robinson boys & company. This song flat out grooves, rocks, rolls- it has every thing for your listening pleasure. “Something to Talk About” by Miss Bonnie Raitt. When’s the last time you have heard this song? It came on my I-Pod shuffle and I forgot how friggin’ great this song is. “It took a rumor to make me wonder.. thinking about you everyday…” Talk about an infectious groove, look no further than this song. “It’s My Life” by Bon Jovi. I love this song!! I-Tunes just released the video of this song. (You still can’t get the single on I-Tunes, you have to purchase the whole “Crush” album- Bon Jovi knows this is probably their most popular song and will get more bang for the buck by making you purchase the entire album). Talk about a chorus that you can’t get out of your head?

Rumor Has It: Guns & Roses (or just Axl, c’mon now) will be performing at Stadiums this summer. Boy, it will be that many more people waiting for him to take the stage, if you get tickets make sure you’re sitting next to the nearest Exit signs just in case you have to avoid the riot.

Queensryche just released a new single “If I Were King” off of their upcoming album- “American Soldier.” I-Tune listeners have given it a 4.5 average star rating. Sounds pretty good.

Thoughts and prayers go out to Michael Sweet, singer of Stryper, his wife-Kyle Rae Sweet- passed away from cancer at the very young age of 52.

Sammy Hagar has released a video for the song “Loud” off of his Cosmic Universal Fashion. It’s pretty cool. My first sighting of Michael Anthony in a long time. Reminds you of Van Halen but the song clearly is a Hagar-like song, no doubt. Look for it on roadrunner records or You-Tube.

Back on this day in 1958, Sam Cooke made his first appearance at the Copacabana in New York. Can you imagine being there that night? Talk about being “on the ground floor” to witness shear greatness!! The man is a musical and national treasure.

Back on this day in 2004 David Crosby was arrested in NYC on possession of marijuana and weapons. 2004? C’mon David shouldn’t this have been 1974 or maybe even 1984.. but 2004?

If you were born today, Mar. 6, you share the same birth date with Mary Wilson of The Supremes, Kiki Dee, and Sylvia Vanderpool Robinson(she had the hit “Pillow Talk” and was the half of Mickey & Sylvia who had the hit “Love is Strange”)

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