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Posts Tagged ‘rock and roll’

Kate Langenburg/A&E Groove

We all know that the recent flooding in Nashville, Tennessee has been devastating to its residents. People have been underwater for days, scrounging to collect any belongings they can save. But how did high-priced items, like world-famous rock instruments, weather the storm?

Not too well, according to the Los Angeles Times. An instrument storage facility, called Soundcheck Nashville, was home to the musical equipment of nearly 1,000 performers. Some of those include country stars Keith Urban and Vince Gill, along with other classic rock gurus like Jimi Hendrix and Pete Townshend. Brad Paisley apparently lost all his equipment for his upcoming tour.

The storage facility sat underwater for nearly six days before anyone could try to recover the instruments.

The owner of the facility, Ben Jumper, claimed that all musicians were responsible for having their own insurance for each instrument kept there. However, his own flood insurance on the building was minimal. Many of these classic instruments have since crumbled and are in no way recoverable.

This is sad news for rock and roll history. When we lose some of our great musical artifacts, like a guitar once played by Johnny Cash, it’s hard not to think that a little piece of the music dies along with it.

However, all the musicians housing instruments at Soundcheck Nashville are being supportive of each other. Not only are they reaching out to help, but they are also lending out some of the instruments they have that were not housed in the facility. The American Federation of Musicians Union has since set up a donation fund to help out those musicians who can’t afford to replace their equipment.

It’s good to know that when something like this happens, there are so many people who want to help.

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Kate Langenburg/A&E Groove

As the baby boomers grow older, it’s amazing to me how many of those that are performers are still touring the country. It may be true what they say — 50 is the new 30. But some of these old-time rock and rollers in particular have really managed to maintain good spirits in their careers, bodies, and minds. Maybe it’s all the medicinal herb, but damn, Willie Nelson sure knows how to keep things kicking.

Having recently turned seventy-seven years old, the folk singer is on a roll and doesn’t appear to be stopping anytime soon. On April 20, his latest album, called Country Music, was released for purchase in the United States. The collection of fifteen songs includes new original songs as well as well-loved traditional folk/bluegrass music. But this is not enough for our dear Willie.

On top of his new album, he is about to embark on a six month tour all over the globe. It will kick off in New York on May 6 and finish up in Wisconsin on October 12. Some of the most intriguing tour stops include Germany, Austria, Netherlands, UK, Switzerland, and Belgium. I suppose you have to squeeze in the international concerts somewhere! For a complete listing of the 75 concerts Willie’s got in store, visit his tour dates page.

As for a Farm Aid concert, there is little information known about the event for 2010. Willie Nelson has been an advocate for Farm Aid since he, John Mellencamp, and Neil Young organized its first concert back in 1985. The organization promotes family farming, healthy foods, and keeping the spirit of the American farm alive.

For more information on Willie Nelson, please view his website.

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Kate Langenburg/A&E Groove

Iggy Pop and the Stooges celebrate their induction to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.

Last night, at 8:30 sharp, a ceremony took place which inducted some of the biggest names in music into its highly esteemed ranks. That’s right folks, I’m talking about the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame 2010 inductees ceremony.

The ceremony kicked off with Phish playing a cover of ‘Watcher of the Skies’ by Genesis, and then lead singer Trey Anastasio bestowed the honor upon the musical group.

Various covers were performed by other bands as well, including Maroon 5, Rob Thomas, Chris Isaak, and Faith Hill.

Here is a complete list of the inductees:

  • Jimmy Cliff
  • Genesis
  • The Stooges
  • ABBA
  • The Hollies
  • David Geffen
  • Barry Mann and Cynthia Weil
  • Ellie Greenwich and Jeff Barry
  • Jesse Stone
  • Mort Shuman
  • Otis Blackwell

On the whole, everyone seemed a little nervous onstage last night as songs were played, groups were introduced, and speeches were made. However, the positive vibe and good cheer was certainly in the air as new and old musicians alike paid their tributes to the inductees.

If you would like more information about the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, there is much to see and do on their website. Just click the link.

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Kate Langenburg/A&E Groove

Johnny Depp fans, get ready. It seems he’s got some big plans in the works. This time, instead of seeing him on the camera, he’ll be behind it, directing.

Back when Depp was working on Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End, he seemed to have gotten along quite well with co-star and famous Rolling Stones rocker Keith Richards. Ever since then, the two have been working on a special project, in which Depp will direct a documentary about Keith Richards’ life.

It comes as no surprise that Depp is on the list for this film, as he based a lot of his moves and swagger for Jack Sparrow off Richards’ style. It seems that the aged rocker may serve as some kind of role model and inspiration for the actor. (Let’s be thankful Depp doesn’t follow Richards’ life to a T though.)

Richards is known for some crazy antics, both onstage and off. He’s usually drunk, stumbling around, and mumbling to whomever will listen. However, he has made quite a name for himself with the Rolling Stones, one of the most important bands in rock and roll, and definitely deserves to have a documentary made about his life.

The Guardian reported that the movie will be called Happy. But this won’t be the first time Depp has directed. Back in 1997, he worked on The Brave, which was not well received by fans. I have high hopes for this one, especially because Depp has some inspiration invested in it.

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Kate Langenburg/A&E Groove

Guitar legends like Jimi Hendrix and Eric Clapton have nothing on the subjects of my latest post. As a piece of art, the results also seem to stand on their own.

French artist Celeste Boursier-Mougenot has created a video of 40 wild finches playing a les paul guitar. The intense musical performance was created by placing guitars and various other instruments in the middle of an aviary, then recording the results.

The video will be premiering on February 27 in London’s Barbican art gallery and the exhibit will run until May 23. Take a peek:

Many people have compared Boursier-Mougenot’s work to that of the famous artist Marcel Duchamp, who introduced strange elements to each other to see how they would come together. His art pieces also had much to do with chance as a factor for their creation.

It might be interesting to check out some more work from this artist. Most things that I’ve seen from him seem to be more installations than anything else. Check out a display of his works here.

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Kate Langenburg/A&E Groove

Aerosmith will cancel their tour due to Steven Tyler's injuries. Photo from esposay.com.

Aerosmith will cancel their tour due to Steven Tyler's injuries. Photo from esposay.com.

Last week, if you recall, I posted a blog piece entitled “Steven Tyler Falls Off Stage,” detailing the rock star’s fall from grace at a Sturgis Motorcyle Rally in South Dakota. As it just so happens, I’ve got some updated information on the state of the band.

Aerosmith has decided to cancel the rest of their tour this summer to give Steven the time he needs to recouperate from his nasty spill. It turns out that he broke his shoulder and needed around twenty stitches on his head. From watching the video of his fall, it’s hard to tell that he hurt himself that bad. Then again, the quality is not the greatest.

It seems that out of everyone, lead guitarist Joe Perry is the most upset by the cancellation of the tour. “Words cannot express the sadness I feel for having to cancel this tour,” he said in an AP report.

But if you’re one of those fans who bought tickets for a show that was canceled, don’t worry. Just bring ’em back to the place you bought them for a full refund.

Steven Tyler is glad he’s okay. In due time, he will recover and the show will go on. We’re glad he’s okay, too.

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Kate Langenburg/A&E Groove

Oh, Steven Tyler, why can’t you stay in one piece for us?

Feel better, Steven. Photo from redtagcrazy.com.

Feel better, Steven. Photo from redtagcrazy.com.

Apparently, the lead singer of Aerosmith fell off the stage during a current performance at the Sturgis Motorcyle Rally show in South Dakota. After much blood and pain conveyed by the rock and roll heavyweight, he had to be airlifted to a  hospital.

Many fans at the concert thought the whole thing was an act. Surely, Tyler couldn’t have fallen off a catwalk for real! It took but a few moments for everyone to realize what had just happened.

Lead guitarist Joe Perry issued a statement a few days later, saying that the band wasn’t sure whether or not the tour would continue because of Tyler’s injuries.

Because of this catastrophe, the band has had to cancel three shows already, which is something that hasn’t happened in the past 25 years of their performing. As Perry put it in his radio interview with WXRX-FM in Rockford, Ill, “it’s breaking his heart.”

Read the full story from the Associated Press.

And wouldn’t you believe it? I was actually able to find a video of the whole thing. Check out “Steven Tyler Falls Onstage” at MTV.com. Ah, the beauty of the internet.

In the meantime, let’s all say a quick word of encouragement and healing for Tyler. Lead singers need love, too.

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