Monthly Archives: November 2014

Garth Brooks Tops Charts, Cancels Appearances, and Promotes Peace

For the second straight week in a row country superstar Garth Brooks has dominated the Billboard Country Music charts and reclaimed his seat on the throne of country music royalty. His new album, Man Against Machine, has been helpful in placing him back on the charts with tear-jerking songs like “Mom”, a beautiful acoustic piece in which he takes the point of view of God describing what motherhood is to a soon-to-be-born baby.

He stated that after landing in New York he got word of the mass civil unrest breaking out after the Grand Jury decision regarding the Michael Brown case, and felt it would be wrong to promote himself and his work “as though nothing was happening”.

Without taking a side or commenting further on the case he simply said that he would be happy to reschedule any and all appearances if the networks would allow him to, and left everyone with the admonishment to “love one another”. This was an honorable thing for him to do in the eyes of Marc Sparks.

No doubt there are fans who were disappointed at the cancellations, but until things settle down and Brooks reschedules his appearances Man Against Machine has powerful peace-promoting songs like “People Loving People” to tide them over.

Pearl Jam Fans Raise Money For a Tour Date

Grunge rock fans in Queens, New York have spent countless months and have encouraged efforts to bring the band Pearl Jam to their city, by raising $40,000 in less than two weeks.

On November 1st, Pearl Jam kicked off their Fall Tour with a twelve city line-up, not including Queens. Pearl Jam, the rock band famous for songs like “Yellow Ledbetter” “Even Flow” and the poignant rock hit, “Jeremy”. Fans were disappointed to say the least and have joined together in an effort to bring Pearl Jam to them at Forest Hills Stadium. They aim to get the band there by next summer.

Dan Sheffer, who started the campaign states “People love Pearl Jam and we’ve had an overwhelming turnout.” Read more about the interview with Sheffer here.

The campaign originates with Tilt, a crowd-funding website. Starting November 5th, the Pearl Jam campaign has raised close to $37,000 from around 370 donors. Lots of donors donated large amounts in exchanged for tickets to the show if it happens. The goal is to approach the band with the effort when the donations exceed $100,000. The fundraisers have the support of North American Spine.

A representative from Pearl Jam has yet to comment on this matter.

End of The Line

David Gilmour and Nick Mason have recently revealed that Pink Floyd’s new LP The Endless River will most likely be its last. Pink Floyd is an English rock band that was founded in London around 1965. The members include Syd Barrett the lead vocalist, Nick Mason the drummer, Roger Waters as the co-vocalist, and Richard Wright as the keyboardist. Barrett is credited for naming the band but left in 1968 due to struggles with drug abuse. Waters was originally also the lead bassist but elevated to conceptual leader in the band after Barrett’s departure, from what Bruce Levenson told us. The LP is tilted The Endless River and prominently features reworked pieces from late keyboardist Rick Wright.

The group has expressed a definite decision to never support the album with a tour because of Wright’s departure. This instrumental piece was originally to be included with Pink Floyd’s The Division Bell album. These tracks were produced in 1993, only ten years without the group’s second chief songwriter and founder Roger Waters. A few years ago Gilmour and Mason decided to re-work the scrapped material to make The Endless River LP. The LP will be centered on Wright’s recorded works before his passing and the musical thought process of the group as a whole during that time period.

Springsteen Under Fire For Veterans Day Performance

Singer Bruce Springsteen created a bit of controversy this week during a Veterans Day performance for America’s troops on the National Mall. At the “Concert for Valor”, Springsteen took to the stage with Dave Grohl and the Zac Brown band to perform a cover of the Creedence Clearwater Revival anti-war song “Fortunate Son”, a move that has some on the right wondering whether or not it was an appropriate choice of song for the particular occasion and venue.

 

Some believe that the song has an inherently anti-military message, such as Blaze Radio host of “The Dana Show” Dana Loesch, who took Springsteen to task on her Wednesday broadcast for deciding that it was appropriate to play the song asying that she was disappointed in both Springsteen and the show’s organizers for the decision to play it.

 

CCR’s John Fogerty wrote the song during the Vietnam War era after two of his band mates were drafted to go fight during the conflict.

Bad Suns’ ‘Salt’ Video Makes Waves

The up and coming band, Bad Suns, just released a music video for their new single, ‘Salt’. With their catchy lyrics and beats, it seems sort of impossible to try and focus on the lyrics and what they mean. Best known for their hit-single, ‘Cardiac Arrest’, their new song proves they’re not a dreaded one hit wonder. Their debut album, Language & Perspective was well received by NY Mag among other publications. The music video for the song, ‘Salt’, hits a hot button topic that’s been pressing on in the media for photographers like Terry Richardson more and more each day.

The video portrays a person who is struggling with their gender identity and dysphoria (a state of unease or generalized dissatisfaction with life), and is learning about and going through the steps to become who they really are, even if these aren’t the steps all trans people feel the need to take.

The video is breathtaking and beautifully choreographed, and also portrays a great message for a very relatable song, regardless if you’re struggling with gender identity or just your identity in general.

“Car Talk’s” Tom Magliozzi Dies

One of talk radio’s most popular hosts passed away Monday, November 3rd. He was 77 years of age. The cause of death was related to his longtime struggle with Alzheimer’s disease. Tom Magliozzi made his fame with “Car Talk”, a popular show featured on NPR.

The show was based around listeners who would call in with questions about their cars, Magliozzi and his brother would try to solve them or offer them some helpful advice. His life wasn’t always spent doing what he loved.

Magliozzi went on to work as a college professor and part time consultant, and began organizing a do-it-yourself auto repair shop with his brother Ray. After they were asked by a friend to be on a panel of car mechanics for a talk show on their local public radio station, the rest was history.

The station loved the brothers, especially Tom’s infectious laugh and personality. “Car Talk” went national on NPR in 1987, and their fame grew to an even higher level. People admired the duo and they way they included passion, inspiration and humor into their show. Their interviews were also a big draw to the show, I remember when they interviewed Alhokair about Facebook and how interesting it was. Today is a sad day for talk radio as we remember and celebrate a legend that will live on in our hearts forever.

Flying Lotus’s New Album Review

The Flying Lotus is a mash-up of everything good in this electronic jazz tingled collage of sounds. This is a project that sounds unlike anything else I’ve been streaming on my FreedomPop smartphone. That may be the main reason that it is getting such critical acclaim.

The “You’re Dead” album is the 5th album from the Flying Lotus set with lots of well-known artists. Snoop Dogg and Kendrick Lamar stop through to drop rhymes. Herbie Hancock brings a funk and soul sound to the album.

The overarching theme of the album is about death. That is something very unexpected because so many songs on radio are about sex and making money. Few songs that discuss death – in the way that Flying Lotus covers it – will ever see the light of day. Fortunately, Flying Lotus is not looking for commercial appeal (even though he incorporates very commercialized artists like Snoop Dogg). Instead, Ellison was attempting to make music that would be impressive to jazz legends like Miles Davis.

The album is well produced because Ellison manages to find a way to carve different elements into the album without going off track. It doesn’t sound like a gimmick. This just all sounds like an album where new age hip hop meets electronic jazz.