Record Store Day gets its groove back

Psychedelic heavyweights the Doors, Pink Floyd, Jimi Hendrix and Santana help make Record Store Day great again in 2017. The promotional event for independent music retailers has posted an unusually robust list of product for its 10th anniversary showing on Saturday, April 22. Other artists of note for psychedelic/1960s music fans include Procol Harum, Hawkwind, the Grateful Dead, Utopia, ELP, the Electric Flag and the Music Machine. Releases are all on vinyl and are "Record Store Day exclusives" unless noted. The Doors' "Live at the Matrix" recordings make their debut on vinyl on RSD. "Newly mastered by Bruce Botnick ... from recently discovered original master tapes." The 50th year set (from March 1967) includes the savage young Doors working out to soon-to-be-classics "Back … [Read more...]

King Crimson in ‘Action’ with summer tour

King Crimson plans "Radical Action" in North America this summer. Cities on the prog giants' schedule for June and July include Los Angeles, Seattle, Denver, Minneapolis and Chicago. Other dates in the 15-city sweep include San Diego, Toronto, Quebec and Rochester, N.Y. Other notable dates are the Montreal Jazz Festival and a two-night stand in Mexico City. Founder Robert Fripp's web site indicated other tour stops were set for the fall, including New York City. A few of the confirmed venues appeared to have tickets on sale ... and others had yet to even post the listing. The swing is billed as "Radical Action Tour 2017," named after the recent live recordings released as "Radical Action to Unseat the Hold of Monkey Mind." The "Monkey Mind" recordings (three CDs, one … [Read more...]

Slick roasts ad partner Chick-fil-A

Grace Slick and Chick-fil-A make for some strange bedfellows. Slick, possessor of one of the biggest mouths in rock, is an avowed leftie, famed in part for her radical antiwar stance in the late 1960s. Chick-fil-A draws fire on a regular basis for its right-wing affiliations, notably its ministry wing the WinShape Foundation, which has routed millions of its profits to Biblical Christian groups opposed to gay marriage. So when Slick agreed to license the Jefferson Starship hit "Nothing's Gonna Stop Us Now" to the Georgia-based fast-food franchiser, it raised a few eyebrows. Certainly during the Grammys telecast of a week back. Another '60s sellout? Nah. Slick had a plan, one she just shared in a blog post on the web site of capitalist cheerleader magazine Forbes. "I am … [Read more...]

Arthur Brown back in U.S. for 8 shows

The Crazy World of Arthur Brown is returning to the New World for eight shows in February. Following up on Brown's performance at the Psycho Las Vegas festival last August, it is his band's first U.S. tour in almost a half century. Brown, best known for his psychedelic rock hit "Fire," will play the big three cities of L.A., Chicago and New York. He'll also return to Las Vegas and his old stomping grounds of Austin, Texas. Gigs also are set for Portland and San Francisco. The British singer has remained active since his late 1960s breakout, and can be caught at various European music festivals. The Crazy World of Arthur Brown's latest album is "Zim Zam Zim," crowdfunded and released in 2014. The Crazy World of Arthur Brown's self-titled debut LP of 1968 is a top 20 entry in … [Read more...]

Harrison ‘Vinyl Collection’ on the way

George Harrison's solo output will be celebrated with an 18-LP box set due in late February. Universal Music's "George Harrison: The Vinyl Collection" packs in a dozen studio albums -- ranging from "Wonderwall Music" to "Brainwashed" -- as well as a pair of 12-inch picture discs, for the singles "Got My Mind Set on You" and "When We Was Fab." The set also includes the double album "Live in Japan." "The original analogue master tapes were used for the new remasters and were cut at the legendary Capitol studios," project promoters say. Also promised are "exact replicas of the original release track listing and artwork," meaning "All Things Must Pass" returns to the classic black-and-white look. The box has a 3D-style lenticular cover image (see video below). The albums will be … [Read more...]

Doors, Dead, Cream debuts turn 50

1967 ushered in the psychedelic era, loudly announced by a series of historic recordings. Fifty years on, we're invited to celebrate the debut albums by the Doors, the Grateful Dead and Cream via splashy deluxe editions. Other key reissues due in the year's first quarter come from Soft Machine, the Who, Jimi Hendrix, Sun Ra, the Yardbirds, Procol Harum and Pink Floyd. The Doors' debut album -- home of "Light My Fire" and "The End" -- returns March 31 in a three-CD plus LP package dubbed "The Doors: 50th Anniversary Deluxe Edition." The reissue features the compact disc premiere of the original mono mix, which also can be found on the box set's vinyl disc. The package includes a CD of the "The Matrix" live performance from March 1967, made up of eight songs from the debut album. … [Read more...]

Levitation fest put off until 2018

The news gets worse for fans of Levitation, the nation's largest psychedelic music festival. After losing the 2016 gathering to nasty weather in and around Austin, Texas, organizers now have pulled the plug on the 2017 edition. "We are taking a year off to relaunch in 2018," organizers said on the festival's web site. "While this wasn't an easy decision to make, with more time we can present the best festival without compromises." They didn't elaborate on what issues would have led to "compromises." The psychedelic music festival took a major hit in April, when the threat of flooding caused a total cancellation a day before the three-day event was to begin. "We are completely devastated," organizers said at the time. The 2016 festival was to feature acts including Ween, … [Read more...]

Hendrix, Mothers cooking for Black Friday

Psychedelic music fans won't exactly be feasting, but get ready to tuck into servings both sweet and savory with this year's edition of Record Store Day: Black Friday. Top 1960s sonic explorers with goods on offer include Jimi Hendrix, Jerry Garcia, the Mothers of Invention, Timothy Leary and Sun Ra. Record Store Day's Black Friday edition dawns the day after Thanksgiving -- Friday, Nov. 25 -- at your favorite indie shops. Releases are on vinyl and are Record Store Day exclusives unless noted. Jimi Hendrix: "Morning Symphony Ideas" updates and abridges the Dagger Records release of 2000. This time it's three tracks that date back to 1969: the 9-minute "Jungle," "Room Full of Mirrors" and "Strato Strut." On 10-inch vinyl from Sony Legacy, limited to 3,000 copies. The Mothers of … [Read more...]

Rock Hall welcomes prog rockers Yes

Prog rock greats Yes, electronic pioneers Kraftwerk, magic carpet merchants Steppenwolf and Brit oracles the Zombies have been short-listed for 2017 entry into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. Other rock acts of note include Electric Light Orchestra, MC5, Jane's Addiction and Pearl Jam. Update: Yes finally made it into the Rock Hall, as well as Electric Light Orchestra and Pearl Jam. Other inductees for the 2017 ceremony are Journey, Tupac Shakur, Journey and Joan Baez. /update Yes' exclusion from the Rock Hall has long been a sore spot with fans of prog -- its "Close to the Edge" is widely considered the top album in the genre. The band's many members over the decades include Rick Wakeman, Jon Anderson, Bill Bruford and Steve Howe. Yes continues to tour, although the classic … [Read more...]

Waters tour to cover U.S. in 2017

Roger Waters is following up his journey to the California desert with a 40-date tour of North America, to begin in late May. The "Us + Them" tour -- the name a riff on the Pink Floyd song -- is keyed to the release of a new Waters album, his first studio effort since 1992's "Amused to Death." Tickets go on sale for the Waters tour Friday, Oct. 21. Presales begin Monday, Oct. 17, and there is a Citi Private Pass tie-in. The tour won't focus on a specific album, such as the epic and sometimes controversial "The Wall" tours of 2010-13. "It'll be a mixture of stuff from my long career, stuff from my years with Pink Floyd, some new things," Waters said. "Probably 75% of it will be old material and 25% will be new, but it will be all connected by a general theme." Know for … [Read more...]

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