Mothers, Doors, Spirit rereleases heat up Q3

Frank Zappa and Mothers, the Doors, Spirit and the Beach Boys help keep the Summer of Love alive in 2017. Here's a roundup of the best psychedelic/1960s music due for rerelease in the third quarter. The Mothers of Invention's second album, "Absolutely Free," will cost you $35 as it returns in a 50th anniversary edition Sept. 29. The group's second album comes in a two-LP package: three sides host the audio; the fourth has a laser etching of bandleader Frank Zappa. Witness the strange and the borderline psychedelic on numbers such as "Plastic People," "Call Any Vegetable," "Son of Suzy Creamcheese" and, of course, "Invocation and Ritual Dance of the Young Pumpkin." The "Absolutely Free" album comes "mastered by Bernie Grundman and cut directly from the original analog master tapes" -- … [Read more...]

Dead Meet-Up does ’89 capital concert

The seventh annual Grateful Dead "Meet-Up at the Movies" salutes the band's gig in Washington, D.C., during the summer of 1989. The Dead's cinema event happens Tuesday, Aug. 1, at 7 p.m. local time. The Grateful gathering coincides with the 75th anniversary of Jerry Garcia's birth. Video of the July 12, 1989, capital concert at RFK Stadium is previously unreleased, organizers say. (The band also played RFK the next day.) The recording, which looks crisp, runs just over 2.5 hours. The show opens with the band's unlikely late '80s hit "Touch of Gray" and continues with Dead fare such as "Cassidy," "Ship of Fools," "Sugaree" and "I Need a Miracle." The show closes with what is a rare video-taped performance of "Black Muddy River." The Grateful Dead Meet-Up at the Movies began … [Read more...]

Monterey Pop stars: Lesh, Burdon, Booker T.

Monterey Pop lives. A 50th anniversary revival of the seminal peace-and-love gathering has unveiled its lineup, with Phil Lesh, Eric Burdon and Booker T. topping the bill. The event will run June 16-18 at the Monterey County Fairgrounds, site of the original festival that brought stardom to Jimi Hendrix, the Who and Janis Joplin. Lou Adler, co-producer of the 1967 festival, said, "The Monterey International Pop Festival cannot be duplicated but can be celebrated and will be, by the performers and the attendees at the 50th anniversary festival." Adler, who is in his mid-80s, has some role with the production, also credited to Another Planet Entertainment and Goldenvoice. Adler oversees the nonprofit charitable foundation that distributes royalty money from the original Monterey … [Read more...]

‘Grateful Dead Movie’ encores at Meet-Up

The 2017 Deadhead meet-up celebrates the 40th anniversary of the good old "Grateful Dead Movie." The feature film screens at 7 p.m. local time on Thursday, April 20, accompanied by footage from the upcoming Dead docu "Long Strange Trip." There's also a "mini-documentary" about the band's May 8, 1977, show at Cornell University, one of those storied Dead gigs. The Grateful Dead Meet-Up at the Movies began in 2011 and has carried on once a year ever since. The first Meet-Up also featured (a restored) "The Grateful Dead Movie." Pay-per-view specialist Fathom Events organizes and manages the screenings. Venue information and tickets for the 2017 Meet-Up can be accessed via the Fathom web site. Meanwhile, the Dead documentary "Long Strange Trip" will premiere in cinemas in New York … [Read more...]

Amazon takes a ‘Long Strange Trip’

Amazon Studios has snapped up rights to the six-part Grateful Dead documentary "Long Strange Trip." The docu, directed by Amir Bar-Lev and overseen by Martin Scorsese, debuts on the Amazon Prime streaming service May 26. "Stranger than fiction -- a user's guide for an impossible journey," drummer Hart said of the project. The 4-hour "Long Strange Trip" premieres Jan. 23 at the Sundance Film Festival, with Dead veterans Mickey Hart, Bill Kreutzmann and Bob Weir on hand to toast the project. Director Bar-Lev is a festival regular. Bar-Lev made the acclaimed 2007 documentary "My Kids Could Paint That" as well as 2010's "Tillman." He was attached to an ill-fated Jerry Garcia biopic with the working title "Dark Star" back in 2010. Executive producer Scorsese said: "I've always … [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...]

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...]

Dead’s movie close-up from Foxboro

Another Grateful Dead tradition comes of age -- go figure. The sixth annual Grateful Dead Meet-Up at the Movies is set for May 11, with the screening of an unreleased concert from July 1989. The Dead movie night again comes via the band's label, Rhino, and the cinema one-off specialist Fathom Events. The main event is the entire Dead concert from Sullivan Stadium in Foxboro, Massachusetts, dating back to July 2, 1989. It was the "tour-opening show from what would be one of the Dead's best tours of their final 15 years of performing," organizers say. Key tracks at the Sullivan Stadium show included 12 minutes of "Friend of the Devil," a rare opening of "Playin' in the Band," and "Eyes of the World." The gig featured an extra helping of psychedelic-era covers, including "Queen … [Read more...]

Psychedelic year in review: Top titles

A half century hasn't dampened demand for the psychedelic goodness of the 1960s. The year 2015 found record labels still stuffing bins with high-quality releases, carefully crafted to take you higher. Here's a review of the year's top reissues of music connected with the psychedelic era. All are still available as 2015 fades to black, although some remain specialty items worth grabbing before the collector's price gouging gets under way. Jimi Hendrix: Completists welcomed the CD release in 2006 of "Burning Desire," the Dagger label's collection of "authorized bootlegs" from the master guitarist's final years. Now Sony Legacy has the expanded vinyl version, on two LPs. Tracks were recorded at the Record Plant in late 1969 and early 1970 with Billy Cox and Buddy Miles. Listen for … [Read more...]

Lesh recovering from bladder cancer

Longtime Grateful Dead bassist Phil Lesh has been treated for bladder cancer, but says he's expected to make a full recovery. Lesh, 75, canceled several sold-out shows at his Terrapin Crossroads bar that were to feature Chris Robinson. "I was diagnosed with bladder cancer in early October, and have spent the last few weeks at the Mayo Clinic in Scottsdale (Ariz.) doing tests and eventually surgery to remove the tumors," Lesh said in an Oct. 16 email sent to customers and later posted on the Terrapin Crossroads web site. "I am very fortunate to have the pathology reports show that the tumors are all non-aggressive, and that there is no indication that they have spread." Lesh successfully battled prostrate cancer in 2006. He also underwent a liver transplant related to hepatitis … [Read more...]

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