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...]

John Wetton dies; King Crimson veteran

Prog rocker John Wetton, a veteran of the classic early 1970s lineup of King Crimson, has died at age 67. Wetton, a singer and bassist, also is known for his role in the bands Asia and U.K. He also worked with Roxy Music, Uriah Heep, Family and Wishbone Ash. With King Crimson, Wetton performed on the albums "Larks' Tongues in Aspic," "Starless and Bible Black" and "Red" -- all considered prog classics and among the band's best albums. The lineup drew on Eastern European influences and was known for instrumental improvisation. Frontman Wetton collaborated on songs for the "Red" era King Crimson with his friend Richard Palmer-James. King Crimson leader Robert Fripp compared the loud and heavy playing style of Wetton and drummer Bill Bruford to "a flying brick wall." That version 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...]

Live Zeppelin, Beatles, Crimson for Q3

Got live if you want it: Stand by for in-concert recordings by Led Zeppelin, the Beatles, King Crimson, Iron Butterfly, Yes and ELP. Other key releases for 2017's third quarter include works by Frank Zappa, Gong, the Byrds, the Turtles and Sun Ra. Led Zeppelin's formative years are celebrated on "The Complete BBC Sessions," the return of a 1997 set being expanded and remastered. The rest of Zeppelin's catalog just enjoyed similar treatment, and guitarist Jimmy Page again supervises the audio on the new set. The "BBC" collection -- spanning 1969 through 1971 -- will feature eight unreleased tracks, including several versions of "Communication Breakdown" and "What Is and What Should Never Be." Of particular interest to collectors will be three tracks from the "previously 'lost' … [Read more...]

Keith Emerson of ELP, the Nice dies

Keyboardist Keith Emerson, whose work with the Nice and Emerson, Lake & Palmer linked modern rock with centuries of classical music, has died. He was 71. The progressive rock star reportedly died of a single gunshot wound to his head, which police said appeared to be self-inflicted. He was found at his home in Santa Monica, California. "We ask that the family's privacy and grief be respected," the band wrote in confirming news of Emerson's death. Bandmate Carl Palmer said Emerson "was a gentle soul whose love for music and passion for his performance as a keyboard player will remain unmatched for many years to come." Emerson, Lake & Palmer was one of the top arena-rock acts of the early 1970s, releasing the key progressive rock albums "Tarkus" and "Brain Salad Surgery." While … [Read more...]

Giorgio Gomelsky dies; Yardbirds producer

Giorgio Gomelsky, the rock music impresario and producer who played key roles in the careers of the Yardbirds and Gong, has died. He was 81. Gomelsky owned the underground Crawdaddy Club in London, where he featured the young Rolling Stones. He managed the Stones briefly, and then took the Yardbirds under his wing. Gomelsky produced the Yardbirds' early albums "Five Live Yardbirds," "For Your Love" and "Having a Rave Up." Bill Wyman has credited scene-maker Gomelsky with introducing the Beatles and Stones. Eric Clapton said he gave him the nickname "Slowhand." Gomelsky, who was born in the country of Georgia and raised in Switzerland, died of complications from cancer in New York on Jan. 13. Other musical associations included Julie Driscoll, Brian Auger and the Trinity; … [Read more...]

Waters, Gilmour have Q3 in the pink

Solo works from Pink Floyd veterans Roger Waters and David Gilmour highlight the psychedelic music releases coming to market in 2015's third quarter. Other key releases come from Steppenwolf, Procol Harum, the Nice, Tame Impala, the Jimi Hendrix Experience and Mahavishnu Orchestra. Roger Waters' long-awaited -- and frequently delayed -- rerelease of "Amused to Death" will finally happen July 24 on all major formats, including 200-gram vinyl, Blu-ray Audio and hybrid SACD. Analogue Productions' revival of the Waters concept album features remastered audio by longtime Waters-Pink Floyd collaborator James Guthrie. The Blu-ray and SACD boast a 5.1 surround remix. The Blu-ray double-disc edition includes a CD with a straight version of the album, as well as the surround and stereo … [Read more...]

Chris Squire dies; bass player for Yes

Chris Squire, the bass player for Yes who was a mainstay and founding member of the prog rock band, has died. He was 67. The British musician suffered from leukemia. Squire also co-wrote some of the band's top songs, including "I've Seen All Good People," "Yours Is No Disgrace" and "Owner of a Lonely Heart." His smooth yet propulsive bass playing drove songs like "Roundabout" and the band's workout on "America." While prog remains primarily a keyboard-driven genre, Squire enjoyed a high-profile role in Yes. At a time when most bassist were content to stay on "the root," Squire was unusually active. His work influenced generations of prog and jam-band bassists. "For the entirety of Yes's existence, Chris was the band’s linchpin and, in so many ways, the glue that held it … [Read more...]

Quad Doors, live Yes, EL&P spark Q2

Classic but freshly repolished goods from the Doors, Yes, the Yardbirds, EL&P and Miles Davis promise a strong second quarter in the psychedelic music world. The Doors' music remained in strong demand a few years after the death of singer Jim Morrison. Elektra looked to give the music new spark with a "Best Of" collection in quadraphonic. The four-channel format fizzled, and Doors marketers moved on to other repackaging jobs, but the quad collection was never forgotten by the early adopters of long ago. Ace audio revivalist Steve Hoffman delivers the goods June 2 with a hybrid SACD containing the original quad mix and his re-do of the two-channel stereo mix. Tracks include the usual suspects as well as "Who Do You Love," "Take It As It Comes" and "Moonlight Drive." "I think that … [Read more...]

Daevid Allen dies; ringmaster of Gong

Daevid Allen, the whimsical visionary behind the seminal prog rock act Gong, has died. He was 77. As a bandleader in the vein of Sun Ra, George Clinton and Frank Zappa, Allen lorded over a strange and imaginative musical universe, complete with its own LSD-fueled mythologies. Gong persisted over five decades with a changing cast of musicians and under variations on the band's name such as Planet Gong. "A communal thing," Allen said. Allen, a singer and guitarist, also is known for co-founding the Soft Machine, another progressive rock touchstone. Allen was born and died in Australia -- although the Soft Machine was a seminal act out of the scene in Canterbury, England, and Gong was formed in France. Both bands specialized in bold instrumental passages and were influenced … [Read more...]

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