The News-Music Today



|Monday, June 27, 2011    
KISS’ Paul Stanley has pulled back the curtain on the band’s early forays into pyrotechnics, which were a lot more cavalier than the high-tech displays employed today.

In an interview with Glen Shaefer at The Province, Stanley said: “We have the best people working with us. When we first started doing it, it was crude to say the least. There were no licensed pyrotechnicians. You had some guy who liked to blow stuff up and you put him on salary.”

Stanley says the production values have come a long way since then, with the show “mutating” rather than evolving or progressing. “Do we blow stuff up? Hell yeah. Do we play real loud? Hell yeah. That’s what we do, we entertain. We’re a killer rock band that prides itself on being entertainers.”

The 59-year-old Stanley also opened up about his fitness regime, which he says is partially driven by vanity. “Nobody wants to see a fat guy in tights,” Stanley says. “At least not in this band, or at least not me. There’s a certain discipline involved, and I’m as vain as the next guy.”

Rex Brown Leaves Down

|Monday, June 27, 2011   
Bass player Rex Brown has officially departed Down, the band he started with fellow former Pantera member Phil Anselmo in the early ’90s.

Brown confirmed his departure to Patrick Musumeche “Down’s not officially over. I’m just officially out of the band,” Brown said. “Things came to a head and they’re better off doing what they’re doing. They’ve got Patrick Bruders playing bass and I kind of lost my passion after a while. There were some other problems that we had to address and it just turned out better that we just parted ways.”

Brown took time out of the band after a serious bout of pancreatitis in 2009, and stayed off the road while sorting out some personal issues. Brown confirmed tensions within the band in a recent interview with Focus In The Mix with Denise Ameswhen he spoke of a rift with Anselmo: “We’re having a little marital spat, so… I’ll just leave it at that. I’m in the doghouse,” Brown said.

Down was formed in 1991 as a side project of Pantera’s Anselmo and Brown and Corrosion of Conformity’s Pepper Keenan. They have broken up and reformed twice and have released three studio albums, NOLA (1995), Down II: A Bustle In Your Hedgerow (2002) and Down III: Over The Under (2007).

This Day in Music: June 27th

Monday, June 27, 2011

Brought to you by this day in music . com

Born on this day:
1935, Doc Pomus, songwriter
1944, Bruce Johnston, vocals, guitar, The Beach Boys
1959, Lorrie Morgan, country music singer
1976, Leigh Nash, singer, Sixpence None The Richer
1983, Evan David Taubenfeld, guitar, Avril Lavigne

1967, Mick Jagger was found guilty of illegal possession of two drugs found in his jacket at a party given by Keith Richards. Jagger (prisoner #7856) was held overnight at Lewes jail in England. He requested books on Tibet and modern art plus two packs of Benson & Hedges cigarettes.

1968, Elvis Presley appeared on an NBC TV show that was billed as his “comeback special”. The show featured a black leather-clad Presley performing on a small, square stage, surrounded by mainly women.

1969, The Doors appeared at the Forum in Mexico City, Mexico.

1970, Led Zeppelin, The Byrds and Jefferson Airplane all appeared at the Bath Festival of Blues and Progressive Music in Bath, England.

1970, the Trans-Continental Pop Festival (better known as the Festival Express) set off. The tour was unique because it took place in four different Canadian cities, and most of the acts traveled between shows on the same train. The Grateful Dead, Janis Joplin, The Band, The Flying Burrito Brothers and Buddy Guy played shows in Toronto, Winnipeg, Saskatoon and Calgary.

1987, Whitney Houston became the first women in U.S. history to enter the album chart at #1 with Whitney. When her single “I Wanna Dance with Somebody” hit #1, it made Houston the first woman to top the singles chart with four consecutive releases.

1991, Carlos Santana was arrested at Houston Airport when officials found cannabis in his luggage.

1992, Michael Jackson played the first night on his Dangerous world tour at the Olympic Stadium in Munich, Germany. The three-continent tour consisted of 69 concerts performed before nearly four million fans.

1994, Aerosmith became the first major band to let fans download a new song for free from the Internet.

1998, after spending 30 weeks on the U.K. album chart, The Corrs went to #1 withTalk On Corners, the highest-selling U.K. album of 1998. It spent 142 weeks on the chart.

2002, one day before the first show of The Who’s 2002 U.S. tour, 57-year old bassist John Entwistle died in his hotel room at the Hard Rock Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas. The Las Vegas medical examiner determined the cause of death to be a heart attack induced by an undetermined amount of cocaine.

Brian Wilson Biopic Coming Soon

Monday, June 27, 2011

A new film based on the life of Beach Boys legend Brian Wilson will soon be headed to the silver screen, according to Rolling Stone. The movie won’t just trace the ups and downs of Wilson’s life, but focus on key moments.

“I have no interest in making a biopic,” producer Bill Pohlad told the Los Angeles Times. “What’s fascinating to me is to look at the different elements in his life, like that super-creative period when he was doing Pet Sounds and the later part when he was redeemed.”

Oren Moverman, who co-wrote the unconventional Bob Dylan biopic I’m Not There, is working on the script for the film. No actors have been cast yet, although with the film taking place over a number of years, many actors might be enlisted to play Wilson.

Dave Ellefson: ‘It was a Good Time to Come Back to Megadeth’

Monday, June 27, 2011

When Megadeth broke up in 2002, it marked the end of an era. Founded in 1983 by bassist Dave Ellefson and frontman Dave Mustaine, after the latter’s expulsion from Metallica, the group pioneered the thrash metal genre. Mustaine would later restart Megadeth, but without his old partner, Ellefson—until last year, when the 46-year-oldbassist rejoined the band to celebrate the 20th anniversary of theRust in Peace album. Subsequently, the group joined the wildly successful Big Four tour and things have never looked brighter for the heavy metal heroes.

Ellefson recently talked with Lithium Magazine about the reunion.

“Yeah, it was a good time to come back,” the bassist said. “There were discussions we’d been having for a while on our side, and it all just lined right up for us… 2010 really was a monumental year, not just for Megadeth, but for the entire genre. For us to be able to do the Rust in Peace tour was amazing. We’d never done a themed album tour like that before, so to do one of those and be able to film that for the Rust in Peace live DVD, and, of course, then rolling right into the Big Four shows and live DVD with that, as well. It was really just a real true homecoming on all fronts for all of us.”

For the reunion to work, Ellefson said that he had to leave the past behind.

“I think on my side of it, I mentally tried to not go back to where the baggage was,” Ellefson admitted. “I mean, you can’t change anything from the past. All you can do is hopefully learn from it and you move forward. I think that to not have learned from your past is probably the worst mistake you could ever make in your life, because none of us are perfect. And certainly in rock and roll bands, you are all very close to each other because of the creative aspect of making music. Then there is the business side of it. The time you spend in the yellow submarine and the iron lung—the airplanes and tour buses and backstages—it’s those close confines where you seem to sacrifice a little bit of your personal space for the betterment of the group.

“And I think that one of the things that was nice in my time away from Megadeth was getting to develop other sides of my life. When I came back, I felt like I’d got to spread my wings a bit, and then come back to the band willing to make some personal sacrifices again. In a group setting, the individual thrives only if the group thrives. Getting that team mentality going again has been something that I have, quite honestly, really enjoyed over the past year.”

Jeff Beck, Johnny Winter to Play on Sly Stone’s Album

Monday, June 27, 2011

It’s been a few years since Sly Stone released a new album (29, actually), but the Rock and Roll Hall of Famer has returned to recording with an upcoming release. I’m Back! Family & Friends will be released on August 16 on Cleopatra Records, and feature Sly and an array of guest stars playing some of Sly and the Family’s Stone’s classic songs, according to

Among the special guests: guitar heroes Jeff Beck and Johnny Winter, Doors keyboardist Ray Manzarek, Heart singer Ann Wilson, drumming great Carmine Appice and funk legend Bootsy Collins. Check out who plays on which tracks below.

Sly Stone, I’m Back! Family & Friends tracklist:

1. “Dance to the Music” (with Ray Manzarek)

2. “Everyday People” (with Ann Wilson)

3. “Family Affair”

4. “Stand! (with Carmine Appice and Ernie Watts)

5. “Thank You (Falettinme Be Mice Elf Agin)” (with Johnny Winter)

6. “(I Want to Take You) Higher” (with Jeff Beck)

7. “Hot Fun in the Summertime” (with Bootsy Collins)

8. “Dance to the Music” (Extended Mix)

9. “Plain Jane”

10. “His Eye is on the Sparrow”

11. “Get Away”

Judas Priest Bassist: ‘K.K. Downing Couldn’t Spend Time Away from His Golf Course’

Monday, June 27, 2011

2011 may turn out to be the most memorable year in the four-decade history of Judas Priest. First, Rob Halford and company announced their farewell “Epitaph” tour. Then, just before they embarked on the two-year trek, founding member K.K. Downing abruptly quit the band. The group managed to recruit a new guitarist, Richie Faulkner, to take his place and has since launched the tour. But even so, the tour itself has not been without confusion, with the metal gods backpedalling a bit about its “finality.”

Wolverhampton’s Express and Star caught up with bassist and founding member Ian Hill to discuss the state of the metal mega-group, including the is-this-or-isn’t-this-a-farewell status of the Epitaph tour.

“Yeah, there was a bit of confusion with ourselves to be honest!” Hill laughed. “It’s the intensive touring. This tour is going to be the best part of two years by the time it’s all wrapped up… if it’s ever wrapped up; it’s open-ended at the moment. As long as people want to hear us, we’ll keep on going.

“But it was never going to be the end of the band. We always thought that we’d continue playing at festivals somewhere or some special gigs somewhere. But touring for two years… you have to wonder how many more two-years-worth of touring we’ve got left in us.

Regarding Downing’s departure from the band, Hill admitted he was shocked when it happened. Part of the reasoning behind the decision, he reckoned, was due to the guitarist’s newly built golf course in Shropshire, England.

“It came as bombshell to all of us,” he said. “I think Ken had just had enough. He’d got a lot on his plate with his golf course and I think he couldn’t spend the time away. This tour’s going to be—by the time it’s wrapped up—the best part of two years. It’s a long, long time to be away from things and I just think Ken couldn’t handle the time away.

“I’ll always be a friend of Ken’s and I’m sure he’ll always be a friend of mine. Still waters run deep and we’ve been together as colleagues and friends since we were about five years old. We went through school and everything together.”

Marianne Faithfull is Sick of Talking about The Rolling Stones

Monday, June 27, 2011

Sixties icon Marianne Faithfull is releasing a new album at the end of the month and has been talking music withVanity Fair magazine. She’s quick to state that she does not want to be constantly associated with her Rolling Stones years (she and Jagger dated in the mid-’60s).

She told the magazine: “I’m sick of talking about it. It would be great if people could see me as I see myself, which is as a working musician with an incredible arc of work. I’ve got such a body of work behind me. It’s much more important than my mythical life. And my life is mythical. Most of it is a lie, the tabloid version of me. You know that. If you know my work, you must know that.”

Her song “Eternity” samples a track that Rolling Stone Brian Jones produced, by the Master Musicians of Jakouka, and she says: “Brian’s presence is perfect. You know, after years and years, all that [expletive] gets washed away. I just remember Brian the musician now.”

If Faithfull is touchy about the Stones, she’s a goldmine of interesting nuggets about other musicians and their craft, like Frank Sinatra. Faithful says: “He learned to swim underwater so he could develop his chest and hold his notes longer. He was very serious, you know. Of course what we want is for it to look absolutely effortless.”

Horses and High Heels will be released on June 28 on Naïve Records.

My Morning Jacket, Amy Lee, Weezer Cover the Muppets

Monday, June 27, 2011

In advance of the fall release of the new Muppets movie (simply titled The Muppets), Disney is releasing an album of Muppets songs, covered by some big names in the rock world, according to Pitchfork. Among the participants on The Green Album: Weezer, My Morning Jacket, Evanescene’s Amy Lee, OK Go, The Fray, Alkaline Trio and Andrew Bird.

Weezer gets the supreme honor of including their version of “Rainbow Connection,” a track that also features Paramore’s Hayley Williams. It’s not the first Muppet-Weezer crossover. Kermit and Co. appeared in the pop rock band’s 2002 video for “Keep Fishin’.”

The Green Album tracklist:

1. OK Go, “Muppet Show Theme”
2. Weezer and Paramore’s Hayley Williams, “Rainbow Connection”
3. The Fray, “Mahna Mahna”
4. Alkaline Trio, “Moving Right Along”
5. My Morning Jacket, “Our World”
6. Amy Lee, “Halfway Down the Stairs”
7. Sondre Lerche, “Mr. Bassman”
8. The Airborne Toxic Event, “Wishing Song”
9. Atreyu’s Brandon Saller and Good Charlotte’s Billy Martin, “Night Life”
10. Andrew Bird, “Bein’ Green”
11. Matt Nathanson, “I Hope That Something Better Comes Along”
12. Rachael Yamagata, “I’m Going to Go Back There Someday”

Soundgarden drummer Matt Cameron said he and his pals in Soundgarden are nearly done recording their new album. The percussionist spoke with radio station WAAF, saying that the album is about 80 percent finished.

“We’re going to record a couple of more songs in August when we get back from tour and then hopefully we can mix it up and put it out,” he said, according to

Cameron is currently bouncing between Soundgarden, who reunited last year, and Pearl Jam, who he’s been with since 1998. When it was suggested that the two grunge bands could team up for a future tour, with a possible Temple of the Dog encore, Cameron didn’t seem so sure.

“I might die if we do that,” he said. “If I was 25, I’d say, ‘Yeah, let’s do this.’ But the energy it takes to play a Soundgarden show and a Pearl Jam show on the same night, I think I need to keep those separate for now.”

The opinions, views, and ideas expressed , do not necessarily reflect or represent the views of the Guitar Society. Send all thoughts, comments, disagreements, and rants to

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