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George Harrison and the Bee Gees will be honored with the Recording Academy Lifetime Achievement Award prior to next year’s Grammy Awards in February. The academy will also honor blues legend Buddy Guy, country duo the Louvin Brothers, jazz saxophonist Wayne Shorter, composer Pierre Boulez, and Tejano music accordionist Flaco Jimenez.
In addition to that, the "non-performing" Trustees Awards will go to married Brill Building songwriting legends Barry Mann and Cynthia Weil, record producer Richard Perry -- with scientist and synthesizer pioneer Ray Kurzweil receiving the Technical Grammy Award.
Newly published is Hipgnosis Portraits, by longtime Pink Floyd collaborator and video director Aubrey "Po" Powell. Powell and his late partner Storm Thorgerson, conceived and created legendary and timeless album and singles covers for Pink Floyd, Led Zeppelin, Peter Gabriel, Paul McCartney & Wings, Yes, the Scorpions, AC/DC, Peter Frampton, Black Sabbath, Styx, 10cc, and countless others. Robert Plant supplies the book's forward.
With Hipgnosis Portraits, Aubrey Powell revisits the team's archives -- including images from 156 negatives that laid untouched in an old file for 43 years -- and puts an end to the many myths that surround classic rock albums of the 1960’s, ‘70s, and ‘80s. Among the more interesting revelations in the book is Hiopgnosis' original unused and unfinished 1973 design for the Rolling Stones' Goats Head Soup.
Steven Van Zandt is proud of his "Boss" Bruce Springsteen for nailing his part during his appearance in Lilyhammer. Springsteen played Giuseppe Tagliano, the brother of Van Zandt's character Frank "The Fixer" Tagliano, on the third season finale of the show now airing on Netflix. Van Zandt told The Associated Press: "He's really acting. It's not some cameo. He's not playing himself. It's a real thing."
Van Zandt told us that Springsteen appearing the show -- and having it be his idea -- meant everything to him: "Bruce makes his acting debut in the final episode this year. And I was really honored that he chose me and trusted me to be the director of his first acting job. It happens to be the episode that I’m directing this year. And, y’know, everybody’s been after him to act, y’know, for 30 years, and he’s finally, (he) finally did it. And he’s just great -- as you’ll see."
It was 39 years ago Saturday (December 20th, 1975) that the Eagles announced the departure of co-founder and guitarist Bernie Leadon, and that former James Gang frontman Joe Walsh was officially replacing him.
During Leadon's time with the Eagles he co-wrote a total of 11 songs, including the band's first Top Ten hit, 1972's "Witchy Woman." He played a pivotal role in developing the band's country-rock sound, but had tired of the group's non-stop grind of studio work followed by endless months of touring -- not to mention bandmates Don Henley and Glenn Frey's growing songwriting monopoly on the Eagles' albums.
Prior to joining the band, Leadon was the lead guitarist for the Flying Burrito Brothers alongside former Byrds Gram Parsons, Chris Hillman, and Michael Clarke.
Kid Rock has unveiled more details about his upcoming 10th studio album, First Kiss, which is due out February 24th. You can pre-order the record now at Rock's website and other participating retailers, and all pre-order buyers will be eligible after fan club members for pre-sales ticket access to Rock’s 2015 U.S. headlining tour.
Rock told us a while back that record sales are less important to him now than touring and playing live: "At this point it's about putting people in seats, you know. It's about live. We've seen this. The days of making money selling records like we were used to when it first came out are not there -- and I'm not necessarily upset about that. To me, live is everything, always has been."
Sunday (December 21st) marks what would have been Beach Boys co-founder and guitarist Carl Wilson's 68th birthday. Carl, who was known for his peaceful nature and flawless tenor vocals, died of cancer on February 6th, 1998 at the age of 51.
Although the Beach Boys story is said to start with the Wilson brothers -- Brian, Dennis and Carl -- harmonizing with cousin Mike Love at family gatherings, it was Carl's love for guitar-based R&B that separated him from his family. While barely a teen, Carl and fellow Beach Boys co-founder David Marks were taking lessons from local guitarist John Maus -- later of the Walker Brothers -- who himself had learned directly from Ritchie Valens.
It was Carl and Marks' dual-guitar combo that took the Beach Boys beyond the intricate Four Freshman-style harmonies, which enthralled brother Brian, the casual doo-wop favored by Love, and the acoustic folk stylings of Al Jardine.