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Coming out tomorrow (Saturday, April 19th) in commemoration of Record Store Day is Bruce Springsteen's new American Beauty vinyl EP. Springsteen recently spoke about the set -- which so far, has no digital or CD release date -- telling Rolling Stone: "It's got some nice things on it. This is material from the past decade. Some were demos that I never cut. I believe 'American Beauty' was a demo I made that I didn't end up cutting with Brendan (O'Brien). I believe 'Hurry Up Sundown' was the same thing. The other two songs, one was cut for maybe Magic or Working On A Dream and they're just good music that didn't get onto this record, and was sitting there. I thought it's a nice time to support the record stores, which are dwindling and get some new music out at the same time."
Back in 2010, Springsteen issued the vinyl single "Wrecking Ball" backed with a live version of "The Ghost Of Tom Joad" featuring Rage Against The Machine guitarist Tom Morello. Although both songs have been previously available as digital downloads, the 10-inch single was only available at independent record stores on Record Store Day.
We’ve got the British and American Beatles album box sets -- and now coming on June 25th is the "Fab Four's" five-CD set called Meet The Beatles - Japan Box. Beatlefan magazine reported that in commemoration of the Beatles' 50th anniversary of landing in America, Universal Music Japan will issue the box, which will feature the following Japanese edition albums: Meet The Beatles (14 songs); The Beatles' Second Album (14 songs), A Hard Day's Night (14 songs -- same as the original UK version, but different cover photo), Help (14 songs -- same as the original UK version) and the compilation, The Beatles No. 5 (14 songs).
Beatles Examiner posted: "Universal says each CD will include reproductions of the original albums' covers, as the Beatles' U.S. Albums set in America did. The albums will also be compiled from the 2009 remasters, as was the American box set. Each disc will feature either stereo or mono sound, but apparently not both, according to a translation."
Nirvana members Dave Grohl and Krist Novoselic have spoken with Rolling Stone about the band's performances during and after their Rock and Roll Hall of Fame induction last Thursday (April 10th), which featured a series of mostly female singers standing in for late frontman Kurt Cobain. Grohl revealed, "We didn't even start talking about playing until about eight weeks ago. It just seemed practically impossible. It was hard to imagine jumping onstage and playing those songs. It takes a little bit of musical preparation, and a lot of emotional preparation."
Out this week is Jethro Tull frontman Ian Anderson’s latest solo album, called Homo Erraticus. The new album, which is the followup to 2012’s Thick As A Brick 2, also chronicles the exploits of the fictional pre-pubescent character Gerald Bostock -- who made his first appearance on Tull’s 1972 Thick As A Brick album. Anderson, who's kicking off a UK tour at the end of the month, will embark on a 35-date U.S. tour beginning on September 12th in Seattle, Washington and running through November 10th in Montclair, New Jersey.
Anderson revealed to Billboard, that the Jethro Tull "brand" is dead, explaining, "The huge body of work that is the Jethro Tull catalogue stands firm close beside me and in good stead. . . But I think I prefer, in my twilight years, to use my own name for the most part being composer of virtually all Tull songs and music since 1968. . . It's a body of work I rather think is now kind of historical, since the weight of it lies back in the '70s and '80s in terms of volume. And I rather think it's nice to kind of leave that as legacy."
John Mellencamp is angered over conservative Republican Gov. Scott Walker once again using his 1985 song "Small Town" during his campaign appearances. The Huffington Post reported that back in 2012 Mellencamp publicly separated himself and the message of the song when Walker used "Small Town" without permission during his recall election, which "effectively ended collective bargaining for most public workers in Wisconsin." The union law passed despite outcries from such liberal musicians as the late Pete Seeger, Peter Yarrow, Rage Against The Machine’s Tom Morello, and Billy Bragg. This time around, Mellencamp’s publicist shot hit Gov. Walker an email explaining that Mellencamp "supports collective bargaining and union rights."
Back in 2010, Mellencamp joined Peter Yarrow and Noel Paul Stookey of Peter, Paul and Mary in asking the National Organization for Marriage (NOM) to refrain from using their music to campaign against same sex marriage. Yarrow and Stookey objected to the anti-Gay marriage group using Peter, Paul & Mary's version of Woody Guthrie's "This Land Is Your Land" at their rallies. Mellencamp previously had fought against 2008 Republican Presidential candidate Sen. John McCain using his songs "Pink Houses" and "Our Country," without his blessing or legal permission.
Art Garfunkel has just tagged 10 new dates onto his tour itinerary stretching his spring shows well into July. New stops include shows in New Jersey, and multiple nights in the Carolinas, New York, and Massachusetts. Garfunkel, who is finally back on his feet after suffering through several years of vocal paralysis, has been in excellent voice during his recent shows -- and was on hand last week at the Rock And Roll Hall of Fame to salute his old friend Yusuf Islam -- better known as Cat Stevens.
Coldplay has announced a handful of intimate live shows in support of the group's upcoming album, Ghost Stories. The band will play Cologne, Germany on April 25th, New York City on May 5th, Los Angeles on May 19th, Paris on May 28th, Tokyo on June 12th and London on July 1st. Early in that run the quartet will also be the musical guests on the May 3rd edition of Saturday Night Live, hosted that evening by The Amazing Spider-Man 2 star Andrew Garfield.
Who or what inspired Lorde's chart-topping Modern Rock and crossover hit, "Royals"? The tune may be the theme song of a new generation of teenagers -- or so the critics say -- but it was actually set off by something much more mundane: a photo in National Geographic of Kansas City Royals third baseman George Brett.
With all the recent attention focused on Nirvana's induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, Dave Grohl's current band Foo Fighters has slipped off the radar a little bit. But the group is still hard at work on its eighth studio album, with producer Butch Vig telling U.K. magazine Kerrang!, "We've been recording at some different locations, but we're almost halfway done with the recording and it's going well. It sounds different -- we've thrown a few things into the mix, in the recording process, that are going to give the record a different sound and a different feel. It's been a challenge, but it's also been exciting."
Drummer Taylor Hawkins told us recently that Foo Fighters have never been in better shape as a band: "We as a band, moreso than ever, can walk into a studio and record a song any way we want, as quick as we want, to the best of our abilities. As a band we're playing better than we've ever played. I just know it. I can feel it, I can hear it, and that's the most important thing, and it's awesome."