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ZZ Top and Weezer to Perform as "Wee-Z Top" This Monday on ABC's "Jimmy Kimmel Live!"

Image Courtesy of ABCZZ Top will team up with modern rockers Weezer next week for the first installment of a new Jimmy Kimmel Live! segment called "Mash Up Mondays," that will feature unlikely one-off collaborative performances by two popular music acts.  The Texas trio and Weezer will join forces to form "Wee-Z Top" -- a name coined by host Jimmy Kimmel -- on this Monday's episode of the late night show, which airs on ABC at 11:35 p.m. ET/10:35 p.m. CT.

The showcase, which will take place each Monday in February -- also will feature funk great Morris Day performing with pop-rock sister act HAIM as "Morris Day and the HAIM" on February 9, and soul star Aloe Blacc collaborating with R&B group Blackstreet as "Aloe Blaccstreet" on February 16.  The artists who will perform on the February 23 edition of "Mash-Up Monday" haven't been revealed.

Meanwhile, in case you missed it, ZZ Top visited Jimmy Kimmel Live! this past Monday, January 26, and performed three tunes -- the band's recent song "Gotsta Get Paid" and the classics "Tush" and "La Grange."  You can watch video of the performances online at the Jimmy Kimmel Live! official site and YouTube channel.

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Paul McCartney Schedules Japanese Concerts in April

Credit: MJ KimPaul McCartney has announced his first 2015 dates of his ongoing Out There tour, a four-show visit to Japan that will take place in April.  The concerts are scheduled for April 21 at the Kyocera Dome in Osaka and April 23, 25 and 27 at the Tokyo Dome in Tokyo.

Last May, Sir Paul was forced to cancel a series of shows in Japan when he was taken ill with a virus, and he's excited to return to the country this year.

"I cannot wait to get back to Japan and have some more great rocking rolling nights together," McCartney says in a new video message.  "It was lovely to be there in two-thousand-and-13 and we had some fun.  It was also very disappointing not to be able to perform there last year, but I want to thank all you lovely people for the great messages you sent me.  It was very kind.  Thank you so much.  So listen, we're coming back and we're gonna rock, we're gonna roll, we're gonna do it together.  Let's have some fun!  Saiko! [Awesome]."

As usual, Paul will be accompanied by his longtime backing band at the shows, which will feature a mix of Beatles classics, solo hits and songs from McCartney's most recent studio album, 2013's NEW.

Tickets for the Japanese concerts go on sale February 28 at 10 a.m. local time.

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Lady Gaga, John Legend & More Join Lineup for Grammy Salute to Stevie Wonder

Credit: Eddie WolflThe lineup for the upcoming TV special Stevie Wonder: Songs in the Key of Life -- An All-Star GRAMMY Salute continues to expand.

Pop stars Lady Gaga, John Legend and Ariana Grande, as well as country group The Band Perry, are the latest additions to the bill, which already includes Willie Nelson, Coldplay's Chris Martin, Janelle Monáe, Ed Sheeran and Usher.  As previously reported, the special will pay tribute to Stevie Wonder by featuring current acts performing songs from the Motown legend's catalog.  Wonder is the only artist ever to win Album of the Year at the Grammys three out of four consecutive years.

The show will be recorded February 10 in Los Angeles, two days after this year's Grammy Awards, and will air February 16 on CBS at 9 p.m. ET/PT.  LL Cool J, who is hosting the Grammy ceremony, will host the salute as well.

In conjunction with the Wonder celebration, Stevie's platinum-selling 2002 hits compilation, The Definitive Collection, has been remastered for iTunes.  The 21-track set features a selection of memorable tunes spanning from Wonder's chart-topping debut single, 1963's "Fingertips (Part 2)," through his most recent solo #1 hit, 1985's "Part Time Lover."

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Brian Wilson's New Solo Album, "No Pier Pressure," to Be Released on April 7

Capitol RecordsBrian Wilson has unveiled full details about his latest solo album, No Pier Pressure, which will be released on April 7.  The record sees the founding Beach Boys mastermind teaming up with a variety of guest artists, including former band mates Al Jardine, David Marks and Blondie Chaplin, as well as acclaimed trumpet player Mark Isham.

Wilson also tapped the talents of a variety of younger music artists whom he's inspired, among them fun. frontman Nate Ruess, country singer Kacey Musgraves, indie-pop duo She & Him's Zooey Deschanel and M. Ward, and Capital Cities' Sebu Simonian.  In addition, a number of well-known studio musicians were brought in to play on the album, including bassist/producer Don Was, guitarist Dean Parks and drummers Jim Keltner and Kenny Aronoff, as well as several members of Brian's touring group, his former band mate Jeffrey Foskett and Jardine's son Matt.

One surprising omission from the list of collaborators is rock guitar legend Jeff Beck, whose previously reported contributions to the No Pier Pressure sessions apparently did not make the final cut.

Brian initially had envisioned the new album as a follow-up to The Beach Boys' 2012 reunion project That's Why God Made the Radio, but when that plan fell through he decided to call on a variety of contemporary artists to take part in the recording.

No Pier Pressure will be available as a standard CD and digital download featuring 13 songs, a deluxe edition CD and download with three bonus tracks, and a 180-gram two-LP vinyl set featuring the same 16 tunes as the deluxe version of the album.

Here is the track list for the deluxe version of No Pier Pressure:

"This Beautiful Day"
"Runaway Dancer" (featuring Sebu Simonian)
"What Ever Happened" (featuring Al Jardine and David Marks)
"On the Island" (featuring She & Him)
"Our Special Love" (featuring Peter Hollens)
"The Right Time" (featuring Al Jardine and David Marks)
"Guess You Had to Be There" (featuring Kacey Musgraves)
*"Don't Worry"
*"Somewhere Quiet"
*"I'm Feeling Sad"
"Tell Me Why" (featuring Al Jardine)
"Sail Away" (featuring Blondie Chaplin and Al Jardine)
"One Kind of Love"
"Saturday Night" (featuring Nate Ruess)
"The Last Song"
"Half Moon Bay"

* = not featured on the standard version.

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Doobie Brothers Launch New "Concert Club" Giving Fans Access to Special Ticket Offers and Merchandise

Credit: Jim SheaThe Doobie Brothers have launched a new fan club that will give their biggest fans access to premium seats and special packages, as well as being treated to a variety of cool themed merchandise and collectibles.  For an annual fee of $39.99, the "Takin' It to the Streets Concert Club" offers participants priority access to pre-sale tickets and VIP packages to select shows, while members also receive a Doobie Brothers guitar-pick set, blanket and limited-edition lithograph, as well as the chance to enter special contests and giveaways.

"Music has changed a lot during our career, but one thing hasn't: fans want the best concert-going experience possible," says Doobies singer/guitarist Tom Johnston.  "We want to make sure our super fans have access to the best seats, our newest merch and also get rewarded for their loyalty."

Among the VIP experiences that can be purchased for the band's 2015 tour dates is the VIP Front Row Meet & Greet Package, which includes a reserved seat in the first row, an in-person meeting and photo with members of the group, plus a Doobie Brothers belt buckle, tote bag, ear buds and laminate.

To join The Doobies' Takin' It to the Streets Concert Club and check out the band's current tour itinerary, visit

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Tom Petty Issues Statement Regarding Sam Smith, Says "I Won't Back Down" Similarity Was a "Musical Accident"

Credit: Sam JonesEarlier this week, it was announced that Tom Petty and Jeff Lynne had been added to the songwriting credits of "Stay with Me," the Grammy-nominated hit by British pop star Sam Smith, because of its supposed similarity to Petty and Lynne's 1989 hit composition, "I Won't Back Down."  Now, Petty has issued statement about that decision, saying there's no bad blood between himself and Smith.

"About the Sam Smith thing. Let me say I have never had any hard feelings toward Sam," Petty writes on his website. "All my years of songwriting have shown me these things can happen.  Most times you catch it before it gets out the studio door but in this case it got by." 

Here, Petty is apparently referring to the fact that sometimes, songwriters are unaware that what they're working on is similar to an existing song.

Petty then continues, "Sam’s people were very understanding of our predicament and we easily came to an agreement.  The word lawsuit was never even said and was never my intention.  And no more was to be said about it. How it got out to the press is beyond Sam or myself.  Sam did the right thing and I have thought no more about this.  A musical accident no more no less."

Petty concludes, "In these times we live in this is hardly news. I wish Sam all the best for his ongoing career. Peace and love to all."

When the news of the credit addendum came to life, Sam's rep issued a statement saying that the publishers of "I Won't Back Down" had contacted the publishers of "Stay with Me" about the "similarities heard in the melodies of the choruses of the two compositions."  The statement went on to say that Sam and his co-writers were not "previously familiar with" Petty's hit, but they "acknowledged the similarity."

That statement concluded, "Although the likeness was a complete coincidence, all involved came to an immediate and amicable agreement in which Tom Petty and Jeff Lynne are now credited as co-writers of 'Stay With Me' along with Sam Smith, James Napier and William Phillips."

The Recording Academy later clarified that if "Stay with Me" wins the Song of the Year Grammy, Petty and Lynne will not receive trophies, because they didn't do any "new writing" on the song.

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New Ringo Starr Album, "Postcards from Paradise," Out March 31

Credit: Rob ShanahanRingo Starr hits the road again in two weeks for about a month's worth of dates, but he'll be back home in time for the release of his new album, Postcards from Paradise, set to drop March 31.

Ringo's 18th studio album sees him backed by his current All Starr Band players: Steve Lukather, Todd Rundgren, Gregg Rolie, Richard Page, Warren Ham and Gregg BissonettePostcards from Paradise is also Ringo's first studio album to include a song written and recorded by them.  It'll also feature contributions from guests including Joe Walsh, Benmont Tench, Dave Stewart, violinist Ann Marie Simpson, Richard Marx, singer Amy Keys, Peter Frampton, bassist and vocalist Nathan East, and Glen Ballard.

Postcards from Paradise's release also sets the stage for Ringo's induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame April 18, when he'll receive the Award for Musical Excellence.  He is, of course, already in the Hall as a member of The Beatles.

Here's the track listing for Postcards from Paradise:

"Rory and the Hurricanes"
"You Bring the Party Down"
"Postcards from Paradise"
"Right Side of the Road"
"Not Looking Back"
"Island in the Sun"
"Touch and Go"
"Let Love Lead"

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Listen to Title Track from Randy Bachman's Upcoming Album, "Heavy Blues," Featuring Peter Frampton

Credit: Mike HoughThe first taste of Heavy Blues, the upcoming studio album by Canadian rock legend Randy Bachman's new group, Bachman, has made its way online.  A clip featuring the audio of the record's entire title track, boasting a guest appearance by Peter Frampton, has been posted on YouTube.

The song lives up to its name, with Bachman and Frampton delivering dueling blues-y guitar riffs accompanied by a bludgeoning rhythm section reminiscent of Cream and the Jimi Hendrix Experience.

As previously reported, Bachman the band is comprised of Randy, bassist Anna Ruddick and drummer Dale Anne BrendonHeavy Blues features guest appearances by such respected guitarists as Frampton, Neil Young, Joe Bonamassa, Robert Randolph and the late Jeff Healey.

The album will be released on April 14; it's currently available for pre-order at iTunes, Amazon and

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Ex-Genesis Guitarist Steve Hackett Upset He Wasn't "Equally Represented" in Band's Recent Documentary

Credit: Lee MillwardEarlier this month, the 2014 Genesis documentary Sum of the Parts, which premiered in the U.S. on Showtime in October, was released on DVD and Blu-ray.  The film featured brand-new interviews with all five members of the band's classic early 1970s lineup, including guitarist Steve Hackett.  The doc focused on the group's history as well as each member's solo career, but Hackett tells ABC News Radio that he wasn't very happy about the amount of coverage his own work outside of the group was given.

"I got on board believing, naively perhaps, that we would all be equally represented," he says.  "But the short of it is, I did two hours to camera on my own and two hours with the band sitting 'round, but it was heavily butchered in the cutting room stage…And I think something that was presented initially as an idea of something completely democratic ended up being something other than that."

Hackett says he was much happier with the 2014 companion compilation, R-Kive, on which the band members collaborated in conjunction with the documentary.

"I perhaps mistakenly thought that because of the album that we were all working on together that we were all Genesis and we were all equals once more, but sadly it's not to be," he laments.

He adds that the experience he had with the film project makes him doubt that the band members will be able to come together for any type of reunion.

"When people ask me…is there gonna be a reformation, I say, '[L]ook at the documentary and you'll get an idea of the priorities that come across," says Hackett, "and I think it's probably extremely unlikely."

Having said that, the guitar virtuoso tells ABC News Radio that he still would be open to playing with his ex-band mates if by some chance they all agreed to a reunion.

"I think that I've always been up for that," he admits.  "It's been decades I've been saying, 'Call me if you need me.'  So, my door's open to that, certainly."

As for Hackett's upcoming plans, he will be bringing his Genesis Extended tribute tour to South America in March.  Then, on April 7, he will release a new solo album titled Wolflight.  Visit for all the latest news on Steve.

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The Who Announces Special Vinyl Releases to Mark 50th Anniversary

LAMedia Collection/Sunshine/RetnaThe Who has announced that 180-gram vinyl reissues of all 11 of its studio albums, along with a double-LP vinyl version of its 2014 The Who Hits 50! compilation, will be released on March 24 in conjunction with the band's 50th anniversary celebrations.  In addition, on April 7, The Who will release a seven-inch blue-vinyl single of its latest song, "Be Lucky," as well as the first of a series of four vinyl box sets gathering together the group's earlier singles.

The British rockers' reissued studio albums, spanning from their 1965 debut My Generation through 2006's Endless Wire, will feature remastered sound and will replicate the original artwork and inserts.  For example, 1969's Tommy will feature a six-panel fold-out sleeve and 12-page booklet; 1973's Quadrophenia will include a 44-page booklet; and 1981's Face Dances will come with a 24-by-24-inch poster.

As for the blue-vinyl "Be Lucky" single, it will be backed by The Who's very first single, 1965's "I Can't Explain."  "Be Lucky" was first released in 2014, and appeared on The Who Hits 50! compilation.  It was the first new music the band had put out since 2006.

The aforementioned vinyl box set is titled The Brunswick Singles 1965–1966, and features replica versions of all seven singles The Who released on the Brunswick label at the beginning of its career.  The package also includes a bonus disc featuring "Zoot Suit" and "I'm the Face," the two songs the band released under the name The High Numbers in 1964, and a color booklet with liner notes about the singles penned by Who biographer Mark Blake.  Each of the three other singles box sets that will be arrive later in 2015 will feature singles issued by the band's later record labels Reaction, Track and Polydor.

The Who will launch the first of two scheduled 2015 North American tour legs marking the band's 50th anniversary on April 15 in Tampa, Florida.  Visit to check out the band's full itinerary.

Here is the list of remastered albums The Who will release on vinyl on March 24:

My Generation (1965)
A Quick One (1966)
The Who Sell Out (1967)
Tommy (double) (1969)
Who's Next (1971)
Quadrophenia (double) (1973)
The Who by Numbers (1975)
Who Are You (1978)
Face Dances (1981)
It's Hard (1982)
Endless Wire (double) (2006)
The Who Hits 50! (double) (2014)

Here is the track list for The Brunswick Singles 1965–1966 box set:

"I Can't Explain" b/w "Bald Headed Woman" (1965)
"Anyway, Anyhow, Anywhere" b/w "Daddy Rolling Stone" (1965)
"My Generation" b/w "Shout and Shimmy" (1965)
"Circles" b/w "Instant Party Mixture" (unreleased at the time)
"A Legal Matter" b/w "Instant Party" (1966)
"The Kids Are Alright" b/w "The Ox" (1966)
"La-La-La Lies" b/w "The Good's Gone" (1966)
Bonus Disc (The High Numbers)
"Zoot Suit" b/w "I'm the Face" (1964)

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Sly Stone Awarded $5 Million in Lawsuit over Unpaid Royalties

Sly Stone, 1975 (Credit: Herb Greene)Sly Stone, frontman of the pioneering funk band Sly and the Family Stone, has been awarded a $5 million settlement in a lawsuit he brought against his former manager and lawyer over unpaid royalties.  The verdict was announced Tuesday following two days of jury deliberations.

Variety reports that in the lawsuit, which was filed in 2010, the singer claimed that manager Gerald Goldstein and attorney Glenn Stone convinced him to sign an agreement with a company called Even Street Productions in 1989 that gave his business associates access to his music royalties, which he claimed they used for their own financial gain.

"It was a classic case of Hollywood accounting, but I guess it would have to be called record industry accounting," said Sly's lead attorney, Nick Hornberger.  He added that the jury "sent a very clear message."

The defendant's lawyer Gregory Bodell said in response to the lawsuit's outcome, "We are disappointed in the finding and believe it will be changed by further proceedings."

During the trial, Sly maintained that he hadn't been paid any royalties between 1989 and 2000.  However, lawyers for Goldstein and Glenn Stone claimed that the singer had received millions of dollars, and said he violated his agreement by not recording new music.  The defendants also argued that Sly was aware of the terms of the agreement he signed, which they say he renewed dozens of times between the years 1994 and 2006.

Sly Stone was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame with his famous band in 1993.  The singer has battled drug problems for decades and has performed only sporadically in recent years.

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Paul McCartney Performing with Rihanna and Kanye West at the Grammys?

Westbury Road Entertainment/Roc Nation RecordsIf rumors are to be believed, Paul McCartney will be taking the stage with Rihanna and Kanye West at the Grammy Awards next month to perform their new collaboration, "FourFiveSeconds."

"Paul McCartney's a Grammys regular and it will give Rihanna serious kudos to have a Beatle backing her on stage," a source told U.K. newspaper The Sun.  "It is going to be a huge Grammys moment."

McCartney plays on the track, while Rihanna and West share vocals.  "FourFiveSeconds" debuted this past Saturday, and marks the second collaboration featuring Sir Paul and Kanye that's been released in 2015.  McCartney plays keyboard on and co-wrote West's single "Only One," which premiered on New Year's Day.

If McCartney does team up with Rihanna and Kanye to perform at this year's Grammys, it stands to be quite different from Sir Paul's 2014 appearance on the awards show.  Last year, he and his former Beatles band mate Ringo Starr collaborated on a rendition of his new solo song "Queenie Eye."  The 57th Annual Grammy Awards take place on February 8 at the Staples Center in Los Angeles.

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Gladys Knight Performing at Super Bowl Gospel Celebration

Kwaku Alston/Verve Music GroupGladys Knight will headline the 16th annual NFL-sanctioned Super Bowl Gospel Celebration, taking place this Friday, January 30, in Phoenix, Arizona.

The legendary pop-soul singer will be joined by Anthony Hamilton, Dave HollisterTamela Mann, Mali MusicFred Hammond and Donnie McClurkin. The show also will include unannounced special tributes and surprise performances.  Actress Holly Robinson Peete and retired NFL star Rodney Peete will co-host the event, which also will see the NFL Players Choir hitting the stage.

A portion of the proceeds from the Super Bowl Gospel Celebration will be donated to national and local charities.  The event takes place two days before the big game on February 1 in Glendale, Arizona.

Tickets for the concert are currently available for purchase at

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Tom Jones, Annie Lennox Among Newly-Announced Grammy Performers

Marco Grob; Mike OwenContinuing the recent Grammy Awards trend of pairing artists from different genres and eras for special performances, Tom Jones and ex-Eurythmics singer Annie Lennox have been tapped to take part in separate onstage collaborations with younger stars at this year's ceremony.

Jones will team up with U.K. pop/R&B star Jessie J, while Lennox will duet with Irish singer/songwriter Hozier.

Lennox, Hozier and Jessie J all received nominations for various honors at this year's Grammys, while Jones took home a 1965 Grammy for Artist of the Year.  Lennox also has several Grammy trophies on her mantelpiece.

Other just-announced Grammy collaborations include Tony Bennett with Lady Gaga, and Maroon 5 frontman Adam Levine with fellow The Voice coach Gwen Stefani of No Doubt.  Interestingly, Jones and Jessie J both have served as coaches on the U.K. version of The Voice.

"Musical collaborations have become a GRAMMY staple, and the best part is that artists now suggest many of these duets themselves," says Grammy Awards executive producer Ken Ehrlich in a statement.  "I'm very excited about this year's special segments, and believe they'll be talked about for a long time to come."

Previously-announced performers at this year's Grammys include Madonna, AC/DC, John Legend with Common, Pharrell Williams, Usher, Miranda Lambert, Sam Smith, Ed Sheeran, and Ariana Grande.  The ceremony airs February 8 on CBS.

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New Photo Exhibit by Pattie Boyd, Ex-Wife of George Harrison and Eric Clapton, to Open in San Francisco

© Pattie BoydA new exhibition featuring photos taken by Pattie Boyd, the ex-wife of both George Harrison and Eric Clapton, will open on February 10 at the San Francisco Art Exchange.  The display will boast a wide variety of candid and rare images documenting her life with the two rock legends, as well as many of their famous musical friends and associates.

The exhibit also will feature the original painting that appears on the cover of Clapton's classic 1970 Derek and the Dominos album Layla and Other Love Songs.  The piece, which has never before been displayed in the U.S., usually hangs in Boyd's house in the U.K.  Pattie, of course, was inspiration for Eric's song "Layla," as well as several other famous tunes, including "Wonderful Tonight" and Harrison's chart-topping Beatles hit "Something."

A reception celebrating the opening of Boyd's exhibit will be held at the gallery on February 14, Valentine's Day.  The exhibition will remain open until March 10.

Check out for more information.

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Rick Springfield Releasing "Stripped Down" CD/DVD Set Next Month

Loud & Proud RecordsA new CD/DVD set titled Stripped Down featuring highlights from the 2014 edition of pop-rock star Rick Springfield's ongoing tour of the same name will be released on February 24.  The concert video and album capture the Australian singer/guitarist playing solo versions of many of his memorable songs, as well as sharing stories about the tunes and his life.

The Stripped Down track list includes renditions of Springfield's hits "Jessie's Girl," "Don't Talk to Strangers," "Love Somebody," "Affair of the Heart" and "I've Done Everything for You." It also features performances of the new song "If Wishes Were Fishes" and covers of Badfinger's "Baby Blue" and Fleetwood Mac's "Oh Well."

"The conception and execution of my solo storytellers show is something I basically worked on my whole life and it's awesome to bring the finished product to the fans who embraced it with the sold-out shows across America in 2014," says Rick in a statement.  "Now, if you can't make it to one of my 2015 Stripped Down dates live, you can enjoy it in the comfort of your own living room…naked, if you want."

Springfield has a variety of North American concerts lined up in the coming months, including Stripped Down shows and gigs with a full backing band.  Here is his current itinerary; full-band shows denoted with an asterisk (*):

1/29-31 -- Niagara Falls, ON, Canada, Fallsview Casino Resort*
2/5 -- Dallas, TX, Majestic Theatre
2/6 -- Houston, TX, Zilkha Hall at Hobby Center
2/7 -- San Antonio, TX, Empire Theatre
2/13-14 -- Nashville, TN, Wildhorse Saloon*
2/15 -- Detroit, MI, Motor City Casino Hotel*
2/21 -- New York, NY, The Concert Hall
2/22 -- Manchester, NH, Palace Theatre
2/25 -- Boston, MA, House Of Blues Boston
2/26 -- Ridgefield, CT, Ridgefield Playhouse
2/27 -- Newton, NJ, The Newton Theatre
2/28 -- Peekskill, NY, Paramount Theatre
3/5 -- Corpus Christ, TX, Selena Auditorium
3/6 -- El Paso, TX, Plaza Theatre
3/7 -- Sun Tan Valley, AZ, Encanterra*
3/13 -- Boca Raton, FL, JAZZIZ Nightlife
3/14 -- Orlando, FL, Trilogy Orlando*
3/15 -- Clearwater, FL, Capitol Theatre
3/18 -- Seattle, WA , The Neptune
3/20 -- Napa, CA, Uptown Theatre
4/9 -- Tucson, AZ, Fox Tucson Theatre
4/11 -- Branson, MO, Andy Williams Moon River Theatre
4/18 -- Mt. Pocono, PA, Mt. Airy Casino Resort
5/10 -- Kansas City, MO, Arvest Bank Theatre at The Midland
5/14 -- Deadwood, SD, Deadwood Mountain Grand
5/15 -- Dekalb, IL, NIU Convocation Center*
5/16 -- Sioux City, IA, Anthem at Hard Rock Sioux City

Here is the track list for the Stripped Down CD:

"Affair of the Heart"
"Love Is Alright Tonite"
"I've Done Everything for You"
"Painted Girl"
"Oh Well"
"Love Somebody"
"Baby Blue"
"Rollin' & Tumblin'"
"If Wishes Were Fishes"
"Don't Talk to Strangers"
"April 24th, 1981/My Father's Chair"
"Me & Johnny"
"Human Touch"
"Jessie's Girl"

And here is the Stripped Down DVD set list:

"Affair of the Heart"
"Me & Johnny"
"Oh Well"
"Love Is Alright Tonite"
"Rollin' & Tumblin'"
"Baby Blue"
"Painted Girl"
"April 24th, 1981/My Father's Chair"
"If Wishes Were Fishes"
"Love Somebody"
"Our Ships Sinking"
"Jessie's Girl"
"Human Touch"
"My Depression" (credits only)

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Chris Robinson Says Reason for Black Crowes Split "Way More Complicated" than Brother Rich's Explanation

Credit: Rod SnyderEarlier this month, founding Black Crowes guitarist Rich Robinson issued a statement announcing that the band had broken up after 25 years together.  In the message, Rich cited a conflict with his older brother, Crowes frontman Chris Robinson, as the reason for the band's split, claiming that the singer had demanded Rich reduce his "equal share of the band and that our drummer for 28 years…Steve Gorman, relinquish 100% of his share, reducing him to a salaried employee."

Now, Chris Robinson has commented about the breakup for the first time since his brother's announcement.  The singer tells Billboard that the story behind the split is "way more complicated than Rich's public outburst," although he didn't go into further details.  He does lament, however, "It's unfortunate that on the 25th anniversary, whether the band is working or not, that it's not about the songs and the good times people had at those concerts."

Chris also explains, "I'm going to keep my personal, private family business personal and private, and I'll focus on all the other things that are important.  The ideas, I think, are more important than the drama. I have too much stuff going on that's progressive and positive to dig through sordid family history and stuff."

That positive "stuff" includes the singer's work with his current band, Chris Robinson Brotherhood, which has a busy 2015 tour schedule that includes a bunch of U.S. dates and a brief Australian tour lined up in early April.

Chris says the group, whose third studio album, Phosphorescent Harvest, came out in 2014, "is my future."  He adds, "I think it's been leading this way for a while that the CRB is really where we all want to be and really where we want to put our collective focus."  Chris Robinson Brotherhood's lineup also includes recent Black Crowes keyboardist Adam MacDougall and veteran singer/guitarist Neal Casal.

According to Chris, fans who attend CRB shows can expect to hear some Black Crowes tunes that he's written, as well as the cover of Otis Redding's "Hard to Handle" that his old band popularized.  However, he says Chris Robinson Brotherhood will focus mainly on its own original material.

You can check out the band's full tour schedule at

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Today Is the 30th Anniversary of "We Are the World" Recording Session

USA for AfricaThirty years ago today, dozens of top musicians came together to record "We Are the World," the successful charity single that raised money for hunger victims in Africa.

The song, which was written by Lionel Richie and Michael Jackson, came on the heels of the British charity single "Do They Know It's Christmas?" It was recorded in Hollywood after the 1985 American Music Awards, and featured a who's who of popular artists from that time.  The artists recorded under the name USA for Africa.

In addition to Richie and Jackson, the song also featured Stevie Wonder, Paul Simon, Kenny Rogers, James Ingram, Tina Turner, Billy Joel, Diana Ross, Dionne Warwick, Willie Nelson, Al Jarreau, Bruce Springsteen, Kenny Loggins, Steve Perry, Daryl Hall, Huey Lewis, Cyndi Lauper, Kim Carnes, Bob Dylan, and Ray Charles.

The all-star chorus included Dan Aykroyd, Harry Belafonte, Lindsey Buckingham, Sheila E., Bob Geldof, Bette Midler, Waylon Jennings, John Oates, Jeffrey Osborne, The Pointer Sisters, Smokey Robinson, and Michael Jackson's siblings, Jackie, La Toya, Marlon, Randy, and Tito.

Richie tells USA Today that he and Jackson listened to various national anthems in order to get into their minds into writing a "world anthem." "We didn't want a normal-sounding song," recalls Richie. "We wanted bombastic, the biggest thing you got."

Billy Joel told ABC News Radio in 2005 that when he first heard the track, he wasn't impressed at all.  "I wasn't that crazy about the song.  I think that was my main memory of that," he recalled. "It was, 'Oh, this is the song?'...It sounded like a Pepsi commercial!"

Dionne Warwick tells ABC News Radio the experience remains difficult to describe.  "I've been asked this question several times -- 'How did it feel, how was it,' and that.  You can't put it in words," she says.  "It's one of those, 'You had to be there.'  You know, the magnitude of talent that was in that room, my god!  It was like the who's who and who is not, even, of show business and the recorded world.  It was amazing.  Amazing."

The recording session on January 28, 1985 at A&M Recording Studios in Hollywood began at 9 p.m. and lasted 12 hours.  The artists were greeted by a sign that read, "Check your egos at the door."

Quincy Jones, who produced the track, recalls that the sign wasn't necessary. "Here you had 46 of the biggest recording stars in the entire world in one room, to help people in a far-off place who were in desperate need," Jones tells USA Today.

Warwick agrees: "There are many times that you might need to say that, in close quarters," she says, laughing.  "But not that evening.  That evening is still, still sparkles.  It was an enormously incredible evening."

"I don't think that night, that experience, will ever truly be duplicated again," says Jones. "I know and believe in the power of music to bring people together for the betterment of mankind, and there may be no better example of this than the collective that was 'We Are the World.'"

Following its release in March 7, 1985, "We Are the World" sold more than 20 million copies and raised more than 60 million dollars for famine relief in Africa. It went on to win three Grammy Awards.

An updated version of the song was recorded in 2010 to help victims of the Haiti earthquake. It featured Justin Bieber, Miley Cyrus, Adam Levine and Kanye West, among others.

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Steely Dan Announces Run of Spring U.S. Tour Dates

Credit: Danny ClinchSteely Dan recently confirmed a pair of headlining performances at this year's Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival, on April 10 and April 17, and now the band has announced a full series of spring shows in the Western U.S.  The Rock and Roll Hall of Famers' concerts run from an April 7-8 stand in Santa Rosa, California, through an April 18 date in San Diego.

In recent years, Steely Dan has headed out on a variety of quirkily named treks, including last year's Jamalot Ever After tour and 2013's Mood Swings outing.  2015 is no exception, as this year's trek has been christened the Rockabye Golly Angel Tour.  On-sale dates for the new shows vary; visit for details.  More concerts are expected to be announced soon.

Here are all of Steely Dan's confirmed 2015 tour dates:

4/7 -- Santa Rosa, CA, Wells Fargo Center for the Arts
4/8 -- Santa Rosa, CA, Wells Fargo Center for the Arts
4/10 -- Indio, CA, Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival
4/11 -- Las Vegas, NV, The Pearl Concert Theater at Palms Casino Resort
4/14 -- Paso Robles, CA, Vina Robles Amphitheatre
4/15 -- Santa Barbara, CA, County Bowl
4/17 -- Indio CA, Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival
4/18 -- San Diego, CA, Humphrey's Concerts by the Bay

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Leonard Cohen Nabs Four Nominations for 2015 Juno Awards

PRNewsFoto/Columbia RecordsHallelujah! One of the top nominees for this year's Juno Awards, Canada's equivalent of the Grammys, is 80 years old -- influential singer/songwriter Leonard Cohen.  The lauded folk-rock artist and Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductee, who probably is best known for penning the popular tune "Hallelujah," received nominations in four categories.

Cohen will compete for Artist of the Year, Fan Choice Award, Album of the Year and Adult Alternative Album of the Year, with the latter two honors for his 2014 studio effort Popular Problems.

Bryan Adams and Sarah McLachlan also are in the running for the Artist of the Year Prize.  As previously reported, Canadian rock legends Rush will be acknowledged for their philanthropic work at the Junos with the 2015 Allan Waters Humanitarian Award.

The 2015 Juno Awards will be held on March 15 in Hamilton, Ontario.  A full list of nominees can be found on

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The Louisiana Swamp Pop Museum operated by the City of Ville Platte is open to the public every Friday and Saturday from 10:00am to 3:00pm. Come view the amazing artifacts, photos, records, Wall of Fame and hear the music. Admission charge is $3 adults, $2 seniors and $1 for children under 12. The museum is located on Northwest Railroad Avenue.

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