Future, If Future – Michael Stipe

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Michael Stipe teased his first ever solo song with a 40-second Instagram snippet of a track called “Future, If Future” to mark yesterday’s March for Our Lives rallies across the world. Over a frenetic electro beat, Stipe sings, “Future, if Future, this future is ours/ Stunk to high heaven lotus, nerve gas or flowers/ We’ve got the obvious, we’ve got the power/ Please don’t stare, we’re doing all we can.”

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Boarding House Reach – Jack White

Jack White has announced the release of his eagerly anticipated new album, Boarding House Reach. The 12-time GRAMMY® Award-winner’s third solo LP and first all-new album in nearly four years, Boarding House Reach will arrive everywhere on Friday, March 23.

Written and conceived while holed up in a spartan apartment with no outside distractions, Jack replicated the identical environment and used the same gear as when he was a 15-year-old (a quarter-inch four-track tape recorder, a simple mixer, and the most basic of instrumentation) to pen sketches of the album’s songs. The album explores a remarkable range of sonic terrain — crunching rock ‘n’ roll, electro and hard funk, proto-punk, hip-hop, gospel blues, and even country — all remapped and born anew to fit White’s matchless vision and sense of restless experimentation.

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Jack White’s concert for the release of his third studio album, Boarding House Reach, will be live-streaming for free this Friday, exclusively on Twitter.

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The stream is scheduled to start at 10 p.m. ET on Friday, March 23, available exclusively on Twitter at live.twitter.com/jackwhite. White’s show, at the Warsaw in Brooklyn, is part of the Live Nation Concert Series on Twitter.

Roger Daltrey – As Long As I Have You

Roger Daltrey commands a unique presence as a rock vocalist. His vocal range is striking and dynamic. Of all the rock and roll lead vocalists I have seen perform live and I’ve seen my fair share, he created the strongest stage impact I’ve ever witnessed. He’s the real deal and his voice reaches deep inside of my soul.

My son and I saw The Who eight row center at The Webster Arena in Bridgeport, CT on November 28, 2006. It was an electrifying evening for both of us. I was blown away by Roger’s singing that night. As he sang The Who classics my respect for who he is, increased dramatically.

My favorite moment was during the second encore when Roger came back out with a cup of tea and joined Pete Townshend to do, “Tea & Theatre” from  Endless Wire. It was a touching, intimate segment that is etched upon the music of our heart these past 12 years.

Here is a video from their 2006 tour filmed a few nights before at The Borgata in Atlantic City, NJ.

I was encouraged to see that Roger Daltrey has recorded a new solo studio album, As Long As I  Have You.  I think this offers a point of continuity from “Tea & Theatre”, as the album features Pete Townshend’s inimitable guitar on seven tracks.

As Long As I Have You will be available in a number of formats including CD, 180g Black Vinyl, Limited 180g Red Vinyl housed in Polydor Disco Bag (available exclusively via thewho.com) and Digital.

His album is available for pre-order and will drop on June 1, 2018. I’m eager to own the red vinyl edition 😉

“This is a return to the very beginning, to the time before Pete started writing our songs, to a time when we were a teenage band playing soul music to small crowds in church halls”Roger Daltrey 2018

“It shows Roger at the height of his powers as a vocalist” ~ Pete Townshend, 2018

David Crosby, Lighthouse

David Crosby announces his new album Lighthouse, out October 21st on GroundUP Music/Verve Label Group. The very skilful record is an intimate, stripped-down set that highlights Crosby’s instantly recognizable voice, incisive songwriting, and incomparable guitar work. The palpable joy in the 9-song collection captures the iconic artist in an unexpected burst of inspiration. “To create brand new music that I’m excited about is a pearl beyond price,” says the two-time Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductee.

Lighthouse features a rare economy of sound, filled primarily by Crosby’s voice and guitars, and Michael League of Snarky Puppy’s skillful production. There’s a sparse, unvarnished quality to the tracks that allows the songs breathing room and for the full emotional weight of the lyrics to emerge, unencumbered by extraneous instrumentation.

On album opener, “Things We Do For Love,” written for his wife of nearly 40-years Jan, Crosby’s vocals show a poetic tenderness. On “Paint You A Picture,” a cinematic tale of romantic regret co-written with Marc Cohn (“Walking In Memphis”), they are filled with remorseful resignation. The longtime social activist lands his political punches as he bitingly condemns the craven politicians who send other people’s children to war on “Somebody Other Than You,” and compassionately reminds us that we are all the same on “Look In Their Eyes,” a poignant tale about immigration inspired by the Syrian refugee crisis.

Listen to “Things We Do For Love” here.

Crowder – Neon Steeple

Neon Steeple is a soulful début album from Crowder, an artist who possesses an insightful depth that conveys heartfelt meanings directly to the listener.

I’ve listened to Neon Steeple tonight on Spotify marvelling at the feelings that it ignites inside the music of our heart. Being a religious person of devout faith I am comforted by the warmth Crowder resonates inside my being.

The album is more like an in-depth look at the soul – the humanity, the redemption and the regenerated. – Ryan Barbee of Jesusfreakhideout.com

Enchant yourself with a listen to Crowder’s Neon Steeple. You’ll be pleasantly surprised and blessed all at the same time. Oh and don’t forget to clap along 😉

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Neil Young’s A Letter Home Limited Edition Box Set

My first reaction when I learned about Neil Young’s A Letter Home Limited Edition Box Set was first disappointment then elation at what this packaged sound solution represents. It’s truly history recorded and preserved for us to witness.

Neil Young, bless the music of his heart, is a prolific human being. He keeps us fans on our toes. I like when artists I enjoy and respect challenges us to stay in league with their artistic direction. That is something both Neil Young and Jack White very much have in common.

I had just purchased the Record Store Day 2014 A Letter Home (12″ Vinyl) edition on the Third Man Records Store on Tuesday 4/22. Next I read about the expanded edition on the Guitar Afficionado Web site last night. I thought, hmmm maybe I should have waited for the box set. But who knew that as both these recordings were stealth announcements. We all love surprises, don’t we?

I became elated when I processed what the expanded edition of A Letter Home provides Neil Young and Jack White audio technology fans. Neil Young and the Pono team are delivering the sheer joy of the Pono Music Player and high-resolution audio for our listening and collecting pleasure. Pono is a technological innovation that will have far-reaching positive effects how we will appreciate music in the very near future.

At the same time Neil Young and Jack White share an affinity for music technology from another era of history. A Letter Home was recorded on ancient electro-mechanical technology. This is a striking contrast to Pono as these two technologies are literally opposite ends of the recording spectrum.

What I love about A Letter Home is the recording technology partnership between Jack White and Neil Young. Neil Young has recorded an entire album in a refurbished 1947 Voice-O-Graph recording booth at Third Man’s Nashville headquarters. To me this is like sitting in a 1950’s kitchenette plugged into your Pigboy amp playing your electric guitar while you make music and record it on one of the first reel-to-reel tape recorders. It’s raw, it’s honest and it’s real!

I mean dig this you have Jack White purveyor of vintage vinyl and vintage recordings, our music preservationist who is innovating and creating with his “vision” recording experience, working with Neil Young who is bringing us Pono. This blows my mind and makes me totally satisfied with the spectrum of recorded sound.

Now the question becomes how do I afford the limited edition box set as well as Pono?

I have a feeling where there’s a will there’s a way 😉 Stay tuned…

 

 

 

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Everyday Robots – Damon Albarn

The man has my attention. The title track video on Damon Albarn’s new solo album that drops on April 29th!

We are everyday robots on our phones,
In the process of getting home.
Looking like standing stones,
Out there on our own.

We’re everyday robots in control,
In the process of being sold.
Driving in adjacent cars,
‘Til we press ‘restart.’

Read more: Damon Albarn – Everyday Robots Lyrics | MetroLyrics 

 

Benmont Tench – You Should Be So Lucky

Benmont Tench is the keyboardist with Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers. His first solo release You Should Be So Lucky (a project 37 years in the making) drops tomorrow, September 18th on the historic jazz Blue Note record label.

Produced by legendary producer Glyn Johns, the album was recorded to tape at Sunset Sound in Los Angeles and features Tench handling lead vocals, piano and organs, joined by a team of collaborators including a core band of Don WasEthan JohnsBlake Mills and Jeremy Stacey and contributions by Ryan AdamsGillian Welch and David RawlingsJoel JeromeTom Petty and Ringo Starr.

The first single from that record, “Blonde Girl, Blue Dress,” features Gill and Dave on vocals, Tom Petty on bass, and Ringo Starr on tambourine.

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Dino Valente – Solo Album (1968)

I’m always in search of albums that reach that calm abyss in the music of our heart. Like the reverberating rings of throwing a stone into a pond echoing across the surface. I have thought about Quicksilver Messenger Service’s lead singer Dino Valenti. He possesses one of the finest vocal timbres in rock from the psychedelic age.

Last year the Tompkins Square label reissued Quicksilver Messenger Service frontman Dino Valente‘s 1968 self titled album. The stoner classic has been pressed to vinyl for the first time, remastered from the original tapes (originally made with Bob Dylan and Leonard Cohen producer Bob Johnston), and has liner notes by American critic Ralph Gleason.

The solo album Dino Valente was the best account of Valenti’s distinctive writing, singing, and guitar playing to be attained in the studio. For the first time this album is commercially available in magnificent MONO.

 

 

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