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June 2004
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August 2004

Christine McVie In The Meantime new album

Via Undercover:
"Christine McVie Comes Out Of Retirement
The retirement of Fleetwood Mac's Christine McVie is over. The former Mac singer will release her third solo album "In The Meantime" in September (...) "In The Meantime" was recorded in England with her nephew Dan Perfect. It will be released on by KOCH Records, through BMG in Australia."

Christine McVie "In The Meantime" (recorded at Christine's home studio in Kent) will be released on Koch Records in The USA on September 7.

Tracklisting:
01. Friend
02. You Are
03. Northern Star
04. Bad Journey
05. Anything Is Possible
06. Calumny
07. So Sincere
08. Easy Come, Easy Go
09. Liar
10. Sweet Revenge
11. Forgiveness
12. Givin' It Back


Living Loud supergroup projects

International supergroup Living Loud: bassist Bob Daisley (Ozzy Osbourne, Rainbow), guitarist Steve Morse (Kansas, Deep Purple), keyboardist Don Airey (Deep Purple, Rainbow), drummer Lee Kerslake (Uriah Heep) and singer Jimmy Barnes are in the way to prepare an US tour for next january.
EMI Internationally will release the Living Loud CD and DVD in 3 formats: the original studio CD (with 2 bonus live tracks), the DVD, or a DVD/CD double packed titled "Loud And Live." Release dates are still to be confirmed.


Allman Brothers Band and Lynyrd Skynyrd tour together

Due to an overwhelming demand from their audiences, the Allman Brothers Band and Lynyrd Skynyrd will tour together for the first time this fall at seven performances. These concerts will run from October 1 in Raleigh, NC through October 10 in San Antonio, TX, with an opening act TBA.
Both groups will do full concert sets, with Lynyrd Skynyrd hitting the stage followed by the Allman Brothers Band each night. The tour promises to be as memorable as the time the two iconic acts were on the same bill at the Georgia Jam June 1, 1974 at Fulton County Stadium in Atlanta.

Of the tour, Gregg Almann said, "The Brothers and Skynyrd on the same stage has been a fan's dream a long time coming, proving that the road goes on forever." Lynyrd Skynyrd's Gary Rossington says, "When our band first got together, we were inspired by the Allman Joys and Hour Glass. It's hard to believe that this will be the first time we've toured together. I can't wait to hit the road with them." Johnny Van Zant added, "This is an American tour that's long overdue…Both of our bands have lived through plenty of hard times, but we're still doing what we love: making music for the fans."

The Allman Brothers Band -- Gregg Allmann, Butch Trucks, Jaimoe, Warren Haynes, Marc Quinones, Oteil Burbridge and Derek Trucks -- are touring in support of their new live album "One Way Out" (Peach/Sanctuary Records) as well as "Live At The Beacon Theater" (Sanctuary Records) a platinum-certified DVD shot at last year's annual string of shows in NYC.
They will also share the stage with several other acclaimed musicians this summer, including The Dead, Chris Robinson, String Cheese Incident, Los Lonely Boys and Little Feat.

Lynyrd Skynyrd -- Gary Rossington (guitar), Johnny Van ant (vocals), Billy Powell (keyboards), Rickey Medlocke (guitar), Hughie Thomasson (guitar), Michael Cartellone (drums), Ean Evans (bass) -- followed up 2003's "Vicious Cycle" CD with the newly released "Lynyrd Skynyrd Lyve" double live album (released June 22 on Sanctuary Records) and a companion DVD.
Recorded before 17,000 fans last year at the AmSouth Amphitheatre in Nashville, the CD and DVD feature many classics from their albums that have sold over 25 million copies. They are currently headlining a U.S. tour.


Patti LaBelle tour

Patti LaBelle is very busy this summer and fall with the end of her european tour and now a US tour.
Also, Patti LaBelle will spend Aug. 30-Sept. 2 supporting her Patti LaBelle Clothing label on the Home Shopping Network.
Patti LaBelle has a new album out: "Timeless Journey" released in last May by Def Soul Classics. It features such guest stars like Carlos Santana, the Isley Brothers' Ron Isley and Floetry.

Patti LaBelle's tour dates:

Aug. 6: Minneapolis (State Theater; Marshall Fields "Glamourama")
Aug. 8: Atlanta (Chastain Park)
Aug. 13: Chicago (Chicago Theater; Marshall Fields "Glamourama")
Aug. 14-15: Washington, D.C. (Constitution Hall)
Aug. 18: Boston (Fleet Boston Pavilion)
Aug. 20: Philadelphia (Tower Theatre)
Aug. 21: New York (Radio City Music Hall)
Aug. 22: Cleveland (TBD)
Sept. 4: Oakland, Calif. (Paramount Theater)
Sept. 5: Los Angeles (Universal Amphitheater)
Sept. 30: Pittsburgh (YWCA of Greater Pittsburgh 35th Anniversary Benefit)
Oct. 2: Englewood, N.J. (Bergen Performing Arts Center)
Oct. 16: Tysons Corner, Va. (Medical Care for Children Partnership Gala)
Oct. 20: Trenton, N.J. (Sovereign Bank Arena; "Katarina Witt & Friends")
Oct. 23: Merrillville, Ind. (Star Plaza Theater)


Jean Beauvoir is back!

Jean Beauvoir, prolific artist of Plasmatics, Voodoo X, Little Steven and Crown Of Thorns fame is to release his first real solo album in years on Frontiers Records and ulfTone music.
After having focused on hard rock material with his own band "Crown Of Thorns", this album entitled "Chameleon" brings back the Beauvoir that had worldwide #1 success with the single "Feel The Heat".
"Chameleon" includes the following tracks: I Wanna Know, Higher, I Don't Need Ya, Where The River Runs Deep, I Want To Lay Here, Something To Believe In, Even More, Addicted To Us, Dying End, Teenager, Amazing, Angel.
Release date is scheduled for August 30th on Frontiers Records worldwide, except for Germany, Austria and Switzerland where the release will be handled via ulfTone Music / Edel.


Bonrud on the way...

Frontiers Records will release the album on September 20th, BONRUD, a new and exciting melodic rock project based in Seattle Washington, led by guitarist and producer Paul Bonrud.
"The CD is sure to please the fans who love the sound of Journey and Foreigner", says Paul. "The US and European release will feature eleven songs, while the Japanese release will contain an additional bonus track".
The band have finished recording their debut self-titled album, produced at White Barn and Big Rock Recording Studios in Washington state, mixed by legendary music producer Keith Olsen (Whitesnake, Journey, Kingdom Come, Saga and countless others).
The line-up featured on the album includes David Hendricks on vocals and Paul Higgins on drums, while mr. Bonrud takes pride in completing the recording, thanks to his skills on guitar, bass and keyboards.

Tracklist is: Leap Of Faith, The Phoenix, Desperate Heart,  I've Changed, Give Me A Chance, Take Me Home, Date With Destiny, Once In A Lifetime, Live Your Dreams, Look Me In The Eyes, Hollywood Movie Star.


Ray Charles Genius Loves Company duets album

Ray Charles great piece of news: On August 31, 2004, Concord Records and Hear Music will release "Genius Loves Company", the final recording by the legendary Ray Charles. The historic CD features twelve duets with an array of artists, from virtually every music genre. "Genius Loves Company" was recorded over a period of one year and completed in March 2004, just prior to Charles' passing.

The release of this landmark recording marks the beginning of an ongoing relationship between Hear Music, the voice of music at Starbucks, and Concord Records to produce and distribute new recordings.

During a career that spanned nearly six decades, Ray Charles, an original inductee into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, appeared on nearly 250 recordings. While he performed with various artists, "Genius Loves Company" will be his first full album of duets.

The album includes performances with some of today's most accomplished and respected entertainers. The 12-time Grammy Award-winning artist handpicked the songs featured on Genius Loves Company, such as "Sorry Seems to Be the Hardest Word" (Elton John), "Sinner's Prayer" (B.B. King), "Here We Go Again" (Norah Jones), "It Was A Very Good Year" (Willie Nelson) and "Fever" (Natalie Cole).
With a variety of musical genres represented, from Gospel and Blues to Jazz and Pop, the recording exhibits the emotion and cross-genre styling that helped make Ray Charles one of the most influential musicians in history.

"I've been a devoted fan of Ray's since I first heard him as a kid," says Bonnie Raitt on working on "Genius Loves Company." ""Do I Ever Cross Your Mind" was one of my favorites from his Country/Western albums and I think singing it as a duet makes it even more powerful. Getting to record with Ray has been a lifelong dream and being part of this project has been one of the proudest and most moving moments in my life."

Elton John adds, "It was amazing to sit in the studio and sing with him. It's so incredibly impressive to be with someone to which music had meant so much. It was a very emotional experience."
Michael McDonald, who recorded "Hey Girl" for the CD with a full orchestra, declares, "To be singing with Ray Charles, two feet away from him, live with an orchestra was pretty unbelievable."

"Genius Loves Company" was produced by Concord Records executive vice president John Burk and Phil Ramone, and recorded for the most part at Charles historic studio in downtown Los Angeles. "It's a special privilege to say you've recorded with Ray Charles," explains Ramone. "Being immersed in and around his musicality is always a learning experience. He set the pace for all of us. The result is a joyful, heartfelt album of great music."

"Genius Loves Company" will be available in traditional retail outlets on August 31, and at Starbucks Company-operated locations and on hearmusic.com beginning September.


James Taylor supports John Kerry and the Democrats

According to James Taylor Online, James Taylor is rumored to be part of a series of political activist concerts planned for October See the Houston Chronicle for details.
James Taylor will perform with the Boston Pops at a free concert tied to the Democratic Convention in Boston. The concert, which was originally planned to be a much larger event on Boston's Esplanade, will now be held Wednesday, August 28 at the UMass-Boston campus.


Asia Silent Nation new album and DVD

Asia will release its long-awaited new studio album "Silent Nation" on August 31, 2004, on InsideOut Music America. "Silent Nation" is Asia's first release for InsideOut under the band's exclusive deal with the label covering all worldwide territories except Japan.

Vocalist/bass guitarist John Payne, keyboardist Geoff Downes, guitarist Guthrie Govan and drummer Chris Slade will begin an extensive world tour after the release of "Silent Nation."
A few select U.S. dates were scheduled for this summer. The special-edition version of "Silent Nation" will include a 24-minute bonus documentary DVD, "The Making of 'Silent Nation'," shot in the studio during the recording of the album; all four band members are interviewed.

"Silent Nation" marks a conscious return to the melody-rich, hard-rock style of Asia's early albums, particularly 1982's self-titled blockbuster and the 1983 follow-up 'Alpha.'

The 10 songs on "Silent Nation" include: "What About Love," "Long Way From Home," "Midnight," "Blue Moon Monday," "Silent Nation," "Ghost In The Mirror," "Gone Too Far," "I Will Be There For You," "Darkness Day" and "The Prophet."

"We wanted to bring "Silent Nation" back down to a much more contained group feel. "Aura" is a good album but it was hard to concentrate on a direction with so many players involved," says Downes. ""Silent Nation" is a much more 'up' and heavier album."

""Aura" was a little bit coffee-table Asia, too steamy and too jazzy. Albums we did with guitarist Al Pitrelli like 'Aria' sounded like '90s rock. "Silent Nation" is more of a band-sounding rock album -- a classic-rock album," Payne says. "What makes it easier than working with a plethora of musicians is the continuity of the sound through the album. It's cohesive."

The lineup of Payne, Downes, Govan and Slade has been together for more than 4 years, the longest of any version of Asia. Founding member Downes is noted for his tenure in The Buggles and Yes. Slade has been a member of AC/DC, The Firm and Manfred Mann's Earth Band. Govan is, by all accounts, a guitarist of almost supernatural abilities. Payne, a member of the band since 1992 and the 'Aqua' album, is also a proficient guitarist and works with Govan on arrangements.

"John and myself had a common goal with this album to return to our rock sound and focus on the four members as a band," Downes says. "The new songs are very melodic. They do have technical flourishes and they occasionally venture into progressive areas but they are rock songs. We started writing from scratch last September and then spent a couple of months going through pieces. By Christmas, the building blocks of the songs were in place."

"We wrote nearly 50 songs over seven months. I'll write on acoustic guitar and Geoff will write on piano. If a song doesn't work when it's played on an acoustic guitar or a piano, then it's not a song," Payne says. "I never really write on bass. Well, riffs maybe. I never sang and played bass in the bands I was in before Asia. I was either just the singer or a singing guitarist. Both singing and playing bass in Asia has been challenging and rewarding for me."

"The two of us co-produced 'Silent Nation' and John engineered it as well," Downes says. "We roll ideas off each other and we're fairly flexible. With a third-party producer it becomes a totally different game."


Richard Marx works with Valli Girls and other Sony artists

Richard Marx is also working to develop acts for Sony Music, beside his own career with a new album "My Own Best Enemy" to be released August 10th on Manhattan Records/EMI.
Richard Marx writes and produces for several artists like a new Columbia act Valli Girls (Pop group whose members are 13- to 19-year-old females) and a new male artist whose name hasn't been revealed.
In the past few years, Rchard Marx has worked as a writer and/or produced for Emerson Drive, SheDaisy, 'N Sync and Luther Vandross.