News spread Saturday that the undisputed father of rock and roll, Chuck Berry, had passed away at the age of 90. With hits like "Johnny B. Goode," "Maybelline," "Roll Over Beethoven" and many, many others, Berry took the R&B of the 50's, added some country flair, a little showmanship and created a whole new sound that had no rules, but inspired artists for decades to come. John Lennon once said, "If you were going to rock and roll another name, you might call it 'Chuck Berry'."
Chuck Berry is survived by his wife of over 50 years, Themetta "Toddy" Suggs, and his four children Ingrid Berry-Clay, Chuck Berry Jr., Aloha Isa Lei Berry and Melody Exes Berry.
Rockers have taken to social media to express their thoughts:
Mick Jagger: "I am so sad to hear of Chuck Berry's passing. I want to thank him for all the inspirational music he gave to us... he lit up our teenage years, and blew linfe into our dreams of being musicians and performers... His lyrics shone above others and threw a strange light on the American dream.
Chuck you were amazing and your music is engraved inside us forever."
Keith Richards: "One of my big lights has gone out."
Bruce Springsteen: "Chuck Berry was rock's greatest practitioner, guitarist and the greatest pure rock 'n' roll writer who ever lived."
Rod Stewart: It started with Chuck Berry. He inspired us all. The 1st album I bought was Chuck's "Live at the Tivoli" and I was never the same."
John Fogerty: "Great songwriter, great guitar player, great singer. One of a kind. Thank you Mr. Chuck Berry for teaching me how it's done. Hail, hail Rock and Roll! RIP my friend."
Elton John: "The greatest rock & roll songwriter of all time. Thanks for all those wonderful records that will define rock music forever."
Billy Idol: "RIP Chuck Berry. Without him Rock n Roll wouldn't be what it came to be."
Alice Cooper: "Everybody in rock 'n' roll, from The BEatles to Alice Cooper, owes Chuck Berry. We all cut our teeth on Chuck. I learned to write lyrics listening to Chuck Berry songs. In my opinion, he was the greatest rock lyricist of all time. What I loved about him is that if he couldn't think of a word he's just
make one up. His songs include words like 'botheration', 'cooleration'. He was the single greatest influence in rock, and there will never, ever, be another Chuck Berry. He was one of a kind!"
Jimmy Page has been diggin way, way into his vaults over the past several years, and all the way in the back he's found an entire albums worth of material he recorded back in 1961. Five years before he joined The Yardbirds, and seven years before he starting Led Zeppelin, Page was in the studio recoeding demos for Chris Farlowe and te Thunderbirds. The Beginning will be released on April 30th in a CD plus-vinyl-LP package and a deluxe limited edition signed by himself and Farlowe. You can pre-order it now or buy it once it comes out at JimmyPage.com. There's also a little snippet from the ablum there for you to check out.
The setlist for Rock Band VR is out, and as usual, it rocks. The game is set to be released on March 23rd, and this time around it put the player onstage with the band using the Oculus Touch virtuality headset. Some of the over 60 songs featured on the game are;
Aerosmith - "Walk This Way"
Alice In Chains - "Man In The Box"
The Black Keys - "Gold On The Ceiling"
Bon Jovi - "Livin On A Prayer"
Foo Fighters - "Everlong"
Joan Jett & The Blackhearts - "Bad Reputation"
The Killers - "When You Were Young"
Megadeth - "Hangar 18"
Oasis - "Champagne Supernova"
Van Halen - "Panama"
U2 is being sued by songwriter, Paul Rose, for stealing elements of his song "Nae Slappin" for their song "The Fly" off of Achtung Baby. Rose says he shared a demo of his song with Island Records back in 1989. He thinks studio execs played it for U2 and then they ripped him off. He's now looking for $5 million, lawyer fees and a writing credit. Take a listen & see what you think...
Former Yes singer Jon Anderson recently revealed that Geddy Lee of Rush would be playing bass on "Roundabout" in place of the late Chris Squire when he helps induct Yes into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame next month. Perhaps he shared something he wasn't supposed to. The Rock Hall always keeps performances underwraps, and after Anderson's comment they issued this statement, "Geddy Lee and Alex Lifeson were only confirmed to do the induction speech for one of their favorite bands and not perform. They, like all other Yes fans, look forward to honoring them and watching them perform at the induction ceremony on April 7th and the HBO broadcast on April 29th." So... that's not a denial, right?
Speaking of Geddy Lee, his love of baseball hasn't escaped on Esty retailer. They've swapped the outline of late Twins slugger Harmon Killebrew on the Major League logo to an outline of Geddy Lee playing bass with the caption "Major Lee Bassball." You can order yours at https://www.etsy.com/listing/503256330/pre-order-2nd-printing-official-rush-tee?ref=shop_home_feat_3
According to a report from Billboard, the lineup for the Classic East & Classic West festivals will include The Eagles, Fleetwood Mac, Steely Dan, The Doobie Brothers, Journey and Earth, Wind & Fire. The concerts will feature the same line up performing one weekend on the East Coast, then another on the West Coast. First up is the Classic West at Dodger Stadium in L.A. on Joly 15th and 16th. Saturday will feature The Eagles, The Doobs and Steely Dan and Sunday's lineup is Fleetwood Mac, Journey and Earth, Wind & Fire. The festival then moves to Citi Field in New York on July 29th & 30th. All of the acts are managed by the legendary Irving Azoff, but no one from his camp is confirming any details. The official announcement is expected to made later on this month.
Heart's Ann Wilson is preparing to launch a new U.S. solo tour next month where plans to perform a mix of Heart classics and cover tunes by artists who've influenced her throughout her life. In the spirit of things, Ann has listed off her top 10 favorite live albums that have influenced her.
Harry Belafonte's Grammy-winning 1959 album, Belafonte at Carnegie Hall, is at #1. Annsays it was Harry who inspired her to want to hit the stage herself, "When I was a child my parents used to play this. It made me want to perform!".
At #2 is the 1971 Aretha Franklin album Aretha Live at Fillmore West.
#3 is Elton John's memorable first live set, 17-11-70, which Wilson calls is "a fantastic listen!"
The Who's classic 1970 album Live at Leedsrolls in at #4. Ann described it as "The Who on all cylinders."
Checking in at #5 is Deep Purple's Made in Japan, Joni Mitchell's Miles of Aisles at #6, James Brown's Live at the Apollo at #7, Johnny Cash's At Folsom Prison at #8, Muse's Live at Rome Olympic Stadium at #9 and Duke Ellington's Ellington at Newport at #10.
Guns N Roses has joined forces with 1-800 Flowers this Valentine's Day to offer the GNR Not in This Lifetime bouquet of 12 or 24 roses to the GNR fan close to you. The run $77 for two dozen roses, with the dozen priced at $57. But that's not too shabby when you consider that they come with a pair of tickets to one of their North American shows AND a chance to win a trip to see them in Miami on August 8th. I know what I want for Valentine's Day!
Bon Jovi is the latest in a growing trend of allowing fans to download their shows. The band kicks off their This House Is Not For Sale tour this week, and fans can go to the merch tent at each show, or at BonJovi.com to buy a pretty cool looking USB bracelet. The bracelet will allow fans to access a special website where you can download one full live show from the tour. That tour will swing through Cleveland on March 19th at Quicken Loan Arena.
The Who is planning to announce a U.S. tour sometime in the very near future. The band is expected to hit the states in August and September before heading south for their first-ever tour of South America in late September.
Doors guitarist Robby Kreiger has a new album on the way. In Session will hit stores Febrary 17th, and features quite a list of guests, including Jackson Browne, Tommy Shaw, former Yes keyboardist Tony Kaye, Rod Argent, Geoff Downes from The Buggles, Yes and Asia. Speakinh of Asia, singer bassist John Wetton, who just passed away, is features on a cover of The Beatles' "All You Need Is Love" among a long list of covers. The collection also has two never-before-released mixes and a bonus live recording of The Doors' "Back Door Man" available on CD for the first time.
Here's the complete track listing for Robby Kreiger's In Session:
"Across The Universe" - w/ Jackson Browne
"Hypernova" - w/ Nik Turner (Inner Space Mix)
"Empty Spaces" - w/ Billy Sherwood
"Where We Belong (Prism Mix)" - w/ Tony Kaye
"Don't Leave Me Now" - w/ Tommy Shaw
"Brain Damage" - w/ Geoff Downes
"School" - w/ Rod Argent
"Deep Down" - w/ William Shatner
"Little Drummer Boy"
"All You Need Is Love" - w/ John Wetton
"Back Door Man" (Live)