Archive for February, 2011

10CC set for UK tour in Spring 2011

February 20, 2011

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10cc – one of the most successful British groups of the 1970s – are set to embark on a 33-date nationwide UK tour between 24 February and 10 April 2011.

  Formed in 1970, 10cc comprised an all-star line up of Graham Gouldman, Eric Stewart, Kevin Godley and Lol Crème. The touring band for 2011 will include original member Graham Gouldman (bass, vocals and guitar), Rick Fenn (guitar, bass and vocals), Mick Wilson (vocals, percussion and guitar), Mike Stevens (keyboards, guitar, bass and vocals), and Paul Burgess (drums).

  The band will be performing all of 10cc’s UK hits, including ‘I’m Not In Love’, ‘Rubber Bullets’, ‘Dreadlock Holiday’, ‘Donna’, ‘Art For Art’s Sake’, ‘The Things We Do For Love’ and ‘The Dean And I’.

The full tour dates are:

  • Thurs 24 Feb – Sheffield City Hall
  • Fri 25 Feb – Liverpool Philharmonic Hall
  • Sat 26 Feb – Grand Opera House, York
  • Sun 27 Feb – The Lowry, Salford
  • Wed 2 Mar – Congress Theatre, Eastbourne
  • Thurs 3 Mar – City Hall, Hull
  • Fri 4 Mar – The Sage, Gateshead
  • Sat 5 Mar – Royal Concert Hall, Glasgow
  • Tues 8 Mar – Alexandra Theatre, Birmingham
  • Thurs 10 Mar – Assembly Hall Theatre, Tunbridge Wells
  • Fri 11 Mar – Assembly Hall, Worthing
  • Sat 12 Mar – Princess Theatre, Torquay
  • Sun 13 Mar – St David’s Hall, Cardiff
  • Wed 16 Mar – Reading Hexagon
  • Thurs 17 Mar – Leas Cliff Hall, Folkestone
  • Fri 18 Mar – Central Theatre, Chatham
  • Sat 19 Mar – The Lighthouse, Poole
  • Sun 20 Mar – Cliffs Pavilion, Southend
  • Tues 22 Mar – New Theatre, Oxford
  • Wed 23 Mar – Buxton Opera House
  • Fri 25 Mar – The Embassy Theatre, Skegness
  • Sat 26 Mar – The Ipswich Regent
  • Sun 27 Mar – Royal Concert Hall, Nottingham
  • Tues 29 Mar – Corn Exchange, Kings Lynn
  • Thurs 31 Mar – The Orchard Theatre, Dartford
  • Fri 1 Apr – The Alban Arena, St Albans
  • Sat 2 Apr – The Anvil, Basingstoke
  • Sun 3 Apr – Swan Theatre, High Wycombe
  • Wed 6 Apr – Grand Theatre, Swansea
  • Thurs 7 Apr – Royal and Derngate, Northampton
  • Fri 8 Apr – Kings Theatre, Southsea
  • Sat 9 Apr – Fairfield Halls, Croydon
  • Sun 10 Apr – City Hall, Salisbury

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James Bond composer John Barry dies aged 77

February 20, 2011

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John Barry – composer of the soundtracks for classic films such as Born Free, Out of Africa, Midnight Cowboy, Somewhere in Time and the James Bond films – has died in New York of a heart attack aged 77. He is understood to have been in poor health for some time.

  Born John Barry Prendergast to a cinema-owning family in York on 3 November 1933, he first found fame as leader of the John Barry Seven. His earliest hits included ‘Hit and Miss’ (1960) which was the theme music for BBC TV’s Juke Box Jury, and a cover version of The Ventures’ ‘Walk Don’t Run’ (1960).

  The first film for which he composed, arranged and conducted the score was Beat Girl, starring Adam Faith, in 1960.

  Barry’s 1962 arrangement of Monty Norman’s James Bond theme led to him composing scores for 11 Bond films, including From Russia With Love (1963), Goldfinger (1964) and You Only Live Twice (1967). He was regarded as having a huge influence on the ‘coolness’ and distinctive style of the 007 series.

  Awarded an OBE in 1999 for services to music, Barry was renowned for his lush strings, orchestral swells and elegant melodies. He saw himself as much a dramatist as a composer and his music was always inextricably linked to the stories told on the screen.

  Barry was also an innovator. He was one of the first composers to use Moog synthesizers in a film score (On Her Majesty’s Secret Service in 1969).

  In a career spanning almost 50 years, Barry was responsible for some of the most memorable and beautiful film scores of all time. He won five Oscars for his film work, including two for Born Free (1967), and one for The Lion in Winter (which also won a BAFTA) in 1969, Out of Africa (1986) and Dances with Wolves (which also won a Grammy Award) in 1991.

  His work for TV included the theme for The Persuaders (1971), while his non-soundtrack work included the albums The Beyondness of Things (1999) and Eternal Echoes (2001).

  Barry’s most recent film score was for the wartime thriller Enigma (2001), while a musical version of Brighton Rock, created with lyricist Don Black, had its London premiere in 2004. He received a BAFTA fellowship in 2005.

  Don Black, 72, who worked with the composer on his Born Free, Thunderball and Diamonds are Forever theme songs, said Barry remained unaffected by his international success. “The thing about John that I will always remember was he never changed,” he said. “He was very much the Yorkshireman, whether he was in Beverly Hills or Manhattan.”

  Barry – who lived in Oyster Bay, Long Island – is survived by Laurie, his wife of 33 years, his four children and five grandchildren.

  According to Don Black, Barry’s widow Laurie is considering staging a major memorial service in London later this year. “She’s talking about the Albert Hall in June or July,” he said. “There will definitely be a big night coming.”

CLASSIC JOHN BARRY SCORES

  • From Russia With Love
  • Goldfinger
  • Zulu
  • Born Free
  • You Only Live Twice
  • The Lion in Winter
  • Midnight Cowboy
  • Diamonds are Forever
  • Somewhere in Time
  • Out of Africa
  • Dances with Wolves
  • Chaplin

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Rock guitarist Gary Moore dies at 58

February 7, 2011

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Renowned rock guitarist Gary Moore has died in a hotel room while on holiday in Spain. He was 58.

  Belfast-born Moore’s career spanned blues, hard rock and ballads, including several spells with Thin Lizzy and a highly-acclaimed solo career that included 20 studio albums. He also enjoyed UK chart success alongside the late Phil Lynott with the singles ‘Parisienne Walkways’ (1979) and ‘Out In The Fields’ (1985).

  Moore received critical acclaim for his work on Thin Lizzy’s 1974 album Nightlife, but he felt constrained by the group format and launched a solo career. He returned to Thin Lizzy briefly on two occasions in the late 1970s.

  Moore was first drafted into Thin Lizzy by Phil Lynott in 1973, following the departure of guitarist Eric Bell. On hearing the news of Moore’s death, Bell told the BBC: “I still can’t believe it. He wasn’t a rock casualty. He was a healthy guy.”

  Guitarist Scott Gorham – the other half of Thin Lizzy’s distinctive twin lead guitar harmony sound – said it been a pleasure to share a stage with Moore. “Playing with Gary during the Black Rose era was a great experience,” he said. “He was a great player and a great guy. I will miss him.”

Born Robert William Gary Moore on 4 April 1952, he started performing at a young age, having picked up a battered acoustic guitar at the age of eight. He got his first good-quality guitar when he was 14 and learnt to play the right-handed instrument in the standard way despite being left-handed.

  Moore’s early musical influences were artists such as Albert King, Elvis Presley and The Beatles. After seeing Jimi Hendrix, John Mayall’s Bluesbreakers and Fleetwood Mac’s Peter Green in his home town of Belfast, he started to develop his own style of blues-rock that would come to dominate his career.

  He was only 16 when he moved from Belfast to Dublin in 1969 to join Irish group Skid Row which featured Phil Lynott on lead vocals.

  Lynott asked Moore to join Thin Lizzy in 1973. The guitarist initially played with the group for only a few months, but he returned in 1977 and then again in 1979, staying long enough to play on the band’s landmark album Black Rose: A Rock Legend, which reached number two on the UK album chart.

  Moore released his first solo album, Grinding Stone, in 1973 under the name “The Gary Moore Band”. In 1978, the combination of Moore’s emotive blues-based guitar and Phil Lynott’s distinctive voice produced the classic single ‘Parisienne Walkways’, which reached Number 8 on the UK singles chart in April 1979.

  After a series of successful rock records in the 1980s, Moore returned to the blues with Still Got the Blues (1990), which featured contributions from Albert King, Albert Collins and George Harrison. He stuck with the blues format until 1997, when he experimented with modern dance beats on Dark Days in Paradise. He returned to his tried and tested blues roots in 2001 with Back to the Blues, followed by Power of the Blues (2004), Old New Ballads Blues (2006), Close As You Get (2007) and Bad For You Baby (2008).

  Gary Moore died in the early hours of 6 February 2011, while on holiday in Estepona, Spain.

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Best of Frank Sinatra’s Las Vegas years on new CD

February 6, 2011

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In the early 1960s, Las Vegas helped to refuel Frank Sinatra’s career, while Sinatra in turn helped to boost the city’s international image.

Now, some of the most memorable performances from the legendary Sinatra-Vegas relationship are being made available on Frank Sinatra: Best of Vegas – a collection of 14 live recordings set for release on February 15, 2011.

The single CD captures Sinatra in concert at the Sands, Caesars Palace and the Golden Nugget in Las Vegas between 1961 and 1987. The collection is a distillation of highlights from Sinatra: Vegas, a five-disc boxed set (4 CD/1 DVD) of live recordings released by Reprise Records in 2006.

Classic tracks include: ‘The Lady Is A Tramp’ (from The Sands, 1961), ‘Pennies From Heaven’ (from The Golden Nugget, 1987) and ‘Theme from New York, New York’ (from Caesars Palace, 1982).

“From his debut at the Desert Inn in September 1951, no entertainer was ever more synonymous with the city of Las Vegas than Frank Sinatra,” says Charles Pignone, author of The Sinatra Treasures, in his comprehensive liner notes for the new CD. “It has been said that next to legalised gambling, nothing has been more beneficial and profitable to Las Vegas than Frank Sinatra.”

FULL TRACK LIST: 

Introduction
The One I Love Belongs to Somebody Else
Moonlight in Vermont
The Lady Is a Tramp
I’ve Got You Under My Skin
Street Of Dreams
Fly Me to the Moon (In Other Words)
Monologue
Luck Be a Lady
I Can’t Get Started
Without a Song
All or Nothing at All
Witchcraft
Pennies From Heaven
Angel Eyes
Theme From New York, New York
Bows

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Kate Bush to release new songs this year

February 5, 2011

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More than five years after her eighth studio album, Aerial, Kate Bush, 52, has confirmed she is currently working on a collection of new songs which may form the basis of a new album to be released by the end of the year.

  However, a spokesman for the singer insisted that no album plans have been finalised. “There’s nothing ready until Kate says it’s ready. That’s always been the way,” he said.

  The last new song released by the ‘Wuthering Heights’ star was ‘Lyra’, written for the soundtrack of the 2007 fantasy-adventure film The Golden Compass. She has not sung in public since the birth of her son, Albert, in 1998.

  She recently won back control of four albums – The Dreaming, Hounds of Love, The Sensual World and The Red Shoes – which EMI originally released between 1982 and 1993. The albums are now expected to be re-issued later this year.

  Kate Bush was signed by EMI Records as a sixteen-year-old after being recommended by Pink Floyd’s David Gilmour. In 1978, at the age of 19, she topped the UK Singles chart for four weeks with her debut single ‘Wuthering Heights’ – becoming the first woman to have a UK Number One with a self-written song.

  After her 1979 tour – the only concert tour of her career – she released the 1980 album Never for Ever which made her the first British solo female artist to top the UK album charts … and the first female artist ever to enter the UK album chart at Number One.

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The Who’s Roger Daltrey in danger of permanently losing voice

February 3, 2011

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The Who’s Roger Daltrey says he is treasuring every minute he can sing because he has been warned he could lose his voice “at any time”.

  The 66-year-old singer underwent surgery to remove a pre-cancerous growth from his throat in December 2009, and he has been working with a throat specialist in the United States to help save his vocal cords.

  Daltrey hopes he will be able to keep singing for many more years, but he has been told his voice could suddenly disappear without warning.

  He first became aware of a problem with his voice shortly after finishing a 30-date tour two years ago. “My voice wasn’t behaving in the normal way,” he told CBS television. “It was becoming hard work to sing.

  “I got depressed after the operation, during what I call the Big Silence,” he said. “That’s when I realised what it would be like to not have a voice.”

  Daltrey revealed he still has to have his throat checked regularly. “It could go bang at any time,” he said. “The time-bomb’s ticking away. But what do you do? I just enjoy every minute I have.”

  At the same time, Pete Townshend’s hearing problems are also threatening The Who’s future.

  After decades of playing and listening to loud music, Townshend suffers from both tinnitus and partial deafness. Last year, the 65-year-old guitarist had to endure a severe recurrence of tinnitus which forced The Who to cancel a number of shows.

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Bellamy Brothers accuse Britney Spears of ripping off 1979 hit

February 2, 2011

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The Bellamy Brothers have reportedly accused Britney Spears of ripping off their 1979 chart-topping hit, ‘If I Said You Had a Beautiful Body, Would You Hold It Against Me’.

  Singer David Bellamy, 60, made the claim after hearing the pop star’s new song ‘Hold it Against Me’, but he insists they won’t be taking Spears to court.

  While the chorus of the country music duo’s classic song goes: “If I said you had a beautiful body, would you hold it against me?”, Britney sings: “So if I said I want your body now, would you hold it against me?”.

  “This particular title is kinda hard to disguise because the title is the song,” David Bellamy told US magazine Entertainment Weekly. “It’s not like saying, ‘I love you, baby’. I know it makes me sound like an old man, but I find that songwriters now are not as strong as they used to be in the 60s or 70s.”

  He added: “I like singer-songwriters, strong hooks, old rock, and old country. I’m not really a big fan of the Euro dance mixes, but I think there’s just more original stuff out there to do than just rehashing old titles.

  “Britney can get away with singing those songs because they would call us dirty old men at this point,” he told the magazine. “I guess that’s why she’s doing it, ’cause she can get away with it … Maybe she’ll come over and we’ll do a duet or something.”

  David and Howard Bellamy, 64, rose to fame with their first hit ‘Let Your Love Flow’ in 1976. In the late 1970s, the brothers also found success in country music and went on to enjoy 20 Number One country singles and have so far released more than 50 albums.

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Agnetha sparks ABBA reunion rumours

February 2, 2011

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ABBA star Agnetha Faltskog – the most reclusive former member of the group – has sparked rumours of an ABBA reunion after telling a Swedish magazine that she would consider reuniting with her former husband Bjorn Ulvaeus, 65, Benny Andersson, 64, and Anni-Frid Lyngstad, 65, for a series of special concerts.

  “I could see us doing something together in the future,” Agnetha, now 60, told Sweden’s M magazine. “It is just a feeling I have that it would be fun to get together, talk a bit about the past and maybe perform together.

  “We wouldn’t get together again for a tour like The Rolling Stones and other old bands. I think we would all consider a one-off reunion, maybe for a good cause.”

  Since the group split in 1982, they have turned down all requests to get back together – including a reputed offer of £650million in 2000. In March 2010, though, Benny Andersson said a one-off performance was “not a bad idea” despite having ruled it out only two years earlier.

  With Agnetha’s comments seemingly making a reunion more likely than ever, bookmaker William Hill is now accepting bets on ABBA performing at Prince William and Kate Middleton’s wedding in April, and at this summer’s Glastonbury festival. The odds of ABBA having a Number One hit this year have also been slashed from 20/1 to 5/1.

How important are ‘oldies’ songs to you? Vote in our poll below …

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