Beatles News: Paul McCartney turns 70!, 2012 Summer Olympics, Ringo Starr’s All Starr Band 2012 Press Conference
Even though he is years beyond 64, Paul McCartney is showing no signs of slowing down on his 70th Birthday! He celebrated the occasion in private, resting up between gigantic gigs this summer. The tributes from fans and fellow rockers rolled in all day long to commemorate the quite possibly out greatest living rocker, Paul McCartney!
The legendary song-writer and musician, philanthropist, vegan, animal-rights activist and newlywed has been saluted by a long list of rockers, starting with Steven Tyler of Aerosmith, who with his band has covered 'Come Together,', and serenaded McCartney during the 2010 Kennedy Center Honords event solo:
"He's got a whole second wind and a new childhood and a new marriage. Y'know, he's gettin' it every night on stage and hopefully in bed with his new wife! God bless him."
Phil Collins says he still can't believe that as a kid, he was recruited to be an extra in The Beatles film 'A Hard Day's Night,' and now, today, he and Paul are friends and colleagues. "Suddenly, 30, 40 years later, you're playing with the guy and he knows your name and comes up and talks to you," an incredulous Collins told ABC News Radio. "It's a little bit out of The Twilight Zone." And Phil, who's basically quit making new music, says McCartney makes him feel a bit guilty about that. "Every time I say that I've stopped, I think, 'Well, he still going!'" he admits. "I admire him for keeping going. So, happy birthday, Paul."
The Beach Boys Brian Wilson, who joins Paul at 70 with a birthday on Wednesday, said "I hope he's as happy as we are, and I wish him very much luck on his concerts."
Bassit Timothy B. Schmit of the Eagles said he wishes Paul "70 more years," adding, "I learned how to sing from listening to him...His bass playing is so unique and powerful. I learned a lot from him."
Donovan, whose friendship with Paul and the rest of the Fab Four dates back to the mid '60s, has a musical wish for McCartney. "They say it's your birthday /Buh-duh-duh-duh-duh-duh /It's my birthday too, yeah," the folk-rock great sings, delivering the opening lines to the classic 1968 Beatles tune "Birthday." He then adds, a bit cryptically, "Well, I'm not 70 yet, but what I say is seven is a good number."
Randy Bachman, of the Guess Who and Bachman-Turner Overdrive said, "As time goes by, anyone who wasn't a Beatle fan, if you don't become one now or tomorrow, you're missing out on one of the greatest pleasures of life."
Bonnie Raitt is another fan who admires Paul for "keeping going." "He is just non-stoppable," she told ABC News Radio, recalling one of his concerts a few years ago where he blew her away by performing for three hours and playing an amazing guitar solo on a rendition of Jimi Hendrix's "Foxy Lady." "I couldn't even believe it was him on guitar," she says. "He is really showin' us how to do it...He's just one of our greatest songwriters ever and such a great singer and a great person. He's just... not a jerk!"
Glenn Tilbrook and Chris Difford of Squeeze were compared to McCartney and Lennon during their band's heyday. Tilbrook talked about Paul in glowing terms: "There's not a time when I hear a Beatles record and don't gravitate towards what he's playing on the bass…If he did nothing else, his bass playing is amazing. I wish him all the very best." Difford added, "'Listen to What the Man Said' -- that's the first song that springs to mind. I think he's an incredible artist."
Fellow rock and Roll Hall of Famer keyboardist Ian McLagan of Faces/Small Faces said, "Happy Birthday, Paul. God bless ya. He never stops. God, he's amazing."
John Lennon's widow Yoko Ono also tweeted birthday wishes to McCartney on Monday.
The U.K. branch of PETA also paid their own tribute to the vegan with a birthday card recreating the 'Abbey Road' artwork. Pople dressed as a fish, a pig, a chicken, and a cow are crossing the street in front of the band’s longtime studio in the card, with he message reading, "Happy Birthday Paul. Thank you for loving us, not eating us."
Paul Weller paid tribute to Paul musically with a cover of the Beatles’ 'Birthday.' All of the proceeds from sales of the song will go to the War Child charity.
Check out this New York Daily News story on how Peter Max celebrated Paul's 70th, but creating some new paintings. www.nydailynews.com
In the last year the always energetic McCartney, has gotten married, collaborated on his first ballet, 'Ocean's Kingdom,' performed all over the world, including North America, Abu Dhabi, Europe, South America and Mexico, released 'Kisses on the Bottom', an album of standard tunes, was honored with the 2012 MusiCares Person of the Year award and a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, directed his first music video, and played at Queen Elizabeth II's Diamond Jubilee concert. Up next for Paul is a major role in the opening and closing of the 2012 Summer Olympics in London.
McCartney will wrap up the opening ceremonies, which are being constructed by ‘Slumdog Millionaire’ director Danny Boyle. The event has been titled 'Isles of Wonder.' UK tabloid The Sun has reported that the song list includes tracks from every era of British music, including patriotic songs and hymns from the early 1900s all the way up to the latest chart hits. Reveered U.K. acts as The Beatles, The Rolling Stones, Queen, Eric Clapton, Led Zeppelin, The Who, David Bowie and The Kinks, and even a song by Michael Jackson (even though he's not British) will be a part of it.
There are no songs on that list by Elton John, Rod Stewart, Tom Jones or Phil Collins. The Sun says that Boyle may be wishing to avoid certain artists who've already performed at Queen Elizabeth II's Diamond Jubilee, or artists who are expected to perform live at the opening ceremony.
Duran Duran, Snow Patrol, Stereophonics, and Paolo Nutini will play the Olympic Games opening concert, with each band representing one of the U.K. factions. Duran Duran will perform for England, Snow Patrol for Ireland, Stereophonics for Wales, and Nutini for Scotland, with Blur, New Order, and the Specials taking part in the London 2012 Olympic closing ceremony. The Olympic Games kick off July 27th.
In an interview promoting the recent deluxe reissue of his 1971 album 'RAM,' McCartney told Paul Draper of Downed in Sound, about his reliance on alcohol to get through the aftermath of the Beatles' breakup, and how it gave him a rare occurrence of writer's block.
On an 'average day' McCartney said he'd go for a horse ride with wife Linda and his kids in the pastoral surroundings around Mull of Kintyre, and then, "in the evening, I'd drink whiskey, of which there was a large supply in Scotland...That was kind of a feature of that time."
"The Beatles, towards the end, was very constricting. You were in a corporate world suddenly...It's not what you get into music for, but it's there, it's a fact of life, especially when you were the label. We were doing Apple (Records), and it got very heavy, so me and Linda escaped with the kids, but the business hassles were still there. So I think I was just trying to escape in my own mind."
"I had the freedom to have just have a drink whenever I fancied it. I'd go into the studio, maybe have another drink and so on. I overdid it, basically, [and] got to a point where Linda had to say, 'Look, you should cool it.' If I would have a writer's block, I look back now and can say that was the over-stimulation. I'd be getting like 'Heeyyyy, nice and fuzzy' and it's not a good thing to write. [At] least for me it's not. Me and John were always very straight when we wrote, and it was normally in the middle of the day when you had your wits about you.
By the early '70s McCartney had long since given up meat, has obviously given us his over-indulgence in whisky, but has only recently given up his 40 year pot habit. Paul told Rolling Stone earlier this year that he'd quit for the sake of his 8-year-old daughter, Beatrice.
"I smoked my share. When you're bringing up a youngster, your sense of responsibility does kick in, if you're lucky, at some point. Enough's enough—you just don't seem to think it's necessary."
The 13th installment of Ringo Starr's All Starr Band Tour kicked off this past Thursday night in Toronto. It has become a favorite spot for Ringo to kick off the tour, with Niagra falls as a backdrop. The band rehearses there, then has the luxury of starting the tour there as well. Joining the Beatles drummer on the 2012 edition of the trek are Todd Rundgren, ex-Santana/Journey singer/keyboardist Gregg Rolie, Toto guitarist Steve Lukather, Mr. Mister's Richard Page, longtime Billy Joel saxophonist Mark Rivera and veteran session drummer Gregg Bissonnette (David Lee Roth).
The All Starr Band Tour is scheduled to run through a July 21 show at the Greek Theatre in Los Angeles. Ringo will spend his birthday on the road, with a performance at Ryman Auditorium in Nashville on July 7th. Rino will continue the tradition of the last few years, at Noon from the Hard Rock Nashville, Ringo will ask anyone anywhere, and everyone everywhere, to join him in a wish for Peace & Love.
Watch the full press conference introducing the band and performances of snippets of each of their classic All Starr hits including 'Rosanna,' 'Broken Wings,' 'Hello It’s Me,' 'Black Magic Woman,' and the Beatles 'Little Help From My Friends,' followed by a Q&A with all of the guys here: www.ringostarr.com
After a tumultuous few weeks that saw both Axl Rose, Izzy Stradlin and then Rod Stewart (from strep throat) bail from attending Guns N’ Roses and Faces/Small Faces inductions into the Rock and Roll Hall Of Fame, the band members who showed up to accept the honors did it with style.
The show kicked off with Green Day, who did a version of the 'American Idiot' track 'Letterbomb.' Rock and Roll Hall of Fame co-founder Jann Wenner followed shortly after addressing the crowd, saying: "I believe in the magic of rock and roll. That magic can set you free. Ladies and gentlemen, tonight you've entered a place where magic happens."
Billy Gibbons and Dusty Hill of ZZ Top inducted the first honoree of the evening, the late blues guitarist Freddie King. King's daughter, Wanda, spoke warmly and shared stories about her father. "He inspired so many young blues artists," she said. "I remember going to a show when I was 14 and meeting Stevie Ray Vaughan for the first time. He said to my dad, 'How can I play the blues like you?' My dad said, 'If you don't feel the blues, you'll never play the blues.'" Joe Bonamassa, Billy Gibbons and Derek Trucks followed, jamming on the King songs 'Hideaway' and 'Going Down.'John Mellencamp inducted Donovan next, saying, "He was my inspiration. I wouldn't just listen to Donovan. I would live Donovan, which means I was stealing all my shit from Donovan. Other artists – and you know who you guys are – called that being inspired." Donovan accepted his induction, reading a short poem, then played "Catch the Wind" and "Sunshine Superman" before duetting with Mellencamp on "Season of the Witch."
Bette Midler then inducted Laura Nyro, with Sara Bareilles honoring Nyro with 'Stoney End' on the piano. In the non-performer catagories Carole King inducted Don Kirshner, who in her early days was her boss and mentor during her days as a Brill Building songwriter in the late 1950s and early 1960s. Darlene Love perfomed 'Will You Still Love Me Tomorrow,' with Paul Shaffer and the CBS Orchestra, who she had a familiarity with due to her many performances on 'Late Show With David Letterman.' Robbie Robertson also presented the Award For Musical Excellence to Cosimo Matassa, Glyn Jones and Tom Dowd later in the evening. Mid-show Smokey Robinson inducted the Blue Caps (who backed Gene Vincent), the Comets (Bill Haley), the Crickets (Buddy Holly), the Famous Flames (James Brown), the Midnighters (Hank Ballard) and the Miracles, who backed Robinson for the first two decades of his career. The surviving members of all six groups took the stage together, giving credit to these deserving legends for their huge role in rock history.
Chuck D of Public Enemy and LL Cool J both inducted the Beastie Boys. "They still are one of the greatest live acts in music. They challenged the conventions in the music business and made up their own rules about what it means to be world class hip-hop cats...They always insisted (on) maturing as musicians and human beings," said Chuck D. LL Cool J said that he owes his entire career to the Beasties. "I wouldn't be here today without them. The Beastie Boys actually played my demo for Rick Rubin in his NYU dorm room. A lot of people don't know that."
Adam Horowitz read the audience a letter from Yauch. "I'd like to dedicate this to my brothers Adam and Mike," he wrote. "They walked the globe with me. It's also for anyone who has ever been touched by our band. This induction is as much ours as it is yours."
The lengthy introduction of Guns N' Roses from Green Day’s Billie Joe Armstrong did include a reference to Rose, and although he didn’t actually say his name, the inference made the crowd boo. “No, shut the f–k up, shut up, shut up!” Armstrong chided the 7,000 people in attendance. “This man’s a bad ass f–king singer. He’s one of the best frontmen to ever touch a microphone … Hey, most singers are crazy — I can vouch for that.” Slash said, “The fans are the ones who made it possible for us to get together tonight with all the adversity and everything that was going on."
Slash admitted that all the drama almost caused him to stay home as well. He then thanked his wife for talking him into attending, saying, “I was like f-k it, but she said ‘Go and do it with the guys,’ and I said ‘You’re right.’” McKagan declared himself “overwhelmed” at the honor of the induction and added, “I don’t know if it matters who’s here tonight because it’s about the music that band created.” Sorum, who gently teased Adler for somehow managing to get fired from GnR for a drug addiction, said, “I want to thank the other bandmates that aren’t here tonight [and tell them] that I love and respect them and I’m honored to have been on stage playing music with them.” And Adler’s very brief speech quoted a key line from Queen‘s ‘We Are the Champions’: “You brought me fame and fortune and everything that goes with it, and I thank you all.”
Singer Myles Kennedy (Slash/Alter Bridge) took the mic for the three-song Guns N' Roses set with Slash, Gilby Clarke and drummers Matt Sorum and Steven Adler. They jammed on the Guns classics ‘Mr. Brownstone,’ ‘Sweet Child O’ Mine’ and ‘Paradise City.’
Simply Red's Mick Hucknall, who has performed with a reunited Faces on tour, joined the band on 'Ooh La La' and 'Stay With Me.' Ron Wood rocked like he is ready for a Rolling Stones tour right now and was joined by keyboardist Ian McLagan and drummer Kenny Jones.
The Roots, along with Kid Rock and Travie McCoy of Gym Class Heroes performed a medley of Beastie classics, including 'Sabotage' and 'So What'cha Want.' Rock, Black Thought and McCoy all wore matching green Adidas track suits.
Comedian Chris Rock took the stage at 12:30 a.m. to induct the last act of the night, Red Hot Chili Peppers and he couldn’t resist poking fun at Rose’s notorious habit of tardiness. “A lot of people are upset that Axl didn’t come tonight,” Rock said. “But let’s face it. Even if he was coming tonight, he wouldn’t be here by now.” He went on to explain that he first saw the Red Hot Chili Peppers when he tried to see Grandmaster Flash in Philadelphia, but walked into the wrong club. "My friends and I were like, 'What the fuck is this shit? There's a lot of white people in here,'" Rock said. "They came out and I couldn't understand a fucking word they said, and they had socks on their dicks! I had never been to a white show before, so I thought all white groups put socks on their dicks. Years later, they're one of the biggest groups in the world and getting inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. They have black ties on their dicks tonight."
Former drummers Jack Irons and Cliff Martinez were part of the induction, and 1:00 a.m., the group (with three drummers) did a three-song set of 'By the Way,' 'The Adventures of Rain Dance Maggie' and 'Give It Away.' "I haven't played with Cliff in 25 years!" Flea said to the crowd. "He's a beautiful man."
At the end of 'Give It Away,' Anthony Kiedis invited everyone back to the stage. Slash, Ron Wood, Billie Joe Armstrong, Kenny Jones and even audience member George Clinton packed the stage for Stevie Wonder's 'Higher Ground.' The five-and-a-half hour show wrapped up at 1:30 a.m. A condensed two and a half hour broadcast of the show will air on HBO on Saturday, May 5th.
Latest Guns N’ Roses Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame News: Green Day to deliver induction speech, Matt Sorum says Izzy Stradlin won’t be in attendance, Slash says Axl “hates my guts”
There's been much buildup to a possible Guns N' Roses original reunion onstage at the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame Ceremony on April 14 in Cleveland. I'm sure the Hall is happy with all the publicity that's been surrounding it, but it's just not going to happen. Izzy Stradlin apparently won't be in attendance, so even if Axl Rose found a way to make his peace with Slash, the lineup would not be complete. Axl hasn't even confirmed that he will be there as of yet.
One thing that was confirmed is that Green Day will deliver their induction speech. Billie Joe Armstrong, Tre Cool and Mike Dirst are sure to deliver an epic speech, and quite possibly a performance of Guns N' Roses songs, hopefully joined by former members.
Here's some of the recent quotes from former band members in regards to the Hall:
"Everyone has been asking me what's going to happen [at the Hall of Fame]," Slash told Rolling Stone earlier this week. "And they know as much as I do. I feel you're totally obligated to be present and I would love to fucking play, but it's just something that's not gonna happen for whatever reason." Relations between Rose and Slash remain, to put it mildly, strained. "He hates my guts," says Slash. "It's over a lot of different stuff; I don't even know. There's just no communication between us. I talk to Duff and Steven, but when it comes to old Guns N' Roses, there really isn't anybody that makes decisions."
Dave Basner of VH1 Radio Network recently chatted with drummer Matt Sorum, who replaced Steven Adler behind the kit in 1990, and asked what he expects from the ceremony.
“Well, I don't expect really anything to happen," he said. "I think we're gonna go and accept the award, is what it's looking like. If anything, I might play drums with [fellow inductee] Donovan. I offered my services to Donovan because I played with him one time before and 'Hurdy Gurdy Man' was a song he recorded that John Bonham played drums on and Jimmy Page was the guitar player and I offered Donovan that me and Slash could play that maybe, but I haven't heard back if he wants us to do it or not.”
Basner asked Matt why he can't just call singer Axl Rose and find out.
"I thought about it, but, you know, I don't think I'm the guy to do it," he said. "I asked Slash if he would do it, and Slash's answer to me was that he spoke to [guitarist] Izzy [Stradlin] and Izzy wasn't planning on coming. So I think that was like, if Izzy's not going to come and it's not all the original guys, then it doesn't make sense. I'm not sure, man. Like I said, I'm just going to go and obviously Steven's gonna be there, so I always thought, if they were going to play, they'll probably do 'Appetite' stuff and if they wanted me to play on something off 'Use Your Illusion', I would be happy to do that. If it was a perfect scenario, I would say the track list should go something like this: Go up there and play 'Welcome To The Jungle', play 'Sweet Child O' Mine', and then finish it up with 'November Rain'."
Original Gn'R drummer Steven Adler said last week that the band's lead singer, Axl Rose, is driving the GN'R name "into the freakin' ground" by continuing to tour with a bunch of "hacks" that "shouldn't even be [called] Guns N' Roses."
"[Slash is] my brother. I know he's up to it," Adler told Loudwire in an interview conducted on Thursday (Mar. 29). "He wants to do it. I want to do it. Just from what I hear, Izzy [Stradlin]'s not gonna show up and Axl will probably want to play with his hack band — his band of hacks. 'Axl and His Hacks' — it shouldn't even be Guns N' Roses. He's just driving that name into the freakin' ground. 'Axl and His Hacks.'"
Adler told Loudwire, "My grandmother always said, 'Time heals all wounds.' Slash and Axl are one to each other. It's not like one of them slept with one of them's wives or anything — and even that's forgivable after a while. There is no reason to be upset."
On Mar. 30th, Adler released a statement in which he apologized for his comments, explaining, "Sometimes my emotions get the best of me when talking about my former band. It's hard to see your ex in bed with somebody else. We created one of the biggest-selling debut albums of all time and it's no secret that I want to finish what we started 25 years ago and play together at the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame. The guys that Axl has put together are all great players. They're not hacks in the sense that they can't play, they're all incredible musicians. I just meant that they are not the original lineup. I would like to apologize to Axl, Bumblefoot, D.J., Tommy, Dizzy, Richard, Frank, and Chris for my statement."
After reading Adler's apology, Ron 'Bumblefoot' Thal responded on his Facebook page, "All good, bro. Thanks so much. We all just want to make music and make people happy. As far as all the GN'R hoopla, I'd rather it be what connects us than what separates us. You and I played together in Chicago a few years ago (I was jammin' with Lita Ford) and you guys were great. I won't be at Hall Of Fame. If you go, please give everyone a big hello for me."
So we know past and former Guns N' Roses members Slash, Duff McKagan, Steven Adler, Matt Sorum and Dizzy Reed will be in attendance and who will induct them, but the rest is a mystery. Let's hope something epic happens! Maybe a fist fight between Axl and Slash. LOL
3/20 - KISS - Jimmy Kimmel Live
3/20 - Meatloaf - Tavis Smiley
3/21 - Dr. Teeth and the Electric Mayhem featuring Travis Barker - Jimmy Kimmel Live
3/23 - Mastodon - Last Call With Carson Daly (R-2/10/12)
3/26 - Shinedown - Jimmy Kimmel Live
3/26 - Train - Late Show With David Letterman
3/26 - Swervedriver - Late Night With Jimmy Fallon
3/27 - All American Rejects - Jimmy Kimmel Live
3/28 - Donovan - Conan
3/28 - Gavin DeGraw - The Tonight Show With Jay Leno
3/29 - Mat Kearney - The Tonight Show With Jay Leno
3/29 - Weird Al Yankovic - The Late Late Show With Craig Ferguson
The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame has announced the presenters for this year's induction ceremony. Rollingstone.com has reported that Chris Rock will induct the Red Hot Chili Peppers, John Mellencamp will induct Donovan, Steve Van Zandt will induct the Small Faces/Faces, Chuck D will induct the Beastie Boys, Billy Gibbons and Dusty Hill from ZZ Top will induct Freddie King, Carole King will induct Don Kirshner and Bette Midler will induct Laura Nyro. They is no announcement as of yet to announce who will induct Guns N' Roses.
The Hall of Fame's induction ceremony on April 14 will be held in Cleveland for only the third time in it's 26 year history, and will air on HBO May 5th.
The ceremony will also feature Robbie Robertson inducting Cosimo Matassa, Tom Dowd and Glyn Johns and Smokey Robinson inducting The Blue Caps, the Comets, the Crickets, the Famous Flames, the Midnighters and the Miracles.