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Rock Picks of the Week: Alice In Chains, Gary Clark Jr., Heart, Papa Roach, Big Wreck, Lynyrd Skynyrd

by on Dec.21, 2012, under ROCK NEWS, ROCK PICKS, VIDEO

Rock Picks of the Week: Alice In Chains, Gary Clark Jr., Heart, Papa Roach, Big Wreck, Lynyrd Skynyrd

Alice In Chains have released their new track 'Hollow' and it lead off on Rock Picks of the Week. The clip for the song includes photos fans have taken or created that were inspired by the track's lyrics after the band post lyrical phrases from the song via Instagram and asked fans to contribute.

The band has finished recording its fifth studio album and second without original vocalist Layne Staley. The new disc is the second from the band with vocalist/guitarist William Duvall and the follow up 2009's 'Black Gives Way To Blue.' There is no official release date yet for the new album, but it should be expected in the spring of 2013. 'Hollow’ will be available for purchase on iTunes beginning Jan. 8th.

Add me to the list giving glowing reviews to the great Gary Clark Jr. for not only his latest album, 'Blak and Blu,' but his career in general. The man is more than well on his way to being one of this generation's guitar greats and if you don't know his name now, you definetely will!. Many are comparing Austin, Texas' Clark Jr. to Jimi Hendrix. Clark Jr. just played with the Stones on their '50 and Counting' tour, and he will be joining many other legends on stage as his potential seems limitless right now. In fact, after his current European tour, Clark will be back in the states for Eric Clapton's Crossroads Guitar Festival at New York's Madison Square Garden on Apr. 12 & 13. It is an amazing lineup of guitar talent, and Gary will be there! Congrats to him on all his accolades! Check out some of these amazing reviews:

"He consolidates Hendrix, Stevie Ray, '90's grunge, hip hop, soul and R&B into a cool mix that makes your jaw drop. He can out groove and out play any (one) on earth, but he's into songs, not showmanship"-
San Antonio Current

“When Gary Clark Jr's right hand hits the strings of his electric guitar, it's almost always a downstroke, as if he wants gravity on his side… the notes fall off his guitar like raindrops." -
Washington Post

This singer-guitarist may be the next Hendrix... churning his distorted strings into a euphoric moment of psychedelia" -
New York Times

"Austin resident Gary Clark Jr., who may be the city's next big music star flashed his blend of blues, soul and rock, mixing fluid, muscular guitar with rootsy bark or a falsetto croon" -
The Wall Street Journal

"Gary Clark Jr. a young force steeped in old sounds.... Ten years in the making, Gary Clark Jr., is about to become an overnight sensation"-
Boston Globe

"Every generation has its chosen one and right now, this is Clark's time" -
Entertainment Weekly

I think he'll live up to it all! Check out his latest track 'Ain't Messin' Round.' I want Gary Clark Jr. to play my house party someday! Below that is the clip of Gary and John Mayer absolutely rocking with the Stones!

Heart have released their next track and video from their amazing 'Fanatic' album. Ann and Nancy Wilson grew up in a military family, and they pay tribute to all of our armed forces in the new clip for the song. Congrats to Ann & Nancy for their so well desrved and overdue induction into the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame. The ladies and their band changed rock n roll, been a positive for music in general, and have influenced generations of rockers, female and male!! Love you ladies!

Papa Roach have released their second track 'Where Did The Angels Go,' from the new album 'The Connection.' The Vacaville, California rockers are on the road in Europe with Stone Sour for the band's first extended tour since singer Jacoby Shaddix had surgery on his vocal cords in September. The band has overcome that scare and are at full force for the latest tour, which will continue on a co-headlining tour with Stone Sour in the U.S. statrting in early 2013. The tour kicks off on January 20th in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania.

Canada's Big Wreck are up next with their track 'Albatross', which conveys feeling and emotion not found in many rock records anymore. Big Wreck are definite survivors of the music biz and in it for the love. The band was formed in 1994 at the esteemed Berklee College of Music in Boston, and subsequently signed to Atlantic Records. But after releasing two albums, 1997's 'In Loving Memory Of...' and 2001's 'The Pleasure and the Greed' albums, the four-piece band had a messy break up that was not amicable to say the least.

Frontman/guitarist Ian Thornley is considered one of Canada's top guitarists, and the band still gets significant airplay at rock radio there for tracks such as 'The Oaf (My Luck Is Wasted),' 'That Song' and 'Blown Wide Open.' Thorney carried on with his band 'Thornley', which was on Chad Kroeger's of Nickelback's 604 Records. Thorney released two albums, 2004's 'Come Again' and 2009's 'Tiny Pictures.' During that time he also shared the same management as Rush.

In late 2010, Thornley reconnected with Big Wreck's guitarist Brian Doherty and they toured Canada under the banner "An Evening with Thornley and Big Wreck." In 2011, Thornley left 604 and decided to put out albums via his management's label, Anthem. He, Doherty, guitarist Paula Neta, bassist Dave McMillan and session drummer Chris Henry (Brad Park is live drummer) entered the studio with Thornley producing alongside engineer/mixer Eric Ratz (Billy Talent, Cancer Bats). Nick Raskulinecz (Foo Fighters, Death Angel) executive produced.

Under the name Big Wreck again, 'Albatross' was released in Canada this past March and it will come out in the U.S. on Rounder this Feb. 19th. A great track, that I hope brings the band the recognition they deserve in America.

Lynyrd Skynyrd have had great success with their latest album 'Last Of A Dyin' Breed', which is great from start to finish. The band have released a lyric video for 'Good Teacher', and it's our last rock pick of the week. The Skynyrd road machine will continue into 2013, with tour dates on the east coast kicking off on Jan. 15th at the Beacon Theater in New York City. Also look for The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson to re-air Lynyrd Skynyrd’s 'Last of a Dyin’ Breed' Performance on December 27th. Skynyrd....still kicking ass!!

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Billboard release list of Top 25 grossing U.S. tours of 2012

by on Dec.15, 2012, under LINKS, ROCK NEWS, ROCK TOUR DATES

Billboard release list of Top 25 grossing U.S. tours of 2012

Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band, who were out on the road for much of the past year, came in at No. 2 on the list of top grossing tours of 2012. He performed 72 shows to 2,165,925 fans on his 'Wrecking Ball' Tour, with 54 of the shows selling out. Nine other shows couldn't be included duye to Billboard’s cut-off date of Nov. 13, 2012.

Roger Waters came in third, with $186 million, having played to 1,680,042 people on 72 nights, with 51 sellouts. Despite 33 shows in North America and Japan cancelled due to various health reasons, the 'A Different Kind of Truth’ tour from Van Halen finished in eighth place. The 46 shows, including nine sellouts to 522,296 fans grossed more than $54 million.

Madonna topped the list, having sold out all 72 of her concerts and bringing in $228 million, with 1,635,176 in attendance. Other rock acts that made the list include the Dave Matthews Band, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Pearl Jam, Nickelback, Elton John and Rod Stewart.

Check out the full list here:

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Nickelback’s Chad Kroeger is engaged to Avril Lavigne…the new Canadian power couple: Chavril

by on Aug.22, 2012, under FUNNIES, ROCK NEWS, VIDEO

Nickelback’s Chad Kroeger is engaged to Avril Lavigne…the new Canadian power couple: Chavril

After dating for about 6 months, fellow Canadians Avril Lavigne and Nickelback's Chad Kroeger are officially engaged. The two haven't set a wedding date, but if it happens it will be the first marriage for the 37-year-old, and the second for 27-year-old Avril. Avril was married to another Canadian rocker, Sum 41's Deryck Whibley, from 2006 to 2009.

People Magazine initially reported that after Avril and Chad met in February 2012 to collaborate on a track for Avril's forthcoming fifth album, "a romantic relationship blossomed as they spent time writing together." Chad proposed to Avril on August 8th, with a 14-carat diamond ring. "He makes her so happy," a family friend told People. "Both of their families could not be more excited."

We wish the two well, as do these following tweets commemorating the potential nuptials:

From Francois Marchand who tweets under the handle @FMarchandVS: “There's only one way this #Chavril wedding can happen: Grey Cup halftime show. With pyro.”

Mike Bell (@mrbell_23): “A positive thought: They have a child. It rebels. And becomes an actual musician. #chavril”

Avril Lavigne and Chad Kroeger from Nickelback are getting married? I didn't know Canada allowed SAME SUCKS MARRIAGE
Adam Newman

How generous of Avil Lavigne to offer herself as the living Juno for worst musician in Canada
Harrison Mooney

I assume Avril Lavigne was drawn to Chad Kroeger because he doesn't make things complicated, particularly song structures
Drew Magary

Chad Kroeger has asked Avril Lavigne to marry him. He proposed in 20 different ways and they all sounded the same.
Matt O'Neill

“I now pronounce you Bro & Punkette. Spicy!” - Father Guy Fieri
Rob Delaney

Avril Lavigne is engaged to the lead singer of Nickelback. They met at the Canadian Music Hall of What We Consider Fame
Chase Miller

Avril Lavigne and Chad Kroeger from Nickelback just got engaged. I feel like the Mayans may have been right about 2012, guys.
Elijah Daniel

Avril Lavigne to marry Chad Kroeger. That's the worst Canadian marriage ever. I'd rather Justin Bieber marry Bryan Adams.
Joe Ward

Here's the new video from Nickelback starring Brooke Burns and Jason Alexander in 'Trying Not To Love You'



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Pollstar Top Grossing Tours of 2012 (so far)

by on Jul.14, 2012, under LINKS, ROCK NEWS

Pollstar Top Grossing Tours of 2012 (so far)

Pollstar has released the list of the top grosses tours for the fisrt six months of this year and Van Halen and former Pink Floyd leader Roger Waters were among the top-grossing acts.

Van Halen sold 448,506 tickets, resulting in a final gross of $44.9 million. Waters topped that, selling 575,444 tickets for a final gross of $61.9 million, making him the top grossing rock act. Waters was #2 overall, behind the 'Cirque du Soleil: Michael Jackson: The Immortal' tour, which grossed $78.5 million. Van Halen was #3 overall.

Here's the rock represented in the top 20:
#7: Bruce Springsteen & The E Street Band - $30.0 million
#8 - Elton John - $26.0 million
#9 - Dave Matthews Band - $24.4 million
#10 - Radiohead - $22.8
#14 - Nickelback - $21.0
#17 - Red Hot Chili Peppers - $18.3
#20 - The Black Keys - $18.0
Check out the rest of the top North American tours here: Pollstar’s Boxoffice Department determined that the Top 100 Tours in North America generated a combined gross of $1,125.9 million, up 1.2 percent over last year.

Ticket prices dropped an average of $6.34, or 9.4 percent, to $60.68, the lowest since 2007 when the average ticket price was $58.61.

On the global chart Roger Waters finished #1, with 63 shows in 40 cities. He sold 1,431,852 tickets for a total gross of $158.1 million.  By comparison, second-place Bruce Springsteen & The E Street Band played 34 shows in 29 cities, selling 925,839 tickets for a total gross of $79.9 million. Van Halen charted at #6.

Other rock represented in the top 20 worldwide:
#6 - Van Halen - $44.9 million
#9 - Paul McCartney - $ 40.1 million
#11 - Elton John - $37.4 million
#15 - Rammstien - $28.7 million
#18 - Red Hot Chili Peppers - $24.7 million
#19 - Dave Matthews Band - $24.4 million
#20 - Radiohead - $22.8 million

Check out the top 50 global tour list here:

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Rock Picks of the Week: Rush, Rival Sons, Bruce Springsteen, Linkin Park, Godsmack, My Darkest Days


Rock Picks of the Week: Rush, Rival Sons, Bruce Springsteen, Linkin Park, Godsmack, My Darkest Days

Rush is up first with their amazing new track 'Headlong Flight,' from the 'Clockwork Angels' album, which will be released on June 12th. The over 7 minute track attacks the senses in a way we have come to expect from the band.

Bassist-singer Geddy Lee, guitarist Alex Lifeson, and drummer-lyricist Neil Peart have recorded an entire album that follows the same narrative thread — that of a young man's journey to follow his dreams in a dystopian alternate world.

Rush will kick off their North American tour on Sept. 7th in Manchester, New Hampshire, with dates rocking through Dec. 2nd in Houston, Texas. The band will also be this will be headlining the Sweden Rock Festival in June of 2013, their first appearance at a European festival in 33 years! Their show at Sweden Rock Festival will be the only festival appearance in Europe, and the band's first festival appearance since they played at Pinkpop in Holland in 1979. In 2004, Rush played in Sweden for the first time in 25 years, selling out the Globe Arena in Stockholm.

Alex Lifeson breaks down 'Clockwork Angels' track-by track here:

Geddy Lee talked with Spin Magazine recently. Check out the interview here:

Rush is on the cover of this month's Classic Rock magazine, and you can get Classic Rock on your iPad and iPhone.
US version:
UK version:

'Clockwork Angels' track listing:
1. Caravan
2. BU2B
3. Clockwork Angels
4. The Anarchist
5. Carnies
6. Halo Effect
7. Seven Cities Of Gold
8. The Wreckers
9. Headlong Flight
10. BU2B2
11. Wish Them Well
12. The Garden

Fast Tube

Rival Sons' new video, for the fantastic track 'Face Of Light' is the next Rock Pick of the Week. The video sees a softer side of the band as they go through the beautiful scenery of the Peak District in the English countryside. The video was filmed with director Dan Ruttley during the band's recent sold-out UK tour with Black Stone Cherry.

Frontman Jay Buchanan comments: "I am happy to say that our record Pressure & Time is about to give us our third single with the song 'Face Of Light'. This is a very special song to us and I am delighted to put out a single with a positive message that can still break a tooth. Three singles from one record; I am so thankful for the support we've been shown. This will more than likely be our last single from the P&T record, so it's a fitting farewell to an unforgettable year with a song so personally close to the vest for me."

Rival Sons are ready to kick ass on all the major European rock festivals and have a couple of gigs in June lined up opening for Guns N' Roses in Netherlands and Germany. The band has recently completed recording their second album 'Head Down' in Nashville and it will be released in August on Earache records.

Fast Tube

Bruce Springsteen's 'Rocky Ground' is up next from the 'Wrecking Ball' album. The black-and-white clip shows footage of the hands of a number of different people writing out the lyrics of the tune on a notepad superimposed over various urban scenes shot in slow-motion.

The clip was directed by Thom Zimny, Springsteen longtime videographer, whose credits include the 2010 documentary 'The Promise: The Making of Darkness on the Edge of Town.' The Boss makes a brief cameo in the video; see if you can spot him.
We've been traveling over rocky ground and a new day is coming.

Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band played the second-biggest German show of their career on Wednesday (May 30) in Berlin before 55,000 fans. Springsteen played a set focused on new material from Wrecking Ball and an assortment of old favorites, but he opened the night with his first-ever live performance of Wizz Jones' 1973 tune "When I Leave Berlin."

Fast Tube

Linkin Park's new album 'Living Things' will be out on June 26th, and the first track 'Burn It Down' is obviously a massive success. It currently sits at #3 on the rock charts, and the band released a video for it last week. Check it out and the 'making of' clip below.

The band's big summer Honda Civic Tour with Incubus kicks off on August 11th in Bristow, Virginia.

Fast Tube

Fast Tube

Fast Tube

Godsmack's cover of the Joe Walsh classic ‘Rocky Mountain Way’ from their 'Live & Inspired' album is up next. The track is rising up into the top 10 of the rock charts, and it's well deserving with their kick ass version of the song for a new generation. The band performed 'Rocky Mountain Way' every night on the recent wrapped Mass Chaos tour with Staind, and now they’ve just released a performance based video for the tune.

GodSmack are now gearing up for the 2012 Uproar Festival with Shinedown, Papa Roach and Staind, among others.

My Darkest Days are back with the title track as the next single from their latest album 'Sick And Twisted Affair.' The album was produced by Joey Moi, who has worked with Hinder, Daughtry and Santana. It includes guest musicians John 5 (Marilyn Manson, Rob Zombie) along with Three Days Grace members Barry Stock and Neil Sanderson.

The band has posted part 2 of their behind-the-scenes teaser,and in it they describe the tough personal relationships that served as much of the album’s inspiration. “I think we’ve all been in a relationship before that’s just so toxic,” explains lead guitarist Sal Costa. “You want it to be over, but don’t really want it to be over… Just seeing them with another person eats you alive.” “Humans, we’re all just walking contradictions,” adds Walst. The guys are rocking all summer long with Nickelback, Bush and Seether and continue.

Fast Tube

“We listen to all types of music. We take stuff from R&B, hip hop, country and bring it into rock and make it something new,” so says My Darkest Days‘ frontman Matt Walst. The band took Joe & Mystikal’s 2007 Top 40 smash single “Stutter,” added a little sex appeal and re-worked it into a rock banger.

Fast Tube

Fast Tube

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