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P U N M A S T E R' S M U S I C W I R E b y D a v i d G r o s s
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January 27, 2001
The Weekend Report
IT HAPPENED LAST NIGHT
With all the musical reunions happening today, its no wonder we're all getting overloaded.......some are more successful than others....but Friday night in Marin County.....Mill Valley, California at the Sweetwater.....something very special took place......
Three men joined each other on stage for the first time in 35 years......the original Southside Sound System featuring Charlie Musselwhite on harmonica and vocals, Barry Goldberg on keyboards, and Harvey Mandel on guitar,......they tore in to old favorites from their now legendary 1966 album "Stand Back," including "Help Me" and "Christo Redemptor"........In 1968 Harvey "The Snake" Mandel recorded his classic album by the same name, spelled "Cristo Redentor"....his first solo album became a psychedelic favorite....an underground staple on KSAN radio in San Francisco, produced by Abe "Voco" Kesh.......at that point Charlie went off to start a successful solo career....Barry Goldberg formed the Electric Flag with Mike Bloomfield, Nick Gravenites, and Buddy Miles.....it was even before then that Barry played with Bob Dylan when he "went electric" at Newport........and played with Jimi Hendrix when he was known as Jimmy James, a year before Chas Chandler of the Animals made a star out of him in England.......Barry went on to be a successful producer as well as scoring soundtracks and writing hit songs.
Harvey Mandel of course went on to join Canned Heat just in time for Woodstock and stayed with the band through their commercial peak and until the untimely death of Alan "Blind Owl" Wilson.....Harvey along with Larry "The Mole" Taylor joined John Mayall for the USA Union and Back To The Roots projects and toured extensively for a year.......Larry Taylor went on to record with Tom Waits and Keith Richards (both Larry and Harvey played on and off with Canned Heat over the years with Bob "The Bear" Hite and also after his death)......Harvey had a string of groundbreaking instrumental records such as "Baby Batter," "The Snake" and "Shangrenade" and was hired to record with the Rolling Stones on their "Black & Blue" album, on the songs "Hot Stuff" and "Memory Motel".....Ronnie Wood got the gig over Harvey and Wayne Perkins.......while Harvey continued to record solo albums and session work to this day.
After 35 years though, the reunion of these 3 accomplished musicians was really a special event......You could feel it in the air.....the warmth coming from the stage as these men beamed with soulful joy, blending their blues roots together. Like the original Paul Butterfield Blues Band with Mike Bloomfield, Mark Naftalin, and Elvin Bishop.....the Southside Sound System were the new generation of white kids to interpret the blues and inspire so many of today's artists.
The event was the Barry Goldberg & Friends show which also featured Barry's regular band with Stanley Behrens on harmonica and sax (who now tours Europe with a new incarnation of Canned Heat along with original drummer Fito de la Parra. Guitarist Henry Vestine recently passed away) and vocalist Marcy Levy who wrote the song "Lay Down Sally"....and toured with Eric Clapton and recorded with Elton John.
But as the regular players left the stage and Charlie & Harvey joined Barry Goldberg with just the bass and drums, is when it got lean and mean and the air was so thick with nostalgia, taking you back to a southside Chicago blues club in the mid-sixties.......
I think I'm covered for reunions for the remainder of this year.....as this is something I've wanted to see happen for a long, long time.....and as Boris Karloff would say.....this was indeed...a Thriller!
Guests, Covers Grace New Clapton Set
On "Reptile," Eric Clapton's first solo album since 1998's "Pilgrim," the artist surrounds himself with a substantial stable of guest musicians, and augments his own new compositions with a healthy collection of cover songs.
Due out March 13, the Reprise album features frequent Clapton collaborators Andy Fairweather Low (guitar) and Nathan East (bass), as well as legendary piano/organ players Billy Preston (the Beatles, Ray Charles) and Joe Sample, blues guitarist Doyle Bramhall II (Arc Angels), vocal group the Impressions, percussionist Paulinho Da Costa, drummer Steve Gadd, and keyboardist Paul Carrack (Squeeze, Roxy Music, Mike + the Mechanics).
Covers on the 14-track set are Charles' "Come Back Baby," James Taylor's "Don't Let Me Be Lonely Tonight," Stevie Wonder's "I Ain't Gonna Stand For It," J.J. Cale's "Travelin' Light," and Big Joe Turner's "Got You On My Mind." The album was produced by Clapton and Simon Climie.
"Superman Inside" has been chosen as the first single for rock radio; a pop/adult contemporary single is yet to be determined.
Clapton will support "Reptile" with extensive European and North American tours. The European run will kick off with a six-night stand next month at London's Royal Albert Hall and wrap April 10 in Moscow. The tour is expected to land stateside in May, including a possible three-night stand at New York's Madison Square Garden in June, according to a source.
"Riding With The King," Clapton's collaboration with blues legend B.B. King debuted at No. 3 on The Billboard 200 last July. The set has sold 1,676,000 copies to date in the U.S., according to SoundScan.
Here are Eric Clapton's European tour dates:
* Feb. 3-4, 6-7, 9-10: London (Royal Albert Hall)
* Feb. 12: Sheffield, U.K. (Sheffield Arena)
* Feb. 14: Manchester, U.K. (Manchester Evening News Arena)
* Feb. 16: Birmingham, U.K. (NEC Arena)
* Feb. 20: Lisbon, Portugal (Atlantic Pavilion)
* Feb. 22: Madrid (Sports Palace)
* Feb. 25: Barcelona, Spain (Palau Sant Jordi)
* Feb. 26: Toulouse, France (Zenith)
* Feb. 28: Florence, Italy (Palasport)
* March 2: Milan (Fila Forum)
* March 5: Zurich (Hallenstadion Zurich)
* March 6: Stuttgart, Germany (Schleyerhalle)
* March 8: Cologne, Germany (Cologne Arena)
* March 9: Frankfurt (Festhalle)
* March 20: Paris (Le Bercy)
* March 23: Ghent, Belgium (Flanders Expo)
* March 25-26: Rotterdam, Netherlands (Ahoy)
* March 28: Copenhagen (Forum)
* March 31: Goteborg, Sweden (Scandinavium)
* April 1: Oslo (Oslo Spektrum)
* April 3: Stockholm (Stockholm Globe Arena)
* April 5: Helsinki (Hartwall Arena)
* April 8: St. Petersburg, Russia (Jubilee Complex)
* April 10: Moscow (Moscow Convention Center)
THIS DAY IN MUSIC HISTORY
For January 27, 2001
2000 - As part of the year's Sundance Film Festival in Park City, Utah, Aimee Mann, Blues Traveler frontman John Popper, Lisa Loeb, and country star Dwight Yoakam perform live on a special webcast edition of VH1's Storytellers.
2000 - Beijing songstress Faye Wong and Hong Kong Canto-pop star Andy Lau share the Century Award for best artist at the Channel V Chinese Music Awards, held at the mainland capital's International Convention Centre.
1998 - Two male dancers for risqué rapper Kinsu, Keith Allen and Antonio Robinson, appear in San Antonio County Court to answer charges of indecent exposure. The two had been arrested earlier in the month for dropping their overalls and ripping off their undergarments in front of a crowd of 35,000.
1998 - Trace Adkins welcomes a new baby girl, Mackenzie Lynn Adkins, at 3:44 p.m. at Baptist Hospital in Nashville. Mackenzie weighs 5 lbs., 15 1/2 oz. and measures 19 inches in length.
1997 - Tin Pan Alley composer Gerald Marks, best known for the song "All of Me," dies at the age of 96.
1984 - The Eurythmics begin a grueling 175-date world tour in Australia.
1972 - Mahalia Jackson dies of heart failure. Age 70. She is posthumously awarded a Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award in 1972. In the ceremony she is cited as the "World's Greatest Gospel Singer."
1971 - David Bowie arrives for his first visit to the U.S. He does not perform, but receives much publicity for wearing dresses in Texas and Louisiana.
1958 - Little Richard interrupts his music career to enter a theological seminary in Huntsville, Ala., where he will later receive a degree and be ordained.
1956 - Elvis Presley's "Heartbreak Hotel" is released.
1951 - Keyboardist Seth Justman of J. Geils Band is born in Washington, D.C.
1945 - Nick Mason of Pink Floyd is born.
For January 28, 2001
1999 - All American crooner Pat Boone forms the Gold Records label, which will only sign artists 45 years old and up. One of the first performers to be signed is two-time Grammy Award winner Jack Jones.
1999 - A benefit concert for convicted cop-killer Mumia Abu-Jamal is held at the Continental Airlines Arena in East Rutherford, N.J. The event, with attendance pegged at around 16,000, is organized by Rage Against The Machine. Featured performers include Rage, the Beastie Boys, Bad Religion, Chumbawamba, and Public Enemy frontman Chuck D.
1998 - Tracey Lawrence is convicted of battery stemming from a quarrel in September with his wife, Stacie. Lawrence is sentenced to pay $500 to a Las Vegas shelter for battered women.
1998 - Martina McBride makes an appearance in the "Nancy" comic strip on a concert T-shirt worn by Aunt Fritzi.
1996 - Diana Ross performs as the featured halftime performer at Super Bowl XX in Tempe, Ariz.
1996 - Recording expert and entrepreneur, John Mosley dies at the age of 82.
1991 - At The American Music Awards in Los Angeles, Gloria Estefan makes her first live performance since injuring her back in a bus accident while on tour.
1985 - More than 40 artists gather at AandM's Hollywood studios to record "We Are the World" under the collective name "USA for Africa." Proceeds from the single go toward worldwide hunger prevention.
1980 - The original Ants split with Adam.
1975 - No. 1 Billboard Pop Hit: "Laughter in the Rain," Neil Sedaka.
1968 - Sarah McLachlan is born in Halifax, Nova Scotia.
1966 - Brian Poole and the Tremeloes announce their break-up.
For January 29, 2001
2000 - Detroit radio legend Martha Jean "The Queen" Steinberg - known by her trademark phrase "I betcha" - dies at Detroit's Harper Hospital. Steinberg was a local fixture in the Motor City for nearly 40 years.
1998 - Opening three weeks behind schedule, Paul Simon's musical "The Capeman" premieres in New York to universally poor reviews. Critics claim that while Simon's musical mixture of Latin and doo-wop was favorable, the story line was consistently faulted.
1992 - At the age 76, rhythm and blues trailblazer Willie Dixon dies in Burbank, Calif., of heart failure. The former boxer wrote more RandB and early rock classics than any other blues artist, including such songs as "Hoochie Coochie Man," "Little Red Rooster" and "Back Door Man."
1988 - No. 1 Billboard Pop Hit: "Need You Tonight," INXS. The group is only the third from Australia - and the first in five years - to top the pop chart.
1977 - No. 1 Billboard Pop Hit: "Car Wash," Rose Royce. The song is the theme to the 1976 comedy of the same name.
1964 - No. 1 Billboard Pop Hit: "I Want to Hold Your Hand," The Beatles. This first American release by the Beatles is one of the biggest selling British singles of all time with worldwide sales of 15 million copies.
1944 - No. 1 Billboard Pop Hit: "My Heart Tells Me," Glen Gray Orchestra.
1889 - Blues great Leadbelly (Huddie Ledbetter) is born.
Taming The Online Music Beast: Majors Crack The Whip
CANNES, France (Reuters) - Not so long ago, the world's major music companies were being labeled ``has-beens'' as fans flocked to more exciting pastures on the Internet, such as Napster, Gnutella and MP3.com.
Refusing to hand their music crowns over that easily, traditional labels have fought back. But music executives told the industry's largest trade fair this week their efforts would be doomed unless they started offering fans something more sexy.
``It's going to be more and more expensive to acquire consumers and music companies must build loyalty now. They have to offer more, so if someone downloads an album, they get extra gizmos like song sheets and video clips,'' musician and former Genesis vocalist Peter Gabriel told the Midem fair in Cannes.
This year, the ``big five'' -- Universal Music, Bertelsmann's BMG, Warner Music, Sony Music and EMI Group Plc -- which together control 75 percent of the music market -- are being given a vital head-start to win back fans.
The force of new Internet start-ups nibbling away at their traditional business is easing off after the Internet downturn. And with cash in short supply, heavyweights may even be able to snap up or at least pair with more innovative Web rivals.
``We will certainly be looking for partners. The only way to stay competitive will be to hook up with the big boys like Vivendi Universal who have the power to integrate Internet businesses,'' said Stephane Bombet, CEO of French music subscription site zoomzic.com, which is due to launch shortly.
Myriad Of Lawsuits
The majors' first reaction to the Internet was to slap lawsuits on illegal sites; a strategy which has had some success, bringing online song swap site Napster to its knees and forcing MP3.com to pay out millions of dollars in damages.
But a list of Napster clones offering free music, like Toadnode, Tripnosis and Splooge, are coming in to fill the gap, forcing majors to figure out how to incorporate digital music distribution and Internet marketing into business plans which have seen them through the advent of vinyl, cassettes and CDs.
Of the five big boys, British-based EMI has been one of the most aggressive movers on the Internet.
``We have to make buying music as easy as stealing music. We must have many approaches and get rid of this inventory mentality to clear stock from the warehouses and move to a more time-based approach,'' said Jay Samit, head of global new media operations for EMI Recorded Music.
In one initiative, EMI's Virgin label unveiled Daft Punk's new album ``Discovery'' which includes a card with a code to download bonus tracks and other titbits from the Internet.
Aside from developing a more intimate relationship with fans, the extra bumph is only available to those who have not downloaded the album for free off sites such as Napster.
Meanwhile, EMI's potential merger partner BMG recently shocked the music industry by striking an alliance to develop a legitimate subscription service with Napster, which faces possible shut down in an ongoing lawsuit with the majors.
EMI and BMG are currently in merger talks.
Seize The Moment
Research group Forrester predicts that by 2005, more than $3 billion of the $40 billion industry's annual revenue could be lost to illegal websites and Price Waterhouse Coopers predicts a downloaded album is likely to sell for just $7.50 by 2004.
``There always has been piracy and there always will be. But it's also not as easy to make money in this industry as it used to be,'' said Gabriel.
Aside from offering fans something extra they can't get from free sites, traditional labels have a chance to catch up by offering faster downloading and a wider selection of music.
``The big issue will be navigation: making it easy for consumers to find what they want and giving them a reason to start paying for their music,'' said PWC's Carton.