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The Rock News Blog
October 27, 2006
$15 mil For Hendrix Sobgs
Mood:  accident prone
Now Playing: A private bidder has bought the rights for some big Hendrix songs, but the Hendrix family says they own the rights.
Topic: Classic Rock
A private bidder has paid $15 million for the rights to hit songs by U.S. rock guitarist Jimi Hendrix at an auction on Thursday, but a company owned by the musician's family said it will sue to prove it owns the songs.

The rights, title, and interest to songs including "Hey Joe," "Purple Haze," "Voodoo Child," and "Foxy Lady," were sold over the telephone in New York by the estate of Michael Frank Jeffrey, Hendrix's one-time manager.

Hendrix, who was born in Seattle, died in 1970 at the age of 27 in London, after choking on his own vomit. About 600,000 of his albums are still sold annually.

Jeffrey died in a plane crash three years later. Fourteen charities based in the United Kingdom, including the Asthma Research Council, the British Heart Foundation and the Kings College Hospital are the beneficiaries of Jeffrey's estate.

"Whoever bought this bought themselves the right to be a litigant," Bob Merlis, a spokesman for Experience Hendrix told Reuters. The Seattle-based company is owned by members of Hendrix's family. "It will be contested instantly," he added.

Experience Hendrix says it owns all rights to the music, and recordings of the guitarist.

The auctioneer, the auctions division of Chicago-based merchant bank Ocean Tomo, declined to comment on the ownership of rights to the songs.

source: Timothy Gardner of Reuters

Written By The Rock News Blog at 7:58 PM EDT
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October 23, 2006
Ex-Runaways Drummer Dies After Battle With Cancer
Mood:  don't ask
Topic: Classic Rock

October 22, 2006

Sandy West, drummer for the influential 70s band The Runaways, died today after a long battle with lung cancer.

She left an indelible mark on rock music as a founding member of The Runaways, which featured fellow rockers Joan Jett, Lita Ford and Cherie Currie, and as a leading inspiration for a number of notable musicians, both male and female. Many young musicians can trace their inspiration directly to the first time they heard "Cherry Bomb."

The Runaways toured the world several times, often headlining with opening acts like Tom Petty and Cheap Trick. Their discography includes over 60 albums, singles, bootlegs and compilations. Their music has been included in dozens of rock and punk collections, has appeared in several feature films including Dawn: Portrait of a Teenage Runaway and Detroit Rock City, and has been covered by numerous bands, from The Street Walkin' Cheetahs to Guns 'N' Roses. They were nominated for the Hollywood Rock Walk, and bootlegs of Runaways performances are still highly prized amongst rock and roll collectors around the world.

After the band broke up, Ms. West continued to perform as a drummer, guitarist and vocalist with The Sandy West Band. As a solo artist she recorded a highly collectible EP CD and numerous videos, and continued to enjoy the adoration of a dedicated cult following.

She will be remembered by more than one generation of fans as a strong part of their musical landscape, but her impact was felt far outside of the music industry as a loyal friend, loving confidante and strong defender of those she loved most. Her strength as a player, passion as a person, and dedication as a friend will be remembered always by friends, fans and fellow musicians alike.

Runaways vocalist and life-long friend, Cherie Currie had this to say, "Sandy West was by far, the greatest female drummer in the history of rock and roll. No one could compete or even come close to her, but the most important was her heart. Sandy West loved her fans, her friends and family almost to a fault. She would do absolutely anything for the people she loved. It will never be the same for me again to step on a stage, because Sandy West was the best and I will miss her forever."

Courtesy of


Written By The Rock News Blog at 5:59 PM EDT
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September 17, 2006
More From KISS & Paul Stanley
Mood:  quizzical
Now Playing: Is there a possibility for another KISS tour? Yes. How about a possibility for a new album form the knights? Paul says no.
Topic: Classic Rock
The Kiss Army may be able to pack its gear for a tour in the near future, but not an album. The group's Paul Stanley, preparing for the Oct. 24 release of his solo album "Live To Win" and an attendant tour, tells he's "sure there will be a [Kiss] tour at some point."

He even confirms that one of the ideas being discussed is a traveling version of the orchestral shows Kiss played in 2003 in Australia, which resulted in the "Kiss Symphony" CD and DVD releases.

"It's not out of the realm of possibility," says Stanley, who welcomed his second son, Colin, with wife Erin on Sept. 6. "Anything's possible, but we're far away from conforming or committing to something like that. I'll let you know when it's true."

New Kiss music is another matter, however. Stanley says as far as he's concerned, trying to make a new album in the shadow of Kiss' classic repertoire is, at the very least, a challenge. "The fact is, [fans] may tolerate the new songs, but it's the old ones you want to hear," he notes. "I think Jimmy Page and Robert Plant found that out. The [Rolling] Stones certainly know it. The Who certainly know it. So unless you're willing to go into the studio accepting that how your album will be received will never match your expectations, I'm not sure it's worth the effort."

What would it take to change his mind? Control, Stanley says. "I would consider doing it if I could do it the way I wanted to do it," he explains. "If 'Live to Win' was good for anything, it was me confirming how I believe I'd like music to sound that I'm a part of. To do another Kiss album, I would not be willing to compromise my point of view perhaps as much as I have in recent years."

But how would that go over with longtime Kiss partner Gene Simmons? "Well, y'know, you'll have to see if we go into the studio," replies Stanley -- who says he's not yet watched an episode of Simmons' new A&E reality show, "Gene Simmons Family Jewels."

Stanley takes a break from diaper duty to begin a 15-date solo tour on Oct. 21 in Atlanta.

Courtesy of

Written By The Rock News Blog at 6:41 PM EDT
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August 7, 2006
KISS Fans, Rock & Roll Hall Of Fame
Mood:  accident prone
Now Playing: KISS Fans Protest the Rock And Roll's Hall Of Fame Snub.
Topic: Classic Rock

CLEVELAND - About 200 Kiss fans protested Saturday in front of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum to demand that the band be inducted into the hall.

Fans, some from as far away as California, carried signs and had painted their faces in black-and-white to resemble Kiss band members.

Those participating in the half-hour demonstration were upset that the band, formed more than 30 years ago, has not been admitted, even though it has been eligible since the late 1990s.

Artists become eligible for induction 25 years after the release of their first record, according to the museum's Web site.

"Criteria include the influence and significance of the artist's contributions to the development and perpetuation of rock and roll," the site says.

A museum spokesman said it was the first demonstration by fans seeking to have a group inducted.

The foundation that selects inductees is based in New York City, not at the museum.

Written By The Rock News Blog at 1:02 PM EDT
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July 27, 2006
Rolling Stones Return To US
Mood:  a-ok
Now Playing: The Rolling Stones return to the US for their ongoing 'A Bigger Bang' tour.
Topic: Classic Rock
Wed Jul 26, 12:54 AM

NEW YORK - The Rolling Stones will return to North America this fall as part of their ongoing "A Bigger Bang" tour. The Stones, now packing venues in Europe, will open the tour Sept. 20 in Boston's Gillette Stadium. Other stops include Chicago, Seattle, Phoenix, Las Vegas and Vancouver, British Columbia, with the final stop in Los Angeles at Dodger Stadium on Nov. 18.

"Most of the shows are going to be on the big stadium stage with fans in the balconies behind us," Mick Jagger said in a statement Tuesday. "We're going to play many cities we didn't get to before and also return to some of our favorite places."

The Stones kicked off "A Bigger Bang" last August at Boston's Fenway Park.

They were forced to postpone the start of the European leg of the tour, which ends Sept. 3 in Denmark, after Keith Richards suffered a head injury in a fall from a tree while vacationing in Fiji in April.

The 62-year-old guitarist said he's feeling great and can't wait to play "more gigs in America and Canada."

"I thought we left too soon you know, so that's the reason we're coming back," Richards said.

Tickets go on sale Monday.

Written By The Rock News Blog at 6:26 PM EDT
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July 23, 2006
Pink Floyd Founder Dies
Mood:  blue
Now Playing: Co-founder of 60's British band Pink Floyd dies at 60.
Topic: Classic Rock

LONDON - Syd Barrett, the troubled Pink Floyd co-founder who spent his last years in reclusive anonymity, has died, the band said Tuesday. He was 60.

A spokeswoman for the band said Barrett died several days ago, but she did not disclose the cause of death. Barrett had suffered from diabetes for years.

The surviving members of Pink Floyd _ David Gilmour, Nick Mason, Roger Waters and Richard Wright _ said they were "very upset and sad to learn of Syd Barrett's death."

"Syd was the guiding light of the early band lineup and leaves a legacy which continues to inspire," they said in a statement.

Barrett co-founded Pink Floyd in 1965 with Waters, Mason and Wright, and wrote many of the band's early songs. The group's jazz-infused rock and drug-laced, multimedia "happenings" made them darlings of the London psychedelic scene. The 1967 album "The Piper at the Gates of Dawn" _ largely written by Barrett, who also played guitar _ was a commercial and critical hit.

But Barrett suffered from mental instability, exacerbated by his use of LSD. His behavior grew increasingly erratic, and he left the group in 1968 _ five years before the release of Pink Floyd's most popular album, "Dark Side of the Moon" _ to be replaced by Gilmour.

Barrett released two solo albums _ "The Madcap Laughs" and "Barrett" _ but soon withdrew from the music business altogether. An album of previously unreleased material, "Opel," was issued in 1988.

He reverted to his real name, Roger Barrett, and spent much of the rest of his life living quietly in his hometown of Cambridge, England. Moving into his mother's suburban house, he passed the time painting and tending the garden. His former bandmates made sure Barrett continued to receive royalties from his work with Pink Floyd.

He was a familiar figure to neighbors, often seen cycling or walking to the corner store, but rarely spoke to the fans and journalists who sought him out over the years.

Despite his brief career, Barrett's fragile, wistful songs influenced many musicians including David Bowie _ who covered the Barrett track "See Emily Play."

Bowie said in a statement posted on his Web site that Barrett had been a "major inspiration."

"His impact on my thinking was enormous," Bowie write. "A major regret is that I never got to know him. A diamond indeed."

The other members of Pink Floyd recorded the album "Wish You Were Here" as a tribute to their troubled bandmate.

It contained the song "Shine On You Crazy Diamond" _ "Remember when you were young, you shone like the sun." The band also dwelt on themes of mental illness on the albums "Dark Side of the Moon" and "The Wall."

The band spokeswoman said a small, private funeral would be held.

Written By The Rock News Blog at 12:24 AM EDT
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June 16, 2006
Robert Plant & Jimmy Page Team Up?
Mood:  bright
Now Playing: From
Topic: Classic Rock
Led Zeppelin fans can get a rare glimpse of rock legends Robert Plant and Jimmy Page when the pair return to live action this summer.

Zep singer Plant is performing with his band Strange Sensation at the Cornbury Festival, which takes place near Charlbury, Oxfordshire on July 8 and 9.

Plant performs on Saturday 8. Others on the festival bill, which incorporates the Truck and Oxford Folk Festival, include The Waterboys, Texas, The Pretenders, Hayseed Dixie, Ronnie Spector, Kate Rusby and Circulus.

Zep guitarist Jimmy Page surfaces as a member of Roy Harper's backing band when the folk singer performs his 1971 album 'Stormcock' at the first Rhythm Festival on Saturday August 5.

The festival, which takes place at the Twinwood Arena, Clapham, near Bedford from August 4 -6, also features Donovan, Ike Turner, Pete Doherty's mates Chas & Dave and Jerry Lee Lewis.

Tickets for Cornbury can be bought from or ticketline 08701181636.

Tickets for The Rhythm Festival are available from

Written By The Rock News Blog at 7:00 PM EDT
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May 31, 2006
Meat Loaf's New Album
Mood:  bright
Now Playing: Meat Loaf is laying down his tracks for Bat Out Of Hell III: The Monster Is Loose.
Topic: Classic Rock
Bat Out of Hell III is Meat Loaf’s long-awaited next installement to the most successful rock music series of all time, with the two previous albums selling a total of 45 million around the world! Bat Out of Hell, released in 1977 and produced by Todd Rundgren, is the third best-selling album of all time, with 30 million copies sold worldwide, featuring such Meat Loaf/Jim Steinman standards as “Two Out of Three Ain’t Bad,” “You Took the Words Right Out of My Mouth” and the show-stopping “Paradise by the Dashboard Lights.”

The Steinman-produced Bat Out of Hell II: Back Into Hell, which came out in 1993, sold more than 15 million, with the classic “I’d Do Anything for Love (But I Won’t Do That),” earning Meat Loaf a Grammy for Best Rock Vocal Performance.

Bat Out of Hell III continues the epic saga in grand fashion, with contributions once again from Steinman and Rundgren, and produced by hitmaker Desmond Child. Bat Out of Hell III promises to mark the triumphant return of the Bat Out of Hell franchise, completing this legendary trilogy!"

Julie Bell is the artist that created the cover and imagry to Bat III and helped make Meat's vision a reality! Click out her website at

Launch Radio Networks reports: QUEEN guitarist Brian May was in a recording studio last week to lay down tracks for the new MEAT LOAF album. May flew to Los Angeles following the "VH1 Rock Honors" show, and he played guitar on a song called "Bad for Good". On his official web site, the guitarist wrote that the is almost seven-and-a-half minutes long, that it could have nearly 50 tracks of his playing on it, and that it's "truly epic and... unashamedly massive! And everything that might be expected from 'Bat 3'!" The album is officially called "Bat out of Hell III: The Monster Is Loose", and it's due October 31. The title song "The Monster Is Loose" has already been released online at the official and web sites.

"Bad for Good" was the title song from MEAT LOAF songwriter Jim Steinman's 1993 solo album.

Written By The Rock News Blog at 9:47 PM EDT
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December 24, 2005
Robert Plant To Donate To Charity
Mood:  a-ok
Now Playing: Ex-Led Zeppelin frontman Robert Plant to help aid Africans.
Topic: Classic Rock
MESA, Ariz. - Robert Plant has secured a $60,000 donation for a Carefree, Ariz.-based charitable organization that aids nomadic people in drought-stricken West Africa.

Plant, former frontman for Led Zeppelin, had committed proceeds from a four-song CD by his band, Robert Plant and the Strange Sensation, but it failed to generate the royalties he had expected.

The 57-year-old rocker made an appeal to PAR Charitable Trust, a small grant-making organization, which agreed to make up the financial gap needed to build and operate school dorms for 200 children for three years, TurtleWill founder Irma Turtle said recently.

TurtleWill offers medical treatment, school funding and employment training for tribal people in remote regions of Ethiopia, Mali and Niger.

The trust will supplement proceeds from sales of the "Live in Paris" CD to build eight dormitories and provide meals, blankets, school uniforms and medicine for students in four locales in Mali.

On the Net:

Courtesy of

P.S. Merry Christmas!!!!! No updates tomorrow!

Written By The Rock News Blog at 3:21 PM EST
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September 6, 2005
Vivian Campbell's Solo Album Postponed
Mood:  sad
Now Playing: Def Leppard's guitarist's solo album postponed until leter this month.
Topic: Classic Rock
Vivian Campbell has a lot of things going for him. He's been both Dio's and Def Leppard's lead guitarist, and now he was supposed to release a solo-album today titled "Two Sides Of If." It's recorded with ZZ TOP's Billy Gibbons, singer Joan Osbourne, and former FRANK ZAPPA and MISSING PERSONS drummer Terry Bozzio. It will be a blues album, if it ever gets released.

Some of Vivian's fans are pretty dissapointed with the news of pushing-back the album.

"Man, Def Lep should just change thier name to "Pushback" or "Delayed". First the covers album and now this. Supposedly albums get pushed back so they don't compete with other releases so they can get max. sales. At this level though, when the glory days are gone, what's the point? Is it really gonna make that big a difference in sales? Those who are set to buy it will get it regardless of what prime release date they "drop" it," one fan saide on

Recently, Campbell had an interview with

"About twenty years ago, my wife heard me sing," Vivian said. "She said, 'You know, you sing like a blues guy. You play guitar like a blues guy, too. Maybe you should do a blues record.' I laughed, and told her to go away and stop being a silly woman. [Laughs] I didn't think much about it, but I always knew that the way I played was more akin to blues than anything else. I let my left hand do most of the work, and I'm basically a down-stroke picker. I fret pretty hard with my left hand, so that articulates the note. So, a couple of years ago I got roped into playing a blues set at my daughter's school fundraiser. You know how it is, when you have kids, you do these fundraiser events. They had a band, and they asked me to do a blues set. So I got up and did four or five songs. That's where I met Tor, the keyboard player. He had put together the little band because his daughter went to the same school as mine. We did the set, and he told me that he thought I should do a blues record. He also said that he thought I sounded like a blues singer. I said, 'Okay. We'll make it happen.' Tor went out and made a few calls and got a bit of interest, so I said, 'Why not, let’s do it.'"

Written By The Rock News Blog at 8:52 PM EDT
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