WATERS RESPONDS TO RECENT USE OF STAR OF DAVID CONTROVERSY
Former Pink Floyd frontman Roger Waters has finally responded to a barrage of negative press and comments he received over his use of the Star of David on an inflatable pig at a concert in Belgium last week. In a Facebook post, Waters defended himself against Rabbi Abraham Cooper, Dean of the Simon Wiesenthal Center, who labeled him “an open hater of Jews,” calling Cooper’s charge “wild and bigoted” while claiming to have close Jewish friends and a Jewish daughter-in-law, thereby making his grandsons Jewish as well. He wrote: In a functioning theocracy it is almost inevitable that the symbol of the religion becomes confused with the symbol of the state… The Star of David represents Israel and its policies and is legitimately subject to any and all forms of nonviolent protest. To peacefully protest against Israel’s racist domestic and foreign policies is NOT ANTI-SEMETIC.”
CAMPAIGN UNDERWAY TO ERECT BONHAM HOMETOWN STATUE
The hometown of late Led Zeppelin drummer John Bonham has kicked off a campaign to raise funds to erect a statue in his honor. According to the Reddich Standard, three Reddich, England business owners have set up the John Bonham Memorial Fund in hopes of collecting enough money to commission the creation of a statue or sculpture in honor of Bonzo. The fund drive will officially get underway in the fall when an online donation page goes live.
JOHN HAS APPENDIX REMOVED; “RECOVERING WELL”
Rock and Roll Hall of Fame member Elton John is “recovering well” after having his appendix removed last week, his publicist reports. The 66-year old singer had his procedure done at the Princess Grace Hospital in Nice, France. Last month, John revealed he risked death by performing several concerts while unknowingly suffering from appendicitis. He told UK’s The Sun, “I’m lucky to be alive. I played nine gigs and the White Tie and Tiara Summer Ball in agony.”
MOTORHEAD SHOW STALLS OUT AFTER JUST 30 MINUTES
Questions continue surrounding the health of Motorhead mainman Lemmy after the band was forced to nix its planned 75-minute set at the Wacken Open Air Festival in Germany after just 30 minutes on Friday because he was too ill to continue. The group was just five songs into its show when Lemmy left the stage, and after an extended guitar solo returned for one more song, after which the entire band left the stage and never returned. On Saturday, festival organizers released a statement that read in part: “Lemmy gave everything he’s got to play an amazing live show. He’s keeping well, but the temperatures and circumstances led to the point that continuing the show would have led to a loss of quality.”
GREGG ALLMAN PLOTS SOLO SET OF JUST HIS COMPOSITIONS
In a recent interview with American Blues Scene, Gregg Allman said he hopes to start work before the end of the year on the follow up to his 2011 Grammy-nominated album Low Country Blues, but he says the record won’t be just a blues album. The Allman Brothers Band namesake said, “I always wanted to a record merely called All Compositions By… and just have my name. It’s probably a goal of every songwriter in the world. Do one record that you totally create.”
U.S. ALBUM SALES DIP DOWN TO HISTORIC LOWS
Blame it on a somewhat traditional seasonal summer slowdown, the continued upward trend of streaming, or falling catalog sales, but U.S. album sales recently reached never-before seen lows. According to Billboard, albums sales have bottomed out at new historic lows over the last five weeks marching the longest consecutive dry spell in the Soundscan era that the record biz has gone without selling over five million albums nationwide. Over the past two weeks, record sales hit consecutive record lows, totaling an all-time record low 4.68 million the week ending July 28, and a previous record low of 4.71 million the prior week.