BECK, ZZ TOP TO TACKLE 20-DATE TOUR
Air guitar enthusiasts will be in faux six-string heaven during each of the 20 stops on the upcoming co-headlining tour featuring fellow Rock and Roll Hall of Famers Jeff Beck and ZZ Top. The two top shelf acts will kick off the guitar fest August 8 in Missoula, MT and rip off the final riff September 12 in The Woodlands, TX. Adding to the already heightened anticipation, the participants promise to end each night with a show-stopping jam.
KINKS KONTINUE TO KONSIDER 50TH ANNIVERSARY REUNION
A long-awaited Kinks reunion rests on whether the long-simmering sibling rivalry between Ray and Dave Davies can be defused enough so they don’t kill each other onstage or in the studio. This year marks the band’s 50th anniversary and according to Dave, the brothers have met to discuss a reunion, but firm plans remain elusive. Dave explained, “Families are difficult, and you can learn from discomfort. In my 30’s and 40’s, I resented the fact that Ray gave me so little credit for my input and creativity. But my love has always been relentlessly directed towards him.”
STEELY DAN TEASE FANS WITH JUST TWO U.S. DATES…SO FAR
Promising to announce more dates in the coming days and weeks, Steely Dan has announced the first two dates of their forthcoming “Jamalot Ever After” North American summer tour. So far, Donald Fagan, Walter Becker and company will perform in San Diego on July 17 and in Niagara Falls, NY on August 8. Tickets for the San Diego gig go on sale tomorrow, and April 25 for the upstate New York show.
KISS COURTS FANS, CROWDSOURCES PLANS FOR 40TH ANNIVERSARY
Though they are rarely void of big ideas, Kiss members Gene Simmons and Paul Stanley are turning to their fans for help on finding the “most epic way possible” to celebrate the band’s 40th anniversary. Fans of the band are encouraged to submit their ideas via popular crowdsourcing site Tongal, which specializes in connecting brands to fans. Simmons told The Hollywood Reporter, “We’ve always been about the fans. Tongal allows our fans to throw out ideas, and you know you’re going to make something authentic.” The deadline for submissions is April 17, and whose ever idea gets picked will be paid $2,500.
PEARL JAM GUITARIST SAYS KISS “WERE THE BEATLES TO ME”
Musically, the grunge rock of Pearl Jam and the bombast of Kiss have very little in common, but according to PJ guitarist Mike McCready Kiss was “the reason I started playing music.” McCready told Rolling Stone that he “had a Kiss room and I started playing guitar. They were the Beatles to me. I was Peter Criss for Halloween in 1976. I loved Alive!” McCready went on to say that “Gene Simmons and Paul Stanley were really into the Beatles and you can hear weird Beatles harmonies going on.” He added,” “I’ve been watching the Hall of Fame situation play out. My thoughts are: I wish they would do it. It just makes the fans happy. And that’s the point, in my mind.”
GESTATION PERIOD CONTINUES FOR REBIRTH OF THE BABYS
Despite original lead singer John Waite declining to take part, The Babys are moving forward with the recording of their first new studio album since 1980’s On the Edge. Original members guitarist Wally Stocker and drummer Tony Brock, along with new recruit Joey Sykes and vocalist John Bisaha are putting a new album to bed and plan to tour once they deliver the record. Asked if bad blood exists between Stocker and Brock and Waite, Brock said “[Waite] supports us all the way. I speak to him quite a lot. He loves the fact that we’re putting this all back together. There’s no animosity.”
WONDER BOOKED FOR FIRST-EVER MONTREUX JAZZ FESTIVAL
In a sense Motown will meet Montreux for the first time in the 48-year history of the Montreux Jazz Festival when Stevie Wonder makes his first-ever appearance at the event on July 16. Happy to have finally been able to sign, seal and deliver Wonder for the Swiss event, festival director Mathieu Jaton said, “We tried to get Stevie many times.” The 48th annual festival will also feature performances by Van Morrison, Robert Plant and Herbie Hancock, among many others.