Classic Rock News

Wednesday May 14



Original Judas Priest Guitarist Dies

(Classic Rock) Original Judas Priest singer Al Atkins has reported that co-founding guitarist Ernie Chataway has died. He was 62. The pair, along with bassist Bruno Stapenhill and drummer John Partridge, formed the band in 1969 - but the lineup only lasted for seven months. When Atkins fronted a new version of Priest in late 1970 none of his previous bandmates were there. Chataway went on to play with bands including Earth and Bullion, and was reported to be performing in and around his Worcester home until recently. Atkins says via his Facebook page: "Just heard the very sad news that Ernie passed away last night. He was a lovely bloke and a great guitarist and will be sadly missed. "I remember the first time we met at the auditions for a new guitarist for Judas Priest in 1969 - his looks reminded me of Marc Bolan. When he plugged in his guitar he totally blew us away, and made KK Downing look a complete amateur (who we'd auditioned earlier)."

Read more: Wednesday May 14

Tuesday May 13



Ozzy Osbourne Faces New Problem With Bats

(Classic Rock) Ozzy Osbourne once again has a problem with bats - after their presence in his countryside barn led to council bosses refusing his application to convert it into a home. The Black Sabbath frontman - who famously bit the head off a bat while onstage in 1982 - applied for permission to turn a building on his Buckinghamshire property into a two-bedroom house. But Chiltern District Council refused, saying there was evidence that bats, a protected species in the UK, live in the barn's rafters. The authority will not consider any application for the conversion until Ozzy can prove the animals' welfare will be protected.

Read more: Tuesday May 13

Monday May 12



Metallica To Get To Work On New Album

Metallica guitarist Kirk Hammett tells Guitar World magazine that the band will be buckling down in September to get to work on the follow-up to 2008's Death Magnetic. "We totally want to make an album," Hammett said. "But...we have families now. It's gonna be summertime soon and it's hard to work [then] because the kids are out of school." He also said that the band has "a backlog of riffs in the riff bank. Now it's about picking riffs out, putting them together and moving along. Later, we'll revisit it all and see where it goes." Hammett also laid out a timetable for the band to get to work on the new album, "September is gonna be the time when we buckle down," he said. "I know I told everyone it was gonna be last January…but that's just the way it goes!"

Read more: Monday May 12

Friday May 9



Tommy Lee Recording With The Smashing Pumpkins

(Classic Rock) Tommy Lee has recorded drums for the next Smashing Pumpkins album. A picture of Motley Crue's Lee in the studio with Pumpkins frontman Billy Corgan has been posted on the band's official Nexus page. It is accompanied with a message that reads: "Here's a shot from the mission out west. Just finished round 1 of tracking drums with Tommy Lee for the new the Smashing Pumpkins album. Shockla-locka-boom. "Yes, that T Lee for all 9 songs of Monument To An Elegy." It is not clear how the move affects current Pumpkins drummer Mike Byrne, who has held the position since 2009.

Read more: Friday May 9

Thursday May 8



Black Sabbath Feature Film Coming

(Classic Rock) Black Sabbath are to be the subject of a documentary by top filmmakers Scot McFadyen and Sam Dunn. The duo behind Canadian company Banger Films have previously made rock documentaries about Rush, Iron Maiden and Alice Cooper. McFadyen tells Times Columnist that they are to start work on a full-length Sabbath feature film, although it has not been confirmed whether it will document the band's entire history or pick up the story since Ozzy Osbourne, Tommy Iommi and Geezer Butler's reunion for 2013 album 13. The record saw the trio record and perform together for the first time in 35 years. Meanwhile, Banger Films will also film a documentary on Seattle grunge icons Soundgarden. Canadian director Reg Harkema tells Bad Feeling he is working with McFadyen and Dunn on the film, set to get underway in the summer when the band go out on tour with Nine Inch Nails.

Read more: Thursday May 8

Wednesday May 7



Foreigner Score Digital Gold and Platinum

This week Atlantic Records Chairman and CEO Craig Kallman presented Foreigner co-founder Mick Jones with multiple gold and platinum records for the band's digital sales. We were sent these details: Six of the band's hits received gold and platinum digital certification by the RIAA which puts the band ahead of any other of Classic Rock Radio's Top 15 artists, including contemporaries Van Halen, Led Zeppelin, The Eagles, Journey and more, according to the band. Foreigner's songs receiving RIAA Certification - which celebrates sales of more than 500,000 downloads (Gold) or 1,000,000 downloads (Platinum) - include: "Cold As Ice" (Gold), "Feels Like The First Time" (Gold), "Hot Blooded" (Gold), "I Want To Know What Love Is" (Platinum), "Juke Box Hero" (Platinum), and "Waiting For A Girl Like You" (Gold). Foreigner co-manager and Atlantic Records veteran Phil Carson had this to say: "For me, the most significant part of today's event is the Platinum certification of 'Juke Box Hero.' We tried everything we knew to break the song early in 1982, but it peaked at #26 with just 40,000 or so sales. "For it to pass one million in the digital era is a testament to the band's hard work on the road, making this a high point in every performance, and to the relevance of Mick's songs and Foreigner over thirty years later." Atlantic Records Chairman and CEO Craig Kallman added: "Few bands in rock history have had the longevity and impact of Foreigner. It is a tangible reflection of Mick's timeless songwriting, stellar musicianship, and brilliant vision for the band that their music continues to strike a nerve today, earning new fans around the world. Foreigner joined the Atlantic family nearly 40 years ago, and we are immensely proud to have this incredible body of work as part of our heritage."

Read more: Wednesday May 7

Tuesday May 6



Bruce Springsteen Jams CCR Classics With John Fogerty

(hennemusic) John Fogerty joined Bruce Springsteen for a pair of CCR classics during his set at the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival this past Saturday, and video from the event is available online. Fogerty took to the stage to join Bruce for the first two songs of his encore, "Green River" and "Proud Mary." The pair have a long shared history, including Springsteen inducting CCR into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1993. Springsteen and The E Street Band are currently playing shows across the US as part of their "High Hopes" world tour.

Read more: Tuesday May 6

Monday May 5



Jimmy Page Plans Special Led Zeppelin Event

(hennemusic) Led Zeppelin are gearing up for next month's release of reissues of their first three albums by holding a sweepstakes for fans to join Jimmy Page in Paris to be among the first to hear selections from the previously-unreleased companion audio included in each package. On May 21st, Page will host a listening session at L'Olympia in Paris, where the 1969 live concert featured with the "Led Zeppelin I" reissue was recorded. The guitarist will provide insight into the selection and background of the companion audio chosen for each album for guests and winners at the invitation-only event. The band is holding a sweepstakes for fans to win two tickets to the special event; fans can also submit questions for Page to answer at the session.

Read more: Monday May 5

Friday May 2



Motley Crue Star Recruits Foo Fighter For New Album

Now that Motley Crue are plotting their farewell tour, bassist Nikki Sixx is turning his attention back to his other band SIXX:A.M. and reveals that a Foo Fighter will be featured on their next album. Sixx announced via Twitter on Wednesday that Foo Fighters drummer Taylor Hawkins will be performing as a special guest musician on SIXX: A.M.'s forthcoming album. Sixx tweeted, "Really excited Taylor Hawkins is gonna play on some of the new Sixx: A.M. album. What a f**ing honor, 'cause he is one of my favorite drummers." The new album will be the third studio release from SIXX: A.M., which apart from Nikki Sixx, also features Guns 'N Roses guitarist DJ Ashba and songwriter/producer/engineer James Michael as their frontman.

Read more: Friday May 2

Thursday May 1



AC/DC To Begin Recording New Album With Brendan O'Brien

AC/DC are carrying on with plans to begin recording new music this month in a record studio in Canada, despite their recent announcement that Malcolm Young is taking a break from the group for health reasons. Lead singer Brian Johnson revealed in a new interview promoting his upcoming TV series that the band will be entering the studio this month and they will once again be working with Brendan O'Brien, who producer their 2008 album "Black Ice". Johnson made the revelation in a new interview posted on Youtube where he was discussing "Cars That Rock", his new TV series for UK's Quest TV,' which will premiere on May 8th. The AC/DC frontman was also asked if fans can expect to see the band on stage and he responded "I hope so" and added "I don't think I'm finished yet." Meanwhile, ACDCFans.net has posted photos on their Facebook page on Tuesday and Wednesday of the band's gear arriving at the Warehouse Studio in Vancouver, Canada. There has been no word from the AC/DC camp what Malcolm's involvement will be in the recording of the new music. Their recent statement said that he "is taking a break from the band due to ill health" but also confirmed in the same statement that "the band will continue to make music."

Read more: Thursday May 1

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