Classic Rock News

Thursday May 22



KISS Rock American Idol With Winner Caleb Johnson

(hennemusic) KISS performed with American Idol winner Caleb Johnson on the Season 13 finale of the reality series Wednesday night. Johnson joined the band for a medley of "Love Gun" and "Shout It Out Loud." The rocker went on to beat fellow finalist Jena Irene for the Idol title. Johnson has been cranking out rock covers all season long, including tracks by Rival Sons, Whitesnake, Rush and Led Zeppelin. KISS previously appeared on the reality singing competition during the 2009 season finale, where they were joined by Adam Lambert for a medley of "Detroit Rock City" and "Rock And Roll All Night."

Read more: Thursday May 22

Wednesday May 21



Guns N' Roses' Axl Rose Has World's Greatest Vocal Range

A new study finds that Guns N' Roses frontman Axl Rose has the greatest vocal range among a host of popular singers including acclaimed pop stars Mariah Carey, Christina Aguilera and Beyonce. On the other end of the spectrum, some of today's most popular pop and country stars landed at the bottom of the vocal range chart, including Justin Bieber and Taylor Swift among the bottom five with Luke Bryan coming in dead last. Concert Hotels published the results of the study in an interactive chart labeled "The Vocal Ranges of The World's Greatest Singers" with Rose capturing the top spot followed by Carey at no. 2 and Prince at no. 3. The study measured the highest and lowest notes that the singers achieved in the recording studio and the interactive chart shows the songs where they hit specific notes. Axl Rose came out with the highest range, covering over five octaves. The highest was on the track "Ain't It Fun" from 'The Spaghetti Incident" and the lowest was on "There Was A Time" from 'Chinese Democracy'. Aerosmith's Steven Tyler came in 4th place, followed by James Brown, Marvin Gaye, Christina Aguilera, David Bowie, Paul McCartney, Radiohead's Thom Yorke and late Queen frontman Freddie Mercury. Most of today's biggest pop stars didn't come close to the top of the chart with Beyonce coming in at No. 22, Miley Cyrus at no. 31, Justin Timberlake at no. 32, Rihanna at no. 43, Lady Gaga at no. 48, Lana Del Rey at no. 49, Lorde at no. 52, Bruno Mars at no. 56, Katy Perry at no. 68, Justin Bieber at no. 73, Taylor Swift at no. 76 and Luke Bryan concluding the list at no. 77. Among rock singers Elvis was no. 12, John Lennon landed at no. 13, The Who's Roger Daltrey came in at no. 17, Bruce Springsteen was no. 19, Bono was no. 21, Jim Morrison was no. 23, Led Zeppelin's Robert Plant was no. 24, Rolling Stones' Mick Jagger was no. 25, Bob Dylan was no. 33, Nirvana's Kurt Cobain was no. 34, Bad Company's Paul Rodgers was no. 35, Lou Reed was no. 40, John Fogerty was no. 55, Chuck Berry was no. 64, Fleetwood Mac's Stevie Nicks was no. 71 followed by Jerry Lee Lewis at no. 72.

Read more: Wednesday May 21

Tuesday May 20



Led Zeppelin Facing Legal Battle Over Stairway To Heaven

(hennemusic) Led Zeppelin are being accused plagiarizing the introduction of their iconic 1971 anthem, "Stairway To Heaven", in a lawsuit that the estate of Spirit guitarist Randy California and members of the band are reportedly planning to file. Spirit founding bassist Mark Andes and the trust that handles California's royalties are working with Philadelphia lawyer Francis Alexander Malofiy, who says he is going to file a copyright infringement lawsuit and seek an injunction to block the rerelease of "Led Zeppelin IV" (as part of that band's expanded reissue series, which starts next month), according to Business Week. They report that California's estate - and the group's members - believe the acoustic introduction to "Stairway" was lifted from their 1968 instrumental, "Taurus." The two bands crossed paths during Zeppelin's first US tour, which saw the future rock legends open for Vanilla Fudge and Spirit, and that's where the Los Angeles band claims Jimmy Page was exposed to "Taurus."

Read more: Tuesday May 20

Monday May 19



Jimmy Page Slams Robert Plant Over Led Zeppelin Reunion Comments

(hennemusic) In an interview with the New York Times, Led Zeppelin guitarist Jimmy Page takes a shot at singer Robert Plant over the role he's been playing in distracting both himself and fans with veiled commitments to reunite the legendary band for a tour. "I was told last year that Robert Plant said he is doing nothing in 2014, and what do the other two guys think?," explains Page as he promotes the upcoming expanded reissues of Led Zeppelin's first three albums next month. "Well, he knows what the other guys think. Everyone would love to play more concerts for the band. He's just playing games, and I'm fed up with it, to be honest with you. I don't sing, so I can't do much about it. It just looks so unlikely, doesn't it?" Plant raised the hopes of Led Zeppelin fans about a possible reunion trek when made the comments in February of 2013 during an interview with Australia's 60 Minutes. "You know, the two other guys (Jimmy Page and John Paul Jones) are both Capricorns and they keep schtum (quiet); they don't say a word," Plant told reporter Tara Brown. "But they are quite contained in their own worlds and they just leave it to me to do this (interviews)." "…to be the bad guy?", asked Brown. "I'm not the bad guy," replied the singer. "Well you are for all those Led Zeppelin fans who'd love you to say 'yes, we're reforming'," she challenged. "Well, then you need to speak to the Capricorns ... 'cause I've got nothing to do in 2014," answered Plant.

Read more: Monday May 19

Friday May 16



The Who Reuniting With Kenney Jones

(Classic Rock) Pete Townshend and Roger Daltrey of The Who will reunite with former drummer Kenney Jones for a cancer charity show next month. Jones - who replaced Keith Moon after his death in 1978 and remained behind the kit for a decade - is helping raise funds for Prostate Cancer UK, the organisation which offered him help while he fought the disease last year. They'll appear at his event, called Rock'n'Horsepower, at Hurtwood Park Polo Club in Ewhurst Green, Surrey on June 14. Mike Rutherford, John Lodge and Procul Harum are also on the bill. Jones says: "I'm really pleased to hear my friends and former bandmates Roger and Pete will be joining me on stage. The lineup is looking amazing - I hope you can all join us."

Read more: Friday May 16

Thursday May 15



Geezer Butler Offers Reward To Catch Cat Killer

(Classic Rock) Black Sabbath bass player Geezer Butler is offering a reward for information on a "heinous" crime which saw 25 cats killed and left swinging from trees in New York. Butler has pledged $1000 to the reward fund on offer to anyone who can provide information leading to the arrest and conviction of those responsible. The cats were put in plastic bags and left swinging from trees in Yonkers, New York. The total reward now stands at $25,000. In a statement released via the Westchester SPCA, Butler says: "It is so tragic that we have human beings among us that are capable of committing such a heinous and heartless crime. Surely there is someone out there that knows who has done this. Please do the right thing and come forward to get this coward off the street."

Read more: Thursday May 15

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

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