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Stevie Nicks Debuts Lyric Video for New Song "Lady"


Warner Bros. RecordsStevie Nicks is out with the lyric video for "Lady," a song from her forthcoming solo album, 24 Karat Gold -- Songs from the Vault.

While fans have likely never heard "Lady" before, it's not new: Nicks says most of the songs on 24 Karat Gold were written between 1969 and 1987, with a couple written in the '90s.  The album, available for pre-order now, is out October 7.  Stevie will kick off a tour with Fleetwood Mac on September 30.

Nicks previously released a lyric video for another song from the album, "The Dealer."  In addition, she's been previewing snippets of other songs from the disc on her Instagram account. 

Fans also are being invited to post their classic Stevie Nicks memorabilia on Instagram using the hashtag #24KaratStevie -- the singer is featuring a new fan's photo on her account every Thursday.

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Twelve-Disc Stevie Ray Vaughan and Double Trouble Collection Coming in October


Epic Records/Legacy RecordingsFrom 1983's first studio album, Texas Flood, through numerous posthumous releases, it's often been difficult to keep up with Stevie Ray Vaughan's complete discography.  Now Epic Records is making it easier for fans to do that.  This October will see the release of Stevie Ray Vaughan and Double Trouble: The Complete Epic Recordings Collection.

The 12-disc set will include the complete Stevie Ray Vaughan and Double Trouble studio discography, from Texas Flood through 1989's In Step, plus the first commercial release of a promotional recording, A Legend in the Making, which captured the late blues guitar legend's performance at Toronto's El Mocambo club in July of 1983.  That performance has previously been released on video as as Live at the El Mocambo.

The set also includes the five live albums from the canon, as well as two discs of rarities.  Apparently missing from the set are 1990's Family Style, Vaughan's studio collaboration with his brother, guitarst Jimmie Vaughan, as well as the initial 1991 posthumous release The Sky Is Crying.  However, many of the tracks from the latter are included on the rarities discs.

Legacy Records will release The Complete Epic Recordings Collection on October 28. Check out the full track listing at SRVOfficial.com.

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Zombies Singer Colin Blunstone Says Band's New Album Should Be Ready by Early 2015


Jacob Blickenstaff/TCI ArtistsThe Zombies just wrapped up a U.S. summer tour this past Sunday and now the band has headed back home to the United Kingdom, where the influential pop-rock group plans to turn its focus on working on a new studio album soon.  During the trek, the band gave its American fans a taste of the upcoming record by premiering a brand-new tune titled "Moving On" that was written by founding keyboardist Rod Argent.

Zombies frontman Colin Blunstone tells ABC News Radio that the group already has begun preparing several tunes for the project, including the aforementioned "Moving On."

"We've recorded two brand new songs, and we've rehearsed a couple of others," he reveals.  "So, we've got four songs in pretty good shape, and then there are two or three other songs that we're sort of talking about and just starting to rehearse."

As for when the album might be completed, Blunstone says he hopes it will be finished by early next year.  He points out, however, "[A]n album takes as long as an album takes.  We're always doing this, sort of setting some kind of deadline and we never make the deadline."

The 69-year-old singer tells ABC News Radio that the band originally intended to keep 2014 "quite quiet as far as concerts are concerned" so that they could spend more time writing and recording the album but, as it turned, The Zombies pretty much have been on the road since January.

Colin says that should change "[a]fter the middle of September," when the group's major touring commitments will be complete, "so we can really get stuck into recording and writing."

As previously reported, The Zombies recently launched a crowdfunding campaign via the Pledge Music website that will allow those who contribute money to check out some of the new tunes, as well as watch exclusive videos of the band in the studio.  The initiative also offers a variety of incentives to participating fans, depending on how much they spend, including early access to the new album; rare and signed memorabilia; T-shirts, mugs and other merchandise; and the chance to appear in an official Zombies video.  Visit PledgeMusic.com to find out more details about the campaign.

The upcoming album will be a follow-up to The Zombies' 2011 effort, Breathe Out, Breathe In.

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Aerosmith's Joe Perry: Fans Don't Want to Hear New Music


Image Courtesy of CBSFans waiting on another Aerosmith record will have to keep waiting, according to guitarist Joe Perry.

"With us being off the record label, we're really not sure yet," the guitarist tells Boston magazine.  Furthermore, Perry suggests, recording new music may be futile.

"When we go out there and play live, people don't really want to hear a thing unless they know it.  We've played a couple of songs off the new record and gotten some polite applause," he says.  "Before the tour and after the record came out, I tweeted, 'What song off the new record would you like to hear?'  The first tweet I got back was, 'It depends on what song you have to take out of the set.'"

Perry says that feedback like that puts "things in perspective."

"I don't know if it's worth going in and sweating blood over a new record when we could be out on the road playing all these other songs that people want to hear," he explains.

He adds that he has spent the last three years finishing his soon-to-be-published memoir, Rocks: My Life In and Out of Aerosmith, and crafting a new solo record.

"I mean, I really feel like [finishing] it now," he says of the solo project.  "I've got five or six things ready to go.  The approach has just been different than the other ones I've done."

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Dave Davies “Would Love to Do Some Form of a Kinks Reunion”; Puts Star Wars Spin on ALS Ice Bucket Challenge


Cleopatra RecordsDave Davies is apparently not against a Kinks reunion project.

The founding Kinks lead guitarist posted a comment on Facebook Wednesday, writing, “I would love to do some form of a Kinks reunion with Ray. – Dave.”

Earlier this week, the U.K. magazine MOJO reported that Kinks frontman Ray Davies revealed in a new interview that the group will tour and release a new album in 2015, and suggested the band may do so without the participation of his brother Dave.

The magazine quoted Ray as saying, "Dave's invited to the party, but if he doesn't want to do it, [the reunion] will happen anyway.  He's very welcome to turn up if he wants.  I'd much rather work with him than without him."

The Kinks' official Facebook page later posted a message declaring, "MOJO is wrong. There will be NO Kinks reunion without BOTH Ray and Dave Davies. Ray Davies claims to have never said this."

In other news, Dave Davies accepted the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge in response to Star Wars actor Mark Hamill's challenge, but didn’t get wet at all.  In a video posted on YouTube, Davies is seen wearing a Star Wars t-shirt as he lounges by a backyard pool. After taking a sip of champagne for courage, he proceeds to dump the contents of an ice bucket over his head, but instead of ice cold water, Star Wars action figures tumble out.  Davies then nominates fellow rocker Graham Nash to take the ALS challenge, after which he douses plastic Luke Skywalker, Darth Vader and R2-D2 figures with cold water.

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ZZ Top Postpones Remaining Tour Dates with Jeff Beck After Bassist Dusty Hill Injures Hip


Images Courtesy of Ross HalfinIt's been a tough summer for ZZ Top's Dusty Hill.  Last month, the 65-year-old bassist needed a kidney stone operation, which caused his band to cancel six headlining dates, and now he's suffered a hip injury that's forcing the postponement of the Texas trio's remaining appearances on its joint tour with Jeff Beck.

According to a message on PalaceNet.com, the official website of the Detroit area's DTE Energy Music Theatre, where ZZ Top and Beck had been scheduled to perform on Wednesday, Hill injured his hip the previous night when he slipped and fell on his band's tour bus.  The note adds that Dusty's injury "requires immediate attention," and explains that "ZZ Top performance dates have been temporarily suspended while he recovers."

The message points out that the affected shows "include all of the scheduled concert bills [ZZ Top shares] with Jeff Beck through September 13."  However, Beck has announced that he still will play three dates on his own -- this Friday in Salamanca, New York; Saturday in Atlantic City, New Jersey; and Sunday in Mashantucket, Connecticut.  In addition, fans who have tickets for all shows from September 6 through September 13 are asked to hold on to them "pending the possibility of rescheduling these concerts."

"While we are very disappointed to not continue this tour with ZZ Top, our thoughts and best wishes are for Dusty to have a speedy recovery," Jeff says in a statement.

ZZ Top also is slated to begin a U.S. fall headlining tour on September 25 in Bloomsburg, Pennsylvania, but it's not clear if any of those shows are in jeopardy of cancellation too.

Here is a list of ZZ Top and Jeff Beck dates affected by postponements:

8/27 -- Clarkston, MI, DTE Energy Music Theatre
8/28 -- Highland Park, IL, Ravinia
*8/29 -- Salamanca, NY, Seneca Allegany Casino
*8/30 -- Atlantic City, NJ, Concert Venue at Harrah's
*8/31 -- Mashantucket, CT, MGM Grand Theater @ Foxwoods
9/2 -- Boston, MA, Blue Hills Bank Pavilion
9/3 -- Columbia, MD, Merriweather Post Pavilion
9/4 -- Wantagh, NY, Nikon @ Jones Beach Theater
9/6 -- Alpharetta, GA, Verizon Wireless Amphitheater
9/7 -- St. Augustine, FL, St. Augustine Amphitheater
9/9 -- West Palm Beach, FL, Cruzan Amphitheater
9/10 -- Tampa, FL, MidFlorida Credit Union Amphitheater
9/12 -- The Woodlands, TX, Cynthia Woods Mitchell Pavilion
9/13 -- Thackerville, OK, Winstar Casino

* = Beck will play solo.

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Martin Scorcese Attached to Ramones Movie


Image Courtesy Sire/Warner Bros. Records Oscar-winning director Martin Scorsese is attached to a forthcoming film about The Ramones, the managers of the band's estate revealed to Billboard.

Jeff Jampol and Dave Frey, who co-manage the band's estate, say the film is just one project being lined up to celebrate the group in advance of the 40th anniversary of the band's debut album, Ramones, which was released in 1976.

In addition to whatever film Scorsese is said to be involved with, the pair are preparing a new Ramones documentary based on recently acquired historical footage.  "We just secured a ton of footage, much of which has never been seen before,” Jampol told Billboard. “It came from the Ramones on the road over the years in the Seventies and a little bit in the Eighties, from a gentleman who had shot them, his name is George Seminara.”

Jampol added that a book, a theatrical play, remastered and new music, and "fashion apparel" are all in the works.

He shared the revelations this Sunday during the tenth, and final Johnny Ramone tribute that has been held annually at Hollywood Forever Cemetery in California.

Johnny’s widow LindaDuff McKagan, event host Rob Zombie and others were on hand.  An all-star concert found both Zombie and a group, which included McKagan,  the Sex Pistols' Steve Jones, Fred Armisen and surprise guest Billy Idol, covering the Ramones.

"Johnny was a good friend of mine, we first met probably ’95 as the Ramones were wrapping up their touring and they opened for White Zombie on tour,” Zombie told Billboard. “We hit it off first day, we started talking, we had a lot of things in common, very similar views on certain things, we became good friends and stayed that way right until the end.”

In other news, Billboard reports that Morrissey is working on his own Ramones tribute album. The singer has compiled a track listing of selections for a new Best of Ramones collection for the Sire/Rhino label.

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Ace Frehley, Motley Crue Tribute Score Top 10 Debuts on "Billboard" Chart


Image Courtesy of eOne MusicThe new solo album by recent Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductee Ace Frehley debuted at #9 on the Billboard album chart this week, giving the founding KISS guitarist his highest charting solo album ever.  It's also his first top 10 solo record.

Frehley's Space Invader, bowed at #9 with 19,000 copies sold, surpassing the #26 peak of his self-titled 1978 debut that was one of four simultaneously released solo albums by KISS members, according to the publication. The Space Ace's album also scored the highest charting position of any KISS solo album ever.

Ace finds himself looking up at another debut this week.  An all-star country salute to Motley CrueNashville Outlaws: A Tribute to Motley Crue debuts at #5 with 31,000 copies sold.

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The Beatles Top Elvis in Poll of America's Top 10 Favorite Music Artists


CBS Photography 1964; Business WireMore than 50 years since The Beatles first captivated the U.S. with their debut appearance on The Ed Sullivan Show, the Fab Four have been crowned the most popular music act in the country, at least according to a new Harris Poll.

The British rock icons beat out Elvis Presley to top the tally, which was based on an online poll conducted last month that asked the question, "Who is your favorite singer/musician or band?"  More than 2,300 people aged 18 and over took part in the poll.

Other veteran rock artists who also made the list include Led Zeppelin, who landed at #4, and The Eagles, who were tied at #7 with Neil Diamond, Celine Dion and Garth Brooks.

When the same poll was last conducted in 2010, The Beatles and Elvis tied for third place, while Dion took the top spot in front of #2 U2, who didn't even make it into the top 10 this year.

Breaking down the poll demographically, we find that more men cited The Beatles as their favorite band, while women chose pop/R&B superstar Beyoncé.  Among younger fans aged 18-37, it's Beyoncé, while Gen-Xers aged 38 to 49 say Metallica is their top group.  Baby Boomers, aged 50-68, choose The Beatles, while those 69 and over say country legend Willie Nelson is their favorite.

When it comes to politics, there's one thing on which all parties can agree: When asked to name their favorite musical acts, Republicans, Democrats and Independents all chose The Beatles, while Republicans also picked Nelson, and Democrats also chose young pop star Bruno Mars.  East Coast and West Coast respondents, as well as Southerners, chose the Fab Four as well, while Midwesterners voted Mars as their #1 pick.

Here is the full top 10 list for the favorite singer/musician or band in the U.S.:

1. Beatles
2. Elvis Presley
3. Beyoncé
4. Led Zepplin
5. George Strait
6. Bruno Mars
7. Neil Diamond
7. Eagles
7. Celine Dion
7. Garth Brooks

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Paul McCartney Delays Release of "Venus and Mars" and "Wings at the Speed of Sound" Reissues to November


Concord Music Group/MPL CommunicationsIf you're a Paul McCartney fan, you'll have to wait a little longer to get your hands on the recently announced reissues of the classic Wings albums Venus and Mars and Wings at the Speed of Sound.  The U.S. release date for the latest installments of the Paul McCartney Archive Collection has been pushed back from September 23 to November 4.

A message on McCartney's official website blames "production issues" for the delay.  Sir Paul is personally overseeing all aspects of the packages.

Originally released in 1975 and 1976, respectively, Venus and Mars and Wings at the Speed of Sound both reached #1 on the Billboard 200 chart.  The remastered albums will be available in multiple formats, including a two-CD Standard Edition, a Deluxe Edition featuring two CDs and a DVD, a vinyl set packaged with a download card, and digital versions of both the Standard and Deluxe Editions.

The three-disc versions of Venus and Mars and At the Speed of Sound both will feature a bonus CD with demo recordings and previously unreleased tracks, as well as a DVD containing footage filmed around the time of each album's release, some of which hasn't been seen before.  The Deluxe Editions' packaging will include a hardbound book offering rare photos, new interviews with McCartney, in-depth information about the albums and a variety of archival material.

You can check out new "unboxing" videos that take a look inside the Deluxe Editions of the Venus and Mars and Wings at the Speed of Sound reissues on McCartney's official YouTube channel.

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Bob Dylan Announces Dates for Fall North American Tour


Columbia RecordsBob Dylan has confirmed he'll be bringing his "Never Ending Tour" back to North America for a fall leg.  The 31-date trek will get underway with a three-show engagement, October 17-19, at the Paramount Theatre in Seattle, and also will include multiple-night stands in Los Angeles; Oakland, California; Minneapolis; Chicago; Toronto; Philadelphia; and New York City.

The tour will wrap up with four concerts at New York's Beacon Theatre that are scheduled for November 28 and 29, and December 1 and 2.  Tickets for most of Dylan's new stateside shows will go on September 5.  Visit BobDylan.com for more details.

Dylan and his backing band currently are playing a series of Australian concerts.  The overseas outing will wind down with a September 10 performance in Christchurch, New Zealand.

News of the tour follows Tuesday's announcement that Dylan will release a deluxe six-disc set on November 4 featuring recordings from his historic 1967 "Basement Tapes" sessions with The Band as the 11th volume of the folk-rock great's Bootleg Series.  Two-CD and three-LP versions of the collection also will be available the same day.  RollingStone.com currently is hosting an exclusive stream of one track that appears on The Basement Tapes Complete, an alternate version of the song "Odds and Ends."

Here are Dylan's confirmed upcoming North American tour dates:

10/17 -- Seattle, WA, Paramount Theatre
10/18 -- Seattle, WA, Paramount Theatre
10/19 -- Seattle, WA, Paramount Theatre
10/21 -- Portland, OR, Keller Auditorium
10/24 -- Los Angeles, CA, Dolby Theatre
10/25 -- Los Angeles, CA, Dolby Theatre
10/26 -- Los Angeles, CA, Dolby Theatre
10/28 -- Oakland, CA, Paramount Theatre
10/29 -- Oakland, CA, Paramount Theatre
10/30 -- Oakland, CA, Paramount Theatre
11/1 -- Denver, CO, Bellco Theatre
11/4 -- Minneapolis, MN, Orpheum Theater
11/5 -- Minneapolis, MN, Orpheum Theater
11/6 -- Minneapolis, MN, Orpheum Theater
11/8 -- Chicago, IL, Cadillac Palace Theatre
11/9 -- Chicago, IL, Cadillac Palace Theatre
11/10 -- Chicago, IL, Cadillac Palace Theatre
11/12 -- Cleveland, OH, State Theatre
11/14 -- Boston, MA, Orpheum Theatre
11/15 -- Providence, RI, Providence Performing Arts Center
11/17 -- Toronto, ON, Canada, Sony Center
11/18 -- Toronto, ON, Canada, Sony Center
11/21 -- Philadelphia, PA, Academy of Music
11/22 -- Philadelphia, PA, Academy of Music
11/23 -- Philadelphia, PA, Academy of Music
11/25 -- Washington, DC, DAR Constitution Hall
11/26 -- Newark, NJ, New Jersey Performing Arts Center
11/28 -- New York, NY, The Beacon Theatre
11/29 -- New York, NY, The Beacon Theatre
12/1 -- New York, NY, The Beacon Theatre
12/2 -- New York, NY, The Beacon Theatre

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Billy Corgan Had Quality Control, Legal Concerns Before Reissuing Smashing Pumpkins' "Adore"


Image Courtesy Universal Music Group DistributionThere will be a deluxe reissue of the 1998 Smashing Pumpkins album Adore hitting stores on September 23, a six-CD/one-DVD box set featuring 107 tracks, most previously unreleased.  Smashing Pumpkins frontman Billy Corgan tells ABC News Radio that pulling together the enormous box set was more than a matter of just slapping together material from his considerable archive.

"People look at...the unreleased tracks of the Pumpkins like, 'Can't you just throw open those doors and dump it all out and the public will just gobble it up?'" Corgan says, "[but] of course on my end I have a duty to maintain a quality and an aesthetic level that's commensurate to what the band was about."

Quality control isn't the only time consumer, says Corgan.  There have been a number of legal wranglings to get through as well, with "ex-band members [who have] expectations about what things are worth," he says.  Not that he blames them.  Corgan admits to ABC News Radio, "Nobody could have anticipated the changes in the music business when those contracts were being put together.  Nobody could have anticipated this level of downloading, and the YouTubes and stuff like that.  I mean, the systems have really changed, the way kids get music has really changed, so the idea of what it means to sell something has changed."

Here's something that's definitely changed: Smashing Pumpkins albums are available for pre-order on a tea shop website.  Corgan's Chicago tea den, Madame ZuZu's, is offering the collection, including many special editions, all of which are now sold out.  The remastered original Adore is still available for pre-sale, though; go to MadameZuZus.com for details.

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The Doobie Brothers' Patrick Simmons and Wife Taking Part in Cross-Country Vintage Motorcycle Race


Image Courtesy of Doobie BrothersFounding Doobie Brothers guitarist Patrick Simmons and his wife, Cris, are planning to go rockin' down the highway together on their vintage motorcycles throughout most of September.  The couple will be participating in the Motorcycle Cannonball Endurance Run 2014, a coast-to-coast event that begins September 5 in Daytona Beach, Florida, and will take them on a 4,100-mile journey ending September 21 in Tacoma, Washington.

Cris Simmons will be raising funds for the Stand Up to Cancer charity during the ride in honor of her and Patrick's son, Pat Jr., who was treated for testicular cancer in 2013 and now is free of the disease.  Cris, incidentally, is an acclaimed motorcyclist who's a member of the National Motorcycle Hall of Fame, the American Motorcycle Heritage Foundation Motorcycle Hall of Fame, and the Sturgis Motorcycle Hall of Fame.

The Motorcycle Cannonball Endurance Run was first run in 2010 and has been held every other year since.  It currently showcases restored motorcycles that were originally built before 1935.  Cris previously took part in the 2010 edition of the race, at which she was the only U.S. woman out of the 45 participants.

Patrick Simmons will be riding a 1929 Harley-Davidson JD during this year's race, while his wife will be on a 1934 Harley-Davidson nicknamed "Buddy" after its former owner, famed Hollywood stuntman Bud Ekins.  "Pat bought the bike from Bud many years ago and I stole it from Pat in 1993, vowing to ride it 'someday,'" explains Cris.

The Doobie Brothers have had a very busy tour schedule this year, although the band will be taking a break for most of September, allowing Patrick the time to hit the road on his Harley.  As previously reported, the group will be releasing a new studio album, Southbound, on November 4 that features duets with a variety of major country stars, as well as contributions from former Doobie Brothers singer/keyboardist Michael McDonald.

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Christine McVie Ready to "Stand Up for Two and a Half Hours Balancing on One Foot" on Fleetwood Mac Tour


Danny Clinch for ELLEThis fall, Fleetwood Mac will launch their first tour in nearly 20 years with Christine McVie, the voice behind such classic songs as "Don't Stop," "You Make Lovin' Fun" and "Over My Head."  The 71-year-old singer/keyboardist says she's been working out with a personal trainer so she'll be able to spend long hours onstage without collapsing.

Speaking to ELLE magazine, McVie notes with regard to her keyboard-playing style, "The aim is to be fit enough to stand up for two-and-a-half hours balancing on one foot, which is what I do."

This new tour will be a little bit more luxurious that in the old days, though, as Christine explains.  Not only will they be traveling by private jet, she says, but "I'm going to have someone that packs for me."   And during the downtime on the road, McVie says she wants to spend more time taking advantage of the interesting locations she'll will be visiting with Fleetwood Mac .  "I want to go out and do things...not just stick around having room service for two days," she insists.  "I feel like I know where I'm going now, and I want to enjoy this."

The rest of the band is thrilled that Christine is back in the fold.  Drummer Mick Fleetwood tells ELLE, "Since she's been back, I'm already feeling the steadying effect of her presence.  There is no doubt that there was a void in the chemistry of the band."

As for the new Fleetwood Mac album, which is in the works, McVie says she has about a half-dozen songs finished that might appear on it.  When asked if any of the tunes were inspired by her self-imposed retirement in the British countryside in the years after she left Fleetwood Mac, she laughs, "You mean the nunnery?  I was by no means a nun."

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Billy Idol's New Album Set for October 21 Release; Listen to Lead Single Now


BFI Records/Kobalt Label ServicesBilly Idol has revealed the track list and release date for Kings & Queens of the Underground, the first studio album of original material from the veteran pop-punk star since 2005's Devil's Playground.  The record will hit stores on October 21, and features lead single "Can't Break Me Down," which currently is streaming at Idol's official website and YouTube channel.

Most of the album was produced by former Buggles/Yes singer Trevor Horn, although Greg Kurstin served as producer on two tracks, including "Can't Break Me Down."  The single is an upbeat, modern-sounding rock anthem that includes some electronic elements also reminiscent of songs of the 1980s New Wave era.

Fans pre-ordering Kings & Queens of the Underground now via iTunes will instantly receive a download of "Can't Break Me Down."  The iTunes edition of the album also features a bonus track called "Hollywood Promises," which came from the same sessions that yielded the rest of the album.  A CD version of Kings & Queens of the Underground that doesn't include the extra song can be pre-ordered now at Amazon.

The album's cover was designed by renowned graphic artist Shepard Fairey.

Idol has scheduled European tour in support of Kings & Queens of the Underground that will get under way in Birmingham, England.  The 58-year-old rocker also will be publishing his self-penned memoir, Dancing with Myself, on October 7.

Here's the full track list for the standard version of Kings & Queens of the Underground:

"Bitter Pill"
"Can't Break Me Down"
"Save Me Now"
"One Breath Away"
"Postcards from the Past"
"Kings & Queens of the Underground"
"Eyes Wide Shut"
"Ghosts in My Guitar"
"Nothing to Fear"
"Love and Glory"
"Whiskey and Pills"

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Keith Richards Sends Video Tribute in Honor of Chuck Berry Being Awarded Sweden's Polar Music Prize


Image Courtesy of Chuck Berry's ManagementChuck Berry was honored Tuesday as a laureate of the 2014 Polar Music Prize, although the 87-year-old rock 'n' roll pioneer could not attend the ceremony because of illness.  Veteran British rocker Dave Edmunds was on hand to accept the honor from Sweden's King Carl XVI at the event, which took place at Stockholm's Concert Hall.

While at the podium, Edmunds read a speech Berry wrote that said, "Unfortunately I am unable to travel, but my heart is in Sweden.  I want to thank the King and the Royal Family for awarding me the Polar Prize.  I understand what a great honor it is to be a recipient.  I am sorry that I am unable to travel and receive this personally."

In addition, Rolling Stones guitarist Keith Richards sent a video homage in which he discussed how much Berry influenced and inspired him.

"Chuck Berry, he just leapt out of the radio at me.  I ate him basically, I mean I breathed him," said Richards.  "It wasn't just food, he was the air I breathed for many years when I was learning guitar and trying to figure out how you could be such an all-rounder.  Such a great voice, such a great player, and also such a great showman, you know, it was all in one package, so basically if I listened to Chuck Berry I was full for the day."

In choosing Berry for the award, Polar Music Prize officials acknowledged him as "the rock 'n' roll pioneer who turned the electric guitar into the main instrument of rock music," while adding that "[e]very riff and solo played by rock guitarists over the last 60 years contains DNA that can be traced right back to Chuck Berry."

The Polar Music Prize, founded in 1989 by late ABBA manager and lyricist Stig "Stikkan" Anderson, is considered the musical equivalent of the Nobel Prize.  Past recipients include Paul McCartney, Led Zeppelin, Bob Dylan, Pink Floyd, Paul Simon, Bruce Springsteen, Peter Gabriel, Elton John, Joni Mitchell and Patti Smith.

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Neil Young Has Filed for Divorce from Wife Pegi


Image Courtesy of Jake BlakesbergIt appears that one of the rock world's great love stories may be coming to an end.  As first reported at RollingStone.com, Neil Young recently filed for divorce from his wife, Pegi, after 36 years of marriage.

The folk-rock legend filed a petition to dissolve the marriage on July 29 in the San Mateo County Superior Court in Redwood City, California.  A hearing on the matter has been scheduled for December 12.

Neil and Pegi have collaborated on numerous musical projects over the years.  Pegi began singing backing vocals for her husband beginning in the 1990s and lent her talents to many of his recent albums.  Neil, in turn, contributed to all three of his wife's solo records, which were released, respectively, in 2007, 2010 and 2011.  He also joined her onstage at some of her concerts.

The couple have two children together -- a son named Ben and a daughter named Amber Jean.  Ben Young suffers from cerebral palsy, as does his older half-brother, Zeke Young, who's mother was late actress Carrie Snodgress.  In attempt to provide an educational situation better suited to Ben's needs, Pegi co-founded the Bridge School in 1986.  Since that year, she and Neil have organized the annual Bridge School Benefit Concert, a star-studded show that raises funds for the facility and that takes place each October in Mountain View, California.

Neil Young's rep did not respond to ABC News Radio's request for a comment regarding the reported impending divorce.

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Kinks Controversy: Is Ray Davies Considering Band Reunion Without Brother Dave?


Decca Label Group; Cleopatra RecordsThere appears to be some controversy brewing with regard to The Kinks' supposed plans for a reunion project next year.  U.K. magazine MOJO reports that legendary rockers' frontman, Ray Davies, revealed in a new interview that the group will tour and release a new album in 2015, while suggesting that the band may do so without the participation of his brother, founding Kinks lead guitarist Dave Davies.

However, The Kinks' official Facebook page has posted a message declaring, "MOJO is wrong. There will be NO Kinks reunion without BOTH Ray and Dave Davies. Ray Davies claims to have never said this."

Getting back to the MOJO article, the magazine quotes Ray as saying, "Dave's invited to the party, but if he doesn't want to do it, [the reunion] will happen anyway.  He's very welcome to turn up if he wants.  I'd much rather work with him than without him."

The article reports that the band -- apparently referring to the Davies brothers and original Kinks drummer Mick Avory -- met during the summer of 2013 to discuss possibly getting together this year for a 50th anniversary Kinks reunion, but Ray and Dave's continued contentious relationship delayed the proposed project.  MOJO also claims that Ray told the mag that he's been recording songs with Avory for a new Kinks album, and that Dave hasn't yet contributed to the sessions.

In addition, MOJO alleges that, when Ray was asked if a project without his brother would still be called The Kinks, he said, "Yes, it would.  I think it's all down to the music.  If somebody can't or won't play, there are other players out there. Mick and I want to do it."

Ray also reported that he continues to work on a solo album based on his 2013 memoir, Americana.

In other news, the singer/songwriter has scheduled a series of three U.K. performances in September that will mark the 50th anniversary of the release of the classic Kinks hit "You Really Got Me."

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Expansive Box Set of Bob Dylan's "Basement Tapes" Sessions Due Out in November


PRNewsFoto/Legacy RecordingsThe Basement Tapes, the historic recordings Bob Dylan did with The Band during 1967 in the Woodstock, New York, area while he reportedly was recuperating from a serious motorcycle accident, is the subject of the upcoming 11th installment of the folk-rock legend's Bootleg Series.  A massive six-CD collection titled Bob Dylan and The Band: The Basement Tapes Complete is scheduled to be released on November 4.

While the original Basement Tapes album, which was issued in 1975 as a two-LP set, featured just 16 recordings from Dylan's '67 collaboration with The Band, The Basement Tapes Complete will include every salvageable track from those sessions, including recently discovered songs Dylan recorded at his upstate New York residence.  Band keyboardist Garth Hudson worked with Canadian producer and music archivist Jan Haust on restoring the tapes.

More than 100 tunes were recorded during the sessions, including covers of traditional and contemporary songs, humorous ditties, impromptu performances, and many Dylan originals.  Among the then-new compositions from Bob were such memorable tunes as "I Shall Be Released," "The Mighty Quinn," and "You Ain't Going Nowhere."  Also featured were early versions of "Tears of Rage" and "This Wheel's on Fire," which both appeared on The Band's 1968 debut album, Music from Big Pink.

Meanwhile, separate two-CD and three-LP vinyl sets titled The Basement Tapes Raw and featuring highlights from the expansive Basement Tapes Complete collection also will be released on November 4.

Dylan's currently in the middle of an Australian tour.  He's planning to announce dates for a fall North American trek on Wednesday.

You can check out the full track list for The Basement Tapes Complete: The Bootleg Series Vol. 11 at BobDylan.com.  Here's the track listing for The Basement Tapes Raw:

CD 1
"Open the Door, Homer" (Restored version)
"Odds and Ends" (Alternate version)
"Million Dollar Bash" (Alternate version)
"One Too Many Mornings" (Unreleased)
"I Don't Hurt Anymore" (Unreleased)
"Ain't No More Cane" (Alternate version)
"Crash on the Levee" (Restored version)
"Tears of Rage" (Without overdubs)
"Dress It Up, Better Have It All" (Unreleased)
"I'm Not There" (Previously released)
"Johnny Todd" (Unreleased)
"Too Much of Nothing" (Alternate version)
"Quinn the Eskimo" (Restored version)
"Get Your Rocks Off" (Unreleased)
"Santa-Fe" (Previously released)
"Silent Weekend" (Unreleased)
"Clothes Line Saga" (Restored version)
"Please, Mrs. Henry" (Restored version)
"I Shall Be Released" (Restored version)

CD 2
"You Ain't Goin' Nowhere" (Alternate version)
"Lo and Behold!" (Alternate version)
"Minstrel Boy" (Previously released)
"Tiny Montgomery" (Without overdubs)
"All You Have to Do Is Dream" (Unreleased)
"Goin' to Acapulco" (Without overdubs)
"900 Miles from My Home" (Unreleased)
"One for the Road" (Unreleased)
"I'm Alright" (Unreleased)
"Blowin' in the Wind" (Unreleased)
"Apple Suckling Tree" (Restored version)
"Nothing Was Delivered" (Restored version)
"Folsom Prison Blues" (Unreleased)
"This Wheel's on Fire" (Without overdubs)
"Yea! Heavy and a Bottle of Bread" (Restored version)
"Don't Ya Tell Henry" (Alternate version)
"Baby, Won't You Be My Baby" (Unreleased)
"Sign on the Cross" (Unreleased)
"You Ain't Goin' Nowhere" (Without overdubs)

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Vince Neil Salutes His Mötley Crüe Band Mates


Image Courtesy Motley Records/Eleven Seven RecordsIf you've seen Mötley Crüe on the All Bad Things Must Come to an End tour, you know that the three musicians on board -- Tommy Lee, Mick Mars and Nikki Sixx -- are a talented bunch.  Singer Vince Neil agrees; though the band members have had their share of spats over the years, the singer has no trouble admitting that he's surrounded by skilled professionals.  Neil tells ABC News Radio that Mars in particular is "an outstanding guitar player [and] very underrated because he shies away from press." 

Neil says that even after 33 years of playing together, "[Mick] plays stuff where I go, 'Wow, where did that come from?'  When he does his solos it's pretty amazing, the stuff that he comes up with."

Vince also appreciates Lee, who he describes to ABC News Radio as being "like John Bonham.  He's just a pure rock drummer [and] he has a great meter."  As for Nikki Sixx, Neil calls him "a great bass player [and] a great showman."

Agreeing with the legions of fans who are mourning the end of Mötley Crüe -- because, of course, the veteran rockers has insisted they will never tour again under the band name -- Neil tells ABC News Radio, "You put everybody together, we're Mötley Crüe and that's why we've been together for so long." 

Here are the remaining dates on Mötley Crüe's 2014 tour leg:

8/26 -- Saratoga Springs, NY, Saratoga Performing Arts Center
8/27 -- Allentown, PA, Great Allentown Fair
8/29 -- Wantagh, NY, Nikon at Jones Beach Theater
8/30 -- Holmdel, NJ, PNC Bank Arts Center
8/31 -- Darien Center, NY, Darien Lake Performing Arts Center
10/10 -- Oklahoma City, OK, Chesapeake Energy Arena
10/11 -- The Woodlands, TX, Cynthia Woods Mitchell Pavilion
10/12 -- Bossier City, LA, CenturyLink Center
10/14 -- Louisville, KY, KFC Yum! Center
10/15 -- Nashville, TN, Bridgestone Arena
10/17 -- Hollywood, FL, Seminole Hard Rock
10/19 -- Jacksonville, FL, Veterans Memorial Arena
10/21 -- Greenville, SC, Bon Secours Wellness Arena
10/22 -- Greensboro, NC, Greensboro Coliseum
10/25 -- Atlantic City, NJ, Borgata Events Center
10/26 -- Montville, CT, Mohegan Sun Arena
10/29 -- Syracuse, NY, The OnCenter
11/5 -- Biloxi, MS, Mississippi Coast Coliseum
11/6 -- Southaven, MS, Landers Center
11/9 -- Moline, IL, iWireless Center
11/11 -- Green Bay, WI, Resch Center
11/12 -- Madison, WI, Alliant Energy Center
11/13 -- Omaha, NE, CenturyLink Center
11/15 -- St. Paul, MN, Xcel Energy Center
11/16 -- Fargo, ND, FargoDome
11/18 -- Edmonton, AB, Canada, Rexall Place
11/19 -- Calgary, AB, Canada, Scotiabank Saddledome
11/21 -- Vancouver, BC, Canada, Rogers Arena

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