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Hear Two Frenetic, Echo-Filled Dead Weather Tracks

October 30th, 2014 · Guitar

By Kory Grow |
October 30, 2014

The two Dead Weather songs that came as part of Third Man Records’ “Vault Package Number 21″ on a gold-colored seven-inch are now streaming online. The songs, “Buzzkill(er)” and “It’s Just Too Bad,” find the band exploring echoey, bluesy garage rock on the former and clattering, shambolic riffage on the latter as frontwoman Alison Mosshart bellows.

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The group recorded the songs in the band members’ downtime from commitments to Queens of the Stone Age, the Kills and Jack White’s solo work. The versions of the songs streaming online play at different speeds, since turntables (and the people who use them) can be fickle things, but the “Buzzkill(er)” stream is official, so listeners will have to imagine “It’s Just Too Bad” playing slower and lower. The seven-inches were available only to members of the label’s Third Man Vault subscription service.

The Dead Weather, who have not played a concert since 2010 (save an impromptu reunion this past August), began work on their upcoming third album last year. In December 2013, they issued the single “Open Up (That’s Enough),” backed with “Rough Detective,” as part of the Third Man Vault series. The group will reportedly issue more two-song sets until they issue an LP next year containing the singles and unreleased tracks.

Article source: http://www.rollingstone.com/music/news/hear-two-frenetic-echo-filled-dead-weather-tracks-20141030

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Metallica Enlist Fans for ‘Kill ‘Em All’ and ‘Ride the Lightning’ Reissues

October 30th, 2014 · Guitar

By Kory Grow |
October 30, 2014

Metallica are currently prepping remastered, deluxe editions of their first two albums, 1983′s Kill ‘Em All and 1984′s Ride the Lightning, which they hope to put out in 2015, but in the meantime they are asking for help from their fans. The band has requested that anyone who has photos of the group and memorabilia or audio of concerts they played between the years 1983 and 1985 to submit them for possible inclusion in the reissues.

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“We want it all,” the band wrote on its website. “Did you manage to sneak a video camera into a show long before they fit in your pocket? Maybe your old instamatic camera for some snapshots? A cassette Walkman with a microphone? We’re looking for anything and everything…audio, video, photos, fliers, ticket stubs, the set list you picked up off the floor and in general any mementos you may have from that around that time.”

Fans with items of interest, including stories, can email the group at submissions@metclub.com. The group added, “By submitting it, you’re saying we can use it should your piece of history land on a release (yes, the lawyers made us add this part!).”

Earlier this year, the band told Rolling Stone of both their first-ever gig in 1981 and the making of Ride the Lightning, which contained the single “Creeping Death” and is home to fan favorites like “Fade to Black” and “For Whom the Bell Tolls.”

“About two minutes into opening song ‘Hit the Lights,’ [former guitarist Dave] Mustaine breaks a string,” Lars Ulrich recalled of the band’s first show. “So after the first song, he had to change his own string, because there was no roadies. And so I sat up there in the back, behind the drum kit and tried to hide under the drums, basically.”

As for making their second album, Ride the Lightning, guitarist Kirk Hammett remembered it as a difficult process, as the band had relocated to Copenhagen to record it. But he recalled the genesis of the iconic, rolling bass line in “For Whom the Bell Tolls” fondly. “[Bassist Cliff Burton] would play that riff a lot in the hotel room, when him and I were hanging out,” the guitarist recalled. “He used to carry around an acoustic classical guitar that he detuned so that he could bend the strings. I would think, ‘That’s such a weird, atonal riff that isn’t really heavy at all.’ I remember him playing it for James [Hetfield], and James adding that accent to it and all of a sudden, it changed. It’s such a crazy riff.”

The band is now working on recording its next album. In April, Ulrich told Rolling Stone that the band was in the “fourth inning” of the writing process. Part of that included writing the new song “Lords of Summer,” which it premiered on tour this year and is issuing as a Record Store Day vinyl exclusive on Black Friday. Metallica are also putting out a 10th anniversary edition of its recently out-of-print documentary Some Kind of Monster, which will come out on November 24th.

Additionally, the band has booked a handful of live dates for the coming months. On November 8th, the band will play the gaming convention BlizzCon and, three days later, the Concert for Valor. The latter show will see them playing the same stage as Bruce Springsteen, Rihanna, Eminem and more. On November 17th, the band will play every day of the week on The Late, Late Show With Craig Ferguson as a residency. And in May, the band will appear at the first Rock in Rio festival in the U.S., which will also feature appearances by Taylor Swift and No Doubt.

Article source: http://www.rollingstone.com/music/news/metallica-enlist-fans-for-kill-em-all-and-ride-the-lightning-reissues-20141030

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18 Things You Learn Hanging Out With U2

October 30th, 2014 · Guitar

By Brian Hiatt |
October 30, 2014

What’s left to learn about U2 in 2014? Plenty, as it turns out – especially if you get a few days worth of intimate access to the band in three different countries. Here’s the best of what didn’t fit into the cover story, from the making of the new album to the secrets of Adam Clayton’s jewelry.

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It’s not unimaginable that U2 could still be around when the band members are in their 70s.
“I don’t know – if we’re writing songs as good as these ones,” says Bono. “I mean, I saw Leonard Cohen play Dublin, and he said, “The last time I was out on the road, I was 60. Just a kid with a crazy dream!’” Adds Adam Clayton, “When you’re working up to 50, you think, ‘Oh, maybe there will be some time where we can kick back and it can be slower, and we can enjoy life a bit.’ And then when you kind of cross over the 50 mark, your thinking kind of goes, ‘Oh, why would you want to stop? This is actually the best bit. We’re really enjoying this, let’s keep going.’ And that’s kind of odd, but I guess there’s a reason why people like Paul McCartney and Elton John are still playing shows and making records.”

After spending years on Songs of Innocence, they recorded the acoustic version that’s on the deluxe edition in about a week.
For the band, it was a test of whether they’d met their goal for the album: writing songs that would work in the barest arrangements. “We had to go in and test the theory,” says Bono. “I saw the Edge with his head in his hands, and he said, ‘It’s taken us three years to finish this album, and you’re saying we have to do another album in a week?’ I said, ‘Edge, all the work over the last three years is going to mean that we can do it.” He just went ‘Ah!’” And he said, ‘We can do it in a week. Will we put it out? We don’t have to. Let’s just try.’ It got pretty frenetic at the end.”

The Edge doesn’t think rock is dead.
“I think it goes in cycles, honestly, and I think that we’ve just been through a particularly low cycle point for guitar-based music, and electronic dance music has been kind of the focus. But I think it’s about doing something fresh and novel, and the problem is that with a lot of guitar-based music, the songwriting has not been great, and it’s not particularly fresh, you know? I think the songwriting has been better in electronic dance music, weirdly enough. So inevitably I think people have drifted that direction. So I don’t fear for guitar-based music long-term, I just think we need some better songs out there. And I like my music to be a little bit more defiant. There’s not a lot of defiance right now. It’s gone very mild and meek. It’s nice to shake things up a little bit. Punk rock was not mild and meek, it was pretty in-your-face defiant.”

Songs of Innocence had some very different potential running orders.
Says Bono, “It used to start with ‘This Is Where You Can Reach Me,’ which was always supposed to be the first song, and then ‘Raised By Wolves.’ And the reason we changed … we put the songs first, is we thought, “Well, if we’re going to have 5,000,000 people perhaps check us out, a really long intro is probably not a good idea. Let’s put the songs first, like on The Joshua Tree.”

Future Islands perform

Bono loves the band Future Islands.
“Have you seen them?” he asks. “That song, ‘Seasons?’ A miracle, that is.”

The car-bombing referred to in the song “Raised by Wolves” was a pivotal event in Bono’s political awakening.
“I asked myself, ‘Why am I always writing about political violence? What’s that all about?’ OK, I live in Ireland. And then I thought back to 1974, to my near-miss with this car bombing, and the odds of that, and thought, “Is that part of the reason?” Through happenstance, I took my bike to school that day and I wasn’t there. Any other Friday I would have been there. Is that why I’m interested? Maybe. And, you know, people like me should probably spend some time in a psychiatrist’s couch, but I don’t.”

Until the last two months of recording, “Raised by Wolves” was radically different.
“It was quite a pop song,” says Declan Gaffney, who co-produced it. “You know, Bono, when he writes melodies, he sings in a language called Bongolese, things that aren’t really words right up until about a month or two before the record is finished. And then Bono came in with these dark lyrics, and we kind of felt that the music didn’t really match the lyrics. So we tried to turn the music on its head, to match the lyrics.

The band’s biggest fear was seeing their new album ignored – which explains their controversial iTunes deal.
“That’s the hardest thing right now in music, is to get people to notice,” says the Edge. “I’m just watching all of these albums coming out and realizing, ‘Wow, they just came and went, and no one noticed.’ We’re not maybe as vulnerable as a lot of other artists to that phenomenon, because we do have a big, loyal fan base. But we’re also always interested in finding new fans. And in this era, it just gets more and more difficult to sort of go beyond your fan base, because there’s so many things in competition. When I was 18, music was the clear winner in terms of the kind of youth culture focus. Now you’re competing against the whole world of gaming, technology, social networking. So I think music has to fight for its position and has to fight for attention. And I think this helps us for sure, but I think it also helps keep music in the conversation, on sort of the front page rather than page three, four, five, six, seven of the conversation.”

There are lines in “Volcano” where Bono’s younger self is talking to his current self.
“The second verse is, the younger guy goes, ‘Your eyes were like the landing lights/They used to be the clearest blue/Now you don’t see so well/And the future’s going to land on you.’” It’s this young guy going, “The fuck happened to you?” And on Songs of Experience, there will be a little bit more of that cross-talk, and I think that’s going to get very interesting. So for a live show you can imagine Quadrophenia where Pete Townshend could walk in any minute and have an argument with his younger self. You know?”

Bono initially imagined “Every Breaking Wave” as somewhat in the vein of Bob Dylan’s “Every Grain of Sand.”
“‘Every Breaking Wave’ was Steve Jobs’ favorite song,” says Bono, “and he said, ‘Do you have one like that?’ And I said, ‘I think so. At least we started one.’ I might have even sent him the lyrics way back, like as soon as I started. And I wouldn’t dare compare the two songs now, I’m just saying the idea was, could you just do a song that simple? Like you and piano?   It was a song about how hard it is to give yourself completely to another person. And the two characters in it are addicted to failure and rebirth. I like the idea that they say to each other, ‘Are we ready? Are we ready to be swept off our feet?” Adam [Clayton] was more like one of the characters in that song than I am. And then he went and got married! It took him to be 52 or whatever he was to be swept off his feet. And he got there.”

Larry Mullen might be too good a drummer.
“My timing is pretty good for an old man,” Mullen says with a smile. During the making of Songs of Innocence, one of the producers wanted to alter Mullen’s performance to make it less perfect. “They basically said, ‘We have to make it sound like it’s live.’ It’s like, it is live! The idea is making it sound slightly out of time just in case somebody would think it’s a machine. That gave me a lot of belly laughs, and also some restless nights. ”

Mullen doesn’t mind being a dissenting voice in the band from time to time.
“Some decisions are not welcomed, or aren’t popular, but I’m not in a popularity contest. I’m in a band.”

The band is weighing a two-night structure for their 2015 tour.
“There is talk of doing two different kinds of shows,” says Clayton. “One night would be a kind of loud, explosive rock  roll kind of event and then the other night’s show take the acoustic arrangements of some of the songs, and kind of present those songs in a much more intimate way. But we don’t really know how that’s going to sound and look.” One thing the band hasn’t figured out: how to make sure audiences understand in advance which show they’re getting.

The Edge went to Coachella this year.
“The band that I liked at Coachella was Cage the Elephant.  Their commitment to the performance really blew so much of the other stuff away. They really did own it in a way that few other artists did. Broken Bells were great, and Skrillex’s thing was pretty cool. Pixies were on, that was good to see them. And I love Outkast. Some of the more strange hippie stuff wasn’t that great. Neutral Milk Hotel, you know them? If you were sort of one of the faithful, you could sort of get excited about it. It didn’t really have a universal appeal at all. And that might be its appeal.”

The band found the recording and songwriting process humbling this time.
“We probably had 50 songs,” says Bono. “Some would come and go in favor, and some you could get them halfway up the hill, three-quarters of the way up the hill. A lot of times, we just couldn’t get them up to the top of the hill. And that was the humbling element. And there’s some humiliation in realizing that your talent is just not up to the task. And then you realize, after that, no one’s talent is. People who are smarter and more creative, more prolific than U2, stopped being able to get songs across after, 20 years, 30 years, and you don’t know why. And I think the muse is a jealous lover, and you really have to serve and wait on her.”

Bono feels that the lyrics on Songs of Innocence are more accessible than anything he’s written in years.
“Edge was really worried about getting so personal, that it would appear nostalgic. But strangely, by being this intimate, it’s much more relatable, because the last album’s quite esoteric. There are esoteric themes – like in ‘Moment of Surrender,’ the guy falls to his knees in a busy street beside an ATM machine. People are saying, ‘I haven’t been able to understand you for years, but this I get.’”

“‘Esoteric’ would be a good way to describe No Line on the Horizon,” says the Edge. “It had a certain introspective darkness to it and I’m always going to be interested in the sort of darker, more melancholy musical mood. But we might have slid a little bit too strongly in that direction, and we wanted this record to be accessible to a wider range of music fans. I think the last record was very much a sort of U2 fan base record. I don’t think we made a hell of a lot of new fans on that record. And with this album, I believe we can. And I fee; much more confident, for instance, that we’ve done this whole Apple thing with this album than I think I would have felt if it was No Line on the Horizon.”

Bono never liked it when people tried to compliment him by saying, “You haven’t changed.”
“Things must change,” he says. “I remember people would say, ‘You haven’t changed’ — like it was a good thing. I was thinking like, ‘What do you mean I haven’t changed? I have changed!’ And I want to continue to change — I want to continue to peel off the layers and if there’s anything in this onion, I want to know what it is.”

Adam Clayton has had a jade bracelet stuck on his wrist since he was 21 years old.
“I was given it when I was 21,” Clayton says with a laugh. “And it’s a women’s size, and I can’t get it off.  My hand was a little smaller. And I actually really forced it on at the time. Because I was 21, and I was having a good time.”

Article source: http://www.rollingstone.com/music/news/18-things-you-learn-hanging-out-with-u2-20141030

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The Roots Headlining Why Tuesday? Voting Campaign Concert

October 30th, 2014 · Guitar

By Rolling Stone |
October 29, 2014

With their new “Let’s Fix It” campaign, non-profit group Why Tuesday? is aiming to rally the public and Congress toward fixing a broken voting system – one which currently ranks 138th out of 172 nations in terms of voter turnout. To raise awareness for the cause, the organization has announced a nationwide contest offering $64,000 to the individual who comes closest to guessing the national voter turnout numbers for the 2014 midterm election. On November 2nd, Why Tuesday? is also hosting the New York City kick-off concert-rally Let’s Fix it Get Out ALL of the Vote, which includes a headlining performance from the Roots.

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“We are asking the $64,000 question, because people don’t realize just how low our voter turnout is,” Why Tuesday? co-founder William Wachtel said in a statement. “It’s not because Americans don’t care. It’s simply that an antiquated system makes it hard for people who do care to vote. Everyone agrees it’s broken, everyone agrees that there are practical ways to fix it, so the only challenge is to get our elected leaders to finally do something about it.”

To enter the contest, participants are asked to predict the national percentage of voter turnout; the person who submits the closest prediction will win the $64,000 cash prize. The contest is open to individuals at least 18 years old residing in the U.S.

NYU is challenging its students to participate for the opportunity to win a scholarship equivalent to one semester at the university. Why Tuesday? will also offer a selection of tickets to NYU for the rally, which will kick off November 2nd at 7:30 p.m. at Webster Hall. 

Both the concert and contest are part of a larger Why Tuesday? campaign, launched ahead of the 50th anniversary of the Voting Rights Act on August 6th, 2015. Supporters can help spread the word through social media by using the hashtag #FIXITNOW.

“The problem is that our elected officials don’t want to get out all of the vote; they want to get out their vote,” said Why Tuesday? Chairman Andrew Young. “We look at it differently. We have Republicans, Democrats and independents coming together to say the system is broken and we need to fix it.”

Article source: http://www.rollingstone.com/politics/news/the-roots-headlining-why-tuesday-voting-campaign-concert-20141029

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Flashback: Dolly Parton, Kenny Rogers Take ‘Islands in the Stream’ to New Heights

October 30th, 2014 · Guitar

By Rolling Stone |
October 29, 2014

On this day (October 29th) in 1983, Dolly Parton and Kenny Rogers reached the top of the Billboard 100 chart with their now-iconic duet, “Islands in the Stream.” Written by the Bee Gees (and later performed on their 1998 live album), the tune was inspired by Ernest Hemingway’s novel of the same name and was meant to have a very different, more RB sound. Co-writer Robin Gibb once told ABC News that he and his brothers originally wrote the song with Marvin Gaye in mind.

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When Rogers got a shot at “Islands,” he went in to record it solo — with the Bee Gees’ Barry Gibb producing — and just didn’t click with it, he has admitted in several interviews over the years. Parton just happened to be at the same recording studio, so the two musicians tracked her down and approached her about turning the song into a duet. Thus was born an award-winning musical partnership (and very special friendship) of more than three decades.

The year after “Islands in the Stream” was released, Rogers and Parton teamed for a Christmas album and TV special, followed by a duet on another chart-topper, “Real Love.” They have since recorded dozens of duets together, including one nominated at this year’s CMA Awards, “You Can’t Make Old Friends.”

“We were cutting this song, ‘You Can’t Make Old Friends,’ and it’s really our lives. We are in the middle of the song and she comes over and throws her arms around me and she says, ‘Kenny, I want you to know something: I could never sing at your funeral.’ I went, ‘We are assuming I am going first…. is that what you’re saying?’” Rogers tells Rolling Stone Country of the October 2013 recording session for their latest duet. “We realized in the studio that day that it had been 30 years to the day since ‘Islands in the Stream’ went Number One on the pop charts.”

“Islands in the Stream” was the only country song to reach Number One on the all-genre Billboard 100 until 2000, when Lonestar topped the chart with “Amazed.” It also reached the pinnacle of the country and adult contemporary charts and was CMT’s pick for the Number One greatest country duet of all time.

Article source: http://www.rollingstone.com/music/videos/dolly-parton-kenny-rogers-islands-in-the-stream-performance-20141029

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Suge Knight, Katt Williams Arrested for Robbery

October 30th, 2014 · Guitar

By Jason Newman |
October 29, 2014

Hip-hop mogul Suge Knight and actor-comedian Katt Williams were arrested Wednesday on “suspicion of stealing a camera from a female photographer,” according to Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office.

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Knight was taken into custody Wednesday in Las Vegas. Williams was arrested while appearing in court on a separate assault case. The pair are accused of taking the camera of an unnamed ”celebrity photographer” in Beverly Hills in September and have each been charged with one count of robbery. If convicted, Williams faces up to seven years in prison, while Knight faces 30 years due to a prior conviction for assault with a deadly weapon.

This isn’t the first legal run-in for the duo. According to TMZ, Knight and Williams got into a fight at a Los Angeles nightclub hours after Williams was released from jail in 2012. One week earlier, the two received citations after a “disturbance,” according to TMZ. Williams was reportedly waiting in front of a Subway shop while Knight, who has acted as Williams’ tour manager, was getting a manicure/pedicure at a nail salon when police arrived. Williams was cited for parking too close to a fire hydrant. Knight’s ticket was based on outstanding traffic warrants. 

In August, Knight was shot six times in the stomach and arm while partying at a Los Angeles nightclub before the MTV Video Music Awards. ”People were screaming and yelling and most ran out immediately,” a witness to the scene told Us Weekly. “The floor was covered with glass from everyone dropping their drinks.” Despite being shot, Knight was able to exit the club on his accord and later laughed off the incident.

“One thing my father always taught me, no matter what it is, you never give up, you never quit if you start something,” Knight said. “When you walk in a place, you walk in one way and no matter what goes on, you leave the same — as a man. I was shot, and I wanted to make sure I got to the right place to patch some of these holes up.”

In July, Williams was sued by his former tour manager for assault and battery who claimed that Williams hit him ”with such force and power that he was rendered unconscious for a period of 90 seconds.” The case is still pending.  

Article source: http://www.rollingstone.com/music/news/suge-knight-katt-williams-arrested-for-robbery-20141029

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Slipknot Hit Number One as Industry Awaits Taylor Swift Sales Results

October 29th, 2014 · Guitar

By Steve Knopper |
October 29, 2014

Bear with me: I’m trying to mention Taylor Swift in every paragraph. Here goes: Album sales are still down 14 percent and track sales are down 13 percent, but next week, the record industry will see if 1989 can make a dent in these depressing numbers. More Swifty details below!

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1989 WATCH: Billboard has upgraded its first-week Swift sales prediction from 750,000 to 1 million. If true, Taylor’s new 1989 would be the only 2014 release to go platinum. (Frozen hit the million-selling mark three times, but it came out in late 2013.) Could 1989 be a lesser Thriller, which sold so many copies that it rescued the record industry from its post-disco recession? Unlikely. Thirty years ago, major record labels were not navigating a downward spiral from selling expensive CDs to selling not-so-expensive iTunes downloads to selling $10 Spotify subscriptions. But 1989 could help.

DON’T FORGET ABOUT COLDPLAY, SLIPKNOT: Yes, Slipknot, the venerable metal band with the masks and the cookie-monster vocals, has hit Number One, selling 132,000 copies of its new album, .5: The Gray Chapter. But no, as one e-mail from the band’s label Roadrunner Records said, that does not make it “the highest debut for a rock record this year.” Perhaps the people who bring us Slipknot, Opeth, Stone Sour and Killswitch Engage do not consider Coldplay‘s Ghost Stories ”a rock record”? Because it sold 383,000 copies in its first week in late May, hitting Number One at the time — still the year’s biggest first-week sales, although Swift’s 1989 is likely to smash that meager accomplishment next week.

SLEEPER OF . . . THE PREVIOUS WEEK: It’s too late to label Hozier‘s spooky, sin-obsessed “Take Me to Church” as “sleeper of the week” — the song has already jumped from Number 13 to Number Two on Billboard‘s digital-songs chart, a 107 percent sales increase, to 132,000. Why the surge? It’s in a new Beats by Dre TV ad with LeBron James, just as the NBA season begins, among other things. Will it stick around the top of the charts? My guess is no. Because you-know-who is on the way, even if her latest “Welcome to New York” made its debut at just Number Five, selling 84,000 copies.

Article source: http://www.rollingstone.com/music/news/slipknot-hit-number-one-as-industry-awaits-taylor-swift-sales-results-20141029

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Chely Wright Fans Break Kickstarter Record in Funding New Album

October 29th, 2014 · Guitar

By Stephen L. Betts |
October 29, 2014

“As a country artist, you can really keep your audience for 20 or 30 years,” muses Chely Wright. “That’s how I was with the country music artists that I liked. They didn’t have to still be on the radio for me to buy their records. If they had me at any point, they had me for life.”

Related: Readers’ Poll: The 10 Best Country Songs of 2014 So Far

 That good karma is coming back to Wright as she preps her next album. The singer-songwriter took the increasingly popular step of funding the project through a Kickstarter campaign. Soliciting donations from her loyal fan base not only guarantees contributors a copy of the record once it’s available, but it also means Wright is able to properly promote the album upon its release, effectively becoming her very own record label. It’s a method that allowed Jo Dee Messina, one of Wright’s country contemporaries, to release her own most recent album, Me, earlier this year.

For Wright, the 45-day campaign, which ended earlier this month, raised $250,000 — an amount which will also allow her to produce a music video in conjunction with the album.

“It went gangbusters,” she tells Rolling Stone Country. “It was the sixth most successful music campaign in Kickstarter’s history and the Number One most successful campaign in country music in Kickstarter history. I say that, really, to just brag on my fans and the enthusiasm they have.”

Still, Wright had plenty to wonder about when it came to the last four years of her life. Eleven years after hitting Number One on the country charts with “Single White Female,” the Missouri-born beauty publicly came out as a lesbian in 2010, also releasing her autobiography, Like Me, and critically-acclaimed documentary about her coming-out process, Wish Me Away. She married Sony Music Entertainment’s Director of Marketing, Lauren Blitzer in 2011 and gave birth to their twin sons in 2013. Living life publicly as a gay country singer, she knew she’d both lose old fans and gain new ones. But the question was whether fan support would show itself in the form of music sales.

“I knew I had new LGBT fans or straight-ally fans after I came out,” she says. “But those people don’t always translate into people who want to buy your records. They’ll hit the ‘like’ button your Facebook page because they like that you’re living an authentic life, but a lot of them will say, ‘But I hate country music. I’m not going to buy her record, but it’s cool that she came out.’ I wasn’t sure who I had left. I was blown away.”

And, as it turns out, “reduced to tears on a daily basis,” by the number of private notes people sent to her not only to thank her for the support her book and film had offered them in their own coming-out experiences but also to reconnect with a favorite artist.

“Some of them were letters [about coming out] but some of them were, ‘I saw you in Albuquerque in 1998′ or, ‘I talked to you in a truck stop in Arizona in ’96.’ These were letters from fans who know who I am and they still want a record from me. It was pretty great.”

With about half of the record already written, Wright looks to mid-2015 as the potential release date for the new project. And in spite of her having moved to New York City and becoming a wife, mother and prominent activist for the LGBT community, the record will remain rooted in country music.

“I had somebody ask me, ‘Why don’t you just go pop?’ I said, ‘That’s not me. I don’t want to be a pop artist. I want to be an artist that can be 60 years old sitting on stage at the Ford Theater at the Country Music Hall of Fame telling stories and singing songs that would be appropriate for a 60-year-old woman. I mean, we all want to be Emmylou Harris or Loretta Lynn, don’t we?”

Having also been asked the rather odd question, “Will this record be gay,” Wright says she has explained that “it will be gay by nature that I am gay. But I won’t be singing about anything different than I’ve ever sung about before. The way I made records and wrote songs was perhaps the only way I ever felt authentic in my life. Even through being closeted, when I sang ‘Single White Female’… I’m trying to tell a great story.”

As an example, Wright points to a song on her first album, 1994′s Woman in the Moon, called “The Last Supper,” about a woman who prepares one final meal for her husband before she walks out on him. “Everyone knew I hadn’t been married before, but everyone took it on good authority that I was singing a song about a man and a wife. As I’ve said many times, I’m pretty sure Johnny Cash never shot a man in Reno just to watch him die. So, all of my pronouns in my songs won’t be ‘she’ and ‘her.’ I’m going to be singing songs about stories that American people can relate to. Most of us in America in country music, whether we’re gay, straight or bisexual, we really are about family and faith and country.”

Article source: http://www.rollingstone.com/music/features/chely-wright-new-album-kickstarter-20141029

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$100 Million ‘Phil Collins Alamo Collection’ in the Works

October 29th, 2014 · Guitar

By Ryan Reed |
October 29, 2014

Remember The Alamo – and the generosity of Phil Collins. According to Reuters, the pop-rock-prog legend has donated a significant chunk of his famed Alamo artifact collection to a new museum planned for the historic tourist attraction in San Antonio, Texas. The $100 million “Phil Collins Alamo Collection” will house a number of rare items – including a rifle (one of four remaining in existence) owned by soldier-frontiersman Davy Crockett, a fringed leather pouch carried by Crockett and an original Bowie knife which Jim Bowie had in his possession during the 1836 battle between Texas settlers and the Mexican Army. 

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“When I got older and became successful, I decided to spend my money on original items from the Alamo rather than on Ferraris,” Collins joked during a news conference hosted across the street from the Alamo, in front of a temporary storage building for the items. “This completes the journey for me. . . These artifacts are coming home.” Collins’ collection is believed to be the largest of its kind, with over 200 total items.  

Land Commissioner Jerry Patterson accepted the donation, adding that, in January, a measure will be introduced into Texas legislature to declare Collins an “Honorary Texan.” 

The singer-drummer first announced plans for the museum during a June press conference, explaining that his obsession with the battle began when he was a child in London, watching the Disney miniseries Davy Crockett. “I’ve had a love affair with this place since I was about five years old,” Collins said. ”It was something that I used to go and play in the garden with my soldiers.”

The former Genesis frontman isn’t donating his entire collection – he plans to keep a number of items at his Switzerland home, partly because his nine-year-old son has also become interested in the Alamo. At the earlier press conference, he emphasized his plans to continue collecting, adding, “Once I’ve lived with whatever I buy for a month, I’ll ship it over here.”

Collins’ Alamo fascination runs so deep, he even authored the 2012 book The Alamo and Beyond: A Collector’s Journey. He also discussed his historical passion during an interview with Rolling Stone. “I started drumming around the same time I came across this part of American history,” he said. “But there seemed to be a way forward playing drums. There didn’t seem to be a way forward being fascinated by a piece of history. . . I’ve bought pretty much every book ever written about the Alamo, and I talk to my friends that I’ve made over the past 15, 20 years. It’s just a constant learning and fascinating thing for me.”

Article source: http://www.rollingstone.com/music/news/100-million-phil-collins-alamo-collection-in-the-works-20141029

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Luna Reunite After Decade-Long Hiatus, Plan 2015 Tour Dates

October 29th, 2014 · Guitar

By Kory Grow |
October 28, 2014

Indie rockers Luna broke up in 2004, but on Tuesday, the group announced a reunion with tour dates in 2015. Frontman Dean Wareham announced the news on Twitter, simply saying, “10 years since the last Luna show; we are planning a short Spanish tour for April 2015.” So far, the group has booked seven dates in Spain, but Wareham said that Luna will play New York City, as well as a few other U.S. dates, later in the year.

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In their initial 13-year run, Luna honed a moody, introspective sound that owed a debt to influences like the Velvet Underground, for whom they opened up on a European reunion tour, and Television, whose Tom Verlaine made a guest appearance on their 1995 album Penthouse.

The news of the group’s reunion comes almost exactly 10 years to the day after the release of the group’s final album, Rendezvous, which came out on October 26th, 2004. The group, which Wareham formed in the early Nineties after the demise of dream rockers Galaxie 500, announced its breakup about a week before the record came out. The group played its final gig in February 2005.

“Anyone who has ever been in a band knows why,” Wareham said at the time. “This is what bands do. There was no incident, no fight or anything like that. We’ve been around for a long time. If you look at the other bands that stay together this long, they are usually making millions of dollars.”

After the group’s breakup, Wareham and the band’s bassist, Britta Phillips, put out three albums and toured. The couple married around the time they recorded their Back Numbers record, which came out in 2007. Dean and Britta have continued to tour and, most recently, Wareham put out the solo album Dean Wareham, which My Morning Jacket’s Jim James produced and featured Phillips in the band, this past April.

Luna Spanish Tour Dates:

April 17 – Gijón, SP @ Gijón Sound Festival
April 18 – Santander @ Escenario Santander
April 20 – Madrid @ Teatro Lara
April 21 – Cádiz @ Aulario la Bomba
April 22 – Valencia @ La Rambleta
April 24 – Zaragoza @ Centro de Las Armas
April 25 – San Sebastián @ Intxaurrondo

Article source: http://www.rollingstone.com/music/news/luna-reunite-after-decade-long-hiatus-plan-2015-tour-dates-20141028

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