Among the more headstrong of the new songs Prince played during his recent two-night stand at the City National Grove of Anaheim was "Fixurlifeup," in which the Purple One looks forward to a time "when the leaders learn how to follow" and proclaims that a "girl with a guitar is 12 times better than another crazy band of boys."
Now Prince has released a music video for the tune, a guitar-heavy garage-rock jam with support by the legend's current backing trio, 3rd Eye Girl. It's the first product of a recently sealed deal between Prince and L.A.-based Kobalt Music Group, which plans to market and distribute material by him and his associates.
The video also provides a glimpse at the kind of gigs Prince and 3rd Eye Girl have been playing on the brief North American tour that brought them to Anaheim earlier this month and which concludes Saturday night in St. Paul, Minn. Media outlets (including The Times) were barred from photographing the concerts, a...
When John Fogerty's wife, Julie, suggested over dinner one night that he revisit his catalog of Creedence Clearwater Revival songs with artists he admires today, he wasn't about to let the music take a back seat to technology.
"I realize nowadays with the ease of digital that a lot of stuff gets made by emailing files around," said Fogerty, who turns 68 on Tuesday, the same day his new album, "Wrote a Song for Everyone," is released and he headlines a show at the El Rey Theatre. "I wanted it all to take place in the same room, kinda old school, as it were. And that's how it happened. And since we're in the same room at the same time, you're a collaborator even if you don't realize it."
Among those who joined Fogerty in various studios for his new album: rockers Dave Grohl and Foo Fighters, Bob Seger and Kid Rock, country stars Brad Paisley, Miranda Lambert, Keith Urban and Alan Jackson, young indie-rock groups My Morning Jacket and Dawes and R&B-pop star Jennifer Hudson.
Jewel may have come from the Lilith Fair generation of female singers and songwriters, but her latest move pays homage to a much earlier era of guitar-playing troubadours.
The 39-year-old is taking on the role of June Carter Cash in "Ring of Fire," a Lifetime movie scheduled to premiere Monday. The film, directed by Allison Anders, throws the spotlight squarely on the woman casual music fans may know only as Johnny Cash's wife.
It's no easy task since Jewel is following in the footsteps of Reese Witherspoon, who won an Oscar for lead actress in the 2005 biopic "Walk the Line."
"I knew this was a big undertaking," Jewel said from her home in Stephenville, Texas. "I mean, Reese won an Oscar for playing June. That set a real high mark. But this movie isn't the Johnny-and-June love story like 'Walk the Line.' This is June's story. I'd seen a bunch of scripts for different roles, but not any that were really interesting to me. When I read...
The disagreement between Stone Temple Pilots and Scott Weiland over whether Weiland is still the band's frontman appeared to have been settled last weekend when the grunge-era hitmakers took the stage at KROQ-FM's Weenie Roast with Chester Bennington of Linkin Park on lead vocals.
Not according to Weiland.
"Like everybody else out there, I read about my band, Stone Temple Pillots, and their recent performance this past weekend with a new singer," Weiland wrote in a "letter to my fans" posted Friday on his website. "To tell you the truth, it took me by surprise. And it hurt."
In February the three other members of Stone Temple Pilots -- guitarist Dean DeLeo, bassist Robert DeLeo and drummer Eric Kretz -- issued a tersely worded statement in which the band said it had "officially terminated Scott Weiland."
The firing followed a period of reported turmoil within the band, which had reunited in 2008 and toured heavily in support of a self-titled 2010 album.
The first lyrics on Cold War Kids' newest album, "Dear Miss Lonelyhearts," sum up the band's predicament right now. "I was supposed to do great things," Nathan Willett howls over a speedy piano plink. "I wasn't raised to shoot for fame, I had the safety on."
Cold War Kids have indeed done some great things, rising out of L.A.'s mid-'00s indie scene with an arty take on barroom blues-rock that made them international stars. They made a real pivot with a summery, pop-inclined 2011 album, "Mine Is Yours," and hired producer Jacquire King to shine up their sound in hopes of pivoting to mainstream success.
Whatever bar they'd set for that, they didn't quite clear it. The album earned mixed reviews while alienating some longtime fans, and despite a winning Coachella set in 2011, their big grab at the rock-star brass ring came up a little short.
But let's not overcorrect here. "Dear Miss Lonelyhearts" is purposefully opposed to the ethic of "Mine Is Yours." It's an adventurous yet immediate...
Blake Shelton’s benefit concert for Oklahoma is set for May 29.
The singer announced that he was working with NBC to quickly organize a telethon in wake of the powerful tornado that ripped through central Oklahoma on Monday.
Shelton’s benefit, "Healing in the Heartland: Relief Benefit Concert," will air live from the Chesapeake Energy Arena in Oklahoma City on NBC and other NBCUniversal networks Style, G4, Bravo, E! and CMT on either a live or delayed basis.
The country superstar has already tapped his wife, Miranda Lambert, and friends and fellow Oklahoma natives Reba McEntire and Vince Gill to perform. Additional guests are expected to be announced.
"Everyone has their way to help, and mine as an entertainer is to perform to help raise money and awareness for this tragedy," Shelton said in a statement. "This is why I want to do this special, and especially hold it in Oklahoma City, which is near ground zero."
With more than a dozen artists participating on “Wrote a Song for Everyone,” including the Foo Fighters, Kid Rock, Brad Paisley, Miranda Lambert, Tom Morello and Jennifer Hudson, there were far more stories to tell than we could cover in one article.
One I didn’t touch on in Sunday’s story is the album’s closing track, “Proud Mary,” possibly Fogerty’s best known and most popular song. The new version features Jennifer Hudson and New Orleans musicians Allen Toussaint and the Rebirth Brass Band.
I knew of Fogerty’s affinity for all things New Orleans, having spotted him hanging out several times at the annual New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival when I...
The afternoon light leaked through the open doors of the Hollywood Palladium on Thursday. But inside the venue, everything was lighted red enough to resemble a reign in blood.
The thousands-deep line outside for Thursday’s memorial for founding Slayer guitarist Jeff Hanneman (who died earlier this month at age 49) proved that the service was more than just appropriate -- for metal fans, it was necessary. Few bands command the kind of loyalty that the Southland metal pioneers have enjoyed for three decades. Drawing your first Slayer logo in a school notebook is practically a rite of passage, and learning Hanneman’s jackhammer guitar riffs is a sacrament of angry teenagedom.
The Hanneman and Slayer families are surely going through their own private grief. But for a few hours Thursday, the tribe of metal fans came together for a final rowdy goodbye.
“This is the diva drama. 'Cause I wake up at this hour — I don’t mean I wake up, I mean I go to sleep, it's kind of the same thing” she rambled before her gown popped open from behind.
“I love you, Donatella [Versace], but it popped, darling. I just wanted to change the ensemb," she mused. Carey then turned around to show the plunge of the back of her gown and was seconds away from...
The last time local government took a close interest in electronic dance music around downtown L.A., the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum Commission banned raves at the facility after a teenage girl's drug death at Electric Daisy Carnival in 2010.
The ban was eventually lifted, yet the incident was a dark cloud over dance music's future on public property in the heart of L.A. But that tune will soon change.
Starting Sunday, a new monthly series produced by the owners of the Fashion District's Pattern Bar will bring sophisticated underground dance artists to Grand Park, one of the city's most significant and idyllic new public spaces.
"This is an opportunity for our genre and community to show proper citizenship," said Eduardo Castillo, co-owner of Pattern Bar and organizer of the Sunday Sessions series. "It sets a new precedent if we all do this responsibly."
Over the last two years, Pattern Bar — Castillo's urbane, Venezuelan-accented venture with chef...
Consider an all-guitar jazz quartet and it's easy for your mind to conjure images of fingers burning up and down fretboards with the kind of mind-scrambling fireworks that've made heroes out of Pat Metheny and John McLaughlin.
Although those approaches to guitar music aren't necessarily wrong, Anthony Wilson offers something more understated with his Seasons quartet. Assembled after being commissioned by guitar maker John Monteleone, the quartet of Wilson, Julian Lage, Chico Pinheiro and Steve Cardenas debuted at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in 2011 with a concert that became a split CD/DVD release that same year.
What's most inviting about the album isn't the technical prowess on display, although there's certainly no shortage of that. It's the lush simplicity of the sound of wood, resonance and steel in the hands of four masterful musicans and collaborators, who uncover music that rests between thoughtful chamber-jazz and the sort of...
If there's a broad failure to the vast majority of popular music in 2013, it's that very often nothing of consequence is being said. This is not an issue for jazz artist Christian Scott.
Which isn't to say that Scott has delved into vocals or the spoken word to get his message across. Though Scott is certainly unafraid to speak his mind in interviews, his instrument remains the trumpet, which can soar, murmur or wail on his two-disc 2012 album "Christian aTunde Adjuah."
Musically referencing American xenophobia ("Jihad Joe"), racial injustice ("Trayvon") and, most often, the plight of his native New Orleans in the shadow of Hurricane Katrina ("New New Orleans," "Danziger"), Scott is a continuation of the thread of social consciousness that has long run through the heart of jazz.
The last time Metallica was at the center of a high-profile Hollywood movie -- in Joe Berlinger and Bruce Sinofsky's revealing 2004 documentary "Some Kind of Monster" -- the members of the influential heavy-metal outfit spent most of their time on-screen talking about their feelings.
Judging by a trailer released this week, that appears not to be the case with "Through the Never," a new Metallica concert film due in theaters on Sept. 27.
The movie, directed by Nimród Antal of "Predators" and "Kontroll" semi-fame, combines footage shot last year at several Metallica concerts in Vancouver, Canada, with a fictional narrative in which one of the band's crew members (played by Dane DeHaan) "is sent out on a mission during Metallica's ... set," according to a release. "While on this mission, he unexpectedly has his life turned completely upside down."
What does Bruce Springsteen mean to you? That’s the basis of a new documentary built around the legendary rocker’s influence on his fans.
Executive produced by famed auteur Ridley Scott, "Springsteen & I" will feature videos and photographs from fans offering testimony on how the Boss and his music affected their lives. The film will be screened in theaters on July 22.
In a trailer uploaded to the performer's YouTube account on Thursday, Springsteen can be seen consoling a fan who just got dumped, singing with an Elvis impersonator and dancing with fans onstage. The teaser also features a few vignettes of some rather rabid fans, including one woman mentioning how she used to hold a picture of the rocker up to her baby and utter “Daddy" (that couldn't have ended well).
Directed by music video director Baillie Walsh, the documentary will also include previously unreleased concert footage and his music. Springsteen and label, Columbia...
On its surface, the arithmetic is baffling. Paris Hilton plus Cash Money Records equals … sweet, sweet music?
The jury is still out on whether the former “Simple Life” star’s record deal and current EDM-accented musical direction will yield a bonanza of Top 40 hits à la label mates Lil Wayne and Nicki Minaj. But for Paris completists, Hilton’s alignment with hip-hop’s imprint du jour appears to be a textbook move.
As far back as 2006, the professional party girl was claiming fealty to hip-hop’s “from the streets to the penthouse” ethos and contextualizing her achievements as an entrepreneur (with a lucrative perfume line, endorsement of champagne in a can and signature nightclub chain) like some kind of blond bombshell version of Jay-Z.
“I’ve worked my ass off. I have done things no heiress has,” Hilton told your humble Pop & Hiss correspondent that year. “I’ve done it all...
Here’s an aspiring musician whose major label debut won’t have to struggle with the budget constraints most first-timers are faced with.
“Everywhere at Once” is the introductory effort from Paul Allen and the Underthinkers. Allen, in case you’re wondering, is the same Paul Allen who back in 1975 created a little venture called Microsoft with his pal Bill Gates.
Allen, who also owns the Portland Trailblazers basketball team, has always been a music aficionado and an accomplished amateur guitarist who used a chunk of his Microsoft fortune to start the Experience Music Project museum in Seatte.
Now he’s assembled a debut album with his band, with a lot of help from other friends, including Heart’s Ann and Nancy Wilson, the Pretenders’ Chrissie Hynde, Joe Walsh, Los Lobos’ David Hidalgo, Derek Trucks, Doyle Bramhall II and Neville Brothers scion Ivan Neville.
Carole King has amassed some impressive accolades in her storied five-decade career. Now she can add the Library of Congress Gershwin Prize for Popular Song to her mantle.
The prolific singer-songwriter was feted with the songwriting award — named after American composers George and Ira Gershwin — at a White House concert Wednesday night.
President Obama presented the 71-year-old with this year's award during a tribute concert for the singer in the East Room of the White House. King performed her hits, as did Gloria Estefan, Billy Joel, Jesse McCartney, Emeli Sande, James Taylor and Trisha Yearwood.
Ripples continue from the death on Monday of Doors keyboardist Ray Manzarek, including a night on VH1 Classic devoted to the band’s music and the rescheduling of an event with Doors drummer John Densmore. Manzarek died at a hospital in Germany at age 74 after a long battle with bile duct cancer.
Thrusday night, VH1 Classic has lined up “The Doors: Live at the Bowl,” the concert the quartet played July 5, 1968, at the Hollywood Bowl. It will be shown at 8 p.m. PDT and EDT, and repeated at 10:30 p.m.
After the first airing of the Bowl concert, VH1 Classic will show the one-hour documentary “Classic Albums: ‘The Doors.’” a look at the making of the band’s 1967 debut album, featuring interviews with Manzarek, Densmore and guitarist Robby Krieger.
"Modern Vampires of the City," the adventurous new album by New York's Vampire Weekend, debuted at No. 1 on the Billboard 200 this week, reflecting sales of 134,000 copies, more than the band has sold before in a single week.
Recorded partly in L.A. with producer Ariel Rechtshaid, the disc is Vampire Weekend's second chart-topper following "Contra," which bowed with 124,000 copies sold in 2010. It's also, as Billboard noted, the first indie-label release to hit the top spot this year.
George Strait came in at No. 2 with "Love Is Everything," the country star's first album since he announced last year that he planned to stop touring after the conclusion of his current Cowboy Rides Away trek. "Love Is Everything" topped Billboard's country tally, earning Strait his 25th No. 1 there.
Behind Vampire Weekend and Strait, Demi Lovato's "Demi" took third place, one spot better than she did with 2011's "Unbroken."
News that Paris Hilton had signed a record deal with Cash Money Records heated up the blogosphere Wednesday.
Many thought it was a joke that the label that made superstars out of Lil Wayne, Drake and Nicki Minaj would sign the heiress. But it's true.
The 32-year-old is plotting her return to music with the popular hip-hop label. With online commenters burning up Twitter wondering how it happened, Cash Money co-founder Bryan “Birdman” Williams said the deal was a no-brainer.
“She’s always supported us, and we’ve supported her. It was a friendship first,” Williams told Pop & Hiss. “She played us music, and I was taken aback. I was impressed by her music, and I didn’t know she could sing so well.”
Hilton broke the news to Showbiz 411 while in Cannes, France, that she had signed with the label to issue her sophomore record; Williams took to Twitter to confirm.
Blake Shelton is working with NBC to organize a benefit concert in the wake of the powerful tornado that ripped through Oklahoma on Monday.
"We'll know more about it in the next 24 hours," Shelton told Billboard after Tuesday's taping of "The Voice." "I'm hoping it will raise a lot of money. Obviously, it will be televised and will happen really quickly."
The country star is a native of Ada, Okla., about 75 miles south of where the tornado struck.
Monday's twister, which produced winds topping 200 mph, killed at least 24 people and devastated the city of Moore. Meteorologists have given the storm an EF-5 intensity rating -- the highest severity for a tornado.
Salsa dancers know that it's crucial to have a partner with good rhythmic chemistry. The same could be said of salsa music, a flamboyant genre that can be picky about sharing the floor with others.
So it's noteworthy that at the 15th annual L.A. Salsa Congress in downtown Los Angeles, which begins Wednesday and runs through Sunday at the Westin Bonaventure hotel, salsa will yield the spotlight at times to its more rustic Caribbean musical cousin, bachata.
A guitar-driven dance music derived from Cuban bolero that first blossomed in the Dominican Republic in the 1960s after the fall of the Trujillo dictatorship, bachata lately has soared in popularity across many parts of Latin America and the United States. The bachata master Joan Soriano will perform at the L.A. Salsa Congress, and movie director Adam Taub's 2009 documentary about Soriano, "The Duke of the Bachata," will be screened. One of the hotel's dance salons also will be devoted to bachata.