Vince Welnick (Grateful Dead)

grateful_dead_-_psychedelic_bears_tapestryVince Welnick, the current keyboard player with the Grateful Dead was born 21 February 1951 and being a big fan I thought I would write something. The Grateful Dead were fomed in 1965 in the San Francisco Bay Area and were known for their unique and eclectic style, which fused elements of rock, folk, bluegrass, blues, reggae, country, improvisational jazz, psychedelia, and space rock, and for live performances of long musical improvisation. These various influences were distilled into a diverse and psychedelic whole that made the Grateful Dead “the pioneering Godfathers of the jam band world.” They were ranked 57th in the issue The Greatest Artists of all Time by Rolling Stone magazine. They were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1994 and their Barton Hall Concert at Cornell University was added to the Library of Congress’s National Recording Registry.The founding members of the Grateful Dead were Jerry Garcia (guitar, vocals), Bob Weir (guitar, vocals), Ron “Pigpen” McKernan (keyboards, harmonica, vocals), Phil Lesh (bass, vocals), and Bill Kreutzmann (drums). Lesh was the last member to join the Warlocks before they became the Grateful Dead; he replaced Dana Morgan Jr., who had played bass for a few gigs. With the exception of McKernan, who died in 1973, the core of the band stayed together for its entire 30-year history.Phil Lesh and Jerry Garcia were brought together by Gert Chiarito in 1964 to perform on The Midnight Special.

Grateful_Dead_Tapestry_72004DThe Grateful Dead began their career as the Warlocks, a group formed in early 1965 from the remnants of a  jug band called Mother McCree’s Uptown Jug Champions, although The band changed its name after finding out that another band of the same name had signed a recording contract.The name “Grateful Dead” was chosen from a dictionary, The definition being that there was “the soul of a dead person, or his angel, showing gratitude to someone who, as an act of charity, arranged their burial.”One of the group’s earliest major performances in 1967 was at the Avalon Ballroom by the San Francisco Hare Krishna temple. The Grateful Dead performed at the event along with the Hare Krishna founder Bhaktivedanta Swami, poet Allen Ginsberg, bands Moby Grape and Big Brother and the Holding Company with Janis Joplin, donating proceeds to the Krishna temple.The band’s first LP, The Grateful Dead, was released in 1967. 1970 included tour dates in New Orleans, Louisiana, where the band performed at The Warehouse for two nights. Mickey Hart quit the Grateful Dead in February 1971, leaving Kreutzmann once again as the sole percussionist. Hart rejoined the Grateful Dead for good in October 1974. Tom “TC” Constanten was added as a second keyboardist from 1968 to 1970, while Pigpen also played various percussion instruments and sang. Following the Grateful Dead’s “Europe ’72″ tour, Pigpen’s health had deteriorated to the point that he could no longer tour with the band. His final concert appearance was June 17, 1972 at the Hollywood Bowl, in Los Angeles;] he died in March, 1973 of complications from alcohol abuse.

grateThe Grateful Dead formed their own record group, Grateful Dead Records & Later that year, they released their next studio album, the jazz influenced Wake of the Flood. It became their biggest commercial success thus far.During the late 1970s the band went back to the studio, and the next year released another album, Grateful Dead from the Mars Hotel.Not long after that album’s release however, the Grateful Dead decided to take a hiatus from live touring so that its members could focus on their solo careers. This hiatus was short lived, though, as they resumed touring in 1976, and released another album Terrapin Station in 1977.During the 1980s the bands sound transformed. Sadly though Garcia’s health began to decline. His drug habits caused him to lose his liveliness on stage. After kicking his drug habit in 1985, he slipped into a diabetic coma for several days in July 1986. After he recovered, the band released In the Dark in 1987, which resulted as their best selling studio album release, and also produced their only top-10 chart single, Touch of Grey.. Inspired by Garcia’s improved health and a successful album, the band’s energy and chemistry peaked in the late 1980s and 1990. Performances were vigorous and as a result, every show exceeded its maximum audience capacity. The band’s “high time” came to a sudden halt when Mydland died after the summer tour in 1990. So Vince Welnick, joined on keyboards and vocals and Bruce Hornsby joined the band as the pianist and vocals on September 15, 1990.The fans of the Grateful Dead, some of whom followed the band from concert to concert for years, are known as “Deadheads” and are known for their dedication to the band’s music. From 2003 to 2009 former members of the Grateful Dead, along with other musicians, toured as The Dead and The Other Ones. There are many contemporary incarnations of the Dead, with the most prominent touring acts being Furthur and Phil Lesh & Friends and though both Jerry Carcia and Brent Mydland have passed away, the music lives on.

World Day of Social Justice

World Day of Social Justice is observed annually on 20th February and is designed to tackle issues such as poverty, exclusion and unemployment, and promote  fundamental values such as social development, social justice, solidarity, harmony and equality in order to acheive a “a society for all”. It was concieved by various governments, who made a commitment to the creation of a framework for action to promote social justice at national, regional and international levels. They also pledged to promote the equitable distribution of income and greater access to resources through equity and equality and opportunity for all.  The governments recognized as well that economic growth should promote equity and social justice and that “a society for all” must be based on social justice and respect for all human rights and fundamental freedoms

Yulia Volkova (t.A.T.u)

Best known for being  a member of Russian Girl group t.A.T.u, (who were Last seen performing at the opening ceremony of the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi) the Russian singer, recording artist and actress Yulia Olegovna Volkova (Russian: Юлия Олеговна Волкова was born 20 February 1985. t.A.T.u featured Yulia and Lena Katina and The group’s first single “All the Things She Said” topped the charts in countries including Australia, Austria, Denmark, Italy, Japan, New Zealand, Switzerland, the United States, and the United Kingdom, but also received controversy due to Julia and Lena kissing onscreen. The group recorded three studio albums in English, including their best-to-date studio album200 km/h in the Wrong Lane, three Russian albums, and four compilation albums. The group also worked on alternative projects, including a 2011 film You and I, and opened a Russian-based record label entitled T.A. Music. Suddenly, in March 2011, t.A.T.u.’s management released a press release officially stating that t.A.T.u. had split, due to conflict and problems surrounding the members. Julia signed a solo career with Gala Records in June 2011, and released her debut single “All Because of You” in October 2011.The song was also released in a Russian-language version under the title “Сдвину мир” (I’ll Change the World). on July 2012, it was announced by her management that Julia would release her debut worldwide single entitled “Didn’t Wanna Do It”, which was released on August 21, 2012. She is also currently recording her first studio album.

Volkova was born on 20 February 1985 in Moscow, Russian SFSR At the age of 6, Volkova enrolled in music school and began learning how to play the piano. When she was 9, Volkova became a member of Russia’s children’s chorus Neposedi, from which she would later meet fellow t.A.T.u. singer, Lena Katina. atage 11, Volkova transferred to a school fostering artistic talent, and three years later left Neposedi to join t.A.T.u. She has insisted that she was banned from Neposedi for misbehaving, but Neposedi representatives deny this, saying that she simply graduated as all of their members did at a certain age. Creator and former-manager of t.A.T.u., Ivan Shapovalov formulated the selling image of t.A.T.u. in order to capitalize on the common fascination and fantasy of school-girl lesbians, and appeal to a diverse fan base.

t.A.T.u. soon became the most successful Russian group of all time, leaving a number of hits behind them, such as “All the Things She Said”, “Not Gonna Get Us” and “All About Us”. They also took part in Eurovision Song Contest 2003 and finished third with “Ne Ver’, Ne Boysia.” They recorded three English-language studio albums: 200 km/h in the Wrong Lane,Dangerous and Moving, and Waste Management. Three Russian language studio albums were put out: 200 po VstrechnoyLyudi Invalidy, and Vesyoyle Ulybki. It was announced in March 2011 that t.A.T.u. was officially disbanded. The duo celebrated their twelve years together, and released two remix albums entitled Waste Management Remixes pt. 1 andWaste Management Remixes pt. 2. It was announced they were the last albums together, as they would both would pursue solo careers.

Many Russian websites started claiming Yulia had left t.A.T.u. to go solo in March 2009. The official blog rejected the claims that Yulia had quit, but stated that both of them would be doing separate solo projects from now on and t.A.T.u was no longer a full-time job. However, in 2010 the duo released a video in which they said they were still together and were planning more songs. Confusingly It was also announced that after the production of t.A.T.u.’s album Waste Management, t.A.T.u. would no longer be a full-time project and it was later announced that Julia and Lena would both be working on solo careers. Julia is currently working on her solo album inMoscow and Los Angeles. Julia has said that she has introduced a new genre entitled “Sex Rock”. As Julia explained “I’m not going to go from t.A.T.u. style to R&B, I like rock. It’s going to be sexy, electric, but I don’t want to give away all the secrets just yet.”

On 16 August 2011, Volkova announced on her website, as well as on Facebook and Twitter, she has officially signed with Russian Label Gala Records, subsidiary of EMI records. She has also stated that her new single to prepare for her debut album, “All Because Of You/Sdvinu Mir” will be released in late August with accompanying video. 2 weeks after the announcement, her official site reported that Julia will be returning to the studio to complete an additional recording session for “All Because Of You/Sdvinu Mir,” and that the single will be officially released in October. For a third time, the single release was postponed until November. Though fans hoped for “All Because of You” to premiere on the radio prior to Julia’s South American tour, it was planned to premiere during Julia’s first performance in Rio de Janeiro on 17 November 2011. The Russian version “Sdvinu Mir” premiered on Lenta.ru on 11 November 2011. This is Volkova’s first debut single for her upcoming untitled debut album the song was recorded in Sweden and was produced by Niclas Molinder, Joacim Persson, Johan Fransson, Tim Larsson and Tobias Lundgren.

On 1 March 2012, it was reported by the press that Volkova was one of the 25 artists in the Russian final selection who would be competing in order to represent Russia at the Eurovision Song Contest 2012 in Baku, Azerbaijan. Russian broadcaster RTR later confirmed her participation among the other 25. She entered the competition together with Eurovision 2008 winner Dima Bilan as a duo with the song “Back To Her Future”. They finished in second place with 29.25 points behind the winning entry, “Party for Everybody” by Russian ethno-pop band Buranovskiye Babushki, with 38.51 points .Since March 2012, Volkova and her management have been quiet. On July 11, 2012, Volkova’s Facebook administrator announced on their t.A.T.u. Facebook page that Volkova is unable to release any updates or news without her and her representatives’ confirmation. however, that same day, the administrator announced on their t.A.T.u. Facebook page that Volkova is finishing her second single from the album entitled “Didn’t Wanna Do It,” due in July 2012. It was confirmed it would be released as her first worldwide single. Volkova released two music videos, for “I Didn’t Wanna Do It” and “Back To Her Future” (Russian version “Lyubov-Suka” with Dima Bilan). Both videos topped the Ello music video charts. “Lyubov-Suka” also reached number 47 in the Russian airplay chart. She recorded a song with Sergio Galoyan titled “Night Of Your Life.” Galoyan released on YouTube the original demo of the track, and asked people to remix it.

they reunited for a performance at the opening ceremony of the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi nd there were rumours of a reunion and a new song. Sadly though No sooner had Lena Katina and Julia Volkova reunited as t.A.T.u. than they just as quickly broke up…again! Alas, according to Lena, it was not meant to be for version 2.0 of the “All The Things She Said” singers. theey have also cancelled the t.A.T.u. promo tour in Slovakia, Czech Republic, Minsk (Belarus) and Moscow.” Reasons for the breakup were cited as incorrect behavior from Julia’s side, making any future collaboration absolutely impossible. including many crude and hurtful statements made about Lena and an ultimatum: in which Yulia declined to participate in t.A.T.u. unlessLena agreed to Yulia’s  demands regarding the creative direction of t.A.T.u. Lena also faced the prospect of Julia, using her close ties to the heads of Channel 1 Russia, to shut down her solo project in Russia

 

Brit Awards 2014 results

WINNERS:

  • British Male Solo Artist – David Bowie
  • British Female Solo Artist  – Ellie Goulding
  • British Group – Arctic Monkeys
  • British Breakthrough Act  – Bastille
  • British Single of the Year Rudimental – Waiting All Night
  • Critics’ Choice – Sam Smith
  • British Global Success – One Direction
  • MasterCard British Album of the Year  – Arctic Monkeys – AM
  • Best Producer – Flood and Alan Moulder
  • International Male – Bruno Mars
  • International Female – Lorde
  • International Group – Daft Punk

 

Kurt Cobain

nirvana-nevermind-album-coverBest known as the lead singer and guitarist of the Seattle grunge band Nirvana, the Late great American singer-songwriter, musician and vocalist Kurt Cobain was born on this day 20 February in 1967. Cobain formed Nirvana with Krist Novoselic in Aberdeen, Washington in 1985 and established it as part of the Seattle music scene, having its debut album Bleach released on the independent record label Sub Pop in 1989. After signing with major label DGC Records, the band found breakthrough success with “Smells Like Teen Spirit” from the second album Nevermind, which was released in 1991, this album also contained many more brilliant songs including “Come as You Are” “In Bloom“ and “Lithium“. A 20th Anniversary edition of the album was also released in 2011 which in addition to the original album also features a second disc full of rarities, Alternative versions, outtakes and accoustic versions and which sounds absolutely fantastic through a decent pair of headphones:D

Following the success of Nevermind, Nirvana was labeled “the flagship band” of Generation X, and Cobain hailed as “the spokesman of a generation”. Cobain however was often uncomfortable and frustrated, believing his message and artistic vision to have been misinterpreted by the public, with his personal issues often subject to media attention. He challenged Nirvana’s audience with its final studio album In Utero (1993). During the last years of his life, Cobain struggled with heroin addiction, illness and depression. He also had difficulty coping with his fame and public image, and the professional and lifelong personal pressures surrounding himself and his wife, musician Courtney Love. On April 8, 1994, Cobain was found dead at his home in Seattle, the victim of what was officially ruled a suicide by a self-inflicted shotgun wound to the head. The circumstances of his death have been a topic of public fascination and debate ever since.

Nirvana, with Cobain as a songwriter, have sold over 25 million albums in the US alone, and over 50 million worldwide. Cobain has been remembered as one of the most iconic rock musicians in the history of alternative music. He was ranked by Rolling Stone as the 12th greatest guitarist and 45th greatest singer of all time, and by MTV as 7th in the “22 Greatest Voices in Music”. In 2006, he was placed at number twenty by Hit Parader on their list of the “100 Greatest Metal Singers of All Time”. Reflecting on Cobain’s death over ten years later, MSNBC’s Eric Olsen wrote, “In the intervening decade, Cobain, a small, frail but handsome man in life, has become an abstract Generation X icon, viewed by many as the ‘last real rock star, a messiah and martyr whose every utterance has been plundered and parsed”.

In 2005, a sign was put up in Aberdeen, Washington, that read “Welcome to Aberdeen – Come As You Are” as a tribute to Cobain. The sign was paid for and created by the Kurt Cobain Memorial Committee, a non-profit organization created in May 2004 to honour Cobain. The Committee planned to create a Kurt Cobain Memorial Park and a youth center in Aberdeen. Because Cobain was cremated and his remains scattered into the Wishkah River in Washington,  many Nirvana fans visit Viretta Park, near Cobain’s former Lake Washington home, to pay tribute. On the anniversary of his death, fans gather in the park to celebrate his life and memory.   In 2006, Cobain took the place of Elvis Presley as the top-earning deceased celebrity, after the sale of the Nirvana song catalogue. Presley reclaimed the spot in 2007. There is also A monument to Cobain in Aberdeen along the Wishkah River, and The monument and bridge have both become popular places for fans to leave tributes.

Gus Van Sant loosely based his 2005 movie Last Days on the events in the final days of Cobain’s life. In January 2007, Courtney Love began to shop the biography Heavier Than Heaven to various movie studios in Hollywood to turn the book into an A-list feature film about Cobain and Nirvana.

Ian Brown (Stone Roses)

Ian Brown , the vocalist with seminal British Alternative Rock bands The Stone Roses was born February 20th 1963. Formed in Manchester in 1983 The Stone Roses were one of the pioneering groups of the Madchester movement that was active during the late 1980s and early 1990s. The band’s most successful lineup consists of vocalist Ian Brown, guitarist John Squire, bassist Gary “Mani” Mounfield, and drummer Alan “Reni” Wren. The band released their debut album, The Stone Roses in 1989. The album was a breakthrough success for the band.

After releasing a much hailed debut album the Stone Roses decided to capitalise on their success by signing to a major label, however their current record label Silvertone would not let them out of their contract,which led to an acrimonious and lengthy legal dispute. they eventually signed a multi-million pound deal with Geffen in 1991, and released their second album Second Coming in 1994. Sadly as a result of this delay, things had moved on and Oasis had arrived on the Manchester Music Scene and and after several lineup changes throughout the supporting tour, The group disbanded Reni going first, followed by Squire.

THE STONE ROSES http://m.youtube.com/watch?v=dJEvF7dPMNM

Then in 2011 Following much intensified media speculation rumours and denial, the band’s four original members – John Squire, Ian Brown, bassist Gary ‘Mani’ Mounfield and drummer Alan ‘Reni’ Wren, called a press conference to announce that the band had reunited and would perform a reunion tour of the world in 2012, including three homecoming shows at Heaton Park in Manchester. These concerts became the fastest selling rock concerts in UK history. After 150,000 tickets for the first two dates sold out just 14 minutes after going on sale. As a result A further date was added and the remaining 75,000 tickets sold out soon afterwards. The band, have also said that it was their intention was to ‘uplift’ the national mood in hard times and that today’s music was ‘boring’ and ‘corporate’. There are also persistent rumours that they are recording a third album, and according to Chris Coghill, the writer of the new film which is set during the Stone Roses 1990 Spike Island show, the band “have at least three or four new tracks recorded.

Ferruccio Lamborghini

lamborghiniMiuraItalian industrialist and Manufacturing magnate Ferruccio Elio Arturo Lamborghini sadly passed away February 20, 1993. Born to grape farmers from the comune of Renazzo di Cento in the Emilia-Romagna region of Northern Italy April 28, 1916, his mechanical know-how led him to enter the business of tractor manufacturing in 1948, when he founded Lamborghini Trattori, which quickly became an important manufacturer of agricultural equipment in the midst of Italy’s post-war economic reform. In 1959, he opened an oil heater factory, Lamborghini Bruciatori, which later entered the business of producing air conditioning equipment.

In 1963 Ferruccio Lamborghini founded Automobili Ferruccio Lamborghini S.p.A. in 1963 in Sant’Agata Bolognese, Italy, with the objective of producing a refined grand touring car to compete with offerings from established marques such as Ferrari. The company’s first models were released in the mid-1960s and were noted for their refinement, power and comfort. Lamborghini gained wide acclaim in 1966 for the Miura sports coupé, which established rear mid-engine, rear wheel drive as the standard layout for high-performance cars of the era.Lamborghini grew rapidly during its first decade, but hard times befell the company when sales plunged in the wake of the 1973 worldwide financial downturn and the 1973 oil crisis. The firm’s lamborghiniCountachownership changed three times after 1973, including a bankruptcy in 1978, before Chrysler Corporation took control in 1987. Unable to operate Lamborghini profitably, Chrysler sold Lamborghini to Malaysian investment group Mycom Setdco and Indonesian group V’Power Corporation in 1994. Lack of success continued through the 1990s, until Mycom Setdco and V’Power sold Lamborghini to the AUDI AG subsidiary of Volkswagen Group on 27 July 1998. Audi’s ownership marked the beginning of a period of stability and increased productivity for Lamborghini. Sales increased nearly tenfold over the course of the 2000s, peaking with record sales in 2007 and 2008. The world financial crisis in the late 2000s negatively affected all luxury car makers worldwide, and caused Lamborghini’s sales to drop nearly 50 percent.Lamborghini’s Sant’Agata Bolognese production facility produces V12 engines and finished automobiles. Lamborghini’s current production vehicles are the V10-powered Gallardo and the V12-powered Aventador. Both production models are available in a variety of regular and limited-edition specifications.

Lamborghini_aventador_lp700In 1969 Lamborghini also founded a fourth company, Lamborghini Oleodinamica, but sold off many of his interests by the late 1970s and retired to an estate in Umbria, where he pursued winemaking. Lamborghini Sadly passed away on February 20, 1993 At 76 years, at Silvestrini Hospital in Perugia after suffering a heart attack fifteen days earlier. Lamborghini is buried at the Monumental Cemetery of the Certosa di Bologna monastery. HoweverAll of Ferruccio Lamborghini’s companies continue to operate today in one form or another. His son, Tonino, designs a collection of clothing and accessories under the Tonino Lamborghini brand. Ferruccio’s daughter, Patrizia Lamborghini, runs the Lamborghini winery on his Umbria estate. A museum that honors Lamborghini’s legacy, the Centro Studi e Ricerche Ferruccio Lamborghini, opened in 2001.