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Richie Sambora (Bon Jovi)

Richie Sambora, American singer-songwriter, guitarist, and producer with rock band Bon Jovi was born 11 July 1959. Originally from Sayreville, New Jersey, Bon Jovi Formed in 1983 and consist of Jon Bon Jovi (John Francis Bongiovi, Jr.), guitarist Richie Sambora, keyboardist David Bryan and drummer Tico Torres. The band’s lineup has remained mostly static during their history, the only exception being the departure of bass player Alec John Such in 1994, who was unofficially replaced by Hugh McDonald.The band

Bon Jovi achieved widespread recognition with their third album, Slippery When Wet, which was released in 1986. Their fourth album New Jersey, was released in 1988, and became just as successful as its predecessor. Eventually Bon Jovi went onto achieve thirteen U.S. Top 40 hits between 1986-1995, including four number-ones including You Give love a Bad Name“”, “Livin on a Prayer“, “Bad Medicine“, and “I’ll Be There for You”. Other hits include Keep the Faith ”Wanted Dead or Alive” ”Bed of Roses” Have a Nice Day and “Always”.

In 2000 Bon Jovi’s single “, It’s My Life“, successfully introduced the band to a younger audience. Bon Jovi has been known to use different styles in their music, which has included country for their 2007 album Lost Highway which debuted at number one on the Billboard 200. The next album, The Circle was released in 2009, reaching number one as well. Throughout their career, the band have released eleven studio albums, three compilation albums and one live album, and have sold 130 million records worldwide. They have performed more than 2,700 concerts in over 50 countries for more than 35 million fans. Bon Jovi was inducted into the UK Music Hall of Fame in 2006. The band was also honored with the Award of Merit at the American Music Awards in 2004, and as songwriters and collaborators, Jon Bon Jovi and Richie Sambora inducted into Songwriters Hall of Fame in 2009 and In 2013 Bon Jovi released the album “About Now”.

Richie Sambora recently parted company with Bon Jovi and has been interviewed about whether he will return. Aside from Bon Jovi, Sambora has also released a number of solo albums including: “Stranger in This Town” in 1991, “Undiscovered Soul” in 1998, and his third, “Aftermath of the Lowdown” In 2012.

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Tommy Ramone

Tommy Ramone, (Thomas Erdelyi) from the punk band the Ramones, sadly died age 62 On 11 July 2014. The Ramones were founded by Guitarist and songwriter Johnny Ramone, (John Cummings) in the New York City neighborhood of Forest Hills, Queens, in 1974. Inspired by Paul McCartney’s use of the name Ramon, All of the band members adopted pseudonyms ending with the surname “Ramone”, though none of them were related. The original members of the band met in and around the middle-class neighborhood of Forest Hills in the New York City borough of Queens. John Cummings and Thomas Erdelyi had both been in a high-school garage band from 1966 to 1967 known as the Tangerine Puppets. They became friends with Douglas Colvin, who had recently moved to the area from Germany, and Jeffrey Hyman, who was the initial lead singer of the glam rock band Sniper, founded in 1972.

The Ramones began taking shape in early 1974, when Cummings and Colvin invited Hyman to join them in a band. The initial lineup featured Colvin on lead vocals and rhythm guitar, Cummings on lead guitar, and Hyman on drums. Colvin, who soon switched from rhythm guitar to bass, was the first to adopt the name “Ramone”, calling himself Dee Dee Ramone. He was inspired by Paul McCartney’s use of the pseudonym Paul Ramon during his Silver Beatles days. Dee Dee convinced the other members to take on the name and came up with the idea of calling the band the Ramones. Hyman and Cummings became Joey and Johnny Ramone.

However Soon after the band was formed, Dee Dee realized that he could not sing and play his bass guitar simultaneously; so Joey became the band’s new lead singer. Dee Dee continued to count off each song’s tempo with his signature rapid-fire shout of “1-2-3-4!” Joey could not sing and play drums simultaneously either and left the position of drummer. While auditioning prospective replacements, Erdelyi often demonstrated how to play the songs. It became apparent that he was able to perform the group’s music better than anyone else, so he joined the band as Tommy Ramone. the Ramones played before an audience for the first time on March 30, 1974, at Performance Studios. The songs they played were very fast and very short. Around this time, a new music scene was emerging in New York centered around two clubs in downtown Manhattan—Max’s Kansas City and, more famously, CBGB (usually referred to as CBGB’s).

The Ramones made their CBGB debut on August 16. Legs McNeil, who cofounded Punk magazine the following year, later described the impact of that performance: “They were all wearing these black leather jackets. And they counted off this song…and it was just this wall of noise…. They looked so striking. These guys were not hippies. This was something completely new.” the band swiftly became regulars at the club, playing there seventy-four times by the end of the year. After garnering considerable attention for their performances—which averaged about seventeen minutes from beginning to end—the group was signed to a recording contract in late 1975 by Seymour Stein of Sire Records. Stein’s wife, Linda Stein, had seen the band play at CBGB; she would later co-manage them along with Danny Fields.By this time, the Ramones were recognized as leaders of the new scene that was increasingly being referred to as “punk”. The group’s unusual frontman had a lot to do with their impact.

The Ramones recorded their debut album, Ramones, 1976. Featuring the song I Don’t Wanna Go Down to the Basement”, Blitzkrieg Bop and I wanna be your boyfriend. The now iconic front cover photograph of the band was taken by Roberta Bayley, a photographer for Punk magazine and it received glowing reviews. However I t wasn’t until they toured England that they began to see the fruits of their labor; a performance at The Roundhouse in London and a club night where The band met members of the Sex Pistols and The Clash introduced them to the burgeoning UK punk rock scene. They played atThe Roxy in Los Angeles the following month, fueling the punk scene and becoming increasingly popular. Their next two albums, Leave Home and Rocket to Russia, were released in 1977. Both were coproduced by Tommy and Tony Bongiovi, the second cousin of Jon Bon Jovi. Leave Home contained the song Pinhead”, which contains the memorable refrain of “Gabba gabba hey!” Rocket to Russia was the band’s next album. Featuring the songs “Sheena Is a Punk Rocker” and “Rockaway Beach”. In 1977, the Ramones recorded It’s Alive, a live concert double album, at theRainbow Theatre, London, which was released in April 1979 (the title is a reference to the 1974 horror film of the same name).

Tommy, left the band in early 1978. But continued as the Ramones’ record producer under his birth name of Erdelyi. His position as drummer was filled by Marc Bell, who had been a member of the early 1970s hard rock band Dust, Wayne County and the Backstreet Boys, and Richard Hell & The Voidoids. Bell became Marky Ramone. The Ramones fourth studio album, Road to Ruin contained the song “I Wanna Be Sedated”,The artwork on the album’s cover was done by Punk magazine cofounder John Holmstrom. The band also made their movie debut in Roger Corman’s Rock ‘n’ Roll High School (1979), renowned producer Phil Spector became interested in the Ramones and produced their 1980 album End of the Century. Pleasant Dreams, the band’s sixth album, was released in 1981. the next album Subterranean Jungle, was released in 1983.

After the release of Subterranean Jungle, Marky was fired from the band due to his alcoholism and replaced by Richard Reinhardt, who adopted the name Richie Ramone. The first album the Ramones recorded with Richie Ramone was Too Tough to Die in 1984 containing the song “Bonzo Goes to Bitburg”; The following year the band recorded their last album with Richie, Halfway to Sanity, Richie left in August 1987, and was replaced by Clem Burke from Blondie, then Dee Dee left the band as they began recording their eleventh studio album, 1989′s Brain Drain. He was replaced by Christopher Joseph Ward (C.J. Ramone), who performed with the band until they disbanded. Dee Dee initially pursued a brief career as a rapper under the name Dee Dee King. In 1995, the Ramones released ¡Adios Amigos!, their fourteenth studio album,and announced plans to disband if it was not successful. They also accepted an offer to appear in the sixth Lollapalooza festival, After the Lollapalooza tour’s conclusion, the Ramones played their final show on August 6, 1996, at the Palace in Hollywood. A recording of the concert was later released on video and CD as We’re Outta Here, which featured several guests including Motörhead’s Lemmy, Pearl Jam’s Eddie Vedder, Soundgarden’s Chris Cornell, and Rancid’s Tim Armstrong and Lars Frederiksen.

The Ramones then disbanded After having performed 2,263 concerts, touring virtually nonstop for 22 years. Sadly a little more than eight years since the breakup, the band’s three founding members had all passed away—lead singer Joey Ramone, guitarist Johnny Ramone in 2004 and bassist Dee Dee Ramone in 2002. Amazingly their only record with enough U.S. sales to be certified gold was the compilation album Ramones Mania. However, recognition of the band’s importance built over the years, and they are now cited in many assessments of all-time great rock music, such as the Rolling Stone list of the 50 Greatest Artists of All Time and VH1′s 100 Greatest Artists of Hard Rock. In 2002, the Ramones were ranked the second-greatest band of all time by Spin magazine, trailing only The Beatles. On March 18, 2002, the Ramones—including the three founders and drummers Tommy and Marky Ramone—were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. In 2011, the group was awarded a Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award.

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Marc Almond

English singer-songwriter and musician. Peter Sinclair “Marc” Almond was born 9 July 1957. As a child, Almond listened to his parent’ record collection, which included his mother’s “Let’s Dance” by Chris Montez and “The Twist” by Chubby Checker, also his father’s collection of jazz including Dave Brubeck and Eartha Kitt. As an adolescent, Almond listened to Radio Caroline and Radio Luxembourg. He also listened to progressive music, blues and rock, Free, Jethro Tull, Van der Graf Generator The Who, and The Doors, and bought the first ever issue of Sounds, because it contained a free poster of Jimmy Page. Almond became a fan of Marc Bolan after hearing him on the John Peel Show, buying the T. Rex single “Ride a White Swan”. From then on Almond “followed everything Marc Bolan did,” Almond was such a fan of Bolan that he adopted the name ‘Marc’ he also discovered the songs of Jacques Brel through Bowie as well as Alex Harvey and Dusty Springfield.

Almond shot to fame in the early 1980s when he began performing and recording With synthpp/New Wave duo Soft Cell. whose hits included “Tainted Love”, “Bedsitter” Say Hello, Wave Goodbye, “What!”, “Soul Inside” and the club hit “Memorabilia”. Soft Cell’s first release was an independent record (funded by David Ball’s mother) entitled “Mutant Moments” via Red Rhino Records in 1980.”Mutant Moments” came to the attention of music entrepreneur Stevo Pearce, who at the time was compiling a “futurist” chart for the music paper Sos which featured young, upcoming and experimental bands of the new wave of electronic sound. He signed the duo to his Some Bizzare label and they enjoyed a string of nine Top 40 hit singles and four Top 20 albums in the UK between 1981-84. They recorded three albums in New York with producer Mike Thorne: Non Stop Erotic Cabaret, Non Stop Ecstatic Dancing and The Art of Falling Apart.

Almond became involved with the New York Underground Art Scene at this time with writer/DJ Anita Sarko, and performed at a number of Art events as well as meeting many New York Art luminaries including Andy Warhol.”Tainted Love”, a cover of a Gloria Jones’ Northern Soul classic was number one in the UK and in many countries over the world and was in the Guinness Book of Records for a while as the record that spent the longest time in the Billboard Top 100 chart in the U.S. It also won the best single award of 1981 at the first Brit Awards. Soft Cell brought an otherwise obscure Northern Soul classic to mass public attention and their version of the song is, to date, the UK’s 59th best selling single of all time, selling over one million copies in the UK.

In 1982, Almond formed Marc and the Mambas as an off-shoot project from Soft Cell. Marc and the Mambas was a loose experimental collective which included Matt Johnson, Steve James Sherlock, Lee Jenkinson, Peter Ashworth, Jim Thirlwell and Annie Hogan, with whom Almond worked later in his solo career. Under the Mambas moniker Almond recorded two albums; Untitled and the seminal double opus Torment and Toreros. He disbanded the collective when it started to feel too much like a regular band.Soft Cell also disbanded in 1984 just before the release of their fourth album, This Last Night In Sodom, though the duo reunited in 2001.Almond’s first proper solo album was Vermin in Ermine, released in 1984. It featured musicians from the Mambas outfit, Annie Hogan, Martin McCarrick and Billy McGee.

This ensemble, known as The Willing Sinners, worked alongside Almond for the subsequent albums Stories of Johnny (1985) from which the title track became a minor hit, and Mother Fist and Her Five Daughters (1987), which was highly acclaimed in reviews, stating that it “embraces classic European cabaret to wonderful effect, more so than any American or English rock album since Bowie’s Aladdin Sane or Lou Reed’s Berlin.” McCarrick left The Willing Sinners in 1987 to join Siouxsie and the Banshees, from which point Hogan and McGee became known as La Magia. Almond released the album The Stars We Are in 1988 which featured Almond’s version of “Something’s Gotten Hold Of My Heart”, which was later re-recorded as a duet with the song’s original singer Gene Pitney and released as a single. The track reached No. 1 in the UK. It also reached number one in Germany and was a major hit in countries around the world. Almond’s other recordings in the 1980s included an album of Brel songs, called Jacques, and an album of dark French chansons originally performed by Juliette Greco, Serge Lama and Léo Ferré, as well as poems by Rimbaud and Baudelaire set to music. This album was released in 1993 as Absinthe (The French Album), and was initially recorded in the late 1980s then finished in Paris in the early 1990s.

Almond’s next album was Enchanted, which spawned the UK Top 30 hit “A Lover Spurned”. A further single from the album, “Waifs and Strays”, was remixed by Dave Ball who was now in the electronic dance band The Grid. In 1991, Soft Cell returned to the charts with a new remix of “Say Hello Wave Goodbye” followed by a re-release of “Tainted Love” (with a new video). The singles were issued to promote a new Soft Cell/Marc Almond compilation album, Memorabilia – The Singles, which collected some of the biggest hits from Almond’s career throughout the previous ten years. Almond then released a new solo album, Tenement Symphony and also the album Fantastic Star recording sessions for the album with John Cale, David Johanson, and Chris Spedding. During recording Almond also spent several weeks attending a treatment centre in Canterbury for addiction. Almond re-invented himsel with a more downbeat and atmospheric electronica album, Open All Night. This featured R&B and trip hop influences, as well as torch songs for which he had become known. The album featured the songs “Black Kiss”, “Tragedy” and “My Love” Plus duets with Siouxsie Sioux and Keli Ali (Sneaker Pimps).

in 2001, Soft Cell reunited briefly and released their first new album in 18 years, Cruelty Without Beauty. Two singles came out of this album, “Monoculture” and a cover of the Frankie Valli’s “The Night”, then In June 2007, Almond released an album of cover songs, Stardom Road. Picked to tell a story of his life and career, the album featured songs as diverse as “I Have Lived” by Charles Aznavour, to “Stardom Road” by Third World War, Frank Sinatra’s “Strangers in the Night”, and “Kitch” by Paul Ryan. The album featured also featured a newly written song. In October 2007, the fashion house Yves Saint Laurent picked Almond’s “Strangers in the Night” to represent their show at London’sFashion Rocks. Almond performed for the event at the Royal Albert Hall.

In 2008 and 2009, Almond toured with Jools Holland throughout the UK as well as guesting at shows by Current 93, Baby Dee and a tribute show to the late folk singer Sandy Denny. In October 2009, Almond released an album titled Orpheus in Exile: Songs of Vadim Kozin which was a tribute to Russian singer Vadim Kozin, who was exiled to the gulags of the Arctic Circleof Russian and comtaimed Romantic ballads and Gypsy songs. In June 2010, Almond released Varieté, an album of crafted personal songs, his first studio album of self-penned songs in almost a decade, and In 2011, Almond released an album Feasting with Panthers. A collaboration with musician and arranger Michael Cashmore. It featured poems of Count Eric Stenbock put to music as well as decadent and homoerotic poems by Jean Genet, Jean Cocteau, Paul Verlaine andRimbaud. Almond also took part in a unique music-theatre work Ten Plagues held at Edinburgh’s Traverse Theatre which was a one man song cycle based on Daniel Defoe’s Journal of the Plague Year (which dates back to 1665), with metaphors of Aids and epidemics, and was a collaboration between Almond, theatre director and designer Stewart Laing, libretto author Mark Ravenhill and composer Conor Mitchell. The show won the Scotman’s Fringe First Award. In 2012, Almond took the role of the Greek Stoic philosopher Seneca in the Paris Théâtre du Châtelet’s experimental rock adaptation of Poppea based on Monteverdi’s original 17th century opera The Coronation of Poppea also starring ex-Libertines Carl Barat, Benjamin Biolay, Fredrika Stahl, Valerie Gabail and Anna Madison.On 9 August 2012, Almond performed at Antony Hegarty’s Meltdown Festival in London’s Southbank. He sang the whole Marc and the Mambas Torment and Toreros album for the first time live. Some of the original musicians in the album also performed with Almond.

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Jim Kerr (Simple Minds)

Jim Kerr, the singer songwiter and keyboard player with Scottish rock band Simple Minds, was born 9th July 1959. Simple minds achieved worldwide popularity from the mid-1980s to the 1990s and are best known for the songs “Don’t You (Forget About me)”, from the soundtrack o theJohn Hughes film The BreakfastClub, “Alive and Kicking” and”Belfast Child”. The band has sold more than 60 million albums since 1979. In 1982 the band’s single “Promised You a Miracle” and the album New Gold Dream were released, containing the songs “Promised You a Miracle”, “Colours Fly, “Somene Somewhere in Summertime”, “Glittering Prize and Catherine Wheel” In February 1984, Sparkle in the Rain, was released containg Waterfront, “Speed Your Love to Me” and “Up on the Catwalk”.

Despite the band’s new-found popularity in the UK and Europe, they remained unknown in the U.S. until the film The Breakfast Club, where Simple Minds were offered the song ‘Don’t You (Forget About me) whoch broke them into the US market almost overnight,In 1988 Simple Minds signed up for Mandela Day, a concert held at Wembley Stadium, London, UK, as an expression of solidarity with the then-imprisoned Nelson Mandela. Bands involved were asked to produce a song especially for the event – Simple Minds was the only act which actually produced one. This was “Mandela Day”, which the band played live on the day (alongside cover versions of “Sun City” with Little Steven and a cover version of Peter Gabriel’s “Biko” on which Gabriel himself took on lead vocals). “Mandela Day” was released on the Ballad Of The Streets EP, Another EP track, “Belfast Child”, was a rewrite of the Celtic folk song “She Moved Through the Fair” (with new lyrics written about the ongoing war in Northern Ireland) and was also an expression of Simple Mind’s support for the campaign for the release of Beirut-held hostage Brian Keenan.

Simple Minds’ next album, Street Fighting Years maintained the band’s growing sense of scale but moved away from the American soul and gospel influences of Once Upon a Time in favour of rock oriented acoustic and folk music-related ingredients. The lyrics were also more directly political covering topics including the Poll Tax, the Soweto townships, the Berlin Wall and the stationing of nuclear submarines on the Scottish coast. Simple Minds then recorded Once Upon a Time which included : “Alive & Kicking”, “Sanctify Yourself”, “Ghostdancing” and “All the Things She Said”. In 1991, Simple Minds returned with , Real Life which included the songs ”See the Lights” They then released the compilation album Glittering Prize in 1992. Simple Minds released the album Good News from the Next World including the songs “She’s a River” and “Hypnotised”. In 1997 Kerr and Burchill played live as part of the Proms tour and played orchestral versions of “Alive And Kicking”, “Belfast Child” and “Don’t You (Forget About Me)” backed by a full orchestra then began working on a brand new Simple Minds album called Cry. Then A 2-CD compilation, The Best of Simple Minds, was released soon afterwards to continue to build commercial momentum.

In 2003 Seen The Lights – A Visual History, the first-ever Simple Minds commercial (double) DVD, was releasd, featuring over four hours and twenty minutes of archive footage plus the majority of the band’s promotional videos. Then In 2004, Simple Minds released a five-CD compilation entitled Silver Box which. comprised previously unreleased demos, radio & TV sessions and various live recordings from 1979 to 1995, and included the long-delayed Our Secrets Are the Same In 2005, Simple Minds released their fourteenth studio album, Black & White 050505, and 2007 saw the band’s 30th anniversary, and a brief tour of Australia & New Zealand as guests of INXS.Simple Minds played the 90th birthday tribute to Nelson Mandela on 27 June 2008 in London’s Hyde Park. The band then undertook a short tour throughout the UK to celebrate their 30th anniversary.

Simple Minds next album, Graffiti Soul, was released on 25 May 2009. Jim Kerr also recorded and released his first solo album Lostboy! AKA Jim Kerr on 17 May 2010 under the name “Lostboy! AKA”. During 2011, Simple Minds embarked on the ‘Greatest Hits Forest Tour’, playing a series of seven dates in woodland locations of England, as part of Forestry Commission Live Music they also visited , Belgium, Portugal, Germany, France, Italy, Switzerland, Ireland, Gibraltar, Belgrade, Serbia IREland and Bad Harzburg. A Simple Minds X5 box set has also been released featuring the 5 first albums over 6 discs, Life in a Day, Real to Real Cacophony, Empires and Dance, Sons and Fascination/Sister Feelings Call and New Gold Dream as well as bonus material on each disc including rare and previously unavailable CD, B-sides and remixes). Simple Minds latest album Big Music Was released in 2018.

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Beck

American singer, songwriter, record producer and multi-instrumentalist Beck Hansen was born July 8, 1970 in Los Angeles. Beck liked hip-hop and folk and began to perform locally at coffeehouses and clubs. He moved to New York City in 1989 and became involved in the city’s small fiery anti-folk movement. Returning to Los Angeles in the early 1990s, he cut his breakthrough single “Loser”, which became a worldwide hit in 1994, and released his first major album, Mellow Gold, the same year. Odelay, with its sonically experimental and lo-fi style. Beck began as a folk musician, switching between country blues, Delta blues and more traditional rural folk music in his teens. He began performing on city buses, often covering Mississippi John Hurt alongside original, sometimes improvisational compositions. He was also in a band called Youthless that hosted Dadaist-inspired freeform events at city coffee shops.

In 1989, Beck went to New York City with little more than eight dollars and a guitar. He spent the summer attempting to find a job and a place to live and eventually began to frequent Manhattan’s Lower East Side where he discovered the East Village’s anti-folk scene’s first wave. Beck became involved in a loose posse of acoustic musicians—including Cindy Lee Berryhill, Kirk Kelly, Paleface, and Lach, headed by Roger Manning—whose raggedness and eccentricity placed them well outside the acoustic mainstream. Inspired by the freedom this gave him and by the local spoken-word performers, Beck began to write free-associative, surrealistic songs about pizza, MTV, and working at McDonald’s, turning mundane thoughts into songs. Beck and Paleface, attended many open mic nights together before Beck returned to his home of Los Angeles in early 1991. Where he worked at a video store in Silver Lake and started performing in arthouse clubs and coffeehouses such as Al’s Bar and Raji’s. In order to keep indifferent audiences engaged in his music, Beck would play in a spontaneous, joking manner. Beck would hop onstage between acts in local clubs and play “strange folk songs”, while sometimes wearing a Star Wars stormtrooper mask. Beck met someone who offered to help record demos in his living room, and he began to pass cassette tapes around.

Beck met Margaret Mittleman, the West Coast’s director of talent acquisitions for BMG Music Publishing, independent record label Bong Load Custom Records. Beck expressed an interest in hip hop, and Rothrock introduced him to Carl Stephenson, a record producer for Rap-A-Lot Records. In 1992, Beck visited Stephenson’s home to collaborate. The result—the slide-sampling hip hop track “Loser” was released in 1993. DJ Chris Douridas played the song on his radio program Morning Becomes Eclectic, and asked to have Beck play live on the air,” Douridas said. “He came in that Friday, rapped to a tape of ‘Loser’ and did his song ‘MTV Makes Me Want to Smoke Crack. Beck performed at the Los Angeles club Cafe Troy to a packed audience and talent scouts from major labels. The song then spread to Seattle through KNDD, and KROQ-FM and Beck was beset with offers from major labels. Beck signed to GEFFEN A&R records. Beck also released the sprawling, 25-track collection of pre-“Loser” recordings titled Stereopathetic Soulmanure in 1994 and also released the the low-budget, genre-blending album Mellow Gold. “Loser” became a huge hit worldwide and Beck was subsequently dubbed “King of Slackers” with Critics, dubbing Loser the essential follow-up to Radiohead’s “Creep” among the disaffected Generation X,

Sadly by the summer of 1994, Beck was struggling and many of his fellow musicians thought he had lost his way with many believing that “Loser” was a “one-hit wonder”. Beck embarked on a world tourAt some concerts, crowds were treated to twenty minutes of reggae or Miles Davis or jazz-punk iterations of “Loser”.[15] At one-day festivals in California, he surrounded himself with an artnoise combo. The drummer set fire to his cymbals; the lead guitarist “played” his char with the strings faced towards his body; and Beck changed the words to “Loser” so that nobody could sing along. However Beck gained the respect of his peers, such as Tom Petty and Johnny Cash, and created an entire wave of bands determined to recapture the Mellow Gold sound.

Beck’s second album Odelay was released in 1996 and was a blend of country, blues, rap, jazz and rock which was inspired by an unfinished studio album Beck first embarked on following the success of “Loser”, chronicling the difficult time he experienced. Beck put together an album of somber, orchestrated folk tunes which could have been a commercial blockbuster along with similarly themed work by Smashing Pumpkins, Nine Inch Nails and Nirvana”. However Beck plucked one song from it “Ramshackle”—and shelved the rest (“Brother” and “Feather In Your Cap” were however later released as B-Sides). Beck was also introduced to the Dust Brothers, producers of the Beastie Boys’ album Paul’s Boutique, whose cut-and-paste, sample-heavy production suited Beck’s vision of a more fun, accessible album. It was another commercial success and critical acclaim. The record produced several hit singles, including “Where It’s At”, “Devils Haircut”, and “The New Pollution”, and was nominated for the Grammy Award for Album of the Year in 1997, winning a Grammy Award for Best Alternative Music Album as well as a Grammy Award for Best Male Rock Vocal Performance for “Where It’s At”. He also contributed “Deadweight” to the soundtrack of the film A Life Less Ordinary.

Beck released his next album Mutations in 1998 which was a far-cry from the cut-and-paste aesthetic of Odelay meant to capture the performance of the musicians live. However it was released against Beck’s wishes so he voided the Record Company contract and they then Counter-sued Beck for breach of contract and he was mired in litigation for years. However Beck was later awarded Best Alternative Music Performance for Mutations at the 42nd Grammy Awards.

Beck’s next album Midnite Vultures was released in 1999 and included hip hop and R&B, influences in the way Al Green and Stax records had done in previous decades. Musicians included bassist Justin Meldal-Johnsen, keyboardist Roger Joseph Manning Jr., and producer-engineers Mickey Petralia and Tony Hoffer plus Dozens of session players including Beck’s father, David Campbell, who played viola and arranged some of the strings. Beck wanted to make an up-tempo album that would be fun to play on tour night after night. Midnite Vultures was accompanied by a world tour. Beck, wanted to return to high-energy performances that had been his trademark as far back as Lollapalooza. Midnite Vultures was nominated for Best Album at the 43rd Annual Grammy Awards.

Sadly In 2000, Beck and his fiancée, stylist Leigh Limon, ended their nine-year relationship and Beck lapsed into a period of melancholy and introspection, during which he wrote some bleak, acoustic-based tracks which appeared on the next album Sea Change which was released in 2002. Music magazine Rolling Stone described it as “the best album Beck has ever made. Sea Change came second on the year’s Pazz & Jop Critics Poll. Beck subsequently toured with The Flaming Lips as Beck’s opening and backing band. During the tour Beck was playful and energetic, sometimes throwing in covers of The Rolling Stones, Big Star, The Zombies and The Velvet Underground.

Following the release of Sea Change, Beck Wanted to change direction, and wrote nearly 35 more songs. Sadly though During his solo tour, these Demo tapes were left backstage during a stop in Washington, D.C., and Beck was never able to recover them. During the recording of Beck’s eighth studio album, Guero, several significant events occurred in his life: his girlfriend, Marissa Ribisi, became pregnant; they were married; their son, Cosimo, was born; and they moved out of Silver Lake. He collaborated with the Dust Brothers again for Guero which was released in 2005 and was notable for their use of high-tech measures to achieve a lo-fi sound. Guero featured the song “E-Pro”. Beck also collaborated with artists 8-Bit and Paza on the Hell Yes, EP. Geffen also released Guerolito, a fully reworked version of Guero featuring remixes by the Beastie Boys’ Ad-Rock, the Dust Brothers’ John King and Boards of Canada. Guerolito combined remixes previously heard as B-sides and new versions of album tracks. A Brief Overview, a 12-track promotional-only “History of Beck” compilation CD sampler was also released, this featured a combination of older and newer Beck tracks.

Beck’s ninth studio album, The Information was released in 2003 and featured low-budget videos to accompany each song, packaged the CD with sheets of stickers so buyers could customize the cover, and leaked tracks and videos also appeared on his website. Digital download releases automatically downloaded the song’s additional video for each single sale, and physical copies came bundled with an additional DVD featuring fifteen videos. In 2007, Beck released the single “Timebomb”, which was nominated for a Grammy Award for Best Solo Rock Vocal Performance. Beck’s tenth album Modern Guilt was produced by Danger Mouse and released in 2008. This was full of off-kilter rhythms and left-field breakdowns, with an overall 1960s vibe”. Beck had known Danger Mouse before, and ended up working with Danger Mouse’s side project, Gnarls Barkley. Beck began working more heavily on his own seven-year-old label, focussing on smaller, more quixotic projects,Beck moonlighted as a producer, working with artists such as Charlotte Gainsbourg, Thurston Moore and Stephen Malkmus.

Beck also founded Record Club, a project whereby an entire classic album—by The Velvet Underground, Leonard Cohen, INXS, Yanni—would be covered by another singer in the span of a single day. Beck provided four songs for the film Scott Pilgrim vs. the World (2010), each attributed to the title character’s fictional band, Sex Bob-Omb Beck also collaborated with Philip Glass,Jack White, Tobacco of Black Moth Super Rainbow, Jamie Lidell, Seu Jorge, Childish Gambino, and The Lonely Island. Beck released Song Reader which comprised songs presented only as sheet music,to inspire enterprising musicians to record their own versions. The idea of Song Reader came about shortly after the release of Odelay after Beck was sent a book of transcribed sheet music for that album, He aimed to keep the arrangements as open as possible, to re-create the simplicity of the standards, and became preoccupied with creating only pieces that could fit within the Great American Songbook. In 2013 Beck began playing special Song Reader concerts with a variety of guests and announced he was working on a record of Song Reader material with other musicians.

In 2014 Beck released the electro ballad “Defriended”, the chorus-heavy “I Won’t Be Long” and the song Gimme and also released his twelfth studio album, Morning Phase, reuniting him with musicians who had worked on Sea Change. This contained the songs “Blue Moon” and, “Waking Light”. Beck also Headlined the Boston Calling Music Festival in May 2015. Morning Phase also won three Grammys for : Best Engineered Album, Non-Classical; Best Rock Album; and Album of the Year at the 57th Annual Grammy Awards. Beck’s latest album includes the songs “Dreams”,”Wow” and “Up All Night” “7th Heaven,” “Dear Life” and “No Distraction”

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Syd Barratt (Pink Floyd)

The late, great, English singer-songwriter and guitarist Syd Barratt sadly passed away on 7th July 2006. He was born 6 January 1946. He became a member of progressive rock band Pink Floyd in 1965. The band originally consisted of students Roger Waters, Nick Mason,Richard Wright, and Syd Barrett. They first became popular playing in London’s underground music scene in the late 1960s. Under Barrett’s leadership they released two charting singles, “Arnold Layne” and “See Emily Play”, and a successful début album, The Piper at the Gates of Dawn . In 1968 Syd Barratt departed from the group due to his deteriorating mental health & Gilmour joined Pink Floyd as the fifth member several months prior to this. following the loss of their principal songwriter, Pink Floyd bassist and vocalist Roger Waters became the band’s lyricist and conceptual leader, with Gilmour assuming lead guitar, taking on most of the band’s music composition, and sharing lead vocals.

Pink Floyd achieved worldwide critical and commercial success with their progressive and psychedelic rock music, which used philosophical lyrics, sonic experimentation, innovative album art, and elaborate live shows. and release of many concept albums such as The Dark Side of the Moon, Wish You Were Here, Animals and The Wall. Pink Floyd ranked number 51 on Rolling Stone magazine’s list of “The 100 Greatest Artists of All Time”, with David Gilmour ranking 14th in the greatest guitarists list. Largely due to the success of their albums the band was ranked No. 3 in Colin Larkin’s the ‘Top 50 Artists Of All Time’, a ranking based on the cumulative votes for each artist’s albums that appear in the All Time Top 1000 Albums. Numerous artists have been influenced by Pink Floyd’s work: David Bowie has called Syd Barrett a major inspiration, The Edge (U2) also bought his first delay pedal after hearing the opening to Animals; and the Pet Shop Boys paid homage to The Wall during a performance in Boston; Marillion guitarist Steve Rothery has cited Wish You Were Here as a major inspiration; and many other bands, such as the Foo Fighters, Dream Theater, My Chemical Romance, Porcupine Tree, The Mars Volta, The La’s, Queen, Oasis, Iron Maiden, Stone Temple Pilots, Coheed and Cambria, Tool, Queensryche, 30 Seconds to Mars, Scissor Sisters, Rush, Radiohead, Gorillaz, Mudvayne, Nine Inch Nails, Korn, Primus and the Smashing Pumpkins, some of whom have recorded Pink Floyd covers, have been influenced by them.

Pink Floyd have also been nominated for and won multiple awards Technical awards include a “Best Engineered Non-Classical Album” Grammy in 1980 for The Wall and BAFTAs award for ‘Best Original Song’ (awarded to Waters) and ‘Best Sound’ (awarded to James Guthrie, Eddy Joseph, Clive Winter, Graham Hartstone and Nicholas Le Messurier) in 1982 for the The Wall film. A Grammy came to them in 1995 for “Rock Instrumental Performance” on “Marooned”. In 2008 Pink Floyd were awarded the Polar Music Prize for their contribution to contemporary music; Waters and Mason accepted the prize from King Carl XVI Gustaf of Sweden. They were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame on 17 January 1996, the UK Music Hall of Fame on 16 November 2005 and the Hit Parade Hall of Fame in 2010. Pink Floyd have become one of the most commercially successful and influential rock music groups of all time, and have sold over 230 million albums worldwide, including 74.5 million certified units in the United States. The band were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1996. Since then they have continued to enjoy worldwide success and are one of the most commercially successful and influential rock music groups of all time. Having sold over 200 million albums worldwide.

Pink Floyd’s last album Titled The Endless River, was released in 2015 and is based on sessions the band recorded in 1994 when they released their last album The Division Bell. The 1994 sessions include contributions from keyboard player Richard Wright, who died in 2008, and the new album is described as his “swansong”. It contains a mixture of songs with vocals and instrumental tracks, and that the album will blend the old sessions with new recordings. It was originally to be a completely instrumental recording and consist entirely of previously unreleased material, and features session bassist Guy Pratt. Pink Floyd also released a 20th anniversary edition of The Division Bell on 2014. David Gilmour has since released many solo albums including On an Island, and Rattle that lock, while Roger Waters has released the albums Pros and Cons of New York, Flickering flame, Amused to Death, The Wall, Live Radio and Is this the life we really want.

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Ringo Starr

English drummer, singer, songwriter, and actor Ringo Starr (Richard Starkey,) MBE was born 7 July 1940 in Dingle, Liverpool. In 1944, his family moved to 10 Admiral Grove; and soon afterwards, his parents separated, and divorced within the year. At age six Starkey developed appendicitis. Following a routine appendectomy he contracted peritonitis, causing him to fall into a coma that lasted for three days. His recovery took twelve months, which he spent away from his family at Liverpool’s Myrtle Street Children’s hospital.

Upon his discharge in May 1948, his mother allowed him to stay home, causing him to miss school. At age eight, he remained illiterate, with a poor grasp of mathematics and his lack of education contributed to a feeling of alienation at school, and he regularly played truant at Sefton Park. However After several years of twice weekly tutoring Starkey had nearly caught up. However in 1953, he contracted tuberculosis and was admitted to a sanatorium, where he remained for the next two years. During his stay the medical staff made an effort to stimulate motor activity and relieve boredom by encouraging their patients to join the hospital band, leading to his first exposure to a percussion instrument; a makeshift mallet made from a cotton bobbin that he used to strike the cabinets next to his bed. Starkey grew increasingly interested in drumming, receiving a copy of the Alyn Ainsworth song “Bedtime for Drums”. Starr said My grandparents gave me a mandolin and a banjo, but I didn’t want them. My grandfather gave me a harmonica … we had a piano but I only wanted to play the drums.

Starkey attended St Silas, a Church of England primary school near his house where his classmates nicknamed him “Lazarus”, and later Dingle Vale Secondary modern school, where he showed an aptitude for art, drama and mechanics. As a result of the prolonged hospitalisations, he fell behind his peers scholastically and was ineligible for the 11-plus qualifying examination required for attendance at a grammar school. Starkey then became interested in recordings by Dinah Shore, Sarah Vaughan and Billy Daniels from his mother’s second husband Harry Graves who was an impassioned fan of big band music and their vocalists. Then After another extended hospital stay following Starkey’s recovery from tuberculosis, he did not return to school, preferring instead to stay at home and listen to music while playing along by beating biscuit tins with sticks.

After his return home from the sanatorium in late 1955, Starkey entered the UK workforce in 1955, he worked at British Rail before securing an apprenticeship at a Liverpool equipment manufacturer. , but lacking motivation and discipline, his initial attempts at gainful employment proved unsuccessful. In an effort to secure himself some warm clothes, he briefly held a position at British Rail, who supplied their employees with suits. They gave him a hat, but no uniform, and unable to pass the physical examination, he was laid off and granted unemployment benefits.He then found work as a waiter serving drinks on a day boat that travelled from Liverpool to North Wales, but his fear of conscription into military service led him to quit the job, not wanting to give the Royal Navy the impression that he was suitable for seafaring work. In mid-1956, Graves secured Starkey a position as an apprentice machinist at a Liverpool equipment manufacturer.

While working at the facility Starkey befriended Roy Trafford, and the two bonded over their shared interest in music.Trafford introduced him to skiffle, and he quickly became a fervent admirer. In 1957, he cofounded his first band, the two began rehearsing songs in the manufacturing plant’s cellar they were joined by Starkey’s neighbour and co-worker, the guitarist Eddie Miles, forming the Eddie Miles Band, later renamed Eddie Clayton and the Clayton Squares after a Liverpool landmark. Performing popular skiffle songs such as “Rock Island Line” and “Walking Cane”. On Christmas Day 1957, Graves gave Starkey a second-hand drum kit consisting of a snare drum, bass drum and a makeshift cymbal fashioned from an old rubbish bin lid. Starr had been a devoted fan of skiffle and blues music, He was also influenced by country artists, including Hank Williams, Buck Owens and Hank Snow, and jazz drummers such as Chico Hamilton and Yusef Lateef, whose compositional style inspired Starr’s fluid and energetic drum fills and grooves Gene Autry and Lee Dorsey Were also among Starr’s first musical heroes.

He joined Al Caldwell’s Texans, a skiffle group who were looking for someone with a proper drum kit so that the group could transition from one of Liverpool’s best-known skiffle acts to a full-fledged rock and roll band. About this time he adopted the stage name Ringo Starr; derived from the rings he wore and also because it implied a country western influence. His drum solos were billed as Starr Time. By early 1960 the Hurricanes had become one of Liverpool’s leading bands and were offered a three-month residency at a Butlins holiday camp in Wales. The Butlins gig led to other opportunities for the band, including an unpleasant tour of US Air Force bases in France. The Hurricanes became so successful that when initially offered a highly coveted residency in Hamburg, they turned it down because of their prior commitment with Butlins. However They eventually accepted, joining the Beatles at Bruno Koschmider‍ ’s Kaiserkeller on 1 October 1960, where Starr first met the Beatles. Storm’s Hurricanes were given top-billing over the Beatles, however Starr performed with the Beatles during a few stand-in engagements while in Hamburg.

On 15 October 1960, he drummed with John Lennon, Paul McCartney and George Harrison, recording with them for the first time while backing Hurricanes singer Lu Walters on the George Gershwin aria “Summertime”.During Starr’s first stay in Hamburg he also met Tony Sheridan, who valued his drumming abilities to the point of asking Starr to leave the Hurricanes and join his band. So Starkey quit the Hurricanes in January 1962 and briefly joined Sheridan in Hamburg before finally joining the Beatles in August 1962, replacing Pete Best. Starr first performed as a member of the band on 18 August 1962, at a horticultural society dance at Port Sunlight and an appearance at the Cavern Club the following day. Starr’s first recording session as a member of the Beatles took place on 4 September 1962. The Beatles next singles were Please Please Me and Love Me Do and performed on Thank Your Lucky Stars and The Ed Sullivan Show in the United States. During live performances, the Beatles continued the Starr Time routine that had been popular among his fans: Lennon would place a microphone in front of Starr’s kit in preparation for his spotlight moment and audiences would erupt in screams.

Starr also played key roles in the Beatles’ films and appeared in numerous other films. He sang lead vocals on the songs “With a Little Help from My Friends”, “Yellow Submarine” and their cover of “Act Naturally”. He also wrote the Beatles’ songs “Don’t Pass Me By” and “Octopus’s Garden”, and is credited as a co-writer of others, such as “What Goes On” and “Flying”. When the Beatles made their film debut in A Hard Day’s Night, Starr garnered much praise from critics, who considered both his delivery of deadpan one-liners and his non-speaking scenes highlights of the movie. After the release of the Beatles’ second feature film, Help! (1965), Starr won a Melody Maker poll for his performance as the central character in the film.

Sadly In 1964 Starr contracted pharyngitis and tonsillitis, shortly before a tour ofDenmark, the Netherlands, Asia, Australia and New Zealand, and was temporarily replaced for five concert dates by 24-year-old session drummer Jimmie Nicol, before rejoining the band in Melbourne on 15 June. On 11 February 1965, Starr married Maureen Cox. In August 1966, the Beatles released Revolver, their seventh UK LP featuring the song “Yellow Submarine”, with Starr as lead singer. Starr also sang lead vocals on “With a Little Help from My Friends” on the 1967 album, Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band. Sadly though the Beatles Manager Brian Epstein died August 1967 and Soon afterwards, the band began filming the Magical Mystery Tour. Then In February 1968, Starr became the first Beatle to sing during another artist’s show without the other three present when he sang the Buck Owens hit “Act Naturally”. He also performed a duet with Cilla Black, “Do you Like Me Just a Little Bit?” on her BBC One television programme, Cilla.

In 1968 The Beatles, released the classic “White Album” inspired by a visit to the Maharishi Mahesh Yogi at his ashram in Rishikesh, India where they had of their most prolific writing periods, composing some fantastic songs including “Don’t Pass Me By”. Sadly During the recording of the White Album, relations within the band deteriorated to the point where Starr quit the band for two weeks, taking a holiday with his family in Sardinia on a boat loaned by Peter Sellers. During this time Ringo was served octopus, and A subsequent conversation with the ship’s captain regarding the behaviours of the animal served as the inspiration for the song “Octopus’s Garden”. He returned to the studio two weeks later and the Beatles began production of their’ fourth feature film, Let It Be, and its accompanying LP, featuring the song “I Want You (She’s So Heavy)”. Sadly relations deteriorated again within the the band until September 1969, when Lennon quit the Beatles followed by McCartney On 10 April 1970,

After the Beatles break-up in 1970, Starr released two solo albums Sentimental Journey, featuring renditions of songs by Quincy Jones, Maurice Gibb, George Martin and Paul McCartney, and the country-inspired Beaucoups of Blues, featuring Nashville session musician Pete Drake. He also released successful singles including “It Don’t Come Easy”,”Photograph” and “You’re Sixteen”. Starr played drums on Lennon’s John Lennon/Plastic Ono Band (1970), Ono’s Yoko Ono/Plastic Ono Band (1970), and on Harrison’s albums All Things Must Pass (1970) and Living in the Material World.Starr participated in the Concert for Bangladesh, organised by Harrison, and made his directorial debut with the T. Rex documentary Born to Boogie. In 1972, he released his most successful UK single, “Back Off Boogaloo”. In 1973 he released the album Ringo and the songs Photograph”, co-written with Harrison, and “You’re Sixteen”, written by the Sherman Brothers and featuring writing and musical contributions from Harrison, Lennon and McCartney including “Oh My My”. Next He released The album Goodnight Vienna in 1974 featuring a cover of the Platters’ “Only You (And You Alone)”and “No No Song”.

He became romantically involved with Lynsey de Paul after playing tambourine on a song she wrote and produced for Vera Lynn, “Don’t You Remember When”, and inspiring another De Paul song, “If I Don’t Get You the Next One Will” and founded the record label Ring O’Records in 1975. Then in 1976 Starr appeared as a guest in the Band’s farewell concert, featured in the 1978 Martin Scorsese documentary The Last Waltz and released Ringo’s Rotogravure, featuring compositions by McCartney, Lennon and Harrison which contained the songs A Dose of Rock ‘n’ Roll” and a cover of “Hey Baby”. Starr’s next album was a curious blend of disco and 1970s pop, entitled Ringo the 4th. Following Lennon’s murder in 1980, Harrison modified the lyrics of a song he had originally written for Starr, “All Those Years Ago”, as a tribute to their former bandmate which included vocal contributions from both Paul and Linda McCartney and Starr’s original drum part. In 1981, Starr released the album Stop and Smell the Roses, containing the Harrison composition “Wrack My Brain”.

From 1984 to 1986, Starr narrated the first two series of the children’s series Thomas & Friends, based on the books by the Reverend W. Awdry and also portrayed the character Mr. Conductor in the programme’s American spin-off Shining Time Station, In 1985, he performed with his son Zak as part of Artists United Against Apartheid on the recording, Sun City. In 1987 Starr played drums on the song “When We Was Fab”, from Harrison’s album Cloud no. 9 co-written by Harrison and Jeff Lynne. I’m 1987 Starr, Harrison and Lynne joined Eric Clapton, Elton John, Phil Collins and Ray Cooper in a performance for the Prince’s Trust charity. In 1989, Ringo Starr & His All-Starr Band performed in front of an audience of ten thousand in Dallas, Texas. The album Ringo Starr and His All-Starr Band featured a compilation of live performances. Starr also recorded a version of the song “I Call Your Name” for a television special marking the 10th anniversary of John Lennon’s death and the 50th anniversary of Lennon’s birth which was performed by a supergroup composed of Lynne, Tom Petty, Joe Walsh and Jim Keltner.

In 1991 Starr made a cameo appearance on The Simpsons episode “Brush with Greatness” and contributed an original song, “You Never Know”, to the soundtrack of the John Hughes film Curly Sue. In 1992, Starr released the album Time Takes Time, featuring guest appearances by Brian Wilson and Harry Nilsson. In 1995 Starr, McCartney and Harrison released the Beatles Anthology for which They recorded two new Beatles songs built around solo vocal and piano tapes recorded by Lennon “Free as a Bird” and “Real Love”. Starr guested on two songs from McCartney’s 1997 album, Flaming Pie. McCartney had written a song about Starr’s ex-wife Maureen, who died in 1994, called “Little Willow” and asked Starr if he would play on another song, “Beautiful Night”. They also recorded a jam session, which became, “Really Love You”, In 1998, he released the album Vertical Man featuring Producer Mark Hudson, and his band the Roundheads, plus many famous guests including Martin, McCartney and George Harrison.

In 2002 Starr was inducted into the Percussive Arts Society Hall of Fame and On 29 November 2002 (the first anniversary of Harrison’s death), Starr performed “Photograph” and a cover of Carl Perkins’ “Honey Don’t” at the Concert for George held in the Royal Albert Hall, London. In 2003, Starr served as an honorary Santa Tracker and voice-over personality during the London stop in Father Christmas’s annual Christmas Eve journey, as depicted in the annual NORAD tracks Santa program. According to NORAD officials, he was “a Starr in the east” who helped guide North American Aerospace Defense Command’s Santa-tracking. In 2005, Liverpool’s City Council announced plans to demolish Starr’s birthplace, 9 Madryn Street, stating that it had “no historical significance”. However after protests the LCC later announced that the building would be taken apart brick by brick and preserved. In 2008 Starr released the album Liverpool 8 produced by David A. Stewart, Mark Hudson and Starr. In 2009, Starr reunited with McCartney at the David Lynch “Change Begins Within” Benefit Concert at Radio City Music Hall. After a separate performance from Starr he later joined McCartney to perform “With a Little Help from My Friends”, “I Saw Her Standing There” and “Cosmically Conscious”. Starr also promoted The Beatles: Rock Band video game and in 2009, Starr once again performed the voice of Thomas the Tank Engine for “The Official BBC Children in Need Medley”.

In 2010 Starr self-produced and released his fifteenth studio album, Y Not, which included the track “Walk with You” featuring a vocal contribution from McCartney he also appeared during Hope for Haiti Now: A Global Benefit for Earthquake Relief. On 7 July 2010, Starr celebrated his 70th birthday at Radio City Music Hall, New York with another All-Starr Band concert, with friends and family joining him on stage including Yoko Ono and his son Zak: McCartney made a surprise appearance. Starr also recorded a cover of Buddy Holly’s “Think It Over” for the tribute album Listen to Me: Buddy Holly, which was released in 2011. In 2012, he released the album Ringo 2012. In2014, Starr reunited with Paul McCartney for a special performance at the 56th Annual Grammy Awards performing the song “Queenie Eye” at the Staples Centre in Los Angeles, he was also featured alongside McCartney in the programme The Night That Changed America: A Grammy Salute to The Beatles. In 2014, Starr toured Canada and the US with an updated version of the Twelfth All-Starr Band. He also became involved in “#peacerocks”, an anti-violence campaign started by fashion designer John Varvatos, in conjunction with the David Lynch Foundation.In September 2014, Starr won at the GQ Men of the Year Awards for his humanitarian work with the David Lynch Foundation. Starr”s latest album, Postcards from Paradise was released 2015. In 2011, Rolling Stone readers named Starr the fifth-greatest drummer of all time. Starr, who was previously inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame as a Beatle in 1988, was inducted for his solo career in 2015, making him one of 21 performers inducted more than once.

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Louis Armstrong

American trumpeter, composer, singer and occasional actor louis Armstrong tragically died of a heart attack in his sleep on July 6, 1971, a month before his 70th birthday while residing in Corona, Queens, New York City. He was born August 4, 1901 in New Orleans, Louisiana ans spent his youth in a rough neighborhood known as the Battlefield, which was part of the Storyville legal prostitution district. His father, William Armstrong, abandoned the family when Louis was an infant. His mother, Mary “Mayann” Albert left Louis and his younger sister, Beatrice Armstrong Collins in the care of his grandmother, Josephine Armstrong, and at times his uncle Isaac. At five, he moved back to live with his mother, her relatives and a parade of “stepfathers”. He attended the Fisk School for Boys, where he most likely had early exposure to music. He brought in some money by selling newspapers, delivering coal, singing on the streets at night, and also by finding discarded food and selling it to restaurants, but it was not enough to keep his mother from prostitution. He hung out in dance halls close to home, where he observed everything from licentious dancing to the quadrille. For extra money he also hauled coal to Storyville, and listened to the bands playing in the brothels and dance halls, especially Pete Lala’s, where Joe “King” Oliver performed as well as other famous musicians who would drop in to jam.

After dropping out of the Fisk School at age eleven, Armstrong joined a quartet of boys who sang in the streets for money. He also started to get into trouble. Cornet player Bunk Johnson said he taught Armstrong (then 11) to play by ear at Dago Tony’s Tonk in New Orleans. He also worked for a Lithuanian-Jewish immigrant family, the Karnofskys, who had a junk-hauling business and gave him odd jobs. The influence of Karnofsky is remembered in New Orleans by the Karnofsky Project, a nonprofit organization dedicated to accepting donated musical instruments to put them into the hands of an eager child who could not otherwise take part in a wonderful learning experience. Armstrong developed his cornet playing skills by playing in the band of the New Orleans Home for Colored Waifs, where he had been sent multiple times for general delinquency, most notably for firing his stepfather’s pistol into the air at a New Year’s Eve celebration . Professor Peter Davis (who frequently appeared at the home at the request of its administrator, Captain Joseph Jones) instilled discipline in and provided musical training to the otherwise self-taught Armstrong. Eventually, Davis made Armstrong the band leader. The home band played around New Orleans and the thirteen-year-old Louis began to draw attention by his cornet playing, starting him on a musical career. At fourteen he was released from the home, living again with his father and new stepmother, Gertrude, and then back with his mother. Armstrong got his first dance hall job at Henry Ponce’s, where Black Benny became his protector and guide. He hauled coal by day and played his cornet at night.

He played in the city’s frequent brass band parades and listened to older musicians every chance he got, learning from Bunk Johnson, Buddy Petit, Kid Ory, and above all, Joe “King” Oliver, who acted as a mentor and father figure to the young musician. Later, he played in brass bands and riverboats of New Orleans, and began traveling with the well-regarded band of Fate Marable, which toured on a steamboat up and down the Mississippi River. He described his time with Marable as “going to the University,” since it gave him a much wider experience working with written arrangements. In 1919, Joe Oliver resigned from Kid Ory’s band; Armstrong replaced him. He also became second trumpet for the Tuxedo Brass Band. Throughout his riverboat experience, Armstrong’s musicianship began to mature and expand. At twenty, he could read music and started playing extended trumpet solos, one of the first jazz men to do this, injecting his own personality and style into his solo turns. He had learned how to create a unique sound and also started using singing and patter in his performances.

In 1922, Armstrong went to Chicago, after being invited by his mentor, Joe “King” Oliver, to join his Creole Jazz Band. Oliver’s band was among the most influential jazz bands in Chicago in the early 1920s, at a time when Chicago was the center of the jazz universe. Armstrong lived luxuriously in Chicago, in his own apartment with his own private bath (his first). Excited as he was to be in Chicago, he began his career-long pastime of writing nostalgic letters to friends in New Orleans. Unusually, Armstrong could blow two hundred high Cs in a row. As his reputation grew, he was challenged to instrumental “cutting contests” by hornmen trying to displace him. Armstrong made his first recordings on the Gennett and Okeh labels (jazz records were starting to boom across the country), including taking some solos and breaks, while playing second cornet in Oliver’s band in 1923. At this time, he met Hoagy Carmichael (with whom he would collaborate later) who was introduced by friend Bix Beiderbecke, who now had his own Chicago band.

Armstrong enjoyed working with Oliver, but Louis’ second wife, pianist Lil Hardin Armstrong, urged him to seek more prominent billing and develop his newer style away from the influence of Oliver. Lil had her husband play classical music in church concerts to broaden his skill and improve his solo play and she prodded him into wearing more stylish attire to make him look sharp and to better offset his growing girth. Lil’s influence eventually undermined Armstrong’s relationship with his mentor, especially concerning his salary and additional moneys that Oliver held back from Armstrong and other band members. Armstrong and Oliver parted amicably in 1924. Shortly afterward, Armstrong received an invitation to go to New York City to play with the Fletcher Henderson Orchestra, the top African-American band of the time. Armstrong switched to the trumpet to blend in better with the other musicians in his section. His influence upon Henderson’s tenor sax soloist, Coleman Hawkins, can be judged by listening to the records made by the band during this period.

Armstrong quickly adapted to the more tightly controlled style of Henderson, playing trumpet and even experimenting with the trombone. The other members quickly took up Armstrong’s emotional, expressive pulse. Soon his act included singing and telling tales of New Orleans characters, especially preachers. The Henderson Orchestra was playing in prominent venues for white-only patrons, including the famed Roseland Ballroom, featuring the arrangements of Don Redman. Duke Ellington’s orchestra would go to Roseland to catch Armstrong’s performances and young horn men around town tried in vain to outplay him, splitting their lips in their attempts. Armstrong made many recordings on the side, arranged by an old friend from New Orleans, pianist Clarence Williams; including small jazz band sides with the Williams Blue Five (some of the most memorable pairing Armstrong with one of Armstrong’s few rivals in fiery technique and ideas, Sidney Bechet) and a series of accompaniments with blues singers, including Bessie Smith, Ma Rainey, and Alberta Hunter.

Armstrong returned to Chicago in 1925. He was content in New York but conceded that the Henderson Orchestra was limiting his artistic growth. In publicity, much to his chagrin, she billed him as “the World’s Greatest Trumpet Player”. At first, he was actually a member of the Lil Hardin Armstrong Band and working for his wife. He began recording under his own name for Okeh with his famous Hot Five and Hot Seven groups, producing hits such as “Potato Head Blues”, “Muggles” (a slang term for marijuana cigarettes: Armstrong used marijuana daily for much of his life and “West End Blues”, the music of which set the standard and the agenda for jazz for many years to come.

The group included Kid Ory (trombone), Johnny Dodds (clarinet), Johnny St. Cyr (banjo), wife Lil on piano, and usually no drummer. Armstrong’s band leading style was easygoing. Among the most notable of the Hot Five and Seven records were “Cornet Chop Suey,” “Struttin’ With Some Barbecue,” “Hotter Than that” and “Potato Head Blues,”, all featuring highly creative solos by Armstrong. His recordings soon after with pianist Earl “Fatha” Hines (most famously their 1928 “Weather Bird” duet) and Armstrong’s trumpet introduction to and solo in “West End Blues” remain some of the most famous and influential improvisations in jazz history. Armstrong’s style included a heavy dose of effervescent jive, such as “whip that thing, Miss Lil” and “Mr. Johnny Dodds, Aw, do that clarinet, boy!” Armstrong also played with Erskine Tate’s Little Symphony, at the Vendome Theatre. They furnished music for silent movies and live shows, including jazz versions of classical music, such as “Madame Butterfly”, which gave Armstrong experience with longer forms of music and with hosting before a large audience. He began to scat sing (improvised vocal jazz using nonsensical words) and was among the first to record it, on the Hot Five recording “Heebie Jeebies” in 1926. After separating from Lil, Armstrong started to play at the Sunset Café for Al Capone’s associate Joe Glaser in the Carroll Dickerson Orchestra, with Earl Hines on piano, which was soon renamed Louis Armstrong and his Stompers. Hines and Armstrong became fast friends and successful collaborators.Armstrong returned to New York, in 1929, where he played in the pit orchestra of the successful musical Hot Chocolate, an all-black revue written by Andy Razaf and pianist/composer Fats Waller. He also made a cameo appearance as a vocalist, regularly stealing the show with his rendition of “Ain’t Misbehavin’”,

Armstrong then worked at Connie’s Inn in Harlem, chief rival to the Cotton Club, a venue for elaborately staged floor shows, and a front for gangster Dutch Schultz. Armstrong also had considerable success with vocal recordings, including versions of famous songs composed by his old friend Hoagy Carmichael. His 1930s recordings took full advantage of the new RCA ribbon microphone, introduced in 1931, which imparted a characteristic warmth to vocals and immediately became an intrinsic part of the ‘crooning’ sound of artists like Bing Crosby. Armstrong’s famous interpretation of Carmichael’s “Stardust” And his radical re-working of Sidney Arodin and Carmichael’s “Lazy River” demonstrate this.

As with his trumpet playing, Armstrong’s vocal innovations served as a foundation stone for the art of jazz vocal interpretation. The uniquely gravelly coloration of his voice became a musical archetype that was much imitated and endlessly impersonated. His scat singing style was enriched by his matchless experience as a trumpet soloist. His resonant, velvety lower-register tone and bubbling cadences on sides such as “Lazy River” exerted a huge influence On singers such as Bing Crosby. The Great Depression of the early 1930s was especially hard on the jazz scene. The Cotton Club closed in 1936 after a long downward spiral, and many musicians stopped playing altogether as club dates evaporated. Bix Beiderbecke died and Fletcher Henderson’s band broke up. King Oliver made a few records but otherwise struggled. Sidney Bechet became a tailor, later moving to Paris and Kid Ory returned to New Orleans and raised chickens.

In 1930 Armstrong moved to Los Angeles to seek new opportunities. He played at the New Cotton Club in Los Angeles with Lionel Hampton on drums. The band drew the Hollywood crowd, which could still afford a lavish night life, while radio broadcasts from the club connected with younger audiences at home. Bing Crosby and many other celebrities were regulars at the club. In 1931, Armstrong appeared in his first movie, Ex-Flame and was also convicted of marijuana possession but received a suspended sentence. He returned to Chicago in late 1931 and played in bands more in the Guy Lombardo vein and he recorded more standards. When the mob insisted that he leave, Armstrong visited New Orleans, had a hero’s welcome and saw old friends. He sponsored a local baseball team known as “Armstrong’s Secret Nine” and had a cigar named after him. Following a tour across America shadowed by the mob, Armstrong decided to go to Europe to escape.

After returning to the United States, he undertook several exhausting tours. However he had financial troubleS and Breach of contract violations plagued him. Finally, he hired Joe Glaser as his new manager, a tough mob-connected wheeler-dealer, who began to straighten out his legal mess, his mob troubles, and his debts. Armstrong also began to experience problems with his fingers and lips, which were aggravated by his unorthodox playing style. As a result, he branched out, developing his vocal style and making his first theatrical appearances. He appeared in movies again, including Pennies from Heaven. In 1937, Armstrong substituted for Rudy Vallee on the CBS radio network. In 1943 Armstrong settled permanently in Queens, New York with his fourth wife, Lucille. where he continued to develop his playing. He recorded Hoagy Carmichael’s Rockin’ Chair for Okeh Records.

During the subsequent 30 years, Armstrong played more than 300 gigs a year. Bookings for big bands tapered off during the 1940s due to changes in public tastes: ballrooms closed, and there was competition from television and from other types of music becoming more popular than big band music. However, a revival in the traditional jazz of the 1920s made it possible for Armstrong to consider a return to the small-group musical style of his youth. Following a highly successful small-group jazz concert at New York Town Hall on May 17, 1947, featuring Armstrong with trombonist/singer Jack Teagarden, Armstrong’s manager, Joe Glaser dissolved the Armstrong big band on August 13, 1947, and established a six-piece traditional jazz group featuring Armstrong with Teagarden, Earl Hines and other top swing and Dixieland musicians, most of whom were previously leaders of big bands. This group was called Louis Armstrong and His All Stars and included at various times Earl “Fatha” Hines, Barney Bigard, Edmond Hall, Jack Teagarden, Trummy Young, Arvell Shaw, Billy Kyle, Marty Napoleon, Big Sid Catlett, Cozy Cole, Tyree Glenn, Barrett Deems, Mort Herbert, Joe Darensbourg, Eddie Shu and the percussionist Danny Barcelona. Armstrong also made many recordings and appeared in over thirty films. He was the first jazz musician to appear on the cover of Time magazine, on February 21, 1949. In 1948, he participated in the Nice Jazz Festival, where Suzy Delair sang “C’est si bon”, by Henri Betti and André Hornez, for the first time in public.in 1950, Armstrong recorded the first American version of C’est si bon (Henri Betti, André Hornez, Jerry Seelen) and La Vie en rose (Louiguy, Édith Piaf, Mack David). He also toured Ghana and Nigeria, performing with Victor Olaiya during the Nigerian Civil war.

By the 1950s, Armstrong was a widely beloved American icon and cultural ambassador who commanded an international fanbase. However, a growing generation gap became apparent between him and the young jazz musicians who emerged in the postwar era such as Charlie Parker, Miles Davis, and Sonny Rollins. The postwar generation regarded their music as abstract art and contempory players considered Armstrong’s vaudevillian style, half-musician and half-stage entertainer, outmoded. While touring Australia, 1954, he modified his anatomical references for the sake of the gentle ears of his host country, “Bebop?” he husked. “I just play music. Guys who invent terms like that are walking the streets with their instruments under their arms “.

Sadly in 1959 Armstrong suffered a heart attack while touring Italy. In 1964, he recorded, “Hello, Dolly!”, a song by Jerry Herman, originally sung by Carol Channing. This remained on the Hot 100 for 22 weeks, and went to No. 1 making him, at 62 years, 9 months and 5 days, the oldest person have Number One hit. He also dislodged the Beatles from the No. 1 position they had occupied for 14 consecutive weeks with three different songs. Armstrong made his last recorded trumpet performances on his 1968 album Disney Songs the Satchmo Way.

Armstrong kept touring well into his 60s, even visiting part of the communist bloc in 1965. He also toured Africa, Europe, and Asia under the sponsorship of the US State Department with great success, earning the nickname “Ambassador Satch” and inspiring Dave Brubeck to compose his jazz musical The Real Ambassadors. By 1968, he was approaching 70 and his health finally began to give out. He suffered heart and kidney ailments that forced him to stop touring. Armstrong did not perform publicly at all in 1969 and spent most of the year recuperating at home. Meanwhile, his longtime manager Joe Glaser died. By the summer of 1970, Armstrong’s doctors pronounced him fit enough to resume live performances. He embarked on another world tour, but a heart attack forced him to take a break for two months.

Armstrong had nineteen “Top Ten” records including “Stardust”, “What a Wonderful World”, “When The Saints Go Marching In”, “Dream a Little Dream of Me”, “Ain’t Misbehavin’”, “You Rascal You”, and “Stompin’ at the Savoy”. “We Have All the Time in the World” was featured on the soundtrack of the James Bond film On Her Majesty’s Secret Service, and His 1964 song “Bout Time” was later featured in the film Bewitched. Armstrong performed in Italy at the 1968 Sanremo Music Festival where he sang “Mi Va di Cantare” alongside his friend Lara Saint Paul. He also appeared with Lara Saint Paul on the Italian RAI television channel where he performed “Grassa e Bella,”. In 1968, Armstrong released “What a Wonderful World”, Which was also used twenty years later in the 1987 film Good Morning Vietnam In 1970 Armstrong appeared on the October 28, 1970, Johnny Cash Show, Singing Nat King Cole’s hit “Ramblin’ Rose” and joined Cash backing Jimmie Rodgers on “Blue Yodel No. 9”.

Armstrong appeared in more than a dozen Hollywood films, usually playing a bandleader or musician. His most familiar role was as the bandleader cum narrator in the 1956 musical, High Society, in which he sang the title song and performed a duet with Bing Crosby on “Now You Has Jazz”. In 1947, he played himself in the movie New Orleans opposite Billie Holiday, which chronicled the demise of the Storyville district and the ensuing exodus of musicians from New Orleans to Chicago. In the 1959 film, The Five Pennies (the story of the cornetist Red Nichols), Armstrong played himself as well as singing and playing several classic numbers. With Danny Kaye Armstrong performed a duet of “When the Saints Go Marching In” during which Kaye impersonated Armstrong. Armstrong also had a part in the film alongside James Stewart in The Glenn Miller Story in which Glenn (played by Stewart) jammed with Armstrong and a few other noted musicians of the time. In 1969, Armstrong had a cameo role in the film version of Hello, Dolly! as the bandleader, Louis, to which he sang the title song with actress Barbra Streisand. His solo recording of “Hello, Dolly!” is one of his most recognizable performances. In 1956 Armstrong played a bandleader in the television production “The Lord Don’t Play Favorites” on Producers’ Showcase.He was heard on such radio programs as The Story of Swing (1937) and This Is Jazz (1947), and made countless television appearances, during the 1950s and 1960s, including The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson.

Armstrong appears as a minor fictionalized character in Harry Turtledove’s Southern Victory Series. When he and his band escape from a Nazi-like Confederacy, they enhance the insipid mainstream music of the North. A young Armstrong also appears as a minor fictionalized character in Patrick Neate’s 2001 novel Twelve Bar Blues, part of which is set in New Orleans, which won the Whitbread Book Awards. There is a scene in Stardust Memories (1980) in which Woody Allen is overwhelmed by a recording of Armstrong’s “Stardust” and experiences a nostalgic epiphany. Terry Teachout wrote a one-man play about Armstrong called Satchmo at the Waldorf that was premiered in 2011 in Orlando, Fla., and has since been produced by Shakespeare & Company, Long Wharf Theater, and the Wilma Theater. The production ran off Broadway in 2014. A fledgling musician named “Louis,” who is obsessed with Buddy Bolden, appears in two of David Fulmer’s Storyville novels: Chasing the Devil’s Tail and Jass.

Against his doctor’s advice, Armstrong played a two-week engagement in March 1971 at the Waldorf-Astoria’s Empire Room and had a heart attack. He was released from the hospital in May, and quickly resumed practicing his trumpet playing. Still hoping to get back on the road, however this proved too much and Armstrong tragically died. Following his death He was interred in Flushing Cemetery, Flushing, in Queens, New York City. His honorary pallbearers included Bing Crosby, Ella Fitzgerald, Dizzy Gillespie, Pearl Bailey, Count Basie, Harry James, Frank Sinatra, Ed Sullivan, Earl Wilson, Alan King, Johnny Carson and David Frost. Peggy Lee sang The Lord’s Prayer at the services while Al Hibbler sang “Nobody Knows the Trouble I’ve Seen” and Fred Robbins, a long-time friend, gave the eulogy. Louis Armstrong was one of the most influential figures in jazz.

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Huey Lewis

Huey Lewis, the lead singer with the band Huey Lewis and the News was born 5th July 1950. Based in San Francisco, California. Huey Lewis and the News had a run of hit singles during the 1980s and early 1990s, eventually scoring a total of 19 top-ten singles across the Billboard Hot 100, Adult Contemporary and Mainstream Rock charts. Their greatest success was in the 1980s with the number-one album, Sports, coupled with a series of highly successful MTV videos. Their worldwide fame expanded when the song “The Power of Love” was featured as a key track in the film Back to the Future, became a number-one hit, and nominated for an nrss,Academy Award. The News combined a rock (and sometimes, a “blues-rock”) backing with soul and doo-wop-influenced harmony vocals and Lewis’ voice.In 1972, singer/harmonica player Huey Lewis and keyboardist Sean Hopper joined the Bay Area jazz-funk band Clover. Clover recorded several albums in the 1970s, and in the middle of the decade transplanted themselves to England to become part of the UK pub rock scene for a time. Without Lewis (but with Hopper), they eventually became the original backing band for Elvis Costello’s first album My Aim Is True.

Lewis also worked with Irish band Thin Lizzy, contributing harmonica to the song “Baby Drives Me Crazy,” recorded onstage for the Live and Dangerous album. Lizzy bassist/vocalist Phil Lynott introduces Lewis by name during the song. The band returned to the Bay Area by the end of the 1970s. Clover’s main competition in the Bay Area jazz-funk scene was a band called Soundhole, whose members included drummer Bill Gibson, saxophonist/guitarist Johnny Colla, and bassist Mario Cipollina (younger brother of John Cipollina). Like Clover, Soundhole had spent time backing a famous singer, Van Morrison. After getting a singles contract from Phonogram Records in 1978, Huey Lewis united his former bandmate and three of his former rivals to form a new group, Huey Lewis & The American Express.

In 1979 they recorded and released a single, “Exo-Disco” (a disco version of the theme from the film Exodus), In 1979, the band wooed guitarist Chris Hayes and moved to Chrysalis Records. in January 1980 they changed their name to Huey Lewis and the News and issued their first studio album, a self-titled LP, Huey Lewis and the News. In 1982, the band released their second studio album, the self-produced Picture This, containing the songs “Do You Believe in Love” , “Hope You Love Me Like You Say You Do” and “Workin’ for a Livin’. their third studio album, Sports, initially hit No. 6 in the U.S. when first released. Four singles from the album reached the top ten of the Billboard Hot 100: “Heart and Soul” reached No. 8, while “I Want a New Drug,” “The Heart of Rock & Roll,” and “If This Is It” all reached No. 6.Their song “The Power of Love” was a number-one U.S. hit and featured in the 1985 film Back to the Future, for which they also recorded the song, “Back in Time”, which was nominated for an Academy Award.

Following the success of “The Power of Love” and Back to the Future, Huey Lewis and the News released their fourth studio album, Fore! in 1986. Fore! followed the success of Sports and reached number-one on the Billboard 200. The album spawned the number-one singles, “Stuck with You” and “Jacob’s Ladder” as well as the mainstream rock hit “Hip to Be Square”. In all, the album had five top-ten singles on the Billboard Hot 100 and was certified triple platinum. The band continued to tour throughout 1987, and released Small World in 1988. After two hit, multi-platinum albums, Small World was considered a commercial disappointment, peaking at No. 11 and only going platinum. The album, which was more jazz and less rock than their previous albums, had one top ten single, “Perfect World”In 1991, they released Hard at Play, which went back to the R&B/rock sound of their earlier albums, and released the hit singles, “Couple Days Off” (No. 11) and “It Hit Me Like a Hammer” (No. 21). The album was certified Gold the bands also released a cover album in 1994 called Four Chords & Several Years Ago featuring doo-wop and rock songs from the 1950s and 1960s. In early 1997, the band released their first greatest hits album, Time Flies, which focused primarily on the releases from Picture This, Sports, and Fore!, and included four new tracks.

In 2001 Huey Lewis and the News released the abum Plan B, which featured the single, “Let Her Go & Start Over”? The band continues to tour regularly, and in December 2004, Huey Lewis and the News recorded the live album, Live at 25, at the Sierra Nevada Brewing Company in Chico, California, which celebrated their 25th anniversary as a band. In the summer of 2006, the band co-headlined a U.S. tour with Chicago. Highlights of the tour included Chicago’s Bill Champlin playing with the band, and members of Huey Lewis and the News playing on Chicago’s percussion-laden hit “I’m a Man”. Huey Lewis also sang the lead on Chicago’s “Colour My World”. On August 21, 2007, the band played a show at the California State Fair and were joined on stage by Cipollina during a four-song encore, his first on-stage performance with the group in over 10 years. Huey Lewis and the News performed at the 28th annual presentation of A Capitol Fourth in Washington, D.C.,The band returned to the studio in 2010, recording their first album of new material in nearly a decade. The album, entitled Soulsville, is a Stax Records tribute album

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Vince Clarke (Depeche Mode, Yazoo, Erasure, VCMG)

Best known for being a member of the bands Depeche Mode, Yazoo, The Assembly, Erasure, and VCMG, the English singer-songwriter, musician, producer and Synthpop pioneer Vince Clarke was Born 3 July 1960. Clarke’s music career started in the-1970s, When he and schoolmate Andy Fletcher formed the short-lived band No Romance in China. In 1979, he teamed up with Robert Marlow & Martin Gore to form French Look. Next he formed the band Composition of Sound, in 1980 with Martin Gore and Andy Fletcher, providing vocals until singer Dave Gahan joined the band, which was then renamed Depeche Mode. At that time, he adopted the stage-name by which he is currently known: Vince Clarke. The band initially adopted a slick synthesised electro-pop sound, which produced the album Speak and Spell and the Clarke-penned singles “Dreaming of Me”, “New Life” and “Just Can’t Get Enough” in 1981.

Clarke left Depeche Mode shortly after. Clarke then teamed up with singer Alison Moyet (at the time known by the nickname of ‘Alf’) to form Yazoo (known as Yaz in the U.S.), and released the songs “Only You”, “Don’t Go”, “Situation”, “The Other Side of Love”, “Nobody’s Diary” and “Walk Away from Love”.Yazoo split in 1983, and Moyet went on to have a successful solo career. Yazoo reformed in 2008 for a series of live dates to celebrate 25 years since the duo’s split. Then In 1983 Clarke teamed up with Eric Radcliffe to form The Assembly, performing with many different artists including singer Feargal Sharkey on the song“Never Never”. He also founded the label Reset Records with Eric Radcliffe and produced four singles “The Face of Dorian Gray” “I Just Want to Dance”, “Claudette” and “Calling All Destroyers” for his friend Robert Marlow. an album called the Peter Pan Effect was eventually released in 1999. In 1985, Clarke collaborated with Paul Quinn of Bourgie Bourgie, on the single “One Day”

Vince Clarke teamed up with Andy Bell to form Erasure After placing an advert in Melody Maker for a singer. Erasure’s first three singles were commercial failures in the UK, although the third, “Oh L’amour”,was a hit and Their debut album, Wonderland, was released in June 1986 Followed by their fourth single, “Sometimes” which became another hit. Erasures ‘s next album The Circus was released in 1987 containing thE hit singles: “It Doesn’t Have To Be”, “Victim of Love” and “The Circus”. Erasure’s third album, The Innocents, was released in April 1988. Containing the singles “Ship of Fools”,”Chains of Love” and “A Little Respect”. This was follwed by , the Crackers International EP, containing the song “Stop!”, and The albums Wild! (1989) and Chorus (1991). In 1992 they released another EP, Abba-esque, covering four ABBA hits, and featuring avideo of the duo dressed in ABBA outfits, Erasure also contributed the song “Too Darn Hot” to the Cole Porter tribute album Red Hot + Blue produced by the Red Hot Organization. In 1992, a singles compilation, Pop! – the First 20 Hits, was released.In 1994, Erasure released the albu, I Say I Say I Say containing the songs, “Always”, “Run to the Sun” And “I Love Saturday”. The next album Erasure marked a determined shift away from Erasure’s signature three-minute synthpop to a more introspective and experimental sound. This featured the songS “Stay With Me”,”Fingers & Thumbs” and a remixed version of “Rock Me Gently”. In 1997 they released the album Cowboy featuring the songs “In My Arms”,”Don’t Say Your Love Is Killing Me” and “Rain”.

In 2000, Erasure released their ninth studio album Loveboat, featuring the song “Freedom”, In 2001 they released a limited EP “Moon & the Sky” containing new versions of the title song, a cover of the song “Baby Love” and some acoustic versions of Loveboat songs. In 2003 Erasure released Other People’s Songs, featuring covers of Peter Gabriel’s song “Solsbury Hill” and Steve Harley’s “Make Me Smile (Come Up and See Me)”. In 2003 a new best-of compilation was released, called Hits! The Very Best of Erasure featuring a new version of “Oh L’amour”. In 2005 Erasure Released the album featuring the songs, “Breathe” and “Don’t Say You Love Me” and double A-side, features new versions of “Here I Go Impossible Again”/”All This Time Still Falling Out of Love”. In 2007 Erasure released the album Light at the end of the World featuring the songs “I Could Fall in Love with You”, “Sunday Girl”. The Storm Chaser EP was also released featuring an exclusive B-side “Early Bird”, a duet with Cyndi Lauper. In 2009 Total Pop! The First 40 Hits, a collection of Erasure’s first 40 hits plus a new remix of “Always” by Jeremy Wheatley, was released Erasure also released a six-track EP of classic remixes entitled Erasure.Club and To celebrate 21 years since its release, the album The Innocents was also remastered and re-released Andy Bell also released his second studio album, Non-Stop, on 7 June 2010.

Erasure’s next album Tomorrow’s World was released in 2011 featuring the songs “When I Start To (Break It All Down)” “Be with You” and “Fill Us with Fire”. Erasure also toured internationally in 2011 visiting Russia, Ukraine, and South America including two shows in Buenos Aires. In 2013, Erasure released the holiday album, Snow Globe featuring a cover of the 1973 Steeleye Span track “Gaudete”. In 2014 Erasure released, The Violet Flame and In 2015, Erasure released an updated version of “Sometimes” to celebrate their 30 years in the music industry plus a new compilation album entitled Always: The Very Best of Erasure. They also released an anthology box set entitled From Moscow To Mars to mark their 30th anniversary Erasure’s seventeenth studio album World Be Gone is released in 2017 featuring “Love you to the Sky”. Erasure also headlined at Glasgow’s O2 Academy, Manchester’s Albert Hall and London’s Roundhouse and embarked on a four-month European tour as special guests of Robbie Williams.

THE CIRCUS http://m.youtube.com/#/watch?v=2mfqh87kcTc
THE INNOCENTS http://m.youtube.com/#/watch?v=glsMO1kMNy8

Vince Clarke has also collaborated with Stephen Luscombe of Blancmange, Pandit Dinesh and Asha Bhosle. The group, West India Company, released a four track, self-titled EP. He also worked with synthpop producer Martyn Ware (Heaven 17, The Human League) in 1999 as “The Clarke & Ware Experiment” and released the album Pretentious. The duo collaborated again in 2001 for the album Spectrum Pursuit Vehicle. Clarke also wrote “Let’s Get Together” for the pop girl group Girl Authority for their second album, Road Trip and co-wrote “What Do I Want From You?” withFreeform Five, for their album Strangest Things.

In 2001, Clarke founded Illustrious Co. Ltd. with Martyn Ware, to create new forms of spatialised sound composition using their unique 3D AudioScape system For use by artists, educational establishments, the performing arts, live events, corporate clients and educational settings round the world. In 2004, Clarke provided additional music for an episode of Johnny Bravo entitled “The Time of My Life”. Clarke was also involved in a project called Family Fantastic who released the album Nice! And released a second album, entitled Wonderful in 2009, Clarke was awarded by an “Outstanding Song Collection” prize, during the Ivor Novello Awards ceremony, in recognition of 30 years in the music industry and was also featured in the BBC Four documentary Synth Britannia.

In 2012 Clarke collaborated with his former Depeche Mode colleague Martin Gore for the first time since 1981 as techno duo VCMG on an instrumental minimalist electronic dance album called Ssss, containing the songs Spock, Single Blip and Aftermaths In 2012, Vince collaborated with the band The Good Natured on a track called “Ghost Train”, and also produced a cover of the Depeche Mode song “Fly On The Windscreen” featuring Ane Brun.