By Ross Cat
TRUCKIN’ OFF TO BUFFALO…..Guitar prodigy DEREK TRUCKS and his band will
be making a tour stop in town this Wednesday the 25th at the University
of Buffalo Center for the Arts. DTB is on the road in support of their
new album “Songlines”, which is set for release on Columbia Records February
21st. This latest effort finds the twenty-six year old guitarist/songwriter
“Hittin the Note” with a passion and precision unmatched by any other guitarist
of his generation.
The nephew of ALLMAN BROTHERS drummer BUTCH TRUCKS; DEREK not only grew
up with the BROTHERS he would eventually become part of the ALLMAN BROTHERS
BAND. A touring musician since the age of twelve;TRUCKS along with GOV’T
MULE guitarist WARREN HAYNES are responsible for rekindling the fire of
the ALLMAN BROTHERS BAND live performances over the past decade.
Already a veteran of the jam band circuit TRUCKS and his blistering axe
have carved out a signature sound with this new disc. The albums twelve
songs are a celestially crafted body of work that intertwines musical influences
from around the world. The blues based album is sweetened by the soulful
sounds of a rhythm section that is in a groove, which is markedly evident
on the second track “I’ll Find My Way Out”. Track seven “Revolution", is
a tenacious tune that finds the band hitting on all cylinders. “Songlines”
also features the debut of impassioned vocalist MIKE MATTISON whose vigorous
voice melds the music and its message.
The DEREK TRUCKS BAND will be on the road through March, check out the
bands website at www.derektrucks.com
for dates and cities. TRUCKS will then join the ALLMAN BROTHERS BAND as
they play the annual Beacon Theatre Run in New York on March 9, 10, 11,
13, 14, 16, 17, 18, 20, 21, 23, 24, 25. Check out the BROTHERS website
for instant live recordings of the bands shows.
DRIVE...One of the more interesting rock and roll storylines developing
this year has musical maverick TODD RUNDGREN getting behind the wheel of
a CARS reunion. Following the success of his 2004 “Liars” tour, which is
available on DVD. RUNDGREN has confirmed on his website www.tr-i.com,
that he along with KASIM SULTAN and PRAIRIE PRINCE will join CARS members
ELLIOT EASTON and GREG HAWKES for a new inCARnation of the band. Original
vocalist RIC OCASEK has declined the invite to reunite; he has just released
a solo album titled “Nexterday”. Original bassist BEN ORR passed
away in 2000. Sources say the band will not only tour this year but are
recording new material as well. NIGHTLIFE will keep chasing down this CARS
story as it develops.
BRAND NEW SHINE...While most bands are “Counting the Days” to their first
record deal, Multi-Platinum recording artist COLLECTIVE SOUL have gone
Indie and are feeling “Better Now”. This past year has been a liberating
one for a band who spent most of the nineties topping the charts with seven
#1 singles and selling over 10 million albums, amply fulfilling their contractual
obligation to ATLANTIC RECORDS. With those credentials behind them the
boys from Atlanta decided to start their own Indie Label called EL MUSIC
GROUP with the intentions of owning all the rights and masters to whatever
music they record.
Following a four year hiatus and the addition of guitarist JOEL KOSCHE,
the ROLAND BROTHERS and bassist WILL TURPIN have carried over the success
with a rejuvenated sound, laced with “Heavy” guitar licks and complex arrangements.
The release of “Youth” in late 2004 finds singer/songwriter ED ROLAND lyrically
illuminating, taking the band to a new level behind the sizzling single
“Better Now”, this was no easy task considering their previous chart success.
This past year found the band pounding it out on the road which included
two amazing gigs in Western New York including a blow out show at the Canal
Festival last summer.
Great news for COLLECTIVE SOUL fans who didn’t get to see the band on tour,
February 7th will mark the release of “Home: A Live Concert Recording with
the ATLANTA SYMPHONY YOUTH ORCHESTRA”, available on both DVD and CD. The
show was recorded in the bands hometown of Hotlanta last April as they
shared the stage with an exuberant group of young musicians. NIGHTLIFE
had the pleasure to speak with bassist/percussionist WILL TURPIN about
the show and what’s in store for the band in the New Year:
R.Cat.- Congratulations on the success of “Youth” this past year.
Was the making of this record more gratifying for the band because it was
done on your own terms and label?
W.T.- Thanks so much. It really was a satisfying experience; we
went out on a limb with no record label to back us up. It was a challenge
for us as musicians but we are really proud of the success that has come
R.Cat.- The concert DVD really captures the bands new found enthusiasm
which is equaled by the ATLANTA SYMPHONY YOUTH ORCHESTRA. Was it a conscious
decision to go with the “Youth” theme as opposed to a veteran group of
W.T.- There were a couple different factors that came into play.
The album title reference definitely was a factor when we decided on how
to go about choosing the Symphony. More importantly, these musicians are
a well trained and well rehearsed group of young professionals. We felt
they brought the same eagerness to the live performance that we felt after
being away from the stage for a few years. This really gave the songs both
old and new an added dimension. We told the youngsters to be loose, and
when you’re not playing its O.K. to enjoy the show like the fans in front
R.Cat.- This had to be an amazing experience for the young
musicians whose ages range from 14-19 years old. How long did the orchestra
get to rehearse with the band?
W.T.- We took about a week to prepare both ourselves and the orchestra
for the show knowing it was going to be recorded for DVD/CD release on
February 7th. Normally COLLCETIVE SOUL doesn’t have the full dress rehearsal
thing, but in this instance we did two of those during the week, then the
actual shows where done on Friday and Saturday night. We are really happy
with how it all turned out.
R.Cat.- It really has been a great year for the band, what can fans
look forward to in 2006 from COLLECTIVE SOUL?
W.T.-We really enjoyed being out on the road last year we did over
160 shows and it was great to reconnect with our fans after sometime away.
We will be heading out again this summer; we are currently looking at a
couple of packages that will include touring in a festival style format.
So we hope to see all you fine folks in Buffalo again this year. NIGHTLIFE
would like to thank WILL TURPIN for his time and Heather Lindner from Deborah
Radel Public Relations for putting this together. You can see the band
perform their next single “Counting the Days” on the Tonight Show with
JAY LENO on Friday February 3rd.
JACK OF ALL TRADES…..Classic rock radio welcomes yet another chart topping
act to the Silver Anniversary fellowship in 2005 as NIGHT RANGER celebrates
this monumental plateau. To commemorate the occasion the boys from the
BAY area released a record last November titled NIGHT RANGER: Hits Acoustic
& Rarities. The disc touches on the bands huge success of the mid-eighties
with the hit singles “Don’t Tell Me You Love Me” and the immensely popular
soundtrack favorite “Sister Christian”. The disc also offers up recent
renditions of each song both live and acoustic, well worth a listen.
JANUARY FRIEND...Although it may be just a bit premature to be thinking
about spring, April 6th may be a date to mark on your calendar. Hometown
hero’s the GOO GOO DOLLS will release “Let Love In” the bands next studio
effort. Since the release of the July 4th concert DVD in 2004 the GOO’S
have enjoyed great success with the singles “Give a Little Bit” and “Better
Days”. NIGHTLIFE will try to “Slide” in an interview with the band before
the disc hits the street. Also look for a full scale tour in 2006
that will include a Darien Lake PAC summer show.
GAMBLE ON... The Seneca Niagara Casino has joined the high stakes of live
music with the opening of their brand new state of the art entertainment
facility. The SENECA EVENTS CENTER which is located inside the luxurious
SENECA NIAGARA CASINO and HOTEL has a seating capacity of 2200, this beautiful
facility should draw in many new and diverse performers to the region.
Artist already slated to roll into town include comedian BILL COSBY on
January 21st, BROOKS and DUNN on February 17th, ANN and NANCY WILSON of
HEART on March 11th, and Jazz legend GEORGE BENSON on March 25th.
With all the new wonderful facilities within the Casino we don’t want the
intimate surroundings of the Bear’s Den Showroom to get lost in the shuffle.
They will welcome the JEFFERSON STARSHIP FAMILY REUNION for two shows on
Friday February 24th, and Saturday February 25th. Ticket information and
show times can be found at www.senecaniagaracasino.com.
LOCAL SUPPORT... With the closing of Media Play we at NIGHTLIFE would like
to remind music fans about the many great convenient locations that longtime
local merchants RECORD THEATRE offers to Western New York. Check out www.recordtheatre.com
for information on stores in Buffalo, Amherst, Hamburg, Lancaster, Niagara
Falls, and Rochester, and be sure to drop your music coin at a location
PRESS RELEASE: Nightlife Magazine is proud to announce an exciting new
Best of WNY.com.
Powered by Bob Luterek and the fine folks at LK
Pro.com, this site is your one hit click to all that is hot in entertainment
in Western New York. The NIGHTLIFE Rock Report is now available online
and will include a Bonus Tracks section that will contain more music news
and interviews not found in the weekly publication. This month will include
a conversation with JACK BLADES of NIGHT RANGER, along with news on THE
WHO, and the “Unchained” DAVID LEE ROTH radio gig.
That being said anyone who knows about the band most certainly knows that
JACK BLADES and company won’t be satisfied with just a walk down “Sentimental
Street”, as they plan to keep “Rocking America” in the New Year. NIGHT
RANGER is currently working on brand new material for a new album and tour
this year. That’s not all that is coming out of the NIGHT RANGER camp these
days as singer/songwriter and bassist extraordinaire JACK BLADES has several
other irons in the fire, including collaborations with several of his Rock
and Roll comrades. NIGHT- LIFE had the pleasure to speak with the multi-faceted
musician, and all around nice guy about what’s in store for 2006
R.Cat.- Congratulations on not only surviving twenty-five years
in the music business but doing so quite successfully.
J.B.- Thank you so much. We are really proud of that accomplishment.
The guys really enjoyed putting together the Anniversary album especially
the acoustic version of “Sister Christian” as well as the live cut of “Don’t
Tell Me You Love Me”. What is even more exciting for us is we are
in the middle of recording an album of brand new material which will be
out this year.
R.Cat.- You’ve enjoyed great success writing and producing for yourself
but you also have quite a list of credits with other artist the likes of
AEROSMITH, ALICE COOPER, ROGER DALTRY, CHER, and OZZY just to name a few.
How did you get involved in those different aspects of music?
J.B.- I’m not just a musician I’m a fan of music. I ‘ve had the
great fortune to be able to sit down with guys like STEVEN TYLER and JOE
PERRY, when you’re writing with them they make you feel like your part
of the band. I really enjoy co-writing especially with artist whom I have
great respect for. I’m also currently working with my old “DAMN YANKEES”
band mates. TOMMY SHAW and I are releasing an album this year called “Influence”,
which is a set of cover tunes that we really love playing. I’m also slated
to produce the new TED NUGENT album this year. So I really thrive on keeping
busy and collaborating with artist on several different styles of music.
As a matter of fact I recently spent some time in Nashville working with
some country artist.
R.Cat.- What a great lead in to my next question. You’ve proven
to be quite an all around talent throughout your storied career not only
fronting NIGHT RANGER, you were also a member of the 1990’s super group
“DAMN YANKEES” which included Rock and Roll’s favorite madman TED NUGENT
and STYX singer/guitarist TOMMY SHAW. How did that all come about, and
is there any chance that group my reform in the future?
J.B.- It got started when a friend of mine at Geffen Records told
me that SHAW and NUGENT were in New York working on material as asked me
to sit in, NIGHT RANGER had split for a while so I was all for it. I got
there and Boom that first weekend we wrote half the first album. As it
turns out TOMMY and I have since become close friends. We really didn’t
go in looking to make a chart topping record it just kind of happened.
Even at that time we were considered dinosaurs so we didn’t really know
what to expect. People have been trying to discount TED for years and he
just continues to piss people off and I just love it. As for a reunion
I myself hope so, it really was a positive experience, we toured relentlessly
and it was a blast. I think it could happen considering the strong relationships
we all still have.
R.Cat.- You also hold the prestigious title of Band Camp Director
at the ROCK and ROLL FANTASY CAMP, scheduled for February 16-20 in Hollywood,
CA. Tell us about that gig and do you get many flute players?
J.B.- That is something that is just a huge thrill for me probably
even more so then the aspiring campers who come along. It really is amazing
spending time with people who want to know what it’s like to put together
a group, then a song, and finally a performance, we manage to pull it off
all in one weekend. What’s even more electrifying is I get to play a WHO
song with ROGER DALTRY singing right next to me. The list of artist who
participate is amazing. This year we will have ROGER as I mentioned, all
the guys from CHEAP TRICK, DICKEY BETTS formerly of the ALLMAN BROTHERS,
and NEAL SCHON of JOURNEY. Those are just few of the musicians, you can
check out the website at www.rockandrollfantasycamp.com
for other performers and how to sign up for band camp.
We at NIGHT-LIFE would like to thank JACK BLADES for taking time out of
his extremely busy schedule to speak with us. Also we would like
to thank Jeff Albright from the Albright Entertainment Group for setting
LISTENING TO YOU…..It appears that WHO fans “Won’t Get Fooled Again” this
year as PETE TOWNSHEND and ROGER DALTRY will finally complete their first
album of new material in over two decades. The duo did write two
new songs for their greatest hits package prior to touring in 2002. Slated
to be titled WHO2 the band will also tour once again this year. The legendary
guitarist has been posting a journal on his website www.petetownshend.co.uk
explaining why he has struggled in getting out new material. In recent
years TOWNSHEND has come clean about the severe hearing loss he has suffered
over many years in the studio. Many people have this misconception that
the reputation of the WHO’S legendary live performances may have caused
this; TOWNSHEND explains that was not the case. “It was not the live loud
shows that caused my hearing to deteriorate; it was the headphones from
working in the studio. In the studio there are often accidental buzzes,
shrieks, and poor connections that cause temporary high level sounds which
have caused me long term damage.
“You Better You Bet” that NIGHT-LIFE will keep an ear to the ground for
any breaking news from the WHO front.
UNCHAINED…..How ironic is it that DAVID LEE ROTH is now facing the daunting
task of replacing a legend behind the mic? Since the departure of HOWARD
STERN to Sirius Satellite, ROTH has taken over the morning drive spot once
held by the King of All Media as a DJ, and ROTH is wasting not time Rocking
Since leaving VAN HALEN in 1984 ROTH has had a less then stellar solo career.
After a failed attempt to “Jump” back in with the band in the late 1990’s
ROTH is using his new medium to get the rumor mill rolling again. On his
first radio show ROTH proclaimed that; “a VAN HALEN reunion with him fronting
the band is inevitable”. He claims that he has had regular communication
with drummer ALEX VAN HALEN and feels it’s just a matter of time. This
is being denied by sources close to guitarist EDWARD VAN HALEN who say,
when it comes to working with DIAMOND DAVE again EDDIE “Ain’t Talkin’‘Bout
In other related VH news former front man SAMMY HAGAR who never gives his
fans the “Runaround”, continues to pump out new music with his band “The
Waborita’s”. HAGAR has a new album ready for the spring and Redheads can
expect a summertime tour. NIGHT-LIFE Magazine is ready to set sail to CABO
with the Red Rocker as we will embark on the 1st annual CABO WABO Cruise.
The seven day cruise in April will take fans to the world famous CABO WABO
Cantina where we will be treated to a concert with SAMMY HAGAR and the
WABORITA’S. NIGHT-LIFE will have a full report on the cruise and the concert
in May. There is still space available check out www.redrocker.com
for more information.
If any of you Rock and Rollers want to contact the NIGHT-LIFE Rock Report
you may do so at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Please feel free to send along this issue to any friends outside the region.
PEACE, Ross Cat.