Sunday, April 22, 2012

High Fidelity

From the movie scene that totally changed my life......more than ten years ago. First Springsteen album that hooked me was Live In New York City, and I've never looked back since. And here I am right now, counting down the days till the wrecking ball hits Sunderland & Manchester.

Friday, April 20, 2012

R.I.P. LEVON HELM, 1940 - 2012

I see my light come shining
From the west down to the east
Any day now, any day now
I shall be released

Levon passed away peacefully this afternoon. He's doing his midnight ramble up there now with Richard and Rick. He was the coolest guy in the coolest 'most uncool' band of all time.

CLICK HERE for Levon's finest moment.

Play nothing but his and The Band's music all day.

Levon, Clarence Clemons & Nils Lofgren

Wednesday, April 18, 2012


I'm listening to Life Is A Carnival as I type this. This morning we woke up to the terrible news of Levon Helm undergoing the final stages of his fight with cancer. Words can't express how sad I am right now. I was seriously considering traveling across the world to Woodstock in the near future to see his legendary midnight rambles. A critic once said that Levon was the only drummer who could make you cry (I actually did once from listening to The Night They Drove Old Dixie Down from Rock Of Ages). As a drummer myself, I was certainly inspired by his style; it sounds like he's playing so damn simple, which he is for the most part, but there's tons of subtle intricacies in the beats which are very difficult to emulate, let alone sometimes sing and play at the same time (Life Is A Carnival is one example). And of course that tremendous Southern voice of his.......truly one of a kind, just like the dearly departed Rick Danko and Richard Manuel; the three of them combined together to create the most unique harmonies ever. Whispering Pines with Richard on lead vocals and Levon coming in during the last verse never fails to break my heart. Also Rick and Levon duetting on the live version of The Rumor. And then Rockin' Chair and then Arcadian Driftwood.....they're all badass. As much as we all love and respect Robbie Robertson, The Band wouldn't be The Band without Levon. Though they're very criminally underrated, they're still undeniably the most talented group of musicians even till today, and the deep, profound impact they've made on not only American music, but popular music in general, cannot be mentioned enough. So rest well Levon, and may your journey into the heavens be a painless and beautiful one.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

In Loving Memory

'Phantom' Danny Federici 
23 January 1950 - 17 April 2008

Friday, April 13, 2012

new Wrecking Ball tour dates

Newly announced stadium shows for the fall. One more month before the European leg begins!

August 14 - Boston, MA - Fenway Park (on sale 5.19 -
August 15 - Boston, MA - Fenway Park (on sale 6.2 -
August 18 – Boston, MA – Gillette Stadium (on sale 4.28 –
August 24 – Toronto, ON , Canada– Rogers Centre (on sale 4.20 –
August 26 – Moncton, NB, Canada – Magnetic Hill (on sale 4.21 –
August 29 – Vernon, NY – Vernon Downs Raceway (on sale 4.28 –
September 2 – Philadelphia, PA – Citizens Bank Park (on sale 4.21 –
September 3 – Philadelphia, PA – Citizens Bank Park (on sale 4.21 –
September 7 – Chicago, IL – Wrigley Field (on sale 4.21 –
September 8 – Chicago, IL – Wrigley Field (on sale 5.5 –
September 14 – Washington, DC – Nationals Park (on sale 4.27 –
September 19 – East Rutherford, NJ – MetLife Stadium (on sale 4.20 –
September 21 – East Rutherford, NJ – MetLife Stadium (on sale 4.20 –
September 22 – East Rutherford, NJ – MetLife Stadium (on sale 4.20 –

- from
updated May 20

Monday, April 9, 2012

Alabama Shakes

Much of the joy in my life so far has been discovering new bands -- bands that are hell-bent on speaking the truth, saying something real, getting our lazy asses up from our couches and send us running to the nearest record store. Usually they can't be found anywhere on the Top 40 charts, at least certainly not here in my country. Enter the Alabama Shakes; the American embodiment of 21st Century blues rock, soul, garage and R&B, harking back to the glory days of Stax and Motown. This young group of twenty-somethings is led by a big lady, Brittany Howard, who unabashedly carries with her the ghosts of many a legendary African-American singer from the '60s and ' particular Janis Joplin, Otis Redding, and more recently, Amy Winehouse. A real powerhouse voice. Get their debut LP now. [link]

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

LA Friday '75

One of my many pet peeves I have is with people wearing T-shirts with the Stones tongue logo on 'em, just because they're cool and stuff, when you know most of them are either vaguely or not familiar with the music. For starters, I think you only deserve to fucking wear a Stones top if you physically own every record or CD from 1962 to 1978, and that definitely includes the three officially released live recordings from the Archives store, and you must have read Keith Richard's autobiography. This third and latest bootleg release comes only two months after the second, Hampton '81. To my ears, LA Friday is very much on par with Brussels Affair, though Ronnie Wood still can't match Mick Taylor's guitar chops.

There are quite a number of 'repeat' songs from Brussels Affair, but trust me, you'll never ever get bored listening to both versions (although I think this Midnight Rambler absolutely trumps the one from Brussels). The chemistry you have with Keith & Ron and Keith & Taylor are worlds apart; the chords may be the same, but they always play them differently. Same goes for the rhythm section of Bill and Charlie, the spontaneity of Ian Stewart's piano, and of course Mick's singing. Put this together with the ragged, ultra-raw style of playing, and you get a quintessential Rolling Stones live document. The band usually plays faster live, just like Pearl Jam, who clearly got their inspiration from the Stones. At that time, their latest album was It's Only Rock & Roll, and you can be sure these shit-hot versions of the title track, If You Can't Rock Me, Ain't To Proud To Beg and Fingerprint File are worth the price of the whole set. For me, Wild Horses may just be the single best thing about this show. And the stellar remastered sound from Bob Clearmountain makes listening more fun.

1. Honky Tonk Women
2. All Down The Line
3. If You Can't Rock Me/ Get Off Of My Cloud
4. Star Star
5. Gimme Shelter
6. Ain't Too Proud To Beg
7. You Gotta Move
8. You Can’t Always Get What You Want
9. Happy
10. Tumbling Dice
11. Band intros
12 It's Only Rock N Roll
13. Heartbreaker
14. Fingerprint File
15. Angie
16. Wild Horses
17. That's Life (feat. Billy Preston)
18. Outta Space (feat. Billy Preston)
19. Brown Sugar
20. Midnight Rambler
21. Rip This Joint
22. Street Fighting Man
23. Jumping Jack Flash
24. Sympathy For The Devil