Chicago recently released a new single, “If This Is Goodbye,” their first new music in eight years, ahead of their summer co-headlining tour with Brian Wilson, co-founder of the Beach Boys, with Al Jardine and Blondie Chaplin.
“If This Is Goodbye” is the band’s first original release since 2014’s Chicago XXXVI: Now, and their first original single since 2008’s “Let’s Take a Lifetime,” which appeared on Stone of Sisyphus.
In “If This Is Goodbye,” the band members reflect on their wild lives and relish the memories with lyrics like: “If this is goodbye / Let’s take one more shot for the memories / Life’s too short to be enemies / And if this ends tonight / You can save your tears for the other guys / I’ll see you in another life.”
Credits: RTTNews Staff Writer
When people think of legendary guitarists, most of the ones mentioned in the upper echelon of the category have sadly passed on. However, one of the absolute greatest guitarists of all time is getting his own film. Who are we speaking about? None other than Carlos Santana. The man paved the way for plenty of guitarists, and he has been instrumental (literally) at genre-blending in a way that has brought so many musicians together with his genius musicality. There is currently a documentary being made that will highlight the man’s life from being a street performer into the powerhouse that he is now. The documentary is being put together by Rudy Valdez.
Rudy Valdez famously directed The Sentence, which covers mandatory minimum prison sentences and the effects it has on families. That documentary landed an Emmy and was produced for HBO. HBO often does its due diligence when it comes to releasing content, and the company usually gets things right. There has been no word about where the Santana documentary will be streamed or premiere, but it could theoretically end up at HBO as well. The man himself spoke about his honor to be the subject of this documentary, and what his aims are for telling his story. According to Santana, “The intentionality of this film is to touch people’s hearts and to inspire people to re-connect with their own light that they may ignite blessings and miracles.”
Santana has had a monster career in terms of his music journey. He is a 10x Grammy winner. A 3x Latin Grammy winner. He was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, a Billboard Century Award recipient, recipient of the Kennedy Center Honors, and one of the only musicians to have a top-10 hit in every decade since the 1960s. Simply put, the man has been one of the biggest and most influential musicians for over 60 years. Now we will all get to see where this journey started, and where it has taken him. Santana joins a prestigious list of iconic musicians that have been given a deep dive into their genius. Most of the time the deeper look comes in form of a biopic, but it’s good that this time we are going to be given a documentary.
This upcoming Santana documentary is certainly in good hands, as Ron Howard is also going to serve as an executive producer for the film. He is joined by Oscar-winner Brian Grazer, who famously produced Apollo 13 and A Beautiful Mind. The latter was the film that won him a Best Picture Academy Award. This is a lot of high-level talent that is going to be attached to this new documentary. For someone as prestigious in the music game as Santana is, he deserves to have the best care taken with his story. Imagine Documentaries is pairing with Sony Music Entertainment to bring this documentary to life.
The Santana documentary is currently in production, but there are no further details about where it will premiere or its release date. There is usually a ton of work to be done on documentaries in the form of interviews and things of that nature.
We might not see this documentary premiere until sometime in early 2023. Keep your eyes peeled for further details in the coming months.
Credits: Giant Freakin Robot – James Brizuela
In the first half of the 20th Century, England lost an entire male generation to save Europe from despotism in two of the most brutal wars ever fought. By the 1960’s, their disillusioned youth were struggling to be noticed. Channeling the same sense of hopelessness experienced by African Americans after the reconstruction period, which led to the Blues, British youths rebelled through music, and no piece of work captured that energy quite like The Who’s Tommy.
The album is a profound body of work that is as relevant today as it was when first released in 1969. Tommy resonates powerful messages on many levels (antiwar, anti-establishment, false idolatry, child abuse, et al). Musical themes and visceral sensations unify as the listener is immersed inside the skin of the protagonist. The album is a remarkable achievement that has been recognized globally over the decades, as Tommy has been performed on Broadway, as a major motion picture, with philharmonic orchestras, and of course by the four talented members of the band.
The storyline centers on a young boy (Tommy) who is rendered deaf, dumb, and blind upon witnessing the fatal shooting of his returning war hero father by his stepfather. His only salvation is pinball, becoming a “Pinball Wizard” and a rock star-like deity, before being rejected by his followers after recovering his senses. In May 1969, when Tommy was released, my brothers and I listened to the album, overwhelmed by its potent eloquence. I was only 13 at the time, but even still, I recognized that this was a game changer. It rivals The Beatles’ Sgt. Peppers with a thematic and musical brilliance that is a strong statement of celebrity, disillusionment, and existential angst.
As interesting as the storyline is, it’s the music that elevates Tommy into a monumental opus. Kicking off the album is “Overture” which deftly captures many of Tommy’s recurring themes. Pete Townshend adds electrical and intricate Spanish acoustic guitars while John Entwistle backs up with the brilliant use of the French horn. Haunting background vocals and an organ is added for more substance as the “Overture” puts Tommy into high gear. It segues into its first vocals as Roger Daltrey announces the birth of Tommy…” It’s a Boy”.
“Amazing Journey” is just that, as drummer Keith Moon drives with his relentless work on the drum kit while Daltrey adds gorgeous vocals. Next up is “Sparks”, an instrumental masterpiece that starts with psychedelic sound effects followed by the relentless, forceful work of Townshend’s acoustic guitar, with Moon in lockstep adding his percussive genius. “Sparks” could easily be turned into an orchestral work. Here’s one of our favorite covers of the instrumental, as performed by Phish during the “S” show on 9/2/11, their first-ever performance at Dick’s Sporting Goods Park:
“Christmas” is another excellent track that first captures Tommy’s vocal themes.” Tommy, Can You Hear/See Me” … “See Me, Feel Me, Hear me, Touch Me.” You are now totally immersed into the story.
“The Acid Queen” is one of the more provocative songs on the album, as the song focuses on Tommy’s parents’ hopes of restoring the boy’s senses with a drug treatment. The play between Townshend and Moon is extraordinary, while the always steady Entwistle shows himself as the master of the bass guitar. A mention must be made to Tina Turner’s cover from the film version of Tommy. She belts out “Acid Queen” with “in your face” passion that sends chills to your core. It may be one of the greatest songs ever performed by The Who, but Ms. Turner may have done them one better.
The most ambitious orchestral track on Tommy is “Underture”. It is a 10-minute tour de force that would make Igor Stravinsky jealous. With its decidedly unromantic classical music structure, Townshend drives Tommy’s musical themes with his remarkable acoustic guitar as Moon provides a complete percussion section with incredibly intricate work on the drum woodblocks, tambourine, snare, and bass drum.
Probably the most famous song from Tommy is “Pinball Wizard”. It captures Tommy at the zenith of his fame. The opening acoustic guitar starts slowly and builds with a tidal wave of frenzied intensity. The power chords overdubbed to the acoustic guitar are terrific. Daltrey is at his finest telling the story of Tommy’s mastery of pinball. Townshend’s vocal response to Daltrey’s lead creates a compelling scenario. “Pinball Wizard” is one of the definitive statements of why The Who is so great. They can rock as hard as anyone, but still deliver Beach Boy-like harmonies.
“Go to The Mirror/Tommy, Can You Hear Me/Smash the Mirror” is the Rock Opera’s denouement. Moon and Daltrey vocalize beautifully as Tommy is close to recovering his senses. It is a thrilling musical ride and also proves that Moon has no rival on drums – his performance is breathtaking. “Tommy, Can You Hear Me” is just vocals and acoustic guitar, delivered with evocative simplicity and grace. Meanwhile, “Smash The Mirror” is raw power.
Closing out Tommy is the epic song “We’re Not Gonna Take It”. It’s straight rock and roll number, but it delivers the definitive Who statement. “We’re Not Gonna Take It” rivals “Won’t Get Fooled Again” and “My Generation” as the proverbial Who middle finger to the rest of humanity. The powerful harmonies once again prove that The Who are the masters of iconoclastic bravado.
Tommy is a work of pure genius. Greatness and genius are terms thrown around and often misapplied to recognize celebrity, but the truly, truly gifted artist stands immortal. There are so few over the centuries: Mozart, Shakespeare, Van Gogh, Picasso, Miles Davis to name a few. We passionately embrace these artists because we can immerse ourselves into their vision of beauty and originality. The pathos experienced when viewing Van Gogh’s “Starry Night” or the stark, lonely beauty of Miles Davis’ “Blue Moods” is the expression of the human condition at its very finest. That is greatness, the only path to immortality. The Who achieved that level of immortality with Tommy a towering work of art that will be loved and embraced as long as there are people on the planet.
CREDITS: By The Jamfather – LIVEFORLIVEMUSIC
Tom Petty had no idea he’d sing on The Traveling Wilburys’ first song, “Handle With Care,” when George Harrison knocked on his door one day in 1988. All he knew was that George was recording music with Jeff Lynne, that Roy Orbison would be there, and they were all going to Bob Dylan’s garage studio. He couldn’t miss it.
George needed a 12-inch single and asked Lynne to help. When they wrote the song that became “Handle With Care,” they decided to get everyone to sing the song. It was a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to get all five rock stars on one song.
Later, they were somehow able to reconvene as The Traveling Wilburys and record their debut, The Traveling Wilburys Vol. 1. Orbison died in 1988, but the supergroup reunited again in 1990 to record their second album. Petty said his time in The Traveling Wilburys was “pure magic,” but he did have regrets.
Tom Petty loved his time in the supergroup
In a video about the making of The Traveling Wilburys Vol. 1, Petty said recording with The Traveling Wilburys was a great experience. “The thing I guess that would be hardest for people to understand is what good friends we were,” he said.
“It really had very little to do with combining a bunch of famous people, it was a bunch of friends that just happened to be really good at making music.”
In 2007, Petty told Mass Live, “It was all great. It’s hard to think of a best thing. You’re in the best band you’ve seen, with all your heroes who are also your friends. It’s still hard to conceive, just a fabulous thing.”
Petty regretted not touring with The Traveling Wilburys
Despite having a great time recording with the supergroup, Petty had a couple of regrets. Petty regretted not taking The Traveling Wilburys out on the road, or playing a single live show with his bandmates, even though it was “considered often.” “We talked about it many nights and then never really did it,” Petty told Mass Live. “We might have some beers and plan it all night and then in the morning we’d be like, ‘Well, no.’ (laughs) Especially when we became successful, there were all kinds of people trying to get us to do tours.”
In the video about the making of the band’s debut album, Petty said, “Every time George had a joint and a few beers he would start talking about touring. I think once or twice we even had serious talks about it, but nobody would really commit to it. We never thought we were gonna run out of time.”
Continuing to Mass Live, Petty said, “When we did ‘The Concert for George,’ and Jeff came out with us and we did ‘Handle with Care,’ I remember thinking at that moment that George would have loved this so much. But there was a lot of pressure on us all to go out on the road together.”
If it was one thing that George hated about the music industry, it was being pressured into doing something, even if he wanted to do it. So, maybe it’s good that the supergroup didn’t relent and go on tour. If they had, George likely would’ve felt like he was doing it for the wrong reasons.
Petty had another regret about the supergroup
After recording The Traveling Wilburys Vol. 1, the supergroup reconvened a third time to record The Traveling Wilburys Vol. 3 (they skipped over Vol. 2) in 1990. The two albums are the only records the supergroup released. Petty wished there was a Vol. 4 (or whatever volume number they would’ve chosen). He regretted not being “more aggressive” about getting it done.
Petty told Mass Live that the four musicians (Orbison died in 1988) talked about getting another Traveling Wilburys album recorded “a lot.” Petty explained George “talked for the rest of his life about doing it again or maybe taking it on the road. It is one of my great regrets that I wasn’t a little more aggressive about getting that done. I always thought we’d have all the time in the world to do it.”
So, the supergroup considered touring and doing a third album multiple times, yet they never got around to doing either. Maybe there was a reason. The Traveling Wilburys wouldn’t have happened if they planned it, but they certainly wouldn’t have planned a third album and a tour if that was what the record companies wanted. The whole point of the supergroup was friends coming together to jam as equals.
Credits: Hannah-Wigandt / Showbiz Cheatsheet
Watch Steve Vai and Nile Rodgers help create the iconic ‘Halo 2’ theme
After being told to “just vibe”, Steve Vai improvised a solo that would feature on the main theme for ‘Halo 2’. A studio recording of guitarists Steve Vai and Nile Rodgers creating the now-iconic theme for Halo 2 has been shared by the series’ original composer, Marty O’Donnell.
Today (April 19), O’Donnell announced that a dispute regarding royalties for his work creating the Halo soundtrack has been “amicably resolved”. Along with the announcement, O’Donnell shared footage of Vai and Rodgers working together on their contribution to the main theme for Halo 2, which includes instrumentals from the pair.
Within the video’s 27-minute run-time, there are plenty of moments that detail how the pair came up with Halo 2‘s guitar-led theme – including Rodgers explaining that he wants to create something “really true” to the game’s original soundtrack. At 0:53, fans can spot Rodgers listening to the string-led portion of Halo 2‘s theme, before picking up his guitar and improvising a chord progression to play with the piece.
After Rodgers’ rhythm section drew praise from Vai, Rodgers joked that “I was doing something like this with [Eric Clapton], he sat there and went “okay, now what am I gonna play?” he said, “you’re covering all the harmony and all the rhythm, what am I supposed to do?” Around the 8:30 mark, a conversation between Vai and Rodgers shares a glimpse into the pair’s approach to collaborating on the Bungie project.
Rodgers tells Vai he wants it “to sound like you’re there with the orchestra” but doesn’t want to change the theme too much as “the original thing is so well-known”. When Vai tells Rodgers to “produce me, baby”, Rodgers instructs him to “just vibe, just groove on it for a minute” to see what he can come up with.
Remarkably, Vai’s improvisation – which begins at 9 minutes in the video – creates the solo that went on to be largely used in Halo 2‘s main theme, much to the approval of Rodgers. The footage was filmed while recording at Seattle’s Studio X, which has been used by artists ranging from Nirvana to Macklemore and Soundgarden.
– Credits: NME – Andy Brow
Eric Clapton and George Harrison were life-long friends. They shared the same love for music, and although they also shared the same love for a woman, nothing came between them. So, when George died of cancer in 2001, Clapton was beside himself. He had to do something to honor his friend, even if that meant doing something George would never have wanted.
Eric Clapton organized Concert for George in 2002.
After George died, Clapton wanted to do something to pay tribute to his life-long friend. So, he came up with Concert for George, a star-studded tribute concert. “It was [Clapton’s] idea,” George’s widow, Olivia, told Rolling Stone.
“He phoned me not long after George died and said, ‘I’d like to do something.’ Eric was a very deep friend of George’s, so I felt confident and relieved that it was Eric coming to me.”
“Olivia had given me this job of being musical director,” Clapton added, “to single out people for certain songs, and I found that really hard.
We were all quite protective of our relationships with George.” Fans and a vast group of George’s closest friends gathered on Nov. 29, 2002, exactly a year after George died, at London’s Royal Albert Hall for Concert for George. They filmed it and released it in theaters and on DVD a year later.
Among the performers were Clapton, Ravi Shankar, Ringo Starr, Jeff Lynne, Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers, Billy Preston, and Paul McCartney. George’s only son, Dhani, played acoustic guitar through most of the performance.
Shankar told the crowd that he believed George’s spirit was with them. However, George would have been uncomfortable with the tribute concert.
Eric Clapton said George Harrison wouldn’t have liked Concert for George
Clapton thought of what his friend would have said about the tribute concert during rehearsals. He realized George wouldn’t have wanted Concert for George. However, Clapton said he didn’t care what George would have thought.
He needed to grieve. “I thought that if he were here, he’d probably say, ‘Thanks very much Eric, but I don’t really want this,’” Clapton told the LA Times.
“I thought, ‘What would I say if he said that?’ “And I then thought, ‘Well I’m doing this for me, actually.’ And that’s more the truth of it; I needed to do it for him, but it was for me most of all because I needed to be able to express my grief in that kind of way.”
The guitarist found it hard to communicate his feelings to the ex-Beatle
After everything George and Clapton went through together, Clapton was never entirely able to show his friend his feelings.
“A lot of times during our relationship, I found it very difficult to communicate my feelings toward George my love for him as a musician and a brother and a friend because we skated around stuff. I was probably dealing with that, too, making amends.”
It was a little late, but Concert for George allowed Clapton to tell George how he felt about him finally. Clapton needed to show George, he loved him by celebrating George’s life.
Hopefully, Concert for George allowed Clapton to mourn George properly and to say all the things he never got to say to him.
Credits: Hannah Wigandt – Showbiz CheatSheet
Tyson Fury, who will take on fellow Brit Dillian Whyte at Wembley Stadium on 23rd April live on BT Sport Box Office, famously performed American Pie after defeating Deontay Wilder in Fury v Wilder II in 2020. The song has since become synonymous with the boxer who is not afraid to showcase his musical talent.
The latest iteration of the song sees McLean singing the verses to “American Pie”, perfectly articulating Tyson’s comeback story, before he’s joined in the chorus by the Gypsy King himself. The Morecambe-based fighter is no stranger to jumping on the mic, having previously appeared on Robbie Williams’ song “Bad Sharon” in 2019.
Ahead of Fury v Whyte the song will be aired on BT Sport to promote the fight and will be played in the stadium on fight night as 94,000 fans pack into Wembley stadium to witness the first all-British heavyweight world title fight for a generation.
In addition to celebrating Fury’s homecoming, the duet coincides with the 50th anniversary of American Pie – both the album and single – as well as the release of a children’s book, documentary about the pop culture impact of the song, and a world tour which will come to the UK and Europe starting in September 2022.
Fans will be able to watch all the build-up, undercard and the main event of Fury v Whyte exclusively live on BT Sport Box Office.
Don McLean is a Grammy award honoree, a Songwriter Hall of Fame member, a BBC Lifetime Achievement Award recipient, and his smash hit “American Pie” resides in the Library of Congress National Recording Registry and was named a top 5 song of the 20th Century by the Recording Industry of America (RIAA).
Credits: Tim Peacock – Udiscovermusic.com