Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Dolly Parton Is Having A Ho Down On "The Today Show"


In less than a month the awesome Ms. Parton will take to "The Today Show" stage and wow everyone with her effortless flair and charisma. I know I will be watching...Yes, I think Dolly is amazing!

Dolly Parton, the most honored female country performer of all time, recently topped the New Zealand all-genre album chart and the Australian country album chart with the release of her latest album Blue Smoke.  Now, in preparation of Blue Smoke’s release in the United States, Dolly has announced her performance as part of the "The Today Show" Outdoor Concert Series,  the very same day her album hits stores – May 13th.

Additional television and media appearances will be announced in the coming weeks.

Achieving 25 RIAA certified gold, platinum and multi-platinum awards, Dolly has had 25 songs reach number 1 on the Billboard Country charts, a record for a female artist. She has 41 career top 10 country albums, a record for any artist, and she has 110 career charted singles over the past 40 years. All-inclusive sales of singles, albums, hits collections, paid digital downloads and compilation usage during her Hall of Fame career have reportedly topped a staggering 100 million records worldwide. She has garnered 7 Grammy Awards, 10 Country Music Association Awards, 5 Academy of Country Music Awards, 3 American Music Awards and is one of only five female artists to win the Country Music Association's Entertainer of the Year Award. Dolly was inducted as a member of the Country Music Hall of Fame in 1999.  And the litany goes on.

Dolly’s career has spanned nearly five decades and is showing no signs of slowing down.  An internationally-renowned superstar, the iconic and irrepressible Parton has contributed countless treasures to the worlds of music, film and television.  Some of her hit films have included "Nine to Five," "Steel Magnolias," "The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas," "Rhinestone," "Straight Talk," and "Joyful Noise."  Parton received two Oscar® nominations – one for writing the title tune to "Nine to Five" and the other for "Travelin’ Thru" from the film "Transamerica."

Have your own Ho Down with Dolly at:


Facebook: Facebook.com/DollyParton

Sunday, April 13, 2014

Stand In Solitude With Suzanne Vega In Rome

Suzanne Vega "Solitude Standing" 
 Available on DVD on May 6th
An intimate performance in Rome from 2003

I, like many first remember Suzanne Vega when she had her breakthrough hit "Luka."
It was an amazing work that brought a palatable sound and mainstream access to a subject matter that was anything but...

Ms. Vega is currently on tour all over the world and the U.S. - click on the link below to find out where in the meantime you can pre-order the DVD of her intimate performance in Rome. Keep calm and carry on...

Filmed at the Rome Auditorium in July 2003, Suzanne Vega performs some of her greatest hits at this intimate concert, including Tom's DinerLuka and Marlene On The Wall. The songs are interspersed with moving poetry readings. The DVD includes a candid interview with singer/songwriter Valerio Piccolo about Vega's life and career. This DVD is released shortly following her world tour and new album.

"Widely regarded as one of the most brilliant songwriters of her generation," (Biography Magazine) Suzanne Vega emerged as a leading figure of the folk-music revival of the early 1980s when, accompanying herself on acoustic guitar, she sang what has been labelled contemporary folk or neo-folk songs of her own creation in Greenwich Village clubs.

Since the release of her self-titled, critically acclaimed 1985 debut album, she has performed at sell-out concerts in many of the world's best-known venues. She'll be touring the UK, Europe, the USA, Japan and Australia throughout March, April and May 2014 - a full list of dates can be found HERE.

Songs / Poems:

1. Marlene On The Wall 
2. How To Make A Poem (poem) 
3. Small Blue Thing 
4. Caramel 
5. Italy In Spring (poem) 
6. Some Journey 
7. Penitent 
8. When Heroes Go Down 
9. Anti-hero (poem) 
10. Gypsy 
11. Left Of Center 
12. Solitaire 
13. The Queen And The Soldier 
14. In Liverpool (poem) 
15. In Liverpool 
16. Luka 
17. Tom's Diner

Buy yourself a piece of solitude at:  http://www.seeofsound.com/p.php?s=WNRD2582

Friday, April 11, 2014

Carrie Borzillo Was There, Kurt Cobain's Death Remembered

Carlton Books has announced the re-issue of author/journalist Carrie Borzillo's first book, 2000's Eyewitness "Nirvana: The Day-by-Day Chronicle," with a new cover, title, and design as "Nirvana: In The Words of the People Who Were There" on April 1, 2014 to commemorate the 20th anniversary of the tragic death of Kurt Cobain.
The book is on sale everywhere. Mr. Borzillo is selling a limited number of signed copies direct to the fans via her official website with a percentage of each autographed copy purchased being donated to the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention. 
Being a Nirvana fan I had to satiate my curiosity and chat with another fellow fan - one that actually authored a book on the subject, here is what transpired...

MS: So I just recently learned, with the re-issue of your book that you are a Nirvana fan.

CB: Yes, but I would never put myself up there with the real hard core Nirvana fans. I was a music journalist so I knew them professionally, and of course being a music journalist I was passionate about music and I loved them, but those real hard core Nirvana fans who are not journalists and do not work in the industry - the just love Kurt Cobain so much! Of course I'm a fan but those real ones can recite every lyric, I sometimes forget what I wrote in my own book, OK? (laughs)

MS: I'm a fan like you are a fan too, I completely love their music and what they stood for but, I can barely remember some of the things I write either. (laughs) Yeah my over the top fan days are long gone.

CB: It's great to feel passionate about music and all of that, but it's not like when you were a teenager or in your twenties.

MS: When I first listened to Nirvana their music used to hit so many deep emotional triggers for me as I have grown older I still love the music, and it still hits certain things for me, but now I look at it more as great music, it's not as emotional now.

CB: It's hard for me to listen to Nirvana still without feeling, at least for me, that huge sense of sadness. When he sings you can really hear that struggle and inner turmoil, it comes out in every word he says, every lyric, every guitar strum is so full of pain, it's hard to listen to.

MS: I'm from the Seattle area by the way.

CB: Oh Wow! Were you around when Kurt's suicide happened?

MS: I was in Los Angeles actually.

CB: I lived in Los Angeles but was flown to a party in Seattle, and was there the day it happened, what a fluke, huh? The biggest news story of my career probably. What timing, weird you know?

MS: Personally I think Kurt Cobain was the last iconic figure we will ever have in rock music.

CB: Absolutely! He was the last true tortured artist who actually had something important to say, that changed pop culture and the music industry, and flipped everything upside down. He made the un-cool people, cool, the misfits became the popular kids. He made it OK to be different and brought alternative music to mainstream. That wasn't really his intention and he honestly struggled with his being indie, cool and underground and all of the sudden that becoming the biggest commercial thing.

MS: I'm sure it was a surprise.

CB: There will never be that again, and if someone does come out again who is like a Kurt Cobain figure, we've got to start counting his days. Those true artists who are coming from a deep lace of pain and suffering are not long for this world. Kurt was never going to live past twenty-seven I think.

MS: What did you think about those who were trying to pin Kurt's murder on Courtney Love?

CB: This happens with anyone who is as big of an icon as Kurt Cobain. It happened with Jim Morrison, it happened with Elvis Presley, the only person it didn't happen with was John Lennon because that was a real clear cut incident with witnesses and everything.

MS: No debating that one.

CB: Because Kurt was such an icon and Courtney was around we he committed suicide. Of course there is going to be all these theories and mysteries, it was clear cut suicide. Listening to all of the conspiracy theories was fun, that Courtney hired somebody to kill Kurt. You know it wouldn't surprise me if Courtney ever said, or had a conversation with someone saying: "I want to kill my husband." But in this case he did this alone.

MS: Why do you think there was some doubt in people's mind?

CB: One of the facts is that the level of heroin he had in his system would not have allowed him to pull the trigger on the gun. The thing is, that is true unless you are a super junkie, Kurt was a super junkie. His tolerance level was higher than the average junkie. I mean if did that much heroin I'd be dead in a second. People always say: "Well Doctors say it's impossible" - Yes, Doctors do say that, but there is a but there, if your tolerance level is as high as Kurt's then it is possible.

MS: Exactly!

CB: With the reissue I didn't want to just capitalize on this horrible tragedy that happened, I wanted to give back and am donating some money to the American Foundation For Suicide Prevention, if you buy singed copies through me on my site. It's great to celebrate his life right now, we are remembering someone who contributed so much to the music industry. But let's bring it back to what really happened: drug addiction, suicide, depression...that's what was really going on with him. Anything I can do to shine a little light on that is what I want to do.

Buy an autographed copy of "Nirvana: In The Words Of The People Who Were There" via Carrie's website and give back at: http://www.carrieborzillo.com/

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

It Cuts Like A "Shonen Knife"

Shonen Knife Is Awesome!

Legendary Japanese rockers SHONEN KNIFE go into “OVERDRIVE” with new album Out 4/15; US Tour Dates Announced

Ever since I heard their cover of The Carpenters "Top of the World" on The Carpenter cover CD: "If I Were A Carpenter" - the punk pop trio of women known as Shonen Knife has been one of my favorite groups...the legends have a new CD dropping and are hitting the road in the United States, it's time, get knifed! 
Shonen Knife, Osaka Japan’s legendary queens of indie sunshine, are back with a brand new album for 2014.
Their 19th studio release, “Overdrive”, is a tip of the hat to 70’s Hard Rock, and a continuation of Shonen Knife’s journey into the musings of food, fantasy and daily life in the Far Eastern metropolis of Osaka.
“Overdrive” features 10 new songs penned by founding member and principal songwriter Naoko who continues to grow the 30 plus year legacy of Japan’s most recognizable name in indie rock. The band is rounded out with 2 songs sung by bassist Ritsuko and drummer Emi, a lineup consistently rocking since 2010.
Channeling the musical traditions of 70’s Metal Icons like Thin Lizzy, Deep Purple, Bad Company, Kiss and Black Sabbath, Naoko’s passion for the hard rock genre is translated through her constant pop culture filter known as Shonen Knife.
“Overdrive” will be available in N. America on Good Charamel Records on April 15th 2014 and is now available for Pre-Sale in the Good Charamel Online Store.Shonen Knife will play Japan and Europe this spring and summer. The initial dates on their fall North American tour have just been announced (see below).
"Overdrive" Track Listing
1) Bad Luck Song
2) Black Crow
3) Dance to the Rock
4) Ramen Rock
5) Shopping
6) Fortune Cookie
7) Like a Cat
8) Green Tea
9) Robots from Hell
10) Jet Shot
Tour Dates:
Fri 09-12 Brooklyn NY @ The Wick
Sat 09-13 Buffalo, NY @ The Music is Art Festival
Tue. 09-16 St. Paul, MN- Turf Club
Thur. 09-18 Chicago, IL- Bottom Lounge
Tues 10-07 San Diego - The Casbah
Wed 10-08 Los Angeles, CA – The Church on York
Fri. 10-10 San Francisco, CA- Bottom of the Hill
Sat. 10-11 Portland, OR- Dante's
Sun 10-12 Seattle, WA – Tractor Tavern
Tue. 10-14 Boise, ID- Neurolux
Wed. 10-15 Salt Lake City, UT- Urban Lounge
Thurs 10-16 Denver, CO- Oriental Theater
Sat 10-18 St Louis, MO- Firebird
(More US dates to be announced soon ....)
The album is now available for pre-order in the Good Charamel webstore.

Monday, April 7, 2014

James + Heidi Durbin = Hunter, & Baby #2...!

This Threesome Is About To Become Four!

James & Heidi Durbin Are Ready To CELEBRATE with Announcement of Second Child Due This Fall

Congratulations to my buddy James Durbin, he and wife Heidi are expecting baby number two! 

American Idol alum & pop rock star James Durbin and wife Heidi Durbin are celebrating the announcement of their second child due this Fall.  Heidi is about 8 weeks along and is expected to deliver the new bundle of joy in November.  This will be the second child for James & Heidi.  Their son Hunter Durbin will turn 5 years old next month. 

Says James & Heidi, "We are looking forward to more laughter in the house with this new addition.  We love those silly baby expressions and big brother Hunter will probably be a big help too."                    

James is also celebrating the release of his brand new CD this week.  CELEBRATE will be released April 8 and features his single "Parachute http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gmrlqh3Pt8o&list=UU6NjAP__bgiv99frESvWIRA&feature=c4-overview   CELEBRATE is available on iTunes, etc here  http://bit.ly/1ckwR6x   

Friday, April 4, 2014

Toni Braxton, Stops In The Name Of Darlene Love

Toni Braxton

This just in "Unbreak My Heart" singer, Toni Braxton has been cast as Rock-N-Roll hall of fame inductee and all around wonderful performer and person, Ms. Darlene Love in a made for TV Movie on Oprah Winfrey's OWN Network:

"My Name is Love: The Darlene Love Story” is slated for a December premiere. Pic revolves around Love’s long career in the music biz, starting out as the key voice behind Phil Spector’s Wall of Sound hits from the 1960s. OWN’s first scripted telepic is shepherded by the docu filmmaker Morgan Neville, who was behind last year’s “Twenty Feet from Stardom” feature about Love and other well-known backup singers."

"Twenty Feet From Stardom" was an awesome documentary, I have no doubt Morgan Neville is going to nail this, along with the multi-talented Ms. Braxton. 

I for one can't wait to see my friend Darlene get a fitting tribute on OWN. Darlene was one of my very favorite interview subjects - she is terrific!

Check out our interview here: http://www.chorusandverse.com/content.php?id=20101110A

Keep up with "My Name Is Love" on OWN at: http://www.oprah.com/app/own-tv.html

Get some "Love" on Facebook at: https://www.facebook.com/darleneloveworld

Thursday, April 3, 2014

I Love My "Hole" Vintage

Vintage "Hole"

"And the sky was all violet. 
I wanna give my violet more violence. 
And I'm the one with no soul 
One above and one below"

- "Violet" Hole 

A  Hole reunion is underway. Courtney  Love has confirmed that she, Eric Erlandson, Melissa Auf Der Maur, and Patty Schemel have been practicing together, reuniting a lineup that broke up in 2002.

Damn, I knew it had been long, but that long?! It's about time they are getting it together and making new music!

God this takes me back to an era of my life that I loved in Los Angeles, the one where one of the best albums ever made came out "Live Through This" and seeing Hole perform live for the first time ever at The Palladium.

I still remember how electrifying Ms. Love and company were when they took to the stage, and her crowd surfing, who could forget that! It was an amazing show! After I got to go back stage and meet Courtney who was gracious and sweet until...let's just say a random woman came up to her and whispered something in her ear and the next thing I know Courtney starts hitting and smacking her and a security guard had to pull Courtney off the woman, and for the rest of that story you will have to read my memoir...but I will add this Ms. Love did give my friend Britney, who went with me and myself a catch phrase we still utter to this day: "Get a Fucking Sharpie!"

While being older and more mellow I do not expect the same insanity to ensue that did in the days of yore mentioned above, but I can't wait for more kick ass music from one of the best bands in my mind ever!

"Pretty On The Inside," "Live Through This" and "Celebrity Skin" music that has stuck with me and never left my psyche...

So hold your breath people it's going to be an amazing bumpy ride!

Keep up with the "Hole" story on Courtney Love's Facebook Page: