CURVED AIR seek fans’ help

September 18, 2014

CURVED AIRApparently, CURVED AIR work on a box set because the band turned to their followers with a request to submit any live tapes that haven’t been in circulation before as well as to find a string of bootleg concert tapes to fill up the group’s archive. “We’re not looking to get anyone intro trouble if you taped a show secretly, please consider this an amnesty! Please get in touch!” say Sonja Kristina, who won a Guiding Light gong at the PROG Awards last week, and her colleagues whose released the "North Star" album earlier this year.

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Manfred Mann’s new album: a glory ride

September 17, 2014

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He might have groups that bore his name but even Manfred Mann wants to have a space of his own sometimes, and the legendary keyboard player has two albums released in a kind of solo mode. Still, 1991’s “Plains Music” is often perceived as an ensemble work, as it helped the veteran revive EARTH BAND, and 2004’s “2006” did feature the band, yet “Lone Arranger” – a nice pun given Manfred’s habit for wearing hats, even though not cowboy ones – is more self-centered. Out at the end of October, Mann’s new record finds him play other people’s pieces, which he a master of; it was him who brought Bruce Springsteen’s songs to the charts by doing “Spirits In The Night” on "Nightingales And Bombers" and “Blinded By The Light” on "Roaring Silence" in the mid-’70s, as well as covered many more compositions. Now, there would be a wide array of these, from classical to pop.

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Yusuf to cover PROCOL HARUM and Edgar Winter

September 15, 2014

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About a year ago, when we reported on Yusuf Islam, formerly Cat Stevens, recording an album with Rick Rubin producing and Richard Thompson adding guitar, it wasn’t known that the result would be a half-covers record. Yet is is. “Tell ‘Em I’m Gone,” out on October 27th, features, alongside, Yusuf originals, a very interesting selection, including “The Devil Came From Kansas” from PROCOL HARUM’s "A Salty Dog" and Edgar Winter’s “Dying To Live” as well as traditionals “You Are My Sunshine” and, rearranged for a title track, “Take This Hammer” plus “Big Boss Man” as popularized by Elvis.

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John Gustafson: rest in peace

September 13, 2014

John GustafsonSad news came in of a passing of John Gustafson, one of the best bass players on this planet and one of the nicest persons around. A stalwart of a Liverpool scene, where he was a mainstay of THE BIG THREE and sometimes played with THE BEATLES, Gus was mostly known for his stint with IAN GILLAN BAND and singing Simon Zealotes in “Jesus Christ Superstar,” although his playing reached much wider, and ROXY MUSIC’s “Love Is The Drug” is just one of famous pieces featuring his four strings.

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