Here’s a look at what’s going on in today’s rock news.
Tuesday November 23rd:
-Spencer Elden, a.k.a., the “‘Nevermind’ Baby,” brought new evidence in his lawsuit against Nirvana. Elden cited journal entries written by Kurt Cobain that were published in 2002 as suggesting a sexual nature of the album’s cover. Elden also said that he was dressed as a baby Hugh Hefner by album photographer Kirk Weddle. Elden seeks at least $150 thousand from each defendant for “extreme and permanent emotional distress.”
-Rage Against the Machine issued a statement following the “Not Guilty” verdict of Kyle Rittenhouse. Sharing a post on Instagram, the politically charged band made a joint statement writing, “What defines innocence in America? Tamir Rice was executed by police for playing with a toy. Nobody was charged. Ahmaud Arbery went jogging and was murdered in broad daylight.” “Kyle Rittenhouse armed himself and killed people who were fighting for racial justice” the statement continued. “He claimed self-defense. This is the settler logic of America’s founding myth: whiteness must cast itself as the victim in order to justify its violence against those resisting its oppression. Welcome to the Land of the Free, Home of the Brave”.
-Kid Rock’s latest video, “Don’t Tell Me How To Live” was so weird that people actually thought it was the work of Weird Al Yankovic. Many people took to social media to congratulate the parody singer, who is known for his silly videos that mock real songs. This time, however, the video featuring Kid Rock spewing insults at millennials was really Rock swinging on a giant finger while shooting a gun. The video was so reminiscent of Yankovic’s work that he had to go to Twitter to disclaim the video, “To everybody that’s congratulating me right now on my new Kid Rock parody video, let me clarify – that’s not me. That’s actually Kid Rock,” Yankovic tweeted.
-Mick Jagger, the legendary Rolling Stones frontman explored Austin, Texas before his concert this past Saturday and landed at taco truck Taqueria El Trompo Mayor for his pre-show meal. Jagger also shared on Instagram a few other pics from deep in the heart of Texas, including stops at Broken Spoke (where he played a game of pool) and a boat ride on Lady Bird Lake.
-Joe Perry’s New England estate is up for sale. The Aerosmith guitarist has listed the Massachusetts home for 4.5 million dollars with Coldwell Banker New England. The house is 7,181 square feet and was built in 1974. It has five bedrooms, eight bathrooms and sits on seven acres of land in the seaside town of Duxbury. It also has a recording studio, a three-stall barn, a guest house and a guitar-shaped pool.
-A Foo Fighters-inspired bar is opening in Houston, Texas. Everlong Bar & Hideaway is expected to open sometime in January 2022. Everlong will feature a “cocktail-focused menu with a small wine list and a tight selection of beers.” There will also be a trivia night.
-U2 is working on new music. In a recent interview, the band’s guitarist The Edge said, “We are firmly locked in the tower of song and working away on a bunch of new things. I’m just having so much fun writing and not necessarily having to think about where it’s going to go. It’s more more about enjoying the experience of writing and having no expectations or limitations on the process.” U2’s last album was 2017’s ‘Songs of Experience.’
Monday November 22nd:
-Puddle of Mudd frontman Wes Scantlin walked offstage mid-show after complaining about stage lights and arguing with the sound engineer. It happened during the band’s Saturday night show in Green Bay, Wisconsin. Fan-shot video shows Scantlin covering his eyes from “blinding” stage lights, then cursing out an unseen crew member before unplugging his guitar and walking off stage. Several fans complained on social media that it was one of the worst shows they’d ever seen – including at least one fan who walked out before Scantlin’s meltdown.
-The recent Astroworld tragedy has reminded many of a similar incident during a 2000 Pearl Jam concert in Denmark – one that nearly made the band call it quits. In a new episode of Audible’s Words + Music, Eddie Vedder recounts the Roskilde tragedy, where nine people were killed when the crowd rushed the stage. Vedder says at least one band member “thought maybe we should never play again”. The band would continue to tour, but avoided festival shows for several years afterwards. Vedder’s own turbulent emotions about Roskilde ended up inspiring the song “I Am Mine”.
-Kid Rock is taking aim at ‘snowflakes’ and ‘cancel culture’ in his new single. The singer shared a video for “Don’t Tell Me How To Live” on Friday – calling out ‘offended’ millenials, ‘agendas’, and both the First and Second Amendments. Rock says he’s working on a huge 50-track album including rock, country, and hip-hop songs.
-No one would ever confuse The Police with Black Sabbath – but Sting will tell you he’s secretly a “heavy metal singer”. Sting was asked about his famously high vocal range in a recent interview. He said “Most heavy metal singers sing up there, so I’m a heavy metal singer – but I have a little more melody”. He says a high-pitched lead vocal is needed “to get about the noise of the band… You can’t be a baritone with a rock band, really”.
-Seether frontman Shaun Morgan says Nirvana’s Kurt Cobain was his ‘rock god’ growing up. Appearing on BBC’s The Rock Show, Morgan said rock music was hard to come by growing up in South Africa – until a friend gave him a copy of Nirvana’s Nevermind. He said “That music was so powerful to me as a child that I didn’t feel like I was alone anymore” – and that after Cobain’s death in 1994 “I really felt like I’d lost a friend and a voice”.
Friday November 19th:
-Toto drummer Jeff Porcaro is cashing out – selling his song catalog to a publisher for a cool $30 million. The deal includes Porcaro’s share of the band’s biggest hit, “Africa”, as well as master royalties from all the Toto albums Porcaro played on. The last year has been filled with big-money publishing deals for artists like Stevie Nicks, Bob Dylan, and Neil Young – some worth hundreds of millions of dollars.
-Genesis is bringing its ‘The Last Domino?’ tour to the U.S., starting Monday with two nights at the United Center in Chicago. Phil Collins, who can no longer play the drums due to nerve damage, has been handling lead vocals while his 20-year-old son Nicholas handles drum duties. Keyboardist Tony Banks promises this really is your last chance to see the band perform in the U.S., telling USA Today “if you want to see Genesis, don’t put it off ‘til the next one. We’re not like the Rolling Stones.”
-Disturbed’s David Draiman says they’ve been pumping out songs all over the place. He told Lou Brutus of HardDrive Radio, between a couple of shows recently they cranked out six new songs. Draiman described them as somewhere between “The Sickness” and “Ten Thousand Fists” as far as “vibe.” He added, “We’re probably not going to put out something in the traditional full-length; we’re probably gonna be doing two separate releases.”
-Sammy Hagar & The Circle have wrapped up recording a new studio album. Hagar broke the news in a radio interview Thursday, revealing the album is “tentatively called These Crazy Times” and includes “all brand new songs”. Hagar & The Circle is getting ready to launch its ‘Toast To Texas’ mini-tour next month, with stops in Fort Worth, San Antonio, Austin, and Houston.
-The screenwriter of the 2018 Queen biopic Bohemian Rhapsody is suing the producers, claiming he has yet to see a dime from the film. Writer Anthony McCarten says he made a deal for 5% of the movie’s net proceeds – not a bad deal, considering it made over $900 million worldwide at the box office. But McCarten says that 20th Century Fox is trying to claim the movie *lost* money – with accounting statements showing it $52 million in the red. That means they don’t have to pay McCarten his five percent.
Thursday November 18th:
-Twitch streamer Ovilee May got to interview Mike Shinoda from Linkin Park. She just didn’t realize it at first. Shinoda made it to the premiere of ‘Arcane: League of Legends’ and chatted with May who eventually said, “You came up here and you didn’t tell me your name, so I don’t know your name.” Once Shinoda said his name, it clicked for May who then began a “We’re Not Worthy”-type bow to the musician. May said to Shinoda “You’re amazing. I apologize for my transgressions. You’re the best thing that’s ever happened to the world.”
-Foo Fighters have released the video for “Love Dies Young.” The video shows the band synchronize-swimming with the help of their coach, played by ‘Ted Lasso’ actor Jason Sudekis. Written and directed by Dave Grohl, the video for “Love Dies Young” is the latest promotion of the band’s ‘Medicine at Midnight’ album. By the way: the ending is a little gross. You have been warned.
-Eddie Vedder has shared a new song called “The Haves” from his upcoming album ‘Earthling.’ Vedder also announced that ‘Earthling’ would officially be released on February 11. “‘Earthling’ will be the Pearl Jam frontman’s first solo album since 2011’s ‘Ukulele Songs.’
-There will be a Joan Jett Funko Pop! figure released in April of 2022! At 4.5 inches tall, the figure is ready for pre-order via Walmart’s website. Joan Jett joins a list of iconic musicians in the Funko Pop! family including Metallica, Guns N’ Roses, Ozzy Osbourne, and Rob Zombie.
-The story of one of the world’s first bombshell sex tapes has released its first trailer on Hulu. Pam & Tommy will premiere on February 2, 2022. It tells the story of Baywatch star Pamela Anderson and Motley Crue drummer Tommy Lee, who made a sex tape on their honeymoon. They intended to keep it private, but a disgruntled electrician stole it from their home, and soon, the whole world was watching. Actress Lily James takes on the role of Pamela while Sebastian Stan is Tommy Lee. Other big names in Pam & Tommy: Seth Rogan, Nick Offerman, and Taylor Schilling.
-Queen certainly are rock royalty, but they’re also the guys behind the all-time best-selling album in the U.K.! Queen’s ‘Greatest Hits’ album has sold over six million copies in the U.K. Abba’s ‘Gold-Greatest Hits’ comes in second place with 5.6 million sold and The Beatles’ ‘Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Heart’s Club Band’ comes in third with over 5.3 million. Queen actually makes the Top 50 list twice thanks to the inclusion of the second volume of their ‘Greatest Hits.’
Wednesday November 17th:
-Metallica just announced a mysterious time capsule vault dubbed the “Black Box,.” featuring all kinds of stuff from the band’s career. According to a press release, the guys will “unbox their collections, pulling their favorite, most significant, and personally meaningful artifacts out of storage.” The “virtual experience” will involve weekly livestream events, although no other specific details were given. Metallica will also reportedly share never seen nor heard video/audio from their long career.
-Julien’s Auctions is back this weekend with their annual “Icons and Idols: ROCK ‘N’ ROLL” event. The auction will include collectibles from a wide range of artists, including Eric Clapton’s Martin guitar, which is estimated to be worth between $300-500,000. Clapton used the guitar when he was with Derek and the Dominos. Hand-written lyrics from Clapton’s song “Layla” will also be available. Music fans will also have a chance to bid on items from Kurt Cobain, Michael Jackson, Robert Plant, and more. Martin Nolan, Executive Director of Julien’s Auctions says the pandemic has made people want to spend money on collectibles over investing.
-Pearl Jam will finally get the chance to tour behind Gigaton. On Tuesday, the band announced that rescheduled dates for its 2020 Gigaton tour will begin in May 2022. Details are still being finalized and the full schedule will be announced “early next year”. The tour was originally supposed to launch in March of 2022 – just as the pandemic shut down all tours and large events.
-Imagine turning down a chance to perform at the biggest concert in 25 years. It happened to Rod Stewart – and he says his ex-manager is to blame. Back in 1985, Stewart says his former manager turned down Live Aid because “I wasn’t getting the right news coverage”. Live Aid, of course, turned out to be one of the most legendary concerts ever – and Stewart told the BBC “I thought it was weird that I didn’t do it”.
-Toto’s song “Africa” continues to be a hit almost 40 years after its release. The song has officially surpassed one BILLION streams on streaming app Spotify. “Africa” was released on Toto’s 1982 album ‘IV’ and has been continuing a successful run thanks to a cover by Weezer and its inclusion on Netflix’s ‘Stranger Things.’
-Three Days Grace are getting ready to release new music! Fans can expect to hear the band’s new single “So Called Life” on November 29! This will be the band’s first song release since they covered Gotye’s “Somebody That I Used to Know” in 2020. The band also recently announced tour dates for next April and May!