It isn’t often that you get to hear someone strumming a ukulele on ‘The Late Show with David Letterman,’ but the host made an exception Monday night for the performer he says “single-handedly made cool.”
We’re talking, of course, about Pearl Jam frontman Eddie Vedder, currently out making the promotional rounds in support of his new solo album, the aptly titled ‘Ukulele Songs.’ Vedder — who Letterman says was “nice enough to actually give me a guitar, and it occupies a position of honor in my home” — plunked down on a stool for a solo performance of ‘Without You,’ offering silent tribute to the recently deceased Clarence Clemons by way of a simple inscription, reading ‘CLARENCE,’ on his ukulele.
It was only last year that Buckcherry was rocking ‘All Night Long’ — but according to an interview the band recently conducted while in the UK for the 2011 Download Festival, they’re already at work on their next album.
“Things are coming along good, we’re having fun and we’ve got around five demos wrapped up but it’s still very early and we need to get everyone in a room and just jam,” said vocalist Josh Todd.
He’s been tied to the whipping post, he’s suffered the Statesboro blues, and he’s been through crazy love, so it might seem like nothing can hurt Gregg Allman at this point — but the Allman Brothers Band frontman faced some scary medical issues last year, and now he’s using his music to help spread awareness.
Diagnosed with hepatitis C, which he says he picked up from a dirty tattoo needle in his 20s, Allman was forced to undergo a liver transplant last year, and his new lease on life has led to a flurry of activity – including his new album, ‘Low Country Blues,’ as well as a public campaign to draw attention to the disease.
They’ve always been big in Japan, but Mr. Big has kept a pretty low profile in America since the mid-’90s — so longtime fans should be excited to hear about the band’s upcoming string of U.S. tour dates, the first for the original lineup since they hit the road in support of 1996′s ‘Hey Man.’
Guitarist Paul Gilbert, who returned to the band in 2009 after over a decade of pursuing other projects, is particularly eager for fans to see the reunion. “Man, it’s been a long time,” he says. “I can’t wait to play our first show in America in about 15 years. It’s gonna be huge!”
Rock supergroups have always been notorious for flaming out quickly, so when we found out Sammy Hagar was teaming up with Joe Satriani, Michael Anthony, and Chad Smith to form Chickenfoot, we knew only time would tell if they stood the test of time.
But in spite of the scheduling difficulties (and, no doubt, ego-juggling) that comes with a collaboration this size, the band has managed to defy the odds by finishing work on its second CD.
He’s been one of the most sought-after producers in rock for 25 years — and now that he’s also co-chairman of Columbia Records, Rick Rubin is also one of the busiest, with his hands in a dizzying list of current and upcoming projects.
Rubin discussed a number of those albums during a recent Billboard interview, conducted to celebrate the huge success of Columbia artist Adele’s new album, ’21′(which, yes, Rubin co-produced). Up next on the schedule is the latest Red Hot Chili Peppers release, which he describes as a “Red Hot Chili Peppers that you’ve never heard before.”
Guitar legend Leslie West, whose work with the band Mountain has been part of rock history since their unforgettable performance at Woodstock, is recovering after doctors were forced to amputate part of one leg over the weekend.
West, who was in Mississippi for a Mountain performance, was rushed to a Biloxi emergency room after noticing swelling in his leg — a condition made more serious by West’s 30-year struggle with diabetes. In order to save his life, doctors removed his leg up to the knee.
They don’t have a release date, a title, or even a record company waiting to get it onto the shelves, but Soundgarden is in the studio working on its first new album in 15 years – and during a pair of recent interviews, frontman Chris Cornell and guitarist Kim Thayil hinted at what fans can expect to hear.
“We’re kind of doing it in stages,” says Thayil, adding, “We have about 14 songs in various stages of completion. Previously, we’d just block out a bunch of time and go and track everything at once, but we can’t really do that right now.”
Despite initial reports that Clemons was responding well to treatment – and despite a pair of brain surgeries to repair the damage wrought by the stroke – his condition worsened as the week wore on, and he died on Saturday, June 18.
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