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Don McLean releases new covers album, 'Still Playin' Favorites,' featuring songs by Dylan, Johnny Cash & more

Time LifeDon McLean has just released a sequel to his 1973 covers album, Playin' Favorites: a 12-track collection aptly titled Still Playin' Favorites.

The new record finds McLean performing versions of songs he loves, which spanning over a century and cover a wide variety of musical genres, including rock 'n' roll, country, folk, gospel, bluegrass, blues, jazz and soul.

Among the tunes the 75-year-old singer/songwriter has recorded are songs that were popularized or written by artists like Bob Dylan, Elvis Presley, Johnny Cash, Ray Charles and many more.

McLean has launched a YouTube series featuring videos in which he performs solo acoustic renditions of tunes from Still Playin' Favorites, discusses his versions and shares some background on the songs.

Among the tunes he plays and profiles are the Cash-penned "So Doggone Lonesome" and blues legend Bessie Smith's "Backwater Blues."

Here's the full Still Playin' Favorites track list, along with the composers of each song:

"So Doggone Lonesome" (Johnny Cash)
"Greenback Dollar" (Hoyt Axton, Ken Ramsey)
"Hide nor Hair" (Morton Craft, Percy Mayfield)
"I Ain't Never" (Webb Pierce, Mel Tillis)
"Little Sister" (Doc Pomus, Mort Shuman)
"I'm Going to Live the Life I Sing About in My Song" (Thomas A. Dorsey)
"Six White Horses" (Clyde Moody)
"Treat Me Nice" (Jerry Leiber, Mike Stoller)
"Most Likely You Go Your Way (And I'll Go Mine)" (Bob Dylan)
"Backwater Blues" (Bessie Smith)
"The Keys to the Kingdom" (Jenny Lou Carson)
"Got the Bull by the Horns" (Amos E. Byrd, Billy Jones)
"Tell Old Bill" (Traditional, Arranged by Don McLean)
"She Used to Love Me a Lot" (Charles W. Quillen, Dennis Morgan, Kye Fleming)

By Matt Friedlander
Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

The third and final 2020 Record Store Day event takes place Saturday

Courtesy of Record Store DayJust a reminder that the third and final installment of the three-day 2020 Record Store Day celebration takes place this Saturday, October 24. As previously reported, organizers decided to spread out the event across three dates in three different months this year because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

This year's events, which also were held on August 29 and September 26, are being called "Record Store Day Drops."

The Rolling Stones, The Who, Toto and Cheap Trick are among the many artists who will be releasing limited-edition discs vinyl this Saturday.

The Rolling Stones' offering is a reissue of the U.K. version of the band's 1975 rarities album, Metamorphosis, pressed on green vinyl and packaged with an iron-on of the cover.

The Who's release is a deluxe two-LP version of the group's 1974 rarities album, Odds and Sods, featuring one red disc and one yellow disc.

Toto will be issuing a red-vinyl version of its Live in Tokyo 1980 EP, which has never been available as a standalone release.

Cheap Trick is offering a previously unreleased two-LP set titled Out to Get You! Live 1977, which was recorded at the famed Los Angeles club The Whisky a Go Go.

Other artists who will have Record Store Day releases available at independent music shops on August 29 include The Allman Brothers Band, Booker T & The M.G.'s, Johnny Cash, Alice Cooper, the Def Leppard spinoff group Down N Outz, Rory Gallagher, The Grateful Dead, Humble Pie, Mark Knopfler, Modern English, Randy Newman, Lou Reed & John Cale, Keith Richards, Skid Row and Warren Zevon.

For the full list of releases and participating stores, visit RecordStoreDay.com.

By Matt Friedlander
Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Bruce Springsteen chats with Steven Van Zandt about new 'Letter to You' album and documentary

Danny Clinch; Courtesy of Big Hassle MediaOn the final episode of Bruce Springsteen's Apple Music Hits program, Letter to You Radio  -- which premiered this afternoon -- the Boss chats with his E Street Band compadre Steven Van Zandt about his brand-new album, Letter to You, and its companion documentary.

As previously reported, Springsteen and the E Street Band recorded Letter to You together, live in his home studio, in just five days.

During the show, Bruce tells Little Steven, "I would say that this is the kind of record we dreamt of making when we were 15 or 16 years old, in the sense that it's a band record, recorded by the band all at once."

He adds, "There are very, very, very few overdubs…[A]ll of my vocals are all first take as the band played the song down for the first or second or third time."

Springsteen wrote most of Letter to You's songs quickly, inspired in part by the 2018 death of George Theiss, who'd been the only other surviving member of Bruce's teenage band The Castiles.

Springsteen explains that the material on the album "looks at the life of a musician…really, obviously because of George's passing and some of the lyrical content, which goes all the way back to The Castiles…all the way up to where we're at in our development right now."

He adds that "it was very satisfying" to create "a group of songs that just [came] out of the guitar."

Regarding the Thom Zimny-directed Letter to You documentary, streaming now on Apple TV , Bruce notes, "It's a document of the band both creating and performing this record, and then there is a lot of narration that goes into the philosophy of sort of what we've been trying to do all these years."

By Matt Friedlander
Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Watch music video for Smokey Robinson's new duet with Charlie Wilson, "All of My Love"

Kenneth Matthews/P Music Group, Inc.

Smokey Robinson has recorded "All of My Love," a new duet with fellow R&B/soul legend Charlie Wilson, formerly of The Gap Band, with a music video to go with it that premiered on People.com.

The clip, which you can also watch at Wilson's official YouTube channel, follows a couple spending time together, in-between shots of Charlie and Smokey singing in their stylish suits. Robinson went for a bright and shiny green suit while Wilson went for a red bow-tie look. 

The visual shifts from color to black-and-white, with both legendary artists singing the chorus, "If all of my love just ain't enough/ Then take all my heart, my soul, my money, my gold, whatever you want."

"Being a lifetime fan and growing up with the greats of Motown, working with Smokey fulfilled a lifelong dream of mine," Charlie tells People magazine. "I was in awe of how cool and smooth he is."

Wilson recalled yelling, "Get 'em Smokey!" in between scenes while shooting the song's video. But his "favorite memory" came from the studio session where they recorded "All of My Love."

"We sat together and he told me some amazing stories," Wilson shared. "When he was recording his parts, I was listening in freaking out, like, 'I got Smokey Robinson on my record!'"

By Rachel George
Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Styx presenting new "Styx Fix Live" streaming concert event this Saturday on YouTube

Credit: Jason PowellStyx will present a new installment of its "Styx Fix Live" series of special streaming concert events this Saturday, October 24, at 8 p.m. ET/5 p.m. PT at the band's official YouTube channel.

The audio presentation will be accompanied by exclusive photos and video clips, and will be available in an original mix or a special "Headphone Mix."

The band is asking fans who watch the "Styx Fix Live" stream to donate to the Recording Academy's MusiCares COVID-19 Relief Fund, which aids in-need musicians affected by the coronavirus pandemic. You can visit Grammy.com to contribute to the fund.

By Matt Friedlander
Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

AC/DC premiering "Shot in the Dark" video on Monday

Columbia RecordsStart your upcoming week with a "Shot in the Dark," courtesy of AC/DC.

The "Back in Black" rockers have announced that they're premiering the video for their comeback single this coming Monday, October 26, at 9:30 a.m. ET.

You can check out a brief, 17-second preview of the video -- featuring the band members lining up in front of a neon AC/DC sign -- streaming now on YouTube.

"Shot in the Dark," which dropped earlier this month, is the first single off AC/DC's upcoming album Power Up, due out November 13.

Power Up was recorded by the surviving members of AC/DC's classic Back in Black lineup -- guitarist Angus Young, vocalist Brian Johnson, bassist Cliff Williams and drummer Phil Rudd -- plus guitarist Stevie Young, nephew of Angus and the late Malcolm Young. The record is a tribute to Malcolm, who died in 2017 at age 64.

By Josh Johnson
Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Glory day! Bruce Springsteen's latest album, 'Letter to You,' available now

Columbia RecordsBruce Springsteen's Letter to You has arrived! The Boss' latest studio album, which he recorded over the course of five days with the heart-stopping, house-rocking E Street Band at his home studio in New Jersey, hit stores today.

As previously reported, Letter to You features 12 tracks, nine of which are recently written, while the other three are unreleased Bruce compositions that date back to the 1970s -- "Janey Needs a Shooter," "If I Was the Priest" and "Song for Orphans."

According to a press statement, the themes of the songs on Letter to You are "centered around the unbreakable bonds formed by a life in music."

The album marks Springsteen's first time performing with the E Street Band -- guitarist Steven Van Zandt, bassist Garry Tallent, drummer Max Weinberg, multi-instrumentalist Nils Lofgren, backing singer Patti Scialfa, sax player Jake Clemons, and keyboardists Roy Bittan and Charlie Giordano -- since The River tour in 2016.

A companion documentary called Bruce Springsteen's Letter to You, directed by frequent Springsteen collaborator Thom Zimny, has premiered at Apple TV in conjunction with the album's release. The film features footage of Bruce and the band recording Letter to You, and includes full performances of 10 of the album's tracks.

Letter to You is available on CD, standard black vinyl, limited-edition black-and-white-splatter vinyl and digitally.

You can check out videos for two of the album's songs -- the title track and "Ghosts" -- at Springsteen's official YouTube channel.

Here's the full Letter to You track list:

"One Minute You're Here"
"Letter to You"
"Burnin' Train"
"Janey Needs a Shooter"
"Last Man Standing"
"The Power of Prayer"
"House of a Thousand Guitars"
"If I Was the Priest"
"Song for Orphans"
"I'll See You in My Dreams"

By Matt Friedlander
Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Red Hot Chili Peppers are back to "writing new music," says John Frusciante

Peter Pakvis/RedfernsRed Hot Chili Peppers are back to "writing new music," according to guitarist John Frusciante.

Speaking to Australia's Double J radio, Frusciante shares that the band had been rehearsing together prior to the COVID-19 pandemic.

"We were rehearsing for a couple months, and then the quarantine started, and then we stopped rehearsing for a couple months, and then we went back to rehearsing," Frusciante says. "We're moving ahead with what we're doing, we're writing new music."

Frusciante, who previously played with the Chili Peppers from 1988 to 1992 and between 1998 and 2009, rejoined the band late last year. He says that returning to the group feels like "returning to family."

"I'm extremely comfortable with those people," Frusciante explains. "It was as if no time had gone by at all when we started playing, pretty much, with a couple of minor exceptions, like how [drummer] Chad [Smith] and I gradually got our communication together in a new way."

"Basically, we're all just as comfortable with each other as we ever were, and it just felt like that right off the bat," he adds.

Meanwhile, Frusciante just dropped a new solo album called Maya, which is described as his "first instrumental electronic album under his own name."

By Josh Johnson
Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Gloria Gaynor says she was initially "discouraged" from recording her latest album, 'Testimony'

Credit: Alex Arroyo

Disco legend Gloria Gaynor earned her second Grammy award earlier this year for her latest album, Testimony, which was honored in the Best Roots Gospel Album category.

She tells ABC Audio it's an "incredible" feeling to finally balance out her grand piano with her other Grammy award for her 1970's hit single, "I Will Survive." 

But Gaynor admits she was initially "discouraged" from recording the album she had on her "heart," "for reasons that were not my own."

"And finally, I was able to do it, and to have the success with it that I've had it's just really incredible," she adds.

Gaynor describes Testimony as her personal "testimony of the love, knowledge, mercy, grace [and] availability of God in my life."

She says it speaks to "how he has helped me through every single thing that I've been through, but also how he has been there for me in the good times, how he's brought me to and through the good times, how he's uplifted, inspired and encouraged me to do things that I didn't know I could do."

When she first began her music career, Gaynor said she wanted to emulate the "uniqueness and power" that legendary artists such as Nancy Wilson, Gloria Lynne, Cleo Laine and Ella Fitzgerald brought to their music. 

But "spiritually and emotionally," Gaynor says her mother, Queenie May Proctor, served as her "biggest role model."

"She was just my rock and then, later on, my pastor had been so detrimental in my spiritual and emotional growth," Gaynor continues. "So those have been the ones who have uplifted encouraged me and helped me to be who I am today."

By Rachel George
Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Director Thom Zimny says new Springsteen doc gave him the chance to enter the E Street Band's "dream space"

Apple Original FilmsBruce Springsteen's latest studio effort, Letter to You, hits stores today, while a documentary about the album's creation premiered Thursday exclusively on Apple TV .

The film, titled Bruce Springsteen's Letter to You, was directed by frequent Springsteen collaborator Thom Zimny, and captures The Boss and his E Street Band as they recorded the new album at Bruce's home studio over the course of a few days.

"I think this project is really unique for me, because I got to enter the dream space of the E Street Band, what happens in the studio," Zimny tells ABC Audio. "I got to...see and film this magical thing that I can't put into words, which is the creation of an E Street album. And hopefully the film reflects that."

Springsteen and his band recorded Letter to You's 12 tracks live together, with little or no overdubs.

Describing the process of how each track was created, Zimny says, "The notebook opens, [Bruce] strums a few chords, says 'good morning' to everyone, they gather around, he sings it twice. There's no deep explanation. And the next thing that happens is the band's arranging and playing, and you go, 'Do these guys know the song?'…It's just unbelievable to watch."

In addition to the studio footage, the film features segments in which Springsteen reflects on the themes of the songs, which focus on the loss of some musicians he's worked with over the years and his lifelong passion for playing music with a band.

Zimny points out that he worked hard to present "two distinct styles" in the film, one for the studio footage and another for "the moments of Bruce in voiceover and score, which take you out of…the studio [and give you] a sense of the spirituality of the record."

By Matt Friedlander
Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Watch new Kinks lyric video for 'Lola Versus Powerman' reissue bonus track "The Follower/Any Time 2020"

BMGThe Kinks have debuted a new lyric video for "The Follower/Any Time 2020," one of the bonus tracks featured on the upcoming reissue of the band's 1970 concept album Lola Versus Powerman and the Moneygoround, Part One, due out December 18.

The track, which is available now as a digital single and via steaming services, is a new medley created by Kinks frontman Ray Davies that combines a remastered version of the Lola Versus Powerman outtake "Anytime" with previously unreleased versions and excerpts of several songs from the album, plus spoken-word segments and sound effects.

The video begins with new black-and-white footage of a woman walking around the streets London.  We see her talking on her phone and visiting a record shop, where she puts a vinyl version of Lola Versus Powerman on a turntable. The clip also includes an animated segment showing a kaleidoscopic montage of elements of the album's cover art, plus archival performance footage and photos of The Kinks.

As previously reported, the Lola Versus Powerman and the Moneygoround, Part One will be released in multiple formats and configurations. A deluxe box-set edition features three CDs, including a remastered stereo mix of the album, alternate mixes and versions of songs, B-sides, session tapes, live performances, BBC recordings, demos, medleys and segments boasting new conversations between Ray and Kinks guitarist Dave Davies.

The box set also contains two seven-inch vinyl discs featuring the singles "Lola" and "Apeman"; a 60-page hardback book with notes, new quotes from the band members, rare photos and memorabilia; a "1970 diary of activities"; and four glossy Kinks photo prints.

The reissue also is available as a single CD, a two-CD set, a heavyweight vinyl LP and digitally.

Visit TheKinks.info for more details.

By Matt Friedlander
Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Jon Bon Jovi, Cher among stars performing at Joe Biden campaign concert this Sunday

Robert Cianflone/Getty ImagesJon Bon Jovi and Cher are just two of the many stars that perform during I Will Vote, a virtual concert held in support of Joe Biden's presidential campaign.

The online event will take place this Sunday, October 25, at 8 p.m. ET.

I Will Vote also is set to include performances and appearances by A$AP Ferg, Sara Bareilles, Black Eyed Peas and Jennifer Hudson, Ciara, Foo Fighters, Macy Gray, John Legend, Dave Matthews, Lin-Manuel Miranda, Helen Mirren, Maren Morris, Ne-Yo, Pink, Billy Porter, Amy Schumer, and the cast of Queer Eye, among many others.

Additionally, Biden and his wife, Dr. Jill Biden, as well as vice presidential candidate Senator Kamala Harris and her husband, Doug Emhoff, are set to appear during the concert.

You can watch be donating any among to the Joe Biden Victory Fund.

By Josh Johnson
Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Ex-Journey singer Steve Perry planning to release acoustic version of his 'Traces' album this year

Kevin Mazur/WireImage for Rock and Roll Hall of FameNot much music has been heard from Steve Perry lately, but former Journey frontman is planning to release a collection of acoustic renditions of songs from his 2018 comeback album, Traces, on December 4.

"It's eight songs from the Traces record done acoustically and I'm really proud of it," he tells Rolling Stone. "It's called Traces Alternate Versions and Sketches…I'm really pleased with the sonics and I'm really pleased with the simplicity of the song and the lyric and the chords, which is basically what it's stripped down to."

The 71-year-old Rock & Roll Hall of Famer also reports that he's "always writing and always recording stuff" at his personal studio, adding, "I have lots of music."

Perry says the acoustic album will "close the Traces chapter," and maintains that he intends to be "opening up another chapter next year at some point."

Steve, who last sang in front of a live audience when he made a guest appearances at three shows by the indie-rock act Eels in 2014, says he'd like to start playing concerts again.

"It's always been on my mind," he tells Rolling Stone. "My heart bleeds daily to be in front of people and to sing for them."

Having said that, Perry says he's apprehensive because he worries about how the rigors of touring might affect his health.

"I've got some physical injuries from touring," he notes. "It's a tough thing, touring. People don't realize. It's like sports…It's a young man's game, but I do miss it."

Meanwhile, Perry says fans hoping for him to amicably reunite with Journey aren't being realistic about the relationship he has with his ex-band mates.

"I don't understand what these people base their thinking on," he says. "There never was any 'Kumbaya' with us."

By Matt Friedlander
Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Dolly Parton plays a singing angel in her upcoming Netflix holiday special, 'Christmas on the Square'

Courtesy of NetflixDolly Parton is bringing her legendary vocal talents to the small screen this holiday season.

Netflix just released the trailer for its upcoming musical holiday special Dolly Parton’s Christmas on the Square. In the film, Dolly stars opposite Christine Baranksi in a heartwarming small-town holiday story that takes cues from seasonal classic How the Grinch Stole Christmas.

The special follows Regina Fuller, played by Baranski, a rich woman who returns to her hometown just before Christmas to attend to her recently deceased father’s affairs. The family owned a large swath of the town, and Regina is planning to evict the townspeople in order to sell her dad’s land to a mall developer. To make matters even worse, eviction day is Christmas Eve.  Of course, Dolly appears as a singing angel to change Regina’s mind, and open her heart to the Christmas spirit.

“Find that light and it will lead you to the part of you that you lost,” Dolly’s character tells Regina. “The part of you that can be happy.”

Also starring Jenifer Lewis and Treat Williams, and directed and choreographed by Debbie Allen, Dolly Parton’s Christmas on the Square boasts 14 original songs from the legendary country performer.

Just in time for the holiday season, the special debuts on November 22.

By Carena Liptak
Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Deluxe 50th anniversary reissues of Cat Stevens' 'Mona Bone Jakon' and 'Tea for the Tillerman' due in December

A&M/UMeThis year marks the 50th anniversary of two memorable Cat Stevens albums, Mona Bone Jakon and Tea for the Tillerman.  To mark the milestones, we're getting reissues of both records on December 4, in multiple configurations.

Mona Bone Jakon and Tea for the Tillerman saw Stevens emerge as an introspective and spiritual-minded singer/songwriter after beginning his career as a pop-oriented artist.  Mona Bone Jakon was released in April 1970, and featured the top-10 U.K. single "Lady D'Arbanville" and the enduring gem "Trouble." Tea for the Tillerman was released in November 1970 and was Stevens' breakthrough album in the U.S., featuring the top-20 hit "Wild World" and many more of his most popular songs.

Deluxe box-set editions of the two reissues feature multiple CDs, a Blu-ray and two 12-inch vinyl discs. The CDs include newly remastered versions of the albums; 2020 mixes of the records; discs of demos, outtakes and alternate versions; and discs of live performances recorded in 1970 and 1971. The Blu-rays contains music videos, and footage from various TV shows and concerts. The vinyl discs feature the 2020 mixes of the albums and live performances.

The Tea for the Tillerman box set also features a CD of the new, remade version of the album, Tea for the Tillerman², which was released in September.

In advance of the reissues, one previously unreleased track from each collection has been made available now digitally and via streaming services. "I Want Some Sun" is a demo recorded around the time Mona Bone Jakon was made, and "Can This Be Love?" is an outtake from the Tea for the Tillerman sessions.

Visit CatStevens.com for full details.

By Matt Friedlander
Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Ringo Starr, Keith Richards, John Fogerty among stars added to Jerry Lee Lewis' virtual birthday celebration

Courtesy of 117 Entertainment GroupThe already star-studded upcoming virtual livestream party celebrating Jerry Lee Lewis' recent 85th birthday is now event more packed with stars.

Among the famous music artists and celebrities who have been added to the event's lineup are Ringo Starr, Keith Richards, John Fogerty, Heart's Nancy Wilson, Kris Kristofferson, Brenda Lee, Tanya Tucker, Chris Isaak, Freda Payne, Drew Carey and Peyton Manning.

In addition, Lewis himself will make a special appearance and will interact with fans via a live chat.

As previously reported, the bash, dubbed "Whole Lotta Celebratin' Goin' On: 85 Years of The Killer," is scheduled for Tuesday, October 27, at 8 p.m. ET at the rock 'n' roll pioneer's official Facebook page, YouTube channels and JerryLeeLewis.com.

Among the initially announced roster of celebs who will perform and/or deliver well-wishes to Lewis are Elton John, ZZ Top's Billy Gibbons, The Eagles' Joe Walsh, The Beach Boys' Mike Love, Bonnie Raitt, President Bill Clinton, Willie Nelson, Tom Jones, Priscilla Presley, former Elvis Presley guitarist James Burton, Mickey Gilley, Lee Ann Womack, Marty Stuart and televangelist Jimmy Swaggart -- who is Jerry Lee's cousin. John Stamos will host the festivities.

The event will raise funds for World Vision, a Christian organization that aids impoverished communities.

Lewis' actual 85th birthday was September 29.

By Matt Friedlander
Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Former Fleetwood Mac member Lindsey Buckingham joins viral "Dreams" challenge

Kevin Mazur/Getty Images for NARASHow viral is the Fleetwood Mac "Dreams" challenge?  Even someone who isn't in the band anymore is getting in on the fun.

Guitarist and songwriter Lindsey Buckingham, who was unceremoniously let go from Fleetwood Mac in 2018, posted a video of himself riding on a horse while swigging Ocean Spray Cran-Raspberry juice, as "Dreams" plays in the background.

"Made this with my girls this weekend," he captioned the clip.

Ironically, "Dreams" was written by Fleetwood Mac's Stevie Nicks about her relationship with Buckingham, which was falling apart at the time the song was written and recorded.

As previously reported, both "Dreams" and its parent album, Rumours, have re-entered the Billboard charts thanks to the viral success of "Dreams" on TikTok, which was started by Idaho man Nathan Apodaca.  The video he created while swigging the juice and lip-syncing to "Dreams" while riding on a skateboard has more than 10 million likes. 

Stevie and Mick Fleetwood were also inspired to create their own "Dreams" TikToks in response.

Made this with my girls this weekend pic.twitter.com/tCY8DpBoCL

— Lindsey Buckingham (@LBuckingham) October 21, 2020

By Andrea Dresdale
Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Watch Eric Clapton perform Cream classic "Badge" at the 2019 Crossroads Guitar Festival

© 2020 Crossroads Concerts LLCA video of Eric Clapton and his backing band performing his classic Cream song "Badge" at the 2019 edition of Crossroads Guitar Festival, which was held at American Airlines Center in Dallas, has debuted at Rhino's official YouTube channel.

"Badge" was co-written by Clapton and his friend George Harrison, and originally appeared on Cream's final studio album, 1969's Goodbye.

The clip will be featured on the video portion of the Eric Clapton's Crossroads Guitar Festival 2019 release, which is due out on November 20.

As previously reported, the collection, which can be pre-ordered now, and will be available in multiple audio and video formats, including on three CDs, six vinyl LPs, two DVDs, two Blu-ray discs and digitally. It features nearly four hours' worth of music.

The 2019 Crossroads Guitar Festival was held on September 20 and 21 of last year, featured performances by Clapton, Peter Frampton, Jeff Beck, Bonnie Raitt, Sheryl Crow, Tedeschi Trucks Band, Jimmie Vaughan, Los Lobos, Buddy Guy, John Mayer, Robert Cray, Gary Clark Jr., Vince Gill and many others. Bill Murray served as the emcee.

The festival raises money for the Crossroads Centre in Antigua, the drug-dependency treatment facility that Clapton co-founded in 1998. Last year's event also featured the launch of Turn Up for Recovery, a global movement founded by Clapton's wife, Melia, that seeks to raise awareness about abstinence-based recovery and helps fund treatment for those who need it at the Crossroads Centre.

Meanwhile, a PBS special featuring highlights from 2019 Crossroads Guitar Festival is scheduled to premiere on November 28; check your local listings.

By Matt Friedlander
Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Barbie and the Jets: New Elton John-inspired doll is available now

Elton: Courtesy David Furnish; Barbie: Courtesy MattelOver the years, Barbie has been everything from an astronaut to a surgeon to a presidential candidate -- so why can't she be Elton John?

A new Elton John Barbie doll has been created to mark the 45th anniversary of Elton's legendary 1975 concerts at Dodger Stadium, when he became the first musical artist to perform at the venue since The Beatles nine years earlier.

The Elton John Barbie is wearing Elton's very best 1970s-era finery: rainbow-striped platform boots, an Elton-logo bomber jacket with star-patterned sleeves and a rainbow hem, a purple bowler hat, sparkly pink sunglasses, a glittery top and flared jeans embellished with an "E" and a "J."

In a statement, Elton says, "Barbie is an icon in her own right, so having her pay tribute to my work and personal style is a real honor. I hope that she inspires fans everywhere to fearlessly pursue their own dreams and limitless potential."

The October 25 and 26, 1975 shows were the largest concert events ever by a single artist at that time, attracting over 100,000 people -- including Elton's parents, relatives, employees and neighbors, whom he'd flown over from the U.K. for the weekend in a private jet.  The event is depicted in his biopic Rocketman.

The Elton Barbie costs $50 and is now available at Amazon, Target, Walmart and Barbie.com.

By Andrea Dresdale
Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved. 

Ex-Yes keyboardist Rick Wakeman launching multifaceted online series, 'Rick's Plaice,' in November

Credit: Rob Ayling

Rick Wakeman will launch a new online series called Rick's Plaice on Saturday, November 7, that will feature the former Yes keyboardist telling jokes, sharing stories, giving live performances, screening archival clips and more.

The six-episode series will air weekly at RicksPlaice.com on Saturdays, and will be followed by a New Year's special. Each episode is priced at $10, and Wakeman also is offering a discounted season-ticket pass featuring all six episodes and the holiday special for 25% off to the first 5,000 subscribers.

In addition, 250 VIP season passes will be available that will features the six episodes, the New Year's special, a signed DVD and other Wakeman merch.

The first episode will feature exclusive performances of Wakeman's solo songs "Gone but Not Forgetten" and "Children of Chernobyl," a look at his Mini Moog synth, an archival performance of his 1979 song "Seahorses" and a segment where he answers fans' questions.

The 70-year-old prog-rock legend says in a statement, "[I]f you have as much fun watching the shows with all of the live music performances, guided tours around my equipment, facts about musicians I have worked with and even a quiz, then you will have enjoyed them as much as I enjoyed making them…which I have to say was most enjoyable."

Wakeman adds that a second series is already being considered, noting, "I really hope that once the unsocial distancing rules are relaxed, that for the recording and filming we can have live audiences in with us without them having to wear masks and stinking of hand sanitizer."

Rick has posted a video preview of the series at his official YouTube channel, in which he shows off where the episodes were shot and introduces the crew that works on the series.

By Matt Friedlander
Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.


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