Rock News Two: The week in pop

JOHN SWENSON, United Press International


Eminem opened up to Vibe magazine in a cover story titled "The Zen of Eminem" that covered his debt to the late rapper Tupac Shakur, anger management and his relationship with his daughter Hailie. The interview with novelist Zadie Smith, whose latest work is "The Autograph Man," is in the October issue. "I love that Tupac cared about his people, from his background, his generation," Eminem told Smith. "He cared what they thought, and anybody else who didn't understand could go to hell." Eminem's current "Anger Management Tour" reflects the rapper's real struggle with his dark side. "I had a wake-up call with my almost going to jail," he said. "It wasn't me trying to portray a certain image or live up to anything. That was me letting my anger get the best of me, which I've done many times. No more." The violent interactions with family members that populate his raps don't extend to Eminem's attitude toward his daughter Hailie, who is a fan, Eminem told Vibe. "She did a song with me, 'My Dad's Gone Crazy.' But in the second verse, there's a part that's really pretty bad so I made her a clean version and she listens to that. My experience with women has not been great, man. I have not had the greatest women in my life. So all I can do is be the best father that I can and try to instill in Hailie the best values, because I do care about what is said around her and done around her."



Fans of "American Idol" winner Kelly Clarkson will have to wait until next spring to hear the album she gets to record as part of her prize. They will get to hear the performances that led to her victory, however, on "American Idol: Greatest Moments," out Oct. 1 on RCA records. Clarkson will have four songs on the collection, runnerup Justin Guarini gets two and the other eight finalists get one each. All 10 perform on a cover of the Mamas and the Papas' "California Dreamin'." The album was compiled by producer Steve Lipson, who oversaw the final weeks of the show's performances. Clarkson's debut single, "Before Your Love"/"A Moment Like This," came out earlier this week.


Progressive rock pioneers Yes start the second leg of their North American tour Oct. 24 in Clearwater, Fla., with returning band member Rick Wakeman joining vocalist Jon Anderson, bassist Chris Squire, guitarist Steve Howe, and drummer Alan White in what most fans consider the classic Yes lineup. "Touring with Rick (Wakeman) again has been a lot of fun for us," Squire said. "The band is playing better than ever and the fans have really been responding well to the shows. We are really looking forward to the next leg of this tour, as we feel we're just getting started." To date, the band has sold more than 30 million albums worldwide, including the classics "Fragile" and "Close To The Edge." The band is touring in support of the recently released five-disc boxed set, "In A Word: Yes (1969- )." Yes also has released a new DVD, "Yessymphonic Live," a live concert from their 2001 tour featuring a full symphony orchestra. Shot in high definition in Amsterdam, Netherlands, the DVD features rare behind-the-scenes material as well as more than two hours of Yes performing the hits live.



Blues Traveler is set to release a live album, "What You and I Have Been Through" Oct. 22 on iMusic. The live set is the band's second since its inception in 1988. The disc opens with a version of "The Star Spangled Banner" performed as a harmonica solo by member John Popper before an emotional crowd of New Yorkers shortly after the events of Sept. 11, 2001. The 11-track CD, recorded during tour dates in November and December 2001, features tracks from throughout Blues Traveler's career. Guest artists Radioactive and Carl Young, respectively, contribute to the songs "The Path" and "Rage." Other songs include Blues Traveler staples, such as "Carolina Blues," with its signature guitar work by guitarist Chan Kinchla; and "Slow Change," from their club days in New York City. Each member is featured in this "best-of-the-tour" CD, from drummer Brendan Hill and Tad Kinchla's unique solos on "All Hands" to Ben Wilson's keyboard solo on "Pattern."


Marianne Faithfull went to bat for old flame Mick Jagger's band, the Rolling Stones, in an interview with the New York Daily News. "Why don't they just shut up and leave them alone," Faithfull said of critics who say the band is too old to rock. "It's jealousy." Faithfull, in New York for three shows at Irving Plaza, engaged in a frank exchange with Jim Farber. The 54-year-old singer's new album, "Kissin' Time," features songs co-written with contemporary rockers Beck, Billy Corgan, Jarvis Cocker and Damon Albarn. "They're all about the age of my son," Faithfull said. "I wanted to record with people he would find appealing." Faithfull, who had a mid-1960's hit with "As Tears Go By," noted the difference between collaborations then and now. "Then, every woman in my position had to go to bed with the musicians they worked with," she said. "If I made this record then, I would have slept with everybody on it."



Former President Bill Clinton flew to Toronto last weekend to attend a party for rock pioneer Ronnie Hawkins, a fellow Arkansan who is gravely ill with pancreatic cancer. At the party, held at the Four Seasons hotel, Clinton sang Leon Russell's "A Song For You" to Hawkins with David Foster accompanying him on piano. Clinton also sang "My Way" along with Paul Anka, changing the lyric to "I did it Hillary's way."


"Paid Tha Cost To Be Da Boss," Snoop Dogg's sixth studio album, is scheduled for a Nov. 26 release. The album features production from The Neptunes, Just Blaze, DJ Premier and Jelly Roll and FredWreck, as well as appearances from Jay-Z, Redman and Nate Dogg. On "From Tha Chuuch to Tha Palace," the Neptunes-produced lead single from the album, the rapper says he's "still got the gin and juice in hand." He brings his typical gangster-meets-pimp-flavored heat throughout most of "Paid Tha Cost To Be Da Boss." On the gangster side, he blasts everyone from Xzibit to Kurupt to Death Row Records' notorious honcho on the blistering "Pimp't Slapped." "Suge Knight's a bitch and that's on my life," he snarls over the funk-inspired beat by Josef Leimberg. Elsewhere, Snoop puts his pimp style on full display with "You Got What I Want," "Suited N Booted," "Boss Playa," "Wasn't Yo Fault" and the Just Blaze-produced "Lollipop."



Hot rocker Chuck Prophet makes his national television debut Tuesday Oct. 8 on "The Late Late Show" with Craig Kilborn. Accompanied by his band, Mission Express, Prophet will perform his new single, "I Bow Down and Pray to Every Woman I See," which already is generating significant airplay at Triple A radio. Since the release of his new disc, "No Other Love," Prophet has enjoyed his biggest success thus far as a recording artist, reaching the No. 3 slot at Triple A radio with his first single, "Summertime Thing," and touring with Lucinda Williams as special guest on her summer tour.


Joe Jackson said it would never happen, but the original Joe Jackson Band is re-uniting for a new album and tour to celebrate the 25th anniversary of its formation and the recording of "Look Sharp." Jackson (piano, vocals), Graham Maby (bass), Gary Sanford (guitar) and Dave Houghton (drums) will record a whole album of new songs to be released next year. Jackson already has 12 completed songs for the new album and still is writing. According to the singer/songwriter, the album will be "high-energy, fun, and in the spirit of the first couple of albums." The Joe Jackson Band formed in 1978 and played non-stop until its last gig on Dec. 15, 1980. Since then, Maby has worked on and off with Jackson but also with Natalie Merchant, They Might be Giants and many others. Sanford has toured and recorded with Joan Armatrading, Aztec Camera and Kirsty McColl, among others, while Houghton has been staying out of the spotlight, doing mostly local gigs in the south of England and teaching drums. The band is rehearsing and doing some exclusive warm-up gigs in the United Kingdom this week and next, then recording there in October. The album release and full-world tour are projected for March/April 2003.



Lifehouse has added a fourth member, guitarist Sean Woolstenhulme, who joins his younger brother Rick, the band's drummer. Lifehouse released its latest album, "Stanley Climbfall" from DreamWorks this week. The band had been touring as a quartet over the summer and decided to make the older Woolstenhulme a full-time member. "It's about time the brothers unite as one," said Rick, who'd brought Sean along in 1999 when he auditioned for the band. "It's great to play music with him because we're so similar. We tend to veer toward the same planets in space." Lifehouse has toured for a solid two years since the release of its multiplatinum debut, "No Name Face," and is about to embark on a world tour that takes them to Europe this week and throughout the United States in the fall. "Sean is an extremely innovative and creative lead guitar player who has great stage presence," said frontman Jason Wade. "We have a chemistry that's really working. We are a band. We have claimed our sound as our own and developed it through touring and in the studio, making it stronger."


Carlos Averhoff, Candido Camero, Bobby Sanabria, Manuel Valera, Mitch Frohman, Paquito Hechavarría, Ray Mantilla, Rances Colon and Reynaldo Jorge are among the stars represented on "50 Years of Mambo," due out Monday on Mambo Maniacs Records. The two-disc set was recorded live in New York's Town Hall in celebration of a half-century of mambo in the United States. German Pifferrer provided musical direction for the 25-piece all star band that had the audience dancing in the aisles. Liner notes were written by Chico Alvarez and Alberto Bernal. For more information call check



TLC will release "3D," the final album featuring the late Lisa "Left Eye" Lopes, on Arista records Nov. 12. Surviving members Rozonda "Chilli" Thomas and Tionne "T-Boz" Watkins completed tracks for the album after Lopes was killed in a car accident in Honduras last April. Lopes already had recorded some of her parts for the record and had come up with the idea for the album title. Several producers contributed to the project, including Dallas Austin, Missy Elliott, Rodney Jerkins, Darryl Simmons and Edmund "Eddie Hustle" Clement. The first single, "Quickie," will be released Oct. 21.


Paul McCartney is set to release a Beatles recording that has never been issued and hasn't been heard in 35 years as a soundtrack to a documentary of his late wife Linda's photographs, the Sunday Times of London reports. "Carnival of Light," a 14-minute piece originally recorded as part of the "Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band" sessions, was played in 1967 shortly after it was recorded at a London festival. "It was one of those weird things," Beatles producer George Martin told the Times. "It was a kind of uncomposed, free-for-all melange of sound that went on."



Eurythmics guitarist Dave Stewart and reggae singer Jimmy Cliff have joined forces to promote a new song, "Peace One Day" on a global scale on Saturday, the United Nations-designated International Day of Peace. Stewart and Cliff, who have been working on an album project together, are trying to persuade radio stations around the world to play the song that day. Stewart, who wrote the song in response to the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks, will make it available free to radio stations on the Internet via the site. "The idea was to make a song, that on Sept. 21, we'll get as many stations around the world to play and DJs to talk about what it's all about," Stewart said. "We're not really making a single that we're trying to get in the charts. It's an idea to uplift people."


"I Am Mine," the first single from Pearl Jam's "Riot Act" album, goes to U.S. radio outlets Wednesday for airplay consideration and will be released Oct. 8. The full album will be released on the Epic label Nov. 12. "Riot Act" will consist of 15 tracks, several of which, including "Can't Keep" and "Thumbing My Way," were previewed earlier this year by Eddie Vedder during solo concerts in California. "I Am Mine" was debuted by the full band at last year's Bridge School Benefit concert. The album was produced by Pearl Jam with Adam Kasper and mixed by Brendan O'Brien. The group is expected to return to the live stage later this year in anticipation of a world tour in early 2003.



The Beat Goes On, the witty musical repertory of rock history tributes, will present "The Beat Visits The Wall of Sound... from the Ronettes to the Ramones" on Oct. 4 at the Bottom Line in New York. Marshall Crenshaw, James Maddock, Annie Golden, Tom Clark, Don Fleming and The Kennedys will be among the performers. This is the 15th installment of the musical series that has covered pop cultural themes such as The Jagger and Richards Songbook, The British Invasion, Rockin' in the '70s, Hullabaloo, The Brill Building, Ready Steady Go, Nuggets I & II, Summer In the City, and The Rat Pack. Producer Phil Spector, whose layer-upon-layer approach to recording became known as the "wall of sound," created his own pop symphonies from the Ronettes' "Be My Baby" to the Ramones "Rock and Roll Radio." Each artist will offer their own renditions of early Phil Spector works, such as his first No. 1 hit with the Teddy Bears "To Know Him Is to Love Him," The Crystal's "Then He Kissed Me," the Ronettes' "Be My Baby," Dion's "Born to Be With You," the Ramone's "Rock N Roll High School," John Lennon's "Instant Karma" and "Across the Universe," Leonard Cohen's "Memories," Ike & Tina Turner's "River Deep Mountain High" and others. Backing them will be an all-star band led by musical director James Mastro (Health and Happiness Show/ Ian Hunter) and featuring the musical talents of Manhattan-based musicians Tony Shanahan (Patti Smith), Pat Irwin (B52's), Daniel Rey (Joey Ramone/Ronnie Spector) and Dennis Diken (Smithereens).


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