Suddenly band class in Los Angeles just got a whole lot cooler. Eddie Van Halen has donated 75 guitars from his personal collection to music programs in the L.A. area. The rocker teamed up with the Mr. Holland’s Opus Foundation to provide instruments to schools without enough for students to play.
Much like they did for the 2007-08 reunion tour, Van Halen has crossed genres in selecting an opening act for their 2012 tour. According to Rolling Stone, none other than Kool and the Gang will open select shows when things kick off on Feb. 18 in Louisville, Ken.
While the choice is somewhat of a head-scratcher, the unconventional pairing could be a lot of fun, depending on which set Kool bring, the funk of the ’70s (check out ‘Spirit of the Boogie‘) or the less memorable R&B of the ’80s (‘Joanna‘).
Percussionist Ralph MacDonald, the hidden force behind platinum selling songs and albums from artists like David Bowie, Paul Simon and Jimmy Buffett, died on Sunday (Dec. 18) at age 67. Known as “the ghost,” MacDonald’s Caribbean style on congas and dozens of other hand drums and music-makers helped make artists big enough to be recognized by first name — Aretha, Luther, Stevie — only get bigger.
Jimmy Fallon returned to ‘Saturday Night Live’ last weekend to mock Justin Bieber, comedian Russell Brand and Sting. In a sketch spoofing Michael Buble‘s Christmas duets album — which is currently the No. 1 album in America — Fallon joins the real Buble for a few short songs.
Wednesday night’s Billy Joel show at the University of Massachusetts was far from his biggest concert ever, but for the audience of about 900 students and staff it was more than entertaining. Joel sang, told stories, gave lessons, did impressions and revealed secrets inside Durgin Hall.
Keyboardist Dick Sims backed up two of the greatest classic rockers of all times, and a dozen others that were pretty dang good in his 60 years. The keyboardist died on Thursday, after a battle with cancer, prompting Eric Clapton to dedicate his Saturday show to his one time bandmate.
The Rolling Stones continue to revisit stories and memories from the making of ‘Some Girls’ in honor of the recent re-release of the 1978 album. In a new interview Mick Jagger and Keith Richards talk about how punk music influenced the project.
Film producer Graham King says he’s still planning on filming a biopic about Queen frontman Freddie Mercury in 2012, and Sacha Baron Cohen is still planning on playing the lead role. It’d be a rare serious role for Cohen, best known for starring in films like ‘Borat (2006)’ and ‘Bruno (2009).’
Last week Led Zeppelin fans celebrated the band’s iconic fourth album’s 40th birthday. If you dusted off your original vinyl copy and bought a new needle for the occasion, one thing is for certain: you’re getting old.
The Rolling Stones have officially opened an online archive of photos, video and unreleased music, and their first offering is amongst the most coveted pieces of Stones memorabilia not really available. ‘The Brussels Affair’ is now officially for sale at StonesAr
If one member of the British Parliament has her way, Led Zeppelin guitarist Jimmy Page could soon share something in common with Sir Elton John, Sir Paul McCartney and Sir Mix-A-Lot. That is, something in common other than being British and a pretty decent musician.
Queen‘s Brian May and Roger Taylor have revealed they’re in possession of recordings of late vocalist Freddie Mercury singing with Michael Jackson. British newspaper The Sun reports that the public may finally get a chance to hear the two men harmonize.
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