Stone Temple Pilots pull out of final five shows of tour with Halestorm due to positive COVID-19 test

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Stone Temple Pilots have canceled their performances at the last five shows of their U.S. tour with Halestorm and Black Stone Cherry because “a member of [their] touring party … tested positive” for COVID-19 during routine testing for the virus.

STP announced the news in a post on their social media sites: “Out of an abundance of caution, we must regretfully cancel the remaining shows on our tour with HALESTORM,” adding, “HALESTORM and BLACK STONE CHERRY will still be performing as scheduled.”

The five affected dates were last night’s show in Evansville, Indiana; tonight’s concert in Tulsa, Oklahoma; and performances on May 27 in Deadwood, South Dakota; May 28 in Moorhead, Minnesota; and May 30 in Missoula, Montana.

STP’s message concludes, “Thank you to everybody who has come out to see a show, and an extra special thank you to HALESTORM. We’ll be back out there as soon as we can.”

In November of last year, the band canceled the final two dates of their fall tour after someone in their organization tested positive for COVID-19, while the following month bassist Robert DeLeo announced that he had caught the virus.

Stone Temple Pilots’ next concert is scheduled for June 4 in Addison, Texas.

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High-def audio disc featuring new version of Bob Dylan’s “Blowin’ in the Wind” to be auctioned in July

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A new studio version of Bob Dylan‘s classic folk song “Blowin’ in the Wind” will be sold at a Christie’s auction in London on July 7.

Billboard reports that Dylan recently recorded his new version of the tune with acclaimed producer T Bone Burnett using Burnett’s new ultra-high-definition Ionic Original audio format, details of which were unveiled last month.

The recording will be up for bid as part of Christie’s “Exceptional Sale,” and its value is estimated between $752,000 and $1.2 million. Prior to the auction, people will be able to listen to the Ionic Original disc by appointment at Christie’s locations in Los Angeles on June 8 and New York on June 15, and in conjunction with a public exhibition in London from July 2 to July 7.

The auction of the updated version of the tune coincides with the 60th anniversary of the original recording of “Blowin’ in the Wind.”

“Sixty years after Bob first wrote and recorded ‘Blowin’ in the Wind,’ he is giving us a new recording of his song; one that is both deeply relevant for our times and resonant with decades of the artist’s life and experience,” Burnett says in a statement. “We’re grateful to Christie’s for their belief in the ‘Ionic Original’ and for presenting Bob’s masterful recording to the world in a unique and meaningful way.”

The new rendition of “Blowin’ in the Wind” is the first recording to use the Ionic Original technology, which was developed by Burnett’s NeoFidelity Inc. company.

As reported last month by Variety, Dylan recorded a series of new versions of his well-known songs that will be released by NeoFidelity on a new Ionic Originals medium, which resembles a vinyl LP but is made of aluminum.

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Watch Rockin’1000 perform Foo Fighters’ “My Hero” in honor of Taylor Hawkins

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The viral music collective Rockin’1000 has shared a rendition of the Foo Fighters classic “My Hero” in honor of the band’s late drummer, Taylor Hawkins.

The performance, which featured 1,000 musicians playing together simultaneously, took place during a Rockin’1000 concert in Paris earlier this month. You can watch it streaming now on YouTube.

Rockin’1000, of course, has a special connection to Foo Fighters. The project made its debut in 2015 by gathering 1,000 musicians to play the Foos song “Learn to Fly” in an effort to convince Dave Grohl and company to perform a concert in founder Fabio Zaffagnini‘s hometown of Cesena, Italy.

Video of the performance — which now has over 60 million views on YouTube — soon went viral and caught the attention of the Foos themselves; they played a show in Cesena later in 2015.

Rockin’1000 has continued over the past seven years performing concerts around the world and has collaborated with musicians including Courtney Love.

Hawkins passed away on March 25. He was 50 years old.

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Environmental-themed Atlantis Concert for Earth to feature performances by Sting, STP, Bush

Courtesy of Atlantis Entertainment

A star-studded environmental-themed festival called Atlantis Concert for Earth that will feature live and virtual performances will be held July 22 and 23.

The live show will take place on the rim of a volcano crater on Sete Cidades in Portugal’s Azores islands. The concert will include a virtual performance by Sting, and the lineup also features Stone Temple Pilots, Bush, Julian Lennon, Mod Sun, Black Eyed Peas, Pitbull, Nicole Scherzinger and others. Scherzinger also will serve as host.

Atlantis Concert for Earth is a nonprofit event that will celebrate global conservation. In addition to the music performances, the show will highlight the work of a variety of conservationists and organizations focused on the environment, including Lennon’s White Feather Foundation.

On July 23, the event will be streamed for free at the Veeps platform, and viewers will be encouraged to donate money, 100 percent of which will benefit the organizations showcased by the festival.

The event was conceptualized in part by Extreme guitarist Nuno Bettencourt, who was born in the Azores and who recently collaborated with Julian on a cover of his late dad John Lennon‘s classic peace anthem, “Imagine.”

“These days, words Climate and Climate Crisis trigger so many different emotions from all walks of life,” said Bettencourt.

He adds, “[T]ogether during Concert for Earth we are taking our universal language and power of music to celebrate the Conservationists and Entrepreneurs from around the world who are game changers leading the way with real, tangible solutions to flip the current narrative of climate and conservation from blame, anger, and doom; to positivity and hope by shining a light on inspirational SOLUTIONS to get us back in balance with our planet.”

For more details about the event, visit AtlantisConcertforEarth.com.

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James Hetfield, Kirk Hammett shred national anthem during SF Giants Metallica Night

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The San Francisco Giants baseball team is once again back to celebrating Metallica Night.

After a two-year absence due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the annual event returned Tuesday at SF’s Oracle Park. Like with previous years, frontman James Hetfield and guitarist Kirk Hammett took to the diamond to rock their shred-heavy instrumental rendition of the national anthem.

Hetfield also threw out the game’s ceremonial first pitch.

Perhaps the spirit of Metallica inspired the Giants players, who pulled out a thrilling 13-12 victory over the visiting New York Mets.

Along with the Giants, Metallica supports a number of other Bay Area sports teams, including the NBA’s Golden State Warriors and the NHL’s San Jose Sharks.

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Paints So Good: Book of John Mellencamp’s paintings to be published in October

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Not only is John Mellencamp adept at painting a portrait of life in small town America with his words and music, the Rock & Roll Hall of Famer also is literally a talented painter.

Now, a new book showcasing his artwork, titled John Mellencamp: American Paintings and Assemblages, is scheduled to be published on October 17. The 256-page volume, which the artist curated himself, features images of 170 pieces he created, including large-scale oil paintings and mixed-media assemblages.

The book includes self-portraits and portraits of such celebrities as Marlon Brando, Johnny Cash and Mellencamp’s one-time fiancee Meg Ryan, as well as an abstract homage to Martin Luther King Jr.

The book also features essays about Mellencamp’s art, penned by publisher Bob Guccione Jr. and acclaimed journalist and critic David L. Shirey.

“Although we may primarily know Mellencamp as a rock star, one of the highest-selling of all time and a Hall of Famer, he is also a great painter, as this book shows,” writes Guccione. “Not a musician who also paints … No, John legitimately belongs in the modern art pantheon.”

Mellencamp’s most recent studio album, Strictly a One-Eyed Jack, was released in January. It features three collaborations with Bruce Springsteen.

According to a post on his official website, he’s planning to return to touring in 2023.

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Rob Halford says Judas Priest currently is tracking its next album, and “it sounds great”

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Judas Priest is having an eventful year that will see the band mount a lengthy, new European leg of its ongoing 50 Heavy Metal Years tour and will culminate with the veteran British rockers getting inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame this November.

Beyond that, frontman Rob Halford reports that the band is continuing to work on a new album that will be a follow-up to their 2018 studio effort, Firepower.

“We’ve stopped kicking the tires and now we’re in tracking,” Halford tells ABC Audio about the status of the record.

He also reveals that he’s planning to add some new material to the project that, judging by his comments, will be based around unfinished archival recordings.

“You can never have enough songs when you’re making an album,” he notes. “Songs that you didn’t even know you had bits and pieces and fragments of, suddenly they become an incredibly important part of your record.”

Regarding the sound of the album, Rob notes, “The music that we’re making now is representative of where Priest is at this probably sixth decade of our existence when it comes out…It sounds great. I’m really pleased.”

He adds, “I’m really, really happy that…we’re not dropping the ball. Not that we ever have. But it’s good, because there are some elements in there that we’ve never…kind of discovered before.”

Asked if he thinks the album may be ready for release sometime next year, Halford responds cagily, “He raises his hands, he shrugs his shoulders and he goes, ‘Meh.'”

Judas Priest launches its 2022 European trek on May 31 in Berlin.

As previously reported, the band will be inducted into the Rock Hall in conjunction with receiving the Musical Excellence Award. The ceremony takes place November 5 in Los Angeles.

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Art created from sound waves of The Band’s “The Weight,” signed by Robbie Robertson, being sold for charity

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Original paintings created from the sound waves of The Band‘s classic 1968 song “The Weight,” along with prints of the art pieces, are being sold now to raise money for the Sweet Relief Musicians Fund.

Founding Band guitarist and songwriter Robbie Robertson has signed 30 of the prints and a few of the original pieces, which are available now, respectively, for $500 and $3000 at SoundwavesArtFoundation.com.

Robertson signed the art and prints this month at his home in Los Angeles.

Unsigned prints also are available, priced at $75.

In a post on his Twitter feed, Robbie writes, “Sweet Relief Musicians Fund is an amazing non-profit supporting music industry workers unable to pay medical and everyday bills. 100% of profits [from sales of the Soundwaves pieces] will be donated.”

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Ex-Blue Öyster Cult member Joe Bouchard reflects on band’s ’70s heyday in new solo tune “In the Golden Age”

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Former Blue Öyster Cult bassist Joe Bouchard has released a second advance track from his forthcoming solo album, American Rocker, a melodic rock tune called “In the Golden Age” that finds him reflecting on the band’s 1970s heyday.

“‘In the Golden Age’ is a high energy rocker that sets the pace for the entire album,” Joe says. “The song started out inspired by the old ’60s TV show Route 66. I updated the theme to be about the early shows of Blue Öyster Cult when we began playing big shows on the West Coast of the U.S. Yes, my life in the ’70s was an endless highway with adventures at every turn … It was all good and exciting!”

The track is available now as a digital download and via streaming services, and a lyric video has premiered at the Deko Entertainment label’s official YouTube channel. It was preceded by the first advance song from American Rocker, “My Way Is the Highway.”

The album is an 11-track collection that will be released on June 3. As Joe explains, “American Rocker is a musical journey of my life as a rock star,” adding, “I feel lucky to live a life of music, and to be fulfilling my wildest dreams.”

CD copies of the album can be preordered now at MerchBucket.com. Special bundles also available are pairing the CD with a T-shirt and an autographed booklet.

Joe has a series of five North American shows lined up in July with his band Blue Coupe — which also features his brother and fellow Blue Öyster Cult alum Albert Bouchard and original Alice Cooper bassist Dennis Dunaway. He and Albert will also be playing a series of U.K. concerts in August, performing as The Bouchard Brothers.

Here’s American Rocker‘s full track list:

“My Way Is the Highway”
“In the Golden Age”
“Deadly Kisses”
“Love Out of Thin Air”
“Off Season Hotel”
“Hounds of Hell”
“Conspiracy”
“Rocket to Fame”
“The Devil’s in the Details”
“Katherine”
“Hey There Suzi Dear”

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Ringo Starr auctioning off NFTs featuring original animated artwork, drum tracks

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Ringo Starr is entering the NFT universe with a new collection of digital tokens that feature animated virtual depictions of artwork he’s created, which will be auctioned off at JuliensAuctions.com on June 13 at 11 a.m. PT.

The “Ringo Starr NFT Collection — The Creative Mind of a Beatle” will include five unique NFTs, each featuring an original animated painting accompanied by a custom-made drum track played and recorded by Starr, and an audio/visual motif echoing his time with The Beatles and his subsequent music career.

Those who purchase the NFTs will also receive a 25-by-25-inch canvas print of the artwork signed by Ringo and will be granted access to join the legendary drummer on an exclusive virtual tour of a gallery of his digital art, called RingoLand.

The winning bidders will receive a private invitation following the auction that will allow them to join the virtual gathering, which was created by Spatial.io, via the web, VR platforms or mobile devices.

Four limited-edition NFTs of each of the five designs will be available, for a total 20 NFT packages that will be auctioned as part of the sale.

“I only ever wanted to be a drummer yet you never know where a new idea or path will lead you,” says Starr. “This new technology is so far out it’s inspired me and I loved creating these NFTs combining my art and my music. Who’d have thought I would be spreading Peace and Love in the MetaVerse.”

Among the NFTs are self-portraits that depict Starr during his early days with The Beatles. Visit JuliensLive.com for more details.

A portion of the proceeds raised by the auction will benefit Ringo’s Lotus Foundation, which funds and supports charitable projects that focus on various social welfare causes.

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