Saturday, June 23, 2018

Paul Rodgers’ 'Free Spirit – Celebrating The Music of Free' out now

This title sounds great, and will appeal to fans of Paul Rogers' fantastic vocals and songcraft, as well as his early band Free!

Paul Rodgers’ Free Spirit out now; deep cuts live album from London's Royal Albert Hall includes Free's biggest hits

Paul Rodgers / Photo by Christie Goodwin

Fans worldwide can now stream the new project from Paul RodgersPaul Rodgers – Free Spirit – Celebrating The Music of Free, released on Quarto Valley Records. This hits and deep cuts live recording, taped from a sold-out performance at London's Royal Albert Hall, celebrates the 50th anniversary of Free. Called a "must have for any fan of Free and Paul Rodgers," Free Spirit is available across all digital platforms, and will be available on CD/DVDBlu-ray, and vinyl on Friday, June 29, 2018.

"I was emotionally rapt at Paul's Free Spirit show. Free were heroes to us when I was at college, and the Fire and Water album was one of our essential bibles. Still is!!!" —Brian May (Queen)
“It’s a given that rock enthusiasts will be jamming along with Rodgers’ grooves forever.” —Billboard
"Let's be honest this man could sing your weekly shopping list and still give you goosebumps. For fans, it gives a chance to hear songs like ‘Love You So’ and ‘Catch A Train’ performed live for the first time as Free never got the opportunity to." —The Rockin' Chair
This 16-song collection includes inspired performances of rock hits like “All Right Now,” “Wishing Well,” “Fire and Water,” and many deep tracks—some of which were never performed live by the original band, such as “Love You So” and “Catch a Train.” Along with this collection, those who purchase the Blu-ray and vinyl can expect exclusive footage and bonus tracks from opening acts Jasmine Rodgers, artist and multi-instrumentalist daughter of Paul, and Deborah Bonham, rock/blues vocalist and sister of Led Zeppelin drummer John Bonham.

"I have been making music for a long, long, long time, so to get supercharged and re-inspired to perform was a revelation,” says Rodgers. “I loved the Free Spirit Tour and the guys who helped create the magic. I hope you feel it too. Just lose yourself in the music and let it fuel your soul."

According to Robert Plant “Paul Rodgers [is] the voice of all British voices,” and to Eric Clapton, “Paul Rodgers is the real deal.” Beginning his iconic music career as a founding member, main songwriter, and frontman for Free, Rodgers is regarded as one of the greatest vocalists in rock history by contemporaries and fans. Rodgers has sold over 125 million records worldwide with his legendary bands Free, Bad Company, The Firm and as a Grammy-nominated solo artist.

“We are very excited and extremely honored to be part of this historic event,” says Bruce Quarto, president of Quarto Valley Records. “This performance, perfectly captured in a variety of formats, is truly a rare event that any Paul Rodgers fan will definitely want to watch and listen to, over and over again.”

This summer Jeff Beck and Paul Rodgers front the co-headlining Stars Align Tour, with Ann Wilson of Heart, and opening act Deborah Bonham

About Paul Rodgers:
Growing up in the sprawling industrial North Yorkshire city of Middlesbrough, Paul Rodgers formed his first band at the ripe age of 14. Shortly after at 18, he formed Free along with late guitarist Paul Kossoff. They gained international success with the Rodgers / Fraser smash single “All Right Now.” For five decades, Rodgers has been recording and performing. He has written, recorded, produced and released 30 albums and has sold 125 million records. He has received numerous awards: the prestigious Ivor Novello Award for Outstanding Contribution to British Music (other recipients include John Lennon, Paul McCartney, and Elton John), an honorary Doctorate of Letters from Teesside University, BMI’s 5 Million US Radio Plays Awarded for “All Right Now”, the Chairman’s Award from the US Music Business Association, and more. He has recorded and/or performed with Jimmy Page, Jeff Beck, Brian May, Sam Moore, Joe Walsh, Ann Wilson, Slash, Nils Lofgren, Charlie Watts, Bryan Adams, Buddy Guy, and others. In his remarkable career, Rodgers has fronted the bands Free, Bad Company and The Firm, and continues to have a celebrated, award-winning solo career.

About Quarto Valley Records:
California-based Quarto Valley Records celebrated their fifth anniversary in 2017. Founded by tech entrepreneur Bruce Quarto, the label is dedicated to supporting and expanding the genres of rock, jazz and blues music. Passionate about supporting artists and their creative process, Quarto’s goal is to reinvent the traditional record company with a new business model that is fair and respectful to the artists.

Friday, June 22, 2018

Capitol/UMe to release Neil Diamond's 'Hot August Night III' on August 17, 2018

This is very exciting news. I was fortunate to get to see Neil Diamond when he performed at the Greek Theatre and it was truly a powerful and memorable concert (you can read my review of that show here)...Robert Kinsler

Legendary Artist Celebrates the 40th Anniversary of his 
break-through HOT AUGUST NIGHT album with Concert DVD Blu-Ray, CD Multi Disc Set

Neil Diamond at the Greek Theatre on Aug. 18, 2012.
Photo: Robert Kinsler
Los Angeles June 22, 2018 – On August 17, Capitol/UMe will celebrate one of the century's most electrifying live albums, with the release of Neil Diamond's Hot August Night Ill, a live concert DVD/CD Blu-Ray multi-disc set. Hot August Night Ill chronicles Diamond's triumphant returto the legendary Greek Theatre in Los Angeles iAugust 2012.The magicaevening was Diamond's 40th anniversary celebratioof the originamultiplatinum-selling Hot August Night collection thawas recorded at the very same venue in 1972.

Diamond's noted concert performance and onstage musical prowess iin full evidence on Hot August Night Illwhicfeatures 33 songs includin3greatest hits. Clocking in at over hours and 20 minutes ilength, Hot August Night Ill will breleased in multiple audio/video configurations, including 2CD2CD + 1DVDand 2CD + 1Blu-rayas well as digital andownload options. The multidisc set's accompanying video content contains rare behind-the scenes footage with both the band and the crew, showcasing the undeniably palpable energy surroundinDiamond'return tthis moshistoric venue.

Following the 2012 shows at The Greek, Billboard Magazine said of Diamond's performance, "His voice remains powerful and accurate; he reaches towards the baritone register for emphasis, just as he did in the 70's. ...he never falters in delivering every line with conviction."

From the fine acoustitwang of "Forevein Blue Jeans" to the pure Americana swing of "Kentucky Woman" to the eternal sing-along sunshine of "Sweet Caroline” to the raw emotionality o"I AmSaidto the welcoming arms of "America,'' Hot August Night Ill cements Diamond's mastery of thlive stage and his unique connection with audiences the world over.

Released in December 1972, the original Hot August Night the title of which was culled from the opening line to one oDiamond's most celebrated tracks1969'"Brother Love's TravellinSalvation Showcaptures a magical performance on the evening of one of his tesold-out shows at the Greek thaAugust. Of these nights, Robert Hilburn oThe Los Angeles Times declared, "His 197Hot August Night stand at the Greek remains among the most celebrated series oshows by a mainstream pop-rock performeever in LosAngeles.

Throughouhis illustrious and wide-ranging careerNeiDiamond has solover 130 million albums worldwide and has dominated the charts for more than five decades wit38 To40 singles and 16 Top 10 albumsHe has achieved record sales with 40 Gold albums,21 Platinum albums and 11 Multi-Platinum albums.

A Grammy Award-winning artist, Diamond is a membeothe Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, thSongwriters Hall Of Fameand has recently received The Johnny Mercer Award anthSammy Cahn Lifetime Achievement Awardtwo of thhighest honors bestowed upon songwritersDiamond's many otheachievements include a Golden Globe Award1Grammy nominations, ASCAP Film and Television Award, Billboard Icon Award, American Music Award and 2009’s NARAS’s MusiCares Person of the Year Award. In 2011, Diamond received the prestigious Kennedy Center Honor for his lifetime of contributions to American culture.

And now, with the endless dynamic enthusiasm that’s apparent all throughout Hot August Night III, Neil Diamond once again sweetly proves that good times never seemed so good.

Preorder Neil Diamond’s Hot August Night III here:

Neil Diamond HOT AUGUST NIGHT III [2CD, 2CD+1DVD, 2CD+1BD, Digital Download]

Disc 1  

Disc 2
3. WE 

Florence + the Machine debut compelling new track "Big God"; tickets on sale for second Hollywood Bowl show today!

Florence + the Machine's highly-anticipated new album 'High As Hope' is set for release a week from today. While we wait for the new album, listen to the new song "Big God" and watch the creative video too...

Florence + the Machine debut new song titled "Big God' - watch the new video


'High As Hope' out Friday, June 29, 2018

Florence + the Machine have unveiled a new song, “Big God,” and video —watch it, choreographed by Akram Khan and Florence and directed by Autumn de WildeHERE. “Big God” is the third track to be released from Florence + the Machine’s hugely anticipated fourth studio album High As Hope, out June 29 on Republic Records.

Listen to Big God 

Watch the music video

Says Florence:
"Big God’ was written about that feeling when someone has not replied to your text, the modern phenomenon of ‘Ghosting’ which is one of my favorite words but not my favorite feeling. I was describing it to someone and they said to me ‘You need a big god’, as if the need in me were so cavernous, it would take something enormous to fill it. Probably something bigger than a text message.

"It’s always been a very physical song. I saw a dance piece in my head as I was writing it, so to co choreograph something with Akram Khan was a huge honour. Autumn de Wilde fully understood what I was trying to do. The power of the desire within the void, left with yourself to rage and wonder and really it is yourself you are raging against. Not the ghost."

Akram Khan adds:
"For me, this encounter with Florence and her powerful song somehow navigated itself towards the element—water. But the direction of the dance also became a resistance to all things that wish to oppress, a sort of protest dance and yet a celebratory one towards a new found freedom."

Due to overwhelming demand Florence + The Machine announced a second show at the Hollywood Bowl on Wednesday, September 26 in addition to the previously announced show on Tuesday, September 25.  Kamasi Washington will open both shows. Tickets go on sale to the public on Friday, June 29, 2018 at 10 a.m. PST. Check for further information.

Furthermore, in addition to the second Hollywood Bowl show, the band added a second night at Washington, D.C.'s The Anthem on October 6. Tickets are available to the public FridayJune 29American Express Card Members can purchase tickets before the general public beginning Monday, June 25 at 12 p.m. local time, through Thursday, June 28 at 10 p.m. local time.

Previously announced dates-on sale now-include New York, SeattlePortlandNashvillePhiladelphiaChicago and more. Visit for more information

Visit for more information.

High As Hope was co-produced by Florence Welch and Emile Haynie and features contributions from Kamasi WashingtonSamphaTobias Jesso JrKelsey LuJamie xx and Thomas Barlett. Watch the A.G. Rojas-directed video for first official single “Hunger” 

5-AugMontreal, QC, CanadaOsheaga
9-AugLake Tahoe, NVLake Tahoe Outdoor Arena at Harveys*
11-AugSan Francisco, CAOutside Lands
8-SepVancouver, BC, CanadaSkookum Festival
10-SepSeattle, WAKeyArena†
11-SepPortland, ORModa Center†
14-SepSalt Lake City, UTMaverik Center†
15-SepDenver, COGrandoozy Festival
22-SepLas Vegas, NVLife Is Beautiful
23-SepSan Diego, CAViejas Arena at Aztec Bowl San Diego State University‡
25-SepLos Angeles, CAHollywood Bowl‡
26-SepLos Angeles, CAHollywood Bowl‡
29-SepDallas, TXThe Pavilion at Toyota Music Factory‡
30-SepHouston, TXThe Cynthia Woods Mitchell Pavilion‡
2-OctNashville, TNBridgestone Arena§
3-OctCharlotte, NCSpectrum Center§
5-OctWashington, D.C.The Anthem**
6-OctWashington, D.C.The Anthem**
9-OctNew York, NYBarclays Center‡
10-OctNew York, NYBarclays Center‡
12-OctBoston, MATD Garden††
13-OctUncasville, CTMohegan Sun Arena††
14-OctPhiladelphia, PAWells Fargo Center††
16-OctToronto, ON, CanadaAir Canada Centre††
19-OctChicago, ILUnited Center‡‡
20-OctMinneapolis, MNTarget Center‡‡
*with wet
†with St. Vincent and Lizzo
‡with Kamasi Washington
§with Billie Eilish
**with Beth Ditto
††with Grizzly Bear
‡‡with Perfume Genius

FLORENCE + THE MACHINE—HIGH AS HOPE                                                    
1. June
2. Hunger
3. South London Forever
4. Big God
5. Sky Full of Song
6. Grace
7. Patricia
8. 100 Years
9. The End of Love
10. No Choir​

Thursday, June 21, 2018

Music Worth Buying episode: Johnny Marr, Lake Street Dive

On the latest episode of MUSIC WORTH BUYING, Robert Kinsler celebrates the release of Johnny Marr's third studio album Call the Comet while TJR champions the sophomore effort from Lake Street Dive, Free Yourself Up:

Paul McCartney announces new album 'Egypt Station'; shares first two singles

The cover artwork for Sir Paul McCartney's upcoming
album 'Egypt Station,' set for release on Sept. 7.
On June 20, 2018, Paul McCartney released two brand new songs  "I Don't Know" and "Come On to Me" — as a double A-side single. Sir Paul had teased that new music via Instagram last week, and he followed up with the goods. In addition to the great new songs, he is set to release his first new album in five years, Egypt Station, on Friday, Sept. 7 courtesy of Capitol Records.

Egypt Station marks McCartney's first new album since 2013's New.

In a statement about his forthcoming LP, McCartney, 76, says: "I liked the words 'Egypt Station.' It reminded me of the album albums we used to make ...'Egypt Station' starts off at the station on the first song and then each song is like a different station. So it gave us some idea to base all the songs around that. It think of it as a dream location that the music emanates from."

I'm really enjoying both new songs, and it's great McCartney has shared a lovely ballad ("I Don't Know") and bona fide rocker ("Come On to Me"), the latter enhanced with a driving beat and artful arrangement. (You can check out my most recent review of MaCartney, a review of his 2010 performance at the Hollywood Bowl here)

Check out Music Worth Buying co-host TJR's initial reaction video on the first two singles from McCartney's upcoming album here:

You can get more information about the album and hear the new cuts on McCartney's official website (via two creative lyric videos!):

Robert Kinsler

Tuesday, June 19, 2018

Groundbreaking artists shine via remarkable returns

Five seminal artists are back with outstanding new releases. 

Artist: Johnny Marr
Title: Call the Comet (New Voodoo Records)
You might like if you enjoy: The Smiths, Noel Gallagher's High Flying Birds, Interpol
Tell me more: Since the breakup of The Smiths in 1987 guitarist Johnny Marr has carved out a wide-ranging path performing with everyone from The The and the Pretenders to Modest Mouse, Talking Heads and even famed composer Hans Zimmer! But the most astounding ripple in Marr's incredible journey has been a solo career launched with 2013's The Messenger. That album, as well as 2014's Playland and 2015's live import Adrenalin Baby, have rapidly established Marr as one of this decade's most exciting rock artists. On June 15, Marr released his third studio album Call the Comet, and the 12-song set offers definitive proof that while Marr's signature guitar work put him on the map his elevated songcraft and top-tier vocals guarantee listeners will be swept away and immersed across "Call the Comet." The disc's track listing shines from start to finish, with the spacious "Rise," evocative "Hi Hello," hypnotic "A Different Gun" and breathtaking "Walk Into the Sea" among the awe-inspiring songs. Johnny Marr will headline at the legendary Theatre at Ace Hotel on Oct. 4, 2018. Information:

Artist: Snow Patrol
Title: Wildness (Republic)
You might like if you enjoy: Radiohead, Two Door Cinema Club, U2
Tell me more: Snow Patrol has returned with Wildness, the Northern Irish rock band's first new full-length album since 2011's Fallen Empires. A seven-year break feels like a lifetime when considering the span between studio albums (just think how many albums the Beatles released during the seven-year span between 1963's With The Beatles and 1970's Let It Be), but the good news for fans is Wildness delivers on the group's ambitious modern rock approach. Indeed, singer-songwriter-guitarist Gary Lightbody and company's mix of introspective lyrics and art rock dynamics are as affecting and compelling on "Wildness" as the troupe's 2003 breakthrough Final Straw. The songs frequently tackle the intimacy of love but in the context of the mystery of life's magic and fleeting fabric. The diversity of sounds and even the range and studio effects on Lightbody's vocals (much of the power of the disc comes courtesy of producer Jacknife Lee) on the pensive "Life On Earth," tender "Don't Give In" and deeply moving "Heal Me" are early standouts on the album. The anthemic "Empress," piano-anchored ballad "What If This is All The Love You Ever Get?" and powerful "Soon" are among this writer's other favorites. Finishing off the album is the introspective "Life and Death" which gracefully explores the connection between two souls. An outstanding return. Snow Patrol is going on a summer tour with Ed Sheehan, and will perform at the Rose Bowl in Pasadena, CA on Aug. 18, 2018. Information:

Artist: The Record Company
Title: All Of This Life (Concord Records)
You might like if you enjoy: Moreland & Arbuckle, The Record Company, Buddy Guy
Tell me more: Those who appreciate the blistering blues rock of Greta Van Fleet but complain that the Michigan outfit sounds too much like Led Zeppelin needs to check out the sophomore album from Los Angeles-based trio The Record Company. On All Of This Life, the trio (singer-guitarist Chris Vos, bassist-vocalist Alex Stiff and drummer-vocalist Marc Cazorla) proves to be the real deal unleashing a blistering hybrid of electric Chicago blues and classic blues rock that explodes out of the speakers. The album's undeniable lead-off track "Life to Fix" has a bona fide intensity and resonates with the impact of a favorite classic rock track. The Little Walter-styled harmonica blasts give "I'm Getting Better (And I'm Feeling It Right Now)" an additional flair on the equally amped-up follow-up single. Adding fuel to the band's firepower brand is the overall message about looking inward and working on one's own issues as part of a solution to help make the world we all share a little better (a message forcefully delivered via the slide guitar-drenched "Make It Happen" and the closing track "I'm Changing"). All Of This Life will be released on June 22. The Record Company has several regional concert dates set for this fall, including a San Diego House of Blues show on Nov. 9 and a date at The Wiltern in Los Angeles, CA on Nov. 10. Information:

Artist: Dawes
Title: Passwords (HUB Records II LLC)
You might like if you enjoy: Buffalo Springfield, The Band, Dawes
Tell me more: Dawes' sixth album Passwords (set for release on June 22) taps into the 21st century with artistic timeliness to be sure. The lead-off track "Living in the Future" is a decidedly probing work that taps into the fast-paced world we call home. But the band's incursions extend beyond the quickening pace of how we struggle to connect with those around us beyond Tweets and Facebook posts. There is an intimacy and honesty that is at the heart of this special album and it helps elevate Dawes' California-styled folk rock beyond the reach of most of their contemporaries. Lead singer-songwriter Taylor Goldsmith clearly spends a lot of time thinking about love, loss and the meaning of life; the fact he is able to put his keen observations so clearly into song is a gift for which discerning listeners can be grateful. "Crack the Case," "I Can't Love" and "Never Gonna Say Goodbye" ooze melancholy even while the songs themselves are luxuriously beautiful. The jazz-tinged soul of "Feed the Fire" and reflective "Time Flies Either Way" show the remarkable range of the Los Angeles-spawned quartet. The ambitious "Telescope" makes an immediate mark, with its sophisticated and majestic soundscape adding weight to its lyrical refrain: "The Stronger the Telescope / The More Stars There Are."  Information:

Artist: Tami Neilson
Title: Sassafrass! (Outside Music)
You might like if you enjoy: Sharon Jones & The Dap Kings, Janiva Magness
Tell me more: The rise of the "Me Too" movement has extended beyond Hollywood-related issues of sexual assault and harassment to also serve as a greater cry by women around the world for equality in workplace and society at large. On Canadian-born/New Zealand-based singer-songwriter Tami Neilson's outstanding new album Sassafrass! there is no mistaking the 11-song album as anything less than a potent and masterful artistic statement on behalf of women everywhere. Wrapped in a musical mix of Americana, soul, country and blues, the songs across Sassafrass! are bolstered by Neilson's own life experiences as woman, mother and daughter. The aptly-titled "Stay Outta My Business" finds the singer playfully (and skillfully) letting everyone else to best worry about themselves. Beyond the straightforward lyrics, there is a magical glow to the music making across the disc. The opulent "Devil In a Dress" is enhanced by a rich musical canvas; the sparse "Smoking Gun," rockabilly romp "Kitty Cat" and gorgeous country ballad "Manitoba Sunrise at Motel 6" add additional layers of depth in expanding the album's focus on women. In addition to the powerful themes detailing and rallying against sexism, Neilson's potent talents as singer are on full display across Sassafrass! Information:

Robert Kinsler