Sunday, February 26, 2012

Sights and Sounds: B-52's, John Mayer, Joan Osborne, Eric Hutchinson

Who cares who wore what at the Academy Awards? I'm more interested in the latest news on upcoming music releases and tours. Here are highlights from my inbox...



~On DVD and Blu-ray March 20, 2012~

In February 2011, 34 years into their reign as the World's Greatest Party Band, The B-52's returned to celebrate in the town where it all began -Athens, Georgia. Now this concert will be available as the band's first-ever live DVD and Blu-ray, when With The Wild Crowd - Live In Athens, GA is released via Eagle Rock Entertainment on March 20, 2012. [MSRP $14.98 for DVD, $19.98 for Blu-ray]

With The Wild Crowd! was recorded in the B-52s' hometown at a show that commemorated the band's 34th anniversary of their first-ever live show on Valentine's Day 1977. Wig-wearing, boa-draped, glitter-covered fans came from near and far to celebrate this historic event as the band delivered a sizzling set that turned Athens' Classic Center into a cosmic dance hall.

Filmed in high-definition with DTS Surround, Dolby Digital 5.1 sound, this 90-minute set is packed with fan favorites like "Love Shack," "Rock Lobster," "Roam," "Funplex," "Give Me Back My Man," "Private Idaho," and "Planet Claire." With The Wild Crowd! is filled with all the excitement, fervor and energy of a classic B-52s dance party, a showcase for the non-stop, high-octane force of a group that has never lost their youthful and dynamic energy.

Only the B-52s can lay claim to their one-of-a-kind sound. There's certainly no mistaking the signature call-and-response vocal play of singers Fred Schneider, Kate Pierson, and Cindy Wilson matched with the unique guitar stylings of Keith Strickland. And with over twenty million albums sold and a nonstop touring schedule, this revolutionary rock band shows no signs of slowing down. The band has just celebrated their 35th Anniversary and has announced plans to embark on a very special 35th Anniversary Tour in Summer 2012, including many co-bill dates with their good friends Squeeze.

Track Listing:


2.)Private Idaho



5.)Dancing Now

6.)Give Me Back My Man


8.)Whammy Kiss

9.)Deadbeat Club

10.) Roam

11.) 52 Girls

12.) Party Out Of Bounds

13.) Love In The Year 3000

14.) Cosmic Thing

15.) Hot Corner

16.) Love Shack

17.) Wig

18.) Strobe Light

19.) Planet Claire

20.) Rock Lobster

Eagle Rock Entertainment recently released the CD component of With The Wild Crowd - Live In Athens, GA in October 2011.

John Mayer set to tour in support of Born and Raised

Seven-time Grammy Award-winning singer, songwriter and musician John Mayer launches his first U.S. tour in two years on April 9, stopping in 18 cities through May 6. The tour leads into Mayer's upcoming fifth album Born and Raised, which will be released soon thereafter.

Mayer produced Born and Raised with Don Was, who worked on albums for acts such as the Rolling Stones, B.B. King and Bonnie Raitt. Rock legends David Crosby and Graham Nash provide vocals on the title song and musicians joining Mayer on the album and on the road include highly-regarded keyboardist/pianist Chuck Leavell — who has worked with the Rolling Stones, Eric Clapton and The Allman Brothers Band —as well as previous collaborators Sean Hurley on bass and Aaron Sterling on drums. Rounding out the touring band are David Ryan Harris on guitar and vocals, Doug Pettibone on guitar and Michito Sanchez on percussion.

Mayer recently previewed the album's first single "Shadow Days" on his tumblr blog ( The song will be serviced to radio on Feb. 27, 2012. He debuts his new album with a performance at SXSW on March 17.

Mayer became passionate about supporting U.S. war veterans following a visit to the Marine Corps' Camp Lejeune in North Carolina four years ago. He has since spent time with active military and veterans while touring, and partnered with the Northern California Institute of Research and Education (NCIRE) to provide veterans with a healthy reintegration into civilian life which will help heal the battle scars caused by the trauma they experienced.

Concertgoers can join Mayer in his support of veterans in two ways. A block of third-row orchestra seats will be made available for sale at a premium price exclusively through Tickets-For-Charity, with proceeds going to Mayer/NCIRE programs. At Tickets-For-Charity, fans pay the same or better price found elsewhere for high-demand seats, with 100% of above-face benefit redirected to charity. For more information, go to

And at, Mayer fans can bid on four front-row tickets, plus a chance to meet him, with proceeds also going to Mayer/NCIRE programs for veterans.

In 2011, through his partnership with NCIRE, Mayer was able to launch the first of several pilot programs to benefit the young men and women returning from Iraq and Afghanistan. Programs include a mobile exercise and wellness program; the development of a program of integrative medicine for traumatic stress; a study on veterans' readjustment to civilian life which aims to develop new therapeutic tools to aid the transition; and a first-of-its-kind screening and intervention program for women suffering from eating disorders triggered by post traumatic stress related to combat.

Mayer's previous albums--Room for Squares, Heavier Things, Continuum and Battle Studies--have sold more than 11 million copies combined. He has been honored with seven Grammy Awards and an additional 11 nominations. He has also been included in Time Magazine's annual Time 100 list of the most influential contemporary thinkers, leaders, artists and entertainers, and twice been featured on the cover of Rolling Stone Magazine's annual "Guitar" issue.

John Mayer Spring Tour 2012 Schedule:

Monday, April 9: Bloomington, IN; the IU Auditorium
Tuesday, April 10: East Lansing, MI; the Wharton Center for the Performing Arts
Thursday, April 12: Grand Rapids, MI; DeVos Performance Hall
Friday, April 13: West Lafayette, IN (Purdue University); Elliot Hall of Music
Saturday, April 14: Detroit, MI; Fox Theatre
Tuesday, April 17: Orono, ME (University of ME); Collins Center for the Arts
Wednesday, April 18: Providence, RI; PPAC Providence Performing Arts Center
Thursday, April 19: West Point, NY; Eisenhower Hall Theatre
Saturday, April 21: Buffalo, NY; Shea's Performing Arts Center
Sunday, April 22: Wallingford, CT; The Oakdale Theatre
Tuesday, April 24: Richmond, VA; Landmark Theater
Thursday, April 26: Tuscaloosa, AL; Tuscaloosa Amphitheater
Sunday, April 29: New Orleans, LA; Jazz & Heritage Fest
Monday, April 30: Memphis, TN; The Orpheum Theatre
Wednesday, May 2: Kansas City, MO; Starlight Theatre
Friday, May 4: Albuquerque, NM; Sandia
Saturday, May 5: Las Vegas, NV; The Joint
Sunday, May 6: Phoenix, AZ; Comerica Theatre

Joan Osborne Bring It On Home set for March 27, 2012 release

Joan Osborne once recalled how “Blues music rescued me when I was in need of rescue.” On her newest album, Bring it on Home, Joan returns the favor and it’s the blues that gets new life. Drawing from a voice the New York Times called “angelic ecstasy and sexual abandon,” Joan Osborne has at long last made an album of vintage blues, R&B and soul songs.

Bring it on Home also includes tracks originally made famous by American blues masters such as Sonny Boy Williamson (“Bring it on Home”), Muddy Waters (“I Want to Be Loved”), as well as recordings originally released by some of the greatest R&B singers ever including Ray Charles (“I Don’t Need No Doctor”), Al Green (“Rhymes”) and Otis Redding (“Champagne and Wine”).

Bring it on Home was produced by Joan and her longtime music director/guitarist Jack Petruzzelli. It was recorded live in the Waterfront Studios in Hudson, NY by engineer Henry Hirsch (Lenny Kravitz), who used an original 24 track Studer tape machine to recreate the warm and organic analogue sound of the era. Guest musicians include Barbecue Bob Pomeroy (harmonica), Allen Toussaint (piano on his own “Shoorah! Shoorah!”) and vocalists the Holmes Brothers and Rufus Thomas’ daughter, Vaneese Thomas. Jimmy Vivino, Conan O’Brien Show Band musical director, assembled all horn arrangements and also played electric piano on “I Don’t Need No Doctor.”


Photo credit: Jeff Lipsky

Warner Bros. Records recording artist Eric Hutchinson will celebrate the April 17, 2012 release of his latest album, Moving Up Living Down, by hitting the road. Hutchinson's North American headlining tour will kick off that evening at Denver's Bluebird Theatre and will also include shows at Highline Ballroom in New York City (May 2) and here in Orange County at the legendary Coach House in San Juan Capistrano(Friday, May 18). See below for itinerary.

"Hutchinson is undeniably charismatic, splitting his time between keyboard and guitar, crooning about stormy romances and everyday struggles," said The Washington Post in a live review.

In its first month at radio, "Watching You Watch Him," the lead single from Moving Up Living Down, tied with Coldplay for #1 Most Added at the Triple A format and quickly climbed into the Top 15. It is Top 40 at Hot AC radio. Last week Hutchinson gave "Watching You Watch Him" its national television debut on "Late Show with David Letterman." You can check out his performance here.

Moving Up Living Down is the follow-up to Hutchinson's full-length debut album, Sounds Like This, which entered Billboard's Heatseekers chart at No. 1 and has sold more than 250,000 units. Fueled by Hutchinson's non-stop touring, numerous television appearances and the album's three radio hits - the RIAA-certified Gold single "Rock & Roll," which hit No. 1 at Triple A, and the Top 5 singles "OK, It's Alright With Me" and "Oh!" - Sounds Like This re-entered the Top 10 of the Heatseekers' chart two years after its initial release on Hutchinson's own indie label, Let's Break Records.

Hutchinson recorded Moving Up Living Down with producers Mike Elizondo (Eminem, Regina Spektor) in Los Angeles and Martin Terefe (Jason Mraz, James Morrison) in London. The album pre-order is now available on the iTunes Music Store. Fans who purchase "Watching You Watch Him" on iTunes will instantly receive a free download of the teaser video for "Breakdown More," another track from Moving Up Living Down, and a longtime fan favorite that originally appeared on Hutchinson's live EP, Before I Sold Out.

Eric Hutchinson - Spring 2012 North American Tour:

4/17 Denver, CO Bluebird Theatre

4/18 Omaha, NE Waiting Room

4/19 Des Moines, IA Wooly's

4/21 Minneapolis, MN Fine Line

4/23 Chicago, IL Lincoln Hall

4/24 Madison, WI Majestic

4/26 Detroit, MI Magic Bag

4/27 Columbus, OH The Basement

4/28 Cleveland, OH Beachland

4/30 Pittsburgh, PA Club AE

5/1 Boston, MA Paradise

5/2 New York, NY Highline Ballroom

5/4 Danbury, CT Heirloom Arts Theatre

5/5 Washington, DC 9:30 Club

5/6 Philadelphia, PA World Café

5/8 Charlotte, NC Visulite

5/9 Charleston, SC Pour House

5/10 Knoxville, TN Bijou Theatre

5/11 Nashville, TN 3rd& Lindsey

5/12 Birmingham, AL Zydeco

5/14 Dallas, TX House of Blues

5/15 Austin, TX Stubb's

5/17 Phoenix, AZ Crescent Ballroom

5/18 San Juan Capistrano Coach House

5/19 Los Angeles, CA Troubadour

5/20 San Francisco, CA Slim's

5/22 Seattle, WA Chop Suey

5/23 Portland, OR Hawthorne Theater

5/24 Spokane, WA Knitting Factory


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