Thursday, March 06, 2014

Sights and sounds: Toto, George Michael, Billy Joel

Here is a roundup of news and notes that have landed in my inbox this morning...

Toto has a new collection coming on April 29, 2014.
Toto and Eagle Rock Entertainment have announced a April 29, 2014 release date for the band's 35 Anniversary Tour - Live In Poland. The title will be available in configurations that include 2-CD, DVD, Blu-ray and a deluxe edition featuring all formats with a 60-page book.

Filmed on June 25, 2013 in Lodz, Poland, the offering captures the band in the midst of a standing-room-only European tour. The two-hour plus performance features Toto's hit stocked repertoire alongside other favorites.  The complete track listing is: Intro,  Medley: "On The Run" / "Child's Anthem" / "Goodbye Eleanor," "Goin' Home," "Hydra," "St. George And The Dragon," "I'll Be Over You," "It's A Feeling," "Rosanna," "Wings Of Time," "Falling In Between," "I Won't Hold You Back," "Pamela," "99," "The Muse," "White Sister," "Better World," "Africa," "How Many Times," "Stop Loving You," "Hold The Line," and "Home Of The Brave."  The set also includes behind-the-scenes bonus content.  Eagle Rock Entertainment has premiered the band's performance of "Hold The Line" which can be viewed here:
The 35TH ANNIVERSARY TOUR - LIVE IN POLAND release captures Toto's  European tour that hit 29 cities staging successful concerts Belgium, Luxembourg, Germany, France, Netherlands, Italy, Switzerland, Poland, Denmark, Sweden, Norway, and Finland.  Toto World Tour 2013 featured Steve Lukather, David Paich, Steve Porcaro on keyboards, and singer Joseph Williams, who sang the hits "Pamela" and "Stop Loving You" on the worldwide platinum release The Seventh One (1988).   Williams is also featured on the platinum certified Fahrenheit (1986), Toto XX (1998), the track "Bottom of Your Soul" on Falling In Between (2006), and the multi-platinum release Past to Present 1977-1990 issued in 1990.
Toto has revealed plans for 2014 that deliver what fans have been waiting years for.  The band will record a new studio album planned for release in 2015, their first since Falling In Between (2006).  Keyboardist and founding member David Paich recently shared, "The repertoire is coming together so naturally it is as though we never took a break from creating as Toto in the studio. For the fans who have been waiting patiently and continually showing the band support and love over the last decade or so, this one's for you. Collectively we can't wait to share these recordings with The World."
This April, they return to Japan for a seven show headlining sold-out arena tour that takes them through Nagoya, Osaka, Tokyo, Sendai and Sopporo.  In August and September, Toto will hit the road as co-headliners with Michael McDonald, for their most comprehensive North American tour in years. 

With over 35 years together and thousands of credits and accolades to their names, Toto remains one of the top selling tour and recording acts in the world. They are the benchmark by which many artists base their sound and production, and they continue to transcend the standards set by the entire music community, being simply synonymous with musical credibility. 
Band members have been South Park characters, while recently Jimmy Fallon and Justin Timberlake offered a light-hearted homage via a comedy sketch around the band's hit  "Africa."  They are pop culture, and are one of the few 70’s bands that have endured the changing trends and styles, and more than 35 years in to a career enjoy a multi-generational fan base.
TOTO also continues to raise awareness for ALS, for their brother and friend, Mike Porcaro, who has been diagnosed with ALS, Lou Gehrig's Disease.  The band commits energies towards fundraising for Police and Fire Departments of California and the Fallen Heroes initiative (, and help the United Nations in their humanitarian endeavors through music. For more information, visit the Eagle Rock Entertainment Web site at:

George Michael has a new live album set to land this month courtesy of Island Records. Read more on George A. Paul's Music Minded blog here.

Finally, Billy Joel's 1987 concert staged in Russia is coming to both CD and DVD/Blu-ray via a new reissue edition. A Matter Of Trust - The Bridge to Russia is being released by Columbia/Legacy on May 20, 2014. Read all the details on George A. Paul's Music Minded site here.

Speaking of Joel, this Sunday, March 9thOvation is proud to present the latest episode of Music Mavericksfeaturing Billy Joel. A hit-maker in the 70s, 80, and 90s, Joel has had a whopping 33 Top 40 hits, all of which he wrote.  He’s won six Grammys, sold over 150 million records worldwide and has been inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame, the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and the Long Island Music Hall of Fame.  In 2013, he received the Kennedy Center Honor, the nation’s highest honor, for influencing American culture through the arts.  This profile shows how a kid from the Bronx was influenced by the Beatles and went on to become one of the most-successful singer-songwriter-pianists of all time.

Music Mavericks airs weekly Sunday nights at 7 p.m. ETOvation, America’s only arts network, is currently airing season two of its original music profile series, Music Mavericks.  The series looks at major figures in rock and pop music and their impact on popular culture.  Using interviews, news archives, and performance footage, each 30-minute episode reveals the unique aspects of the iconic artist profiled.

Please take a look at the following exclusive clips from the episode:

Music Mavericks: Billy Joel - New York State of Mind (Preview)

Music Mavericks: Billy Joel - Piano Man (Preview)

Music Mavericks: Billy Joel - 80s Style Motown (Preview)

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