Wednesday, February 24, 2016

Sights and Sounds: Doheny Blues Fest, Walter Trout, James, Record Store Day update

There is plenty of music news to catch up on, so let's get started...

Doheny Blues Festival less than three months away and there is more big news as it relates to additional acts (Lynyrd Skynyrd and Walter Trout were among the big names announced earlier this month). Here is a poster featuring the latest big names added to the diverse and promising two-day festival coming to Doheny Beach in Dana Point on May 21 and 22, 2016.

Visit the official Doheny Blues Festival Web site for more details and ticket information.

Speaking of Walter Trout, if you can't hit Dana Point to catch him in May, here is the full media release with details on his forthcoming tour of the U.S.

Walter Trout announces extensive U.S. tour in support of most recent album, 'Battle Scars'

Provogue / Mascot Label Group Album Presents The Guitarist and Blues
Singer-Songwriter's Narration Of His Hard-Won, Life-Or-Death Struggle
Waiting For, And Receiving, A Life-Saving Transplant

Walter Trout performing at
Doheny Blues Festival in May 2011.
Photo: Bob Steshetz
New York, NY --- Walter Trout hits the highways of the U.S. this March for the long-anticipated tour to support his recent studio album Battle Scars.  The tour begins on March 10 in Las Vegas, and will run through June.  Alongside headline dates across the country, Trout will appear at the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival, headline several festivals including the Tampa Bay Blues Festival and the Beale Street Music Fest in Memphis. Trout will also perform at the Grand Ole Opry in Nashville for Lead Belly Fest (which follows his recent show-stopping appearance at Carnegie Hall in New York).  He will then return to Europe for an extensive tour of prestigious festivals overseas.

With bristling energy, unflagging virtuosity and lyrics that cut to the core of human hope and willpower, Trout’s Battle Scars, chronicles his horrific battle with liver failure. The 12-song set, released worldwide by Mascot Label Group’s Provogue Records, captures the international guitar hero, on a new high — playing and singing at the peak of his abilities, infusing even his darkest numbers with creative joy that sweeps like a beacon.  "I’m thrilled about this album, about my life and about my music,” says Trout, who returned to the stage in June 2015 at the esteemed Lead Belly Festival at London’s Royal Albert Hall. “I feel that I’m reborn as a songwriter, a singer, a guitarist and a human being. I have a new chance at being the best musician and the best man that I can be. And I’m incredibly happy and grateful.”

Trout looks forward to playing the songs from his recent release for his US fans. Speaking from his home in Southern California, he relates: “The songs come out a little bit different each night, as I feed off inspiration from the audience. It is still a therapeutic experience for me to play these songs about my journey to death’s door and back, and each time I share them with a live audience, I heal a little bit more.”

Battle Scars is Trout’s 18th album released by the Netherlands-based Provogue label and his 42nd overall, counting his pre-solo-career recordings as a member of the historic groups: Canned Heat and John Mayall’s Bluesbreakers. Trout’s practical schooling started in earnest when he arrived in Los Angeles in 1973 and got gigs backing Hooker, Big Mama Thornton, Finis Tasby, Pee Wee Crayton, Lowell Fulsom, Percy Mayfield and Joe Tex. In 1981 he joined the remaining original members of Canned Heat. But the real turning point was his five-year tenure with British blues giant Mayall. Trout became part of the Bluesbreakers’ lineage of great guitarists along with Eric Clapton, Peter Green and Mick Taylor.

Trout founded his own band in 1989 and cut his debut album Life In the Jungle, rapidly becoming a chart-topping star in Europe. His first U.S. release, 1998's critically heralded Walter Trout, also made him a fixture of the American blues-rock scene.

Over the decades Trout has accumulated numerous honors. He is a three-time winner of the “Overseas Artist of the Year” title at the British Blues Awards, and is a three-time Blues Music Awards nominee (US). In 2015, Trout won the Sena European Guitar Award, and honor he shares with a handful of acclaimed previous winners such as Brian May, Steve Lukather, and Slash. Trout’s six-string prowess earned the number six slot in BBC Radio 1’s “Top 20 Guitarist” listener’s poll.

Trout is now moving triumphantly forward in his 50th year as a guitarist. He is joined on the road by keyboardist Sammy Avila, drummer Michael Leasure, and bassist Johnny Griparic, with a special appearance by son Jon Trout.  “I don’t take this lightly,” Trout declares. “My wife, Marie says that all of the people who donated to our fundraiser for my medical expenses” — which generated more than $240,000 – “bought stock in me and my liver. When I play for them now, I have a responsibility to give back and offer the very best that I have.”

Confirmed appearances include:
3/10     Las Vegas, NV                                               Boulder Station Casino
3/11     Phoenix, AZ                                                    Rhythm Room
3/30     Taos, NM                                                        Taos Mesa Brewing
4/01     Woodlands, TX                                              Dosey Doe - The Big Barn
4/02     Austin, TX                                                      Scoot Inn
4/04     Dallas, TX                                                       The Kessler Theater
4/07     Jacksonville, FL                                              Mojo Kitchen
4/08     Boca Raton, FL                                              Funky Biscuit
4/09     Stuart, FL                                                        Terra Fermata
4/10     St. Petersburg, FL                                           Tampa Bay Blues Festival (headliner)
4/13     New York, NY                                               BB King's Blues Club
4/14     Pawling, NY                                                   Daryl's House
4/15     Fall River, MA                                                Narrows Center For The Arts
4/16     Norfolk, CT                                                    Infinity Music Hall
4/19     Atlanta, GA                                                    Smith's Olde Bar
4/20     Franklin, TN                                                    Music City Roots (Live HD Webcast)
4/22     New Orleans, LA                                            New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival
4/25     Washington DC                                              Howard Theatre
4/26     Wheeling, WV                                                River City Ale Works
4/27     Columbus, OH                                                Woodlands Tavern
4/30     St. Louis, MO                                                 Old Rock House
5/04     Milwaukee, WI                                               Shank Hall
5/05     Minneapolis, MN                                            Famous Dave's
5/06     Clearlake, IA                                                   Surf Ballroom

5/07     Kansas City, MO                                            Knucklehead's Saloon

James is set to return with the release of the UK band's 14th studio album, Girl At The End Of The World. Read all about the new album and how to pre-order the full-length release (and watch the official video of "To My Surprise" off the disc), which is set to land in the U.S. on March 18, on the Music Minded site.

Finally, Record Store Day is thrilled to announce its Ambassador for 2016, Grammy Award-winning, Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductees...

Metallica is no stranger to Record Store Day, this year set for Saturday, April 16, a special day in support of independent record stores and record store culture worldwide, now in its ninth year.
"Independent record stores are part of Metallica's DNA," said drummer Lars Ulrich. "They have been pivotal in shaping each one of us into the music fanatics we've all become. We could not be any prouder to be Record Store Day Ambassadors for 2016 and are looking forward to screaming from every rooftop the next few months about everything independent record store and beyond."
Throughout Record Store Day's near-decade lifespan, Metallica's support has been more than noteworthy with in-store appearances, (remember Mountain View, CA Rasputin Records in 2008, when the band met their fans for hours to kick off the very first Record Store Day) and a healthy handful of special releases. In fact, members James HetfieldLars UlrichKirk Hammett and Robert Trujillo made big news just last year when the band's cassette-issued democollection, No Life Til Leather, ended up as Record Store Day 2015's highest seller. As well, Trujillo's lauded biopic, Jaco, about legendary bassist Jaco Pastorius, was RSD 2014's Official Film and a special Record Store Day exclusive version was released on DVD for Black Friday 2015, including a bonus CD featuring tracks from Trujillo himself.  
This year the band's official release will fit into a wider theme of Record Store Day 2016, highlighting the relationship between US record stores and their French counterparts, between Record Store Day and 'Disquaire Day', between music-loving humans in the US and France, following the tragic events in Paris in November 2015. Metallica will release Libert√©, Egalit√©, Fraternit√©, Metallica! - Live at Le Bataclan. Paris, France - June 11th, 2003, a CD featuring a live recording from the club, with the band, Record Store Day and independent record stores donating proceeds to benefit Fondation de France's Give For France charity (details here)
The live recording set list includes: "The Four Horsemen;" "Leper Messiah;" "No Remorse;" "Fade To Black;" "Frantic;" "Ride The Lightning;" "Blackened;" and encores: "Seek & Destroy;" and "Damage, Inc."
For now, let's all get ready for another great Saturday in April, when we celebrate the culture of the independent record store with Metallica.  

About Record Store Day:

Record Store Day, the organization, is managed by the Department of Record Stores and is organized in partnership with the Alliance of Independent Media Stores (AIMS), the Coalition of Independent Music Stores (CIMS) and promotes independent record stores year-round with events, special releases and other fun things. 

Record Store Day, the global celebration of the culture of the record store, takes place annually in April.
Record Store Day 2016 Sponsors:
ADA, Border City Media, Caroline, Crosley Turntables, Disk Union, Dogfish Head Craft Brewery, InGrooves, Music Business Association, RED, Red Bull Sound Select, Redeye Distribution, Sony Music, Universal Music Distribution, Warner Bros. Records, WEA

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