Wednesday, March 29, 2023

Arizona festival Pure Imagination announces 2023 lineup additions, Los Lobos and Dirtwire

Check out the latest news on the forthcoming Pure Imagination festival coming to Prescott, Arizona on May 20. Great to see the legendary rock troupe Los Lobos and experimental electronica outfit Dirtwire added to the bill...Robert Kinsler 

David Hidalgo of Los Lobos.
Photo credit: Daryl Weisser

Cesar Rosas of Los Lobos.
Photo credit: Daryl Weisser




Legendary rock band Los Lobos will be appearing at Pure Imagination in Prescott,
Arizona on May 20, 2023. Photo credit: Daryl Weisser

Lucinda Williams will bring her top-tier
songcraft to the Pure Imagination festival.
Photo credit: Daryl Weisser




Los Angeles, CA (March 29, 2023) – The organizers of Pure Imagination – the female led and curated, environmentally forward, all-ages destination festival taking place on May 20th in Prescott, AZ – are thrilled to announce the addition of two acts to the already fantastic line-up for its sophomore edition: Los Lobos and Dirtwire.


Los Lobos:

For all the trailblazing musical acts who've emerged from Los Angeles, very few embody the city's wildly eclectic spirit more wholeheartedly than Los Lobos. Over the last five decades, the East L.A.-bred band has made an indelible mark on music history by exploring an enormous diversity of genres -- rock-and-roll and R&B, surf music and soul, mariachi and música norteña, punk rock and country -- and building a boldly unpredictable sound all their own.



Hailing from the underground, west coast, electronic, bass music scene, Dirtwire finds itself at the forefront of experimental electronic music production mixing in their wide array of world instruments with sampled beats and 808’s. Dirtwire’s live shows are a communal psychedelic journey, ranging from down home boot stomping get downs, to bass and blues electronic mashups, to ethereal cinematic beat driven soundscapes. Woven into each is the exploration of where live instruments meet computer production, and where tradition meets experimentation.

Los Lobos


Additionally, the festival has announced a partnership with the Arizona-based, eco-conscious apparel company Keep Nature Wild, which also hosts nationwide community cleanups. The company will be doing the site clean-up on the day after the festival. Their dedicated “Wild Keeper Ambassadors” spend time every month tidying up their communities. Together, they pick up one pound of trash for every product sold.


This month, in anticipation of the company achieving their goal of picking up 1,000,000 pounds of trash and in celebration of Earth Day, Pure Imagination will be participating in a community trash pick-up campaign to help Keep Nature Wild with their initiative.


Jared James Nichols will perform at Pure Imagination.
Photo credit: Robert Kinsler

Situated in the 19th century, historic, old-west town of Prescott, AZ, just an hour and a half away from both Phoenix and Flagstaff, this year’s intimate event also boasts performances from 8x Grammy winner and reggae icon Ziggy Marley, the legendary Grammy winning singer-songwriter and soon-to-be published memoirist Lucinda Williams and her band, recent 4x Grammy nominated Allison Russell, beloved Southern hip-hop group Nappy Roots, Grammy nominee Brandy Clark, alternative radio favorites Capital Cities, as well as Jared James NicholsThe BrummiesJohan Glidden, and Ponderosa Grove, the Grammy nominated frontwoman of which, Candace Devine, founded Pure Imagination. Passes to the family-friendly event can be purchased HERE.



Pure Imagination 2023 Line-Up

Ziggy Marley

Lucinda Williams and her band

Los Lobos

Capital Cities

Allison Russell

Nappy Roots

Brandy Clark


Ponderosa Grove

Jared James Nichols

The Brummies

Johan Glidden

The all encompassing experience features an eclectic lineup as diverse and exciting as the landscape where it’s taking place. Located on Watson Lake Park, featuring the breathtaking setting and granite dells of Prescott National Forest – the traditional Yavapai land belonging to The Fort McDowell Yavapai NationThe Yavapai-Apache Nation and The Yavapai-Prescott Indian Tribe – the festival is just minutes away from historic Prescott, Arizona. The grounds offer festival-goers miles of hiking trails, on-site lawn games and frisbee golf, twenty food trucks, as well as kayaking. Prescott's picturesque downtown is replete with serious old west vibes — in fact, The Palace, where the Earp Brothers and Doc Holliday used to get a drink, is still a favorite spot for tourists and locals alike.


Pure Imagination saw its inaugural festival in 2022, where the stage was graced by folk rock band Dawes, hip hop icon, Talib Kweli, three time Grammy winner Fantastic NegritoNikki Lane, Rising AppalachiaPhantom PlanetKatie Pruitt and more. This eclectic line-up brought over 5,000 music fans to the field to enjoy Prescott's always perfect weather with a day packed with performances by aerial artists, performance groups, jugglers, art cars and plenty of revelry for everyone. Many of the same experiences are returning to the festival grounds this year. Details below.

  • “Art Ally” featuring live painters and projection art, art cars, interactive exhibits and installations
  • The Hopi Water Clan Dance Troupe
  • Play area, bubble joy, face painting, kids talent show, kiddie jam zone, compost trash lessons and more. Kids 7 and under are free!
  • Aerialists, stilt walkers, dance exhibitions and more!
  • Lounge spaces throughout the grounds
  • VIP camp experience packages by Noam
  • VIP lounge with installations by Buckey's Casino
  • Catered snacks and food by El Gato Azul
  • Beauty bar by Desert Rose Retreat
  • Giant field games

The festival has been the work of Candace Devine, frontwoman of Ponderosa Grove and CEO of Further West, the company that produces Pure Imagination Festival. Devine started the festival out as part of a desire to see Prescott rise as an epicenter for arts, culture and music in the Southwest. The town itself is surrounded by the Prescott National Forest which offers 1.25 million acres of natural, rugged beauty and is a top destination for mountain biking, hiking and bouldering. "Pure Imagination has been a dream of mine for a long time and it was amazing to see everyone that came forward last year in support of music and the arts for this very treasured and unique experience. We have a spectacular line-up this year and we can't wait to astonish everyone with a day of magic and music that holds a vibrant loving community of people at the center of all of it," said Devine.


The festival will donate a portion of its proceeds to: Flying Horse Foundation, an organization that is dedicated to supporting arts and music in multicultural spaces. Flying Horse Foundation is a registered 501(c)(3).

Connect with Pure Imagination:

Tuesday, March 28, 2023

The Alarm reaches the summit in new video "Whatever" (inspired by John Lennon)

Check out the anthemic new track and accompanying music video for The Alarm's "Whatever"...Robert Kinsler 

Mike Peters of The Alarm / Photo courtesy of the artist

"If I can get back to the mountaintop, I’ll know I am on the right track."

Conquering The Elements

Makes It To The Summit in New Video

Video Premieres via The Big Takeover
THE ALARM "Whatever"

MARCH 27, 2023 (Wales, UK) – “Whenever I’ve been in hospital, I have projected my imagination towards recovery and the mountain summit has always been a place I aspire to get to as a sign of recovery,” says Mike Peters, vocalist/guitarist of THE ALARM who release their new single and video “Whatever” today, April 27, 2023. The video, which shows him hiking up a mountain during a snowstorm, is symbolic of his struggle to make it back to good health, as Peters continues to rebound from a serious leukemia relapse in 2022.  “If I can get back to the mountaintop, I’ll know I am on the right track.”
“I was inspired to write this song after hearing John Lennon sing ‘Whatever Gets You Thru The Night’ on the hospital radio. I thought to myself ‘Never mind the night, what am I going to do to get through life?’,” he told The Big Takeover, who premiered the video.  He elaborates, “The song ‘Whatever’ was born soon after and it’s really about the most simple, yet most important things like family, friends and loved ones who help you in the hours of need and an appreciation of life’s fundamental gifts such as being able to breathe, talk and to walk.”
Filmed on Moel Hiraddug, a mountain in Wales which “is literally right outside my front door in the village of Dyserth where I was born and raised,” the video carries a bit of symbolism in addition to portraying his uphill struggle with cancer. Carrying a retro relic of the ‘80s - the Sony Watchman, a suitcase and a mylar star balloon, Peters struggles amidst adverse conditions to make it up the summit to a television tower.
“All this carried me up the mountain towards an old abandoned tower that I have always been fascinated by,” he explains. “Often, when I look up to the mountain at night, I can sometimes see a light coming from inside the building and wonder who is up there and obviously using the place as a shelter. I tied my silver star (which is a symbol of the new record), to my suitcase of life belongings, and headed for the shelter. The snow was beginning to fall as I walked ever higher, and then with the wind picking up it literally felt like I was climbing through the life storm of recent times. I had brought an old Sony Watchman with me which was another symbol connecting the past to the future. Was this really the first portable screen I had owned, and precursor to the modern screens of devices that feed us news, information and psychobabble 24-7?”

“Whatever” is the third single from his forthcoming album Forwards (out June 2, 2023), following “Next” and title track “Forwards.”  Forwards is being released physically on both CD and Vinyl with the LP release featuring two different record sleeves and colored vinyl configurations. A classic green and white star white vinyl edition (Mike’s healing color combo), is being made available to outlets everywhere along with a unique Metallic Green vinyl limited edition available exclusively to independent record stores only.
Forwards is also being released in all digital formats including Hi-Res and Dolby Atmos editions. Pre-sale and pre-save is available here:
Described by Bono of U2 as “the second greatest rock and roll band in the world”, Mike Peters has been the driving force behind The Alarm for over forty creative years of new music making, and dedication to presenting the band’s classic songs in ways both imaginative and inventive.

Forwards cover art

1. Forwards
2. The Returning
3. Another Way
4. Love and Forgiveness
5. Next
6. Whatever
7. Transition
8. Love Disappearing
9. New Standards
10. X
U.S Dates
    Jun 23     Gramercy Theater         New York, NY
 Jun 24     Gramercy Theater         New York, NY

Sunday, March 26, 2023

New Music: Pink Floyd, Depeche Mode, Nickel Creek

A stunning hardcover edition celebrating the 50th anniversary of Pink Floyd's The Dark Side Of The Moon as well as eagerly-awaited full-length returns from Depeche Mode and Nickel Creek are featured in my column this week.

Pink Floyd  The Dark Side Of The Moon: The Official 50th Anniversary Book
Author: Jill Furmanovsky
Publisher: Thames & Hudson
Hardcover: 160 pages
Tell me more: Released in March 1973, Pink Floyd's eighth studio album The Dark Side of the Moon would ultimately prove to be one of the most iconic rock albums of the 20th century and is the groundbreaking English troupe's most beloved effort. According to Wikipedia, The Dark Side of the Moon is certified 14 times platinum in the United Kingdom and topped the LPs and Tape charts in the U.S. where it has "charted for 975 weeks." Now in celebration of the 50th anniversary of that release, Thames & Hudson has issued the must-have "Pink Floyd  The Dark Side Of The Moon: The Official 50th Anniversary Book." 

Curated by 
Jill Furmanovsky and featuring art direction from Aubrey Powell, the gorgeous LP-sized hardcover volume features rare and previously unseen photographs (including backstage and onstage images of the band taken during The Dark Side of the Moon tours of 1972-1975), song lyrics, tour dates, a Melody Maker review of the band's 1972 Wembley concert and much more; the book was created with the involvement of members of Pink Floyd. A truly marvelous keepsake for fans of Pink Floyd and The Dark Side of the Moon. Information:

Depeche Mode
Title: Memento Mori (Columbia Records)
You might like if you enjoy: Depeche Mode, Color Theory, Erasure
Tell me more: On their 15th studio album Memento Mori, Depeche Mode remind the music world why the British outfit matters more than ever; this is especially true following co-founder Andrew "Fletch" Fletcher's tragic death on May 26, 2022. Electronic rock's most enduring artist, Depeche Mode's David Gahan and Martin Gore are back with a brilliant batch of tracks that revisit familiar territory even while moving their sound ever onward into the future. The opener "My Cosmos is Mine" is a dark and brooding track with Gahan's powerful baritone awash in the troupe's signature electronica soundscape. The compelling "Watch Another Angel Die" is infectious on its surface even as the song's lyrics ponder religious doubt. The album's most enticing track, "Ghosts Again," is a sweeping number with a dynamic rhythm and irresistible flow across its full length. Romantic doubt ("Don't Say You Love Me," "Before We Drown"), self reflection ("My Favorite Stranger"), death ("Soul With Me"), obsession ("Always You," "Never Let Me Go") and human nature ("People Are Good") are detailed expertly via compelling originals produced by James Ford — along with additional production by Marta Salogni. Information:

Nickel Creek
Title: Celebrants (Repair Records)
You might like if you enjoy: Nickel Creek, First Aid Kit, bluegrass music
Tell me more: Celebrants is Americana outfit Nickel Creek's first original album since 2014's A Dotted Line. It almost goes without saying that it is wonderful to have new music from the talented trio of Chris Thile, Sean Watkins and Sara Watkins — especially when the disc is as great as this one. My favorite track is the sumptuous musical jaunt "Strangers," with the dashing mix of Thile's mandolin, Sara Watkins' fiddle and Sean Watkins' acoustic guitar work dancing with the trio's artful harmonies. Other standout songs on the 18-track disc include the gorgeous "Holding Pattern," rousing "Where the Long Line Leads," sonically ambitious "The Meadow" and bewitching "Stone's Throw." Additional kudos to bassist Jeff Picker for his musical skills that enhance the music making across Celebrants. Information:

Robert Kinsler

Saturday, March 25, 2023

Revisit U2's 'Elevation' opener in March 2001 via my coverage of the band's March 24, 2001 concert

On March 24, 2001, U2's Elevation tour began in Sunrise, FL. I was fortunate to be at the event and cover the memorable concert for The Orange County Register. Check out my review as it appeared in the deadwood edition of the newspaper on Monday, March 26, 2001. Click the image below to see a full screen version of the review...Robert Kinsler

Tuesday, March 21, 2023

John Fogerty to be honored with the Music for Life Award at the 2023 NAMM Show

I am happy to see Rock and Roll Hall of Famer John Fogerty will be honored at the 2023 NAMM Show in early April...Robert Kinsler 

John Fogerty to Be Honored With the Music for Life Award at The 2023 NAMM Show 

CARLSBAD, Calif. – March 21, 2023 – 
GRAMMY® winner, composer, and musician John Fogerty will be presented with the National Association of Music Merchants (NAMM) “Music for Life” award at The 2023 NAMM Show on Thursday, April 13 in Anaheim, California. The award is the music products, pro audio, and entertainment technology industry’s highest honor and is presented in recognition of Fogerty’s lifelong contributions to music and commitment to inspiring music makers everywhere. 

“John Fogerty is a living example of inspiration and character, as a singer, guitarist, songwriter, and artistic visionary,” said NAMM President and CEO Joe Lamond. “When I was 10, my dad brought home the Creedence Clearwater Revival album Green River and said, ‘Play like this.’ That moment started my own musical journey, and I imagine many walking The NAMM Show floor can say the same thing. Honoring him with the Music for Life Award will be a personal highlight for me and a huge privilege for all NAMM members.” 

The award annually recognizes individuals or organizations that exemplify NAMM’s vision of music-making as a precious element of daily living for everyone. In receiving the award, Fogerty will join past recipients, including Quincy Jones, Garth Brooks, Melissa Etheridge, Jason Mraz, Graham Nash, Stevie Wonder, Smokey Robinson, Yoko Ono, Henry Mancini, Bob Weir, Nancy Wilson, and, in 2022, Kenny Loggins, among others. 
This year, Fogerty has another reason to celebrate, having officially realized a decades-long dream of acquiring a majority interest of the worldwide publishing rights of his historic song catalog from Concord, a deal that he hopes will help usher in new “revival” of his most treasured hits.

John Fogerty, seen here performing in May 2007,
will be honored at the NAMM Show on April 13, 2023.
Photo: Robert Kinsler

As the leader of Creedence Clearwater Revival (CCR), Fogerty forged a distinctive, groundbreaking sound all his own — equal parts blues, country, pop, rockabilly, R&B, swamp boogie, and Southern fried rock ’n’ roll, all united by his uniquely evocative lyrical perspective. Fogerty is a Grammy winner and has been inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame and the Songwriters Hall of Fame. In addition, he is the only musician to be inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame for his song “Centerfield,” a staple at baseball stadiums across the country. He has sold over 100 million albums throughout his career. 

Among Fogerty’s many hit songs, both as a solo artist and as leader of CCR, highlights include “Centerfield,” “Proud Mary,” “Susie Q,” “Fortunate Son,” “Born on the Bayou,” “Bad Moon Rising,” and “Have You Ever Seen the Rain,” among many others. In 2019, Fogerty celebrated 50 years in music with a worldwide “My 50 Year Trip” tour. That same year, he released “50 Year Trip: Live at Red Rocks,” an album featuring a collection of Creedence Clearwater Revival hits and fan favorites that included songs from the set list of his performance at the legendary Woodstock music festival in 1969.  
In April 2020, while self-quarantining, the Fogerty Familyfeaturing John with his sons Shane and Tyler and daughter Kelsy, gathered in their home studio to play music together. A weekly video series began and became so popular that a digital EP, Fogerty’s Factorywas released via BMG on Fogerty’s birthday, May 28, 2020. An extended Fogerty’s Factory full album was released on November 20, 2020. In December of that year, Creedence Clearwater Revival's Chronicle Vol. 1 hit a milestone after charting more than 500 weeks on the Billboard 200 and becoming only the eighth album to ever do so. At the end of 2022, Chronicle Vol 1. was listed at No. 55 on Billboard’s Top 200 Albums year end chart.
In January 2023, Fogerty acquired a majority interest in the worldwide publishing rights to his historic CCR song catalog from Concord, giving him control of his music for the first time in 50 years. 
In early March 2023, Fogerty joined has joined Spotify’s “Billions Club” with Creedence Clearwater Revival’s enduring recording of his song, “Have You Ever Seen the Rain,” commemorating an outstanding achievement of over 1 billion streams on the platform, a feat that has been reached by less than 400 songs. His iconic song “Fortunate Son,” also recorded by CCR, is also on track to hit 1 billion streams later this year. 
Additionally, when it comes to overall monthly listeners of bands founded in the ’60s, CCR currently ranks in Spotify’s Top 3, landing just behind The Beatles and Fleetwood Mac, and ahead of acts like The Rolling Stones, Pink Floyd, and Led Zeppelin. Nearly 55 years after their debut, it is a remarkable testament to their timeless appeal.
Fogerty and his band will be hitting the road in 2023 for The Celebration Tour, and he will once again be joined by his sons Shane and Tyler, as well as their band, Hearty Har. The tour will make stops in Europe and across the United States. 
For more information about Fogerty’s career, please visit
The NAMM Show will see the return of much-loved industry award events, including the Parnelli Awards, the TEC Experience, and the She Rocks Awards, as well as Hip Hop 50 and MIDI@40 celebrations, networking opportunities, including the Top 100 Alumni, Pro Audio Pool Party, Women of NAMM and NAMM Young Professionals receptions, and more. 
In addition to the events and professional development sessions, attendees of The 2023 NAMM Show will enjoy a robust show floor with exhibiting brands, including Adam Hall; ADJ; Allen & Heath; American Music & Sound; Apogee; Avid; beyerdynamic; C.F. Martin & Co.; Casio; Conn-Selmer; d&b audiotechnik; Ernie Ball; ESP; Harman; IK Multimedia; Ibanez; Kala; Kawai; KMC Music; Konig and Meyer; Line 6; Pioneer; Shure; Tama; Ultimate Ears; and Yamaha, among many others.  
Registration is now open for The 2023 NAMM Show. To register, please visit