Nirvana rocker Krist Novoselic has backed Eddie Vedder's recent anti-war speech by writing an impassioned essay calling for peace. During a concert in England earlier this month (Jul14), the Pearl Jam frontman launched into a rambling rant about war, telling the crowd, "There are people out there who are looking for a reason to kill!... They're looking for a reason to go across borders and take over land that doesn't belong to them. They should get the f**k out and mind their own f**king business."
Vedder was not specific about who he was targeting, but he has been criticised by Israeli groups, who feel sure his frustrations were aimed at them amid their ongoing conflict with Palestine.
Now Novoselic has come out in defence of Vedder in a post on his blog, which reads, "Thank you Eddie Vedder for speaking up for peace in our world."
The former Nirvana bassist adds, "Eddie has gotten some criticism over comments he made about the conflict between the Palestinians and Israelis. That situation has been messed up for so long, it is no wonder that even mentioning it is toxic.
"The people of Palestine and Israel deserve peace and prosperity. It is time to stop repeating the same old arguments, dogma and hate speech. It is the knuckleheads on both sides that should be criticised and not the singer from a rock band.
"In addition, both sides need to make hard decisions about finding a settlement to the catastrophe that is Israel/Palestine. Thanks Eddie for sharing your feelings. I stand with you my friend!!!"
At the end letter, Novoselic posted a video clip of John Lennon and Yoko Ono singing Give Peace a Chance.
Singer Wayne Coyne has joined forces with the four members of experimental rock band Linear Downfall to form a new group. The six-strong side project, named Electric Wurms, also features Coyne's Flaming Lips bandmate Steven Drozd and the new collaborators are set to release their debut album, Musik, Die Schwer Zu Twerk, in August (14).
A quirky statement released by Electric Wurms reads: "They are not a super-group. They are like Sherpas climbing with you. To help you. To love you. They have a message of hope and peace and chaos and violence. All the secrets that they know they tell you. That's what love is."
Rocker Courtney Love has confirmed her near-20 year war of words with Dave Grohl is over after meeting up with the former Nirvana star at the band's recent Rock & Roll Hall of Fame induction. Love and her late husband Kurt Cobain's bandmate have battled publicly over the rights to Nirvana songs for years, but she reveals they got a chance to call a truce at the Hall of Fame gala last month (Apr14).
She tells Pitchfork.com, "On my way to the bathroom, I saw Grohl, and Grohl saw me, and he came up to me... I was like, 'Alright, no matter what happens, we're not going to be b**ches'. That was my attitude going in, and obviously his. Not much else needs to be said. We just both knew it was time to let it go, and we were ready to do it.
"It's been 20 years. We didn't even talk at the funeral. None of us. And so... 20 years of Dave bashing, and me bashing and making it worse, all that s**t. The legal stuff, the trial. We just buried it. It was really deep. "It brings tears to my eyes to even talk about it. There were certain lawyers who called me tearfully and said it was the most moving moment of the night. There were some hecklers who booed me, which was weird and off and scary. I ignored it. I just looked at who was on stage and was like, 'Ah, f**k it!'"
And she admits she even liked Grohl's idea of asking Lorde, Kim Gordon and St. Vincent to join the band onstage at the ceremony, even though she initially couldn't understand why the drummer had invited women to front Nirvana for the night. She adds, "Initially, I thought it was sexist, and a little bit ghettoizing. But then I was like, 'No, Kurt would have loved this'. And there's reality to it. Apparently, no high profile dudes wanted to do it. "The Kim Gordon moment was so punk. Kim gave the punkest performance, the one that Kurt would've approved of the most. It was the punkest thing the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame has ever seen. I was really proud of that. It was truly a celebration of the spirit of what was subversive about In Utero (album) and (producer Steve) Albini, and what remains punk about Nirvana.
"Me and Kim, we're not BFFs (best friends forever), but I was getting my hair done recently, and my hairdresser said, 'Kim Gordon was asking how you were, she said to tell you hi'. I was like, 'Really? We don't really talk, but tell her hi'. So we've kind of made peace through our hairdresser."
Atlanta Rhythm Section bassist Paul Goddard has died at the age of 68. Goddard passed away after a battle with cancer on Tuesday (29Apr14) in Atlanta, the band's manager Len Fico confirms to The Hollywood Reporter.
The band's vocalist Rodney Justo paid tribute to his bandmate, saying, "I knew Paul when he was a guitarist, and maybe that's why his bass playing was so musical. And to go with that musicality was a unique sound that made him so identifiable to fans and other musicians as well. Yes, at one time he was 'that big fat guy that played bass,' but once he started playing, he wasn't fat. He was a giant."
In a post on their Facebook.com page the band writes, "We are saddened by the passing of our bass player and dear friend the legendary Paul Goddard...Rest in peace P.G."
Goddard helped form the southern rock band in 1970 with a group of session musicians, and the group went on to amass a strong following in America's southern states and once performed for U.S. President Jimmy Carter, although they never attained the commercial success of contemporaries such as Lynyrd Skynyrd and The Allman Brothers.
Goddard retired from touring in the mid-1980s, but returned to the band in 2011 with original vocalist Justo, who left the band in 1972.
Rock veteran Neil Young is expanding his writing resume by penning a science fiction novel. The Like a Hurricane hitmaker is due to release his second memoir, the follow-up to 2012's Waging Heavy Peace, later this year (14) and he also has a second literary project in the pipeline.
He has declined to give a possible release date or any further details about the novel but has described it as "f**king weird", reports Uncut magazine.
Hip-hop artist Dj E-Z Rock has passed away, aged 46. The rapper, real name Rodney Bryce, died on Sunday (27Apr14). No further details have been released.
E-Z Rock performed as part of a duo with his longtime collaborator and friend Rob Base. Base shared the sad news on his Facebook.com page, writing, "R.I.P Skip (DJ EZ Rock) friends since 4th grade I'm really going to miss you."
The pair first stormed the music scene in 1988 with their iconic track It Takes Two, which went multi-platinum in the U.S., and has been sampled by a number of top stars, including Snoop Dogg and Ciara. E-Z Rock and Base's winning formula for mixing hip-hop and dance genres helped their single Joy and Pain become another chart hit, and thanks to the two tunes, their debut album, also called It Takes Two, achieved seven-times platinum status in the U.S.
Following the news of his death, members of the hip-hop community began to send their condolences via Twitter.com. Rapper Biz Markie wrote, "R.I.P. to EZ Rock from Rob Base and EZ Rock you will truly be missed." DJ Red Alert added, "We have lost our very own from Harlem NYC & the hip-hop culture our brother DJ E-Z Rock. Rest in peace."
Red Hot Chili Peppers star Flea has dismissed speculation he has created a new supergroup with former members of now defunct cult rock band The Mars Volta. The bassist was rumoured to have joined Omar Rodriguez-Lopez and Cedric Bixler-Zavala's new project Antemasque after videos showing him playing in their rehearsals emerged online this week (beg07Apr14).
However, Flea is adamant he is not a full time member of the group, and simply joined the former At The Drive-In rockers to jam on some of their new tracks.
He writes in a post on Twitter.com, "Woke to find out I'm in a new supergroup. Hahahaha. Played on some tracks a few weeks ago with my friends Omar and Cedric for love that all."
Flea has previously been part of other supergroups including Damon Albarn's Rocket Juice & the Moon and Atoms For Peace with Thom Yorke.
The Mars Volta split last year (13).
Ratt drummer Bobby Blotzer has pulled out of the band's upcoming appearance on a rock cruise after undergoing neck surgery. The rocker had an operation in October (13) and subsequently axed a number of appearances with the group, but he has failed to bounce back as quickly as he had hoped.
Blotzer has now confirmed he will be unable to rejoin the band for the Monsters Of Rock cruise, which sails from Florida on 29 March (14), as he is still struggling to regain his fitness.
In a post on his Facebook.com page, he writes, "Just a heads up regarding the Monsters cruise next week. My neck is not playing ball, so I'll be getting more Cortisone (steroid) next week to crush the burning pain that doesn't want to let me be in peace. Too much stress! So, sorry I can't be there to rip for you and really don't know when I'll see you all again. Till then, enjoy the cruise lots of good friends playing and attending... Bon voyage!!"
Yoko Ono has penned an open letter to English rock band Elbow praising them for using her name in their song New York Morning. The track is featured on their new album The Take Off And Landing Of Everything and the lyrics read: "Oh, my giddy aunt, New York can talk, It's the modern Rome and folk are nice to Yoko."
Ono has now responded to the name drop, writing, "Dear Guy, Craig, Mark, Pete and Richard, Yes. New York has been kind to me as your song says. Thank you. For John (Lennon), he always wanted to come and live in this city, ever since he saw Bob Dylan on the famous album cover (The Freewheelin' Bob Dylan). And I played the catalyst to make his dream come true.
"But in sleepless nights, I am still living in the memory of my sweet husband, who was virtually kicked out of his own country that he loved so dearly and learned to live in this bleak port city just so his woman and he could live in peace. Two sides of the coin. Life is. Have a great time in New York. We loved it. Love, Yoko."
Focus Features via Everett Collection
Listen up, nerds! Get ready to high-five a million angels, because Tina Fey is making her way back to the big screen. Everyone's favorite funny lady is attached to produce and star in The Taliban Shuffle, based on the book by journalist Kim Barker, The Taliban Shuffle: Strange Days in Afghanistan and Pakistan. The film, which will be set in 2002, will follow Barker as she travels to Kabul on assignment, with very little travel experience and the inability to speak a single word of Arabic. However, the more time she spends in the Middle East, the fonder she grows of the people and the culture, while at the same time coming to the realization that peace between Afghanistan and Pakistan might be impossible. Although there's not yet a director attached to the project, Fey's longtime collaborator Robert Carlock has signed on to write the script.
At first glance, The Taliban Shuffle seems like an odd choice for Fey, whose comedic style tends to be goofier and more off-the-wall than would be fitting for a film about a Middle Eastern journalist. Her previous projects have generally capitalized on that, although she recently moved into more dramatic territory with the film Admission. However, this was the most poorly received of her films, which may mean that Fey is generally more suited to wierder projects, and The Taliban Shuffle doesn't sound like it easily lends itself to the quickfire cutaways and strange visual gags that have become her signature over the seven-year run of 30 Rock. But even though Fey and Barker sound like an odd couple, the film might actually be tailor-made for the comedian.
Barker's book, which deals with the intense political climate of the Middle East through a comedic lense, has been described as "Tina Fey-esque," which makes Fey the perfect choice to bring it to the big screen. Since she first rose to fame on Saturday Night Live's Weekend Update, she has a great deal of experience finding the humor in politics and major news stories, and audiences are also used to seeing her take on politicians — after all, her Sarah Palin impression is probably the most well-known and well-loved thing she has done in her career — which would make it easier for them to accept her in a role that probably calls for a bit more gravitas than Liz Lemon did.
Until The Taliban Shuffle, Fey's films have always given her another big-name comedian to play off of onscreen, from Amy Poehler in Baby Mama to Paul Rudd in Admission. This time around, though, it seems as if Fey will need to carry the film on her own, which makes Carlock's presence as screenwriter the most positive sign for this film. Carlock and Fey have worked together for years, and their friendship dates back to their Saturday Night Live days. Not only does he have experience finding the humor in serious and sometimes controversial topics, but he also understands how to write for Fey in a way that plays to her strengths. The success of the film will depend solely on Fey's performance, but with Carlock on board, there's no doubt that they will find a way to allow her to carry The Taliban Shuffle the same way that she carried 30 Rock for seven seasons.
Fey has had a difficult time translating her television success into a box-office smash. None of her films has been an outright flop, but the fact remains that Fey is a much bigger force in television than she is in film. However, The Taliban Shuffle might just be the movie that will finally establish her as a movie star and bring her the same kind of success that she has enjoyed with SNL and 30 Rock. And even though the film could be a perfect fit for her, the subject matter is just surprising enough to help attract interest in the film, as many moviegoers will be intrigued to see Fey break out of her comfort one somewhat with a political dramedy.
Fey's next television venture, Tooken, will have a lot to live up to after the massive success of 30 Rock. But the only thing that The Taliban Shuffle needs to be successful is to be funny, and Fey and Carlock teaming up once again should help it deliver on that front. Everything it needs to be a hit is present, which means all that's left for us to do is wait until it finally hits theaters, and audiences will finally get the iconic Tina Fey movie they've been waiting for. There's only so many times that you can re-watch Mean Girls, after all.