Late music legend Lou Reed will be remembered at a tribute show in New York City on Sunday (24Nov13). The concert, which will be held at Manhattan's Bowery Electric, will feature members of The Vaccines, Patti Smith Band guitarist Lenny Kaye, Reed's former collaborator Shahzad Ismaily and rockers Hollis Brown, who will perform the Velvet Undergound's 1970 record Loaded in its entirety.
Proceeds from the gig, titled Last Great American Whale: A Concert in Memory of Lou Reed, will go to the Ali Forney Center, a charity which helps the homeless.
Reed died last month (Oct13) at the age of 71.
A former girlfriend of British rapper Dappy has admitted falsely implying he had assaulted her. The N-Dubz star, real name Costadinos Contostavlos, became embroiled in a bust-up with his ex, Kaye Vassell, on Twitter.com after she posted a picture of herself with a lump on her head.
The image was accompanied by the message, "I kept quiet for wayyyyyy (sic) too long to protect you Dappy", sparking rumours the couple had had a violent relationship, but now Vassell has confessed she lied.
In a new message on the social networking website, she writes, "We all know Dappy Didn't (sic) really Do (sic) that to my Face (sic)! I was simply angryyyyy (sic) at the pics (sic) he tweeted earlier??? It's defo (definitely) over this time!!!"
Contostavlos and Vassell have had an on/off relationship for several years and have two children together - Gino, four, and Milo, two.
Roky Erickson has been a cult hero for so long that even the albums that introduced the Austin-based psychedelic survivor to an enthralled post-punk audience back in the 1980s are ready to be discovered by a new generation. The estimable reissue label Light in the Attic Records has revived Erickson's three 1980s releases, The Evil One, Don't Slander Me, and Gremlins Take Pictures, as CDs, downloads, and vinyl LPs that look and sound worlds better than their original incarnations.
Unfamiliar with Roky Erickson's fascinating, tragic and ultimately uplifting story? Here's what you need to know.
He Wrote A Garage Rock Classic
Roky first gained notice as the lead singer in one of the psychedelic era's most notorious bands, The 13th Floor Elevators. Their albums -- most notably 1966's The Psychedelic Sounds of the 13th Floor Elevators and 1967's Easter Everywhere -- are legendary for openly proselytizing for the use of hallucinogenic drugs. But the Elevators' first single (and all-time best song) is an Erickson-penned snotty little teenage kiss-off called "You're Gonna Miss Me" that's closer in spirit to the likes of "96 Tears" or "Dirty Water." That song kept the band's name alive when Lenny Kaye included it on the classic proto-punk compilation Nuggets: Original Artyfacts from the First Psychedelic Era in 1972, where generations of new garage rock fans first discovered Erickson.
He Made A Really Tragic Choice
Although it was the Elevators' guitarist and primary songwriter Stacy Sutherland who was the driving force behind the band's pro-hallucinogenics stand, that outspokenness made the entire band targets as far as Texas law enforcement was concerned. So when Erickson was arrested holding a single joint in 1969, he decided to plead insanity in an effort to avoid a potential decade in jail. Unfortunately, his three-year stint in a Texas mental hospital, which included heavy doses of both electro-shock treatments and anti-psychotic medications, left Erickson -- who had had brief episodes of mental illness prior to being committed -- far more mentally and emotionally damaged than he had been when he went in.
He Was A Post-Punk Cult Hero
One of the less attractive elements of the indie rock underground is that sometimes artists attract audiences more for their obviously unbalanced mental state (Daniel Johnston and the late Wesley Willis being two obvious examples) than for their actual music. While there's no question that some of Erickson's latter-day fans were attracted by the "Hey, lookit the crazy guy!" aspect of his story, the albums that Light In The Attic has just reissued stand up on their own musical merits. The Evil One (1981) most strongly features Erickson's lyrical obsessions of that era, religious parables doused with creepy horror-movie imagery of zombies, werewolves and vampires. Don't Slander Me (1984) is his most straightforwardly rocking effort and includes the glorious "Starry Eyes," an utterly sincere power pop love song that sounds like the best single Buddy Holly never wrote. The patchwork Gremlins Have Pictures (1986) was gathered from live tracks and demos covering nearly a decade and is the hardest listen of the lot, both for its lo-fi sound and the clear evidence of Erickson's steadily-worsening mental state in the fragmented songs. Still, even it contains the sterling live track "Song For Abe Lincoln," a cockeyed optimist's lyric set to one of the catchiest tunes he'd ever written.
He Got Worse...A Lot Worse
In the 1980s, Erickson announced that his body had been inhabited by an alien, and even got a notarized statement to that effect. Diagnosed as schizophrenic, Erickson lost interest in music by the late '80s, and at the turn of the 1990s spent a stint in prison on mail theft charges that were eventually dismissed. During this period, a longtime fan who worked for Warner Brothers Records created the 1990 compilation Where The Pyramid Meets The Eye: A Tribute To Roky Erickson. Long out of print but easily available online, the set includes tracks by friends and fans including ZZ Top, R.E.M., T-Bone Burnett, Julian Cope and The Jesus and Mary Chain, not to mention now-obscure college rockers of the time like The Judybats, Thin White Rope and Poi Dog Pondering. The album both contributed royalties to Erickson's all-but-depleted coffers and introduced him to the burgeoning alternative rock scene.
And Now He's A Lot Better
In 2001, Roky Erickson's youngest brother Sumner petitioned to take over his sibling's guardianship due to the declining mental and physical state of their mother. With his mental illness more carefully managed thanks to that change and advances in medication, Roky Erickson returned to an almost-normal life that included live performances and, in 2010, a well-received comeback album, True Love Cast Out All Evil, with the help of fellow Austinites Okkervil River. A promo interview of Roky by Okkervil River frontman Will Sheff from that era shows an alert, witty, intelligent and introspective man in late middle age (he turned 66 in July) who more than possibly anyone else deserves the clichéd term rock and roll survivor.
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A woman who was arrested after a six hour stand-off with cops at the home of American Pie star Eddie Kaye Thomas has been ordered to stay 100 feet (30.4 metres) away from the actor for the next three years. Roxanna Bear was taken into custody after cops responded to claims she had barricaded herself indoors at his Los Angeles property after threatening the actor with a knife.
Cops eventually used flash grenades and tear gas to smoke her out of the house after six hours.
Bear was sentenced to 312 days in jail for felony vandalism, and has been released after 156 days due to good behaviour. All other charges against her have been dismissed.
She has now been ordered to stay at least 100 feet away from the actor over the next three years, which is the length of her probation. Bear has also been ordered to complete a 52-week psychiatric counselling program.
Actor William Shatner is hitting the road with prog-rock supergroup Circa to promote his new album of sci-fi music. Former Yes stars Billy Sherwood and Tony Kaye will back the Star Trek legend when he tours following the release of his first progressive rock album Ponder the Mystery.
Sherwood actually helped the actor create the music for his poems, which make up the tracks on the album.
The project also features guest spots from another former Yes star, Rick Wakeman, Vince Gill, Steve Vai, The Doors' Robby Krieger and Mick Jones.
And Shatner tells RollingStone.com he's really proud of his latest musical venture: "I'm learning to play the album now as we prepare for the live performances. The more I play it, the more I hear the musical overtones, the more impressed I am about my own album."
Country stars Carrie Underwood and Kix Brooks have offered well wishes to Lady Antebellum star Hillary Scott, who became a first-time mum on Monday (22Jul13). Just hours before news of the royal baby's birth made headlines around the world, the Need You Now singer welcomed little Eisele Kaye Tyrrell to the world in Nashville, Tennessee.
And several stars have taken to Twitter.com to congratulate Scott and her husband, Lady Antebellum drummer Chris Tyrrell.
Her bandmates Charles Kelley and Dave Haywood posted a message on the group's Twitter.com account, writing, "Congratulations to @HillaryScottLA and Chris, parents of the beautiful Eisele Kaye! Happy birthday and we love you!!"
And pal Underwood added, "@HillaryScottLA Congratulations, sweet Hillary! So many blessings to your family and its new gift from God! May she be just like you!"
Former Brooks & Dunn star Kix Brooks was also thrilled by the 'other baby news', tweeting, "Congrats to @HillaryScottLA of @ladyantebellum - sweet lil thing finally showed up! This is where the party starts!"
Scott took to her own Twitter page on Tuesday (23Jul13) to declare, "Thanks to EVERYONE for the congratulations, prayers, support, and love for our precious Eisele Kaye! She has completely stolen our hearts!"
Lady Antebellum star Hillary Scott has beaten the Duchess Of Cambridge to motherhood. Both women went into labour on Monday (22Jul13), and the singer's little lady popped out before Britain's new prince or princess.
Scott gave birth to daughter Eisele Kaye Tyrrell in Nashville, Tennessee.
The newborn's name is a combination of her grandmothers' maiden and middle names.
Proud dad Chris Tyrrell tells People.com his baby daughter is "incredibly gorgeous".
The drummer wed Scott in January, 2012, and she announced the pregnancy in December (12).
British actress Hayley Atwell is set to become the latest star to light up the West End by taking on the lead role in a critically-acclaimed play. The Captain America: The First Avenger star will appear in Alexi Kaye Campbell's Olivier Award-winning drama The Pride, which previously ran Off-broadway in 2010 with Hugh Dancy, Andrea Riseborough and Skyfall's Ben Whishaw.
In the production, Atwell plays Silvia, a woman whose marriage is crumbling, and she says of the role, "It's about identity and repression. She (Silvia) had the feminine quality of taking her own pain and putting it aside, as she watches her marriage break down."
The Pride will open at London's Trafalgar Studios on 8 August (13), just months after another big name, James McAvoy, was seen in an acclaimed production of Macbeth at the same venue.
White Christmas star Danny Kaye is to be immortalised on the menu at fabled New York diner Carnegie Deli. Kaye is to be honoured with his own sandwich as fans, family members and friends remember the late star on what would have been his 100th year.
The actor/singer's daughter Dena will join the staff of the deli on Monday (29Apr13) for a sandwich cutting ceremony.
A spokesman for the diner tells WENN, "Danny Kaye is known to most as a star of stage and screen, singer, entertainer extraordinaire and true humanitarian. However, the beloved American icon, who entertained children of all ages in films like White Christmas and Hans Christian Anderson, is far less well known for his culinary talents. A bona fide Chinese chef whose frequent dinner guests included luminaries from Cary Grant and Audrey Hepburn, to Frank Sinatra and Henry Kissinger, Danny surely had a sophisticated skill set and palette.
"His very favourite food though, like Danny, was much more fun and lighthearted. Down-to-earth and simply delicious, Danny Kaye loved the sandwich."