Blues legend Johnny Winter's final album will be a star-studded affair featuring famous friends including Eric Clapton, Ben Harper, Billy Gibbons, Dr. John and Joe Perry. The guitar great passed away suddenly in Switzerland in July (14), but not before he had completed work on a last album, titled Step Back.
His longtime bandmate Paul Nelson has produced the record, which also features Joe Bonamassa and Brian Setzer, and ZZ Top star Gibbons admits it was a dream come true to work with his idol.
He tells WENN, "I never had the opportunity to jam with him (and so) I was content to remain in awe and admiration."
Aerosmith star Perry adds, "If it was not for Johnny Winter, I would have never picked up the guitar."
Highlights of the album include Perry and Winter's collaboration on Lightnin' Hopkins' Mojo Hand, and Winter's cover of Bobby 'Blue' Bland's Don't Want No Woman with Clapton.
If you haven't heard of the ALS "Ice Bucket Challenge" yet, you've probably been offline for the last week or so. Hello, here to fill you in! The challenge is meant to help raise awareness, and donations, for ALS, also known as Lou Gehrig's Disease. To participate, you are supposed to videotape yourself while pouring a bucket of ice water on your head, then nominate your friends to take the challenge. Recently, more and more celebrities have been participating and nominating their celebrity friends. It's been raising a lot of awareness, as well as creating a lot of hot men in wet t-shirts.
Draco Malfoy (I'm sorry, Tom Felton)
Nominated: Ron Weasley (okay, sorry again, Rupter Grint), Josh Gordon, and Paul Hodge
Nominated: His 3rd grade teacher Don Padget, his first acting coach in New York Bob Luke, and his teacher Pat Jackson.
Nominated: Tilda Swinton, Octavia Spencer, Jamie Bell, Frank Grillo, Anthony Mackie, and Sebastian Stan
Nominated: Irving Azoff, Kanye West, and Susan Sarandon
Nominated: Prince Harry
Nominated: Sophia Smith, Pharrell Williams, John C. Reilly, and Will Ferrell
Nominated: Cub Swanson, Peter Tunney, and Olivia Culpo
Nominated: Nick Jonas, Alex Pettyfer, Nelly, Alanna Masterson, and Diplo
Nominated: Guy Pearce, Mia Wasikowska, and Marilyn Manson
Nominated: Robert Pattinson, Matthew McConaughey, and Eric The Actor
Nominated: Woody Harrelson, Josh Hutcherson, and Matt Niven
Eddie Redmayne & Jamie Dornan
Eddie Nominated: Sally Light and Jamie Dornan
Jamie Nominated: Andrew Garfield
Nominated: Jeremy Renner, Chris Evans, and Mark Ruffalo
Robert Downey Jr.
Nominated: Chris Hemsworth and Vincent D'Onofrio
Nominated: Louis Tomlinson, John Terry, and Novak Djokovic
Post by Chris Pratt.
Nominated: Gregory Smith, Nick Offerman, and Dave Bautista
Nominated: Benedict Cumberbatch and Luke Evans
Nominated: John Green, Nat Wolff, and Dylan O'Brien
Nominated: Joe Maganiello
Nomiated: Jimmy Fallon, Steve Higgns, and The Roots
Nominated: Mark Wahlberg, Channing Tatum, and Brad Slater
Check back to see if some of these other Hollywood hotties have taken the challenge! Tweet us which celebrity you want to see take part in #ALSIceBucketChallenge!
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Rocker Ian Gillan is planning to pull a Kiss if Deep Purple ever get inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame - because he refuses to hit the stage with former guitarist Ritchie Blackmore. KISS founders Paul Stanley and Gene Simmons pulled out of a Hall of Fame set in April (14) after they were informed that current bandmates Tommy Thayer and Eric Singer would not be honoured alongside the pair and former colleagues Ace Frehley and Peter Criss, and singer Gillan insists he'll follow their example if Blackmore's replacement, Steve Morse, isn't included in what many fans think is a long overdue induction.
Gillan says, "It would be unconscionable to think about bringing Ritchie in.
"I don’t have an issue with Ritchie, nor does anyone. I’ve been in touch with Ritchie recently and everything’s cool, so there’s no bitter, personal problem. We’re too old for that and everything’s in the past, but no. That would be out of the question.
"This is the longest that any lineup has ever been together in this band."
Blackmore left Deep Purple in 1993 and Morse has been the band's guitarist ever since.
The drummer for U.S. chat show David Letterman's house band was once a member of Kiss for a night. Revered session musician Anton Fig, who had played on two KISS albums as well as guitarist Ace Frehley's debut solo record, was initially drafted in to replace Peter Criss in 1980, but he was dismissed hours later when Paul Stanley and Gene Simmons decided to go in a different direction.
Frehley recalls, "We were looking for a new drummer and we auditioned about a dozen drummers, including Eric Carr. I called up Paul and Gene, because I had been working with Anton on my solo record, and I said, 'Why don't we get Anton Fig to play drums?' and they both agreed.
"So I called up Anton and said, 'You're in the band'. He was thrilled. He couldn't sleep all night. The next day, Paul and Gene calls (sic) me and says, 'You know what, I don't think Anton's a good choice'. So I had to do the dirty work and call Anton and say, 'Sorry, Anton, you're not in the band'. He was elated and then he was let down."
Criss officially left KISS in May, 1980, prompting the band to postpone a European tour. He was replaced by Eric Carr.
Paul Stanley and Gene Simmons refused to regroup the original Kiss line-up for a performance at the band's Rock & Roll Hall of Fame induction because they were afraid fans would demand a reunion tour, according to guitarist Ace Frehley. Stanley and Simmons pulled the plug on a performance at the big bash in April (14) after Hall of Fame bosses refused to honour their current bandmates alongside Frehley and drummer Peter Criss, so the live spectacular fans had hoped for was nixed - and now the group's original guitarist tells WENN the KISS army will never forgive his old bandmates.
He explains, "After 40 years, you think they could have given the fans 15 minutes that night. Peter and I wanted to perform, the Hall of Fame wanted us to do it, but Paul and Gene shot it down. It was a moment in history that was lost and some of the fans will never forgive them for that.
"But I'll tell you why Paul and Gene didn't wanna perform with me and Peter - they were afraid of history repeating itself. When me and Peter performed with them on the MTV Unplugged sessions in 1995, the place went completely crazy and they had to scrap their album that they had just recorded with Bruce Kulick and Eric Singer and they had to do a reunion tour.
"They're on tour right now with Tommy (Thayer) and Eric (Singer) and they didn't want anything to overshadow that. They were afraid that everyone was gonna demand a reunion again if we played."
And Frehley has used his new WENN interview to respond to fresh criticism from Stanley, who recently stated his former lead guitarist was not fit "to wear the uniform" of KISS, explaining, "If you no longer can uphold your end or live up to the stature that we set for ourselves in the beginning, if you are compromised by drugs or alcohol, if you've lost sight of how lucky we are to be in this position, then you no longer deserve to wear the uniform."
Frehley insists he was never as bad as his former bandmates paint him - and he hopes his new album Space Invader, his first in five years, will prove he's still got what it takes.
He adds, "It's a joke. In concert, I always delivered, and 95 per cent of the time I delivered on record. It's there, it's history. All they're trying to do is discredit me, so it validates the new line-up. They'll look foolish when my new album comes out.
"I think they're just cranky that every time they go on the Internet they have to read fans saying, 'Get Ace back'."
Mr. Big drummer Pat Torpey has been forced to sit out the group's upcoming world tour as he battles Parkinson's disease. The rocker tells Blabbermouth.net he has been fighting symptoms for the past two years, but his diagnosis was only confirmed recently.
He says, "I intend to fight the disease with same intensity and tenacity that I drum and live my life by and will continue recording and performing, as always, to the best of my ability."
Torpey is still expected to join his bandmates during acoustic sets, but a replacement drummer will take his place on the band's upcoming tour.
The drummer reunited with his Mr. Big co-founders Eric Martin, Paul Gilbert and Billy Sheehan in 2009. The group formed in 1988 and enjoyed a string of chart hits, including To Be With You and Just Take My Heart.
"It would be a pity if Eric retires, because... he really plays good! But he's that kind of guy, Eric. I can see him saying, 'I'm going to retire.' He's kind of a homebody in essence... I remember him joking about how I stand up for the whole show. He said, 'I sit down.' That's a blues player thing. But he's just too good a player. I would say to him, 'Yeah, by all means, sit down, Eric. But don't retire'." Sir Paul McCartney urges Eric Clapton not to hang up his guitar after the rocker suggested he was ready to quit music last month (Jun14).
Rocker Gene Simmons has dashed Kiss fans' hopes of an original line-up reunion following the group's Rock & Roll Hall of Fame induction in April (14), insisting there's "not a chance" of a get together. As Simmons and frontman Paul Stanley prepare for a residency in Las Vegas while touring with Def Leppard, devotees are hoping that Ace Frehley and Peter Kriss will join them onstage - but the bassist insists current bandmates Eric Singer and Tommy Thayer will never be replaced.
He tells The Tampa Tribune, "We've already danced that dance three different times. No way will we reunite. It wouldn't be fair to Tommy and Eric. It wouldn't be right."
Simmons and Stanley refused to perform at the Hall of Fame gala after learning Thayer and Singer would not be honoured alongside Frehley and Kriss.
The bass player adds, "We only did the induction with Ace and Peter because the fans wanted it. But it was a slap in the face that they didn't acknowledge Tommy and Eric. They've been in the band longer than Ace and Peter."
The 2014 Electric Daisy Carnival in Las Vegas has been marred by the death of second reveller. The annual dance bash hit headlines over the weekend (20-22Jun14) after 24-year-old Montgomery Tsang collapsed in the parking lot at the end of Friday night's (20Jun14) festivities. He was pronounced dead at a local hospital in the early hours of Saturday (21Jun14).
Now the death of a second man, 25-year-old Anthony Anaya, has also been linked to the Electric Daisy Carnival. He was found unresponsive at the Vdara hotel resort late on Saturday (21Jun14), hours after attending the Las Vegas Motor Speedway festival, which featured headlining sets by superstar DJs Diplo, Paul Oakenfold and Eric Prydz.
Coroners are currently awaiting blood toxicology results for both males before ruling on the official cause of death.
Anaya is the seventh reveller to die after attending the EDC since 2011, according to LAweekly.com.
The Electric Daisy Carnival has been hit by another tragedy after a reveller died at the annual Las Vegas dance music festival. A 24-year-old man collapsed in the parking lot upon leaving the event and was pronounced dead at a local hospital in the early hours of Saturday (21Jun14).
The cause of death has not yet been released.
A statement from organisers reads, "Today we learned some very tragic news, that after attending the festival a guest of the show has passed away. We are deeply saddened by this news, and hope that everyone will join us in keeping his family and friends in their thoughts during this very difficult time."
Superstar DJs Diplo, Paul Oakenfold and Eric Prydz were among the festival's headliners.
It is the latest tragedy to overshadow the festival. In 2012, organisers distanced themselves from two deaths which occurred after revellers attended the event.