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  • 0 Chuck D and Randy Jackson to co-host 50 Years of Stax Records Classic Soul Concert

    • News
    • by Kingsley H. Smith
    • 06/12/2007

    Chuck D and Randy Jackson will host 50 Years of Stax: a Concert to Benefit the Stax Museum of American Soul Music on Friday, June 22, 2007, at Memphis, Tennessee's historic Orpheum Theater (at the foot of Beale Street). Isaac Hayes, Booker T & the MGs, Eddie Floyd, William Bell, Mavis Staples, Mable John, the Soul Children, and Angie Stone (among others) are all confirmed to appear. Chuck D, of Public Enemy fame, commenting on his role as a co-host for the benefit says: "The logo of Stax says it all. That finger snap graphic brings a funky sound effect by just looking at it. With it comes a catalog of soul heroes and heroines whose heart, souls and passions still echo across this planet today." Co-host producer, songwriter, and American Idol host Randy Jackson adds: "I am honored to be a part of this amazing music legacy. Stax records is the foundation that R&B was built on. The legendary artists that Stax built are such a huge part of my music roots."

  • 0 Barry White Salute coming to NYC off Broadway

    • News
    • by Kingsley H. Smith
    • 06/07/2007

    Barry White: Guided By Destiny, a new off Broadway musical/concert, is scheduled for a two week showcase production June 14th - June 24th, 2007 at the Times Square Arts Center in New York City. The producers have created original music to go along with original Barry White and Love Unlimited songs. Artist Lanar will play the late classic soul icon Barry White (who passed away on July 3, 2003). Venus Adore is slotted as Glodean White, with Jessica Opong and Gezele Portwood rounding out The Love Not Limited Singers, (a trio performing as Love Unlimited in the production). Barry White: Guided By Destiny will explore the R&B legend's relationships with Muhammad Ali and Elvis Presley (credited with changing his life).

  • 0 Janet Jackson Wraps up Love Doctor Role

    • News
    • by Kingsley H. Smith
    • 05/24/2007

    Janet Jackson recently mentioned on her official website that she's wrapped up filming her role in the new Tyler Perry movie, Why Did I Get Married?" Jackson plays "Diane," an author and psychologist who "writes about love, marriage, and relationships." Jill Scott is also featured in the movie, which is based on Tyler Perry's stage play of the same name. Why Did I Get Married is scheduled for a November 2007 theatrical release.

  • 0 Stax 50th Anniversary Show to Benefit the Stax Museum

    • News
    • by Kingsley H. Smith
    • 05/08/2007

    Several Stax Record label legends are reuniting onstage Friday, June 22, 2007 at the Orpheum Theater in the shadow of Beale Street, Memphis, Tennessee. 2007 marks the 50th anniversary of Stax, the legendary hot house of southern soul. Isaac Hayes, Booker T & the MGs (featuring Steve Cropper & Duck Dunn), Eddie Floyd, William Bell, Mavis Staples, the Soul Children, and the Reddings (honoring the legacy of their father Otis Redding) will perform along with special guest Angie Stone (new to the Stax label in 2007). More Stax stars and special guests are still to be announced. Proceeds from the Orpheum extravaganza will benefit the Stax Museum of American Soul Music, the world's only soul music museum, located at the site of the old Stax headquarters on Memphis' historic McLemore Avenue.

  • 0 Does Sly Stone know the way to San Jose?

    • News
    • by Kingsley H. Smith
    • 04/12/2007

    First it was the recent surprise March 31st appearance in Las Vegas. Now Sly Stone is heading for San Jose, California, scheduled to appear in a July 7, 2007 event billed as "Back in the Day, Summerfest 2007." "Scheduled to appear" is always the operative phrase with Sly. With the reissue of the Sly & the Family Stone catalog, I'm not surprised that Mr. Stone is once again venturing to boldly go where Sly hasn't dared to go for almost two decades? live concert performances. His Las Vegas appearance was a big hit. Just in case 'the new Sly' does some 'old Sly' no-show backsliding, here is the rest of the line-up for "Back in the Day, Summerfest 2007," at Arena Green Park in San Jose, California: Average White Band Malo El Chicano Jorge Santana Tierra

  • 0 The Blues Hall of Fame

    • News
    • by Kingsley H. Smith
    • 03/29/2007

    What's your best source for information about the blues? Don't have one? Try the Blues Hall of Fame. It's an excellent resource. Dave Bartholomew, Dr. John, Eddie "Guitar Slim" Jones, and Sister Rosetta Tharpe are the 2007 Blues Hall of Fame inductees. The curator of the hall is The Blues Foundation, located in Memphis, Tennessee. The foundation has selected a new group of inductees every year since 1980. Members are inducted in five categories: Performers Non-Performers Classics of Blues Literature Classics of Blues Recordings (songs...single or album track) Classics of Blues Recordings (albums) Everything you may ever need to know about individuals, recordings and blues literature can be searched at the Blues Hall of Fame Museum. Previous Post | Next Post

  • 0 Big Time for Macy Gray

    • News
    • by Kingsley H. Smith
    • 03/17/2007

    Can collaboration partners Natalie Cole, Justin Timberlake, Fergie, Nas, and will.i.am (of Black Eyed Peas) fame help reinvent the Macy Gray groove? Only time will tell, when Macy's Big drops on Tuesday, March 27 (scheduled release date). Big is the first Macy Gray album in four years. She's remained active with film soundtracks, (Spiderman), and other projects. Macy's unique voice hasn't captured strong commercial success since her 1999 breakthrough, On How Life Is. It's her appealing graceful growl that made "I Try," a hit from On How Life Is. Versatility is a double-edged sword. Macy Gray has it. Unfortunately, the music industry has difficulty promoting artists who don't fall into neat categories. Macy's fans will ultimately decide whether Big gets over. Previous Post | Next Post

  • 0 Sly Stone takes you Higher with Reissues

    • News
    • by Kingsley H. Smith
    • 03/15/2007

    Over the next few months, several classic Sly & the Family Stone albums will be reissued on CD. Teenage prodigy, producer, radio deejay, and musical powerhouse Sylvester Stewart also known as Sly Stone was a trend setter during the dawn of funk laced classic soul in the late 1960's. Here are four Sly albums now back in the spotlight: A Whole New Thing - Original release, 1967. No hits on this one, but it was his first collection. Out of the box, Sly & the Family Stone took a different approach fusing pop, rock, and soul. Dance to the Music - Original release, 1967. One of the best creative albums released in 1967, featuring "Dance to the Music," "Dance to the Medley," and the original version of "Higher." The track, "Are You Ready," hammers home the idea of ethnic tolerance, a reoccurring theme in several Sly Stone songs. Life - Original release, 1968. Not as consistent as "Dance to the Music," but moving the Family Stone formula forward, with "M'Lady," "Love City," and more Sly enhanced fun. Stand - Original release, 1969. Clearly, the best Sly & the Family Stone album. All 8 tracks sparkle with creative energy: "Stand!" "Don't Call Me Nigger, Whitey" "I Want To Take You Higher" "Somebody's Watching You" "Sing A Simple Song" "Everyday People" "Sex Machine" You Can Make It If You Try" These four albums, along with several other Sly & the Family Stone collections, are scheduled for reissue in March, April, and May 2007. What's a reissue without some previously unreleased tracks? To sweeten the pot, several bonus cuts will seed these legendary albums. Is that really necessary? Not really. The music is so good, new fans can easily turn on to the Sly & the Family Stone experience (without the bribes). Previous Post | Next Post

  • 0 Carla Thomas Leads Stax Revival

    • News
    • by Kingsley H. Smith
    • 03/14/2007

    Carla Thomas, the daughter of Memphis Legend Rufus Thomas, remains a "southern soul sweetheart" of iconic stature. Next week, Carla Thomas' The Queen Alone will be reissued (on Stax) in what's being called a deluxe expanded edition. Carla had a nice run on Stax, with "Gee Whiz," "B-a-b-y," "Let Me Be Good To You," and "Tramp" (a duet with Otis Redding). The 11 songs on the original 1969 album will be complemented by five bonus tracks that were omitted from the original vinyl release: "Me and My Clock" "Same Thing" "Your Love Indeed (Alternate Take)" "I Want To Know (Take 2)" "I Wonder About Love" The Queen Alone will be reissued on the reactivated Stax Records through Concord Music Group as part of the label's yearlong series of 50th Anniversary events. Previous Post | Next Post

  • 0 O'Jay vs. O'Jays Royalty Rumble

    • News
    • by Kingsley H. Smith
    • 03/06/2007

    Former O'Jay Sammy Strain is claiming in a $15 million dollar civil lawsuit that he never received any royalties from his 16 years with the O'Jays. Here's another strange story from the world of classic soul. Sixteen years is a long time to overlook (by both parties) a possible contractual obligation for payment of royalties. Strain's lawyer, Charles A. Whittier, says "my client has been stabbed in the back for the love of money." The lawsuit, filed recently in Philadelphia, alleges that O'Jays founders Eddie Levert and Walter Williams conspired to deny Strain of his share of royalties. Kenny Gamble and Leon Huff, producers, and owners of the Philadelphia International label are also named as defendants. Strain replaced original member William Powell in 1976, and remained with the group until 1992, according to the lawsuit. Sammy recorded 11 albums with the O'Jays. Previous Post | Next Post

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