Journey’s new lineup debuts at Chicago show; Neal Schon invites Post Malone to play with the band at Lollapalooza

Courtesy of Journey

On Thursday night at Chicago’s Aragon Ballroom, Journey played their first concert since late 2019, and the first since longtime bassist Ross Valory and drummer Steve Smith were fired early last year.

The performance was part of a series of Lollapalooza “aftershow” events that select artists also performing at the Chicago festival this weekend are playing at various venues in the Windy City. The Aragon show was a warmup for Journey’s Lollaplooza headlining set Saturday.

In addition to guitarist Neal Schon, keyboardist Jonathan Cain and singer Arnel Pineda, Journey’s lineup includes drummers Narada Michael Walden and Deen Castronovo, keyboardist/backing vocalist Jason Derlatka and bassist Randy Jackson, although Marco Mendoza is filling in for Jackson at the Chicago shows while Randy recovers from back surgery.

According RollingStone.com, the Aragon Ballroom show was an extra-long, two-set extravaganza that included classic hits like “Open Arms,” “Faithfully” and “Separate Ways,” along with deep cuts like “Suzanne,” “Just the Same Way” and “Feeling That Way.” You can check out fan-recorded video of the band performing the 1978 gem “Wheel in the Sky” on YouTube.

Walden, Jackson and Derlatka joined the band last year, while it was announced earlier this week that Castronovo, who previously played who Journey from 1998 to 2015, was once again a member of the group.

Meanwhile, Schon tells ABC Audio that he’s excited that popular rapper-singer Post Malone will be headlining Lollaplooza alongside Journey on Saturday.

“I think he’s a very good guitar player…and I heard he’s a fan of mine as well,” says Neal. “And he plays many different styles.”

Schon adds, “Maybe he’ll get done before we do, ’cause I think we’re playing a longer show, and I’d like to invite him to our show to come…and sit in.”

Copyright © 2021, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Albums by CSNY, Cat Stevens, The Rolling Stones among July Record Store Day’s top sellers

Atlantic/Rhino; A&M

Limited-edition vinyl LPs from Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young, Cat Stevens, The Rolling Stones and The Allman Brothers Band were among the top-selling albums for the second 2021 installment of the Record Store Day campaign, which took place on July 17.

According to Billboard, CSNY’s Déjà Vu Alternates, which features alternate versions of the songs from the group’s classic 1970 album, Déjà Vu, was the second-best-selling album released on July 17.

At #6 was Cat Stevens’ Harold & Maude: The Songs from the Original Movie soundtrack album, one ahead of The Rolling Stones’ yellow-vinyl reissue of their classic 1971 two-LP compilation, Hot Rocks.

The Allman Brothers Band’s live album The Final Note was #8 on the tally.

The top-selling RSD album was Foo FightersHail Satin, released under the name the Dee Gees. The project sold 12,000 vinyl LPs, plus another 3,000 downloads when it was made available digitally on July 19.

The 10-song album includes covers of four number-one Bee Gees hits and a cover of “Shadow Dancing,” by the Bee Gees’ younger brother, Andy Gibb.

Billboard reports that according to MRC Data, RSD resulted in 1.14 million U.S. vinyl album sales overall.

As for the top-selling singles, a vinyl disc featuring two remixed tracks from Bob Dylan‘s 1983 album, Infidels — “Jokerman” and “I and I” — was #3 on the list, while a single by Tom Petty guitarist Mike Campbell‘s current group The Dirty Knobs, featuring a cover of JJ Cale‘s “Humdinger” and the non-LP B-side “Feelin’ High,” was #10.

The top-selling RSD single release was Pearl Jam‘s “Alive,” which was issued on both 12-inch vinyl and cassette, along with the rare B-sides.

Here are the top-selling RSD 2021 July 17 drop albums at independent record stores, according to MRC Data:

1. Dee Gees/Foo Fighters, Hail Satin
2. Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young, Deja Vu: Alternates
3. Beastie Boys, Aglio e Olio
4. Amy Winehouse, Remixes
5. Miles Davis, Champions: Rare Miles from the Complete Jack Johnson Sessions
6. Cat Stevens, Harold & Maude: The Songs from the Original Movie (Soundtrack)
7. The Rolling Stones, Hot Rocks 1964-1971
8. Allman Brothers Band, The Final Note: Painters Mill Music Fair, Owings Mills, MD 10-17-71
9. John Prine, Live: At the Other End, Dec. 1975
10. The Ramones, Triple J Live at the Wireless: Capital Theatre, Sydney, Australia, July 8, 1980

And here are the top-selling singles:

1. Pearl Jam, “Alive”
2. Fleet Foxes featuring Resistance Revival Chorus, “Can I Believe You”/”Wading in Waist-High Water”
3. St. Vincent, “Piggy “/”Sad but True “
4. Bob Dylan, “Jokerman”/”I and I ” (Remixes)
5. Karen O & Willie Nelson, “Under Pressure “
6. Dio, “God Hates Heavy Metal “
7. Denzel Curry & Robert Glasper, “So Incredible”/”This Changes Everything” (Live from Leimert Park)
8. “Weird Al” Yankovic, “Beat on the Brat”
9. Jxdn, “Angels & Demons”/”Drivers License”
10. The Dirty Knobs, “Humdinger”/”Feelin’ High”

Copyright © 2021, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

More unreleased archival Joan Jett & the Blackhearts concerts available for streaming at nugs.net

Credit: Olivia Jaffe

Earlier this year, Joan Jett & the Blackhearts launched a partnership with the nugs.net live-music platform making available previously unreleased concert recordings and video performances spanning the band’s 40-plus-year career.

Three new archival concerts recently were made available in both audio and video formats: a 2013 performance at the Pacific Amphitheatre in Costa Mesa, California; a 2015 show at the Toyota Center in Houston; and a 2016 event at the Jones Beach Theater in Wantagh, New York.

These three shows join previously released concerts from 1983 in Houston; 2015 in Columbus, Ohio; and 2018 in Clisson, France.

The audio versions of the shows are available for download in MP3 and two high-res formats.

Meanwhile, Joan Jett & the Blackhearts begin their 2021 tour itinerary with a show this Sunday, August 1, in San Francisco at the Stern Grove Festival. Check out the band’s full schedule at JoanJett.com.

Copyright © 2021, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Listen to Paul McCartney’s new collaborative track with Mark Ronson and Gary Numan

Paul McCartney and Mark Ronson; Courtesy of Apple

A new track that Paul McCartney recorded in collaboration with famed DJ/producer Mark Ronson and synth-pop veteran Gary Numan has been released as part of the soundtrack album for a new Ronson-hosted Apple+ series that premiered today.

Watch the Sound with Mark Ronson is a six-part series that follows Ronson as he “uncovers the untold stories behind music creation and the lengths producers and creators are willing to go to find the perfect sound.” To do that, he interviews artists including McCartney, Numan, Foo FightersDave Grohl, Beastie Boys members Adam “Ad-Rock” Horovitz and “Mike D” Diamond, and more.

Each episode ends with Ronson debuting a new piece of original music created with the guest artist using various groundbreaking techniques and technology.

McCartney and Numan are featured in an episode focusing on the synthesizer, and the tune they created with Ronson is called “I Know Time (Is Calling).”

The six-track soundtrack is available now as a digital download and via streaming services.

Here’s the full track list of Watch the Sound (Original Soundtrack):

Autotune: “Show Me” — Mark Ronson
Sampling: “Why Would I Stop” — DJ Premier featuring Wale
Reverb: “One Life” — Mark Ronson featuring Diana Gordon & Jónsi
Synth: “I Know Time (Is Calling)” — Mark Ronson featuring Paul McCartney & Gary Numan
Drum Machine: “You’ll Go Crazy” — Mark Ronson featuring King Princess
Distortion: “Do You Do You Know” — Mark Ronson featuring Santigold & Kathleen Hanna

Copyright © 2021, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Check out previously unreleased alternate take of George Harrison’s “Isn’t It a Pity”

Credit: Barry Feinstein

A previously unreleased alternate version of George Harrison‘s classic song “Isn’t It a Pity” that will appear on the upcoming deluxe reissue of the late Beatles legend’s landmark 1970 solo album, All Things Must Pass, is now available as an advance digital track.

Two versions of “Isn’t It a Pity” are featured on the original album, while the expanded reissue offers three additional renditions — a demo recording and two alternate takes.

The newly released “Take 27” version features a slower and simpler arrangement than the best-known version of of “Isn’t It a Pity,” which was issued as a double-sided single with “My Sweet Lord.”

An animated music video for “Isn’t It a Pity (Take 27)” has debuted at Harrison’s YouTube channel in conjunction with the track’s release. The melancholy clip brings surreal and evocative painted images to life, including a windmill, grandfather clocks, hot air balloons, and a man rowing a boat followed by an old sailing ship, all inside of a bottle.

As previously reported, the expanded 50th anniversary edition of All Things Must Pass will be released August 6 in multiple formats and configurations, including a Super Deluxe eight-LP or five-CD/Blu-ray-audio set.

The Super Deluxe reissue features a new mix of the original 23-track album, as well as 30 demos and various outtakes, alternate takes and studio jams. Forty-two of the tracks are previously unreleased.

The collection comes with a 60-page scrapbook curated by Harrison’s widow, Olivia, that features rare images and memorabilia, handwritten lyrics, diary entries and more. A replica of the original album poster also is included.

Released in November 1970, All Things Must Pass spent seven weeks at #1 on the Billboard 200.

Visit GeorgeHarrison.com for full details about the reissue.

Copyright © 2021, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Journey welcomes drummer Deen Castronovo back into the band

Courtesy of Journey

Just as Journey starts playing live again for the first time since the COVID-19 pandemic began in 2020, the band has announced that Deen Castronovo, who was the group’s drummer from 1998 to 2015, has rejoined its lineup as a second drummer alongside Narada Michael Walden.

On Wednesday, Journey guitarist Neal Schon and Castronovo hinted at Deen’s return in a series of Twitter posts promoting the band’s Chicago concerts this week, on Thursday at the Aragon Ballroom and Saturday at the Lollapalooza festival.

Schon’s post featured the Twitter tags of the Aragon Ballroom and most of Journey’s current members, plus Marco Mendoza — who will be filling in on bass for Randy Jackson this week — and Deen.

Also, Castronovo tweeted on Wednesday a message that reads, “It’s ON!! STOKED to be playing with my brothers in Journey this weekend!! Let’s DO THIS!,” along with the hashtags #deencastronovo, #teamdeeno, #lollapalooza, #aragonballroom, #journeyband and #journeyfamily. The post also featured photos apparently taken at the group’s rehearsals for the concerts.

Then, on Thursday, Schon chatted with fans via a Facebook thread and was asked if Castronovo was back as an official member of Journey, to which he replied, “Yes.” He also noted that both Deen and Narada will be playing drums, adding, “JOURNEY AS YOU’VE NEVER HEARD US BEFORE!!!!”

Castronovo was fired from Journey in 2015 after he was arrested on domestic violence charges involving his then-girlfriend, to whom he’s now married.

In 2019, Castronovo took part in Schon’s short-lived Journey Through Time project, which celebrated Journey’s early music and also featured founding Journey singer/keyboardist Gregg Rolie and, interestingly, Mendoza.

Walden, Jackson and keyboardist/backing singer Jason Derlatka all joined Journey in 2020 after drummer Steve Smith and bassist Ross Valory were fired from the band.

Copyright © 2021, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

ZZ Top’s Billy Gibbons says band will continue following the death of bassist Dusty Hill

ZZ Top in 2016; Brill/ullstein bild via Getty Images

Following Wednesday’s sad news of the death of longtime ZZ Top bassist Dusty Hill, the band’s frontman, Billy Gibbons, has revealed that the Rock & Roll Hall of Famers plan to continue.

Yesterday, rock radio personality Eddie Trunk took to his Twitter feed to share a text message Gibbons sent him that reads, “As Dusty said upon his departure, ‘Let the show go on!’ and…with respect, we’ll do well to get beyond this and honor his wishes.”

The 71-year-old singer/guitarist added, “Dusty emphatically grabbed my arm and said, ‘Give Elwood the bottom end and take it to the Top.’ He meant it, amigo. He really did.”

The “Elwood” Billy mentions is Elwood Francis, ZZ Top’s longtime guitar tech, who’d been filling in for Hill on bass at recent concerts by the band.

Before Hill’s death, ZZ Top announced on their Facebook page that Dusty had to exit the band’s tour and return home to Texas “to address a hip issue,” and that Francis was stepping in “with his slide guitar, bass guitar, and harmonica playing in full swing.”

ZZ Top canceled their show on Wednesday, July 28, in Simpsonville, South Carolina, but the band is still slated to play its next scheduled gig this Friday, July 30 in Tuscaloosa, Alabama.

On Wednesday, ZZ Top announced that Hill had “passed away in his sleep at home in Houston.” He was 72. No cause of death has yet been publicly revealed.

Copyright © 2021, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Listen to rare 1968 Joni Mitchell performance of “The Dawntreader” recorded by Jimi Hendrix

Rhino

The upcoming archival Joni Mitchell compilation Archives Vol. 2: The Reprise Years (1968-1971) includes a full unreleased live performance Mitchell gave in March 1968 at Le Hibou Coffee House in Ottawa, Canada, that — amazingly — was recorded by Jimi Hendrix.

Now, Mitchell’s rendition of her early song “The Dawntreader” from the concert has debuted as an advance track from the compilation, which is due out October 29.

Hendrix had been performing at another Ottawa venue at the same time that Mitchell was playing a residency at the coffee house and he decided to catch her show there on March 19, 1968, and record it on a reel-to-reel tape machine he owned.  The guitar legend documented his plan in a diary entry that reads, “talked with Joni Mitchell on the phone. I think I’ll record her tonight with my excellent tape recorder.”

After Joni’s two-set show, Jimi wrote about her, describing her as a “fantastic girl with heaven words.”

In a new interview featured in the Archives Vol. 2 liner notes, Mitchell recalls giving Hendrix permission to record the concert.  “He beautifully recorded this tape,” Joni remembers. “Of course I played part of the show to him. He was right below me.”

Unfortunately, Hendrix’s tape was stolen a few days later, but the recording recently was rediscovered in a private collection that was donated to the Library and Archives Canada. The recording was then given to Mitchell, and it now will be released on Archives Vol. 2.

The five-CD collection features numerous previously unreleased live, studio and demo recordings from Joni’s early career, leading up to the release of 1971’s Blue.

The studio version of “The Dawntreader” appeared on Mitchell’s 1968 debut album, Song to a Seagull.

Visit JoniMitchell.com for full details about Archives Vol. 2.

Copyright © 2021, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

It’s no RickRoll: “Never Gonna Give You Up” finally hits one billion YouTube views

Bernd Muller/Redferns

It’s hard to believe it’s taken this long, but Rick Astley‘s 1987 video for “Never Gonna Give You Up” has finally hit one billion YouTube views.

The cheese-tastic clip for Astley’s number-one hit earned a second life online starting in 2007 thanks to the popular RickRolling meme, where you’re directed to click on a link but instead of getting what you expect to see, you get Astley’s video instead.

This year alone, the clip received 2.3 million daily views on April Fool’s Day.

This makes “Never Gonna Give You Up” only the fourth music video of the ’80s to join the Billion Views Club, following Guns N’ Roses“Sweet Child o’ Mine”, a-ha’s “Take on Me,” and Michael Jackson’s “Billie Jean.”

Copyright © 2021, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Expansive reissue of Whitesnake’s 1997 album ‘Restless Heart’ due in October

Rhino

Whitesnake‘s ongoing deluxe reissue campaign continues with a four-CD/DVD collection focusing on  the band’s 1997 studio album, Restless Heart, which will be released on October 29.

Restless Heart: Super Deluxe Edition features newly remixed and remastered versions of the album, plus a variety of unreleased demos and studio outtakes, and a DVD containing official music videos, fan videos, and a behind-the-scenes look at the making of the record that includes new interviews with frontman David Coverdale.

Restless Heart originally was intended to be Coverdale’s third studio album, but it was released as a new Whitesnake record due to label pressure. It was never issued in the U.S. at the time.

The super deluxe reissue’s first disc features a 2021 remix of Restless Heart that’s closer to how Coverdale originally intended for the album to sound. It includes three bonus tracks, which were originally available on the Japanese version of the record.

The original musicians who contributed to the project included guitarist Adrian Vandenberg, drummer Denny Carmassi and bassist Guy Pratt, while Coverdale tapped guitarist Joel Hoekstra and keyboardist Derek Sherinian to add their talents to the updated tracks.

Disc two features a remastered version of Restless Heart, while the third and fourth CDs boast demos and outtakes that help show how the tracks evolved to their final stage.

In addition to the aforementioned music videos and making-of feature, the DVD offers a trio of acoustic performances from the 1997 live acoustic album, Starkers in Tokyo, originally only available in Japan.

The set comes with a hardbound book featuring rare and unseen photos.

The Restless Heart reissue, which you can pre-order now, also is available as a two-CD set, a two-LP silver-vinyl release and a single CD.

Here the Super Deluxe reissue’s track list:

Disc 1: Restless Heart — 2021 Remix
“Restless Heart”
“You’re So Fine”
“Can’t Go On”
“Crying”
“Take Me Back Again”
“Anything You Want”
“Too Many Tears”
“All in the Name of Love”
“Your Precious Love”
“Can’t Stop Now”
“Woman Trouble Blues”
“Stay with Me”
“Oi (Theme for an Imaginary Drum Solo)”
“Don’t Fade Away”
“Can’t Go On (Unzipped)”

Disc 2: Restless Heart — 2021 Remaster
“Don’t Fade Away”
“All in the Name of Love”
“Restless Heart”
“Too Many Tears”
“Crying”
“Stay with Me”
“Can’t Go On”
“You’re So Fine”
“Your Precious Love”
“Take Me Back Again”
“Woman Trouble Blues”
“Anything You Want”
“Can’t Stop Now”
“Too Many Tears ’95 (Live & Drunk in the Studio featuring The Horny B’stards)”

Disc 3: Dancing on the Titanic — Early Arrangements & Getting Drum Tracks in the Studio
“Restless Heart “
“You’re So Fine”
“Can’t Go On”
“Crying”
“Take Me Back Again”
“Anything You Want”
“Too Many Tears”
“All in the Name of Love”
“Your Precious Love (Soul Version)”
“You Precious Love”
“Can’t Stop Now (Instrumental Version)”
“Woman Trouble Blues”
“Stay with Me”
“Oi (Instrumental)”
“Don’t Fade Away”
“Snakes Down South (Unreleased Demo)”

Disc 4: Restless Heart — Evolutions
“Restless Heart”
“You’re So Fine”
“Can’t Go On”
“Crying”
“Take Me Back Again”
“Anything You Want”
“(Red Light Green Light)”
“Too Many Tears”
“All in the Name of Love”
“Your Precious Love”
“Can’t Stop Now”
“Woman Trouble Blues”
“Stay with Me”
“Oi (Instrumental)”
“Don’t Fade Away”

Disc 5: Restless Heart — DVD-Video
“All in the Name of Love” (Fan Video)
“Anything You Want” (Fan Video)
“You’re So Fine” (Music Video)
“Restless Heart” (Fan Video)
“Too Many Tears” (Music Video)
“Don’t Fade Away” (Music Video)
“Can’t Go On” (Acoustic Slideshow)
“Restless Heart” (Lyric Video)

Starkers Trilogy
“Too Many Tears”
“Can’t Go On”
“Don’t Fade Away”

Behind the Scenes
The Making of ‘Restless Heart’

Copyright © 2021, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.