Showing posts with label Classic Rock. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Classic Rock. Show all posts

Friday, June 14, 2024

LEGENDARY DUTCH ROCK BAND FOCUS ANNOUNCE NEW ALBUM AND TOUR: ZOOM SPECIAL EVENT WITH THIJS VAN LEER TALKING ABOUT THE MAGIC OF "HOCUS POCUS" AND SAYS WE ARE NOT A PROG GROUP!

 


DUTCH ROCK LEGENDS


 ANNOUNCE NEW STUDIO ALBUM

F O C U S  12

AVAILABLE JULY 5TH

ZOOM SPECIAL EVENT

with SINGER...SONGWRITER

KEYBOARDIST...FLAUTIST

BANDLEADER

THIJS VAN LEER

INTERVIEWING THE LEGENDS

click below 

to watch the entire interview!


 With their unique brand of progressive rock, Focus manifested themselves at the start of the '70s as the most successful and appreciated of all the Dutch pop-rock exports. Fronted by founding member Thijs Van Leer, and best known for their hits "Hocus Pocus", "House of The King" and "Sylvia", as well as critically acclaimed albums 'Moving Waves', 'Focus 3' and 'Hamburger Concerto', the iconic Dutch music masters are back with their tenth album, which is guaranteed to please their legions of fans! 


 After a comeback in the early 2000's, which resulted in the well-received albums 'Focus 8' and 'Focus 9', the band regrouped with a fantastic new line-up. Along with Thijs van Leer on vocals, flute and keyboards, back on the drums is famed Focus drummer Pierre van der Linden, who joined the group on their second album 'Moving Waves' in 1972.

Internationally renowned for his rhythmic skills, Pierre remains a defining factor in the Focus sound. Guitarist Menno Gootjes, who participated in Focus at an earlier stage, and acclaimed bass player Udo Pannekeet, complete the band's current line-up. Recently, Focus's biggest hit "Hocus Pocus" was used in a 4-minute Nike commercial before the World Cup broadcast. Focus music can be regularly heard on Top Gear and Saxondale on TV in the UK.     

A new Focus era has arrived! There is a rejuvenated passion amongst the band as they released their first studio album for 6 years, Focus 11, in early 2019.   They toured the world in support of the new album and are now excited re their 50th Anniversary tour. Unfortunately, the world situation had halted the 50th Anniversary celebrations, but Focus now is happy touring the world again.


Eagerly awaited, we are pleased to announce the forthcoming release of FOCUS 12, the brand-new studio album from Focus.  

For Thijs van Leer (75) and Pierre van der Linden (78), age is nothing more than a number. Both continue to contribute to Focus with passion.


Thijs, who has written most of the new album, rises at 4.30 am every day in order to work on his compositions. Whilst the album boasts some of Pierre’s greatest and most energetic drum sequences to date.

Allowing the younger guard to take the audio reins for the first time, Focus 12 is produced by band members Udo Pannekeet and Menno Gootjes, who also contribute two compositions on the album.

Thijs commented “How beautiful life can be when a band plays so easily and so together.”

preorder

THE BRAND-NEW STUDIO ALBUM

BY

FOCUS

entitled

FOCUS 12


available July 5th 2024


pre-order at

 https://burningshed.com/store/focus

“FOCUS TWELVE BY DUTCH PROG LEGENDS FOCUS IS A CAPTIVATING AND SUBLIME MUSICAL RESCUE. EVERY BRILLIANT TRACK IS GRATIFYING AND PERFORMED TO ITS PERFECTION. THIS ALBUM VALIDATES WHY 70S ROCK BANDS WHO STILL RECORD AND TOUR HAVE ALEADY ACCOMPLISHED LEGENDARY STATUS.”

5 STARS!

….BY MUSIC JOURNALIST RAY SHASHO


THE HEAT OF THE MOMENT TOUR

2024 DATES

HEADLINED

BY

A S I A 

with special guests

FOCUS

MARTIN TURNER  ex WISHBONE ASH

CURVED AIR

MC'd by ARTIST ROGER DEAN 

The tour will commence on July 3rd 2024 and will incorporate 21 dates across the USA and Canada.

The tour has been masterminded by rock music keyboard legend & original Asia member, Geoff Downes (Buggles, Asia, Yes)

Wednesday, July 3: Ridgefield Playhouse, Ridgefield, CT

Thursday, July 4: Fallsview Casino, Niagara Falls, ON

Saturday, July 6: Chevalier Theatre, Medford, MA

Sunday, July 7: The Paramount, Huntingdon, NY

Tuesday, July 9: Bergen Performing Arts Center, Englewood, NJ

Wednesday, July 10: Count Basie Center, Red Bank, NJ

Friday, July 12: Tropicana Showroom, Atlantic City, NJ

Saturday, July 13: Wind Creek Event Center, Bethlehem, PA

Sunday, July 14: American Music Theatre, Lancaster, PA

Tuesday, July 16: Spartanburg Memorial Auditorium, Spartanburg, SC

Wednesday, July 17: Ryman Auditorium, Nashville, TN

Thursday, July 18: Columbia County Performing Arts Center, Evans, GA

Saturday, July 20: Hard Rock Live, Orlando, FL

Sunday, July 21: Pompano Beach Amphitheater, Pompano Beach, FL

Monday, July 22: Seminole Hard Rock, Tampa, FL

Wednesday, July 24: North Charleston PAC, North Charleston, SC

Thursday, July 25: Macon City Auditorium, Macon, GA

Friday, July 26: Saenger Theatre, Mobile, AL

Sunday, July 28: VBC Mark Smith Concert Hall, Huntsville, AL

Tuesday, July 30: The Arcada Theatre, St Charles, IL

Wednesday, July 31: The Pabst Theater, Milwaukee, WI


DISCOGRAPHY

STUDIO ALBUMS

FOCUS

     Focus Plays Focus (1970; also known as In and Out of Focus)

    Focus II (1971; also known as Moving Waves)

    Focus 3 (1972)

    Hamburger Concerto (1974)

    Mother Focus (1975)

    Ship of Memories (1976) (studio compilation)

    Focus con Proby (1978)

    Focus (1985) (as Jan Akkerman & Thijs Van Leer)

    Focus 8 (2002)

    Focus 9 / New Skin (2006)

    Focus X (2012)

    Golden Oldies (2014) (studio re-recordings)

    Focus 8.5 / Beyond the Horizon (2016)

    The Focus Family Album (2017) (studio outtakes from 2012 to 2017, plus solo tracks)

    Focus 11 (2018)

    Completely Focused (2021) (studio re-recordings)

    Focus 12 (2024) (up-coming)









THIJS VAN LEER
APPEARS
JUNE 14TH 2024

ON INTERVIEWING THE LEGENDS

WITH RAY SHASHO

THE ROCK STAR CHRONICLES

BOOK TRAILER

 

BOOK REVIEW

-By Literary Titan (5) STARS

The Rock Star Chronicles by Ray Shasho, is a splendid book written by a music enthusiast who has poured their heart and soul into it. It’s a story of a boy who loved rock music, and his obsessive passion of it earned himself the name Rock Raymond. He went to school but instead was schooled in all matters of music while his peers were buried chin-deep in coursework. He then became a radio DJ and has now compiled a book on all interviews he held with Rock gods who raided the airwaves back in the 70s and 80s. It’s a compilation of interviews with outstanding vocalists, legendary guitarists and crazy drummers in the rock music scene. Each interview gives a reader an in-depth view into their personal lives and the philosophies that guide their lives which all serve to humanize these great icons. For readers who are old enough to call themselves baby boomers this book will bring old memories back to life. Millennials, on the other hand, may think of this book as a literal work of the Carpool Karaoke show. 

The Rock Star Chronicles is a book I didn’t know I was waiting for. To come across a book that will talk me into trying something new. One brave enough to incite me to venture into new frontiers. This book made me a believer- I am now a bona fide Rock and Roll music fan. 

Ray Shasho masterfully gets the interviewees talking. He smartly coaxes answers from them with crafty questions designed to get a story rolling out of them. The artists talk about diverse issues ranging from music, politics, and their social engagements. Having been on the music seen all his life, Ray Shasho knows the buttons to press, how to get them comfortable about talking about their lives. 

The book’s cover is befitting of its subject matter with the leather look offering a royal background to the golden letter print. It speaks to how high a level rock music holds in the pecking order- arguably, modern music as we know it has originated from blues and rock music.  The second noteworthy thing is the use of high-definition pictures to reference the musician being interviewed in every sub-chapter. This ensures that the book is for both original rock and roll lovers and aspiring new ones. Together is makes for a refreshing and consistently enjoyable read.

I recommend this book to rock music enthusiasts, aspiring musicians wondering what it takes and all readers curious to learn new things by going back in time.

https://literarytitan.com/2020/05/03/literary-titan-book-awards-may-2020/   

Gold Award Winner



MORE BOOKS BY RAY SHASHO




RESERVE YOUR SPOT TODAY
 
TO BE PART OF MUSIC HISTORY!

CALL 941-567-6193

WHAT ARE YOU WAITING FOR??? 

Tuesday, June 11, 2024

NORMAN GREENBAUM DISCOVERING THE ORIGIN OF “SPIRIT IN THE SKY” ‘THE LOST INTERVIEWS’ WITH RAY SHASHO EPISODE 13

 


NORMAN

GREENBAUM

THE ORIGIN OF

"SPIRIT IN THE SKY"

'THE LOST INTERVIEWS'

with RAY SHASHO

EPISODE 13

CLICK BELOW 

TO LISTEN TO THE ENTIRE INTERVIEW!


-INTERVIEWED Dec 6th, 2011 

“When I die and they lay me to rest

Gonna go to the place that’s the best

When I lay me down to die

Goin’up to the spirit in the sky” 

Norman Greenbaum is considered by many music experts to be a one-hit wonder.  But when the lyrics to that hit meant so much to so many and with eternal impact… then who cares?

Greenbaum’s “Spirit In The Sky” echoed an inspirational message of optimism for hope of an afterlife. The song reached #3 on the Billboard charts and sold two million singles by 1970, and during an important transitional period in music that witnessed Album-Oriented Rock formats overshadowing Top 40 singles on the airwaves. Greenbaum created one of the most recognizable guitar riffs in rock and roll history using an industrial fuzz tone. Released in 1969, “Sprit In The Sky” has stood the test of time. Greenbaum states, “Motorists actually still pull over to the side of the road when they hear the song being played on the radio.”

And the song continues to be a heavily requested tune at funerals. Rolling Stone magazine ranked “Spirit In The Sky,” #341 on the list of top ‘500 Greatest Songs of All Time.’ Countless musicians have mimicked their version of the celestial composition including Elton John, DC Talk, Darrel Mansfield, The Stovall Sisters (The back-up singers on the original recording), Doctor and the Medics, Nina Hagen, and Norman’s favorite cover version, The Kentucky Headhunters. “Spirit In The Sky” has been featured in countless movies, TV series and commercials. The song has also been spotlighted on the 2008 music video game- Rock Band 2, enlightening a whole new generation of “Spirit” advocates. Norman Greenbaum began a music career as a member of Dr. West’s Medicine Show and Junk Band. Their sole hit was, “The Eggplant that Ate Chicago” (#52 on Billboard’s top 100) in 1966. Greenbaum departed the band and began a solo career under the direction of producer Erik Jacobsen (Lovin’ Spoonful, Sopwith Camel, Chris Issak).

Raised of the Jewish faith, Greenbaum states that there wasn’t much resentment from the Jewish Community over his Christian-like lyrics, especially his reference to Jesus. The only true criticism came from the Christian side who were not very pleased with his lyric… “Never been a sinner I never sinned.” Greenbaum says, “I just didn’t know better at the time.” Today Norman Greenbaum is 69 years old and lives in Northern California. His 1969 metaphysical one- hit wonder continues to be adored and emulated by countless fans. Most recently Peter Frampton covered “Spirit In The Sky” on William Shatner’s latest album, Seeking Major Tom.Norman enjoys sponsoring races at the local fair. He says, “All it consists of is getting around thirty friends together, having a party, and getting your picture taken with the winning racehorse.” He’s also won a bunch of blue ribbons entering various works. Here’s my interview with Songwriter/Vocalist/Guitarist/Rock and Roll Icon/ and a very amusing and hip guy… Norman Greenbaum. (We had to reschedule the original interview date because Mr. Greenbaum was feeling a bit under the weather).








THE ROCK STAR CHRONICLES

BOOK TRAILER

 

BOOK REVIEW

-By Literary Titan (5) STARS

The Rock Star Chronicles by Ray Shasho, is a splendid book written by a music enthusiast who has poured their heart and soul into it. It’s a story of a boy who loved rock music, and his obsessive passion of it earned himself the name Rock Raymond. He went to school but instead was schooled in all matters of music while his peers were buried chin-deep in coursework. He then became a radio DJ and has now compiled a book on all interviews he held with Rock gods who raided the airwaves back in the 70s and 80s. It’s a compilation of interviews with outstanding vocalists, legendary guitarists and crazy drummers in the rock music scene. Each interview gives a reader an in-depth view into their personal lives and the philosophies that guide their lives which all serve to humanize these great icons. For readers who are old enough to call themselves baby boomers this book will bring old memories back to life. Millennials, on the other hand, may think of this book as a literal work of the Carpool Karaoke show. 

The Rock Star Chronicles is a book I didn’t know I was waiting for. To come across a book that will talk me into trying something new. One brave enough to incite me to venture into new frontiers. This book made me a believer- I am now a bona fide Rock and Roll music fan. 

Ray Shasho masterfully gets the interviewees talking. He smartly coaxes answers from them with crafty questions designed to get a story rolling out of them. The artists talk about diverse issues ranging from music, politics, and their social engagements. Having been on the music seen all his life, Ray Shasho knows the buttons to press, how to get them comfortable about talking about their lives. 

The book’s cover is befitting of its subject matter with the leather look offering a royal background to the golden letter print. It speaks to how high a level rock music holds in the pecking order- arguably, modern music as we know it has originated from blues and rock music.  The second noteworthy thing is the use of high-definition pictures to reference the musician being interviewed in every sub-chapter. This ensures that the book is for both original rock and roll lovers and aspiring new ones. Together is makes for a refreshing and consistently enjoyable read.

I recommend this book to rock music enthusiasts, aspiring musicians wondering what it takes and all readers curious to learn new things by going back in time.

https://literarytitan.com/2020/05/03/literary-titan-book-awards-may-2020/   

Gold Award Winner



MORE BOOKS BY RAY SHASHO




RESERVE YOUR SPOT TODAY
 
TO BE PART OF MUSIC HISTORY!

CALL 941-567-6193

WHAT ARE YOU WAITING FOR??? 


Wednesday, May 22, 2024

BURTON CUMMINGS THE LEGENDARY VOICE OF CANADA’S OWN THE GUESS WHO ‘THE LOST INTERVIEWS’ EPISODE 10 WITH RAY SHASHO




BURTON 

CUMMINGS

THE LEGENDARY VOICE

 OF WINNIPEG’S OWN

T H E  G U E S S  W H O

‘THE LOST INTERVIEWS’

EPISODE 10

with RAY SHASHO

CLICK BELOW

TO LISTEN TO THE ENTIRE INTERVIEW


Burton Cummings is the legendary voice, songwriter, and keyboardist for Canada’s own classic rock superstars The Guess Who. Although the group has had numerous personnel changes throughout the years, the most prominent members have been Burton Cummings and guitarist Randy Bachman.  Cummings was born and raised in Winnipeg, Manitoba. His first band was an R&B group called The Deverons. The band released two singles on the REO Records label.  In 1965, Cummings joined The Guess Who replacing Bob Ashley on keyboards and eventually Chad Allan on vocals. The Guess Who scored commercially with their first international hit “These Eyes” (#6 Billboard Hit) in 1969.

The track was featured on their album Wheatfield Soul on the RCA record label. The single was written by Bachman/Cummings and was their first to reach the top ten.  The Guess Who followed with a succession of Top 40 hits including … “Laughing” (#10 U.S. Hit, #1Canada -written by Bachman/Cummings) and “Undun” (#22 U.S. Hit). 1970 would prove to be the most pivotal year for The Guess Who. The group scored (2) #1 Hits in the U.S. with “No Sugar Tonight/New Mother Nature" and “American Woman” the group’s biggest selling single. The Guess Who also spawned the hits …. “No Time” (#5 U.S. #1 Canada -written by Bachman/Cummings), “Hand Me Down World” (#17 U.S. Hit) and “Share The Land” (#10 U.S. Hit -written by Burton Cummings). 
Randy Bachman left The Guess Who in 1970 and would eventually form Bachman- Turner Overdrive. Subsequent albums released by The Guess Who … Canned Wheat (1969), American Woman (1970), Share The Land (1970), So Long, Bennatyne (1971), Rockin’ (1972), Artificial Paradise (1973). In 1973, Burton Cummings and The Guess Who released one of the group’s most underrated albums entitled The Guess Who #10. The album was a clear diversion from the band’s roots but spotlighted brilliant lyrical content and virtuoso musicianship. The album featured Burton Cummings composition “Glamour Boy.” The track was a jab at David Bowie’s glitter rock insurgence. The album also featured the profound “Cardboard Empire” written by Bill Wallace and Kurt Winter, while hauntingly performed by Cummings.  In 1974, The Guess Who collaborated on their final Top 40 single entitled “Clap For The Wolfman,” (#6 U.S. Billboard Hit) an applicable tribute to legendary radio and TV personality Wolfman Jack.  Subsequent releases: The Guess Who #10 (1973), Road Food (1974), Flavours (1974), Power in the Music (1975), The Way They Were (1976).

The Guess Who disbanded in 1975. In 1983, Bachman, Cummings, Jim Kale and Garry Peterson reunited as The Guess Who to play a series of Canadian gigs and recorded the Together Again live album and video.  Bachman and Cummings reunited again in 1997 to perform in Winnipeg for a disaster relief fund raiser.  An eclectic Guess Who reunion ensued in 2000 featuring Bachman, Cummings, McDougall, Kale, and Peterson. Bill Wallace eventually replaced Kale while the group toured regularly through 2003. A live album and DVD followed at the end of the 2000 tour. The Guess Who was inducted into Canada’s Walk of Fame in 2001. Cummings received an additional Star in 2011. The Guess Who performed for an estimated 450,000 people at Molson Canadian Rocks for Toronto, a benefit concert in 2003.  The Guess Who continues to tour with only original members … drummer Garry Peterson and bassist Jim Kale. Burton Cummings also amassed a widely successful solo career.

He landed a huge hit with “Stand Tall” (#10 U.S. #1 Hit Canada) in 1976.  Burton Cummings solo albums …Burton Cummings (1976), My Own Way to Rock (1977), Dream of a Child (1978), Woman Love (1980), The Best of Burton Cummings (1980), Sweet Sweet (1981), Heart (1984), Plus Signs (1990), The Burton Cummings Collection (1994), Up Close and Alone (1996), Above the Ground (2008).

In 2002, The Burton Cummings Theatre for the Performing Arts in Winnipeg, Manitoba was renamed to dedicate the singer and songwriter.  In 2008, Cummings released the highly- acclaimed CD Above The Ground. All the tracks on the release are written by Cummings. The album also features his touring band The Carpet Frogs. In 2009, Cummings received the Order of Canada, one of the country’s highest civilian honors.  In 2012, Burton Cummings Massey Hall was released –an incredible live CD recorded in Toronto.  Most recently … Burton Cummings is on a summer tour. He’ll be releasing a book of poetry soon entitled, ‘The Writings of B. L. Cummings,’ and a video series called RUFF.  I had the rare opportunity to chat with Burton Cummings recently about the summer tour, the true origin of “American Woman,” The life and times of The Guess Who, Canada, Wolfman Jack and so much more!

Here’s my interview with singer, songwriter, musician, and legendary voice of 'The Guess Who' …BURTON CUMMINGS.








 

THE ROCK STAR CHRONICLES

BOOK TRAILER

 

BOOK REVIEW

-By Literary Titan (5) STARS

The Rock Star Chronicles by Ray Shasho, is a splendid book written by a music enthusiast who has poured their heart and soul into it. It’s a story of a boy who loved rock music, and his obsessive passion of it earned himself the name Rock Raymond. He went to school but instead was schooled in all matters of music while his peers were buried chin-deep in coursework. He then became a radio DJ and has now compiled a book on all interviews he held with Rock gods who raided the airwaves back in the 70s and 80s. It’s a compilation of interviews with outstanding vocalists, legendary guitarists and crazy drummers in the rock music scene. Each interview gives a reader an in-depth view into their personal lives and the philosophies that guide their lives which all serve to humanize these great icons. For readers who are old enough to call themselves baby boomers this book will bring old memories back to life. Millennials, on the other hand, may think of this book as a literal work of the Carpool Karaoke show. 

The Rock Star Chronicles is a book I didn’t know I was waiting for. To come across a book that will talk me into trying something new. One brave enough to incite me to venture into new frontiers. This book made me a believer- I am now a bona fide Rock and Roll music fan. 

Ray Shasho masterfully gets the interviewees talking. He smartly coaxes answers from them with crafty questions designed to get a story rolling out of them. The artists talk about diverse issues ranging from music, politics, and their social engagements. Having been on the music seen all his life, Ray Shasho knows the buttons to press, how to get them comfortable about talking about their lives. 

The book’s cover is befitting of its subject matter with the leather look offering a royal background to the golden letter print. It speaks to how high a level rock music holds in the pecking order- arguably, modern music as we know it has originated from blues and rock music.  The second noteworthy thing is the use of high-definition pictures to reference the musician being interviewed in every sub-chapter. This ensures that the book is for both original rock and roll lovers and aspiring new ones. Together is makes for a refreshing and consistently enjoyable read.

I recommend this book to rock music enthusiasts, aspiring musicians wondering what it takes and all readers curious to learn new things by going back in time.

https://literarytitan.com/2020/05/03/literary-titan-book-awards-may-2020/   

Gold Award Winner



MORE BOOKS BY RAY SHASHO




RESERVE YOUR SPOT TODAY
 
TO BE PART OF MUSIC HISTORY!

CALL 941-567-6193

WHAT ARE YOU WAITING FOR???