Zeppelin, Metallica…ah, good. I have your attention.
46 years ago today, a tragedy at Kent State University inspired one of the most powerful protest songs in rock ‘n’ roll history.
When President Richard M. Nixon announced his decision to send a U.S. invasion force into Cambodia on April 30, 1970, it was greeted with considerable disdain by a significant portion of the population, and given that it was an era which was ripe with political protests, it was only to be expected the decision would inspire such protests around the country. On May 1, things started to get ugly in Kent, with protestors taking things too far, damaging storefronts in the midst of making their political statement. In turn, police were dispatched, tear gas was released, and tensions between the two sides increased significantly. On May 2, an ROTC building was set aflame, inspiring cheers from students and further tear gas from National Guardsmen that had been called by Ohio Governor James Rhodes.
Rhino has made it a point to reissue classic albums on 180-gram vinyl on a regular basis. These are the latest to get that treatment. You're welcome.
In the late ‘80s, college rock darlings didn’t get any more darling than 10,000 Maniacs, who – thanks in no small part to the swirling skirts and soulful vocals of lead singer Natalie Merchant – were all over the CMJ charts and eventually worked their way into the mainstream. We’ve reissued two of the band’s key albums from the Merchant era of the band (that’s a casual way of reminding you that they’re still going strong, just with Mary Ramsey in Natalie’s spot), and although you’ll probably remember them simply from their titles, we’ll throw you a bone and offer a few facts about each of them, just in case.
Longtime Foreigner frontman Lou Gramm turns 66 years old today, which is a pretty significant accomplishment when you consider all of the things he’s endured in his life. You’ll read about a couple of those as we take you through five non-Foreigner projects he’s worked on over the years, but for now, we’ll just say that we’re glad he’s still rocking.
Poor Heart, “Won’t Somebody Take Her Home” (1970): Many Foreigner fans have no idea that Gramm was in several bands before he was invited by Mick Jones to join Foreigner, but after Agent Provocateur took the band’s sales figures into the stratosphere, someone over at PVC Records got the bright idea to reissue the lone LP by Poor Heart, a band for which Gramm sang harmony vocals. It’s interesting enough rock in the mold of Grand Funk Railroad, Rare Earth, and Vanilla Fudge, but anyone looking for a proto-Foreigner ain’t gonna find it here.
36 years ago today, Joy Division performed a concert which would, as a result of frontman Ian Curtis subsequently performing what one of his bandmates famously referred to as “the dirty deed,” turn out to be their last.
The performance in question took place at Birmingham University’s High Hall, and it started very late, but at least it actually took place. Joy Division had been doing their best to ride their success, but it was proving to be a struggle as a result of Ian’s battle with epilepsy, which was taking its toll on him.
The release of The Monkees' GOOD TIMES! is just around the corner and when we tell you that it is, indeed, full of real good times, you best believe us! Get ready with the RollingStone.com premiere of "She Makes Me Laugh," penned by Weezer frontman Rivers Cuomo. It just might be one of the coolest official lyric videos you've ever seen.
One of the hallmarks of Linda Ronstadt’s career has been her ability to bounce between musical styles and genres with remarkable easy, successfully turning in albums based in rock, folk, country and western, swing, and many others. One of her most successful switch-ups, however, came in 1987, when she delivered a Spanish-language album that sold over two million copies and spawned a sequel.