News & To Dos

February 6, 2020

New Cream, Doors, Filmusic, Cooke and Zappa Treasures For 2020

 JUST RELEASED FROM Universal Music Enterprises for February is a 4-CD, special edition of Cream’s Goodbye Tour Live 1968, a live set that brings together 36 tracks, including 29 making their first appearance on CD, recorded during Cream’s farewell tour of the U.S. in October 1968 and their final UK date at London’s Royal Albert Hall on November 26th of that same year. There are a total of 19 previously unreleased tracks, and a further 10 tracks from the Royal Albert Hall show, which have only ever been available on DVD.

Also reissued on vinyl from the Real Gone Music and Second Disc Records label is Laura Nyro’s genre-defining debut LP More Than a New Discovery. The album features such as “Stoney End,” “And When I Die,” “Blowin’ Away,” and “Wedding Bell Blues.”

This rare original mono mix has new artwork, a different song order and added reverb. The limited edition restores the original cover art and album sequence, and, even better, offers the incredibly rare, dedicated mono mix according to Felix Cavaliere of the Rascals, Laura’s preferred mode of audio reproduction from the very first version of the album. It’s remastered from the original tapes by Vic Anesini at Battery Studios, with lacquer cutting by Clint Holley at Well Made Music. Also check out Real Gone’s reissue of Charles Wright & the Watts 103rd Street Rhythm Band’s Express Yourself. It contains the seismic “Love Land” and pulsating “Express Yourself.”

THE DOORS AND TRAFALGAR Releasing have announced the upcoming release of The Doors: Break on Thru – A Celebration of Ray Manzarek, coming to cinemas worldwide for a one-night only event on February 12, 2020. The film will bring fans together in theaters to celebrate the extraordinary legacy of the late Ray Manzarek, co-founder and keyboardist of The Doors, on what would have been his birthday.

This hybrid concert/documentary was filmed at the Fonda Theatre in Los Angeles, CA and brought surviving members from The Doors, Robby Krieger and John Densmore, on stage for the first time in 15 years to celebrate the birthday of Manzarek alongside captivating performances from Foo Fighters’ Taylor Hawkins and Rami Jaffee, Stone Temple Pilots’ Robert DeLeo, Paul McCartney’s Brian Ray, X’s Exene and John Doe, Jane’s Addiction’s Stephen Perkins, Gov’t Mule’s Warren Haynes and more. Proceeds from the LA concert were donated to Stand Up for Cancer as selected by Ray Manzarek. Participating theaters and tickets can be found

/director and produ-cer Christopher M. Allport is currently in production of Emily or Oscar?, scheduled for completion later in 2020. View the trailer at With three ear-worm musical numbers, by Allport a handful of other cues by singer/songwriter Susie Stevens (the Simpsons) and neo classical composer, Maria Newman, Emily or Oscar? is a true collaboration of artistic enlightenment, like an early United Artist flick. RCN regular, poet and songwriter Stephen J. Kalinich plays the role of ‘The Prophet,’ who acts as a conscience to protagonist ‘Sam Feldman, played by the film’s maker. Casara Clark, General Hospital and Days of Our Lives, infuses ‘Emily,’ the female romantic lead, named in the film’s title, with a juxtaposition of poise and quirky mannerismsSusan Blakely offers her presence as ‘The Agent,’ while Susan Boyd Joyce (Happy Days) returns to the screen as an older ‘Mary Pickford,’ a muse to inspire ‘Emily’ to focus on her own desires. In 2000 Allport sang as back-up singer to Barbara Streisand in her Timeless: Live in Concert Tour date at the Staples Center in Los Angeles. During ٢٠١٢ Allport directed the motion picture and live broadcast of the Young Musicians Foundation Gala featuring conductors Michael Tilson Thomas, Joey Newman and John Williams, which is still broadcast on PBS-TV.


JANUARY ALSO SAW THE RElease of The Dark Album, the sixth solo album by seminal Los Angeles performance artist The Dark Bob, who was mentored by our friend the late/great photographer Guy Webster. A kind of homage to the Beatles’ White AlbumThe Dark Album delivers ٢٣ song mash-up of musical styles that explores themes of remorse, renewal and redemption, an elegy of sorts to the arc of the artist’s life. The album kicks off with the song I’m Not Famous No More, which brutally and humorously takes on his early success in the restless art scene of Los Angeles in the 1970’s*, and (22 songs later) closes with Singin’ A Song, which celebrates the activity, rather than the result, of The Dark Bob’s iconoclastic and adventurous songwriting. Stepping in for guests turns are acclaimed guitarist Nels Cline (Wilco and solo projects), jazz pianist Larry Goldings (Ray Charles, Leon Russell, James Taylor), session drummer Danny Frankel (Lou Reed, k.d.lang, Laurie Anderson), and the Dark Bob’s son, bassist Ryan Zin. The collection was produced by Glenn Nishida and The Dark Bob at Pacifica Studios.

DAN PERLOFF OF MANIFESTO Records in L.A. has happily convinced his company that the time has come to reissue Limbo, the 1984 LP by Phast Phreddie & Thee Precisions initially recorded for the Martian Records labelPhast Phreddie (aka Fred Patterson) and crew offer 40 songs, plus his liner notes detailing the story of the band, photos and Tomata Du Plenty’s cover graphic he did for the original Limbo LP. Also incorporated is Don Waller’s inserted fantasy story on the band.

LATE DECEMBER BROUGHT the release of The Hot Rats Sessions – the 50thanniversary boxed set of Frank Zappa’s landmark first solo album, Hot Rats. This was Zappa’s inimitable, groundbreaking first solo album which put the songwriter and musician on the map as a virtuosic guitarist and changed the course of music forever with its conceptual, compositional and technological innovations. Self-described as a “movie for your ears,” the mostly instrumental 1969 album was a new musical avenue for Zappa following the dissolution of his band The Mothers Of Invention.

Filled with an abundance of rare and unedited mixes, work mixes, relevant Vault nuggets and complete basic tracks mixed from the original multi-track master tapes by Craig Parker Adams and mastered by Bob Ludwig in 2019, the collection provides a fascinating look into the making of this classic album, and includes essentially every musical entity that was recorded during these iconic sessions. Overseen by the Zappa Trust and produced by Ahmet Zappa and Zappa Vaultmeister, Joe Travers, The Hot Rats Sessions is available in a 6CD boxed set and digitally, including Apple Digital Master. Frequent Zappa collaborator Don Van Vliet aka Captain Beefheart provides his unmistakable vocals to lone non-instrumental, the blues-rock number, “Willie The Pimp.” Star musicians on these sessions include multi-instrumentalist Ian Underwood, violinists Don “Sugarcane” Harris and Jean Luc Ponty, bassist Max Bennett, drummers Jon Guerin, Paul Humphrey and Ron Selico, R&B pioneer Johnny Otis and his 15-year-old son, Shuggie Otis who lays down some astounding bass lines on “Peaches En Regalia” and several other tracks.

FOR THE FIRST TIME, LITTLE Steven’s pioneering early solo career albums have been collected together in a new boxed set, RockNRoll Rebel – The Early Work
(Wicked Cool/UMe), which includes all of the Rock & Roll Hall of Famer’s solo records between 1982 and 1999, as well as the landmark protest album, Sun City, by Artists United Against Apartheid, The Early Work is available today exclusively via uDiscover:

ABKCO HAS JUST KICKED off a year-long celebration of the upcoming 90th anniversary of Sam Cooke’s birth starting this January 24 with the release The Complete Keen Years (1957 – 1960), a remastered and extensive 5-disc set. The Complete Keen Years (1957 – 1960) collects Sam Cooke’s body of work as he began releasing secular albums, stepping away from the Soul Stirrers where he found great success as a gospel singer. The Complete Keen Years (1957 – 1960) offers the Sam Cooke aficionado an opportunity to experience all of Cooke’s Keen album and single tracks for a comprehensive overview of his time at the label. The 5-CD set includes the content of his five originally released Keen LPs plus multiple bonus tracks, a total of 65 tracks in all. The box displays rare photographs and ephemera from the Keen archives, expanded session information and insightful liner notes by writer Michael Corcoran.

THE AMERICAN SPIRITUAL leader, psychedelic explorer, author, deejay, counterculture icon Ram Dass, the former Richard Alpert, died at age 88 in Hawaii. In 1961, while at Harvard, that he collaborated with Timothy Leary, Ralph Metzner, Aldous Huxley, Allen Ginsberg, and others to pursue intensive research with psilocybin, LSD-25, and other psychedelic chemicals. One of his co-written book titles The Tibetan Book Of The Dead, had a profound influence on John Lennon and the Beatles’ composition, “Tomorrow Never Knows,” the first song recorded for the Revolver album.

MULTI-INSTRUMENTALIST Chris Darrow who occasionally graced the pages of RCN died this past January. His work informed recordings by Leonard Cohen, James Taylor, Linda Ronstadt, Gene Vincent, John Fahey and Kim Fowley.


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