Posted by RockStarPR on July 7, 2017 | Comments Off on CONGRATULATIONS TO THE ONE AND ONLY DENNIS DEYOUNG, WHO’LL BE CELEBRATING THE 40TH ANNIVERSARY OF THE RELEASE OF STYX’ “GRAND ILLUSION” (7/7/77) BY PERFORMING THE EPIC ALBUM IN ITS ENTIRETY AT THE ARCADA THEATRE IN ST. CHARLES, ILLINOIS ON FRIDAY, JULY 7
Dennis DeYoung is a founding member of STYX and the lead singer and writer on seven of the band’s eight Top Ten hits. His live concerts showcase all the STYX Greatest Hits spanning the 70’s, 80’s and 90’s. The set includes all eight Top Ten hits including “Lady,” “Babe,” “Come Sail Away,” “Too Much Time on My Hands,” “Best of Times” and “Mr. Roboto” along with the Classic Rock anthems “Renegade,” “Blue Collar Man,” “Suite Madame Blue,” “Rockin’ the Paradise” and more. Dennis is a legendary singer, songwriter, keyboardist, composer and record producer with a career spanning five decades. His voice is one of the most recognizable in the music world today and he continues to inspire new generations of fans. All the hits… All the memories… One unforgettable evening… One original voice.
Note: We proudly represented STYX in the 90’s! Many a memorable moment and show!
Posted by RockStarPR on July 7, 2017 | Comments Off on DOUG HARR’S “ROCKIN’ THE CITY OF ANGELS” HARDCOVER BOOK CELEBRATES BIGGEST AND BEST ROCK SHOWS TO LAND IN SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA DURING THE SEVENTIES WITH PHOTOS BY SOME OF ROCK’S ALL-TIME GREATEST PHOTOGRAPHERS
June 21, 2017
“There is no better place to be but ‘in the trenches’ — the space in front of the stage
between the band and the first row where the energy of the music played onstage
and the love expressed by the audience produces an uncontrollable heat and
the stage becomes one with the audience. I shot my best photos in this sauna of love,
adrenaline and the shared passion for the music played live. It is in these moments
when a concert becomes an unforgettable experience. Apparently Doug Harr, the author
of this great book, has felt all of the above, and 40 years later his undeniable love and
passion for the best years of rock music has pushed him to share these unforgettable
experiences with the world… This book is a fantastic labor of love, and we are the lucky
ones to hold it in our hands.”
One Love, Armando Gallo
DOUG HARR’S “ROCKIN’ THE CITY OF ANGELS”
HARDCOVER BOOK CELEBRATES BIGGEST AND BEST ROCK SHOWS
TO LAND IN SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA DURING THE SEVENTIES
WITH PHOTOS BY SOME OF ROCK’S ALL-TIME GREATEST PHOTOGRAPHERS
2017 MARKS 40TH ANNIVERSARY OF MEMORABLE AND LEGENDARY
CONCERT PERFORMANCES AND TOURS BY SUCH ICONIC ARTISTS AS
LED ZEPPELIN, QUEEN, HEART, KANSAS, SUPERTRAMP AND GENESIS
If you were a music-loving, concert-going kid living in Los Angeles in the 70’s, you were, undoubtedly, in the right place at the right time to witness some of the greatest bands in the history of rock and roll.
Author Doug Harr was one of those kids, and to say that his concert-going experiences that decade made a lasting impression on his life would be an understatement.
“Hello Los Angeles!”
“Please welcome… Rockin’ the City of Angels!”
If you’re a classic rock fan and want to see, or perhaps “relive,” some of the most incredible performances and tours to ever hit the Southland during the 70’s, then Doug Harr’s new book, Rockin’ the City of Angels, is just the front row “ticket” for you.
Some of rock’s greatest artists captured by some of rock’s greatest photographers!
More than 30 featured artists/tours/performances and 23 photographers.
One spectacular book!
To quote the Emerson, Lake & Palmer song, “Karn Evil 9,” from their Brain Salad Surgery album (an artist and tour featured in Rockin’ the City of Angels), “Welcome back my friends to the show that never ends, we’re so glad you could attend, come inside, come inside.”
They’re all here and caught in the act by some of the best photojournalists of the day including Richard E. Aaron, Jorgen Angel, Martyn Dean, Armando Gallo, Stacey Katsis, Neal Preston, Jim Summaria, Lisa Tanner, Brian Weiner, Neil Zlozower and others.
“These images are seared into my memory from the rock concerts I witnessed in Los Angeles, the “City of Angels,” in the 1970’s, a time when rock bands were making expansive concept records with sweeping themes,” comments Harr. “Rock albums at the time promised ‘theater of the mind,’ and their creators were inspired to mount elaborate stage shows that brought these dreams to life. These artists used every available piece of stagecraft — lights, projections, backdrops, props, and costumes — to create awesome spectacles for arenas packed with adoring fans — fans like you and me.”
Those “arenas” in this book include such well-known southern California venues as “The Fabulous Forum,” Los Angeles Memorial Sports Arena, Long Beach Arena, Universal Amphitheater, Shrine Auditorium and Civic Auditorium Center in Santa Monica as well as Dodger Stadium, Anaheim Stadium and more intimate venues as the Whiskey a Go Go and Roxy Theater among others.
In the book’s first section, “Rock Gods & Entertainers,” The Who kicks off the seventies decade with a featured performance at Anaheim Stadium on June 14, 1970 during their “Tommy” Tour. What follows in that chapter are performances and tours by The Rolling Stones (“Exile on Main Street” Tour: the L.A. Forum appearance was 45 years ago this month on June 11, 1972), Alice Cooper (“Welcome to My Nightmare” Tour), Jethro Tull (“A Passion Play” Tour), Elton John (“Captain Fantastic and the Brown Dirt Cowboy” Tour), David Bowie (“Station to Station” Tour), Wings (“Wings Over the World” Tour), Queen (“News of the World” Tour), Led Zeppelin (“Presence” Tour), Styx (“Pieces of Eight” Tour) and AC/DC (“Highway to Hell” Tour).
The second section, titled “Shamans, Storytellers & Mellow Rockers,” highlights the performances and tours of Genesis (“The Lamb Lies Down on Broadway” Tour), Cat Stevens (“Numbers/Majikat” Tour), Ambrosia (“Somewhere I’ve Never Traveled” Tour), Yes (“Relayer” Tour), Eagles (“Hotel California” Tour), Supertramp (“Even in the Quietest Moments” Tour), Heart (“Little Queen” Tour), Kansas (“Point of Know Return” Tour), Fleetwood Mac (“Tusk” Tour: the last featured tour of the 70’s in this book – December 4-6, 1979) and Pink Floyd (1980’s “The Wall” Tour).
Section three, “Virtuoso’s & Classical Rockers,” features the performances and tours of Frank Zappa and Mothers, Rick Wakeman, Emerson, Lake & Palmer (“Brain Salad Surgery” Tour), King Crimson (“Starless and Bible Black” Tour), Premiata Forneria Marconi (“The World Became the World” Tour), Gentle Giant (“The Power and the Glory” Tour), Camel (“The Snow Goose” Tour), Happy The Man (“Crafty Hands” Tour), Electric Light Orchestra (“Out of the Blue” Tour), Rush (“Hemispheres” Tour), Dixie Dregs (“Night of the Living Dregs” Tour), Kate Bush (“Lionheart” Tour) and the band, U.K. (“Night After Night” Tour).
The book is rounded out by an “Encore” section (IV) that features additional photos and commentary on the band Genesis along with the solo efforts of the band’s individual members – Phillips, Collins, Banks and Rutherford – and a sole section about Peter Gabriel.
Rockin’ the City of Angels is a wonderful perspective from both a true fan’s point of view and the photographer’s pit.
Forty years ago this week, Led Zeppelin came to the L.A. Forum on June 23, 1977 on their Presence tour. As Doug states in the book, “Led Zeppelin, the mightiest rock band of the 1970s, was the soundtrack to my life in Los Angeles.”
This year also marks the 40th Anniversary of such concert tours as Queen’s “News of the World” Tour, Heart’s “Little Queen” Tour, Supertramp’s “Even in the Quietest Moments” Tour, Kansas’ “Point of Know Return” Tour and Genesis’ “Wind & Wuthering” Tour.
An aficionado of progressive and classic rock music from the early 1970’s and a frequent concert patron, Doug Harr has now attended more than 400 shows during his lifetime.
With his new book Rockin’ the City of Angels — Celebrating the Great Rock Shows of the 1970s – In Concert, On Record, and On Film — Doug has enabled us to be the beneficiaries of those trapped-in-time moments.
“This book celebrates more than thirty of these incredible performances including key tours by bands such as Led Zeppelin, Queen, David Bowie, Fleetwood Mac, Genesis, Heart, Jethro Tull, Pink Floyd, The Who and Yes. We’ll share memories of those legendary concerts and my reviews of the best video documents of the era, each band illuminated by a hand-picked collection of brilliant images — some never-before seen — by the best photo-journalists of that time.”
If you’d like to interview the author, Doug Harr, please contact Jeff Albright / The Albright Entertainment Group at email@example.com.
Posted by RockStarPR on July 7, 2017 | Comments Off on DAVE MASON CONTINUES “ALONE TOGETHER AGAIN” TOUR OVER SUMMER, PERFORMING TREMENDOUS SET OF SONGS FROM HIS 1970 DEBUT SOLO ALBUM, “ALONE TOGETHER,” ALONG WITH OTHER SOLO HITS AND TRAFFIC CLASSICS
May 22, 2017
NOTE: SEE DAVE’S OFFICIAL WEBSITE AT www.davemasonmusic.com FOR CURRENT TOUR DATES.
Join Rock and Roll Hall of Famer and co-founder of the legendary band Traffic, Dave Mason, for an evening of great music history as he performs his 1970 debut solo album, Alone Together, from beginning to end in its entirety, then follows it up with a great selection of hits from his illustrious career.
It’s a show that Dave has wanted to do for quite some time stating, “Alone Together was an important album for me for many reasons and I still love those songs.”
Fans can expect to hear such classics as “Feelin’ Alright,” “All Along the Watchtower,” “Dear Mr. Fantasy,” “We Just Disagree” and “Only You Know and I Know,” which appears on the Alone Together album.
Mason founded Traffic with Steve Winwood in April of 1967 while both were still teenagers, and created music that would find its way into the hearts of generations of music lovers. He would go on to establish himself as a successful songwriter, guitarist and solo artist.
At the age of eighteen, the Worcester, England native teamed up with Steve Winwood, Jim Capaldi and Chris Wood to form the legendary band Traffic, who had a profound effect on the genre of rock and roll.
While still a teen, Mason penned the Traffic hit “Feelin’ Alright.” The song became a global rock anthem and has been recorded by dozens of artists including Joe Cocker who had a huge international hit with the song. “Feelin’ Alright” remains a highlight and crowd favorite of Mason’s live shows today.
After extensive touring with Traffic throughout the UK and Europe, Mason headed for the U.S. to pursue a solo career. He struck international gold with his debut solo album, Alone Together, which is considered a seminal rock classic. The album was special in every manner; known for its psychedelic marbleized vinyl, the vertical gatefold packaging, and of course the hits “Only You Know and I Know,” “World in Changes,” “Shouldn’t Have Took More Than You Gave” and more. The album has sold millions of copies since its original release.
Five highly successful albums for the CBS/Sony label followed, four of which received gold album certification in the States. His next album, Let It Flow (1977), sold millions of copies and contains another major Mason classic, “We Just Disagree.” It was a mainstay on the charts, as it remained on the Billboard 200 for 49 weeks. In addition to performing to sold-out audiences and being a permanent staple in record collections and hearts of fans around the world, Mason’s unique guitar work can be heard on many landmark albums and songs such as the Rolling Stones’ Beggars Banquet, George Harrison’s All Things Must Pass, Paul McCartney’s (Wings) “Listen to What the Man Said” and Jimi Hendrix’s Electric Ladyland. Hendrix’s major rock standard, “All Along the Watchtower,” features Dave playing the acoustic guitars before Hendrix’s soaring entrance onto the track.
The song is a big favorite of Dave’s and he performs it in nearly every one of his live shows. Dave Mason’s work and career remain linked with numerous other members of rock and roll elite, including Eric Clapton, Steve Winwood, Stevie Wonder, Michael Jackson, Fleetwood Mac, Graham Nash, Stephen Stills, Rita Coolidge, Delaney & Bonnie, Leon Russell, Ron Wood, Jim Capaldi, Mama Cass Elliot, and The Spencer Davis Group.
Dave Mason’s career spans several important rock eras and encompasses his work as a producer, performer, songwriter and consummate guitarist. In 2004, Mason was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame for his work with the groundbreaking group Traffic.
Mason is also involved in the program he co-founded, Work Vessels for Veterans (WVFV – http://www.workvesselsforvets.org), an all-volunteer movement that provides veterans with the tools they need to transition to civilian work.
Posted by RockStarPR on July 7, 2017 | Comments Off on THE HIT MEN TO RELEASE NEW CD, “TIME TRAVEL,” WITH TWO NEW AND ORIGINAL KILLER TRACKS ON MAY 16
May 2, 2017
THE HIT MEN BRING PAST AND PRESENT TOGETHER, CREATING TWO NEW
AND ORIGINAL KILLER TRACKS FOR “TIME TRAVEL” CD, WHICH ALSO
FEATURES RENDITIONS OF FOUR NUMBER ONE HITS BY SUCH ARTISTS AS
THE YOUNG RASCALS, THREE DOG NIGHT, GRAND FUNK RAILROAD AND CAT STEVENS
THE HIT MEN – A GROUP OF AMAZING PERFORMERS, SUPERB MUSICIANS,
SUPERIOR VOCALISTS, GREAT ARRANGERS AND CREATIVE COMPOSERS –
PAY HOMAGE TO THE WELL-KNOWN THEY’VE PERFORMED AND/OR RECORDED
WITH OVER THE YEARS BY RELEASING NEW CD, “TIME TRAVEL,” ON TUESDAY, MAY 16
IN MEMORY OF ORIGINAL AND LONGTIME “HIT MAN” LARRY GATES
If you’ve ever had the opportunity to see The Hit Men live in concert, then you know it’s one well-known hit after another and a good time had by all.
So is their new CD, aptly titled Time Travel, that features two new and original killer tracks, “She’s Got You Runnin'” and “Rosalie,” by The Hit Men’s Jimmy Ryan along with a vast selection of well-known hits made famous by the tremendous artists they’ve performed and/or recorded with over the years.
Since their inception in 2010, one of the fan favorites in concert has been The Hit Men’s on-stage performance of the song, “The Loco-Motion,” a song that was a #1 hit for both Grand Funk Railroad in 1974 and Little Eva a dozen years earlier.
Since Grand Funk Railroad’s cover of the song hit #1 on the Billboard charts 43 years ago this week, The Hit Men thought it would be an ideal and pertinent time to announce the release of their new Time Travel CD.
The new twelve-song CD, which the band has been working on in the studio in-between their busy tour schedule, features their rendition of four #1 hits including “The Loco-Motion,” Three Dog Night’s “Joy to the World,” Cat Stevens’ “Peace Train” and the lead-off track, The Young Rascals’ “Good Lovin’,” featuring special guest guitarist and Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductee Gene Cornish of The Young Rascals and The Rascals.
In addition to these selections, the CD also features two hit songs by Carly Simon, “Let the River Run” and “Anticipation,” along with Elton John’s “Saturday Night’s Alright for Fighting” and a three-song medley of hits made famous by The Four Seasons (the Sandy Linzer-Denny Randell penned songs, “Opus 17 (Don’t You Worry ’bout Me)” and “Working My Way Back to You” along with the Bob Crewe-Bob Gaudio penned “Ronnie”).
If you grew up in the 60’s and 70’s, it’s likely that you remember these songs well…
“Good Lovin'” topped the U.S. charts for a week in April of 1966 and would be the first real hit for The Young Rascals, selling over a million copies.
“Joy to the World” topped the U.S. charts for six weeks beginning in April of 1971. Featuring Chuck Negron on lead vocals, it would be the biggest selling single of the year (selling over two million copies) and become one of the best-selling singles of all-time (over 5 million copies).
“Let the River Run” would gather all kinds of accolades in 1989 including an Academy Award (for its appearance in the movie, Working Girl) and a Golden Globe for Best Original Song. The Hit Men’s Jimmy Ryan played rhythm and solo guitars on the original hit song in addition to performing in the official video for the song with Carly Simon, Melanie Griffith and Joan Cusack.
“The Loco-Motion” was released by Grand Funk Railroad in May of 1974 and remained at #1 on the U.S. charts for eight weeks. It would be the first #1 song for the band with the second being “We’re An American Band.” It remains one of only nine songs in music history to reach the top of the charts for two different artists.
“Peace Train” would be Cat Stevens’ first top ten hit in the United States, spending three weeks at #1 on the adult contemporary charts in 1971. It remains an anthem of hope to this day…
“Opus 17 (Don’t You Worry ’bout Me),” “Working My Way Back to You” and “Ronnie” would all be Top 20 hits for The Four Seasons in 1966.
“Anticipation” was the title track of Carly Simon’s 1971 album and one of her most popular songs. She wrote the song while waiting for Cat Stevens to pick her up for a date. The Hit Men’s Jimmy Ryan performed electric bass on the original hit song in addition to arranging, and singing on, the back-up vocals.
“Saturday Night’s Alright for Fighting” — written by Elton John and Bernie Taupin – was recorded in 1973 and would be the first single released from Elton’s epic album, Goodbye Yellow Brick Road.
All of these hits have tremendous relevance for the five veteran musicians known as The Hit Men, as keyboardist/founder Lee Shapiro, at the young age of 19, joined Frankie Valli as one of the legendary Four Seasons; Lead guitarist/vocalist/founding member Jimmy Ryan recorded with Carly Simon, Cat Stevens and Elton John; Vocalist/keyboardist/percussionist Russ Velazquez performed with Carole King (who co-wrote the song, “The Loco-Motion,” with songwriting partner, Gerry Goffin); Drummer/vocalist Steve Murphy performed with Felix Cavaliere, Chuck Negron and Mark Farner; Bassist/vocalist Jeff Ganz has also toured with Mark Farner in addition to performing with such music icons as Chuck Berry, Johnny Winter and Cheap Trick among other notables.
Jimmy Ryan co-wrote “She’s Got You Runnin'” with Andy Goldmark while a staff writer at Atlantic Records’ publishing division, Walden Music. It would eventually be recorded by singer Mickey Thomas (Jefferson Starship/Starship/Elvin Bishop Band) for his first solo album, Alive Alone (1981). “Andy and I would usually draw from our friends, family and TV for inspiration on our subject matter,” states Ryan regarding the song. “This one was about a friend of ours who was being totally jerked around by his ‘girlfriend’ who, yes, was a girl but not much of a friend. We weren’t really trying to give him advice in the song. We did enough of that in real life. We were mostly grateful to them for giving us the inspiration to write about something that was real, happening in the present and that many people experience in the often anxiety ridden realm of romance.”
“‘Rosalie’ had a similar drift but this time from a first person perspective rather than the observer in “She’s Got You Runnin’.” This lyric was written by Mike Ragogna, and my contribution was the music and some lyric edits. In my experience in writing with him, Mike was a master in coming up with subject matter out of the blue. I’m pretty sure this song is not about anybody in particular. Mike just has the gift of observing the world around him, and precipitating a vast amount of observation into fascinating short stories. ‘Rosalie’ was one of ten songs we wrote in 1986 for my solo album project that to both of our disappointment, was never released. I’m thrilled that one of those songs has been brought back to life via The Hit Men!”
“We’ve traveled all over the world, either performing or recording with all of these legendary artists who’s songs we’ve recorded for this Time Travel CD,” comments founder Lee Shapiro. “It represents our collective history with these great artists and their songs. We hope you enjoy it.”
Last December, Larry Gates — an original and longtime member of The Hit Men (2010 – 2016) — lost his battle with Multiple Myeloma at the age of 63 and in his honor and memory, Time Travel is being released on what would’ve been his 64th birthday, Tuesday, May 16.
Time Travel was recorded and mixed by Larry Gates and Jimmy Ryan.
Time Travel will be available for purchase on the band’s Facebook page (www.facebook.com/TheHitMenLive/) and CD Baby ( http://cdbaby.com/cd/thehitmen17) in addition to their live shows.
If you’d like additional information, an interview with one of the band members or a review copy of the CD, please contact Jeff Albright / The Albright Entertainment Group at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Please note that select reviews of the CD may be displayed on the big screen behind their stage or merchandise booth at forthcoming shows.
TIME TRAVEL – TRACK LISTING
Good Lovin’ (The Young Rascals and previously, The Olympics) – Featuring special guest guitarist Gene Cornish of The Young Rascals and The Rascals
Joy to the World (Three Dog Night)
Let the River Run (Carly Simon)
The Loco-Motion (Grand Funk Railroad and, previously Little Eva)
Peace Train (Cat Stevens)
She’s Got You Runnin’ (New Original by The Hit Men’s Jimmy Ryan)
Rosalie (New Original by The Hit Men’s Jimmy Ryan)
The Four Seasons Medley 3 – Opus 17 (Don’t You Worry ’bout Me)/Working My Way Back to You/Ronnie (The Four Seasons)
Anticipation (Carly Simon)
Saturday Night’s Alright for Fighting (Elton John)
A new fan recently posted the following commentary, titled “Oh What A Night,” regarding a show by The Hit Men in Texas in April 2017:
“So what if you won free tickets to see The Who, Journey, Elton John, Three Dog Night, Foreigner, Jim Croce, Tommy James and the Shondells, Cat Stevens, Carole King, Carly Simon, The Turtles, The Young Rascals and The Four Seasons all in one event in one night… WOW! Well, that’s kind of what happened to me last Friday night! My friend and I had the time of our lives with The Hit Men at the Brauntex Theatre. These are five brilliant and phenomenally talented musicians who toured and recorded with all these tremendously famous, iconic, artists and bands! YES! These five amazing guys are the actual artists that helped all these and many, many more bands rocket to stardom.” And I got to be a guest at their show and meet them! It was one of the most unforgettable experiences of my life. Thank you Lee Shapiro, Jimmy Ryan, Jeff Ganz, Russ Velazquez and Steve Murphy and Brauntex Theatre.”
THE HIT MEN TOUR DATES 2017 (CONFIRMED)
May 6, 2017 Niswonger PAC Van Wert, OH Ticket Info
May 7, 2017 Arcada Theater St. Charles, IL
May 12, 2017 Three Rivers Casino Florence, OR Ticket Info
May 13, 2017 Three Rivers Casino Florence, OR Ticket Info
June 17, 2017 Martin Lipscomb PAC Highlands, NC
July 20, 2017 The Axelrod PAC Deal, NJ Ticket Info
October 14, 2017 The Mohegan Sun Uncasville, CT
October 20, 2017 The Shea, Wm. Patterson Univ. Wayne, NJ
October 21, 2017 The Strand Lakewood, NJ
November 5, 2017 The Maryland Theatre Hagerstown, MD
ABOUT THE HIT MEN
A group of amazing performers, superb musicians, superior vocalists, great arrangers and creative composers, The Hit Men are:
LEE SHAPIRO (keyboardist/founder) – In 1973, at the age of 19, Lee Shapiro joined Frankie Valli as one of the legendary Four Seasons. As keyboardist/musical director, Lee toured the world performing classic hits like “Can’t Take My Eye Off You,” “Sherry” and “Big Girls Don’t Cry.” Lee was the arranger on the multi-million sellers, “December, 1963 (Oh, What a Night)” and “Who Loves You.” Over the years, Lee has collaborated with stars ranging from Barry Manilow and Tommy James to the London Symphony Orchestra. Fun fact: In 1999, Lee diversified his talents and created the “must have” toys of 2000 and 2001, “Rock ‘N Roll Elmo” and “Rock ‘N Roll Ernie” for Mattel/Fisher-Price.
JIMMY RYAN (lead guitarist/vocalist/founding member) – Jimmy started playing guitar at the age of ten and began performing for audiences by fifteen. By seventeen, he had his first recording contact and, by eighteen, scored his first hit record as lead guitarist, vocalist and co-songwriter with The Critters. When the band split up, Jimmy continued his career as lead guitarist, back-up vocalist, often arranger, and occasional co-writer with Carly Simon, recording such hits as “Anticipation,” “You’re So Vain,” the Academy Award-winning song, “Let the River Run” and many more. His working relationship with Carly spanned twenty-one years and they remain close friends to this day. Jimmy has also recorded albums with many other artists, most notably Cat Stevens and Jim Croce (receiving ha gold record for each), as well as recording with Rod Stewart, Paul McCartney, Mick Jagger, John Entwistle, Jimmy Webb, Elton John and Kiki Dee, The Doors and many more. Fun fact: The George Washington Museum in Mount Vernon is featuring five films with Jimmy’s music and Independence Hall in Philadelphia is currently featuring Jimmy’s music in their introductory presentation of “The Liberty Bell.”
RUSS VELAZQUEZ (vocalist/keyboardist/percussionist) – Born and raised in the Bronx, Russ is an award-winning and Emmy-nominated composer, singer, arranger and producer for TV, radio and film. A “first call” session singer and guitarist for over thirty years, he has performed with some of music’s best including Sting, Carole King, Luther Vandross, Patti Austin, Lisa Fischer, the Ramones and others. Fun fact: He writes music for Sesame St. and has written the theme songs and scored music for various cartoons and TV shows including Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (2nd and 3rd theme songs), Pokemon, GI Joe Sigma 6, Sonic X, One Piece and Yu-Gi-Oh!
STEVE MURPHY (drummer/vocalist) – Steve is a drummer/singer/producer/engineer and has been heavily involved in the New York music scene since the late ’80s. He became passionate about music and performing at an early age. The artists he has performed and recorded with are some of the most famous and recognizable names in music over the last sixty years. His first big break came in 1998 when he was asked to work as a vocalist in the studio with legendary producer Phil Ramone on a project for Elton John. He was a member of The Alan Parsons Project touring over 40 countries from 2003 – 2010. He has also toured with Jack Bruce, Eric Burdon and the Animals, Chuck Negron, Felix Cavaliere, Dave Mason, Todd Rundgren, Christopher Cross, Mark Farner, The Turtles, Micky Dolenz, Gary Puckett, Mitch Ryder and over a dozen more major artists from the 60’s, 70’s and 80’s. Fun fact: His voice was featured on dozens of national commercials including the Army’s “Be All You Can Be” campaign.
JEFF GANZ (bassist/vocalist) – Born in Washington, DC, Jeff became a New Yorker at the age of 13. A year later, he began performing professionally as a guitarist/vocalist in the Hendrix/Clapton tradition. At the age of 20, Jeff made the decision to master the bass, as it represented the ideal hybrid between harmony and rhythm, guitar and drums. Jeff has toured and recorded with such legends as Johnny Winter, John Lee Hooker, Lou Reed, Tito Puente, Chuck Berry, Southside Johnny and the Asbury Jukes, Dr. John, Eddie Money, Cheap Trick, Vanilla Fudge and Blood, Sweat & Tears. Jeff’s resume reads like a who’s who of popular American music. His freelance credits include movie soundtracks, Broadway musicals and national television commercials. He appeared on Grammy-nominated recordings with Johnny Winter and John Lee Hooker, as well as the Tony Award-winning original cast album of Roger Miller’s Big River.
Individually, they’ve appeared on over 85 albums and have been awarded numerous gold and platinum albums for their recording and touring efforts.
“STORIES FROM THE ROAD” Video Series
Jimmy Ryan’s story about two insanely memorable days at George Martin’s AIR Studios in London while recording with Carly Simon for her 1972 No Secrets album – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u_nILamoiTY
Russ Velazquez’s story about meeting David Bowie at the St. James Theatre in NYC – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nYockhNcXqs&feature=youtu.be
Lee Shapiro’s humorous tale of a show with Frankie Valli and The Four Seasons at Radio City Music Hall -https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6d3wtYSXCMw&feature=youtu.be
Jimmy Ryan’s tribute to Jim Croce on what would’ve been Croce’s 74th birthday –
STAY TUNED FOR A NEW “STORIES FROM THE ROAD” FROM THE HIT MEN’S JEFF GANZ!
With so many great stories to tell and songs to sing, it’s easy to see why The Hit Men are a favorite among audiences across America.
Posted by RockStarPR on May 5, 2017 | Comments Off on CONGRATULATIONS TO THE LEGENDARY LOU GRAMM AS TODAY, MARCH 8, MARKS THE 40TH ANNIVERSARY OF THE RELEASE OF FOREIGNER’S SELF-TITLED DEBUT ALBUM!
March 8, 2017
Congratulations to the legendary Lou Gramm as today, March 8, 2017 marks the 40th anniversary of the release of Foreigner’s self-titled debut album… what an amazing album! In my humble opinion, it’s 38 minutes and 46 seconds of rock perfection.
Spawning the Top 20 singles, “Feels Like the First Time,” “Cold as Ice” and “Long, Long Way From Home,” it also contained such fan favorites as “Starrider,” “Headknocker” and “At War with the World.”
While a group by the name of Foreigner still exists, it should never be forgotten that Lou Gramm is, and always will be, the distinct and irreplaceable voice you hear on every single one of the hits from the 70’s, 80’s and 90’s. Sixteen top 30 hits. 80 million albums sold worldwide. There’s only one Lou.
Posted by RockStarPR on May 5, 2017 | Comments Off on CRAIG CHAQUICO REUNITED WITH LONG LOST 1959 LES PAUL SUNBURST THAT WAS STOLEN DURING FAMOUS RIOT AT JEFFERSON STARSHIP CONCERT IN SUMMER OF 1978
February 21, 2017
CRAIG CHAQUICO REUNITED WITH LONG LOST
1959 LES PAUL SUNBURST THAT WAS STOLEN DURING
FAMOUS RIOT AT JEFFERSON STARSHIP CONCERT IN SUMMER OF 1978
GRAMMY-NOMINATED GUITARIST HOPES TO PERFORM ONCE AGAIN
WITH BELOVED GUITAR HEARD ON SUCH JEFFERSON STARSHIP HITS AS
“WITH YOUR LOVE,” “COUNT ON ME” AND “RUNAWAY”
For Jefferson Starship guitarist and original founding member Craig Chaquico, “Find Your Way Back” has a whole new meaning some 35 years after writing, and performing on, the Billboard Top Ten single from the band’s 1981 album, Modern Times.
It was a year ago this month that Craig informed his worldwide fans about his quest to retrieve his beloved 1959 Les Paul Sunburst guitar (9-2180) that was thought to have been destroyed during a summer of ’78 fiery riot in Lorelei, Germany, right after it was announced that Jefferson Starship wouldn’t be taking the stage that day as a result of legendary singer Grace Slick not feeling well.
Fearing for their safety, the band members that were on site — Craig, David Frieberg, and John Barbata — quickly evacuated the area. Grace Slick, Paul Kantner, Marty Balin and Pete Sears were still at the hotel. Devout fans of the band know that their next show in Hamburg together would mark the last for this original line-up.
Almost all of the bands’ instruments and gear went missing during this riot, including Craig’s rare 1957 Les Paul Gold Top (still missing – Serial No. 7 8793 – played on the first two Jefferson Starship hit albums, Dragon Fly (1974) and Red Octopus (1975)), and this recently discovered ’59 Sunburst guitar that was near-and-dear to Craig’s heart, as he used it on the platinum-selling Jefferson Starship albums, Spitfire (1976) and Earth (1978), and can be heard on such classic hits as “With Your Love,” “Count on Me” and “Runaway” among others. Of course, it’s this rock and roll history that has added extreme value to the guitar.
Part of the successful identification process which, without the serial number, included Craig going through thousands of high-resolution photos in the vast archives of Roger Ressmeyer who was a key band photographer throughout the ‘70s and ‘80s, including for both the Spitfire and Earth albums.
In what could be called “a feel good story,” the ’59 Sunburst has finally found its way back.
Three years after he was tipped off that the guitar might still be in existence, Craig’s difficult quest to get it back has ended after a meeting of the musical minds between Craig and the instrument’s current owner, a guitar aficionado, himself.
After more than a year of back-and-forth’s in the legal system, the two musicians sat down and talked about the history of the guitar (now known affectionately as “Lorelei”) and what it meant to each of them. And it was this discussion that led to a confidential settlement agreement and resolution between the parties…
“Seeing the guitar for the first time after so many years brought back so many memories for me,” states Chaquico. “One of my dreams from the outset was simply to perform or record with it again… and it looks like that dream just might come true.”
In a gesture of good will from one musician to another, the current owner of the ’59 Sunburst (who has now owned the instrument for almost a dozen years) would like Craig to continue making great music and providing further heritage to the instrument that already has an illustrious past thanks to Craig. This guitar went everywhere with him beginning in the mid-70’s until it vanished at the riot.
“I’m thoroughly excited about hitting the stage with it again sometime this year,” says Craig. “It’ll be a magical moment for me and I’m sure I’ll feel like a ‘kid’ in the mid-70’s all over again. ‘Lorelei’ truly is one of my favorite guitars of all-time.”
“What was most pleasing for me was seeing Craig and the current owner, both lovers of music and guitars, sit down for a day and talk amongst themselves to develop a trust,” says attorney Peter Koenig who represented Craig in his pursuit of the guitar. “While us lawyers discussed esoteric legal points as to who, rightfully, would keep the guitar, Craig opened a dialogue with the current owner that ultimately allowed for both of them to share their feelings and realize their dream outcome. I look forward to the music Craig makes on ‘9-2180’.”
The value of the guitar can only increase over time if it remains in its impeccable condition.
According to a Guitar Player magazine article in April 2016, Metallica’s Kirk Hammett purchased a 1959 Les Paul Standard that was previously owned by Fleetwood Mac founder Peter Green and guitar great Gary Moore for a reported $2 million.
Craig looks forward to great things ahead, commenting, “What I’d really like to see is a reunion of Jefferson Starship original members who lost their instruments that day come together and perform with them again. Pete Sears got his bass back in 2013 and John Barbata got his cymbals back shortly after the riot.”
As the popular Jefferson Starship song, “Rock Music,” says, “Rock ‘n’ Roll is good time music… listen to it!”
And to quote yet another one of their hits, “Freedom at Point Zero,” ” ‘n Rock ‘n’ Roll isn’t over!”
If you’d like to interview Craig regarding the history of the guitar and his quest or need additional press materials, please contact Jeff Albright / The Albright Entertainment Group at email@example.com. We have a great selection of photos available!
Posted by RockStarPR on May 5, 2017 | Comments Off on GEOFF TATE THE WHOLE STORY “RYCHE” ACOUSTIC TOUR BEGINNING JANUARY 22 TO FEATURE HIGH ENERGY ACOUSTIC VERSIONS OF SOME OF THE HEAVY METAL GENRE’S MOST RECOGNIZED SONGS INCLUDING “SILENT LUCIDITY,” “JET CITY WOMAN” AND “EYES OF A STRANGER”
January 16, 2017
GEOFF TATE THE WHOLE STORY “RYCHE” ACOUSTIC TOUR
BEGINNING JANUARY 22 TO FEATURE HIGH ENERGY ACOUSTIC VERSIONS
OF SOME OF THE HEAVY METAL GENRE’S MOST RECOGNIZED SONGS
INCLUDING “SILENT LUCIDITY,” “JET CITY WOMAN,” “EMPIRE,”
“I DON’T BELIEVE IN LOVE” AND “EYES OF A STRANGER”
Beginning Sunday, January 22, 2017, multi-platinum selling, GRAMMY-nominated singer/songwriter Geoff Tate will be embarking on an extensive U.S. tour that will be highlighting songs from all 17 albums he has done throughout his illustrious 35 year career.
Geoff is regarded as one of the most skilled vocalists in the rock genre with hundreds of modern, popular artists citing him as a major influence. He is the original singer for the band Queensryche, which he fronted for over 30 years.
Geoff will present his upcoming all-acoustic show with himself, backed by a 7-piece acoustic band of musicians from the United States and Ireland — featuring three guitar players, mandolin, cello, saxophone, violin and multiple percussion instruments — to produce a high energy acoustic version of some of the heavy metal genre’s most recognized songs including “Silent Lucidity,” “Jet City Woman,” “Empire,” “I Don’t Believe in Love” and “Eyes of a Stranger.”
22 – Culture Room in Ft. Lauderdale, FL
23 – Sanjan Theater in Bonita Springs, FL
24 – Capitol Theatre in Clearwater, FL
25 – City Winery in Atlanta, GA
26 – Zydeco in Birmingham, AL
27 – Vinyl Music Hall in Pensacola, FL
28 – Varsity Theatre in Baton Rouge, LA
31 – 3TEN @ ACL Live in Austin, TX
1 – Sam’s Burger Joint in San Antonio, TX
2 – The Pub Fountains in Stafford, TX
3 – Jake’s in Lubbock, TX
4 – Trees in Dallas, TX
7 – Shank Hall in Milwaukee, WI
8 – Amsterdam Bar & Hall in St. Paul, MN
9 – The Waiting Room in Omaha, NE
10 – The Castle Theatre in Bloomington, IL
11 – Tailgater’s Grill in Bolingbrook, IL
12 – City Winery in Chicago, IL
13 – City Winery in Nashville, TN
15 – Jammin Java in Vienna, VA
16 – Daryl’s House in Pawling, NY
17 – The Rapids Theatre in Niagara Falls, NY
18 – Tupelo Music Hall in Londonderry, NH
19 – 89 North Music Venue in Patchogue, NY
20 – City Winery in New York, NY
21 – State Theatre in State College, PA
22 – Diesel in Pittsburgh, PA
23 – The Token Lounge in Westland, MI
24 – The Kent Stage in Kent, OH
25 – Live at Ludlow Garage in Cincinnati, OH
28 – Gothic Theatre in Englewood, CO
1 – Downtown Artery in Fort Collins, CO
2 – Kimo Theater in Albuquerque, NM
3 – Marquee Theater in Tempe, AZ
5 – Rialto Theatre in Tucson, AZ
9 – The Coach House in San Juan Capistrano, CA
10 – The Rose in Pasadena, CA
11 – The Canyon Theater in Agoura Hills, CA
12 – Saint Rocke in Hermosa Beach, CA
14 – Jazz Alley in Seattle, WA
15 – Jazz Alley in Seattle, WA
16 – Rock Hard PDX in Portland, OR
18 – Oakland Metro Operahouse in Oakland, CA
19 – Goldfield Trading Post in Sacramento, CA
22 – Rumba Cafe in Columbus, OH
23 – The Intersection in Grand Rapids, MI
24 – Old Rock House in St. Louis, MO
25 – Knuckleheads Saloon in Kansas City, MO
28 – High Dive in Gainesville, FL
29 – Jack Rabbits in Jacksonville, FL
30 – The Calico Room in Wilmington, NC
1 – The Blind Tiger in Greensboro, NC
2 – The Windjammer in Isle of Palms, SC
4 – The Grey Eagle in Asheville, NC
5 – Neighborhood Theatre in Charlotte, NC
6 – Fletcher Theater in Raleigh, NC
7 – Shaka’s in Virginia Beach, VA
8 – The Beacon Theatre in Hopewell, VA
9 – Tellus 360 in Lancaster, PA
12 – Saile Multi in Quebec, Canada
14 – Brass Monkey Bar in Ottawa, Canada
15 – Rockpile West in Toronto, Canada
(New info below added and sent from T.A.E.G. on February 14, 2017 – Press release below initially sent by MVD Entertainment Group to media on February 6, 2017)
GEOFF TATE, FORMERLY OF QUEENSRYCHE,
STARS IN THE BURNINGMOORE DEATHS
COMING TO DVD AND DIGITAL FORMATS VIA
MVD ENTERTAINMENT GROUP ON FEBRUARY 14TH
On February 14th, MVD Entertainment will release the feature film debut of Geoff Tate, former lead vocalist of the multi-platinum metal band Queensryche. Entitled The Burningmoore Deaths, the horror film – written and directed by Jonathan Williams – is inspired by true events surrounding unsolved murders captured on security cameras during a production shoot of a Home Improvement TV show pilot.
Tate takes the role of James Parrish, a man who allegedly killed his own wife and three children before disappearing without a trace. With the home now vacated and boarded up, a home improvement company gets permission to film the renovation process for a test pilot for a TV network, not knowing that Parrish had returned to take up residence once again in the derelict building. Bloody chaos ensues – and it’s all captured on camera!
The Burningmoore Deaths features an original score by Andrew Kadin with additional music by Dawn of Solace and Geoff Tate.
“I think I’ve always done it… in our own shows and with the way I present music,” said Tate. “It all has a bit of a stage acting bend to it. So this wasn’t really a stretch for me… it was just playing to a different audience, to a camera rather than a room full of people, but it’s the same thing. You play-act and you make stuff up and you present that like you like you would in a stage show.”
The Burningmoore Deaths will be available on all digital stores for download and also available on DVD in retail stores, the MVD Shop and on Amazon.
Hi Res Cover Art (below and…): https://mvdb2b.com/i/300dpi/MVD9663D.jpg
Press Photos / Stills: http://mvdb2b.com/i/press/MVD9663D/PHOTOS/
Street Date: 02/14/17
PreBook Date: 01/10/17
Run Time: 82:00 mins
Number of Discs: 1
Year of Production: 2010
Director: Jonathan Williams, James A. Colletti
Producers: Lisa G. Myers, Tony Guida
Actors: Geoff Tate (formerly of Queensryche)
Territory: USA & ENGLISH CANADA
Posted by RockStarPR on May 5, 2017 | Comments Off on LEGENDARY CONCERT PROMOTER BARRY FEY, WHO PUT ON MORE SHOWS THAN ANY OTHER PROMOTER IN THE HISTORY OF MUSIC, TO BE MEMORIALIZED IN MAJOR MUSIC HISTORY DOCUMENTARY, “ROCKFATHER ROCKUMENTARY – THE LIFE AND TIMES OF BARRY FEY”
January 30, 2017
My journey took me from misfit to myth. I vacillated between bravado and panic;
between madman and saint. I was often an intolerable bastard but my goals were always the same:
sell as many tickets as possible and make sure the audiences had the best possible experience.”
— Barry Fey (from his book, “Backstage Past”) —
(Photo provided from the Fey Family photo archives)
LEGENDARY CONCERT PROMOTER BARRY FEY,
WHO PUT ON MORE SHOWS THAN ANY OTHER PROMOTER IN THE HISTORY OF MUSIC,
TO BE MEMORIALIZED IN MAJOR MUSIC HISTORY DOCUMENTARY,
“ROCKFATHER ROCKUMENTARY™️️ – THE LIFE AND TIMES OF BARRY FEY,”
WITH BRONZE STATUE TO BE ERECTED AT RED ROCKS AMPHITHEATRE IN THE SUMMER OF 2018
MUSICTRACKS™️️ FILMS, INC., IN COLLABORATION WITH THE FEY FAMILY,
CURRENTLY IN PRODUCTION OF “ROCKFATHER ROCKUMENTARY™️️” THAT WILL FEATURE
INTERVIEWS WITH FAMILY, FRIENDS, INDUSTRY EXECUTIVES AND, OF COURSE,
THE ROCK STARS THAT HELPED BARRY FEY REACH THE PINNACLE OF SUCCESS AND VICE VERSA
Concert promoter Barry Fey was one in a million… as brash as he was brilliant.
He sold more concert tickets than any promoter in the history of music.
Loved by rock stars and adored by audiences, Barry Fey undeniably reached legendary status before his untimely passing in 2013.
There wasn’t anyone like him “then” and, due to the ever-changing concert business, there won’t be anyone like him in the future.
U2’s Bono once described him in a personal letter as, “A voice louder than any rock ‘n’ roll band.”
If you saw a show at the famous Red Rocks Amphitheatre in Morrison, Colorado from 1968 to 1997, you had Barry to thank as he promoted almost a thousand shows at the venue during his illustrious career. Barry once said, “All these venues were made by men, but Red Rocks was made by God.” There are “The Gods of Rock” and this is the “Rocks of God.” His first show at Red Rocks in September of ’68 was headlined by Jimi Hendrix and, as they say, “the rest is history.”
Later that year, he would promote what would be Led Zeppelin’s very first show in America at the Denver Auditorium Arena.
In the summer of ’69, Barry promoted the Denver Pop Festival at Mile High Stadium (marking the last performance of The Jimi Hendrix Experience) and continued to bring the Colorado music masses great shows throughout the 70’s.
He would create “The Red Rocks Summer of Stars” concert series in 1976 and would be named “Promoter of the Year” by Billboard magazine for three consecutive years beginning in 1978.
Fast forward to 1983 where he put on, perhaps, his most well-known show with a band on the rise at the time called U2.
The spectacle at one of the world’s premiere outdoor concert venues would result in the epic concert film, U2 Live at Red Rocks: Under a Blood Red Sky, that would be produced by Barry, Island Records founder Chris Blackwell and the band, itself. Rolling Stone selected the film’s performance of “Sunday Bloody Sunday” as one of the “50 Moments that Changed the History of Rock and Roll.”
Just a week prior to the U2 concert at Red Rocks, Barry helped Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak put on one of the greatest four-day concert festivals in the history of music called the US Festival. With 670,000 people in attendance over the four-day event (Memorial Day weekend), the US Festival would be the largest single show that Barry ever promoted.
In September of that same year, Barry teamed up with such baseball legends as Joe DiMaggio, Mickey Mantle and Willie Mays, to bring The Denver Dream old-timers game to Mile High Stadium in Denver, opening up the doors for Major League Baseball in the state of Colorado. Barry, an avid sports fan, called it, “Without a doubt, the finest thing I’ve ever done as a promoter was on September 30, 1983.” The event drew over 58,000 people.
And that was all in 1983!
Call it just another year in the well-lived life of Barry Fey.
It’s these kinds of stories and more that will be reflected in the forthcoming documentary on Barry titled, Rockfather Rockumentary™️️ – The Life and Times of Barry Fey, currently in production.
“This is a life story that needs to be told,” states Lee Liley (CEO) of Denver-based MusicTracks™️️ Films (www.musictracksfilms.com), who are producing the major documentary. “There have been so many great music-related documentaries lately, from David Bowie, Keith Richards and Kurt Cobain to David Geffen and Shep Gordon, that we felt further inspired to tell Barry’s own, incredible story, as a tribute from his friends and family. It’ll be the good, the bad and, perhaps, even the ugly… his musical adventures from beginning to end… We hope to capture it all. While he penned a book a few years back, we wanted to bring his story more to life on a big screen… one that’s colorful… just like Barry.”
Charles E. Slocum III, MusicTracks™️️ Films President and Executive Producer of the documentary, comments, “It was great working with Barry. He had the best memory of anyone I’ve ever met. He could remember not only the dates of the shows that he produced, but tell you the day of the week, what the weather conditions were and what the artist was wearing that day! Barry was truly extraordinary.”
Rockfather Rockumentary™️️ – The Life and Times of Barry Fey will encompass both Barry and music history, as it evolved from the mid-60’s, featuring footage of, and commentary from, many of the top musical artists of the 60’s, 70’s, 80’s and 90’s about their interactions with Barry and stories of the era.
Just prior to his passing, Barry was working with MusicTracks™️️ on the documentary and sat down with his longtime friend and well-known musician Kenny Passarelli for what would be his last filmed interview. A snippet of that interview can be seen here – http://musictrackstv.com/musictracksfilms/rockfather/promo/fey.html). Passarelli – a twenty-six time gold and platinum winning artist and co-writer of the hit song, “Rocky Mountain Way” – will host and narrate the forthcoming documentary and already has quite a few artists and executives “in the can.”
MusicTracks™️️ has established a memorial statue fund (www.BarryFeyStatueFund.org) for a life-sized bronze statue of Barry to be erected at the Red Rocks Park Amphitheatre that they’re hoping to unveil on July 16, 2018, a day that marks what would’ve been Barry’s 80th birthday. A memorial concert that will benefit the Barry Fey Foundation is in the works for that day.
Upon Barry’s initial retirement in 1997, President Bill Clinton thanked Barry for his contributions, “Dozens of the artists who are now in rock’s pantheon were first booked by Barry. Music lovers all across America, and all around the world, have been the beneficiary of Barry’s good instincts, his hard work and his creativity.”
This same year, Barry would be inducted into the Touring Hall of Fame by Performance magazine.
He went from a small town to the big time and the accolades he received during his career were numerous.
From his first show in Rockford, Illinois on Easter Sunday 1965 to his final show in Colorado more than three decades later, Rockfather Rockumentary™️️ – The Life and Times of Barry Fey will “tell the tale.”
In early 2012, Barry released a book called Backstage Past (Forewords by Pete Townshend and Ozzy & Sharon Osbourne) that chronicled his journey.
He hung out with “The Gods of Rock” and, ultimately, became a rock star among rock stars.
Colorado. Rocky Mountain Way. He came, he saw, he conquered.
With Rockfather Rockumentary™️️ – The Life and Times of Barry Fey, the legend continues…
If you have a story regarding Barry Fey and would like to be considered for an interview for the documentary, please contact Jeff Albright / The Albright Entertainment Group at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Posted by RockStarPR on May 5, 2017 | Comments Off on THE HIT MEN — FEATURING FIVE BRILLIANT MUSICIANS AND SINGERS WHO HAVE PERFORMED AND TOURED WITH SOME OF MUSIC’S BIGGEST NAMES — START THE NEW YEAR OFF BY ANNOUNCING INITIAL U.S. TOUR DATES
January 10, 2017
THE HIT MEN — FEATURING FIVE BRILLIANT MUSICIANS AND SINGERS
WHO HAVE PERFORMED AND TOURED WITH SOME OF MUSIC’S BIGGEST NAMES —
START THE NEW YEAR OFF BY ANNOUNCING INITIAL U.S. TOUR DATES,
NEWEST BAND MEMBERS AND NEW MUSIC ON THE HORIZON
THE HIT MEN PAY TRIBUTE TO THE LATE, GREAT, JIM CROCE,
BY SHARING VIDEO STORY ON WHAT WOULD’VE BEEN THE SINGER’S 74TH BIRTHDAY
A group of amazing performers, superb musicians, superior vocalists, great arrangers and creative composers, THE HIT MEN are hit makers of the 60’s, 70’s and 80’s — including performing and recording members of superstar acts like Frankie Valli and The Four Seasons, Tommy James and the Shondells, The Critters, and band-mates who played and performed with Jim Croce, Cat Stevens, Carly Simon, Elton John, Paul McCartney, Cheap Trick and more.
On the road touring as THE HIT MEN, this brotherhood of musicians — keyboardist and group founder Lee Shapiro, lead guitarist/vocalist Jimmy Ryan, keyboardist/percussionist/vocalist Russ Velazquez and new members, bassist/vocalist Jeff Ganz and drummer/vocalist Steve Murphy — relive the magic they created on world stages and in recording studios years ago, bringing audiences a night of mega-hit after mega-hit, after mega-hit.
“Who Loves You,” “December, 1963 (Oh, What a Night),” “The Loco-motion,” “Peace Train,” “Mony Mony,” “Good Lovin’,” “You’re So Vain” and “Joy to the World” are just a few of the many hits they perform at their shows.
Such hits are the fabric of our lives.
Whether you’re a child of the 50’s, 60’s, 70’s or 80’s or just a fan of good music, THE HIT MEN have created a performance for all to enjoy.
The hits they’ve recorded with well-known artists or the songs they have performed with those artists have spanned four decades.
“Good music will always stand the test of time and we love to perform the hits of the artists we’ve been associated with over the years at our shows,” states Lee Shapiro.
“We take people on a journey back to a more innocent time when they were kids and just out to have fun on a Saturday night. We promise you will leave our shows feeling younger than when you arrived!” comments Jimmy Ryan, a founding member of THE HIT MEN.
During their performances, THE HIT MEN share engaging and often hilarious stories and anecdotes from their days in recording studios and on the concert circuit; it’s a fascinating look back through rock & roll history from the guys who lived and breathed the experience. They simply deliver sizzling shows that combine hit after hit after hit with eye-popping videos and reminiscences born from their witnessing and making musical history.
Make no mistake… THE HIT MEN are not a tribute act, nor are they the former cast of a Broadway musical.
They are the actual musicians that have recorded in the studio or appeared on stage with the artists of the hits, themselves.
In all, they have individually appeared on over 85 albums, awarded numerous Gold and Platinum albums and have received Emmy nominations, Telly awards, Clio awards and more.
“We have an emotional connection with the audience that tribute bands and sound-alike bands can’t have,” comments Shapiro. “When we share our experiences and tell stories, we aren’t reciting a script. We were on the team that made these songs what they are… When we tell you how ‘My Eyes Adored You’ was originally called ‘Sweet Eyes of Georgia,’ we know because we were there.”
Their musical resume reads like a Who’s Who in Rock & Roll.
`This year, the band will be performing dozens of dates all over the United States and will be finishing up the recording of their new CD between their mid-January and mid-February performances (see announced and confirmed itinerary below).
Today would’ve marked Jim Croce’s 74th birthday and, as such, THE HIT MEN’s Jimmy Ryan pays tribute to him with this video story:
In describing his days with Jim Croce, Jimmy commented, “Beyond being a brilliant and immediately lovable composer, not to mention an old Villanova U buddy, Jim was a pleasure to work with… His spirit and energy filled the studio and the musicians had no trouble tuning into the sound and style he wanted to create in his music because he made it so easy.”
A medley of Jim Croce hits is expected to appear on the new CD.
While final songs have yet to be determined, one thing’s for sure… it’ll be chock-full of greatest hits from THE HIT MEN!
Here come the flashbacks!
For more information on The Hit Men, please contact Jeff Albright / The Albright Entertainment Group at RockStarPR@aol.com.
THE HIT MEN can be found at:
Official Website: www.thehitmenlive.com
THE HIT MEN TOUR 2017*
14 – Peoples Bank Theatre in Marietta, Ohio
10 – The McCarter Theatre in Princeton, New Jersey
18 – Broadway Theatre in Pitman, New Jersey
1 – Ruth Eckerd Hall in Clearwater, Florida
3 – Flagler Auditorium in Palm Coast, Florida
4 – Artis in Naples, Florida
5 – Sharon Morse Performing Arts Center in Lady Lake, Florida
24 – The Macomb Center for the Performing Arts in Clinton Township, Michigan
26 – Arcada Theater in St. Charles, Illinois
1 – Scottsdale Performing Arts Center in Scottsdale, Arizona
6 – Cole Auditorium in Hamlet, North Carolina
21 – Brauntex Theatre in New Braunfels, Texas
22 – Palace Theatre in Corsicana, Texas
28 – The F.M. Kirby Center for the Performing Arts in Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania
29 – Bergen Performing Arts Center in Englewood, New Jersey
6 – Niswonger Performing Arts Center in Van Wert, Ohio
17 – Martin Lipscomb Performing Arts Center in Highlands, NC
Posted by RockStarPR on May 5, 2017 | Comments Off on RAYBURN CONTINUES TO SHINE THE LIGHT WITH RELEASE OF NEW ALBUM TITLED “THE LIVING END” FEATURING A DOZEN SONGS REFLECTING THEIR 70’S ROOTS
September 6, 2016
RAYBURN CONTINUES TO SHINE THE LIGHT
WITH RELEASE OF NEW ALBUM TITLED “THE LIVING END”
FEATURING A DOZEN SONGS REFLECTING THEIR 70’S ROOTS
“THE LIVING END” — PRODUCED BY GRAMMY AWARD-WINNING
PRODUCER BEN FOWLER — SPANS THE GAMUT BETWEEN
PROG ROCK AND CLASSIC ROCK WITH MULTI-GENERATION APPEAL
Here’s the story.
In 1964, Rayburn’s Steve Stephens and his friend Jimmy Roberts went to see the Yardbirds in their hometown of Little Rock, Arkansas and the concert changed their lives forever. In the midst of the memorable performance, Stephens said to Roberts, “Let’s do that!” And they did… for two twelve-year-old boys, the dream began and RAYBURN was born. Stephens had his electric piano and Roberts had his guitar. It wouldn’t be long before they were playing everywhere in town, eventually performing between the set breaks of jazz great Ramsey Lewis, who encouraged them by once saying that they might want to think about giving music a “serious spin.”
But a career in music was about the last thing that Steve’s parents wanted to hear and they soon shipped him off to prep school…
Little did they know that the school had a piano and by the time he returned to Little Rock, the dream was very much alive and well and he soon resurrected the band with Roberts.
They quickly found themselves opening up for the likes of Three Dog Night and acting as Chuck Berry’s backing band when he came to town.
They cut some demos of their own at Nashville’s Monument Studios and, while recording, were spotted by a label executive from an RCA subsidiary called Mega Records. “They’d had some big hits and they were looking for a rock act,” recalls Stephens. “Right there, he offered us a contract.”
Excited that their dream was coming true, they signed it… and then they heard nothing more. It was the highest of highs and the lowest of lows.
Jimmy Roberts would pass away from spinal cancer in 1974 and the band lost its soul to carry on… Stephens would go to work for the family business and all music aspirations seemed done as the years passed.
The year 1980 proved to be another difficult one as Stephens’ father fell ill, but decided it was time to tell Steve that the reason their music “died” years earlier was because he bought the band’s contract from the label.
Steve was devastated but determined, deciding that “never say never” was the attitude to uphold. Steve and his father were estranged but reconciled before his father’s passing.
Fast forward to almost three decades later.
At the urging of Jimmy Roberts’ brother (who had taken Steve and Jimmy to that original Yardbirds concert in ’64), Stephens reunited the remaining band members in 2009 for a one-off Rayburn performance that would last into the early morning hours.
The music came alive and so did the original spark that Stephens possessed so many years ago.
Shortly after the release of their debut, Your Mind, in 2011, Stephens became re-invigorated and began to write songs for The Living End. As the principal songwriter, he wrote or co-wrote the majority of the tracks in addition to arranging the music.
Grammy Award-winning producer/engineer Ben Fowler (Eric Clapton/Rush/Lynyrd Skynyrd/Bad Company/Others) hopped on board and the recording process began…
From the lead-off track, “At the Gate” (a prog rocker reminiscent of early Kansas), to the last selection, “Not Going Back,” what lies between are songs about a variety of topics including overcoming challenges (“Morning Train”), exorcism (“Malachi”), social interaction (“Deep in Blue”), abused children (“Madness”), spiritual development (“Almost Home”) and the Big Easy (via the hook-laden song, “Fat Tuesday”). It’s definitely a “Journey,” which is also the title of one of the songs.
Rayburn is comprised of Danny Archer (Lead Vocals), Steve Stephens (Hammond B-3 organ and piano/keyboards), Mack Price (Bass/Acoustic Guitar), NIR-Z (Drums), Tom Bukovac (Electric and Acoustic Guitar), Eldon Huff (Electric Guitar) and Mack Price V (Electric Guitar).
“I feel we captured some great performances,” states Stephens. “In addition to the usual Rayburn ‘suspects’ who played lights out on this album, we were joined by a great selection of guest players and vocalists that included steel guitarist Paul Franklin, bassist Michael Rhodes, percussionist Eric Darkin and synth programmer Charles Judge along with our background singers Russell Terrell, Vicky Hampton and Kim Keys.” Mack and Steve arranged all parts played by the highly regarded string section known as the Nashville String Machine.
Rayburn’s newest CD, The Living End, will bring you back to the days where you would head down to your local record store, go through the albums from A to Z, buy a favorite or two, take the shrink-wrap off, then read the liner notes while listening to both sides of the disc all the way through.
While those days may have passed, the spirit continues… Rayburn’s aim with The Living End is to take the listener on a journey where the entire album is heard in one sitting from beginning to end.
In a world where songs are often seen or heard one at a time on a variety of computer outlets, Rayburn hopes that you take 47 minutes to take a listen to their newest offering in its entirety.
Fully realizing the importance and impact of a visual affiliation, the band is currently working on videos for many, if not all, of the songs featured on the album.
Steve Stephens remains true to the history of music that got him this far and Rayburn will be putting out a special vinyl pressing of The Living End to honor that history.
Rayburn only proves that it’s never too late to be what you could’ve been as their music has the power to excite, inspire and unite.
While the music is still proud progressive rock — with the emphasis on rock — The Living End isn’t about the distant glory days. It’s about a push into the future.
Like the very best stories, Rayburn’s tale doesn’t end. The Road goes ever on…
Enjoy the music.
If you’d like to receive a review copy of The Living End and/or do an interview with Rayburn founder Steve Stephens, please contact Jeff Albright / The Albright Entertainment Group at email@example.com. Song inspiration/description available upon request.
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Official Website: www.rayburn.band