AOR and Melodic Rock News on 22/05/2014

NIGHT RANGER BONUS TRACK PREVIEW:
Night Ranger release their anticipated High Road album June 6, and there’s a few bonus tracks on offer. Those are:
L.A. No Name (Instrumental) & The Mountain Song on the Deluxe Edition of CD (Worldwide + DVD)
L.A. No Name, Don’t Even Know Your Name & The Mountain Song (Best Buy USA, Deluxe CD +DVD)
Lay It On Me (Live) (Japan release).

For your purchasing decisions, here is 90 second samples of the bonus tracks – Don’t Even Know Your Name / The Mountain Song / Lay It On Me (Live).
LA No Name was the Japanese Bonus Track for Somewhere In California.


R.I.P. BASS GREAT RANDY COVEN:
Rock bassist Randy Coven, who toured and recorded with artists including Yngwie Malmsteen and Steve Vai, passed away on May 20th of undisclosed causes. He was 54.
Born in Great Neck, New York, Coven was introduced to music at a young age. His parents fostered his love of music by taking him to the Beatles concert at Shea Stadium when he was just five years old, and from there his dream was to make music. He started on drums but switched to bass after feeling restricted behind the drum set. According to his biography on the Phil Brodie Band website, Jeff Berlin lived around the corner and overheard him working on a Stanley Clarke song.
More at: www.notreble.com/buzz/2014/05/21/in-memoriam-randy-coven/

And from last week (forgive the late notice): Tweet from Lou Gramm “It is with a heavy heart that I post Foreigner’s original Bassist, Ed Gagliardi past away Saturday. Rest in Peace Ed.”

R.I.P. to two more another musical greats.

I’d also like to take a moment to mention the passing of a long time MR.com reader from Canada – Paul Enns. Paul was a huge supporter of this site and he attended both the first two MelodicRock Fest events, he was sadly too sick to attend last year and recent passed away from cancer. It’s never easy to hear news like this and we wish his family all the very best. R.I.P. Paul.

INTHESTUDIO WITH REDBEARD PAYS TRIBUTE TO ROCK AND ROLL HEROES:
Dallas, TX – May 20, 2014. North American syndicated Rock radio show and website InTheStudio: The Stories Behind History’s Greatest Rock Bands remembers Rock and Roll’s departed musical heroes with a special star-studded tribute.
Echoes: Classic Rockers Remembered is a two-part, two week broadcast radio special featuring tributes to John Lennon, Ray Charles, Jerry Garcia, George Harrison, Jimi Hendrix, Syd Barrett, Lou Reed, Jim Morrison, Ray Manzarek, Ronnie Van Zant, Stevie Ray Vaughn, Ronnie Montrose, Alvin Lee, Brad Delp, John Entwistle, Keith Moon, Randy Rhoads, remembered by artists Tom Petty, Eric Clapton, Ozzy Osbourne, Gary Rossington of Lynyrd Skynyrd, Roger Waters, Joe Cocker, and Bob Weir of the Grateful Dead.
Although this is not a complete list of departed classic rockers who have appeared with Redbeard In the Studio, it does cover a significant portion of Rock and Roll music makers who shaped the sound of the second half of the 20th century. Pink Floyd co-founder Roger Waters, for example, shares with InTheStudio host Redbeard his thoughts about the vital importance of Pink Floyd co-founder, the late Syd Barrett.
“Being a Syd Barrett fan seems to be, to me, a perfectly legitimate and reasonable way of spending your spare time… He was a very interesting man… He was the key that unlocked the door to Rock’n’Roll for me.”
Echoes In The Studio: Classic Rockers Remembered interview part one is available now to stream at: www.inthestudio.net/redbeards-blog/echoes-studio-classic-rockers-remembered-pt-1/

THE WIZARDS OF WINTER LAUNCH TRIBUTE TRACK:
The Wizards of Winter commemorate Memorial Day by releasing “March of the Metal Soldiers”, honoring the US Military and aiding Wounded Warriors.
Prog-Metal band The Wizards of Winter have officially released their first song from their forthcoming new album that they have been working on with Trans-Siberian Orchestra founding member Tommy Farese. The song is called “March of the Metal Soldiers”. They are releasing this now in honor of Memorial Day and will be donating a portion of the proceeds from all sales of this track to the Wounded Warrior Project as their way of thanking all that have served . They have put together a short slide show so that you can preview the music here: www.youtube.com/watch?v=krBewQRb4yU. To purchase a copy, visit their website thewizardsofwinter.com
“March of the Metal Soldiers” is a reworking of the classic standard “March of the Toys”, reimagined by band leader Scott Kelly with screaming guitars, lush keyboards and a heavy new arrangement that shows off the band’s versatility.  Of special note is the song’s vocal interlude. The lyrics are the slogans of the four branches of the US Military slogans converted to and sung in Latin.
The full album is due for release in the Fall of 2014, with album artwork designed by legendary album cover artist Ioannis. A winter tour will follow with Trans-Siberian Orchestra founding members Tommy Farese and Tony Gaynor as their special guests.

MELODICROCK 2014 – READY TO GO (ALMOST)!:
The brand new MelodicRock.com website is finally complete and almost ready to roll. Those that originally donated towards the costs of getting the new site built will receive an email to invite them to beta-test the site in the next day or so!
I thank everyone for their patience in getting this thing ready to roll and really feel that the new site will be a much better asset to music fans in the way they can share information, engage in social media connections and also the way the site archives all information and artists for easy reference.
In light of the work needed to go into prepping the new site for launch, news updates here will be pretty brief for the next week or so and there will be a day or two of downtime before the official launch date – to be announced next week!

 

Asia add new UK date

Asia Gravitas

The legendary British band ASIA will be performing in the UK to promote the new album Gravitas. The latest date to be announced the prestigious Shepherds Bush Empire on 2nd November.

Touring and playing live has always been of huge importance to ASIA throughout their career and 2014 sees them hitting the road for further dates throughout he UK later in the year.

For ASIA’s long-devoted fans, the band’s return to the concert stage cannot come soon enough. As drummer Carl Palmer says:“Performing on stage is where this band truly comes into its element. Seeing the fans reacting to our music is what makes it all worthwhile. It is the fuel that drives this train we call ASIA.”

The new album, Gravitas is produced and written by band members John Wetton and Geoff Downes. The album also introduces the world to the band’s new guitarist, Sam Coulson, who replaces Steve Howe in the studio and live line-up.

ASIA’s debut album exploded onto the music scene in April 1982 and was the best selling album in the world that year. Featuring Geoff Downes (keyboards), Steve Howe (guitar), Carl Palmer (drums) and John Wetton on lead vocal and bass, the group was the logical successor to their collective bands of the 70’s – Yes, ELP, King Crimson, UK and The Buggles. The original ASIA reformed in 2006 for the first time in 23 years.

“It always was a great live band, but this time the dragon has awoken with fresh energy, direction and purpose,” Wetton continues. “As with any new ASIA album, putting it all together presents something of a challenge,” adds Geoff Downes. “Everyone involved rose way above and beyond this challenge. There is a renewed energy when we step on stage now; we can feel it and I know the fans can feel it.”

ASIA is:

John Wetton – lead vocal and bass

Carl Palmer – drums

Geoff Downes – keyboards

Sam Coulson – guitars

 

Tickets for the Shepherds Bush show:

Tickets are £25 – £30

O2 Priority pre-sale – Wednesday midday

General On sale – Friday 23rd May at midday

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AOR and Melodic Rock News on 15/05/2014

SOUND OF ETERNITY – NEW AUDIO PREVIEWS:
MelodicRock Records is excited to release some teaser soundbytes for Spanish melodic hard rock band Sound Of Eternity. The band’s debut album Visions & Dreams will be released one week later than origially announced (now June 23) to coincide with the release ofMRCD12.

Soundbytes: 03) Running To You 04) Broken Heart 05) Reason To Live.

Sound of Eternity is a female fronted melodic rock band formed in San Pedro Sula, Honduras in 2013 by Jean Funes (Guitars) and Beatriz Aranda, the lead vocals from Cordoba, Spain. Its background comes from the band “Codigo Eterno”, which makes melodic rock in Spanish since 2004, and was formed by guitarist Jean Funes. The debut album “Visions & Dreams” is filled with passionate songs inspired by melodic rock acts like Def leppard, White Heart and Petra, also modern rock bands like Skillet, Anberlin and Fireflight.
It was mixed and mastered by Erik Martensson (W.E.T., Eclipse, Jimi Jamison), who plays bass and keyboards on the album. Also with Andreas Passmark (Narnia, Rob Rock, Work of Art) on bass, as a guest studio musician. The cover artwork is made by Carl Andre Beckston (Monowasp) and booklet design by Nello Dell’Omo from Art For Music.
Sound Of Eternity is: Beatriz Aranda – Vocals and BGV, acoustic Guitars; Jean Funes – Electric Guitars; Rui Prado – Drums / Guest Studio Musicians: Erik Martensson – Bass, Keyboards, Background Vocals; Andreas Passmark – Bass.
The track listing for Visions & Dreams is: 01) Visions & Dreams 02) Call To Action 03) Running To You 04) Broken Heart 05) Reason To Live 06) Alpha & Omega 07) My Saviour 08) Eternal Love 09) Forever 10) Universe.


MRCD12 ADDS ONE MORE TRACK:
The details of MRCD12 – Better Days (out June 23) was announced yesterday with a small error – there is one more track that needs to be added to the compilation, making it an 18 track, 78 minute release – 07) Fenrik Lane – Diamonds In The Waste
Pre-orders for both MRCD12 and Sound Of Eternity from tomorrow (Friday).


GUITAR LEGEND NEAL SCHЦN’S VIDEO “LOVE FINDS A WAY” HAS PREMIERE ON USATODAY.COM:
Neal Schцn fans can click here to check out the exclusive worldwide premiere of the video for “Love Finds A Way” on USAToday.com. The new video is taken from the forthcoming jazz and blues-inspired hard rock studio album, SO U. SO U features Schцn along with bassistMarco Mendoza (Black Star Riders, Ted Nugent, Whitesnake, Thin Lizzy) and drummer Deen Castronovo (Journey, Ozzy Osbourne, Steve Vai, Hardline) splitting vocal and writing duties, with many of the tracks also co-written by Night Ranger/Damn Yankee’ssongwriter, singer and bassist Jack Blades. The track “Serenity,” from the album is now firmly entrenched in the Top 5 at Classic Rock radio, coming in at #3 this week.
Best known as founding member and lead guitarist of Journey, Neal Schцn has enjoyed a remarkable career as one of rock n’ roll’s top virtuosos, with a hand in creating some of the most popular songs of all time. Beginning his career more than 35 years ago in the San Francisco Bay area, the 15-year-old guitar prodigy left home to join Santana. Schцn moved on in 1973 to form Journey. With Journey and other projects, he has earned 19 Top 40 singles and 25 platinum and gold albums, was awarded the prestigious “Legend Of Live Award” at the 2011 Billboard Touring Awards, received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame in 2005 and was individually inducted into the Oklahoma Music Hall Of Fame in 2013. As the only member to record on all of Journey’s albums, Schцn continues with the band today in its latest incarnation.
For more information please visit: www.schonmusic.com.


BALANCE BACK ONCE AGAIN FOR SWEDEN SHOWS:
The Iconic Melodic Rock Band Balance is scheduled to regroup for a round of Live Shows based out of Sweden for the end of Summer 2014. This will kick off in the Swedish coastal town of Vдstervik (home of famous music festivals and the group ABBA), on Friday August 22, 2014. The next night, Balance will play in the university city of Linkцping as part of its annual party. Both shows are sponsored by the Swedish national organization Sensus.
Based on a Youtube viewing of 4 young 10 yr. old Swedish girls called the SeaTeens singing a cover version of one of the band’s well known songs “Is It Over” at the Hojrock Festival in Vдstervik the summer of 2013, Peppy Castro (original founding member), was so taken by the videos (www.youtube.com/watch?v=7-KoKSyDzdE and www.youtube.com/watch?v=DYxJZQmS1oQ) that it spawned the reunion of the band.
The Melodic Rock and AOR scene are made up of legendary albums and bands, which, as time goes by, become even more respected among the community of fans. Balance is exactly one of those bands, whose name and reputation, like good wine, has stood the test of time for decades. Original members, Peppy Castro, Bob Kulick and Doug Katsaros, will be reuniting for a round of shows in Europe in late summer 2014 based out of Sweden where it has all started again thanks to Sweden’s own Sea Teens.

As proof of the many talents of the artists involved in Balance, all members went on to brilliant careers in music following the group’s recording years. Grammy award winning Producer/Guitarist Bob Kulick’s credits read like a who’s who of heavy metal and rock bands, working in the studio, recording or producing or playing live with Meat Loaf, Kiss, Wasp, Paul Stanley Band, Lou Reed, John Cale, Michael Bolton, Dee Snider, Motorhead, Alice Cooper, Tim Curry, etc, etc…Doug Katsaros, Grammy and Emmy winner, sang & arranged for KISS, Rod Stewart, Cher, Bon Jovi, Sinйad O’Connor, Aerosmith and Georg “Jojje” Wadenius, among others, and he worked in several rockin’ Broadway shows, including The Rocky Horror Show and Footloose. Peppy Castro, Emmy nominated and inducted into The Long Island Music Hall of Fame, is considered to be one of the early pioneers of the Psychedelic Garage band rock era. His 1st hit record began at the age of 17 as one of the founding fathers of the legendary rock group, “The Blues Magoos.” His rock and roll status led him to a starring role in the original Broadway Production of Hair. He has written songs for and sang on records by Diana Ross, Kiss, Laura Branigan, Michael Bolton, Cher, Joan Jett, Ronnie Spector etc., and is even one of the producers of the hit off Broadway show (The Gong Show) in New York. All the members of Balance have had a long affiliation on many levels with KISS.

Balance will be joined on stage with two seasoned and respected musicians who hail from the depths of the Swedish rock brigade. Jonas Wikstrom on drums and Dan Larsson on bass will complete the line-up of Balance. For more info on the members of this incredible band and their astounding list of accomplishments, as well as their music, check these links: www.peppycastro.com / en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bob_Kulick / www.themusicofyourdreams.com/Biography.html.

NIGHT BY NIGHT PUSH ALBUM BACK ONE MONTH:
News from Night By Night: “After some deliberation, we’ve decided to postpone the release date of our June 16th to July as to avoid clashes with the Download Festival and Sweden Rock. As you’ll understand, it’s really important for us to be able to get press and radio attention around the release of the album and we’re concerned that the rock media won’t have time for a (relatively) new band’s debut amidst all the events of June. 
Therefore, we’ve decided to change the date to July 11th (Mainland Europe) 14th (UK) and 15th (USA/Canada). We hope you understand – we’ve put the last 4 years into this album, so really want to ensure we get off to a great start with it! 
However – we will still be giving you some NxN delights in June, with the release of a digital single and video on June 23rd (more news soon) and we will play a London release show on July 17th (again, more news on this ASAP). 
Thank you for continuing to support us! Not long now! Ben, Hen, Jon, Tom and Damien.”


INTRODUCING SCARLETT MOONLIGHT – I’VE CHASED THE RAIN:
Scarlett Moonlight, the US-based melodic rock/AOR band, have just released their latest single, I’ve Chased The Rain, in digital format in most MP3 online stores (iTunes, Amazon, Google Play, etc). You can listen to the song here: www.youtube.com/watch?v=l7tYMwvWHlw.
This will be the first of a series of single releases that will happen every 2-3 months. Stay tuned to each release at: www.facebook.com/scarlettmoonlight.

Scarlett Moonlight, formerly known as Scarlett Shadow, is a Rhode Island based original Rock band in the style of Survivor, Foreigner, Whitesnake, Bon Jovi and Journey. They first came together when Michael Geiser, former bass player for Firebrand, met Fran Rodriguez, former keyboardist for the band Nexx. They then asked Mike Rodenbaugh, guitarist with Shotgun Still, to join on Guitar and Bob Myron on drums. They needed the right singer for the band, and Fran brought in Jacob Guajardo and the band Scarlett Moonlight was born.
Scarlett Moonlight has been in Michael’s studio for the last year writing and recording their first group of 13 songs, which will be released one at a time as they are finished. In this day of digital music outlets and stores the need to release and entire album at one time is not as necessary as it once was. You can follow the band at: facebook.com/scarlettmoonlight / reverbnation.com/scarlettmoonlight / twitter.com/ScarlettShadow5.


XLRATOR MEDIA PLUGS INTO DUFF McKAGAN’S “IT’S SO EASY AND OTHER LIES”:
Los Angeles (May 14, 2014) – XLrator Media announced today that it has acquired from Vision Films the North American distribution rights for former Guns N’ Roses bassist Duff McKagan’s autobiographical documentary, It’s So Easy And Other Lies. The film is currently in production with financing provided by Scatena & Rosner Films. Based on the New York Times best-seller about McKagan’s life, the film is written and directed by Christopher Duddy, produced by Daniel Zirilli, Duff McKagan, Christopher Duddy, and Steven G. Kaplan of Rainstorm Entertainment, and executive produced by Lise Romanoff, Gato Scatena, Jordan Rosner, Birgit Stein, Hans Stangl and Katherine Thomson.
The deal was negotiated by Vision Films’ Managing Director/CEO, Worldwide Distribution Lise Romanoff, Steven G. Kaplan and XLrator Media CEO Barry Gordon. 
“Duff’s remarkable life will be the ultimate ‘insider’ rock n’ roll documentary chronicling Duff’s rise as a punk-rock teen prodigy from Seattle, to the heights of super-stardom as a founding member of Guns N’ Roses and Velvet Revolver, to the depths of substance abuse and addiction. All of these things have defined Duff and have led him to his current, and most rewarding, life chapter. Everyone will be moved by his story,” said Gordon. 

McKagan said: “I’m one of the fortunate ones who survived the trials of severe drug and alcohol addiction. I not only survived, but am blessed with seeing life from a whole different and brighter perspective. This film and stage show from the book, will hopefully expose some stark insight, knowledgeable commentary, and humor of this rock and roll life of mine.”

This authorized documentary takes the audience on an incredible cinematic journey from a driven Seattle teenager’s meager beginnings to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. The man is Michael McKagan, better known to the world as “Duff.” The band is Guns N’ Roses. The band became the ultimate icons of sex, drugs and rock and roll, causing pandemonium in their wake, but the lifestyle caught up with Duff, leaving him close to death. Follow Duff’s journey through original archival footage and interviews with many of the people who took this wild ride, including a constellation of rock stars that rose to fame alongside him, and the people who inspired him to overcome his addictions. Duff provides a voice that is as honest as it is indelibly his own as he takes viewers on his harrowing journey through the dark heart of one of the most notorious bands in rock and roll history and out the other side.

It’s So Easy And Other Lies began production by capturing one of Duff’s book readings at the Moore Theatre in Seattle. The film will contain rare archive footage from Marc Canter, who filmed all the early footage of Guns N’ Roses behind the scenes and performances. “Vision Films is excited to be distributing “It’s So Easy And Other Lies” globally,” said Lise Romanoff, Managing Director and CEO of Worldwide Distribution. “The film is a one of a kind look into the life of one of the most iconic musicians in Rock history.” 
For more information on It’s So Easy And Other Lies, visit: duff-itssoeasy.com.