July 2003

Sun Records Producer Sam Phillips Dies

Record producer Sam Phillips, who founded Sun Records in Memphis in 1952, helped launch the career of Elvis Presley, and usher in the rock ‘n’ roll revolution, died Wednesday of respiratory failure. He was 80.
Phillips produced Presley’s first record, the 1954 single that featured “That’s All Right, Mama” and “Blue Moon of Kentucky,” and nine more.
“God only knows that we didn’t know it would have the response that it would have,” Phillips said in an interview in 1997. “But I always knew that the rebellion of young people, which is as natural as breathing, would be a part of that breakthrough,” he said.
Phillips was elected to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1986. In 2000, the A&E cable network ran a two-hour biography called “Sam Phillips: The Man Who Invented Rock and Roll.”
Source yahoo.com.

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Second Accident for IT Fest Organizers

A union stagehand from Auburn was seriously injured in the second major accident during preparations for Phish’s two-day concert taking place this weekend.
Douglas Born, 42, was working Tuesday night on the second-floor roof of some staging when he stepped off the side and fell 35 feet to the ground.
He sustained extensive internal injuries and was airlifted to Eastern Maine Medical Center in Bangor, said Stephen McCausland of the Maine Department of Public Safety.
Born, who was working for Great Northeast Productions Inc., producers of the Phish concert, was in serious condition Wednesday, according to Tammy Howes, a hospital spokeswoman.
The accident is being investigated by the Limestone Police Department and the federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration.
On Sunday, James Willox, a 43-year-old concert organizer from Dedham, Mass., died when his car struck an embankment. Police said speed and driver fatigue were the likely causes.
Source Boston.com.

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Cypress Hill Eyes New Release In Fall

Cypress Hill is eyeing a fall release date for their first Columbia album since 2001’s “Stone Raiders.” Taking a quick break from the studio, the group is out on its first headlining mini-tour of the U.S. in nearly four years. Cypress Hill is playing several club gigs under Miller Genuine Draft’s “Pure Night Out” banner.
The group spoke to reporters before the show about a wide range of topics, including the new album, its recently-concluded supporting slot on the European leg of Eminem’s Anger Management tour and recent FCC rulings that aim to further deregulate radio station ownership. Speaking out about media conglomerates, Cypress Hill’s B-Real said, “We understand it’s a business, but it makes it harder for bands to get out there and do their thing.”
DJ Muggs said the group’s live sets will feature a lot of old material, including some favorites fans haven’t heard in years. But don’t expect to hear a sneak peak of the forthcoming album. “It doesn’t seem like hip-hop audiences are up for that,” he said.
The group added that it was listening to a lot of mix tapes and hip-hop as it puts together the new record, but didn’t go into any detail about potential guest MCs. “We’re just making the same phat product using the chemistry that got us here,” Muggs said.
Source Billboard.com.

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Stereophonics Return To The States

The Stereophonics are back with their fourth – and some say most rocking album – and are out to make good on its title. You Gotta Go There To Come Back pretty much sums up the Welsh band’s tour schedule, which finds the trio taking on Japan, North America, Europe and the U.K. all before year’s end.

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Napster Relaunches With A Whole New Face

By Christmas this year, Napster’s enigmatic cat logo will again lure consumers into downloading music. But this time it will discard its file-sharing heritage and be entirely legal, with a wealth of new capabilities.Chris Gorog, chairman and CEO of Napster’s parent company Roxio, said the completely revamped service will launch under the name Napster 2.0 to emphasize the changes.
Users will be offered their choice of how to access the company’s 500,000 tracks, including buying individual downloads, paying for professionally programd Internet radio and subscribing to receive unlimited monthly access. These options and others can be mixed to suit personal preferences.”Napster 2.0 is being built from the ground up to reflect the essence of independence and innovation that the brand is known for,” said Gorog. “Consumers want flexibility, and for the first time they will not have to choose between downloads or subscriptions.”
He thinks the two different business models are “synergistic,” although Napster’s marketing strategy was likely to emphasize individual downloads in the beginning, he said. “They’ll get involved, and after downloading 10 or 12 songs they’ll realize a subscription is far greater value,” Gorog added. “That will be especially true once people realize they can drive their home entertainment system with this product.”
He said the service also will offer a significant amount of original programming unavailable elsewhere. “We’re talking about the best ways of bringing artists into the Napster studios in Los Angeles, having them do video interviews and laying down exclusive live tracks just for our customers.”Additionally, Napster 2.0 will include several features to help in the music discovery process and to build communities.
Source etonline.com.

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moe. Announces More Fall Shows

moe. has announced a number of new fall tour dates that wrap around the Southeastern United States, including two nights at the Orange Peel in Asheville, North Carolina.
The band will be playing two nights at the Aragon Ballroom in Chicago on October 31 and November 1, billed as “The Headbangers’ Left Ball: An Evening of Heavy moe.tal.

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Pearl Jam To Release New Live CDs

Pearl Jam recently wrapped its Riot Act world tour, but a host of live releases are on tap for the coming months. On Sept. 16, the band will release complete concerts from July 8-9 at New York’s Madison Square Garden and a two-set, 45-song blowout taped July 11 outside of Boston.
As previously reported, Pearl Jam released CDs of each show from the tour exclusively via its Ten Club fan organization, although three performances were later made available through traditional retailers. The deadline to order individual shows from the Ten Club is Aug. 20; afterward, the CDs will only be sold in complete sets from the tour’s three legs.
Both Madison Square Garden shows featured 30 songs. The July 8 concert, which ran just shy of three hours, sported a guest appearance by Ben Harper on “Daughter” and “Indifference.” The July 11 gig was another Pearl Jam first, as the group played a 12-song, largely acoustic set prior to opening act Sleater-Kinney, then returned for a 33-song set packed with rarities.
On the visual front, a DVD of a March 1 show in Yokohama, Japan, is “incubating,” according to the band’s official Web site. The site says Pearl Jam is also compiling a comprehensive DVD of the Riot Act tour, shot by the same crew members who worked on the 2000 DVD release “Touring Band.”
Pearl Jam’s lone shows for the rest of the year will come in late October at Neil Young’s annual Bridge School Benefit outside San Francisco. The band is considering going back on the road in 2004, including a trip to Europe, “but nothing is firm at the moment,” according to the site.
Source Billboard.com.

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Erykah Badu’s Third Release Due In Sept

R&B singer/songwriter Erykah Badu will release her third studio album, “Worldwide Underground,” Sept. 16 through Motown Records. The set will be the follow-up to 2000’s “Mama’s Gun,” which has sold 1.2 million copies in the U.S., according to Nielsen SoundScan.
“Worldwide Underground” will be preceded by the lead single “Danger,” which will officially ship to radio in early August. The track was produced by Badu and co-written with R.C. Williams. Also set for the new disc is a collaboration with Lenny Kravitz titled “Back in the Day” and a remake of the girl rap trio Sequence’s classic hip-hop tune “Funk You Up.” The latter features Badu rapping with Queen Latifah, Angie Stone and Bahmadia.
Source Billboard.com.

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Lance Armstrong Wins 5th Tour de France

Perhaps arguably, the greatest sports feat ever, Texan Lance Armstrong equaled the record of five consecutive wins in the Tour de France when he crossed the line maintaining his overall lead in Paris Sunday.
The cyclist, who has come back from cancer, has vowed to go on for a record sixth consecutive victory.
He beat German rival Jan Ullrich by 61 seconds after 2,1125 miles staged over 23 days. He had never won by less than six minutes in his previous victories.
Armstrong smiled broadly and chatted with other riders as they rolled into Paris. The race’s final stage is traditionally a ceremonial ride where no one challenges the overall leader. Armstrong insists the problems that nearly cost him the Tour title this year will not be repeated.
“I don’t plan on being this vulnerable again next year, I really don’t,” Armstrong said Saturday, relieved to have scraped through a Tour that pushed him to the limits of his physical and mental strength.
Ullrich, the Tour winner in 1997 is a five-time runner-up in the race, including twice to Armstrong.
Ullrich’s challenge effectively ended when he crashed on the wet surface trying to trim Armstrong’s 65-second lead during Saturday’s individual time trial.
In that 19th stage, the 31-year-old Texan all but guaranteed himself a record-tying fifth straight Tour win, matching the mark set by Spain’s Miguel Indurain.
Source CNN.com.

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