Being a Prince fan, I
Verve Records is issuing for the first time on CD James Brown’s jazz album, “Soul on Top.” Recorded in 1969 with the Louie Bellson Orchestra, it was originally released on King Records. The 12-tune collection features Oliver Nelson’s arrangements and Brown’s bandmate Maceo Parker Jr.’s tenor sax gales. Led by the longtime Duke Ellington Orchestra drummer, the support group includes such noteworthies as bassist Ray Brown and alto saxophonist Ernie Watts.
In the original LP’s liner notes penned by jazz scribe Leonard Feather, Brown commented, “At heart I’ve always been a jazz man. When I was just a kid in Macon, Ga., during amateur shows, I went up onstage with some of those name bands that passed through town. I’ve never forgotten the impression those big-band sounds made on me.”
On the album, Brown performs such romantic standards as “That’s My Desire” and “It’s Magic.” He puts a funky jazz spin on Hank Williams’ “Your Cheating Heart” and stretches out on two of his big hits, “It’s a Man’s, Man’s, Man’s World” and “Papa’s Got a Brand New Bag,” given the big-band jazz treatment by Nelson. The CD also contains a previously unissued version of Brown’s 1968 hit, “There Was a Time,” co-written by Brown and Bud Hobgood.
The folks at Earthdance have put together a diverse array of musicians for the United Beats Of Peace tour.
House pioneer BT, genre-bending hip-hop producer Dan The Automator, and funktronic jammers Particle will headline the traveling festival, which aims to “unite dance and music communities around the world in support of humanitarian, environmental and peace-related causes.”
Afro hip-hop collective Chris Berry & Panjea and producer/remixer DJ Peas will also appear on the jaunt, which launches August 20 in San Francisco.
Earthdance plans to spark community activism with its “awareness-raising component,” comprising guest speakers and voter registration booths along with presentations by progressive companies and non-profit organizations.
Organizers say 20 shows are planned, leading up to the 8th annual Earthdance global event, a 24-hour, internationally synchronized music and dance extravaganza.
Eagle Rock Entertainment is releasing an historic set of music with The Who’s legendary concert performance Live At The Isle of Wight on DVD on August 10, 2004. Supported with a nationwide theatrical premiere at Regal Entertainment Group movie theaters across the country on August 9th, the concert event will also be broadcast in high definition on INHD later in the month, beginning August 14th.
The DVD is available for the first time in DTS audio and features the original Who lineup and an exclusive 40-minute interview with Who guitarist, Pete Townshend. Under the expert supervision of Townshend and Murray Lerner, the film
HeadCount, a not-for-profit nonpartisan group run entirely by volunteers, announced that it has registered 25,000 voters across the country, and is adding about 3,000 new registrants per week.
Currently on tour with The Dave Matthews Band and soon to join the Dead and Phish when their summer touring schedule resumes, HeadCount ranks as the most active music-oriented voter registration group in the country. Its 60 street teams – representing almost every major city in the country – set up tables at approximately 40 concerts per week.
The Dead’s Bob Weir spoke about HeadCount and voter registration during every concert on the first leg of the Dead’s national summer tour. It marked the first time in 35 years that Weir, a member of HeadCount’s board of directors, has regularly talked about any issue on stage.
“I think I can speak for the entire band in saying that this is the most important election that has occurred in our lifetime,” said Weir recently. “If you ever want to participate in a real election again, I think you better vote in this one.”
Other artists who have welcomed HeadCount to their concerts include Santana, String Cheese Incident, Crosby Stills and Nash, Primus, Gov’t Mule, Galactic, Leftover Salmon, moe., The North Mississippi Allstars and The Disco Biscuits, among others.
The organization has also shot public service announcements, soon to air on TNT and TBS, starring Dave Matthews, Trey Anastasio of Phish, Jeff Tweedy of Wilco, Les Claypool of Primus, and every member of The Dead.
Founded by Marc Brownstein, bassist for the popular electronic rock band The Disco Biscuits, and Andy Bernstein, a sports media reporter with strong ties to the live music community, HeadCount is an organization that is truly grassroots in structure. It has no paid employees, no major corporate funding and no central headquarters. But through a network of nearly 1,500 volunteers and the backing of a board of directors that includes Weir and the top managers and promoters in live music today, HeadCount has almost instantly become a unifying force within the music community.
See headcount.org for more info.
On August 3, Thelonious Records and HYENA will release, Monk ‘Round The World, the second installment from the recent partnership between the two independent record labels. The latest collection is drawn from five different concerts, highlighting seven performances, of the legendary composer and pianist recorded around the world beginning in 1961 and stretching through 1964. The set features Monk’s various quartets of the period, while placing particular emphasis on his longtime saxophonist Charlie Rouse, who joined Monk’s group in 1959. Their relationship would become one of the longest running associations in jazz history. Monk ‘Round The World will also include a free bonus DVD of Thelonious Monk captured on March 14, 1965 at The Marquee Club in London. Additionally, basketball legend and self-professed Monk fanatic Kareem Abdul-Jabbar contributes liner notes to Monk ‘Round The World. The CD/DVD series began last September 2003 with Monk In Paris: Live At The Olympia.