This fall, John Mellencamp will release his 22nd album, ‘Plain Spoken.’ The record will be the his first for Republic Records, who announced that they have signed Mellencamp to a lifetime contract.
“Not only has he served as an ambassador of social consciousness in America,” said Republic co-founder Monte Lipman . “But he has also provided the soundtrack of a generation. We’re thrilled to be working with John Mellencamp as part of this historic deal.”
Original Kiss drummer Peter Criss is set to make a special appearance at a tribute concert for the late Led Zeppelin time keeper, John Bonham. Bonzo Bash is being billed as an all-star tribute to Bonham, and will take place on May 31 at the Bergen Performing Arts Center in Englewood, New Jersey.
Also taking part in the tribute will be members of Overkill, Living Colour, Twisted Sister, and Kings X, as well as Corky Laing of Mountain. Billed as ‘The Ultimate Celebration For The Ultimate Drummer,’ ‘Bonzo Bash’ is being put together by Brian Thomas Tichy, who has played with Whitesnake, Foreigner, Billy Idol and Ozzy Osbourne to name a few.
Criss recently joined Rob Zombie on stage to perform the Kiss classic ‘God of Thunder’ at a May 10 concert in New Jersey. We recently published an in-depth look at the ups and downs of the Catman’s solo career following his initial 1980 departure from Kiss.
Randy Coven, a versatile bassist who worked with Steve Vai, Yngwie Malmsteen and Leslie West over the years, has died at age 54. Coven’s family has confirmed his passing on May 20, though a cause of death was not revealed. Services for Coven will be held later today (May 22).
Coven was a specialist in neoclassical and heavy metal styles perhaps best known for having toured with Malmsteen from 1999-2001, a period chronicled on the 2009 concert recording ‘Live in Korea.’ The guitarist’s over-the-phone audition of Coven reportedly went something like this: “Do you drink beer?” “Do you play with a pick?” “And do you play a Fender bass?” Coven was said to have answered “yes,” “yes” and “yes,” securing the job.
This October, Jimmy Page will offer his official autobiography for wide release, having issued ‘Jimmy Page by Jimmy Page’ as a limited-edition project back in 2010. The book, presented as a photographic essay with personal insights offered via the captions, was personally overseen by Page.
“I’ve been asked on a number of occasions to do a written book and I thought of the other side of the coin,” Page tells Billboard. “I thought it would be unique to have an autobiography in photographs, charting my whole musical journey. It was important to include every milestone along the way, so people who were fans of the music have got a real testament of the times.”
Fleetwood Mac have just emerged from the studio. This new batch of recordings marks the band’s first step back in the studio for a full-length album since ‘Say You Will’ in 2003 and, according to guitarist Lindsey Buckingham and returning keyboardist Christine McVie, things couldn’t have gone better.
“We got in the studio not knowing what to expect, and the chemistry was just unbelievable,” Buckingham told Billboard. “We got eight tracks very far along, like, 75 percent done. It just played out really organically in a way that seemed appropriate.”
Motley Crue are working on a new song that could turn out to be the last they ever record. Guitarist Mick Mars says the song is titled All Bad Things Must Come To An End and that it just needs vocals and some guitar – otherwise it's ready to go.
TeamRock previously reported that James Michael was to produce the band's last ever song, although at the time there was no title.
Mars tells Guitar World: "It's probably about half finished. We have to wait for Vince Neil to sing it, and then I'll do my soloing and ear-candy all over it and stuff like that.”Mars adds that once Crue complete their last ever tour, he will record and release a solo album that ill be heavier than Crue's material. He also says the setlist for the final tour would include all the classic hits.
He says: “If you went to see Aerosmith for the last time and they skipped Dream On, you'd be fucking pissed. It will be a celebration.”