Tag Archive | "pop music"

iDKHow Premiere New Video; Announce ‘1981 Extended Play’ EP

iDKHow Premiere New Video; Announce ‘1981 Extended Play’ EP

L-R: Ryan Seaman, Dallon Weekes

Dallon Weekes, the former Panic! At The Disco bassist, and drummer Ryan Seaman will see 1981 Extended Play, the debut release from their once  and future band, I Dont Know How But They Found Me (iDKHOW), in-stores on November 9 (Fearless Records).  The EP’s six-tracks were produced, written or co-written by Weekes, and recorded at various locations in Utah and California.   Sonically, the songs are from a time when fashions were loud, melodies were infectious and iconoclastic pop trailblazers broke through commercialy without compromising artistically.  Pre-orders for the EP can be placed HERE.

Recently re-discovered, the music video for one of the EP’s tracks, “Do It All The Time,” is making its debut and can be seen HERE. This footage was first thought to be a conceptual art piece produced by the band before making music videos had become standard music industry practice. While the exact date and circumstances under which it was produced are unclear, the anonymous donor of the footage claims that it had been screened to students for nearly twenty years as part of the public school curriculum, until its use was discontinued in 1984.

Weekes has plenty of experience with the potential for a great song to move crowds.  As bassist/backing vocalist for Panic! At The Disco from 2009 – 2017, Weekes co-wrote the band’s massive hits “This is Gospel” and “Girls/Girls/Boys,” and is credited on nearly all of the songs that comprise the album Too Weird to Live, Too Rare to Die!.

Said the band, “The hard working people at iDKHOW are pleased to align with Fearless to unearth and uncover the rare and forgotten recordngs of I Dont Know How But They Found Me.  We look forward to rediscovering this long-forgotten music together and giving iDKHOW a second chance.   For the first time.”

A lyric video for “Do It All The Time” debuted late last month and to date, has accumulated 821K Spotify streams and 900K YouTube views.

iDKHOW will set out on the road this fall as main support for Waterparks.  The 23-city U.S. tour starts on November 2 at the Kelsey Theatre in Lake Park, FL, and will also feature Nick Gray and Super Whatevr.  Tickets are on sale now – go to  http://idkhow.com for all purchasing information.

2 – The Kelsey Theater, Lake Park, FL
3 – The Abbey, Orlando, FL
4 – The Senate, Columbia, SC
6 – Arizona Pete’s, Greensboro, NC
7 – The Broadberry, Richmond, VA
9 – Chameleon Club, Lancaster, PA
10 – Starland Ballroom, Sayreville, NJ
11 – Webster Underground, Hartford, CT
12 – Anthology, Rochester, NY
14 – Mr. Smalls Theatre, Millvale, PA
15 – Agora Ballroom, Cleveland, OH
16 – The Castle Theatre, Bloomington, IL
17 – Blue Moose Tap House, Iowa City, IA
19 – The Waiting Room Lounge, Omaha, NE
20 – The Oriental Theater, Denver, CO
21 – Mesa Theater, Grand Junction, CO
23 – The Complex, Salt Lake City, UT
24 – Jub Jub’s Thirst Parlor, Reno, NV
25 – Ace of Spades, Sacramento, CA
27 – The Glass House, Pomona, CA
28 – 191 Toole, Tucson, AZ
30 – Alamo City Music Hall & Club, San Antonio, TX

1 Warehouse Live, Houston, TX

I DONT KNOW HOW BUT THEY FOUND ME – Dallon Weekes and Ryan Seaman – is a musical entity with a conceptual backstory. The name, a key to their remarkable odyssey, is taken from a piece of dialogue from the 80s classic film “Back To The Future.” They are a lost act from the late 70s early 80s that never quite made it, but their rare and long-forgotten music has recently been unearthed thanks to today’s technological resources. Weekes and Seaman are just starting to resurrect the songs and innovative spirit of iDKHOW for a new generation starved for creative risk taking and unbound joy.

I DONT KNOW HOW BUT THEY FOUND ME is getting a second chance. For the first time.

Visit the official website for the project at www.idkhow.com.

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Taking Back Sunday Announce Worldwide Tour and Compilation To Celebrate 20th Anniversary

Taking Back Sunday Announce Worldwide Tour and Compilation To Celebrate 20th Anniversary

Craft Recordings has announced a special collaboration with Taking Back Sunday, in celebration of the band’s 20th anniversary. As part of this year-long fête, the band will be embarking on an extensive worldwide tour, paying tribute to their catalog – and their fans – with full album performances. In conjunction, Craft will be releasing a special career (to date)-spanning compilation, titled Twenty. The 21-song collection is set for release on January 11, 2019, and will span all seven of their full-length albums, in addition to a couple of surprises.

Stay tuned for the full track listing and format details to be revealed very soon. The pre-order for Twenty will launch October 30, 2019.  Watch the 2019 tour trailer HERE.

“It feels strange to say out loud…2019 marks 20 years since I joined Taking Back Sunday and my life changed forever,” remarks singerAdam Lazzara. “So, next year we will be traveling the world to celebrate the amazing brotherhood, music and life we have created together over the past 20 years. We hope you can join us for what is sure to be an experience to remember.”

The first leg of the worldwide tour is being announced today and includes dates in Australia, Asia, a portion of North America and South America. At all shows, Taking Back Sunday will be performing their debut album Tell All Your Friends in its entirety. For tour stops where the band are performing over two-nights, each nightly set will offer a double-album play – using a specially designed coin, Taking Back Sunday will flip to play either Where You Want To Be or Louder Now, in addition to Tell All Your Friends. In headline cities where they are playing only one night, they will perform Tell All Your Friends, plus a selection of fan favorites from their extensive catalog. With more dates and special releases in the works, 2019 should be a fun-filled year of shows around the globe.

Taking Back Sunday – Photo by Natalie Escobedo

If you can’t believe that Taking Back Sunday have been around for 20 years, you’re not alone, because they can’t either. Although the pride of Long Island have had a handful of member changes over the years, the current lineup of the band – vocalist Adam Lazzara, guitarist John Nolan, drummer Mark O’Connell and bassist Shaun Cooper – have all been there since the beginning. From the band’s landmark 2002 debut Tell All Your Friends, to their most recent full-length, 2016‘s Tidal Wave, Taking Back Sunday have evolved from a key player in the early 2000s emo scene to a genre-defying rock band who have three gold albums without ever ceasing to push the limitations of their sound. This fact is evidenced on Twenty.

Twenty is a celebration not only of those career-defining moments but of the landmark albums that chronicle the band’s story: 2002‘s Tell All Your Friends, 2004‘s Where You Want To Be, 2006‘s Louder Now, 2009‘s New Again, 2011‘s Taking Back Sunday, 2014‘s Happiness Is and 2016‘s Tidal Wave, all of which are represented on this collection. Whether your introduction to the band was singing along to “A Decade Under The Influence” in a sweaty club or hearing “MakeDamnSure” or “Sink Into Me” on the radio, Twenty is a look back at some of the highlights from this unlikely group of musical misfits. Additionally, fans will be able to hear newly recorded songs which hint at the direction that Taking Back Sunday are heading in the coming years. Musical legacy aside, ultimately what’s most impressive is the fact that after two decades and countless successes, Taking Back Sunday have managed to preserve that initial spark that excited them as teenagers.

Australia, 2019 (Pre-sale 10/12, regular on-sale 10/15):

January 9:        HQ, Adelaide

January 11:       170 Russell, Melbourne

January 12:       UNIFY Gathering, Tarwin Lower (on-sale now)

January 14:       Metro Theatre, Sydney

January 15:       Metro Theatre, Sydney

January 16:       The Triffid, Brisbane

January 17:       The Triffid, Brisbane


Asia, 2019 (on-sale soon):

January 19:       TBA, Singapore,

January 21:       Space Odd, Tokyo, Japan

January 26:       New Frontier Theater, Manila, Philippines


South America (on-sale 10/9):

March 13:         Amon Solar, San Jose, Costa Rica

March 15:         Club Subterraneo, Santiago, Chile

March 16:         Roxy Live, Buenos Aires, Argentina

March 17:         Fabrique Club, São Paulo, Brasil


North America, 2019 (1st leg – more to be announced)(VIP & pre-sale 10/16, regular on-sale 10/19):

January 29:       Beartooth Theatre, Anchorage, AK

February 1:       The Republik, Honolulu, HI

February 2:       The Republik, Honolulu, HI

March 25 & 26: House Of Blues, Houston, TX

March 28 & 29: Emo’s, Austin, TX

March 30 & 31: House Of Blues, Dallas, TX

April 1:              Charley B’s, Lubbock, TX

April 3:              Sunshine Theater, Albuquerque, NM

April 4 & 5:        Marquee Theatre, Phoenix, AZ

April 6 & 7:        The Observatory North Park, San Diego, CA

April 11 & 12:    Hollywood Palladium, Los Angeles, CA

April 13 & 14:    The Warfield, San Francisco, CA

April 16 & 17:    Ace of Spades, Sacramento, CA

April 19 & 20:    Crystal Ballroom, Portland, OR

April 21 & 22:    Commodore Ballroom, Vancouver, BC

April 24:            MacEwan Hall, Calgary, AB

April 26:            Burton Cummings Theatre, Winnipeg, MB

April 27 & 28:    First Avenue, Minneapolis, MN

April 30 & May 1: The Summit, Denver, CO

May 2 & 3:        The Complex, Salt Lake City, UT

May 4 & 5:        House Of Blues, Las Vegas, NV

For more info, visit TakingBackSunday.com and follow on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube, and Spotify.


About Craft Recordings:
Craft Recordings is home to one of the largest and most prestigious collections of master recordings and compositions in the world. Its rich and storied repertoire includes legendary artists such as Joan Baez, Ray Charles, John Coltrane, Creedence Clearwater Revival, Miles Davis, Bill Evans, Vince Guaraldi, John Lee Hooker, Little Richard, Nine Inch Nails, Thelonious Monk, Otis Redding, R.E.M. and Traveling Wilburys, to name just a few. Renowned imprints with catalogs issued under the Craft banner include Concord, Fania, Fantasy, Milestone, Musart, Nitro, Prestige, Riverside, Rounder, Specialty, Stax, Sugar Hill, Vanguard and Vee-Jay Records, among many others. Craft creates thoughtfully curated packages, with a meticulous devotion to quality and a commitment to preservation-ensuring that these recordings endure for new generations to discover. Craft Recordings is the catalog label team for Concord Music. For more info, visit CraftRecordings.com and follow on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube, and Spotify.


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YOUTH IS WASTED ON THE YOUNG: Yungblud Talks Life, Music and Bright Future!

YOUTH IS WASTED ON THE YOUNG: Yungblud Talks Life, Music and Bright Future!

“It’s what I am, man!”, Yungblud answers when asked where he came up with the title for his debut record, “21st Century Liability”. The young Yorkshire native, born Dominic Harrison, just finished up a rehearsal session for his first ever headlining US tour. Big things have been happening for the artist: brand new album dropped this summer, festival shows a plenty, the aforementioned US tour, and an upcoming European tour next spring. If you’re not familiar, you need to get familiar. Yungblud has an infectious sound that brings in elements of hip hop, ska, punk, modern rock, etc. His smart blend of these genres and songs with an actual message put him a league of his own. They say rock and roll is about being who you are and taking a stance. If that’s the case then Yungblud is, in fact, the new face of rock and roll. Icon Vs. Icon’s Dylan Lyles recently got the chance to sit down with this artist on the rise to talk touring, songwriting, and the overall goal of connecting with as many people as possible.

Hey Dom, thanks for sitting down for a few minutes to chat with us. I first just want to start out by saying congratulations! This past summer you dropped the new album, “21st Century Liability.” You’ve played a plethora of huge crowds on Warped Tour, you’re in the midst of the US tour that already consists of multiple sold out dates, plus in the spring you head back to Europe for another tour. So, to kick this all off, how are you feeling right now?

Oh man it’s crazy! Like, I’m just overwhelmed as fuck! It’s just crazy to me, to have dropped the record and to have such a reaction internationally, it’s mental. I mean, I’m from fucking Doncaster in the north of England where nothing happens. Now in America where I’m about to start my first ever headlining US tour which sold out dates, and a sold-out run in Europe next year. It’s crazy, it’s mental, like … what the fuck?!

It is crazy, but you deserve it. Definitely, congratulations! Now, for our readers who may not be 100% familiar, and of course they will be soon as you’re doing huge things, I want to chat about your early memories in music. What are your first memories of music?

Hell yeah man! I mean to be honest, I am an adult with ADHD so I just had so much energy as a kid. I was so opinionated all the time and always had so much energy as a kid. A lot of people misunderstood me, and a lot of people misunderstood my energy. I think right now, and back then, especially nine years ago it’s getting better now, if you didn’t conform to a certain box people wouldn’t give you the time of day. Do you know what I’m saying? If you didn’t conform to a certain box they just didn’t understand you so they just pass you off as nothing. That just made me feel really frustrated and unaccepted. So, music was the thing I latched onto. I would listen to artists like Eminem, The Arctic Monkeys, The Clash, The Rolling Stones, Busta Rhymes. I would hear these outsiders who didn’t really give a fuck. They were just so fundamentally themselves. They expressed that through their music and to me, man, that was so sick! I was like, “If Eminem can be fundamentally, undeniably himself then so can I.” The music was something that made me feel like I could express myself in a way that no one could touch; that no one could tell me was wrong. Ya know? So, it’s pretty fucking special to me. It like infected my brain.

For sure, and when you listen to the album, “21st Century Liability,” it’s not hard to hear that you are completely unafraid to experiment with your own overall sound. That album, as a whole, is a cohesive project that brings in influences of hip hop, rock, ska, punk and so on. Did you go into this album knowing you wanted each song to have kind of a different sound, or is it something that kind of just happened?

Totally man! Like, to me all of those genres that we just named are the same thing. The fundamental, underlying soul of all those genres is freedom and not being afraid to express yourself in a way that you feel is right. Like punk, ska, rock, hip hop, they’re all connected on a level that’s really deep. To be honest man, I just wanted to create a record that makes people go, “Wow, what the fuck is this,” because it reflects my brain. My head moves a million miles an hour. I never want people to be able to put a finger on it, especially in rock and roll now. I’m under this rock and roll bracket because I’m like a kid and I got a guitar in my hand, but the thing is that I feel rock and roll is in a state of stagnation right now. There’re not many artists who are trying to push the boundaries with it. To me, man, it’s been almost condemned to NOT BE proper traditional rock and roll if it’s not just four idiots on stage banging the shit out of instruments. That’s why I think it’s hard to move forward. I just wanted to create a record that shows that rock and roll to me is about what you’re fucking talking about. I just wanted to create a record that accumulates so many different genres of music together. But, what ties it together, what makes it Yungblud, is the message. I think right now, my generation, we are so smart. We are so intelligent, and we actually genuinely give a fuck about the world. We’re not just bratty kids rebelling against the system for rebelling against the system’s sake. That’s a really naïve way of looking at us. We are a generation that knows and understands the future that we want to be a part of. But, it’s almost been held back by a generation who adopts these old ideologies and aren’t quite ready for the world to go to that place yet. I think I needed to write about that because it angered me. I think that’s why things move so quickly because I think people related to it worldwide. It’s amazing to me because I just felt in all my life this is the first time that I’ve been heard. Ya know what I mean? I just feel so connected with my fanbase, I feel so connected with them all. I stay behind after the shows to meet them because they genuinely inspire me to write these tunes. It’s always lyrics that come to me first and it’s exciting ya know?

Yeah, and that’s what I actually was going to get into next after speaking about the overall sound. Every song you’ve put out has been infectious. You’ve found this positive, catchy sound throughout the album that makes it almost impossible to stand still while listening. You’re able to do this without sacrificing the meanings behind the songs. Every song has something to say whether you’re touching on gun violence, the opioid epidemic, consent, and so on. You talked about your overall songwriting process, but what I really wanted to touch on was mental illness. It’s a topic that I hold very near and dear to my heart. It’s a very touchy subject that I feel isn’t addressed enough in a serious manner. A lot of your tracks touch on this subject. Was one of your hopes to give someone who may be struggling with mental illness something to identify with?

I want this album to be an outlet for people who feel like they can’t be themselves, or feel like they can’t say what they think. At the end of the day I wanted this album to say that it’s okay to not be okay. It’s so amazing that mental health is finally being taken seriously. I don’t want to tell people what to think because I don’t have all the answers. You know what I mean? I’m just a 21-year-old young person who is saying what I think; talking about what’s going on in my head. It makes me feel better if I talk about it. I just want to encourage people to say what they think and feel like their voice is important. There’re so many people right now who feel like they’ve not been heard. The amount of times I go and I speak to people after the shows they feel so silent and so afraid to speak because so many people are out to judge them. I want Yungblud to be a fucking safe space for people to be themselves no matter who they are. At my shows, man, it’s got to be fucking positive. I want the song to be hopeful, because it is fucking dark and we’re going to a dark place but once you find that outlet, once you find a community of people who feel exactly the same, it’s better. At my fucking shows everyone can be who or whatever they are. We’re a community of people who, ya know what, might not be right in the head. You might be there because the music connects to you or you might be there just to have a good time, but it’s fucking exciting. I mean it’s amazing the amount of people connecting to it. That’s it man, Yungblud is an outlet for me. I always refer to Yungblud in the third-person because it’s part of my head that understands me. It’s weird man, but writing it down I kinda understood myself.

It’s a connection that you have and it’s a connection that you’ve created with your audience. You’ve given people an outlet to share their feelings and I love that. I think that’s what makes Yungblud itself so fantastic. Now, “21st Century Liability” is a powerful title. Where did the inspiration come from for this?

It’s what I am, man. It’s all my thoughts, my anger, my emotions, what I felt growing up as a 21st century young person. It’s everything I’ve seen and wanted to talk about. I’ve felt like a liability my whole life because people just thought I was nuts because I was very outspoken and very opinionated. I was a kid that mums didn’t like very much. If I went to your house for fucking Sunday dinner I’d tell ya if I didn’t like ya. You know what I mean? That just made me feel like I was a liability and a little bit of a burden on people. But you know what? I wasn’t. People just made me feel like that and, it’s like, at the end of the day, and what I want people to take away from Yungblud is it’s totally okay to be yourself. If people don’t like who you are then they’re just totally not meant to be in your life.

I agree. It’s important to cut out that negativity and just be who you are. Now, switching over to the live show. It’s cliché for an artist to say “my live show is less of a show and more of an experience,” however, with you I feel like it’s 100% true. I had the opportunity to catch you at Warped Tour in Maryland and it was fantastic. Everyone became one big family. With the multiple festival shows this past summer, the fall US tour, and the spring European tour, what would you say your goal is as you hit the stage each and every night?

To leave a part of myself on it. If I ain’t done that, then I’ve done my job wrong. I just fucking love feeling connected to my fanbase. People are like, “How do you tour so much?” I’ve been on tour since January, really. I’ve had a week of here and there but I’ve been running and running and running. I just become so infected by it. Getting on stage, man, I can genuinely be myself. I don’t want people to leave my show and be like, “Yeah man, that was cool wasn’t it? Should we go get dinner? Do something afterwards?” I want people to leave my show and be like, “Fuck me man, I’m exhausted. I need to go to bed, that was the best thing I’ve ever seen.” I miss live performances now. I miss genuine live performances. I grew up watching bands like Oasis, the Arctic Monkeys, like fucking Coldplay. Big acts that when you stood in the audience, even the people standing in the back, you fucking feel it in your belly. It’s like a grenade has gone off in your chest. To me, I feel like live music has lost that a little bit. It’s all become very programmed, and very electronic. It’s just become some dickhead screaming down a mic and throwing water at people. I grew up on Jagger! I grew up on Freddie Mercury! I grew up on Liam Gallagher! I grew up on Eminem! I grew up on Kurt Cobain! I grew up on Madonna! I grew up on Lady Gaga, Marilyn Manson! All these fucking icons! Bowie man! They’d all fucking walk on stage and put on a SHOW. Even fucking Coldplay man, their stadium show is fucking insane.

Exactly, and you’ve created this experience that’s almost gone extinct with modern music in 2018. Now, what has the American crowd been like since debuting in the US with “I Love You, Will You Marry Me?” We talked a little bit about Warped Tour, but what has that American crowd been like for you?

Mate, it’s been amazing man! It’s insane to see the connection like everywhere. Going across Warped Tour, the amount of kids, like 3-400 kids across every city losing it. It was just ridiculous. They were just so enthusiastic and excited, and I fucking love it. What’s amazing is that they would talk about like, there’s a mental health epidemic going on in America right now, but my fans aren’t afraid to talk about it with me. I love that, man. I want to create conversation with them. They make me understand shit that I may not necessarily understand. Like, you can’t understand someone’s point of view if it’s told in third-person sometimes. When you speak to someone, and you hear the emotion and feel the emotion in their heart, see it in their eyes, it sways you. It’s amazing, man. I can’t wait to get back out in the US. It’s fucking mad, right? Growing up in Doncaster … America just seemed so far away from me. Like another planet, almost. To be out here, about to tour the whole country on a headlining tour, that’s pretty much sold out. It’s fucking crazy.

I love that constant talk of connection, and I love speaking to you because I can see that you genuinely care. You’re not just there to get your name out there, you genuinely care about having that connection. Now, is there a different mindset you have when playing in America versus playing closer to home?

That’s so funny. Yeah, I think! It’s kind of like, the further away from home I get the more committed I get. I just want my message and my music to reach the four corners of the world. I’m not trying to sound a bit wanky, but I genuinely do. I mean, when I go to Australia I’m like, “Fuck me man, I’m in Australia, I need to take this territory.” I just want to meet as many people as I can. I don’t really give a fuck about record sales, and all that shit. I mean, that’s fine. I just want to play stadiums. I want to have thousands of people there … not just for me, man. It’s not about me. Yungblud ain’t fucking about me. It’s not about that. It’s about a unity and a fucking connection. You nailed it on the head, it’s like a connection to the family that I want to create. I’m not in it for the fucking, whatever like everyone is so focused on plaques and all of that shit right now. I’m not into that. I’m genuinely not. Like, I’m on the road with my best mates delivering a message that I genuinely believe in with all my heart and playing music that I fucking love. And to be providing answers to people who don’t necessarily have them is amazing because that’s the way I used to be. That’s what Eminem did for me. That’s what Alex Turner did for me. That’s what Joe Strummer and The Clash did for me. That’s what Lady Gaga did for me. It’s just insane.

For sure, and I mean you have been touring nonstop since January, we talked about that earlier. You have a lot of hours to kill when you’re not performing. Taking a step back, how do you stay busy when you’re not on stage?

Write. Fucking write. Also, I’m on my social media because the amount of DMs I get from people every day is crazy. I try to respond to as many as I can or at least write lyrics that I can put on my twitter that can connect to people. I always want to be connected to people, that’s the thing for me. I put so many lyrics on my twitter. Rock and roll music does not have a presence online, and that’s why I love hip hop so much. Hip hop artists genuinely give you an insight into their soul and into their life. I think that’s amazing. Yeah, sometimes I may not understand or agree with what they’re saying, but at least they’re saying something. I love being online. At first it’s scary to put yourself online. It’s like, “Fuck me, everyone is gonna judge me.” But it’s just so fun just connecting with thousands and thousands of people. And eventually, hopefully millions, and never failing to put my message out there. To me man, it’s like, if I got an hour to kill I’ll go on Instagram live or something. If I’ve got two hours to kill I’ll start writing lyrics that I can put into a song when I can finally get back into the studio. I want to be able to utilize that in the best way possible. I want to be putting new music out … December this year, January next year. I’m ready, I’ve got another album ready to go! I’m gonna be dropping like a song every month. You know what I mean, man?

I’m very excited to hear that!

I’m so excited! Like, going on Warped Tour and meeting the kids, that first record was about outwardly addressing issues with the world and issues with myself. It was outward. It was leave it alone mate. It was stop calling me a psychopath. It was stop calling me an anarchist. I don’t like just analyzing my mental health so much, but the next songs I’ve been writing have been inward. They’re about what I’ve been feeling on the road and what people have confided and told me. Like, there’s a song called “Mars” I can’t wait to release. It’s about a person that … it fucking chokes me up every time man, every time I say it, it takes my breath away. I was on Warped Tour and this girl came up to me who used to be a boy. She told me that “Kill Somebody” allowed her to put her makeup on and go down to her parents and say, “This is who I am.” That, for me, was just fucking crazy. I had to write this song, and it’s almost like a 21st century version of “Life on Mars” by David Bowie. I can’t wait to release songs like this: about genuine positive connection and telling stories about people I’ve met.

That’s very powerful, and I feel it truly comes back to the overall topic of this interview: connection. Connection to your audience. Connection to the people around you. It’s truly phenomenal. Now, looking back on these past couple of years what can you say stands out as some of your greatest creative milestones?

I love the videos I just put out. I love “Medication” and “Psychotic Kids.” I really wanted to express my visual identity. I wanted people to see the pink socks. I wanted people to see videos that genuinely mean something. It’s not just me under neon lights singing pretty, or throwing dollars on a car with my mates awkwardly standing next to me. I wanted to genuinely create an identity and a character that people can latch onto and go to for help. That I can go to for help, ya know? Also, probably “Polygraph Eyes,” which is one of my favorite songs. It was the first time I told a story about what I’ve seen and the first time I explored an issue so outright that I was totally out of my comfort zone. Because, I’ve seen it but I’ve never genuinely experienced that. I haven’t been sexually assaulted. I’ve just only seen it happen and seen it around me. And I wanted to write something that was from a third-person almost. As well, the other day The Recording Academy tweeted me saying, “We think Yungblud could be the future sound of rock and roll” and that just blew my fucking mind. Like, what the fuck? Hahaha. And finally, just touring and being able to connect to people. I know I sound like a broken record but that’s it man, I just want to connect with as many people as I can. That’s what music is about, right?

Of course, 100%.

It’s become about how many Instagram followers can I have or how much fucking money can I make. It’s not about that for me, man. It’s about connecting to as many people as I can because it’s weird man … we can get lost. And, I don’t want to be lost.

That’s 100% true. You’re a genuine artist, there’s no mistaking that. It’s easy to see that you are a goal oriented individual. You’ll stop at nothing to achieve success, even if that success is that connection. Is there anything at the moment that you have your mind set on doing in the not-so-distant future? A goal that you haven’t quite met just yet?

Yeah man, I’m excited. I’m excited to work on collaborations with artists that you wouldn’t expect. Like there’s some in the pipeline and there’s some recorded that I just can’t wait to release. For me it’s all about embracing culture and embracing things that I wouldn’t normally do or that people wouldn’t expect to work. But, I mean why would I want to do a collaboration with someone who sounds like me? Why would I want to do that? I can’t wait to reveal it and drop these collaborations. That’s gonna be really fun. That’s going to be a milestone for me. For people to go, “Ya know what? I don’t know what the fuck Yungblud’s going to do next.” And that’s the way I want to be for the rest of my career.

It’s all about stepping out of your comfort zone, right?

Hell yeah! That’s the fun part!

Well I want to thank you for taking the time out of your hectic, busy schedule to chat with me. The album is fantastic, the tours have been going well, and I know it’s only going to get better from here. I know I caught you in the middle of rehearsal so I’ll let you get back on stage so you can rock it!

Thank you brother! It was sick to talk to you!

For all the latest news and tour dates for Yungblud, visit is official site at www.yungbludofficial.com. Connect with him on social media via Twitter, Instagram and Facebook.

Catch Youngblud on tour on these dates:
10/03 – Denver, CO @ Larimer
10/05 – Austin, TX @ Emo’s
10/06 – San Bernardino, CA @ Cal Jam Fest
10/07 – Austin, TX @ Austin City Limits
10/09 – Nashville, TN @ The High Watt
10/10 – Atlanta, GA @ Vinyl
10/11 – Knoxville, TN @ The Open Chord
10/13 – Houston, TX @ WOMH Upstairs
10/14 – Austin TX @ Austin City Limits
10/16 – Kansas, MO @ Record Bar
10/17 – Minneapolis, MN @ 7th Street Entry
10/18 – Chicago, IL @ Subterranean
10/19 – Cincinnati, OH @ Madison Live
10/21 – Toronto, ON @ The Drake
10/23 – Boston, MA @ Great Scott
10/25 – New York, NY @ Baby’s Alright
10/26 – Washington, DC @ DC9
10/27 – Philadelphia, PA @ Boot & Saddle

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Pop Icon Lady Gaga To Launch Exclusive Las Vegas Residency: Dates and Details Announced!

Pop Icon Lady Gaga To Launch Exclusive Las Vegas Residency: Dates and Details Announced!

Six-time GRAMMY Award-winner, Golden Globe Award-winner and Academy Award-nominated superstar entertainer Lady Gaga will launch her exclusive residency at Park Theater at the new Park MGM resort Friday, Dec. 28. Citi is proud to join Lady Gaga and Park MGM as the official credit card of this residency, presented in partnership by Live Nation and MGM Resorts International.

Lady Gaga’s Las Vegas residency will feature two unique shows in the intimate venue. LADY GAGA ENIGMA is a brand-new odyssey of her pop hits built as an experience unlike any other while LADY GAGA JAZZ & PIANO will feature stripped-down versions of her hits as well as music from the Great American Songbook.

Lady Gaga said, “I can’t wait to share ENIGMA with all of my fans and with Las Vegas. We’re creating a show unlike anything I’ve done before. It will be a celebration of all that is unique and different within us. The challenges of bravery can be overcome with creativity and courage that is grown out of adversity, love and music.”

Bill Hornbuckle, President of MGM Resorts International, said, “Working with Lady Gaga and her team has been a career highlight for me. What she is planning for Las Vegas audiences is nothing short of spectacular. Welcoming her into our family will firmly position Park MGM as the city’s most exciting new destination.”

Members of Lady Gaga’s Little Monsters fan community will receive access to an exclusive pre-sale beginning Wednesday, Aug. 8 at 10 a.m. PT to Sunday, Aug. 12 at 10 p.m. PT. For more information, visit GagaVegas.com.

Citi® is the official presale credit card of Lady Gaga’s residency at Park Theater. As such, Citi® cardmembers will have access to purchase presale tickets from Thursday, Aug. 9 at 10 a.m. PT to Sunday, Aug. 12 at 10 p.m. PT thru Citi’s Private Pass® program. For complete pre-sale details, visit citiprivatepass.com.

M life Rewards loyalty members as well as Live Nation and Ticketmaster customers will receive access to a presale scheduled from Saturday, Aug. 11 at 10 a.m. PT to Sunday, Aug. 12 at 10 p.m. PT. To join the M life Rewards program, or for more information, visit mlife.com.

Tickets starting at $77.90 (not including applicable service charges or fees) go on sale Monday, Aug. 13 at 10 a.m. PT. A limited number of VIP packages including meet and greets also will be available. Tickets can be purchased at all Ticketmaster outlets or online at Ticketmaster.com or GagaVegas.com. Tickets also can be purchased through the MGM Resorts International Call Center at (866) 740-7711.

2018 Performance Dates:  LADY GAGA ENIGMA Shows

December 28; 30 – 31

2019 Performance Dates:  LADY GAGA ENIGMA Shows

January 17; 19; 24; 26; 31

February 2

May 30

June 1; 6; 8; 12; 14

October 17; 19; 23; 25; 31

November 2; 6; 8

2019 Performance Dates:  LADY GAGA JAZZ & PIANO Shows
January 20

February 3

June 2; 9

Lady Gaga? has amassed an extraordinary 31 million global album sales and 171 million single sales, making her one of the best-selling musicians of all-time. Gaga is one of the biggest living forces in social media with more than 59 million likes on Facebook, over 76 million followers on Twitter and more than 28 million followers on Instagram. Her fifth studio album, Joanne, was released?in October 2016 and debuted at No. 1 on the Billboard Top 200, marking her fourth consecutive No. 1 album – the first female to do so in the last seven years. Lady Gaga has also seen incredible touring success with Live Nation producing and promoting all of her tours since The Monster Ball tour (2009-2011), which was the highest-grossing tour for a debut artist in history. Since then, she’s also entertained fans with her Born This Way Ball tour (2012-2013); the 2014 ArtRave: The ARTPOP Ball tour; her 2015 tour collaboration with Tony Bennett; as well as her most recent JOANNE WORLD TOUR which wrapped earlier this year.

Park Theater is the entertainment centerpiece of Park MGM, a partnership between MGM Resorts International and New York-based Sydell Group which features two distinct hotel experiences including a Las Vegas version of Sydell’s widely acclaimed NoMad Hotel. The 5,200-seat Park Theater, with its cutting-edge audio and visual technology, provides artists of diverse talents with a dynamic space to create one-of-a-kind productions where every seat allows guests to feel up close and personal. From comedy shows and live concerts, to sporting events and award shows, the theater is specially designed to transform seamlessly for any occasion.

For more Park Theater show and ticket information, visit ParkTheaterLV.com or follow on FacebookTwitter and Instagram

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BREAKING THE MOULD: Jane Badler Talks Career, Artistic Evolution & New Projects!

BREAKING THE MOULD: Jane Badler Talks Career, Artistic Evolution & New Projects!

Jane Badler – Photo by Jennifer Stenglein

Jane Badler is the definition of cool. A seasoned actress with undeniable prowess, she’s brought strong female characters to the screen long before it was buzzworthy. Trained at Northwestern University, she cut her teeth as a young actress on the TV soap opera “One Life to Live” (1968), where she played Melinda Cramer Janssen until 1981, returning briefly to reprise the role in 1983. However, it wasn’t until she landed the role as Diana, the evil reptilian Visitor leader Diana in the NBC mini-series “V” (1983) and its sequel “V: The Final Battle” (1984) that she became a driving force in a pop culture phenomenon. The sci-fi franchise took the world by storm and launched her to superstardom as she was quickly one of the most recognizable faces in television. Her journey would ultimately take her away from the glitz and glamour of Hollywood to forge a new life in Australia with her loving husband and two spirited sons. Where one chapter ends, another begins. Fortunately for us Jane Badler is focused on the future and the best is yet to come! Jason Price of Icon Vs. Icon recently caught up with this force of nature for a revealing interview to discuss her unique career path, passion for the arts and, most importantly, everything she has in store for her fans in the realms of both acting and music!

You built an eclectic career for yourself. How did you get involved with the arts?

Like a lot of people in the arts, I started very young. I was always drawn to it. I was drawn to dance and music. I played the flute, the guitar and I sang, in addition to being in theater. For me, I think it was a fantastic way to express myself! I grew up in the ‘60s and things were a little bit different then! My parents were divorced, and it was a slightly dysfunctional home, so through acting and all of the things I did, I had a sense of purpose and self-esteem. I was able to create other worlds, which was a wonderful thing for me as a young person!

Who had a big impact on you?

You know, when I was young, I loved Elizabeth Taylor. I thought she was incredible! She was so beautiful and glamorous, and I do love glamour, I have to say! I also really love Barbra Streisand. I sang all of her songs and I thought she was an amazing singer. I also loved that she looked so different and was a big star. These were my tastes as a young person. I also loved James Taylor, the Beatles and Carole King. I sang all of their songs too! Those were a lot of my influences musically. It’s a funny thing, people ask, “Who are your influences?” I think the best answer is anyone who does what they do at a very high level. That always inspires me! It doesn’t even have to be someone who is known! I can go to the theater and see a miraculous play, I’m in awe of the director and I have to go and speak with him! I think I’m just inspired by great work and people who do things slightly different and slightly left-of-center. Then, I try to find my own way in all of it and have my own voice!

You made a name for yourself early on as an actor. What drew you to the craft professionally and did you have reservations about taking the plunge?

Yeah, I think I did. My mother was a little nervous for me. It wasn’t that she didn’t believe in me. However, even though I had been accepted into one of the great theater universities, Northwestern, which is very difficult, she wanted me to do a double major. She just wanted me to have something to fall back on, you know. To me, that’s a funny concept because when you say, “something to fall back on,” there is already a part of your brain that starts getting doubt. You might start thinking, “Maybe I’m not good enough.” She felt like I always needed something to fall back on and that is what I did. I studied drama and when I graduated, my mom was in New Hampshire, and I said, “I’m going to New York!” She was so frightened for me! She just said, “Really?” I was 21 at the time. I didn’t know anyone in New York, I didn’t have an agent and I didn’t have a lot of money. I think she was very frightened for me, but I just had this determination because that’s what it takes, ya know!

Well, it certainly worked out in the long-run!

[laughs] Yeah! In those days you could go around and knock on the doors of agents, which is what I did! I don’t think you can do that now. I don’t think anyone would open the door for you if you did that now! [laughs] But then you could, and I got an agent! I did lots and lots of commercials and I got my first soap opera when I hadn’t even been there a year! I was really lucky!

You cut your teeth as a young actor on the soap opera “One Life To Live.” From what I heard, that’s a different animal compared to other types of shows. What did you take away from your time there?

Soap operas are very unique! They are very, very fast paced and you do a show a day. That’s an hour show a day, which is crazy! You have rehearsal, you block it, you do a run and then you tape it. It’s very high pressure and sometimes you have to learn 30 pages in a day. What an incredible learning experience for a young actress! You get very quick! There are good things and bad things about that. Because you have to work so quickly, you don’t have time to delve very deeply and you have to be a master at coming up with emotions. As you know, on soap operas, you’re either crying or angry. It’s extreme emotion! In a way, I think you learn how to master those emotions very quickly, learn lines quickly and come up with the goods quickly. That’s very positive for any young actor!

Building on that, when did you come into your own as an actor?

I love your questions! I think it was a different time then. That was the day of the soap opera — nighttime and daytime. We had everything from “Dynasty” to “Falcon Crest.” The acting style was very different in the ‘80s. If you look at the style, people tended to overact a little bit more. The more mumbling, naturalist acting came a little bit later. Although I had studied, I don’t feel I really came into my own until I moved to Australia, which sounds very strange. Even though I am very proud of “V” and “Mission: Impossible,” I’m even more proud of a lot of the theater I have done here and the depth that I now bring to roles as a mature person.

Jane Badler as Diana on ‘V.’

You mentioned your role on “V.” That is an awesome piece of your resume. The show was one of the biggest phenomena of the ‘80s. How did you get involved with the project and did you know it would skyrocket the way it did?

It’s interesting, there was no internet at the time of the series and for probably about 10 years after. I knew it was popular because I was on all the talk shows from “Johnny Carson” to “David Letterman” and I was on the cover of “People” magazine. I knew it was a big hit but after the two mini-series and then the series didn’t go anywhere, I kind of figured that was the end of it. It was like any other actor; out there trying to get another job. I moved to Australia and it wasn’t until 10 or 15 years ago that I started suddenly realizing how many fans I had! It was incredible! It was a constant stream of people contacting me and it quite blows my mind! Let’s face it, that was a long time ago!

It was a captivating role. What did you bring to the character that wasn’t on the original written page?

I was in a very vulnerable point in my life at that time. I had lost my father; my mom was a single mother and I was in my 20s. Like a lot of people, I had to make it or break it. It was up to me. I didn’t have any type of cushioning, which most of us don’t! I think I had a sense of determination and I brought all of that to the role of Diana. She is a character who is incredibly determined and incredibly driven yet, even though I was a hard-ass evil bitch, underneath it there was a sense of vulnerability. That was something I had in myself. I didn’t even need to act it; it was just there in me. Maybe that is why people like the role because there were a few dimensions going on.

How did being a part of the phenomenon impact you and what did you take away from the experience?

First of all, the opportunities it has given me are extraordinary. No matter how good I am, the fact that I moved away to Australia at the peak of my career was a hindrance to my career. It was not a hindrance to my personal life and happiness, but it was a hindrance to a career that was doing well. In order to return to Los Angeles, when most actors have stayed and pounded the pavement, no matter how good I think I am, if I didn’t have that amazing iconic stature, it would be much more difficult for me. So, I think having been a part of something like that has given me wonderful opportunities.

Jane Badler – Photo by Jennifer Stenglein

What goes into bringing a new character to life?

When I was younger, and I don’t think this is true at all of younger actors now, I would wing it a lot more. Even with all my training, I didn’t work so hard on it like the way I do now. Now, no matter what the role is, it takes a lot out of me. Recently, I did a comedy in Spain and another film, “2047: Virtual Revolution.” It’s not just about learning the lines but creating a whole backstory about the character because often the films I do are not very high budget. That means there isn’t a lot of rehearsal time and it’s filmed very quickly. I have to have really made a lot of choices and done a lot of work before I arrive on set, which I do! Sometimes I get a coach to work with me. I take it really seriously! I learn all my lines before I set foot at rehearsal. It’s a lot of work if you want to look good on the screen!

You mentioned “2047: Virtual Revolution,” which is the film that brought us together today. How did the project come onto your radar and what drew you to it?

Like many of the projects I do, people contact me through social media. For example, I just got asked to sing on someone’s really cool album yesterday! I’m always having people contact me about new projects, which is so awesome. This particular role started when the director, Guy-Roger Duvert, reached to me. We have a mutual friend who I had done a short film with in Paris. He saw me in that short film and thought, “I’d really love to have her in my feature.” He contacted me and sent the script. I read it and said, “Whoa! This is so cool! What a cool premise!” It centers around how most people in 2047 spend all of their time online and it’s become a huge addiction. In the meantime, the real world is falling apart because everyone is online and now all the problems from the real world are now online. I thought it was such a cool concept. It was not a role that was far from anything I had ever done, and it was a role very within my scope to do, which is a kickass woman who is the head of a corporation that is fighting terrorism inside virtual worlds. It was a great role and I was so excited to be asked to do it. I loved working with Guy, who is a gentle, talented director. He is Parisian, and it filmed in Paris. Hello! You can’t say no to Paris, right? [laughs] It’s been a great experience. The film has won a lot of awards and now it’s out on DVD, so it’s been a fantastic thing and I hope he continues to do films.

What do you look for in the roles these days?

I have recently signed with management in New York, which is a very big step for me. It means that I am looking to commit to spending some time in The United States and auditioning again. They are very good managers who handle a lot of very well-known people, so I’m sure they can start to get me in the door again. When I think about what I like to do now, I still love the sci-fi and horror genre, I do! I love acting in those things because I love bigger than life characters. I love fantasy characters and I probably always will! I would also love to play a strong woman on a TV show, something like the Ambassador to the U.N. or an FBI agent. There is so much of that now on television and there is a lot more opportunity for older women as well!

What brought about the decision to transition back to working in the United States?

First of all, both of my children live in America. My eldest son is in technology and is getting a masters at the Tisch School. He lives in New York. The other one is an actor/musician in Los Angeles. I love my kids so much and they are still in their mid-twenties, so that is one very big reason why I want to spend more time in America!

That is cool to hear. What a great reason to be bi-coastal!

Yeah, I know! How good is that! [laughs] I want to be near them! My husband is now in a position where he can take some time and be with me as well, so that’s even better! I feel like it’s my time! I’ve spent a lot of years with my children and being here in Australia, which I love! My husband is an Australian but I’m also an American and the opportunities for me are not here, they are there. I feel like I have to go and give it a last little shot, if you know what I mean!

I do! You are a seasoned professional, so any production would be lucky to have you aboard!

Well, thank you! I feel like that. Every time I get on set, I feel like a skier who has been doing it their whole life. I get on the set and I’m like, “Yup! I get this!” I get this, and I always have a million ideas. I absolutely love it! I know that I can do it, I just need to get in the ring again!

Jane Badler is an unstoppable creative force! – Photo by Karl Giant

There is also a wonderful musical side of your career. Tell us about that side of your creative life.

You know, I’m a singer. When people ask me, “What are your influences,” that’s a complicated answer. I am more of the muse for other people. People come to me to sing their songs and I am an interpreter. I take a song and make it my own and that’s what I love doing the most! I started singing at 5 years old in little talent contests. Then I did little musicals and sang in the Miss America Pageant before forming bands. When I got to New York, I didn’t sing a lot because I realized I had no original music and being in a cover band was not the answer for me. Fast forward and now I’ve released three albums of all original music. The first one was done on the smell of an oily rag with a little indie band, which is very cool, hip and indie. The next one was jazz fusion and a friend wrote most of the songs and I wrote one song. I love the song I wrote, “Nursery Rhymes,” which I think is a beautiful song. I worked with the most extraordinary jazz pianist/composer, who produced it. The third album I wrote with two other musicians. That one is called “Opus” and I worked with an extraordinary L.A. producer to bring it to life. Now, I’m about to go back into the studio again to do a disco again, which will be all fun dance music. I am working with an amazing producer called Parralox. It’s been really cool and I’m doing it through a little record in the UK called Energise. Like I’ve said, it’s so great that these little opportunities come up for me!

There is great stuff to dig into for sure. What are your key tracks for those just discovering your body of work?

Yeah! I’ve got some music videos that I couldn’t be more proud of! The very first music video I did is called “Four Corners To My Bed.” What a cool title, right? You can imagine that it conjures up all sorts of sexual things, which is exactly what it’s about it! It’s about the deviations in people’s sexual appetites. It’s a very jazzy, loungey song. I shot the video in Canada and I’m super proud of that one! Later on, on my third album, I did a song called “Losing You,” which I wrote. That is my favorite music video of all. I worked with a guy in LA who is magic when it comes to post-production and he created entire worlds! Each room I walk into is a whole new world. The song is all about states of mind. I also re-did one of Kylie Minogue’s biggest dance songs, “Can’t Get You Out Of My Head.” Originally, it’s a poppy song, which I turned into a much darker song. There is a music video for that one as well. Those are three that stand out to me. I have a bunch of videos and my son is in quite a few of them! He was in one of my first one’s called “I Want A Lot of Boys To Cry At My Funeral.” What a title, huh? I think it says it all right there, right? [laughs] He was in that one and in “Losing You” as well. He’s been in quite a few of them, so that has been fun!

It sounds like your passion for music is at an all-time high! Do you have plans for live performances in the near future?

It’s so interesting, I stopped singing for two years and now that I’ve discovered this disco music, which I’m really excited about, I’m definitely starting to think about performing again! I feel like there is so much I can do with this as far as performance and the way I dress. I recently united with the most extraordinary stylist, whom I would trust to dress me. I’m really thinking now about performing this stuff. I will definitely perform in the UK, where the label is and see how it goes. It’s a very slow process when it comes to breaking in new material and coming up with show ideas.

Jane Badler is as intense as ever! – Photo by Jennifer Stenglein

Looking back on your career, how have you evolved as an artist?

I think, in a funny way, I’ve become more compassionate and more curious about not only my own place in the art form but in the whole picture. I produced a film a couple of years ago called “Daisy Winters.” It’s about to be released in America on DVD and streaming. That project taught me so much and that everything is not about me. I could see the whole picture of the film and how every part was equally important. I am taking that with me now in everything I do. I have a true appreciation for everyone who collaborates with me and makes the product what it is, whether it’s a pianist, the person doing the clothes, the background singer or what have you. Each piece is equally important in making a great product! I’ve always had attention to detail and it’s very important to me. I find it really strange when artists haven’t really put attention into their appearance and how they look. To me, that is as important to me as my music; the image that I put forth. Getting a very good team together is so very important. It also becomes harder as you get older because you get even more into the detail of it! It becomes even more important that everything is at a certain level. I think that is more what I’m into now!

What’s the best lesson we can take from your journey so far?

I know it sounds cliché but be very true to yourself and your vision. Always trust that! Trust that your vision and whatever you want to do is enough. You don’t have to think there has to be more. Also, never give up! If you believe in something, keep pushing forward. Keep persevering. There will be a lot of rejection along the way and there will be a lot of hard times but if you are passionate about something and you believe in it, you will have to strength to keep going!

That’s amazing advice! Thank you for your time today, Jane! With all the new things on the horizon, I’m sure we will chat soon! Best of luck to you!

Fantastic! I loved it! I look forward to talking to you soon! Take care!

You can follow the continuing adventures of Jane Badler on her official website — www.janebadler.com. Connect with her through social media via Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube

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ON THE RISE: Ottawa’s Dale DeLong On Bringing Their Music To The Masses!

ON THE RISE: Ottawa’s Dale DeLong On Bringing Their Music To The Masses!

Cleveland-based band Ottawa has exploded onto the Indie Rock scene hard with the release of their punchy new single “Strangers”.  The spirited track is the first release out of 6 brand new, upcoming songs set to trickle out throughout the rest of the summer. Ottawa features the collective talents of Dale DeLong [Lead Vocals], Tim Czajka [Guitar], Jeremy Barnes [Bass] and Will Hooper [Guitars & Backup Vocals]. More Manchester than Midwest, Ottawa creates ambitious Indie Rock that’s equal parts steel-town grit and new wave gloss. Their energetic performances and captivating hooks have helped them generate a buzz far beyond their hometown. After writing and recording for the past twelve months, the band is taking their passion to an elevated level as they set out to promote the releases this summer. Jason Price of Icon Vs. Icon recently caught up with Dale DeLong to discuss his musical roots, the formation of the band and everything they have in store for music fans in the months to come!

Going all the way back to your humble beginnings, both as an artist and as a band. What went into finding your creative voice early on?

That answer is going to be very different for all of us, but for me, I always had this sense that I was meant to front a band, from singing along with New Kids On the Block as a kid to actually looking for guys to start a band with, it always felt very natural. Melody always has come very easy to me, I don’t really know how to explain it; it just comes out. As a band, you’re essentially trying to impress each other, early on. It’s like, “you have a guitar, and you aren’t 50?” Let’s do this.

There is no doubt that music is your true love, so let’s start at the beginning. What are your first memories of music?

I remember my mom blaring ‘Conga’ by Gloria Estefan and I didn’t really care for that too much, but one day I remember her playing “I Can’t Tell You Why” by Eagles. I was maybe 6 or 7 and it just made so much sense to me, like it was made just for me to hear.

Dedicating yourself fully to your art is a big step. Did you ever have any reservations about taking the plunge?

It’s scary. We all still have jobs but, fingers crossed, hopefully for not much longer. The band is taking up more and more time the further we get into it. There’s no reservation in the plunge, it’s just about taking it at the right time, so it sticks.

Who were some of the performers and people behind the scenes who helped to shape the artist we see today?

The Strokes, The Cure, Oasis, The Beatles, Cranberries, Smashing Pumpkins…I’ll toss Jeremy, our bass player, a bone and say Rush (not my thing but it helped shape him). Don Henley, 2Pac- Any new wave band, loads of producers /Engineers, Jimmy Lovine, Matt Goldman, Mark Needham (who mixed two songs for us), Brandon Flowers, Tom Petty, Wilco…it’s endless really.

You are clearly very driven when it comes to your career. Where do you find yourself looking for inspiration to fuel your creative fire?

When you know you’re working toward making your dreams come true, drive just happens and you don’t think twice about it. I’m not consciously driven, its just reality for us at this point; no looking back. The buzz of writing something new that’s so fucking good, and hasn’t been done yet NEVER gets old.

How did you all initially cross paths and form Ottawa?

Tim and I went to high school together. It took me so long to try and convince him to play with me because he never took me seriously- I think because I was a class clown in school. I met Will through a Craigslist ad I posted when I gave up on college and moved home to start a band, like, 10 years ago. That’s when Tim started to come around as well. Needless to say, this band had a couple other iterations along the way, which is pretty typical. Jeremy joined the band two years ago; we kind of needed a new bass player/drummer situation and posted another craigslist ad, assuming nothing would come of it. Jeremy had apparently heard our song “Roman Candle” somehow so he responded right away. He was very good and grounded- he and Tim had an immediate bond over some type of handy work discussion, Will and I ignored, now here are. The 4 of us are Ottawa. Anyone playing drums with us will be a friend or someone hired- we just like being a 4-piece, it works for us.

For those who may be reading this before hearing your work — How would you describe the sound you have created?

We are guitar driven with big choruses; the type of music that you’d clap along with the kick drum to and scream the chorus at a festival. It’s kind of British/ new wave-ish.

What do you bring out in each another creatively?

We aren’t competitive with each other; we only want what’s best for the songs. That being said, we do really push each other. I tend to be the most vocal when we’re writing all together, mostly because I’m the only one with a microphone. There’s a constant push and pull when we’re writing, but when everything finally clicks, there’s a collective like looking at each other like “this is it”.

Ottawa recently wrapped up a long studio session in Atlanta with producer Matt Goldman (Glow in the Dark Studios). What were the highlights of the experience and what have you been cooking up for us?

It was probably the best two weeks of my entire life. The accommodations weren’t the best, lol, but that made it even more fun. We were all sleeping on children’s bunk beds at night, then we’d wake up, drink coffee and make magic. Anything felt possible with Matt, he was steps ahead in his head and he totally got what we were after. Before meeting him we didn’t really know what he was like or what music he liked, because a lot of the records he’s made were kind of metal or whatever. It turns out his favorite music was more along the lines of what we do, so it was just amazing.

What can you tell us about the songwriting process for your music?

Typically, it’ll start with some random melody I have, or a just a title even. I’ll bring the guys some slow ballad-type thing and before you now it, its some Indie Rock banger. Will was playing an acoustic guitar in the studio and we wrote a new song in like 20 min called “Plan of Attack”- it’ll definitely see the light of day.

Did you have any goals, aspirations or a specific vision when hitting the studio for this batch of songs?

Our only goal was that the recordings do the song’s justice; we knew the songs were awesome because we worked our asses off writing them. We’re very proud of this batch of songs!

You’ve been able to live with the songs for a little while now. Which ones resonate with you the most and have you excited to bring to the fans?

Our favorite collectively is a song called “Friends” which we almost scrapped because we couldn’t quite figure it out, then one day, we just did. We’re pumped about all of them but it seems like “No More Love Songs” is the one people are reacting to the most, so we’re really excited to get that one into the world.

I think a lot of people might take for granted what you do to keep things moving forward. Can you talk a little bit about what goes into keeping a band like Ottawa on the rails and moving in the right direction?

I could go on for hours about this — It’s all about the songs! Every new song is a jolt of lightning. The truth is, if we we’re going to quit, we would’ve already. Trying to get this going can be exhausting but when it’s what you’re meant to do, you don’t question it, you just do it.

What were the biggest challenges you faced as a young band?

It would have to be finding the right people to work with, both in and out of the band.

What stands out as your creative milestones?

I can’t pinpoint one thing but finishing a song you started on a random night where you pick up your guitar because you’re lonely, or need to feel like you’re working when others aren’t, is a great feeling.

You have a lot of productive years ahead of you. Where do you see yourself headed musically in the future — with short and long term?

Short-term: releasing these songs and praying to God people like them so we can quit our day jobs, lol. Long-term: festivals all over the world, playing MSG, The Tonight Show, SNL- the whole gamut. I know this may sound farfetched or too ambitious but other bands have done it, right?

As an artist, so many things can be said about the current state of music. What excites about the music today?

The amount of truly talented people being able to put their music into the world is pretty great.

What are you currently listening to for inspiration and what songs are your guilty pleasures?

The War on Drugs, The Killers, Ryan Adams, Old U2… I personally don’t really believe in guilty pleasures because even if something is super lame, there’s usually a team of fantastic songwriters behind it (which I think is awesome), but for the sake of it I think that yoddle kid’s song ‘Famous’ is a pretty good tune. The whole situation is bizarre, but it’s a nice little song.

What do you think people would be most surprised to find out about Ottawa?

We aren’t really the type of people going out partying all the time although we aren’t boring by any means. Personally, I put sleep before most things. You also won’t be seeing us out at swanky night clubs or anything, not that anyone would assume that about us, lol. Tim is a relatively quiet guy but when he get a little toasty that’s when I get texts and voicemails saying how proud he is of what we’re doing and “we’re going to make it”, lol. I look forward to those.

What’s the best way for fans to help support your band in this day and age?

Listen to our music and tell everyone you know and have ever met to do the same!

You have certainly faced your own challenges and learned some things from your time with this project. What’s the best lesson we can take from your journey so far?

When things get really, really hard, that’s right when you’re about to be great- so keep going!

Follow the continuing adventures of Ottawa on social media via Facebook, YouTube, Instagram and Twitter. Visit the official website of the band at www.ottawatheband.com.

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Out of The Darkness: The Outfield’s Tony Lewis On Creating His Debut Solo Album!

Out of The Darkness: The Outfield’s Tony Lewis On Creating His Debut Solo Album!

Tony Lewis – Photo by Harvey Pearson

The Outfield was an undeniable force. The band took the airwaves of the ’80s by storm with their infectious pop songs, including “Your Love,” “All The Love” and “Say It Isn’t So.” Their 1985 debut album, “Play Deep,” reached triple platinum sales status and Top 10 on the U.S. album charts. “Your Love” peaked at #6 and is still featured in a number of compilation albums and commercials, and has been covered or remixed more than 1,000 times by other artists. More than 30 years later, “Your Love” continues to make waves with an average of 1 million streams per week on Spotify and more than 5 million monthly views of the video on YouTube, while still in rotation at more than 300 major market radio stations across the country. Collectively, The Outfield has more than 170 million total views on YouTube videos and 125 million streams on Spotify.

Following the 2014 passing of his longtime friend and collaborator, Tony Lewis took a break from music. However, the London-based musician, songwriter and record producer couldn’t stay away for long. In 2018, Tony Lewis of The Outfield announced the release of “Out of The Darkness,” his first solo album. The new 12-track album, slated for release on June 29 via Madison Records, was written and recorded by Lewis over the past two years. It is his first for the Atlanta-based label. Fearless during the process, Lewis produced, recorded and played all the instruments on the new album. This new collection of songs isn’t a rehash of his musical past but an exciting new chapter in his career and paves the way for an exciting future of possibilities for him as an artist. In support of the album’s release, Lewis will hit the road this summer on the Retro Futura Tour, alongside Belinda Carlisle, ABC, Modern English, Kajagoogoo’s Limahl and Bow Wow Wow’s Annabella. The July and August outing – including a July 28 show at the Wiltern Theatre in Los Angeles – will mark his first tour in more than 13 years.

Jason Price of Icon Vs. Icon recently caught up with Tony Lewis to discuss his life in music, the making of “Out of The Darkness” and what the future might hold for him as a solo artist.

How did music come into your life and what drove you to pursue it professionally?

Basically, it all got started when I picked up an old acoustic guitar out of a dustbin! [laughs] It was my sister’s friend’s brother who got an electric guitar and he was going to throw away his acoustic. I said, “Don’t throw it away. Can I have it?” I was about 14 or 15 years old at the time. He said, “Yeah, yeah, sure you can have it.” I took it home and I didn’t know how to tune a guitar, but I played along mono record play. I would play old ‘60s singles fast, so I could hear the bass lines. I would put it back to 45 RPM, so I could play along with the record. I just made up chords as I went along! I eventually got a cheap electric guitar. I’m primarily a bass player, as you know, but I like playing guitar as well. I was left handed back then and I saw a left-handed bass in a guitar shop. I saved up a lot of money and, when I went back to the shop, it had sold. Someone at my school said, “You’re going to have to learn on the other hand. It’s going to take you about six months.” It took me every night of those six months! [laughs] In the ‘70s, it was very rare that you could get a left-handed guitar, let alone bass! That’s why Jimi Hendrix played the Strat upside down because he couldn’t get a left-handed Strat! From there, I got into a school band with Alan Jackman and two other guys. We didn’t even know how to tune guitars back then, but we played in pub playing covers. Around that time, I met John [Spinks] and we were in a prog rock band years and years ago. There was another guy who sung with the band. I said to John, “He’s not a very good singer, is he?” He said, “No but he’s got a nice van!” [laughs] We did gigs in this very nice van with him before taking a break because the punk rock thing had happened. As I said, I was playing covers in clubs and John came down to a club I was playing. I was singing “Message In A Bottle” by The Police. I thought everyone could sing it! John said, “Wow! That voice! We’ve got to do some recording!” We went to a local studio, raised demos and toured all over England as The Baseball Boys. Eventually, we got signed to CBS. The rest is history!

You and John Spinks made amazing music together through the years. I’m sure he had some influence on your latest project as well. What did you bring out in each other creatively?

We feed off of each other with ideas. I would have guitar ideas and John would have bass ideas or I would play guitar on one track and he would play bass on one of the tracks. We never had any egos as far as who was playing what. We found out that we could play the drums on the computer, so we didn’t always need to go out and record in the studio. After working with various producers, we taught ourselves the tricks of the trade on how to produce. We both like the same sort of music from the Beatles to the Rolling Stones to The Cars to Thin Lizzy. I was also a big fan of T-Rex, Bowie and that sort of ‘70s stuff. John and I fed off of each other creatively and I loved recording music together.

Tony Lewis – Photo by Carol Lewis

There were periods when you took a break from music. What can you tell us about that and what brought you back to create a powerful new solo album?

I haven’t toured in about 13 or 14 years. We recorded “Replay” and brought Alan [Jackman] back to record because we wanted to get the original lineup back again to make a final album. It was an album to say to the fans, “Look, this is for you. This is what we do.” We did some recording over a year period and got Alan to do the drum tracks afterwards. We did it at a studio in the East End of London. We put it out to iTunes. After that, basically every week, John would send me mixes or a vocal for this or that. Thank God for the Internet because we were able to send each other sound files rather than going to each other’s houses all the time because we lived quite far apart. After John’s passing, I took a four-year hiatus. For two years, I didn’t even want to pick up a guitar, let alone think about playing music again. The title of the new album, “Out of The Darkness,” represents a journey back into the music industry after four years away from the industry and 14 years of not touring. After 33 years of being known as the singer of The Outfield, I wanted to reemerge as a solo artist and show them I have more than one string to my bow. I produced all of the music and played the majority of instruments. Through this album, you can hear my journey through love, loss and the beginning of a new chapter. Early on, I’d recorded a lot of backing tracks but I struggled with the lyrics. My wife, Carol, saw my frustration and offered to help me — basically to shut me up! [laughs] I worked very personally with my songs. Sometimes I would go through songs with the acoustic or a backing track and I would think, “I can do this song with this backing track.” It grew from there and it was quite an easy way of recording. It wasn’t stressful and almost effortless. It just grew and grew and grew into an album.

With the first three songs on the album, there is the spirit of The Outfield but after that it becomes more about how I write and how my approach to music is different than John’s. He was very major, and I was very minor. I could put a positive spin on a dark song. Through our ideas in the studio, and that dynamic, that’s how we made it a bit more interesting. For “Out of The Darkness,” I wanted these songs to just be about me rather than me trying to deliver an Outfield sounding album. This album shows a different side to me. Being in The Outfield for years, a lot of people think, “Oh, well, he’s just the bass player and singer.” I wanted to show people I can produce, record, play guitar, keyboard and drums. I also wanted to hear what it sounded like as an album. When I was halfway through the album, this guy named Randy Sadd [of Protocol Entertainment] contacted me. He is based in Atlanta and did promotions for The Outfield through 2010-2011 period and is a great friend of ours. He said, “What are you doing?” I said, “I’ve put some songs together. Can I send them to you?” He said, “Yeah!” He knew Tanner Hendon from Madison Records and they had some meetings. He really liked what I did, and it just grew from there.

Did you encounter challenges during the making of the record?

I wouldn’t say there were any challenges. It wasn’t like the label had said, “Can you write a ballad” or “Can you write a love song?” There was no pressure! I was basically just left to make my own music and I didn’t have to run it past anyone or deal with any decision-making. That’s quite the refreshing part of being a solo artist; you don’t have to run it past a committee! You are just your own person! I tried to get some feedback from Tanner, Randy and my wife from time to time. Sometimes you can be a fish in a bowl and be able to stand back and see where it’s going wrong. I’ve got a pretty good idea about how a song is structured and how it works. I understand radio as well. You can’t have an introduction of just keyboards! You’ve got to grab people’s attention, so I understand that totally!

Although this solo album is new to us, you’ve lived with these songs for a while now. Where are you headed musically in the future?

I’m already over halfway through the second album! I’ve got recorded stuff ready to go! I did that while waiting and mixing this album. You know, mixing and mastering is a long process. Tanner, who owns the record company, is also the drummer. He drummed with Paul Rodgers and Bad Company. So, I said, “Would you like to drum on some of these tracks?” He drums on about five tracks on this album because I love the feel of a drummer. It’s got a great feel to it! That was the pure luxury at all! How I see myself beyond the likes of this album? I don’t know. I’m not even thinking beyond the Retro Futura Tour. I’m just going to see how it goes because this is going to be the first tour that I’ve done without John. I’ve known him for over 40 years and we had done so many tours together. He was my best mate and it’s going to be very weird to look over and not see him there. That’s why I didn’t want to continue on with the name The Outfield when he passed. The Outfield is no more. I’m Tony from The Outfield! For the Retro Futura Tour, there will be a band there and we will go through The Outfield stuff and some of my stuff and take it from there! I’m not even thinking further down the road.

Perfectly understandable. What are you most looking forward to about the Retro Futura Tour?

It’s going to be great to see the fans again and say thank you for all the support and always being there for me. Hopefully, I will gain some new fans as well! To be on stage playing — you can’t beat it! On this tour, to go out there and do four songs, I’m not even going to break a sweat! [laughs] It’ll be like, “Come on, Tony! Finish now!” I’m used to playing two hours! That will be a bit strange but I’m really looking forward to seeing the other bands ABC, Belinda Carlisle, Annabella from Bow Wow Wow. I’m looking forward to seeing everyone and getting back in the swing of it again!

How have you most evolved as an artist over the years and when did you come into your own as a frontman?

I suppose we’ve learned a lot of tricks of the trade and producing. I tend to lean toward the guitar more than the bass, which is surprising because I am a bass player! I’ve never ever rehearsed on the bass because I think the guitar allows you to create more colors. I gained a lot of experience from the tours because you can be a great recording artist but if you can’t get up there and deliver, you shouldn’t be doing it! [laughs]

You just get up there and you do it. Obviously, this tour is a whole different experience because I don’t know the band. However, when you’re on stage and you’ve got your mates with you, you feel like a force. You feel like you’re powerful. Liam Gallagher was quoted, during his first solo venture, as saying that he actually missed his brother! He said, “This was strange. I wasn’t expecting this. I’m suddenly making all the decisions on my own and playing with the band.” I can relate to that with this new chapter, but it doesn’t happen overnight, obviously. I said to my wife, “Every time I see bands on TV, I feel like the iconic frontman, like Robert Plant or Mick Jagger, is missing.” If I see bands that don’t have that iconic frontman, I struggle with who it is I’m supposed to look at. Is it the singer, the drummer or the keyboard player? Every band has to have a focal point. I just wish I was a foot taller! [laughs] That’s all I wish!

What’s the best lesson we can take from your journey as an artist?

What I’ve learned is that no matter what you’re doing, just have faith in it, totally believe in it and sell it! Don’t just go through the motions. Don’t say, “I think I’ll just sit down and write a song because the bloke next door wants me to write a song about a lawnmower.” I’d be bored to death if I did that! It’s all about looking at life, yourself, where you’ve come from and what those experiences have given you. Never forget your roots! Being raised up in two rooms is something that never leaves you, that strong upbringing. I remember hearing the Beatles for the first time when I was 9 years old; I heard “Penny Lane” on the radio. I thought, “That song makes me feel safe.” If you pick up a guitar, piano or any other instrument, just keep practicing until you can put a song together or get in a band if you can’t do it on your own. With this album, I did it all on my own, just because I wanted to see if I could do it! Having that band thing is still good. Recording at home is great but there is something magical about getting a band together in a proper studio and everyone is pitching in ideas! That’s what makes a band a band! Whatever you do, believe in yourself and love what you’re doing! If you don’t love what you’re doing, go and get a day job! [laughs]

That’s true! Thanks for your time today today! It was a pleasure and I can’t wait for everyone to hear this new album!

Thank you, Jason! It was great chatting with you! Hope to see you soon!

For all the latest news and dates for Tony Lewis, visit his official site at www.tonylewismusic.com. Connect with him on social media via Facebook and Instagram.

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The Legendary Ann Wilson Reveals Details New Album ‘Immortal’

The Legendary Ann Wilson Reveals Details New Album ‘Immortal’

ANN WILSON of HEART, one of rock’s most distinctive and powerful vocalists, will release her new solo album September 14 on BMG, marking her debut for the label. Fittingly titled IMMORTAL, the album features 10 musically diverse tracks that pay homage to some of the singer’s favorite songs and artists, all of whom have passed away in recent years and whose music poignantly lives on (the full track listing is below).

For the new release, ANN has teamed with original Heart producer Mike Flicker (Dreamboat Annie, Magazine, Little Queen, Dog and Butterfly and Bebe Le Strange, among others). Look for the iconic Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductee to perform some of the album’s songs when she tours North America this summer with Jeff Beck and Paul Rodgers for the “Stars Align Tour” (see below for full upcoming tour itinerary). The songs will also be featured in ANN‘s first-ever solo television special (details TBA), taped this past April at the Arcada Theatre in St. Charles, IL, to coincide with the album’s release.

ANN chose the album title IMMORTAL after revealing some working titles early on in the project. “The original working titles evolved as the concept for the album evolved; a little bit at a time,” explains ANN. “As my understanding of what I had undertaken grew and clarified, I realized a larger truth; that the souls may have departed but the songs will forever be their resonances. These are the poets of our time and their expressions must be handed down. Poetry is lasting and elemental like carvings in rock.”

The finely etched tracks that comprise IMMORTAL cover a lot of musical ground, with many highlights including songs by Leonard Cohen (“A Thousand Kisses Deep”), Amy Winehouse (“Back to Black”), David Bowie (“I’m Afraid of Americans”), Lesley Gore (“You Don’t Own Me”) and Tom Petty (“Luna”). ANN says the criteria for choosing this collection of songs was easy. “First of all, I had to LOVE them! They had to be songs I could get inside of authentically as a singer. Lyrics are important to me but the most important thing is always the marriage of words and melody that makes the song magic!”

With sexism at the forefront of the national conversation, ANN says this did factor into the inclusion of “You Don’t Own Me.” “‘You Don’t Own Me’ was originally an early feminist anthem in the 1960’s and ’70’s. Since then the idea of self possession has grown to be more universal…This song is about refusing to be objectified and owned. By anyone.”

IMMORTAL includes some very special guests as well. “Warren Haynes plays on Tom Petty’s ‘Luna’ and ‘You Don’t Own Me,'” ANN reveals. “Ben Mink is featured on Leonard Cohen’s ‘A Thousand Kisses Deep’ and Amy Winehouse’s ‘Back to Black.’ They are both musicians and great people whom I admire. It’s always a pleasure and an honor to work with them. Their souls shine through on these songs!”

Producer Mike Flicker brings an important element to IMMORTAL. “Mike was the first producer to believe in me,” ANN says. “He was my first teacher in the studio and knows how to provide that special support needed to bring out my soul in the recording process. It is exciting to work with him for the first time since 1980. I have traveled many, many miles since then but the old feeling is still there and fresh on Immortal. He has fearlessly helped me bring my ideas to life once again and it’s been a great collaboration.”

The IMMORTAL track listing is as follows:

“A Different Corner” (George Michael)
“A Thousand Kisses Deep” (Leonard Cohen)
“Back to Black” (Amy Winehouse)
“Baker Street” (Gerry Rafferty)
“I Am the Highway” (Chris Cornell, Audioslave)
“I’m Afraid of Americans” (David Bowie)
“Life in the Fast Lane” (Joe Walsh, The Eagles) in honor of Glenn Frey
“Luna” (Tom Petty)
“Politician” (Cream) in honor of Jack Bruce
“You Don’t Own Me” (Lesley Gore)

The “Stars Align Tour” with Jeff Beck and Paul Rodgers kicks off July 18 in West Valley City, Utah, and makes stops in over 20 cities across the U.S. and Canadaincluding Dallas, St. Louis, Chicago, Toronto and Nashville, before wrapping August 26 in Tampa. In addition, ANN has a handful of headlining dates coming up this summer.

ANN WILSON‘s upcoming tour dates are as follows:

Headlining Dates:
Snoqualmie, WA
Snoqualmie Casino
Bremerton, WA
Admiral Theatre
Salem, OR
Elsinore Theatre
Jacksonville, OR
Britt Pavilion
Lemoore, CA
Tachi Palace
Albuquerque, NM
Route 66 Casino
Aspen, CO
Belly Up
Stars Align Tour with Jeff Beck and Paul Rodgers:
West Valley City, UT
USANA Amphitheatre
Irvine, CA
Five Point Amphitheatre
Chula Vista, CA
Mattress Firm Amphitheatre
Houston, TX
Smart Financial Centre at Sugar Land
Dallas, TX
The Pavilion at Toyota Music Factory
St. Louis, MO
Hollywood Casino Amphitheatre
Chicago, IL
Huntington Bank Pavilion at Northerly Island
Detroit, MI
DTE Energy Music Theatre
Toronto, ON
Budweiser Stage
Boston, MA
Blue Hills Bank Pavilion
Camden, NJ
BB&T Pavilion
Lewiston, NY
Artpark Amphitheatre
Cincinnati, OH
Riverbend Music Center
Indianapolis, IN
Ruoff Home Mortgage Music Center
Pittsburgh, PA
Heinz Hall for the Performing Arts
Holmdel, NJ
PNC Bank Arts Center
Wantagh, NY
Northwell Health at Jones Beach Theater
Nashville, TN
Nashville Municipal Auditorium
Charlotte, NC
PNC Music Pavilion
Vienna, VA
Wolf Trap
Jacksonville, FL
Daily’s Place
West Palm Beach, FL
Coral Sky Amphitheatre
Tampa, FL
MIDFLORIDA Credit Union Amphitheatre
^with Jeff Beck only
with Cheap Trick
Lincoln, CA
Thunder Valley Casino Resort

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Fueled By The Promise of a New Beginning: FF5 Releases “Fire On The Highway” Video

Fueled By The Promise of a New Beginning: FF5 Releases “Fire On The Highway” Video

Fueled by the promise of a new beginning, Curb Records’ pop duo, FF5, release red hot music video for “Fire on the Highway” off their latest release EL COMPADRE. Shot in Nashville, TN the video starring FF5, which is comprised of brothers Jacob and Josh Olds, shares the story of two band members looking to say goodbye to the past in order to make room for a new future.

Directed and produced by Ryan Camp, the video features Jacob and Josh enjoying the freedom of cruising around with the possibility of something new on the horizon. Music City supplies a number of scenic shots and helps set the scene as a place filled with dreamers trying to make it. Along the journey, Josh makes stops collecting old band memorabilia and reflecting on a decade long career as Family Force 5. The night ends in an epic blaze of goodbyes and hello to a new era.

Built on powerful melody and brilliantly sculpted beats, new song “Fire on the Highway” redefines the possibilities of pop and shows the strange synergy at the heart of FF5. With its shimmering textures, the song draws from Jacob’s affection for ’80s pop and Josh’s raw rock-and-roll energy to dream up a hypnotic yet hook-driven sound. Like most of their new material, the synth-laced track was shaped by the band’s belief in following through on the beautiful mistakes that so often occur in the creative process.

FF5 (Family Force 5) is the brainchild of twin brothers Jacob and Joshua Olds: two Atlanta-bred musicians with wildly divergent sensibilities and a shared passion for shattering boundaries. Although the Nashville-based duo have endured much upheaval over the years—label drama, lineup changes—FF5 now return with new music that proves their chemistry to be more potent than ever. Their latest release EL COMPADRE premiered on Billboard.com and is available here.

For more information on FF5, visit http://ff5music.com/.

Connect with them on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram or YouTube.


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Backstreet Boys Release New Single and Video, Sign to RCA Records

Backstreet Boys Release New Single and Video, Sign to RCA Records

On the heels of their 25th anniversary, the Backstreet Boys have signed with RCA Records who released their electric new single “Don’t Go Breaking My Heart” today May 17th, along with its official music video directed by long time BSB collaborators Rich + Tone.

“The minute we heard this song we knew it was special,” says Kevin Richardson. “I geeked out over the piano and synths. When that groove drops on the second verse, COME ON. Great verse, hook and melodies. Just makes you wanna listen over and over again.”

In support of the new single, BSB will return to the Good Morning America Summer Concert Series in New York’s Central Park on July 13th. The group will also perform at a series of summer radio shows like this year’s KIIS FM Wango Tango before returning to their record-breaking “Backstreet Boys: Larger Than Life” Las Vegas Residency. Tour dates below.

Recorded immediately after the first leg of their highly successful Las Vegas residency, “Don’t Go Breaking My Heart” has the energy of a group who had a remarkable year and who channeled their excitement into a new song that hits harder and funkier than ever before.

It’s hard not to think the group’s latest activities didn’t shape this track. Whether it’s the creative relationship with Florida Georgia Line that earned BSB their first #1 Country radio single; working with a variety of new and young producers; there’s an undeniable energy and creativity surrounding the Backstreet Boys and “Don’t Go Breaking My Heart” is an extraordinary new track from a group who continues to impress 25 years into their storied career.

“We’ve been working our ass off for 25 years,” says AJ McLean  “and with the support of RCA and our contemporaries, we know we’ll be performing for fans, both old and new, for a really long time. It feels like we’re just getting started.”

“Don’t Go Breaking My Heart” – now available on all digital platforms – was written by Stephen Wrabel (Ellie Goulding) and produced by Stuart Crichton (Kesha) and Jamie Hartman (James Bay).

For 25 years, the Backstreet Boys have been one of the most successful groups in music history and continue to be one of pop’s most influential performers in the world. With countless #1s, record-setting tours, numerous awards and worldwide sales in excess of 130 million, BSB has been recognized as the best-selling boy band in history.

To Purchase or Listen To “Don’t Go Breaking My Heart”:

Multi-retailer – http://smarturl.it/bDGsBMbH

Official Video – http://smarturl.it/bDGsBMbHv
Tour Dates:
May 19th – SPF Vegas 2018 at Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas – Las Vegas, NV
June 2nd – Wango Tango at Banc of California Stadium – Los Angeles, CA
June 15th – WBLI Summer Jam at Jones Beach – Wantagh, NY
July 13th – Good Morning America Summer Concert Series – Central Park, NYC
August 18th – Winstar World Casino & Resort – Thackerville, OK
“Backstreet Boys: Larger Than Life” Las Vegas Residency
Zappos Theater at Planet Hollywood in Las Vegas, NV
July 25th, 27th and 28th
August 1st, 3rd, 4th, 8th, 10th and 11th
October 24th, 26th, 27th and 31st
November 2nd, 3rd, 7th, 9th, 10th, 14th, 16th and 17th
For more information on Backstreet Boys please visit:

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