Author Archives: Lew

50 years ago May 18th, 1968, the Northern California Rock Festival in Santa Clara featured such Bay Area luminaries as the Grateful Dead, Jefferson Airplane,Big Brother & the Holding Company and The Steve Miller Band plus, from L.A., The Doors.

50 years ago May 18th, 1968, the Northern California Rock Festival in Santa Clara featured such Bay Area luminaries as the Grateful Dead, Jefferson Airplane,Big Brother & the Holding Company and The Steve Miller Band plus, from L.A., The Doors.

CLASSIC CUTS: People Are Strange The Doors: “People Are Strange” The Hook: The idea came to Jim Morrison during a sunrise spent at the crest of Laurel Canyon following a deeply depressed evening. Album: Strange Days Year: 1967 Writers: Jim Morrison and Robby Krieger Stats: Peaked at number-12 on the Billboard Hot 100. Background: “People Are Strange” was the first single off The Doors’ second album,Strange…Read more »

Motley Crue guitarist Mick Mars turns 67 May 4th

Motley Crue guitarist Mick Mars turns 67 May 4th

CLASSIC CUTS: Kickstart My Heart   Motley Crue: “Kickstart My Heart” The Hook: Heart-stopping talk box guitar “stuff” from Mick Mars takes the place of a traditional solo at the end of Nikki Sixx‘s song about about the time his heart actually stopped. Album: Dr. Feelgood Year: 1989 Writer: Nikki Sixx Stats: The second single off Dr. Feelgood, following its Top 10 title track, “Kickstart…”…Read more »

Queen were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame on March 19th, 2001.

Queen were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame on March 19th, 2001.

CLASSIC CUTS: Killer Queen    Queen: “Killer Queen” The Hook: Brian May says their breakthrough hit may not have rocked all that hard, but, boy, was it put together well. Album: Sheer Heart Attack Year: 1974 Writer: Freddie Mercury Stats: Peaked at number-12 on the Billboard Hot 100 and at number-two on the British charts. Background: When Queen released their third album, Sheer Heart Attack, in 1974,…Read more »

Johnny Van Zant Turning 59 How about a taste of Freebird

Johnny Van Zant Turning 59 How about a taste of Freebird

CLASSIC CUTS: Free Bird    Lynyrd Skynyrd: “Free Bird” The Hook: Easier to learn than you’d think. Album: (Pronounced ‘Lĕh-‘nérd ‘Skin-‘nérd) Year: 1973 Writers: Allen Collins and Ronnie Van Zant Stats: An edited version became Skynyrd’s second Top 20 hit, peaking at number-19 on the Billboard Hot 100. Background: Lynyrd Skynyrd guitarist Ricky Medlocke was the group’s drummer in 1970 and ’71, before they had a recording contract.…Read more »

What Do Jethro Tull, Earth & Black Sabbath Have in common Birthday Boy Tony Iommi Turning 70 Today 2/19

What Do Jethro Tull, Earth & Black Sabbath Have in common Birthday Boy Tony Iommi Turning 70 Today 2/19

Black Sabbath founder and guitarist Tony Iommi turns 70 today (Monday). Born in Birmingham, England, where he still lives, he started playing guitar as a teenager after being inspired by Hank Marvin of The Shadows. He sliced off the tips of fingers on his right hand while working in a metal factory but didn’t give up the guitar. He compensated by attaching…Read more »

Axl’s Birthday turning 56

Axl’s Birthday turning 56

CLASSIC CUTS: Welcome to the Jungle    Guns n’ Roses: “Welcome to the Jungle” The Hook: Slash had the initial idea for it, but the whole band actually put it together in one three-hour rehearsal session. Album: Appetite for Destruction Year: 1987 Writers: Axl Rose and Slash Stats: Peaked at number-seven on the Billboard Hot 100. Background: “Welcome to the Jungle” was initially released before “Sweet…Read more »

Today 1/18 is the second anniversary of the passing of #GlennFrey of the #Eagles.

Today 1/18 is the second anniversary of the passing of #GlennFrey of the #Eagles.

Classic Cuts Eagles   Eagles: “One of These Nights” The Hook: A personal favorite of the late Glenn Frey. Album: One of These Nights Year: 1975 Writers: Don Henley and Glenn Frey Stats: Topped the Billboard Hot 100. Background: The late Glenn Frey told us that he and Don Henley were really on a roll as songwriters by the time the Eagles recorded their fourth album, One of These Nights. And for him,…Read more »

Chris Cornell may be gone, but his work on behalf of human rights continues.

Chris Cornell may be gone, but his work on behalf of human rights continues.

The late singer is featured in a new celebrity-heavy video PSA for his #KeepThePromise campaign for refugee children in war-torn countries. Tom Hanks, George Clooney,Barbra Streisand, Elton John, Jennifer Lopez, Ozzy Osbourne, Hugh Jackman, Don Cheadle, Ryan Gosling, Adam Levine, Serj Tankian, Jimmy Fallon and Cornell’s former bandmates Tom Morello and Matt Cameron are just a few of stars who speak in it. The clip starts with two of Cornell’s…Read more »

the 72nd birthday of Led Zeppelin’s John Paul Jones. January 3rd

the 72nd birthday of Led Zeppelin’s John Paul Jones. January 3rd

CLASSIC CUTS: Stairway to Heaven    Led Zeppelin: “Stairway to Heaven” The Hook: “The quintessential Zeppelin song.” Album: Led Zeppelin IV Year: 1971 Writers: Jimmy Page and Robert Plant Stats: Never released as a single, it was, however, the most-requested song on FM radio throughout the 1970s. Background: John Paul Jones tells us the first time he heard “Stairway to Heaven” it was played to…Read more »