Drummer from The Band, Levon Helm, Dies at Age of 71
First Dick Clark, now Levon Helm – the 71 year old drummer from The Band passed away yesterday. To youngsters who don’t know them – yes, they were actually called The Band. A few days ago, his family had posted that Helm was in the final stages of cancer. One of the most influential drummers of his time, Helm touched and inspired many. Some quotes making the rounds yesterday:
Bob Dylan: “In response to Levon’s passing: He was my bosom buddy friend to the end, one of the last true great spirits of my or any other generation. This is just so sad to talk about. I still can remember the first day I met him and the last day I saw him. We go back pretty far and had been through some trials together. I’m going to miss him, as I’m sure a whole lot of others will too.”
Patrick Carney (@PatrickCarney from the Black Keys): “one of the best singers and drummers and it all is sad.”
Tom Morello (@tmorello from Rage Against the Machine): “Hey Levon Helm, thanks man for carrying The Weight of that backbeat (and great vocals) for decades. Inspired so many”
Elton John: “When I heard The Band’s Music from Big Pink, their music changed my life. And Levon was a big part of that band. Nigel Olson, my drummer, will tell you that every drummer that heard him was influenced by him. He was the greatest drummer and a wonderful singer and just a part of my life that was magical. They once flew down to see me in Philadelphia and I couldn’t believe it. They were one of the greatest bands of all time. They really changed the face of music when their records came out. I had no idea he was sick so I’m very dismayed and shocked that he died so quickly. But now my son [Zachary Jackson Levon Furnish-John] has his name.”
The Band – The Weight
Red Hot Chili Peppers to Release New Covers EP
Hot on the heels of their Rock and Roll Hall of Fame induction, the Chili Peppers are celebrating by releasing a 6-song EP full of
crap covers (via NME). The covers consist of the Ramones’ ‘Havana Affair’, Iggy and the Stooges’ ‘Search and Destroy’, Neil Young’s ‘Everybody Knows This Is Nowhere’, David Bowie’s ‘Suffragette City’, The Beach Boys’ ‘I Get Around’ and Dion and the Belmonts’ ‘A Teenager In Love’. The Neil Young cover was recently recorded, while the others have been available previously, but not digitally. Why no digital love, boys? Who am I kidding – the RHCP recently gave away a live EP for free earlier on their website. Yup, I refrained from a “Give It Away” pun.
What’s With TV Show Names Copying Band Albums or Names?
A few years ago, David Duchovny decided to name his cable TV show Californication, much to the outrage of the Red Hot Chili Peppers, who revived their career with an album of the same name. A lawsuit ensued. Tears were shed. Now, there is an HBO show called Girls, and Christopher Owens from the band Girls is not happy (via Spinner). Of course, they named their band after one of the two sexes, so I don’t know exactly how outraged they can get.
Various tweets from Owens’ Twitter: “Do you think that TV show even thought twice before using our band’s name for their show?” I’ll bet they were just like ‘fuck it, fuck them.’”
“Its a bit sucky to be informed by a giant company like HBO that you don’t matter enough culturally to not have your name taken away or used.”
“Girls is obviously a word that cannot be owned by anyone; anyone that really respected us wouldn’t have used it.”
No offense to the band, but do you think HBO knows (or cares) about an indie band? And hey, free press! Stop complaining – your Google searches just went way up!
Feistodon – Can We Have More Collaborations With Names Like This?
For Record Store Day (WHICH IS TOMORROW!), Canadian soft singing artist, Feist, has teamed up with Mastodon in what they’ve dubbed Feistodon, which is 100% awesome. The premise is also awesome – Feist covers a Mastodon song, while Mastodon covers a Feist song. Feist has a stab at Black Tongue, while Mastodon takes on A Commotion. And you can now listen to both before in case the record stores don’t have the vinyls tomorrow. Even the art work is awesome!