Monthly Archives: September 2019

TVD Live: An intimate evening with Ken Stringfellow and Friends, Chevy Chase, MD, 9/23

PHOTOS: RACHEL LANGEThe time: 7:30 on a Monday night. The place: a private residence in Chevy Chase. Not the usual circumstances for a rock concert, but that’s the point—Ken Stringfellow’s solo tour is prioritizing “non-venue spaces,” including many private concerts and “secret shows” like this one. The fine line between public and private is a fitting leitmotif for Ken’s return to Touched, originally released by Manifesto Records on the inauspicious date of September 11, 2001. His second solo album since the breakup of the Posies, Touched is appropriately personal, and a fitting soundtrack for the deep disillusionment of 2019.

The concert is surprisingly lighthearted, despite the melancholy musical fare. Hosted by ELO alumnus Parthenon Huxley and his wife Helle, the event has the delightfully laid-back vibe of a grown-up house party—there’s beer and wine chilling on the back porch, while a fleet of folding chairs give guests who have already taken their seats plenty to look at it, whether it’s the record collection on the bookshelf or the eclectic collage of pop and high art on the walls.

At the front of the room is Ken’s improvised stage rig, which features “a real piano” (as promised by the tour webpage) against the tastefully space-age backdrop of a dark window to the backyard which reflects both the mood lighting in the living room and the neon violet glow of the WiFi router. Ken cracks a joke about this unexpected special effect between tunes—a moment which epitomizes the appeal of a private concert. There might not be much room to move, but there’s plenty of room to breathe, and Ken uses that freedom to great effect.

In addition to an impressive musical CV which includes not only The Posies but more recently R.E.M. and Big Star, Stringfellow has a sense of humor and he isn’t afraid to use it. Nothing is off-limits, either, and throughout the set he riffs on everything from Millennial entitlement to an audience member’s ill-timed sneeze. (Okay, I confess: it was me.) His performance turns out to be two parts music, one part standup routine, and sometimes both at once.

Because the guestlist is short enough that the main attraction can see who’s not here yet (“They’re a big group and they tend to travel in packs,” he remarks) the shows gets off the ground not with Touched but with requests from the audience and a new composition Ken describes as “one from the mental health files.” Nobody’s heard the song before but nobody minds, already absorbed by Ken’s uncompromising vocals and the artfully mixed metaphors which give his lyrics their distinctive bittersweet flavor.

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TVD Radar: Chet Baker, The Legendary Riverside Albums 5-LP box set in stores 11/15

VIA PRESS RELEASE | Craft Recordings is pleased to announce the release of Chet Baker’s The Legendary Riverside Albums on November 15th.

The deluxe five-LP box set presents the artist’s output as a leader for the renowned jazz label, recorded and released between 1958 and 1959: (Chet Baker Sings) It Could Happen To You, Chet Baker In New York, Chet, and Chet Baker Plays The Best Of Lerner And Loewe. The recordings, which feature such icons as Bill Evans, Johnny Griffin and Kenny Burrell, have been cut from their original analog master tapes by Kevin Gray at Cohearent Audio and pressed on 180-gram vinyl at RTI. Also included is a bonus disc of choice outtakes and alternates from Baker’s Riverside sessions, plus a collectible photo print and a 16-page booklet filled with photos and insightful new liner notes by jazz historian Doug Ramsey. The complete collection will also be released digitally, including in hi-res 192/24 and 96/24 formats. The track “You’re Driving Me Crazy” is available to stream and download today: listen and pre-save the collection here.

Few musicians have embodied the romantic—and ultimately tragic—jazz figure as totally as Chesney “Chet” Baker (1929–88). Unschooled yet eloquent in his music, and a fast-liver who survived for nearly six decades, the Baker mystique has only reinforced one of the most haunting trumpet styles and ingenious approaches to jazz singing. The Los Angeles–based musician rose to fame in the early ’50s, playing with established artists like Charlie Parker, Gerry Mulligan, and pianist Russ Freeman—partnerships which would solidify his status as a major jazz star. By the end of the decade, when he signed a four-album deal with the New York–based label Riverside, Baker had become known for his trademark West Coast “cool jazz” style. However, these recordings—which pair the artist with some of the best East Coast players—demonstrate Baker’s versatility as a modern trumpeter who could play with even the hardest boppers.

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John Medeski’s Mad Skillet brings “Invincible Bubble” and eponymous debut to the Republic tomorrow night, 10/1

Ever since the Medeski, Martin and Wood keyboard player’s supergroup featuring New Orleans’ own uber-sousaphonist Kirk Joseph and ace drummer Terence Higgins released their eponymous debut, local fans have been waiting to hear the group play the material live. We get the chance tomorrow night when the band, which also includes stellar guitarist Will Bernard, brings its eclectic sound to the Republic.

Mad Skillet came together like so many other cobbled together bands during the musical madhouse that is the after-hours shows at Jazz Fest. However, this one stuck due to the nearly telepathic interplay between the four members. Each brings unique skills to the equation, where the sum is certainly greater than the equal of its parts.

The connection between the two New York-based musicians and the two New Orleanians goes back to 1999 when Medeski, wearing one of his other hats, produced the Dirty Dozen Brass Band’s album Buck Jump. While Joseph is a founding member of the Dozen, Higgins was one of several drummers who has played with the band over the years and is featured on Buck Jump.

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Jason Tyler Burton,
The TVD First Date

“I don’t really remember my first love. Or rather I remember it in pictures and stories from my family. How I would play Glen Campbell’s Rhinestone Cowboy over and over and how I’d scratch the record to put the needle back on that song, the first track on side 2 of what I later realized is not Mr. Campbell’s best work. But that cowboy in white on the cover, hat raised high and riding his horse in the desert. I was in. Then I dropped the record and it broke. I am told I cried all day.”

“My first memory of vinyl that I know is my own was later, in Kentucky, in the log cabin I spent my formative years in, pulling old records from my parents collection and listening on the cheap system we had. I fell in love with the Skeeter Davis song “The End of the World.” It’s such a classic country song, complete with a recitation verse and a steel guitar and a gentle shuffle beat. It was also sad. And man, I love sad songs.

This all happened near the end of vinyl’s reign, and I spent way too much money on cassette tapes in the coming years, and then of course amassed a ridiculous collection of CDs. But still I’d buy the occasional vinyl. Paul Simon’s Graceland, R.E.M.’s Murmur record. Uncle Tupelo’s March 16-20. I frequented Recordsmith in Richmond, Kentucky. CD Central in Lexington, and once I moved out west, Groovacious in Cedar City, Utah. Not only are record stores places to find great music, they are usually inhabited by folks who have way better taste than me. The workers in the few stores that are left are the monks of wax. They ask you a few questions and send you home with something you didn’t know you needed, and it fills a void in your soul.

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Graded on a Curve: Laibach,
The Sound of Music

You know what I’d kill to hear? Everybody’s favorite faux-totalitarian Balkan state musical group doing a cover of Grand Funk–entitled, of course, “We’re a Slovenian Band.” It’s not like they don’t do covers–they’ve lent their unique martial industrial touch to The Beatles’ Let It Be, The Stones’ “Sympathy for the Devil,” “Jesus Christ Superstar”–and the list goes on and on.

On their latest (2018) outing, Laibach–who’ve been inciting controversy since the early 1980s with their foreboding music and parodic flirtation with the iconography of nationalism, totalitarianism, and militarism–turn their attention to the soundtrack of Rogers and Hammerstein’s 1959 Broadway musical The Sound of Music, and the results are hilarious, unexpectedly accessible and even (dare I say it?) occasionally sweet.

Laibach’s decision to reinterpret the story of the Von Trappe family, who fled Austria to avoid persecution at the hand of the Nazis, is a provocative one–it takes one back to the Second World War, Slovenia’s annexation by Nazi Germany and fascist Italy, and ultimately to the expulsion of ethnic Germans from that country at war’s end. Unlike Austria, which docilely accepted Hitler’s takeover, Slovenia–or at least many of its citizens–fought back. If the Von Trappe family were the best Austria could do in the way of resistance, what did that say about Austria?

You would think that The Sound of Music would be enough of a “concept” for even Laibach, but they can’t resist tacking on a couple of Korean folk songs, which makes a twisted kind of sense given Laibach’s decision to debut their new material in North Korea in 2015. Hence the delightful album cover, on which Laibach singer Milan Fras sits surrounded by adorable North Korean tykes in frightening military uniforms. Oh, and Laibach closes the LP with the rousing welcoming speech delivered upon their arrival in North Korea by one Mr. Ryu. Seriously, you can’t make this shit up (unless they did!).

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In rotation: 9/30/19

Kelowna, ON | ‘We can’t let the music die’: Kelowna’s Milkcrate Records takes final bow: It’s not just any record store, Milkcrate Records is a vital lifeline of Kelowna’s music scene and it’s about to disappear from Lawrence Avenue. “We can’t let the music die,” said Richard Rafton, Milkcrate Records owner. Known not only for its great record selection, Milkcrate was a key connection for local artists and music lovers. Employees would welcome anyone through the doors for coffee, a slice of pie and record spinning during the day. At night it became a place where musicians, poets and authors could come together in the name of art. “We are all about supporting not just the local music scene but live music in general,” Rafton said. After five years of fostering local talent and allowing it to blossom on-stage, Rafton said it’s time to say goodbye to the beloved record store, after losing a dispute with the landlord.

Dublin, IE | Pixies make in-store appearance ahead of Dublin gig: US indie legends Pixies marked the release of their new and seventh studio album Beneath The Eyrie with an in-store appearance at Tower Records in Dublin on Thursday afternoon ahead of their sell-out show at the Olympia Theatre. The band, Paz Lenchantin, Joey Santiago, Charles Thompson IV and David Lovering, signed albums and spoke to fans at the shop at lunchtime. Pixies played a 39-song set last night at Ulster Hall in Belfast, including new track Los Surfers Muertos, and classics such as Caribou, Velouria, Nimrod’s Son, Wave of Mutilation, and an encore of Debaser. Regular visitors to Ireland, Pixies have played many gigs here over the years, since their first Irish show at Dublin’s National Stadium in 1990. They have also headlined several Irish festivals. Tower on Dublin’s Dawson is no stranger to visits from international music stars and earlier this year Bob Dylan surprised staff at the shop when he sent them a signed copy of his 1997 album Time Out of Mind to mark Record Store Day.

Leeds, UK | Newsflash! PL ref Jon Moss is in a band and has opened a record shop in Leeds: When I tell people that Premier League referee Jon Moss has a record shop in Headingley called ‘Vinyl Whistle’, the first reaction is “really!” followed by “great name”. The Leeds postcode, LS6, is ‘Studentsville’. Not the most obvious place for one of the country’s leading football officials to pop up with a stack of LPs and singles. But back in the late 80s and early 90s, this was Jon’s hunting ground. Like so many of us back then who wrote cheques to buy fish and chips and queued outside phone boxes to contact our girlfriends and boyfriends, Jon was a record-buying, gig-going musical nut. And his passion for music has never left him since those taste-shaping days. So Planet Football was intrigued. The part of the Venn Diagram where football referees and Velvet Underground (that’s what he would be playing when I first entered his shop) fans intersect is a small one. It was time to find out how this all came about.

3″ Vinyl? Record Stores Nationwide Are Selling the Tiny Format: Record Store Day is now trying to popularize a niche vinyl format with new releases for the ‘RSD3 Mini Turntable.’ Vinyl sales are now threatening to overtake CDs — for the first time since 1986. So maybe this is the perfect time for a vinyl novelty. The tiny, 3″ vinyl format was first popularized by The White Stripes frontman, Jack White. White’s label ⁠— Third Man Records ⁠— imported the format from Japan for limited edition singles. The original 3″ vinyl player was a cheap toy from Japanese toymaker Bandai. The format never caught on beyond White Stripes fans, but Record Store Day is hoping to change that. Earlier this year, Record Store Day teamed up with Crosley to release a new 3″ vinyl player. Dubbed the RSD3 Mini Turntable, the record player launched on Record Store Day ⁠— April 13th. Four collectible singles from Third Man and Epitaph Records highlighted that initial release.

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TVD’s The Idelic Hour with Jon Sidel

Greetings from Laurel Canyon!

Fare you well, my honey, fare you well my only true one. / All the birds that were singing are flown, except you alone.

Going to leave this brokedown palace, / On my hand and knees, I will roll, roll, roll. / Make myself a bed in the waterside, / In my time, I will roll, roll roll.

In a bed, in a bed, by the waterside I will lay my head. / Listen to the river sing sweet songs, to rock my soul.

We lost Robert Hunter this week. It’s nuts to say he was an underrated songwriter—I don’t know if there is a more fanatical fanbase than the Grateful Dead, but for me it wasn’t that Hunter was the greatest songwriter or that I’m a Deadhead in mourning.

What got my Idelic brain motoring about this week’s hour of songs was that Hunter was a poet at a time when great poets united with magnificent troubadours. As fortune would have it, Hunter met Garcia, the banjo man from Menlo Park. The two closely follow in the footsteps of Bob Dylan; writing meaningful words put to music.

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TVD Live Shots:
Incubus and Dub Trio
at The Masonic, 9/24

Incubus is out on their “20 Years of Make Yourself and Beyond Tour” in celebration of their 1999 breakthrough album including two nights at The Masonic in San Francisco with openers Dub Trio who tore through their 30 minute instrumental set in front of an already packed house.

Incubus kicked things off with a 10 minute documentary that served to further pump up the already anxious crowd which clearly delighted in the interviews and home movies of the band from their Make Yourself era. When the band finally emerged—flanked by cages of super-VIPs on either end of the stage—and launched into “Privilege,” The Masonic went absolutely nuts.

As Incubus wound their way through each song from Make Yourself in no particular order, the crowd erupted in delight each time a new tune started. For his part, front man Brandon Boyd was genuinely overwhelmed by the response, pausing to tell the crowd to keep doing what they’re doing.

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TVD Live Shots:
Alter Bridge, Skillet,
and Dirty Honey at MECU Pavilion, 9/22

On September 22, Alter Bridge and Skillet kicked off their co-headlining, “Victorious Sky” tour at Baltimore, Maryland’s MECU Pavilion, with young rock upstarts Dirty Honey in the supporting role.

Leading off was California’s Dirty Honey (vocalist Marc Labelle, guitarist John Notto, bassist Justin Smolian, and drummer Corey Coverstone). With only an EP under their belts, they’ve already rubbed elbows this year with Slash on his tour with Myles Kennedy and the Conspirators as well as made the rounds of the summer festivals. While the band’s sound will likely remind fans of anyone from Zeppelin to Guns ‘n’ Roses to current rock saviors Rival Sons, it’s clear they are not out to mimic anyone. Rather, during their six-song set, they demonstrated that they’ve arrived to carry the torch of their classic rock forebearers, but in their own young and modern way. It was the third time I’d seen Dirty Honey; they keep getting better.

Coheadliner and Christian rock stalwarts Skillet excited the crowd with their super high energy and exhilarating set. I’ll admit to being unfamiliar with Skillet; the term “Christian rock” makes the agnostic in me bristle and run for the hills. I like my rock and roll dark, dirty, and demon sprinkled, with squeezed lemons my preferred imagery.

However, Skillet’s style goes over well live as their songs are melodic and uplifting, the band members charismatic and skilled musicians. It’s great fun to watch and rock out to, especially when vocalist John Cooper strapped on what could only be described as fire extinguishers to his arms and blasted water vapor in the air, or when Seth Morrison and Korey Cooper got lifted on risers. Drummer Jen Ledger smiled for my camera as she sang and wailed on the drums. They were terrific.

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TVD Radar: Harry Nilsson’s final album, Losst and Founnd in stores 11/22

VIA PRESS RELEASE | The music world was stunned on January 15, 1994, when superstar vocalist Harry Nilsson was struck down by a heart attack at the young age of 52. What the music world did not know at the time was that the multiple Grammy®award-winning artist was at work on his first album of original material in nearly fifteen years—fans would have to wait another quarter of a century to hear it.

Omnivore Recordings is proud to release Losst and Founnd, a brand new album by Harry Nilsson. Produced by Mark Hudson (Ringo Starr, Aerosmith, Ozzy Osbourne), the album features nine Nilsson originals as well as covers by Jimmy Webb and Yoko Ono. With musical contributions from an all-star cast of musicians, including Van Dyke Parks, Jim Keltner, Webb, and Harry’s son, Kiefo, the album features classic Nilsson melodies that have been his trademark for over 50 years.

Nilsson’s estate is administered by Warner Chappell Music (WCM), who championed the album as part of the company’s effort to create new opportunities around catalog. WCM is working on a four-series podcast delving into the backstory behind Losst and Foundd, to be released leading up to the November album drop. Losst and Founnd will be available in CD, LP and Digital on November 22, 2019.

Nilsson’s legacy—a body of work including “Everybody’s Talkin’,” “Without You,” “Coconut,” “Jump Into the Fire, “Spaceman,” and “I Guess the Lord Must Be in New York City”—has been bolstered in the last few years with the successful documentary Who Is Harry Nilsson (And Why Is Everybody Talkin’ About Him)? and the many, many usages of Harry’s songs in film and television including this year’s Netflix hit Russian Doll, which features Nilsson’s “Gotta Get Up” from his classic Nilsson Schmilsson album.

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Graded on a Curve: Electric Light Orchestra, The Ultimate Collection

How great are ELO? Randy Newman wrote a song (“The Story of a Rock and Roll Band”) making fun of ‘em! Talk about your honors. That’s better than a Grammy! Six Grammys! A dozen Grammys even!

And how dumb was poor Roy Wood, who split Electric Light Orchestra before they sold like a gazillion records to form Wizzard, who sold like six! No wonder hairy Roy looks like a crazy recluse who’s spent the past 40 years in the wilderness, subsisting on a diet of spotted squirrel and sterno–he has!

The words “symphonic rock” frighten the bejesus outta me. But (at least on the best of their songs) ELO pulled it off, partly on the strength of their top-secret recipe (write Beatlesque melodies, then just add strings) but also because–and this is critical–unlike the pompous schmucks in Emerson, Lake & Palmer, ELO approached their classical-rock fusion in a spirit of fun. I don’t much care for many of their songs for the simple reason that I have a low tolerance for cellos and the like, but there’s something self-consciously preposterous in their shtick that makes me love them anyway. Call it ironic distance if you like, but the distance counts for a whole lot in my book.

There are plenty of ELO best-of compilations out there, but I’ve yet to run across one that makes me completely happy. They either dispense with the filler but fail to include some of my favorite songs, or include my favorite songs but toss in a bunch of songs I really don’t want to hear. With its 38 cuts 2001’s The Ultimate Collection falls into the second category; I have no use for “Shine a Little Love,” “The Diary of Horace Wimp, “Ticket to the Moon,” or “Last Train to London,” but the comp includes such personal must-haves as “Do Ya,” “Ma-Ma-Belle,” and “10538 Overture.”

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In rotation: 9/27/19

Cork, IE | Why we need to support independent record shops: THE independent record shop has been under threat for many years now. Before the so-called vinyl revival of the last 10 years, nearly every one of them had closed in Cork and at one stage even Plug’d records had to shut for a significant amount of time. Plug’d originally occupied the Washington St premises that Comet had in the 90s, (during the heyday for record shops here) but there are multiple reasons why independent shops have not been able to continue doing business since. Remarkably, in Cork, we still have a few, but sadly one of the main ones took a massive hit recently with the fire in Douglas Village shopping centre. Music Zone was just one of the many independent shops affected by the fire, which looks set to keep the centre closed for a significant amount of time. But Ray from the shop is doing his best to carry on regardless.

Pittsburgh, PA | Pittsburgh’s 3 best spots for affordable vinyl records: Hoodline crunched the numbers to find the best affordable vinyl record hot spots in Pittsburgh, using both Yelp data and our own secret sauce to produce a ranked list of where to satisfy your cravings. 1. Jerry’s Records: Topping the list is Jerry’s Records. Located at 2136 Murray Ave. in Squirrel Hill South, the spot to score music, DVDs and vinyl records is the highest-rated low-priced vinyl record spot in Pittsburgh, boasting 4.5 stars out of 73 reviews on Yelp. This spot was named one of Rolling Stone Magazine’s best record stores, according to its website. Expect to find nearly a million albums in a diverse range of genres like pop, metal, funk, classical and more.

Bromsgrove, UK | Bromsgrove Record and CD Fair returns to the town: The Bromsgrove Vinyl Record and CD fair returns to the Bromsgrove Hotel & Spa this Sunday (September 29). Organisers are promising a number of new traders who have never sold at the venue before in addition to 40-plus tables of used and new vinyl/CD and memorabilia assortments. The fair is the first since May, having taken a four-month break over the summer. Further information is available at There is free on-site parking when registering inside the hotel, as well as a cafe and restaurant. The fair runs from 10am-4pm.

Gearbox Records unveils Automatic MkII turntable: Vinyl record label, Gearbox Records, has announced the Automatic II turntable, targeted at novice and experienced vinyl users alike. Gearbox Records was established in 2009 and has cultivated a reputation for producing great quality vinyl releases. It then struck up a collaboration with Austrian hi-fi brand Pro-Ject Audio, resulting in the original and distinctive Automatic turntable. The MkII (£549) is a similar affair, taking its design cues from Dieter Ram’s 1955 Braun PC 3 SV record player. It’s a meld of the old and the new with transparent plinth allowing users to see the internal workings of the deck. There’s also Bluetooth connectivity for streaming vinyl wirelessly, as well as Gearbox’s music-recognition technology that allows tracks to be added from your record collection to your Spotify playlist. It carries a built-in valve phono stage, designed and tuned for moving magnet (MM) cartridges such as the pre-fitted Ortofon OM10. Plug the turntable into any line input and you’ll be ready to listen to your collection straight from the box.

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TVD Live: The Long Ryders at Pearl Street Warehouse, 9/20

Before there were labels like alt country or Americana, The Long Ryders were providing the connection between country and rock with a punk punch through their very limited recording years of 1984 to 87. They proved the thread between the pioneering work of the Byrds and Gene Clark (who lent vocals on the first Long Ryders album) and Uncle Tupelo, who wouldn’t release their first album until 1990.

After the encouragement of a few reunion shows, the early lineup is back together with a solid new album, Psychedelic Country Soul, and a tour to go along with it. “It took us 33 1/3 years,” frontman Sid Griffin told the crowd at the Pearl Street Warehouse in DC Friday, making the RPM connection.

Griffin, with his grey Prince Valiant hair and sideburns looking like a cross between Bob Keeshan and patriotic Muppet Sam the Eagle, has been spending his time in the intervening decades as a rock journalist in London. But he still likes to rock out on Chuck Berry style tunes like “State of My Union.” Just as in the old days, his rock instincts are balanced by the sweet country stylings of guitarist Stephen McCarthy, the Ryders’ secret weapon, last seen in town with The Jayhawks, with whom he recorded Rainy Day Music.

McCarthy brings a tasty twang to the proceedings, smooth vocals and decent songs. What’s more, he and bassist Tom Stevens create some fine harmonies, as on “You Don’t Know What’s Right, You Don’t Know What’s Wrong.” When Stevens fronts one of his own songs, though, he both takes lead guitar duties in addition to lead vocals. Drummer Greg Sowders (an ex-husband of Lucinda Williams) looked just happy to be part of the crew once more.

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TVD Radar: Foreigner, Double Vision: Then & Now reunion concert 2LP in stores 11/15

VIA PRESS RELEASE | With more than 80 million albums sold and 16 Top 30 hits, Foreigner is universally hailed as one of the most popular rock acts in the world. Now, Foreigner – Double Vision: Then And Now takes viewers behind the scenes as original band members join Mick Jones and Foreigner’s current lineup for the very first time in the band’s 40-year history. Both incarnations of the band share the same stage for an epic performance.

Watch rock and roll history with one of music’s most anticipated reunion events as Foreigner – Double Vision: Then And Now celebrates the 40th anniversary of the band’s multi-platinum 1978 album Double Vision with a masterful live performance of the band’s biggest hits, filmed at Soaring Eagle Casino & Resort, Mount Pleasant, Michigan, USA. Original members Lou Gramm, Al Greenwood, Dennis Elliott, Ian McDonald, and Rick Wills take the stage with Mick Jones and Foreigner—Kelly Hansen, Tom Gimbel, Jeff Pilson, Michael Bluestein, Bruce Watson, and Chris Frazier—to rock through some of the best-selling songs that bring back the memories that make it feel like the first time for both long-time fans and new generations.

Says Mick Jones, “This was a show that I will always remember! Sharing the stage with the guys that shaped Foreigner in the beginning and the stellar musicians that carry the flag in the new millennium, was a truly emotional moment.”

“We wanted to stage an elaborate production for the very first ‘Foreigner – Then And Now’ reunion concert,” says award-winning executive producer Barry Summers of Rock Fuel Media, who created this explosive rock celebration.“Something unlike any other previous Foreigner show has captured on film, that both visually and sonically breathes new life into their amazing classic songs—the songs that I grew up on—for the fans to enjoy for many years to come. I believe we achieved that in this film and live album.”

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TVD Radar: Down In Jamaica: 40 Years Of VP Records anthology box set in stores 10/25

VIA PRESS RELEASE | Available October 25, 2019, Down In Jamaica: 40 Years of VP Records is a 94-track, multi-format limited edition (2,000 run) box set with a 24-page booklet and art cards detailing the hits, the rarities, and the history of the world’s largest reggae label. Featuring 101 different artists, Down In Jamaica tells the story in detail through a chronological survey of the key records that helped define the company, from early singles on obscure sublabels (Roots From The Yard, Jah Guidance, and Love) to the well-known VP Records brand that brought Beenie Man, Sean Paul, Wayne Wonder, and others into the international mainstream.

Curated by DJ, writer, and VP Records Director of Catalog Development Carter Van Pelt, the set contains four 7-inch singles, four 12-inch singles, and four CDs, the first configuration of its kind for a box set package. The CDs include the chronology of hit songs, and the vinyl pieces bring back rare titles long out of print. The initial release is in the physical format only, with a digital release of the CD portion of the set on all streaming platforms in late November. The singles format was the dominant vehicle for Jamaican music from its inception, and the collection tells the company’s story almost entirely from singles, taking its name from Red Fox and Naturalee’s 1989 hit.

“The goal is to tell the story of a continually owned and operated family business at the heart of the global growth of reggae, dancehall, and Caribbean music” said Van Pelt. “As a distributor and manufacturer, the company has brought some of reggae and dancehall’s most recognizable hits to the public over 40 years. This set ties that story together with some lost treasures in the form of vinyl rarities.”

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