Posts Tagged “Jeff Beck”

Peter Hodgson of recently conducted an interview with Sammy Hagar (CHICKENFOOT, VAN HALEN). An excerpt from the chat follows below. I’ve always wanted to ask you how you rank yourself as a guitarist. It takes balls to stand up there with Eddie Van Halen or Joe Satriani. I’ve been lucky to jam with Satriani and Vai, and to a certain point it’s intimidating but also at a certain point you’ve just got to tell yourself “Screw it, this is what I do.”

Sammy: I’m a little bit intimidated if we go too long, but in CHICKENFOOT and VAN HALEN, I just put the guitar on and got a big cheer always, and then I’d burn for a little bit and then take it back off before I ran out of chops, y’know? I rate myself as a guy that can play, and I can express myself extremely well but only in one language. I can only play blues-based guitar. And when a guy like Joe steps up there, he can play. Once he finishes with my repertoire, he can go into French, Spanish and Russian on the guitar! He’s just so versatile and fluent. Eddie‘s not as fluent and versatile. Eddie‘s got a style for himself and he’s very much in that pocket, but Joe can play anything. He freaks me out. When Joe and I start to write together, he’ll show me some chords and I’ll start singing, then I’ll pick up a guitar just mainly to figure a lick out: “What chord is that? What are you playing?” so I can know what notes I have to choose from to sing. Then he’ll go “That was a cool lick, what did you play?” and I’ll go “[Expletive], I don’t know!” I don’t get it. I just play. There were so many great guitar players to come out of the ’80s where you knew they’d kind of fade away, but even early on it was apparent that we’d still be hearing about Joe Satriani in 40, 50 years.

Sammy: Oh, Joe‘s here to stay. I think he’s going to have a kind of Jeff Beck career. He’s going to have these little windows where he gets a little bump, a little more publicity, a little more recognition, and then he kinda just cruises along, then all of a sudden somebody’s gonna say, “Wow, Joe Satriani‘s the best guitar player in the world” and everybody gets hip again. He ain’t going nowhere. The thing that amazes me the most about Joe‘s guitar playing over any other musician is he knows exactly what he’s playing and he can play it twice, three times exactly the same. He works his parts out but he does it really quick. It’s not like it takes him forever to come up with a part. He comes up with it, BAM, instantly, and he knows every note he’s playing and I don’t know how he does it. He’s too smart for his own good. But you’re a lucky man if you stood up and played next to Joe Satriani. What I do is, I learn. He immediately makes me better because it makes me aware of what I’m playing, because if I see him solo I think, “I don’t know what I’m doing.” So I start to think a little more, like “Oh I know why that note works.” So he just enlightens. He’s enlightening to play with. I don’t know if that works for you, but that’s how it works for me.

Read the entire interview at

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On September 3, Eagle Rock Entertainment will release “Live In Tokyo” by PORTNOY SHEEHAN MACALPINE SHERINIAN on DVD, Blu-ray, 2CD and digital audio and video formats.

“Live In Tokyo” was filmed/recorded on November 14, 2012 at Zepp Tokyo. This 95-minute concert is the first release of material from the PSMS supergroup, and it showcases a wide range of instrumental performances from each of the members’ careers and collaborations (moved up from a later paragraph). Wider fanbases of DREAM THEATER, MR. BIG and BLACK COUNTRY COMMUNION will definitely stand up and take notice.

Drummer Mike Portnoy (DREAM THEATER, THE WINERY DOGS, TRANSATLANTIC), bassist Billy Sheehan (TALAS, MR. BIG, DAVID LEE ROTH), guitarist Tony MacAlpine and keyboardist Derek Sherinian (BLACK COUNTRY COMMUNION, DREAM THEATER, BILLY IDOL) brought their collective strengths to Japan this past fall. The result was a 16-track deep cornucopia of the members’ individual highlights. The group unleashed a fierce storm of sonic musicianship on songs such as “Shy Boy” from Sheehan‘s band TALAS, MacAlpine‘s “The Stranger”, Sherinian‘s “Apocalypse 1470 B.C.” and DREAM THEATER‘s “A Change Of Seasons: The Crimson Sunrise”. The DVD and Blu-ray also offer an exclusive peek at this production with a behind-the-scenes featurette.

“Live In Tokyo” track listing:

01. A Change Of Seasons: I The Crimson Sunrise (DREAM THEATER song)
03. The Stranger (TONY MACALPINE song)
04. Stratus (BILLY COBHAM song)
05. Atlantis, Part 1: Apocalypse 1470 B.C. (DEREK SHERINIAN song)
06. Tony MacAlpine Guitar Solo
07. Been Here Before (DEREK SHERINIAN song)
08. Birds Of Prey (Billy’s Boogie) / Billy Sheehan solo
09. The Farandole (TALAS song)
10. The Pump (JEFF BECK song)
11. Mike Portnoy Drum Intro
12. Nightmare Cinema (DEREK SHERINIAN song)
13. Hell’s Kitchen (DREAM THEATER song)
14. Derek Sherinian Keyboard Solo
15. Lines In The Sand (DREAM THEATER song) (abridged)
16. Shy Boy (TALAS song) (Billy Sheehan on lead vocals)

A performance clip of “Birds Of Prey (Billy’s Boogie)”, taken from “Live In Tokyo”, can be seen below.

In an interview with Prog Sphere, Portnoy stated about the new band, “It’s a blast. I love Derek; he’s a fun guy. I still stand by the fact that I’m not sure if he was ever right for DREAM THEATER. But, that doesn’t mean I don’t love the guy as a player and person. I really do — I love being with him and I love playing with him and I’m glad to be able to work with him again. And, you know, it’s a cool project because obviously it’s very much… I think of everything I’m doing it’s the most like DREAM THEATER or it’s more even like LIQUID TENSION EXPERIMENT, probably. But you know, it’s just me being able to play that kind of music with some amazing musicians. Not only Derek, but, obviously, Billy Sheehan‘s a dear friend and I’ve got two different things going with Billy at the moment, and I love working with him; he’s one of my favorite bass players of all time. And Tony MacAlpine is an amazing guitar player, so I’m honored to be playing with him as well.”

Portnoy formed the lineup to perfom at two drum events at the NAMM show in January 2012. Due to overwhelming response, that band has decided to take their show on the road.


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Jacky BamBam of Philadelphia’s 93.3 WMMR radio station recently conducted an interview with brothers Carmine Appice (OZZY OSBOURNE, ROD STEWART, VANILLA FUDGE, JEFF BECK, GUITAR ZEUS, KING KOBRA) and Vinny Appice (DIO, BLACK SABBATH, HEAVEN & HELL).

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David “Gus” Griesinger of recently conducted an interview with brothers Carmine Appice (OZZY OSBOURNE, ROD STEWART, VANILLA FUDGE, JEFF BECK, GUITAR ZEUS, KING KOBRA) and Vinny Appice (DIO, BLACK SABBATH, HEAVEN & HELL).

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The latest episode of the “Dropping The Needle” podcast features an interview with brothers Carmine Appice (OZZY OSBOURNE, ROD STEWART, VANILLA FUDGE, JEFF BECK, GUITAR ZEUS, KING KOBRA) and Vinny Appice (DIO, BLACK SABBATH, HEAVEN & HELL).

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Those who were Tower Records habitués can hopefully relate to this little nugget from the past.  There was a time when music stores were not just emporiums of sound, but cultural hubs where like minds could congregate, future artists could refine their knowledge and loners could find those special voices who spoke their language on record.  You never knew when the next Jeff Beck, Buddy Rich, Larry Graham or Rob Halford was going to be proverbially birthed from the annals of record shelves and listening booths.   Meanwhile, profiteers sat back and watched vinyl (and later, cassettes and CDs) fly out with the chunks and tings of old cash registers adding a synthetic, commercial glaze overtop whatever happened to dominating the store loudspeakers.

In Baltimore, we used to have a monster-sized music store that’s long gone the way of Colecovision and Frosty root beer, the Record Theatre.  About half the size of a Tower Records and maybe one floor of the colossal Virgin Megastores (both also long gone), the Record Theatre was still the place for tunes in our area, along with Waxy Maxy’s, but the latter was located in a different part of town. 

I remember when Record Theatre was flourishing, it was filled with wall-to-wall people, much like the Virgin superplex in Times Square.  I miss both dearly, albeit for me, the smaller homeboy record shop like you’d find in High Fidelity or Pretty in Pink is truly where I’d find myself home.  In Baltimore today, that distinction belongs to Sound Garden and Record and Tape Traders, two music shacks still holding on in tough times and still experiencing a respectable influx of never-say-die tune freaks.

Back to Record Theatre, however, the place seemed like a castle to young eyes such as mine in the late seventies and early eighties.  Being stationed in an urban location, I always thought the owners were shrewd in catering to all tastes, even if R&B sold more than rock ‘n roll (albeit the Stones sold more than anyone, period), but that wasn’t always the norm depending on what time of day diverse pockets of clientele would show up.  At one point, the Record Theatre hired some punks and metalheads who worked certain shifts and they hijacked the store stereo to spin hardcore and thrash.  I tended to show up during their shifts on purpose, just so I could hear new things I identified with and to have someone who knew what made my tick behind the register.

Before all that, the store was supported mostly by soul and pop sales, thus walking in would submit you to a lot of Rod Stewart, Luther Vandross, Donna Summer and even Kiss.  I remember buying “I Was Made For Lovin’ You” on 45 there when I was a kid and my folks had stopped at the store with an uncle of mine.  I can’t remember what they were after, Conway Twitty or Willie Nelson for I all know.  The Record Theatre had the area’s best country selection, go figure.  It was one of the few times I’d been allowed to venture on my own and since I was a Kiss loyalist at the time, I had to have that 45.  I’d been teased by one of my cousins-in-law for picking up “I Was Made For Lovin’ You” because Kiss had done the unthinkable by going disco.  In hindsight, they were right for harassing me, but I digress.

What was eye-popping about Record Theatre aside from the neon piping along the perimeter that was precursor to the tubular glitz of eighties’ arcades, was the giant framed album cover art mounted around the circumference of the place.  They collectively propagated as much of a pseudo pop art gallery of its time as they were glaring advertisements, yet many of those hoisted pieces never came down until the store went under in the late eighties.  Some of those remained up for nearly a decade and one of those eternal holdouts was The Cars’ Candy-O.

If I owned a record shop today, I would certainly have Candy-O along with Roxy Music’s Country Life, Roger Waters’ The Pros and Cons of Hitch Hiking and Robert Palmer’s Pressure Drop high up on the wall of my hypothetical store.  Whitesnake’s Lovehunter would certainly be a temptation, but it does cross into actual porn territory.  Call me a pervert if you must, it’s all good, but I maintain that each of these risqué album covers are boundary-pushing fine art of the modern age.  The art world has been historically been consumed with interpreting the nude in poetic manners, and while Roxy, Waters and Palmers’ album covers contain nudity, they’re reasonably tasteful.  Appositely, the nudity is merely suggestive in the case of Candy-O, and that one fascinated me the most as a kid.  Hell, it continues to titillate me today.

Alberto Vargas gave us a rock ‘n roll masterpiece on Candy-O that sums up the entire ethos of the genre upon the hood of a prototype street beastie with its alluring tamer spread across the hood.  Today I find fascination with “Candy-O’s” gravity-defying bosom that hardly seems logical in such a perpendicular position, not without one of those missile-cone bras of the fifties.  The sheer fabric Vargas enshrouds his honeypot muse in suggests she’s full-on beneath and as a young boy, I was completely entranced by it, slightly exaggerated or not.

It was the fiery red hair and the shadowy belly button that first attracted me at nine years old.  I knew vaguely that men and women and boys and girls had different anatomy and that (in most cases) they were drawn to each other.  It wasn’t until I’d learned more about sex itself later that year after tripping over a stray copy of Hustler magazine when the rest of Candy-O’s attributes became apparent to my greedy eyes.  As I got older and able to process desire for consummation with the other sex, I wanted Candy-O.  Who didn’t?  The Cars had scored a home run by flashing Vargas’ fleshly beacon call overtop their wax, and that’s before listeners could dive into “Let’s Go,” “Double Life,” “Lust For Kicks” and the title track. 

It was vintage marketing.  Sex sells better than a glittering testimonial from God Himself.  The 1978 self-titled album had been such a powerhouse that Candy-O was going to be a hit by attrition.  The Cars merely sweetened the deal for one of their future classics by thrusting a smoking hot aphrodisiac into the package.

When I first beheld Candy-O on the upper tier of the Record Theatre, that disco Kiss slab in my paw suddenly grew icky.  I felt a then-unfathomable urge to betray my kabuki heroes and beeline for The Cars on the sales racks.  My mom, being ever vigilant while loosening the leash, did a beeline of her own for me once she’d seen what had ensnared my attention.  “Eyes down, honey,” she’d told me in a gentle voice and steered me away from Candy-O’s svelte and sleek invitation.  Kiss remained in my hands and thus came home with me, paid for with my dollar-a-week allowance.  Yes, I remember when 45’s were only 99 cents, much less remembering them at all.

The more frequently we attended the Record Theatre as a family, it became a bit of a sport for me to sneak passing glances at Candy-O.  My mom knew all the time what I was doing, and it’s to her credit she’d thrown the boundary lines at me while my sexual hormones were starting unravel by the time I hit age 11.  I think it was well-smart of her to hold me in check and now as a father, I hide all of the album covers I mentioned earlier from my son.  He’s not yet ready for any of that, but I’ll understand wholeheartedly when someday I catch him trying to sneak a peek at Candy-O and that bare-bottomed one-night-stand from Robert Palmer’s voguish playboy days.

When the Record Theatre announced it was closing, I was a teenager and hitting the place on a regular basis.  Some of the routine customers were being offered pieces of the store to keep as mementos.  You can bet what I asked for when they asked me if I wanted something.  She was still there in her glory on the high end of the wall, oozing overtop the jazz section as she always had since I’d first set foot in the place.  I’ve always loved that dichotomy, such a jazzy chick spilling rock ‘n roll wantonness overtop a style of music that’s subliminally sex-driven instead of outright sleazy.  When I asked if I could have Candy-O, I was given a laugh and told, “She’s already claimed, Ray, sorry.”  Instead, they sent me out with an album promo cutout for Elvis Costello’s Spike, still a couple months ahead of its official release.  That was kinda cool, actually.  It gave me a taste of my future, having access to music in advance.

Like the eighth track on Candy-O, you can’t hold on too long to much of anything and nowadays whenever I pass the exit from the beltway that used to lead to Record Theatre, I routinely sigh.  Nobody but me knows why I do it, but I miss the hell out of the place and I miss that giant Candy-O wall mount.  She was my first adolescent fantasy.  Blondie told me to call her over and over from my turntable, but Candy-O summoned me, if you will.  I used to have innocent crushes on Barbara Eden and Catherine Bach prior to, but Candy-O was there to prompt my first wet dream.  When I think about it, that gal popped my cherry long before the real event occurred.

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Highlights from the 2012 Classic Rock Roll Of Honour will be broadcast in a special hour-long programme tonight at 8pm on Sky Arts. Presented by Duff McKagan, the ceremony features guest appearances from Jeff Beck, Rick Wakeman, Billy Gibbons, the classic Frantic Four line-up of Status Quo and many more (including comedian Vic Reeves, who’s a big fan of, and presents an award to, Rival Sons). Plus there are live performances from Saint Jude and Lynyrd Skynyrd.

Don’t dare miss it. Check out the video below for a taster of what’s in store.

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Canadian cult metallers Overlord will be included in an upcoming Metallica tribute album titled “Puppet Masters – A Millennium Tribute to Metallica – 1983-2013,” scheduled to be released on Versailles Records and slated for later this year. The selected song, “King Nothing,” was recorded at Vyner Road Studio and engineered, mixed and produced by Elliott Sairan who has worked with Rush, Triumph, Jeff Beck, Alice Cooper among others.

Currently Overlord are working on new material and up to see a new release soon to follow up the 2010 release “Back into the Dragon’s Lair” put out by Heaven and Hell Records. Overlord also recently released a new song “Living on the Poverty Line,” which you can listen to over on the band’s reverbnation page.


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Sir Mick Jagger teamed up with fellow rocker Jeff Beck during a performance for U.S. President Barack Obama at the White House on Tuesday.

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Alfred Music Publishing now distributes Guitar World In Deep: How to Play in the Style of Jeff Beck, an instructional performance DVD.

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