Quick Takes On Robert Plant, Steven Tyler, Gregg Allman And Songwriter Bill Dees
Robert Plant has written and recorded a new album's worth of material with Band Of Joy guitarist and co-producer Buddy Miller. Miller explained: "We didn't mean to, but we sort of wrote a record's worth (of material) and I said, 'While we're doing this, why don't I put up some mics and document it,' because that's better than just trying to remember it or record it on your phone. And it sounded so good I think we, you know, accidentally made a record. . . I don't know how much (Robert) would want me talkin' about it. . . If the last record might be pastoral, parts of it, (this one's) much more tribal; it's much more urgent and tribal and, dare I say, rockin'!" (Rolling Stone)
Despite his Grammy Award winning team up with Alison Krauss and the constant lure of a multi-million dollar offer to tour with Led Zeppelin, around the time of their 2010 self-titled debut, Plant told us that Band Of Joy is literally the only music on his mind: "I can't think of anything else but this. As much as I'm ambitious and I can't stop think about the next song somewhere, I still can't get over how great it was in London when we played the Forum in Kentish Town and ripped the place to pieces. And I've seen film of it and heard recordings of it and it's great. It's kind of like a breakthrough in strong, good hearted, big voiced spook."
Steven Tyler maintains that he has not broken off his engagement to fiancee Erin Brady. A spokesman for the Aerosmith frontman labeled the rumors "absolutely false and misleading. . . Just as any couple goes through trials and tribulations in a relationship, Steven and Erin are asking for their privacy at this time. They are engaged to be married and each is committed to their sobriety." The rumor was spread by an unnamed source who told The New York Post that the couple split due to Tyler battling to stay sober while heading out on the road with Aerosmith, and hinting that 38-year-old Brady's sobriety might be the reason for Tyler calling it quits: "Steven has been trying to maintain his lifestyle and to stay clean. The tour is really important to him and the band. So he decided to end it." (Ultimate Classic Rock)
Steven Tyler told us that regaining his sobriety literally gave him a new lease on life: "The reason I stopped taking drugs is not because it was killing me, 'cause I was too busy being high, but that it was stealing something that I had -- by the grace of God, and my parents, and the talent that I was born with -- it started stealing all those things from me, so I stopped taking drugs. And it all came back again, like as if I was 16-years-old, and trying to be in my first band. When you're stoned for 10, 15 years, and you get sober, suddenly things start working again."
Coming to DVD on December 11th is Gregg Allman's I'm No Angel: Live On Stage. The disc features Allman and his solo band caught live in November 1988 band at Nashville, Tennessee's The Cannery.
The tracklist is: "Don't Want You No More," "It's My Cross To Bear," "Sweet Feeling," "Just Before The Bullets Fly," "Fear Of Falling," "Demons," "I'm No Angel," "Statesboro Blues," "Slip Away," and "One Way Out."
We asked Allman if he still feeds off the energy of the audience the way he did back in the '70s: "Well, it feels like that to me, and I tell you -- the, the audience, they really draw it out of you. The audience can get -- they have a lot to do with getting the performance they want."
Gregg Allman tour dates (subject to change):
November 7 - Birmingham, AL - Alabama Theatre
November 10 - Gulfport, MS - Sun & Sand Mississippi Film & Music Festival at Jones Park
December 30 - Mobile, AL - Saenger Theatre
Songwriter Bill Dees, best known for co-writing the Roy Orbison classics "Oh, Pretty Woman" and "It's Over," died on October 24th of brain cancer at age 73 in Mountain Home, Arkansas. Apart from his work with Orbison, Dees wrote songs for the Johnny Cash, Loretta Lynn, Glen Campbell, and Billy Joe Royal, among others. Dees is survived by his wife, four children, two stepchildren, a brother and numerous grandchildren and great-grandchildren. (Entertainment Weekly)