Quick Takes On Elton John, R.E.M., Neil Young, The Monkees, And Chuck Berry

Music News

We can all rest easy, Elton John has announced that he’s reconciled with his 92-year-old mother after years of being out of touch.

Elton posted a photo on Instagram of himself and Sheila Farebrother, with a message that read, “Dear Mum, Happy Mother’s Day! So happy we are back in touch. Love, Elton xo.” According to sources, Elton and his mom actually patched things up two years ago after not speaking for seven years. Farebrother — who has had a contemptuous relationship with Elton’s husband David Furnish — refused to turn her back on John Reid, Elton’s former manager and lover, as well as Bob Halley, Elton’s former driver and personal assistant. Both men were cut off while Elton restructured his career. (The Daily Mail)

R.E.M.’s Michael Stipe showed a softer version of himself during a chat about his beard on British TV. During his recent chat on The First Time With. . ., Stipe shed light on how his long white beard originally came about, explaining, “Three Halloweens ago I went as a failed radical fairy. And to be a failed radical fairy you have to have a lot of facial hair — put flowers in it, way too much glitter, way too much makeup, overdo the eyebrows. And it worked. People laughed and laughed and laughed. And I had a great Halloween.”

Stipe went on to talk about how he grooms the now impressive beard, which reaches his chest: “I wash it with shampoo, and I’ve tried conditioner, but it doesn’t condition very well. I’m kind of going for — rather than skid row Santa, I’m kind of going for a Poseidon-slash-Zeus-slash-Brancusi, uh, Matisse kind of appeal. And so I keep it a little trimmed on the sides to show off my beautiful cheekbones. And that’s about it, really. I put some oil on it from time to time.” (Billboard)

After a six-year break, The Canadian Songwriters Hall of Fame (CSHF) Induction ceremony will reconvene to induct Neil Young, among others on September 23rd at Toronto’s Massey Hall. Joining Young as the 2017 inductees are Bruce Cockburn, Beau Dommage, and Stephane Venne. Relix.com reported “artists set to perform at the bilingual event are k.d. lang, Arkells, Florence K, Whitehorse, Elage Diouf, Randy Bachman, Buffy Sainte-Marie, and more.”

Monkees fans are gearing up for the next “Super Deluxe Reissue” from the band’s classic catalogue. Monkees archivist Andrew Sandoval tweeted: “Hearing ‘I’m A Believer’ in mono from tape for the 1st time in 50 yrs — the More Of The Monkees super deluxe ed is on its way.” More Of The Monkees was released on January 9th, 1967 and was the group’s second of fourth chart-toppers, spending 18 weeks on top of the Billboard 200 album charts. Amazingly, More Of The Monkees ended the 13-week chart-topping run of the Monkees’ 1966 self-titled debut.

The album featured such Monkees standards as their second Number One hit, “I’m A Believer” and “Look Out (Here Comes Tomorrow)” both written by Neil Diamond, Gerry Goffin & Carole King’s “Sometime In The Morning,” Mike Nesmith’s “Mary, Mary,” as well as “She,” “Your Auntie Grizelda,” “(I’m Not Your) Steppin’ Stone.” No release date for the new edition has been announced.

The first Chuck Berry video has just premiered online. The song, “Big Boys” is the lead single from the late-rocker’s upcoming posthumous set, titled Chuck, due out on June 9th. The “Father of rock n’ roll” died of a heart attack on March 18th at the age of 90 — but was alive during the filming of the video. (Rolling Stone)

Photo Courtesy of PRPhotos.com

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