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Janis Joplin was called “the greatest white urban blues and soul singer of her generation” by the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, which inducted her in 1995. Joplin’s powerful, gritty vocals made songs like “Piece of My Heart,” “Ball and Chain,” “Summertime” and “Me and Bobby McGee” uniquely her own. Joplin, who died in 1970 at age 27 of an accidental drug overdose, burst on the music scene in 1966 as vocalist of San Francisco’s Big Brother and the Holding Company. The band’s manager, Chet Helms, encouraged its members to make Joplin their lead singer. Joplin’s triumphant performances at…

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Talk about better late than never. 44 years since it was recorded, Gary Wright’s 1972 album, Ring of Changes, finally saw release a few months back. And upon listening to the album, one is puzzled why Wright’s label, A&M Records, buried such a strong commercial release which had sat in the archives for more than four decades. Consummate musicianship and arrangements, powerful, emotive vocals and songs primed for heavy AOR airplay, fans of Wright can rejoice that this lost treasure is now being made available for the very first time. Best known for the smash ’70s hits “Dream Weaver” and “Love Is Alive” and as…

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They’re songs that sound like they’ve been around forever, timeless musical screeds drawing from a deep well of country, R&B, folk, gospel, roots rock, Dixieland jazz, and Tin Pan Alley. “The Night They Drove Old Dixie Down,” “Stage Fright,” “The Weight,” “Up On Cripple Creek,” “Rag Mama Rag,” “It Makes No Difference,” “King Harvest (Has Surely Come)” and “The Shape I’m In” are among the jewels written by Robbie Robertson, guitarist/songwriter for The Band. Emerging onto the music scene in the late ’60s with a throwback sound and traditional style that separated themselves from their contemporaries (The Beatles, Bob Dylan,…

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Arizona’s Jimmy Eat World recently announced plans for a busy 2017. Specifically, they’ll be touring around North America (and beyond) with Beach Slang in support of their new album, Integrity Blues. On the heels of that news, drummer Zach Lind took some time out to answer some questions for us regarding the album, the tour (visit their Ticketmaster page for more details there), the state of the country and a lot more. Enjoy it below. Rock Cellar Magazine: What’s the story behind the title of Jimmy Eat World’s new album, Integrity Blues? Zach Lind: Well, we actually struggled with the…

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For the past two decades, Corey Taylor has been the ringleader of the metal band Slipknot. He’s also, even before Slipknot, been the lead singer of the hard-rock band Stone Sour — and he’s also published three books to date as well. In 2016, he began hosting a Beats 1 radio program titled A Series of Bleeps. He’s done some acting, too. Simply put, the man’s always working. With Stone Sour ramping up for a huge year in 2017 with an ambitious new album in the works, Rock Cellar was fortunate enough to grab some one-on-one time with Taylor at the recent…

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Hundreds of bands have produced one monster hit: a catchy, memorable concoction of lyrics, music and vocals that sold millions of copies. But many were somehow unable to follow it with another successful tune. DJs call them one-hit wonders, but musicians hate that moniker. “It is a pejorative term,” says Don Baskin of the Syndicate of Sound, who scored big with “Little Girl.” “How about no-hit wonder? How about 99.9% of the bands out there playing that never get anywhere near that?” We wondered why a successful follow-up hit is so elusive. So we asked artists from eight bands who…

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“There was no vision for this album,” says producer Don Was of The Rolling Stones’ new CD, Blue & Lonesome. “We were making an album of new songs, and sometimes you do a bunch of takes and you need to take a little break, right? So we were working on a song and we just needed to get away from it, so Keith, really just to cleanse the palate, said, ‘Let’s play “Blue & Lonesome,”’ which is an old Little Walter song.” The setting was Mark Knopfler’s recording studio in London where The Stones were working on their first album…

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When I meet up with David Crosby during rehearsals for his fall tour supporting his new solo album Lighthouse, he almost can’t contain himself about the amazing reviews the album had been getting. “Have you read the Rolling Stone review?” he asks me, almost immediately after we say hello. “Woo! Uncut was a blazer, too, but Rolling Stone, man, it was a rave. It’s a great review. They loved it!” Crosby is going it alone these days, and he’s never seemed happier. After a nasty, public falling-out with longtime musical foil Graham Nash, and cutting ties with his other musical…

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When he was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2012, President Obama said of Bob Dylan, “There is not a bigger giant in the history of American music.” Hailed as the voice of his generation, Dylan won the Nobel Prize for Literature in 2016 but his greatest achievement may be his influence on musicians that have included the Beatles and Bruce Springsteen, who said Dylan “changed the face of rock and roll forever.” In the first of a series, Rock Cellar asked some of the most respected artists in rock, folk and blues to share their recollections of the…

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Steve Jones was one of those kids whose high school yearbook entry would have read “Most likely not to succeed.” His life path was an all-too-certain roller coaster ride to the gutter until rock and roll blew its anarchic spirit into his lungs. The true epitome of an accidental pioneer, Jones’ pile-driving, powerful guitar work powered the engine that ignited the Sex Pistols’ punk rock fusillade. His new autobiography, Lonely Boy: Tales from a Sex Pistol, details his fast-paced life, a sweaty sex, drugs and rock and roll journey with dollops of humor, honesty and bratty tongue in cheek pathos. Rock Cellar Magazine: When did…

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