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Mike Dow

Mike Dow

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Wednesday, 26 September 2012 14:59

Nancy Wilson of Heart

New book, new album and the joy of plugging in

There are few bands of Heart's stature and longevity who can lay claim to a year like this one. June saw the release of 'Strange Euphoria' - a box set containing a wealth of previously unheard material across three discs, along with a DVD of a 1976 Heart performance.

Wednesday, 19 September 2012 14:48

Mike Reno of Loverboy Ready to rock Bangor

 80's rock band to appear with Journey and Pat Benatar

After 32 years, more than a dozen hits and sales of more than 20 million records, Loverboy is still going strong. Lead singer Mike Reno says the group's longevity can be attributed to the fact that they retain the bond that brought them together.

Loverboy's lineup has endured one change in its three decade history: the death of longtime bassist and Mike Reno's best friend Scott Smith in a boating accident.

Wednesday, 12 September 2012 14:14

Coming soon in music

P!nk and No Doubt have struck deals with Target to offer exclusive deluxe editions of their upcoming albums. P!nk's 'The Truth About Love' will be released on Sept. 18 and features four new tracks exclusive to the Target release. A longtime fan of the retailer, P!nk recently told Billboard, 'My entire house looks like Target threw up on it.' P!nk wrote and recorded 35 new songs for 'Truth' and will offer 17 of them on the new Target edition of the record.

No Doubt follows on Sept. 25 with 'Push and Shove' their first new LP in 11 years. While most retailers will offer an 11-track version of the album, Target gets an exclusive eight-song bonus disc five of them exclusive to the Target disc. Included among the extra tracks are acoustic versions, remixes and a cover of Adam and the Ants' 1981 single 'Stand and Deliver.'

Wednesday, 05 September 2012 14:24

The other Boston Tea Party

In the mid 80s, a friend gave me a cassette containing live recordings of a February 1970 Fleetwood Mac performance (the original Fleetwood Mac - with Peter Green on guitar and lead vocals) recorded in Boston. The tape was labeled 'Live at the Boston Tea Party,' and to this day, that tape contains some of the best live rock recordings I've heard.

In those pre-internet days, information about The Boston Tea Party was hard to come by. That tape instilled an ongoing curiosity for me about the venue itself. Where was it? Who played there? What is currently occupying that space? That's where it gets a bit complicated.

Beginning in the early 1980s, actress Diane Franklin portrayed an array of diverse roles on the big and small screens. She was the innocent Karen in 'The Last American Virgin' in 1982.

Franklin famously portrayed Monique, the sexy French foreign exchange student who gave John Cusack the will to live in 'Better off Dead' (1985).

Shortly before stepping away from the spotlight as a new decade approached, Franklin appeared as Princess Joanna in 'Bill and Ted's Excellent Adventure.' Throughout the decade she appeared in episodes of 'Matlock,' 'Murder She Wrote' and 'Charles in Charge.'

Wednesday, 15 August 2012 11:55

Inside the Last Summer on Earth Tour

Featuring Barenaked Ladies, Blues Traveler, Big Head Todd and the Monsters and Cracker

This Sunday night, many concert-goers on the Bangor Waterfront will be partying like it's 1995, but for the bands involved in the tour dubbed Last Summer on Earth, it has less to do with nostalgia than it does hitting the road with old friends to give the audience some serious rock and roll bang for their buck.

In addition to a full set by headliners Barenaked Ladies, the tour includes sets by three other bands that rose to prominence in the 90s: Blues Traveler, Big Head Todd & The Monsters and Cracker.

When the tour was announced earlier this year, Barenaked Ladies' vocalist and guitarist Ed Robertson said, 'I love playing outside in the summertime. To travel and hang around with a bunch of bands, and get a chance to do some collaboration, is part of the magic of a summer tour.'

bringing smiles to chronically ill children

'The whole theme of the fund is to bring a smile to a child's face during those times when they have to undergo procedures,' says Lucille Koncinsky, grandmother of Brianna Rachel Koncinsky. 'The reason the fund exists this was her idea.'

Brianna was 6 years old when she lost her two year fight with brain cancer. Twelve years later, her spirit continues to make a powerful impact on the lives of people she never knew.

Shortly after her passing, Brianna's family established The Brianna Rachel Fund for Kids to assist with the non-medical needs of chronically ill and hospitalized children and their families.

Wednesday, 01 August 2012 15:10

Phish: focused ferocious fun on Chicago 94'

Following the release of last year's seven-disc box set 'Hampton/Winston-Salem '97,' which captured a pivotal funky moment in the evolution of Phish, another thematic archival release has arrived in the form of 'Chicago 94' (JEMP Records), featuring two stellar Phish performances recorded six months apart at Chicago's UIC Pavilion.

1994 was probably the busiest year Phish has ever seen. In March, Elektra Records released the band's fifth studio album, 'Hoist,' a record that helped Phish reach a wider audience with songs like 'Down with Disease,' 'Wolfman's Brother' and 'Sample In A Jar.' As drummer John Fishman told Richard Gehr in 'The Phish Book,' 'Both we and Elektra wanted to have something on the radio, so we tried to write a hit single. But we never committed ourselves to it totally.'

Wednesday, 25 July 2012 12:23

Gregg Allman 'such a wonderful life'

Gregg Allman is on the phone, and he's laughing as he recalls a trip to Maine with The Allman Brothers Band in the 90s. 'We were playing there and they took us out to this island,' he remembers. 'There was a 50 gallon drum full of lobsters and man, we partied let me tell you. We had boats and it was just a very memorable time.' When I asked if he could recall the approximate date of that visit, he thought about it for a few moments. 'It was probably the early 90s no, wait a minute. It was probably the later part of the 90s because I had already gotten clean and sober and that was in 1996. Man, we had a ball.'

When The Allman Brothers Band were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1995, the ceremony was capped with the usual all-star jam session and after-party. Allman says his party began a week early technically, decades earlier. He recounts this story with vivid detail at the beginning of his new memoir 'My Cross to Bear' (William Morrow), written with journalist Alan Light.

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