Mike Dow

Mike Dow

edge staff writer

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John Lodge has no interest in slowing down. The legendary bassist, composer and vocalist for the 2018 Rock and Roll Hall of Fame 2018 inductees the Moody Blues is back out with his 10,000 Light Years Band this summer as part of the 28-date “The Royal Affair Tour” with headliners Yes.

Rounding out the bill are bands Asia and Carl Palmer’s ELP Legacy, with special guest vocalist Arthur Brown.

“It’s a long show – about four hours,” Lodge said during an interview from the hotel of his Toronto tour stop. “Sometimes the show starts as early as six p.m. (laughs).”

Leading the pack of new releases this week is the first LP from Jack White and Brendan Benson’s The Raconteurs since 2008’s “Consolers of the Lonely.” The 12 new songs that make up “Help Us Stranger” (Third Man Records; June 21) signal a return to the riff-rich joy that made the band’s first two releases so much fun. Heavy on guitars, the album’s warm analog sound (White’s preferred method of recording) lends an air of timelessness while also allowing the music to breathe. Welcome back, fellows.

For as much as we know about the events surrounding the 1969 Woodstock Music and Art Fair, when more than a half million people converged on a 600-acre dairy farm in the tiny hamlet of Bethel, New York, for a weekend of music by Jimi Hendrix, The Who, Janis Joplin and dozens more, there is apparently much that we don’t. Author and Woodstock-attendee Mike Greenblatt has managed to expose a surprising amount of first time information in an impressively detailed book on the festival scheduled for release in July.

Greenblatt’s “Woodstock 50th Anniversary: Back to Yasgur’s Farm” (Krause Publications) is an absorbing read not only for music fans but also for history buffs and documentarians keen on firsthand information.

In addition to conducting interviews with 32 figures central to the Woodstock story, Greenblatt artfully conjures the sights, sounds, and even the scents of the festival, from the perspective of a woefully unprepared 18-year old music fan eager to soak up all it had to offer – including the brown acid.

A multitude of Woodstock-related images appear in Greenblatt’s book which assist in transporting the reader to the lip of the stage as the author recounts the festival’s humble beginnings and tumultuous build-up as well as an act-by-act rundown of each performance, and the significance of its legacy.

As a publicist, editor and freelance journalist, Greenblatt has been writing about rock music in all of its forms in the five decades since Woodstock. He’s been thrown against a backstage wall by a pissed off Meat Loaf; nearly killed by Jerry Lee Lewis, and has driven around the Jersey Shore with Bruce Springsteen. In short, the guy has stories.

BANGOR – The inaugural concert for the 2019 Outlaw Music Festival drew thousands of fans to Darling’s Waterfront Pavilion in Bangor last Friday night to hear headliners Willie Nelson & Family, Phil Lesh & Friends, Alison Krauss, The Revivalists, Lukas Nelson & Promise of the Real and Particle Kid.

It’s funny how something as ordinary as hearing a new song on the radio can send a person burrowing down a rabbit hole so rich with hidden trails and secret passageways, he’s still there decades later savoring every moment.

Phish is currently on a 26-date summer tour and will soon arrive in Bangor to play back-to-back shows at Darling’s Waterfront Pavilion on Tuesday and Wednesday, June 25 and 26.

Most every fan in attendance will have a different story about what brought them to Phish (insert Volkswagen Minibus joke here). Oh yeah, Phish fans have to put up with a lot of crap. It’s all good, man. We can take it.

The moment I received a message from The Maine Edge’s resident Super Genius assignment editor Allen Adams asking me to share the story of my path to Phish, I began compiling a list of details.

(Editor’s note: I’ve been looking for an excuse to have Mike go long on Phish for years; his passion for the band is palpable. With the band’s return to Bangor, I got what I wanted – and you all are getting something special.)

This is how I came to Phish and why I hope to never leave.

Tuesday, 11 June 2019 16:35

Spotlighting some new June tunes

With eagerly anticipated new titles on the way from heavy hitters like Ed Sheeran, Willie Nelson, Bruce Springsteen, Dave Matthews and Madonna, summer 2019 is shaping up to be tunefully memorable. As many new releases are timed to coincide with the heavy touring season, the music industry is hoping that global sales will continue to rise for a fifth straight year.

Here’s a sneak peek at a few just-released titles and a taste of things to come.

Netflix’s new horror thriller “The Perfection” freaked me out in a way that a movie hasn’t done for a long time. As I watched, I realized that it would be very difficult to say much about it without giving away some key plot points. Suffice to say all of my preconceptions and expectations were shattered. Cheers to writer and director Richard Shephard for reminding me that the best scary movies are the ones with twists I didn’t see coming.

Shortly before the May 24 premiere of “The Perfection,” I spoke with Steven Weber, one of the film’s stars, for a conversation mostly revolving around the movie … with a little “Wings” exchange at the end.

The new EPIX stylized series “Perpetual Grace, LTD” has aired only two episodes as of this writing but it’s already generating Emmy buzz for star Sir Ben Kingsley over his portrayal of diabolical small-town New Mexico preacher Pastor Byron Brown. Think of this noir-ish thriller as “Ma and Pa Kettle from Hell.”

Kurtwood Smith (“That 70s Show,” “Robocop,” “The Ranch”) has a recurring role as Uncle Dave, and says working with Kingsley is something all actors would love to do.

“A lot of people have wondered what happened to me and where I’ve been,” former Saturday Night Live star Chris Kattan said at the outset of my interview with him about his new memoir “Baby Don’t Hurt Me.” It’s a deeply personal and fast-paced read that is equally captivating, hilarious and heartbreaking.

BANGOR – Three well-known Maine bands are slated to come together for a night of music to benefit the Make-A-Wish Foundation on Sunday, May 26, from 7 p.m. to 1 a.m., at Penobscot Pour House, located at 14 Larkin St. in Bangor.

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