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Thanks to the new biopic “Bohemian Rhapsody,” the popularity of Queen – indisputably one of rock’s most beloved and influential bands – is at its highest point since the 1991 death of front man Freddie Mercury. One of the group’s biggest fans has unknowingly chosen the perfect time to release his musical tribute to the iconic singer.

Wednesday, 16 January 2019 14:08

Bangor’s Phish fans elated for band’s imminent return

Written by Mike Dow

When the band Phish announced summer tour dates last week, revealing a two-night return to Darling’s Waterfront Pavilion in Bangor on June 25 and June 26, many local fans began making plans to attend.

Wednesday, 26 December 2018 12:33

Denny Laine to bring The Moody Wing Band to Portland

Written by Mike Dow

“We were kids who wanted to do something in music,” rock icon Denny Laine told me of his early days in Birmingham, England. That kid eventually became a key member of two legendary rock bands – The Moody Blues, and later, Wings, where Laine was the only consistent member - other than Paul and Linda McCartney – for that band’s decade-long existence.

The Rock and Roll Hall of Famer is planning to bring his Moody Wing band to Portland’s One Longfellow Square for a concert on Tuesday, January 8, to perform two classic albums in their entirety.

As the dust settles following last week’s official announcement regarding the 2019 class of inductees into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, a few questions remain. Will they all show up to accept the honor? Which songs will be performed during the traditional post-ceremony jam?

And the big question: Which artists will be selected to introduce and wax poetic over each of the seven inductees? I have a few ideas.

It was a bold move that exceeded expectations when Phish booked a summer residency at Madison Square Garden in July and August 2017. More than 32 years after playing their first show as a foursome, Trey Anastasio, Jon Fishman, Mike Gordon and Page McConnell settled in for 13 shows spread over 17 nights.

Wednesday, 05 December 2018 14:43

Singer-songwriter Henry Jamison talks new album and tour

Written by Mike Dow

His songs have been streamed more than 85 million times, but he’ll tell you that he’s not a big deal. Henry Jamison’s fans are likely to tell you otherwise when the Burlington, Vermont-based musician brings his band to his old Portland stomping grounds on December 8 for a show at Port City Music Hall with dreamy baroque-folk pop band Darlingside.

With a number of classic rock titles celebrating milestone 50th anniversaries in 2018 it was a given that reissue producers would come up with a multitude of commemorative box sets to mark the occasion. Some hit the mark beautifully by checking nearly every box on the rock archaeologist’s wish list while others come frustratingly close but ultimately misfire in some significant way.

A few months back, I received an invitation to preview the new self-titled double album by Ace of Cups - a group of women who were at the epicenter of the San Francisco rock scene in the late ‘60s and early ‘70s.

Despite sharing stages with some of the era’s heaviest hitters, Ace of Cups didn’t have an opportunity to make a studio record of their own until now – and it’s a stunner.

Wednesday, 14 November 2018 12:21

The Marcus King Band set for Maine return

Written by Mike Dow

Marcus King says he won’t forget 2018 anytime soon. The 22-year old guitarist and band leader of the blues and soul-infused Marcus King Band has just returned from a 15-date European tour in support of “Carolina Confessions” – the band’s third album.

King and his five bandmates are set to appear at Aura in Portland on Wednesday, November 21, and King says he can’t wait to return to Maine.

Take a few seasoned rock and blues vets, find some classic rock ‘n roll songs that haven’t been covered to death, write some new tunes that sound like they could be vintage rockers, add a little country and then come up with a catchy name. Voila! You have “Shaken & Stirred” - the new album from Earl & the Agitators.

Lead by Foghat founding member and drummer, Roger Earl, the new disc features singer and guitarist Scott Holt (a veteran of Buddy Guy’s band), Foghat’s lead and slide guitarist Bryan Bassett (former guitarist for Wild Cherry – that’s his solo on ‘Play That Funky Music’), longtime Foghat bassist Craig MacGregor, bassist Rodney O’Quinn, guitarist Tony Bullard, and percussionist Mark Petrocelli.

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