with Wesley Woodson
Trump Looks Best In A (Law)Suit
A week ago, Neil Young posted that he was reconsidering legal action against the Trump campaign. Now it seems he’s taking action.
On his Neil Young Archives website on Tuesday morning, Young posted what seems to be a draft of a lawsuit that claims the Trump campaign did not have a proper license to play two of his songs: Rockin’ in the Free World and Devil’s Sidewalk.
Young’s attorney has verified that the suit has been filed. The draft of the suit specifies the Trump campaign using the songs at the president’s rally in Tulsa, and at a speech at Mt. Rushmore on July 3 that incited a response from Young.
The suit states that Young’s displeasure over Trump’s use of the song was first expressed on June 16, 2015. The rocker is pursuing “statutory damages in the maximum amount allowed for willful copyright infringement.” The fine for each infringement is between $750 to $150,000.
Young is not alone, as the Rolling Stones threatened to sue the Trump campaign for its use of You Can’t Always Get What You Want in June.
Saving It For The Stage
More than 150 independent music venues in New York City are rallying for the passing of the bi-partisan Save Our Stages Act and the Restart Acts, both of which will assist indie venues during their continuing financial hardships following the COVID shutdown.
Notable names among the venues include Baby’s Alright, the Knitting Factory, the Bitter End and Bowery Ballroom. Together, these venues formed the New York Independent Venue Association (NYIVA) in affiliation with the National Independent Venue Association, and announced their effort to pass the legislation with a “day of action” on Tuesday.
NYIVA says that each venues will need $300,000 on average to stay viable if they remain closed until next year. It says venue landlords could claim $150,000 in arrears and more than 80% of venues have “no definitive arrangement with their landlords.”
Right now, the average NY venue only makes $375 per month — after labor and cost of goods — with the way streams, merchandising and online operations are panning out.
Kanye West Goes South
Kanye West has finally admitted that tossing his name into the bid for the presidency was an attempt to damage presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden’s chances at winning.
In a text mesage interview with Forbes, West said “ I’m not denying it; I just told you.” The interview with West touched on a wide array of issues — including his life as an anti-vaxxer and experience with COVID-19.
West disclosed that he’s still on good terms with the Trump White House — telling Forbes that he’s “designing a school within the next month,” and is meeting with Betsy DeVos about schools’ curriculum post-Covid.
It’s been a turbulent past few weeks for the rapper/mogul/presidential nominee. After announcing his bid for the presidency on the 4th of July, West somehow managed to poll at 2%. He had an at times disjointed campaign “rally” in South Carolina and managed to drop songs somehow in between all of this.
Blink's 182 Days In Quarantine
Blink-182 released their new single, “Quarantine,” on Friday amid the cyclical onslaught of New Music Friday releases.
The song, first announced on Wednesday via Twitter, hits the scene less than a year after the release of their most recent LP, Nine. “Quarantine” serves as a return to more familiar stomping grounds after spending much of the Matt Skiba era partnering with artists outside of their usual genre and making room for their various other projects.
On the track, Mark Hoppus says what’s probably on everyone’s minds with “I thought that 2019 was effed up.”
The song also suggests that their upcoming EP — which is rumored to feature artists like Lil Uzi Vert and Pharrell Williams - might be here sooner than later.
Prince Time Is Up In The Vault
The Prince Estate has entered the vault to gift fans with another previously unreleased song, “Cosmic Day.”
The track was originally recorded on November 15, 1986, at Sunset Sound, Studio 3, with engineers Susan Rogers and Coke Johnson.
Previously unvaulted tracks include “Witness 4 The Prosecution (Version 1)” in June and the 1979 version of “I Could Never Take the Place of Your Man,” which came out last month.
In a statement regarding the release, the song is described as an example of what Prince sounded like at his most psychedelic.
Sign O’ the Times is out Sept. 25. via the Prince Estate in partnership with Warner Records.
There's Something In The Air in Paris
David Bowie’s archival releases aren’t showing any sign of slowing down, as they’ll continue with the upcoming digital release of Something in the Air (Live Paris 99).
Recorded on Oct. 14, 1999, the new digital chapter includes delicacies like “Can’t Help Thinking About Me,” which he issued in 1966 but hadn’t performed in more than three decades. It also includes live renditions of Station to Station’s “Word on a Wing,” Aladdin Sane’s “Drive-In Saturday,” and the debut live performance from Hours’ "Something in the Air.”
The live project follows the release of two archival unveilings in May and June.
Something in the Air (Live Paris 99) will be available on streaming services on Aug. 15.
Roger Waters Goes Deep
Roger Waters expands his series of socially distant performances with two album cuts from Pink Floyd’s 1979 LP, The Wall: “Vera” and “Bring the Boys Back Home.”
“Vera” is about an English singer, songwriter, very popular during the Second World War. “Bring the Boys Back Home” serves as an expression of Waters' discontent with the reasons why federal officers are currently being deployed.
The performance moves from “Vera” into a grand orchestral take on “Bring the Boys Back Home.” The latter features the silky harmonies of Lucius’ Jess Wolfe and Holly Laessig, who collaborated with Waters on previous performances.
Most recently Waters released videos featuring a cover of John Prine’s “Hello In There” and a rendition of Pink Floyd’s “Two Suns in the Sunset.” He also got into a one-sided feud with former bandmate David Gilmour over entry to the Pink Floyd website.
Re-Burning The Midnight Oil
Almost 33 years after Midnight Oil first made waves with “Beds Are Burning,” they’ve returned with their first song in 17 years. After announcing their upcoming mini-LP, The Makarrata Project, “Gadigal Land” is the first offering of what fans can expect come October.
As fans know, it wouldn’t be a Midnight Oil tune without some politically-charged activism, so the new track comes with a loaded message from the band.
When describing the purpose behind the song, Oil said it’s meant to urge the federal government to heed the messages in the Uluru Statement from The Heart and act accordingly.
They also said they hope the song and mini-album they created alongside their First Nations friends can help shine a bit more light on the urgent need for genuine reconciliation in this country and in many other places too.