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 The Steve Miller Band

The force of their explosive success in the seventies propelled the Miller Band toward that status achieved by only a few in this business:
a kind of perennial success untainted by any loss of credibility. Their story from this point is one of undiminished productivity. Some of it
pursued a streamlined pop orientation, as on Abracadabra in 1982; lauded for its “effervescent melodies” and tagged “pretty damn irresistible” by Allmusic.com, it peaked at No. 3 and broke the platinum barrier as the title cut soared to the top of the singles chart. Other more
experimental projects would  reflect Miller’s ability to expand on the core of his band’s sound without blunting its impact. Some of these efforts stirred less commercial response than others, but even these would document Miller’s willingness to take risks, if there were artistic reasons for doing so.

Overall, though, the Steve Miller Band legacy, as established throughout the late twentieth century and up to the present, is one of enduring currency. They continue to draw large and loyal followings at landmark concerts that have included one before 74,100 fans at the
Cotton Bowl in Dallas for the Texas Special Olympics in 1990; a soldout show at Spartan Stadium at San Jose State University in 1991, with ZZ Top, Extreme, and Eric Johnson, that chalked up more than a million dollars in gate receipts; an Earth Day benefit at the Hollywood Bowl in April 1993, at which Paul McCartney persuaded Miller to collaborate on his upcoming Flaming Pie album; and a memorable set at the San Francisco Blues Festival in 2002, for which Miller organized a Chicago Blues Reunion with Charlie Musselwhite, Elvin Bishop, Barry Goldberg, Harvey Mandel, Nick Gravenites, and Marcy Levy.

The public would keep buying their CDs as well: The Joker would rack up platinum sales, Fly Like an Eagle would break the quadruple platinum barrier, and Greatest Hits 1974-1978, which went platinum within one month of its release in 1978, has since been certified for a mind-boggling 13-times-platinum sales.

So this train evidently still rolls. After all, Miller did once confide to Rolling Stone, “I don’t think, as a musician, you really hit your peak until you’re about 60.”


Beach Boys - Biography

The most successful and important American band of the rock music era is without question The Beach Boys. They were formed in 1961 in Hawthorne, CA, around the three Wilson brothers: Brian (b. June 20, 1942) (bass, piano, vocals), Dennis (b. Dec. 4, 1944 - d. Dec. 28, 1983) (drums, vocals), and Carl (b. Dec. 21, 1946) (guitar, vocals). Additional members were Mike Love (b. Mar. 15, 1941) (vocals), the Wilsons' cousin, and Al Jardine (b. Sep. 3, 1942) (guitar, vocals). From the start, the focus of the group's music was Brian Wilson, who combined a fascination with vocal harmony in the Four Freshmen mold with a love of Chuck Berry-derived rock & roll. Added to that was the subject matter of middle-class teenage life in Southern California -- surfing, cars, and girls.

The Beach Boys returned to prominence in the mid-'70s on a wave of nostalgia and a potent concert act that focused on their early hits. Capitol Records had repackaged their catalogue repeatedly, but Endless Summer, a June 1974 double LP compiling their early-'60s work, amazingly topped the charts, becoming their first gold album in seven years. In July 1976, The Beach Boys released 15 Big Ones, their first new studio album in more than three years and their first album in a decade to credit Brian Wilson as producer. The album spawned a Top Ten hit in a cover of Chuck Berry's "Rock and Roll Music," but the group's commercial appeal, at least as far as new recordings, was temporary. Subsequent albums The Beach Boys Love You (April 1977) and M.I.U. Album (September 1978) sold less well. Brian Wilson's "comeback" also proved elusive after 1977.

Especially with the dawn of the CD era, the extensive repackagings of Beach Boys material have continued apace. The year 1993 finally brought a five-CD boxed-set retrospective, Good Vibrations: Thirty Years of The Beach Boys. In 1995, after the resolution of various legal issues, lead singer Mike Love and Brian Wilson began working together again, yet the partnership was quickly derailed due to various tensions, and Wilson began collaborating with Van Dyke Parks and working on a new solo album. The following year, The Beach Boys released a collection of duets with country artists titled Stars and Stripes, Vol. 1, and there were plans for a box set chronicling the Pet Sounds sessions, but the compilation was delayed due to disagreements within The Beach Boys camp.

Hear some of the greatest songs ever written including; “Surfin' Safari,” “409,” “In My Room,” “Little Honda,” “Surfin' U.S.A.,” "Wouldn't It Be Nice," "God Only Knows," "Caroline No," "Sloop John B," "You Still Believe in Me," "Don't Talk," “All Summer Long,” “Help Me, Rhonda,” "I Know There's an Answer," “Shut Down,” “Warmth of the Sun,” “Surfer Girl,” “Little Deuce Coupe,” “Catch a Wave,” “Don't Worry, Baby,” “Be True to Your School,” “Fun, Fun, Fun,” “I Get Around,” “Dance, Dance, Dance,” “Do You Wanna Dance?,” “California Girls,” “Barbara Ann,” “Sloop John B.,” “When I Grow up (To Be a Man),” “Wendy,” “Good Vibrations” and “Kokomo.”

The Beach Boys first rode the waves of success in 1961 with their regional debut hit “Surfin.” By 1966 they had emerged as one of America’s top pop groups by releasing eleven top-10 singles in five years. They were made popular with hits like “Fun, Fun, Fun,” “I Get Around,” “Help Me Rhonda,” “California Girls” and “Good Vibrations.” The Beach Boys didn’t stop there. They released 29 full-length albums between 1962 and 1977, a dozen compilations and boxed sets, and numerous singles into the 90’s. The band’s biggest selling hit didn’t come until 1988 with “Kokomo.” The period between it’s release and the band’s first major album release “Good Vibrations” in 1966 is the longest span of time between number one records of any artist in history.

The Beach Boys were recently honored with the Lifetime Achievement Award at the 2001 Grammy Awards and by VH-1, which named 1966’s “Pet Sounds” as the #3 album in the Top 100 Albums in Rock ‘n’ Roll History.



CREEDENCE CLEARWATER REVISITED

Stu Cook and Doug "Cosmo" may not have intended it, but their band Creedence Clearwater Revisited has taken on a startling life of its own. The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame rhythm section (bass and drums respectively) from the legendary group Creedence Clearwater Revival launched the Creedence Clearwater Revisited project in 1995 to once again perform live Creedence Clearwater Revival hits - touchstones of a generation. Though the pair initially only planned to play private parties, Creedence Clearwater Revisited now performs up to 100 shows a year and has released the album “Recollection.”

"We never really had any intention of playing for the public," says Stu. "But a friend wanted to promote a couple of concerts. We got talked into it, but didn't know how it would go over."

Since then, the reaction to Creedence Clearwater Revisited’s concerts has been astounding, and driven in part by a generation of kids who, as Cosmo says, "weren't even born when the music came out." Likewise, the release of a double-live CD on Universal’s Hip-O Records label, which features passionate, authoritative version of 22 classic hits - was the result of public demand. "It was generated by requests of the people who came to the shows," Stu acknowledges. "Over and over they would ask, "'do you guys have a CD?’" Creedence Clearwater Revisited's "Recollection" has proven so popular that it was certified as a gold record by the RIAA in 2002 and is well on its way towards platinum record status.

Having now toured North America, South America, New Zealand, Europe and Asia, knocking out audiences with astounding concerts jam packed with songs that are still a staple of radio and movie soundtracks, Creedence Clearwater Revisited has come a long way. "In the beginning Cosmo and I decided that if we could find the musicians that could capture the sound and recreate what the music was about, we'd do it," recalls Stu.

As fans who have experienced a Creedence Clearwater Revisited concert can attest, Stu and Cosmo found the right players. Lead singer/rhythm guitar player John Tristao, a powerful tenor with the energy to power songs, initially rose to prominence as lead singer for the band People when their hit "I Love You" bulleted into the top ten. Lead guitarist Tal Morris has been described as "the quintessential Bay Area guitar prodigy" and his monstrous talent unleashed live is what a rock 'n' roll concert is all about. Talented multi-instrumentalist Steve Gunner rounds out the group. As Cosmo puts it, "Gun provides live all the overdubs that were on the records. He plays keyboard, acoustic guitar, percussion, harmonica and sings the high harmonies."

With this new lineup, Stu and Cosmo and their band Creedence Clearwater Revisited add a new chapter to their legacy with vibrant and exhilarating energy and pure American spirit. As the Hollywood Reporter's music critic John Lappen wrote about a Creedence Clearwater Revisited concert in Los Angeles, “Their set was an amazing list of hit after hit that was done serious justice by the players involved. If anyone in the cheering crowd was disappointed [anyone] wasn't there, they hid it well behind their big smiles and whoops of joy at hearing live some of the best American rock ever written and recorded." "People don't want to be involved in an endless debate," Cosmo sums up. "They want to hear the music." And Creedence Clearwater Revisited always delivers.


The Red Willow Band
 

The Red Willow Band existed in South Dakota from 1974 to 1982.

 Their business card read "Red Willow Band.....the best in country swing". Two albums and several singles were recorded and released, with one single "I Wish I Had Your Arms Around Me" reaching #97 on the Billboard Hot Country 100 charts for a whopping 7 days. The band made numerous TV specials for South Dakota Public Television, hosted the successful NEMO series of outdoor festivals, and toured nonstop in the upper U.S. from Washington State to New York City.

The band reunited in 2004 for a 3 concert tour of South Dakota. Click here to see the poster full size.


More Entertainment Information to come!

 


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