Sunday, September 25, 2011

Monday Morning Mini


John Larson, trumpet player with the Ides of March, died Wednesday (September 21) of complications from cancer in Warsaw, Indiana. He was 61. John joined the group in the late '60s and his playing can be heard on the brass-dominated tunes, such as "Vehicle." A memorial service is being planned for November.
-- Ron Smith
John Larson, 61, Ides of March trumpet player passes
John Larson was the driving force behind the band’s 1970 hit “Vehicle.” 
Mr. Larson died Wednesday of complications of cancer at a hospital in Warsaw, Ind. He was 61.
Kent -
This is from the Sun Times on Friday. Sad to hear about John. I wondered why he was not with the Ides for awhile and now we know the reason.
The Ides Of March have lost a couple of former members recently.  (Guitarist Ray Herr passed a few months back.)  I have to wonder what kind of a memorial service "send-off" they're planning for him in November ... should be something!  (kk)

This past weekend, legendary DJ Dick Biondi was inducted into yet ANOTHER Radio / Broadcasting Hall Of Fame ... this time in Buffalo, New York, where Biondi spent 1958 and 1959 broadcasting on a couple of AM Rock And Roll / Top 40 radio stations ... prior to coming to Chicago for the very first time in 1960 to join WLS-AM.  Congratulations to Dick Biondi on yet another fitting honor and accolade.  We love ya, Dick!  (kk) 

Got this from FH Reader Dave Barry:
Diana Ross review: Superb voice keeps love aliveAidin Vaziri, Chronicle Pop Music Critic
Monday, September 19, 2011
"Stop!" Diana Ross raised her palm at the Golden Gate Theatre on Friday. The 67-year-old singer looked resplendent in a sparkling floor-length gown, red lipstick and an eruption of curls topping her smiling face - almost as if she had spent the past five decades preserved in amber. Less than a second passed, but it felt like an eternity.
Her 12-piece band stood at full attention. The stage lights illuminated the capacity crowd. Then Ross delivered the kicker, backed by a volunteer chorus of hundreds: "In the name of love!" She wailed. They wailed. "Before you break my heart!"
It was pop history in the flesh, with all the emotional heft that comes with it. Friday's concert marked the first time Ross had performed in San Francisco proper since she appeared with the Supremes at the Fairmont Hotel's Venetian Room in 1969, according to promoter Rick Bartalini.
That's where Ross picked up, opening the 90-minute show with the high points of the trio's Motown catalog delivered in quick succession. "Baby Love." "You Can't Hurry Love." "Where Did Our Love Go?" That's a whole lot of love.
You would think she would be sick of their ubiquity by now, but Ross and her 12-piece live band seemed genuinely thrilled to be playing each one for what had to be the 50,716th time.
Horns and synthetic strings cued a transition to the disco era, as Ross took the stage in earrings that looked like apartment chandeliers and a dazzling red dress with enough sequins to cover a small island in the South Pacific.
Her 1980 hit "I'm Coming Out" seemed to hold special resonance with the San Francisco audience, which could never quite figure out whether to sit or stand in a venue typically reserved for touring Broadway shows.
"Love Hangover," released in 1976, sounded as sublime as ever, while "Ease on Down the Road," from the Ross-helmed soundtrack to "The Wiz," would have fared better left in the used record store bins.
Her foray into jazz and blues was unexpectedly delectable, as Ross' wonderfully aged voice soared on lounge versions of "Fine and Mellow" and "Don't Explain." For the drag queens in the audience, it was like a master class in commanding the stage.
Just after "Theme From 'Mahogany' (Do You Know Where You're Going To)," when it seemed like she had completely exhausted her cache of popular songs, Ross dropped an all-hands-on-deck version of "Ain't No Mountain High Enough." Plus the fifth costume change of the night - a little gold number with holographs.
So it was a little disappointing that she closed out the set (and encore) with a wedding band cover of Gloria Gaynor's signature anthem, "I Will Survive."
Then again, the sentiment hit the mark. Ross' enthusiasm and energy were remarkable, not just for her age, but any age. Now if we could just get her to visit more often.

You mentioned The Zombies touring, but didn't give dates  ... WWW.THEZOMBIES.NET
Sept. 30    Phoenix, AZ - Celebrity Theater
Oct. 1    Agoura Hills, CA - Canyon Club
Oct. 2    San Juan Capistrano, CA - Sunday Coach House
Oct. 5    Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada - McPhillips Station Casino
Oct. 7    Regina, Saskatchewon, Canada - Casino Regina
Oct. 9    Edmonton, Alberta, Canada - Century Casino
-- Ken Voss
Unfortunately, no stops anywhere near Chicago ... but a VERY glowing review from Tom Cuddy for their New York appearance.  We've heard good things every step of the way on this one ... and, with a brand new album to promote on the market (although apparently only available as an import at this time here in The States), we may be primed for MORE Zombies appearances in the weeks and months to come.  (kk)