Late, Late Night FDL: Anarchy In The U.K.

The Ukulele Orchestra of Great Britain – Anarchy In The U.K.

As an Uke afficionado, I’d been following this British High Court case…

The Ukulele Orchestra Of Great Britain (UOGB) has won a High Court ruling against a rival group which it accused of trading off its reputation.

The group challenged the German-based United Kingdom Ukulele Orchestra (UKUO) over the similarity in name.

It argued the German group had copied its format and fans were getting confused between the two.

The judge agreed and said its “passing off” claim had succeeded.

The legal battle kicked off last September when the UOGB filed a claim for trademark infringement as the UKUO was preparing for its first tour of the UK.

In his initial ruling, Judge Richard Halcon sided with the German group, agreeing that it was not in competition and adding the British group should have mounted a legal challenge earlier.

Made up of British musicians, the UKUO was founded in 2009, while the UOGB has been going since 1985.

But in his ruling on Thursday, Judge Halcon said he was satisfied “the United Kingdom Ukulele Orchestra’ misrepresents to a substantial proportion of the public in this country who recognise the Ukulele Orchestra Of Great Britain’ as the trade name of a particular musical group”.

He added: “I am also satisfied that this has caused damage to the Ukulele Orchestra Of Great Britain’s goodwill, particularly by way of loss of control over the Ukulele Orchestra Of Great Britain’s reputation as performers.”

‘Unique show’

The case was brought by the founder of the UOGB, George Hinchliffe, who told the court he was approached in 2009 by a German producer who wanted to franchise the band in Germany.

The request was turned down, but Erwin Clausen, director of Yellow Promotions, set up the United Kingdom Ukulele Orchestra, promoting a similar style of musical comedy.

Mr Hinchliffe said: “We have worked hard for 30 years to create a unique show and the court has now recognised that copycat musical performances cannot trade off the reputation of established groups.”

Mr Hinchliffe added: “We have an international and celebrity fan base who have stood by us and who will be very pleased.”

Seriously, I like the both of’em, so where’s the real harm here…?

What’s on your mind tonite…?

Late, Late Night FDL: Five Long Years

Buddy Guy, Jonny Lang, and Ron Wood – Five Long Years

Jonny has a busy Summer ahead of him…

Guitarist Jonny Lang says that playing the blues now that most of the greats are gone is like classical musicians still playing music written centuries ago.

He tells the Columbus Dispatch: “Classical musicians weren’t around when Beethoven was going through whatever he was going through to make him write that music; they’re standing on his shoulders when they perform.“

Lang also reveals that while he can’t experience what greats such as B.B. King went through in their early days, he can still appreciate it.

The North Dakota native adds: “Culturally, I couldn’t be further away from the fellows that this music was born from. I don’t have that life experience, but I can imagine what it was like to the best of my ability.”

Lang released his most recent work Fight For My Soul in 2013 and believes pigeonholing music is growing increasingly pointless.

He says: “I can’t keep tabs on what style of music I’m supposed to fit into. A lot of the songs I’ve done over the years, if you played a Muddy Waters record and then played mine, you’d go: ‘No, those aren’t in the same genre.’

“People’s perception of the blues has evolved.”

What’s on your mind tonite…?

Late, Late Night FDL: Mr Blue Sky

ELO – Mr Blue Sky

Jeff Lynne and ELO plan to release a new DVD and a new album soon…

Jeff Lynne‘s triumphant revival of the Electric Light Orchestra banner for a Sept. 2014 festival performance will get the home video treatment this fall, when Jeff Lynne’s ELO: Live in Hyde Park is scheduled to arrive in stores.

The concert film, due Sept. 11, is being released on DVD, Blu-ray and digital formats, and will include the documentary Mr. Blue Sky: The Story of Jeff Lynne & ELO alongside the band’s Hyde Park live performance, which marked ELO’s first appearance on a festival stage in nearly three decades. According to the Live in Hyde Park press release, Lynne “has been involved every step of the way with every aspect of this production, especially the audio delivery.”

“It seemed like the entire 50,000 were singing and clapping along, which carried on for the whole night. The Hyde Park concert turned out to be one of the most memorable shows ever for me,” says Lynne in a statement. “It’s important to me that viewers experience the Hyde Park show exactly as it was performed on the night … in stereo.”

For Lynne, who’s spent most of the last 25 years focusing on studio work, returning to the concert stage was an experience not without its share of jitters — but one that ultimately left him wanting more.

“For the last 20 years, I’ve been sitting down in the studio playing, so you have to learn all over again how to stand up and sing and play,” he admitted last year. “Once we got that good, that tight, we wanted to play another gig, but my manager said no. We were all fired up and it would’ve been perfect time to do it.”

Happily for fans who’ve been patiently waiting for new music, Lynne evidently feels that time hasn’t passed. Saying he’s “definitely” planning on scheduling some U.S. tour dates in the near future, he revealed, “I’m working on a new album, and that’ll be involved in the new times when we play.”

What’s on your mind tonite…?

Late, Late Night FDL: I’ve Seen All Good People

Yes – I’ve Seen All Good People

R.I.P. Chris Squires…!

Chris Squire, the influential rock bassist who was a founding member of the celebrated British band Yes, died on Saturday in Phoenix. He was 67.

His death was confirmed by the band’s keyboardist, Geoffrey Downes. Mr. Squire, the only member to have played on every one of Yes’s albums and participated in every one of its tours, was being treated for acute erythroid leukemia and said last month that he would not be with Yes for its summer and fall tour, scheduled to begin on Aug. 7.

“I’m in pieces over it,” Mr. Downes said in a phone interview from his home in Wales. “The guy was a total legend.”

Yes, formed in 1968, was known for its blend of rock, jazz, folk and classical influences and also for its complex time signatures and pristine vocal harmonies. One of the first of the so-called progressive (or prog) rock bands — among the others were King Crimson and Emerson, Lake & Palmer — it went on to become the most successful and longest-lasting.

The first Yes albums to reach a wide international audience were the group’s third and fourth, “The Yes Album” (1971) and “Fragile” (1972), both released in the United States on Atlantic. The group’s most recent studio album, “Heaven & Earth,” was released by Frontiers Records last year.

Mr. Squire’s propulsive and often melodic bass playing was a key element of the Yes sound. A self-taught virtuoso, he has been cited as an influence by many other rock bassists.

What’s on your mind…?

Late Night FDL: My Sweet Lord + Today Is A Killer

Nina Simone – My Sweet Lord + Today Is A Killer

The Guardian had an interesting article today on Nina Simone…

Nina Simone: ‘Are you ready to burn buildings?’

Nina Simone’s album Black Gold, recorded at New York’s Philharmonic Hall on 26 October 1969, concludes with a deeply moving performance of To Be Young, Gifted and Black. The song took its name from a hit play about Lorraine Hansberry, the celebrated playwright who had converted Simone to political activism before dying young in 1965. As she spoke about Hansberry, Simone’s voice creaked with emotion. “I think that very soon now, maybe four or five weeks, I won’t be able to sing it anymore because each time I do it she comes a little bit closer and I miss her a little bit more.”

In Liz Garbus’s new Netflix documentary What Happened, Miss Simone? we see rows of black students enraptured by the song she called “the Black national anthem”, her biggest hit since I Loves You, Porgy a decade earlier. It had the pride and optimism of the cover versions she had alchemised into civil rights anthems: Feeling Good, I Wish I Knew How It Would Feel to Be Free, Ain’t Got No/I Got Life. But her Philharmonic performance revealed the undercurrents of pain and loss that were slowly dragging her under.

The tremendous power of Simone’s music has entranced the likes of Kanye West, Antony, Laura Mvula and Lauryn Hill. In 2008, President Obama named her version of Sinnerman as one of his 10 favourite songs. She sang in an almost androgynous baritone that she said ranged from “gravel” to “coffee and cream”, played piano like a virtuoso and interpreted material with power and imagination. When she covered a song it stayed covered, although it’s ironic that her career was revived in 1987 thanks to a perfume commercial that featured 1958’s My Baby Just Cares for Me because that perky jazz standard (which she once called “a piece of shit”) told listeners nothing about who she really was.

There was always something regal about the “High Priestess of Soul” who, at one point, claimed to be a reincarnated Egyptian queen: Nadine Cohodas’s excellent biography is called Princess Noire. “She is loved or feared, adored or disliked, but few who have met her music or glimpsed her soul react with moderation,” Maya Angelou wrote in the 1970 magazine article that gives Garbus’s film its name. “She is an extremist, extremely realised.” {more}

What’s on your mind tonite…?

Late Night FDL: All Through The Night

Cyndi Lauper-All Through The Night

Congrats to Cyndi, Sir Van, and the other honorees…

Cyndi Lauper, Van Morrison and Lady Gaga have all been inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame.

The stars received their honours at a three-hour ceremony in New York, and many expressed surprise in their acceptance speeches.

“I still can’t believe I make a living making music,” said Lauper. “I’m blown away.”

The Grateful Dead’s Jerry Garcia, was also inducted posthumously alongside the band’s lyricist Robert Hunter.

Country artists Toby Keith, who has sold more than 40 million albums worldwide, and Bobby Braddock, who wrote Tammy Wynette’s DIVORCE, were also honoured.

And “poet laureate of the blues” Willie Dixon, who died in 1992, was cited for songs including Hoochie Coochie Man, I Just Want to Make Love to You and You Can’t Judge a Book by the Cover.

What’s on your mind tonite…?

Late Night FDL: Kryptonite

3 Doors Down – Kryptonite

3Doors Down has a new album on tap…

Us And The Night due out later this year

3 Doors Down have revealed the title of their upcoming sixth album.

The Mississippi rockers will release Us And The Night later this year, guitarist Chris Henderson says.

He tells KFMX: “I’m actually on my way to the studio right now to finish guitars for a new record. The music’s almost done. Probably in the next five days the record will be finished 100 percent and sent off to mix.

“It’s going to be called Us And The Night, so there is an album title. I think the tentative release date will be September, October, November – somewhere in that area. We want to make sure it’s right before we put it out.”

The album will be the follow-up to 2011’s Time Of My Life.

I’m back to work tonite…! Be nice…!

Late Night FDL: Grand Illusion

Styx – Grand Illusion

Styx is releasing a new box set of their oldies…

8-disc vinyl pack features releases from 1975 to 1984

A box set containing eight Styx albums on heavyweight 180g vinyl is to be released on July 17.

The A&M Years 1975-1984 will be issued by USM and features the studio albums Equinox (1975), Crystal Ball (1976), The Grand Illusion (1977), Pieces Of Eight (1978), Cornerstone (1979), Paradise Theatre (1981) and Kilroy Was Here (1983), along with 1984 double live album Caught In The Act.

Last month, Styx mainman Tommy Shaw insisted they wouldn’t be rushed into recording a new album, despite saying they had “stuff in the works.”

He said: “I’m writing some stuff for what will be more like an Americana solo album. We’re also working on some new Styx music – just taking our time with it. We don’t really have any plans to release an album, but there’s stuff in the works.”

They released Styx Live At The Orleans Arena Las Vegas in May on DVD and are currently on tour.

What’s on your mind tonite…?