Music News Digest: Week Of May 26, 2013

June 2, 2013 by Amy Gold

During the week of May 26, 2013, oldies music fans mourned the passing of bassist Marshall Lytle of Bill Haley and His Comets, Clarence Burke, Jr. of the Five Stairsteps, and Marvin Junior of the Dells.

Also that week, it was announced that Lou Reed had a liver transplant last month. The 71-year-old former Velvet Underground frontman's recovery appears to be coming along nicely.

Also, Aerosmith, James Taylor, Boston, Carole King, and many other bands and artists gave a benefit concert at Boston's TD Garden to aid victims of April's Boston Marathon bombings. The Moody Blues announced an upcoming tour for this fall, and Alice Cooper will be touring this June with fellow shock rocker Marilyn Manson. Dave Davies will also be going on tour early this summer in support of his upcoming new album to be released this June.

Rick Springfield has written his first novel which is scheduled for publication in May, 2014. Also, Ringo Starr will be releasing an eBook this June about the Beatles that will feature some never-before-seen photos of the Fab Four.

Finally, Paul McCartney paid a unique tribute to Elvis Presley on his first visit to Graceland by leaving behind a guitar pick on his grave so that the King could play in heaven

May 26, 2013: Dave Davies To Release New Album

Dave Davies, former Kinks co-founder and lead guitarist, will soon be releasing a new solo album entitled "I Will Be Me." This album, which will include several guest artists, is slated for June 4, 2013. A video for the first track, "Little Green Amp," has been released and can be viewed online. Davies will also be touring from May 27-June 11, 2013 to support this album.

Source: New Dave Davies Solo Album Coming June 4

May 27, 201: Paul McCartney Leaves Guitar Pick Behind On First Trip To Graceland

Paul McCartney, who is currently on tour, recently passed through Memphis and visited Graceland for the first time. He paid a unique tribute to Elvis Presley by leaving behind a guitar pick on his grave so that the King can play in heaven

Source: McCartney Leaves Pick on 1st Visit to Graceland - ABC News

May 28, 2013: Moody Blues To Tour This Fall

The Moody Blues will be launching a 28-date tour in the U.S. this fall. The tour will begin on Sept. 26, 2013 in Louisville, KY at the Palace Theatre and will end on Nov. 2 in Rancho Mirage, CA at the Agua Caliente Casino. This tour will be in support of the band's new 17-disc box set scheduled to be released on June 25, 2013.

Source: Moody Blues Confirm Fall U.S. Tour Dates

May 28, 2013: Famed Bassist Marshall Lytle Passes Away

Famed bassist Marshall Lytle died on May 25, 2013 at age 79 at his home in New Port Richie, FL after battling lung cancer. He is best known for his work with Bill Haley & His Comets, and his distinctive bass playing can be heard in such classic hits as "Rock Around The Clock," "Crazy, Man, Crazy" and "Shake, Rattle And Roll." After working as a guitarist, Lytle joined Haley's band (then known as the Saddlemen) in 1951 as a bassist, and it was from Haley that he learned how to play slap bass. In 1952, the group changed its name to Bill Haley & His Comets, and Lytle played with them until late 1955 when he and two other Comets members left the group over a salary dispute to form the Jodimars. The latter group, which became a popular act in Las Vegas, disbanded in 1958. He also co-wrote "Crazy Man, Crazy" and many songs for the Jodimars. Since 1987, Lytle and former Comets members have toured and performed on and off through 2009. In 2012, they were inducted as members of the Comets into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. Lytle is survived by longtime partner Cathy Smith, nine children, and many grandchildren.

Source: Marshall Lytle, Bassist With Bill Haley, Dies at 79 -

May 29, 2013: Billy Joel Releases Recent Video Clips

Billy Joel has started releasing videos of his performance from last April at the New Orleans Jazz Fest. So far, he has released one song, "Miami 2017," to his website, and he will continue to release one song per week over the next month.

Source: Billy Joel Releases Recent Live Clips

May 29, 2013: Upcoming Ringo Starr eBook To Feature Never-Before-Seen Beatles Photos

The former Beatles drummer is publishing a new ebook that will feature never-before-seen photos of the Beatles during their heyday. Photos from Ringo Starr's childhood in Liverpool, plus videos with commentary, will also be included. This ebook is scheduled to be released on June 12, 2013 on Apple's iBookstore. A limited-edition hand-bound book signed by Starr will also become available this December.

Source: Ringo Starr unveils unseen Beatles photos in e-book | Reuters

May 29, 2013: Five Stairsteps Lead Singer Clarence Burke Jr. Passes Away

Clarence Burke Jr., lead singer of the Five Stairsteps, died on May 26, 2013, one day after his 64th birthday, in Marietta, GA. The Five Stairsteps were a family soul group formed in Chicago in 1965 that consisted of Clarence, three other brothers, and a sister. Dubbed the "First Family of Soul," the Five Stairsteps became famous for their 1970 smash hit, "O-o-h Child." This song is included in Rolling Stone magazine's list of the 500 Greatest Songs of All Time and has been covered by many bands and artists over the years. The Five Stairsteps had a string of hits on both the R&B and Pop/Rock charts through the late 1970s that also included "Don't Change Your Love" (1968), "From Us To You" (1976), and their debut song, "You Waited Too Long" (1966). After the group disbanded in the late 1970s, the four Burke brothers reunited to form the Invisible Man's Band which had a hit in 1980 on the R&B charts with "All Night Thing."

Source: News from The Associated Press

May 31, 2013: Aerosmith, James Taylor, And Others Give Benefit Concert

On May 30, 2013, Aerosmith, James Taylor, Boston, Carole King, and many other bands and artists gave a benefit concert lasting over 5 hours at Boston's TD Garden to aid victims of the Boston Marathon bombings which took place last April. The proceeds from this concert will go to One Fund Boston, established by Governor Deval Patrick and Mayor Thomas Menino to help bombing victims.

Source: Aerosmith, Dropkick Murphys, NKOTB Come Together for 'Boston Strong' Concert | Billboard

May 31, 2013: Rick Springfield To Publish First Novel

Rick Springfield has just completed his first novel, "Magnificent Vibration," which is slated to be published by Simon & Schusterís Touchstone Books in May, 2014. The rock star and actor had previously published a book of memories in 2010, entitled "Late, Late At Night."

Source: Rick Springfield to Publish Debut Novel, "Magnificent Vibration," Next Spring

May 31, 2013: Dells Singer Marvin Junior Passes Away

Dells singer and founding member Marvin Junior died on May 29, 2013 at age 77 at his home in Harvey, IL. Marvin Junior, who is famous for his robust baritone voice, was a longtime member of the Dells, a doo-wop/R&B group he co-founded in 1952 while in high school along with several other friends. First known as the El-Rays, the group changed its name to the Dells in 1955 and had its first R&B hit the following year with "Oh What a Nite." A more soulful version of this song ("Oh What a Night") was later recorded in 1969 which is included in Rolling Stone magazine's list of the 500 Greatest Songs of All Time. The Dells had a long string of hits on both the R&B and Pop/Rock charts that also included "Stay in My Corner" (1968), "Always Together" (1968), "Oh What A Day" (1970), and "Give Your Baby a Standing Ovation" (1973). In 2004, the Dells were inducted into both the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and the Vocal Group Hall of Fame. The Dells continued performing for several years thereafter until the passing of group member Johnny Carter in 2009, ending this band's over half-century run. Marvin Junior is survived by his wife Ruby, three sons, three daughters, 10 grandchildren; and a brother.

Source: Marvin Junior, Dells Singer, Dies at 77 -

May 31, 2013: Alice Cooper To Tour With Marilyn Manson

Alice Cooper and fellow shock rocker Marilyn Manson will soon be launching a 14-date North American tour. It will begin on June 3, 2013 in Morrison, CO, and end on June 28 in Rockford, IL.

Source: Alice Cooper Talks Tour With Marilyn Manson

June 1, 2013: Lou Reed Reportedly Recovering From Liver Transplant

Last month, Lou Reed had a liver transplant and is just now recovering. So far, things are looking promising for the 71-year-old former Velvet Underground frontman who is back to working and doing tai chi, according to his wife, musician and performance artist Laurie Anderson.

Source: Lou Reed reportedly recovering from liver transplant -