June 5, 2016 by Amy Gold
During the week of May 29, 2016, the world bade a final farewell to legendary heavyweight champion Muhammad Ali to whom Johnny Wakelin & The Kinshasa Band paid homage in the 1975 hit, "Black Superman - 'Muhammad Ali'." Ali himself also made a splash on the pop charts in 1964 with his rendition of the Ben E. King classic, "Stand By Me" (see video below).
Also that week, it was announced that Eric Clapton's and Bob Dylan's latest albums, titled "I Still Do" and "Fallen Angels," respectively, both debuted in the Top 10 on the Billboard 200 chart. Also, David Bowie's final album, "Blackstar," made it to the #2 spot on Entertainment Weekly magazine's recent list of "The 25 Best Albums Of 2016 (So Far)."
Petula Clark will release a new album this June titled "Natural Love: The Scotti Brother Recordings" consisting mostly of songs originally recorded in the early 1980s. The album's title track, which became a hit in 1982 on the Billboard Hot 100 and Adult Contemporary charts, also became her first and only Billboard Country chart hit that same year.
This June, Rick Springfield will launch a tour that will take him to various parts of the U.S. and Canada. Also that month, Randy Bachman of The Guess Who and Bachman-Turner Overdrive will join the lineup for the "Fire Aid For Fort McMurray" benefit concert in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada. Sister Sledge and Roger McGuinn of The Byrds will take part in the Songwriters Hall of Fame Induction and Awards Dinner in New York City. This October, Bad Company will launch a tour in the U.K. Also that month, Steely Dan will begin a new residency at New York City's Beacon Theatre. Joe Bonamassa's third annual "Keeping The Blues Alive At Sea" cruise featuring Gregg Allman and many other artists sets sail in February 2017 from Tampa, FL.
Also that week, it was announced that Chicago, Foreigner, REO Speedwagon, and Rick Springfield are among the bands and artists to perform on the upcoming ABC TV special, "Greatest Hits," which premieres June 30, 2016.
(For more information about the above-listed news items, please see below for a list of sources with links and article summaries.)
Muhammad Ali (Cassius Clay) sings "Stand By Me."
May 29, 2016: Lineup Announced For Joe Bonamassa's 2017 Cruise
Joe Bonamassa's third annual "Keeping The Blues Alive At Sea" cruise will set sail February 6, 2017 from Tampa, FL. Featured artists on this blues-themed seagoing music fest include Gregg Allman and another founding member of The Allman Brothers Band, drummer Jaimoe. For more info, visit BluesAliveatSea.com.
May 30, 2016: Randy Bachman To Perform At Fire Aid Benefit Concert
Randy Bachman of The Guess Who and Bachman-Turner Overdrive will join the lineup for Fire Aid For Fort McMurray, a benefit concert to aid victims of the recent forest fires near Fort McMurray and the Regional Municipality of Wood Buffalo in Alberta, Canada. This event takes place June 29, 2016 at Commonwealth Stadium in Alberta's capital, Edmonton.
May 30, 2016: Petula Clark To Release New Album
Petula Clark is set to release a new album titled "Natural Love: The Scotti Brother Recordings" which is due out on June 3, 2016. Highlights of this country-pop collection, most of which was originally recorded in the early 1980s on Scotti Brothers Records, include Clark's covers of "Blue Eyes Crying In The Rain" and the "Sound Of Music" classic, "Edelweiss," plus the album's title track which not only became a hit in 1982 on the Billboard Hot 100 and Adult Contemporary charts but also became her first and only Billboard Country chart hit that same year.
May 31, 2016: Latest Eric Clapton And Bob Dylan Albums Debut In Top 10 Of Billboard 200
Eric Clapton's latest album, "I Still Do," debuted on the Billboard 200 this week at #6, making this album Clapton's 16th to make this chart's Top 10. Also that week, Bob Dylan's "Fallen Angels" came in at #7, making this his record-holding 22nd Top 10 Billboard 200 album. His similarly-themed 2015 album, "Shadows In The Night," which also covers songs previously recorded by Frank Sinatra, also made its Billboard 200 chart debut that year at #7.
May 31, 2016: David Bowie's 'Blackstar' Ranked At #2 On Entertainment Weekly's 2016 Best Albums List
David Bowie's final album, "Blackstar," made it to the #2 spot on Entertainment Weekly magazine's recent list of "The 25 Best Albums Of 2016 (So Far)," with Beyonce's "Lemonade" topping the list. Released on January 8, 2016, Bowie's 69th birthday, Blackstar made its debut on the Billboard 200 at #1. For more info, visit EW.com.
June 1, 2016: Chicago, Rick Springfield & More To Perform On ABC TV Special
Chicago, Foreigner, REO Speedwagon, and Rick Springfield are among the bands and artists to perform on the upcoming ABC TV special, "Greatest Hits." This six-episode series, which covers the 1980s, 1990s, and 2000s, premieres June 30, 2016 and will be shown every Thursday thereafter through August 4. Each show will focus on a five-year period featuring that half-decade's best known music artists and chart-topping songs.
June 1, 2016: Bad Company To Launch Fall Tour
Bad Company announced an upcoming U.K. fall tour which kicks off October 15, 2016 in Leeds, West Yorkshire, England and ends on October 29 in London, with stops in Scotland and Wales. The band is currently on tour in the U.S. with Rich Robinson filling in for founding member Mick Ralphs who will return this fall. For more info, visit PaulRodgers.com.
June 2, 2016: Steely Dan Announces New Residency In NYC
Steely Dan announced a new residency at New York City's Beacon Theatre that will run from October 12 through October 29, 2016. This 10-date engagement will include full-album performances of "The Royal Scam," "Aja," "Gaucho," and "Countdown To Ecstasy," plus "Greatest Hits" and "By Popular Demand" shows and concerts featuring Rickie Lee Jones. The band is currently on tour in the U.S. with Steve Winwood of Traffic.
June 3, 2016: Entertainment/Presenters Lineup Announced For 2016 Songwriters Hall Of Fame Induction Ceremony
Sister Sledge and Roger McGuinn of The Byrds are among those to take part in the upcoming Songwriters Hall of Fame Induction and Awards Dinner as presenters and/or performers. This event is set to take place June 9, 2016 at New York City's Marriott Marquis Hotel. This year's inductees include Elvis Costello, the late Bernard Edwards, the late Marvin Gaye, Tom Petty, Nile Rodgers of Chic, and Chip Taylor. Also, Lionel Richie will be presented with the Johnny Mercer Award.
June 3, 2016: Rick Springfield To Launch Summer Tour
Rick Springfield announced an upcoming summer tour that will take him to various parts of the U.S. and Canada. This 37-date trek begins on June 4, 2016 in Kalamazoo, MI and ends on November 6 in Fort Myers, FL, with additional stops in Michigan, as well as in Arizona, California, Georgia, Illinois, Iowa, Kansas, Louisiana, Maryland, Minnesota, Mississippi, Nevada, New Jersey, New York, North and South Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, and Virginia, plus Ontario, Canada. Special guests will include Loverboy, Night Ranger, The Romantics, and other top acts from the 1980s.
June 4, 2016: Muhammad Ali Passes Away
Boxing great Muhammad Ali died on June 3, 2016 at age 74 of septic shock after being hospitalized for a respiratory illness. The lovably brash and quick-witted heavyweight boxing champion hold a special place in the hearts of oldies music fans as he was paid homage to in the Johnny Wakelin & The Kinshasa Band hit, "Black Superman - 'Muhammad Ali'" (1975), a mostly-spoken song inspired by the historic "Rumble In The Jungle" match that took place between Ali and George Forman in Kinshasa, Zaire on October 30, 1974. Ali himself also made a splash on the pop charts in 1964 (under his birth name, Cassius Clay) with "I Am The Greatest" and his cover of the Ben E. King classic, "Stand By Me."
Born Cassius Marcellus Clay, Jr. in Louisville, Kentucky, he began training at age 12 and won his first world heavyweight championship at 22 in a match against Sonny Liston which took place on February 25, 1964 in Miami Beach, FL. Shortly thereafter, Clay changed his name to Muhammad Ali after converting to Islam. In 1966, his career suffered a temporary setback when he refused to be drafted into the U.S. army, citing his religious beliefs and his opposition to U.S. involvement in the Vietnam War. Ali remains the only three-time world heavyweight champion, his second and third wins occurring on October 30, 1974 (against George Forman) and September 15, 1978 (against Leon Spinks), respectively. Ali fought once last time in December 1981 before retiring permanently after his health began to decline in the late 1970s. He was diagnosed with Parkinson's in 1984 which is believed to have been the result of multiple injuries to his head in the boxing ring. While battling this disease for the remainder of his life, the iconic Ali became a spokesman for various causes and made many public appearances over the years, most notably at the 1987 Tournament Of Roses Parade and at the 1996 Summer Olympics in Atlanta, GA where he lit the torch during the opening ceremonies.