Music News Digest: Week Of February 3, 2019

February 11, 2019 by Amy Gold

During the week of February 3, 2019, fans bade a final farewell to famed drummer Paul Whaley (January 14, 1947 - January 28, 2019) who was a longtime member of Blue Cheer. Considered to be one of the earliest pioneers of heavy metal, this band is best known for its 1968 hit remake of Eddie Cochran's "Summertime Blues."

Also that week, CBS announced the lineup for its upcoming special, "Motown 60: A Grammy Celebration," which will air on April 21, 2019. Smokey Robinson will co-host this event, with Stevie Wonder, Diana Ross, and Martha Reeves to be among the featured performers.

Steely Dan announced a Las Vegas residency at The Venetian Theatre at The Venetian Resort, with nine concerts to take place April 24-May 11, 2019. Also, Neil Young has scheduled a series of five shows in Oregon and the State of Washington for May 17-23 in advance of his headlining concert on May 25 in Napa, CA with his backing band, Promise of the Real.

Lynyrd Skynyrd announced 20 new concerts for the U.S. leg of its farewell tour which will begin on May 10, 2019 in Tuscaloosa, AL and end on September 28 in Orange Beach, AL, covering many states. George Clinton also announced a farewell tour with Parliament-Funkadelic which officially kicks off on June 1 in Cincinnati, OH and wraps up on August 18 in Las Vegas, NV, with stops in many states across the country. The funk legends also have several concerts lined up for this spring taking place in Georgia, Hawaii, Illinois, Massachusetts, and Wisconsin.

Jackson Browne added five new concerts to his 2019 itinerary that start on June 29 in Wallingford, CT and end on July 6 in Bethel, NY, also covering Massachusetts and Virginia. This series will take place after a four-night stand at New York City's Beacon Theatre in late June.

Sammy Hagar announced an upcoming spring tour with his current band, The Circle. This 23-date trek begins on April 19, 2019 in Reno, NV and ends on June 7 in Tinley Park, IL, covering many states across the country. In addition, the band will release its debut album, "Space Between," on May 10.

A new archival album by Aretha Franklin will be coming out March 22, 2019 on vinyl and digitally. Titled "Songs Of Faith: Aretha Gospel," this collection capture some of the late Queen of Soul's earliest recordings made in 1956 when she was only 14 while accompanying herself on piano at Detroit's New Bethel Baptist Church. Also due out on March 22 is an expanded version of Van Morrison's 1997 studio album, "The Healing Game."

A previously unreleased Marvin Gaye album from 1972, "You're The Man," will be coming out March 29, 2019 on vinyl and digitally. Also, founding Yes frontman Jon Anderson will release a new solo album titled "1000 Hands" on March 31. This upcoming recording is the culmination of a project he started almost 30 years ago that features contributions from Steve Howe of Yes, Ian Anderson of Jethro Tull, Steve Morse of Deep Purple, and numerous other guest artists.

The O'Jays announced their first album in 15 years titled "The Last Word" which is due out on April 19, 2019. Highlights include "I Got You," a song of reassurance in a time of political turmoil written in the original group's Philadelphia Soul style from the 1970s.

Also that week, it was announced that "Diana Ross: Her Life, Love And Legacy" will make its premiere in select theaters on her 75th birthday, March 26, 2019. This documentary captures highlights from two benefit concerts she gave at New York's Central Park that took place July 21 and 22, 1983.

Finally, Aerosmith will be honored with a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. The star will be unveiled at 6752 Hollywood Boulevard in front of Musicians Institute during a ceremony to take place February 14, 2019.

(For more information about the above news items, please see below for a list of sources with links.)