HOT: R.I.P. Prince
Even if you are living under a rock, you’ve probably heard that American music icon Prince died on April 21. Coverage of his death and tributes have been extensive and far-reaching, the sheer quantity and diversity of which was rivaled only by the reaction to the passing of Prince’s ’80s rival, Michael Jackson, seven years ago (and, before that, the deaths of Elvis and John Lennon). The musician’s death has been shrouded in mystery (the cause had yet to be announced by the time we went to press), which is fitting because — besides being one of our time’s greatest performers, writers and musicians — he was a master of the lost art of being a mysterious superstar.
It seems like any musician who has stood on a stage in the wake of his death has paid tribute to Prince, either in words or by playing his music (the final weekend of Coachella was chock full of tributes). Bruce Springsteen opened a pair of Brooklyn, N.Y. concerts by playing a rousing rendition (if it's anything but rousing, you're doing it wrong) of "Purple Rain," a recording of which was made available as a free download by The Boss here. More recently, D'Angelo played a passionate version of Prince's "Sometimes It Snows in April" on The Tonight Show.
CityBeat wrote about Prince's 1984 "secret show" at Bogart's last year as part of a cover story about the long-running local venue. Check it out here.
WARM: No Bizkit for Dayton
A beautifully ridiculous prank that began with a simple Facebook event post recently made international news. Jokesters in Dayton, Ohio posted about a secret show by much-maligned Rap/Rock band Limp Bizkit that was slated for a Dayton Sunoco gas station on April 20 (4/20, dude). While many seemed in on the joke (likely including, despite press reports that they were all dumb LB devotees, some of the 100 or so "fans" who loitered around the station near the alleged showtime, just in case — have to imagine some of them were there for the joke of it all and being sarcastic), interest in the “concert” grew enough that local police felt compelled to issue a tweet saying the event was not real and Bizkit frontman Fred “Not Robert” Durst took to Twitter to deny the sad reality that it was all a prank, while the band’s official account begrudgingly gave “props” to the “posers” behind the gag. Perhaps the band will make it a reality — pop-up gas-station gigs somehow seem to be a perfect fit for the "Nookie" band.
COLD: Joe Says “No” to GOP Gig
Legendary Rock guitarist and redeeming quality of the Eagles Joe Walsh was almost bamboozled into performing at the launch of the Republican National Convention this summer in Cleveland. Walsh canceled the appearance and released a biting statement saying he was told the event was a non-partisan benefit for families of military veterans. Walsh made it clear that he wanted nothing to do with Republicans this election season, calling the GOP candidates’ campaigns “isolationist and spiteful,” and saying he couldn’t “in good conscience endorse the Republican party in any way.” All of which means Kid Rock is going to be even busier come convention time. (I swear news that Rock was indeed replacing Walsh at the event didn't come out until this week's issue of CityBeat was already back from the printers — either I'm psychic or Kid Rock is very predictable.)