Listen Live:

ABC - Oldies News

Former "Game of Thrones" actor Richard Madden in talks to join Elton John biopic

ABC/Randy HolmesFormer Game of Thrones star Richard Madden is in talks to join the Elton John biopic Rocketman, according to The Hollywood Reporter.

The actor will reportedly play Elton's former manager, John Reid, who worked with the pop-rock legend for over three decades beginning in the '70s. He'll join Taron Egerton, who is playing Elton.

It was previously reported that Billy Elliot's Jamie Bell was in negotiations to play John's longtime songwriting partner, Bernie Taupin.

Rocketman, directed by Dexter Fletcher, will arrive in theaters May 17, 2019.

Madden previously played Robb Stark on HBO's Game of Thrones, and recently starred on Amazon's Strange New Things.

Copyright © 2018, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.


Members of The Doors, Monkees and Mamas & the Papas to appear at L.A.'s Love Street Festival this Sunday

Courtesy of Love Street FestivalA variety of music stars, including members of The Doors, The Monkees and The Mamas & the Papas, will be on hand for the sixth annual Love Street Festival, taking place this Sunday, July 22, in the Los Angeles community of Laurel Canyon.

This year's event will celebrate the 50th anniversary of the release of the Doors song "Love Street," which appeared on the B-side of the band's chart-topping single "Hello, I Love You." Late singer Jim Morrison wrote the tune about Laurel Canyon's Rothdell Trail, where he and his girlfriend Pamela Courson used to live.

Among the celebs who will attend the festival are Doors guitarist Robby Krieger and drummer John Densmore, Monkees singer Micky Dolenz, Michelle Phillips of The Mamas & the Papas, and Johnny Echols, lead guitarist of the influential '60s band Love. Also appearing at the event will be Wilson Phillips, featuring Beach Boy Brian Wilson's daughters Carney and Wendy Wilson and Michelle's daughter with the late John Phillips, Chynna; Stephen Stills' son Chris Stills; and another of John's daughters, Bijou Phillips.

The festival, which runs from 12 p.m. to 8 p.m. PT, will feature a special dedication ceremony, musical performances, food and beverages and pet adoption. Famed rock photographer Henry Diltz and album-cover artist Gary Burden will be honored during the festivities.

Proceeds raised by the event will benefit We Are Laurel Canyon, a nonprofit organization that focuses on the preservation of the community's open spaces and wildlife corridor.

Visit LoveStreetFestival.org for more information.

Copyright © 2018, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.


2011 Pink Floyd best-of comp "A Foot in the Door" being reissued on vinyl in September

Legacy RecordingsThe 2011 Pink Floyd compilation A Foot in the Door -- The Best of Pink Floyd will be released on vinyl for the first time on September 28. The album, which originally was only available on CD, features a selection of tunes spanning from 1967 to 1994 chosen by the band's members.

The new version of the retrospective will be issued as a two-LP set pressed on 180-gram vinyl, with the tracks remastered by longtime Pink Floyd collaborator James Guthrie. Among the well-known tunes featured on the album are "See Emily Play," "Money," "Wish You Were Here," "Have a Cigar," "Another Brick in the Wall (Part 2)," "Comfortably Numb," "Hey You" and an edited version of "Shine On You Crazy Diamond." The vinyl edition will include a restored version of "Time," with the ringing alarm clocks heard at the start of the track reinstated, after having been omitted from the song on the version that appeared on the CD release.

The album package features updated cover art and a gatefold outer sleeve.

Here's the full original track list of A Foot in the Door -- The Best of Pink Floyd:

"Hey You" (1979)
"See Emily Play" (1967)
"The Happiest Days of Our Lives" (1979)
"Another Brick in the Wall (Part 2)" (1979)
"Have a Cigar" (1975)
"Wish You Were Here" (1975)
"Time" (1973)
"The Great Gig in the Sky" (1973)
"Money" (1973)
"Comfortably Numb" (1979)
"High Hopes" (Edited version) (1994)
"Learning to Fly" (1987)
"The Fletcher Memorial Home" (1983)
"Shine On You Crazy Diamond" (Edited version of parts 1-5) (1975)
"Brain Damage" (1973)
"Eclipse" (1973)

Copyright © 2018, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.


Tours by The Rolling Stones and Eagles among 2018's top-grossing treks so far

Dave Hogan; Myriam Santos

With the midpoint of the 2018 in the rear-view mirror, Pollstar has compiled a list of the artists who pulled in the most cash on the road worldwide so far. Quite a few veteran music acts had high-grossing tours during the first half of the year, including The Rolling Stones, The Eagles, Roger Waters and U2, who all landed in the top 10.

The Rolling Stones are at #3, having earned $100.8 million from their No Filter Tour of Europe.

The Eagles landed at #6, after their trek brought in $84 million. Waters is #9 on the list with $60.7 million in earnings from his Us and Them solo tour, while U2 is #10 with $59.9 million from its eXPERIENCE iNNOCENCE tour.

Other older artists who landed in the tally's top 20 include Depeche Mode at #15 with $47 million, and Bruce Springsteen at #16 with #45.8 million. Interestingly, The Boss' earnings come exclusively from his hugely popular Springsteen on Broadway show in New York City.

A bit further down on the mid-year tally are Bon Jovi and Phil Collins at #21 and #22, respectively, with about $38 million in earnings each.

The top-grossing world tour of 2018 by far, according to Pollstar, is British pop star Ed Sheeran, who raked in an impressive $213.9 million.

As for the top-grossing North American tours of the year, The Eagles are at #2, U2 is at #6, Springsteen is at #7 and Bon Jovi is at #10. Pink grabs the #1 spot with $95.6 million.

Overall, the top 50 worldwide tours grossed a record total of $2.21 billion, up $240 million from last year's mid-year figure of $1.97 billion.

Copyright © 2018, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.


ZZ Top's Billy Gibbons releasing new solo album, "The Big Bad Blues," in September

Concord RecordsA few months ago, Billy Gibbons told ABC Radio that he'd be releasing a new solo album this year exploring his "bluesier roots," and now the ZZ Top frontman has unveiled full details about the project. The album, titled The Big Bad Blues, is due out on September 21.

The 11-track collection finds Gibbons celebrating his love of the blues and early rock 'n' roll. It features six original tunes and five covers, including songs by Muddy Waters and Bo Diddley. The album is a follow-up to Billy's 2015 solo debut, the Afro-Cuban-influenced Perfectamundo.

"We successfully made our way through those uncharted waters with the Cubano flavor of Perfectamundo and completed the journey," explains Gibbons. "The shift back to the blues is a natural. It's something which our followers can enjoy with the satisfaction of experiencing the roots tradition and, at the same time, feeling the richness of stretching the art form."

The Big Bad Blues features contributions from ex-Guns N' Roses drummer Matt Sorum, as well as from some Billy's Perfectamundo collaborators, including keyboardist Mike Flanigin, bassist Joe Hardy and drummer Greg Morrow. In addition, James Harman, who has played harmonica on several ZZ Top albums, lends his harp skills to the new record.

Interestingly, the new album kicks off with a song titled "Missin' Yo' Kissin'," which was written by Gibbons' wife, Gilligan Stillwater.

The record's first single, which was made available for radio airplay earlier this week, is a hard-driving cover of Waters' delta blues classic "Rollin' and Tumblin'." You can check out a lyric video for the track now at Concord Records' official YouTube channel.

A tour in support of The Big Bad Blues will be announced soon.

Here's the album's full track list; all songs by Gibbons except where noted:

"Missin' Yo' Kissin'" (Gilly Stillwater)
"My Baby She Rocks"
"Second Line"
"Standing Around Crying" (Muddy Waters)
"Let the Left Hand Know…"
"Bring It to Jerome" (Jerome Green)
"That's What She Said"
"Mo' Slower Blues"
"Hollywood 151"
"Rollin' and Tumblin'" (Muddy Waters)
"Crackin' Up" (Bo Diddley)

Copyright © 2018, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.


Operatic version of Pink Floyd's "The Wall" making U.S. debut tonight in Cincinnati

Credit: Philip GroshongThe operatic version of Pink Floyd's The Wall that debuted in March 2017 in Montreal will get its U.S. premiere at the Cincinnati Opera tonight, July 20. Another Brick in the Wall -- The Opera was composed by Julien Bilodeau, based on the original words and music Roger Waters wrote for his old band's classic 1979 concept album.

A total of five performances are scheduled for Cincinnati's Music Hall, on July 20, 21, 26, 28 and 31. The production features performances by an international cast of solo singers, as well as the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra and the Cincinnati Opera Chorus, enhanced by video projections and captivating staging.

Like The Wall album, the opera tells the story of a rock star named Pink, who becomes more and more alienated from the world as he struggles with issues from his past. Among the many troubles the character faces are the death of his father in World War II, an overbearing mother, a repressive school teacher, and an unfaithful wife.

In the Cincinnati production, Pink will be portrayed by baritone Nathan Keoughan, who tells local paper CityBeat that the role is a challenging one for him as a singer.

"I have to sing incredibly high notes, which I never thought I had," he says. "I started out as a bass-baritone and now I’m a baritone touching the edges of tenor."

CityBeat reports that Waters, who recently wrapped up a European leg of his Us and Them solo tour, isn't planning to attend the Cincinnati premiere of Another Brick in the Wall. Meanwhile, Pierre Dufour, former general director of Opera de Montreal, tells CityBeat that opera companies in Buenos Aires, England, France and Toronto are discussing staging the production.

Copyright © 2018, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.


New Lynyrd Skynyrd documentary getting its TV premiere on Showtime in August

Courtesy of Showtime

A new Lynyrd Skynyrd documentary called If I Leave Here Tomorrow that premiered in March at the South by Southwest Festival in Austin, Texas, will make its television debut next month on Showtime.

The film, narrated primarily by founding Skynyrd guitarist Gary Rossington, will air on the cable network on August 18 at 9 p.m. ET/PT.

The documentary charts the Southern rock legends' rise to stardom and looks at the tragic 1977 plane crash that claimed the life of frontman Ronnie Van Zant and other members of the group, and its aftermath. In addition to Rossington, the movie features interviews with former Skynyrd drummer Artimus Pyle and guitarist Ed King, late drummer Bob Burns, late backing vocalist JoJo Billingsley, producer Al Kooper and others.

The flick also includes rare archival footage, as well as recently discovered radio interviews with Van Zant and his fellow late founding members Allen Collins and Leon Wilkeson.

You can check out a trailer for the film now at Showtime's official YouTube channel. The two-and-a-half-minute preview includes Rossington and Pyle sharing recollections about the crash, footage of Lynyrd Skynyrd performing "Sweet Home Alabama" and "Freebird," Gary discussing the group's use of the Confederate flag, and a recording of Van Zant ironically musing about how the band's success could be fleeting.

Lynyrd Skynyrd's current lineup is the middle of its Last of the Street Survivors Farewell Tour. The trek stops in Mansfield, Massachusetts, tonight. Visit LynyrdSkynyrd.com to check out all of the dates.

Copyright © 2018, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.