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Kool Music News

The Scorpions' release title track from upcoming studio album, 'Rock Believer'

Klaus Voormann/Spinefarm Records

The Scorpions have just released the title track of their forthcoming studio album Rock Believer, which is due out on February 25.

The tune, which is available now via digital formats, combines a catchy melody sung by frontman Klaus Meine with soaring rock accompaniment highlighted by harmonized guitar solos.

Meine, who wrote the song's lyrics, notes, "Over the years, we've heard people say lots of times that rock is dead. But there are still millions of rock believers out there all over the world that prove them wrong. Our fans are the best in the world. We'll see you someday somewhere out there, because we're Rock Believers, just like you."

As previously reported, the "Rock Believer" single's cover art was designed by Klaus Voormann, who famously created the cover of The Beatles' classic 1966 album Revolver. A music video for the song will premiere on The Scorpions' YouTube channel this Tuesday, January 18, at 12 p.m. ET.

Following the video's premiere, The Scorpions will be hosting a special after-party and Q&A event that will be accessible to subscribers of the YouTube Premium service. You can submit questions for the band members now in the comments section of this Facebook post.

Rock Believer's title track is the second advance song issued from the album, following "Peacemaker." You can pre-order the album now.

The Scorpions will kick off their 2022 tour itinerary in support of Rock Believer with a nine-date Las Vegas residency at the Zappos Theater at Planet Hollywood, running from March 26 to April 16. Visit for more info.

Copyright © 2022, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Check out Loverboy's brand-new song, "Release," along with accompanying music video

Gary Miller/Getty Images

As Loverboy prepares to return to the stage for the first time since the COVID-19 pandemic started in 2020, the veteran Canadian rockers have released a brand-new single, "Release," that they recorded remotely during lockdown.

The hard-rocking, '80s-influenced song is available now via streaming services, while a video for the tune has premiered at Loverboy's YouTube channel. The clip features the band performing the song together, mixed with archival footage of the group playing at various concerts.

Loverboy guitarist Paul Dean began writing "Release" for a heavy-metal band that wanted him to collaborate with them, but when the project fell through, he decided that the song could work as a tune for his own group.

"It started out as a frustrated call to action, after months of lock down, and morphed into a metal anthem about the loyalty and commitment of that audience," explains Dean, who says the lyrics were inspired by the 2005 documentary Metal: A Headbanger's Journey.

Paul adds, "The communal aspect of heavy rock is almost like a religion. I've always been a big metal fan; my son and I have seen many of those bands in concert."

Dean enlisted his Loverboy band mates to help finish the song, including frontman Mike Reno, who contributed some lyrics as well as lead vocals.

Paul also praises Loverboy drummer Matt Frenette, who sent him seven different drum takes to choose from for the track.

"That was amazing," Dean enthuses. "It totally blew me away."

Loverboy will play their first concert in nearly two years on January 23 in Ridgefield, Washington. The band has a variety of other headlining shows scheduled leading up to their upcoming spring/summer tour with Styx and REO Speedwagon, which kicks off May 31 in Grand Rapids, Michigan.

Copyright © 2022, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

New Jimi Hendrix-inspired footwear collection arriving later this month from John Fluevog

Walter Iooss Jr./Getty Images

A new collection of Jimi Hendrix-inspired footwear and accessories created by shoe designer John Fluevog in partnership with the Experience Hendrix company, which oversees the late guitar legend's legacy, will be available starting later this month.

The John Fluevog + Jimi Hendrix collection includes The Stand Up Electric Lady and The Tudor Jimi boots, as well as a uniquely designed bag, belts and bracelets.

The designs were inspired by Hendrix's life, music, lyrics, art and fashion sense, and Fluevog and his team worked closely with Jimi's family to create items that pay proper tribute to the rock icon.

The Stand Up Electric Lady is a tall platform boot featuring silk scarf lacing, while The Tudor Jimi is an ankle boot that boasts braided appliqué. Both boots will be available in variations featuring either gold embroidery or purple velvet. The velvet used in the boots features examples of Hendrix's handwriting.

"I feel such a sense of privilege to be connected to a cultural icon at the level of Jimi Hendrix," Fluevog says in a statement. "We went deep into Jimi's clothes, style and overall journey; one can envision him swinging down the streets of London in this collection looking perfect. We're so proud of it and we'd like to think Jimi would be delighted with our collective efforts."

Adds Janie Hendrix, Jimi's sister and Experience Hendrix's CEO, "If ever a product line has drawn from the very essence of the Hendrix experience, this one has. Fluevog has truly grasped the signature style and energy of Jimi and created pieces that could very well have come out of his closet. The 'wow effect' that Jimi unveiled every time he appeared is definitely there!"

The Hendrix collection will be available at John Fluevog stores and website starting January 27.

Copyright © 2022, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Come to my bookstore: Melissa Etheridge releasing graphic novel 'Heartstrings'

Kate Samuels/Z2 Comics

Melissa Etheridge has an extensive collection of guitars, and she'll be showcasing them, not in a museum exhibit, but in the pages of a new graphic novel called Heartstrings, coming this June.

Published by Z2 comics, the novel features Melissa relating the "untold stories" of her favorite instruments, in collaboration with two writers and an illustrator.  According to a press release, the novel promises "insight into the creative mind of one of the greatest songwriters of the past 30 years."

"As many of my fans know, my my guitars is beyond special and these instruments hold a very significant place in my life," says the Grammy-winning star. "I am so excited to share all these stories and images from my entire collection and have them all be a part of this incredible graphic novel."

The book will be available in softcover and hardcover formats in bookstores, comic shops and record stores in June, which is also Pride Month.

Deluxe and super-deluxe versions are also available at the Z2 comics website, and there's a very limited $999 Platinum edition that comes with a Epiphone guitar and a copy of the book, both signed by Melissa, plus various collectibles, like art prints, coasters and a journal.  The regular book costs $25.

In other Melissa news, a vinyl version of her 2021 album One Way Out gets its release today. The record features a collection of recently recorded songs that Melissa wrote during the late 80's and early 90's, but didn't release at the time.

Copyright © 2022, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Rod Stewart is "most honored" that his 1983 hit is being used in a new single by Snoop Dogg and...Heidi Klum?

Max Montgomery

Evidently, Rod Stewart, Snoop Dogg and Heidi Klum is the musical trio we didn't know we needed.

Heidi, who's not known as a singer, has teamed up with rap icon Snoop Dogg for a dance track called "Chai Tea with Heidi," produced by L.A.-based producer duo WeddingCake.  In the track, Snoop raps, while Heidi sings the hook -- which is lifted from Rod's 1983 hit "Baby Jane."

Specifically, Heidi sings the song's chorus: "When I give my heart again I know/ It's gonna last forever/ No one tell me where or when I know/ It's gonna last forever."

"I'm most honored that these Super Stars have included 'Baby Jane' in this memorable song," says Rod in a statement.

Heidi adds, "I am still pinching myself to make sure this really happened. It was truly an honor to work with Snoop Dogg and WeddingCake to create this fun and upbeat song that will hopefully make you want to get up and dance. This would not have been possible if [the] iconic Sir Rod Stewart didn’t give us approval to use melody and lyrics to his 'Baby Jane.'"

As for Snoop, he notes, "I know that all of Europe will be hearin this in tha clubs til 6 in tha mornin. Lookn forward to getting back overseas n performing it live ya dig?!?!"

As for why the song is called "Chai Tea with Heidi," at one point, Snoop raps, "Girl, you're hot and you're sweet like chai tea/ After the show we can kick it like tai chi/ Me and you in the mood, that's likely/ Get your dance on, baby, entice me."

Wonder what Heidi's ex-husband -- Grammy-winning singer Seal -- thinks of his former wife's foray into music?

Copyright © 2022, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Bruce Springsteen tops list of highest-earning music artists of 2021

Kevin Mazur/Getty Images for Robin Hood Foundation

Rolling Stone has unveiled its list of the 10 highest-earning music artists for 2021, and the tally is made up mostly up veteran acts who sold the rights to their music catalogs last year.

Topping the list is Bruce Springsteen, who earned a whopping $590 million last year, $550 million of which came from the sale of his publishing copyrights and master recordings to Sony, the parent company of his longtime label. The Boss' 2021 earnings also included money he made from his Springsteen on Broadway performances, the Spotify podcast he did with Barack Obama, and the book that emerged from the podcast.

Landing at #3 on the tally was Paul Simon, who enjoyed a $260 million payday in 2021. Simon also sold his entire music catalog to Sony Music Publishing last year, including his solo compositions and those he wrote for Simon & Garfunkel.

Also in the top 10 of the list were The Red Hot Chili Peppers at #6 with $145 million in earnings, Lindsey Buckingham at #7 with $100 million and Mötley Crüe at #8 with $95 million in income. All three acts sold the rights to their music publishing and/or master recordings in 2021.

Discussing the wave of music catalog acquisitions that's been taking place recently, Josh Gruss, CEO of Round Hill Music, notes, "These are almost like pieces of art -- there's a finite number of real, super-high-quality hit songs from the past -- and there's this sort of all-out grab to own those rights…It's a very steady stream of revenue that's there."

Only three artists in the top 10 didn't sell their music rights last year -- Jay-Z, Kanye West and Taylor Swift.

Here are the 10 artists who made the most money in 2021

1. Bruce Springsteen -- $590 million
2. Jay-Z -- $470 million
3. Paul Simon -- $260 million
4. Kanye West -- $250 million
5. Ryan Tedder -- $200 million
6. Red Hot Chili Peppers -- $145 million
7. Lindsey Buckingham -- $100 million
8. Mötley Crüe -- $95 million
9. Blake Shelton -- $83 million
10. Taylor Swift -- $80 million

Copyright © 2022, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Has Madonna found the star of her upcoming biopic?

Marc Piasecki/GC Images

Ever since Madonna announced that she was making a movie of her life, there's been speculation as to who would play her.  Now she may be hinting that she's found her star.

The Queen of Pop posted a photo of herself and model/actress Julia Fox embracing on a couch and captioned it, "Went to dinner with Julia to talk about my movie and some other folks showed up."

Among the "other folks" in the slideshow: Fox's boyfriend Kanye West, boxer Floyd Mayweather and football player Antonio Brown.  According to the New York Post, the celebs were all together Wednesday night at L.A. hotspot Delilah’s.

Later that evening -- actually, early the next morning, around 3 a.m. -- West allegedly punched a man who asked for his autograph outside the members-only club Soho Warehouse; he's now being investigated for misdemeanor battery.

Fox is best known for her appearance in the 2019 movie Uncut Gems.

Madonna is producing, co-writing and directing the biopic, which has been in the works for quite a while now.  She wrote in October that the script was "almost finished."

Copyright © 2022, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Elton John, Ringo Starr, Stevie Wonder featured on Eddie Vedder's new solo album, 'Earthling'

Seattle Surf/Republic Records

Pearl Jam frontman Eddie Vedder has revealed new details about his forthcoming solo album, Earthling, including the fact that some very famous musicians have lent their talents to the project, including Elton John, Ringo Starr and Stevie Wonder.

Elton appears on a song titled "Picture," while it wasn't announced which tracks feature Ringo and Stevie.

Also contributing to the album are three members of Vedder's Earthlings solo band: Red Hot Chili Peppers drummer Chad Smith, ex-RHCP guitarist and current Pearl Jam touring member Josh Klinghoffer, and guitarist and producer Andrew Watt.

Interestingly, Vedder contributed to a song called "E-Ticket" from Elton's latest album, 2021's The Lockdown Sessions, while Elton, Smith and Watt, along with Miley Cyrus, Metallica bassist Robert Trujillo and famed cellist Yo-Yo Ma, all collaborated on a version of Metallica's "Nothing Else Matters" that also appears on The Lockdown Sessions as well as on last year's The Metallica Blacklist tribute record.

Meanwhile, Vedder has shared a new song from Earthling called "Brother the Cloud." The track, which you can download and stream now via digital outlets, is the third advance cut to be released from the record, following "Long Way" and "The Haves." Smith, Klinghoffer and Watt all play on the track.

Earthling, Eddie's first solo effort in 11 years, is due out on February 11. Vedder and the Earthlings will launch a tour in support of the record February 3 in New York City.

(Video contains uncensored profanity.)

Copyright © 2022, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Cash It In: Whitesnake's David Coverdale sells music publishing rights

Sergione Infuso/Corbis via Getty Images

Maybe he should rename his band "Goldsnake" now that Whitesnake frontman David Coverdale has joined the ranks of artists who have sold off their music publishing rights.

Coverdale has struck a deal with Round Hill Music Royalty Fund Limited, which -- according to Billboard -- has acquired the "music publishing, master rights and master rights royalties" for the veteran rock singer's catalog. Also as part of the agreement, the company will help oversee income generated from performance of songs in the catalog.

The deal not only includes songs by Whitesnake, which Coverdale founded in 1978 and continues to lead, but material from his mid-1970s stint with Deep Purple, solo releases and various other projects.

Among the notable songs included in the acquisition are Deep Purple's "Burn" and "Stormbringer," and Whitesnake's "Here I Go Again," "Is This Love," "Still of the Night" and "Slow an' Easy." The deal also includes "The Last Note of Freedom," a song David co-wrote with Billy Idol and Hans Zimmer for the film Days of Thunder.

"I am thrilled beyond words to joyfully announce that my existing catalog of works, both songs and master recordings, which I have been involved in creating for over 50 years, is now in exceptionally safe hands with the fine people at Round Hill," Coverdale says in a statement. "I look forward immensely to working together with [CEO] Josh Gruss and all at Round Hill to ensure the legacy of my existing works for future generations to enjoy."

While monetary terms of the deal weren't announced, Billboard estimates that the income streams in the package are worth $35 million.

Other artists that have inked music-publishing agreements with Round Hill Music include Heart's Nancy Wilson, Randy Bachman, Rob Thomas, Tesla, Triumph, Goo Goo Dolls' Johnny Rzeznik and many more.

Copyright © 2022, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Paul Simon's self-titled post-Simon & Garfunkel solo album celebrates 50th anniversary today

Sony Music Entertainment

Fifty years ago today, Paul Simon released his first post-Simon & Garfunkel solo album, a self-titled effort that arrived almost two years after the lauded folk-rock duo's final full-length record, Bridge over Troubled Water.

Paul Simon featured two hits singles, the reggae-flavored "Mother and Child Reunion" and the catchy, samba-influenced "Me and Julio Down by the Schoolyard," which reached #4 and #22, respectively, on the Billboard Hot 100.

The album itself peaked at #4 on the Billboard 200 and went on to sell more than a million copies in the U.S.

Simon wrote 10 of the album's 11 songs by himself, while one tune, "Hobo's Blues," was co-written with legendary jazz violinist Stéphane Grappelli, who also plays on the track.

The song "Duncan" features the Paris-based Andean folk group Los Incas, which also contributed to the 1970 Simon & Garfunkel hit "El Condor Pasa (If I Could)." "Duncan" was issued as the Paul Simon album's third and final single, but stalled at #52 on the Hot 100.

Paul Simon landed at #425 on Rolling Stone's 2020 list of the "500 Greatest Albums of All Time." As the magazine noted, "Simon's first solo effort after the breakup of Simon & Garfunkel had plenty to prove, and it did, with a tour de force of songcraft, virtuosic guitar picking, upper-register vocal dazzle, and vivid storytelling."

Here's the album's full track list:

"Mother and Child Reunion"
"Everything Put Together Falls Apart"
"Run That Body Down"
"Armistice Day"
"Me and Julio Down by the Schoolyard"
"Peace Like a River"
"Papa Hobo"
"Hobo's Blues"
"Paranoia Blues"

Copyright © 2022, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

The Moody Blues' John Lodge releases new live solo album, 'The Royal Affair and After,' today

Keeping the Faith for Halesouth

Moody Blues singer/bassist John Lodge's new live album The Royal Affair and After, featuring performances from his stint on the Yes-headlined 2019 Royal Affair Tour and from his subsequent U.S. solo trek, gets its release today on CD and digital formats.

The album is mainly made up of renditions of popular Moody Blues songs, and features current Yes frontman Jon Davison on two songs.

Lodge tells ABC Audio that during the Royal Affair trek, he invited Davison to join him and his 10,000 Light Years Band to sing backing vocals on their encore, the 1968 Moody Blues gem "Ride My See-Saw."

"[I]t was fantastic," Lodge says of Davison's performance.

For Lodge's headlining tour, he decided to salute his fellow Moody Blues members by including songs they wrote for the group in his set, among them the Justin Hayward-penned Moodies classic "Nights in White Satin," on which Davison sang lead.

"[H]e sings a fantastic version, and it's on the album," John notes. "And I'm really pleased with it, because he's brought the exact emotion to the song."

Lodge also recorded Moody Blues drummer Graeme Edge reciting the spoken-word piece "Late Lament" that Graeme wrote for The Moody Blues' Days of Future Passed album for use on John's tour. Audio of Edge's performance is included on The Royal Affair and After.

Edge died of cancer at age 80 in November 2021, and Lodge says he visited Graeme four days before he passed away, and gave him a copy of the new CD.

"We had a few laughs, a few tears," John shares, adding that when he gave Graeme the CD, "he was tickled pink."

A blue-vinyl LP version of The Royal Affair and After will be released on January 28. Here's the album's full track list:

"Steppin' in a Slide Zone"
"Saved by the Music"
"Legend of a Mind"
"Late Lament" (with Graeme Edge)
"Nights in White Satin" (with Jon Davison)
"Gemini Dream"
"Isn't Life Strange"
"I'm Just a Singer (in a Rock and Roll Band)"
"Ride My See-Saw" (with Jon Davison)

Copyright © 2022, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Art inspired by U2, No Doubt & other acts to be displayed at Interscope Records 30th anniversary exhibit in LA

Theo Wargo/WireImage

Art inspired by musicians that have recorded for Interscope Records, including U2 and No Doubt, will be displayed at an upcoming exhibition celebrating the 30th anniversary of the label.

Artists Inspired by Music: Interscope Reimagined, which opens at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art on January 30, features over 50 original works by visual artists relating to particular albums or songs from the Interscope catalog.

The U2-themed art was based on the band's 2000 hit "Beautiful Day," and was created by John Currin. Two No Doubt songs from the band's 1995 breakthrough album Tragic Kingdom served as inspiration for two separate pieces of art that will be featured in the exhibit -- "Just a Girl" by Julie Curtiss and "Spiderwebs" by Lucy Bull.

Among the many other acts whose music inspired artwork for the exhibit are musicians including Dr. Dre, Billie Eilish, No Doubt singer Gwen Stefani, Eminem, Mary J. Blige, Tupac, Nine Inch Nails, Olivia Rodrigo, Kendrick Lamar, Selena Gomez, Lana Del Rey, Lady Gaga, Black Eyed Peas, 50 Cent, Eve and Helmet.

"Interscope's original mission was to find the most profound artists, empower their creativity and watch what happens," says the label's co-founder, Jimmy Iovine. "For the 30th, we wanted to continue that vision by assembling the most admired visual artists and empower them with that same creative license to honor the musical artists we have worked with over three decades."

The exhibition will be on display through February 13. For more info, visit

Copyright © 2022, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Zendaya hopes to make the late Ronnie Spector proud with her portrayal in upcoming biopic

Jeff Kravitz/FilmMagic for HBO

As the entertainment world continues to mourn the passing of Ronnie SpectorZendaya, who will portray The Ronettes' lead singer an an upcoming biopic, paid tribute to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductee.

"This news just breaks my heart. To speak about her as if she's not with us feels strange as she is so incredibly full of life," the Euphoria star writes on Instagram. "There's not a time I saw her without her iconic red lips and full teased hair, a true rockstar through and through."

The Emmy Award winner also says she's grateful to have spent time with Spector preparing for the role.

"Ronnie, being able to know you has been one of the greatest honors of my life," Zendaya writes. "Thank you for sharing your life with me, I could listen to your stories for hours and hours. Thank you for your unmeasured talent, your unwavering love for performing, your strength, resilience and your grace."

The 25-year-old actress adds, "There is absolutely nothing that could dim the light you cast. I admire you so much and am so grateful for the bond we share. You are a magical force of greatness and the world of music will never be the same."

Zendaya concludes, "We celebrate your beautiful life and give you all the flowers you so rightfully deserve. Rest in great power Ronnie. I hope to make you proud."

As previously reported, Spector died on Wednesday after battling cancer. She was 78.

A statement on her website reads, "Ronnie lived her life with a twinkle in her eye, a spunky attitude, a wicked sense of humor and a smile on her face...Her joyful sound, playful nature and magical presence will live on in all who knew, heard or saw her."

Copyright © 2022, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Matchbox Twenty doesn't have "the emotional bandwith" to make a new album now, says Rob Thomas

Scott Dudelson/Getty Images

Rob Thomas has said that when he and Matchbox Twenty launch their twice-delayed tour this May, they'll have some new music to perform.  But now Rob says fans shouldn't expect anything a new album from the band, which hasn't released a full-length project since 2012.

"Right before the holidays, the guys were in New York at the studio," he tells Smashing Interviews magazine. "None of us really had the time or emotional bandwidth to put together an entire album in the way we’d want to put together whole record."

So instead, Rob says, they'll just do something on a smaller scale.

"So we’re just going to put out probably just a four-song EP [to have] some new music for fans and stuff to play live," he explains. "It’s just not about going out to support a whole record right going out and doing all the TV shows and all that stuff. It seems like a lot more fun to have a song out and let the tour be the promotion for it."

Matchbox Twenty's North American tour with The Wallflowers gets under way May 17 in Vancouver and is set to wrap up in mid-August.

Meanwhile, Rob says he's got an entire solo album ready to go -- which he's back-burnered this year in favor of doing Matchbox stuff -- while "Move," his 2021 reunion single with his "Smooth" buddy Carlos Santana, is still on the radio.  Rob reveals that after Carlos unexpectedly had heart surgery in November, he sent the legendary guitarist a special "get-well" present.

"I sent him this box set. It was like the 100 greatest DVDs in Warner Bros. history," he laughs. "It was all these movies from the 1930s until today...So I sent him that to help him recuperate."

Copyright © 2022, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Rosa Lee Hawkins of The Dixie Cups, known for their #1 hit "Chapel of Love," dead at age 76

Erika Goldring/Getty Images

Rosa Lee Hawkins, an original member of the New Orleans R&B vocal trio The Dixie Cups, died Tuesday at a hospital in Tampa, Florida, reports. She was 76.

Rosa's older sister and fellow original Dixie Cups singer Barbara Hawkins revealed that she died from internal bleeding and other complications after undergoing a surgical procedure last week.

The Dixie Cups are best known for their chart-topping 1964 smash "Chapel of Love," as well as for their hit 1965 rendition of "Iko Iko," which was based on a traditional Mardi Gras Indian chant.

The group also had top-40 hits in 1964 with "People Say" and "You Should Have Seen The Way He Looked at Me."

The Dixie Cups' third original member, Joan Marie Johnson -- a cousin of the Hawkins sisters -- left the group in 1966 and passed away in 2016.

Rosa Lee and Barbara Hawkins continued to perform as The Dixie Cups with various third members. The most recent lineup also featured their childhood friend Athelgra Neville, a sister of the famed New Orleans sibling group The Neville Brothers.

"The most important thing to Rosa, after her son and me and her grandchildren and nieces and nephews, was singing," Barbara told "She was very happy when she was onstage. Her whole attitude and demeanor were different because she was doing something she loved."

The Dixie Cups hadn't performed live since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, but they had been scheduled to take part in the 2022 New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival. Barbara says she and Athelgra still plan to perform in her honor.

"[Rosa] had said, 'I'll probably go before you, but please don't stop singing,'" noted Barbara. "I love her like I still love my mom…I will always love her."

Copyright © 2022, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

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