Friday, July 31, 2009

Live Music - Aiden James

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Aiden James in performance photographed by me.

The always adorable Aiden James posted a new 'Satellite Session' while touring in San Francisco. He discusses the song On The Run from the new CD as he drives across the Golden Gate Bridge. He also performs Gonna Hurt More.

I am excited because next Friday, August 7th, I will be going to Philadelphia to see Aiden for his video release party at the Tin Angel. That is just a week from now! For more information about the show, click here.

Great Music - Darren Hayes

Darren Hayes Photobucket

In 1996, Darren Hayes and Daniel Jones were lighting up the charts in their native Australia as supergroup Savage Garden. They started moving up the US charts in 1998, thanks to the word Hayes did in promotion stateside. The first single off their album was I Want You, a contagious pop song that seemed to be heard everywhere.

As often happens, Hayes felt a desire to put out a solo project, and released Spin in 2002. Rather than the softrock/pop of Savage Garden, Spin had more of an R&B feel. There were several singles, including Insatiable, but none made a huge impact on the American market, although it did very well in Australia and Europe. He followed that up in 2004 with The Tension And The Spark, a somewhat darker, edgier CD that was more electronic in nature.

Darren Hayes Darren Hayes Darren Hayes

In 2006, Hayes and the label parted ways, and Darren set out to put out and indie release in 2007, This Delicate Thing We've Made. In was a 25-song double-disk CD, with plenty of music. It again did well in Australia and Europe, although there was little promotion done in the US. There was a mini-tour set up, with stops all around, including New York and Philadelphia.

Currently, Darren is working on a new CD, and is twittering daily about the process. I have not heard a working title yet, just that he is excited about what is happening in the studio, and will be released the beginning of next.

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Darren Hayes working, and with his husband.

He has kept his personal life pretty close to the vest for most of his career. Early on in the Savage Garden experience he divorced his childhood sweetheart, and that break up was thought to be much of the inspiration for the second Savage Garden CD, Affirmation. However, in 2006 Darren entered into a civil partnership with artist Richard Cullen, and the two are still together.

For more information about Darren Hayes, click here.

Great Women - Ann & Nancy Wilson

Ann & Nancy Wilson are sisters and make up the group Heart. Nancy kicks ass with her guitar playing, both electric and acoustic. Ann Wilson has a voice few other can even touch. Together they stood in the face of conventional wisdom that said chicks couldn't play rock, and kicked ass. I own and cherish their early work together.

You can get more information from the official website by clicking here.

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Live Music - Eric & the Adams

Eric Himan, Angel Adams, & Jimmy Adams

This past weekend, Eric & the Adams played at D-Fest 2009 in Tulsa, Oklahoma. From the look and sound of the video, they set the town on fire! So great, they were asked to sign the guitar to hang in the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino in the Tulsa.

Next stop on their tour is Kansas City, Des Moines, and Chicago this weekend. You can go to their website for updates and schedule for the future.

New Music - Mika

Mika Mika

Mika, the floppy-haired singer who rose to fame in 2007 behind the success of the wonderful single Grace Kelly, is about to release his second full-length studio CD, We Are Golden, in September. So, they have released a video for the first single, also called We Are Golden. In the video, the singer bounds around his room in boxers, singing along with his track.

The singer was born in Beirut, Lebanon, after I had completed college and made the move to NYC, making me feel very old. OK, so he is just 25, soon to be 26. But he is adorable and fun, although somewhat reticent to speak of his own sexuality, preferring not to be labeled and instead to focus on his work. That said, he has not shied away from employing gay themes in his music.

Mika Mika Mika

He has certainly enjoyed success on both sides of the Atlantic, and is a talented man. He has amazing use of his falsetto, and plays with it willingly. For pure pop fun, Mika is hard to beat.

For more on Mika, click to find his bright and imaginative website.

Great Women - Patsy Cline

On March 5, 1963, the world lost an incredible talent, one that will not be forgotten. That woman with the a voice so special was Patsy Cline. When she sang a ballad, my heart dropped. When she sang bluegrass or honky-tonk, she lifted me up to the clouds.

I Fall To Pieces is the definitive song about love gone bad. The ache you hear has to be real.

Lovesick Blues is everything that is right with Country music. In 1973, Patsy was the first woman inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame. I just hope the bitch is still singing, and meets me with a song when my time comes.

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Great Music - Cheyenne Jackson

Cheyenne Jackson Cheyenne Jackson

OK, so Cheyenne Jackson doesn't have a CD of his own out, but he is gorgeous, talented, and very out, and that is enough for me. He is 6'3" and built, with striking good looks, a beautiful voice and he can act - what's not to love? I saw him in Damn Yankees last year at New York's City Center, and he was great. He played in a cast that included Sean Hayes and Jane Krakowski.

Cheyenne Jackson Cheyenne Jackson Cheyenne Jackson

Jackson has also roller skated in Xanadu, starred in Thoroughly Modern Millie, Altar Boyz, and played openly gay hero Mark Bingham in Flight 93. This year, he has teamed up with Michael Feinstein in a nightclub act called The Power of Two and I would kill to see it. He has also appeared in Ugly Betty and will be in the premier episode of Glee in the fall.

The above clip was Cheyenne Jackson performing the song I've Got Your Number at Broadway Under the Stars in Bryant Park, June 14, 2005. The song is from the Neil Simon musical Little Me, with music and lyrics by Cy Coleman and Carolyn Leigh.

Cheyenne Jackson Cheyenne Jackson

The following is Cheyenne Jackson performing Surrender on January 7, 2008. The song was written by songwriter Scott Alan. This performance was at a CD Release Party for Scott Alan's Dreaming Wide Awake CD.

On a personal note, Cheyenne and his partner have been together for 10 years. To find out more about Cheyenne, visit his website here. He also has music available for purchase on iTunes.

Str8 Boys Need Love Too - Ace Young

Photobucket Ace at the Cherry Blossom Parade Ace
Photos by me from Binghamton, NY, Washington DC & Uncasville, CT

My appreciation of Ace Young has been documented by my driving 6 hours to catch him performing live, seeing him a couple of times playing Kenickie in Grease on Broadway last fall/winter. It was about a year ago Ace released his first self-titled CD, with a release party at the Mohegan Sun Casino in Connecticut. It was produced by Desmond Child, the musical genius. It is a pretty good freshman offering, but established no traction with resistance from radio to play non-studio songs. There were some select combo CD/DVDs for sale, with the first video and some behind-the-scenes footage. That footage included scenes of a shirtless Ace working out to get ready for a shirtless photoshoot. That alone could be worth the price of admission.

Making Due Pull Ups
Wow Handstand
Screencaps from the Behind The Scenes DVD

Well, the fanworld of Mr. Young was thrown in a tizzy recently when he announced his engagement to Allison Fischer, whom he met during the stint in Grease. I wish them the best of luck, and hope we get to see and hear much more from the both of them. Until then, this is the video for Addicted from his eponymous CD. It is a song I still love.

Ace Young Addicted Video Premiere

You can listen to more of Ace's music on his MySpace, buy the CD from iTunes and most other retail and online stores, but I think the CD/DVD package can only be purchased in Target.

Worth Another Listen - Midge Ure

midge ure,ultravox midge ure,ultravox

Now, back in the 80s, I was madly in love with Midge Ure, yet another Scotsman. He was the lead singer of one of my favorite bands, Ultravox. He had an amazing voice, and was very hot. Then he worked with Bob Geldof, and together they wrote Do They Know It's Christmas?, the huge single to raise money for African Famine Relief. Ultravox also performed at Wembley Stadium for Live Aid. So, Midge was also good-hearted and had cool friends. Aside from the wife and being str8, I thought he would be a perfect boyfriend for me.

midge ure,ultravox midge ure Photobucket

In 1986, Midge ventured out on a solo career, and I was loving it. He released The Gift, and I was all over it. It was followed by Answers To Nothing, Breathe, and Pure. His first solo single was If I Was, and I still love that damn song, and think the video just makes me happy.

Like so many of us, Midge has aged a bit. But dammit to Hades, I still think he is hot. He still performs in the UK, so there is little chance I will get the chance to see him.

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Midge Ure with Bob Geldof in 2004, Midge Ure aging beautifully.

Ultravox had that dense rock sound I was [and still am] so very fond of. I could, of often would, listen to Ultravox all day long. Songs like Vienna, Lament, All Stood Still, We Came To Dance, Love's Great Adventure, and Hymn, I was a very happy camper. Here is a clip of Ultravox playing Dancing With Tears In My Eyes, followed by Vienna from their set at Live Aid. Great stuff!

You can find out more about Midge on his website.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Great Women - Linda Ronstadt

linda ronstadt

I do notice that my music collection is rather testosterone driven, filled with male singers. But that doesn't mean I don't appreciate some great female singers, and one of those is Linda Ronstadt. From her days with the Stone Ponies to now, the woman has a magnificent gift with that voice of hers. I remember when she was singing country-fried rock, pop, rock, standards, Mexican music for her father, to the amazing things she did with Dolly Parton and Emmylou Harris in Trio.

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Trio - Linda Ronstadt, Dolly Parton & Emmylou Harris linda ronstadt

She was a pinup girl in the 70s, he posters selling along side Farrah Fawcett. Her albums sold huge numbers, combining great music and outrageous vocals. She covered Roy Orbison and The Rolling Stones with ease. I can ever be sure which album is my favorite, it could be Simple Dreams, Hasten Down The Wind, or Prisoner In Disguise. Here is a clip from a live concert, Linda singing Down So Low from Hasten Down The Wind.

But I have to say, I do love Blue Bayou. It is from the album Simple Dreams, and it showcased her control and exquisite phrasing. Not an easy song, and she delivers just perfectly.

Linda Ronstadt has no official website, but there is a rather complete unofficial page.

Update - Daniel Boys

^_^  Daniel Boys Blog

Although it happened a year ago, I am just catching up that Daniel Boys did an all-but naked photoshoot for British Cosmopolitan, promoting testicular and rectal cancer awareness for men. He was one of many Brit stars who took part in the campaign, which I think ran in the centerfold of several issues. He was, and still is, starring in Avenue Q on the London West End, hence the puppet. Have to say, Daniel is looking quite good!

I just got word a fansite for Daniel Boys was recently completed, with a fan forum that is now up and running. You can see it by clicking here.

Daniel Boys Blog ^_^  Daniel Boys Blog

Oh, hell, the real reason I wanted to make a post was because the sexy shot and a chance to post a video of Daniel singing. This is from his CD So Close. The song is Better Than I, from the Dreamworks animation Joseph, King of Dreams.

To find out more, you can go to Daniel's official website here. You can order the CD here. I have my copy, and would recommend it highly.


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