Celebrated Stones, Zeppelin Producer Dies

Veteran music engineer and producer Andy Johns died in Los Angeles over the weekend. He was 61.

During his illustrious career, Johns -- whose brother and nephew, respectively, are fellow producers Glyn Johns and Ethan Johns -- worked on such classic albums as Led Zeppelin's "II," the Rolling Stones' "Sticky Fingers" and Joni Mitchell's "Shadows and Light," reports.

According to CNN, Johns was hospitalized late last month. The cause of his death is still unknown.

Born in Surrey, England, Johns began his decades-long career as a tape operator at the famed Olympic Studios in London, where he worked on sessions for the Jimi Hendrix Experience's "Axis: Bold as Love."

"In those days you could go into one studio and Joe Cocker was working, and then you're working with Jimi Hendrix in Studio One, or down the corridor Eric Clapton is doing something," Johns once said of his early Olympic Studios days,
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Rock 'n' Roll Ain't Noise Pollution!

I recently emceed a very cool smart culture event for Blackberry's Playbook (digital tablet) at their pop-up shop in Chelsea. Not only did I conduct interviews with artist Peter Max, blues pianist Henry Butler, and indie band The Kin, but with two outstanding rock photographers -- Mick Rock and John Scarpati.

Mick is the more well-known of the two, having captured iconographic rock images from the late '60s through the '70s of Syd Barrett, Lou Reed, Iggy Pop, David Bowie, Queen, Sex Pistols, Blondie, and more. But John has done amazing work as well, just during a different time period on the West Coast, more specifically L.A. bands during the '80s. Many folks have seen his photos of Fishbone, The Cramps (image left), Jane's Addiction, Poison, L.A. Guns, Social Distortion, Redd Kross, et al. He did album covers, press photos, magazine shots, and more. He was
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First Images, Full Cast, and Soundtrack Announced for Woody Allen’s To Rome With Love

Woody Allen’s next film, heretofore known as ‘Nero Fiddled’, was officially re-titled yesterday and given a new name that should see it resonate better in its international territories, and so from here on out we’ll know it as ‘To Rome With Love’.

We now have the first eleven images to share with you, some images of the film itself and others including Allen on set, as well as the full cast line-up (which is excellent) and the full soundtrack details (which are just a little bit impeccable).

The romantic-comedy is made up of four vignettes, two of which revolving around American characters and two around Italian characters, with the main cast including the likes of Allen himself, Alec Baldwin, Penélope Cruz, Ellen Page, Jesse Eisenberg, Roberto Benigni, Judy Davis, Greta Gerwig, and Alison Pill.

The newly re-titled To Rome With Love will open in Italy on 20th April
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New Images From Woody Allen's 'To Rome With Love'; Full Soundtrack Details Unveiled

With a new geographically-specific title and a summer release just announced, Woody Allen's latest Euro-flavored venture, "To Rome With Love," is just around the corner. Looking to replicate the success of "Midnight In Paris," a career-best box office hit that won Allen his first writing Oscar since 1987 for "Hannah And Her Sisters," details of his latest film are being kept under wraps. Luckily, we now have a better look at what's to come as a host of photos from the project have been unveiled.

While there's no sign of young stars Greta Gerwig or Ellen Page amongst the pics, there's certainly no lack of star-power with our first glimpses at Penelope Cruz, Jesse Eisenberg, Alec Baldwin, Roberto Benigni, Alison Pill, Judy Davis and even Allen in his first acting role since 2006's "Scoop." The images also feature Allen's army of lesser-known Italian stars including Monica Nappo, Flavio Parenti, Alessandra Mastronardi,
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Jani Lane's Autopsy Can't Determine Cause of Death

Like Amy Winehouse's, Jani Lane's death will remain a mystery for several weeks ahead. The autopsy performed on Friday, August 12 proved inconclusive, meaning the cause of death would only be revealed after toxicology tests which can take up to two months or more.

Lane's body was discovered on Thursday night at Comfort Inn hotel in Woodland Hills, Los Angeles. His long-time manager Obi Steinman believes the singer never recovered from his alcoholism. "He lost his battle over alcohol," Steinman said. "He was one of the great rock-and-roll frontmen and singers of all time. His music helped shape the '80s."

According to some sources, a half-empty vodka bottle was found near Lane's body along with prescribed medicine. Investigators temporarily treated the death as "an accidental overdose or a possible death from natural causes."

According to Steinman, a private memorial service for the "Cherry Pie" singer would be held on Sunday,
See full article at Aceshowbiz »

How Willow Creek Is Leading Evangelicals by Learning From the Business World

Ready to Learn: Some 7,000 pastors and laypeople filled the Willow Creek sanctuary for its Global Leadership Summit in August. | Photograph by Saverio Truglia

"Messing With People's Minds" Willow Creek pastor Bill Hybels, right, with association president Jim Mellado and summit producer Corinne Ferguson | Photograph by Saverio Truglia

Willow Creek, one of the nation's largest and most powerful megachurches, leads evangelicals by learning from the business world's best.

Jack Welch called the other day. He wanted to talk about his friend Bill. Forget the notion that the ex-ge chief is a curmudgeon -- the guy just gushed. Bill "is a man with enormous capability, a man who can rally a team around a vision." Bill runs a fast-growing organization based just outside Chicago that today has affiliates on every continent except Antarctica. "I have my four Es," Welch says, referring to the four leadership qualities he looks for in executives: Someone
See full article at Fast Company »

The Ten Worst Greatest-Hits Albums Of All Time

It’s a relatively quiet week for new releases. There’s Regina Spektor’s follow-up to her breakout, a new album from the Mars Volta and the latest from Pete Yorn. But today also sees the release of A Casual Affair: The Best of Tonic.

This begs the question: Huh?

For anybody who didn’t come of age in the Clinton years, Tonic had a big radio hit in 1996 with a tune called “If You Could Only See.” After that, they basically fell off the map (save for a few appearances on various soundtracks to the “American Pie” movies). The set contains that single plus a bunch of other songs that never quite got there. Even if you allow that “You Wanted More” and “Open Up Your Eyes” were “hits,” that’s still only three tunes on a 15-track album. Three songs is an Ep, not a $15 album.

But this
See full article at MTV Newsroom »

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