Newsbites: ‘We are in danger of being improperly jailed’
World roundup: Nugent’s a villain, Dylan’s a hero, $600 Motorhead VIP tickets, plus latest from Smashing Pumpkins, Marilyn Manson, Faces, Fear Factory, Blink 182, Rick Springfield, Rock of Ages… and Robert Plant’s haunted house
♦ Ted Nugent has suggested the US Army have acted in an unAmerican fashion by dropping him from a Fort Knox concert following his recent controversial comments. He was interviewed by Secret Service agents after telling a National Rifle Association rally he’d be “dead or in jail” if Barack Obama is re-elected president later this year. Now he insists his speech did not represent a threat to the president’s life: “There is nothing that could be even wildly considered by any stretch of the imagination to be a threat to anyone,” he says. “A whole bunch of us believe we are in danger of being improperly jailed. To think that there’s a bureaucrat in the United States Army that would consider the use or abuse of First Amendment rights in determining who is going to perform at an army base is an insult – and defiles the sacrifices of those heroes who fought for the Constitution and the Bill of Rights.”
♦ Meanwhile, Bob Dylan is to be awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom for being “one of the most influential musicians of the 20th century.” The White House also notes his “considerable influence on the civil rights movement of the 1960s” and his “significant impact on Americal culture over the past five decades.” [Rolling Stone]
♦ Motorhead are the latest band to jump the VIP bandwagon, offering $600 tickets to some stops on the US Mayhem Festival tour. The price includes ticket, meet-and-greet with band members, the chance to see the show from the stage, early entry with use of a VIP tent during the day including light snacks and soft drinks, a shirt, autographed photo, tour pass and festival memorabilia. The offer is limited to 20 per venue.
♦ The Smashing Pumpkins release new album Oceania on June 19 – but it’s not an entire work in its own right. The record is a continuation of Billy Corgan’s 44-song Teargarden By Kaleidyscope project. His manager explains: “The Smashing Pumpkins created Oceania as an album experience and it is intended for the process of the release to follow a path of inclusion, so that fans hear it at the same time as press or radio.”
♦ Marilyn Manson‘s new album, Born Villain, is the first to feature his own guitar playing. He reports: “I’m still a singer – that’s what I do – but a song like Pistol Whipped, that idea came to me in the middle of the night and I had to figure out how to play it, so I just did. I played the solo in one take and it has the recklessness of some of the great things I love.” [Billboard]
♦ Faces drummer Kenney Jones believes music can save you from a life of crime – because that’s what it did for him. He says: “I grew up with kids in the east end. We were constantly causing havoc, generally being horrible. It was only when I discovered drums that I didn’t want to do that any more. When my friends used to come round saying, ‘Coming out?’ I’d say, ‘No, sorry.’ They eventually got fed up with me because I was literally hooked on my drums. And it saved me – otherwise I don’t know where I would have gone.” [Clash Music]
♦ Fear Factory have confirmed their upcoming record, The Industrialist, is a concept album based on a story by frontman Burton C Bell. The title character, he says, is “the incarnation of all industries in the form of an automaton.” The band have just kicked off their first tour with new drummer Mike Heller.
♦ Travis Barker of Blink 182 is preparing to have his tonsils removed. He underwent an endoscopy last week and is set for the surgery later this week. [KROQ]
♦ Rick Springfield is offering fans the chance to appear on his next record. He’s provided detailed instructions on his website. Every recording sent in which follows them accurately will be added to a chorus background track.
♦ Tom Cruise has recorded lead vocals for Def Leppard‘s Pour Some Sugar On Me and Guns N’ Roses‘ Paradise City, and his work will appear on the soundtrack album for the film versions of Broadway musical Rock Of Ages.
♦ Upcoming rock outfit Alabama Shakes have already turned some important heads – not least Led Zeppelin frontman Robert Plant. But they got some shakes of their own when they stayed at his Austin, Texas home. Singer Brittany Howard says: “It’s a lovely place – but we’re pretty sure it’s haunted. I wouldn’t just say that. Sinks would turn on by themselves and there would be a knock at the door but no one was there.” [Scotsman]
Tags: 2012, alabama shakes, birmingham, Black Sabbath, bob dylan, Faces, Fear Factory, Kenney Jones, Led Zeppelin, Marilyn Manson, may 19, Motorhead, Rick Springfield, Robert Plant, Rock Of Ages, Smashing Pumpkins, Ted Nugent