AC/DC go loco in Pennsylvania… Another Bon Scott statue unveiled… Saxon get Spinal Tap treatment…
AC/DC played a final dress rehearsal for their Black Ice World Tour on Sunday (October 26) at the Wachovia Arena in Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania, in front of thousands of contest winners and invite-only industry personnel. As the lights went down an animated AC/DC film played and a giant locomotive moved out to centre stage, surrounded by fireworks. Besides show opener Rock N’ Roll Train, the title song from Black Ice was the only other new tune played. You can watch fan-filmed footage of the start of the set here. The first leg of the Black Ice World Tour kicks off tonight (October 28) in Wilkes-Barre.
A statue honouring AC/DC’s Bon Scott was unveiled at the Fremantle Fishing Boat Harbour in Western Australia on Saturday (October 25). Although born in Scotland, Bon Scott grew up in Fremantle. Bon was born in 1946 and his family emigrated to Australia in the early 1950s. Little Bon started out his newfound Australian life in Melbourne. The family lived in the suburb of Sunshine for four years before moving to Fremantle. The Mayor of Fremantle, Peter Tagliaferri, did the official unveiling of the statue.
Founder members of Saxon, Graham Oliver (guitar) and Steve ‘Dobby’ Dawson (bass), are currently writing a book entitled Saxon Drugs And Rock And Roll: The Real Spinal Tap, due out in 2009. The foreword will reportedly be written by Harry Shearer who based his Derek Smalls character in This Is Spinal Tap on Dawson. Following a falling-out with Saxon singer Biff Byford, the pair now play in their own band, Oliver Dawson Saxon.
Keyboardist Merl Saunders, who had a long-term collaboration with Jerry Garcia and The Grateful Dead, has died at the age of 74 from complications after suffering a stroke six years ago. The family said a memorial service would be held on October 29 in San Francisco for Saunders, who was a bandmate of Johnny Mathis through junior high school and recorded with a list of top musicians including Miles Davis and B.B King.
Not everyone is excited about the prospect of Guns N’ Roses’ Chinese Democracy album finally being released. Cypress Hill rapper B-Real has blasted Chinese Democracy before he’s even heard it. The star is confident he will not like the forthcoming album because he is not a fan of the current Guns N’ Roses line-up, which features Axl Rose as the only original member. B-Real adds of the upcoming release: “It’s Guns N’ Roses only in the sense of the name. It’s not them.”
The original line-up of Jane’s Addiction rocked a tiny Los Angeles Mexican Bar called La Cita last Thursday night (October 23). Guitarist Dave Navarro called the experience “old school 1987 Jane’s”. The re-formed band – vocalist Perry Ferrell, bassist Eric Avery, drummer Stephen Perkins and Navarro – performed an hour-long set, fuelling hopes for a full-scale reunion. Writing on his blog, Navarro said: “Everything came together, hopefully not for the last time.”