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G.H. HARDING

BOWIE’S MOONAGE DAYDREAM —Director Brett Morgan’s much-anticipated David Bowie doc MoonageDaydream, was screened in Cannes the other day and Matthew Carey’s review in Deadline is pretty awesome. Morgan’s past docs on Kurt Cobain and The Rolling Stones were revealing and terrifically well done, so I’m expecting the same with his Bowie film; thew first sanctioned by his estate.

I’m a huge Bowie-fan (always have been) and have found the docs on him thus far good, but not great. Morgan’s work, which will be on HBO and HBO Max early next year, at least from this review, seems pretty sumptuous. Check it out here: https://deadline.com/2022/05/moonage-daydream-review-cannes-midnight-screenings-david-bowie-documentary-director-brett-morgen-news-1235031236/

One definitive Bowie (and addressed in the doc) moment occurred when he appeared on the Dick Cavett talk-show in the 70’s. Bowie, clearly addled from the start, was intro’d by Cavett with these words: “Who is he, what is he, where did he come from? Is he dangerous, smart, dumb… crazy, sane, man, woman, robot, what is this?”

A great TV moment I’ve never forgotten. Also, the performance (with David Sanborn on sax and Luther Vandross singing) of “Young Americans” is a classic., Check it out here:


Also, another quote from the review immediately resonated with me: “He didn’t reach out to the audience like an ingratiating performer—he drew them into his orbit with the gravitational force of his presence.”

No wonder John Lennon called him the last of the originals. Bowie lives!

PHONE FOMO (Via W42 St.) Put away your quarters Midtown’s last remaining public phone booth has made its last call as city leaders gathered on Monday to commemorate the removal of the iconic symbol of New York life and the implementation of additional stumpy LinkNYC kiosks.

The payphone, located at 745 7th Avenue and W49th Street, was given a hero’s salute by Manhattan Borough President Mark Levine and the LinkNYC C-suite before being sent to the Museum of the City of New York to be displayed as part of their “Analog City” exhibition — an exploration of “NY B.C. (before computers)” that is increasingly hard to find outside of a museum.

“As a native New Yorker, saying goodbye to the last street payphone is bittersweet because of the prominent place they’ve held in the city’s physical landscape for decades. Just like we transitioned from the horse and buggy to the automobile and from the automobile to the airplane, the digital evolution has progressed from payphones to high-speed Wi-Fi kiosks to meet the demands of our rapidly changing daily communications needs,” said Matthew Fraser, Commissioner of the Office of Technology and Innovation.

Once a constant presence not only on the city’s streets but also in its depiction in TV and movies (notably in American Psycho and Scarface), the humble payphone — once found at over 13,000 locations citywide — was pushed aside in 2014 when the de Blasio administration implemented a citywide proposal to replace the analog booths with high-speed Wi-Fi kiosks able to make calls, charge devices, display maps and pertinent neighborhood information, and call 911. CityBridge, a consortium of tech experts won the bid and began the process of replacing the booths with the kiosks in 2015.

While intended as a means to increase digital connectivity to small businesses, visitors, and New Yorkers out on the town, LinkNYC kiosks have caused almost as much drama as Superman himself emerging from a payphone booth. As of summer 2021, more than 70 percent of zip codes in Queens and Staten Island were without a single kiosk, an inspection of 225 kiosks around town over a 24-hour span found that two-thirds of them were found to be damaged or dirty, and CityBridge owed the city over $70 million due to a lack of ad-generated revenue.

While a revised contract with the city encouraged CityBridge to eventually pay up $26 million, other larger questions remained about the use of the kiosks. Not only are they equipped with surveillance cameras (hello CCTV!), but, perhaps more troublingly by connecting with their Wi-Fi networks, your devices are tapped into LinkNYC’s user data collection.

Does all of this have you desperately looking for a regular-shmegular-degular old payphone? Good news — if you’re determined to remain offline, there are a few remaining phone booths left in our fair city.

Thanks to the advocacy of phone booth enthusiast and Upper West Sider Alan Flacks, four “Superman-style” vintage phone booths are stationed on West End Avenue at W101st, W100th, W99th, and W66th Streets. Thanks to Flack and the support of City Council Member Gale Brewer, the four booths were written into the LinkNYC contract as protected entities for nostalgic New Yorkers to make calls (and take photoshoots) for the foreseeable future. One payphone at W100th Street even inspired a children’s book entitled The Lonely Phone Booth by UWS resident Peter Ackerman — ensuring that future generations be told about the magic machine that could make calls the old fashioned way, B.C.

SHORT TAKES — We caught Tuesday’s last-ever This Is Us. Face it, this was a show like none other. Heartfelt at every turn; terrifically well-acted and written. It was just sensational …

Ann Kittredge

SIGHTING: Jazzheads’ Randy Klein and PR-pasha David Salidor at the Laurie Beecham Theater catching Ann Kittredge. She has an album due on the label next month …Siobhan Synnot, in Glasgow’s Sunday Post, dubbed Tom Cruise the last action hero, and she just may be right. Stallone’s gone; Schwarzenegger too, and Willis has retired. Those lads were the last ones. Check out her article: https://www.sundaypost.com/fp/tom-cruise-60/

Micky Dolenz’s “Some Of Shelley’s Blues” is #3 on Mike Read’s Heritage chart in the U.K. Will it go to #1? Dolenz speaks to Gray Graff next week about 7a Records’ re-issue of the classic Dolenz, Jones, Boyce & Hart album next month … Stay tuned …

Per Deadline: Everyone but the King himself seemed to turn out for the premiere of director Baz Luhrmann’s long-awaited Elvis biopic, Elvis, in Cannes. Among those walking the red carpet were stars Austin Butler, Tom Hanks and Olivia DeJonge as well as Luhrmann, Priscilla Presley, Kaia Gerber, Shakira, Sharon Stone, Conor McGregor and even Elon Musk’s mom … Took a tour of NYC’s new Chelsea Table & Stage (courtesy of their Pablo Rossil) on West 26th Street. Beautiful space and stage. Guitarist Sean Harkness performs there Saturday, June 18 with his Unusual Suspects  … The final episode of Ellen ran yesterday. As I’ve said, I was never a fan and the so-called allegations that ultimately scuttled the show, I had heard for years. We speak to a bunch of PR people in preparing this column and I have to say, there were terrible negative comments from Day One on her. Karma’s a bitch for sure. She had a good run (19 years) and while an ending like this is terrifically embarrassing and will forever haunt her, she’ll be back for sure … With the Johnny Depp/Amber Heard circus winding up today in court, I feel compelled to weigh in: What a mess from start to finish. I think the only question left to answer is how just how much damage have they both done to their careers? Honestly, I do feel that Depp could well rehabilitate his career from here, while Heard’s may never recover. I wasn’t there, so I’m only hearing what is being said. Who’s right? God only knows. Stay tuned! … GUESS WHO DON’T SUE: What newbie artist literally on the edge of stardom had his managers turn down a request from a third party who could have brought him to a major satellite radio station and major label? Crazy, right? … Justin Timberlake is the latest artist (and youngest) to sell his catalog. The always-prescient Roger Friedman perfectly detailed the deal in his column. Take a read: https://www.showbiz411.com/2022/05/26/justin-timberlake-sells-music-catalog-rights-youngest-so-far-of-songwriters-to-cash-in … Happy Bday Buddy Blanch of Romeo Delight and Robert Watman!

JUST IN — As we go to press two deaths just literally rocked us: Actor-extraordinaire Ray Liotta and drummer Alan White. More next time.

NAMES IN THE NEWS — ALeighton; Ian Anderson; Tony King; Mike Read; Tom & Lisa Cuddy; Melissa Davis; Freddie Bastone; Anthony Noto; Anne Leighton; Wayne Robbins; Eppy; Mark Bego; Freda Payne; Randy Alexander; Gary Graff; Glenn Gretlund; Donnie Kehr; Cori Gardner; Dina Pitenis; Markos Papadatos; and ZIGGY!

G. H. Harding is a four decades insider to the entertainment world. He’s worked for record companies; movie companies; video-production He’s worked for record companies; movie companies; video-production companies and several cable outlets. His anonymity is essential in bringing an unbiased view to his writings on pop culture. He is based in NYC.

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TRUMPED AT CANNES — What with Francis Ford Coppola’s Megalopolis and Kevin Costner’s Horizon garnering most of the pre-Cannes ink, it turns out that The Apprentice; the so-called rise of Donald Trump, has become to must-see attraction there.

Starring Sebastian Stan

Sebastian Stan

and Jeremy Strong -as Roy Cohn-  its received the most attention after its screening this week. Check out this up-to-date spot from The Hollywood Reporter:


The Trump camp has threatened a lawsuit over a somewhat graphic scene between Trump and Ivana in the movie. The filmmaker Ali Abbasi has said that while the lawsuits may fly fast and furious from the Trump-camp, their success rate should be re-examined. A pretty savvy response if you ask me.

MORE TREK — (Via Deadline) Oscar winner  Holly Hunter has been tapped to star in Paramount+’s upcoming series Star Trek: Starfleet Academy. Hunter will play the captain and chancellor of Starfleet Academy in the series which will begin production later this summer.

Produced by CBS Studios, the series will follow the adventures of a new class of Starfleet cadets as they come of age in one of the most legendary places in the galaxy.

Per the logline: Star Trek: Starfleet Academy introduces viewers to a young group of cadets who come together to pursue a common dream of hope and optimism. Under the watchful and demanding eyes of their instructors, they discover what it takes to become Starfleet officers as they navigate blossoming friendships, explosive rivalries, first loves and a new enemy that threatens both the Academy and the Federation itself.

As a Treker-from the 60’s, where the hell is the next proper Star Trek-movie with Chris Pine and Zachary Quinto? They both were fantastic in my mind. Into Darkness was sensational? Weird for sure.

Michael Jackson and Ron Alexenburg

SHORT TAKES — Record-industry icon Ron Alexenburg is penning his autobiography to be called From The Warehouse To The Penthouse. Alexenburg, when he ran Epic Records, worked with everyone from Michael Jackson to Meat Loaf, Boston, The Beach Boys, and Charlie Daniels. Here’s a great interview with him:

Oddly, he doesn’t mention his Infinity Records opus, where I worked with him. The opening night party for the label was at the NY Public Library in NYC. It was an awesome event …

Speaking of books, Dave Mason’s Only You Know and I Know is finally out after a massive delay. I saw a video of him opening the first box. Apparently it is only available through his website. Good luck Dave …

We haven’t seen Kevin Costner’s Horizon yet, but a report from Roger Friedman (Showbiz 411), claims Costner doesn’t even appear in the movie for the first hour. Really? …

Christopher Reeve

Great Hamptons Film Festival exclusive by Roger Friedman. Check it out: https://www.showbiz411.com/2024/05/21/hot-ticket-christopher-reeve-super-man-film-to-get-early-look-hamptons-screening-before-release-at-summerdocs … And, great spot on Jimmy Fallon’s Tonight Show on the new book from Michael McDonald with Paul Reiser (What A Fool Believes/DEY Street):

RIP Fred Roos.

NAMES IN THE NEWS — Riley Keough; Edwyn Collins; Tom & Lisa Cuddy; Tony Seidel; Jason Cooper; Bob Krasnow; Les Schwartz; Pete Sanders; Jeremy Long; Peter Shendell; Randy Alexander; Carson Daly; Pete Best; Cory Robbins; Bill Adler; Roy Trakin; Mark Bego; Nancy Ruth; Teresa Knox; Kent and Laura Denmark; and BELLA!

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RASCALS AT SONY HALL — The Rascals long-awaited return to NYC proved to be a sensational evening of music. Their 16-song set, backed up by a terrific band -including bassist John Billings from Micky Dolenz’s band- was rocking from the start with their “Do You Feel It” and “”Beautiful Morning.” Felix Cavaliere’s vibrant vocals were just a joy. Face it, for people of a certain age, we grew up with this voice … just magical.

Micky Dolenz

Their cover of the Jackie Wilson-chestnut “(Your Love Keeps Lifting Me) High” set the SRO crowd afire.

Felix then brought his daughter Aria out for two selections. Clearly, she’s inherited by father’s dynamic vocal prowess. She was just terrific and a nice surprise.

Cavaliere then brought out guitarist Gene Cornish who was just wonderful. Gene has had some health issues, but his presence brought the show to a magnificent high-point.

Oddly, there was no mention of the rumored “My Hawaii” from Cavaliere with vocals from Dolly Parton. He mentioned it in a recent interview with Medium, but was mum about it on last Monday’s WOR-interview with Len Berman and Michael Riedel. I hear that the release has been held up several times. Sad … can’t wait to hear it.

The show ended with their signature classics “I’ve Been Lonely Too Long,” “How Can I Be Sure,” “People Got To Be Free” and Good Lovin’.” The Rascals’ music is ingrained and it was a joy to hear it once again. Truth be told, it sounded better than ever!

Seated in a corner booth by the stage was none other than Bill Murray – a huge fan. Great night sensational set. Also, there were Rascals-PR man David Salidor; Dan Zelinski; Billy Amendola; Magda Katz from Times Square Chronicles; and Susan Nuzzi Russo. Thanks to SONY Hall’s Peter Abraham for his assistance.

David Sanborn

DAVID SANBORN — We don’t usually re-print tributes, but this, from David Sanborn’s wife Alice Soyer was so heartfelt.  Take a read:

Dave, my love, my warrior, my soulmate, my unique bird, my everything. I cannot believe what I’m writing right now but what I know is that you changed my life, because of you I know what true love is, I had and have it all. I have it all. Although I’m going to miss you every single minute of my life, I know that the pain you were enduring was not right, those pains are now released and you are completely free. You are and will be in every note, in every breath, in every sound that touches the soul, in every sun beam, in every cloud, in every beat of my heart. Dave you are an inspiration. Your courage to be yourself, to reveal this true voice screaming from inside, oh my love you are a true warrior, a pure artist, an extraordinary being.I will honor you every step on the way, I will represent you, us. I love you madly.

Dave forever

Don Grolnick

SHORT TAKES — First off, I left off one very important member when I referenced The Brecker Brothers last time: keyboardist-genius Don Grolnick: terrifically talented and much-missed …

George Harrison

One of the best parts of watching Let It Be(again!) was seeing John & Yoko dancing to George Harrison’s stunningly-beautiful “I Me Mine.” Awesome…  From Roger Friedman’s SHOWBIZ 411:Barbra Streisand just released a new a beautiful new single called “Love Will Survive,” for the closing credits of the upcoming series “The Tattooist of Auschwitz.” It’s maybe Streisand’s best new vocal in years thanks to producers Walter Afanasieff (Mariah Carey’s classics) and Peter Asher (Linda Ronstadt, James Taylor classics). So now I’m told Streisand has booked the producing duo for her next album of duets. Barbra has a couple of these under her belt over her six decade career. But this one sounds like a powerhouse … Great interview with Micky Dolenz in advance of his Surf Ballroom show Friday in Clear Lake, Iowa: https://littlevillagemag.com/monkee-micky-dolenz-surf-ballroom/?fbclid=IwAR2jXAYYYCJ_19ovY4yT8DU8OfdaTU-GYdYhXahF-rvYj3yERRW_K5MmgrI

Francis Ford Coppola

With this year’s Cannes  Film Festival underway, the first big movie screened was Francis Ford Coppola’s Megalopolis and it generated some of the craziest reviews I’ve ever seen.

Mostly positive. Coppola’s a genius, so you know to expect the unexpected. I think my favorite was from the UK’s Daily Telegraph which gave the movie four stars, saying, “Coppola’s latest is like Succession crossed with Batman Forever and a lava lamp… Aubrey Plaza is fantastic in this full-body sensory bath movie which follows a struggle for power among the elites of New Rome.” Me? I can’t wait to see it. The guy’s a bloody genius … 17-year-old wunderkind Kjersti Long -co writer of Vanessa Williams’ current return to music “Legs (Keep Dancing)”- heads to NYC for the Tribeca Festival in 2 weeks … And Apple TV’s Sugar -with Colin Farrell- ended its run. The first few episodes were great; very LA Confidential, but then, it turned into a sci-fi adventure. Odd? You bet. The ending left room for a second season, but I highly doubt it. Farell was great, but the topsy-turvy plot twist was brutal.

NAMES IN THE NEWS — August Darnell; Coati Mundi; Jeff Vogel; Kent Kotal; Bruce Grakal; Ringo Starr; Danny Fried; China Club; Tony King; Peter Brown; Mark Bego; Kent & Laura Denmark Tom & Lisa Cuddy; Peter Abraham; Peter Lubin; Steve Plotnicki; Profile Records; Joe Cocker; Lush Ice; Anthony Pomes; Terry Jastrow; and BELLA!

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SANBORN RIP — I was absolutely devastated to loss another friend Monday, musician David Sanborn. Still reeling from the loss of Sam Rubin, I just could not believe the news when I heard it.

I first met David when he played with The Brecker Brothers band (brothers Michael and Randy, Will Lee, Steve Khan, Don Grolnick, Chris Parker) and we immediately hit it off and became fast-running buddies. David, who had already played with the Paul Butterfield, was on his way to super-stardom: playing with everyone from Stevie Wonder to David Bowie, with his superb sax work. When you heard his work, you immediately knew it was him. Listen to his work on Bowie’s “Young Americans.” Just stunning.


His solo work with equally as stellar. His first solo-album Taking Off was just great. His signature “Chicago Song” was sensational too. I’ll never forget his great work on Lorne Michael’s Night Music show – especially the time he paired up Eric Clapton and Robert Cray. If you’ve never seen this, take a look here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BngAj8xV3Os

He also worked with the late-Michael Kamen (and sting) on the Lethal Weapon soundtrack with Sting. Just exemplary work.

Check out his work with the Letterman band on a show in Vegas with Sammy Davis, Jr.: Sammy Davis Jr. on Late Night With David Letterman in Las Vegas (1987)

He was a lot of fun to hang with. I’ll miss his company – no question. Tremendous loss for sure.

David Salidor and Gene Cornish Photo by Bobby Bank/Getty Images

SHORTS TAKES — The Rascals’ “Good Lovin'” is in Jerry Seinfeld’s Unfrosted Netflix movie. Unfortunately, the movie’s taking a heavy beating in the media. I don’t think I’ll tune in, but a great music selection for sure … The first full-trailer for Coppola’s Megalopolis has just been released. Its rather sensational. Take a look here from Roger Friedman’s Showbiz 411: https://www.showbiz411.com/2024/05/14/watch-first-full-pre-cannes-teaser-trailer-for-coppolas-biggest-gamble-ever-with-astonishing-megalopolis-images

Alicia Keys announced the album for her play Hell’s Kitchen (13 TONY noms) will be out June 7. Interesting that she said album. Good for her … MTV has canceled their movie awards presentation for 2024. Low ratings the case? I’d bet on it. Also, parent-company Paramount might have a new owner or new owners. Check this out: https://www.showbiz411.com/2024/05/12/mtv-cancels-movie-and-tv-awards-for-2024-skips-barbenheimer-movies-after-2023-ratings-debacle

I started watching the original Let It Be film on Disney and loved it, just as I did when I originally saw it in 1970. As I’ve said before, this original (from director Michael Lindsay-Hogg) would never have come out again if there wasn’t a demand for it. What Peter Jackson did was great, but it wasn’t what The Beatles and Apple wanted. I loved it. Check this terrific article out on it: https://www.soundandvision.com/content/making-beatles-let-it-be-and-peter-jacksons-get-back?fbclid=IwZXh0bgNhZW0CMTEAAR2l_MOZXCWPMg2E5gNKfin7wIVgTKlmRvGWBwOHvqM4B_dphbY2bw-JcoM_aem_AXa5zighOQPj-_fICOPXlPDJP1wXUdXEx82NiZSzlevB … Happy BDay Crispin Cioe ; Jane Blunkell and Gene Cornish.

NAMES IN THE NEWS — Savannah Guthrie; Carson Daly; Paul Pesco;Alicia Keys; Tony Mandich; Judy Libow; Amanda Naylor; Tom & Lisa Cuddy; Len Berman; Michael Riedel; Bob Feiden; Sam Rubin; Paul Cooper; Anthony Noto; Ed Steinberg; Richard Johnson; Steve Carrel; Matt Damon; Matt Drudge; Bobby Orlando; Mark Berry; Marissa Armstrong; Heather Moore; and CHIP!

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SAM RUBIN — KTLA’s Sam Rubin passed on Friday. I first met Sam in 1986 while introducing a new artist around the LA scene, Sam immediately struck me as not only a terrific reporter, but a caring one and we immediately struck up a friendship that continued until last week. Sam was the type of guy who would ask the hard questions, but also gifted with a terrific sense of humor. If you saw him on the press-line, you’d go to him first. He wasn’t snarky; wasn’t unkind; wasn’t sneaky … just an honest-to-God good guy.

He was one of the few entertainment reports who would go onto question Mel Gibson about his off-screen antics. I always admired him for that.

I actually spoke to him earlier last week about an exciting new project and he was immediately entranced and even gave me some intriguing suggestions. Stand-up guy? No question. He will be missed greatly by not only his KTLA staff, but by the whole of Hollywood.

We’ve lost one of the good guys!

Read Roger Friedman’s take on Sam: https://www.showbiz411.com/2024/05/10/rip-sam-rubin-64-legend-in-hollywood-tv-reporting-for-station-ktla

YOUNG SHELDON — I’ve been a big fan of TV’s The Big Bang Theory and when it went off (after 12 seasons), Young Sheldon appeared in its place; about the early-life of lead-character Sheldon Cooper. After 7 seasons, it’s coming to a close and I have to say that although it hasn’t generated the same sort of fervor as BBT did, it’s been just a sensational show in every way.

The cast, led by Iain Armitage (Big little Lies) has just been spot on; and last week was the penultimate episode where Sheldon’s father George (Lance Barber), suffers a heart attack and passes. It was foretold in BBT and everyone -from the cast on- knew it was coming, but it was handled so well and off-screen, that it immediately became the show’s shining moment.

Talk about the little show that could, that was Young Sheldon. Beautifully done in every way. Bravo!

SHORT TAKES — Apple TV’s Constellation has been canceled. No real surprise here as it looked great, but the story was terrifically hard to follow. Actually, we’re waiting for the channel’s Invasion to return … Cassidy Wixom (KSL.com)did a great piece on 17-year-old wunderkind Kjersti Long, who’s “Legs (Keep Dancing)” song from Vanessa Williams, hit #3 on the Billboard Dance Charts. Check it out here: https://www.ksl.com/article/51008484/meet-the-utah-teen-who-helped-write-vanessa-williams-new-single

Robert Funaro

The Soprano’s Robert Funaro was a guest on NYC’s PIX11 and talked his new projects. Check it out here: Catching up with ‘The Sopranos’ Robert Funaro (youtube.com)

David Kramer

Check out Zach Martin’s session with Director David Kramer on his Jimi Hendrix: The Documentary: https://newhdmedia.com/jimi-hendrix-medical-mysteries-wine-controversy-and-persistent-murder-theories/

Felix Cavaliere

Felix Cavaliere on WOR this morning with Len Berman and Michael Riedel. He and Gene Cornish are at SONY Hall Friday. It’ll be Gene’s 80th Bday … Happy Bday Denise Lopez … RIP Roger Corman (https://deadline.com/2024/05/roger-corman-dead-independent-filmmaker-1235912737/)

NAMES IN THE NEWS — Zach Martin; Greg Porto; Kimberly Cornell; Tom & Lisa Cuddy; Asha Puthli; Jim Burgess; Glenn Friscia; Richard Johnson; David Sanborn; Paul Butterfield; Eppy; Mitch Kanner; Bruce Schindler; Anthony Pomes; Terry Jastrow; Crimshaw; Peter Abraham; Dan Zelinski; Donna Quinter; Wayne Avers; Anthony Pomes; Peter Abraham; Dan Zelinski; and Sadie!


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SAMBORA SPEAKS — (Via Ultimate Classic Rock) Richie Sambora has only one regret regarding his exit from Bon Jovi. The guitarist, who abruptly quit the band in 2013 to spend more time with his family, was a recent guest on The Allison Hagendorf Show. When asked what he would change about his departure from Bon Jovi if he could go back in time, Sambora was forthright.

“I probably would have left earlier,” the rocker admitted. “I might have left a couple of albums before because, I think Jon [Bon Jovi] was moving into a place where he wanted to not really be a band.”

This was not the first time the guitarist sensed Bon Jovi would rather go solo.

“When we first met, he was thriving to be a kind of a solo artist in a Bruce Springsteen way or a Rick Springfield way,” Sambora explained. “And quite frankly, it was an ultimatum for me when I just before Slippery [When Wet] [was made]. I went, ‘Come on, man. Let me in. We have to do this. We have to make this a band situation if we want to invade the planet and have people accept it.’”

Elsewhere in the interview, Sambora explained his dissatisfaction with the recently-released Bon Jovi documentary Thank You, Goodnight.

“Hey, look, this obviously was [Jon’s] personal perception. And this documentary was his perception, his baby. I really had nothing to do with it,” the guitarist explained. “I disagree with a lot of stuff or whatever, but I’m not really shaken by it.”

“It could have been more of a celebration,” Sambora continued. “We could have cut that down to about two hours, because, to me, the celebration would have been the great songs that we wrote and how we sold all those millions of records and played for people. I was in the band for 32 years, which is unbelievable anyway. [That] five guys could be married for 32 years, it’s incredible. That celebration of those great songs that people really took into their lives, that’s what I believed the 40-year celebration would be myself. But, like I said, it was his baby.”

Asked what he would change about the documentary, Sambora laughed.

“Everything,” he remarked. “There’s one thing that’s not in there, and it’s everything. Like I said, to me, this is Jon’s baby.”

Interesting for sure. Again, Sambora in the doc looked haggard, confused and sort of embarrassed to even be there. Here, he essentially said the same thing. Sure, he’s clearly going through a rough patch and actually, what he says make a lot of sense. But I think it’s ironic that he’s got to say these things as a result of the doc. To be honest, he should have got out in-front of the doc and spun his story.

These days everyone has a spin-doctor.

Steve Albini

ALBINI PASSES — (via Deadline) Steve Albini a singer and guitarist best known for producing some of the most groundbreaking and influential albums of the alt-rock genre, died of a heart attack at his Chicago recording studio Electrical Audio. He was 61. Albini’s death and cause of death was confirmed by Taylor Hales of Electrical Audio.

Born July 22, 1962, in Pasadena, Albini moved to the Chicago area after high school to study journalism at Northwestern University. While there, he began writing for local punk rock ‘zines and beginning to record and engineer albums for local bands.

Stubbornly opposed to the larger music industry and its exploitation of artists, Albini formed the Chicago-based band Big Black in 1981, recording the first of several albums, an EP for the Chicago label Ruthless Records, a label he co-managed. That band last until 1987.

From 1987 to 1988, Albini sang and played guitar for Rapeman, named after a Japanese comic book. The short-lived band broke up after one album, two singles and an EP. Albini later expressed remorse over the band name, calling it “a flippant choice,” “unconscionable” and “indefensible.”

Albini formed Shellac in 1992, a band that continues to this day.

While a longstanding and active musician, Albani’s name is most closely associated with producing, or what he preferred to call engineering. In a 2018 interview, Albini estimated that he had engineered several thousand records, mostly by underground rock musicians. Albini’s more well-known collaborations were with Pixies, The Breeders, the Jesus Lizard, PJ Harvey, Jimmy Page and Robert Plant (as Page and Plant), Fred Schneider, The Stooges, Manic Street Preachers, Jarvis Cocker, the Fleshtones, The Membranes, Cheap Trick, Motorpsycho, Veruca Salt, and The Auteurs.

But in the history of rock, Albini’s name will forever be linked to Nirvana. In 1993, the band led by Kurt Cobain, who had been impressed with Albini’s production of the Pixie album Surfer Rosa and The Breeders’ Pod, hired Albini in 1993 for work on its third album In Utero.

The six-day recording went more smoothly than the perpetually-restless Cobain had anticipated, though the front man initially expressed dissatisfaction with the album and even considered re-recording it. Albini refused to re-record. The band brought in R.E.M. producer Scott Litt to remix some of the songs, with Albini later saying the finished album didn’t “sound all that much” like the record he had produced.

Accounts over the years vary about exactly how much difference can be heard in the two versions, but regardless of the inside-baseball controversy, In Utero would become a generational touchstone. Released on September 21, 1993, the album was a major commercial and critical success, featuring a roster of songs that would become among Nirvana’s best and most popular: “Serve the Servants,” “Scentless Apprentice,” “Dumb,” “Pennyroyal Tea,” and the massive hits “Heart-Shaped Box” and “All Apologies.”

SHORT TAKES — Check out Carol Ruth Weber’s  excellent interview with Felix Cavaliere in Medium:https://carolruthweber.medium.com/felix-cavaliere-relays-rascal-energy-voicing-joy-peace-8afd25a108fc

Maggie Q

Maggie Q joining the cast of the Renee Ballard sequel to Bosh: Legacy and John Malkovich and Paul Walter Hauser have been added to the cast of Marvel’s Fantastic Four to be helmed by Matt Shakman (WandaVision)  …

Fantastic Four

PR-pasha David Salidor at The Smith in NOMAD …RIP Dennis Thompson … Happy Bday Ken Dashow!

NAMES IN THE NEWS — Jeff Smith; Tom & Lisa Cuddy; David Kramer; Vinny Rich; Jim Bessman; Michael Starr; Richard Johnson; Tate Taylor; Peter Abraham; Jack Cunningham; Marsha Stern; Obi Steinman; Gene Cornish; Roger Friedman; Steve Leeds; Paul Cooper; Len Berman; Chuck Scarborough; Amanda Naylor; Bruce Haring; Roy Trakin; Harrison Jordan; and ZIGGY!

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