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Courtesy of Julien's AuctionsThree of the late Eddie Van Halen's iconic guitars fetched a total of over $422,000 when they hit the auction block on Wednesday.

The guitars were sold as part of the "Icons & Idols Trilogy: Rock 'N' Roll" sale, hosted by Julien's Auctions, which also featured memorabilia from Elvis PresleyLittle RichardKurt CobainDavid BowieThe WhoFleetwood MacBob Marley and others.

Van Halen's customized red Kramer electric guitar, that's embossed with white and black stripes on its body, fetched the highest bid of the night -- a whopping $231,250.  The backstory of the guitar says Van Halen was gifted the instrument in 1991 by Bryan Cush, his close friend and the owner of Shreveport, Louisiana's Cush's Centenary Oyster House.

The Kramer, on which Eddie wrote the inscription, "Yo - Bryan...Let's get shucked up...Eddie Van Halen...5150," was put on display at the restaurant, and Van Halen would pick it up and play it whenever he stopped by the joint.

Two other guitars belonging to the Rock & Roll Hall of Famer also fetched impressive prices.

His 2004 EVH Charvel Art Series electric guitar went for $140,800, while the guitar prop that was played by child actor Bryan Hitchcock posing as a young Van Halen in the "Hot for Teacher" music video was sold for $50,000.

Another big ticket items was a black Fender Stratocaster guitar that Cobain smashed on stage and gifted to a fan in the audience during Nirvana's 1994 In Utero Tour, which fetched $153,600.

Another high-priced item was a Hammond B-3 organ, estimated to be from the mid-'60s, that was played by Gregg Allman. The instrument, which Allman took on tour with him between the 1980s and his final show in 2015, sold for $102,400.

By Matt Friedlander
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Courtesy of nugs.net/Sweet ReliefThe nugs.net live-music streaming service has partnered with the Sweet Relief charity to offer a special promotion that also will raise money for members of the music community in need of financial and medical help during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The service is offering one year of unlimited access to over 25,000 official concert recordings, as well as to full video-on-demand shows available in high-def formats for just $50, an $80 discount from nugs.net's regular annual subscription price.

Among the artists whose live recordings are available for streaming via nugs.net are The Rolling Stones, The Who, Pearl Jam, Bruce Springsteen, Metallica, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Bob Dylan, Dead & Company, Phish, Dave Matthews Band and many more.

The promotion will be available through January 2, 2021, and can be accessed at nugs.net/sweetrelief. For each new subscription, a $5 donation will go toward Sweet Relief's COVID-19 Musicians Fund.

Brad Serling, nugs.net founder and CEO, says, "During the pandemic, our on-demand access to live music has been a lifeline to fans. We're excited to open it up for even more to enjoy."

He adds with regard to partnering with Sweet Relief, "It is incredibly important for us to support the countless unemployed workers, and musicians who rely on income touring and live music. Some of them are dealing with medical bills stemming from personal struggles with the virus. That's why we are donating a portion of every new nugs.net subscription to support Sweet Relief's mission to assist those musicians and industry workers directly impacted by the virus."

By Matt Friedlander
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Courtesy of GibsonSlash has introduced a new addition to his collection of signature Gibson guitars that was launched earlier this year. Tuesday saw the release of the Guns N' Roses great's Gibson Slash "Victoria" Les Paul Standard Goldtop electric guitar, which is now available worldwide.

The new instrument boasts a solid mahogany body with a gold-painted front and a dark back finish, a maple top and various personal touches designed by Slash.

As with the other guitars released as part of the Slash Collection, the "Victoria" features Slash's signature "Skully" drawing on the back of the headstock, and the rocker's signature on the instrument's truss rod cover. It also comes with Slash's new Ernie Ball strings, and four Slash picks.

The "Victoria" Les Paul Standard Goldtop joins six other previosuly released guitars -- four Les Paul Standard electric models and two J-45 Standard acoustic instruments -- in the Gibson Slash Collection.

For full details about the "Victoria," visit Gibson.com.

"Developing my new Collection with the new team at Gibson has been really exciting," Slash said in a statement. "The quality and attention to detail is next level, and these guitars truly reflect what I play live and in the studio. I think guitarists will be inspired by what we've put together."

You can check out a video of Slash discussing his Gibson Collection and his passion for Gibson guitars at the Gibson TV YouTube channel.

By Matt Friedlander
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Columbia Records2020 marks the 40th anniversary of the release of Loverboy's self-titled debut album, and in celebration of the milestone, the Canadian rockers have just reissued the record as a limited-edition LP pressed on red vinyl.

The Loverboy album peaked at #13 on the Billboard 200 and featured the top-40 hit "Turn Me Loose," as well as the slightly less-successful single "The Kid Is Hot Tonite." The album has gone on to sell more than two million copies in the the U.S.

The reissue features an updated version of the album's original cover art, which was inspired by the band's song "Little Girl" and featured a self-portrait Polaroid of contemporary Canadian artist Barbara Astman depicting herself as a tough young woman smoking a cigarette and clad in black. The cover featured the lyrics to "Little Girl" typed across it, and in the new version the type has been embossed.

Reflecting on the making of the album, frontman Mike Reno says, "Boy did we get lucky in late 1979 to work with the best in the business, [producer] Bruce Fairbairn and [engineer] Bob Rock...oh and don't forget [assistant engineer] Mike Fraser. This record still sounds great."

The Loverboy LP reissue is available now at Amazon.

The band was inducted into the Canadian Music Hall of Fame in 2009, and remains active today.

Here's the full Loverboy track list:

Side A  
"The Kid Is Hot Tonite"
"Turn Me Loose"
"Always on My Mind"
"Lady of the 80's"

Side B  
"Little Girl"
"Prissy Prissy"
"Teenage Overdose"
"D.O.A."
"It Don't Matter"

By Matt Friedlander
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RhinoFebruary 12 will see the release of a Super Deluxe Edition of Vol 4, the 1972 Black Sabbath album that features classics like "Supernaut," "Snowblind" and "Changes."

The release will be available in several formats that will include a newly remastered version of the original album, 20 unreleased studio and live recordings, and a booklet including rare photos and a poster of previously unpublished artwork.

You can choose from a four CD set or a five-LP set pressed on 180-gram vinyl, which are available for pre-order now, or a digital version.  A remastered version of "Tomorrow's Dream" is available now.

The live recordings, from March 1973, are designed to reflect a typical Black Sabbath setlist from the Vol 4 tour, and include concert versions of "Paranoid" and "War Pigs," as well as Vol 4 tracks like "Cornucopia" and "Tomorrow's Dream."

There are also unreleased studio outtakes of "Supernaut," "Changes" and others from the original album sessions, plus alternative takes, false starts and studio dialogue.

For a full track list of the package, visit Rhino.com.

By Andrea Dresdale
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Jörg Carstensen/picture alliance via Getty ImagesJust in time for the holidays, Metallica has the perfect gift for the metal fan in your life.

The band is now selling a new version of its Metallica Monopoly set, which was first released in 2011.  This new World Tour edition is inspired by 2013, when the legendary group became the first band ever to perform on all seven continents. 

During the game, you tour the globe and visit the group's favorite cities across the continents, buying cities, arenas and stadiums with your Metalli-bucks. If you land on one of the "Carpe Diem" or "Shortest Straw" spaces, you'll either win drumsticks, guitar picks and snake pit passes, or be hit with stage repair and parking fees.

And instead of the standard Monopoly tokens, like the top hat, the shoe or the dog, you'll get to play with Lady Justice from ...And Justice for All, the Death Magnetic coffin, the Ride the Lightning electric chair, the Master of Puppets Cross, the Metal Up Your A** toilet, and the Scary Guy.

All yours, for just $39.99.  Rock on.

By Andrea Dresdale
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Courtesy of Museum of Pop CultureAlice in Chains was honored with the 2020 Founders Award Tuesday from Seattle's Museum of Pop Culture, a.k.a. MoPOP, as part of a star-studded virtual tribute that streamed live on Amazon Music's Twitch channel.  It also lives on demand on the museum's YouTube channel.

The nearly two-and-a-half-hour event featured performances by Alice in Chains themselves, as well as Metallica, Heart's Ann and Nancy Wilson, The Smashing Pumpkins' Billy Corgan, Nirvana's Krist Novoselic, Foo Fighters' Taylor Hawkins, Pearl Jam's Mike McCready, Soundgarden's Kim Thayil, Guns N' Roses' Duff McKagan, Dave Navarro and Chris Chaney of Jane's Addiction, and many others.

Throughout the special, Alice in Chains members were shown visiting MoPOP's various exhibits and discussing the legacy and influence of Jimi Hendrix, the museum's original inspiration.

Among the event's many highlights were Metallica performing an acoustic version of "Would?"; Ann Wilson singing "Rooster"; Navarro, Hawkins, Chaney and Slipknot's Corey Taylor teaming up for "Man in the Box"; Soundgarden's surviving members joining forces with McCready and Tad's Tad Doyle for a rendition of "Angry Chair"; Thayil playing "Drone" with Novoselic's current band, Giants in the Trees; and late Soundgarden singer Chris Cornell's daughter, Lily, performing "Black Gives Way to Blue" with Queensrÿche guitarist Chris Degarmo.

The program also featured tribute messages from Pearl Jam's McCready, Eddie Vedder and Jeff Ament, Sammy Hagar, Stone Temple Pilots, Robert Downey Jr., Tom Morello, Cameron Crowe, Elton John guitarist Davey Johnstone and others.

At the end of the show, Alice in Chains drummer Sean Kinney was shown presenting Founders Award trophies to the families of late band mates Layne Staley and Mike Starr.

This year's Founders Award ceremony raised more than $600,000 for MoPOP.

Here's the full list of performances:

"Your Decision" -- Alice in Chains
"Rooster" -- Ann Wilson
"Man in the Box" -- Dave Navarro, Taylor Hawkins, Corey Taylor, Chris Chaney
"Down in a Hole" -- Duff McKagan, Shooter Jennings, Ayron Jones, Martin Feveyear
"Would?" -- Korn
"Brother" -- Nancy Wilson, Mark Lanegan and Liv Warfield
"Them Bones" -- Fishbone
"Rain When I Die" -- City and Colour
"Put You Down" -- Liv Warfield
"Again" -- Mastodon
"It Ain't Like That" -- Kim Thayil with Shaina Shepherd, Bubba Dupree, Bill Herzog, Nathan Yaccino
"Drone" -- Kim Thayil with Krist Novoselic, Giants in the Trees
"Black Gives Way to Blue" --  Lily Cornell Silver with Queensrÿche's Chris Degarmo
"Nutshell" -- Mark Lanegan, Maggie Bjorklund
"Heaven Beside You" -- Aryon Jones
"Angry Chair" -- Members of Soundgarden with Tad Doyle, Mike McCready and Meagan Grandall
"Check My Brain" -- Billy Corgan
"Would?" (Acoustic) -- Metallica
"No Excuses" -- Alice in Chains
"Black Gives Way to Blue" -- Eric & Encarnación

(Video contains uncensored profanity.)

By Matt Friedlander
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Courtesy of CBSNew details have been unveiled about Play On: Celebrating the Power of Music to Make Change, the recently announced multi-genre concert special scheduled to air this month on CBS.

The air date for the special has been moved from December 11 to December 15, and the show now will feature special appearances by rock stars including Ringo Starr and Bruce Springsteen.

As previously reported, the hour-long benefit event will promote awareness about the issues of racial, social and food justice, while raising funds for two charities -- the NAACP Legal Defense & Educational Fund, a.k.a. LDF, and WhyHunger.

The program will feature an eclectic list of artists from the worlds of rock, pop, country, hip-hop and jazz/funk performing at three historic U.S. venues -- The Apollo Theater in New York City, The Bluebird Cafe in Nashville, and The Troubadour in Los Angeles.

The lineup includes Bon Jovi, Sheryl Crow, Ziggy Marley, Sara Bareilles, LL Cool J, Slick Rick, Snoop Dogg, Gary Clark Jr., Andra Day, Jon Batiste, Machine Gun Kelly, Maren Morris, Yola and The Highwomen.

Bon Jovi will give an exclusive performance from an as-yet-unannounced location, while Crow is among the artists who will be performing in Nashville.

Kevin Bacon will co-host the Play On special with rapper, actress and The Talk co-host Eve. Bacon founded SixDegrees.org, creator of the Play On Fund, which will distribute the money raised by the special.

Play On will premiere Tuesday, December 15, at 8 p.m. ET on CBS, and will be available for streaming on YouTube starting at 9 p.m. ET.

By Matt Friedlander
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Bob Fogerty/BMGJohn Fogerty recently released the Fogerty's Factory album, a 12-track collection featuring performances by the ex-Creedence Clearwater Revival frontman and his three youngest children -- sons Tyler and Shane, and daughter Kelsy -- most of which are new versions of CCR tunes and Fogerty solo songs.

Most of the songs were recorded at Fogerty's home while the family was self-quarantining during the COVID-19 pandemic, although the lead track, a rendition of his classic 1985 baseball homage "Centerfield," was performed at an empty Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles as part of a special 75th birthday celebration for John in May.

Fogerty tells ABC Audio that performing "Centerfield" at the L.A. ballpark with his kids is something he'll remember for the rest of his life.

As he notes, "[B]ecause I'm such a baseball fan, and they all know that, of course, that's why I wrote 'Centerfield' in the first place…to do it with my family in a Major League Baseball stadium…on my 75th birthday, I mean, you couldn't script it any better…It was just an awesome experience for me."

John's son Tyler, meanwhile, tells ABC Audio that performing and getting to spend time at the empty stadium was "very bizarre, but very cool."

He adds, "I'm glad that in the weirdness that people can't go to a baseball game, at least something cool like that was able to happen...It was just…incredible standing down on the field and you're playing and you can hear the sound just…echoing all around you."

You can check out a video featuring the "Centerfield" performance and highlights of the birthday celebration at Fogerty's official YouTube channel.

Fogerty's Factory is available now on CD and digitally. A vinyl version will be released on January 15, 2021.

By Matt Friedlander
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Courtesy of Nugs.tvSteely Dan's Donald Fagen, Toto's Steve Lukather and Ringo Starr are among the celebrities who will make remote guest appearances on a virtual holiday charity event hosted by This Is Spinal Tap star Harry Shearer and his wife, singer/songwriter Judith Owen, that will stream live on Nugs.tv on December 11.

The couple's 15th annual Christmas Without Tears event, which is going virtual this year because of the COVID-19 pandemic, will raise funds for several U.S. and U.K. charities that support members of the music communities of those countries affected by the global health crisis.

"The show started as a party in our home to try to comfort Judith, a Welsh woman prone to melancholia, who could not stand that the fact that Christmas in Southern California was about 78 degrees and sunny," Shearer explains about Christmas Without Tears.

Over the years, the show has featured a wide array of musicians, comedians and other performers, and has benefited various charities. This year's lineup includes Fagen, Lukather joined by Starr, Squeeze's Chris Difford, Paul Shaffer, John Goodman, Jeff Goldblum, British singer Julia Fordham, lauded U.K. folk-rock veteran Richard Thompson, famed session bassist Leland Sklar and many others.

The Christmas Without Tears webcast will premiere at Nugs.tv on Friday, December 11, at 2 p.m. PT, with tickets available for a $9.99 donation. That entitles you to watch the show an unlimited number of times through Sunday, December 13, at midnight PT.

Additional donations can be made at GoFundMe.com/CWT2020. The beneficiaries of this year's fundraiser are NIVA, a.k.a. National Independent Venues Association, The New Orleans Musicians Clinic and the U.K.'s Help Musicians and Music Venue Trust organizations.

Visit ChristmasWithoutTears.com for more information.

By Matt Friedlander
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Bruce Glikas/Bruce Glikas/FilmMagicIf you're looking to leave the big city and ride out the rest of the pandemic in style in bucolic surroundings, Paul Simon has a deal for you.

The real estate website Dirt reports that Paul and his wife, fellow musician Edie Brickell, have slashed the price on their mansion in New Canaan, CT from $13.9 million to a mere $11.9 million.  Sure, it sounds like a lot, but not if you consider that the couple paid $16.5 million for the place about 19 years ago.

The 1938 mansion has six bedrooms and seven bathrooms and three powder rooms in 8,500 square feet, and sits on grounds that include "sweeping meadows," "formal walled gardens," a swimming pool and a private pond. There's also a 2,400-square-foot cottage on the property that Paul and Edie use as a recording studio.

According to Dirt, Simon also owns a duplex in New York City, and a 30-acre oceanfront home in New York's ritzy Hamptons. Brickell, a Texas native, separately owns a 10-acre estate outside of Dallas.

By Andrea Dresdale
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BMGJust in time for the holidays, a new animated lyric video for Rolling Stones guitarist Keith Richards' 1978 rendition of Chuck Berry's rocking Christmas classic "Run Run Rudolph" has premiered on his official YouTube channel.

The clip features a bird's-eye -- or perhaps reindeer's-eye -- view of a city, as snow falls down on the buildings below, along with the words to the tune. Also during the video, an archival photo of Richards swigging a bottle of whiskey and the image of a metal skull with antlers make appearances. The photo of Richards is the same one that was featured on the cover of the limited-edition "Run Run Rudolph" single issued in conjunction with the 2018 Record Store Day Black Friday celebration.

"Run Run Rudolph" was written by Johnny Marks and Marvin Brodie in 1958, and first recorded and released by Berry that same year. Richards' version, which was his first-ever solo single, was released in December 1978.

In a 2018 YouTube Q&A, Richards explained why he decided to record "Run Run Rudolph."

"To me, it's the hippest Christmas song there is," he said. "Beautiful lyrics, a beautiful, joyful feeling about it, an it tells the story, short and snappy. And what a great track, the sound of it is amazing."

He added that longtime Rolling Stones touring piano player Ian Stewart contributed to his cover, while noting that it "was just done out of sheer fun."

The "Run Run Rudolph" lyric video follows the release last month of the deluxe box-set reissue of Richards' 1991 Live at the Hollywood Palladium album, which documents a December 15, 1988, show that Keith and his solo band The X-Pensive Winos played in Los Angeles while on tour supporting his debut solo album, Talk Is Cheap.

By Matt Friedlander
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Rick Kern/WireImageOne of the guitars the late Chris Cornell used to record Soundgarden's 1994 opus Superunknown is up for auction.

The 1966 Fender Jazzmaster, which Cornell also played during Soundgarden's 1993-1994 tour, is expected to fetch between $175,000 and $250,000.

According to Gotta Have Rock and Roll, the auction site selling the guitar, the instrument is being sold by Chris Bond, a longtime friend of Cornell's. Bond came to own the guitar in the aftermath of the divorce settlement between Cornell and his first wife, band manager Susan Silver.

For more info, visit GottaHaveRockandRoll.com.

By Josh Johnson
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Credit: Myriam SantosThe prescription for 2020 probably calls for a lot more than just cowbell, but just in case, Tommy Lee is here to help.

The Mötley Crüe drummer has teamed up with the company Latin Percussion to launch his own signature cowbell.

The Tommy Lee Rockstar Ridge Rider Cowbell is described as "supremely durable and tour-ready...big and full, with just the right amount of volume and attack for any fist-in-the-air rock anthem."

"This is, by far, the most bada**-sounding cowbell on the planet," Lee proclaims.

You can order your own now via LPMusic.com.

Lee just released a new solo album called Andro in October. Mötley, meanwhile, was set to launch a reunion tour this past summer, but the outing's been postponed to 2021 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

(Video contains censored and uncensored profanity.)

By Josh Johnson
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Credit: Jim BennettAlice in Chains will be honored Tuesday night with the Founders Award, an annual accolade given out by the Museum of Pop Culture in the band's hometown of Seattle.

The virtual ceremony, which premieres at 9 p.m. ET, will include performances by artists including Heart's Ann and Nancy Wilson, Metallica, The Smashing Pumpkins' Billy Corgan, Nirvana's Krist Novoselic and Korn, plus members of Soundgarden, Pearl Jam, Guns N' Roses, Foo Fighters, Jane's Addiction and Slipknot.

Speaking with ABC Audio, Alice vocalist William DuVall calls the lineup "amazing...under any circumstances," but given the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, such an outpouring of love feels "all that much more extraordinary and all that much humbling."

"We're just so gratified by it," he says.

As for what everyone will be performing, even the Alice in Chains members don't know. In fact, they purposely avoided the whole song selection process.

"We just want to be surprised," says bassist Mike Inez. "We'll be watching a lot of it for the first time just like everybody else."

"We want to watch like fans," Duvall adds.

The lineup also includes Lily Cornell Silver, the daughter of longtime AiC manager Susan Silver and the late Chris Cornell, who will be making her debut musical performance during the ceremony.

"She [has] a really nice voice, and beautiful tone...like her dad," DuVall says. "Not that she sounds like him, but she has an innate sense of how to get a song across."

"She's family," Inez adds of Lily. "We helped raise that girl. She was the flower girl at my wedding. Now she's all grown up and just sounds amazing." 

The 2020 Founders Award will stream via the Museum of Pop Culture's Facebook page, and the Amazon Music Twitch channel.

By Josh Johnson
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Tim Mosenfelder/Getty ImagesJourney guitarist Neal Schon has revealed that the long-in-the-works solo album on which he's collaborated with acclaimed producer, drummer and songwriter Narada Michael Walden finally will be released in the coming days.

According to a recent post on Schon's Twitter feed, the album is titled Universe and will arrive in "early December." The message also unveiled the album's cover art.

In a separate tweet, Neal reports, "There are some interesting covers on here as well as originals written and produced by Narada Michael Walden…There's some very healing music for this Christmas." Schon also mentions series of artists whose songs he apparently covers on the record, among them Jimi Hendrix, Prince, Stevie Wonder, The Beatles and Journey.

Walden, who joined Journey this year as the band's new drummer, produced and played drums on Universe and, according to a press statement that dates back to 2017, wrote "six or seven" tunes for the project.

Coming early December https://t.co/lubz0AVnRZ

— NEAL SCHON MUSIC (@NealSchonMusic) November 29, 2020

By Matt Friedlander
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Credit: Leah SteigerSammy Hagar is among the artists who will take part in a virtual holiday benefit for the City of Hope charity that will stream live today, December 1, starting at 9 p.m. ET.

City of Hope is an independent biomedical research and treatment center focusing on helping people with cancer, diabetes and other life-threatening diseases.

The fundraiser will feature music and comedy performances, as well as celebrity guest appearances. In addition, a two-hour pre-show experience, beginning at 7 p.m. ET, will offer viewers the chance to walk a virtual red carpet, join networking breakout rooms, have their digital caricatures drawn and more.

The holiday benefit's lineup also includes Kiefer Sutherland, Aloe Blacc and Pentatonix, while comic Ben Gleib will host the festivities.

The event marks the first time that City of Hope's various corporate industry groups, which usually work independently of each other, are uniting in support of a single fundraiser.

Tickets for the bash are available now; for more information, visit CityofHope.org/holidaybenefit.

By Matt Friedlander
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ABCFoo Fighters have teamed up with the Los Angeles restaurant Casa Vega to make their own signature taco.

The creation includes smoked brisket, a homemade flour tortilla, BBQ sauce drizzle, Mexican coleslaw, red pickled onion and chopped cilantro. You can order one to go starting Tuesday, December 1.

Proceeds raised from sales of the Foo Fighters taco will benefit the charity organization No Us Without You, which supports undocumented hospitality workers.

If you don't live in the L.A. area but would still like to contribute to the cause, you can pre-order a special Foo Fighters x Casa Vega t-shirt, which will also benefit No Us Without You.

Casa Vega, by the way, previously teamed up with Fall Out Boy to launch their own signature taco in October.

Foo Fighters will release their new album Medicine at Midnight, featuring the lead single "Shame Shame," on February 5, 2021.

By Josh Johnson
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Credit: Maryanne BilhamSantana drummer Cindy Blackman Santana's recent solo song "Mother Earth" is featured in a new video that promotes the Amazon Aid Foundation, which works to protect and preserve the Amazon rainforest.

The clip, which has been posted at the Amazon Aid Foundation's YouTube channel, features footage of various animals that live in the rainforest, while illustrating the destruction humans are causing in the region because of fires, deforestation and more.

The percussion-heavy instrumental track appears on Blackman Santana's latest solo album, Give the Drummer Some, which includes contributions from her husband, Carlos Santana, plus Metallica's Kirk Hammett, Living Colour's Vernon Reid and others.

Cindy is a longtime supporter of Amazon Aid Foundation, and the "Mother Earth" marks her inaugural project as one of the organization's Artists for the Amazon program, which seeks to raise awareness about Amazon rainforest preservation and protection through the arts. Many scientists believe that deforestation of the rainforest is a factor in global warming, which may be the cause of such devastating environmental occurrences as the recent destructive forest fires in the Western U.S.

"I implore each and everyone, to make conscious choices to help support and SAVE our Earth's lungs -- the Amazon!" says Blackman Santana. "This beautiful life support system is vital and a key element in our very survival and quality of life. Mother Earth is calling you, please answer with love."

Adds Amazon Aid founder Sarah duPont, who produced the video, "The burning we experience in the U.S. is connected to what's happening in the Amazon -- both scientifically and philosophically. Whether by arson or by climate change, these are the effects of exploitation of living systems. We need substantive shifts -- in policy, in consumption, and in how and what we value."

You can donate to the cause at AmazonAid.org.

By Matt Friedlander
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Courtesy of John LodgeBack in July, Moody Blues singer/bassist John Lodge released a new solo track called "In These Crazy Times (Isolation Mix)," which was recorded during the COVID-19 lockdown. Now an official video for the tune has premiered at the band's official YouTube channel.

The clip features scenes of Lodge working on the song in his home studio, along with some of his collaborators on the track, including his son Kristian on lead guitar, and his wife, Kirsten, and current Yes singer Jon Davison on backing vocals.

The video also features recent onstage footage of Lodge and his 10,000 Light Years Band, as well as Davison, who was a special guest during John's most recent tour.

Lodge's daughter, Emily, who organized the recording of "In These Crazy Times," says her father has been writing a number of new tunes during the pandemic.

In related news, Moody Blues singer/guitarist Justin Hayward recently posted a video on the band's YouTube channel of himself giving an acoustic performance of "One Lonely Room," a tune from his 1977 solo album Songwriter.

The clip begins with a segment shot at the Hendrix Vintage Guitars shop in Lavagna, Italy, featuring Hayward giving some background about the song.  The actual performance was filmed at Justin's home studio.

The video is the latest in Hayward's "Tuesday Afternoons" series of performance clips the guitarist has been posting each Tuesday on YouTube.

By Matt Friedlander
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