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A Musical Instrument Auction To Benefit Music Rising – Essentially Pop

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U2’s The Edge and producer Bob Ezrin, Co-Founders of Music Rising have announced Guitar Icons: A Musical Instrument Auction to Benefit Music Rising to take place December 11th, 2021, starting at 10:00 a.m. PST. Hosted by Van Eaton Galleries (vegalleries.com) in Los Angeles, the live and online auction will offer a significant collection of guitars and other music memorabilia by some of the world’s most prominent musicians and friends of Music Rising.  The auction will take the charity back to its roots and help support the musicians of the NOLA region after a long period being without income.

Music Rising was co-founded by U2’s the Edge and legendary producer Bob Ezrin, along with a host of music industry partners in 2005 after the devastation of Hurricane Katrina. Since its inception, Music Rising has provided millions of dollars in aid to musicians and recipients of music education across the country.

Guitar Icons: A Musical Instrument Auction to Benefit Music Rising includes an exclusive collection of important instruments donated by friends of the charity. All of the instruments have a unique and special story and provenance and together make up an extraordinary example of some of the greatest moments in music history.

Highlights include:

  • The Edge’s 2005 Limited Edition Gibson Les Paul Music Rising guitar, often referred to as the ‘One’ guitar given its use on the Joshua Tree tours of 2017 and 2019 during performances of the hit ‘One’.

The Edge also played this guitar on ‘One’ and ‘American Soul’ during U2’s 2018 Song of Experience shows along with their famous 360 tour back in 2010, and serves as a significant iconic symbol for Music Rising, being one of the first guitars produced to benefit the charity at its inception. Of further significance to the ‘One’ guitar, The Edge also played this guitar at the first reopening of New Orleans Jazz Fest post Katrina in 2006 alongside Dave Matthews and during a performance at the Grammy Awards 2006 alongside Bruce Springsteen and Elvis Costello.

  • The Edge “I Still Haven’t Found What I’m Looking For” Custom Signature Fender Stratocaster.

Edge took this guitar on the road with him during the period of 2017-2019 and used it for performances of ‘Bad’ and the beloved chart topping hit single from ‘The Joshua Tree’, ‘I Still Haven’t Found What I’m Looking For’.

  • Paul McCartney’s Tour and Studio Played Left-Handed “Wings” Yamaha BB-1200 Electric Bass Guitar.

The Cherry Burst BB-1200 was a principal instrument used during his performances with Wings in the late 1970s. He was frequently photographed playing it on stage, during live performances and in the studio.

  • Lou Reed’s Danny Gatton Fender Stratocaster nicknamed “Goldie.”

Reed’s love of this guitar can be seen in the patina and wear throughout and can be seen in videos of Reed playing his rendition of ‘Jealous Guy’, at Radio City Music Hall, as well as on tour during 2005-2006.

  • Bono’s U2 Tour Played Custom Gibson ES-175 Electric Guitar used extensively on tour.

Bono played this guitar on the 1992-1993 “Zoo TV” tour during performances of the songs ‘The Fly’, and ‘Angel of Harlem’. The guitar was painted to Bono’s precise specifications and Bono also added a decal to the body of the guitar reading “I Feel Good”.

  • Slash’s signed Gibson Custom Shop “Victoria” Les Paul Goldtop Model Electric Guitar created to Slash’s specifications and includes an original drawing by Slash of “Skully” on the top of the guitar.
  • Noel Gallagher’s Tour-Played Nash Telemaster guitar which was played on tour with Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds. 
  • Legendary Producer Bob Ezrin’s Artist’s Proof Custom Frank Brothers Ezrin Model Electric Guitar.

This is a handmade instrument designed to capture the studio sounds of several of the iconic guitar players he has worked with over the years. Numbered “00” this guitar is one-of-a-kind.

Other exceptional highlights include:

  • Elton John’s Signed and Concert Played Yamaha Motif-8 Keyboard;

This was used by Elton John during live performances and on the road for nearly a decade. He also signed the instrument with black felt pen.

  • RUSH’s Alex Lifeson’s Tour Used Signature Hughes & Kettner RUSH Amp and Cabinet Half Stack;

Used extensively on the 40th Anniversary tour “Vapor Trails” and the “Snakes and Arrows” tour, as well as the “Time Machine” tour.

  • Adam Clayton’s Tour Played Fender Standard Precision Bass;

The U2 bassist played this guitar for performances of the song, ‘A Sort of Homecoming’, on The Joshua Tree tour from May-July, 2017. During the tour the bass was also used for the songs ‘Bullet, The Blue Sky’, ‘Running to Stand Still’, ‘One Tree Hill’ and others.

  • Alice Cooper’s Tournament Used “Big Bertha” Golf Clubs;

The music icon’s personal set of golf clubs in a customized “Alice Cooper” bag.

  • Chris Martin’s Tour Played Painted Fender Telecaster Deluxe guitar;
  • Pearl Jam’s Eddie Vedder’s Concert Smashed Fender Stratocaster;

The Lake Placid Blue Fender American Special Telecaster was decorated by Vedder with an embroidered red/white Chicago Cubs “C” sticker as a tribute to legendary Chicago Bears running back Walter Payton and used by Vedder during Pearl Jam’s August 20, 2018 tour at Wrigley Field and was smashed by Vedder at the conclusion of a cover of The Who’s, ‘Baba O’Riley’.

  • A collection of extraordinary silkscreened Pearl Jam concert posters signed by the band members;
  • KISS’ Paul Stanley’s one-of-a-kind Tour Played Ibanez Custom Shop guitar;

The collection will also boast additional instruments for auction including:

  • Bruce Springsteen’s signed Americana Original ‘50s Fender Telecaster; Joe Wash’s “Bono” Irish Falcon Gretsch guitar;
  • The Eagles Don Felder’s signed Epiphone G-1275 Double Neck Electric Guitar and Signed Art Print; Vince Gill’s The Eagles Concert Played Duesenberg Bonneville guitar;
  • The Rolling Stones’ Ronnie Wood’s Signed American Original 50’s Fender Stratocaster;
  • The Kings of Leon band signed Epiphone Dot Studio Guitar;
  • Steve Miller’s Signed Original and Hand Painted Maccaferri guitar;
  • Halestorm Lzzy Hale’s signed Tour Played Prototype Signature Epiphone Explorer guitar;
  • A Julian Lennon signed Martin & Co. Acoustic guitar;
  • A Green Day Band Signed Epiphone Les Paul Special guitar;
  • Ed O’Brien’s Radiohead Tour Played Signature Fender Stratocaster;
  • Flea’s Red Hot Chili Peppers Band Signed Signature Fender Jazz Bass;
  • Joan Jett’s Signature Gibson Worn White Melody Maker; Johnny Marr’s Signed Studio Played Limited Fender Jaguar guitar;
  • A Dave Grohl signed Gibson Explorer guitar;
  • Tom Morello’s Signature “Soul Power” Stratocaster;
  • Win Butler’s signed Prop Bass Guitar from The Arcade Fire music video “Everything Now;”
  • Zac Brown’s Personally Played Signed Natural Gibson ES-335 guitar;
  • Three additional guitars which were played and used by the late Lou Reed.

“The music of New Orleans has influenced various styles of music borrowed from early traditions. It is the birthplace of jazz and represents a musical culture which bears great significance to most every genre today.  I can’t imagine what it would feel like to lose my ability to do what I love – making music. Unfortunately there are many musicians and crew members who continue to struggle since the pandemic. If this multigenerational chain is broken, we lose more than just a few concerts we lose an entire culture that stretches back centuries. Some of the world’s greatest musicians and friends of Music Rising have generously donated their personal instruments to raise money for Music Rising. We hope you have a chance to bid on one or more of the beautiful instruments in the auction. The monies raised goes to musicians and crew. Your support continues to be invaluable to Music Rising.” –  U2’s The Edge

“When we launched Music Rising in 2005 we didn’t have any idea how significant a role the organization would play in helping musicians and music educators for as long as it has. Guitar Icons: A Musical Instrument Auction to Benefit Music Rising will be our biggest fundraising opportunity this year. We are working closely with the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Foundation in bringing back the bright sounds of the music of New Orleans. We thank you for your support and hope you are able to bid on one or more of the extraordinary instruments offered in the auction. We are thankful for all of your continued support of Music Rising.” – Co-Founder and producer, Bob Ezrin

Music Rising has also launched a new apparel collection featuring limited edition t-shirts, hoodie, caps and tote. All the new apparel can be purchased at www.musicrising.com and benefits the charity. The iconic logo, which serves as the symbol for Music Rising is featured on each item.

The auction will take place at Van Eaton Galleries located at 13613 Ventura Blvd in Sherman Oaks, California beginning at 10:00 a.m. PDT on Saturday, December 11, 2021. The auction will also stream live and be online via various auction platforms all available through https://vegalleries.com/musicrising.  A public exhibition of the collection will begin Monday, November 22, 2021 at the gallery and can be visited by collectors and fans by appointment. Proceeds from the auction will be administered by the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Foundation on behalf of Music Rising.

GUITAR ICONS: A Musical Instrument Auction to Benefit Music Rising

Van Eaton Galleries

13613 Ventura Blvd

Sherman Oaks, California 91423

PUBLIC EXHIBITION

Beginning Monday, November 22, 2021 10:00 a.m. PDT – 6 p.m. PDT

To confirm your visit please call Van Eaton Galleries at 818-788-2357 or email auction@vegalleries.com

EXHIBITION HOURS ARE Monday-Saturday, Closed on Sunday and Thanksgiving.

To register to bid or to view the online catalogue for the auction please click here.

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St. Vincent Covers “Funkytown” For Minions: The Rise of Gru

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Some things in life are inevitable. For a while, that inevitably was a new Shrek movie with an updated pop cover like “I’m a Believer” from Smash Mouth. These days it’s a new Despicable Me movie, this time in the form of spinoff Minions The Rise of Gru. And just as we all predicted, the new Steve Carrell led film comes stacked with a loaded soundtrack headlined by St. Vincent.

For her contribution to the Minions: The Rise of Gru soundtrack, St. Vincent covered “Funkytown” by Lipps Inc. Her version was produced by Jack Antonoff and continues a run of luck for the musician that earlier this year saw her win a Grammy for Best Alternative Music Album.

Antonoff also gave St. Vincent a shout-out for her album Daddy’s Home when he won Producer of the Year at the Grammys.

Announcing the release of her funky cover, St. Vincent took to Twitter and wrote, “Excited to say the @Minions (including @jackantonoff) and I have just released our version of ‘Funkytown’ from #TheRiseofGru soundtrack. Shout out to Gru and them…” Included with the post was a graphic of St. Vincent as a minion.

Joining St. Vincent on the Minions: The Rise of Gru soundtrack are Tame Impala, Kali Uchis, Brittany Howard, Thundercat, Caroline Polachek, Diana Ross, and Weyes Blood, just to name a few.

The album will be released on July 1, coinciding with the film’s theatrical release. You can listen to St. Vincent’s cover of Lipps Inc. “Funkytown” below!



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Parmalee Shares The Music Video For Their Top Five US Hit ‘Take My Name’, A Musical Marriage Proposal.

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Back in October of 2021, Parmalee released ‘Take My Name’ as the second single from their third studio album. It was written with and produced by David Fanning, producer of the massive hit ‘Carolina’ that introduced me to the band back in 2008, Ashley Gorley and Ben Johnson. Robyn Collins of ‘Taste of Country’ described the song as “a musical marriage proposal” and lead singer of the band, Matt Thomas, says it was inspired by the marriage of brother Scott; he says “it made me think about what I would want to say to my future wife.”

Some songs almost become bigger than themselves when they tap into the lives and moods of everyone and this is very much one of those songs. It’s not difficult to see why this song has been adopted by fans all over the world irrespective of their taste in music; its words conjure all the romance and love that you’d hope to feel when you ask someone to marry you. It’s lyrically a shopping list of everything you feel at the moment you realise you’ve met the one, even if that’s after only a short time. I remember proposing to my wife after just 8 weeks and if I try to remember what I was feeling at the point I proposed and tried to put it into words I would hope it was very similar to this song. Now over 31 years later and still happily married I listen to this song and it brings all those feelings back in a rush so why wouldn’t it be the perfect song to overlay a proposal, sing at the wedding or just be part of the moment; it’s how I’d love my sons to feel when they propose to their partners. 

Parmalee are very aware of their fans needs and were quick to record a wedding version for such occasions with a less catchy percussion and a softer piano focussed vibe than the original version. There have even been brilliant occasions where the band has turned up to “crash” a wedding and sing this song to the happy couple reminiscent of Maroon 5 and their song ‘Sugar’. None of those guests will forget that wedding in a hurry!

With all the interest in the song and the brilliant videos and messages the band have received, they felt the time was right to make their own narrative video to accompany the song as an addition to the previously released visualizer. The ‘Wedding Version’ video of the romantic song was filmed in Gallatin, TN and directed by Shane Drake. The heart-warming story follows the journey of the protagonist through middle school and all the way to adulthood featuring kids from a local school, an original 1968 Mustang Shelby GT350 and appearances from the band with the lead being played by frontman Matt Thomas.

Matt says:

“From the jump, the fans have really latched onto this song in such an amazing, life changing way- our fans have been the reason for so many of our own major milestones, so it means that much more to us that folks are using our song for their proposals and weddings and allowing us to be a part of those major moments in their lives. We wanted to pay tribute to the fans who have been on this journey with us since the beginning so in the music video you’ll see a story of love and loyalty unfold across the years-but don’t expect to see any weddings or proposals – the fan created videos far exceed anything we could depict. We love watching them.”

With over 135 million global on demand streams, the song has raced up the Country charts, outpacing the band’s previous single, the multinational Number 1 smash ‘Just The Way’ with Blanco Brown and has been popping up all over TikTok with creators playing the song over proposal and wedding videos and even sparking a trend of using the sound of the song and writing “if your man doesn’t make you feel this way then what are you doing?” over the video. 

Parmalee - Take My Name (Official Music Video)

Coming from their recently released album ‘For You’, an album that has garnered critical acclaim with American Songwriter calling it “authentically real, genuinely inspired” and Billboard saying that “Parmalee find itself in the enviable position of being able to tap into multiple audiences”. What is very clear is that Country music is slowly starting to find a new, younger audience in the UK to stand alongside the existing fans of the genre. Zack Bryan has recently found himself high on the Spotify album charts and UK stars like Ed Sheeran have appeared alongside Country stars like Luke Combs at the Country2Country festival. Even Tom Odell has found himself headlining the British Country Music Festival in the Summer. Parmalee may be the band to really break down the barriers between Country music and the UK Charts with this song as the musical genre of this release is far less important than the honesty and emotion of the lyrics and Romance will always break down all of the barriers, or at least I would hope it would.

‘For You’ is out now and can be streamed and downloaded here. Find out more about Parmalee and their music online on their official website.

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Mercedess Releases debut album ‘Casa Fantasia’ along with lead single ‘Summers Already Gone’

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This Copenhagen DIY pop artist has managed the difficult task of mixing her soulful voice with vibrant dreamy production and lyrics with real streetwise attitude. The result is something that has given her the hit single ‘Obvious’ which Danish radio loved and the internationally acclaimed single ‘Back to Business’. Now she is releasing the excellent lead single ‘Summer’s Already Gone’ which sounds very modern Bond in its lo fi production but tells an unusual love story. Not a story about falling in love with a person, but about the love affair that always ends; the affair with Summer.

She says:

“I wanted to write a song that could represent both the fearlessness of the magical Summer days and the truly blue sadness of the re occuring love story it actually is when Summer eventually comes to an end. I know it’s a heartbreaking, melancholy feeling but it’s also everything I love about Summer.”

The song was written in Mercedess’ living room with Danish indie superstar Goss and the guitarist Søren Breum and is produced by the critically acclaimed artist Vera. It allows the velvet of the artist’s voice to tumble over the muted trumpets, break beats and flirty acoustic guitars and strings bringing to life the seasonal heartbreak. 

The fact that it is about the love and anticipation felt for Summer is almost more poignant this year as we embark upon the first free Summer for a few years. The affair with Summer this year promises to be a torrid passionate affair as we’ve been apart so long but the heartbreak of its end will be felt more keenly. This song will be the soundtrack to the affair for sure.

The single is released on the same day as the debut album from this exciting new talent. Mercedess says of the album: “Casa Fantasia is an album about longing for closeness and honesty. These songs are an escape from reality-a place to feel free and be yourself. Writing it was a personal journey and process to me that hopefully will make space for creativity, art and emotions for others too”

The album promises to do just that with the artist’s melancholy and yet warm and dreamy vocals and marks an exciting new chapter for an artist destined to find international acclaim  with this collection of music. Summer may come and go but I’m sure the appeal of Mercedess will be perennial. 

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