Rick de Leeuw concert live on radio


This is a music video of Rick de Leeuw singing the song Kom bij mij, at the live national radio concert in Hilversum, the Netherlands, on 2 November. Rick de Leeuw came on stage after Berget Lewis (on whose performance this blog reported earlier).

The video was recorded on mobile phone, so please don’t expect professional quality :)

Decades ago, Rick de Leeuw was singer of the Amsterdam punk rock band Tröckener Kecks. Later, he became well-known for poetry as well.

He now is a radio presenter in Belgium; though he lives in Amsterdam. His backing band at the Hilversum concert were Belgian musicians. Contrary to Berget Lewis, they did include a bass guitar with their drums, guitar and keyboard.

Berget Lewis radio concert live


This video is the official video of Berget Lewis‘ new single, Aviator.

On Saturday 2 November, there was a live national radio show in Hilversum, the Netherlands. Three music acts performed there. They all had new albums out recently. About the two others later; Berget Lewis sang first.

Berget Lewis was born in Amsterdam, from parents from Suriname.

Her parents were Pentecostal church members. As Berget told in the radio interview between the 2 November songs, they forbade her to sing anything which was not religious gospel music. While her brother’s non-religious music was allowed.

Berget Lewis, radio concert Hilversum, 2 November 2013

Berget’s band were her, relatively low, vocals; two guitars, keyboards, drums; no bass guitar. Sometimes, the music seemed to be somewhere between Tina Turner and Guns ‘n Roses.

They played three songs. The audience applauded enthusiastically.

Rock musician Lou Reed dies


This video says about itself:

Laurie Anderson & Lou Reed Interviewed by Charlie Rose (2003) – Part One

July 8, 2003

Lou Reed talks about ‘NYC Man‘ (his retrospective album) and Andy Warhol.

Laurie Anderson and Lou Reed talk about their relationship.

And here is part two of that interview.

From Haaretz daily in Israel:

Rock legend Lou Reed dies at 71

Cause not reported, but according to Rolling Stone magazine, he underwent a liver transplant in May.

Oct. 27, 2013 | 7:42 PM

Rock legend Lou Reed, 71, died Sunday, Rolling Stone magazine reported.

The cause of death wasn’t reported but according to Rolling Stone, he underwent a liver transplant in May.

Reed was born to a Jewish family in Brooklyn, New York in 1942. He went on to form the Velvet Underground group with Welsh musician John Cale in the 1960s. They would later come to collaborate with pop artist Andy Warhol.

The band is widely credited as one of the most influential bands of the 20th century.

Some of his most well-known songs were Perfect Day, Take a Walk on the Wild Side, I’m Waiting for my Man and Here Comes Your Man.

He was married to performance artist Laurie Anderson. He had no children.

This music video is called Lou Reed – Walk On The Wild Side.

American rock song on Chinese traditional instrument, video


This 21 September 2013 music video is called Guns ‘N RosesSweet Child o’ MineGuzheng Cover.

From the Huffington Post in the USA:

This Unconventional Cover Of A Guns N’ Roses Song Is Beyond Awesome

Posted: 10/07/2013 11:19 am EDT

Vancouver musician Michelle Kwan rocks out with this most holy of covers, showing that nothing is more rock ‘n’ roll than an ancient Chinese string instrument.

You may not have guessed that a guzheng would so delicately capture the essence of Guns N’ Roses’ harmonious hit “Sweet Child O’ Mine.” In fact, you might not even know what a guzheng is.

For those of you who don’t know, a guzheng is a Chinese plucked zither, related to the Japanese koto, the Mongolian yatga, the Korean gayageum and the Vietnamese đàn tranh. If you don’t know what those are either, you’ll have to watch the video above to find out.

Enjoy the teenage musician’s unlikely hard rock ode and be warned: things get really intense around 2:37.

Swedish police anti-Roma discrimination


This video is called Gypsy Gipsy Romani Romany Sinti Holocaust.

Translated from NOS TV in the Netherlands:

Outcry about registry of Roma in Sweden

Monday 23 Sep 2013, 14:08 (Update: 23-09-13, 14:40)

In Sweden there is an outcry over a police database containing thousands of names of Roma. The only reason for inclusion in the registry is Roma origin, most of the people listed have no criminal records.

The existence of the registry was revealed by the newspaper Dagens Nyheter and confirmed by the Swedish police. According to the newspaper, there are over 4,000 people in the database. A quarter of them are toddlers or preschoolers.

Bad reputation

Police would not say why the register is kept, but it is believed that it is done because of the bad reputation of Roma, mostly living in camps or on the streets. …

This reminds me of United States rocker Joan Jett‘s song “Bad Reputation”. Here is the music video.

The Swedish Minister for EU Affairs Ohlsson was shocked by the revelation about the Roma, who are considered to be Europe’s most discriminated minority. She calls the registry “frightening, unethical, unacceptable and illegal.”

Sweden has prohibited registration by ethnicity. In the Netherlands there is a ban on that as well, though there are municipalities which want more opportunities to register Roma.

French Interior Minister Manuel Valls has once again turned on the Roma, demanding their expulsion to Eastern Europe: here.

The Final Countdown, music video by Koen Theys


This video is called Koen Theys – The Final Countdown (2013, 3 channel video, 47″44′) @SMAK, GENT.

Belgian video artist Koen Theys made a video, based on over 2000 YouTube videos, of people performing the song The Final Countdown, originally by Swedish rock band Europe.

The song is played on electric guitars, acoustic guitars, kazoos, flutes, other wind instruments, violins, by a capella singers, etc.

Koen Theys’ complete video lasts over 47 minutes. At the moment, it is projected on a big screen in the S.M.A.K. museum in Ghent, Belgium. That is part of a Koen Theys exhibition in that museum. I visited that exhibition; and will write more about it on this blog later.

‘New’ prehistoric lizard called after Jim Morrison


This video, in Spanish, is about the discovery of the fossil lizard Barbaturex morrisoni.

From The Sticky Tongue Project blog:

New Species of Lizard Discovered

A new species of lizard doesn’t come along every day. Even less common is a new lizard species named for a 1960s rock star. But that’s exactly what University of Iowa paleoanthropologist Russell Ciochon and his co-authors reveal in an article published in the June 5 issue of the journal Proceedings of the Royal Society B. (The complete paper can be found here.)

The lizard was a plant-eater, like present-day iguanas, that lived in the jungles in Southeast Asia about 40 million years ago. At some 60 pounds and six feet in length, the lizard was one of the largest of its kind—making it a veritable “king” of land-dwelling lizards.

As for the name, “Barbaturex morrisoni,” the researchers say it just fit.

“Barbatus” is from the Latin, which means “bearded,” and “rex,” means “king”—so the name refers to the presence of ventral ridges along the underside of the mandible, as well as the giant size of the lizard, says Ciochon (pronounced sha-HAHN).

“The species name honors vocalist Jim Morrison,” Ciochon says. “We did take some liberty in naming the new species after rock legend Jim Morrison, who is known as the ‘Lizard King.’”

Because of the lyrics of his song Celebration Of The Lizard.

This music video from the USA is called Jim Morrison – Celebration Of The Lizard (Full Version).

Lead author Jason Head of the University of Nebraska-Lincoln says, “I was listening to The Doors quite a bit during the research. Some of their musical imagery includes reptiles and ancient places, and Jim Morrison was of course ‘The Lizard King,’ so it all kind of came together.”

Ciochon says the lizard itself was a product of its times, evolving about 40 million years ago when the climate was as much as 9 degrees Fahrenheit warmer than it is today. A warmer and moister environment would have encouraged the growth and evolution of subtropical vegetation, which would have provided resources allowing for larger reptiles and mammals. Likewise, it was probably climate change and cooler temperatures that altered the food supply and led to the eventual extinction of Barbaturex morrisoni, he says.

“Species that are adapted to narrow niches often go extinct when the niche changes or disappears completely,” Ciochon says.

Surprisingly, the research that resulted in Barbaturex morrisoni almost never came about because the discovery is based upon fossils that Ciochon helped find some 35 years ago in Burma and which had been stored in California for decades.

“The fossils were found on Dec. 25, 1978, on my second expedition to Burma (Myanmar) at the beginning of my career,” says Ciochon.

Ciochon and University of California, Berkeley, Professor Donald E. Savage, who died in 1999, collected many vertebrate fossils, including the primate fossils that were the focus of their expedition. The lizard fossils were stored in the University of California Museum of Paleontology and forgotten until about 15 years ago when another trip to Burma caused Ciochon to remember them. Eventually, Ciochon and colleagues contacted Jason Head of the University of Nebraska-Lincoln and requested his help in describing the find.

When Head first examined the fossils (a total of 10 specimens of the same species), he noticed the creature’s bones were characteristic of a group of modern lizards that includes bearded dragons, chameleons and plant-eaters like spiny-tailed lizards.

Head says: “I thought, ‘That’s neat. Based on its teeth, it’s a plant-eating lizard from a time period and a place from which we don’t have a lot of information.’ But when I started studying its modern relatives, I realized just how big this lizard was. It struck me that we had something here that was quite large, and quite unique.”

See also here.

Women tribute rock bands


From daily The Guardian in Britain:

Lez Zeppelin, Vag Halen and AC/DShe – meet the all-female tribute bands

Think the tribute act is the sole preserve of obsessive fanboys? Open your ears to the women who really know how to rock

Friday 31 May 2013

Vag Halen! AC/DShe! The names alone are enough to make you pay attention – but that’s only the start of it. All-female tribute bands may have traditionally provoked guffaws in the exclusionary, testosterone-fuelled world of budget rock, but these days they are increasingly earning plaudits on the homage scene. Lez Zeppelin were the first tribute band (of any gender) to perform at Download festival, and in June they play a show at the Garage in London.

To thrive in this niche industry is no small feat, and these women are next-level virtuosos who refused to hang up their six-strings in frustration when tasked with mastering Jimmy Page‘s trickiest solos. They have note-perfect guitar skills, loyal audiences and an encyclopaedic knowledge of alpha-male rock that could put even the most ardent, B-side-collecting fanboys to shame. For these ladies, the tribute game is more than hero worship: it’s about a riff-perfecting devotion to rock that exceeds imitation. Throw up those horns and watch them wail!

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Lez Zeppelin

Lez have been rocking since 2004 and are considered queens of the all-female homage game. They have recorded full-length albums with former Led Zeppelin engineers, doing so with a diehard devotion that saw them tracking down the same (now vintage) equipment employed by LZ in 1968, to make their second album, Lez Zeppelin I. They can pull off the theremin solo on Whole Lotta Love with the skilful, preening show(wo)manship of true pros, but don’t call them a tribute act: they prefer to think of themselves as a “she-incarnation” of rock’s most hallowed foursome.

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Judas Priestess

Guitarist D Mercedes spent two years choogling in the all-female Mötley Crüe tribute band Girls Girls Girls! before beginning this homage act in 2009, with co-founder and NYC punk legend Gyda Gash. Priestess match their heroes riff for epic riff, and have the official endorsement of follically challenged rock god Rob Halford himself. As journalist Laina Dawes has investigated in her 2012 book What Are You Doing Here?, women of colour have been especially marginalised by heavy metal‘s hyper-masculine, white-dude culture. Nevertheless, Priestess front-woman MilitiA – who writes for AFROPUNK.com and has fronted Dee “Twisted Sister” Snider’s rock opera, Van Helsing’s Curse – is a charismatic, badass vocalist capable of commanding any stage.

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Vag Halen

Thought feminist rockers were all po-faced, prudish killjoys? Check out Vag Halen and consider yourself schooled. Despite their Eddie V-referencing moniker, this queer, feminist troupe from Toronto are too capricious to pledge allegiance to any one, specific band of yore, and “muff dive” (rather than Jump) into a repertoire of cock-rock classics at their rowdy, lesbian-populated shows, while lascivious, semi-nude frontwoman Vanessa Dunn delivers rock’s most revered, straight-man standards with sapphic gusto; you will never listen to that chorus on Clapton’s Leila in the same way again.

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Misstallica

This smart Philadelphia quartet originally started out as Queen Diamond, a King Diamond tribute act, but a passion for 80s thrash metal saw them evolving into a whiplash-inducing Metallica tribute, fronted by dexterous shredder Gina Gleason. Gleason could beat James Hetfield in a growl-off, and with fret skills to match a young Jennifer Batten, she was a natural choice for Cirque du Soleil’s Michael Jackson ONE production. Fans worried they will be subjected to numbers from the much-maligned St Anger album – or worse, that Lou Reed collaboration Lulu – are in safe hands at a Misstallica show: they have a strict first-four-albums-only policy and refuse to play anything Ulrich and co recorded after 1988′s … And Justice For All.

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Iron Maidens

Iron Maidens are a quintet of heavy-metal femmes hailing from Los Angeles. Their credo? Bring your daughters to the slaughter, of course. Fronted by Kirsten “Bruce Chickinson” Rosenberg and powered by Courtney “Adriana Smith” Cox and Nita “Mega Murray” Strauss’s duelling guitars, the band have opened for the mighty Kiss, played a storming rendition of The Trooper to a 40,000-strong audience at Venezuela’s heavy metal Gillmanfest and picked up a clutch of industry accolades, including wins at the LA music awards.

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AC/DShe

San Francisco’s AC/DShe are out to shake you all night long. They have been around since 1997, honing AC/DC‘s Bon Scott-era oeuvre with a skill that has earned them support slots for Pat Benatar, Cheap Trick and Girlschool. Angus Young’s schoolboy uniform is iconic garb in the world of rock apparel, but AC/DShe’s lead axewoman Pamela Ausejo sports that blazer-and-shorts combo with just as much finesse, and can match Young’s wild solos note for note to boot. “Our ultimate goal,” says vocalist Amy Ward – who boasts an uncannily Scott-like timbre and gargantuan lungpower – “is to spread the gospel of AC/DC”. For those about to rock to AC/DShe, we salute you.

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The Ramonas

The Ramonas are Cloey, Margy, Rohnny & Pee Pee Ramona, London’s all-gal answer to punk’s most revered and influential forefathers. The band began in 2004 at the behest of Clare Pproduct (of UK glam rock band AntiProduct), who boasts the distinction of playing bass in Marky Ramone’s Blitzkrieg. They turned out a strong set at Manchester’s Mockfest earlier this month and are on the line-up for Blackpool Rebellion festival this August.

Before there were the London Ramonas, from 1987-1994, there were the Dutch Ramona’s. An all-woman punk rock band (not a Ramones tribute band).