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Special thanks are due to Richard Russell, whose Byrdmaniax Mailing List is the most dependable source of current news on the Byrds. Thanks as well to the members of that list who provided information about many of the items that appears below, in particular Richard, Cheryl Jennings, Raoul Verolleman, and Ken Young.
July, 1999: The July-August issue of No Depression (#22) sports a 10-page cover story on Gram Parsons by Holly George-Warren, who worked closely with Ben Fong-Torres on the research for Hickory Wind. Timed to coincide with the release of the new GP Tribute, Return of the Grievous Angel, the article argues that "Parsons' country roots have grown deep into the nooks and crannies of rock's foundation." The issue also features a review of the tribute album and the recent Parsons bootleg Under Your Spell Again. The cover and the tribute review feature a pair of sharp stylized ink portraits of GP by Glenn Hilario. The issue closes with an interesting reflection on Joshua Tree by former Jayhawk and current Creekdipper Mark Olson.
June 27, 1999: K-Tel International releases Exposed Roots: The Best of Alt.country, which contains a track by Gram Parsons as well as selections by 23 other top-drawer No Depression acts (among them BR5-49, Johnny Cash, Alejandro Escovedo, Jimmie Dale Gilmore, Golden Smog, the Jayhawks, the Meat Puppets, Steve Earle, Whiskeytown and Lucinda Williams).
June 26, 1999: Richard Russell has given his Byrds website a sharp new look, a new name (Byrdmaniax, like his mailing list), and a new address: http://www.byrdmaniax.com. The site, formerly known as Byrds' Nest, also boasts a number of additions and improvements made over recent months. If you haven't visited Richard Russell's site lately, be sure and check out his efforts.
June 25, 1999: WSM Radio News reports that Vern Gosdin is recovering from a stroke. Gosdin, known as "The Voice," began his career in the early '60s with brother Rex in the Golden State Boys, later known as the Hillmen after mandolinist Chris Hillman. The Gosdin Brothers later backed Gene Clark on his first solo album, and the Byrds covered Vern's composition "There Must Be Someone" on Ballad of Easy Rider. In the mid-'70s Vern Gosdin achieved success in the field of country music, with hits continuing into the late '80s.
Gosdin is listed in good condition at St. Thomas Hospital. He suffered an earlier stroke in 1995.
June 15, 1999: Gene Parsons and Meridian Green announce some changes to their Stringbender website at http://www.stringbender.com. The new Meridian Green CD In the Heart of This Town (described below), as well as other releases by Parsons and Green separately and together, are available from a new secure ordering page at http://www.stringbender.com/store. Gig news is now available at at http://www.stringbender.com/events. The site also features the Parsons Green Gazette, to keep fans abreast of the duo's other activities, at http://www.stringbender.com/Gazette. The first Gazette features "Ride On, Easy Rider," an excerpt by Gene Parsons from an autobiography-in-progress called Sweet Desert Childhood.
June 12, 1999: Sony Music Entertainment announces a deal with Digital On-Demand that will make digital versions of more than 4,000 albums from various Sony catalogs available on demand. by sending them directly to stores via a high-speed computer network. Under the deal, customers will be able to order CDs from in-store kiosks, which will then download the data, press up a CD on the spot, print liner notes and original artwork, and deliver them to the customer in about 15 minutes. No word yet on the availability of releases (or unreleased material) by the Byrds, Gene Clark, Dylan or other artists of interest to ByrdWatchers.
June 10, 1999: Belgian Byrdfan Raoul Verolleman has launched a new website, Byrds In Flight at http://users.skynet.be/byrdsflyght/. According to M. Verolleman, the "site's ambition is to list every possible appearance by the Byrds or by ex-Byrds on unofficial records."
June, 1999: MOJO #67 (June '99, Capt. Beefheart/Grateful Dead/Arthur Lee cover) reports on page 12:
"A series of albums featuring previously unreleased live recordings by many major artists from the late '60s and '70s is being launched in June with Shrine '69, a Fleetwood Mac set taped in 1969, with Joni Mitchell, the Byrds, Steely Dan and the Kinks to follow. The tapes, all high quality soundboard recordings from the archives of top engineer Stuart 'Dinky' Dawson, are being released by Rykodisc.
"'Everything is being authorised,' Dinky tells MOJO... 'I've presented Ryko with 300 tapes that'll keep them going for the next ten years.'...
"Other acts likely to feature in the series include the Mahavishnu Orchestra, Joan Baez, Bonnie Raitt, Weather Report, Flying Burrito Brothers, and Linda Ronstadt."
Those who have read Dinky's book know that he joined the Byrds as soundman early in the Skip Battin period, so the Byrds release will come from that period. (Untitled) era seems like a good bet.
The forthcoming Sony live Byrds CD has been described as being a Tea Party gig from the York period ('69), so it looks like we're in for two different live CDs in the near future.
Later in the same issue (p. 117) there is a story on the release of Dylan's Street Legal and the first two Dylan Greatest Hits albums in remastered editions, a holding action before the official launch of a Byrds-like systematic reissue of the Dylan catalog by Sony. The article ends thusly:
"Meanwhile, expect an autumn release for Legacy's remaining Byrds titles, (Untitled), Byrdmaniax and Farther Along." No mention of the Sony live CD in this article.
June, 1999: John York announces that German label Taxim Records will release his solo CD Claremont Dragon this summer. York plays 12-string, mandolin, slide guitar, violin, bass, and cello, as well as a variety of exotic instruments such as oud, dumbek, Chinese and native American flutes, gu zheng, pipa, Irish harp and tin whistles. Guests include Gordon Waller, formerly of Peter & Gordon, and Chris Darrow, formerly of Kaleidoscope. For more details, see York's website, http://home.earthlink.net/~yorksong/. York also guests on a new CD by Anita Kruse called Creation Flight. York is featured on Balinese and Peruvian flutes and Chinese pipa. To order Kruse's CD, see http://anitakruse.com/creation.htm.
June, 1999: The UK label Big Beat reissues a 20 track CD of material recorded by Blackburn & Snow, a '60s San Francisco folk rock duo, which contains a cover of David Crosby's "Stranger In A Strange Land." No version of this song by the Byrds with vocals has yet come to light, so curious Crosby fans may want to seek out this British release.
June, 1999: Jac Holzman, founder and CEO of Elektra Records (and first signer of the Byrds back in '64, though he renamed them the Beefeaters) has launched a website for his autobiography, Follow the Music at http://www.followthemusic.com.
May 18, 1999: Grateful Dead Records releases Sons of the Golden West, a new recording by the Flying Burrito Brothers. The 1999 Burritos consist of John Beland on guitars and vocals, Larry Patton on bass and vocals, and Gary Kubal on drums, all of whom appeared on California Jukebox (American Harvest, 1997), along with Wayne Bridge on steel guitar and Earl "Pool" Ball (a veteran of the International Submarine Band and Sweetheart of the Rodeo sessions) on piano. Both Gib Guilbeau and Sneaky Pete Kleinow have bowed out of the group after having heart attacks. Like the last outing, this one features an impressive roster of guest stars: Merle Haggard, the Oak Ridge Boys, Delbert McClinton, Alison Krauss, Ricky Skaggs, and Sam Bush. The CD makes several nods to California country and country rock from the '50s to the '70s. One such reference is the irreverent but affectionate "Ode to Gram," in which uninformed concertgoers looking for Gram are told, "Sorry, he's still dead." Grateful Dead Records is distributed by Arista, so it should be easier to find than Jukebox.
May, 1999: Larry Rice writes that he, brother Tony Rice, Chris Hillman, and Herb Pedersen have finished recording a follow-up to Out of the Woodwork (Rounder, 1997) and that "the project turned out really nice." Rounder has pushed the release date back from fall of this year to January of 2000. Rice expresses hope that the foursome might do some live gigs in the future, though there are currently no dates planned. Larry Rice has his own website at http://www.xtalwind.net/~larryr/.
May, 1999: RCA's mid-price label Camden Deluxe issues a new compilation of "legendary country rock recordings" called Fallen Angels, featuring two previously unreleased demos by Gram Parsons: "November Nights" and "Just Can't Take It Anymore." Both tracks were recorded at RCA's studios in late 1965, just after Parsons formed the first incarnation of the International Submarine Band. According to the liner notes by Sid Griffin, the tracks were recorded in a bit of leftover studio time after some RCA recording sessions on which the ISB backed Brandon DeWilde. Both tracks reveal that Parsons was more influenced by Bob Dylan than Buck Owens at this stage. "Just Can't Take It" also sounds much like the early Dylan covers by the first incarnation of the Byrds. "November Nights" was subsequently covered by actor Peter Fonda on a 1966 single for Hugh Masekela's Chisa label. The Camden album is avaliable in the States only as a European import.
May, 1999: German A&M releases The Fantastic Expedition of Dillard & Clark and Through the Morning, Through the Night on a single CD, which also contains the three non-LP single sides "Why Not Your Baby," "Lyin' Down the Middle," and "Don't Be Cruel." Other than the previously unreleased cuts by Dillard & Clark that appear on the recent Flying High compilation, this CD contains all the tracks released under the Dillard & Clark name. The music is digitally remastered from the original master tapes.
May, 1999: The Gene Clark Festival planned for Tipton, Missouri August 7, 1999 has been cancelled due to scheduling difficulties. Organizers (including Gene's brother Rick Clark) are aiming for a festival in the summer of 2000. For more information see the official site of the Tipton Chamber of Commerce at http://www.tiptonmo.com or the festival page on geneclark.com/festival.html
April 29, 1999: John Einarson, author of books on Buffalo Springfield, Neil Young, the Guess Who and Steppenwolf, writes to the Gene Clark list:
"Good news. My book Desperados: The Origins Of Country Rock will be published worldwide in mid-2000 by Cooper Square Books, a music division of Rowman & Littlefield Books (NY), distributed worldwide by National Book Network. It'll be much easier to find than my Springfield book was, given that it will be a US based company handling it. Cooper Square are very excited about the book and see a lot of potential for it. We are currently editing the manuscript.
"The book has lots on Gene Clark and Dillard and Clark and in that regard includes interviews with Hillman, McGuinn, Doug Dillard, Bernie Leadon, Byron Berline, Jon Corneal, Herb Pedersen, John York and Sneaky Pete all talking about Gene."
John also promises plenty on Gram Parsons, Chris Hillman, the Byrds and the Burritos, plus Buffalo Springfield, the Dillards, Poco, and other topics that will surely interest readers of this site. I encourage readers of this site to keep an eye peeled for Desperados.
April, 1999: Judith Hogan, an old high school classmate of Gene Clark, establishes a site at http://www.fortunecity.com/westwood/vivienne/328/jhgene.html containing some of her memories of Clark. The site includes some old yearbook photos that will be of interest to fans. Another nice Gene Clark site with lots of interesting photos and other info has been established by one Gonzo (apparently not the Gonzo who has a Clarence White site -- this Gonzo also likes Roky Erickson of the Thirteenth Floor Elevators) at highrise.freeservers.com/gclark.htm.
April, 1999: Relix Records releases Bicentennial Burritos, live recordings from 1976 recorded in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma; Kansas City, Missouri; and Passaic, New Jersey. The recordings feature the Airborne Burritos: Joel Scott Hill, Sneaky Pete Kleinow, Gib Guilbeau, Gene Parsons, and Skip Battin.
April, 1999: Skip Battin is no longer touring with the Byrds Celebration, having bowed out for health reasons. His place has been taken by Michael Curtis, who played with Crazy Horse in the early '70s, with one of Gene Clark's Byrds reunions in the mid-'80s, and with one of the recent Buffalo Springfield semi-reunions. The Byrds Celebration are playing dates this summer in their new 100% Byrd-free line-up.
April, 1999: Carla Olson has joined Pat Robinson and John York in a new version of "CRY," taking the place formerly held by Gene Clark. The trio is recording an album of new versions of songs originally written by Clark, Robinson and York in the '80s. A CD featuring original versions with Clark may follow at a later date. For additional information, see Pat Robinson's homepage at home.earthlink.net/~patagoura/. Projected songs include:
"I Need to Fly"
"After the Storm"
"Sleep Will Return"
"Somewhere After Midnight"
"A Rose Is A Rose"
"The Hurting Game"
"Once In A Lifetime"
"Rock of Ages"
"On the Run"
March, 1999: Sid Griffin and the Coal Porters release a live CD, The Gram Parsons Tribute Concert on the UK label Prima. Twelve of the tracks are from a live tribute show staged on the 25th anniversary of Parsons' death. There is a bonus studio version of "Apple Tree," once recorded by Johnny Rivers. The tracks are as follows:
"One Hundred Years from Now"
"Drug Store Truck Driving Man"
"(Sweet) Mental Revenge"
"(Return of the) Grievous Angel"
"In My Hour of Darkness"
"Hot Burrito #2"
"Six Days on the Road"
You can reach Prima Records at P.O. Box 2539, London NW3 6DF, UK. The internet site is 22.214.171.124/pd/SidHome.html.
March, 1999: Roger McGuinn is offering a CD, Folk Den, Vol. I, on the MP3 website (http://www.mp3.com/artists/mcguinn.html) featuring a dozen tracks from McGuinn's Folk Den website in both CD audio and MP3 formats. The CD comes without liner notes or jewel case but is available for under $9. Tracks on the CD are:
"John The Revelator"
"The Bonny Ship The Diamond"
"The Handsome Cabin Boy"
"James Alley Blues"
"Home On The Range"
"Mary Had A Baby"
March, 1999: Not Lame Records (http://www.notlame.com) a pop specialty label, announces that it will release a 2CD tribute to Gene Clark featuring Gene's brother Rick Clark, as well as such artists as Bill Lloyd, Kelly Willis, Steve Wynn, The Rooks, The Kennedys, Continental Drifters, Steve Almaas, Shazam with Brad Jones, The Shambles, Bobby Sutliff, Ghost Rockets, Frank Bango, Myracle Brah, Michael Carpenter, The Gripweeds and many others to be announced.
March, 1999: Netherlands-based CSNY fan Dolf van Stijgeren launches a new site devoted to his favorites, called "4 Way Site" at http://www.hacom.nl/~thestijg/4WaySite.
February 14, 1999: Doug Weston, former owner of the Troubadour, dies at age 72. Jim McGuinn and Gene Clark met at the Troubadour, and encountered David Crosby there as well. The photos from the 1973 reunion album were shot there. Weston's Hollywood club launched the careers of dozens of well-known musicians and comedians.
February, 1999: Benno Internet Music Magazine features an audio profile of Gene Clark, requiring RealPlayer, at http://www.benno.com/radio/focus/gene_clark/gene_clark.html.
February, 1999: Henry Diltz reissues his CD of rock photography Under the Covers, now available only through his website http://www.powernet.net/~peterb. Many of the photos will be of interest to Byrd fans, including the 1973 Byrds reunion, many shots of David Crosby and CSNY, Chris Hillman, and many other luminaries of California rock. Signed prints are also available at the above URL.
February, 1999: The February issue of British magazine Record Collector reports that a planned 4 CD box featuring unreleased Gene Clark tracks from the 1980s, tentatively titled "The Lost Decade," was slated for release sometime in 1999, but has hit snags. According to the piece, Byrds biographer Johnny Rogan was involved in the project in some capacity; Rogan is quoted as saying that the project had reached an "impasse."
February, 1999: Former Byrds roadie and soundman Stuart "Dinky" Dawson has released a memoir of his rock years, Life On The Road, (New York: Billboard Books, 1998), ISBN 0-8230-8344-6. The book, co-written by Carter Alan, begins with the original Peter Green version of Fleetwood Mac, continues with the Skip Battin-era Byrds, and moves on to, among others, the Kinks. There are several chapters on Dawson's time with the Byrds. With Byrd Gene Parsons, Dawson co-wrote "B.B. Class Road," a tribute to roadies. Dawson has a website devoted to his various ventures at http://www.dinkysworld.com.
February, 1999: Online music magazine Allstar Music News reports that the Gram Parsons tribute album Return of the Grievous Angel, produced by Emmylou Harris, will be released in mid-May, 1999 on the Almo Sounds label. Proceeds will benefit the Campaign for a Landmine Free World, a project of the Vietnam Veterans of America Foundation. The track listing will be as follows:
The Pretenders with Emmylou Harris, "She"
Cowboy Junkies, "Ooh Las Vegas"
Beck & Emmylou Harris, "Sin City"
Evan Dando & Juliana Hatfield, "$1000 Wedding"
Chris Hillman and Steve Earle, "High Fashion Queen"
Sheryl Crow & Emmylou Harris, "Juanita"
Elvis Costello, "Sleepless Nights"
Lucinda Williams & David Crosby,
"Return of the Grievous Angel"
Wilco, "100 Years"
Gillian Welch & David Rawlings, "Hickory Wind"
The Rolling Creekdippers,
"In My Hour of Darkness"
The Mavericks, "Hot Burrito #1"
December, 1998: Larry Klug writes that his great Gram Parsons website has moved to http://www.gramparsons.com.
November 29, 1998: Ben Fong-Torres writes:
"This is to let you know that my book, Hickory Wind: Life and Times of Gram Parsons, has been reissued in a revised & expanded form by St. Martin's Griffin. It's in paperback, list price $13.95, and features a new last chapter, some new photos, and, best of all, corrections of typos from the first edition! Since the first book, from Pocket/Simon & Schuster, has been out of print for years, I'd appreciate your letting GP people know about this one. Thank you."
The new edition of this book is handsome and the update will be of interest to all Parsons fans. If you haven't read this high-quality Parsons bio before, you should get your hands on this revised edition.
November, 1998: A new website called Radiodayz contains a recent interview with Roger McGuinn, which you can find at http://www.radiodayz.com/interviews/mcguinn/mcguinn.htm.
November, 1998: The November issue of MOJO (#68, Dylan cover) reports the following, confirming Bob Irwin's long-ago announcement on the Sundazed page:
"After a considerable delay, Columbia/Legacy have given a green light for expanded editions of the final three Byrds studio albums: Untitled, Byrdmaniax, and Farther Along. Even more welcome is the news that there are plans for a vintage live album 'drawn from shows taped during the band's 1969 tour,' says a source close to the project."
November, 1998: Diablo, a Demon Records label, reissues Chris Hillman's first recorded work, Bluegrass Favorites by the Scottsville Squirrel Barkers. The album was originally released in 1963 on Crown Records and intended to be sold for 99 cents in supermarkets. The album also features Kenny Wertz on banjo and Larry Murray on dobro.
October, 1998: Sierra Records is offering a limited edition video featuring Gram Parsons and Emmylou Harris performing three songs and Clarence White performing six songs. The Parsons footage dates from a gig at Liberty Hall on the Fallen Angel Tour and features "Big Mouth Blues," "New Soft Shoe," and "Streets of Baltimore." The Clarence White footage is from a guitar workshop program and features Roland White, Byron Berline and Alan Munde; tracks are "Wildwood Flower," "Listen to the Mockingbird," "The Crawdad Song," "I Am A Pilgrim," "Soldier's Joy," and "Sally Goodin." Each segment is about 20 minutes. The video is available in NTSC, PAL, and SECAM formats. Orders must be placed before November 23, 1998 by mail (check, money order or credit card), fax or e-mail (credit card). Price is $26.00 plus shipping and handling charges of $3.00 for the first item and $0.50 for each additional item in the US and Canada; $7.00 for the first item and $3.00 per additional item overseas. Mail to P.O. Box 5853, Pasadena CA 91117; Fax to 626-355-4065; e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org. (Note: The deadline for this offer was later extended to December 15, 1998; to the best of my knowledge, the deadline was never extended beyond that date and the video is no longer available.)
October, 1998: UK magazine Record Collector (#230, Beatles/Depeche Mode cover) runs a long profile of Chris Hillman, with interview, in which Hillman states that he was being treated for hepatitis that was not yet symptomatic and which had been dormant in his system for years. He described his condition as very healthy and the treatments as prophylactic in nature. The virus was the reason for the postponement of a UK tour planned for earlier in 1998.
September 23, 1998: British A&M Records at long last issues the long-promised 2-CD Gene Clark retrospective, Flying High, compiled by Sid Griffin. It covers the years 1965 to 1990, including several unreleased tracks and various other rarities. Track listing:
"You Showed Me"
"Feel A Whole Lot Better"
"Set You Free This Time"
"She Don't Care About Time"
"Tried So Hard"
"So You Say You Lost Your Baby"
"The French Girl"
"I Pity The Poor Immigrant"
"That's Alright By Me"
"Train Leaves Here This Morning"
"Why Not Your Baby"
"The Radio Song"
"Get It On Brother"
"Wall Around Your Heart"
"Through The Morning Through The Night"
"Kansas City Southern"
"One In A Hundred"
"She's The Kind Of Girl"
"The American Dreamer"
"Full Circle Song"
"In A Misty Morning"
"I Remember The Railroad"
"The True One"
"Lady Of The North"
"Hear The Wind"
"Fair & Tender Ladies"
"Mr Tambourine Man"
September 23, 1998: Meridian Green, wife of Gene Parsons and daughter of Bob Gibson, releases a new album, In the Heart of This Town, featuring Gene Parsons and harmonies and assorted instruments. The CD is available through the Stringbender website, http://www.stringbender.com/events/InTheHeart.html. The album is also available by e-mail to email@example.com, or by writing to StringBender, Box 76, Caspar, California 95420.
August 18, 1998: The Harry Smith Connection, a new tribute on Folkways Records to the Harry Smith Anthology of American Folk Music, recently reissued on Folkways, features three tracks by Roger McGuinn, performing with Jeff Tweedy and Jay Bennett of Wilco: "East Virginia Blues," "James Alley Blues," and "Sugar Baby." The tracks were recorded live at a concert saluting the Anthology, which in its original incarnation brought the folk music of the '20s and '30s to the folk revivalists of the '50s and '60s.
August, 1998: Raven Records of Australia releases Byrd Parts, a compilation of Byrd-related items, including such fascinating rarites as "Come Back Baby" and "Willie Gene" by David Crosby, "It Won't Be Wrong" by the Beefeaters, "Sum Up Broke" and "One Day Week" by the International Submarine Band, and Back Street Mirror" by David Hemmings.
July 29, 1998: Russ Kness launches a new Gene Clark website at geneclark.com.
July 22, 1998: Roland White's website is selling a three-minute video of Roland, Clarence, and Eric White playing in a local park in 1957, made from an old home movie. Interested parties should check out http://www.rolandwhite.com/video.htm or e-mail Roland at firstname.lastname@example.org.
July, 1998: Chris Hillman's new album Like A Hurricane (Sugar Hill, 1998) makes the top ten on Gavin's Americana Chart.
July, 1998: A lengthy story by Sid Griffin about the life and music of Gene Clark appears in the August issue of UK magazine MOJO (#57, Clark and a slew of other "American Masters" on the cover). Meanwhile, the release of the Griffin-compiled Clark anthology, Flying High, is postponed for the umpteenth time, this time because of the closing of A&M Records.
June 23, 1998: CPR, the debut studio album by David Crosby, Jeff Pevar and James Raymond, is released on Samson Music. The CD features eleven tracks, all written by Crosby, most in collaboration with Pevar or Raymond or both. Song titles: "Morrison," "That House," "One For Every Moment," "At the Edge," "Somebody Else's Town," "Rusty and Blue," Somehow She Knew," "Little Blind Fish," "Yesterday's Child," "It's All Coming Back to Me Now," and "Time Is the Final Currency."
Meanwhile, Chris Hillman's new album, Like a Hurricane, is released on Sugar Hill. Notable guest stars include David Crosby, Jennifer Warnes, Jerry Douglas and David Lindley, as well as former members of the Desert Rose Band John Jorgenson, Jay Dee Maness, and Steve Duncan.
June 5, 1998: In the Summer 1998 Newsletter of the Blue Cloud Abbey, Father Matthew Kowalski publishes an autobiographical piece by Roger McGuinn explaining in detail McGuinn's late '70s embrace of Christianity and renunciation of drugs. The piece is available online at http://www.bluecloud.org/summer98.html.
June 4, 1998: Variety runs a story on David Crosby's film and book project, Stand and Be Counted, chronicling the involvement of musicians in political and social causes including the civil rights struggle and the anti-war movement. Crosby has interviewed such names as Pete Seeger, Bob Dylan, Joan Baez, Bonnie Raitt, and Elton John. Crosby is co-writing the book with David Bender for Harper San Francisco. Documentarian Todd Robinson is directing the film.
June, 1998: The June issue of UK magazine Folk Roots (#180, Billy Bragg cover) features a three-page profile of Chris Hillman timed to coincide with the release of his new CD, Like A Hurricane. The July issue of UK magazine MOJO (#56, Massive Attack cover) features an 18-page profile of Gram Parsons in honor of the 25th anniversary of his death. The piece is written by Barney Hoskyns, author of Waiting for the Sun, a profile of LA's music scene from the '40s to the '90s.
Courtesy Sugar Hill Records
The remaining tracks are all written by Chris Hillman and Steve Hill. Song titles: "Back's Against the Wall," "Angles," "Cry," "Sooner or Later," "Carry Me Home," "Run Again," "Second Wind," "Like a Hurricane," "Living on the Edge," "Forgiveness," "I'm Still Alive" (which features David Crosby on harmony vocals) and "Heaven's Lullaby."
May 8, 1998: Chris Hillman's ten-date European tour is postponed for health-related reasons, according to an e-mail from Hillman to Richard Russell, adminstrator of the Byrdmaniax mailing list and webmaster of the Byrd's Nest website.
"I had to postpone the tour due to a temporary setback with my health which will require me to stay in the States and get some medication for a few months," Hillman said. In a subsequent interview in the October 1998 issue of Record Collector, Hillman stated that he was being treated for hepatitis that was not yet symptomatic and which had been dormant in his system for years.
May, 1998: David Crosby's new band, CPR -- featuring Jeff Pevar and James Raymond -- has launched its own website, http://www.crosbycpr.com. Crosby is listed as one of the webmasters of the site. It features news, reviews, tour schedules and other CPR info.
The site will also sell CPR albums and T-shirts. Advance copies of the forthcoming CPR album on Samson are offered, as is a self-released live CD called Live at Cuesta College. The two-CD set features an entire evening recorded on January 19, 1997 at Cuesta College in San Luis Obispo, California. Four of the tunes are new and slated to appear on the group's studio debut this summer: "Morrison," "Somehow She Knew," "Time Is the Final Currency," and "One For Every Moment." Other tracks span Crosby's career, from "Guinnevere" to "Rusty and Blue." The CDs can also be ordered by phone at 888-867-7938.
May, 1998: As the 25th anniversary of his untimely death approaches, Clarence White is the subject of a lengthy profile in the June issue of Acoustic Guitar and another story in the June issue of Flat Pick Guitar, UK magazine. Crosby and Nash are also the subjects of a cover story in the June/July issue of Dirty Linen, focusing on the release of Another Stoney Evening (Grateful Dead Records, 1997).
April 21, 1998: Mobile Fidelity releases a Gold Disc version of the Byrds album (Untitled). The album is remastered and features new liner notes by Roger McGuinn. It has no additional tracks. No word on what impact, if any, this release will have on the third wave of Sony Byrds reissues, reportedly slated for later this year, which would presumably include (Untitled).
April 20, 1998: Crosby, Stills and Nash have recorded eight tracks for a planned CSN album, including a version of "Turn! Turn! Turn!," according to an e-mail from Graham Nash to Hans Veldhuizen, the webmaster of the Crosby Stills & Nash Website. Nash states that the band are considering selling demos for the new album online.
March 31, 1998: David Crosby has signed a deal for release of the new CPR album in June, to be followed by a European tour, according to Hans Veldhuizen, the webmaster of the Crosby Stills & Nash Website. In the US, Samson Records will release the eponymous debut album by CPR, Crosby's new group. Sony will distribute the disc in the US. The album was recorded in August of 1997. Other members of CPR are Jeff Pevar and Crosby's son, James Raymond.
A European tour will kick off with the Montreux Jazz Festival in Switzerland on July 14. Dates in Italy are scheduled, and dates are being sought in the Netherlands, France, the UK, and Ireland. A CPR US tour is slated for May and June.
March 28, 1998: Chris Hillman joins Roger McGuinn onstage for several numbers at the Suwannee Springfest. The two play "So You Want to Be a Rock and Roll Star," "Feel a Whole Lot Better," "She Don"t Care About Time," "The Christian Life," "Hickory Wind," and "Chimes of Freedom." It is the first time the pair have performed together since the reunion shows with David Crosby in the early '90s.
Hillman had earlier that day performed a set with Herb Pedersen, Tony Rice and Larry Rice, consisting of songs from their joint release Out of the Woodwork (Rounder, 1997).
March 22, 1998: David Crosby is the subject of an episode of Behind the Music, VH-1's rockumentary series. The hour-long program combines video, music and interview footage with Crosby and other principles in his story. Check VH-1's website to see when the episode will be rerun.
February 5, 1998: Chris Hillman opens for Crosby, Stills and Nash at the Thousand Oaks Civic Center in California. At the end of Hillman's set, David Crosby joins him onstage for duets on "Mr. Tambourine Man" and "Turn, Turn, Turn."
January 31, 1998: Roy Josephson reports that Gene Parsons and Merdian Green have three musical releases slated for 1998. In April, Meridian Green will release In the Heart of This Town, with Parsons making a guest appearance. A joint release by the two, If I Were A River, is scheduled for August release. And November should bring the first Parsons solo album since Melodies (Sierra, 1980), tentatively named Dark Moon. Parsons and Green can be reached at email@example.com or by regular mail at P.O. Box 1354, Mendocino, CA 95460. They have also launched a website for their Stringbender business, http://www.stringbender.com.
January 31, 1998: In an e-mail to Richard Russell of the Byrdmaniax mailing list and the Byrd's Nest website, Chris Hillman reports that the release date for his long-awaited solo album has been pushed back from April to approximately June of 1998. "This may be the toughest project I've ever done but it also might be the best I've ever done," says Hillman.
January 27, 1998: According to ICE, a 2-CD Pete Seeger tribute on Appleseed Recordings called "Where Have All the Flowers Gone: The Songs of Pete Seeger" is scheduled for release on March 17. Roger McGuinn performs an acoustic version of "Bells of Rhymney."
January 27, 1998: Roger McGuinn contributes his trademark guitar sound to the single "Lights Are Changing" by Mary Lou Lord. The track can be found on her new album, Got No Shadow (Sony, 1998). Until the release of this CD, Lord was best known for her romantic liaison with the late Kurt Cobain and for playing her guitar in the subway.
January 23, 1998: Rocktropolis Allstar Daily Music News reports that Beck and Emmylou Harris have recorded a duet version of "Sin City" for a forthcoming Gram Parsons tribute album. Harris is the executive producer of the project, slated for Almo Sounds. (Almo is owned by Herb Alpert and Jerry Moss, the former heads of A&M Records, which signed Parsons as one of the Flying Burrito Brothers in 1968.) No release date has been set, but Harris has named Elvis Costello, Chrissie Hynde, and Brian Eno as possible participants.
January 17, 1998: In an e-mail to Ralf Narfeldt of the Gene Clark mailing list and the Gene Clark Homepage, Sid Griffin reports that the release date for the long-awaited Gene Clark retrospective Flying High has been set for April. Griffin has also been commisioned to write a Gene Clark article for April issue of UK music magazine Mojo, for which he is seeking original (unheard) stories and photos, particularly from the Dillard & Clark period, the late 70's and the early 80's. If you have anything to contribute, Griffin's address is: Sid Griffin, P.O. Box 2539, London, England, NW3 6DF United Kingdom.
January 12, 1998: Bernie Leadon is inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame with the Eagles. Leadon was a founding member of that band, along with Glenn Frey, Don Henley, and Randy Meisner. Leadon joins his former bandmates, Gene Clark, with whom Leadon played in the Dillard & Clark Expedition, and Chris Hillman, with whom Leadon played in the Flying Burrito Brothers. Both Clark and Hillman were inducted as members of the Byrds in 1991.
January, 1998: The January issue of UK magazine Record Collector (#221, Queen cover) features Johnny Rogan's account of the writing -- and rewriting -- of Timeless Flight.
December, 1997: Johnny Rogan's updated Byrds bio, Timeless Flight Revisited: The Sequel is released in hardback in the UK. (London: Rogan House, 1997). 720 pp. ISBN: 0-95295-401-x. £20.00; about US$35.00. This book is not really a sequel but a "director's cut," and like most director's cuts, it's longer than the original release. More than twice as long, in this case, but that's all to the good if you're a fan of the Byrds. Rogan's updated book will certainly become the bible for all serious Byrdmaniacs. This version covers the entire history of the band and features lots of new research, which we can actually discern thanks to the inclusion of endnotes. An index also makes this hefty tome even easier to use than its shorter predecessors. An American release is planned, as is a softcover version. UK readers should be able to order it from book and CD shops. For those outside the UK who can't wait, the book states that mail order copies may be obtained from the following address: Rogan House, P.O. Box 12728, London SW1P 4FB, England. Write first about prices. I was able to obtain an imported copy quickly from an American CD shop called Music Machine: Phone # (410) 356-4567; e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org; website: http://www.musicmachine.com.
November 10, 1997: Sundazed Scene, the online newsletter of Sundazed Records at http://www.sundazed.com, reports that label head Bob Irwin has been retained to remaster the last three Sony Byrds albums. (Untitled), Byrdmaniax and Farther Along are planned for reissue sometime in 1998. Irwin is responsible for the eight Byrds reissues to date, as well as the Byrds Boxed Set.
November, 1997: Another Stoney Evening, a live Crosby-Nash recording of an October 10, 1971 date in LA, is released on Grateful Dead Records. The CD will be picked up by BMG/Arista in January. Grateful Dead Records can be reached at 1-800-CAL-DEAD in the US and 415-884-5500 overseas. The CD can also be ordered through Crosby Stills & Nash World Headquarters, a new official website at http://www.CrosbyStillsNash.com.
October 25, 1997: Roger McGuinn plays a concert at the Barns of Wolf Trap in Northern Virginia, celebrating Harry Smith's Anthology of American Folk Music and its legacy. The Smith anthology was a seminal collection for a generation of folk musicians in the '50s and early '60s and has recently been reissued on CD. Backing McGuinn were Jeff Tweedy and Jay Bennett of Wilco.
October 23, 1997: David Crosby undergoes successful surgery to repair a torn muscle in his abdomen resulting from his liver transplant surgery several years earlier.
October 22, 1997: Japanese label WAWON releases Rock And Roll Doctor, a tribute to Lowell George of Little Feat. Chris Hillman and Jennifer Warnes duet on "Straight from the Heart," produced by Hillman's long-time musical partner, Herb Pedersen. Also featured on the track are other former members of the Desert Rose Band, John Jorgenson, Jay Dee Maness, and Steve Duncan. Also saluting George are J.D. Souther, Taj Mahal, Bonnie Raitt, Allen Toussaint, Jackson Browne, Randy Newman and the Bottle Rockets. No word yet on the release of this album outside Japan.
October, 1997: Gene Parsons has launched a website for his Stringbender business, http://www.stringbender.com. Though the emphasis is on the Stringbender, the site also promises news about the recording projects of Gene Parsons and Meridian Green, and sound clips.
September 7, 1997: Derek Taylor, former press officer for both the Byrds and the Beatles, dies of cancer in his Suffolk home after a long illness. Taylor was a journalist who was hired as PR man for the Beatles in the early days of Beatlemania. In 1965 he emigrated to LA and was soon the press agent for the fledgling Byrds. As Taylor was well-known from his stint with "the Fabs" (as he always referred to them), his association with the Byrds added greatly to their credibility in the music business and with music fans. Taylor also worked for the Beach Boys, the Mamas and the Papas, Buffalo Springfield and the Doors. In early 1968 he returned to the UK to head up Apple Corps for the Beatles. He enjoyed a reputation as a smart and decent man. In recent years, Taylor was involved with archival Beatles releases such as the 20th Anniversary edition of Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band and the various Anthology sets.
August 21, 1997: Sierra Records launches its new website at http://www.sierra-records.com. Sierra carries many Byrds related releases, including just about every Byrds-related CD, LP or cassette currently in print. Sierra has also recently reissued Nashville West, a live album featuring Clarence White, Gene Parsons and Gib Guilbeau, recorded shortly before White and Parsons joined the Byrds.
Late Summer, 1997: Ether/American Harvest finally releases the new LP by the most recent iteration of the Flying Burrito Brothers, featuring Sneeky Pete Kleinow, Gib Guilbeau and John Beland. The album features a load of interesting guest stars (like Buck Owens!) and some interesting covers. For more news about this release see the last Flying Burrito Brothers Chapter.
May 4 - 6, 1997: Their Hall of Fame induction weekend begins with a show of class, when Crosby Stills & Nash make a brief, free appearance at Kent State University. They appear as part of a ceremony marking the anniversary of the murder of four Kent State students in 1970 by National Guardsmen during a protest against the escalation of the Vietnam War. The group sings "Ohio," the Neil Young composition inspired by those deaths which was released as a single by CSNY in 1970.
The next night, CSN appear at the Agora Theater, so that their fans get a chance to celebrate the induction. Nash also has a display of his photography in a local gallery, where the three meet and greet many fans.
On May 6, David Crosby becomes one of the few double inductees into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame when Crosby, Stills & Nash are inducted. Stephen Stills becomes the first musician to be inducted twice in one night, as Buffalo Springfield are being similarly honored. Nash suggests with tongue halfway in cheek that a write-in campaign for the Hollies might be in order.
Neil Young also becomes a double inductee that night as a part of Springfield, but skips the ceremony after squabbling with hall staff about having to pay $1500 a seat for his family to attend, other than the one free guest ticket provided for each artist. Crosby later releases an e-mail expressing support for Young's decision, which can be read on Hans Veldhuizen's Crosby Stills & Nash Website. Crosby, like Young, also objects to the sale of television rights to VH-1 without any compensation to the performers.
March 23, 1997: In a blatant attempt to capitalize on the rollout of the ByrdWatcher Website, Sony releases the long-awaited second wave of Byrds reissues: Notorious Byrd Brothers, Sweetheart of the Rodeo, Dr. Byrds & Mr. Hyde and Ballad of Easy Rider. As with the first batch, these sport cool bonus tracks, nice liner notes by David Fricke and Johnny Rogan, and terrific sound from Sundazed Supremo Bob Irwin.
Courtesy Rounder Records
January 14, 1997: Rounder Records releases Out of the Woodwork, a new album featuring Chris Hillman, Herb Pedersen and the Rice Brothers, Larry and Tony.
Late 1996:Windsong Records releases Three Byrds Land in London, featuring Roger McGuinn, Chris Hillman, and Gene Clark. The album captures a pair of live shows recorded for the BBC in the spring of '77. These shows pre-date (and eventually led to) the formation of McGuinn, Clark & Hillman, so they contain live sets by each former Byrd backed by his own band. All three unite for a finale of three Byrds songs.
November 1996: Hollywood Records releases Live from Mars, the new album by Roger McGuinn. The album features a live tour through McGuinn's own back pages, with explanatory stories for each tune. As a bonus, there are two new studio cuts recorded with Gary Louris and Marc Perlman of the Jayhawks.
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