Recently by Chris Gerard

The Top 10 on the Billboard Hot 100 this week 30 years ago featured a classic mix of R&B, pop and new wave hits. From the chart published April 21, 1984: 10. Tracey Ullman – “They Don’t Know” Written and originally recorded by British singer/songwriter Kirsty MacColl, Tracey Ullman’s cover of “They Don’t Know” would become her only Top 40 ... [Read]

The LGBTQ Academy of Recording Arts (LARA), which presents the yearly OUTMUSIC Awards, has announced the production of a new full-length documentary. For Which WE Stand (One Queer Music Nation in The Visible) will highlight LGBTQ artists through numerous interviews with musicians and music-industry insiders as well as live performances and behind-the-scenes footage. The film is being directed by Sean ... [Read]

Contemporary Christian music isn’t a format where one might think to look for vocal supporters of same-sex marriage, but as with anything else times are changing. Dan Haseltine, front-man for the popular Christian band Jars of Clay, yesterday took to his Twitter account in a series of posts supportive of same-sex marriage, posting “Not meaning to stir things up BUT… ... [Read]

Prince’s acrimonious two-decade long battle with Warner Bros. Records, the label for which he recorded all of his ‘80s classics and a couple ‘90s releases as well, appears to have finally come to an end. On Friday, Warner Bros. announced a new deal with Prince that will grant him the ownership rights to his master recordings -- something he has ... [Read]

April 5th marked the 20th anniversary of former Nirvana vocalist Kurt Cobain’s death, and coincidentally last week Nirvana was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in their first year of eligibility -- a rare honor, but one they deserve without question. It’s astonishing to believe that two decades have passed since Cobain’s apparent suicide. Nirvana changed the ... [Read]

The Billboard Hot 100 for this week 28 years ago, in the edition published on April 5, 1986, was a particularly good one.  Nine of the fifteen tracks would eventually peak in the Top 3, so a lot of mid-80s classics here. 15. Starship – “Sara” During the mid-‘80s, the ever-evolving Starship (which had very little to do with its ... [Read]

If anybody had told me when I was 12 years old and listening to Cyndi Lauper’s She’s So Unusual incessantly on my bedroom turntable that I’d still be playing it on vinyl 30 years later, I suspect I would have just laughed incredulously. After all, to a 12-year old, 30 years is an eternity -- an unimaginably vast expanse of ... [Read]

On Friday, March 21, 2014, British musical icon Kate Bush made a casual announcement on her website that caused shockwaves of disbelief and feverish anticipation within the music industry and her devoted fan-base: after a 35-year absence from touring, she will return to the stage this coming August for a series of shows entitled Before the Dawn at the London ... [Read]

Legendary singer and actress Diana Ross turns 70 today. Her career in the music industry and legacy of success is untouchable. As a solo artist and with The Supremes -- including soundtracks, live albums and compilations -- Diana Ross has registered an amazing 59 albums on the Billboard Top 200, and 72 singles on the Hot 100 pop chart (41 ... [Read]

Sir Elton John is often recognized by fans and critics more for his long string of classic singles than for his albums. It is true that during certain periods of his career -- the 1980s leap to mind immediately -- his albums tended to have a couple great singles and then loads of filler. That said, it is also a ... [Read]

The legendary British musical icon, Kate Bush, is never predictable, but nobody could have imagined the news that hit this morning and sent shock waves through the music industry: the reclusive artist will perform live for the first time in 35 years with a series of 15 shows at the London Eventim Apollo in Hammersmith starting April 26, 2014. Ticket ... [Read]

As the ‘80s faded into the ‘90s, many so-called 'Children of MTV' and fans of punk, post-punk and new wave bands turned away from the Top 40, which had become increasingly dominated by hip-hop, R&B and dance-pop. College radio had always been an important factor for many music fans, but by the time the ‘90s rolled around there were major ... [Read]

Twelve Outstanding Albums to start 2014

Posted by Chris Gerard
March 20, 2014 10:53 AM |
2013 was a terrific year for music -- there were dozens of outstanding releases, 30 of which we compiled in a list of last year's best.  So far 2014 is starting out at least as strong. There have been some outstanding albums issued already in the first three months of the year. Below is a selection of 12 of the ... [Read]

Twenty-four years ago this week, on March 19, 1990, British synth-pop titans Depeche Mode released the most successful and acclaimed album of their career:  Violator. Depeche Mode had been scoring Top 10 singles in their native UK since their debut album Speak and Spell in 1981, but in America they were largely relegated to college radio and, in some cases, ... [Read]

George Michael hasn’t released a new studio album in a decade, and it seems fans yearning for one will need yet a little more patience. Michael’s new album Symphonica, out this week, is a document of his 2011-2012 tour in which he performed a mixture of covers, jazz standards and selected nuggets from his own back catalog with an orchestral ... [Read]