Pearl Jam guitarist Mike McCready has shared footage of a recording session he did late last year with five young men who lived in foster care. The session took place at Pearl Jam's private studio and the goal was to write and record a brand new song -- which is what they did, creating a tune called "Try So Hard." McCready explained to Rolling Stone, "This was a bunch of guys that had never met each other, so you never know how that's going to go."

McCready met the musicians, aged between 15 and 20, through a non-profit organization called Treehouse, which helps foster kids in Washington State graduate high school and prepare for adulthood. He was impressed by what he saw when he volunteered a few years back for the organization, saying, "They help foster kids that are in dire need of finishing their education, providing funding for summer camps and lessons, even new clothes -- all the things a lot of us take for granted."

  • McCready continued to help raise funds and participate in events for Treehouse, eventually putting together the idea of a recording session.
  • The session lasted four hours, with 20-year-old Franky Price providing most of the vocal lines on the song and 17-year-old Rickardo Mendiola laying down guitar.
  • McCready said about the results, "The song just organically happened. We were sitting around, and it was amazing that it came together the way it did . . . They created a song, and I got to play along with it."
  • Pearl Jam has been writing its 11th studio LP and is heading out on European and North American tour dates this spring and summer.

Story source: Rolling Stone

CHECK IT OUT: Watch a featurette on the recording session:


Disturbed has posted a short video online featuring footage from the band's latest sessions at The Hideout Recording Studio in Las Vegas, Nevada with producer Kevin Churko. The presence of acoustic guitars and brush-stroke percussion in the clip might be confirmation of the group's stated plans to record an acoustic EP before moving forward on its seventh full-length studio LP.

  • Draiman revealed a year ago that Disturbed was planning to record an acoustic EP, explaining, "That's something we've wanted to do for years that we just never had the time or the opportunity to."
  • An acoustic EP now could capitalize on the success Disturbed has had with its cover of Simon & Garfunkel's "The Sound Of Silence," a massive hit that introduced the band to new audiences.
  • Both "The Sound Of Silence" and the album it was included on, 2015's Immortalized, were certified platinum for sales of over one million copies.
  • Immortalized ended a four-year hiatus for the quartet and was its fifth album to enter the Billboard 200 chart at Number One.

Story source: Blabbermouth

CHECK IT OUT: See the clip of Disturbed in the studio:


On August 14th, Gene Simmons will publish his latest book, titled 27: The Legend And Mythology Of The 27 Club, via the powerHouse Books imprint. The book, chronicles the many rock legends who died at 27 -- Jimi Hendrix, Kurt Cobain, Janis Joplin, Brian Jones, Jim Morrison, Amy Winehouse, blues pioneer Robert Johnson, Grateful Dead co-founder Ron "Pigpen: McKernan, Badfinger's Pete Ham, Big Star's Chris Bell and many more. quoted the Kiss bassist talking about the premature deaths on a recent radio interview, explaining, "Frances Bean, Kurt Cobain's daughter, is friends with my son, they hang out. You should read the quotes she does in the media. 'Hey, it's real cool your father dies while you're still a baby from drugs.' No, it ain't. It sucks."

Obviously overlooking the fact that not every musician that died at 27 was due to a drug problem -- Pete Ham hung himself; Chris Bell died in a car crash, and Brian Jones drowned -- not to mention that Kurt Cobain shot himself; Simmons went on to say: "You'd be shocked at how deep this runs mysteriously. But, again, it's not about the idea that it's 27, although we ask that question: 'Why then? Why not 28? Why not 30?' and all that. But it's really about when you become rich and famous and everybody admires you, what is that thing that makes people destroy themselves, even to die? What is that? The rest of the world adores you and your fans love you and they give you money and fame and all that, and then you kill yourself. I don't get it."

  • The official synopsis of the book touches upon the mystery of one of rock's greatest questions: "In 27, rock legend Gene Simmons of Kiss fame, a man with over 10 million album sales and many a story to his name, will serve as our guide to the enigmatic 27 club, examining sex, drugs, and rock n' roll from the inside, and answering our enduring questions. . . Why do we find ourselves obsessed with the untimely deaths of the famous and the infamous? Is the 27 club just a compelling urban legend? What does age 27 really mean for our most beautiful and damned?"
  • Over the years, Gene Simmons have never hidden his feelings about drug use, even when his bandmates were involved. He says that drugs are the number one reason for bands failing to live up to their potential
  • The Gene Simmons Band will next perform on May 3rd in Saint Charles, Illinois at the Arcada Theatre.

READ: Full Gene Simmons piece:


Sum 41 will embark on a tour celebrating the 15th anniversary of the band's 2002 sophomore album, Does This Look Infected?. The North American jaunt will start on April 27th in San Francisco and sprint through 20 cities, winding down on May 26th in Los Angeles. Although the group toured in 2012 for the LP's 10th anniversary, original guitarist Dave Baksh will be part of the lineup this time following his return to the group in 2015.

  • Frontman Deryck Whibley said in a statement, "Out of nowhere we started to receive messages from fans asking us to do another DTLI anniversary tour . . . and when the fans call, we go."
  • VIP packages for the tour will be available on Wednesday (February 14th). All other tickets will be available this Friday (February 16th).
  • The group will play the album in its entirety. The disc was best known for the Top 10 single "Still Waiting," but it also spawned the tracks "The Hell Song" and "Over My Head (Better Off Dead)." The album peaked at Number 32 on the Billboard 200 album chart and was certified gold.
  • Sum 41's most recent album was 2016's 13 Voices.
  • Confirmed Sum 41 tour dates (subject to change):
    May 4 – Dallas, TX - House of Blues
    May 5 – Houston, TX - House of Blues

Story source: Consequence Of Sound

CHECK IT OUT: Watch the video for "Still Waiting":


Former Smashing Pumpkins bassist D'arcy Wretzky has given her first full interview in nearly 20 years with Alternative Nation, in which she slams Pumpkins frontman William Corgan for saying that she turned down offers to play with the band again. Although Corgan claimed within the past week that Wretzky had repeatedly skipped opportunities to get together, Wretzky said the opposite was true and that she was never given any real chance to rejoin the group.

Wretzky said, "(Corgan) says that he’s invited me to come out and play for all of these things, which is a complete lie. He’s never invited me to anything . . . They hired Jack Bates for this tour. I made Billy spell it out, because he was doing his nonsense double talk crap bulls**t."

  • Wretzky also claimed that Corgan offered to have her come out and do sporadic appearances on the upcoming reunion tour, with Wretzky saying, "It was just unbelievable, really just disgusting. The f**king nerve, and then for him to come back and say, ‘Well, we haven’t seen you in this long, and you haven’t done this, and you couldn’t even make it to this. Everyone has shown up, and you didn’t?’ How could I, I didn’t even know you were there?"
  • Bates, the son of Joy Division and New Order co-founder Peter Hook, played bass on the last Pumpkins tour.
  • Wretzky also addressed her long-rumored drug use, saying, "You know how they’re always telling you in school drugs will do this to you; they’ll do that to you, drinking kills your brain cells? At the time I was like good, maybe I can kill off all these horrible memories . . . I wouldn’t recommend it, it didn’t work. I count myself lucky to be alive."
  • She saved her most pointed responses for Corgan, however, saying, "Billy loved to humiliate people and shame people in front of other people. It was incredibly abusive, and I was the only one who would fight back.”
  • Wretzky also released an exchange of text messages between her and Corgan that seem to back up the idea that she was not going to be the full-time bass player on the reunion tour or any future recordings, but more or less appear as a "special guest."
  • The Pumpkins are expected to announce this Thursday (February 15th) a tour involving the other three original members as well as some new music.

Story source: Alternative Nation

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