Robert Plant Featured on Fairport Convention's Upcoming 50th Anniversary Album

    Ed Miles; Courtesy of Fairport ConventionLed Zeppelin's Robert Plant makes a guest appearance on the upcoming album by Fairport Convention, 50:50@50, which celebrates the British folk-rock band's 50th anniversary. Plant lends vocals to a rendition of the vintage spiritual tune "Jesus on the Mainline," which was recorded at a concert in Banbury, U.K.

    According to a message from longtime Fairport Convention bass player Simon Pegg posted on the band's official website, 50:50@50 features half studio tracks and half live performances recorded at various U.K. shows, including at the band's annual summer festival, Cropredy.

    Plant's connection to Fairport dates back to 1971, when he duetted with the group's then-lead singer Sandy Denny on the Led Zeppelin song "The Battle for Evermore." Robert also performed with Fairport at the Cropedy Festival in 1986 and 2008.

    50:50@50 is scheduled to be officially released on CD and digitally on March 10, but pre-release copies can be purchased now at Fairport Convention's online store. You also can check out clips of each track on the album at the site.

    Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

    Rick Springfield to Host 2018 80s Cruise; Lineup Also Features Mike + the Mechanics, Lou Gramm & More

    Credit: Jay GilbertRick Springfield will host and headline the 2018 edition of The 80s Cruise, which takes place in March of next year. The Australian pop-rocker will become the first music star to serve as emcee of the seagoing festival, which also will feature Mike + the Mechanics, original Foreigner frontman Lou Gramm, Loverboy, The Tubes, Thomas Dolby, ex-Katrina & the Waves singer Katrina Leskanich and Tommy Tutone.

    The 2018 80s Cruise will embark from Fort Lauderdale, Florida, on March 17 and will visit Nassau in the Bahamas; St. Thomas; Tortola in the British Virgin Islands; and CocoCay in the Bahamas before returning to port on March 24.

    During the cruise, Springfield will lead parties, play three headlining concerts, make appearances at other artists' sets and take part in an autograph session, a Q&A event, a celebrity poker tournament and an '80s-themed game show. Co-hosting the nautical extravaganza will be original MTV VJs Mark Goodman, Nina Blackwood and Alan Hunter.

    "When the producers of The 80s Cruise asked me to be the first artist to ever host the cruise, I wanted to do it right -- which means doing it big," says Springfield in a statement. "I will be everywhere on the ship!"

    In conjunction with the cruise's theme, '80s music videos and movies will play non-stop in all the cabins, while the ship also will feature an old-school video-game arcade.

    For more details, visit The80sCruise.com.

    First up, however, is The 80s Cruise's 2017 installment, which runs from February 11 to February 18 and stops at Cozumel, Mexico; Grand Cayman; Ocho Rios, Jamaica; and CocoCay. The star-studded lineup of performers includes Cheap Trick, Belinda Carlisle, Men at Work singer Colin Hay, The Romantics, Morris Day and the Time, Survivor, Berlin, Howard Jones, Debbie Gibson and Men Without Hats.

    Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

    Madonna Defends “Blowing Up the White House” Comment: “I Am Not a Violent Person”

    Paul Morigi/WireImageThere were lots of celebrity speakers at the Women’s March on Washington Saturday, but perhaps none of them made the headlines that surprise speaker Madonna did.

    She defended remarks she made at the event, including the lines: "Yes, I'm angry. Yes, I am outraged. Yes, I have thought an awful lot about blowing up the White House, but I know that this won't change anything. We cannot fall into despair."

    "I am not a violent person, I do not promote violence and it's important people hear and understand my speech in it's entirety rather than one phrase taken wildly out of context," she wrote on Instagram Sunday.

    "My speech began with 'I want to start a revolution of love.' I then go on to take this opportunity to encourage women and all marginalized people to not fall into despair but rather to come together and use it as a starting point for unity and to create positive change in the world," she said.

    "I spoke in metaphor and I shared two ways of looking at things -- one was to be hopeful, and one was to feel anger and outrage, which I have personally felt," Madonna added. "However, I know that acting out of anger doesn't solve anything. And the only way to change things for the better is to do it with love."

    The singer ended her statement with saying that it was "an honor to be part of an audience chanting 'we choose love.'"

    Kellyanne Conway, special counselor to President Trump, called out Madonna for her "profanity-laced" speech Sunday on ABC's This Week.

    "You have a very prominent singer who's worth hundreds of millions of dollars not going over to a woman's shelter here in D.C. to write a check, but instead saying that she thought of, quote, 'burning down the White House,'" Conway said.

    By the way, Taylor Swift's normally not one to get political, but she made a mild exception for the Women's March, tweeting Saturday. "So much love, pride, and respect for those who marched. I'm proud to be a woman today, and every day."

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    David Crosby Debuts New Protest Song, "Capitol," Online

    Credit: Henry DiltzDavid Crosby's latest solo album, Lighthouse, was released in October, but fans can already get a taste of the folk-rock legend's next record by checking out his new protest song "Capitol" at his son James Raymond's SoundCloud page. In a post on his Twitter feed, Crosby explains that the tune is about "our shameful U.S. Congress."

    The 75-year-old Rock and Roll Hall of Famer says the song will appear on his forthcoming album, which tentatively is called Sky Trails and is due out in the spring. Crosby co-wrote "Capitol" with Raymond, with whom he frequently collaborates and who has served as Crosby, Stills and Nash's touring keyboardist in recent years.

    The tune is a pointed critique of corruption in the U.S. government. Here's one of the song's verses: "They come for the power, for the power they stay/ And they'll do anything to keep it that way/ They'll ignore the Constitution, and hide behind the scenes/ Anything to stay a part of the machine."

    The musicians who contributed to the track include Raymond, acclaimed session guitarists Dean Marks and Greg Leisz, saxophonist Steve Tavaglione, journeyman studio bassist Andrew Ford and CSN touring drummer Steve DiStanislao.

    David also revealed in another Twitter message that he's been recording new tracks with guitarist Jeff Pevar, who used to play with Crosby and Raymond in the band CPR.

    Crosby currently has just one gig on his 2017 schedule, a February 10 appearance at the GroundUp Music Festival in Miami Beach, Florida. The three-day event, which runs from February 10 to February 12, is headlined by the modern-jazz collective Snarky Puppy, whose leader, Michael League, produced and was David's main collaborator on Lighthouse.

    Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

    Pat Benatar Releases New Song, "Shine," in Solidarity with Women's March on Washington

    Al Pereira/WireImagePat Benatar released a brand-new song titled "Shine" on Friday in support of the Women's March on Washington, which takes place in the U.S. capital on Saturday. The track, which was co-written with renowned songwriter and producer Linda Perry, is the Benatar's first new song in more than 10 years.

    While she isn't able to attend the march, the legendary singer says she's releasing the song to coincide with the event because she wants to show her "support for everyone marching and the importance of standing up for women's rights." Pat adds, "By joining together and lifting each other up, we will show the world that women's rights must continue to move forward -- we're not going back."

    Along with the release "Shine," a new campaign called Shine Together conceived by Benatar has been launched in support of the Women's March. According to a press statement, Shine Together "is a movement that uses the universal language of song to inspire women to support each other and continue to move forward on issues affecting women of all races, ethnicities and backgrounds."

    "Shine" is available for purchase now as a digital download via ShineTogether.info and at iTunes, Amazon and other online music sellers. The track is priced at 69 cents to draw attention to the per-dollar wage gap that exists between men and women in the U.S. Proceeds from the tune will be donated to the B.A. Rudolph Foundation, which supports women who are seeking careers in public service and government.

    You can check out an official video for "Shine" now on YouTube. The clip shows Benatar working on the track in the studio with Perry and Pat's husband and longtime guitarist Neil Giraldo.

    Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

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