Elton John Lyricist Bernie Taupin's Paintings to Be Displayed at Two New York Shows

    Rebecca Sapp/WireImageBernie Taupin is famous for writing the words to all of Elton's John's mega hits, but the lyricist also is a painter, and his artwork will be in the spotlight this month at two shows in New York's exclusive beachfront Hamptons communty.

    Mark Borghi Fine Art is mounting a retrospective Taupin show, titled "BLUEPRINT," at its Bridgehampton, New York, location.  The exhibit will include 16 contemporary and abstract works that reflect Taupin's influences from the art of the 1950s and '60s.  That show will run from July 12 through July 26, and Taupin himself will be in attendance at an opening reception on July 11, at 6 p.m. ET. 

    Meanwhile, in nearby Water Mill, New York, Taupin's newest works will be on display in an exhibit titled "Plain Brown Wrapper," at the Art Southampton art fair, which takes place July 10-13.  Bernie also will be on hand for an opening reception at Water Mill's Parrish Art Museum this Thursday, July 9, at 6 p.m. ET.  For more information visit Art-Southampton.com.

    Since Taupin took up painting in the early '90s, his work has been displayed at exhibitions in New York, Miami, Chicago and Los Angeles.  You can get a taste of Bernie's abstract expressionist and pop art influenced work at BernieTaupinArt.com.

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    Pink Floyd's "The Dark Side of the Moon" Among the 10 Best-Selling Vinyl Albums of 2015

    EMI MusicPink Floyd's The Dark Side of the Moon may be more than 40 years old, but, according to Nielsen Music, it's one of the 10 top-selling albums for the first half of 2015…on vinyl, that is.  The classic 1973 album landed at #7 on the 2015 Nielsen Music U.S. Mid-Year Report's Top LP Vinyl Albums list after selling 22,600 copies.

    The report reveals that sales of vinyl records have increased by 38-percent from last year, and now comprise almost nine percent of all physical album sales.  At #1 on the vinyl albums tally is pop superstar Taylor Swift's 1989, which has sold 33,500 copies. 

    Pink Floyd is one of the only classic-rock acts to appear in the top 10 of any of the lists featured in the 2015 Nielsen Music U.S. Mid-Year Report.  The only other veteran rocker is Paul McCartney, whose collaboration with Rihanna and Kanye West "FourFiveSeconds" landed at #9 on the Top Digital Songs tally, with more than 1.8 million copies downloaded.

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    Grateful Dead Wraps Fare Thee Well Tour in Chicago

    Jeff Kravitz/FilmMagicThe core surviving members of The Grateful Dead completed their Fare Thee Well Tour Sunday with the third of three shows at Chicago's Soldier Field.

    As was the case for their shows in Santa Clara, California, a week earlier, Dead rhythm guitarist Bob Weir, bassist Phil Lesh, and drummers Mickey Hart and Bill Kreutzmann were joined during the weekend by Phish frontman Trey Anastasio, Bruce Hornsby, and keyboardist Jeff Chimenti.

    Among the fans at Friday's show was Donald Strong, who along with his girlfriend had traveled from Charleston, South Carolina -- a 15-hour drive. He explained, "It's all about passion and love of Jerry Garcia and The Grateful Dead."

    Saturday's performance was attended by celebrities including Katy Perry, her on-again, off-again boyfriend John Mayer, and Woody Harrelson, Billboard reports.

    In addition, President Obama wrote a message in acknowledgement of the Fare Thee Well Tour, stating, "Here's to fifty years of the Grateful Dead, an iconic American band that embodies the creativity, passion, and ability to bring people together that makes American music so great. Enjoy this weekend's celebration of your fans and legacy.

    "And as Jerry would say, 'Let there be songs to fill the air,'" he added, referring to the late Jerry Garcia.

    “The feeling we have here -- remember it, take it home and do some good with it," Mickey Hart said in closing, according to The New York Times.  "I’ll leave you with this: Please, be kind.”

    Here's the set list for Saturday's concert, according to LiveMusicBlog.com:

    Set One:
    "Shakedown Street"
    "Liberty"
    "Standing on the Moon"
    "Me and My Uncle"
    "Tennessee Jed"
    "Cumberland Blues"
    "Little Red Rooster"
    "Friend of the Devil"
    "Deal"

    Set Two:
    "Bird Song"
    "The Golden Road (To Unlimited Devotion)"
    "Lost Sailor"
    "Saint of Circumstance"
    "West LA Fadeaway"
    "Foolish Heart"
    "Drums"
    "Space"
    "Stella Blue"
    "One More Saturday Night"

    Encore:
    "US Blues"

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    Dave Davies' Upcoming Live Album, "Rippin' Up NYC," Is Due Out in Late August

    Credit: Al PereiraHere's some cool news for Kinks fans.  Founding lead guitarist Dave Davies has revealed the title and release date of the recently announced live solo album he's been putting together.  Rippin' Up NYC is scheduled to hit stores on August 21, according to a post on his Twitter feed.

    Judging by the title, the album likely was recorded during the two-night stand Davies played this past November at the City Winery in New York City.  Those concerts were part of a brief tour Dave mounted in support of his latest studio effort, Rippin' Up Time, which was released in October.

    Meanwhile, as previously reported, the 68-year-old Rock and Roll Hall of Famer has been has lining up dates for a new U.S. solo tour that's scheduled to get under way on October 8 in Boston.  The trek, which is mapped out through a November 3 show in West Hollywood, California, currently includes 11 dates.

    Here is Davies latest itinerary, according to his official website:

    10/8 -- Boston, MA, The Wilbur Theatre
    10/9 -- Londonderry, NH, Tupelo Music Hall
    10/10 -- Londonderry, NH, Tupelo Music Hall
    10/11 -- Londonderry, NH, Tupelo Music Hall
    10/20 -- Washington, DC, The Howard Theatre
    10/22 -- Asbury Park, NJ, The Stone Pony
    10/24 -- Fall River, MA, Narrows Center
    10/26 -- Albany, NY, The Egg
    10/27 -- Ridgefield, CT, Ridgefield Playhouse
    10/30 -- Napa, CA, Uptown Theatre
    11/3 -- West Hollywood, CA, The Roxy Theatre

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    Billy Joel Marries in Surprise 4th of July Ceremony

    Myrna Suarez/WireImageBilly Joel just capped off a banner week by tying the knot.

    The 66-year-old singer-songwriter married girlfriend Alexis Roderick, 33, Saturday at his Long Island, NY estate, according to US Weekly.  By all accounts the ceremony was a surprise to the family and guests gathered for a Fourth of July celebration.

    New York Governor Andrew Cuomo officiated the nuptials, while guests included comic actor Kevin James and Alexa Ray Joel, Billy's daughter with second wife Christie Brinkley, who posted her congratulations on Instagram, writing: "Congratulation to the glowing bride and groom.. And to my daughter Alexa, who has a wonderful friend in Alexis! Wishing the growing family every happiness!"

    James was also there last Wednesday night, when Joel performed his record 65th show at New York's Madison Square Garden, the most shows played there by any artist.  James helped raise a banner commemorating the achievement.

    Joel and Roderick, who's pregnant, began dating in 2009, right about the time Billy divorced his third wife, Katie Lee.

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