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Benjy says...

Many classic rock artists are enjoying a real renaissance in popularity, especially from a younger audience who in most cases were not even born when that particular artist was at their creative peak. The Stones are still rolling (and raking in gazillions on the road), artists like Deep Purple, Ten Years After, Glenn Hughes, David Gilmour and Uriah Heep among others are still making great new albums and classic rock radio continues to be the fastest growing format worldwide ... 'Strewth even the new bands sound 'classic' - I mean do Wolfmother not sound like the Sabs? and The Answer like a young Led Zep? ... a case of 'Meet the new boss, same as the old boss' as Pete Townshend once put it.

Perhaps the reason(s) why rock is resurging in such a big way is due to the grey, narrow programming of mainstream radio (have you tuned in lately?), it's boring, particularly what they like to call 'modern rawk' ... bands that sound and look like they were pressed from the same mold. It makes me think of that Gerald Scarfe scene in "The Wall" where the mincer produces clones.....

The Internet too has played an amazing role in exposing the great rock of the late 60's and 70's to a new younger audience, check out .... for instance type in Jimi Hendrix and lo and behold an unlimited amount of Hendrix video clips to view and hear including much to my delight a jam between Brian Jones, Jimi and Dave Mason with footage of the Master backstage at a Stones gig! On YouTube you can see literally any band you want .... The point that I'm trying to make is that the 'Net has made it possible for young rock music lovers to see and hear artists that they have only heard from a hippie cousin or read about in some dusty old copy of Melody Maker - and they are embracing the music. I am getting more and more calls, and emails, from listeners who are as young as 16 asking about Alice Cooper, Grand Funk, The Who and The Stooges ... how cool is that?

After the rock blues drenched Leslie West Special last week it's time to pay tribute to an artist who in many ways single-handedly invented glam rock. He has written some of the defining anthems of the early 70's like Rebel Rebel and Ziggy Stardust - The Thin White Duke himself, David Bowie.

The Rock of Ages Special - David Bowie

This week on the show - Win 5 copies of The David Bowie Platinum Collection 3 cd set (courtesy of EMI South Africa)

David Bowie - The Platinum Collection

David Bowie (born David Robert Jones on 8 January 1947) is an English Grammy Winning singer, songwriter, multi-instrumentalist, actor, producer, arranger, visual artist and audio engineer whose work spans five decades. Throughout the 1970s he took cues from art, philosophy and literature and appeared to elevate pop and rock to a more sophisticated level. He was born in Brixton, London, and stayed there until he was six years old, when his family moved to Bromley in Kent (now part of Greater London). He was educated at Bromley Technical High School in Keston, Bromley and lived with his parents until he was eighteen. Page 85 of "Alias David Bowie" by Peter and Leni Gillman, records that Bowie's friend George Underwood, while wearing a ring on his finger, had punched him in the left eye when the two were fighting over a girl. He was forced to stay out of school for eight months so that doctors could conduct operations in attempts to repair his potentially blinded eye. Underwood and Bowie remained good friends; Underwood went on to do artwork for Bowie's earlier albums. Doctors could not fully repair the damage, leaving his pupil permanently dilated. As a result of the injury, Bowie has faulty depth perception. Bowie has stated that although he can see with his injured eye, his colour vision was mostly lost and a brownish tone is constantly present. The color of the irises are still the same blue, but since the pupil of the injured eye is wide open, the color of his eyes are commonly confused to be differing.

David Bowie

Bowie's earliest musical goal was to be a saxophone player in Little Richard's group. Initially a saxophonist, he was discovered, quite by accident, as a singer when he subbed in for a missing vocalist at a club in London. He played with various blues groups, such as The King Bees, The Mannish Boys and The Lower Third in the 1960s. Bowie adapted his public image to fit, and often anticipate, the prevailing musical trends. His early work shifts through the blues and Elvis-esque music while working with many British pop styles. Influenced by the dramatic arts he studied at this age — from avant-garde theatre and mime to Commedia dell'arte — much of Bowie's work has involved the creation of characters or personae to present to the world. The aspiring rock star needed to use a different stage name to avoid confusion with Davy Jones of The Monkees, so he chose the last name Bowie after the Alamo hero Jim Bowie and his famous Bowie knife. He pronounces Bowie to rhyme with Joey. Bowie released his first solo album in 1967 for Deram records, simply called David Bowie, an amalgam of psychedelia and easy listening. Also released was a single, "The Laughing Gnome", with the cult-classic B-side "The Gospel According to Tony Day". None of these managed to chart; the 1967 album is hard to find today, although it exists in counterfeit copies. However, the materials of the album, the single, and several other works were later recycled in a multitude of compilation albums. During 1967, Bowie also had minor success with a single he wrote for another artist, "Oscar" (an early stage name of actor-musician Paul Nicholas). Bowie wrote Oscar's third single, "Over The Wall We Go", which gained a degree of notoriety because it satirized a series of highly-publicized breakouts from British prisons.

David Bowie

1969 to 1973: Psychedelic folk to glam rock
Bowie's first flirtation with fame came in 1969 with his single "Space Oddity", supposedly released to coincide with the first moon landing, although Bowie himself has claimed that this is untrue. This ballad was the story of what was often called Bowie's first dual-subject and role, Major Tom, an astronaut who becomes lost in space. It became a UK hit record. Its corresponding album was originally titled David Bowie and has caused some confusion, as both of Bowie's first and second albums were released with that name in the UK. In the US the second album bore the title Man of Words, Man of Music. In 1972, the second album was re-released as Space Oddity.On 19 March 1970, Bowie married Mary Angela Barnett in Kent, England. Later that year, Bowie released The Man Who Sold the World, rejecting the acoustic guitar sound of the previous album and replacing it with the heavy rock backing provided by Mick Ronson, who would be a major collaborator through to 1973. Much of the album resembles British hard rock of the period, but the album provided some interesting musical detours, such as the title track's use of Latin sounds to hold the melody.The track provided an unlikely hit for UK pop singer Lulu and would be performed by many groups over the years, including Nirvana. The cover of the first release of this album, on which Bowie is seen reclining in a dress, was an early indication of his interest in exploiting his androgynous appearance.His next record, Hunky Dory (1971) saw the partial return of the fey pop singer of "Space Oddity", with light fare such as the droll "Kooks" (dedicated to his young son known to the world as Zowie Bowie)... the album included some of his most harrowing lyrics on tracks such as "Oh! You Pretty Things", the semi-autobiographical "The Bewlay Brothers" and the Buddhist-influenced "Quicksand". Lyrically, the young songwriter also paid unusually direct homage to his influences with "Song for Bob Dylan", "Andy Warhol," and "Queen Bitch," which Bowie's somewhat cryptic liner notes indicate as a Velvet Underground pastiche.As with the single "Changes", Hunky Dory was not a big hit but it laid the groundwork for the move that would shortly lift Bowie into the first rank of stars, giving him four top 10 albums and eight top ten singles in the UK in 18 months between 1972 and 1973.

Bowie's androgynous image was taken a step further in June 1972 with the seminal concept album The Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders from Mars, focusing on the career of an extraterrestrial rock singer. The album's sound returns to the hard rock line-up of The Man Who Sold the World, but the feel is lighter and faster, typifying glam rock as pioneered by Marc Bolan. Many of the album's songs became rock classics, including "Ziggy Stardust," "Moonage Daydream," "Hang on to Yourself," and "Suffragette City".Bowie's Ziggy Stardust character became the basis for his first tour beginning in 1972, where Bowie donned his famous red, flaming hair and wild outfits. The tour featured a three-piece band representing the 'Spiders from Mars': Ronson on guitar, Trevor Bolder on bass, and Mick Woodmansey on drums. The album flew to #5 in the UK on the strength of the single "Starman." The success of the album made Bowie a star, and soon the one-year-old Hunky Dory album eclipsed Ziggy Stardust, when it peaked at #3 on the UK chart. At the same time the non-album single "John, I’m Only Dancing" peaked at UK #12, and "All the Young Dudes", a song he had given to, and produced for, Mott the Hoople, made UK #3. Around the same time Bowie began promoting and producing his rock and roll heroes. Former Velvet Underground singer Lou Reed's solo breakthrough Transformer was produced by Bowie and Mick Ronson. Iggy Pop and his band The Stooges signed with Bowie's management, MainMan Productions, and recorded their ultimate album, Raw Power, in London. Though he was not present for the tracking of the album, Bowie later performed its much debated mix. The Spiders From Mars came together again on 1973's Aladdin Sane, another conceptual work about the disintegration of society, and Bowie's first #1 album in the UK. The album is sometimes called Bowie's "On the Road" album, because he wrote all the new songs on ship, bus or trains during the American Ziggy Stardust tour. The album's cover, featuring Bowie shirtless with Ziggy hair and a red, black, and blue lightning bolt across his face, is impressive. Aladdin Sane included the hits "The Jean Genie", "Drive-In Saturday", and a rendition of The Rolling Stones' "Let's Spend the Night Together". Bowie's later Ziggy shows, which included songs from both the Ziggy Stardust and Aladdin Sane records were ultra-theatrical affairs, filled with some rather shocking stage moments, such as Bowie stripping down to a sumo wrestling loincloth or simulating oral sex with Ronson's guitar. Bowie took the character to extremes, touring and giving press conferences as Ziggy before a dramatic and abrupt on-stage "retirement" at London's Hammersmith Odeon in 1973. His famous announcement - "Not only is this the last show of the tour, but it's the last show that we'll ever do" - was preserved as part of a live recording of the show, released as a double album under the title Ziggy Stardust - The Motion Picture.

David Bowie

Pin Ups, a collection of his versions of 1960s hits, was released in 1973, spawning a UK #3 hit in "Sorrow" and itself peaking at #1, making David Bowie the best-selling act of 1973 in the UK. By that time, the Spiders from Mars were long split, and Bowie was trying to escape from his Ziggy persona. Bowie's own back catalogue was now highly sought. The Man Who Sold the World had been re-released in 1972 along with the second David Bowie album (Space Oddity).The androgynous public and stage persona Bowie affected during this period sold records, but its popularity in gay culture and the emerging gay rights movement created controversy both in Britain, where homosexuality had only been legal since 1967, and the United States. Bowie has since retracted and distanced himself from the claim he made in an interview to being bisexual.

1974 to 1976: Soul, R&B, and The Thin White Duke
1974 saw the release of another ambitious album, Diamond Dogs. The album demonstrated Bowie headed toward the genre of soul/disco music, the track "1984" being a prime example. The album spawned the hits "Rebel Rebel" and "Diamond Dogs" and went to #1 in the UK, making him the best-selling act of that country for the second year in a row. In the US, Bowie achieved his first major commercial success when the album went to #5.To follow on the release of the album, Bowie launched a massive Diamond Dogs tour of North America, lasting from June to December 1974. Choreographed by Toni Basil, and lavishly produced with theatrical special effects, the high-budget stage production broke with contemporary standard practice for rock concerts by featuring no encores. Bowie commented that the resulting live album David Live ought really to be called "David Bowie Is Alive and Well and Living Only In Theory," presumably referring to his addled psychological state during this frenetic period. For Ziggy Stardust fans who had not discerned the soul and funk strains already apparent in Bowie's recent work, the "new" sound was considered a sudden and jolting step. 1975's Young Americans was Bowie's definitive exploration of Philly soul — It contained his first #1 hit in the US, "Fame," co-written with John Lennon . One of the backing vocalists on the album is a young Luther Vandross, who also co-wrote some of the material for Young Americans. Despite Bowie's unashamed recognition of the shallowness of his 'plastic soul,' he did earn the bona fide of being one of the few white artists to be invited to appear on the popular Soul Train. Another, violently paranoid appearance on "The Dick Cavett Show" seemed to confirm rumors of Bowie's heavy cocaine use at this time.Young Americans was the album which cemented Bowie's stardom in the US; 1976's Station to Station featured a darker version of this soul persona, called The Thin White Duke. Visually the figure was an extension of Thomas Jerome Newton, the character Bowie portrayed in The Man Who Fell to Earth. Station to Station was a transitional album, prefiguring the Krautrock and synthesizer music of his next releases, while developing the funk and soul music of Young Americans. By this time Bowie was heavily dependent on drugs, especially cocaine, and many critics have attributed the chopped rhythms and emotional detachment of the record to the influence of the drug, which Bowie claimed to have been introduced to in America. His emotional disturbance and megalomania at this time reached such a fever pitch that David Bowie refused to relinquish control of a satellite, booked for a world-wide broadcast of a live appearance preceding the release of Station to Station, at the request of the Spanish Government, who wished to put out a live feed regarding the death of Spanish Dictator Francisco Franco.With the album at #3 in the US, his greatest success there ever, and the single "Golden Years" becoming a transatlantic Top Ten hit, Bowie was at a commercial peak, yet his sanity — by his own admission later — was twisted by cocaine and he overdosed several times during the year.

David Bowie

At around this time, Bowie became embroiled in a controversy caused by his comments to Playboy magazine apparently praising Hitler, and his statement that "Britain is ready for a fascist leader." He later pointed out that being "ready" for one and "needing" one are two different things. In a September 1976 Playboy interview, Bowie referred to Hitler as "one of the first rock stars" and expressed admiration of Hitler's stage presence, comparing him favourably to Mick Jagger.Bowie may have intended to refer specifically and narrowly to Hitler's ability to mesmerize a crowd, and not to his Aryan-supremacist views or the genocidal results. However, Bowie's statements were accompanied by some theatrics involving an open-top vintage Mercedes and what some claimed was a Nazi salute staged outside Victoria Station.Bowie would later angrily deny being so "foolish" as to raise a Nazi salute, claiming that the photographer had caught him in mid-wave. This incident, along with similarly controversial racist remarks by Eric Clapton around the same time, were catalysts for the formation of the Rock Against Racism movement. Later, Bowie retracted his 'fascist' comments, excusing himself by claiming his judgement had been affected by substance abuse.Bowie's interest in the growing German music scene, as well as his drug addiction, prompted him to move to Berlin to dry out and rejuvenate his career. .The brittle sound of Station to Station proved a precursor to that found on Low, the first of three recorded where Brian Eno was integral to the making of the albums . Heavily influenced by the Krautrock sound of Kraftwerk and Neu Low was renowned for having been far ahead of its time. Bowie himself has said "cut me and I bleed Low". It was produced in 1976 and released in early 1977.The next record, "Heroes " was similar in sound to Low, though slightly more accessible. There was an extensive world tour in 1978 which featured the music of both Low and "Heroes". A live album of this tour was released, known as Stage. Lodger (1979) was the final album in Bowie's so-called "Berlin Trilogy" or 'triptych' as Bowie called it. This was Bowie's last album with Eno until 1995's Outside.

David Bowie

In 1980, Bowie did an about-face, integrating the lessons learnt on Low, Heroes, and Lodger while expanding upon them with chart success. Scary Monsters (and Super Creeps) included the #1 hit "Ashes to Ashes", revisiting the character of Major Tom from "Space Oddity". The imagery Bowie used in the song's music video gave international exposure to the underground New Romantic movement and, with many of the followers of this phase being devotees, Bowie visited the London club "Blitz"—the main New Romantic hangout—to recruit several of the regulars (including Steve Strange of the band Visage) to act in the video, renowned as being one of the most innovative of all time.While Scary Monsters utilised principles that Bowie had learned in the Berlin era, it was considered by critics to be far more direct musically and lyrically, possibly reflecting the brutal transformation Bowie had gone through during the experience. Bowie had divorced his wife Angie, undergone withdrawal from the drugs of the "Thin White Duke" era, and his conception of how music should be written had totally changed. The album had a hard rock edge with many innovations, including conspicuous guitar contributions from King Crimson's Robert Fripp and The Who's Pete Townshend. Perhaps in an appropriate creative high point, as "Ashes to Ashes" hit #1 on the UK charts, Bowie opened a 3-month run on Broadway starring as The Elephant Man on 23 September 1980.

David Bowie & Mick Ronson

1980 to 2007: Bowie the superstar
In 1981, Queen released "Under Pressure", co-written by and performed with Bowie. Bowie then scored his first truly commercial blockbuster with Let's Dance in 1983, a slick dance album co-produced by CHIC's Nile Rodgers. It was a departure from Scary Monsters for which Bowie received a bit of inside criticism; rather than revolting against 1980s dance music, he had in fact joined the scene. The album also featured the singles "Cat People", "Modern Love" and "China Girl" , the latter causing something of a stir due to its suggestive promotional video. Let's Dance was also notable as a stepping stone for the career of the late Texan guitarist Stevie Ray Vaughan, who played on the album and was to have supported Bowie on the consequent Serious Moonlight Tour. Vaughan, however, never joined the tour after a pay dispute . The 1984 follow-up album Tonight was also dance-oriented, featuring collaborations with Tina Turner ,critics labelled it a lazy effort, dashed off by Bowie simply to recapture Let's Dance's chart success. Yet the album bore the transatlantic Top Ten hit "Blue Jean". In 1985, Bowie performed several of his greatest hits at Wembley for Live Aid. At the event, the video to a fundraising single was premièred – Bowie performing a duet with Mick Jagger on a version of "Dancing in the Street", which quickly went to #1 on release. Also, Bowie worked with the Pat Metheny Group on the song "This Is Not America", which was featured in the film The Falcon and the Snowman. In 1986 Bowie contributed the theme song to the film Absolute Beginners. He also took a role in the 1986 Jim Henson film Labyrinth as Jareth, the Goblin King, who steals the baby brother of a girl named Sarah (played by Jennifer Connelly), in order to turn him into a goblin. Bowie wrote songs for the film, some of which became singles. Bowie's final dance album was Never Let Me Down (1987), where he ditched the light dance of his two earlier albums, instead producing harder rock with a dance edge. In 1989, for the first time since the early 1970s, Bowie formed a regular band, Tin Machine, a hard-rocking quartet, along with Reeves Gabrels, Tony Sales, and Hunt Sales. Tin Machine released two studio albums and a live record. The band received mixed reviews and a somewhat lukewarm reception from the public. Bowie's negative press-image continued when the cover of Tin Machine's second album became unusually controversial, due to the presence of naked statues as its cover art. The coverage only seemed to invite unrelated negative commentary about Bowie to further permeate the public discourse.

1993 saw the release of the soul, jazz and hip-hop influenced Black Tie White Noise. Though considered by some critics to be musically far superior to Let's Dance, the public was still unsure whether or not it was ready to be receptive of Bowie again. The album, however, met the number one spot on the UK charts with singles such as "Jump They Say" and "Miracle Goodnight". Undaunted, Bowie explored new directions on albums such as 1993's The Buddha of Suburbia (built on incidental music composed for a TV series). The album still contained some of the new elements introduced in Black Tie White Noise, except with more of a twist in the direction of alternative rock. Newly created work, 1995's ambitious, quasi-industrial Outside, supposed to be the first volume in a subsequently abandoned non-linear narrative of art and murder, reunited him with Brian Eno. On 17 January 1996 David Bowie was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame at the eleventh annual induction ceremony. Receiving some of the strongest critical response since Let's Dance was 1997's Earthling, which incorporated experiments in British jungle and drum and bass and included a single released over the Internet, called "Telling Lies." 1999's 'hours...' featured "What's Really Happening", the lyrics for which were written by Alex Grant, the winner of Bowie's "Cyber Song Contest" Internet competition. The decade also saw him launch a branded internet service provider (BowieNet) as well as a novel and quite successful fund-raising scheme to raise cash on the strength of future royalties, called Bowie Bonds.

David Bowie

Bowie and Visconti continued collaboration with the production of a new album of completely original songs instead. The result of the sessions was the 2002 album Heathen, notable for its dark and atmospheric sound, and Bowie's largest chart success in recent years In 2003, a report in the Sunday Express named Bowie as the second-richest entertainer in the UK (behind Sir Paul McCartney), with an estimated fortune of £510 million. However, the 2005 Sunday Times Rich List credited him with a little over £100 million. In September 2003, Bowie released a new album, Reality, and announced a world tour. However, it was cut short after Bowie suffered chest pain while performing on stage on 25 June 2004. Originally thought to be a pinched nerve in his shoulder, and later diagnosed as an acutely blocked artery, an emergency angioplasty was performed. He was released in early July and continued to spend time recovering. Bowie later admitted he had suffered a minor heart attack, resulting from years of heavy smoking and touring. Still recuperating from his operation, Bowie worked off-stage and relaxed from studio work for the first time in several years. In 2004, a duet of his classic song "Changes" with Butterfly Boucher appeared in Shrek 2. he had made no plans for any performances during the year. David Bowie finally returned to the stage in 2005, alongside Arcade Fire, for the nationally televised event Fashion Rocks, his first gig since the heart attack. For 2006, Bowie once again announced a break from performance, though he made a surprise appearance at a David Gilmour concert on 29 May 2006 at the Royal Albert Hall , London, to sing the songs "Arnold Layne" and "Comfortably Numb", closing the concert.

On 8 February 2006, David Bowie was awarded the Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award. In November, Bowie performed at the Black Ball in New York for the Keep a Child Alive Foundation alongside his wife, Iman, and Alicia Keys. He dueted with Keys on "Changes", and also performed "Wild is the Wind" and "Fantastic Voyage". In May 2007 Bowie will curate the Highline Festival in the the abandoned railway park in New York called the Highline. He will select various musicians and artists to perform, and the festivities will include art shows and performances.

David Bowie

  • David Bowie (1967)
  • Space Oddity (1969)
  • The Man Who Sold the World (1970)
  • Hunky Dory (1971)
  • The Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders from Mars (1972)
  • Aladdin Sane (1973)
  • Pin Ups (1973)
  • Diamond Dogs (1974)
  • Young Americans (1975)
  • Station to Station (1976)
  • Low (1977)
  • "Heroes" (1977)
  • Lodger (1979)
  • Scary Monsters and Super Creeps (1980)
  • Let's Dance (1983)
  • Tonight (1984)
  • Never Let Me Down (1987)
  • Black Tie White Noise (1993)
  • Outside (1995)
  • Earthling (1997)
  • 'hours...' (1999)
  • Heathen (2002)
  • Reality (2003)
Information and pics courtesy of and

Rock of Ages's recommendations

Paul Stanley

Although Kiss have been going strong for over 30 years with no clear sign of ever stopping (this in itself is questionable), co-founder Paul Stanley has only released one solo album, 1978's "Paul Stanley". Now 28 years later the 'Starman' guitarist finally follows it up with "Live to win" (Universal Music) *** . Stanley has been wise to bring in brace of outside writers including the Grammy award winning Desmond Child, current Nordic fave Andreas Carlsson, Marti Fredericksen and Holly Knight. Together they have crafted a solid rock album with both modern and classic rock overtones. Recommended tracks:Live to Win, Lift.

Spock's Beard

In the forefront of the modern progressive rock wave of the last decade, Spock's Beard continue to reinvent and reinvigorate the genre. Their 9th studio album, the self titled "Spock's Beard" **** (SPV/InsideOut), is an absolute must, not just for prog lovers but for any rock fan looking for music that challenges the ears. Filled with anthemic songs like "Skeletons at the feast", with Alan Morse's stratospheric guitar work ripping a hole in the speakers, the classic rock inflected "Sometimes they stay..." and the rollercoaster 24 minute tour-de-force "As far as the mind can see" - a feast of musicianship, passion and fire from start to finish!

***** Volcanic....not to be missed.
**** Seismic....highly it!
*** Aftershock....solid effort.
** Xmas cracker...Pooof!
* Do I need to explain this?

Rock of Ages presents "Footstompin' Music"

"Footstompin' Music" is almost ready for release through Universal Music, I guess it should be in the stores by early March at the latest. Here is a pic of the front cover for you to drool over as well as the final tracklisting:

click for bigger pic
Rock Of Ages Presents Footstompin' Music
  1. Grand Funk Railroad - Footstompin' Music
  2. Deep Purple - Burn
  3. Uriah Heep - Look at yourself
  4. Black Sabbath - Sweat Leaf
  5. Thin Lizzy - Chinatown
  6. Robin Trower - Too rolling stoned
  7. Mountain - Never in my life
  8. Wishbone Ash - Blowin' free
  9. Foghat - I just wanna make love to you
  10. Budgie - Baby, please don't go
  11. Santana - Toussaint l'Overture
  12. Alice Cooper - Muscle of love
  13. Nazareth - Go down fighting
  14. Blue Oyster Cult - The Red & the Black
  15. Lynyrd Skynyrd - Gimme back my bullets
  16. Free - The Hunter
  17. Taste - What's goin' on

Keep the rock real...


Contact Rock of Ages

Snail mail:
PO Box 53585, Kenilworth, 7745
Studio phones: 021-4342523 / 4342525

The views, opinions, rants, raves and ramblings expressed on this website are the author's own and in no way reflect the views of Radio 2000 or the SABC.

Latest Playlist
All the playlists are available in the
Playlist Archives.
Rock Of Ages News
Van Halen Postponed
Q: When is an official announcement really not an official announcement?
A: When it involves a Van Halen reunion tour. ....... Van Halen's indefinite hiatus will apparently continue indefinitely, with the indefinite postponement of a summer tour that wasn't officially announced in the first place. Confused yet? Enlightenment awaits.

Maiden In India
Iron Maiden are to play their first ever show in India on March 17. This will be at the Bangalore Palace.

Jam Partially Back
Former Jam members Bruce Foxton and Rick Buckler have re-united in a band called From The Jam: Bruce Foxton And Rick Buckler. Expect tour dates soon.

Slash Tells All
Velvet Revolver guitarist Slash has signed a publishing deal for his autobiography with HarperCollins. He'll write this with Anthony Bozza, who worked with Tommy Lee on his 'Tommyland' autobiography.

Shorts Cuts.... In contrast to the aborted Van Halen tour, the reason for the cancellation of a world tour by David Crosby and Graham Nash is clear cut: Crosby is too sick.

More Classic Rock?
I can highly recommend the About Classic Rock website run by Dave White. Not only does Dave host one of the most knowledgeable classic rock blogs on the Net but the site itself is very entertaining and informative. There are always great indepth stories on the artists and the rock quizzes are addictive. If you are like me, a classic rock fan, then the weekly About Classic Rock newletter is a must. Sign up at

More rock on R2K......
Suffering from Rock withdrawal symptoms on a Tuesday night? Well then tune the dial el pronto to Barney Simon's show between 8 and midnight every Tuesday on Radio 2000 (or R2K as Barney calls it) for the best in South African rock plus gig guide, albums reviews, demos, new releases, news from around the country and much more...... Unmissable!.... Also don't forget to catch Michelle Constant between 1pm and 3pm Monday-Friday for news, music, interviews and loads of cool stuff.... and of course.... Mo G on the morning drive, weekdays 8-10am... Exclusively on Radio 2000.
Live Gigs
Jim Neversink
4th March Tempos, Randburg (with The Hellphones)
5th Cool Runnings, Melville

Jack Hammer/Piet Botha
2nd March Steak & Ale, Centurion, PTA
3rd March Bertie's Mooring, Gordon's Bay (with Johnathan Martin)
4th March Lord Nelson Hotel (with Johnathan Martin)
8th March Die Boer, Durbanville CT
12th March Dorp Street Theatre, Stellenbosch

Josie Field (unplugged) & Laurie Levine Duo
3rd March Radium Beerhall, Orange Grove JHB

10th March Roxy's, Melville

Running With Scissors
11th March Tempos, Randburg
19th Cool Runnings

1st March Back2Basix, Westdene
2nd March Randfontein Show

Splashy Fen Festival
5-9 April Underberg KZN … See for artist lineups

London Calling, Fairview JHB
9th March Swamp Stomp with The Kosmonauts, The Death Valley Blues Band and Swivelfoot
You say it's your birthday...
February 18
Robbie Bachman - Bachman Turner Overdrive - 1953
Yoko Ono - 1933
Dennis DeYoung - Styx - 1947

February 19
Tony Iommi - Black Sabbath - 1948
Mark Andes - Firefall, Heart - 1948

February 20
Jerome Geils - J. Geils Band - 1946
Walter Becker - Steely Dan - 1950
Randy California - Spirit - 1951
Jon Brant - Cheap Trick - 1954
Lew Soloff - Blood, Sweat & Tears - 1944

February 21
Paul Newton - Uriah Heep
Jerry Harrison - Talking Heads - 1949

February 23
Johnny Winter - 1944
Rusty Young - Poco, Buffalo Springfield - 1946
Brad Whitford - Aerosmith - 1952

February 24
Paul Jones - Manfred Mann - 1942
Bob "Bear" Hite - Canned Heat - 1945
Lonnie Turner - Steve Miller Band - 1947

February 25
George Harrison - 1943

February 26
Mitch Ryder - 1945
Paul Cotton - Poco - 1943
Jonathan Cain - Journey - 1950
Fats Domino - 1928

February 27
Neal Schon - Santana, Journey - 1954
Johnny Van Zant - Lynyrd Skynyrd - 1959

February 28
Brian Jones - Rolling Stones - 1942
Cindy Wilson - B-52's - 1957

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Benjy Mudie
Benjy Mudie with Void in the late 70's - click for bigger picture Benjy Mudie 2006 - click for bigger picture
Then Now

Benjy Mudie is a self confessed 'rockaholic' with little chance of recovery... a music obsessive whose entire life has been spent in search of the lost chord... from discovering Jimi's "Are you experienced" at 13, he has constantly devoured music through lp's, singles, tapes, cds, dvds, books, magazines, film, concerts, radio, tv and the internet. His entire working life has also been music related: from running a record store and later joining WEA Records in the mid 70's through to his 21 year A&R/Marketing stint at Tusk Music where he signed some of the biggest names in South African rock and pop. The last 8 years have been spent nurturing new talent at his indie label Fresh Music and reissuing classic albums as part of it's ongoing Retro series.... To say that 'music is his first love' (to paraphrase John Miles's classic song) is somewhat understated.


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