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RHCP Join James Corden for Carpool Karaoke and It’s Epic

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James Corden’s Carpool Karaoke has become one of our absolute favorite things to watch as the Late Late Show host has booked some serious starpower to join in the fun — from Adele to Lin-Manuel Miranda to Mariah Carey.

For his latest installment, Corden invited Anthony Kiedis, Flea, Chad Smith and Josh Klinghoffer of the Red Hot Chili Peppers to carpool around Los Angeles, and let’s just go ahead and say it’s pretty epic.

The segment includes Corden and company singing and air thumping through the Peppers impressive repertoire of hits including “Give It Away,” “Californication” and “By the Way,” the television debut of the weed-induced “Heemi Lheemey,” as well a brief “intermission” that had them all sprawling out of the car for a wresting match in some random person’s lawn between Corden and Kiedis. (Any bets on who won?)

Jumping back into the car, additional antics ensued when Flea, Kiedis and Corden began to strip down for “The Zephyr Song.”

Partake in the madness below …

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The Shelters Take on Classic Sounds with a Modern Twist on Debut Album

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“Fuzzy, bluesy and melodic … it’s as if the Laurel Canyon harmonies of the 1970s spent the glam rock ‘80s in The Viper Room on the Sunset Strip before getting a 2015 update in Silverlake.” – Paste Magazine

Paste Magazine’s editor-in-chief Joshua Jackson could not have described Los Angeles-based quartet the Shelters anymore perfectly, and their updated retro sounds evoke every bit of their homeland. Comprised by singer and guitarist Josh Jove, singer and guitarist Chase Simpson, drummer Sebastian Harris and bassist Jacob Pilot, the Shelters have been tearing up the L.A. music scene for the past few years.

Their infectious beats and energetic live shows caught the attention of legendary music veteran Tom Petty, who welcomed the band into his home studio and co-produced their self-titled debut, dropping tomorrow (Friday, June 10). Petty’s influence is heavily present throughout the Shelters inaugural effort, and it’s hardly a coincidence that Jove and Simpson’s vocals can be easily mistaken at times for Petty’s signature croon.

Having Petty take Jove and his bandmates under his wing was an undeniable dream come true for this young band.

“Everyone knows he’s one of the best American songwriters and I think he has a lot of wisdom in regards to what makes songs do well and what makes people love music,” said Jove during an interview with Gretsch Guitars. “He’s such a music lover himself and he’s studied great music over all these years and he knows what makes a good song.”

Petty is not the only influence at play, though. The Shelters draw from countless other inspirations that include Hendrix, the Beatles, Jimmy Page and the Kinks. Their riffs are reminiscent of hits of the past, pulling from the pinnacle of each era from the ’60s to present day. For instance, anthemic opening track “Rebel Heart” features a jingle from Jove and Simpson’s guitars that can be likened to Simon and Garfunkel’s “Mrs. Robinson.” These components combine with a supremely catchy chorus: “She’s got a rebel heart/One day she’s going to fall/She’s got a rebel heart/She’s up against them all,” making for a simple and fun instant hit. Elsewhere, track “Liar” opens with a “Smoke on the Water” vibe that progresses into an ‘80s-style chorus, showing the stylistic range the Shelters are capable of.

Throughout the album, the Shelters never really show signs of slowing, keeping their energy high and riffs steady as their ever-present classic elements hold strong. “Gold” embodies quintessential ‘60s surf, while “Fortune Teller” and “Down” ooze Petty-like qualities. “The Ghost is Gone” is perhaps the most complex, modern and musically diverse songs on the record. This cut carries quite a variety of sounds that feature an eerie Doors-esque melancholy melody that builds into a heavier, dynamic classic rock song during the chorus.

Other songs gracing the record are equally inspiring, eclectic and enthusiastic. The Shelters present a simple yet sophisticated collection of sounds that offer a modern take on classic chart-toppers with the right amount of distortion, fuzz and effects. It’s a bold move to tackle vintage sounds and continue the legacy paved by such legendary influences, but this talented young band has found the sweet spot of mixing it up with their own unique updated style. It’s no wonder Petty was instantly drawn to the Shelters and their appealing brand of music that offers a little something for everyone.

Pre-order the album here.

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Exciting Gretsch Events Scheduled at Country Music Hall of Fame

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Photo by Jeff Daley.

Nashville’s Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum has scheduled several exciting Gretsch events June to coincide with the Summer NAMM Show, including sessions hosted by Cheap Trick’s Tom Petersson, singer-songwriter Lindsay Ell, musician and author Andy Babiuk and Gretsch’s very own Joe Carducci and Fred Gretsch.

These events also help support the Bachman-Gretsch exhibit, which runs through July 17.

Check out a rundown of events below:

Monday, June 20  – Sunday, June 26
10:00 a.m.–1:00 p.m.

Creative Zone—Embellished Instruments: Gretsch Style

Gretsch guitars have unique shapes, designs, and sounds. Young designers will learn about guitar design by looking at guitars in the new exhibit American Sound and Beauty: Guitars from the Bachman-Gretsch Collection. They will apply what they learned to make personalized guitar designs using the Gretsch instruments as inspiration. All ages. Taylor Swift Education Center. Presented in support of the exhibit American Sound and Beauty: Guitars from the Bachman-Gretsch Collection. Included with museum admission. Free to museum members. Children and up to two accompanying adults may attend the program and tour the museum at a discounted rate.

Thursday, June 23                    2:00 p.m.–3:00 p.m.

Gretsch Bass Demonstration: Tom Petersson

Tom Petersson is a professional singer, songwriter, and bass player who has spent most of his life playing rock music. For over 35 years, Petersson has played bass for the recently inducted Rock and Roll Hall of Fame band Cheap Trick, and he has written a few of their biggest hits, including “Can’t Stop Falling into Love.” An avid guitar collector, Petersson will highlight some of his favorite guitars including the 12-string Gretsch White Falcon bass he helped design. Presented in support of the exhibition American Sound and Beauty: Guitars from the Bachman-Gretsch Collection, this bass demonstration will be streamed live at countrymusichalloffame.org/streaming. Included with museum admission. Free to museum members.

Friday, June 24                         2:00 p.m.–3:00 p.m.

The Gretsch Fred and Joe Show: The Story of the Gretsch Guitar

Fred Gretsch, President of the Gretsch Company, and Joe Carducci, Gretsch Guitars Product Marketing Specialist, host this multimedia presentation tracing the history of the innovative guitar maker. The company was founded in 1883 when Gretsch started making musical instruments in Brooklyn. In 1985, Fred Gretsch, great-grandson of the founder, bought back the family business from the Baldwin Piano Company, relaunching the brand and ushering in an era of high quality and unique design. This program will discuss the musicians who’ve woven the Gretsch sound into the fabric of modern pop culture by playing the guitars on classic hits, and it will look closely at the instruments on display in American Sound and Beauty: Guitars from the Bachman-Gretsch Collection. Joe Hudson, 2015 “Thumbpicker of the Year” co-winner, will perform. The event will be streamed live at countrymusichalloffame.org/streaming. Included with museum admission. Free to museum members. Limited seating. Program pass required.

Saturday, June 25                     11:30 a.m.–12:15 p.m.

Songwriter Session: Lindsay Ell

Lindsay Ell began playing guitar and writing songs as a child, in Calgary. At age 13, she was discovered by Randy Bachman, who pushed her to learn new guitar styles as well as co-wrote and produced her first record. Ell moved to Nashville in 2013 and signed with Stoney Creek Records. She wrote her singles “By the Way” and “Trippin’ on Us,” as well as several songs with Bobby Bones and the Raging Idiots, including “We Can’t Stand Each Other” (featuring Carrie Underwood) and “Netflix Love Song.” Presented in support of the exhibition American Sound and Beauty: Guitars from the Bachman-Gretsch Collection, this session will be streamed live at countrymusichalloffame.org/streaming. Included with museum admission. Free to museum members. Limited seating. Program pass required.

Saturday, June 25                     1:30 p.m.–2:30 p.m.

Beatles Gear: The Gretsch Invasion with Andy Babiuk

When the Beatles appeared on the Ed Sullivan Show in 1964, George Harrison played a Gretsch Chet Atkins Country Gentleman model, Aspiring guitarists across the United States immediately clamored to get one, sparking a boom in production for the guitar maker. In Beatles Gear: All the Fab Four’s Instruments from Stage to Studio, Andy Babiuk explores the story of the legendary band, as told through the equipment they used. This program will focus on the Beatles’ fondness for Gretsch instruments and the subsequent impact their embrace had on the company. Babiuk is a musician, writer, producer, founding member of the Chesterfield Kings, and owner of a boutique music shop. He is a staff consultant to the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame and consultant to major auction houses in London and New York. Presented in support of the exhibition American Sound and Beauty: Guitars from the Bachman-Gretsch Collection, this session will be streamed live at countrymusichalloffame.org/streaming. Included with museum admission. Free to museum members. Limited seating. Program pass required.

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Fred Gretsch Receives Honorary Degree from Elmhurst College

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Fred W. Gretsch, fourth-generation leader of a family business that has helped shape American music history, was presented with an honorary Doctor of Music degree from Elmhurst College at the school’s Spring Commencement over the Memorial Day holiday weekend.

An Elmhurst alumnus, Gretsch is also president of the Gretsch Company, which was founded by his great-grandfather in 1883 and continues to make guitars and drums for musicians who appreciate “That Great Gretsch Sound,” top-quality craftsmanship, and classic style.

Elmhurst College confers honorary degrees on individuals whose commitments and achievements embody the College’s mission, vision, and core values. Fred Gretsch was recognized for his ongoing contributions to the music industry, as well as to his and his family’s stated mission, which is “to enrich people’s lives through participation in music.”

Fred, his wife and business partner Dinah, his family company, and the Gretsch Foundation have been generous supporters of Elmhurst College and its Department of Music. That support has funded a variety of scholarships, as well as the state-of-the-art Sylvia and William Gretsch Recording Studio (established in 1987 to honor Fred’s parents). In 1993, the Gretsch Electric Guitar Ensemble became a regular element of the music program, and in 2015, arrangements were made for the music department’s ensembles to perform exclusively on Gretsch drum kits. Gretsch has also been a major supporter of the annual Elmhurst College High School Invitational Jazz Festival.

“Fred Gretsch’s support has helped us develop one of the top music business programs in the country, from the Gretsch Music Business Student Scholarship fund to his multiple gifts that have allowed us to build and continually upgrade our state-of-the art Gretsch Recording Studio,” said Elmhurst College Music Business Program director Tim Hays. “The College, the Music Department, and generations of students have benefited from his vision and generosity.”

Vice President for Development and Alumni Relations Joseph Emmick added, “We’re pleased to honor Fred Gretsch. Who better to receive an honorary degree than someone who has distinguished himself in his service to the musical community? Fred and Dinah together form one of the music industry’s most formidable teams, and their international success enhances Elmhurst College’s reputation across the globe.”

After receiving his honorary degree Fred Gretsch said, “I’m grateful and I’m honored. When it comes to enriching people’s lives through music around the country and around the world, I recognize that Elmhurst is a great place to start. I look forward to working with the college to create more music-makers in the generations ahead.”

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Live from Plum Creek Sound Studios: Matthew Vasquez

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As previously blogged here, Austin-based alt-country rock artist Israel Nash hosted an intimate event during SXSW called “Live From the Hills With Love,” an afternoon of good old southern hospitality, outstanding performances and free beer. For fans everywhere, Nash and his Plum Creek Sound Studios team are making those performances available to everyone with a unique video series.

The first video to be rolled out features Matthew Logan Vasquez (Delta Spirit), who played what he introduced as a “really, really f*ing long song, but it’s all about growing up here, and then doing drugs, and then finding Jesus and then not finding Jesus, and then drinking a lot and then meeting my wife in Fresno and then moving back here.”

Indeed, the song spans 14 minutes so grab a beer and enjoy “Austin” below …

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