Prince's influence has been discussed far and wide, from fashion to music videos to the actual, Hendrixian quality of his guitar playing. But it's always unusual when the mercurial purple genius decides to directly contribute to another artist's canon, particularly since one really never knows where he's going to end up next. What follows is a chronological list of ten of Prince's most interesting "guest appearances." Half of them are actual guest appearances, the other half either songs he
On this day, seminal '90s pop-punk band Green Day gets the kind of musical immortality only reserved for a select few. That's right, today's the day that the Green Day: Rock Band video game hits stores. Fans will finally be able to control Billie Joe Armstrong, Mike Dirnt and Tre Cool as they ascend from obscurity to supposed sellouts. If I've said it once, I've said it a million times: I don't get the concept of selling out at all. So many supposed fans get mad when their beloved local act
It might be premature to write about the film score news of the day - especially since the La-La Land label will be announcing some titles later today - but a few labels have announced some worthwhile titles to kick off your Tuesday morning. Although it was announced late last month, the Tadlow Music label is now shipping copies of the complete score to Mad Max: Beyond Thunderdome, composed and conducted by Maurice Jarre (an Oscar winner for Lawrence of Arabia and Doctor Zhivago). This deluxe
Upon its acquisition of the Elvis Costello catalog in 2007, UMe wasted no time in releasing The Best of Elvis Costello: The First 10 Years (Hip-O B0008640-02). That self-explanatory set was compiled by Costello himself, and so it’s fitting that some three years later, Costello and Hip-O are bookending that disc with Pomp & Pout: The Universal Years. This 18-track compilation, slated for a July 13 release, draws from the 10 years Costello spent at various Universal labels between 1998 and
For whatever reason, your loyal reissue reporter has been listening to a lot of Huey Lewis and The News. No, it's not a Patrick Bateman thing. It's just that The News - that pub-rock ensemble that powered a lot of mid-'80s radio - are just crazy listenable. They really bridged a gap between straight-up blues-rock and synth-driven pop, creating a style that really holds up some 25 years or so later. It's a style that's kind of underrepresented on CD, though. Sports was expanded in 1999 with live
Talking about Prince on a blog devoted to back catalogue music usually results in three considerations: 1) Prince really should allow remasters/reissues of his astounding discography, 2) Prince won't ever allow remasters/reissues of said discography and 3) why the heck not? As many of his fellow contemporaries (Madonna, Michael Jackson, Rick James, etc.) and other luminaries (The Rolling Stones, Jimi Hendrix, even The Beatles) have enjoyed remastering and rediscovery on compact disc, Prince has
This particular installment of Prince Week is an unorthodox one. The Second Disc is usually a place for just catalogue type stuff, since that is the gateway to most of our feelings about classic music. But sometimes the feelings themselves are worth writing about, if they're particularly strong. It's with this in mind that The Second Disc presents a bit of an emotions-based look at Prince's music. The following (admittedly lengthy) essay is something I've worked on for a few years in college,
We continue our Prince week with a little something for the fans out there that may have never caught on to His Royal Badness enough to buy any of his music. Often times, in cases where you want to get a firm start on following an artist, a greatest-hits compilation is the way to go. But Prince, like many other rock legends, has more than one such set on the market. And money's tight for a lot of folks. So which one do you end up buying? Follow the jump for a detailed breakdown of each one.
The Film Score Monthly label has prepped another two titles for release: two very different scores from two different composers, but winners both. First up is Jerry Goldsmith's in-demand score for the Sean Connery space Western Outland (1981). Goldsmith created a score that resembled his suspenseful approach to Alien from two years before, and it was augmented by some last-minute additions by Michael Boddicker (Buckaroo Banzai, Flashdance and session work for Michael Jackson) and Morton Stevens
A hat tip to Pause & Play for posting the Amazon pre-order link for a Deluxe Edition of Pinkerton, the sophomore LP by alt-rock stalwarts Weezer, coming from Geffen and UMe. When it was released in 1996, Pinkerton was ill-received by critics and fans expecting a traditional follow-up to the band's excellent self-titled debut, which featured hooky garage-pop with Ric Ocasek of The Cars in the producer's chair. By contrast, Pinkerton - initially conceived as a space-rock opera called Songs
The Second Disc reader Robert Altman was predicting the future when he suggested a week devoted to Prince a few days ago. Prince - one of the most polarizing and intriguing figures to ever saunter onto the pop music scene - deserves reams (or gigabytes, in this case) written about his music and its impact, and The Second Disc promises to deliver in that regard. From this Friday to next Friday - going right through Prince's 52nd birthday on Monday - TSD will present a few features on Prince's
Another quick update on a catalogue reissue: Rhino has pushed back the shipping date of the upcoming Deluxe Editions of a-ha's Hunting High and Low and Scoundrel Days to July 6 in the U.S. and August 6 in the U.K. All together now: noooooooooooo.
I'm not sure how old I was when I learned what a remix was. I certainly didn't have a childhood of going through 12" singles and hearing alternate, longer versions of my favorite pop songs. But I do know that when I first started realizing that songs would be edited for radio (or extended for single consumption), my mind was blown. This increased tenfold with the discovery of remixes through the '80s. Say what you will about the music at that time, some of it was made better by remixing on
Even though The Second Disc is primarily geared toward catalogue matters, I'd be doing myself a disservice by not paying attention to music as it stands in the present day. There's a trend I've been trying to wrap my head around on the tech side of music, one which could actually have spectacular implications for catalogue works if done properly. They're calling it "the cloud" - mobile, streaming music services that keep the music on a server instead of directly downloading it to your computer.
It may not be as big a news item as Paul McCartney shifting his solo catalog from sinking ship major EMI to rising indie Concord, but Paul Simon has told Showbiz411’s Roger Friedman of his plans to move his entire output from Warner Music Group to Sony/Columbia. Or more accurately, back to Sony/Columbia. Simon recorded his very first solo album, The Paul Simon Songbook, for Columbia’s U.K. arm in 1965, and of course, the entire Simon and Garfunkel catalog has long resided there. When Simon and
The great thing about most reissues over the past few years is that labels seem to want to follow one rule: if they can reissue it, they will do their best. Of course there are people out there who like, say, Cutting Crew or a-ha - but who could have seriously predicted that labels would be open to the idea of reissuing those records with bonus cuts and all that? Of course, this rule makes some of the great bands without reissues - Prince, The Go-Gos, that one Buckingham Nicks album - look like
In today’s radically-changed music climate, it should come as no surprise that record labels are trying many different series and business models to figure out just what the heck will sell. These releases aren’t necessarily aimed at the audience reading this site, most often targeting the casual music buyer. As such, these greatest hits series – whether Sony’s The Essential…, Universal’s 20th Century Masters or EMI’s Classic Masters, just to name a few – tend to be scorned by many collectors as
One of the hardest parts of being a reissue fan is waiting. Sometimes a project will get announced, then delayed or cancelled outright. Those long gaps between reissues can be irksome, particularly when the delay time fails to lead to any improvement or innovation in the packaging and presentation of a catalogue title. Other times, though, the reason behind the lack of a reissue is simply that nobody thinks to re-release it. Take, for instance, one of the better bands of the 1980s - Tears for
Man, it's been a good week for Star Trek music enthusiasts. First Film Score Monthly announces a brand-new deluxe reissue of James Horner's score to Star Trek III: The Search for Spock last week. And now, Varese Sarabande has jumped ahead on the Trek timeline to give fans another new deluxe set: starting June 14, the label will ship Star Trek: The Deluxe Edition, featuring the complete score to last year's fantastic reboot of the sci-fi series. As if the movie wasn't great enough on its own
Readers: we need to talk. It's nothing bad. The Second Disc isn't going away, isn't reducing its output, nothing like that. We just need to talk about a few things. Around five months ago, The Second Disc was started with a list of great reissues that were released in 2009. It was a post copied from a Facebook note written some weeks before. A modest beginning, to be sure. It's hard to have high expectations about anything you're just starting out on, particularly a blog. How many blogs must
A late announcement for readers: Hip-o Select has begun taking pre-orders for another reissue from Nils Lofgren. Since 2007, the label has been remastering and reissuing the solo works of Lofgren, of course best known as one of Bruce Springsteen's E Street Band members for the past quarter-century. Thus far, his original band Grin's final LP, Gone Crazy (1973) and solo efforts Nils Lofgren (1975), Back It Up!! Live-An Authorized Bootleg (1975) and Cry Tough (1976) - all originally released on
Blame the continuing heat in the Northeast. Blame the recent release of video game Red Dead Redemption. But it's just a good time for some great music from the "spaghetti Westerns," that subgenre of film where the Italian film community emulated and built upon the traditions of the American Western picture. Ask any film scholar and they'll likely tell you that few directors contributed more for the genre than Sergio Leone - and futhermore, that his best works had Ennio Morricone providing a
Lately, I've been unable to turn the radio dial to a rock-oriented radio station without happening on the music of Billy Idol. There's nothing wrong with that - Idol was one of the best artists of the '80s - but it's a bit jarring, if only because it's hard to think of Billy Idol as a rocker, in the truest sense. Sure, his music is dominated by some excellent guitar (usually from the axe of the fantastic Steve Stevens), and it has a bit of an edge thanks to Idol's irrepressible snarling vocals.
Next week is going to be much more comfortable when it comes to posting on The Second Disc. After several months of bitterly typing and researching over a creaky, aging Dell PC (having lost a nearly-just-as-creaky Thinkpad T60 laptop), the weekend should see your humble correspondent upgrading to a Macbook. As a lifelong Windows user (barring my time writing and editing for my newspaper in college), it's an unusual but worthwhile transition, and I can't wait to regain simple pleasures like
After yesterday's Miles Davis pricing madness, The Second Disc brings you some much more appreciable madness, through another set of reissues by Madness, one of the best-known ska acts of the '80s. Continuing the band's ongoing reissue project, Salvo and Union Square Music has prepped the band's fourth and fifth LPs, The Rise & Fall (1982) and Keep Moving (1984), as double-disc deluxe reissues. Both sets will feature various remixes, B-sides and promo videos to boot. It's notable that The