“Our fans will now be able to easily recognize the No. 43 Ford and Aric on the track throughout the season.”—Richard Petty, team owner Concord, N.C. (February 27, 2013) – Richard Petty Motorsports and its partner Smithfield Foods announced today that the Petty Blue tradition and heritage will return for the majority of the NASCAR Sprint Cup season in 2013. Smithfield Foods, and its family of brands including Eckrich, Farmland, Gwaltney and Smithfield, will showcase the historic color on the No.43 Ford driven by Aric Almirola in 24 races this season. It will be the first time in over 40 years that the Petty Blue color will be primarily featured on the No. 43 for nearly the entire race schedule. The color, introduced by the Petty family and then made famous by “The King” Richard Petty, has come to define the winning tradition and heritage of the Petty family and the famed No. 43. The legions of Petty race fans have long waited for the return of the famous Petty Blue paint scheme. Smithfield Foods is proud to return the tradition and winning heritage back to the track.”We want to connect the tradition and history of Richard Petty and Richard Petty Motorsports fans to our Smithfield Foods family of brands,” explained Larry Pope, chief executive officer of Smithfield Foods. “There is no better way to do that than to bring back the Petty Blue color scheme that all race fans recognize and relate to on the No. 43 Ford. We will now make sure that each time we race this season, our fans will be able to easily recognize Aric (Almirola) on the track and the strong heritage that the Petty and Smithfield Foods brands represent.”The first Petty Blue scheme will adorn the No. 43 this weekend when Almirola will race the Famland Ford at the Phoenix International Raceway. This car, along with the Eckrich and Smithfield (Gwaltney) Ford were unveiled today by team owner Richard Petty and Smithfield Director of Public Affairs, Dennis Pittman.”I’m really humbled by everyone at Smithfield and all their companies to decide to make this change,” said team owner Richard Petty. “They have been great partners for us as a company and this really proves that. Our fans will now be able to easily recognize the No. 43 Ford and Aric on the track throughout the season. It will also bring back a lot of good memories for me each time I see it.” Familiar Look Connects Fans to Smithfield Foods
On Monday night, guitarist Carlos Santana made rock and roll history by reuniting with his original band. The last time the group was on the stage was 1973, but old memories were brought back to life at the House of Blues in Las Vegas, NV.Among those present were Carlos Santana (guitar, vocals), Gregg Rolie (keyboards, lead vocals), Neal Schon (guitar, vocals), Michael Carabello (percussion), and Michael Shrieve (drums). Bringing top-notch music that spanned old and new, Santana and company absolutely crushed it! The group has a new album, Santana IV, due out on April 15th.Watch The Original Santana Band Perform Together For The First Time Since 1973Thankfully, Erik Kabik Photography was on the scene to capture the magic. Check out some stunning captures below: Load remaining images A full gallery of Erik Kabik Photography’s images can be seen below, as well as the setlist of the performance:
Those paying attention of late may have caught the name Courtney Barnett in passing. The Australian rocker opened for, and collaborated with, Jack White a couple years ago, and her debut album Sometimes I Sit and Think, and Sometimes I Just Sit took the world by storm last year. She even contributed a rocking version of “New Speedway Boogie” for the Day of the Dead 59-track tribute album to the Grateful Dead, which you can stream here.Last night, Barnett made her debut on last night’s season finale of Saturday Night Live, playing two tunes from her 2015 album. If you’ve never heard Barnett, SNL provided the optimal stage for her to show off some sensational chops. Her music has something of a 1980’s rock and roll vibe to it, drawing from influences like Joan Jett and Billy Idol. Still, she manages to imbue the music with a modern freshness, smoothly belting playful lyrics while keeping the guitar licks rocking. With a tight rhythm section, Barnett is well on her way to capturing the hearts of millions after last night’s showing.Check out the two songs from the evening, “No One Really Cares If You Don’t Go To The Party” and “Pedestrian At Best,” and let us know what you think.“No One Really Cares If You Don’t Go To The Party”“Pedestrian At Best”
Last weekend, a number of truly talented performers descended on the High Sierra Music Festival last weekend, bringing great jams from a diverse spectrum of artists. Among those musicians were the talented folks of Greensky Bluegrass, who not only played a set on the main stage, but also let loose for an extraordinary late night set.Thanks to Must Have Media, we have our first glimpse into the band’s late night jamboree. The group opened their set with their fan-favorite tune, “Don’t Lie,” before looping into a cover of Prince’s “1999,” only to bring it back into “Don’t Lie.” What a jam! Watch the footage below.Next up for GSBG is a performance at the Ryman Auditorium in Nashville, TN scheduled for tomorrow, July 7th. Don’t miss out!
The great Toots Thielemans has passed away at the age of 94. The jazz harmonica master died in his home country of Belgium, where he had retired after he stopped touring a few years ago.Thielemans had been a fixture on the jazz scene since the late 1940s, playing in Europe with Charlie Parker, Miles Davis, and Max Roach before moving to America in 1952 to join Parker’s “All-Stars” band. He went on to play with a who’s who of jazz legends, everyone from Ella Fitzgerald to Pat Metheny and Jaco Pastorius, and Thielemans enjoyed an illustrious career as the go-to harmonica player in the jazz world.Thielemans also crossed over and worked on many projects in the mainstream. He worked on numerous occasions with famed producer Quincy Jones, and he contributed to the soundtracks of many classic films like Midnight Cowboy and The Getaway. Thielemans even even performed the famous closing credits of Sesame Street, although it goes uncredited. In the 80s, Thielemans recorded with several modern pop stars like Billy Joel and Paul Simon, and his smooth harmonica skills were enjoyed by an entirely new generation of fansIn honor of the great Toots Thielemans and the great musical life he led, take a few minutes to watch some videos and hear Thielemans’ incredible harmonica playing one more time.Watch Thielemans in Rotterdam, Netherlands in 2009 performing his biggest solo hit, “Bluesette” at the “Night of the Proms”.Here’s Thielemans performing “Imagine” by John Lennon at The Caspian Jazz and Blues Festival in Azerbaijan in 2002, courtesy of YouTube user American Voices.Listen to audio of Thielemans performing with Pat Metheny on “Back in Time”, courtesy of YouTube user Zs R.Finally, listen to Thielemans’ iconic playing on the Sesame Street closing credits.RIP Toots Thielemans, and thank you for your incredible contribution to the world of music!
Firefly Music Festival has become a behemoth over the past few years. The Delaware music festival has attracted 90,000 fans for many years running, and has become one of the landmark music festivals in the country. In doing so, the festival has formed a strong bond with its fanbase, using a survey system to find out artists that their fans would like to see in The Woodlands. In fact, Blink-182, Earth Wind & Fire, and Busta Rhymes were all booked in recent years specifically due to fan requests, while the festival has booked “31 of the top 30 mid-tier acts and 7 of the top 10 headliners” in the past four years in response to fan demand. Using their fans to crowd-source their lineup decisions has paid off, leading to a true connection between Firefly fans and promoters Red Frog Productions.Now, in 2017, Red Frog and Firefly will take their connection with their fans even further, as the festival has announced that the entire festival will essentially be decided by fan voting. The festival team posted an update on the event’s website today, explaining that fans will help decide the food, the art, the design, and the overall feel of the festival. See below for a portion of their full statement:“As each Firefly is built, it is a lengthy and complex process with ups and downs, lefts and rights. There are numerous decisions to be made about every inch of The Woodlands. What stays and what gets replaced? what do we hang here and built there? Hammocks or swings, tacos or crepes, kickball or capture the flag? Starting now, you will have the opportunity to be involved in every piece of Firefly. Throughout the next seven months, we will be releasing several surveys specific to each area of the festival. Artists, attractions, food, camping, merchandise, etc. These are your opportunities to voice your opinion, to help curate the best weekend of the summer…”In a festival market filled with homogenous lineups, seemingly endless corporate sponsorships, and many of the same attractions, it’s time for fans to finally have their voices heard at a large-scale festival. The only question is, will fans create a festival that the majority of festival-goers actually like? Or will this new strategy end up as another gimmick? With the involvement of festival giants Goldenvoice, one can only wonder how much power they will cede, especially given their involvement in the disappointing Hangout Festival lineup. We can only hope that real fans will show them a thing or two at Firefly this summer by democratically deciding on an amazing event!
2017 is going to be a busy year for Sophistafunk! The band is hitting the ground running, having recently revealed plans for a new album and a major tour. With a sound that recalls a mixture of “The Roots” meets “Rage Against The Machine,” the band is set to reveal their new release, Real Vibration, on February 14th, 2017.To get the party started, the band has announced a series of tour dates leading up to the album release. They’ll kick off the tour this Saturday, January 21st in their hometown of Syracuse, NY, before hitting stops throughout the Northeast from 1/21 through 2/11. The band’s explosive sound will be featured in full force, as they continue to own 2017 with their unique brand of music. Speaking of which, Sophistafunk wrote the theme song for Food Network’s Guy’s Grocery Games newest season, and Adam (keys) is a contestant on the show as well!Says vocalist/lyricist Jack Brown, “It is hard to explain the spirit of peace and unity that I have experienced as a lover of live music, but anyone who has ever felt it knows exactly what I’m talking about. Right now, I think the world needs to feel the Funk more than ever! Music has the power to build bridges where walls once stood, which inspired us to create the songs that would become our new album, Real Vibration. Our goal was to follow in the footsteps of Bob Marley, Stevie Wonder, Michael Franti, and many others by writing music that uplifts people and brings them together. The key was holding on to the essence of Funk, Soul, Jam, and Hip Hop that makes us who we are sonically”He continues, “I think anyone who loves to see us live will really enjoy sharing this album with their friends and family, because it balances the raw emotion of a Sophistafunk dance party with the veteran production skills of Jocko Randall at MoreSound Studios. Although it was fun in the studio, I am excited to get back out on the road this week for the Real Vibration 2017 CD Release Tour, coming soon to a venue near you. We are also happy to announce that we will be rejoined by our funk brother Tommy Weeks (of the Funky Dawgz Brass Band) on saxophone, and will also feature Brian Graham (from Sister Sparrow & The Dirty Birds) for our shows in Portland and Boston.”To get fans ready for the excitement, check out a video of their theme song for Food Network’s Guy’s Grocery Games from this most recent season!Check out the full tour schedule, posted in the artwork below. You can head to the band’s website for details.
Twiddle and Aqueous brought their jam wares out to Buffalo, NY last night, playing the first of a two night weekend run at the Town Ballroom. The sold out crowd was eager to catch both bands last night, with Aqueous coming out of the gate with a strong opening set before Twiddle closed it down with two big sets of their own. Both bands collaborated with each other and dug deep to create priceless concert memories that won’t soon be forgotten.Aqueous opened the night, coming out strong with their song “Strange Times.” The real highlight of their set came in the middle of their song “Numbers & Facts,” when the band welcomed out Twiddle bassist Zdenek Gubb to accompany them on their debut performance of “Express Yourself.” The N.W.A song saw Aqueous’s Evan McPhaden rapping through the bars before crowd surfing while Gubb held it down on the low end. What a wild time!Check out full video of the show below, broken into three parts by TheKamherst. Setlist: Aqueous | Town Ballroom | Buffalo, NY | 3/4/17Set: Strange Times, Second Sight, Numbers & Facts > Express Yourself* > Numbers & Facts, Don’t Do It* = NWA cover, Zdenek Gubb from twiddle on bass, Evan McPhaden on MC dutiesSetlist: Twiddle | Town Ballroom | Buffalo, NY | 3/4/17Set One: Blunderbuss, Polluted Beauty, White Light, Brick Of Barley, Carter CandlestickSet Two: Wildfire, Indigo Trigger, Dr. Remedies, Latin Tang*, Lost In The ColdEncore: Ghostbusters Theme*** = with Mike Gantzer** = with Mike Gantzer & Evan McPhaden[Photo by Tim Merrill] Twiddle hit the stage thereafter, bringing two five song sets to keep the energy high throughout the whole night. The group really found their groove in a great version of “White Light” in the first set, and kept up the jamming through the whole show. They welcomed Aqueous’s Mike Gantzer out during “Latin Tang” in the second set, and would also surprise fans with a “Ghostbusters Theme” encore to close out the night. “Ghostbusters” also featured Gantzer and McFadden from Aqueous, as the additional musicians added some energy to the stage.Check out videos of “Latin Tang” and “Ghostbusters” below, courtesy of TheKamherst.
The second annual Fool’s Paradise is set to bring the heat to the St. Augustine Amphitheatre on March 31 & April 1, with genre-bending music from Lettuce x2, Joe Russo’s Almost Dead (with Jeff Chimenti), The Floozies, The Motet, Manic Science (a special set with Manic Focus & Break Science) The Main Squeeze, Organ Freeman, and Oteil Burbridge & Antwaun Stanley as artists-at-large.Part of what makes Fool’s Paradise so unique is the one-on-one time fans get with their favorite musicians. The event itself is intimate, from the one-stage parameter to the nearby after parties – but there are also opportunities to have even more time with your favorite artists outside of the festival ground. Before the gates open on Saturday afternoon, Fool’s Paradise will offer three artist-led excursions for those in town for a full experience in St. Augustine, FL.One of which is The Shady Horns Sailing Adventure & DJ Set At Sea! Kick back, relax and soak up the sun with saxophonist Ryan Zoidis and trumpeter Eric “Benny” Bloom” on the Schooner Freedom Charters! Join the jokesters as they DJ their favorite tunes on a two-hour nautical adventure at sea. The guys promise deep cuts from New Orleans, some rare and carefully procured funk, and maybe some reggae if the vibes right.Bring a pair of binoculars and look for dolphins, turtles, and birds, or take the helm for an unforgettable sailing experience. Beer and wine will be provided, though you can always bring more. Snacks are also recommended! The ship boards at 12PM ET. Space is limited, so sign up right HERE.If sailing’s not your thing, you can also play mini-golf with Lettuce’s Jesus Coomes, Vulfpeck’s Antwaun Stanley, and The Motet’s Lyle Divinsky, or go against Adam Deitch and Adam “Shmeeans” Smirnoff in a ping-pong tournament to raise money for The Water Collective. More information can be found here.
J Dilla was an absolute machine of a producer, creating more music than his lifetime could retain. Posthumous tracks continue to surface from the late Dilla, including particularly unique combinations with him and other well known recording artists. Just yesterday, the Dilla family announced Motor City, a new posthumous release that spotlights Dilla’s roots in the Detroit underground hip hop scene.The album is due out on April 21st, and was put together by Ma Dukes, featuring hand-picked selections from the Dilla collection. Among those is a take on Biggie’s song “Juicy,” complete with a previously unreleased beat laid down by Dilla himself. The beat was provided by Dilla’s own collaborator J Rocc, and the track was released as a sampler for the upcoming Motor City collection.Take a listen to the new single, and be prepared for more grooving Dilla beats to come.