Friday, May 30, 2008

Walter Becker's Circus Money: Special material with International release

News item about extras to come...In a post over on the BlueBook earlier today Dan Belcher noted that the international distributor of Circus Money had the following news item on the homepage:

"Free exclusive bonus mp3 to come with ex-US release
Check back soon for an update on this exclusive bonus song from Walter Becker, only available with purchase of the ex-US release! Pre-order available soon on the Sonic360 store."

We just checked the homepage in question and while the news item has been rephrased it still indicates something a little extra to come with the international version of Circus Money when it is finally released July 14:

Special material with International Release
Special material with International Release of 'Circus Money': more details and pre-orders coming soon, please check back.

Your guess is as good as ours! An extra song maybe... A personalized postcard from Walter... A vinyl pressing of Medical Science... A jar of ginger cookies...

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Walter Becker's Circus Money: UK (and international) release date and track-by-track comments!

Walter Becker press releaseAccording to a press release published today, July 14 is the release date for Circus Money in the UK. The distribution is handled by Sonic360, a record company started by producer Chris Allison in 2000.

The really interesting thing about this press release is that you get a short comment on each track by Walter himself.
Walter Becker Press ReleaseWhat song title came to Walter in a dream?
What song came out sounding a bit like a Brill Building/Lieber & Stoller/Bert Berns composition?
What song was inspired by a name-dropping German businessman?

The answers to these questions can be found in the press release found here!

A couple more quotes:

Sonic360 is pleased to announce the UK release of Circus Money, Walter Becker’s first solo album in fourteen years. “It is,” the artist acknowledges, “a unique career strategy.”

Walter on Larry Klein as producer and co-writer:

"All I can say is that I’m glad Larry came along when he did,” Walter observes. “If he hadn’t, I’d probably still be writing couplets. To me, that’s always been the fun part.”

: : : : : : : : :

UPDATE: Gina on Mizar5 has posted the telephone interview Walter did on KFOG, San Francisco May 22. One minute and 47 seconds.

UPDATE 2: Looks like the UK date of July 14 is also the release date for the rest of the world excluding the US and Canada, as Sonic360 seem to handle that somewhat larger piece of the planet. The different distributors of Sonic360 and Walter's album around the world are listed here.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Pink Floyd gets Polar Prize

The British group Pink Floyd gets the Swedish Polar Prize of 2008 and one million Swedish kronor ($ 168 000).
They share the award with the american opera singer Renée Fleming.
The Polar Prize was once initiated by ABBA's manager Stikkan Andersson.

Saturday, May 17, 2008

Becker's background vocalists

Kate, Cindy, Walter, Windy and Larry(Kate, Cindy, Walter, Windy and producer Larry Klein.)

Judging by the two full tracks and the short soundclips heard so far, the background vocalists on Circus Money will be more than just "background". In addition to two familiar voices; Carolyn Leonhart-Escoffery and Cindy Mizelle, there's also Windy Wagner and Kate Markowitz.
All four are listed in the pdf that came with the download-if-you-pre-order track Door Number Two.
There might be additional background vocalists on the album, but for now here are links to learn a bit more/lot more about these important contributors to Circus Money's soundscape:

While wondering what pic I could use to illustrate this post I found the miniature one of all of the above except Carolyn on Windy's homepage. I hope she don't mind me using it here.

Thursday, May 15, 2008

Walter Becker's Circus Money: YouTube x 2!

OK. Three weeks ago Scapegrace99 joined the member ranks of the sizeable pile of visual entertainment that is YouTube. A mere five and 14 hours respectively ago he (?) posted two videos of considerable interest to those of us waiting for Circus Money to arrive.

First off the aptly titled Walter Becker Circus Money. 49 seconds with the soundtrack being from one of the songs on the album; Selfish Gene.

And then there's the shorter but perhaps even more intriguing Walter Becker Circus Money Fringehead. 27 seconds to the beat of Door Number Two you'll like and whose hidden meaning(s) can be discussed until June 10 and beyond.

Will there be additional videos for all songs? Can a Twitter account be far behind?

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

The Walter Becker Store is open!

At least if you're a subscriber to the newsletter over on

You can pre-order Circus Money and get it delivered five days before its official release date of June 10.

Go online, pick one or more of the following versions of the album; a CD, mp3 or FLAC.
Pay and get an instant download in the form of the opening song Door Number Two including a pdf with the lyrics and who plays what on that particular song.

The newsletter has a personalized link for you to "share this offer with as many non-subscribed friends as you choose."
So if you're not already a subscriber and want to pre-order as well, please drop us an email and we'll point you in the right direction.

P.S. This is what Walter's 5 Over 12 label logo looks like.

And Door Number Two sounds just as great as we suspected it would after hearing the soundclips posted late last month!

Sunday, May 11, 2008

Neil Young's Blue-ray Archives

What was Neil Young doing at at the JavaOne computer/technology conference in San Francisco last week?
He was there to unveil the latest move foward in his Archives series. And to casual Neil Young fans like ourselves the massive all-inclusive Archives retrospective has been talked about and in the making for at least 20, 25, maybe 30 years.

A couple of CD:s have been released and there's a special Archives section over at
But last weeks PR-thing/announcement that it would all be collected on Blue-ray discs and updated over the Internet gave Archives a larger and perhaps more tangible form.

You can see a video where Neil Young explain why he's doing Archives the way he's doing it and why he's waited until now.

Then there's a text-only interview here.

Right now the plan is for five boxes consisting of ten discs each! The first box will cover the years 1963 - 1972.

Saturday, May 10, 2008

What's new in Baltimore? = A Zappa bust

The city of Baltimore (Maryland, US) erects a bronze bust of rock artist and composer Frank Zappa.
Zappa was born there in 1940 and lived in the city until the age of ten when his family moved to California.

The bust project is supported by Lithuanian fans (!) who put up their own Zappa bust in their capital Vilnius in 1995.
Read the article from The Baltimore Sun here:,0,5047730.story

Friday, May 09, 2008

Weekend music: King Crimson

Now and then we slap a video on this blog. And this time it is two videos by our Album of the Month artists; King Crimson!
First of a collage of clips from the early days of the group. The sharer writes:
The classic 1972-74 line-up of King Crimson - Robert Fripp, John Wetton, Bill Bruford and David Cross (plus Jamie Muir on the earliest footage) - filmed in Europe and the US performing some of its better known compositions - "Easy Money", "Lament", "Starless", and "Larks' Tongues In Aspic" Parts One & Two. Rarely seen archives; only fragments are presented here so as to support rather than prevent an official release which is hoped for... eventually.

And a rare TV appearance from 1995 by the group:

Wednesday, May 07, 2008

New Carolyn Leonhart record

Carolyn Leonhart & Wayne Escoffery's If Dreams Come True was released seven months ago. May 26 is date set for Carolyn's new solo album Chances Are - The Romantic Music Of Robert Allen.

Robert who?

According to Wikipedia:
Robert Allen (February 5, 1927-October 1, 2000) was a pianist and an arranger and writer of music for popular songs. He was an accompanist for Perry Como, Peter Lind Hayes, and Arthur Godfrey. Many of his compositions were collaborations with lyricist Al Stillman.

The album is released by President Records in England. And if you're an subscriber you don't have to wait for May 26; you can download the album right now.

Link to a pressrelease.

1 Chances Are
2 I Don't Regret A Thing
3 Come To Me
4 You Are Never Far Away From Me
5 Everybody Loves A Lover
6 Meantime
7 It's Not For Me To Say
8 Play For Keeps
9 It Could Have Been Worse
10 No Such Luck
11 Teacher, Teacher
12 I'm Loving You A Lot
13 Moments To Remember

Walter Becker: Full song streaming!

Circus MoneyThe song is Somebody's Saturday Night and it's streaming over on Rolling Stone where you also can read a Q & A with Walter.

Tuesday, May 06, 2008

The Carly Simon - Steely Dan connection + some new rereleases

The Radio Dupree homepage has just been updated with:

Carly Simin - This Kind Of Love* The listener's Top 20.
* Who won the April giveaway?
* The connection between Carly Simon's brand new CD and Steely Dan.
* An upcoming bunch of Steely Dan rereleases for the completist collector.
* Album of the Month: King Crimson's The Great Deceiver.

Drop on by and have a look.

Monday, May 05, 2008

Amazon to sell out of print CD's via Amazon On Demand

Way back in the days of Napster and other whos names we've long ago forgotten, the natural choice was to go find music were you could find more than the Top 10, 20, 50 or 100 plus advertised stuff that any legal site could offer.

Looks like we're slowly getting there, although I would love to see a site or more that offered out of print stuff as well as obscure and the latest hits. A true one-stop for ones musical needs and explorations.

Here's a news item we found today that points in the right direction:

Amazon has made deals with Sony BMG, EMI and other labels to bring hundreds of out-of-print albums to CD using their CreateSpace “Disc on Demand” system. The new CDs will be manufactured on-demand and shipped when customers place an order.

Sunday, May 04, 2008

Steely Dan vs. The Eagles

This blog is not exclusively Steely Dan, far from it. But as we keep an eye on that very same group we should've had this clip here eons ago. It was about that time we first heard Yacht Rock mentioned.
And we meant to check it out. But you know how things go. You put it off and suddenly you're one way or another reminded that you haven't seen the clip yet. And you finally do and find it funny. And as we haven't had any clip here for quite some time we thought we'd give you Yacht Rock episode 10. The episode were we get to see how that feud between the two of the most successful 1970's bands played out. Steely Dan versus The Eagles:


It just struck us as somewhat odd in a perplexing way that more than 30 years on both groups are still around, touring and recording...

Friday, May 02, 2008

Jon Herington album re-released

Did we miss this? Almost! Guitarist Jon Herington's The Complete Rhyming Dictionary from 1992 has been re-released with a brand new title; Pulse And Cadence. The record label/nuber is ESC 3726.

The album was recorded back in 1992 and features a stellar band:
Jim Beard: piano, keyboards, synthesizers, hammond, organ, vocals.
Ralph Bowen: sax.
Michael Mossman: trombone.
Victor Bailey: bass.
Peter Erskine: drums.
Arto Tuncboyaciyan: percussion.
Leno Gomez: flute, clarinet, bass clarinet.

(Nice album cover as well!)

We might as well remind you of an interview with Jon published in January this year on the Inside Musicast site. Click the link and give it a listen.

Thursday, May 01, 2008

Steely Dan 2008: Playing in Europe? Not likely...

It's a bit of a pipe dream, but living in Europe we're allowed to nurture it. And after last year's world tour we imagined that just maybe, just maybe, Steely Dan would take the 2008 tour abroad as well.

With the latest update to drummer Keith Carlock's homepage those dreams look set to stay just dreams. Keith will be on tour with his own band Rudder in September and Wayne Krantz in October.
Somehow we find it hard to see Steely Dan touring with a different drummer. And going back on the road in November?

Over on they've gigs listed until August 9, so theoretically they could add a few international dates for the remainder of the month. Hmmm... OK. It's back to dreaming!

But before we go a question:
Carly Simon has just released her first album of new songs in eight years. It's called This Kind Of Love and has a clear Steely Dan connection. What is that connection?
No, it's not drummer Rick Marotta who also played on Gaucho, Aja and The Royal Scam.
The correct answer to the question will be posted here this weekend if we don't get it in the comments to this post!

Ponderlingly yours,