NEW ORLEANS (AP) — “Sea Cruise” singer Frankie Ford has died. The Jefferson Parish Coroner’s Office in Louisiana says Ford died Monday of natural causes. He was 76. Ford hit number 14 in 1959 with “Sea Cruise.” He never had another top-40 hit. Ford started singing when he was a child and got his first break in the late 1950s. He was called into a New Orleans studio to cover songs by local black singers who got limited airtime on the radio because of racial discrimination.
Archives for September 2015
LAS VEGAS (AP) — A street near the Las Vegas Strip has been renamed for Sammy Davis Junior. It happens to intersect with Frank Sinatra Drive and Dean Martin Drive, and that’s where yesterday’s dedication ceremony was held. Davis’ family was among those present. The street was formerly Industrial Road.
LOS ANGELES (AP) — Founding Toto bassist David Hungate jokes it’s time for him to figure out what he wants to be when he grows up, so he’s not going to tour with the band anymore. Hungate says he doesn’t have the stamina and resilience for extended touring, although playing with Toto has been one of the greatest honors of his life. Leland Sklar will take over bass duties beginning with Toto’s European tour in January.
NEW YORK (AP) — Pharrell (fah-REL’) Williams is trying to get books in the hands of young readers in low-income families. Williams and the nonprofit literacy organization FirstBook will donate up to 50,000 books to children. Williams’ publisher, Penguin Young Readers, says it will donate a book for every Twitter post with the hashtag “readHappy” with a thought about why reading makes you happy. Williams’ picture book, “Happy,” comes out next week.
NEW YORK (AP) — Keith Richards finally released his second solo album in 23 years because it was a matter of timing. As Richards puts it, “The thing is I work with this other band.” Richards says his “Crosseyed Heart” album has been ready for 18 months but he had to wait for a break in the Rolling Stones schedule. A documentary about the album called “Keith Richards: Under the Influence” has been released to Netflix. Why Netflix? Richards says he knows little about things like that and leaves it up to his manager. He says, “I’m not a businessman, particularly. I just happen to make lots of money.”
LOS ANGELES (AP) — Roger Daltrey says he’s on the mend and feeling a lot better after a bout with viral meningitis. The Who have rescheduled the concerts they had to postpone because of Daltrey’s illness. The Who will resume their North American tour Feb. 27 in Detroit.
CLEVELAND (AP) — The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame is opening an exhibit about Graham Nash in which visitors can sing with a virtual Nash, and Nash will tell them if they’re good or not. The exhibit allows users to try to sing harmony with Nash, and they can email their results to themselves. The exhibit will also include the jeans and belt Nash wore to Woodstock, a painting Joni Mitchell made of Nash with their cat and Nash’s early handwritten lyrics to “Our House.” The exhibit opens October 17.
PHILADELPHIA (AP) — Aretha Franklin had hopes to surprise Pope Francis by singing “Nessun Dorma” as an encore during the Festival of Families in Philadelphia on Saturday. Unfortunately, he left by the time she returned to the stage. He did get to hear her sing “Amazing Grace,” though. Sister Sledge changed the words of “We Are Family” to “I’ve got all my sisters and brothers with me,” and they referred to Jesus as “the way, the truth, the light.” Other performers include The Fray, Andrea Bocelli (ahn-DRAY’-uh boh-CHEL’-ee), Columbia pop star Juanes (WAH’-nes) and folk singer Marie Miller. Mark Wahlberg was the host.
NEW YORK (AP) — The Global Citizen Festival in New York over the weekend was a nice reward for people who have done good deeds. The fact that they got to see interesting musical collaborations was a bonus. Fans earned free tickets by taking action to defeat global poverty. Beyonce’ and Ed Sheeran teamed up on her song “Drunk in Love.” Beyonce performed with Eddie Vedder, Sting sang with Common, and Ariana Grande (GRAHN’-day) sang with Coldplay. Other celebrities who appeared include Stephen Colbert (kohl-BAYR’), Kerry Washington, Olivia Wilde, Hugh Jackman, Leonardo DiCaprio and Bono.
UNDATED (AP) — Alice Cooper and Aerosmith guitarist Joe Perry are making good for all the hearing they’ve blown out over the years. Cooper and Perry, along with Johnny Depp, helped fit customized hearing devices for 218 residents of Rio de Janeiro at the Rock in Rio music festival on Thursday. Perry says the impact on the lives of the children who now can hear is “astounding.” Cooper jokes maybe the people who can now hear should start listening to music that’s a little lighter and work up to his music. The Starkey Hearing Foundation sponsored the hearing devices. Cooper, Perry and Depp performed as Hollywood Vampires at Rock in Rio.