Posts tagged with "Rick James"

Reckless in Vegas via Erika Pope for The Vox Agency for use by 360 Magazine

Reckless in Vegas × SAHARA

Reckless In Vegas, whose utterly distinctive sound offers a modern twist on Vintage Vegas, announced tickets are now on sale for its ongoing engagement at SAHARA Las Vegas, beginning June 30. Performing in the Las Vegas Strip’s fabled resort-casino, which recently completed a $150 million renovation and where Louis Prima, Bobby Darin, Buddy Hackett and Don Rickles once graced the showroom stage, Reckless In Vegas will appear in the SAHARA Las Vegas Theatre on Thursday and Friday evenings at 8:30 PM. Audiences can look forward to rocking out to the power trio’s exhilarating original renditions of beloved classics by the Rat Pack, Elvis Presley and more.

Reckless In Vegas steals audiences away to the bygone days of Las Vegas when the drinks were strong, the entertainers were charismatic and the music was intoxicating. The show combines the imagery, comedic banter, glamorous showgirls and classic music from Sin City’s 1960s “glory days” with a contemporary rock band aesthetic.

Members Michael Shapiro (band founder, lead vocals, guitar), Jack E. Roth (drums) and Chris Nichols (bass, vocals) have created a high-energy show incorporating live performances of modern versions of songs by artists such as Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin, Elvis Presley, Sonny & Cher, Frankie Valli, Neil Diamond, Johnny Cash and Bobby Darin with dynamic production-show elements.

Whether audiences remember the swinging Vegas lounge-era days or were born much later, Reckless In Vegas brings something for everyone. Video montages, dialogue, humor, modern hard-rocking grooves and tender moments of balladry combine to create a truly original take on this classic genre. Think The Rat Pack meets Green Day.

“Performing at the historic—yet completely reimagined—SAHARA Las Vegas on the Las Vegas Strip represents a dream come true for me,” says Shapiro. “There exists no better venue for our band, which reinvents and reinvigorates classic Las Vegas entertainment for contemporary audiences.”

About Michael Shapiro

Shapiro was raised in Las Vegas and, after stints in Oregon and California, returned to his hometown in 2015. He picked up his first instrument at age 13, and trained hard in guitar, vocals, piano and trumpet, attuning his ear to classical opera as well as rock. A chance encounter with a family friend struck the right chord and paved Shapiro’s way into music. At age 16, he had the opportunity to jam with Bruce Springsteen. The rocker’s energetic marathon performances spurred Shapiro to develop a taste for a raucous stage presence. After playing in various cover bands in his teens, Shapiro formed the band Trip, released several albums and toured. Being part of the VH1 Rock Across America Tour, Trip opened for such artists as Edwin McCain, Duncan Sheik, The Romantics and Cheap Trick. It was during an ill-fated gig opening for Great White when a tragic fire struck, that moved Shapiro to deeply reflect on life’s vagaries and whims.

He bounced back, releasing his first solo album, Somehow, Someway, and toured nationally, opening for the alt-rock band Live. After moving to San Rafael, Calif., he formed the power trio: Reckless in Vegas.

Shapiro’s style yields insight into his influences: Jimi Hendrix‘s relentless guitar riffs, Journey‘s Neal Schon, Carlos Santana and the melodic and powerful vocal styling of U2′s Bono

About Jack E. Roth

With more than 35 years’ experience, Roth has played drums and percussion on hundreds of projects associated with major labels and otherwise (including work with MCA, Universal, Interscope, MTV, VH1, Artisan, EA Sports), resulting in an extensive knowledge of playing, recording, production and engineering techniques.

Roth has performed all over the United States, headlining and opening for Guns N’ Roses, Aerosmith, Puddle of Mudd, Chickenfoot, Buckcherry, Corey Taylor (Slipknot/Stone Sour), Fuel, Living Colour, Trapt, Adelita’s Way, Steel Panther, Deep Dark Robot, Cold, Smashmouth, Danzig, Static-X, Fear Factory, Slaughter, Vince Neil, Dokken, Ratt, Eddie Money, Michael Angelo, Rick Derringer, Michael McDonald, Dennis DeYoung (Styx), The Commodores, The Romantics, Al Stewart, Starship, Berlin, Mark Farmer (Grand Funk), The Family Stone, Pat Travers, Edgar Winter, Canned Heat, Ten Years After, Steppenwolf, Marshall Tucker Band, Three Dog Night, War, The Fixx, Vixen, Shotgun Messiah, Kik Tracee, Gilby Clark, Life, Sex & Death, Bang Tango, Gary Hoey and Love/Hate, among others.

He has also played in backing bands for Randy Jackson (Mariah Carey, Journey, American Idol), Dee Snider, Meat Loaf, Sabastian Bach (Skid Row), Nick St. Nicholas (Steppenwolf), Deborah Gibson, Sheri Belafonte, Frank Hannon (Tesla), Tony Fredianelli (Third Eye Blind), Steve Plunkett (Autograph) and Paul Revere & the Raiders.

Roth is endorsed by Ayotte Drums, Aquarian Drumheads and Gibraltar Hardware and is a proud member of ASCAP.

About Chris Nichols

Born in Newark, Ohio, as the son of a piano teacher, Nichols studied the piano, cello, guitar, drums and bass. His early years led him to Nashville where he toured with several artists throughout the nation. His desire to “Go West” led him to Las Vegas when the mob still owned the town. He saw the Sands and the Dunes casinos fall to their demise. Since moving to Sin City, he has recorded on several records both as an artist and an engineer.  Nichols actually shared the stage with Shapiro in Trip as they ascended to the height of that band’s career. With the help of several bands, he has also shared stages with Willie Nelson, Chris Isaak, Toto, Peter Frampton, Rick James and Lifehouse, to name just a few.

illustration by Samantha Miduri for use by 360 Magazine

Rick James Documentary Feature Premieres September 3rd

SHOWTIME® has released a trailer for BITCHIN’: THE SOUND AND FURY OF RICK JAMES, directed by Emmy®-nominee Sacha Jenkins (WU-TANG CLAN: OF MICS AND MEN, BURN, MOTHERF*CKER, BURN!). BITCHIN’ is an intimate yet propulsive look at Rick James, one of rock, funk, and R&B’s most legendary and often underappreciated figures. Featuring rare footage of James’ incredible live shows, never-before-seen home video, original interviews with legendary artists, collaborators, and friends, and a treasure trove of recorded interviews with James (who died in 2004), the documentary presents a full picture of James’ dramatic rise and fall, focusing in on the “Punk-Funk” music he left behind. The film, which screened at the Tribeca Festival® in June, will premiere on Friday, September 3 at 9 p.m. ET/PT. Click here to watch and share the trailer.

Best remembered as the creator of hits such as “Superfreak,” “Give It To Me Baby” and “Mary Jane,” James blazed new trails in American music and global culture in the ’70s and ’80s as a songwriter, performer, and producer, collaborating with luminaries such as Neil Young, Joni Mitchell, The Temptations, Smokey Robinson, Nile Rodgers, Eddie Murphy, Teena Marie, The Mary Jane Girls, and M.C. Hammer. BITCHIN’ presents a full and complete picture of James’ life as told by those who knew him. At the center of it all is the “Punk-Funk” that encompassed a unique swath of 20th-century music history from jazz to soul to R&B to rock and eventually, to hip-hop. Friday, August 6 marks the 17th anniversary of James’ death. 

BITCHIN’: THE SOUND AND FURY OF RICK JAMES is a Mass Appeal production for SHOWTIME, directed by Jenkins, produced by Steve Rivo, and written by Jenkins, Rivo, and Jason Pollard. The film is executive produced by Peter Bittenbender and Jenkins for Mass Appeal, and Douglas Banker and Ty James.

Showtime Networks Inc. (SNI), a wholly-owned subsidiary of ViacomCBS Inc., owns and operates the premium service SHOWTIME®, which features critically acclaimed original series, provocative documentaries, box-office hit films, comedy and music specials, and hard-hitting sports. SHOWTIME is available as a stand-alone streaming service across all major streaming devices and Showtime.com, as well as via cable, DBS, telco, and streaming video providers. SNI also operates the premium services THE MOVIE CHANNEL and FLIX®, as well as on-demand versions of all three brands. SNI markets and distributes sports and entertainment events for exhibition to subscribers on a pay-per-view basis through SHOWTIME PPV®. For more information, click here. 

About Mass Appeal

Mass Appeal is an entertainment company dedicated to telling stories from the perspective of those who shape and shift culture. Since 1996, we have documented the emerging movements that influence popular ideas. Today, Mass Appeal is the elevated voice of Hip Hop and its ever-expanding sphere of influence. Integrated offerings in content, music, and creative services stoke Mass Appeal’s ability to maximize the impact of our output. Our diverse school of thought separates us from friends and foes alike.

ESSENCE Festival Promo image via Sheila Harris for use by 360 magazine

ESSENCE Festival Features Bobby Brown × Keith Sweat

ESSENCE Festival of Culture will feature R&B legends Bobby Brown and Keith Sweat on July 1.

It’s official! The battle for the title of R&B king is back on the line and this time, two of the genre’s icons are going head-to-head for the crown in a Verzuz battle to rival the best of them—and it’s all going down at the 2021 Essence Festival of Culture presented by Coca-Cola.

Get ready to watch none other than Bobby Brown and Keith Sweat go hit-for-hit in what’s sure to be an epic showdown filled with a host of the R&B classics we love. Mark your calendars and get your watch party crew together to watch these stars on Thursday, July 1 at 8 PM EST via ESSENCE.com, the Triller app, and the Verzuz TV Instagram page. The Essence Festival x Verzuz stage is a show you surely won’t want to miss.

Bobby Brown is an American singer, songwriter, rapper, and dancer who has been dominating the music industry since the 1980s. Originally part of the R&B and pop group New Edition, Brown stepped out for a highly successful solo career in 1985. He’s known for his hits like Don’t Be Cruel and Every Little Step. His sound was influenced by musicians like Prince, Michael Jackson, and Marvin Gaye, which served him well as he went on to win Grammy Award and even cameo in Ghostbusters II, for which he contributed two songs on the soundtrack. He later married (and divorced) superstar singer Whitney Houston and wrote a tell-all book about his life, which was released shortly after her death. He has since returned his focus to his music, including performing once before with Keith Sweat at the Valentine’s Day Music Festival in Houston, TX.

Brown will appear opposite Keith Sweat, a fellow singer, producer, and R&B genius. He was also an important early figure in the new jack swing movement. Sweat’s career began in the 1970s and he has gone on to soar to new heights ever since. The musician honed his craft in his early years while he was a part of the music group Jamilah, before branching out as a solo artist in 1984. His collection of hits like I Want Her, Make You Sweat, and I’ll Give All My Love To You won him not only fans and fame but also awards recognizing his stellar R&B style. He eventually found himself working with other expert musicians again when he helped form the R&B supergroup LSG with Gerald Levert and Johnny Gill. He also discovered and supported other popular R&B groups like Silk and Kut Klose.

As a part of their showdown, the Essence Festival × Verzuz stage will feature an endless list of hits like Bobby Brown’s My Prerogative, Don’t Be Cruel, and Every Little Step, as well as Keith Sweat’s Nobody, Twisted, and Make It Last Forever. In other words, you’ll want to have all your best dance moves ready, folks. 

Essence Festival of Culture x Verzuz is sponsored by Ciroc, Nike, and Coca-Cola.

Rick James, Anthony Hamilton, 360 MAGAZINE

Anthony Hamilton × Rick James

With over 50 million albums globally and proclaimed a “national treasure” by the Los Angeles Times, GRAMMY® Award-winning multiplatinum singer, songwriter, producer, actor, author, and R&B icon Anthony Hamilton, returns with his first original solo single in two years “Back Together” [feat. Rick James]. 

Get it HERE!

Written by Anthony Hamilton, Ed D. Kane and produced by 9th Wonder [Mary J. Blige, JAY-Z, Drake], a simmering beat and strings wrap around Hamilton’s instantly recognizable delivery on the verses. Meanwhile, he duets with none other than the late legend Rick James by way of a sample 9th Wonder dug out of the crates. Complemented by a classic James harmony, he carries the hook—“Why can’t we just get back together?”—to the heavens and back. 

About the song, Hamilton commented, “Growing up listening to ‘Super Freak’ and ‘Fire and Desire’ made it impossible not to want to sing. This is when I knew, Rick James would be an all- time favorite.” 

“9th Wonder flipped the sample right in front of me. I wrote the song in a way to make it feel like Rick was singing along with me. ‘Back Together’ pays homage to one of the greats. To me, it’s also about love and getting back together with someone you knew was special. In this time of COVID-19, it took on a new meaning too. It means getting back to our lives. Be close to those who are special to you. We all want to be close to anybody right now.” 

“Efficient…like fast. The way he pens songs that are meaningful in such a short timeframe…I’ve seen writers do that for artists in R&B…but when artists do it themselves…it’s a joy to watch. Genius level, with that much soul and feeling. AH is a genius!” quotes 9th Wonder. 

In other big news, Hamilton recently launched his new label My Music Box in partnership with BMG, and “Back Together” marks the first release under this newly minted alliance. It also paves the way for his upcoming full-length album, slated for release later this summer.

Hamilton has been at the forefront of COVID-19 relief efforts, taking the virtual stage last month at “Saving OurSelves: A BET COVID-19 Relief Effort,” which premiered on BET Networks, and lending his voice to “Under One Roof: Livestream Concert to Benefit North Carolina Artists.” He also recently spoke to Billboard about the live-stream renaissance and said, “It’s all about bringing people to a different place to remember when things were good.” 

During “Saving OursSelves,” Anthony Hamilton delivered a powerful rendition of “Lean On Me” in tribute to Bill Withers, paired with vignettes highlighting acts of kindness and charity from the likes of Oprah Winfrey, Rihanna, Diddy, LeBron James and more. At “Under One Roof,” he supported his home state, headlining a lineup of North Carolina-bred and based talent. Charlotte-based entertainment publication CLTure organized the event as part of the “Come Hear NC” initiative of the North Carolina Arts Council and North Carolina Department of Natural and Cultural Resources. The benefit was broadcast live on Twitch and Facebook.

These appearances continued a string of recent activities by Hamilton to raise awareness regarding the importance of staying home, and benefiting those in need of support in this battle. On March 22, he joined forces with Global Citizen and the World Health Organization and live-streamed an intimate performance right from his living room on Instagram Live. It drew upwards of 80,000-plus viewers, making for one of the largest audiences of the weekend and reasserting the appeal and energy of R&B. Additionally, he blew up on social media, trending on Twitter at #3 during the performance. Essence, CBS, and more recapped it. Watch it HERE.

Maintaining this momentum, he supported the MusiCares COVID-19 Relief Fund—which benefits those in the music industry affected by coronavirus—with an Instagram Live stream entitled Soulful Sundays with Anthony Hamilton on March 29. During the acoustic performance, he invited fan requests and encouraged donations to the relief fund. In addition, he also linked up with Novant Health to produce a video that urges social distancing and staying-at-home. View it HERE.

As Alzheimer’s & Brain Awareness Month approaches, Hamilton also recently collaborated with The Alzheimer’s Association for their Music Moments compilation album on a soulful rendition of Ben E. King’s classic “Stand By Me.”

Once again Anthony Hamilton reaffirms the healing power of R&B as he leads it in 2020.