Quick Takes 3/30/20

  • A host of classic rockers have performed online from home to engage and entertain fans, who are also self-isolating. Among the numerous musicians that could be found all over YouTube this weekend was Elvis Costello, who took a Q&A approach in order to benefit England’s National Health Service, and Graham Nash performing “Our House” and Stephen Stills‘ “4 + 20” as part of Rolling Stone‘s “In My Room” series.
  • Barry Gibb teamed up with his son Stephen to raise funds for the United Nations Foundation by performing “Stayin’ Alive,” “How Can You Mend A Broken Heart,” and “Words”; Paul Stanley discussed the writing of “Love Gun”; Michael Stipe debuted his new song “No Time For Love Like Now”; and Sammy Hagar & The Circle performed their own new track, called “Funky Feng Shui.”
  • Todd Rundgren will re-record his 1973 classic “Just One Victory” and givie it away for free use to all Democrats running for office in November. Joining Rundgren on the recording will be Joe WalshDaryl HallPaul Shaffer, and Don Was.
    • Rundgren spoke about the track to Rolling Stone, explaining, “Everyone is trying to figure out what they can do to get that maniac out of the White House. More importantly, to get the banana Republican Party out of governing wherever possible. The song will be available to any Democratic candidate that’s been approved by the DNC to use at for campaigns and at their rallies. They can also use it in a commercial if they so desire.” (Rolling Stone)
  • Beloved singer/songwriter John Prine has been hospitalized, with signs pointing to the Corona virus. A statement was posted by his family on his social media, stating: “After a sudden onset of COVID-19 symptoms, John was hospitalized on Thursday. He was intubated Saturday evening, and continues to receive care, but his situation is critical. This is hard news for us to share. But so many of you have loved and supported John over the years, we wanted to let you know, and give you the chance to send out more of that love and support now. And know that we love you, and John loves you.” Prine’s wife Fiona has tested positive for the virus, but so far, John’s testing was deemed only “indeterminate.”
  • Alan Merrill of the Arrows, who wrote and originally recorded Joan Jett & The Blackhearts‘ 1982 chart-topper, “I Love Rock N’ Roll” died in Manhattan at age 69 from Coronavirus. Merrill went on to play guitar for Rick Derringer and Meat Loaf.
  • Joan Jett paid tribute to Merrill on Twitter posting, “I’ve just learned of the awful news that Alan Merrill has passed. My thoughts and love go to his family, friends and music community as a whole. I can still remember watching the Arrows on TV in London and being blown away by the song that screamed hit to me. With deep gratitude and sadness, wishing him a safe journey to the other side.”
  • The Moody Blues‘ Justyn Hayward has released a new two-track digital single — “One Summer Day” and “My Juliette.” Hayward said of “One Summer Day”: “It just sprang out of my old Martin guitar late one evening. I had been playing the riff for a while just for fun, without realizing it could actually be a song.” He said of “My Juliette”: “I was entranced and I still treasure every moment of that theatre life. I had the song for years before I was sure I wanted to actually finish or record it because I enjoyed just playing around with it.” (Press