ABC Classic Hits

© Mary McCartneyIn a recent BBC radio interview, Paul McCartney shared details about his forthcoming studio album, McCartney III, which he recorded by himself while in lockdown because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Speaking with BBC 6 Music interviewer Matt Everitt, McCartney noted that the album started coming together unexpectedly while he was working on some film soundtrack music in his studio in Sussex, U.K.

"That was the great thing about the album," Sir Paul declared. "I didn't know I was making an album, and that really makes a difference."

He continued, "[For] nine weeks I was just messing around, thinking, 'Ah, it would be good to finish this [song] up. Oh, I could do this one. Yeah that'd be okay,' and just going through them all and never suspecting for one second that this was going to be an album."

The former Beatles legend pointed out that most of the songs on McCartney III are new, while a few of the tracks were old recordings that he'd never finished and that he wound up remodeling.

Paul said that when he'd finished the tracks, "I sort of looked at them and I was going, 'Well, what can I do with this? Is this a new album or something?' And then it suddenly hit me -- this is McCartney III. You've done it all yourself like the others [1970's McCartney and 1980's McCartney II], so this qualifies."

McCartney also revealed that a couple of the new songs were inspired by the pandemic, including one titled "Seize the Day."

He explained that the song's message was about "just reminding myself and anyone listening that, yeah, we better grab the good stuff and…try and get on through the pandemic."

McCartney III, which can be pre-ordered now, will be released on December 11.

By Matt Friedlander
Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.


Courtesy of 117 Entertainment GroupThe star-studded virtual livestream party celebrating Jerry Lee Lewis' recent 85th birthday takes place tonight at 8 p.m. ET at at the rock 'n' roll pioneer's official website, Facebook page and YouTube channel.

The event, dubbed "Whole Lotta Celebratin' Goin' On: 85 Years of The Killer," features a jaw-dropping lineup of stars who will perform and/or deliver well-wishes to Lewis, including Ringo Starr, Keith Richards, Elton John, John Fogerty, ZZ Top's Billy Gibbons, The Eagles' Joe Walsh, Heart's Nancy Wilson and many more.

In addition, Lewis himself will make a special appearance and will interact with fans via a live chat.

Among the other artists on the bill are The Beach Boys' Mike Love, Bonnie Raitt, President Bill Clinton, Willie Nelson, Tom Jones, Priscilla Presley, former Elvis Presley guitarist James Burton, Brenda Lee, Tanya Tucker, Chris Isaak, Freda Payne, Mickey Gilley, Lee Ann Womack, Marty Stuart, Drew Carey, Peyton Manning and televangelist Jimmy Swaggart, who is Jerry Lee's cousin. John Stamos will host the festivities.

The event will raise funds for World Vision, a Christian organization that aids impoverished communities.

Lewis' actual 85th birthday was September 29.

By Matt Friedlander
Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.


Williams/Mirrorpix/Getty ImagesThe late, great Whitney Houston has officially joined the Billion Views Club on YouTube.

The singer’s rendition of "I Will Always Love You" has reached one billion views on the video streaming platform, making it the first time a music video from the '90s by a solo artist reached that milestone.

It's the fourth '90s music video overall to reach a billion views, following Guns N' Roses' "November Rain," Nirvana's "Smells Like Teen Spirit" and The Cranberries' "Zombie."

"I Will Always Love You" was originally written and recorded by Dolly Parton in 1973, but found huge success in 1992 when Whitney recorded it for The Bodyguard soundtrack. Whitney's version spent 14 weeks at #1 on the Billboard Hot 100.

By Andrea Tuccillo
Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.


Clay Patrick McBride; Rob ArthurThe Doobie Brothers have teamed up with Peter Frampton, remotely, for a new cover of the classic 1970 Eric Clapton song "Let It Rain," and the veteran rockers also have created a socially distanced video for the tune.

The new version of the song features Doobie Brothers singer/guitarists Tom Johnston and Pat Simmons, and Frampton each singing a verse. Johnston, Frampton, Simmons and Doobies multi-instrumentalist John McFee also all take turns delivering guitar solos.

Johnston explained to Rolling Stone how the collaboration came about.

"A couple of months ago, Peter and I were going over various tunes after deciding to do a song or video together," Tom said. "I tossed out 'Let It Rain' by Eric Clapton and he loved the idea. He's a phenomenal guitarist and a fan of Clapton's, as am I, so it seemed a great idea to take to the rest of the guys."

Tom added, "Peter, Pat, and I took verses and solos and John played some cool pedal steel and helped us put that together with Bill Payne on piano, John Cowan on bass, and Ed Toth on drums. Also Rob Arthur who did all the video work played B3. It was a team effort! We really enjoyed working together on this with Peter."

Meanwhile, Frampton said of the collaboration, "It was so much fun playing with my friends the Doobie Brothers even virtually! I look forward to a time when we can, hopefully, play together in person."

The "Let It Rain" video features footage of Frampton and the various Doobie Borthers members playing their parts separately. You can watch the clip at The Doobies' official YouTube channel.

Clapton co-wrote "Let It Rain," which originally appeared on his self-titled 1970 debut solo album, with singer Bonnie Bramlett.

By Matt Friedlander
Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.


Courtesy of Rolling Live StudiosDef Leppard's Joe Elliott is part of an impressive lineup of famous singers who will perform during an upcoming livestream event in honor of what would've been David Bowie's 74th birthday.

The online concert, dubbed A Bowie Celebration: Just for One Day!, will air January 8, 2021, which also is two days before the fifth anniversary of the rock legend's passing.

Longtime Bowie pianist Mike Garson curated the show's lineup, which also will feature Nine Inch Nails' Trent Reznor, The Smashing Pumpkins' Billy Corgan, Bush's Gavin Rossdale, Jane's Addiction's Perry Farrell, The Cult's Ian Astbury, Living Colour's Corey Glover, longtime Bowie bassist/backing singer Gail Ann Dorsey, Rolling Stones touring backup vocalist Bernard Fowler, R&B and soul singer Macy Gray, actor Gary Oldman and more.

The concert's house band will feature a variety of musicians who toured and collaborated with Bowie throughout his career, including frequent producer Tony Visconti and members of the group with whom David recorded his final album, Blackstar.

"I reached out to friends who had played with David, people who grew up listening to him, those he inspired and influenced," Garson explains. "Artist after artist I spoke with, each immediately understood my vision and enthusiastically said yes to taking part in this special show."

He adds, "David left the world with an amazing and enduring library of music and this is the perfect time to be able to share that music in such a unique and cathartic way."

Since 2018, Garson has organized and taken part in a Bowie tribute tour featuring other Bowie touring alums and guest singers, but the trek was put on hold this year because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

For ticket info, visit

By Josh Johnson and Matt Friedlander
Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.


Courtesy of Vicki Peterson and Kathy ValentineGo-Go's bassist Kathy Valentine and Bangles guitarist Vicki Peterson are among a variety of well-known musicians who have contributed to a charity cover of the chart-topping 1983 Eurythmics hit "Sweet Dreams (Are Made of This)."

The track was recorded in collaboration with The Miraculous Love Kids/Girl with a Guitar, a project that aims to bring and teach music to girls in war-torn Afghanistan. 

"I watched all the videos, looked at the entire website, and read all the press," Valentine explains in a statement. "After doing all that, I decided I wanted to be of service to The Miraculous Love Kids."

Adds Peterson, "This was a singular honor for me to be a part of and I would love to be involved further."

Other artists who are featured on the cover include Cherie Currie of The Runaways, Rage Against the Machine guitarist Tom Morello, MC5 guitarist Wayne Kramer, Foo Fighters keyboardist Rami Jaffee, The Bird & the Bee and Umphrey's McGee drummer Kris Myers.

You can watch the "Sweet Dreams" cover streaming now on YouTube.

The Miraculous Love Kids/Girl with a Guitar previously collaborated with The Beach Boys' Brian Wilson on a rendition of his solo song "Love and Mercy." For more info on the project and to make on donation, visit

By Josh Johnson
Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.


Courtesy of FITZ GamesAlice Cooper is helping make this year's Halloween potentially spookier and more fun by partnering with the FITZ Games company to launch a new horror-themed comic card game, called HorrorBox.

HorrorBox was co-written by a team of horror fanatics, with input from the legendary shock rocker himself. The game features a series of question cards with queries such as "Pennywise tricked me by..." and "The tenth circle of hell is for...," as well as answer cards with fun responses like "Setting up my haunted house as an Airbnb."

In addition, dare cards are interspersed with the question cards, prompting players to "drink something that looks like blood," "knock on your neighbors door and say you're next" or other creepy activities.

HorrorBox, which is available now, can be played in person or via video chat.

The main game is priced at $25, and features 420 cards. A special Alice Cooper "expansion pack" also can be purchased boasting 40 more cards, all written by Alice himself. More themed expansion packs also are available, focusing on such scary subjects as aliens, slasher films, monsters, the supernatural, iconic horror characters, classic movies, modern movies and R-rated flicks.

"This is 2020, which means all things are upside down and backwards," Alice says in a statement. "You're going to be staying home a lot, so why not play HorrorBox. It's something totally new, fun for everyone. I helped write a lot of the stuff in it. You will become The Addams Family, if that's a goal in your life."

Alice has posted a humorous video showing him unboxing the game on his official YouTube channel.

Visit for more information.

By Matt Friedlander
Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.


Credit: Jutta Maue KayFounding Steppenwolf frontman John Kay recently taped a solo concert at Santa Barbara, California's historic Lobero Theatre that will air as a pay-per-view event on Friday, November 13, to help raise money to keep the venue from closing.

The show, which was shot without an audience, is part of the "Live from the Lobero" series of benefit events that also has included similar performances by Kenny Loggins and KT Tunstall.

Kay tells ABC Audio that he was happy to do the show because he's seen many concerts at the Lobero Theatre, which is located near his home, and he considers it "a community treasure."

As he explains, "Doing this on behalf of the Lobero is my way of kind of saying 'thank you' for what the Lobero has provided to my partner…Jutta and I all those wonderful evenings there."

Regarding his performance, Kay says, "I've seen the results…[I]t's well-edited…It sounded pretty good. So, I'm hoping that, as a consequence, a few ducats will come the Lobero's way."

Steppenwolf retired as a touring act in 2018, but Kay has continued to play select solo acoustic shows. Of course, any plans he had this year have been put on hold, so the Lobero concert may offer fans their only chance to see him play in 2020.

Tickets for the concert are $15, and are available now at People who are able to make an additional donation to help the venue stay in business are welcome to do so when they purchase tickets.

Kay tells ABC Audio that he hopes people will help out music venues during the COVID-19 pandemic anytime they're able to do so, "particularly the smaller clubs…where making ends meet is already a challenge under the best of circumstances."

John Kay Live from the Lobero from Lobero Theatre on Vimeo.

By Matt Friedlander
Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.


Courtesy of Big Machine Records

Here's a reminder that "#StandByMe (2020)," the recently reported star-studded cover of Ben E. King's classic 1960 hit "Stand by Me," will be released as a charity single on Tuesday, October 27, 60 years to the day that the original version of tune hit stores.

John Oates of Hall & Oates, Peter Frampton, Dire Straits' Mark Knopfler, Bad Company's Paul Rodgers and ex-Yes keyboardists Rick Wakeman are among the music stars who contributed their talents to the remote recording.

Proceeds from the song will benefit Help Musicians, a U.K. organization that aids musicians adversely affected by the COVID-pandemic. Acclaimed British radio and TV presenter "Whispering Bob" Harris, who was the host of the famed U.K. performance series Old Grey Whistle Test, organized the recording and played triangle on the track.

The one-off group, which has been dubbed Whispering Bob's All-Stars, also features guitar legend Duane Eddy, Hootie & the Blowfish singer Darius Rucker, PP Arnold, Rosanne Cash, Kiki Dee, Marc Cohn, Leo Sayer, Richard Thompson, Judie Tzuke, Leland Sklar, and Humble Pie's Jeremy Stacey, among many others.

You can check out an official music video for the tune at the Under the Apple Tree label's official YouTube channel.

"COVID-19 has had a devastating impact on the U.K. music scene," notes Harris. "The artists who rely on live performances for their income have been particularly hard hit. For the past six years Under The Apple Tree has been a fantastic platform for emerging artists and now, in this time of difficulty, we want to raise funds to help the diverse and dedicated grass roots music community that we love so much."

You can find out more about the recording, order the track and/or donate directly to Help Musicians by visiting

By Matt Friedlander
Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.


Credit: Michael GomezFormer Journey drummer and backing singer Deen Castronovo and ex-Chicago singer/bassist Jason Scheff have joined forces with bassist Jay DeMarcus of the superstar country trio Rascal Flatts in a new cross-genre band called The Rise Above.

The star-studded group, which is rounded out by veteran session guitarist Chris Rodriguez and multi-instrumentalist Tom Yankton, will make its live debut on Wednesday, October 28, with a show at Nashville's Marathon Music Works. Proceeds from the performance will benefit the ACM Lifting Lives COVID-19 Response Fund. Tickets are available now at

A glimpse into The Rise Above's planned set list reveals that the band will be performing well-known songs by Castronovo's and Scheff's famous former bands -- including Journey's "Don't Stop Believin'," "Open Arms" and "Any Way You Want It," and Chicago's "25 or 6 to 4," "Stay the Night" and "Will You Still Love Me" -- as well as by Rascal Flatts.

The Rise Above also has been working for the last nine months on a debut album that expected to be released in 2021. According to a statement, the band's goal is "to bring '80s rock and classic music back to life."

For more information, visit

By Carena Liptak and Matt Friedlander
Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.


Astrid Stawiarz/Getty ImagesActor Wendell Pierce is setting the record straight after he previously suggested he would portray the late, legendary blues musician B.B. King in an upcoming biopic called The Thrill Is On, whose title is a play on King's signature song "The Thrill Is Gone."

"The Estate of B.B. King has requested I clarify the film The Thrill Is On is not a biopic in the traditional sense," Pierce tweeted. "It is a dramatized version of a real-life friendship story in the spirit of the filmRound Midnight. The friendship of 2 musicians, one being the King of the Blues."

Pierce said he still plans to keep his promise to B.B. King and honor his astonishing life and career in The Thrill Is On, which focuses on the decades-long friendship between King and young musician Michael Zanetis.

"As I stated before, and nothing has changed," Pierce continued in another tweet. "I promised B.B. King before he died, I will honor him and his creative genius. An American Icon."

As for King's official biopic, Variety reports that it will begin pre-production in 2021, according to the estate's Chairman, Vassal Benford.  She believes Pierce "unintentionally misspoke" about The Thrill Is On, which is a separate film and not associated with his estate. 

Benford confirmed King's estate is in talks with a "major director" for the official biopic, which is being produced by the estate. While Pierce is being considered to play King, the estate is also looking at other actors, including comedian and Saturday Night Live star Kenan Thompson.

By Rachel George
Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.


Credit: Pamela LittkyThe Dirty Knobs, the band fronted by Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers guitarist Mike Campbell, have released a humorous music video for "F*** That Guy," a song from the group's forthcoming debut album, Wreckless Abandon.

The profanity-filled clip follows a guy wearing a giant, furry replica of a COVID-19 virus cell over his head as he walks around Los Angeles doing obnoxious and inconsiderate things.  He obliviously walks into traffic while talking on his cellphone, grabs money from the guitar case of a street musician -- played Campbell -- and struts naked on the beach while pestering a bikini-clad young woman.

A crew of people in Hazmat suits eventually begin chasing the COVID-headed man, who steals a young girl's bicycle while trying to avoid being caught. At the end of the video, the Hazmat crew catches up with the coronavirus guy and gives him a beatdown before stuffing him the trunk of a car, which then drives off to parts unknown.

The clip features cameo appearances by Curb Your Enthusiasm and The Goldbergs actor Jeff Garlin and Hollywood tough guy Danny Trejo. The video was directed by Trejo's son, Gilbert.

"'F*** That Guy' is a simple song that could really be about anyone you know," says Campbell, who co-wrote the tune with country star Chris Stapleton. "The video is a bizarre and darkly humorous take on 2020. It's been a hard year. It helps to just laugh."

The video is available in a clean version and an uncensored version, both of which have been posted on YouTube. The track has been released as a digital single and via streaming services in advance of Wreckless Abandon.

The album, which you can pre-order now, was originally scheduled to be released in March, but its arrival was pushed back until November 20 because of the pandemic.

By Matt Friedlander
Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.


HBO/Rock & Roll Hall of FameThe Rock & Roll Hall of Fame 2020 Inductions special premieres on HBO and HBO Max on Saturday, November 7, and now you can check out a preview trailer featuring glimpses of the inductees and some stars who'll be saluting them during the event.

As previously reported, the 2020 Rock Hall inductees include The Doobie Brothers, T. Rex, Whitney Houston, Depeche Mode, Nine Inch Nails and The Notorious B.I.G. Famed music executives Jon Landau and Irving Azoff also will be inducted.

Among the special guests taking part in the event who also appear in the trailer are Springsteen, Ringo Starr, The Eagles' Don Henley, Jackson Browne, Coldplay's Chris Martin, Foo Fighters' Dave Grohl, Iggy Pop, Alicia Keys and more.

The clip begin with Grohl declaring, "The story of rock 'n' roll is really many stories. It's the story of pain and beauty, rebellion and unity, noise and harmony."

The trailer goes on to feature short segments on each inductee. For The Doobie Brothers, country star Brad Paisley and Judd Apatow are both shown praising the band.

We also see ex-Doobie Brother Michael McDonald, who says, "Being a Doobie Brother represents some of the best years of my life," and get a quick look at Doobies frontman Tom Johnston holding up his statue.

Starr is seen paying tribute to T. Rex, while noting, "They called it glam rock, but it was always just great music to me."

Springsteen and Browne, meanwhile, both are shown talking about Landau. The Boss shares, "My first thought was, 'Who does this guy think he is!'" while Brown says Landau "brought me to a complete other level."

Check out the full trailer on HBO's official YouTube channel.

The Rock & Roll Hall of Fame 2020 Inductions debuts on HBO at 8 p.m. ET/PT on November 7.

By Matt Friedlander
Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.


Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images

Forty-five years ago today, Elton John played the second of two historic concerts at Los Angeles' Dodger Stadium.  Looking back on those shows -- the largest concerts ever by a solo artist at that time -- Elton says what he remembers the most was the sheer enthusiasm of the fans.

The shows, on October 25 and 26, attracted some 110,000 fans.  "My fondest memory was the electricity from the crowd. The energy was palpable -- you could feel it vibrating from your feet!" Elton tells ABC Audio.

For his performance, Elton wore a now-iconic L.A. Dodgers uniform covered in sparkles from head to toe. It was designed by the legendary Bob Mackie, who created most of Cher's outrageous looks.

Elton says, "Being the first [solo] artist to perform in Dodger Stadium, Bob and I wanted to make a big statement while paying homage to America's favorite pastime."

"I said, 'Let's take the baseball uniform and make it fabulous,'" he continues. "Then Bob came back with something beyond my wildest imagination! It was incredible!"

The outfit's so iconic, in fact, that in 2018, Harry Styles wore it for Halloween. Elton's reaction? He tells ABC Audio, "I'm flattered and honored to inspire any and all fans and love to see fans enjoying it just as much as I did."

As previously reported, a new Elton John Barbie doll has been created to commemorate those Dodger Stadium shows.  The Barbie is wearing some of Elton's craziest '70s fashions: sparkly pink glasses, a bowler hat, flared jeans and rainbow platform boots.

"The '70s was one of the most stylish decades of all time!" Elton says of the Barbie's outfit. "I wanted to capture the essence and meaning of what '70s fashion was all about: radical self-expression and glamour. From head to toe -- she looks like a rock star."

By Andrea Dresdale
Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.


Daniel Knighton/Getty ImagesWolfgang Van Halen, Van Halen bassist and son of the late Eddie Van Halen, is denying a report that the band will be reforming in the wake of his father's death.

Over the weekend, Wolfgang deemed a report that a new version of Van Halen was forming -- featuring Sammy Hagar on vocals, Michael Anthony on bass, Alex Van Halen on drums and Wolfgang on guitar -- a "lie."

"This is just a s***ty lie attempting to capitalize on these awful times," Wolfgang tweeted. "Please stop with this."

"Anyone peddling this s*** is not only hurting the fans, but hurting me and my family," he added.

Wolfgang joined Van Halen in 2006 in place of longtime member Anthony.

Eddie Van Halen died October 6 after a long battle with cancer. He was 65.

By Josh Johnson
Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.


Kevin Winter/Getty ImagesIt's been over 40 years since Fleetwood Mac released "Dreams" but, thanks to TikTok, it's popularity has remerged -- something Stevie Nicks couldn't be happier about. 

Speaking with CBS Sunday Morning on October 25, Nicks said, "This TikTok thing has kind of blown my mind. I'm happy about it because it seems to have made so many people happy."

"Dreams" drastically climbed the charts in recent weeks thanks to a viral TikTok featuring the track that shows Idahoan Nathan Apodaca riding on his longboard and drinking a giant bottle of Ocean Spray Cran-Rasberry Juice. 

The song's newfound popularity has landed the 72-year-old singer-songwriter the number-one spot on Billboard's Hot 100 Songwriters chart.

"Dreams" also made the Top 10 on Billboard's Global 200 chart and has become the oldest non-holiday record to reach the Top 10 on Billboard's Top Streaming Chart, surpassing Michael Jackson's "Billie Jean."

The TikTok-fueled revival comes in perfect timing for Nicks as she's recently released a new song, "Show Them The Way," and a film, 24 Karat Gold, which is a set of hits from her solo career and with Fleetwood Mac.

The film's accompanying album is due out on October 30.

By Danielle Long
Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.


Credit: Josh CheuseAC/DC has premiered the video for "Shot in the Dark," the lead single from the band's much-anticipated new album, Power Up.

The clip gives us our first glimpse of the reunited Back in Black lineup --  guitarist Angus Young, vocalist Brian Johnson, bassist Cliff Williams and drummer Phil Rudd, plus guitarist Stevie Young, nephew of Angus and the late Malcolm Young -- performing together. It features close-up shots of each member, in between footage of the band rocking out on a red neon-lit stage.

You can watch the "Shot in the Dark" video streaming now on YouTube.

Along with the video, AC/DC also shared a conversation between guitarist Angus, Johnson and Williams and the band's longtime director, David Mallet, about their favorite videos that they made together. Mallett also reveals that the shot in "Shot in the Dark" of Angus' solo, which was filmed using a small camera mounted to his guitar, was a nod to the classic "Thunderstruck" video.

Power Up, the follow-up to 2014's Rock or Bust, is due out November 13.

By Josh Johnson
Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.


Suzanne Cordeiro/Corbis via Getty ImagesCountry music has lost one of the greats, Jerry Jeff Walker. The singer/songwriter, who is best known for writing the classic tune "Mr. Bojangles," passed away at the age of 78.

Walker died Friday after a long battle with throat cancer, according to family spokesman John T. Davis.  

Walker came into prominence in the 1960s after founding the psychedelic-folk-rock band Circus Maximus, where their 1967 single "Wind" achieved moderate success across progressive heritage stations.  

Later, Walker embarked on a solo career and broke out in 1968 with his song "Mr. Bojangles," which was inspired by a New Orleans street performer.  The tune became a #9 hit on the Billboard Hot 100 for The Nitty Gritty Dirt Band in 1970, and also has since been covered by a variety of other well-known artists, including Dolly PartonBob DylanNeil Diamond, Sammy Davis Jr. and more.

Walker also recorded a notable cover of Guy Clark's "L.A. Freeway" in 1972 and later partnered with the Los Gonzo Band a year later to record ¡Viva Terlingua! -- an album that is considered a classic among country-rock music.

After securing his place in the Texas outlaw country scene, Walker satisfied himself by creating the record label Tried & True Music alongside his wife, Susan.  He also released over 30 albums that spanned his music career.  

Walker was first diagnosed with throat cancer in 2017.  His last release came a year later, 2018's LP It's About Time.

Walker is survived by his wife Susan and their two children -- a son and a daughter -- Django and Jessie Jane.

By Megan Stone
Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.


Courtesy of Tom Petty

A variety of music stars, including Stevie Nicks, Stephen Stills and Jackson Browne, took part in a special virtual celebration on Friday night to commemorate would would have been the late Tom Petty's 70th birthday last Tuesday.

The almost-three-hour event, which streamed at and Petty's official Facebook page, featured new and archival performances, spoken-word tributes and stories, interview clips with Petty and concert footage of Tom playing with his band The Heartbreakers.

The program included an emotional spoken-word homage from Nicks, Stills performing "I Won't Back Down" with his son Chris, and Browne delivering a rendition of "The Waiting."

The special ended with a three-song set by Petty's two closest collaborators, Heartbreakers guitarist Mike Campbell and keyboardist Benmont Tench, who were featured performing at the band's rehearsal space, marking the first time they played together since Tom's death in October 2017.

Among the other artists and celebrities who performed and/or appeared on the special were Heartbreakers bassist Ron Blair, Foo Fighters, The Byrds' Roger McGuinn, The Bangles' Susanna Hoffs, Pearl Jam's Eddie Vedder, Eurythmics' Dave Stewart, Lenny Kravitz, Jane's Addiction drummer Stephen Perkins, Jakob Dylan, Dhani Harrison, Adam Sandler, Kiefer Sutherland, Beck, The Flaming Lips, Gary Clark Jr., Norah Jones, producer Rick Rubin and many more.

The event, titled Tom Petty's 70th Birthday Bash, can be viewed on-demand now at, and an encore broadcast also will be shown via Amazon Video at 1 p.m. ET today.

Those watching the special are encouraged to donate to these charities: Save Our Stages, Digitunity, Music in Medicine and MusiCares.

Here's the full performance set list of the special:

"Free Fallin'" -- Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers*
"Listen To Your Heart" -- The Flaming Lips
"Yer So Bad" -- Adam Sandler
"Don't Come Around Here" -- Beck with Jeffertitti
"The Waiting" -- Jackson Browne
"Stop Draggin My Heart Around" -- Margo Price and Lukas Nelson
"Southern Accents" -- Lukas Nelson & Promise of the Real
"I Need to Know" -- Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers*
"Free Fallin'" -- Susanna Hoffs
"Walls" -- The Lumineers' Wesley Schultz
"Breakdown" -- Spoon
"Angel Dream" -- Lady Blackbird
"Crawling Back to You" -- Margo Price
"Oh Well" -- Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers*
"Honey Bee" -- Foo Fighters
"Runnin' Down a Dream" -- Lucinda Williams
"Rockin' Around with You" -- Sabina Sciubba
"Refugee" -- Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers*
"Good Enough" -- Gary Clark Jr.
"Love Is a Long Road" -- Dhani Harrison and Blur's Graham Coxon
"Room at the Top" -- Amos Lee
"Climb That Hill" -- Drive-By Tuckers' Patterson Hood
"Cabin Down Below" -- Mosshart-Sexton
"Wildflowers" -- Brandi Carlile
"Don't Fade on Me" -- Chris Stapleton
"Time to Move On" -- Norah Jones
"Only a Broken Heart" -- Norah Jones
"King of the Hill" -- Roger McGuinn
"I Won't Back Down" Stephen Stills and Chris Stills
"Kings Highway" -- Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers*
"It's Good to Be King" -- Dave Stewart
"American Girl" -- Mike Campbell and Benmont Tench
"Something Good Coming" -- Mike Campbell and Benmont Tench
"We What Boogie Bout Midnight" -- Mike Campbell and Benmont Tench

* = archival performance.

By Matt Friedlander
Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.


Time LifeDon McLean has just released a sequel to his 1973 covers album, Playin' Favorites: a 12-track collection aptly titled Still Playin' Favorites.

The new record finds McLean performing versions of songs he loves, which spanning over a century and cover a wide variety of musical genres, including rock 'n' roll, country, folk, gospel, bluegrass, blues, jazz and soul.

Among the tunes the 75-year-old singer/songwriter has recorded are songs that were popularized or written by artists like Bob Dylan, Elvis Presley, Johnny Cash, Ray Charles and many more.

McLean has launched a YouTube series featuring videos in which he performs solo acoustic renditions of tunes from Still Playin' Favorites, discusses his versions and shares some background on the songs.

Among the tunes he plays and profiles are the Cash-penned "So Doggone Lonesome" and blues legend Bessie Smith's "Backwater Blues."

Here's the full Still Playin' Favorites track list, along with the composers of each song:

"So Doggone Lonesome" (Johnny Cash)
"Greenback Dollar" (Hoyt Axton, Ken Ramsey)
"Hide nor Hair" (Morton Craft, Percy Mayfield)
"I Ain't Never" (Webb Pierce, Mel Tillis)
"Little Sister" (Doc Pomus, Mort Shuman)
"I'm Going to Live the Life I Sing About in My Song" (Thomas A. Dorsey)
"Six White Horses" (Clyde Moody)
"Treat Me Nice" (Jerry Leiber, Mike Stoller)
"Most Likely You Go Your Way (And I'll Go Mine)" (Bob Dylan)
"Backwater Blues" (Bessie Smith)
"The Keys to the Kingdom" (Jenny Lou Carson)
"Got the Bull by the Horns" (Amos E. Byrd, Billy Jones)
"Tell Old Bill" (Traditional, Arranged by Don McLean)
"She Used to Love Me a Lot" (Charles W. Quillen, Dennis Morgan, Kye Fleming)

By Matt Friedlander
Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.


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