In the January 2011 edition of Classic Rock, John Paul Jones tells of his plans for 2011. He is involved in an upcoming opera about the life and death of Playboy model Anna Nicole Smith.

"I'll be playing in the pit for some of the time, with the basses," Jones said, "and I'm also on stage playing with a jazz trio with Peter Erskine."

According to the Royal Opera House website, Anna Nicole is a world premiere on the fascinating subject of Anna Nicole Smith. A model for Playboy, marriage to an octogenarian billionaire, scandal, legal battles and early death – this is the real-life story that has inspired Mark-Anthony Turnage's new opera. Inevitably adult themes, strong language and sexually explicit content are part of this exciting work. Richard Jones directs this major new opera, with Antonio Pappano conducting a cast that has Eva-Maria Westbroek in the title role.

Anna Nicole is playing at the Royal Opera House in Covent Garden, London, England on February 17, 21, 23 & 26 and April 1 & 4. To purchase tickets, go here.

Peter Erskine has played drums since the age of 4 and is known for his versatility and love of working in different musical contexts. He appears on over 500 albums and film scores, and has won 2 Grammy Awards plus an Honorary Doctorate from the Berklee School of Music. Over 30 albums have been released under his own name or as co-leader. He has played with the Stan Kenton and Maynard Ferguson big bands, Weather Report, Steps Ahead, Joni Mitchell, Steely Dan, Diana Krall, Kenny Wheeler, The Brecker Brothers, The Yellowjackets, Pat Metheny & Gary Burton, John Scofield, et al, and has appeared as a soloist with the London, Los Angeles, BBC Symphony and Berlin Philharmonic orchestras. Peter has been voted "Best Jazz Drummer of the Year" ten times by the readers of the Modern Drummer magazine. Peter produces jazz recordings for his record label Fuzzy Music, and is an active author with several books to his credit: the latest titles include Time Awareness for All Musicians and Essential Drum Fills and Essential Drum Fills. Peter graduated from the Interlochen Arts Academy in Michigan and studied at Indiana University under George Gaber. Peter is currently a full Professor of Practice, Jazz Studies and the Director of Drumset Studies at the University of Southern California.

There are no currently scheduled shows with John Paul Jones at this time, however hopefully there will be soon in 2011.

Classic Rock magazine - January 2011
Peter Erskine

 

American soul singer Bettye LaVette performed last night (Jan. 12) on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno. She sang a cover of Led Zeppelin's All My Love from her 2010 album Interpretations: The British Rock Songbook with the Tonight Show Band.

Interpretations: The British Rock Songbook includes unique arrangements and performances of classic songs by The Beatles, Rolling Stones, Animals, Pink Floyd, and more.

LaVette opened for Robert Plant and the Band of Joy on his July 2010 American tour leg.


Thanks to Nech!
Spinner.com recently released a list of their 50 Greatest Guitar Riffs in Rock 'n' Roll. The only appearance by a song written by Led Zeppelin is Heartbreaker, which got the #4 slot.

Picking the best Jimmy Page riff is a lot like picking the best sexual position: You can make a convincing argument for most of them. Some involve more technique and manual dexterity (Black Dog), while others involve sheer power (Kashmir), but they all leave you tired and happy. We're going with Led Zeppelin's Heartbreaker because, well, we had to pick one, and it kicks copious amounts of ass.


The number one greatest guitar riff, according to Spinner, is (I Can't Get No) Satisfaction by the Rolling Stones. You can view the entire list at Spinner.com.
Robert Plant has been nominated for the "British Male Solo Artist" category in the Brit Awards 2011. Other nominees in this category are Mark Ronson, Paul Weller, Plan B and Tinie Tempah.

This is the first time that Robert Plant has been nominated in the Brit Awards. The BRIT Awards 2011 will be held at The O2 in London on Tuesday 15th February and will be broadcast live on ITV1.

Robert Plant Nominated in Brit Awards 2011
Queens of the Stone Age mainman Josh Homme has revealed that he "died" during leg surgery last year -- but came back to life on the operating table.

Speaking to NME, Homme said that the operation hit complications and that he technically "died" before coming round again.

The Them Crooked Vultures ringleader was bed-ridden for three months post-surgery as he recuperated from the ordeal, getting the green light from doctors in mid-December to return to rock duties.

He said, "I had an operation and died and survived on the table. I had surgery on my leg and there were complications and I died on the table. I was in bed for three months."

As previously reported by Spinner, guitarist Troy Van Leeuwen has said that the upcoming Queens of the Stone Age album -- their first since 2007 -- will be blues influenced and will make people "shake some arse."

Homme told NME that the band is on the verge on a creative minefield at the moment as song ideas are getting readied for listening.

He added, "We're all just waiting to show each other all the ideas we've got. Everybody's trying to outdo each other with their iPod right now..."

From: SPINNER.COM
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This Month in
Led Zeppelin History

January 09, 1944 - James Patrick Page was born in Heston, Middlesex
January 03, 1946 - John Baldwin was born in Sidcup, Kent
January 02, 1946 - Led Zeppelin Tour Manager Richard Cole was born in Kensal Rise, London, England
January 05, 1967 - Jimmy Page begins recording Little Games with The Yardbirds at De Lane Lea Studios in London.
January 17, 1969 - Led Zeppelin released in the US
January xx, 1970 - Led Zeppelin now play without support acts in order to perform longer sets
January 09, 1970 - Royal Albert Hall gig filmed and recorded for documentary that is eventually scraped. (But was recalled for 2003’s DVD)
January xx, 1971 - Recording continues at Headley Grange
January xx, 1972 - Page has a studio built into his home
January 02, 1973 - Plant’s car breaks down and Bonham and he barely make the Sheffield City Hall gig
January 22, 1973 - Led Zeppelin record a live gig at Southampton University
January xx, 1974 - Recording Physical Graffiti at Headley Grange
January xx, 1974 - The band resigns with Atlantic and forms their own label
January 03, 1975 - Jimmy breaks a finger at Victoria Station just a week before the European warm up shows
January 17, 1975 - The band rehearses in Minneapolis for the upcoming US tour. Bootleg "Johnny Kidd And The Pirates" evolves out of this rehearsal
January xx, 1976 - Jimmy contemplates the release of The Song Remains The Same film but, continues work on the soundtrack
January 01, 1976 - In Paris, Robert takes his first unaided steps since his car accident
January xx, 1977 - Rehearsals for US tour take place at Manticore Studios in Fulham
January 24, 1977 - Bonham and Plant watch The Damned perform at the Roxy in London
January xx, 1978 - Media still claims Led Zeppelin have broke up
January 21, 1979 - Robert Plant is now proud father to son Logan Romero
January xx, 1980 - Zeppelin donate Candy Store Rock to a benefit album to benefit children
January 31, 1995 - Jimmy Page escaped being knifed when a fan rushed the stage at a Page and Plant gig at Auburn Hills, Michigan. The fan was stopped by two security guards, who he knifed instead. After his arrest, he told police that he wanted to kill Jimmy Page because of the Satanic music he was playing.
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