The Glorious Corner: Bruce Springsteen, Paul Rodgers, Elton John’s “Rocketman” and More

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G. H. Harding
Square One

FATHER’S DAY — Rudy Shur’s Square One Publishers just released How to Self-Publish Your Book by Jan Yager, who we remember from her Friendshifts book. Shur saw with Jan the chance to have the ultimate guide about self-publishing — the book shows the would-be published author precisely how to do it on their own through the “self”-publishing method. Says Yager: “It turns out my father, who was a dentist until he retired at age 65, always wanted to write a self-help book for retirees—but he never told me or anyone else about it. Three years after he died [her father passed away from a brain tumor when he was 80], my mother showed me the journal that he kept during his retirement years. Had I known, I would have helped him realize his dream of writing and publishing his own book. With this new book, though, I hope to help lots of people of all ages to achieve their own dream of writing—and publishing—a book of their own, on their own.”

Paul Rodgers

PAUL RODGERS’ FREE — Paul Rodgers recalled the night Free played signature track “All Right Now” for the first time, and it went down so well they had to play it again.

The song was co-written in 1970 with bassist Andy Fraser and went on to reach No. 4 in the U.S. and No. 2 in the U.K. and it’s been played more than three million times on American radio stations.

“‘All Right Now’ was a product, really, of the kind of audiences we were playing to at that time,” frontman Rodgers told Uncle Joe Benson for the Ultimate Classic Rock Nights radio show. “We were playing in blues clubs but we were moving out into different areas, getting bigger. We had a song called ‘The Hunter,’ which is an Albert King blues song; and really we couldn’t get off stage without playing that song. It was very difficult to follow it, you know? It went down so well.

“I was looking for a song; I said, ‘We need something that the audience can actually sing. Something real simple, I don’t know, like, “All right now, baby…” We worked the chorus out, and then Andy took that home and he came back the following day with some chords. I remember thinking, ‘Hmm, that’s gonna need quite a few lyrics to fill that, because it stays on the same thing. I’m gonna need a story here… and I need to get it to “All right now.” So what’s the story about?’”

Rodgers came up with the notion of a woman who he thought might want to be kissed. “It just flowed from there,” he recalled. “I wrote out the whole thing and I took it along to the next show and we sound-checked it. We thought, ‘Hey, this is pretty good – we’ll play it tonight.’” Free started the show with their new composition, but “towards the end of the evening I said to the crowd, ‘Anybody wanna hear anything? Any requests?’ And all of them started saying, ‘Play that first song you played!’ I thought, ‘Wow, that’s like an hour and a half later they’ve remembered this song. That’s pretty good.’”

Classic song for sure, here’s the video:

Bruce Springsteen
Mark Bego with Zach Martin
Sylvia Miles

SHORT TAKES — Rocketman has grossed more than 60 million since its release … Next up for a rock biopic is Boy George and Culture Club …Here’s Zach Martin’s interview with author Mark Bego on his East Like A Rock Star book: … Martin speaks with social-influencer Wendy Stuart Kaplan this week … Watched the PBS broadcast of Concert For George last night. What a show. With a list of performers like Eric Clapton, Jeff Lynne, Tom Petty, Gary Brooker; Billy Preston; Jim Keltner; Klaus Voorman; Ringo Starr, Paul McCartney; Albert Lee; Chris Stainton; Marc Mann; and, Andy Fairweather Low, this was the one-year to the day memorial concert for George Harrison. Clapton curated it and it was just sensational. Watching the 2002 concert again now, I realized just how much horn men Jim Horn and Tom Scott Rocked. Simply amazing. Also there, one of Harrison’s closest friends, U.K.-star Joe Brown, who did a impressive version of “Here Comes The Sun,” and ‘”I’ll See You In Your Dreams” as the show’s closing number as confetti dropped from the ceiling. Terrifically impressive show … Remember the name Kjersti Long. Her debut album (Stronger Than You Think I Am) on Van Dean’s Broadway Records drops July 19 … SIGHTING: PR-pasha David Salidor at Odeon for Father’s Day … and, Bruce Springsteen’s new album Western Stars is out and the video for the title track is terrific. we’ll have an album review next week. Here’s the video: … Check out colleague Roger Friedman’s (Showbiz 411) take on the album: … And, RIP Sylvia Miles!


NAMES IN THE NEWS — Efrem Harkham; Sarah Clarke; Mark Bego; Tom & Lisa Cuddy; Van Dean; Zach Martin; Leesa Csolek; Curtis Urbina; Matt Polk; Sigma Sound Studios; Randy Alexander; 12 West; John Addison; Audrey Joseph; and, CFS.

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