Jerry Herman receives Kenny Center Honors in 2010
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Iconic Broadway Composer Jerry Herman Has Passed Away
The GRAMMY- and Tony-winning creator of joyful Broadway musicals has died at 88 years old
Legendary GRAMMY- and Tony-winning Broadway composer Jerry Herman passed away on Dec. 26 at age 88, The Associated Press reports. He was beloved and celebrated for his joyful, upbeat show tunes written for "Hello, Dolly!," "Mame," the English adaptation of "La Cage aux Folles" and more.
Herman's goddaughter Jane Dorian confirmed his passing with AP today. He died of pulmonary complications in Miami, where he was living with his partner Terry Marler.
Herman, who was born in New York in 1931 and raised in Jersey City, had a love of piano and musicals from a young age. Back in 1996, he told the AP that after his parents took him to "Annie Get Your Gun" on Broadway as a child he set his dreams on writing musicals.
"I thought what a gift this man has given a stranger. I wanted to give that gift to other people. That was my great inspiration, that night," he said of seeing his first Broadway musical.
After graduating from the University of Miami, he moved back East to New York, later making his Broadway debut in 1960, with songs he contributed to the musical revue "From A to Z." In 1961, he scored "Milk and Honey," a musical about the founding of Israel, which earned him his first Tony and GRAMMY nominations. Herman's first GRAMMY nod came at the 4th GRAMMY Awards for Best Original Cast Show Album for the music from play.
Just three years later, Herman, who wrote the music and lyrics, and Michael Stewart, who wrote the play adaptation from Thorton Wilder's novel "The Matchmaker," debuted "Hello, Dolly!" on Broadway. According to AP, at the time, it became the longest-running Broadway musical with a 2,844-performance run.
The beloved play originally starred Carol Channing and saw many revivals over the years, most recently starring Bette Midler in 2017. The play won 10 Tony Awards, including Best Musical and Best Original Score in 1964 and was nominated for Best Score From An Original Cast Show Album at the 7th GRAMMY Awards.
Additionally, in 1964, jazz legend Louis Armstrong released an emotive rendition of the title number from the play to help promote it. Armstrong's single "Hello, Dolly!" won him Best Male Vocal Performance at the 7th GRAMMY Awards and won Herman Song Of The Year, as the songwriter. It was also nominated for Record Of The Year. Both the Armstrong version of the song and the original cast recording were inducted into the GRAMMY Hall of Fame, in 2001 and 2002, respectively.
Just two years later, at the 9th GRAMMY Awards, Herman would take home his second golden gramophone, for Best Score From An Original Cast Show for his second musical, "Mame." It starred Angela Lansbury and also saw a long run, with over 1,500 performances. According to the AP, in 2009, Lansbury presented Herman with his Special Tony Award for Lifetime Achievement, saying he created songs just like himself—"bouncy, buoyant and optimistic."
His 1983, he released one of his other classic musicals along with playwright Harvey Fierstein, an adaptation of " La Cage aux Folles," from the 1973 French play of the same name. It broke barriers for queer representation on Broadway as one of the first whose story is centered around a gay couple. You may know the story from the classic 1996 movie "The Birdcage" starring Robin Williams, which was adapted from the French movie based on the original play.
With it, the late composer not only paved the way for future queer Broadway triumphs, but also won several Tonys in 1984, including Best Original Score and Best Musical, as well as another GRAMMY nomination for Best Cast Show Album. In 2006, his lifetime of work was recognized with Kennedy Center Honors.
He is survived by his partner and two goddaughters—Dorian and her daughter Sarah Haspel. Dorian told the AP his songs "are always on our lips and in our hearts."
Photo: Kevin Mazur/WireImage.com
Pearl Jam Named Record Store Day 2019 Ambassadors
Pearl Jam's Mike McCready says "if you love music," record stores are the place to find it
Record Store Day 2019 will arrive on April 13 and this year's RSD Ambassadors are Pearl Jam. Past ambassadors include Dave Grohl, Metallica, Run The Jewels (Killer Mike and El-P), and 61st GRAMMY Awards winner for Best Rock Song St. Vincent.
McCready was also the 2018 recipient of MusiCares' Stevie Ray Vaughan Award.
The band was formed in 1990 by McCready, Jeff Ament, Stone Gossard, and Eddie Vedder, and they have played with drummer Matt Cameron since 2002. They have had five albums reach No. 1 on the Billboard 200 and four albums reach No. 2.
"Pearl Jam is honored to be Record Store Day's Ambassador for 2019. Independent record stores are hugely important to me," Pearl Jam's Mike McCready said in a statement publicizing the peak-vinyl event. "Support every independent record store that you can. They're really a good part of society. Know if you love music, this is the place to find it."
With a dozen GRAMMY nominations to date, Pearl Jam's sole win so far was at the 38th GRAMMY Awards for "Spin The Black Circle" for Best Hard Rock Performance.
Pearl Jam will be performing on March 3 in Tempe, Ariz. at the Innings festival, on June 15 in Florence, Italy at the Firenze Rocks Festival and at another festival in Barolo, Italy on June 17. On July 6 Pearl Jam will headline London's Wembley Stadium.
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Original Misfits Unleash One Night Only L.A. Reunion Show
Dark punk legends to play first show with Glenn Danzig and Jerry Only since last year's Riot Fest reunion
There's big news today for punk-rock fans aware that the Misfits made much more than just T-shirts.
The massively influential punk band announced a special show touted as the "only 2017 performance in this world… or any world" and billed as "The Original Misfits" in Los Angeles at the Forum on Dec. 30.
This will be the first Misfits show featuring original singer Glenn Danzig and original bassist Jerry Only with long-time guitarist Doyle Wolfgang von Frankenstein since the band reunited for a pair of Riot Fest appearances in Chicago and Denver in 2016. Last year's Riot Fest gigs, which featured drummer Dave Lombardo, marked the first time in 33 years the original Misfits members played together.
"OK Los Angeles, you've waited almost 35 years for this, here's your chance to see the "Original Misfits" in this Exclusive L.A. only performance." said Glenn Danzig. "No Tour, No BS, just one night of dark metal-punk hardcore brutality that will go down in the history books. See you there."
Tickets for this "one night only" show go on sale Friday, August 25.
Photo: Anthony Harvey/Getty Images
Lady Gaga Steps In To Support Youth Impacted By Hurricanes
GRAMMY winner pledges support for those impacted by hurricanes this year through Save the Children’s Journey of Hope program
On Oct. 10 Lady Gaga announced she is devoting her $1 million donation in support of those impacted by the recent hurricanes in Texas, Florida and Puerto Rico and the earthquakes in Mexico, to a specific cause — the mental and emotional well being of children and youth.
Gaga announced on her Born This Way Foundation website she will support Save the Children’s Journey of Hope program, which uses a variety of tools to help young people deal with trauma in the wake of natural disasters.
"Through a curriculum that includes cooperative play, discussion, art, meditation, and mindfulness practices, young people learn to recognize and understand their emotions and develop healthy coping skills," Gaga wrote. "Tens of thousands of youth have benefited from the program since it’s development in the wake of Hurricane Katrina and Save the Children is working to bring it to hundreds of thousands more in Texas, Florida and Puerto Rico."
The announcement came on World Mental Health Day, and the Fame Monster has invited all of us to step up and consider making a contribution to the Journey of Hope program to support to mental and emotional needs of children.
"Mental health is just as vital to our wellbeing as physical health. That’s true for each of us, everyday, but it’s especially important for those coping with disaster and recovering from trauma," wrote Lady Gaga. "We must do everything within our power to support the full, vibrant recovery of these communities, from meeting their immediate needs to helping them to rebuild sustainably."
Find Out Who's Nominated For Best Rap Album | 2020 GRAMMY Awards
Dreamville, Meek Mill, 21 Savage, Tyler, The Creator, and YBN Cordae all earn nominations in the category
The 2020 GRAMMYs are just around the corner, and now the nominations are in for the coveted honor of Best Rap Album. While we'll have to wait until the 62nd GRAMMY Awards air on CBS on Jan. 26 to find out who will win, let's take a look at which albums have been nominated for Best Rap Album.
Revenge of the Dreamers III – Dreamville
Dreamers III, the third installment in the label’s Revenge of the Dreamers compilation series, debuted at No. 1 on the Billboard 200 chart and achieved gold status this past July. In addition to a Best Rap Album nod, Dreamers III is also nominated for Best Rap Performance next year for album track “Down Bad,” featuring J.I.D, Bas, J. Cole, EARTHGANG, and Young Nudy.
Championships – Meek Mill
In many ways, Championships represents a literal and metaphorical homecoming for Meek Mill. Released in November 2018, Championships is the Philadelphia rapper’s first artist album following a two-year prison sentence he served after violating his parole in 2017. Championships, naturally, sees Meek tackling social justice issues stemming from his prison experience, including criminal justice reform. The album debuted at No. 1 on the Billboard 200, his second chart-topper following 2015’s Dreams Worth More Than Money, and reached platinum status in June 2019. Meek Mill's 2020 Best Rap Album nod marks his first-ever GRAMMY nomination.
i am > i was – 21 Savage
Breakout rapper and four-time GRAMMY nominee 21 Savage dropped i am > i was, his second solo artist album, at the end of 2018. The guest-heavy album, which features contributions from Post Malone, Childish Gambino, J. Cole, and many others, has since charted around the world, topped the Billboard 200 – a first for the artist – in the beginning of 2019, and achieved gold status in the U.S. As well, nine songs out of the album’s 15 original tracks landed on the Hot 100 chart, including multi-platinum lead single “A Lot,” which is also nominated for Best Rap Song next year. 21 Savage’s 2020 Best Rap Album nomination, which follows Record of the Year and Best Rap/Sung Performance nods for his 2017 Post Malone collaboration, "Rockstar,” marks his first solo recognition in the top rap category.
IGOR – Tyler, The Creator
The eccentric Tyler, The Creator kicked off a massive 2019 with his mid-year album, IGOR. Released this past May, IGOR, Tyler’s fifth solo artist album, is his most commercially successful project to date. The album debuted at No. 1 on the Billboard 200, marking his first time topping the coveted chart, while its lead single, "Earfquake,” peaked at No. 13, his highest entry on the Hot 100. Produced in full by Tyler and featuring guest spots from fellow rap and R&B stars Kanye West, Lil Uzi Vert, Solange, and Playboi Carti, among many others, IGOR follows the rapper’s 2017 album, Flower Boy, which received the Best Rap Album nod that same year.
The Lost Boy – YBN Cordae
Emerging rapper YBN Cordae, a member of the breakout YBN rap collective, released his debut album, The Lost Boy, to widespread critical acclaim this past July. The 15-track release is stacked with major collaborations with hip-hop heavyweights, including Anderson .Paak, Pusha T, Meek Mill, and others, plus production work from J. Cole and vocals from Quincy Jones. After peaking at No. 13 on the Billboard 200, The Lost Boy now notches two 2020 GRAMMY nominations: Best Rap Album and Best Rap Song for album track “Bad Idea,” featuring Chance the Rapper.