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  • Billboard: Matt Sorum’s Fierce Joy, ‘The Sea’: Exclusive Song Premiere



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    The ex-Guns N’ Roses drummer returns with a new solo album… says Velvet Revolver is talking about a return. “We don’t want to throw it away, ’cause it’s something we built”

    When it comes to solo albums, Matt Sorum seems to be on the every 10 years plan. But he doesn’t want to repeat that decade-long gap between his new “Stratosphere” and its predecessor, “Hollywood Zen.”

    “I hope that maybe I can sell enough of this one to make another one, to make my investors say, ‘OK, let’s do it again,’ ” the drummer of Guns N’ Roses, Velvet Revolver and The Cult fame tells Billboard. “I’m actually going to take the time to push this album. When I did ‘Hollywood Zen,’ I never did any press, never put a band together. We just did that (Velvet Revolver) ‘Contraband’ record right after. Now I’m focused on taking this all the way — as far as I can, anyway — and see how it unfolds and hope people gravitate towards it and hopefully just listen to it for the music, number one, instead of having a preconceived notion of this guy from all these rock bands.”

    For complete article and to listen to streaming track go here:
    www.billboard.com/articles/news/5930354/matt-sorum-fierce-joy-the-sea-ong-premiere-album-velvet-revolver-update

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  • MATT SORUM’S FIERCE JOY: More ‘Stratosphere’ Album Details Revealed



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    Rock And Roll Hall Of Famer and legendary drummer of GUNS N’ ROSES, VELVET REVOLVER and THE CULT, Matt Sorum will release his new album, “Stratosphere”, under the moniker MATT SORUM’S FIERCE JOY on March 11 on Rok Dok Recordings via Kobalt Label Services.

    “Stratosphere” is major departure from the hard-hitting rock Sorum is best known for. His intense passion for animal and human rights, and need to give back heavily influenced the narrative and acoustic orchestration of the album.

    “Over the years, I’ve been influenced by my surroundings and sometimes that hasn’t always been for the better,” says Sorum. “But after years of soul searching, I organically fell into a different state of mind.

    “With many lessons learned along the way, it seemed like the perfect time to do a record in my own voice, if you will. It’s as real and exposed as anything I’ve ever offered my in my career, and I hope you enjoy it.”

    Besides stepping behind the mic for lead vocals, Sorum wrote the entire album, and plays acoustic guitar and piano.

    “I’ve always played acoustic, so I wanted to use that as the feel of the record,” Matt says.

    “I chose the musicians I wanted by records they had played on, and diverse instruments such as mellotron, slide guitar and ethnic percussion.

    “I always wanted orchestration, so this album was the canvas for that as well.”

    Pre-order “Stratosphere” now on iTunes and get an instant download of “The Sea”.

    Check out the first webisode (in a series of 5) about of the making of “Stratosphere” below.

    MATT SORUM’S FIERCE JOY“Stratosphere” track listing:

    01. Intro – Stratosphere Part 1
    02. The Sea
    03. What Ziggy Says
    04. For the Wild Ones
    05. Goodbye To You
    06. Gone
    07. Lady of the Stone
    08. Ode to Nick Drake
    09. Blue
    10. Josephine
    11. Land of the Pure
    12. Killers N Lovers
    13. The Lonely Teardrop
    14. Outro – Stratosphere Part 2

    Speaking to The Street, Sorum stated about his inspiration for the “Stratosphere” CD: “I’m known as a rock guy, but I’ve always loved so many diverse artists. I was a huge Joni Mitchell fan; I remember listening to a lot of her records back to back. Neil Young, Tom Petty, THE BEATLES, of course, and I was a huge Bowie fan. I was also into progressive stuff, like early GENESIS, Peter Gabriel era. You can hear that influence on the new album; there are a couple of songs that have some interesting time changes.

    “I’ve always dabbled on the acoustic guitar, and I wrote a couple songs for VELVET REVOLVER. In GUNS N’ ROSES, Axl [Rose] and Slash looked to me for arrangements. I wasn’t the predominant songwriter, but I’ve always been involved in the process.

    “When I put ‘Stratosphere’ together, I actually had a lot of it on cassette. I’d been writing the songs over the years, and I wanted to do an album that was just coming from me, regardless of anyone’s expectations.”

    Asked if MATT SORUM’S FIERCE JOY will go out on tour, Sorum said: “We’re going to tour, but it isn’t going to be a typical rock show. If I’m going to front a band, I can’t see myself, at my age, jumping up and playing rock and roll the way Dave Grohl does. Dave pulls it off, running around the stage with an electric guitar. But would that feel right for me? How can I make this feel natural, a natural progression, growing into the man that I finally feel that I am, and saying what I want to say now?”

    Sorum played a brand new solo song entitled “The Sea” on November 18, 2013 at Avalon Hollywood in Los Angeles. Fan-filmed video footage of performance — featuring Sorum on guitar and vocals — can be seen below.

    Sorum told The Street about the track: “I wrote that song on acoustic, then piano.

    “I always heard the desert was a cool place to write, so I headed out to Joshua Tree. Then in my hometown, we used to go to a little beach getaway called the Surf and Sand, and I wrote the lyric to ‘The Sea’ there. I was sitting on a balcony, overlooking the ocean, thinking about life. I started thinking about the sea as a metaphor for spiritual awakening.”

    “The Sea” Music Video

    Making of “Stratosphere” webisode 1:

    Making of “Stratosphere” webisode 2:

    Making of “Stratosphere” webisode 3:

    Making of “Stratosphere” webisode 4:

    Making of “Stratosphere” webisode 5:

    “The Sea” performance footage:

    Read more at http://www.blabbermouth.net/news/matt-sorums-fierce-joy-more-stratosphere-album-details-revealed/#yxjFF6mARzTllHxg.99

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  • Ready, Set, Slaughter: Dolphin Killings to Begin in Infamous Cove



    Sunday, September 1 marks the start of Taiji, Japan’s annual dolphin slaughter, made famous by the Oscar-winning documentary ‘The Cove.’

     

    cove killings 2013

    Former Guns ’N Roses drummer Matt Sorum (L) and dolphin activist Ric O’Barry (R) protest Taiji, Japan’s annual dolphin slaughter by holding iPads that depict footage of the bloody killings during a flash-mob appearance on Friday, August 29, in Tokyo, Japan. (Photo: Lincoln O’Barry)

    It’s that wretched time of year again.

    The killing season opens Sunday, September 1 in Taiji, heralding a six-month orgy of mass terror, suffering, kidnapping, bloodshed and slaughter inflicted upon hapless pods of whales and dolphins unlucky enough to swim near the coast of Japan’s Kuman-nada Sea.

    Herded by boats and terrifying banger poles into an inlet popularized by the Oscar-winning documentary The Cove, the stressed-out animals will be separated: younger, cuter ones will be sold to theme parks to spend a life in “show business.” The rest will be impaled, speared, sliced, and gutted in the crimson-red waters, destined for East-Asian dining tables.

    For ten years, Ric O’Barry, star of The Cove, and his wife Helene have journeyed to Taiji every September 1 to kick off a long, often depressing and chilly season of volunteers witnessing, monitoring, protesting, and—something that gets more difficult each year—trying to attract media attention.

    After the nuclear disaster in Fukushima, most Japanese and international media have focused on urgent issues far to the north. “One journalist at AP told us she’s not coming back until we find radiation in the cove,” O’Barry says, with sadness, before boarding a Tokyo flight. “It gets harder and harder when Fukushima is really the only issue over there right now.”

    If The Cove pointed a world spotlight on the slaughter, Fukushima turned it away. Now activists around the world are coming up with new, attention-grabbing events the media simply cannot ignore, including simultaneous global demonstrations, Japanese flash mobs, and a healthy heaping of rock ’n’ roll.

    “Anything we can do” will be done, O’Barry vows. “We have to keep coming up with creative ways to keep the issue alive.”

    That’s why on this trip, “Ric will be accompanied by Matt Sorum, a Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductee, a founding member and drummer of Guns N’ Roses and founder of the supergroup Kings of Chaos,” says Mark Palmer, Associate Director at Earth Island Institute.

    “Matt is also the Musical Director for ‘Tokyo Celebrates the Dolphin,’ an upcoming event to generate much-needed positive international publicity regarding Japan’s relationship with dolphins,” Palmer continues. “The concert and celebration will be about the relationship the people of the Tokyo islands have with wild and free dolphins. The local people have adopted dolphins and given them names.” One island even made their dolphins official citizens.

    “We’re trying to balance this publicity out, so it’s not all negative,” says O’Barry. Most people in Japan “are the opposite of Taiji,” he says, “We want to celebrate the relations they have with dolphins.” Meanwhile, the Kings of Chaos, “can fill stadiums around the world. A concert in Tokyo with 40,000-to-60 000 young people in the same building (in protest of killing dolphins) is hopefully going to get a lot of attention, and keep attention on the cove.”

    A concert date has not been set, but September 1 will be a red-letter day in Taiji, and around the globe. “We have about 50 people who will show up at the cove, but we also have 100 cities around the world where people will be protesting at Japanese embassies and consular offices,” O’Barry says. “People can go to Save Japan Dolphins to get the information and show up at one of these demonstrations.”

    Activists will also be showing up, spontaneously, at freshly planned “flash mob actions,” over the coming weekend,” says Palmer. “We’ve been invited by a Japanese activist group called Flippers Japan” to a flash mob in Tokyo on Friday and a similar Taiji event on Sunday.

    Credit for much of the ongoing action belongs to The Cove, which “had an enormous influence on many issues,” says the film’s director Louie Psihoyos. “In Japan we’ve helped reduce demand for dolphin meat by about two-thirds, saving thousands of dolphins and porpoises each year. When our team arrived in Japan the government was force-feeding dolphin meat with toxic loads of mercury to thousands of schoolchildren, and had a plan to expand this scheme to unsuspecting communities all over the country. That’s not happening anymore.”

    The company distributed thousands of pamphlets “to the primary dolphin hunting communities warning them of toxic dolphin meat,” he adds. “and sent suitcases of translated DVDs of The Cove all over the country.” Today, several countries “are banning the import of wild dolphins and many airlines (refuse) their planes for trafficking dolphins,” Psihoyos says. “Watching a good documentary can be more than $10 and some popcorn; it can be a weapon of mass construction.”

    Greater awareness, about mercury and about what happens at the cove, has driven down demand, and thus the total number of animals killed annually. “In 2004, when our Save Japan Dolphins Campaign began, about 1,600 dolphins were killed that season. Last season about 900 were killed,” Palmer says. The government authorizes about 2,000 animals annually, “so the hunt itself is not doing well.”

    But this silver lining has a very dark cloud: As demand for dead dolphins dropped, demand for live ones skyrocketed, with each fetching $150,000 or more. This, critics say, is the economic underpinning of the entire enterprise. Remove it, and the business collapses.

    According to Whale and Dolphin Conservation (WDC), although numbers killed each season fluctuate, last season saw the lowest number of animals killed in 10 years, but a record high number of animals, 247, captured for public display. In the prior season, only 68 were taken alive.

    And there is more bad news. Whale-and-dolphin drives are still thriving in other countries, especially the Solomon Islands, in the south Pacific and the Faroe Islands, in the north Atlantic.

    “I don’t think anyone has a handle on total numbers in the Solomon’s,” says WDC’s Courtney Vail. “The average take there is around 700 dolphins.” And though there was “a brief cessation” brokered by Earth Island officials, this year “nearly 1,700 dolphins were taken, many more than are killed in Taiji annually.”

    “We’ve had some success funding (villages) for alternatives to killing dolphins,” Palmer explains. “One of the tribes got greedy and threw out our agreement and began killing dolphins again. But other villages are sticking by the agreement.” Unconfirmed reports claim the animals are suffocated with mud stuffed down their blowholes.

    In the Faroes, meanwhile, people have survived for centuries through hunting whales. But in the 21st century, “the tradition persists, not only because some people there like to eat whales, but because they enjoy killing them,” Helene O’Barry recently wrote.

    Here, “the hunts involve the larger community that participate in the round-up and killing in full view of observers, bystanders, and the Internet,” says Vail. “Whales are dispatched in large groups, as they are herded to shore en-masse, in a chaotic scramble to kill.” So far this year, more than 1,000 animals have perished.

    Despite all the protests, media scrutiny, legal challenges, diplomatic force and simple attempts at friendly dissuasion, the killing goes on, in Japan and elsewhere. It seems as though no amount of outside pressure can stop it.

    “It has yet to change the resolve of the hunters and the governments that support them. Diplomacy and friendship have not yet succeeded,” laments Vail, who then adds: “All cruel customs, no matter how deeply rooted in tradition, should be exposed.”

    O’Barry agrees. “We are trying to get the Japanese people to take ownership of this issue; they are the only ones who can stop this dolphin slaughter. Westerners can’t do it,” he says. “That’s why we’ve been looking for the past ten years for ways to work with them, not against them.”

    Like any nationality, Japanese dislike foreigners telling them how to behave. “Many Japanese react with defiance,” says Palmer, “but many more secretly agree with us.” Still, standing up against this issue “is very hard for Japanese,” who risk their jobs, and get harassed and investigated “in a very heavy-handed way.” But, he adds, “word is getting around, slowly.”

    O’Barry predicts the slaughter, though probably not live captures, will end soon. The killing is unsustainable, he says, morally and economically. After all, “The vast majority of people in Taiji are not involved in killing dolphins,” he notes, “less than 50 men are giving the entire country a bad name.”

    Source: http://www.takepart.com/article/2013/08/30/cove-slaughter-2013-begins-ric-obarry-taiji-japan

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  • Ric O’Barry to return to the Cove backed by more than 100 events



    http://www.digitaljournal.com/article/357023

    Taiji – With little more than a week to the start of the Taiji dolphin drive season, dolphin advocate Ric O’Barry will return to the Cove backed by more than 100 individual events around the globe.
    As he does every year on Sept. 1, the star of The Cove movie will be heading to Japan with volunteer Cove Monitors and international supporters from six continents. Once there, they will join-up with Japanese activists in Tokyo and Taiji, and will be on the Cove beach Sept. 1, calling for an end to the dolphin drive hunts and slaughters.

     

    Matt Sorum  Guns & Roses singer and drummer will be at The Cove in Taiji  Japan  with Ric O Barry on...

    Accompanying the dolphin advocate and his team this year, will be drummer and singer Matt Sorum, from the rock group Guns N Roses and the supergroup: Kings of Chaos. Backing them from afar will be more than 100 global events hosted by a consortium of dolphin lovers as part of an annual event called Japan Dolphins Day (JDD).

    Boasting 102 listed events at its new website: Japan Dolphins Day.net, none is perhaps more poignant than the protest being planned in Tokyo. It is being organized and hosted by Japanese activist group: Action for Marine Mammals.

    Taiji’s dolphin drives

    Japan’s dolphin crisis inevitably centers on the small coastal whaling village of Taiji in the Wakayama Prefecture of Japan. Every year between Sept. 1 and March 31, dolphins across several species are driven into a tiny cove by fishermen and either slaughtered for their meat or sold (at great profit), to the captive marine industry.

    Last season, according to Ceta Base.com, “1,486 dolphins from six species,” were driven into the cove. “Of this total,” the database said, “899 were killed, 340 were released and 247 were live-captures.”

    Ric O Barry displays dolphin meat for sale in Japan.

    O’Barry, who is the campaign manager for both Save Japan Dolphins and the Dolphin Project, documented and questioned Japan’s dolphin hunting culture in the Academy Award-winning documentary, The Cove.

    Directed by Louie Psihoyos, the 2009 film is still inspiring activists today after it took the 2010 Academy Award for Best Documentary Feature.

    Planned events

    The Save Japan Dolphins Campaign which operates under the umbrella of the Earth Island Institute, has once again partnered with the social media campaign Save Misty the Dolphin, to facilitate and coordinate events.

    Japan Dolphins Day (JDD) has attracted more events this year than any other. The majority of events begin towards the end next week with many timed to coincide with O’Barry’s visit to Taiji on Sept. 1. The dolphin advocate is also planning to report live from the Cove via live-stream.

    Further details on all scheduled events are available through the Save Japan Dolphins Facebook page and Japan Dolphins Day.net.

    Read more: http://www.digitaljournal.com/article/357023#ixzz2dW77NOYn

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  • Adopt the Arts Event Sunday September 15, 2013



    Please save the date for this historic evening as two organizations, separated by over 8,000 miles, pull together for the singular goal of improving the education of underprivileged students from Los Angeles and Pakistan.
    Sunday
    September 15, 2013
    5:00PM–11:00PM
    Ray Dolby Ballroom at the Loews Hollywood Hotel
    1755 North Highland Avenue, Los Angeles, CA 90028
    Red carpet, catering by Wolfgang Puck, live auction and performances by Matt Sorum, Shehzad Roy, and guests
    Tickets
    Gold $1,000, Silver $500, Bronze $200
    Please purchase tickets at adoptthearts.org/peacethroughmusic
    Adopt the Arts Advisory Committee
    Shepard Fairey, John Stamos, Slash, Gina Gershon, Juliette Lewis, Danny Masterson, Steve Stevens, Billy Bob Thornton, Michael Wincott, Adrian Young, Antonio Pelayo
    Event contacts
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  • Washington Post: Yo-Yo Ma joins rocker Matt Sorum on Capitol Hill to call on Congress to fund arts



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    By Associated Press, Published: April 9

    WASHINGTON — Former Guns N’ Roses drummer Matt Sorum joined cellist Yo-Yo Ma on Capitol Hill on Tuesday to urge lawmakers to increase funding for the arts in a year of deep federal budget cuts.

    The rocker and classical musician played a jam session briefly together for a gathering of legislators and arts advocates from across the country who planned to visit congressional offices. They performed with bagpiper Cristina Pato and dancing star Lil Buck.

    Sorum said his mother was a music teacher and that his high school classes in orchestra, jazz and marching band were critical in launching his career in music and in business. More recently he has started a charity to support arts education in Los Angeles. Guns N’ Roses was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in Cleveland last year.

    Sorum said he was excited to visit Washington to press Congress for funding.

    “This is the coolest thing I’ve done since Madison Square Garden, I’ve got to say. Slash is going to be really jealous,” he said, referring to the lead guitarist from Guns N’ Roses and now the group Velvet Revolver. “If I can navigate the music business, I’m going to have fun navigating Congress.”

    The group Americans for the Arts is pushing for funding to be restored to $155 million each for the National Endowment for the Arts and the National Endowment for the Humanities. Last year each agency received about $146 million and lost about $7 million of that due to Congress’ automatic budget cuts.

    House Republican budget leaders have called for eliminating the two agencies altogether.

    Still, Republican Rep. Leonard Lance of New Jersey joined advocates Tuesday, saying the arts benefit the entire nation.

    Arts programs face a daunting budget environment. With the $7 million in automatic budget cuts, each endowment stands at $139 million for the current fiscal year. Overall, each has lost about $30 million in annual funding since 2010. It’s an even bigger drop since the endowments’ high point of $176 million in arts funding in 1992.

    Ma has pressed for greater focus and funding for the arts in education, joining a White House initiative to help turn around failing schools with arts programs. He also called for including the arts with the educational emphasis on science, technology, engineering and math. Creativity connects the other subjects, Ma said, and helps students become self-motivated and innovative.

    “It seems to me that many of the skills in terms of what children need in order to succeed … are actually best modeled through the arts,” Ma said.

    ___

    Americans for the Arts: http://www.artsusa.org/

    Adopt The Arts: http://adoptthearts.org

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  • Uber Rock UK: MATT SORUM reveals details of new solo album



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    Matt Sorum, famed for his work on the drum stool with Guns N’ Roses, The Cult and Velvet Revolver, has revealed that he is working on a new solo album.

    Sorum commented:

    “My new solo record will not be a rock record and I am not playing drums on it. [I am] singing and [playing] acoustic [guitar] mainly, [and] using another drummer [for the recording sessions].”

    Sorum has revealed that the material to be featured on this new album is “a cross between The Doors, Pink Floyd, Wilco, David Gray, Peter Murphy and Portishead.” Sounds thrilling.

    Songtitles set to appear on the album are ‘The Sea’, ‘What Ziggy Says’, ‘Blue Josephine’, ‘Gone’, ‘Lady Of The Stone’, ‘Killers N’ Lovers’, ‘Ode To Nick Drake’ and ‘Land Of The Pure’, the latter of which is “about children of Pakistan,” says Sorum.

    Sorum’s new CD will be the follow-up to 2004′s ‘Hollywood Zen’, his previous solo effort which featured his GN’R/VR bandmates Slash and Duff alongside Giuffria legends Chuck Wright and Lanny Cordola, the latter co-producing with the veteran sticksman.

    complete article: http://www.uberrock.co.uk/news-updates/91-january-news-updates/6894-matt-sorum-reveals-details-of-new-solo-album.html

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  • Diamond Baby at the Viper Room 9/5/12 Wednesday 9PM



    Come Support Diamond Baby at
    Viper Room this Wed Sept. 5th 9pm

    www.diamondbabyband.com

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  • New Matt Sorum T-shirts



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  • Order Yours Now Matt Sorum Personalized Autographed VR Drawing Drumhead



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    Will include an original drawing by Matt like the one shown here personalized to any one name. These are snare heads.

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    Price: $99.99

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