Cyrus, Warwick To Perform New Single Today On CBS’ The Talk

billyraycyrus_hopeisjustahead_cover_smallCountry musician Billy Ray Cyrus will appear today on CBS’ The Talk.

Cyrus will perform his new single, ‘Hope Is Just Ahead’ on the networks’ afternoon talk show.  Audiences can catch The Talk live on their local CBS station.  Viewers can check their local listings for broadcast times online at http://www.cbs.com/shows/the_talk.  He is expected to be joined by fellow veteran singer Dionne Warwick, with whom he also recorded the song.  The song has jumped to #60 and is most added on the A/C Chart in just its second week at radio.  The video for the new single can be viewed online now at http://www.usatoday.com/story/life/music/2014/01/30/billy-ray-cyrus-dionne-warwick-premiere-new-duet/5044913/?AID=10709313&PID=6154686&SID=2f4szw8nt2dh and http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jyQfyMIH5Uk.

Cyrus explained in a recent interview how the meaning behind his new single has changed since it was originally written.  He explained that  was inspired by a school shooting, and that it has now done what it was meant to do.  “I initially started writing ‘Hope Is Just Ahead’ the day after the Columbine shootings with Don Von Tress,” he noted.  “I feel like ‘Hope Is Just Ahead’ has now found its purpose.  Cyrus will donate a portion of sales of the single to the “Do The Write Thing-National Campaign to Stop Violence.”  The group was developed to create awareness and stop violence among young people in schools before it has a chance to develop.

Cyrus discussed the “Do The Write Thing-National Campaign To Stop Violence” in his comments.  ‘Do The Write Thing is one of the few ideas I have seen in front of us as a society in America that can actually make an immediate and positive impact, a real difference in stopping violence in schools before it happens,” he said.  “If this concept can save one life, if the thought of early detection means one less Sandy Hook, VA Tech or movie theater massacre, then it needs our support.  He went on to add that “Edmund Burke said, ‘The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing,’ so let’s no longer just stand back and say ‘I saw this coming, but did nothing.We have to try something, standing here debating and procrastinating, just ain’t working.”  More information on “Do The Write Thing-National Campaign To Stop Violence” is available online at http://www.dtwt.org/about-dtwt.

More information on Billy Ray Cyrus is available online at http://www.billyraycyrus.com and http://www.facebook.com/BillyRayCyrus.  To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews, go online to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it.  Fans can always keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews in the Phil’s Picks blog at http://philspicks.wordpress.com.

Black Sabbath Reveals Dates For Full North American Tour Schedule

Courtesy:  Universal Republic Records

Courtesy: Universal Republic Records

The hatchet has largely been buried between the members of veteran hard rock band Black Sabbath.  After over three decades of waiting, fans of this groundbreaking band will finally get to hear new music from the band this Summer.  And in support of the new album, titled 13, Black Sabbath—Ozzy Osbourne, Tony Iommi, and Geezer Butler—will hit the road in support of the album with a full North American tour.  Drummer Bill Ward will be replaced on the band’s upcoming tour with a replacement drummer.  Tickets for the band’s upcoming tour will be available Friday, May 3rd.  Fans can get early access to the pre-sale tickets on May 2nd when they RSVP at https://www.facebook.com/events/147056262140133/?context=create or at http://bit.ly/Sabbath_RSVP.

The band’s upcoming North American tour begins Thursday, July 25th at the Cynthia Woods Mitchell Pavilion in Houston, TX.  It spans nineteen dates that will take the band from the East Coast to the West and even into Canada.  The full list of tour dates is available below.

DATE                    CITY                     VENUE

+Thu- Jul 25          Houston, TX          Cynthia Woods Mitchell Pavilion

+Sat-Jul 27           Austin, TX             Frank Erwin Center

<Mon-Jul 29          Tampa, FL             Live Nation Amphitheatre

+Wed-Jul 31          W. Palm Beach, FL Cruzan Amphitheatre

~Fri-Aug 02          Bristow, VA           Jiffy Lube Live

*Sun-Aug 04        Holmdel, NJ           PNC Bank Arts Center

+Tue-Aug 06        Detroit, MI            DTE Energy Music Theatre

+Thu-Aug 08        Uncasville, CT        Mohegan Sun Arena

+Sat-Aug 10         Philadelphia, PA     Wells Fargo Center

^Mon-Aug 12        Boston, MA           Comcast Center

*Wed-Aug 14        Toronto, ON          Air Canada Centre

+Fri Aug 16           Tinley Park, IL       First Midwest Bank Amphitheatre

+Sun-Aug 18        Indianapolis, IN       Klipsch Music Center

+Thu-Aug 22        Vancouver, BC       Rogers Arena

*Sat-Aug 24        Seattle, WA           Gorge Amphitheatre

+Mon-Aug 26        San Francisco, CA  Shoreline Amphitheatre at Mountain View

+Wed-Aug 28       Irvine, CA              Verizon Wireless Amphitheatre

+Fri-Aug 30          Phoenix, AZ           US Airways Center

+Sun-Sep 01        Las Vegas, NV       MGM Grand Garden Arena

*Tue-Sep 03        Los Angeles, CA     Los Angeles Sports Arena

 

*Previously announced date.

^On sale Friday, May 3

+On sale Saturday, May 4

~On sale, Friday May 10

<On sale, Saturday, May 11

>On sale TBD

Before the band hits the road and the album hits stores, fans can get a glimpse of what is to come now.  The band has released 13’s lead single, ‘God is Dead?’, and fans can check it out now on YouTube at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wVfUimq2KeI.

To get more tour information and all of the latest news from Black Sabbath, fans can go online to the band’s official website, http://www.blacksabbath.com, its official Facebook page, http://www.facebook.com/BlackSabbath, and via Twitter and Instagram at http://twitter.com/OfficialSabbath and http://instagram.com/officialsabbath.

To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews, go online to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it.  Fans can keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews in the Phil’s Picks blog at http://philspicks.wordpress.com.

Bringing Metal to The Children is one Wylde read

Zakk Wylde is known throughout the music world as one of the most prolific guitarists in modern music history.  His chops are unequalled.  That he’s been part of fellow legend Ozzy Osbourne’s camps only adds to his reputation.  Now, the man who heads up the Black Label Society worldwide can add one more title to his resume.  That title is author.  And his new book, Bringing Metal to The Children:  The Complete Berzerker’s Guide to World Tour Domination is an amazing look behind the scenes at life on the road for Wylde and his BLS bandmates.

Wylde opens the book fittingly with an introduction to the Black Label Society creed:  SDMF. Strength, Determination, Merciless, Forever.  SDMF isn’t just some random marketing scheme.  For both fans and members of BLS, it’s a way of life.  It’s a creed.  It’s a motto of self empowerment.  Wylde writes of Strength that it relates to mental, physical and spiritual strength.  For those who don’t know, he is a very devout Catholic, despite what  some may believe of him (or his friend and mentor Ozzy Osbourne.  He discusses this later in the book).  And his faith plays a very big role in his personal strength.  By looking at him, it’s obvious that Wylde walks the walk and talks the talk.  He writes about his physical conditioning.  He explains about his exercise and eating habits, especially now that he’s sober.  That combination of spiritual and physical strength leads to his explanation of DeterminationDetermination is self explanatory.  He writes of this part of the BLS creed to not give up, no matter how tough or bad the situation may be. Merciless is directly tied in to Determination.  To be merciless means to give every bit of what one has.  Forget giving 100% of what one has.  Regardless of the situation, to be merciless means giving 1,000% of oneself.  Simply put, it means to never give up.  Never Give Up.  Those are three little words.  But they’re the key to this part of the BLS creed.  Again, they tie right in to Determintaion.  It all also ties directly back to Strength.  If one embraces these three parts of the BLS creed means that one will find they’ll want to live by that creed Forever.  Understanding the Black Label Society creed is to be part of the Black Label Society worldwide Forever.  It means being the best one can be Forever

The thorough explanation of the Black Label Society creed is a perfectly fitting opening to this new book.  That’s because it serves to disspel the label that has been placed on Black Label Society and its fans.  If the in depth explanation of the band’s creed isn’t enough to prove just how vital BLS is to the music community, then the explanation of the “Three Black Label R’s” and the signifigance of the band’s patches will serve to show outsiders that Black Label Society isn’t just a band.  It collectively shows that Black Label Society is a community and a way of life.  It creates a whole new appreciation for Black Label Society, and for that which Black Label Society stands.

After explaining the Black Label creed, Zakk starts discussing his beginnings as a musician up to his trials and tribulations as a solo artist, dealing with record labels, and his time with Ozzy and the creation of his own home studio, known as the Black Vatican.  Along the way, readers are treated to stories of good times with other rockers, such as:  Fozzy, Crowbar, Damageplan, etc.  He also writes some stories about fellow guitar god, Dimebag Darrel (R.I.P.).  OF course, stories of life on the road aren’t all that Zakk imparts to his readers in his new book.  He also tackles Ozzy’s religious reputation.  He explains to readers that all the rumors of Ozzy being this and that are entirely wrong.  Rather, he writes, Ozzy’s quite religious.  As a matter of fact, he writes that the crucifixes that he and all the Black Label Society members wear were made by Ozzy’s dad.  He ties in to that story of how he [Zakk] bought some books to try to understand certain topics, and his wife’s reaction to it.  One can’t help but agree with Zakk’s argument that reading it doesn’t mean practicing it.  Learning that after his wife threw the books out of a hotel window, and someone took them will bring plenty of laughs.

Speaking of laughs, real Black Label fans will have more than their share of laughs throughout this books.  Zakk writes of his early days in a little band called Stonehenge, and its attempts to get its name out there.  The story of his experience playing at a person’s house is the stuff of legend.  It’s the type of story one might only expect to hear or see from a movie or sitcom.  There’s also the story of one infamous in-store appearance with Ozzy in which the store only carried a grand total of twelve (yes twelve) Ozzy albums.  Reactions from both Zakk himself and Ozzy’s wife, Sharon, are absolutely hilarious.  And then there are, of course, stories of BLS’ radio ventures at stations that didn’t know the first thing about him or his band.  Perhaps one of the book’s funniest moments doesn’t come from in store appearances or Zakk’s early days.  It comes as Zakk explains the dangers of using the bathroom on a tour bus.  If this story doesn’t get audiences laughing, then nothing in this book will. 

Bringing Metal to The Children offers readers so much great material.  Whether one is a new member of the Black Label Society Worldwide, or a lifelong Berzerker, this book is an absolutely wonderful read for any Society Dweller worldwide.  It’s one of those rare music memoirs that really shines in a sea of books that clog bookstore shelves and digital downloading pages.  For fans of the rock world, if there’s one book to check out in 2012, it’s Zakk Wylde’s new book, Bringing Metal to The Children.