Australian roots-jam singer-songwriter John Butler is quite the groove monster on his new album, Flesh & Blood, but he got a lot of help on one of the funkier numbers from his bassist Byron Luiters.

As Butler explained on the line from New York the other day—on a tour that brings him to the Commodore for two sold-out shows—Luiters came up with the “very deep groove” on the track “Livin’ in the City”.

The Joe Satriani show at the Vogue last year was one of my fave gigs of 2013, no surprise since Satch has been consistently blowing me away ever since I first heard Surfing With the Alien back in the Eighties.

Similarly minded guitar freaks who don't already own all of Satriani's albums—or who are rich enough to afford doubles—should know that today Sony's Legacy Recordings announced the release, on April 22, of Joe Satriani: The Complete Studio Recordings.

Here's some of the promotional bumph:

The spirit of '76 will never falter because that’s the year Thin Lizzy put out two LPs instead of just one.

Albums listed in alphabetical order according to title, otherwise Jailbreak would be right there at the top.

I've included three song titles to help you remember how awesome the music was, and one clip to bring it all back home.

You shouldn't need any other music today.


A Day at the Races: Queen (“Tie Your Mother Down”, “Somebody to Love”, “Long Away”)

Agents of Fortune: Blue Oyster Cult (“[Don't Fear] the Reaper”, “Sinful Love”, “The Revenge of Vera Gemini”)

Here's a cool animated video that was posted on YouTube yesterday by PBS Digital Studios.

It features a snippet of Jimi Hendrix's final interview, conducted by music journalist and press agent Keith Altham exactly one week before the guitar legend's drug-related death.

I like the part at the beginning where, after being asked about how he's doing money-wise, Jimi talks about the way he'd like to live--in a house that is basically a big swimming pool, so he could swim from one room to another.

Jimi just seemed like a big kid, didn't he? A big, sweet, talented-as-fuck kid.

I remember Darkman, partly because it was one of the first movies I ever got paid to review, way back in the fall of 1990.

I also remember Darkman because it was one hell of an entertaining horror-thriller, which is what I'd come to expect from director Sam Raimi, the guy behind Evil Dead.

The good news is that on Feb. 18 Scream Factory, the genre-movie line distributed by Shout! Factory, is releasing a Blu-ray version of Darkman that is jam-packed with all-new interviews, including ones with stars Liam Neeson, Frances McDormand, and Larry Drake, as well as makeup-FX artist Tony Gardner, production designer Randy Ser, and art director Philip Dagort.

When you're talking about amazing guitarists who've passed away before achieving the widespread acclaim they deserve, Mike Bloomfield's right up there.

But a four-disc boxed set released today on Sony's Legacy Recordings imprint should help get the word out on the mindblowing blues player.

Here's the promotional bumph:

Twenty years ago today—on February 4, 1994Bootsauce played the Commodore Ballroom for the first time. The Juno-winning funk-rock group out of Montreal was touring behind it's fourth album, Sleeping Bootie, which I remember thinking was pretty cool in a Red Hot Chili Peppers kinda way.

Lead singer Drew Ling and bassist Al Baculis dropped by the Straight office a couple weeks before the show and gave me the scoop on the new album. Here's the story that ran in advance of the Vancouver gig in case anyone's interested. Sorry about saying "sassy" so many times.

Vancouver’s Devin Townsend is a master of extreme metal. I’m not saying that from personal experience, because I’m not into extreme metal. Old Iron Maiden’s about as extreme as I get these days.

But from what I’ve heard the fortyish singer, songwriter, producer, and multi-instrumentalist is quite the artistic genius when it comes to various types of metal-based music. He’s hugely prolific and has pretty well gone on to conquer the world since I was following him in the early ’90s, writing about his band Gray Skies and his collaboration with American rock-guitar hero Steve Vai.

After that I went back to listening to Thin Lizzy and stuff.

I just finished reading Stephen King's latest novel, Doctor Sleep, and to be honest--even though it was dedicated to Warren Zevon--I wasn't that crazy about it. Then again, as much as I adore King's early work and appreciate all he's done for the horror genre, I haven't been that crazy about a few of his books.

Sometimes I think he just really needs to edit himself a bit, especially with those weighty tomes that break the 800-page barrier. Insomnia almost put me to sleep, and I just plumb gave up trying to get through the 1074-page behemoth that became the godawful TV series Under the Dome.

Maybe you saw him at the Grammy's the other night, performing his old hit "Photograph" and then playing drums behind Paul McCartney on some song that wasn't a Beatles tune.

Well, now you can see him in the flesh, as legendary Fab Four drummer and all-around good guy Ringo Starr is bringing his All-Starr Band to the Hard Rock Casino Vancouver on July 15.

Ringo's band will include guitarist Steve Lukather (Toto), keyboardist Greg Rolie (Santana, Journey), bassist Richard Page (Mr. Mister), drummer Gregg Bissonette (Joe Satriani), and multi-instrumentalist-vocalist Todd Rundgren (Todd Rundgren).