One of my earliest arena-concert memories was of seeing Bad Company on the Run with the Pack Tour at Vancouver's Pacific Coliseum back in the spring of '76, I think it was. The opening act was a prog-leaning rock band from Kansas called Kansas, who I remember most because they had a violin player.

This was just a few months before the release of Leftoverture, which included the huge hit "Carry on Wayward Son", which I've never gotten tired of hearing. It was the most-played track on classic rock radio in 1997, so I'm not alone in my fondness for the killer guitar riff delivered by composer Kerry Livgren.

Couldn't make it out last night? You missed New West-bred rock 'n' roller Johnny de Courcy at Neptoon Records. Sarah Fawcett was there and caught a moment of the show on Instagram. Here’s your concert pic of the morning. Johnny de Courcy at Neptoon Records on November 22, 2014. Thanks Sarah.

Has pop culture passed its maximum capacity for gluteus maximus? For a few months it seemed as if, when it came to fascination with the female backside, the public's appetite was endless. The phenomenon even inspired some really overwrought think pieces, but we seem to have turned a corner. 

Kim Kardashian didn't break the Internet, but the grotesque spectacle of her oiled-up hindquarters on the cover of Paper magazine might well have broken the spell we seem to have been under.

How else would you explain the relatively tame performance of "Booty" that Jennifer Lopez and Iggy Azalea turned in at the American Music Awards last night?

A video titled "Sturmgruppe 2013 Reel" has been the buzz of the Internet since its posting to YouTube on Wednesday night. And not the good kind of buzz. The video, apparently a demo reel from a production house called Sturmgruppe, is mostly composed of scenes from a couple of Marilyn Manson videos. But there is also a brief sequence in which singer Lana Del Rey is depicted as being pushed onto a bed and held down by someone who looks a lot like actor and filmmaker Eli Roth. (Other bloggers have described this as a "rape scene" but I won't go that far; at the end of the scene the man is shown getting up and walking away with his pants still on.)

The video has since been removed, although others have reposted it, and you can watch it below, for now.

Two famous country singers have come out of the closet.

Ty Herndon, 51, was the first to do so, inspiring 26-year-old Billy Gilman to  follow suit.

The twice-married Herndon decided to speak about his sexual orientation to People magazine to help younger gay men.

"I am an out, proud, and happy gay man," Herndon declared.

Gilman then released a video explaining his decision.

Country music appeals to many conservatives who are not known for their support for the LGBT community.

Thirty years ago this Sunday--on November 23, 1984--Nazareth played the Commodore Ballroom, touring behind its new album The Catch.

In advance of the show I interviewed frontman Dan McCafferty and--among other things--got the scoop on the story behind the group's curious single, "Vancouver Shakedown".

Here's a slightly condensed version of the piece that appeared in the Nov. 23-30 issue of the Straight.

 

So I was checking out my Twitter account on the commute home last night and I noticed that my number of followers had blasted up from 1435 to an impressive fourteen-hundred and thirty-six. My new follower was a guy named Niro Knox, who looked like a pretty rockin' dude.

So I took a gander at some of his tweets and found one labelled "Guitar Solo" that was a link to a year-old YouTube video he'd posted. It's just him riffing out on a goldtop Les Paul, but as he soon as he hit a note it reminded me of Gary Moore, so I immediately followed him back.

That is all.

Couldn't make it out last night? You missed Los Angeles experimental musician-producer Flying Lotus at the Commodore. Lydia Reedeeah was there and caught a moment of the show on Instagram. Here’s your concert pic of the morning. Flying Lotus at the Commodore Ballroom on November 19, 2014. Thanks Lydia.

I finally got around to checking out the nominees for the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame's class of 2015 and, lemme tell ya, that institution has developed its most severe case of HUA (Head Up Ass) Syndrome yet.

Okay, firstly, let's rattle off the nominees: Green Day, Nine Inch Nails, N.W.A., Joan Jett and the Blackhearts, Lou Reed, the Smiths, the Spinners, Sting, Chic, Kraftwerk, the Marvelettes, Bill Withers, War, Stevie Ray Vaughan, and the Paul Butterfield Blues Band.

Told ya it was embarassing!

From that lame-ass batch, the only ones worthy of nomination in my books are Jett, Reed, Butterfield, and Vaughan.

Fvck Chic.

There's no denying that the vast majority of rock 'n' roll animals heading to the sold-out Rogers Arena this Friday night will be huge fans of Mötley Crüe, which is performing on its heavily publicized "Final Tour".

But I doubt I'll be the only one going there to revel in the killer tunes and theatrical shock-rock shenanigans of "special guest" Alice Cooper.

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