Monday, May 25, 2015

HAPPY MEMORIAL DAY!




Take a minute to think of the men and women who put their lives on the line every day in the name of freedom. These are the real heroes, not athletes or Hollywood. Thank you for the sacrifices you make!

Sunday, May 24, 2015

CALEXICO


 
Calexico, armed with a new release,
returns to Philly

By Rob Nagy

Offering a hybrid of Americana, Tex-Mex, rock, jazz, folk, psychedelic and Latin music, Tucson, Arizona based “Calexico” is one of the most original bands on the scene today.

Featuring a line-up including Joey Burns  (vocals, guitars, bass, cello, piano, keyboards, accordion, percussion, vibraphone), John Convertino (drums, percussion, piano, keyboards, vibraphone, marimba, accordion), Paul Niehaus (steel guitar, guitars), Jacob Valenzuela (trumpet, keyboards, vibraphone, vocals), Martin Wenk  (trumpet, guitar, keyboards, accordion, glockenspiel, vibraphone, theremin) and Volker Zander (standup bass, electric bass), Calexico has released its latest album, “Edge of the Sun” (2015), a follow-up to 2012’s acclaimed “Algiers.”

In preparation for the album, and at the suggestion of keyboardist, fellow musician and songwriter Sergio Mendoza, Burns and Convertino embarked on a songwriter retreat in Mexico, where the trio flourished creatively in a setting that more than fueled their efforts.

“Sergio was instrumental and responsible for suggesting that John, he and I go to Mexico City for ten days to do some writing, recording and just hanging out,” says Joey Burns from his Tucson, Arizona home. “It proved to be very fruitful. We had a lot of fun. We got to meet some cool people and do some sightseeing. We got to stay in a very historic neighborhood called Coyoacán. It was pretty amazing being there.”

 “Going to another city to jumpstart the creative writing process helped us to know what this record is about and where we are as a band - like an open canvas with few ties to normal routines when recording and writing,” adds Burns. “Of course, we have been influenced by Mexican music and culture since the beginning, and you would imagine that a trip to Mexico City would have happened on past projects, but it hadn’t. So going to the center of Mexico and seeing an artistic community with such an impressive history as well as notable current musicians really inspired us.”

Working with Mexican collaborators for the first time, the band enlisted a diverse group of guest musicians, including Neko Case, Gaby Moreno, Sam Beam, Band of Horses' Ben Bridwell, Devotchka's Nick Urata and members of the Greek ensemble Takim. 

The result - Edge of the Sun - offers fans a collection of fresh, well-crafted and beautifully written songs symbolic of the diverse talents of a band continuing to push the creative envelope.

“We maintain this sort of traditional side to being a musician, honing your craft and working with your instrument,” says Burns. “Finding like-minded people that are doing things not from just a monetary aspect, but doing this for the right reasons. We’ve always gravitated toward that kind of aesthetics in the band and with other musicians.”

“When I step back from this record, I see the spirit of collaboration,” adds Burns. “As we began working on it, we started inviting people, and it was a natural thing. We’ve always welcomed guests; it’s in our DNA. John and I are really good at playing with people and improvising, but we’re also sensitive to what artists need.”

“We’re very pleased for sure, especially in a day where the music business is challenged on many levels,” says Burns. “I’m really happy to have some consistency in getting albums released and in being able to record albums with a label that’s supportive.”

Formed in Tucson, Arizona, Calexico, named after a town on the border of California and Mexico, released its debut album, “Spoke” (Quarterstick Records), in 1997.

Co-founders Joey Burns and John Convertino met in 1990, while Burns was a music student at the University of California (Irvine) and Convertino was playing drums with the band “Giant Sand.”

Their 2005 EP “In the Reins,” recorded with Iron & Wine, made the Billboard 200 album charts. The “Feast of Wine” (2003), “Garden Ruin” (2006),  “Carried to Dust” (2008) and “Algiers” (2012) all charted in the U.S. and abroad.

More than two decades in, and armed with an impressive collection of studio and live albums, film soundtracks and collaborative efforts to their credit, “Calexico” is thriving as a concert draw.

There’s a lot of diversity on the stage - the song selection, languages,” says Burns. “There are a lot of influences in what we do, and there has always been over the years. It’s a wonderful sensation to be on the edge playing with a group of musicians in front of an audience, and nobody knows where the moment is going to go.”

“I tend to try to incorporate that into the show every night,” adds Burns. “There’s some element of surprise and spontaneity for everyone involved, including the audience. This is why we do this. If it were predictable, I would probably change gears and do something else.”

“We really enjoy what we do and we take a very serious approach,” says Burns. ”We love our job. There’s a lot of passion involved and hopefully it shows in the music and the writing and the whole package - the trajectory of what we’ve done now for years. It’s great seeing creativity continue to flow, and that’s super important for anyone, especially for us.”

Calexico, with special guest Gaby Moreno, performs at the Union Transfer, located at 1026 Spring Garden Street Philadelphia, PA 19123, Saturday June 6, 2015 at 8:00P.M. For further information, call 215-232-2100 or visit www.utphilly.com. To stay up to date with Calexico visit www.casadecalexico.com

Friday, May 22, 2015

JOE ELY


Texas Music Legend Joe Ely
Plays Sellersville
  
By Rob Nagy

Texan guitarist Joe Ely’s honky-tonk, Tex-Mex style of rock and roll has been dazzling audiences since the early 70’s.

Masterfully exhibiting a creative diversity on the guitar, Ely, fronting his own band or playing solo, has collaborated and/or performed with Bruce Springsteen, John Hiatt, Merle Haggard, Guy Clark, the Clash and Lyle Lovett, among others.

One of music’s greatest ambassadors, Ely was recently honored for his outstanding commitment to the arts in his home state of Texas. At a ceremony at the State Capitol in Austin, he was appointed the Official “Texas State Musician” for 2016.

“That kind of came out of the blue,” says Ely, from his home in Austin, Texas. “I didn’t see that one coming. Over the last ten years, I think they’ve named - every year - a musician, a poet and an artist. It’s kind of an Official representing the state in whatever field that is.”

“I really don’t know what my duties are (laughs),” adds Ely. “It was great to go up to the Capitol building. So, I guess I’ll find out more about it later. I told them if I had duties to perform, my first wish was to have all the speed bumps removed from the state of Texas (laughs).”

Born in Lubbock, Texas, Ely, Jimmie Dale Gilmore and Butch Hancock formed the short-lived group “The Flatlanders” in 1972. Recording at the famed Sun Studios in Memphis, Tennessee, they released a promotional single, Gilmore's "Dallas." A commercial flop, the planned album, “All American Music, was initially shelved but later released to satisfy their recording contract.

A year later, the members of the trio each embarked on solo careers, while occasionally reuniting. They released the albums “Now Again” (2002) and “Hills and Valleys’” (2009) and “The Odessa Tapes” (2012), the latter an album featuring unreleased recordings from 1972 recording sessions.

Signed to MCA Records, Ely released his self-titled debut in 1977 and established himself as a solo artist. Ely’s single “All My Love” made the Top 100 U.S. Country Charts. Ely made the Top 40 charts with his 1981 single "Musta Notta Gotta Lotta," Mainstream Rock (MSR).

Ely’s songs have been featured in the films “Roadie” (1980) and Robert Redford’s “The Horse Whisperer,” which included collaborations with his Flatlanders band mates.

To distance himself from the bureaucracy and the creative control of a major record label, Ely launched Rack’Em Records in 2007. He released his debut album, “Happy Songs from Rattlesnake Gulch,” the same year. Ely has since released “LIVE Cactus!” (with Joel Guzman), “LIVE Chicago 1987!” and the critically acclaimed “”Satisfied At Last” (2011).

“The last few years have been kind of rich finding things,” says Ely. “Now that I started a record company, I’m releasing all kinds of things, like a duet with Linda Ronstadt that we recorded in 1985. I have a collection of material that I’m finding a place for.  It’s all part of my life. I figure someone might be interested in it.”

Expanding his creative output, Ely has published two books.

In “Bonfire of Roadmaps” (2007), Ely paints an authentic picture of life on the road through verse and drawings.

“I’ve always carried a sketchbook in my guitar case,” says Ely. “I always carried a journal. The journals tell about ideas I have on the road. The drawings were kind of like an early camera that I carried with me. The songs have just been a part of stories that come by. I just try to grab them as I come. It’s really how my whole life has been with zigs and zags in between. I’ve always tried to just capture the experiences.”

On the heels of his most recent offering, a fictional novel entitled “Reverb” (2014), Ely is nearing completion of his first album in four years.

“I’m going to call it ‘Panhandle Ramblers’,” says Ely. “At the top of Texas, it’s called the panhandle. There are a lot of interesting characters in this whole collection of works and stories about those characters and about my passing through that world. Ramblers and gamblers that I met up and down the road. I’ve got it just about wrestled to the ground. I’ve been working on it for a couple of years now. It will probably be out late summer.”

At 68, Ely never stops looking for a new adventure, a new inspiration in crossing paths with people that enrich his life.

“For me, work is to just to constantly uncover the mystery of living on this earth and the people,” reflects Ely. “It’s never been about going toward some shiny door at the end of the rainbow. It’s all about just trying to capture everything that I’ve run across and to tell about it. I’ve never really stopped because I would not know how to stop (laughs).”

“Looking back on my life and all the places I’ve been, that’s really what has kept me going,” adds Ely. “I’ve been blessed to run into interesting people who are kind of on the same road, on the same path. We share a little bit here and there and then go down opposite roads.”

Joe Ely, joined by Joel Guzman, will perform at the Sellersville Theater; located at 24 West Temple Ave., Sellersville, PA, on Wednesday June 3, 2015 at 8:00 P.M. Tickets can be purchased by calling 215-257-5808 or on-line at www.st94.com

To stay up to date with Joe Ely visit www.ely.com




LIVINGSTON TAYLOR


Livingston Taylor returns to the Colonial

By Rob Nagy

It’s been decades since American music legend Livingston Taylor first stepped into the spotlight. His 1970 self-titled debut featured the song “Carolina Day” and set the stage for one of music’s most engaging singer songwriters, poets and educators.

Excelling at a variety of musical genres, including folk, pop, gospel and jazz, Taylor has captured the hearts of a global audience with the top-40 hits “I Will Be in Love with You,” “I’ll Come Running,” “I Can Dream of You” and “Boatman.”

As a follow-up to last year’s “Blue Sky” album, Taylor is planning his next release.

“I’m out to make a record with a dear friend of mine, a guy by the name of Shelly Berg, who is the Dean of the Frost School of Music down in Miami, Florida,” says Taylor, while on tour in Baltimore, Maryland. “Shelly and I are working on a record that I’m calling “Songs That Our Parents Sang Too Loud.” It’s all that great pre-1960 work, “Never-Never Land,” “Where Is Love,” “Rainbow Connection,” “Penny Lane,” “It Might As well Be Spring,” “On The Street Where You Live,” “Put on a Happy Face” and “All The Things You Are.” I hope to record in late summer and release it in the fall. We’ll see what happens.”

The consummate live performer, Taylor, who remains a steady concert draw, has shared the stage with music luminaries Linda Ronstadt, Jimmy Buffett and Jethro Tull. His engaging presence, showmanship and musically creative execution still resonates with his fans, both young and old.

“I think people are relaxed in my presence,” says Taylor. “I think they’re glad to see me again. I was never so good looking that I had a lot of real good looks to lose.  So my getting older means less. The loss of youth for me is less acute because I didn’t have that much youth to lose. People enjoy the fact that I enjoy them so much. If I look in the mirror, it’s clear to me that glitz is not going to be a viable option.”

“For me, live performing has always been heaven,” adds Taylor. “I love playing live. I’ve done it forever. I love the adventure of being on the road, going to new places. I enjoy performing far more than when I was younger. I love the colors that I have on a palette now after a lifetime of studying music. I can go in all imaginable directions. I have a wonderful thing to show an audience, having studying the craft for a lifetime. It is a great honor to be on stage.”

Taylor, a full professor at the Berklee College of Music in Boston since the late 80’s, has been responsible for touching the lives of numerous aspiring young artists with his popular “Stage Performance” class. His book, by the same name and released in 2011, has expanded his audience.

Taylor is quick to recognize the harsh realities of technological advances and the impact on the art of making music. The paltry revenue streams from recorded music now find artists taking to the road in order to survive.

 “We’ve come to a time where the Internet transfer of digital creativity is unlimited,” says Taylor. “This requires an adjustment in thinking. With digital creativity, it’s absolutely impossible to control distribution. I’m more than happy to get my music out there in whatever capacity I can, but you’re selling thousands of copies doing that, and that’s nice, but you’re not selling hundreds of thousands of copies. As a result, you’re always competing with music that was made during the era of controllable distribution, and you can’t compete with that. You can’t compete with Steely Dan, The Eagles, Yes or all of the artists that came out in the last 50 years.”

“You have to have a mind set that you’re on the drift,” adds Taylor. “That you’re out there to see your audience. That you need your audience. Your audience does not need you. To find them means that you’ve found the salvation that an audience delivers. That certainly makes the travel for me all worthwhile. It’s been a wonderful career and a wonderfully adventurous life. I’m very blessed by all of that I’ve been able to do and very enthusiastic about it.”

Livingston Taylor performs at the Colonial Theater, located at 227 Bridge Street in Phoenixville, PA Saturday May 30, 2015 at 8:00 P.M. Tickets are available at the Colonial Theatre Box Office by calling 610-917-1228 or on-line at www.thecolonialtheatre.com. All ages are welcome at the Colonial.

To stay up to date with Livingston Taylor, visit www.livtaylor.com.




Wednesday, May 20, 2015

JACO PASTORIUS



Documentary highlights the Life
of Jaco Pastorius

By Rob Nagy

Synonymous with the bass, the late Jaco Pastorius was single handedly responsible taking the instrument to a level of creative expression that had never been heard or seen before.



Undeniably a legend in his own time, Pastorius, who routinely exalted himself as “The Best Bassist in the World,” raised the bar for every bass player to follow. 



Jaco’s critically acclaimed 1976 self-titled debut album (featuring Herbie Hancock, Wayne Shorter, David Sanborn, Lenny White, Hubert Laws, Don Alias, Michael Brecker and Sam & Dave) is revered by many as the finest bass album ever recorded.



Despite his creative genius, remarkable drive, unique passion and the support of the music elite, Pastorius’ rise to stardom came to an untimely and tragic end.



A new documentary entitled “Jaco” examines the life of this musical prodigy, from his youth in South Florida to his rise to fame and the bipolar diagnosis that inevitably led to a mental breakdown and consequent substance abuse. 



A brilliant career ended with a homeless Pastorius squatting in a South Florida Park. His life came to a tragic finish in 1987, at age 35, following an altercation with a bouncer outside a local club.



“Jaco,” directed by Paul Marchand, is the culmination of a four-year project by “Metallica” bassist Robert Trujillo, the film’s producer and one of Jaco’s biggest fans.



“When I saw him (in concert) in 1979,” recalls Trujillo, “he had no shirt and long hair. So, in many ways he was just like me and my wild surfing and skateboarding friends from Venice Beach. He was punk."



Trujillo still remembers the last time he saw Jaco perform in the mid 80’s at a Los Angeles guitar show.



"The walls were shaking,” recalls Trujillo. “We thought it was an earthquake. Jaco looked at all of us but didn't say a word.  He just shredded, as if to say, 'I've got you in the palm of my hand.’”



Featuring interviews with family members, fellow bass players Sting, Flea, Jerry Jemmott and Bootsy Collins, as well as singer-songwriter Joni Mitchell (who featured Pastorius on her “Hejira” album), Herbie Hancock, Wayne Shorter and Lenny White, the film takes you on a hypnotic journey through the life of one of music’s most notorious characters.



Included are rare (never before seen) home movies, family photographs, archival interviews with Jaco, live performances - most notably during his turbulent tenure with the group “Weather Report” - and period footage through the late 80’s.




"I'm just hoping this movie spreads the message about Jaco's talents and his essence as a human being," said Trujillo to the capacity crowd attending the Mill Valley Film Festival (CA) last fall.



“It's about trying to bring more awareness to Jaco Pastorius and his gifts," added Trujillo. "I did this from the heart."



“Jaco: A Documentary Film” has been making the rounds at film festivals this spring and recently won the Foundation Award (presented to the Asbury Park Music Foundation’s selection for the APMFF premier film) at the debut of the “Asbury Park Music In Film Festival” in NJ last month.



A fundraising drive is taking place in an effort to raise money for the licensing of music, still images and video content, as well as distribution for the ultimate theatrical release of “Jaco.”



Look for “Jaco: A Documentary Film” at film festivals and, hopefully, in mainstream theaters in the near future.  Be prepared for an unforgettable  high voltage performance.

Friday, May 8, 2015

NILS LOFGREN SELLS OUT THE SELLERVILLE THEATER


 Nils Lofgren at the Sellersville Theater this Sunday May 10th is officially SOLD OUT!

Thursday, May 7, 2015

NILS LOFGREN COMING TO THE SELLERVILLE THEATER 5/10/15



Nils Lofgren’s Solo Tour
Coming to Sellersville

By Rob Nagy

Veteran rock guitarist Nils Lofgren was 18 when Neil Young enlisted him for the recording of the classic “After The Gold Rush” album in 1969.

Serving as a springboard to a highly successful career that finds Lofgren, 63, still rocking concert stages around the globe, he is most notably recognized as a long time member of Bruce Springsteen’s E Street Band.

A critically acclaimed solo artist, songwriter and multi-instrumentalist in his own right, Lofgren has also worked with Ringo Starr and his All-Star band, Lou Gramm (Foreigner), Lou Reed and Patty Scialfa, among others.  He is humbled by the success that led to his 2014 enshrinement into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame as a member of the E Street Band.

“Even though I am in the E Street Band, I think it was deserved and long overdue,” says Nils Lofgren, from his home in Phoenix, Arizona. “I’d been in the band 30 years and people, in particular Clarence Clemmons and Danny Federici who we lost, were really hurt that it took so long and that it didn’t happen in their lifetime.”

“I think the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame knew they should have figured it out, and they didn’t, which is just the bureaucracy,” adds Lofgren. “It was still a great moment, and they were there in spirit.

As a co-founding member of the late 60’s band “Grin,” Lofgren gained notoriety throughout the Washington, D.C. music scene. Signing a recording contract with Epic Records, for which Lofgren credits his work with Neil Young as a catalyst, Grin released four albums - “Grin” (1971), “1+1” (1972), “All Out” (1973) and “Gone Crazy”(A&M Records 1973).

Following the disbanding of Grin in 1975, Lofgren released his critically acclaimed self-titled debut album on A&M Records. Future Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band manager Jon Landau, a writer for Rolling Stone magazine at the time, cited the album as one of the “best rock albums of the year.”

Working his solo career at a feverish pace, Lofgren continued recording and performing with Neil Young.   Appearing on Young’s “Tonight’s the Night” (1975), “Trans” (1982) and “Unplugged” (1993), Lofgren was briefly a member of Neil Young’s “Crazy Horse.” He played on Crazy Horse’s self-titled debut album in 1971.

Bruce Springsteen enlisted Lofgren in 1984 as a replacement for guitarist Steve Van Zandt in the E Street Band prior to the “Born in the USA” world concert tour.

An integral member of the band on stage and in the studio, Lofgren performed on the “Tunnel of Love Express” (1988) and “Human Rights Now!” (1988) concert tours, as well as on the albums “Live! 1975-85”(1986), “Tunnel of Love” (1987) and “Chimes of Freedom” (1988).

“There is no bigger fan than myself,” says Lofgren. “I used to buy tickets to see the band in the 70’s and early 80’s. Playing with these guys is a dream come true. I certainly, as a fan, hope somewhere down the road that there is another chapter, but there are no plans that I know of right now.”

A competitive gymnast in high school, Lofgren added a theatrical element to his live performance by playing guitar while doing flips on a trampoline.  In 2008, a double hip replacement surgery, the result of years of playing basketball, doing flips on stage and age, brought that stage dynamic to an end.

“I won’t be doing anymore back flips on stage,” says Lofgren. “I miss it, and I’m sorry I can’t do it for the fans. It had a long run. When a surgeon says, ‘You can be a cripple, don’t do it,’ you’d better listen to him.”

Following an 11 year hiatus, Lofgren and the E Street Band reunited with Springsteen in 1999.
The rekindled relationship yielded the albums “Bruce Springsteen & the E Street Band: Live in New York City” (2001), “The Rising” (2002), “Magic” (2007), “Working on a Dream” (2009), “Wrecking Ball” (2012) and “High Hopes” (2014), as well as the supporting concerts tours “Reunion Tour” (1999-2000), “The Rising” (2002), “Magic” (2007/2008), “Wrecking Ball” (2012-2013) and “High Hopes” (2014).

In celebration of a career spanning decades, Lofgren has delved into his musical past with the release of “Face the Music.” Featuring rarities dating back to the earliest days of his illustrious music career, Lofgren is elated with the end result.

“I’ve got this box set out from Fantasy Concord Records,” says Lofgren. “It is 10 discs, a DVD and 9 CD’s with 40 bonus tracks, basement tapes, unreleased things. We found a lot of great rare gems from the early days of Grin and before Grin, which is an extraordinary surprise for me, because most of my old music is out of print.”

“I picked my favorites of 45 years of work to get it out in this really great box set,” adds Lofgren. “I’m just glad a lot of that extinct music is available, and I got to hand pick what I thought was the best of it. It turned out to be a very extraordinary package, and we’re very proud of it.”

Following a 26 month run of live concerts with Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band, Lofgren is shifting his focus back to his solo career with an east coast swing of concerts that will bring him to the Sellersville Theater this month.

“It’s been over three years since I did any of my own shows,” says Lofgren. “It’s always exciting and refreshing to get back to my own work since I’ve taken such a long break. I’m not really musically rusty. I’ve been staying busy and engaged musically. I’m excited about it. It’s really healthy and inspiring for me to put a show together with my buddy Greg Varlotta.  I know they’re expecting a lot of me, and if I do my job right, I’m able to deliver that. That’s the magical thing I focus on.”

“I think my longevity is a steady journey of showing up and playing for people and doing great shows,” adds Lofgren. “People want to show up, because they know I work really hard to make it a special night for them every time.”

Nils Lofgren, joined by Greg Varlotta, performs at the Sellersville Theater; located at 24 West Temple Ave., Sellersville, PA, on Sunday May 10, 2015 at 7:30 P.M. Tickets can be purchased by calling 215-257-5808 or on-line at www.st94.com.

“Face the Music” is available at www.Nilslofgren.com or www.Amazon.com.

To stay up to date with Nils Lofgren visit www.nilslofgren.com. 

Monday, May 4, 2015

HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO THE GREAT SHARON JONES





DON'T MISS NILS LOFGREN AT THE SELLERVILLE THEATER THIS SUNDAY 5/10/15




Nils Lofgren’s Solo Tour

Coming to Sellersville



By Rob Nagy



Veteran rock guitarist Nils Lofgren was 18 when Neil Young enlisted him for the recording of the classic “After The Gold Rush” album in 1969.



Serving as a springboard to a highly successful career that finds Lofgren, 63, still rocking concert stages around the globe, he is most notably recognized as a long time member of Bruce Springsteen’s E Street Band.



A critically acclaimed solo artist, songwriter and multi-instrumentalist in his own right, Lofgren has also worked with Ringo Starr and his All-Star band, Lou Gramm (Foreigner), Lou Reed and Patty Scialfa, among others.  He is humbled by the success that led to his 2014 enshrinement into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame as a member of the E Street Band.



“Even though I am in the E Street Band, I think it was deserved and long overdue,” says Nils Lofgren, from his home in Phoenix, Arizona. “I’d been in the band 30 years and people, in particular Clarence Clemmons and Danny Federici who we lost, were really hurt that it took so long and that it didn’t happen in their lifetime.”



“I think the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame knew they should have figured it out, and they didn’t, which is just the bureaucracy,” adds Lofgren. “It was still a great moment, and they were there in spirit.



As a co-founding member of the late 60’s band “Grin,” Lofgren gained notoriety throughout the Washington, D.C. music scene. Signing a recording contract with Epic Records, for which Lofgren credits his work with Neil Young as a catalyst, Grin released four albums - “Grin” (1971), “1+1” (1972), “All Out” (1973) and “Gone Crazy”(A&M Records 1973).



Following the disbanding of Grin in 1975, Lofgren released his critically acclaimed self-titled debut album on A&M Records. Future Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band manager Jon Landau, a writer for Rolling Stone magazine at the time, cited the album as one of the “best rock albums of the year.”



Working his solo career at a feverish pace, Lofgren continued recording and performing with Neil Young.   Appearing on Young’s “Tonight’s the Night” (1975), “Trans” (1982) and “Unplugged” (1993), Lofgren was briefly a member of Neil Young’s “Crazy Horse.” He played on Crazy Horse’s self-titled debut album in 1971.



Bruce Springsteen enlisted Lofgren in 1984 as a replacement for guitarist Steve Van Zandt in the E Street Band prior to the “Born in the USA” world concert tour.



An integral member of the band on stage and in the studio, Lofgren performed on the “Tunnel of Love Express” (1988) and “Human Rights Now!” (1988) concert tours, as well as on the albums “Live! 1975-85”(1986), “Tunnel of Love” (1987) and “Chimes of Freedom” (1988).



“There is no bigger fan than myself,” says Lofgren. “I used to buy tickets to see the band in the 70’s and early 80’s. Playing with these guys is a dream come true. I certainly, as a fan, hope somewhere down the road that there is another chapter, but there are no plans that I know of right now.”



A competitive gymnast in high school, Lofgren added a theatrical element to his live performance by playing guitar while doing flips on a trampoline.  In 2008, a double hip replacement surgery, the result of years of playing basketball, doing flips on stage and age, brought that stage dynamic to an end.



“I won’t be doing anymore back flips on stage,” says Lofgren. “I miss it, and I’m sorry I can’t do it for the fans. It had a long run. When a surgeon says, ‘You can be a cripple, don’t do it,’ you’d better listen to him.”



Following an 11 year hiatus, Lofgren and the E Street Band reunited with Springsteen in 1999.

The rekindled relationship yielded the albums “Bruce Springsteen & the E Street Band: Live in New York City” (2001), “The Rising” (2002), “Magic” (2007), “Working on a Dream” (2009), “Wrecking Ball” (2012) and “High Hopes” (2014), as well as the supporting concerts tours “Reunion Tour” (1999-2000), “The Rising” (2002), “Magic” (2007/2008), “Wrecking Ball” (2012-2013) and “High Hopes” (2014).



In celebration of a career spanning decades, Lofgren has delved into his musical past with the release of “Face the Music.” Featuring rarities dating back to the earliest days of his illustrious music career, Lofgren is elated with the end result.



“I’ve got this box set out from Fantasy Concord Records,” says Lofgren. “It is 10 discs, a DVD and 9 CD’s with 40 bonus tracks, basement tapes, unreleased things. We found a lot of great rare gems from the early days of Grin and before Grin, which is an extraordinary surprise for me, because most of my old music is out of print.”



“I picked my favorites of 45 years of work to get it out in this really great box set,” adds Lofgren. “I’m just glad a lot of that extinct music is available, and I got to hand pick what I thought was the best of it. It turned out to be a very extraordinary package, and we’re very proud of it.”



Following a 26 month run of live concerts with Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band, Lofgren is shifting his focus back to his solo career with an east coast swing of concerts that will bring him to the Sellersville Theater this month.



“It’s been over three years since I did any of my own shows,” says Lofgren. “It’s always exciting and refreshing to get back to my own work since I’ve taken such a long break. I’m not really musically rusty. I’ve been staying busy and engaged musically. I’m excited about it. It’s really healthy and inspiring for me to put a show together with my buddy Greg Varlotta.  I know they’re expecting a lot of me, and if I do my job right, I’m able to deliver that. That’s the magical thing I focus on.”



“I think my longevity is a steady journey of showing up and playing for people and doing great shows,” adds Lofgren. “People want to show up, because they know I work really hard to make it a special night for them every time.”



Nils Lofgren, joined by Greg Varlotta, performs at the Sellersville Theater; located at 24 West Temple Ave., Sellersville, PA, on Sunday May 10, 2015 at 7:30 P.M. Tickets can be purchased by calling 215-257-5808 or on-line at www.st94.com.



“Face the Music” is available at www.Nilslofgren.com or www.Amazon.com.



To stay up to date with Nils Lofgren visit www.nilslofgren.com