Above: Cotton Candy performs at Blayney's in Westport on Dec. 15. It would be her final performance. She died on Christmas Day. Photos courtesy of Kim Smith.
Her many friends, fans and colleagues will celebrate the life of blues singer Annetta "Cotton Candy" Washington from 3 to 7 p.m. Friday ( Dec. 28) at Watkins Brothers Memorial Chapel, 4000 Emanuel Cleaver Blvd. She died on Christmas Day of complications from a stroke. She was 76.
Fellow musicians are encouraged to attend. Connie "Crash" Humiston, one of Washington's close friends, advises us: "There will be a backline so musicians can bring their instruments."
The funeral is scheduled for 2 p.m. Saturday, also at Watkins Brothers. Humiston says to expect "some illustrious guest speakers."
The Kansas City Blues Society is planning a tribute to Cotton Candy in the February edition of Blues News. The magazine is inviting the public to share stories, anecdotes and photographs that celebrate Cotton Candy's life. Send them to email@example.com.
Above: the video for Radiohead's "Jigsaw Falling Into Place."
Radiohead is planning a Webcast of a live New Year's Eve performance of "In Rainbows." It'll air at 11 p.m. here in metro KC on Current.com and on Current TV: That's Channel 231 for Time-Warner customers or Channel 107 (Comcast); Channel 366 (Direct TV); Channel 196 (Dish Network).
Wired magazine recently ran a piece on how new technology and social networks are helping increase the audiences for live-music Webcasts. I don't know. Watching a concert from in front of a computer screen isn't my idea of live music ...
The local Web site Innate Sounds has long broadcasting news, interviews and music from the local underground hip-hop scene. It recently posted a Podcast starring the words and sounds of Deep Thinkers. Recommended for fans of hip-hop infused with jazz, soul, R&B, etc. It's smart, groovy, soulful and and bling-free.
Speaking of rap troupes with local roots, Anti-Crew as drawn more than 20,000 viewers to this very cool animated video of its song, "Peace."
Speaking of underground rap: The Roots will perform at Jesse Hall on the Mizzou campus on Feb. 1, a Friday. Tickets are only $25. If you saw their fabulous show at the VooDoo Lounge in March (above), you know they're worth a 120-mile road trip (each way).
An on-line radio network for pacifists, anti-fascists and progressives of all ages will launch Jan. 1. The Peace & Justice Radio Network will feature music plus programs like "Democracy Now" with Amy Goodman.
If you missed the Elders' acoustic performance at the very intimate Pilgrim Chapel in October, you can watch most of it via YouTube.
The Hurricane's time in limbo may be coming to an end. According to John Kelly, one of the three managing partners who reopened the live-music joint in Westport late last year, the place could re-open as early as the second weekend in January.
"Will it still be called the Hurricane? I don't know," he said Wednesday. "But we're scheduling bands again, and the plan is to be live music all the time, hopefully by mid-January.
"But there are banks and lawyers and criminals involved, so anything could happen. There will be many meetings between now and (mid-January) so I have no definite idea of what the outcome is going to be. I just wanna rock!"
The Hurricane has been closed since the week of Dec.10, when the venue's sound system was removed reportedly by the person who owned it. Kelly also co-owns Jerry's Bait Shop.
Above: The Sprint Center was full opening day. It wasn't for R. Kelly or Ozzy Osbourne.
A story by Reuters paints a grim picture of the live music industry: Numbers for the Top 20 tours are down 15 percent this year and at their lowest since 2004. This is all germane to our city, given Sprint Center's dependence on big live shows and given the new music venues opening up around the arena. We posted this question recently regarding arena acts: Where will the big bands come from in an industry that hasn't nurtured talent for a least a decade? How many Led Zep or Police reunions are out still there? Beyond that, how can all the mid-size venues (Starlight, the Uptown, Crossroads KC, VooDoo Lounge, the new Midland, Liberty Hall) survive when demand is dropping?
Is rock music's walking saint, Bono, a tax fraud? Several organizations and writers, including those at Rock 'n' Rap Confidential, have been making the case recently. Their allegations: The man who so sincerely wants to ease, if not cure, Third World debt, has been contributing to it by moving his own fortune around to ease his own financial (tax) responsibilities. Here's one persuasive commentary with a rebuttal.
Is it hypocrisy for a man with many mansions to aggressively protect his fortune while he campaigns for the poor? The Kennedys pulled it off 40 years ago; Bill Gates and Warren Buffet have managed it; but John Edwards is having a tougher time of it.
Above: Oscar Peterson with Ray Brown and Herb Ellis plus guests Coleman Hawkins and Nat King Cole.
Duke Ellington was just one of several legends who called Oscar Peterson the best jazz pianist ever. Peterson, 82, died Sunday night at his home in Ontario. The New York Times ran his obituary on Christmas Day.
If you saw R. Kelly at Sprint Center this month, you may have seen his last show in Kansas City for a long while. A judge in Cook County, Illinois, has set R. Kelly's day of legal reckoning: According to Billboard, his tried on child pornography charges will begin May 9, unless his lawyers can come up with another delay strategy. Kelly nearly spent Christmas in the big house after he missed a court date when his tour bus was delayed in Utah.
The Short List Organization has released its long list (of nominees for the Seventh Annual Music Prize. According to the Web site: "Any album released in the U.S. from January through November 2007 was eligible for nomination, so long as it had not been certified gold for domestic sales of 500,000 units." In other words, you have to be hip and famous but not popular.
On the way:
It's not the singer, it's the songs, eh? More than 12 years after lead singer Shannon Hoon died of a drug overdose, the new version of Blind Melon (with singer Travis Warren) is coming to the Beaumont Club on March 25. Tickets will go on sale Saturday (Dec. 29). They'll be $17.50.
Annetta Washington died on Tuesday, Christmas Day, one week before she would have celebrated her 77th birthday. She died of complications from a stroke suffered on Dec. 15. Local blues fans knew her as "Cotton Candy," the vocalist for the gospel/blues troupe So Many Men.
COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — The self-proclaimed widow admits she’s been a bit of a drama queen, and she’s not about to apologize for it. The lawyer feels brushed aside after more than two decades of dedication. The preacher had trouble dealing with the death of a man who took the role of the father who abandoned him.
And the son is at peace, ready to continue his father’s work.
A year after music legend James Brown died in an Atlanta hospital, the people who surrounded him in life continue to fight over the future of his fortune and legacy. People claiming to be Brown’s relatives have entered the fray. And none of what’s become a tragicomic saga looks to be resolved anytime soon.
Paste "The premier magazine for people who still enjoy discovering new music, prize substance and songcraft over fads and manufactured attitude, and appreciate quality music in whatever genre it might inhabit."