Hard Rock | December 2009

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Has the ubiquitous year-end list become a cliché or is it a tradition? We’re gonna jump on the bandwagon and flatter ourselves by calling it a tradition. Let’s check out a few things that went down in the world of Hard Rock memorabilia in ’09 and some stuff we hope to see in 2010.


In ’09, we went high-tech with our collection, so that we could share it with the world more effectively and bring our unique brand of rock 'n' roll irreverence to the masses. Though we’ve embraced the technology of the new century whole-heartedly, three things stand out for music fans and memorabilia nerds.

Has the ubiquitous year-end list become a cliché or is it a tradition? We’re gonna jump on the bandwagon and flatter ourselves by calling it a tradition. Let’s check out a few things that went down in the world of Hard Rock memorabilia in ’09 and some stuff we hope to see in 2010. As always, you can check out some of our best stuff at our interactive memorbilia site.

Ya know how that big apple drops toward the stroke of midnight on New Year's Eve in Times Square every year? The big NYE apple in the Big Apple? Well, three Hard Rock Cafes are doing something similar, only in our own particular rockin' idiom. That's right, Hard Rock Cafe Nashville, Hard Rock Cafe Memphis, and Hard Rock Cafe Niagara Falls are all dropping big ol' guitars. There'll also be plenty of great music and libations at each location. Click the flyers below to find out more information. We'll see you on New Year's Eve, when we'll simultaneously drop those hugemongous guitars and rock your socks off. Believe it.

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At Hard Rock Cafe Chicago, don't miss your opportunity to bring in the New Year with style. Enjoy a premium open bar, dinner buffet, awesome party favors and a champagne toast at midnight! Maggie Speaks will also be performing LIVE from 10:00 PM-1:00 AM! (*Must be 21 years or older. Purchase tickets on ticketweb.com or in the Hard Rock Cafe Rock Shop, and you can also pick up tickets at Will Call, which is recommended.)

At Hard Rock Cafe Lake Tahoe, ring in the New Year while partying like a rock star. All the way from Miami, DJ Craze will heat things up. $30 right now, then $40 day of the event, tickets available at ticketweb.com or by calling the Cafe. Included in the price of admission: party favors, Imagine bracelet with donation going to fight world hunger, countdown and champagne toast at midnight. Table reservations available: Reserved booth for 4 guests, $375, includes 4 tickets & 1 bottle of Mumm champagne. Reserved booth for 8 guests, $630, includes 8 tickets & 2 bottles of Mumm champagne (Call 775.843.7142 for booth reservations). Bottle service available. 21+

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Rock in the New Year at the new Hard Rock Cafe Las Vegas on the Strip! On Thursday, December 31st, Hard Rock Cafe Las Vegas will host special performances by two of hip-hop’s most prestigious DJs, Mix Master Mike, resident DJ for Beastie Boys, and DJ Muggs, founding member of Cypress Hill. In addition, during the event, both DJs will donate items which will become a permanent part of Hard Rock’s world-famous memorabilia collection, including Mix Master Mike’s turntable and an orange jumpsuit from his first tour with the Beastie Boys and DJ Muggs’ performance outfit from the band’s infamous 1993 “Saturday Night Live” appearance.

General admission tickets include a complimentary champagne toast at midnight and party favors. Guests are also invited to reserve VIP tables, which offer a full view of the Las Vegas Strip and the city’s fireworks display. 

Hard Rock Cafe Las Vegas Hosts New Year’s Eve Bash 

Thursday, December 31, 2009
9 p.m.    Doors open
10 pm.   Performances begin   
Hard Rock Cafe Las Vegas
3771 S. Las Vegas Blvd
Las Vegas, NV

$100 until 12/30; $125 day of event, General admission tickets, visit ticketweb.com to purchase tickets
VIP seating available, contact the Cafe for details
Ages 21 and older welcome

12.29: Don’t go chasing waterfalls, y'all. Immortal words spoken by an immortal singer from an immortal band. Now, if we can just remember their name....Hmmm, still don’t have it....Oh, yeah. We just googled it. Tony Toni Tone. No, wait a minute, that’s not right. Okay, we’re done messing around. It’s TLC. That group's most vocal and trouble-prone member, Lisa “Left Eye” Lopes, never backed down from a disturbance she couldn’t cause, which brings us to this day in 1994. Left Eye pled guilty to arson charges in a fire that destroyed her boyfriend’s (Atlanta Falcon’s receiver, Andre Rison) shoes and mansion. You see, they’d had a contentious relationship, fraught with not-so-good times, and Left Eye had had enough. She set fire to his favorite shoes, but the fire got out of hand pretty quickly, burning the massive house down to the ground (we still remember the helicopter-cam images from tv), turning it into a toasted, gnarled shell of nothing, along with all of Rison’s shoes and belongings. Yeah, that’ll teach him! We know we make fun, but we really dig TLC. Their Atlanta-based southern-tinged rhythm and blues holds a special guilty-pleasure place in our rockin’ hearts. Even if Left-Eye went off the tracks every once in a while.

12.31: Okay, let’s go back in the Way Back Machine. We’re going back to the early ‘80s, a time before the fandangled interweb thingamajiggy, upon which you find yourself this very second, a time when, compared to now, the music business seemed small, almost quaint. It was before the rise of alternative rock, before the term “hip-hop” entered the lexicon and most people just called it “rap music,” before MySpace and YouTube, a time when you owned a record player, a boom box, or were still relegated to Super 8s (look it up). Michael Jackson made people take notice for his music not his life and Madonna struggled to get her nascent name on the tips of everyone’s mind. In 1983, a little band from Sheffield, England, came out with an album called Pyromania and the world exploded in awesomeness. Def Leppard blended the metal of the previous decade (Black Sabbath, Judas Priest) with the melodic sense of theater that came from glam rock (David Bowie, T.Rex). Def Leppard owned the term “hard rock” in the ‘80s. Pyromania launched them into the stratosphere of popularity, on the propulsion of songs like “Photograph” and “Die Hard The Hunter.” Def Leppard tied themselves to the mast of the then-new MTV, as it sailed the musical seas, and they never looked back. Okay, what does this have to do with this day in rock history? Well, kiddoes, on this day in 1984, Rick Allen, Leppard’s shirtless drummer extraordinaire, flipped his car going around a corner at very, very high speeds and, in the ensuing crash, lost his arm. Well, he didn’t actually lose it. It was found in the field by paramedics. Ewww. They even reattached it. Okay, that's cool. Then they sawed it off again due to infection. Double ewwww. Man, way to mess with a guy, doctor dudes. Kinda like the ol’ “I got yer nose” trick people play with kids, except they were doing it with a guy’s arm, and they weren’t pretending. Anyhoo, Allen didn’t give up the drumming gig and went on to help Def Leppard close out the ‘80s by drumming (with a special kit, of course) on Hysteria, the equally popular follow-up to Pyromania, which featured the best stripper song ever, “Pour Some Sugar On Me.” Man, we love that song. Thanks for not giving up on music, Rick.

01.01: Okay, we know this is Hard Rock, and we know all that name entails, but today is the anniversary of an immensely sad day in the history of music. This day in 1954, Hank Williams, Sr., one of the original outlaws of country music, overdosed in the back of a car on the way to his next gig. All of 29 (!?), it again hits home, to this day, that the candle that burns twice as bright, burns half as long. Like Sam Cooke and Otis Redding in the genre of soul or Jimi Hendrix and Kurth Cobain in the genre of rock, Williams’ shadow falls long and hard over the genre of country and western. If you don’t know about him or are one of those people that say you like all music, “except country,” then you need to do some research, pick up one of Hank Williams' albums or compilations, and listen. Listen to the lyrics, most of all. This was a man who lived a hard life, through the Great Depression and his own self-induced problems, who knew the pain that can encompass life, and came out of it with an amazing voice, an intense perspective, and something to say. His lyrics were dark and wouldn’t be out of place in a Trent Reznor song. Man, wouldn’t that be awesome. Nine Inch Nails covering “Cold Cold Heart.” That he died before his time doesn’t belie the fact that his straightforward, no bull way of singing and performing influenced many in country, rock, soul, and every genre (whether they know it or not). R.I.P., Hank. You died too soon, but we’re grateful for what you left behind.

01.02: On this day in 1978, Ozzy Osbourne rejoined Black Sabbath. Wait, what? When did Ozzy leave Black Sabbath? Anyone? Anyone? Bueller? We’ve got the answer to that conundrum, kids, so fear not. You’ll be sleeping well tonight in the knowledge that Ozzy had left the band in fall of ’77, tired of the whole band thing, tired of the routine. He just wanted his own routine. You know, sleeping late, drinking all day, getting high on goofballs all night. Ah, the life of a rock star. So, Ozzy took off for a couple of months, leaving the other guys in the studio without a singer. Bummer. What to do? Well, they hired another singer and got to work writing an album. Of course, when Ozzy showed back up on their doorstep a few months later, they got rid of the interim singer they’d hired in his stead and let Ozzie back in the band. Over the next five months, they recorded their seventh album, Never Say Die!, which was fairly well received in the U.K. and pretty much landed with a thud in the U.S. The band officially fired Ozzy a year later, after the poor album performance, the escalation of Ozzy’s every-increasing addictions, and a lazy world tour, during which a new band of hard rocking kids opening for them, somebody called Van Halen, showed up Sabbath up at every stop. Don’t worry about Ozzy or the guys, though. Ozzy went on to amazing solo success (thanks to his new guitar player, the incredible Randy Rhoads), and Sabbath took a new singer and a new direction when the Hobbit of heavy metal, Ronnie James Dio, joined the band and they put out the phenomonal Heaven and Hell. Ah, we love a happy ending.

The inimitable William Shatner officially kicked off the Celebrity Series at Hard Rock Cafe Maui this past weekend. Crooner Brian Evans, a singing staple in Las Vegas, "convinced" Shatner to accompany him to the Cafe for the event, but, in reality, it didn't really take much convincing. Come on. Maui? Do you really have to convince anyone to go to Maui? Nope, so Kirk/Hooker/Crane/Shatner jetted on over to the island with Mr. Evans, who, as always, provided his smooth take on the crooner standards.

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Mr. Shatner signed copies of his newly released autobiography Up Till Now, meeted and greeted, and, generally, rocked it out of the park for the lucky people who came to catch a glimpse of the Tribble-lovin', star trekkin', Heather Locklear-hangin' with, lawyerin' actor's actor. We love William Shatner and are ecstatic that he got to spend some time at one of our Cafes. We just wanted to thank Bill and Brian and all the fans who came out for the event and the staff at Hard Rock Cafe Maui for always being awesome. You all rock!

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The next show of the Celebrity Series hits on Friday, Jan. 15th, when Rosanne Barr drops by the Cafe for a full set, accompanied, as well, by Mr. Brian Evans. If you're gonna be anywhere near the Islands, you will not want to miss this show. Just ask William Shatner. Believe it.

On Friday, December 18th, 2009, Hard Rock Cafe Boston and Country 102.5 teamed up to host American Music Awards’ Breakout Artist Gloriana. Gloriana, made up of Tim Gossin, Mike Gossin, Rachel Reinert and Cheyenne Kimball, had the sold-out crowd going wild as they sang such hits as “Wild At Heart” and “How Far Do You Wanna Go?”. The band finished their second encore of the night with “Silent Night,” wishing everyone a great holiday season. After the performance, the band stuck around to take pictures and sign autographs for fans. Hard Rock Cafe Boston would like to thank Gloriana, Country 102.5, and the fans for another great night!

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Posted on December 23, 2009 | Tags:

Blues legends B.B. King and Buddy Guy are set to belt it out at Hard Rock Live at Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Hollywood, FL, on Tuesday, February 2 at 8 p.m. Tickets are on sale now.

For more than half a century, Riley B. King - better known as B.B. King - has defined the blues for a worldwide audience. Since he started recording in the 1940s, he has released over 50 albums, many of them time-honored classics. B.B. was inducted into the Blues Foundation Hall of Fame in 1984 and into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1987. He received NARAS' Lifetime Achievement Grammy Award in 1987, and has received honorary doctorates from Tougaloo (MS) College in 1973; Yale University in 1977; Berklee College of Music in 1982; Rhodes College of Memphis in 1990 and Mississippi Valley State University in 2002. In 1992, he received the National Award of Distinction from the University of Mississippi

Contemporary and fellow Rock and Roll Hall of Famer Buddy Guy was a chief guitar influence to rock titans like Hendrix, Clapton, Beck, and Vaughan, a pioneer of Chicago's fabled West Side sound and a living link to that city's halcyon days of electric blues. Guy has received five Grammy Awards, 23 W.C. Handy Blues Awards (the most any artist has received), Billboard’s Century Award for distinguished artistic achievement and the Presidential National Medal of Arts.

Tickets cost $90, $75, $60 & $45*; all seats are reserved and available at the Hard Rock Live Box Office, open Monday – Saturday from noon to 7pm and on Sunday – only open on event days at noon. Tickets also are available at all Ticketmaster outlets online at ticketmaster.com or charge by phone: 1-800-745-3000. Doors open one-hour prior to show start time.

*Additional fees may apply.

Posted on December 22, 2009 | Tags:
Select Hard Rock Cafe Locations Host GRAMMY Telecast Viewing Parties Hard Rock Offers Limited-Edition GRAMMY Pin to Benefit the GRAMMY Museum™

Orlando, Fla., December 23, 2009 – Hard Rock Cafe is proud to announce its partnership with The Recording Academy® in celebration of the 52nd Annual GRAMMY® Awards. Hard Rock is hosting the “Rock the GRAMMYs” sweepstakes via www.HardRock.com and will once again host the official GRAMMY Telecast Viewing Parties at select Hard Rock Cafe locations across the country.

Rock the GRAMMYs
Hard Rock is offering fans the chance to attend the 52nd Annual GRAMMY Awards with its “Rock the GRAMMYs” sweepstakes! Consumers can register for a chance to experience the thrill and glamour of Music’s Biggest Night®. Visit hardrock.com to enter to win the grand prize: a trip for two to the 52nd Annual GRAMMY Awards on January 31st, including round-trip airfare, accommodations, two tickets to the GRAMMY Awards and official GRAMMY Celebration® after party and spending cash! The sweepstakes is open for entry now through January 15, 2010.

Can’t Make it to the GRAMMYs?  Hard Rock Cafes Celebrate Music’s Biggest Night
This marks the fourth consecutive year that The Recording Academy has partnered with Hard Rock to host its exclusive GRAMMY Telecast Viewing Parties nationally for its membership. The partnership has been expanded this year to include public viewing parties at select Hard Rock Cafe locations. Hard Rock will provide food and beverage specials, music activities and more in celebration of the GRAMMY Awards.  Guests are encouraged to visit Hardrock.com’s GRAMMY page for participating locations and viewing locations. 

We are delighted to be a part of Music’s Biggest Night, an evening anticipated by artists and fans alike, and to continue our longstanding partnership with The Recording Academy,” said Hamish Dodds, president and CEO, Hard Rock International.  “The GRAMMY Awards celebrate outstanding achievements in the record industry, and Hard Rock is proud to participate in this event.

Rock Out for a Great Cause
In keeping with its longstanding philanthropic commitment, Hard Rock will also be offering limited-edition co-branded GRAMMY telecast pins with a portion of the proceeds benefiting the GRAMMY Museum, a non-profit organization focusing on educational and public programs featuring films, lectures and special projects. Pins will be available for purchase online at www.hardrock.com, www.grammystore.com and at the GRAMMY Museum store.

The 52nd Annual GRAMMY Awards will broadcast live on the CBS Television Network on Sunday, January 31, 2010 (8 p.m. to 11 p.m., ET/PT) from STAPLES Center in Los Angeles.

For further details, please visit www.hardrock.com.

About The Recording Academy
Established in 1957, The Recording Academy is an organization of musicians, producers, engineers and recording professionals that is dedicated to improving the cultural condition and quality of life for music and its makers. Internationally known for the GRAMMY Awards — the preeminent peer-recognized award for musical excellence and the most credible brand in music — The Recording Academy is responsible for groundbreaking professional development, cultural enrichment, advocacy, education and human services programs. The Academy continues to focus on its mission of recognizing musical excellence, advocating for the well-being of music makers and ensuring music remains an indelible part of our culture. For more information about The Academy, please visit www.grammy.com. For breaking news and exclusive content, join the organization's social networks as a Twitter follower at www.twitter.com/thegrammys, a Facebook fan at www.facebook.com/thegrammys, and a YouTube channel subscriber at www.youtube.com/thegrammys.

About Hard Rock International
With a total of 159 venues in 54 countries, including 129 cafes and 12 Hotels/Casinos, Hard Rock International is one of the world's most globally recognized brands. Beginning with an Eric Clapton guitar, Hard Rock owns the world's greatest collection of music memorabilia, which is displayed at its locations around the globe. Hard Rock is also known for its collectible fashion and music-related merchandise, Hard Rock Live performance venues and an award-winning website. In addition to the two flagship Seminole Hard Rock Hotels and Casinos in Tampa and Hollywood, Fla., Hard Rock Hotels/Casinos are located in Las Vegas, Biloxi, Orlando, Chicago, San Diego, Pattaya, Bali, Macau and Penang.  Additional hotel and casino projects have been announced in: Singapore and Punta Cana, scheduled to open in 2010; Panama, scheduled to open in 2012; and Atlanta, Hungary, Dubai and Abu Dhabi, scheduled to open in 2013.  Hard Rock International is owned by Seminole Hard Rock Entertainment, Inc. For further details on Hard Rock Hotels and Casinos, visit www.hardrockhotels.com. For more information on Hard Rock International, visit www.hardrock.com.

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