10.31: Robert Matthew Van Winkle joined us this day in 1968. Wait, what? You've never heard of Robert Matthew Van Winkle? Well, when we tell you the name that most of us know him by, you'll wish we hadn't. Still want to know? Vanilla Ice. There, we said it. Vanilla Ice. Man, we feel so dirty. The simple fact that more people know "Ice Ice Baby" than know the immaculate, incredible, indelible Queen and David Bowie collaboration of "Under Pressure" (from whence Ice's "song" sampled its amazing riffs and beats) makes us cringe, cry, and scream in anger, all at the same time. Ice's thankfully short-lived chart and cultural popularity will forever be one of those things (like "Disco Duck" and Ashley Simpson and '80s hairstyles) that everyone collectively looks back on and hates themselves for having taken part in, if only by way of knowing what and who they are.
Little Steven Van Zandt, longtime friend of Hard Rock and guitar player for some guy from New Jersey, recently took over Hard Rock Cafe New York to tape the 500th episode of his Underground Garage radio show. If you haven't heard the show, you should tune in ASAP. What's it about you ask? From the website: "Each week Little Steven takes audiences on a two hour trip down the path of what was cool in all six decades of Rock and Roll, a celebration of Pop culture, and features the best emerging new bands worldwide." Yes, it's a great show. If there's isn't a radio station in your area that broadcasts the show, you can listen to archived shows online. Do it.
The Hard Rock Cafe in Honolulu celebrated Pinktober in style, in support of the Kapi'olani Center. For more information click here. TAKE TIME TO BE KIND.
10.24: On this day in 1978, Keith Richards was found guilty of drug possession when the Royal Canadian Mounted Police found heroin and cocaine on his person. Richards received a suspended sentence and was ordered to play a benefit concert for the blind in Oshawa, Ontario. Because, ya know, that's an appropriate sentence for a drug-addled musician, and people who are blind love Keith, too, or something like that. We don't really understand this suspended sentence. We're just amazed that Keith got caught with 22 grams of heroin and pretty much just had to play a concert as punishment. So, remember, if you get caught with 22 grams of heroin in Canada in 1978, all you'll be punished with is having to do what you do every day. Party time!
A very special group of Hard Rock "Ambassadors" visited the Vicente Ferrer Foundation in Anantanpur, India to see the new housing colony, built with fundraising from Hard Rock. Through a passionate commitment and a wide range of activates and events, Hard Rockers have fostered this relationship over the years to realize this special moment to make this become a reality. TAKE TIME TO BE KIND.
Orlando, Fla. (October 20, 2011) – Having recently teamed on Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Punta Cana, Hard Rock International today announced an agreement with Palace Resorts LLC to transform Palace Resorts properties in Cancun, Puerto Vallarta and Riviera Maya into Hard Rock Hotels. These will be “ultimate all-inclusive” properties that bring the acclaimed Hard Rock experience to these popular Mexican tourist destinations.
Hard Rock Cafe Atlantic City, located in the Taj Mahal Casino, will be the site of Gilda Rocks On to be held on Thursday, November 17 from 6 to 10 PM.
“It is going to be an amazing night. The Cafe is pulling out all the stops to make sure our guests have a great time. The Event Committee has worked very hard on the auction. We are so happy to be able to put this evening together to help Gilda’s Club South Jersey,” said Isabel Allen, a member of the GCSJ Board of Directors who is co-chairing the event with her husband, Jim, CEO Seminole Gaming and Chairman of Hard Rock International. The couple has set a lofty $100,000 fundraising goal.
10.17: Ready or not, on this day in 1972, Wyclef Jean was born. The man with the plan, Wyclef's musical and production skills anchored his band The Fugees and helped them score one of the best-selling hip-hop albums in history, appropriately titled The Score. Wyclef went on to much solo success after the dissolution of the band, but as far as we're concerned, The Score is the one that will be remembered. That album still gives us goose bumps today when we sit down for a listen. For that, we say, "Happy Birthday, Wyclef!"
10.18:"Hail! Hail! Rock 'N' Roll!" Man, what an amazing birthday we have for you today. The one and only Chuck Berry joined us on this day, all the way back in 1926. He is one of the originals, probably the first to put all of the pieces together and make sweet, sweet rock 'n' roll. Bringing together boogie woogie, rockabilly, gospel, jazz, country, and blues, Chuck exploded onto the scene in 1955 with "Maybellene." From "Johnny B. Goode" to "No Particular Place To Go," Mr. Charles Edward Anderson Berry is a true originator, influencing everyone from Keith Richards to Jerry Garcia, Angus Young to Pete Townsend. And ya know what? He's still rocking out today. The man is 85 and still playing those licks like it's 1955!
The Local Ambassadors from the Hard Rock Cafe Phuket continued their community outreach by supporting a wide range of projects in Phuket, Thailand. The team went to visit the “Phuket Shelter for Children and Families” for the fifth in our “Ambassador Program” series. They donated essential items such as clothes, books, children’s sundries, women’s sundries, mattresses, pillows, etc. This project was lead by “khun Eak” Hard Rock Chef De Partie and Philanthropy Ambassador. Khun Eak and the hard rock team went to “Phuket Shelter for Children and Families” to meet the children, the mothers and babies. The Phuket Shelter for Children and Families is an organization of Bureau of Woman and Child Anti- Trafficking under by The Ministry of Social Development and Human Security. They help and protect the orphans, homeless children, beggars, lost children, handicapped children, abused children and women, unwillingly pregnant women, victim of human trafficking, Violence in families, Children and women sex workers, and many more. The Phuket Shelter for Children and Families rehabilitates by assisting them in solving their physical and mental health problems. TAKE TIME TO BE KIND.
Congratulations to the National Dance Institute on it's new location in Harlem, and for their continued work inspiring children through the arts. National Dance Institute (NDI) is a non-profit arts education organization founded in 1976 by ballet star Jacques d'Amboise. Through in-school partnerships, workshops, and public performances, NDI uses dance as a catalyst to engage children and motivate them towards excellence. For more on NDI and how you can help click here. To read the NY Times article click here. ALL IS ONE.