Quick Takes: Brian May, Anita Pointer, The Rolling Stones, Frampton, Sting, Lennon, McCartney, The Beach Boys, The Jackson 5, Lindsey Buckingham
Brian May, the co-founding guitarist of Queen, is officially a Knight. “Sir Brian” was singled out for King Charles‘ first New Year’s Honors List for, “services to music and to charity, after more than 50 years in one of Britain’s most popular rock bands.”
May posted a message online to his fans saying, “Thank you so much for all your messages of congratulations following the announcement of my knighthood. I’m very thrilled and very touched by the love that’s come from you, and the support. I will do my very best to be worthy.” (EW)
Anita Pointer of the Pointer Sisters died on December 31st, 2022 of undisclosed causes at age 74. Her sister Ruth, bothers Aaron and Fritz and granddaughter Roxie McKain Pointer issued a statement, which reads, “While we are deeply saddened by the loss of Anita, we are comforted in knowing she is now with her daughter Jada and her sisters June & Bonnie and at peace. She was the one that kept all of us close and together for so long.” (NPR)
The Pointer Sisters are best known for their Top 10 hits “He’s So Shy,” “Slow Hand,” “Jump (For My Love),” and “I’m So Excited.” The group originally included sister Bonnie, who went solo in 1978 and died in 2020 at age 69. Sister June Pointer died of cancer in 2006 at age 52.
The Rolling Stones posted a new message on Facebook leading fans to believe that the band will be returning to the road over the next 12 months. The Stones — who are still prepping their first new original album in 18 years — wrote, “Wishing you all a very happy New Year! See you in 2023!!”
Fresh off his farewell European gigs, Peter Frampton posted online he’ll be playing a free show in Nashville on January 22nd, with details to follow. So far, the unannounced date is Frampton’s only 2023 gig on the books.
Sting fans have a new incentive for signing up for the exclusive fan membership at Sting.com. A new, exclusive five-track digital EP, including songs recorded live at soundchecks along the “My Songs 2022” tour, is now available as the official fan club membership gift. The digital EP will be delivered to members on a USB flash drive designed especially for subscibers.
The songs are: “Sister Moon,” “You Still Touch Me,” “She’s Too Good For Me,” “Consider Me Gone,” and “I Burn For You.”
The final Billboard Hot 100 chart of 2023 (dated December 31st) saw John Lennon, Paul McCartney, the Beach Boys, and the Jackson 5 all returning to the Top 40. McCartney’s 1979 holiday classic “Wonderful Christmastime” re-entered at Number 32, Lennon and wife Yoko Ono‘s 1971 standard “Happy Xmas (War Is Over)” has finally earned Top 40 status by re-entering the chart at Number 38.
The Jackson 5’s 1970 perennial, “Santa Claus Is Comin’ To Town” re-entered the Top 40 at Number 33, with the Beach Boys’ 1963 yuletide favorite “Little Saint Nick” came back at Number 30, marking not only the band’s first Top 40 hit since 1988’s chart-topping “Kokomo” — but the group’s 35th career Top 40 hit. (Billboard)
In a year-end post on social media, Lindsey Buckingham confirmed a new solo album is in the works and took time out to salute his late-Fleetwood Mac bandmate, Christine McVie, posting: “Although 2022 was certainly a positive year in many respects, it was also a year of loss and disappointment. The sad passing of several of my longtime soulmates has been profoundly heartbreaking. And a largely successful year of touring was unexpectedly cut short at the end due to challenges with my health. The year’s polarity of positives and negatives has only strengthened my resolve to remain in the moment and to continue to move forward.”
Buckingham went on to write: “Happily, my health has returned, and I’ve begun work on a new album. Thanks so much to everyone for your support. I’m looking forward to 2023 and beyond!”