Carmen Vandenberg is the guitarist of London based band Bones and along with vocalist Rosie Bones has just collaborated with Jeff Beck and co-written his new album ‘Loudhailer’. They were on tour throughout the summer with Jeff and Buddy Guy and will be heading out with Jeff again in October. Carmen has also worked with Roger Taylor, Dave Stewart, Roger Mayer and Guy Chambers. Carmen came to our London office to try a range of amps and pedals for her upcoming tour and studio work and will be using a HT Club 50 rig. For more information on Bones visit http://www.bonesbandbones.com
Riot Fest 2016
This weekend Riot Fest takes place in Chicago, Illinois. Riot Fest is a multi-day music festival specialising in punk, rock, alternative, metal, and hip-hop. Founded in 2005 in Chicago, it has now expanded to include stops in Denver and Toronto. This years lineup includes The Specials with guitarist Steve Cradock using a pair of Artisan 30’s and Morrisey’s guitarist Boz Boorer also using an Artisan 30 combo. Other Blackstar endorsees over the weekend include Bob Mould using an Artisan 100 rig and The Descendants using a HT Stage 100 rig. For the full lineup and more information on Riot Fest visit http://riotfest.org
Wednesday 13 and One Eyed Doll Tour
Wednesday 13 and One Eyed Doll are currently on tour playing thirty-six shows across the US and Canada until the end of October. Both guitarist Jack Tankersley from Wednesday 13 and Kimberley Freeman from One Eyed Doll are Blackstar endorsees using a Series One 104EL34 and a HT Metal 100 rig respectively. Wednesday 13 will be in the UK for two special Halloween shows at the Garage in London on the 28th and 29th October with the second night having already having sold out. For more information on the tour visit http://officialwednesday13.com
Young Guns - London Shows
The London-based Young Guns have emerged as one of the UK’s most electrifying bands, garnering heavy radio play and UK chart success. The band is back in the UK this week for a couple of London shows at The Borderline and The Hippodrome before playing Butserfest in Petersfield at the weekend. The band return to the US next week to play fifteen shows across the states before heading back home in October to tour the UK and Europe in support of Billy Talent. Both guitarist, Fraser and John Taylor are long term Blackstar endorsees and both use Series One rigs. Young Guns new album ‘Echoes’ is released on the 16th September and is available for pre-order now. For more information visit http://www.weareyoungguns.com
Operation Domination Tour
Angel Vivaldi and Gus G. are currently on a US tour called the 'Operation Domination Tour'. They have various dates around the US that you can check them out at. For full details and to get your hands on tickets, go to the following site: http://www.bandsintown.com/gusg
Mark King - Level 42
The longtime frontman for the British funk-pop group Level 42, Mark King was a onetime drummer but upon co-founding Level 42 in 1980 he moved to the bass, honing a distinctive thumb-slapping technique which became an integral element of the group’s sound. From their self-titled 1981 debut onward the quartet enjoyed considerable success at home, and in 1984 King took time out to record his debut solo album, Influences. After Level 42's international popularity peaked in 1986 with the hit "Something About You," the band released a series of subsequent LPs before disbanding in late 1994, having spent 177 weeks on the British singles chart and 228 weeks on the album chart. Due to popular demand the band reformed in 2004 and continue to tour the world today. Mark is now using a Blackstar Fly3 Bass and had this to say about the amp, "What a fantastic little amp!!! This sucker is going straight in with the luggage. A must have for any bassist who wants to keep his chops together when away from home”.
Neil Hannon - The Divine Comedy
After six long years, one of the most unique and acclaimed songwriters in pop is back doing what he does best. Neil Hannon and The Devine Comedy are set to release their eleventh studio album this September and will embark on an extensive tour of the UK and Europe beginning in October and keeping the band busy well into the new year. Neil is using an Artist 30 combo and we are delighted to welcome him to the Blackstar family. For more information on The Divine Comedy’s new album and upcoming tour visit http://thedivinecomedy.com
L7 European Tour
L7 first formed in LA back in 1985 when a pair of guitarist/singers, Suzi Gardner and Donita Sparks, decided to start a band. Over the next few years the group extended its lineup and in 1988 L7 were signed by the Epitaph label, which issued their self-titled debut the same year and the group spent the better part of the next few years touring the world. Their 1992 album 'Bricks are Heavy’, produced by Butch Vig, featured in Rolling Stone’s May 1999 list of ‘Essential Recordings of the 1990s’, and is widely considered their classic. The band reformed in 2015 and are just about to embark on a European tour playing across seven countries in just over two weeks and culminating in a show at The Forum in London. Both guitarist Donita and Suzi will be using Blackstar Series One 50 and HT Club 50 rigs. For more information on L7 and to see their tour dates visit l7theband.com
Sign up for Guitars on the Beach
In just over two weeks, on September the 3rd and 4th, this years Guitars On The Beach will take place at the Mark Hix Food Rocks Festival, Lyme Regis and will see the record bid for the most guitarist playing one song together. Last year around 3000 guitarist took part in the event held on Lyme Regis beach. The song this year will be Rave On and Guitars On The Beach 2016 is once again gearing up to be one of the UK’s biggest unique live event of the year. There will be bands playing on both days with the records bid at 5pm on Saturday the 3rd. Blackstar will be providing the backline, giving guitar tutorials and raffling our Fly 3 amps throughout the weekend. So why not come and join in to help us set a new UK record and try and beat the World Record! For more information, guitar tuition and to join Britain’s biggest band, visit www.facebook.com/guitarsonthebeach and sign up free at www.guitarsonthebeach.com
Bloodstock festival took place this weekend in Derbyshire. Established in 2001, Bloodstock has progressed over the years from its humble beginnings as a one day event to a three day full on metal extravaganza. Blackstar artists Behemoth, Evil Scarecrow and Anti-clone all performed and Blackstar provided equipment for all of the stages at the festival. This year Blackstar also teamed up with Eyesore Merch and had a booth on site selling official merchandise and giving the festival goers a chance to try out our amps. For more information on the festival and for your chance to get tickets for next years event visit http://www.bloodstock.uk.com
Latitude Festival 2016
This weekend Latitude Festival takes place in Henham Park in Suffolk. The festival first began in 2006 and has since grown into one of the UK’s largest and most diverse festivals. This year Blackstar is proudly supplying amps for six of the stages including the BBC 6 Music stage, the Sunrise Arena and the Lake Stage. Blackstar artist performing this year include headliners The Maccabees, Otherkin, Isaac Gracie, and Money. For more information on the festival visit http://www.latitudefestival.com
Everything Everything at Somerset House
Last week the Summer Series at Somerset House began and Blackstar artists Everything Everthing will be performing a headline show on the 11th. Last year they returned with their highly-anticipated third album Get To Heaven which gate-crashed the Top 10 of the album charts and included the unforgettable Regret. The album garnered the finest critical reception of their career to date and established them as one of the most progressive, inventive and exciting bands in British music. On the 12th Samm Henshaw joins the Summer Series fresh off the back of his headline UK tour. A talent way beyond his years, Samm and his band The Sound Experiment have been Blackstar endorsees from the very beginning of their exciting career. For more information on the Summer Series visit https://amexinvites.nme.com
New Distributor Partnership
Blackstar are proud to announce their new distribution partnership with Grupo Adagio in Italy, Spain and Portugal.
Grupo Adagio is a cutting edge MI distribution organisation, representing global brands with a comprehensive reach across the region and access to commercial retail channels. An arena where Blackstar products such as ID:CORE BEAM, FLY and TONE:LINK will flourish. Blackstar’s Export Sales Manager Alex D’Arcy explains, “Grupo Adagio are a dynamic company looking to the future and recognising the rapid evolution taking place in European MI distribution. Blackstar are proud to align their vision for innovation and business expansion in Italy, Spain and Portugal with Adagio’s professional and progressive structure.” He also comments: “Both companies recognise the importance of ensuring business security through economy of scale and market reach, while continuing a core mission to inspire new consumers into the MI market with
product visibility, exciting technology and an inclusive marketing message.”
On the collaboration, Adagio’s CEO Daniel Alorda-Derkson comments, “Blackstar is a fantastic brand, but what is extraordinary are the people behind it. We are extremely honoured to be a part of their dream.” As a direct implication of Grupo Adagio’s organisational scale and brand portfolio, dealers should anticipate improved service, marketing support and value added packages ensuring maximum benefit as a Blackstar dealer.
Nexus ICA Quadruple World Record Attempt
On June 18th Nexus Institute of Creative Arts undertook a world record attempt for endurance playing with an all-encompassing collective of guitar players, bass players, keys players, drummers and vocalists each performing for impressive durations of 50 hours and upwards. This remarkable feat was supported by Blackstar Amplification, supplying all tonal needs in the form of ID:Core Stereo amplifiers for the guitarists and the all-new FLY 3 Bass mini amps for the bassists in order to complete the world record attempt.
The music marathon was a fantastic success having beaten all current records simultaneously for endurance playing on guitar, bass, keys and vocals; footage of the event can be viewed here www.youtube.com/watch?v=n5sLPdYi_ek
Rock Werchter 2016
Rock Werchter festival in Belgium started in 1974 as a one-day event and over the years has evolved to become one of Belgium’s largest music festivals. It is now a four day event and hosts around 150,000 music fans. There are plenty of Blackstar artists performing this year across the three stages including Ellie Goulding, Richard Hawley, Iggy Pop, Gutterdammerung and Samm Henshaw. For more information on the festival and for your chance to watch live feeds of all the Blackstar artists as they perform visit http://www.rockwerchter.be/en