Shortly after the reported suicide in New York City of fashion designer L'Wren Scott, who was Mick Jagger's girlfriend of the past 13 years, The Rolling Stones announced that the band is postponing its imminent seven-date "14 ON FIRE Tour" of Australia and New Zealand.
The tour, their first Down Under since 2006, was to have kicked off March 19 in Perth and continued through April 5 in Auckland, New Zealand. The postponement is said to cost The Stones an estimated $1 million, but most of that will be made up when they play the replacement shows that have yet to be announced.
Shortly before the 49-year-old Scott's death, the band added two more European dates in June to go along with the three previously announced gigs, the Pinkpop Festival in Landgraaf, the Netherlands on June 7 and the TW Classic Festival in Werchter, Belgium on June 28.
When news of Scott's suicide hit, a spokesman for the group said that Jagger, 70, was "completely shocked and devastated."
"I am still struggling to understand how my lover and best friend could end her life in this tragic way," according to a statement the singer himself posted on his personal website. "We spent many wonderful years together and had made a great life for ourselves. She had great presence and her talent was much admired, not least by me. I have been touched by the tributes that people have paid to her, and also the personal messages of support that I have received. I will never forget her."
He immediately left Australia for Los Angeles, where he is with members of his family.
Echoing Jagger's sentiments, Vogue contributing editor Andre Leon Tally talked about Scott and Jagger's relationship on "Entertainment Tonight,"
"You would go to L'Wren Scott's shows and Mick always was there taking pictures, and Mick was very, very verbally supportive of her," Tally said. "L'Wren spoke to me about how much she loved the family side of her life with Mick and his children. She loved going away with them, and I think she loved the balance that it gave her in this very tough and ruthless, heavily pressurized world of fashion."
KEITH RICHARDS TO WRITE CHILDREN'S BOOK
Publishing his best-selling memoir, "Life," a couple years ago may have given Rolling Stones guitarist Keith Richards the writing bug. The 70-year-old father of five's first children's book will be published Sept. 9 by Little, Brown Books for Young Readers.
"Gus & Me: The Story of My Granddad and My First Guitar," is based on a tale he related in "Life" about the influence Keith's grandfather had on him as a youngster. His daughter, Theodora Richards, is providing the illustrations for the book.
"I have just become a grandfather for the fifth time, so I know what I'm talking about," Richards said. "The bond, the special bond, between kids and grandparents is unique and should be treasured. May I be as great a grandfather as Gus was to me."
OBITS: STOOGES DRIMMER SCOTT AHETON, AND SONGWRITER PETER CALLANDER
Scott Asheton, powerhouse drummer for pioneering punk outfit The Stooges, fronted by Iggy Pop, died at 64 in the band's hometown of Ann Arbor, Mich., reports the New York Times. His daughter said he suffered a heart attack. The band formed in Ann Arbor in 1967 and included his older brother, guitarist Ron Asheton, who died in 2009 at 60.
Like their contemporaries, The Velvet Underground, The Stooges were never big record sellers. However, with songs like 1969's "I Want to be Your Dog" and "Raw Power" in 1973, the band was a major influence on countless punk-based artists that followed, including The Sex Pistols, The Red Hot Chili Peppers and Nirvana's Kurt Cobain.
The Stooges recorded three albums, "The Stooges" in 1969, "Full House" in 1970 and "Raw Power" in 1973 before breaking up in 1974 because of Pop's out-of-control heroin addiction. The years passed, Pop cleaned up and scored a few solo hits like "Lust for Life" before The Stooges finally reunited nearly three decades later in 2003. The band remained active until Scott Asheton's death. They undertook numerous tours and recorded two additional studio albums. In 2010, The Stooges were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.
Pop released a statement saying, in part, "Scott was a great artist. I've never heard anyone play the drums with more meaning than Scott Asheton. He was like my brother. He and Ron have left a huge legacy to the world."
English songwriter Paul Callander died in England at 74, according to the New York Times. His wife said the cause was a heart attack. Callander first hit the British charts in 1963 when Adam Faith took his song, "Walkin' Tall" to No. 23. He and his songwriting partner Mitch Murray later penned hits in the U.K. for Manfred Mann, Cliff Richard and The Tremeloes.
He and Murray scored their first American hit in 1967 when "The Ballad of Bonnie and Clyde" reached No. 7. He continued to write hits into the 1970s with Paper Lace's lone hit, "The Night Chicago Died," Bo Donaldson and The Heywood's "Billy Don't Be A Hero," Vanity Fair's "Hitchin' a Ride" and a million-selling smash for Wayne Newton in 1972, "Daddy Don't You Walk so Fast." In 2005, Abba's Agnetha Faltskog had a hit with a remake of his song that was a British hit in 1966 for Cilla Black, "A Fool Am I."
Among the recently released albums, digital reissues, MP3 downloads and deluxe box sets are a rerelease of The Everly Brothers' second LP, "Songs Our Daddy Taught Us," from 1958, that Green Day leader Billie Joe Armstrong and Norah Jones recorded and released late last year as "Foreverly" and included Gene Autry's "That Silver Haired Daddy of Mine" and Tex Ritter's "Long Time Gone"; and "Sex and Love (Deluxe)," the 10th studio album from Spanish singer-songwriter Enrique Iglesias, who has sold more than 40 million albums, contains 16 songs, including a duet with Kylie Minogue on his composition, "Beautiful."
The 14-track "Symphonica" is George Michael's first album in a decade and mostly features live songs from his 2011-2012 Symphonica Tour, including such Big Band-era standards Walter Donaldson and Gus Kahn's "My Baby Just Cares for Me" from the 1930 Eddie Canter musical-comedy, "Whoopee," "Brother, Can You Spare a Dime," that were 30's hits for both Bing Crosby and Rudy Vallee, and Victor Schertzinger and Johnny Mercer's "I Remember You" from the 1942 Dorothy Lamour musical, "The Fleet's In"; and a 55-track, 40th anniversary 2-CD reissue of "Elvis Live On Stage In Memphis (Legacy Edition)" from 1974 that records his first concerts there since 1961 and includes 18 songs not featured on the original album, including his takes on Peggy Lee's "Fever" and James Taylor's "Steamroller Blues" and five songs that were recorded at RCA Studio in Hollywood that year but never released.
"Kiss Me Once' is Australian superstar Kylie Minogue's first studio album in four years; "Me" is country songstress Jo Dee Messina's first album in nine years; the 25-song "The Muppets Most Wanted" soundtrack sees the beloved puppets, includes The Muppets joined by 87-year-old Tony Bennett, and Lady Gaga on "We're Doing a Sequel" and with Josh Groban n "Together Again" and Kermit the Frog with Tina Fey and actors Danny Trejo and Ray Liotta on "The Casa Grande"; "Live in Ireland" sees 74-year-old folk legend Judy Collins treating the locals to such classic Irish tunes as "Wild Mountain Thyme" that both she and her pals The Byrds originally recorded in 1965, "Innisfree" from the 1951 John Wayne-Maureen O'Hara classic, "The Quiet Man," and of course, her concert closer, "Danny Boy."
"Blue Horizon" is British rock band Wishbone Ash's 25th album since 1970; "Rock and Roll Blues" is the second solo album from Luther Dickinson, former Black Crowes guitarist and current lead guitarist-singer for the North Mississippi Allstars; "The Nocturne Diaries" are 12-songs from Texas folkie Eliza Gilkyson whose debut LP, "Eliza '69" came out 45 years ago; "The Boston Record" was recorded live last summer by then-71-year-old English progressive-fusion guitar god John McLaughlin and The 4th Dimension and includes his 1971 Mahavishnu Orchestra song, "You Know You Know"; and "Good Road to Follow," a 3-CD set from Philly soulster John Oates, half of you-know-who, is joined by Vince Gill on "Don't Cross me Wrong."
Steve Smith writes a new Classic Pop, Rock and Country Music News column every week. Contact him by email at Classicpopmusicnews@gmail.com.