‘The Snake King’

Rick Springfield’s upcoming CD “The Snake King” is starting to get some press – with an article that came out yesterday on Bristol Herald Courier in advance of a concert this weekend.

The article had this quote: “I have a new CD coming out called ‘The Snake King’ that has the potential to put the final nail in the old teenybopper coffin,” said Springfield.

Unfortunately the article cut off in the middle of a sentence, so there wasn’t any clear explanation of why this might be (Update: The missing text is added, but no more info on the new CD) . For RS fans who have listened to “Shock/Denial/Anger/Acceptance” or read “Late, Late at Night,” that shiny, happy teenybopper image dissolved long ago. (For me it was in 2014 when I “rediscovered” Rick Springfield although SDAA came out in 2004 and his autobiography in 2010.)

He’s also alluded to the idea that even his current fans might not like it because it’s so drastically different than what he’s done in the past. But last year’s “Rocket Science,” had a country feel and now it’s one of my favorite CDs, although country is a genre I was never particularly fond of. (Lately I have been binge-watching “Nashville,” a show I watched a few episodes of a couple years ago in preparation for the release of “Rocket Science.” RS connection: Rascal Flatt’s Jay DeMarcus – who co-wrote “Down” with RS – was on an episode I recently watched, writing a song with one of the characters.)

Back in 2015, RS was already performing some of his “Rocket Science” songs in concert before the 2016 release of the CD (“Light this Party Up” and “Down”), so maybe we’ll hear a song or two at an upcoming concert (and hopefully somebody will share the video online). He usually includes at least one blues song in his set list at concerts, which showcases his awesome guitar skills so I’m looking forward to hearing his original blues songs.

I’m not sure how accurately “Nashville” depicts the music business scene, but one clear message I’ve gotten is that the artists don’t always get to record the songs they want to perform because once they sign with a label, they often have to do what their record label dictates and not what they want to do.  (It’s made me appreciate that I have full creative control of my own songs, even though nobody besides my immediate family actually hears them.)

So as a longtime RS fan, I’m thrilled that he’s making new music and that his repertoire of songs covers so many different styles.

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RV Catification

It’s been a little over a year since Rick Springfield’s guitar tech Ruben Velasco died of cancer at age 41 and a project in honor of his love for cats is under way in his memory: The R.V. RV Cat Mobile.

This RV – a play on his initials and actually an RV – will  be used to transport cats (and dogs) during emergencies, for adoptions and to schools for educational programs. According to the Indigogo site describing the project, the RV was purchased through Rick Springfield’s Ruben Velasco Legacy Fund – the one created last year that offered a backstage experience that included being an honorary guitar tech backstage at RS shows last summer.  According to rickspringfield.com, the fund collected $47,000 in donations from RS fans and minus the cost of marketing and the cost of the guitars and other goods provided to those that purchased the backstage experience, a total of  $35,576 was donated to the Fur & Feather Animal Sanctuary, the organization that purchased the RV and plans to modify it for this special use.

Because the Sanctuary is in a level-4 Fire Zone, the modified RV will be able to be used as part of an evacuation plan – providing a safe rescue vehicle for the cats, a refrigerator for their medications and even separate quarters for cats with leukemia (The Sanctuary houses many special needs cats.)

The campaign goal is $25,000 and when people contribute to the fund, they qualify for special gifts. The Rick Springfield-related ones are signed Rick Springfield photos and “Still Rockin for Ruben” T-shirts. For the full list of prizes and more information about the RV and the Sanctuary, visit the Indigogo site: The Sanctuary Cats R.V.- RV Needs CATification!