New Journey Album and Tour Coming This Summer!

There’s very exciting news for fellow Journey fans. They are releasing a new album – Eclipse – on May 24 in the U.S. and Canada. Like their last album, Revelation, it will be sold exclusively at WalMart stores. And they will be touring with two other groups that I love – Foreigner and Night Ranger! Here is the press release from Journey:

JOURNEY, one of the most popular American rock bands of all time, is gearing up to unleash their latest album of brand new material, Eclipse. The album will be released in the U.S. and Canada on May 24 exclusively at Walmart and beginning June 3 in Europe on Frontiers Records. To follow the release of Eclipse, Journey will launch the “Eclipse Tour” with Foreigner, and special guest Night Ranger, beginning July 21 at Rio Tinto Stadium in Salt Lake City, UT. Fans can expect to hear new songs from Eclipse as well as classics such as Don’t Stop Believin’, Any Way You Want It, Faithfully, Lights, Separate Ways, Wheel In The Sky, and many more. The “Eclipse Tour” dates are listed below.
“I’m in love with this record, which I haven’t said about one of our albums for a long time,” says founding member and lead guitarist, Neal Schon. “It’s a rock record and it sounds amazing.” Commenting on the upcoming tour, Schon continued, “We’ve got a lot of hits to play and there’s plenty of time to do some new stuff too, so we’re gonna mix it up. We haven’t toured with Foreigner for over 10 years, so we’re really looking forward to this run.”
Tickets for “The Eclipse Tour” go on sale beginning Friday March 11, at all the usual online, phone and physical retail outlets, including select Walmart Ticketmaster locations across the country. Check for complete ticket onsale information.
Journey has once again teamed up with to offer their fans a variety of VIP ticket packages. For more details go to
In an interview with the Las Vegas Review-Journal, keyboardist Jonathan Cain recently described Eclipse as “a concept record with some spiritual themes to it…pretty tough, hard-hitting stuff.” Jonathan continued, “We just felt like it was time to send a message to the world about how we feel about life in general.”
Journey toured the world for two years in support of their 2008 release, Revelation. More than a million fans attended the shows, and welcomed new lead singer Arnel Pineda. Completing the Journey lineup is Schon (guitars, backing vocals), Cain (keyboards, backing vocals), Ross Valory (bass, backing vocals) and Deen Castronovo (drums, percussion, backing vocals). Revelation marked the band’s biggest first week’s sales in more than a decade, debuting at #5 on the Billboard 200 in June 2008 and taking the top spot on the Independent Albums chart. Revelation earned the band their 11th Platinum album certification to date, leading The New York Times to declare that “the band…feels alive.”
Since its formation in 1973, Journey has earned 19 Top 40 singles and 25 gold and platinum albums. The band’s Greatest Hits album is certified 15 times platinum, bringing Journey into the elite club of Diamond-certified album holders. The group also received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame in 2005.
For more information, visit

Tour Dates:

* July 21: Salt Lake City, UT (Rio Tinto Stadium)
* July 23: Irvine, CA (Verizon Wireless Amphitheater)
* July 24: Phoenix, AZ (Desert Sky Pavilion)
* July 27: Maryland Heights, MO (Verizon Wireless Amphitheater)
* July 30: Tinley Park, IL (First Midwest Bank Amphitheatre)
* July 31: Clarkston, MI (DTE Energy Music Theatre)
* August 02: Cuyahoga Falls, OH (Blossom Music Center)
* August 03: Cincinnati, OH (Riverbend Music Center)
* August 05: Columbus, OH (Crew Stadium, Ohio State Fair)
* August 06: Noblesville, IN (Verizon Wireless Music Center)
* August 10: Darien Center, NY (Darien Lake Performing Arts Center)
* August 13: Camden, NJ (Susquehanna Bank Center)
* August 16: Hartford, CT (Comcast Theatre)
* August 17: Wantagh, NY (Nikon at Jones Beach Theater)
* August 19: Virginia Beach, VA (Virginia Beach Amphitheater)
* August 20: Raleigh, NC (Time Warner Cable Music Pavilion at Walnut Creek)
* August 21: Charlotte, NC (Verizon Wireless Amphitheatre Charlotte)
* August 24: Holmdel, NJ (PNC Bank Arts Center)
* August 27: Burgettstown, PA (First Niagara Pavilion)
* August 30: Syracuse, NY (New York State Fair)
* August 31: Allentown, PA (The Great Allentown Fair)
* September 02: Saratoga Springs, NY (Saratoga Performing Arts Center*)
* September 10: New Orleans, LA (New Orleans Arena)
* September 16: Atlanta, GA (Aaron’s Amphitheatre at Lakewood)
* September 17: Tampa, FL (1-800 Ask-Gary Amphitheatre)
* September 18: West Palm Beach, FL (Cruzan Amphitheatre)
* September 24: Dallas, TX (Gexa Energy Pavilion)
* September 25: The Woodlands, TX (Cynthia Woods Mitchell Pavilion)
* September 28: Kansas City, MO (Starlight Theatre)
* October 01: Englewood, CO (Comfort Dental Amphitheatre)
* October 07: Chula Vista, CA (Cricket Wireless Amphitheatre)
* October 14: Wheatland, CA (Sleep Train Amphitheatre)
* October 15: Mountain View, CA (Shoreline Amphitheatre)
* October 19: Portland, OR (Rose Garden Arena)
* October 21: Seattle, WA (KeyArena

Daily Trivia – 3/10/11

Question: Can you name the two 1987 movies that starred future governors Arnold Schwarzenegger and Jesse Ventura?

Last Question: On Valerie, who played the family matriarch after actress Valerie Harper left the show?

Answer: Sandy Duncan

Valerie first aired in March of 1986, and starred Valerie Harper as Valerie Hogan, a mother trying to juggle both her career and the raising of her three sons while her husband, an airline pilot, was seldom around. For the first two seasons, the show was called Valerie. By the end of the second season, the show was a big hit. The producers then decided that they wanted to focus more attention on the young cast members – fraternal twin sons Willie (Danny Ponce) and Mark (Jeremy Licht), and especially David (Jason Bateman). Bateman was becoming a teen heartthrob.

Previously, when Valerie Harper and her boyfriend Tony Cacciotti had control of the show, it had “smart realistic humor”. Now the new producers wanted to have more family-oriented slapstick stories. Harper and Cacciotti disagreed with this decision, and they were fighting during the 1987 hiatus. Harper was dismissed and her character was written out of the show as having died in a car accident. I guess they really didn’t want her back! At least she didn’t go on any rants that included “Winning!” and “Tiger blood”. But, Harper did take the producers to court for breach of contract. In late summer 1988, Harper won the case, and she was awarded $1.4 million in damages.

When the 1987 – 1988 season premiere aired, the show was retitled Valerie’s Family: The Hogans. The time-line for this third season began 6 month’s after Valerie’s death. NBC’s decision to continue the series without Valerie Harper was controversial at the time. But the show survived and continued on for three more years. Taking Harper’s place in the household was Sandy Duncan as Michael’s sister, Sandy, who had moved in with her brother to help the family in their time of loss. She took a job as a guidance counselor at the high school the boys attended following her recent divorce. Next-door neighbor, Mrs. Poole (Edie McClurg) became a more regular character, and was a major scene-stealer.

At the end of the third season, Harper’s lawsuit continued, and the network dropped Valerie’s name from the title completely. The show was retitled The Hogan Family.

In 1990, NBC canceled the series due to declining ratings. However, CBS picked up the series. That December, CBS also canceled the series due to dismal ratings. There were 4 unaired episodes that were filmed at that point. CBS aired the final episodes in July of 1991.

The theme song, “Together Through the Years,” was performed by Roberta Flack and composed by Charles Fox. The lyrics were written by Stephen Geyer.

Daily Trivia – 3/9/11

Question: On Valerie, who played the family matriarch after actress Valerie Harper left the show?

Last Question: What East German figure skater beat world champion Rosalynn Sumners to win gold in the 1984 Olympic Games?

Answer: Katarina Witt

Katarina Witt won two Olympic gold medals for East Germany, first in the 1984 Sarajevo Olympics and the second in 1988 at the Calgary Olympics. She narrowly won the 1984 Olympic title over the favored contender, reigning World champion Rosalynn Sumners of the United States. Witt and Sumners held the top two spots heading into the Olympic free skate, which were worth 50% of the total score. Witt landed three triple jumps in her free skate program, and the judges left room for Sumners to win the event, but Sumners scaled back two of her jumps, and Witt won the long program by one tenth of a point on one judge’s scorecard.

After the 1988 Olympics, Witt became a professional skater. In 1995, she was inducted into the World Figure Skating Hall of Fame. In December 1998, Witt posed nude for Playboy magazine. The issue in which these photos were published was the second ever sold-out issue of the magazine. (The first sold-out issue was the inaugural one including photos of Marilyn Monroe.)

Currently, Witt is the bid head for Munich’s bid to host the Winter Olympics in 2018.

Here is Katarina’s 1984 Olympic performance:

And here is her 1988 performance:

Daily Trivia – 3/8/11

Question: What East German figure skater beat world champion Rosalynn Sumners to win gold in the 1984 Olympic Games?

Last Question: In 1986, who became the first female president of the Philippines?

Answer: Corazon Aquino

In 1986 Corazon Aquino ran against the unpopular Ferdinand Marcos in the Philippine presidential election.

In the last week of November 1985, Marcos surprised the nation by announcing on American television that he will hold a snap presidential election in February 1986, in order to dispel and remove doubts against his regime’s legitimacy and authority.

Aquino, whose husband (Ninoy Aquino) was a popular senator that was assassinated in 1983, was reluctant to run. However, one million signatures urging her to run for president were presented to her. Eventually, she decided to run.

Marcos did not help himself when he said that Corazon that she was “just a woman” whose place was in the bedroom. She responded by saying “may the better woman win in this election.”
The election was held on February 7, 1986 and was marred by massive electoral fraud, violence, and intimidation. There may have been election rigging, and the allies of the ruling party declared Marcos the winner. In protest to the declaration of the Philippine parliament, Aquino called for a rally dubbed “Tagumpay ng Bayan” (People’s Victory Rally) the following day, during which she claimed that she was the real winner in the election and urged Filipinos to boycott the products and services by companies controlled or owned by Marcos’ cronies.

After weeks of tension following the disputed outcome of the snap election, disgruntled and reformist military officers, led by then Defense Minister Juan Ponce Enrile and General Fidel V. Ramos, surprised the entire nation and the whole world when they announced their defection from President Marcos and their strong belief that Aquino was the real winner in the presidential election on February 22, 1986.

Finally, to the amazement and admiration of the entire world, after twenty years of martial rule, Ferdinand Marcos was driven out from power and Corazon Aquino was formally and peacefully sworn in as the new president of a freed and liberated Philippines on February 25, 1986, a historic event which is now known and remembered as the 1986 EDSA People Power Revolution.

Phil Collins Calls It Quits

In addition to quitting the music business, Phil Collins apologized for being successful. Here is the announcement from Time:

Phil Collins Apologizes for Success as He Quits Music

By: Nick Carbone

Is it something in the air or does Collins hold quite a bit of resentment toward his haters?

Citing health problems, the famed Genesis drummer and vocalist is calling it quits from the music biz. He tells FHM that years of hunching behind his drum kit have left him with an array of medical problems, from hearing loss to a dislocated vertebra, and nerve damage in his stick-clutching hands make playing painful.

Collins’s career has brought him 13 hit singles, seven Grammys, and even an Academy Award for his work on the Disney musical movie Tarzan, winning in 1999 for best original song. “I’m sorry that it was all so successful. I honestly didn’t mean it to happen like that. It’s hardly surprising that people grew to hate me,” he said. Critics – and their harsh words – have emerged louder than the guitars of the modern rock era. Oasis guitarist Noel Gallagher famously cut down the drummer in past years, quoted as saying, “You don’t have to be great to be successful. Look at Phil Collins.”

He lives in a small town in Switzerland now, attempting to distance himself from the music scene. The report that he’s calling it quits from the music business just seems to make his actions official. “I don’t really belong to that world and I don’t think anyone’s going to miss me. I’m much happier just to write myself out of the script entirely,” he told FHM. Today’s world of MTV Music Awards and artists who care more about celebrity status than making music led to an choice, he explained.

Cast aside your haters, Phil. You’ll be in NewsFeed’s heart forever.

Ronald Reagan Centennial – Beirut Barracks Bombing and Grenada Invasion

Beirut Barracks Bombing

On October 23, 1983, American peacekeeping forces were attacked by terrorists with the use of a suicide truck bomber in Bierut, Lebanon. 241 American servicemen were killed and more than 60 others were injured. Less than 2 minutes later, another truck bomb went off at French barracks killing 58 French servicemen and injuring 15. In the attack on the American barracks, the death toll was 241 American servicemen: 220 Marines, 18 Navy Sailors, and three Army Soldiers. This was the deadliest single-day death toll for the United States Marine Corps since the Battle of Iwo Jima of World War II (2,500 in one day) and the deadliest single-day death toll for the United States military since the 243 killed on January 31, 1968, the first day of the Tet Offensive during the Vietnam War.

Here is a news report about the attack from ABC News:

To this day, there is no clear responsible party. Most opinion seems to lead towards Hezbollah, although they did not formally announce their existence until 1985. But they were thought to still be “underground” at that point, and backed by Iran and Syria. Hezbollah, Iran and Syria have denied any involvement.

President Ronald Reagan called the attack a “despicable act” and pledged to keep a military force in Lebanon.

In retaliation for the attacks, France launched an airstrike in the Beqaa Valley against alleged Islamic Revolutionary Guards positions. President Reagan assembled his national security team and planned to target the Sheik Abdullah barracks in Baalbek, Lebanon, which housed Iranian Revolutionary Guards believed to be training Hezbollah militants. A joint American-French air assault on the camp where the bombing was planned was also approved by Reagan and French president François Mitterrand. Defense Secretary Weinberger, however, lobbied successfully against the missions, because at the time he was not certain that Iran was behind the attack.

So, there was no real retaliation for the Beirut bombing from the U.S. The Marines were moved offshore where they could not be targeted. On February 7, 1984, President Reagan ordered the Marines to begin withdrawal from Lebanon. This was completed on February 26, four months after the barracks bombing; the rest of the multinational force was withdrawn by April.

Operation Urgent Fury (Grenada)

On October 25, 1983, only two days after the attacks in Bierut, President Reagan ordered U.S. forces to invade Grenada, code named Operation Urgent Fury. Grenada is a Caribbean island nation with a population of just over 100,000. Grenada gained independence from the United Kingdom in 1974. Rebels seized power in a coup in 1979. In 1983, there was a power struggle that resulted in the murder of Prime Minister Maurice Bishop. An military council was formed to rule the country. They announced a four-day total curfew where anyone seen on the streets would be subject to execution.

In March 1983, Ronald Reagan began issuing warnings about the threat posed to the United States and the Caribbean by the “Soviet-Cuban militarization” due to an excessively long airplane runway being built as well as intelligence sources. He said that the 9,000-foot runway and the oil storage tanks were unnecessary for commercial flights, and that evidence pointed that the airport was to become a Cuban-Soviet military airbase.

Another reason for the invasion was that there were U.S. medical students at St. George’s University on Grenada. The university was near the controversial runway, and there was the possibility that they could have been taken hostage as U.S. diplomats in Iran had been four years earlier.

On October 25 Operation Urgent Fury began. It was the first major military operation conducted by U.S. forces since the Vietnam War, several days of fighting commenced, resulting in a U.S. victory. In mid-December, after a new government was appointed by the Governor-General, U.S. forces withdrew.

Here is Ronald Reagan’s address to the nation regarding Beirut and Grenada:

Daily Trivia – 3/7/11

Question: In 1986, who became the first female president of the Philippines?

Last Question: In Ferris Bueller’s Day Off, what NHL team’s jersey does “Cameron” wear?

Answer: The Detroit Red Wings

If Ferris Bueller’s Day Off took place in Chicago, why did he wear a Detroit Red Wings jersey, you may ask (I know I did). Well, it was John Hughes paying tribute to his childhood hero Gordie Howe.

Gordie Howe was asked about this in Sports Illustrated: I was watching Ferris Bueller’s Day Off the other day and your jersey was on the screen the whole time since Ferris’ friend Cameron is wearing it. I was wondering if you knew that your jersey would be a part of the movie.

Howe: Oh yeah, I sent them the jersey. They asked me for the jersey and I sent it out. It was nice seeing the No. 9 on the big screen. I had a lot of proud moments in that jersey.

“You’ve Got Another Thing Coming” on American Idol

I’m not exactly the biggest American Idol fan – mainly because I really love music. Luckily, I have a DVR player, so I conduct my own little “Gong Show”. As soon as I can see the song is going to suck, I fast forward through the rest of the song, and listen to the judges.

But, this week I was pleasantly surprised by this year’s token “rocker” – James Durbin. There were some seasons that I did not watch “Idol” at all, but as far as I know, nobody has done Judas Priest’s “You’ve Got Another Thing Coming”. I think James did a great job with it. He wasn’t as over-the-top as I though he would be. I’ll keep tuning in as long as he’s on the show, and he keeps up performances like this:

And if that put you in the mood for the original, here you go:

Daily Trivia – 3/4/11

Question: In Ferris Bueller’s Day Off, what NHL team’s jersey does “Cameron” wear?

Last Question: What 1986 show starred teenage actress Rebecca Schaeffer and former Mork & Mindy star Pam Dawber?

Answer: My Sister Sam

My Sister Sam aired on CBS from 1986 to 1988. Pam Dawber, of Mork and Mindy fame, played Sam Russell, a San Francisco photographer. Her life gets disrupted when her teenage sister Patti (Rebecca Schaeffer) comes to live with her.

The show was successful on Monday nights. But CBS changed its schedule and moved My Sister Sam to Saturday night opposite NBC’s successful comedy lineup. The show’s audience dwindled to one of the lowest on network TV. CBS canceled My Sister Sam mid-1988 after only half of the second season had aired.

Tragically, on July 18, 1989, Schaeffer was murdered by Robert John Bardo, an obsessed fan who had been stalking her for three years. Bardo was tried by prosecutor Marcia Clark, who later became famous for her role in the O.J. Simpson trial. Convicted of capital murder in a bench trial, Bardo was sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole.

Pam Dawber has not done too much since the cancellation of My Sister Sam. She has been married to actor Mark Harmon since March 21, 1987. The couple appeared together in the film I’ll Remember April, and have two sons: Sean Thomas Harmon (born April 25, 1988) and Ty Christian Harmon (born June 25, 1992).

Daily Trivia – 3/3/11

Question: What 1986 show starred teenage actress Rebecca Schaeffer and former Mork & Mindy star Pam Dawber?

Last Question: What 7’6″ player became the tallest player in NBA history at that time?

Answer: Manute Bol

Manute Bol, the Sudanese-born NBA player was one of the tallest players of all time standing at 7 feet, 6 3/4 inches. Bol played basketball for many teams over his career. Obviously, his shot blocking skills were considered among the best in the history of the sport. He was not very good at scoring though. He is the only player in NBA history to have more blocked shots than points scored.

In 1985 Bol was drafted in the second round by the Washington Bullets, becoming the first African-born player to be drafted into the NBA. He played in the NBA for ten years, from 1985–1995, spending parts of four seasons with the Bullets, parts of three with the Golden State Warriors, parts of four with the Philadelphia 76ers and part of one season with the Miami Heat. In 1987, the Washington Bullets drafted the 5 ft 3 in (1.60 m) point guard Muggsy Bogues, pairing the tallest and shortest players in the league on the court for one season.

Manute Bol was also known for his activism. He spent most of his money supporting various causes related to his war-ravaged nation of birth, Sudan. Bol established the Ring True Foundation in order to continue fund-raising for Sudanese refugees. In 2002, Fox TV agreed to broadcast the telephone number of his Ring True Foundation in exchange for Bol’s agreement to appear on their Celebrity Boxing show. After the referee goaded, “If you guys don’t box, you won’t get paid”, he scored a third-round victory over former football player William “The Refrigerator” Perry.

Sadly, on June 19, 2010, Bol died from acute kidney failure and complications from Stevens–Johnson syndrome at the University of Virginia Medical Center in Charlottesville, Virginia.

80's Pop Culture and News

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