Music History 103

Let’s continue on with our music history lesson— with some great songs from the 70’s and beyond and their links to Microsoft Co-founder, Paul Allen…..  


The Band and Eric Clapton—Further On Up the Road (from The Last Waltz)      



Musician Robbie Robertson performs this terrific song in concert with Eric Clapton and the rest of The Band on the video soundtrack of “The Last Waltz.” “The Band” members included Robertson, Richard Manuel, Garth Hudson, Rick Danko and Levon Helm.  The Band had a farewell concert after 16 years of touring on Thanksgiving Day, November 25th , 1976 at Winterland Ballroom in San Franciso.   The rock group was joined by more than a dozen special guests, including Eric Clapton, Neil Diamond, Bob Dylan, Joni Mitchell, Van Morrison, Ringo Starr, Muddy Waters and Neil Young. The concert was filmed by Martin Scorsese and made into a documentary in 1978, which was released on DVD in 2002. The film has been hailed as one of the greatest concert films ever made.   (Wikipedia The Last Waltz ) 

From Wikipedia: “As Clapton was taking his first solo on “Further On Up the Road”, his guitar strap came loose. Clapton said “Hold on,” but Robertson picked up the solo without missing a beat….” (You can see it on this video—watch what happens around 54 seconds into the song:-). 

Link to Paul Allen: 

Robbie Robertson has been a good friend of Paul Allen’s for years. Robertson often performs with Allen for fun at various parties and in various places, including aboard Paul Allen’s yacht, Octopus. See…   

Sweet Home Alabama (Lynyrd Skynyrd)  


“Sweet Home Alabama ” is a song by Southern rock band Lynryd Skynyrd that first appeared in  1974 on their second album, “Second Helping.”  “Sweet Home Alabama” was written as an answer to the songs “Southern Man” and “Alabama” by Neil Young, which were critical of the South.  “We thought Neil was shooting all the ducks in order to kill one or two,” said Ronnie Van Zant at the time (Dupree 1974). Van Zant’s musical response, however, was equally controversial, with references to Alabama Governor George Wallace and the Watergate scandal. Despite (or perhaps because of) the debate, the song has become one of the most popular examples of Southern rock.  It reached the top ten of the US charts in 1974 and was the band’s second hit single.” (Excerpt taken from Wikipedia ) 

Link to Paul Allen: 

Allen invited Lynyrd Skynyrd to his 1998 luxurious Alaska party aboard the Crystal Harmony along with 400 other celebrity guests, and even spent a few evenings jamming with them (and a few other musicians) onstage.   



Who is that girl? Eurythmics =   


“Who’s That Girl?” was a song recorded by the extremely popular 80’s group, the Eurythmics, comprised of Annie Lennox and Dave Stewart.  According to Wikipedia, Stewart’s former wife, Siobhan Fahey, and two other members of her music group, Bananarama, make cameo appearances in the original MTV video for this song. ( 

Link to Paul Allen: 

Eurythmic’s Dave Stewart is one of Paul Allen’s best friends, who also often performs with him onstage or in Allen’s recording studios. He and Allen co-founded the
Covent Garden creative arts hotspot, the Hospital.


Peter Gabriel—

Steam (in concert) =  


Musician Peter Gabriel was born Feb. 13, 1950 in Chobham, Surrey, England.   He first became famous as the lead vocalist and flautist of the rock group Genesis. After leaving Genesis, Gabriel went onto a successful solo career.  More recently he has focused on producing and promoting world music and pioneering digital distribution methods for music.  He has also been involved a number of humanitarian efforts, including the founding of the human rights organization, Witness.   See… (Excerpt from Wikipedia 

Link to Paul Allen: 

In addition to a long-term friendship that has included collaboration on multimedia projects in the 90’s, Peter Gabriel was also a guest at Paul Allen’s lavish 1998 Alaskan party aboard the Crystal Harmony. Later on, Gabriel could not resist Allen’s invitation to come aboard one of his yachts (Meduse) for a jam session in Allen’s onboard recording studio during a trip down the Amazon. 


 Kiss From A Rose (Seal)


“Kiss from a Rose” is a song from Seal’s second eponymous album, “Seal.” The song was featured on the 1995 “Batman Forever” soundtrack.  It was originally planned to accompany a love scene between Bruce Wayne and the character Chase Meridian but ended up placed at the end of the film…………… “Kiss from a Rose” is considered one of the most popular waltzes from the 1990s. ( From Wikipedia)

 Link to Paul Allen: 

Paul Allen and his band were billed to open for Seal at the new WAMU Theater in Qwest Field Events Center in
Seattle last November. Qwest is the home of the Seattle Seahawks, owned by Allen.   See..

Unfortunately, Allen had come down with a bad case of bronchitis that night, leaving his band to perform the opening act without him. So what do you call your band when you’re listed as Paul Allen’s band and Paul Allen doesn’t show up? The Predicaments, of course, which is how Allen’s band introduced themselves that night!  These guys seem to have a great sense of humor, and a great sense of fun when it comes to jamming together, whether they do it at Allen’s home studio, his reportedly gorgeous Octopus (yacht) studio, or in front of an audience.  

It’s that sense of fun that you can sometimes hear in Paul Allen’s original songs. One example is the freewheeling improvisation in “Said and Done,” a song written by Allen and recorded on his 1999 Grown Men album.  See… . Although the lyrics are not exactly cheerful, the melody rocks with free-spirited fun—-you get the impression that these guys are having a really, really good time, and that makes the song fun to hear.   

2000+ Jazz


All at Sea (Jamie Cullum)



Jamie Cullum is a 26-year-old Grammy award winning British jazz musician. His third album, Twentysomething, which was released in May of 2003, became the #1 selling studio album by a jazz artist in the
United Kingdom, selling over 2 million copies around the world.

See… and


Link to Paul Allen:


Jamie Cullum performed “Everlasting Love” for the “Brigid Jones: The Edge of Reason” soundtrack in 2004.

(1) Rene Zellweger starred in the lead role in that movie. She also starred as “Barbara Novak” in the movie “Down with Love” with (2) Ewan McGregor’s “Catcher Block.”   Ewan McGregor starred as Obi-Wan Kenobi in “Star Wars III : Revenge of the Sith” directed by (4) Paul Allen’s friend, (3) George Lucas.  See…|1&axs=0|52951275%2c52950158%2c52950157%2c52950156&id=52950157


 Don’t Know Why (Nora Jones)


Norah Jones, born Geethali Norah Jones Shankar on March 30, 1979 in Brooklyn, New York, is the daughter of renowned musician and friend of Beatles’ George Harrison, Ravi Shankar. Her music career was launched with the massively successful 2002 debut album entitled “Come Away with Me.” The album sold over twenty million copies worldwide and received 6 Grammy Awards, including “Best New Artist.”Jones also won 3 more Grammy’s in 2005. She made a cameo appearance in the movie, “Two Week’s Notice” in 2002 and recently starred in “My Blueberry Nights” which was the opening film for the 2007 Cannes Film Festival. See..   (Excerpts from Wikipedia


 Link to Paul Allen:


Grammy winning Nora Jones is the daughter of (1) Ravi Shankar, who was nominated for an Oscar for his original score in the 1982 movie, Gandhi. (2) Candace Bergen also starred in that movie as Margaret Bourke White. 
Bergen was a guest at (3) Paul Allen’s Alaskan party aboard the Crystal Harmony luxury liner in 1998.

And finally, there are a few groups through the years that seem to be in a category of their own.  So stay tuned for the final chapter of Music History 101…… 


* See