Yes, the pandemic pulverized the music industry, but never underestimate the comeback trail. Here are eight acts bringing fresh music to albums and stages this fall.
Ringo Starr: A new album in September and a tour in 2022
The album: Ringo Starr released an EP, Zoom In, in March, and he’s been busy overseeing development of The Beatles’ giant Get Back juggernaut this fall (documentary series, authorized book, multiple Let It Be reissues). Yet music’s peace and love ambassador, 81, still made time for the album Change the World (out Sept. 24). The four-song EP brims with his usual energy and optimism, from the hopeful “Let’s Change the World” to “Coming Undone,” which spotlights New Orleans jazz/funk prodigy Trombone Shorty. For a jaunty “Rock Around the Clock,” the Fab Four drummer drafted brother-in-law Joe Walsh on guitar. Starr says he’s done making albums and will only release EPs going forward.
The tour: The All Starr Band, which skipped tours the past two summers, plans to hit the road in 2022.
Get more information here: ringostarr.com
Melissa Etheridge: A fresh album in October that helped her heal
The album: Rock star Melissa Etheridge was rummaging through her catalog to assemble a 2013 box set when she ran across unfinished songs from the 1980s and 1990s, personal and feminist sentiments written at the height of her popularity but before she came out as a lesbian and gay activist. No longer fearful of repercussions, Etheridge, 60, assembled them for her new album, One Way Out (out Oct. 1). The project helped her cope with the lockdown and last year’s overdose death of her 21-year-old son Beckett (with former partner Julie Cypher). “Music saved me,” she told the Daily Telegraph. “I decided I really wanted to learn more about streaming and the technology, the cameras and sound. After my son’s death, that really healed me, getting out of bed every day to build the studio, and when we started back up again in late June last year, fans subscribed to it and we built up this community of people singing songs together. I was here with my wife and my kids, but so many people were alone, and bringing music to them helped take their minds away for an hour and made them feel part of something.” On the tour, expect new tunes — plus at least three old hits per show.
The tour: Etheridge plays America through June 16, then Europe through July 15.