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Black Francis, "Weird Al," Flea to Rock "Winston Calling" Benefit

November 5, 2009 11:53 AM ET

The Pixies might have just kicked off the American leg of their Doolittle tour last night in Los Angeles, but Black Francis has already made plans to return to L.A. on December 8th and 9th when he headlines Winston Calling: A Rock and Comedy benefit concert for baby Winston Bertran. The first concert of the two-night benefit at the Echoplex and its upstairs venue the Echo will also feature appearances by "Weird Al" Yankovic (who will sing the Pixies' "I Bleed"), Flea, Michael Penn plus members of Pixies, Love & Rockets and She Wants Revenge. Francis' Grand Duchy side project with his wife Violet Clark will also perform. The second night will feature comedy from Tim & Eric, Bob Odenkirk, Pixies' David Lovering and another solo performance by Francis.

Both shows will raise money for Winston's Village, a charity started by the family of Winston Bertrand, a eight-and-a-half-month-old baby born with two rare complex malformations called Lymphatic and Venous Malformations. According to the Winston's Village Website, the first condition "deals with a lack of fitness of the lymphatic system and chronic pooling of lymph fluid, creating large cysts in the face and neck. The second concerns the improper formation of veins." Winston's condition requires around-the-clock care, so his parents are hoping to raise the appropriate funds.

Tickets for the shows are available at the Echoplex website. For more information and to donate for Bertrand, visit the Winston's Village Website.

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Song Stories

“Try a Little Tenderness”

Otis Redding | 1966

This pop standard had been previously recorded by dozens of artists, including by Bing Crosby 33 years before Otis Redding, who usually wrote his own songs, cut it. It was actually Sam Cooke’s 1964 take, which Redding’s manager played for Otis, that inspired the initially reluctant singer to take on the song. Isaac Hayes, then working as Stax Records’ in-house producer, handled the arrangement, and Booker T. and the MG’s were the backing band. Redding’s soulful version begins quite slowly and tenderly itself before mounting into a rousing, almost religious “You’ve gotta hold her, squeeze her …” climax. “I did that damn song you told me to do,” Redding told his manager. “It’s a brand new song now.”

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