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16 Classic Rock Artists To Watch In 2016

As 2015 comes to a close, it can be fun to look back on the year. There were many great Classic Rock moments in 2015, however 2016 promises to be an even bigger year for us Classic Rock Fans. It is with that in mind that we present ’16 Classic Rockers’ to watch in 2016. This list features many confirmed and announced Classic Rock events and artist activity, as well as some things that we are keeping our fingers crossed for 😉

Bruce Springsteen

Bruce Springsteen  at the 'Shining A Light' concert at The Shrine Auditorium on November 18, 2015 in Los Angeles, California. Classic Rockers  (Photo by Christopher Polk/Getty Images)
Bruce Springsteen at the 'Shining A Light' concert at The Shrine Auditorium on November 18, 2015 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Christopher Polk/Getty Images)

It is a fun time to be a Bruce Springsteen fan. In late Fall, Springsteen released The Ties That Bind Box set, which contains unreleased tracks from The River sessions.  The boss amped up the fun by providing his Philly fans with one of the biggest concert announcements of 2015, that he and the E Street Band would bring ‘The River Tour’ to the States this winter. He followed up the tour announcement with a rousing performance on SNL which featured a visit from Sir Paul McCartney. Just in case you thought he wasn’t busy enough, Springsteen later mentioned that he was also working on a new solo album, which will be supported by a solo tour.

Journey/Doobie Bros/Dave Mason

John McFee, Tom Johnston, and Patrick Simmons of The Doobie Brothers and manager Bruce Cohn attend the Music Biz 2015 Awards in May 2015. Classic Rockers (Photo by Rick Diamond/Getty Images)
John McFee, Tom Johnston, and Patrick Simmons of The Doobie Brothers and manager Bruce Cohn attend the Music Biz 2015 Awards in May 2015. (Photo by Rick Diamond/Getty Images)

Leaving the year with some exciting concert announcements is always the best way to start a new year. Just in time for Christmas, we learned that Journey will be hitting the road this summer with Big Gig alumni the Doobie Brothers, and Traffic’s Dave Mason. The tour hits the states Summer of 2016

Gregg Allman

Gregg Allman performs onstage during day two of 2015 Stagecoach, California's Country Music Festival, at The Empire Polo Club on April 25, 2015 in Indio, California. Classic Rockers  (Photo by Frazer Harrison/Getty Images for Stagecoach)
Gregg Allman performs at the 2015 Stagecoach, California's Country Music Festival on April 25, 2015 in Indio, California. (Photo by Frazer Harrison/Getty Images for Stagecoach)

Though The Allman Bros. Band disbanded in early 2015, there is a light at the end of the tunnel. Gregg Allman is keeping the music alive, and hitting the road in the early part of 2016. While it is a solo tour, you can expect him to sprinkle in some Allman Bros favorites as well. The tour hits the Tower Theatre on April 1st

Def Leppard/Styx/Tesla

WEST HOLLYWOOD, CA - MARCH 17:  (L-R) Musicians Rick Allen, Phil Collen and Joe Elliott of Def Leppard announce the KISS and Def Leppard "2014 Heroes Tour" at House of Blues on March 17, 2014 in West Hollywood, California. Classic Rockers  (Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images for Live Nation)
(L-R) Musicians Rick Allen, Phil Collen and Joe Elliott of Def Leppard. (Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images)

What could be more fun than a night with Def Leppard and Styx? Following the release of their successful self-titled album, Def Leppard are hitting the road January through February with Styx, for what will be a rocking start to 2016.

The Who

Roger Daltry and Pete Townshend of The Who at the Glastonbury Festival at Worthy Farm, Pilton in June  of 2015. Classic Rockers   (Photo by Ian Gavan/Getty Images)
Roger Daltry and Pete Townshend of The Who at the Glastonbury Festival at Worthy Farm, Pilton in June of 2015. (Photo by Ian Gavan/Getty Images)

2015 was a busy year for the Who. They toured most of the year for their “Who Hit 50” tour, and slowed down a bit when Roger Daltrey got sidelined by Viral Meningitis. But don’t worry, nothing can keep this gathering of rock royalty down. The Who will play a round of rescheduled dates in the Spring of 2016.

Black Sabbath

(L-R) Musicians Tony Iommi, Ozzy Osbourne and Geezer Butler of Black Sabbath onstage during the 56th GRAMMY Awards on January 26, 2014   (Photo by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images)
(L-R) Musicians Tony Iommi, Ozzy Osbourne and Geezer Butler of Black Sabbath onstage during the 56th GRAMMY Awards on January 26, 2014 (Photo by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images)

In 2013, Black Sabbath released their first studio album with Ozzy Osbourne since 1978’s Never Say Die, simply titled 13. The album was a success, and Sabbath supported the album with an equally successful tour. Conversations began immediately about a follow-up album, but guitarist Tony Iommi’s struggles with Lymphoma treatments have made playing music a lot more difficult. It is with that in mind that all plans for a follow-up album have been scrapped, and Black Sabbath are embarking on their farewell tour. Black Sabbath will bring the “Beginning of the End Tour” to the States for a few dates in February, and then a larger tour leg in the Summer.

AC/DC

AC/DC perform on stage during a media call ahead of their 'Rock or Bust' world tour at ANZ Stadium on November 3, 2015 in Sydney, Australia.  (Photo by Brendon Thorne/Getty Images)
AC/DC perform on stage during a media call ahead of their 'Rock or Bust' world tour at ANZ Stadium on November 3, 2015 in Sydney, Australia. (Photo by Brendon Thorne/Getty Images)

After the 2015 release of their seventeenth studio release, Rock or Bust, AC/DC supported the album with a short run of US dates. In a recent turn of events, we learned that AC/DC added a leg to the “Rock or Bust” tour, and will hit a lot more places in the Spring. It is no surprise that the shows are selling out quickly, especially since they have done a full US tour leg, since 2009’s “Black Ice Tour.”

Phil Collins

Phil Collins at the Stuttgart Premiere of the musical 'Tarzan'  on November 21, 2013 in Stuttgart, Germany.  (Photo by Thomas Niedermueller/Getty Images)
Phil Collins at the Stuttgart Premiere of the musical 'Tarzan' on November 21, 2013 in Stuttgart, Germany. (Photo by Thomas Niedermueller/Getty Images)

In 2011, Phil Collins announced that he was taking time off from his career, due to some health complications. Taking time turned to retirement. In the interest of keeping on par with other legendary Classic Rockers, Collins announced at the end of the year that he was coming out of retirement. He said that his children never got to see their dad at work, and he would like to make that happen for them. Not only is Collins out of retirement, but he has also shown that he will be quite busy in 2016, with a new album, a tour, and autobiography. He hasn’t mentioned whether the new album will be a solo release or a Genesis release, either would be fine for us and we look forward more Phil and/or Genesis news in the coming months.

David Bowie

NEWPORT, ENGLAND - JUNE 13:  David Bowie performs on stage on the third and final day of "The Nokia Isle of Wight Festival 2004" at Seaclose Park, on June 13, 2004 in Newport, UK. The third annual rock festival takes place during the Isle of Wight Festival which runs from June 4-19.  (Photo by Jo Hale/Getty Images)
David Bowie at "The Nokia Isle of Wight Festival 2004" June 13, 2004 in Newport, UK. (Photo by Jo Hale/Getty Images)

After disappearing for over a decade, David Bowie reemerged in 2012 with his first original release since 2003, titled The Next Day. The album conquered the charts all around the world, and proved that Bowie is very much alive. His next album Black Star arrives on Jan 8th 2016 (his birthday). While Bowie claims to be retired from the road, he will have a busy year with the release of his new album, and the premier of his stage production Lazarus. Who knows if the ‘Thin White Duke’ will change his mind about performing live again? It wouldn’t be the first time in his career that he did something that he said he would never do again.

Bob Seger

Bob Seger performs onstage at the Rock & Roll Hall Of Fame 19th Annual Induction Dinner at the Waldorf Astoria Hotel March 15, 2004 in New York City.  (Photo by Frank Micelotta/Getty Images)
Bob Seger performs at the Rock & Roll Hall Of Fame 19th Annual Induction Dinner in 2004 in New York City. (Photo by Frank Micelotta/Getty Images)

Back in November, Seger announced that he would be releasing a compilation of previously unreleased tracks called I Knew You When, along with a tour sometime in 2016. The tour is to include his “bucket list” stops, or places that he always wanted to play, including the Hollywood Bowl and New Orleans Jazz Festival. Let’s hope that the list includes a venue in close proximity as well!

Roger Waters

NEW YORK, NY - NOVEMBER 06:  Roger Waters performs at The New York Comedy Festival And The Bob Woodruff Foundation Present The 7th Annual Stand Up For Heroes Event at The Theater at Madison Square Garden on November 6, 2013 in New York City.  (Photo by Bryan Bedder/Getty Images for New York Comedy Festival)
Roger Waters at The 7th Annual Stand Up For Heroes Event in 2013 in New York City. (Photo by Bryan Bedder/Getty Images for New York Comedy Festival)

If listening to the new “The Wall Live” set has put you back into that Pink Floyd mood, Roger Waters may have some projects to keep it going. In August, Waters mentioned working on a new album, as well as a memoir. In addition to that, we may once again get to see Roger Waters ‘in the flesh’, as he also mentioned plans to tour in 2016.

ELO

Singer Jeff Lynne of Jeff Lynne's ELO onstage during The 57th Annual GRAMMY Awards at the at the STAPLES Center on February 8, 2015 in Los Angeles, California.
Singer Jeff Lynne onstage during The 57th Annual GRAMMY Awards on February 8, 2015 in Los Angeles, California.

After an exhilarating return to the stage in 2014 at Hyde Park, Jeff Lynne caught the bug to play live again. He assembled “Jeff Lynne’s ELO” and released the first new ELO music in fourteen years, entitled Alone In The Universe. Lynne rounded out 2015 with a few scattered live performances in the UK, and one US date, and is hitting the UK on a larger run in 2016. While no further US dates are announced so far, the door is certainly open. ‘Don’t bring me down,’ Jeff!

Guns N’ Roses

LOS ANGELES, CA - APRIL 23:  (L-R) Bassist Duff McKagan and  singer Axl Rose of Guns N 'Roses perform onstage at the 6th Annual Revolver Golden Gods Award Show at Club Nokia on April 23, 2014 in Los Angeles, California.  (Photo by Frazer Harrison/Getty Images)
Bassist Duff McKagan and singer Axl Rose of Guns N 'Roses perform onstage at the 6th Annual Revolver Golden Gods Award Show in 2014. (Photo by Frazer Harrison/Getty Images)

Rumors about Guns N’ Roses reunions have filled the web for years. As Axl toured the world with a band of completely new faces, most GNR fans prayed that Axl and Slash would one day bury the hatchet.  In 2015, we learned that Axl and Slash have indeed ‘made up.’ With the recent announcements of guitarists DJ Ashba and Bumblefoot departuring from the touring Guns N’ Roses line-up, we know that the band has some vacancies, could they be filled by Slash and Duff McKagen? In another interesting move, the band added merchandise to their online store, featuring “classic” Guns N’ Roses imagery. A lot of this imagery was caught up in copyright/licensing rights wars since the original GNR lineup went their separate ways. Could these be clues about some upcoming activity from the classic lineup? While we hope that 2016 brings the answer, we will just keep practicing our ‘patience’.

Faces

LONDON - JUNE 26:  Singer Rod Stewart and Ronnie Wood perform on stage at the Olympic Torch Concert held in The Mall on June 26, 2004 in London. The free concert - organised by Visit London and The Greater London Authority is  to celebrate the arrival of the Olympic torch in London. (Photo by Getty Images)
Rod Stewart and Ronnie Wood on stage at the Olympic Torch Concert in 2004 in London. (Photo by Getty Images)

For the past couple years, Rod Stewart has made it known that he would be interested in returning to the stage with the Faces. In what would be the first time in 39 years, Rod Stewart reunited with the surviving members, Ronnie Wood and Kenney Jones (Ronnie Lane having passed in 1997) to play a one-off charity performance in September. Hopefully the chemistry was there, and the Faces get the spark to tour in the near future.

The Kinks

LONDON - NOVEMBER 16:  (L-R) The Kinks band members Mick Avory, Dave Davies, Peter Quaife and Ray Davies pose backstage with the award for their induction into the UK Music Hall Of Fame 2005, the culmination of the two-week Channel 4 series looking at 1950's-1990's popular music, at Alexandra Palace on November 16, 2005 in London, England. Acts are selected by a panel of over 60 artists, journalists, broadcasters and executives, with artists including Alanis Morissette, The Pretenders and Slash paying tribute to their fellow musical artists at the event.  (Photo by MJ Kim/Getty Images)
The Kinks band members Mick Avory, Dave Davies, Peter Quaife and Ray Davies pose backstage with the award for their induction into the UK Music Hall Of Fame 2005. (Photo by MJ Kim/Getty Images)

Brothers who play in bands together have always been known to “not see eye to eye,” and Ray and Dave Davies are no strangers to that. Every time a piece of news came that looked positive for a Kinks reunion, one of the brothers would say something that proved the contrary. In a surprising turn of events, Ray joined Dave onstage at a late December 2015 concert, for a rocking rendition of “You Really Got Me.” This would be the first time that the brothers appeared onstage together in almost 20  years. It seems like the main hurdle is behind them, so hopefully a Kinks reunion will emerge in the not so distant future.

Jimmy Page

LOS ANGELES, CA - NOVEMBER 12:  Musician Jimmy Page speaks onstage at "An Evening With Jimmy Page And Chris Cornell In Conversation" at the Ace Hotel on November 12, 2014 in Los Angeles, California.  (Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images)
Jimmy Page speaks onstage at "An Evening With Jimmy Page And Chris Cornell In Conversation" at the Ace Hotel on November 12, 2014. (Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images)

Now that Jimmy Page has completed the Led Zeppelin reissues project, he is ready to start thinking about new music. He has mentioned several times, with increasing enthusiasm, that he has music written, and would like to release a new solo album, along with a 2016 tour featuring music from throughout his career. In November, Page returned to the stage for an all-star jam at the Seattle Experience Music Project Museum benefit concert. While nothing has been mentioned about who will play in his touring band, we can count on Page having an unbelievable lineup. After all, Page does have a pretty good track record of picking high quality musicians – ie:  Paul Rodgers, Jeff Beck, Robert Plant.

 

Sean Burke is a Rock/Classic Rock reporter and addict, who scours the Internet almost as long as he is awake to get the most up-to-date, accurate updates on all of the top Rock artists. When not talking about music, Sean can be found playing an epic air guitar solo while standing on your favorite piece of furniture.