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Monday
Oct022017

Another Concert Tragedy

At least 58 are dead and more than 500+ hurt after an overnight shooting in Las Vegas. The shooting happened during the Route 91 Harvest Country Festival, and Jason Aldean was performing. Police say suspect Stephen Paddock shot people from a room on the 32nd floor of Mandaly Bay.


This situation is a little different from the terror attacks during the Eagles of Death Metal and Ariana Grande concerts in Europe. This was an open air event where the shooter basically opened up a machine gun over top the music fans. This is especially hard to see because the people had no where to go to take cover except to run... and of course, how do you know where to run when you don't know where the shooter is even staged?


Police did breach the room where Paddock was apparently holed up shooting.


So where does this leave us? These attacks are becoming more brazen. Remember, always look for an escape route whenever you go into a concert venue - no matter if it's a tiny club or giant open air event. Protect yourself.



Sunday
Oct012017

Marilyn Manson Injured In Stage Accident

This is pretty scary. Marilyn Manson was performing in New York City last night. During the show, a big prop fell on him and he was hurt. Manson was injured but to what extent, we don't know yet. The show was canceled after the accident. Video of the accident is below.


Saturday
Sep302017

'No Junkie Is A Lost Cause'

As the opioid crisis continues to ravage America, Nikki Sixx has stepped up his advocacy efforts. He recently wrote an op-ed in the Los Angeles Times about this country's response and it is pretty powerful. Everything Nikki writes is true - I hope it brings some more awareness to the crisis and lack of government help in this arena. For places like where I'm from, it seems like most young folks are addicted to something. It's unreal and it can be stopped - with the right programs and plans. Nikki writes:

"I am one of the lucky ones. And I know my continuing sobriety is not the result of my actions alone. I have a loving family and an extensive support network.. I have AA and the guidance of my sponsors. I have good health insurance. I have the money, time and resources to help me save myself.

So many people don’t have access to these resources. But they are no less deserving of help. No one is a junkie by choice. And no junkie is a lost cause.

Addiction cannot be solved behind closed doors. It’s a sickness, a systemic failure and a societal problem. Individuals are responsible for their own recovery, but too often, we struggle and suffer — as we sin — in secrecy and silence. Secrecy and silence do not lead to solutions.

So I am speaking out. And so should you. Because another 142 people are going to die today."


Friday
Sep292017

Bret Michaels Knows Hotels

Apparently the Rock Star Suite located at the Hard Rock Riviera Maya is amazing. So now you know. I'm glad it is Friday. My hand is really hurting again and I need a break from computer work. Have a good one.


Thursday
Sep282017

Did Vinnie Vincent Save KISS?

Our favorite hermit, Vinnie Vincent, is about to come out of the shadows. He's appearing at the Atlanta KISS expo on Saturday, January 20, 2018. Now he's in a promo video for the event - watch it below. I'm really jealous of the people who land tickets for this. The stories would be amazing.



Wednesday
Sep272017

Doug Gray, Marshall Tucker Band Interview

This is my latest feature for The Dayton City Paper. I don't usually (ever!) get the country beat, but hey, I love changing it up. I actually have another country feature coming soon, too. I enjoy being able to write about all sorts of different music. Here lately I've been able to write about Broadway and classical performances, too. 

 

I hope you enjoy this feature on the Marshall Tucker Band. I've always enjoyed their southern cool. 

 

“We’re nothing special, we’re just a bunch of guys that get together and make people smile and have a good time,” Doug Gray tells the Dayton City Paper. Gray is the only original member left in the Marshall Tucker Band. The singer will bring his jam band to Kuss Auditorium at Clark State University in Springfield on Sunday, Oct 1.

Over the years, Marshall Tucker Band (MTB) has been called southern rock, gospel, country, jazz, and everything in between. That’s the way Gray and the rest of the band likes it: not having a clearly defined sound has let the band evolve since its inception in 1972. Four decades later, MTB is enjoying a bit of a renaissance, playing big festival gigs and sharing the stage with acts as diverse as Larry the Cable Guy to Kid Rock. Through lineup changes (20 different members have been in the band!), sudden deaths, addiction, and sobriety the two constants have been Gray’s voice and the band’s collective loyalty to their songs. 

“You have to keep going, you can’t give up,” Gray explains. “When we started MTB there was no such thing as giving up.” Some of the band members were just back from Vietnam. The men snagged day jobs and practiced in their off hours. Within a year, MTB had a contract and were jamming with any other band that would have them. Things might not quite work that way these days, but back then a strong work ethic, mixed with a lot of talent got you far. That same work ethic that got them a record deal in the first place allowed them to write and record over 300 songs – and stay on the road over 100 days a year, every year. Road life can take a toll on anyone but members of MTB keep it fresh by letting their songs air out as they see fit. That means some live versions of their classic tunes can last 30 minutes or more. That doesn’t always make sense in an instant gratification social media world, but for MTB, it works. 

“All the guys in the band understand that we have a duty to the old fans as well as the new ones. We’re loyal back to [our] fans by playing as close to the real sound as [on the recording]. And each person takes the song where they want – we don’t rehearse it. It always falls into place. We always stay loyal to the songs and then we’re out of there.” 

There’s a lot of southern pride and culture that goes with being a MTB fan. A big piece of this pride is enjoying the music of youth: going to shows and reliving some great memories. It’s no secret that Ohioans love to travel to the south on vacation, especially to places like South Carolina, the birthplace of MTB. Gray calls Spartanburg, S.C. home and notes how many Ohio plates he sees while driving around town. 

“All Ohioans want to do is come down and have a good time. They remember that good time all throughout the year and they want to come back. That’s what our music is all about.”

For Gray, being southern in 2017 means just being you. It’s that simple: good friends, good music, good life. For Gray and the rest of the MTB, their fans have become friends and even family over the years. The band has a dedicated following that seeks out their shows and special events. 

“I’ve done Sturgis Bike Rally for 37 years,” Gray recalls. “You get to see the same fans every time. You get tighter and tighter with them – it’s like seeing family every time. It’s like having a separate family.”

For Gray and the rest of MTB, treating fans like family isn’t just southern hospitality: it helps keep them grounded. In the past, Gray has noted that band always wanted to be “one of the people.” 

Beyond regular road shows, the Marshall Tucker Band will take part in the sold-out Southern Rock Cruise this coming January. Some of the other acts on that bill include Lynyrd Skynyrd, .38 Special, The Outlaws, Molly Hatchet, and many more. This cruise allows fans to have a more intimate experience with the band – smaller gigs and once-in-a-lifetime jam experiences. 

Through it all, Gray is still amazed that people pay to see him perform. “It’s real nice. You don’t know if people will show up, but you have high hopes. There’s always so many nice people.”

The Marshall Tucker Band performs at Kuss Auditorium at Clark State Community College, 570 E Leffel Lane in Springfield on Oct 1. Tickets are on sale now through Ticketmaster by calling 937-328-3874. Prices range from $30 – $60. For more information, visit MarshallTucker.com/


Tuesday
Sep262017

Imagine Hearing Led Zeppelin For The First Time

This one is just for Metalboy since his favorite band of all time is Led Zeppelin. Imagine hearing the band for the first time. Ok, now imagine you're like seven years old. Yep, it's time for another "Kids React" video. This one is pretty cute. Maybe not as hysterical as the recent Motley Crue episode... but still really good.

You know what I really want to see? I want to see an episode of kids reacting to Mayhem. Now THAT would be hilarious, but I digress. Enjoy the Zep and have some faith in humanity!


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