Tuesday, August 31, 2010


Well boys and girls, it's a Tuesday night.  Yes in the middle of the week, which all you fathers and husbands know, is the worst day of the week for a rock concert.  The 'Casual One' and I are getting old, but not THAT old.

Free Food, Free Parking, Free booze, ok view of the show.

Cons: The Casual One lost his phone.  More to come.

Sunday, August 29, 2010

LA Guns, FP, and J Corabi HARPOS, DETROIT 7/30/2010 THE PICS

LA Guns, Faster Pussycat, and John Corabi HARPOS, DETROIT 7/30/2010

Electric Gypsies:
Hair Metal, Aging, and Harpos Theater

by St.Aubin

“You know, we're both almost 40.” Marc decides to eloquently mention, just as we pull off onto Chalmers Street.

  Marc's my head writer, though conveniently, he's never actually written anything for me.

  Almost forty years old. And, on our way to Harpos to see LA Guns and Faster Pussycat, and ex-Motley Crue howler, John Corabi.  It struck a chord and I contemplated Marc's comments the entire evening. It was as if I were living the hard rock sequel to Almost Famous, entitled 'Almost Forty'.
  If you grew up in Michigan in the eighties, you grew up with thelegends of a hard rock stronghold surrounded by the ghetto, passed onto us by older brothers and uncles. We couldn't wait to turn 18 or get a decent fake id and see our first concert. But that was two decades ago. Hell, even U2 played this place in their early days, but it had been '93 since the last set foot in the glorious old hellhole, '95 for Marc, and truth be told, I could barely remember it. We were just as curious to see the building, as we were to see if Sunset Strip hair metal still drew a decent crowd. For the record, the drug exchanges are still going on across the street. A white cutlass brougham delivered the goods as we were walking in Harpos front door.

The Show:

John Corabi, real name John Corabi.
  He's 51. He's played in RATT, Brides of Destruction, and, until Nikki Sixx awoke from a year long heroin stupor, replaced Vince Neil.
  And he just cant win, even in Detroit, a city that loves castoffs and underdogs. His tour bus was 'late' arriving into Detroit, he explained, and as a result, the poor bastard only got to play four songs. But, on the flip side, Corabi has the strongest vocal range of any of the night's performers. He doesn't have the deepest vault of material to draw from, but 'Hooligan's Holiday' was a highlight.
  Four songs, and he's cut off. Replaced by some local nu-metal act.
The Show, part 2:
Tracii Guns. Real name, Tracy Ulrich.

Born, 1966. 44.

Forget for a moment that Tracii is the guitar player. And, that a man who actually goes through life calling himself 'Jizzy Pearl' is the L.A. Guns vocalist.

After years of touring, excess, and being irrevocably replaced by grunge, it would be easy for the Guns to phone in the performances on this current tour. The knock against L.A. Guns has always been the studio recordings cant do justice to the live performances.

But not tonight: Their was an energy between Tracii and Jizzy, and it was clear we were watching two brothers doing what they love. Playing music. The bond came across in their electrifying presence, and they left it all, ALL, on the stage when it was over.  Even the most cynical hipster or depressed alt-rocker would've been impressed by the energy, love, and simple of fun that the Guns had on stage. 

The Show, part 3:
Taime Downe, real name Gustave Ronald Molvik, lead singer of Faster Pussycat.

He's 46.

To be fair, 'Taime', Tie Me, or whatever the hell you want to call him, can still work an inebriated crowd with sleeze metal anthems like Bathroom Wall and Poison Ivy. And, where else in the world, except for perhaps the drag queen clubs, can a fifty year old man step on a stage wearing a black slip, eyeliner, and striped stockings as grown men go buck wild. Old school metal geezers were banging their heads, throwing up the devil horns, and act like complete drunken buffoons.
  Myself included.

  But, alas, this is where I must wax poetic.  During the breaks in the live action, I found myself cautiously observing everyone in this crowd of diehard blue collar wankers, most of whom spend their workdays wishing like hell it was 1987, and wondering if Marc W isn't depressingly correct:

  Aren't we ALL just a bit old for this routine?

  When are we too old to rock? When should we hang it up? FP peaked in 1991. I peaked in 1995. They've been playing for twenty five years and Taime still wears a slip.

  When I was 17, and a junior in high school, my favorite album was Sonic Temple by The Cult. I still go that album when the stress of being a husband, father, and stooge weighs heavy. I turn on Sun King and vividly remember a time where life seemed simpler.  Maybe that was what we were all reaching for this night.  A simpler time, a simpler life, when it was just about music. Not money, and not responsibility.  For three hours, I found a refreshing break from reality.  So suprisingly, I got as much entertainment, smiles, and fun out of this celebration of hair metal, than I have a five Dave Matthews band concerts.
 Food for thought.

  Oh and a interesting side conversation to end this diatribe:   
 While reacquainting myself with Harpos, I struck up a conversation with one of the so-called 'band aids' who were all actively engaged in ignoring Corabi's performance. Besides an innocent smile, breasts augmented well beyond modesty, she sported a Guns and Roses logo tattoo on her shoulder blade that would rival even the most hardcore fan artwork i've ever seen.

“I love this life.  I drove up here all the way from (deleted)."
"What do you love most about it?" I inquired.
"It's been sex, drugs, and rock and roll for me everyday since I turned 14. I'm a Band Aid. I take care of the band.  She explained with a sudden glow of pride.  "At least until my sentencing.  I sold to an undercover.”

Rock and roll.