Posts Tagged ‘signatures’
So back in 1995/1996 I was still married to my now ex-wife. She was a voracious reader and during our brief marriage inspired me to do some reading. Most of the time it was band/musician biographies. Sometimes it was just catching up on John Saul books (all of which suck anymore). One day I went to the library and was just thumbing through the reference books and came across “Headbangers – The Worldwide MegaBook of Heavy Metal Bands” by Mark Hale. I cracked it open and just started freaking out. This book had just about everyone in it that was a metal band. It spans from the late 60s to about 1990 and does a wonderful job of cross-referencing bands, listing albums and catalog numbers. There’s an index in the back of musicians, band names, countries of origin and record labels with catalog numbers. It’s a pretty extensive hardcover book. This book blows away any of that Martin Popoff crap.
Hale gives descriptions of the bands and does his best not to inject bias. It’s 540+ pages of heavy metal goodness.
My ex and I split up in late 1996 and by early 1997 I had started my own CD sales business. I was mostly doing it by word of mouth between friends, eBay and had started an online music store, Acacia Music (defunct). I checked the book out from the library several times and finally called the publisher to see if they still had any copies. Luckily they did. Having a business license and tax ID number, they sold me the book for $75. One of the best investments that I have ever made.
The book has 2 editions. The first edition had a run of 750 copies and the second run of the first edition had 250 copies. That’s it!
Somewhere along the line I decided to get it signed by bands that were in it. If I remember correctly the first signatures were by Warrell Dane/Jim Shepherd (Sanctuary) and Jon Schaffer (Purgatory 60 aka Iced Earth) when Nevermore and Iced Earth were touring together in 1999.
From there and if it was convenient, I would get bands to sign it. If it meant having to lug the 5lb book around all day or night, I wouldn’t bother with it.
Over the years I’ve met a lot of bands who are in it and some of the encounters were pretty random. I think in the coming months I’ll start writing about the signatures and how I obtained them. Many of them had some good stories attached to them. Typically I get the same reaction, “What the hell is this and where the hell did you get it?”
If you’re a fan of metal, especially the pre-1990 stuff, this book is a must have. They typically don’t come cheaply but you can generally find some on Amazon.com. Most of the copies there are ex-library copies.
Here’s the current list of signatures (updated 7/13/13):
Agony Column – Stuart Laurence
At War – Paul Arnold, Shawn Helsel
Battlezone – Paul Di’Anno
Black N Blue – Pete Holmes
Dark Angel – Gene Hoglan
Deceased – King Fowley
Devastation – Rodney Dunsmore
Dirty Looks – Paul Lidel
English Dogs – Graham Butt (one of the funniest inscriptions ever…you had to be there)
Faster Pussycat – Taime Down, Brent Muscat, 2 non-original members
Forbidden – Tim Calvert
Raven/Pentagram – Joe Hasselvander
Helstar – James Rivera, Larry Barragan
Lizzy Borden – Alex Nelson (RIP), Lizzy Borden, Joey Scott Harges
Megadeth – Dave Mustaine, David Ellefson
Militia – Mike Soliz, Rob Willingham, Phil Achee, Tony Smith, Jesse Villegas
MSG – Michael Schenker
Mystic Force – Keith Menser
Nuclear Assault – Dan Lilker, John Connelly
Obituary – James Murphy
Ozzy – Tommy Aldridge
Pretty Boy Floyd – Steve Summers, 2 non-original members
Iced Earth/Purgatory 60 – John Schafer
Raven – John Gallagher, Mark Gallagher
Yngwie Malmsteen’s Rising Force – Yngwie Malmsteen, Anders Johansson
Scorpions – Uli Roth
Sabbat – Martin Walkyier, Andy Sneap, Simon Negus, Simon Jones
Sadus – Steve DiGiorgio
Sanctuary – Warrel Dane, Jim Sheppard
Slayer – Dave Lombardo
S.A. Slayer – Bob Catlin, Art Villareal
Takashi – Danny Stanton
Tesla – Troy Lucketta, Tommy Skeoch, Brian Wheat, Frank Hannon, Jeff Keith
Testament – Chuck Billy, Alex Skolnick, Greg Christian, Eric Peterson
Thin Lizzy – John Sykes, Scott Gorham
Triumph – Rik Emmett
Turbin – Doug Morrison
Vendetta (Chicago) – Klyph Black
Watchtower – Jason McMaster, Ron Jarzombek, Billy White, Rick Colaluca
Forte’ – Rev Jones (band not in the book)
Enuff Z’Nuff – Chip Znuff, 3 non-original members
Ace Frehley – Anton Fig
SOD – Billy Milano
Hirax – Katon W. DePena
Deliverance – Glenn Rogers
DRI – Felix Griffin
DIO – Rowan Robertson
Odin – Shawn, Jeff and Matt Duncan, Randy O., Aaron Samson
Rotting Corpse – John Perez, Mando Tovar
Exodus – Gary Holt, Tom Hunting
Celtic Frost – Tom G Warrior
Assalant – Mike Botello
Pentagram – Bobby Liebling, Victor Griffin
Riot – Don Van Stavern, Bobby Jarzombek
Motorhead – Lemmy Kilmister
King Diamond – Mikkey Dee
Fates Warning – Frank Aresti, John Arch, Jim Matheos, Victor Arduini, Steve Zimmerman, Joe DiBiase
The Rods – Carl Canedy, David Feinstein, Garry Bordonaro
Salty Dog – Michael Hannon
Armored Saint – Joey Vera
Metal Blade Records – Brian Slagel
Trouble – Ron Holtzman, Eric Wagner, Jeff “Oly” Olson
Juggernaut – Harlan Glenn
Great White – Jack Russell
Overkill – Bobby Ellsworth, D.D. Verni
Flotsam and Flotsam – Eric AK, Kelly David Smith, Ed Carlson, Michael Gilbert
Anthrax – Dan Spitz
Hawkwind – Nik Turner
Queensyche – Geoff Tate
Manilla Road – Mark Shelton
Wolfsbane – Blaze Bayley
Kingdom Come – James Kottak
Racer X – Juan Alderete (as “Jeff” in the book)
Chastain – Leather Leone
Amulance – Rick Baez, Bob Luman, Chuck Hamilton (not in the book)
Grim Reaper – Steve Grimmett
Satan – Brian Ross, Russ Tippins, Graeme English, Steve Ramsey, Sean Taylor
Jag Panzer – Chris Cronk (also listed with Fates Warning)
Death Tripper – Jerry Blanco
Wishbone Ash – Andy Powell
Syrus – Al Berlanga, Michael Vasquez, John Castilleja
Wyzard – John Alvarado, Buster Grant (as Gilbert Grant Guzman in the book)
Wicked Angel – Joseph Valdez (book only lists the singer, validated here)
Cheap Trick – Tom Petersson, Robin Zander, Rick Nielsen
Medieval Steel – John Roth
Winger – Kip Winger, Reb Beach, Rod Morgenstein
Wow. Where to begin.
I love Testament. While I haven’t liked all of their albums, they are one of the best live bands I have ever seen. Friday’s
show was I think the 7th or 8th time I have seen them since 1987 when they opened for Anthrax on the original Legacy Tour.
Let’s go back a little further with Megadeth. I first saw them in 1986 on the Peace Sells tour with Overkill opening up on their Taking Over Tour(!!!). What a night that was! Friday’s show was my 5th(?) time seeing them and I’ve never been disappointed.
So a few months back when this tour was announced, I was pretty excited. Two bands that I love to see live and one that I have never seen, albeit not a major fan of either. While I like Fabulous Disaster and Pleasures of the Flesh a lot, Bonded By Blood and all of their other albums never did a thing for me. But, I was going to get to see them. They are legends, even with only 2 original members left.
When I purchased tickets, there was a meet and greet package available and I figured what the hell, I’ll drop the cash on it. Why not? Either I misread the original advertisement or it was misrepresented when I bought my ticket, but I thought it was for all 3 bands, not just Testament. Don’t get me wrong, Testament are badass dudes and Chuck Billy is nice as hell. I met him in 2000 on The Gathering Tour at Jaxx in Springfield, VA. So yeah, I paid the bucks to meet Testament. Whatever. Early birthday present to myself.
I had to be in line for the meeting before 5pm on Friday and there were a few others ahead of me. I really expected it to be a small crowd of people who bought the special pass but it ended up being about 35 or so. Good for Testament.
Dudes can’t make money on albums anymore, so make it through these kinds of deals and through merch. Good on ‘em!
Met this cool dude from Oklahoma City who saw them the night before in Houston. We hung out most of the show and I lost him during Megadeth.
We get to the backyard part of Stubbs and get herded like cattle through the line to get our shit signed. We were given a poster that the band could sign and most everyone brought other personal stuff. of course I had “the book” with me. As we’re going through the line, Glen Drover signed the poster and I spoke with him briefly about seeing him with King Diamond several years ago and how much I liked the first Eidolon CD. I also saw him with Megadeth 2 years ago. Eric Peterson and Greg Christian were next and I had them both sign their photo in the book. I got the usual reaction, “What the hell is this and where do I find a copy?” Got to Paul Bostaph and had him sign on the Forbidden Evil section. Seems to be a relatively quiet dude. When I got to Chuck, he saw that he had signed it and asked when and where. I told him it was at Jaxx in 2000 and the other guys in the band all said, “Jaxx! Fuckin Jaxx!” It was pretty funny. I told Chuck that my first Testament show was the Legacy Tour at the Boathouse in Norfolk, VA. “We played that place a lot over the years.” Yes, I know. I was there for almost every one of them if not all of them.
Anyhoo, we get herded again to do photos with the band and then a couple of shots with the band and the whole meet and greet group. One cool thing was that we got to get to the merch booth before they let the crowd in. We were able to buy one t-shirt for $10 and one hoodie for $20, as opposed to the $35 and $60 they were priced. I bought one of each.
As we were sitting in the venue waiting for them to let the crowd in, I saw my friend Jay West who is an incredible rock photographer. His brother is the guitar tech for Exodus. Jay worked some magic and got the Exodus page signed by Tom and Gary. Jay grew up in the Bay area and knew those guys when they were still just a local band. Pretty cool.
I live next door to the venue and took my swag and the book back to my place. Didn’t want to lug it around all night. Luckily I know one of the security guys and he let us get right back in the venue without having to wait in the long ass line.
So the crowd gets let in and it’s a sold out show. Austin’s been getting a lot of good metal shows lately. Kreator was last night! I didn’t go.
Exodus hit the stage while the sun was still up and in general they sounded great. I only recognized a handful of songs but their performance was great. As the new singer was introducing the band, he noted that Lee Altus was one of the guitarists. HEATHEN?!?!?! Shit! I should have had him sign the book as well. Dammit. Oh well.
When Testament was getting their drums soundchecked, you could tell that they were having some difficulties. Unfortunately their sound was shitty for the whole show. All you could hear was mostly drums and some semblance of guitars. I could, however, hear Drover’s solos and he sucked. Learn Skolnick’s solos. You’re playing the whole Legacy album…LEARN IT! Overall, They were good, from the best that I could tell.
They never disappoint live.
I ran home to change shoes between bands. Stuffs has an unevenly sloped gravel floor and it was killing my feet, knees
Megadeth hits the stage and were great. Mustaine is a guitar god. Love him or hate him he’s a badass when it comes to guitar riffs. I’m in the minority, though, in that I never cared for Rust In Peace or anything else from the Friedman era. He bored me with Megadeth and Nick Menza’s drumming was the most boring. Shawn Drover did a good job imitating it but sounded great on the other Megadeth stuff. Dave Ellefson just returned to the band and was great. I’m such a fanboy. Chris Broderick’s solos were spot on as well. Of course I would like to have heard more from Peace Sells, Killing is My Business and So Far So Good So What, but there just wasn’t time. Megadeth delivered again, though. Love em! They also played a song from the new album that Dave stated had not been played live before that night. Sweet! The new album is great. Go buy it!
Apparently after the show the Testament and Exodus guys were hanging out at Headhunters with my pal Billy Milano. Had I know they were there I would have grabbed the book and got Altus’ signature in it. I LOVE Heathen’s first 2 albums. Oh well, hopefully they’ll come back again.
It was a great show and a fun night altogether. Shows like this bring everyone out. Ran into Rodney from Devastation which is always cool. I was really glad that testament was able to do more than 25 minutes like the last time I saw them.
In My Darkest Hour
Skin O’ My Teeth
Holy Wars… The Punishment Due
Take No Prisoners
Poison Was the Cure
Tornado of Souls
Rust in Peace… Polaris
The Right to Go Insane
Symphony Of Destruction
Over the Wall
First Strike Is Deadly
Do or Die
Into the Pit
Souls of Black
Alone In The Dark
Bonded By Blood
Children of a Worthless God
War Is My Shepherd
Strike Of The Beast
The Toxic Waltz
I think I got the setlists correct. Someone please let me know if I missed something.