I really wanted to go to a show of any kind. Heavy metal was the answer. I went to see Slaughter and Great White at a tribal casino even though I wasn’t their number one fan back in the day. I do love their ballads, but I grew up listening to KISS, Ozzy, Dio, Dokken, Triumph, Stryper, and so many more. And there were women like Lita Ford and Vixen and I’ll throw in Joan Jett even though she wasn’t heavy metal. Slaughter and Great White were hair bands so I didn’t buy their albums which were then on cassette.
Slaughter’s debut album Stick It to Ya didn’t come out until 1990 with hits like “Up All Night” and “Fly to the Angels”. They formed in Las Vegas in 1988.
Great White formed in Los Angeles in 1977, but I don’t recall hits until much later. They are known for “Save Your Love” and “Rock Me” from the 1987 Once Bitten album. In 1989, they did a cover song by Ian Hunter “Once Bitten, Twice Shy” and another hit they are known for has a bluesy feel is “House of Broken Love” on the … Twice Shy album. I forgot about all the blues music that they incorporated.
On the way to the concert, I saw a cloud I like to call the spaceship cloud. I never thought I’d see one!
Remember I wasn’t a big fan of either group, but I wasn’t not a fan. I just love heavy metal in general. So, for some reason I got it in my head we were going to see Slaughter and Whitesnake. Renaissance Man looked up the concert just before we were to take off and said it’s Great White not Whitesnake. For three weeks I had been listening to Whitesnake, getting ready for the concert. Ugh. So, on the drive there I had to quickly look up Great White to remember what songs they played.
Walking into the concert was like walking back into high school—well not my high school. The kids who followed hair bands were “wannabes.” So, it wasn’t my crowd, but I really wanted to hear some music. It was funny because women were checking out other women to see if they aged well. Ha!
The music was better than I remembered. Both bands were awesome. Slaughter performed first. Mark Slaughter can sing and he is still doing those rocker screams. The guitarist was posing with the neck of the guitar in the air. The drummer was on fire! He reminded me of Animal from the Muppets. He would bang the drums with each stick alternately and move his head in figure eights to get his hair flying. This guy is not slowing down. He even stood, I think on his drums, and motioned for all us old folks to get off our asses and rock out. They performed, “Fly to the Angels” which I loved, but they dragged it out instead of doing it like the original. All the other songs came out perfect. I can’t say enough about how awesome they were.
Then Great White comes out and they have a new singer, Brett Carlisle. He is fantastic! I didn’t know who he was. I thought wow he’s so skinny and has aged well. Okay I was in back and my eyesight gets a little sloppy after being on Twitter. Brett is so sweet. He does air high fives, waves, and I love Rock n’ Roll signs to peeps in the crowd all while making eye contact. And he sings so beautifully. He loves the music and the band. You can tell how important the music is too him. He has no ego and seems appreciative of the gig. He just turned 25 this April and I hope he can keep this band going for 25 more years. I think the band sounds better than before. Well musicians do get better with age if they take care of themselves. I am now a fan of Great White because of this guy. I want to hear all the old songs with his voice. I hope they record him with the old songs.
Renaissance Man leans over and asks in his snarky voice, “Is it all you expected it to be?” He was into punk music growing up. He came to the concert for me and even he liked it. The venue wasn’t great. The casino didn’t have a theatre. They stuck the bands in the bingo room. It wasn’t even as good as my high school gym. The sound guy had the bass up too loud for Slaughter. Even with the issues I still thought the bands were awesome. They are killing it out there.
Now that there is a young guy in Great White, I hope he attracts new fans to heavy metal. I saw maybe a few young people there. Young peeps got to go to heavy metal concerts and rock out with those cane waving ladies. Really someone was wavy their American flag inspired cane. This music will keep you alive and kicking! It’s about being rebellious and living life on your terms!
Copyright 2023 Melissa Crismon
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Aboard a conservation ship, Sarah Sumner has an identity crisis while morphing into a mermaid and fighting whalers at fellow deckhand Gunner’s side. She seeks answers to her mutation, but through her journey, she finds deeper meaning in helping the whales. The MerSea series is an urban fantasy romance filled with action, adventure, and an inspirational, transforming tale.
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