10 Questions with Jimmy Bower of Superjoint

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By Ryan Meehan

(BIO via Earsplit Compound)

On November 12th, Superjoint will release the punishing wares of their new full-length album Caught Up In The Gears Of Application. Captured at Nodferatu’s Lair, the eleven-track offering marks the band’s first new output since 2003’s critically-lauded Lethal Dose Of American Hatred. Produced by Superjoint co-founder Philip H. Anselmo (Down, Pantera, Scour, Arson Anthem etc.) and Stephen Berrigan (Down, Philip H. Anselmo & The Illegals, Eyehategod, Haarp, Classhole, etc.) and mastered by Scott Hull (Agoraphobic Nosebleed, Pig Destroyer) at Visceral Sounds, Caught Up In The Gears Of Application remains true to Superjoint original strategy:  To spew forth an acrimonious crossover of hardcore punk, metal, and unrelenting, hostile, New Orleans-style angst. We are thrilled to have head Superjoint skinbasher Jimmy Bower as our guest today in 10 questions.

RM:  How long did it take to complete this album; and which portion of the recording process was the most satisfying for you as a musician?

JB:  It really didn’t take that long…Two of our members live out of town, so knowing that we went into it – not in a rushed kinda mode – but knowing that we couldn’t fuck around…We really had to buckle down and get it done. And the fact that we hadn’t done anything in over eleven years to me made it that much easier. To me, definitely the writing process of the record is really fun. I tend to get nervous once we start recording, because you’re recording one performance on an album and…I tend to overthink things, so it’s like “Well, we could have played it better” or “We could have sounded more ferocious if we’d have done this” and when you’re making a record you can’t really think like that. You know what I mean?

RM:  For sure…This is the first record the band has put out in well over a decade…Was there ever any point over the past 13 years when you doubted whether or not we would see a new Superjoint record? Why or why not?

JB:  Totally, dude. Up until about two or three years ago we weren’t even gonna do the band again. It wasn’t until Corey Mitchell (Rest in Peace) who was the Housecore Festival organizer had the idea and he was like “Dude, what if we had Superjoint play?” So that kinda got the ball rolling…and here we are. But before that there was absolutely no thought of ever doing this band again. So thanks goes to Corey Mitchell.

RM:  In a recent press release, you said “The minute we started writing, I knew this record was going to be brutal”…I was listening to A Lethal Dose of American Hatred at work the other day when I read that quote, so I feel like I have to ask:  How the fuck did you guys go about approaching the idea of taking that brutality to the next level on “Caught Up In The Gears of Application”?

JB:  “Lethal Dose of American Hatred” is actually my least favorite Superjoint record. I like the first one…me and Phil have talked about it a lot. Like “Let’s try and make the new one in the vein of the first record” because the first one was more spontaneous, it was a brand new band…To me on “Lethal Dose” it got a little more technical. And that happens with bands, you know…But we we talked about concentrating more on the first record and trying to get that old hardcore style back. And what I think we came up with was a pretty good mixture of a little of that element – it’s a completely different band, and you can hear it too. It still sounds like Superjoint, but it’s definitely taking a newer direction within the songwriting process.

RM:  How did Phil come up with the name for the LP; and what does the title suggest?

JB:  “Caught up in the Gears of Application” is basically…I take it as being caught up in the bullshit of society. Cell phones, emails, just being caught up in that trap – everybody’s got a damn cell phone in their hand…I’m almost 50 years old so when I grew up there were no cell phones, you had to find other shit to do. I mean, you didn’t have to find shit to do, there was other shit to do. Now everybody’s got their fucking face in a phone all day. It’s just real weird man, it just seems like everybody’s going backwards you know? But Phil came up with the title – he comes up with all of the titles for the songs and everything like that as well. He might give you a give you a completely different interpretation.

RM:  What is the most metal artifact that can found at Nodferatu’s Lair; and what are some of the things which make those rooms such a great place to record?

JB:  Hmmm…I’m trying to think, man. There’s like a bunch of different posters that are really cool. There’s a picture…it’s funny because when I first started playing drums I used to hang out with this dude named Mark. I used to go over to his house and play drums and we’d put our drum kits together – I was like 14 or 15 years old – and it turns out that when Phil moved back to Texas he bought that house. So there’s a big picture in a frame there of me playing drums in the house that he would later buy. Kind of a weird coincidence, now whether that’s the most metal artifact I have no idea. It’s just a really good vibe there as far as being able to…I mean, (Phil’s) house is on 18 acres of land so you go over there and if you want to walk away and just go take a walk in the woods…It’s not like being at a studio in the city or something, it’s actually got a vibe to it and we definitely use that to our advantage. Because a lot of studios are either in the city or around a bunch of other shit and it’s kinda hard to put all that aside. Out there it’s just out in the country, so it’s just really cool.

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RM:  It seems like nowadays with Facebook and other social media sites that some of these metal publications are really fiending for any questionable soundbite or video clips of any big name artist, trying desperately to stir the pot…Does it ever concern you that some of these sites like Blabbermouth are trying to turn the day-to-day exchanges between metal musicians and the media into sort of a TMZ-like tabloid experience? Is there any material on the new album which addresses shit like that which makes most of us die hard metal fans want to fucking pull our hair out?

JB:  Yeah, I think there’s a lot on the album that addresses that. This dude who runs Blabbermouth…I used to talk to him every day on the phone in the nineties. He used to work for Century Media, and he was a fuckin’ gossip hound back then. So it just makes sense that he runs that. I try not to pay any attention to those sites…it’s not like a fuckin’ paper mag, man. I guess they can kinda sit back where they are and kinda be that keyboard warrior without any repercussions. It’s stupid. It’s got nothin’ to do with music, man. It’s weird with all of this social media and everything…everybody talks about music – not too much, because that’s a bad thing to say – but tries to figure it out too much. There should be more concerts, there should be more people going to shows and interacting with other people face to face. That’s how I grew up here:  The scene in New Orleans was really beneficial for somebody that was into music. You’d go to a show and it wasn’t just the show, it was hanging out with everybody, talkin’ to ’em, finding out what bands they were into…because back then there was no internet. So you’d talk like “Dude I heard about this band from Texas you gotta check ’em out!” you know…There was a sense of excitement about it and it just seems like that’s kinda died out. At least for old fucks like us.

RM:  Returning to the record, one of the things that has made Superjoint so memorable in the past is the ability to really shake things up with regards to tempo and dynamics…Obviously as someone who has also played drums quite extensively for some time, you have a great sense of control when it comes to when those changes need to happen…Is that something you really want to bust out as much as possible when writing a song, or do you guys tend to just write based on the overall flow of each individual riff and let the feel of the hook take you to the song’s completion?

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JB:  That’s a great question, man…great question. We call ’em “drops”. Drops to me happen in so many different forms. You can either build up to ’em or you can have ’em abruptly happen or whatever. And of course, if you write songs with those elements in ’em of course you’re gonna be conscious of it to the point where it’s being discussed. It’s without a doubt discussed and taken into massive consideration. That’s a cool question, man.

RM:  What is the biggest difference between playing live shows in this day and age compared to doing so twenty years back? What – if anything – do you miss about doing shows that took place in the early to mid-nineties?

JB:  I guess the only difference for me is the physical aspect of it. I’m older and it’s not as easy to go nuts per se as I could when I was 25 or 26 years old. To me, live shows are still the same. You show up…The only difference is people got fuckin’ cell phones recording everything, takin’ pictures and stuff like that. Which bums me out, but I don’t really do or say anything about it because if that’s the way they wanna have their experience at a concert, so be it. When I was a kid, we just fuckin’ soaked everything up and it was like “Dude, they’re right there. They’re right there and they’re jammin’” and all of the attention was on them. No face in a cell phone or all that. But I think live shows are – as far as playing the shows – pretty much the same. I think they’re very important, man.

RM:  Let’s say that we were doing this interview in person and you felt it wasn’t going well…If you had to smack me over the head with one album that isn’t your new one to knock some metal sense into me, which record would you select and what makes that so release so abrasive that you would feel the need to hit me with it?

JB:  I guess like an old Black Flag or Sabbath record or something. I would never smack anybody over the head, I’d rather just tell you to shut up and let’s jam some tunes or whatever. Old Black Flag dude, you can’t beat that man. The music is just so violent and…That’s kinda what we try and go for with Superjoint is that massively violent car accident sound.

RM:  Where does Down currently sit at the moment? Is that something that those of you who are in the band don’t really feel like you need to address either because the time isn’t right or projects like Superjoint are front and center of your musical output?

JB:  Well you’ve got Pepper, who’s doing Corrosion of Conformity right now. They’re doing a record, and obviously we just did the Superjoint record. Bobby does Honky and Pat is doing this band with Pinkus from Honky called Pure Luck…it’s a country band, and I’ve been workin’ on my solo record. Down is one of those bands that…it is a side project, so sometimes it doesn’t get 100% full attention and that’s what’s happening right now. We have two more EPs to come out in the set of the four, so hopefully starting next year we’re going to get down to starting to write on that because I think a lot of Down fans – and a lot of other people – really dig Down. One thing we learned between NOLA and the second record is the amount of time we took in between records…Being a fan of music myself, it’s not fair to the fans to disconnect yourself from it for that long. So, hopefully soon!

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RM:  If you had to sum up your group of friends within the New Orleans music community in one sentence on less, how would that passage read?

JB:  We’re all sluts for music. It’s true, everybody in New Orleans…There’s like ten people in the scene that all jam with each other.  So it’s like…everybody kinda cheats on their band, but it’s cool. That’s just talkin’ about my friends…constantly starting different projects, jammin’, gettin’ together and stuff like that.

RM:  What’s up next for yourself and the rest of the band in the remainder of 2016 and beyond? Anything big in the works that we should know about? You mentioned your solo album…

JB:  Yeah, I’m working on that at a snail’s pace, man. But I am workin’ on it…The Superjoint record comes out on the eleventh, I’m gonna try to figure out what to get my daughter for Christmas and that’s about it. We’ve got one Superjoint show on the twelfth in Dallas and we start touring in January, so 2017 looks to be a high point for us – getting back out there and getting busy – and hopefully another Eyehategod record, too. And then like I said, hopefully new material with Down and getting another EP released with them as well.

Housecore Records Official Website:  http://www.thehousecorerecords.com/

Superjoint on Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/Superjoint-7066758901/

Housecore Records on Twitter:  https://twitter.com/housecore_press

Once again thanks for visiting First Order Historians and enjoying more of the internet’s finest in user generated content.

Meehan

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10 Questions with Ryan Clackner and Lucy Cochran of Stump Tail Dolly

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by Ryan Meehan

Ryan Clackner and Lucy Cochran (sometimes separately, sometimes together) have toured, performed or recorded with Bob Wayne, Fifth on the Floor, Shooter Jennings, JD Wilkes, The Legendary Shack Shakers, Sarah Gayle Meech, Red Simpson, Travis Harris and many others. They’ve opened for Social Distortion, Tiger Army, Hank III, George Thorogood, Unknown Hinson, Roger Clyne, JJ Grey, Scott Biram and more. Ryan has appeared in multiple music videos, including “Hush Hush” by The Pistol Annies. The purpose of Stump Tail Dolly is to mess your head up with an off-center mix of metal and country with other influences snuck in for good measure. They’ll be performing at Awesometown in Fulton, Illinois on Sunday October 9th and we are thrilled to have Ryan Clackner and Lucy Cochran of Stump Tail Dolly as our guest today in 10 questions.  Continue reading

10 Questions with Lauren Carter

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10 Questions with Lauren Carter

by Ryan Meehan

Lauren Carter is an award-winning singer and songwriter based in Los Angeles. A resonant vocalist with a three-octave range, Carter creates a focused yet eclectic sound. Her music is a fusion of dreamy pop and rock that evokes a hypnotic feel while establishing a powerful edge. Currently Lauren is preparing for the release of her debut EP “American Dream”. The title track was co-written and produced by Andrew Williams, known for his work with artists ranging from T-Bone Burnett to Jessica Simpson, while lead single “Rulebreaker” is a piano-driven pop song co-written and produced by longtime Ludacris collaborator Josh ‘IGLOO’ Monroy. Earlier this year Carter received sync licensing placement for a VW Radio Campaign, and is debuting at Hotel Cafe on Saturday, September 24, 2016. Lauren is also an actress, model, and philanthropist. Her modeling credits Sports Illustrated, Maxim, GQ and more. She has appeared on stage and screen internationally, including working with Oscar-winning director Robert Altman. Armed with a powerful voice and illuminating collection of songs, Lauren has had a breakout year with the release of “American Dream”. I am honored to have the very lovely Lauren Carter as my guest today in 10 questions.

RM:  What is your earliest memory of singing in front of a live audience? Was there anything really special which happened in the moment that drew you to musical performance, or did it take a little while for you to become enamored with the concept of the art form?

LC: My earliest memory of singing in front of a live audience…I think is probably my third grade talent show. I think what happened was it really encouraged me to be known as a ‘good singer’ or as someone with a ‘good voice’ and that really became part of my identity and helped me stand out and figure out what I should do with my life, from an early age.

RM:  What other avenues did you pursue within the entertainment field during your formative years of educational development? If you could go back to any point in time between the ages of eighteen and twenty-four and do one thing differently, what would it be and why do you think it would have been beneficial to what you are accomplishing today?

LC:  I studied dance from age 2, acting from age 5, piano from age 5, and singing from age 9! I guess I was the standard ‘triple threat’, and I’m grateful to my parents for all those lessons! If I could go back and do anything over – – maybe in college I would have started recording demos and started songwriting earlier? I guess? Because I was training as an opera singer, mainly, which I have veered away from, and I’m now more into the craft of songwriting and recording as well as just singing. However, I loved my conservatory training and studying the history of Western music. It sticks with me today and gave me an understanding of the language of music. It’s all relevant.

RM:  When did writing and creating music become the central focus of your career, considering that you had put so much energy into modeling and acting up until that point? Was it something that slowly developed over the course of time, or was there an exact moment when you knew you identified as a musician above all else?

LC:  In the past three years, I turned my focus more completely to music. I quit my last commercial agency – I just didn’t care to spend all that time being available for auditions anymore. I was working a lot in the London market, and when I relocated back to LA, I went to auditions for a while and a combination of necessity and desire made me refocus on music and let go of the pursuit of acting because I really just can’t be bothered anymore to invest time in auditions, and spent that time instead in the studio where I feel more rewarded and get to craft things that are more my own, anyway.

RM:  Where did the concept for “Rulebreaker” originate? Is the idea of not subscribing to any set of guidelines within your personal life something that is a common theme in your lyrical content?

LC:  Well, the rule breaker in the song is the errant lover – The guy in this case. But, it’s a song about individuality and independence also, and I haven’t shot the video yet but it’s going to celebrate being part of an artistic crew of friends in LA and being fulfilled without a relationship, and getting by with your friends and colleagues and your art – and although I am a relationship person, I do celebrate that, and am pretty independent and go against the grain a little bit.

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RM:  What did you hope to do differently on your new single “American Dream” that you felt you hadn’t previously done on prior songs?

LC:  I’m not sure. I just love that song and am really happy with how it turned out, and feel it is the most ‘me’ I have accomplished yet as a songwriter and in how it reflects my vocal style.

RM:  How would you define the idea of the “American Dream” in the United States today in 2016; and in what ways do you feel that you have achieved it according to your individual specifications?

LC:  The American Dream I’m writing about in the song is the ideal of the rock ‘n roll dream, of the pursuit of fame, which so much of American life and culture is obsessed with and idolizes. I personally am very inspired by things like Andy Warhol, the 60’s, and also the 90’s and the icons – tragic or not – from that era. I love the sort of  – canon – of idols of rock ‘n roll and fame in this country. They’re our royalty. Today we have the Kardashians, et cetera. They are the current American Dream, and I’m no Kardashian basher as I find them fascinating, I may just not be that into their specific aesthetic.  They are an interesting phenomenon and represent a new form of the American Dream. Still, fully wrapped up in the Andy Warhol 15 minutes of fame, really. At the same time, an artist whose aesthetic I love – Lana del Rey, well, as far as I know she really became viral and that’s how she broke, and it’s because her style and vision and talent were so worth it, and she had the means to pursue it, I think – – and you have Kardashian and Lana del Rey – two people who invoke very different styles but represent the current American Dream of fame. And as a side note, Lana sang at Kim’s wedding.

Anyway…The song is about that dream, and about burning the candle at both ends. If you go back to the punk era, and through into the 90’s we have a million tragic stories about people who LIVED for their dream and that’s kind of a rock n roll ideal, it’s also an American ideal – because we have the right to pursue our own individual dream, expression, and freedom -it’s uniquely American really. It’s a love letter to that romantic ideal – so obviously, that ideal is often doomed – -but it’s also quite American to live and die for your own right to expression and your own pursuit of happiness – –  and that’s why the song is melancholy and has a twinge of, I guess irony? It’s obviously not just a happy ‘wow American Dream’ song – I guess if you really read the lyrics you’ll get some more of the subtle references to invoking I would say, the ‘patron saints’ of the rock and roll / fame / history – – I don’t name names, but I do reference the Chelsea Hotel and I guess you just have to listen and make your own inferences. I don’t like lyrics to be over analyzed or too specific, so I don’t want to spell it out. But the song to me is about a specific ‘American Dream’ but it applies to all kinds of references to the American Dream including more political – – – there’s a melancholy like, the dream is still here and the same at its core, but also no longer innocent. Maybe that’s it. Rather than getting super specific: it has melancholy, nostalgia, and it also has a sincere message. I definitely, personally, believe in this country and believe in the pursuit and power of being an artist – so I’m certainly into these ideals – but I think there is a nostalgia of all that’s happened and all that is yet to happen – it’s not a flawless dream.  However, more than political I’m referring to the American Dream of two things: a more personal romantic love (it is a love song) and a love affair with fame. More than making a really political statement, but it’s in there, too.

RM:  The is a certain somber feeling to both of the aforementioned cuts even though there is a great sense of movement going on there…Do you have any intention of doing any tracks in the future that might be a little more upbeat and would fall into the genres of club or EDM, or is that not something that you’re particularly concerned with at the moment?

LC:  I’m not so much someone who would write a totally upbeat song that has no nostalgia or irony, however – never say never. I love upbeat up tempo stuff I’m just not sure about straight up EDM for me.

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RM:  As a songwriter, at what times do you feel like you are most likely to reach out and develop a single idea into an actual structure? What is your favorite part of brainstorming when it comes to that aspect of the process?

LC:  It varies. Sometimes I just sit at the keyboard and mess around until I like how something sounds, and build from there. Other times I start with an inspiration from a groove and chord progression I like and improvise on top of that – I don’t ever pre-meditate lyrics. They come once I’m messing around on top of the chords and rhythms. I don’t start with lyrics and melody – almost never. And once I start I figure out what I want to say and build it from there, in a more analytical way. Then of course I’m thinking of things that go with the message, what rhymes, what I want to say, but initially I think it’s very subconscious and free form. I love that part of the process. Pulling a full concept from thin air and then piecing it together – that’s how I feel it works for me.

RM:  What can you tell us about some of the producers and songwriters you’ve worked with up to this point? How are each of those individuals able to extrapolate on your abilities and allow for you to grow as an artist while perfecting the task at hand?

LC:  Andrew Williams in particular understands my direction and the cultural references I like to use, but everyone brings something. Every collaboration is cool and unique and I like everyone I’ve worked with. I guess at this point in my career, I’ve been trying out different relationships and seeing who sticks and where I can go with them. And then going down whichever paths arise.

RM:  What do we need to know about Ender Legard and their current line of products? How did you end up getting sponsored by them; and in what ways have they been able to support your career as a musician?

LC:  Ender Legard is a fabulous high end corsetry designer, whom I discovered online at www.net-a-porter.com. I approached them and they liked my work, and were willing to send me some pieces for my video and photo shoots. It’s a small European boutique, but quite amazing work. I think the founder used to tailor for Margaret Thatcher – which you can imagine is a pretty posh assignment. So, it just is a brand that espouses amazing British tailoring, of which I’m a huge fan, and beautifully made corsets – I love their pieces.  They shoot beautifully as a stand alone piece, I mean you can wear this piece as a top, in the evening, but they also are quite popular with brides because they form an amazing foundation to a dress and give a lot of shape, and one of their specialties is a plunging neckline or a plunging back – good stuff. I love them – check them out.

RM:  You’re an avid supporter of arts education in schools…Let say for the sake of discussion that I am a fairly conservative individual and tell you I think that music and arts is a waste of money…In that hypothetical situation, how would you go about telling me that I’m mistaken in that assumption? What would be a personal example from your own life that you would cite to make your case?

LC:  Ok, ‘conservative man!’ (laughs) – Art is an integral part of society. There is no question it has value and will continue to be valued.  Music education sharpens brain pathways, and is a universal language that by the way, is increasingly more accessible as a career path to anyone who knows the basics and has some software; creating theatre creates confidence, communication skills, and team players…story telling is an integral part of any community.  Visual arts are a universal language and part of every day life – the truth is creative careers are abundant now in the internet age.  These are skills that matter, and that hold value.  And they lead to viable careers so – ‘conservative guy’ shut up 🙂 Just kidding. Even if you don’t go on to play with the Vienna Orchestra or come to Hollywood to work on a TV crew, there are many avenues for creatives in today’s job market – perhaps combined with some tech skills – being creative is easier than ever.

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RM:  Do you think most people who claim to have a negative attitude towards pop music feel that way because they genuinely dislike it, or because they feel some kind of pressure from their peers to not take it seriously? What are some things that the industry of pop music is doing correctly that the average entertainment consumer doesn’t necessarily give it credit for?

LC:  I don’t know. I really can’t speak for other people, and don’t judge them. (laughs) I mean, I enjoy pop music. I enjoy hip hop. I just don’t really work in either genre, but I like quality versions of ALL music – OK except for canned, cheesy country – sorry. That’s just too removed, for me personally, from my aesthetic and my world view. However give me some cool retro country-ish stuff and I’m in. But I think if someone says they dislike pop music they usually mean they dislike the predictability of the chords, structure, melody, and maybe find some of the voices annoying.  I know I do. That’s why I do like the new infusion of R&B into pop – we’re getting some better singers and more style and soul and less high pitched belty whiny attack – sorry not a huge fan of that – and overly saccharine and predictable songs – although I think someone is lying if they say they hate all pop music.  That’s just not possible. Is Michael Jackson considered pop? I mean, who doesn’t like Michael Jackson?

RM:  What’s up for you in the remainder of 2016 and beyond?  Anything else big in the works that we should know about?

LC:  Lots! I have my debut headlining show with my band at Hotel Cafe, which I’m very proud to do on Saturday, September 24th, 9:30 pm. I’m finishing the music video for ‘American Dream’ and working on other videos. I’m also involved in a fashion line, called A Summer of Love. Please follow us on Instagram. We’re launching in a matter of weeks and it’s a project that is tied into my music, also. Thanks so much, Ryan!

Official Website:  http://laurencarteronline.com/

Lauren Carter on Soundcloud:  https://soundcloud.com/lauren-carter-8

Lauren on Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/lauren.carter.792740

Lauren on Twitter:  https://twitter.com/hilaurencarter

Once again thanks for visiting First Order Historians and enjoying more of the internet’s finest in user generated content.

Meehan

 

10 Questions with Debbie Gibson

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Photo courtesy of RayGarciaPhotography.com

by Ryan Meehan

For more than 25 years, Debbie Gibson has proven she’s an entertainer of immeasurable talent. From singer, songwriter and musician to actress and dancer, she embodies what it truly means to be an entertainer. A music prodigy, Gibson exploded on the Billboard Pop Charts at the tender age of 16 with the self-penned “Only In My Dreams.” The “Original Pop Princess” quickly became the youngest artist ever to write, produce and perform a No. 1 hit song, “Foolish Beat,” and entered the Guinness Book of World Records. To date, she is still the youngest female to hold that record. Gibson has sold more than 16 million albums worldwide, performed for British Royalty and hosted “The American Music Awards,” produced by friend and legend Dick Clark. After conquering the pop world with three consecutive albums and world tours, she set her sights on the theater and starred in 17 musicals in 17 years. Gibson made her mark in the Broadway production of “Les Miserables” as Eponine. She broke box office records in the London West End production of “Grease” as Sandy. She then took the stage in the U.S. Broadway tours of “Grease” as Rizzo and “Funny Girl” as Fanny Brice. Gibson also wowed critics as Belle in Disney’s “Beauty and the Beast,” Gypsy Rose Lee in “Gypsy,” The Narrator in the national tour of “Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat,” Cinderella in the national production of “Cinderella” with Eartha Kitt, Velma Kelly in “Chicago,” and, Sally Bowles in the Broadway revival of “Cabaret” with Neil Patrick Harris. Continuing to dazzle with entertainment magic, Gibson bridged the gap between pop music and Broadway with her one-woman show “Pop Goes Broadway.” Gibson made her debut in the world of orchestration for Dr. Rutledge’s documentary, now available on demand, “3 Billion and Counting,” about Malaria prevention in third world countries. She collaborated on the score and the powerful closing credits song, “Rise,” which was shortlisted for an Academy Award nomination. Gibson then released a new album, “Ms. Vocalist,” from Sony Japan that was top 10 on the Billboard charts. The first single, “I Love You,” hit No. 1 and she headlined a sold out tour. In 2011, Gibson starred with Tiffany in the SyFy hit “Mega Python Vs. Gatoroid,” which led to a joint sold out tour as well as a performance on GMA’s Summer Concert Series. She also appeared in Katy Perry’s hit music video for “Last Friday Night (TGIF).” As a spokesperson for Children International, she spent time in impoverished villages in Manila. For more than 20 years, she has been a child sponsor and advocate. In 2012, she raised more than $50,000 for Children International on “The Celebrity Apprentice,” and made a cameo in the film “Rock of Ages,” as part of Russell Brand’s Rocker Posse. Gibson starred as a celebrity judge on “Sing Your Face Off,” a music competition show that aired on ABC in the summer of 2014, and joined an esteemed list of musical performers as a 2014 inductee of the Long Island Music Hall of Fame. From No. 1 hits and platinum albums to starring roles on Broadway, film and TV, Gibson is a true entertainer with timeless talent and charisma. She stars in the upcoming Hallmark Channel movie “Summer of Dreams” which premieres Saturday, August 27th at 9 EST/8 CST, and we are ecstatic to have her as our guest today in 10 questions. Continue reading

10 Questions with Johnny Kelly of Danzig

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by Ryan Meehan and Blade Mancano

Prior to 1994, Johnny Kelly was living the dream touring the country as a drum tech for Type O Negative. Their most recent record at the time “Bloody Kisses” would eventually go platinum, but then percussionist Sal Abruscato was about to leave the band and Kelly saw his golden opportunity come to fruition right before his very eyes. Type O Negative went on to sell out massive concert venues worldwide, and Kelly would eventually go on to pursue other musical ventures which would make him one of the most sought after drummers in the heavy metal communities. Aside from doing a brief stint with Black Label Society at the end of their 2011 European tour, Kelly also toured with Seven Witches and two years ago replaced Vinny Appice in Rex Brown’s Kill Devil Hill. But possibly his most challenging task to date would be the decade and a half he’s toured as the chief skin-basher in Danzig, although in the middle of that tenure he would encounter an unexpected loss that would change his life forever. While working on material for the follow-up to Type O Negative ‘s 2007 critically-acclaimed album “Dead Again”, frontman Peter Steele passed away suddenly of heart failure in 2010. Shortly thereafter Johnny and the rest of the members would announce that Type O was no more, but Kelly has remained a very busy man to say the least. We are very honored and humbled to have Johnny Kelly of Danzig as our guest today in 10 questions. Continue reading