Frankie Venom

October 15th marked the anniversary of the death of Frank Kerr, better known as Frankie Venom. He was the lead singer of Teenage Head. This Canadian punk rock band was most popular in Canada during the early 80’s, but never quite garnered attention outside of Canada. To me, Teenage Head was sort of a cross between punk rock, new wave, and 60’s surfer music. The band always seemed to be more radio friendly and upbeat than most punk rock bands. Frankie Venom had a wicked name, an evil look, but always came across as a down to earth, nice guy.

In their hometown of Hamilton, Teenage Head was ripping it up on stage. In 1978 they released their first single, Picture My Face, from the self titled album..

In 1980 Teenage Head released their second album, Frantic City. I would love to review this album, but I don’t think I could say it any better than Deke. So here is a link to his review.

https://superdekes.wordpress.com/2015/07/20/sonic-waves-teenage-headfrantic-city/

Below is a few recorded TV show appearances during those days. The TV announcer is J.D. Roberts(now John Roberts), who was very popular in Canada on such shows as The NewMusic, Toronto Rocks and MuchMusic. He has since gone on to bigger and better things in the USA.

Teenage Head was reaching the height of their popularity in 1980, and they were scheduled to do a free concert at Ontario Place in Toronto. Their songs were hits on the radio, and the band promoters advertised a free show. Thousands of people lined up early, and the venue was full long before the band hit the stage. The police would not let any more people in, and a riot started. A Toronto newspaper book excerpt from events of that day.

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/arts/music/book-excerpt-teenage-head-and-the-day-all-hell-broke-loose/article18920627/

After the second album, Teenage Head was ready to tour the USA, and bring their talents to a bigger audience. Unfortunately, just days before the tour was set to kick off, guitarist Gord Lewis broke his back in a car accident. Here is an interview from those days(featuring J.D. Roberts again).

The third album, Some Kinda Fun also features some great tunes, including the below clip.

In 1982 they were in the movie Class of 1984, featuring a then, unknown named Michael Fox(later known as Michael J Fox). The movie also included I am the Future by Alice Cooper.

In 2014, Tom Wilson (Junkhouse, Blackie and the Rodeo Kings, Lee Harvey Osmond) started a campaign to erect a statue to honour Frankie Venom in Hamilton. This has so far been met with some resistance, due to the late singer’s substance abuse and a conviction for assault. In my opinion, if the funds are not public funds, the statue should be made. He best represents the blue collar city, and was possibly the most famous musician from Hamilton.

http://o.canada.com/entertainment/music/teenage-head-frankie-venom-statue-Hamilton

There is a book about Teenage Head entitled Gods of the Hammer that I do not have, but I intend to purchase it soon.

A tribute song to Frankie Venom.

A tribute to the band by a fan on youtube.

Even though the band has continued on since his death, I will always think of Frankie Venom as the face of Teenage Head. We miss you Frankie. RIP.

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“Bush Party Tonight”

Munenori Kawasaki, the backup infielder for the Toronto Blue Jays, is a fan favourite. His English is limited, but he always seems to say the right things. He is one of those players that brings energy and fun into the game. He is always joking around, and the reporters always want to speak to him.

In 2013 he snuck in with the reporters and asked his team mate, Esmil Rogers a question. The reaction from Rogers proves how important it is to have fun while playing sports.

Here he tells a reporter a joke.

Here is a clip of just a few of his funny moments

After the Toronto blue Jays got into the MLB playoffs for the first time in 22 years, Kawasaki spoke those infamous words.

The Blue Jays have been on a tear this year.

They lost the first 2 games at home, and then won the next 2, must win games in Texas to shift the series home to Toronto for the final, and deciding game.

Tonight the Blue Jays pulled off an almost impossible feat. They became only the third team in history to lose the first 2 games in a MLB playoff series at home, and then win the next 3 to win the series. The win came after the craziest inning of baseball I have ever seen. 58 minutes long!! An error by the catcher that caused a run to be scored against the Jays. The pissed off fans did not agree with the call and threw beer cans on the field. (I was embarrassed to be a Blue Jay fan at that moment), 2 bench clearing brawls (luckily no punches thrown), and 3 errors in the bottom half of the inning by the Rangers infield. Crazy inning indeed.

I had a feeling when Bautista was coming up to bat that it was his time. I yelled as loud as I did in 1993 when they won it all. I then cried tears of joy. I have never cried that much over a sporting event.

Let`s see that home run one more time. Turn it up.

Bush Party Tonight. You deserve it.

Happy 67th Birthday Sammy Hagar

So we all know his I Can’t Drive 55 and his stint in Van Halen(Van Hagar?) so I will include some lesser known Sammy songs. Some people hate him because he replaced David Lee Roth in Van Halen. All I can say is I like his music and David Lee Roth`s, so even though haters gonna hate, you have to respect his ability, and his cool, fun-loving attitude.

From the self titled Montrose album(1973)- Bad Motor Scooter

From the Canadian film, Heavy Metal soundtrack(1981), Heavy Metal

I know I mentioned we all know about his stint in Van Hagar. This song was unique as it was done for the Twister soundtrack. This song was the straw that broke the Van Hagar’s back. It was during the time this song was being written that Sammy’s wife was pregnant. He asked the rest of the band to do the song in Hawaii where his wife was about to have a baby. They refused, so Sammy and his wife had to go back to California for the recording of this song. Sammy and Van Halen split after this. This may not be the best Van Hagar songs, but I like it, and is a little more obscure.

Twister soundtrack (1996)- Humans Being

Chickenfoot- Chickenfoot III(2011)- Bitten by the Wolf. This song was only available on the vinyl version. This is a live version.

Sammy Hagar & Friends (2013)- Personal Jesus. Before this research, I had only heard the Depeche Mode and Johnny Cash versions. I think this version is awesome. Heavier than the others. I especially love Neil Schon`s guitar.

Sammy Hagar & Friends (2013)-Winding Down. I had to include this one because it includes Taj Mahal. If you love the blues, you have to respect this 71 year old blues master lay down the licks. He even adds background vocals. I really need to buy this album.

Sammy arriving for the 2nd night of his Birthday Bash 2015 in 900HP race truck. This guy knows how to party. He has a 3 day bash at his bar in Cabo San Lucas, Mexico.

Little White Lie intro, Birthday Bash 2015

Happy Birthday Sammy. Maybe I`ll have a snort of Cabo Wabo in your honour, and one day I will party with you at your Birthday Bash.

A Tribute to AC/DC-2008 Legacy Entertainment Inc.

Back In Black-Joe Lynn Turner, Phil Collen, (uncredited on album cover-Simon Wright, Jeff Pilson) : Right away you will not recognise Phil Collen. This isn’t a Def Leppard song. He is free to roam. This sounds more Malmsteen meets Satriani improv than Def Leppard. It’s a good thing, believe me. The man can shred. This is the first of a few songs on the album that don’t mention Simon Wright. I mean, this is an AC/DC tribute album, and the only person on the album that was ever in the band, is not listed. Ok then. Jeff Pilson does a great job here, holding up his end of the rhythm. The vocals are mastered by Joe Lynn Turner. This isn’t like his Rainbow and Deep Purple stuff. He lowers his voice to a deep, smoky, Brian Johnson-like growl, but it is mixed with an 80’s hairband like wail. It really is a great first song on an album.

Highway To Hell-Angry Samoans : This California punk rock band went through a few phases in their career, and it shows on this song. A mix of punk and hard rock melt together in an enjoyable version.

Walk All Over You-Dee Snider with Scott Ian ( uncredited other Anthrax members Frank Bello and Charlie Benante) : This sounds like a Dee Snider 80’s rocker. It has energy, snarl and basically kicks ass.

You Shook Me All Night Long- Jetboy : This California hairband had its biggest heyday in the 80’s. However, they didn’t reach near the success level of many of their peers. Great guitar work here. A little slower than Angus, but still great. The drums were too slow and not pounding enough for me. They sound muted. The bass was hidden in the track. The vocals were 80’s hairband goodness. This song was both good and bad for me. Maybe the mixing was to blame. If so, too bad.

Thunderstruck-Birmingham 6 : So far we have rock, metal, hairband, and punk. Now we have a Danish Electro-Industrial/EBM band. I mean, when I think of AC/DC, the first thing that pops into my head is Danish Electro-Industrial/EBM bands. Basically, to the non expert in this field, it is as if Kraftwerk and NIN were joining together to cover AC/DC. WTF? Who thought this would work? Starts off with Angus’ guitar replaced by keyboards, but seems kind of catchy. This would be the version that would get the dance club crowd moving. The lyrics have kind of a Trent Reznor meets Lemmy sound. I actually liked this a lot better than I thought I would.

Shake a Leg-John Corabi, Bruce Kulick (uncredited Billy Sheehan, Pat Torpey) : With this line up, this song should kick ass. And it does. The guitar work wails. The bass is thumping. The drums pound. And John Corabi screams. Screams in a good way. His voice is awesome here. Something special about an expert guitar master going nucking futs and a singer screaming with all his might. Realllly good song here.

For Those About To Rock-Godflesh(listed as Goldflesh on album) : Now we have an industrial metal band. What next? This bands style is heavy, dark and dreary. It kind of sounds robotic, but for me just heavy enough to keep my interest. I personally am not into the vocal styles of Justin Briadrick, but the musicianship of the other band members sort of make up for it.

Rock ‘N’ Roll Damnation-Dr. Know : This former California punk band saw its heyday in the 80’s, never gaining the success of some of its counterparts. You thought Bon Scott was wild in concert. I can only imagine how awesome these guys would have been. The entire song feels like it was injected with caffeine and sped up. The playing is frenetic, angry and brash. It is punk rock at its best. I looked with all my might and could not find a link to add to this post. Suffice it to say, if you love punk, you will love this song.

Sin City-Great White : If Joe Lynn Turner’s voice suited Brian Johnson, then Jack Russell’s voice best suits Bon Scott. The recording and mixing on this song are awesome. The bass and drums are loud and crisp. The guitar work is great, and the vocals are well suited to this song. The version I found here is different(not as good in my opinion) as the one on my disc, but you should get the basic idea.

It’s a Long Way To The Top- Lemmy, Jake E. Lee(Simon Wright again uncredited) : This sounds as awesome as it should. The drums are pounding, Jake E Lee is in prime form, and Lemmy is growling and snarling. There are no bagpipes here, but they make up for it with juicy bits. Lemmy has some cool bass licks, Jake E. Lee has roughly 10 million wails and some really cool spots where the guitar abruptly stops, and Simon pounds the shit out of the skins.

Who Made Who-Terminal Sect featuring En Esch (Ex – KMFDM) : My first question is who, featuring who? Good thing they covered Who Made Who. Industrial musicians that were most popular in the 90’s. It kind of has a Depeche Mode meets Marilyn Manson feel to it. Very upbeat and danceable. Kind of a catchy beat that stays in your head.

T.N.T. – Sebastian Bach, Kelly Deal (uncredited Jimmy Flemion, Jimmy Chamberlain. Collectively they were known as The Last Hard men) : This again sounds as awesome as it should. The only 2 things I have to nit pick is the oi sounds like a creepy robot, and there is a constant crackle noise that is barely noticeable, but it is there. It seems to come from the creepy robot noise as well. There are times when it goes away completely, and the song really shines. Sebastian is in peak form here, and he does a good job and echoing his inner Bon Scott. The guitar work is great. The background vocals I may even prefer over the original. It is a great song, only marred a bit by the electronic interference.

In closing, I really enjoyed this album. I would never have guessed that punk, Industrial, metal, rock, and hairband don’t usually go together, but in this case they mesh fairly well. I have to knock off some points for the spelling errors and omissions, but I would recommend this to anyone.

Would have been a 9 so with the subtractions, lets say 8.5/10.