Best Holiday Ever? Oh yes!

Fancy a holiday on the high seas (do I hear you say Yaaarrrrr!)with a bunch of debauched (and aging) rock stars, who cannot escape your limp clutches because they are shut up on a ship with the audience, then the ‘Monsters of Rock’ cruise is for you!!!!
The below is taken from their website

It all began one special day in August 1980 at Castle Donington, Leicestershire, England…Seven Metal Bands and thousands of rabid fans converged on the soggy turf of Donington Park and became part of rock history as a legendary event was born…the Monsters of Rock!

Fast forward to February 2012…Now you can become part of music history, as the tradition of the Monsters of Rock is reborn, this time in the Bahamas aboard a luxury cruise ship. We proudly announce the Monsters of Rock Cruise, the greatest floating 80’s heritage rock festival to ever sail the seven seas!

It all begins in Fort Lauderdale, FL, sailing from February 25 – 28, 2012 aboard the MSC Poesia, destination Nassau, Bahamas and Key West. This epic event will feature some of the greatest artists of the era, including Cinderella, Tesla, KIX, Stryper, Y & T, Lynch Mob, Firehouse, Black ‘N Blue, Bang Tango, Faster Pussycat, Keel, XYZ, John Corabi and Eric Martin. This is much more than a “Concert Cruise” event…it is fantasy camp for metal fans that will be talked about for many years to come!

The fun will begin the moment you come aboard the beautiful MSC Poesia, meeting new friends poolside during the kickoff Sailaway Concert. This will set the tone for the next 3 days, enjoying a myriad of over the top Special Events, including the Monsters Rock & Roll Prom 1989, “So You Think You Can Shred” Competition, Shotgun Wedding Vow Renewal, Artist Meet & Greets and much, much more.

In addition, you’ll appreciate the inviting Music Venues & Events, featuring our incredible artists on the Main Stage plus the Monster’s Coffee Shop, Back-Alley Stage and the Pool Deck Showcase for partying under the stars! You wont want to miss Eddie Trunk from VH1’s That Metal Show, as he moderates up close and personal Q & As with our artists called Rock ‘N Roll War Stories. Finally, our other celebrity guest, Rock of Love’s “Big John” will always be there to keep the party going…like you needed any more encouragement!!

We are about to rekindle the Spirit of Donington and set the bar at a new level with the Monsters Of Rock Cruise. You simply must be there…see you aboard!

My idea of heaven!!!

Killer Power Ballads

Just a few of my favourite, killer, ultimet, greatest power ballads that never get tireless, and a few that make me want to hurl!
Think POWERPLAYS off 80’s TV show ‘ No Limits!’

Nightranger – Goodbye / Reason To Be
Giuffria – Call To Your Heart
FM – Frozen Heart / Face To Face
Aerosmith – Dont Wanna Miss A Thing
Cheap Trick – The Flame
DSS – If This Is Love
Foreigner – Cold As Ice
Giant – I’ll See You In My Dreams
Kansas  – More Than A Feeling
The Storm – Ive Got a Lot to Learn About Love
House of Lords – Remember My Name
Hugo – Walk Away
Issa – Im Alive
Journey – Mother, Father / Faithfully
Kiss – Forever
Kane Roberts – Does Anybody Really Fall In Love Anymore
Khymera – Beautiful Life
Los Angeles – I Must Be Blind
Loud And Clear –  Doesent Anybody Fall In Love Anymore
Mark Free – Someday
Michael Bolton – Save Our Love
Mitch Malloy – Anything At All
MTB – Cant Miss
Eddie Money – Walk On Water
Mr.Big – Big Love
Jeff Paris / MTB – Never Stop Falling
Malmsteen –  Heaven Tonight
Nelson – (Cant Live Without Your) Love and Affection
On The Rise – Beat Of Your Heart
Only Child – Always
Phil Cristian Big Mouth – Where Were You
Rainbow – Street Of Dreams
Red Dawn – I’ll Be There
Rick Springfield – Jessies Girl
Romeos Daughter – I Cry Myself To Sleep At Night / Nothing But Love
Sam Harris – Id Do It All Again
Paul Sabu – Call Of The Wild
Saraya – Love Has Taken Its Toll
Shout – Never Stop
Signal – Wake Up You Little Fool
Stan Bush – The Power / Love Dont Lie
Steve Perry – Oh Sherrie
Strangeways – Dance With Somebody
Styx – Babe / Lady
Survivor – High On You / Cant Hold Back / Is This Love
Jefferson Starship – Jane
Tommy Shaw – Girls With Guns
Tony Macalpine – The World We Live In
Tyketto – Standing Alone
Unruly Child – To Be Your Everything
Valentine – Tears In The Night
Walk On Fire – Blind Faith
White Lion – Wait /  Broken Heart
White Sister – Save Me Tonight
Winger – Miles Away

And a few I wouldnt care if I never heard them again…..
Scorpions – Winds Of Change
Poison – Every Rose Has its Thorn
GNR – November Rain
Stryper – All of their ballads!
And almost anything put on a ‘Power Ballads’ album for the mass market

Dream Theater Drummer – And the winner is……..(if you can’t wait to watch an hours worth of Youtube footage)

…..former Extreme drummer Mike Mangini has replaced Mike Portnoy in Dream Theater following a three-day audition process in New York.

Portnoy quit the band last summer, but guitarist John Petrucci is thrilled with the new addition.
He states, “The departure of our lifelong bandmate and friend was an unexpected and truly heartbreaking blow… but when we played with the infectiously positive powerhouse of a drummer that is Mike Mangini, we knew we had found a silver lining to what has been, by far, the most challenging episode in our musical lives.”
Singer James LaBrie adds, “I had the privilege of working with Mike on three of my solo albums, so I knew he would be a huge contender. He is without a doubt one of the most intelligent, intuitive, interpretive and virtuosic musicians I have ever played with.”

Mangini has joined the band in the studio to work on a new album and the group will head off on a world tour in July

If you have wathched with interest (like me) you’ll all have had your favourites. I myself called this one correct after watching episode 1, such was the response from the DT guys. However as the try-outs progressed, I would have been really happy if Peter Wildoer would have landed the drum seat. He looked like a guy who could take DT onto a different level. Marco Minnemann also excelled and either would have been a great choice for the band. In saying that, all of the drummers who tried out, were excellent. All brought their own bit of magic to the band, and were unlucky not to get the position

Portnoy is a big pair of shoes to fill. It seems that Mangini will fit in well. Last time I saw DT on the Prog tour with Opeth and Bigelf, they really looked like 5 guys who couldnt wait to see the back of each other. I look forward to seeing them on their return to the UK in the Summer to witness the new line up. I hope it works out well and doesnt fall apart at the seams anytime soon

Mangini gets the news he’s been waiting for !!!!

Dream Theater Drummer Update – Part 1 (aka American ‘Drum’ Idol)

Today sees the start of an epic journey with DREAM THEATER. Part one of an intimate look at the band’s search for a replacement for their infamous stixmen Mike Portnoy has launched today. Head on over to hear from the band how the news of Mike’s departure was broken to the band and the start of the process to find someone who not only has the technical ability to play the Dream Theater back catalogue but who also has right chemistry with the remaining members.

American Idol -I’m Guilty as Charged!

Considering that every fibre in my body is saying ‘dont do it Chesy’, Ive been an avid watcher of AI since Season 5 (Winner, Taylor Hicks), and I dont think I have missed a single episode since. Yes there have been some extremely good and bad & ugly moments, and despite the contrary I have kept an eye out for albums by some good artists (if you can ever call a Cowell/Lythgoe act an artiste), notably Chris Daughtry, a Season 5 fourth placed Idol, Adam Lambert, S8 runner-up to Kris Allen, and Crystal Bowersox, the S9 runner up to Lee DeWyse. For your info, one of the bad and ugly was Sanjaya Malakar, who was kept in the competition purely down to his different weekly hairstyles – I shit you not!

Anywho, my reason for this short opinionated blug is to state that this years judges – Randy Jackson, Jennifer Lopez, and the ‘absolutely entertaining in his own right’ Steven Tyler have picked the strongest set of contestents in the last 10 seasons. In fact any one of the top 10 could win the competition. From the ‘One Trick Pony’ stylings of Scotty McCreery (every week is country week!), to the Luther Vandross-like Jacob ‘Diva’ Lusk, Haley Reinhart, a Janis Joplin style singer, and the double bass playing Casey Abrams (the only contestant to be voted back in by the judges after his elimination by the SFB – thats shit for brains – voting public of America). My tip? The absolutely bonkers, but extremely talented James Durbin. A tourettes wielding Metal Head trying to bring back Metal to the masses all on his own in the US of A

So far, we have been treated to Sammy Hagar’s ‘Heavy Metal’ (feat. Zakk Wylde); Muse’s ‘Uprising’, Stevie Wonder’s ‘Living For The City’,   Bon Jovi’s ‘I’ll Be There For You’, and Judas Priest’s ‘You’ve Got Another Thing Comin” to name but a few.

He has a range that most rock vocalists would give one of their nuts for – In Durbin’s case, he already sounds like he has. Except for the week he kept it understated on ‘While My Guitar Gently Weeps’, each week he has tried to up the stakes both vocally and visually

Whether he wins or not remains to be seen, but I’m certain the bloke will be making a shitload of money and will be a household name sometime soon. Rest assured he will shift more units than the overall winner. I for one hopes he makes the final week as Tyler has promised him a duet should he get there. Vote Durbin, America!