November 10, 2013
Things are starting to heat up here with dates on the horizon for both VOLLMER and HELIX.
VOLLMER plays their first gig two Fridays from now (November 22nd at the Rockpile East in Toronto). Essentially this band (myself, John Claus/guitar, Brian Doerner/drums, and Tom Leonard/bass) is "Helix-lite", which means we play a lot of Helix material with a few covers thrown in for good measure and some lesser known Helix songs in the mix. For instance, we'll be playing "Jaws of the Tiger" to open that night, and we'll be including Rock Candy by Montrose and the Immigrant Song by Zepplin in the set as well. The whole idea behind the band is to play secondary markets in southern Ontario where hotels/promoters might not be able to afford Helix, try out new songs, and give me the opportunity to be singing every weekend. The price of VOLLMER is considerably lower than HELIX, which should be an attractive reason for bar owners to run us for a night. This band is not available for festivals or casinos however. That AIN'T gonna happen.
As for Helix, even though I had wanted to keep the band out of bars from here on in, I was forced to eat my words. The reason for this was quite simply that I needed money to record. Picking up some bar dates will help to pay for the recording, as the bigger prize is getting over to Europe in May/2014. The tour is being put together by No Nonsense Booking, who just finished a successful tour for Harem Scarem over there. They feel that if we had new product to work that there would apt to be more of a chance to get European promoters on board to hire the band. We've done several tours of Europe since our first with KISS in 1983, including two with MOTORHEAD and a headline tour of Sweden where we had a Number 1 album (Long Way to Heaven). This time around we're shooting for a 13 city tour that will include Spain/Germany/England/ & Scandanavia.
The bar dates coming up are going to bring us back to a couple of familiar haunts and a couple of new ones. On December 20th we'll be playing a Christmas show put together by my old friend Brett Davidson. This will be held at the Army & Navy Club in Brantford. Unlike last year where we played a full set of Christmas songs and only two HELIX songs, this year it will be the other way around with a "normal" Helix set with a couple of Christmas songs (especially ALL I WANT FOR CHRISTMAS IS THE LEAFS TO WIN THE CUP" ) thrown in. We'll also be playing two sets that night, on my suggestion. I like the break so that I can come out and chat with people. Sometimes the end of the night isn't as good for a couple of reasons.
The next night (Dec. 21st) we play the Red Dog Salloon in Peterborough. This was the first place we played with Brent when he rejoined the band in 2008. Now we're going back with John Claus and a much different show.
We end off our 2013 year in our hometown of Kitchener, Ontario at the Moose Lodge. This gig is being put together by Robbie Hanes, lead vocalist for the AC/DC clone band Dirty Deeds. This is also a charity for a very worthy cause. Please read below:
New Years Eve is coming and tickets for the show will be available at the Moose Lodge next fri the 15th of nov the show Features HELIX and DIRTY DEEDS with special guests The Lonezome Schoolboys and Rock Patrol tix are $40 in adv $50 @ door proceeds are going to The Desiree Gallagher rehab fund to help with her recovery from the brutal crime she was a victim of
Moose lodge 553 Wabanaki dr 519 893 7112 FOR TIX
On January 11/2014 we kick off the year at Casino New Brunswick in Moncton, New Brunswick. Bernie Aubin, our Canadian agent, is presently looking for other dates to go with this one. Originally we were booked to play Dartmouth at The Parkside Pub when the promoter inexplicably pulled the date. Why we (Bernie Aubin and myself) were so pissed off about this had less to do with the gig falling out and more to due with the fact the promoter strung us along for two weeks telling us the deposit was coming. Why waste our time? But I digress...
Then on Feb. 15th we'll be at Obsessions in Ottawa. I was directed to this club by my old friend Russ Graham of Killer Dwarfs. Russ told me the club really takes care of bands well and are great to deal with. I love hearing that. Makes my life so much easier. Now that the date at Obsessions is confirmed, I'll now be looking for another play to go with the Saturday, possibly in Cornwall, Kingston, or Montreal. Anybody out there?
METAL ON ICE CD AVAILABLE SOON ON PLANET HELIX
This week I've purchased a quantity of METAL ON ICE from Coalition, the management company Sean Kelly works for in Toronto. It contains 6 hit songs by Canadian 80's metal bands and one brand new song (METAL ON ICE) written by Sean and Nick Walsh. The guitars on the songs were recorded by Sean Kelly, the bass by Daryl Gray (except Road to Rock which was played by Victor Langen). The original singers were brought in to re-record the tracks and on Metal on Ice we each took a line or two to sing. The CD by itself is only $9.99+S&H, but I will also be offering Christmas Package Specials which will have this CD included for FREE.
Here's the songlist:
HEAVY METAL LOVE: BRIAN VOLLMER
METAL QUEEN: LEE AARON
ON THE ROAD TO ROCK: NICK WALSH
HEY OPERATOR: CARL DIXON
DON'T IT MAKE YOU FEEL: DARBY MILLS
KEEP THE SPIRIT ALIVE: RUSS GRAHAM
METAL ON ICE: ALL OF THE ABOVE
COUNTRY CLASSIC AUCTION
Last Saturday was the Country Classic Auction to raise money for minimally invasive surgical technologies at the London Sciences Centre. Lynda and I were invited as friends of Dave Southen, a friend of mine that does much charitable work for the hospital. With the help of Sean Kelly, I had gotten a guitar signed by Nelly Furtado to be auctioned off. I also was lucky enough to get the guys from the Sheepdogs to sign some Rolling Stones magazines and pick guards for guitars as well. Nelly's guitar went for close to $1,000.00 and the Sheepdog's stuff for over $450.00. Thankyou to both artists and Dave Southen for their generosity. The night always ends with a "surprise band". This year it was Tom Cochrane.