“Skum Rocks!” to Premiere at Colony Theatre March 5th to Benefit CHARLEE

Miami Premiere Flyer

On Thursday March 5th, the long awaited World Premiere of “Skum Rocks!” narrated by Alice Cooper will finally screen for the fans!  In what Michael Wench has called ‘the most important rock and roll film of the past thirty years,” “Skum Rocks!” will unleash its stark look at one of the most controversial bands of  the past forty years.

The night, all to benefit CHARLEE of Dade County will bring the stars out in Miami.

With an old Hollywood style premiere, complete with celebrities, red carpet, spotlights and limos will give Miami a night to remember. “What they are doing here is really amazing,” said film director Clay Westervelt. “This film deserves a large premiere, just the scope of the celebrities in this film is astounding and to launch this massive project and doing something great for CHARLEE, well, to me thats just what this band is all about.”

“CHARLEE has been serving children and families in Miami-Dade County for almost 32 years.  We are extremely grateful that CHARLEE was chosen as the beneficiary of the Skum Rocks premiere and after party,” said Executive Director Suzy Schumer.  “The funds raised from the event will allow us to continue to provide vital services in our community..”

The film premiere and red carpet will be at the Colony Theatre on Lincoln Road with the after party concert at Miami’s Grand Central.

“We wanted to do something for the city which has embraced this band.” said rhythm bassist Todd Middlebrook. “This city is like a second home to me and this just feels good to do.”

In typical Skum fashion, the after party will be over the top with Quiet Riot and Eddie Money  on stage with Skum as well as special guest The Urge. “This will be the homecoming people will be talking about for years, to finally show this story and play on stage with the likes of Eddie and QUIET RIOT. You can make this up,” said lead bassist Pat Burke.

“Charity is a passion of mine,” said Guitarist John Eaton. “To do this event and have this all benefit CHARLEE, who is not going to go to a classic time and hear some great rock and roll. Anyone who knows us will be there to show the country what this city can do for this great cause.”

 

Ten Must-Hear Albums for 2015

 

January 6, 2015—-by Michael Wench

With new releases from iconic bands like U2 and Fleetwood Mac, legendary performers like Madonna, and resurrected rockers like Skum, 2015 is shaping up to be an interesting year for new album releases. Here are my top picks for must-have music in the coming year that offers up a little something for everybody.

1. Mark Ronson — Uptown Special (Jan) The British producer/songwriter has been working on this follow-up to his 2010 Record Collection since 2013, and it features the unique genre-bending for which he is known. One of the tracks, Uptown Funk, with guest vocals from Bruno Mars, has been at the top of the charts since its November release, and the album itself is sure to follow.

 2. Imagine Dragons — Smoke and Mirrors (Feb) This Las Vegas alternative rock quartet hopes to match the success of its 2012 album, Night Visions, and there are good reasons to believe it will.  Rumor has it the music will be less hip-hop influenced and more rock driven, with cultural influences inspired by their recent world tour.  Sounds good to me.

 3. Kid Rock — First Kiss (Feb) This is Kid Rock’s tenth studio album, self-produced in his Michigan studio. The title track, “First Kiss”, sets the tone for the album in its entirety, with emotional remembrances and references to childhood innocence.  Call me sentimental, but you got to love a tune called “Drinking Beer With Dad.” Grab a six pack and your Dad and listen in.

4. Skum — Lost at the Circus (TBA) What happens when a wildly popular 1980’s East Coast band who gained notoriety for not actually performing at most of their gigs, happens across their lost studio recordings two decades later?  In this all-American rock and roll story, the band reunites, their story is filmed by award-winning producer Clay Westervelt, and SKUM ROCKS! becomes one of the top twenty Raindance Film Festival’s must see favorites. Combining their original 80’s recordings with new tracks laid down at London’s Abbey Road and Memphis’ famed Sun Studio, Lost at the Circus is a classic rock album in the vein of Bat out of Hell, taking the listener on a journey through the fringes of American Society —a highly anticipated, wild ride eagerly awaited by Skum’s legions of die-hard fans. Including myself.

5. Madonna — Rebel Heart (March) Her boldest release in years, and her thirteenth studio album, Madonna fans will not be disappointed. With elements of gospel and pop, a guest rap by Nicki Minaj, and a duet with Alicia Keys, she addresses rebellion, cynicism, love and redemption in a way only Her Majesty can: sincere, fragile, emotionally powerful. Some of these tracks have already been released, but we can’t wait until March to hear the entire album.

6. Faith No More — TITLE TBA (Spring) Their first album in eighteen years, though they’ve been touring again since 2009, fans like myself have been eagerly anticipating this album’s release. Hard to know exactly what it’s going to sound like, but those of us who enjoy a bit of adventure in their music collection will definitely want to pick this up.

7. Giorgio Moroder — 74 Is the New 24 (TBA) His first solo album in thirty years, electronic music pioneer Moroder was reborn to audiences after collaborating on Daft Punk’s 2013 Random Access Memories album. If you love throbbing, pulsing beats reminiscent of disco, (and who doesn’t?) and an are as anxious as I am to hear what featured vocalists like Britney Spears and Mikky Ekko will add to the mix, keep your eyes open for this eclectic release.

8. U2 — Songs of Experience (TBA) There’s been talk for years about a U2 release of “sister” albums, and with the release of Songs of Experience less than a year after Songs of Innocence, its finally going to happen. (And yes, those titles do sound familiar to those of us who’ve read William Blake’s late 18th century illustrated poetry collection). But fans of U2 won’t let literary references put them off. We expect innovation and inspiration when we listen in to these guys, and I’m willing to bet they won’t disappoint.

9. Kanye West — TITLE TBA (TBA) West seems to outdo himself with almost everything he releases, so everyone expects his latest album to be one of the biggest money makers of the year.  And that’s okay with West fans.  He gets the big bucks and we get to enjoy his lyrical brilliance.

10. Fleetwood Mac — TITLE TBA (TBA) This is Mac’s first studio album since 2003’s Say You Will, and with the return of Christine McVie, who hasn’t played with them since 1998, this album could potentially rival anything they did in the ’70s. As a fan then, now, and forever, I can’t wait to find out.

 

ROBEX LUNGREN INTERVIEWS SKUM

 

January 4, 2015

http://ghgumman.blogg.se/2015/january/interview-with-skum.html#comment

What does the name “Skum” stand for? Hart: “Skum” stand for the what rock and roll once stood for before the record companies and MTV made mainstream music something that was debated in board rooms and not on the stage, or in the arena, where the fans are he judge. We always represented the true rock fan who wanted to have fun, and not be told how they had to like. Like us great, hate us, great. Your choice.

What made you call the band “Skum”? I always said that rock and roll was hijacked by a bunch of musicians and the name of the band equates that. Also we really sucked, so that fit as well.

How was the band formed?

Hart: Formed out of necessity one drunken night at a bar in Wiliamsburg, Virginia. Three college soccer players who were bored with a very low level music scene where everyone tried to look and sound like Prince or whomever MTV was showing that week. Be your own person and write your own fucking songs. We did that from the get go. Never played a cover until we stepped into Sun Studios this year and did U2’s “Angel of Harlem” Did you see that video?  Yes, it was great.

Can you briefly introduce your band and who you are? Hart: The band has changed over the years, now we are a kick ass unit. Todd Mittlebrook is still on rhythm bass, I am still lead vocals / guitar, Pat Burke is still lead bass and John Eaton is lead guitarist.  We just added drummer Tommy Craig this year. He almost replaced Steven Adler of GNR back in the late 80’s, but he was available when we regrouped, so we fired Tommy Gunn. We never kept drummers around for too long anyway.

What was the ambitions of the band when you started? Hart: To have fun, push the boundaries a bit and to be honest, expanding the girls pool a bit. We were doing well, but we were 20 year old athletes, so we could handle a larger talent pool. And we did.

Could you explain your music to someone that haven’t heard you? Hart: Take the Clash, Kiss and Motley, we are somewhere in the middle of all of that. Fast, hard with melodic hooks, great rock and roll music for the fans.

Where was your first gig? Adam Hoge’s basement. He had no idea we were playing there and Hart: it was packed, over 400 people crammed into there. It was the very essence of what rock and roll was all about.

Where was the latest gig? Hart: Memphis. See the movie.

Who writes your songs?/Who writes the music who writes lyrics? Hart: We all write, but the majority were written by myself and Johnny.

Who has the best since of humor in the band? Hart: The band is based on humor, if you don’t have any humor (see T Gunn) you won’t last. This is one funny fucking group of guys. We premiered the unfinished film at Raindance in London and tore that city up.

What are your songs about? Hart: All of our songs are about life that we have witnessed. “Bad Checks”, which received a lot of alternative airplay back in the late 80’s, is about a man who lashes out at society but writing fraudulent checks. “Jon the Bagman” is about a man who abandoned life and chose to live on the streets. “Shaken It” tell the tale of a man who was still a virgin at age 37 and tells of how he dealt with that. All are real stories. The album “Lost at teh Corcus” is a theme album, about the fringes of American society. It doesn’t judges, just tells their stories.

Do you write your own material or mainly covers?

Hart: We started as an original band. All we do. Although we did do a U2 song in Memphis and a Beatles song at Abbey.

Tell me about the film “Skum ROCKS!”

Hart: In 2007, acclaimed Emmy Award winning film maker Clay Westervelt, a long time fan of the band’s legacy, asked if he could do a documentary on the band. He was allowed unlimited access to the band and their achieves. He was arrested during the filming and yet, still was determined to finish the piece.

“Skum ROCKS!” was alive and over 50 celebrities from the world of rock, TV, film, porn all gladly did cameos as all understood the importance of this band and their mark on the world of underground rock and roll.

Rock and Roll legend Alice Cooper signed on to be the narrator, stating ‘this is important that this story is finally told.”

The band officially reunited in the fall of 2011 and immediately fired drummer Tommy Gunn and replaced him with Tommy Craig.

Due to legal issues raised by band attorney Walter Bruning, Gunn remains a full member of the band, although he is not permitted within 50 feet from the stage.

At what age did you start playing? Hart: We were in our early 20’s when we started. Now late 40’s.

Best/worst gig you’ve played?

Best show, so many, tough to nail down. We sold over 4,000 tickets to a blow out at the University of Miami in 1988. That was when we realized, the real side of teh band was going to make it.  The girls that night were off the charts. Also the Pumpkinfest, but those were years ago.

The worst, easy. Bruton Parish in 1985. Over 5,000 people and we sucked. We stopped after one song and blamed the poor sound on the sound guy and left. But let’s face it we were awful and hadn’t practiced in over two months.

What places will you be playing in in the immediate future? Hart: We are playing a show Jan 17th in Melbourne. First time we have appeared live n stage since 1990. Big night. Frankie Banali of QUIET RIOT will join us on stage, so good event.

Is it always the same set’s live? Hart: Our shows are legendary. You need to see it live and live it. But, you will have fun and everyone hooks up in the audience, so get to a show and get some action both on the stage and later in your car.

What are the plans for the rest of the year? Hart: Finish this film, get this released along with the album and the book. Big year for sure.

How do you get psyched up for a gig? Hart: If you need to get psyched for a gig or a game, you are in the room stadium. We are all ex-athletes. We show up to play ball.

What are your goals with your music? Hart: My main goal is not not become a self important musician. I always want to keep my head level and just have fun and make people laugh and smile.  You see some bands ad they think they are gods. Dude, you just play a fucking guitar, it is not like you are curing cancer. Smile and have some fun and by all means treat the fans with respect!

Is it easier to get your inspiration from older bands or from bands more modern? Hart: Inspiration comes in all forms. Bands are a very small part on any real inspiration. Star filled night, or a memory of sneaking out of your house at age 16 to get laid. Things like that have much more inspiration than a band of sweaty guys.

What’s the first step when making a new song? Hart: John and I have different approaches. It may start with a riff, or a lyric, but the important thing is that you get it down. I am working in a new one right now “Driving All Night” and John is working on “London Nutcracker”. Both are going ti blow you away.

What are your sources of inspiration? Hart: Seeing something that you want to write about. “16” is about teenage girls in the porn industry. This was rampant in the 1970’s and 80’s but it was happening, so that is why I wrote the lyrics to ’16’. It is an important song on many levels and the ability to write songs that rock out and tell a true story, that is a lost art for sure. You listen to ‘One Direction and the other junk and  it is all fake. Our songs, 100% real.

How do you feel about the downloading of music instead of buying albums? Hart: Piracy will kill the industry. If their is no market, soon, there will be no new music. Why would a band invest a million dollars to record when it will be stolen? The masses are being pretty ignorant about that. If you went to a restaurant because you liked the food and never paid the bill, and everyone did that, it would not be there very long. That is happening to the music industry.

Besides your own music, what genres and bands do you listen to? Hart: Mood music. I love it all. Beethovem when I am writing prose, the Boss when I am driving, the Crue, Van Halen, Quiet Riot when I am running, everything. Music is great. Not into hard core rap. That is a self defeating genre. But anyone has  a right to do it.I just turn that off.

What do you hold most dear? Hart: My girls.

What would be your greatest fears for the future? Hart: I keep my politics out of the band .

When you are on stage, what do you fear most then? Hart: I fear nothing on stage. Never have, never will. Once you have any fear, you are done.

How important are your fans? Hart: The fans are what we do this for.The film is all for them They get to see everything. We have only one rule in the band. Treat the fans like family and we do. In london we had about 50 fans in Abbey Road watching us record. It is what we do.

What’s the funniest/most memorable thing a fan has done for you? Hart: Fresh Tracks Studio, 1984’ studio bathroom. I remember thinking I could get used to this.

Name 2 of your own songs you like at the moment? Hart: “Bagman” and “16”.

What do you feel is the best live band you’ve seen? Hart: Kiss set the bar pretty high. Van Halen in 1982’ were spectacular and the Crue still lays it out. Springsteen on a cold night. So many.

What drives a band that isn’t all that famous and renowned to try to make a living on their music and to keep playing? Hart: We were done, but this movie (“SkumROCKS!”) opened all of this up again, and in the end, this is a great question by the way, it is all about the love of what rock and roll once stood for and that really has nothing to do with music. I just love that vibe that we can bring that to the table and make people look beyond music for a true rock and roll experience. A true rock and roll night and you may never even get to show. The show and music are all secondary to the experience.

Do you have any webpages? Hart: www.skumrocks.com - you can check out some track and see the film’s trailer there.

Any pearls of wisdom for all other bands out there? Hart: Don’t be a music geek. Have fun and most important, write your own fucking songs and don’t worry if they suck. They are yours, so write and play them really loud. And most importantly, treat your fans like they are your family.

How do you view the music industry of today? Hart: Kind of a paradox. Dying and thriving at the same time. Piracy is killing it, yet, with the internet and so forth it could be the best ever as the record companies have been taken out of the loop. If you are good and have good songs, people will find you. So, pay for your music so there will be more of it.

What are the biggest obstacles for a band? Hart: Their egos.

Would you like to add anything else?

Hart thank you so much for the sit down.

Hart: Robex, my pleasure. Great interview and we look forward to posting this on our site. You need to go and see the film when it hits Sweden. We love our Swedish fans. I hear a fan club is starting up in there! Once again, a big shout out to all our European fans. We hope to get over there next summer and kick some ass.

 

 

Skum Rocks Hollywood!

 

 

Skum really rocked the house at the Hollywood premiere of their rockumentary tour de force, Skum Rocks!  The first official US showing, held May 30th at the 17th Annual Dances With Films Festival on Hollywood Boulevard in LA, was a stupendous success. And with a theatre packed with fans, friends, and celebrities, the members of Skum couldn’t have been happier.

Skum’s lead guitarist, John Eaton, was elated. “The Chinese Theatre? Are you kidding me? I could get used to this. Tommy [Craig] and I stayed at the Roosevelt, and hung out in the Lair of the Hollywood Vampires at the Rainbow.  It’s been a great week, and it’s great to be part of Hollywood Folklore.”

“This was a huge step for the film, being screened here at the Chinese Theatre,” commented Clay Westervelt, the film’s Emmy-winning director. “And this is just the beginning. I’m very proud of what we’ve accomplished.”

“Tonight was great, being out with the band and all these fantastic fans”, added Phoenix Benjamin, the uber-talented guitarist, who, from time to time, rocks his guitar with Skum.

Master musician and friend of the band, Frankie Banali, agreed, stating simply that “Skum does rock!”

The roaring triumph of the band’s Hollywood premiere is not the last you’ll be hearing from the rockers of Skum. According to lead singer, Hart Baur, there may be another Skum big project in the works. “There’s been talk of a TV show,” Baur revealed after the premiere. “If that happens, it’ll be way over the top.”

For now, the members of Skum are taking things one day at a time, and they’ve had some pretty great days. Tommy Craig, Skum’s drummer extraordinaire, left me with this comment. “A few months back we had the world premiere at Raindance in London, and then cut tracks at Abbey Road. That was amazing. But now, being on the big screen in Hollywood? That’s really something. I can’t wait ‘til we play at the Whiskey later this year.”

We can’t wait either, Skum.

An Interview with Diana Laura Noris

by Robert Patterson

Diana Laura Noris is fortunate to possess a few natural attributes — she’s ridiculously funny, possesses an undeniable charisma, and she has an enchanting body.  The Puerto Rican/Argentinean native may have only recently become a household name, thanks to her outstanding performances in more than twenty films in the past three years, but she’s been a working actress for over twenty years, having gotten her start on Puerto Rican television.  And Noris really hit her stride in 2013 — having one of her best years in the industry.

Noris spoke to Inside Celebrities about being a Latina actress, the virtues of her beloved Puerto Rico and, well, being a MILF.

 I.C – Your son is 19.  Do you know what a MILF is?

DL – I’m sorry, I don’t.

I.C – It’s like the hot mom in the neighborhood.  Your son’s friends must have had crushes on you.
D.L – It’s not like I’m dressed sexy when I’m inside the house or anything.  I’m just a normal Mom.  His friends are very used to me.  I don’t know if any of them had a crush on me.  I really hope not.

I.C – You’re Latina.  Does it upset you that there aren’t more Latino actors working in the States?
D.L – It’s getting better.  You can’t compare it to the parts American actresses get, but it’s getting much better.  The doors are wide open for Latinas.  At least that’s my opinion.  A lot of TV shows now are looking for more Latin women.

I.C – What’s the one food from Argentina that Americans should know about?

D.L – Honestly, I think the steaks are what Argentina is known for — the best “asados” steak BBQ.  And since I was raised in Puerto Rico, I naturally love the dishes from there, like “arros con gandules”, “pinchos”, “bacalaitos”.   They are all just yummy!

I.C – You’ve been such a busy lady this year.  Tell us about your latest films.

D.L – I made several films this year.  One Moment, Repulsive, The Ticket Box, Krissy Belle, Runner Runner, Warm Bodies, Spilt, The Client List, and I’m in pre-production for Roller Dolls.

         

The busy actress has graced the pages of a large stack of popular magazines this year as well, including Us Latino, Lifestyle Miami, Gente de Miami, Inside Celebrities, Cosmopolitan, Gold Coast, Playboy Smoking Jacket, The Miami Herald, Sun Sentinel, Guitar World, Hidden Treasures, and the cover of Latin Times Miami.  This year Noris also expanded her game, becoming a celebrity columnist for the trendy new publication, Miami Fashion Spotlight.  Her featured column is entitled, “Miami Social according to Di.”

This year was also full of humbling acknowledgements for the charitable actress.  Philanthropist Kimberly Shenker- Bacardi’s Karma Group recognized Noris as one of the “Eight Most Charitable Women in Miami.”  In October 2013, the American Cancer Association also bestowed an award to Noris for her charitable efforts, and she’s been recognized for her animal welfare advocacy work as well.  She continues to champion causes and events to aid those in less fortunate circumstances in Florida and around the world.

In 2010, Noris founded Women in the Arts Miami, an organization whose mission is to encourage, promote, and support the contributions of Southern Florida women in the creative arts.  The yearly recognition ceremony continues to grow each year, and now even includes men in the annual list of honorees.  Noris is busy working on the ramp-up for the 4th annual ceremony now in her role as president and event planner-in-chief for what is always a sparkling event.  “I’m blessed to be able to honor the best of the best in all the different categories of our artist community in Florida each year,” Norris said.  “There is so much diversity and range of talent and experience, and it’s a real honor to be able to share that with others and help build a strong creative community together.”

While 2013 was an extremely hot year for Noris, 2014 is set to sizzle even more for this Latina go-getter as she prepares to conquer the world and build a brighter, more colorful place for everyone around her.  If you want to keep up with Diana Laura, please check her out on Facebook and give her page a Like.  You can find the beautiful and talented Ms. Noris at www.facebook.com/dianalauranoris and at www.dianalauranline.com.

 

Photo Credits: Andrew King and Tony Vera.

 

Skum Rocks! Makes Triumphant Debut at Raindance

by Nigel Pandemonium

On the 26th of September in London, movie-goers both laughed and cringed as the documentary SkumROCKS! made its global premiere at the Raindance Film Festival.  During seventy-seven minutes of unadulterated, crazy fun, the true story of Skum delivered a winning charm that completely captivated the sold out crowd. Thanks to the charisma of the band members and the innovative story telling of award-winning director Clay Westervelt, Skum Rocks! is being hailed by many as the most important rock and roll film in decades.  Entirely original in texture and format, Skum, the band that burned brightly for eight years before its tragically hilarious implosion, totally rocked the big screen.  But the path to their success was not an easy one.

When I sat down with Skum’s Hart Baur, I learned it was a long and winding road that led to the documentary, SkumROCKS!   “The project started more than five years ago,” Baur said.  “When the band broke up in 1991, I never completely got over it.  So I put together some ideas, and then called Todd Mittlebrook.  He obviously felt like I did, because he flew to Miami and we stayed up for two days straight writing down everything we remembered about Skum’s twisted history — the good and the bad times.”

It’s that combination of good and bad times that make this film so dynamic.  As their origins are revealed, the viewer is captivated, among other things, by the unparalleled audaciousness of Skum.  It all began in Virginia in 1984, when the band was a “party-band-for-hire” punching above its weight at the College of William and Mary.  The brainchild of three soccer players – Hart Baur, Todd Mittlebrook and Canadian Scott Bell – Skum came into existence for one reason, according to Bell, which was “to meet girls and have some fun.”  But enthusiasm doesn’t long hide lack of talent, and in order to cover up Baur’s inability to play the guitar, the soccer threesome soon invited Jon Tarrant into the band.

According to the documentary, the musical results weren’t much improved after Tarrant’s addition, but it didn’t matter.  Skum managed to lie, manipulate, and trick its way into talent shows, local gigs, and newspaper headlines.  After a few years of playing the party circuit in Virginia, Skum left in order to reinvent itself in Miami. By 1986, Bell and Tarrant dropped out as the band brought in more musical muscle in the form of guitar virtuoso John Eaton and self-proclaimed “band quarterback,” bassist Pat Burke.  The Burke-Eaton combination, along with a series of different drummers, proved to be a winning combination for Baur and Mittlebrook.   “Playing with Pat and John was like learning to run for the first time,” Baur explained.  ”It let Todd and I concentrate on the stage show while they held down the musical fort.  This gave us a lot more freedom to perform on stage.”  The combination of gifted musicians and a killer stage presence resulted in Skum growing into a true Miami favorite during its five year reign.

Along with Baur, Burke, Eaton, Mittlebrook, and current drummer Tommy Craig, the original Skum members were in London for the film’s premiere.  Mittlebrook explained, “Hart and I felt it was essential to have Jon and Scott with us.  The four of us were together in the beginning, so it was important we were together again when the band’s story hit the big screen.”  Also on hand was Skum Rocks! director Clay Westervelt of Imaginaut Entertainment, who began work on the project three years ago.  I asked if he was surprised the film sold out at an independent film festival.  “Not at all,” he said.  “I’ve learned to always expect the unexpected with Skum.  When I heard that Raindance had to release twenty emergency tickets to satisfy the large number of American fans that flew to London for the premiere, I just smiled and laughed.  Nothing could be more typical of Skum.”

Skum’s week in London was a busy one.  Not only did Skum Rocks! premiere at Raindance, they also recorded new tracks at the famous Abbey Road Studio for their forthcoming album, “Lost at the Circus,” as well as additional footage with Westervelt that will be added to the movie.  Pat Burke commented, “London, the Raindance Festival, the folks at Abbey Road ­—everyone we came in contact with was welcoming and gracious.  From the reception we received at the Skum Rocks! premiere to the way both the Brits and visiting Yanks embraced us is something we’ll never forget.  It was a remarkable and memorable week for the band and the film.”

 

Skum Makes Music History at Abbey Road

Jeremy Radnor – UK Music World

When the rock band Skum entered legendary Abbey Road Studios on the 26th of September, they were walking into history. No band had ever recorded in Memphis’ Sun Studios as well as London’s Abbey Road in the same calendar year. Ever. The occasion was momentous, to say the least.

Skum was in London for the Raindance Film Festival premiere of “Skum Rocks!”, the rock documentary helmed by notable director Clay Westervelt. And with their album still underway, they thought, “why not record some tracks at Abbey Road?” It was no easy feat booking time at the Beatles-famed studio, especially with a mere two weeks’ notice, but a few calls were made and a few generous artists — who wish to remain anonymous — swapped their studio slots to give Skum the needed time.

Skum rhythm bassist, Todd Mittlebrook, said, “It’s great that we made rock and roll history with these recordings. And don’t get me wrong, it’s a huge accomplishment and one we’ll be telling our grandkids about for sure…But we didn’t do this to get into the history books, we did this for our fans. We want these bonus tracks to be something special, and they are.”

By all accounts, the Abbey Road session was vintage Skum, laying down their tracks in one or two takes. In what has become an urban myth, Skum likes to do everything live. “There is so much more that goes into a good recording session other than recording,” said lead guitarist, John Eaton. “We figure if we knock the main stuff out in ten minutes or so we have a lot more time for what makes this band great. And that’s hanging out.”

While in the studio, the band recorded their underground 80’s classic, “We Are Skum,” which will be the opening track on their upcoming album, Lost at the Circus. They also completed a blistering cover of the Beatles’ “Back in the USSR”.


“We wanted to pay homage to the Beatles, especially the White Album,” said lead bassist Pat Burke. “The background vocals alone (performed by Victoria Rummler and Roveina) will knock this track out of the park. They made our job easy. This is simply a classic version of a great Beatles song. It may even be better than the original version, to be honest. With all due respect, of course.”

The session was intense as fans kept pouring into famed Studio 2. By noon there were over thirty people crammed into the control room to witness the madness unfolding below. Once the levels were set and Skum producer Mark Brasel was satisfied, the band knocked out their tracks, including a piano/accordion sonata lead-in for the Beatles track. Written and performed by Dr. Andrew and Peter Watson, “Drowning the Gypsy in the Volga” is a sad tale of life under the yoke of totalitarianism in an age when life was measured in days rather than years. “‘Gypsy’ tells a story no one wants to hear,” said Dr. Watson.  “It’s very much in tune with this album’s theme. Except this tale takes place outside of Samara in 1937.”

Musically, these tracks will blow you away. Skum’s powerhouse drummer, Tommy Craig, drives both tracks with a vengeance that will make even the casual fan turn his head. “I wanted to give the tracks an edge,” said Craig. “I played around with the intro, and Johnny just told me to go for it, so I did. I’m really happy with the results.”

Eaton was in epic form on both tracks, and his preparation showed. His solo on “USSR” was sharp and on target. “I had about eight days to prepare. I was ready,” said Eaton. “Besides, Abbey Road, are you kidding me? This is what this band is all about. Skum at Abbey? Next up, Electric Ladyland!”

Burke and Mittlebrook laid down the bass lines in one take, high fiving each other after, as they listened to the playback. “It’s what we do,” said Burke. “It’s just cool we did it at Abbey Road in front of our fans.”

“The importance of recording at Abbey Road really goes without saying,” said lead singer Hart Baur. “We wanted to give our fans and investors something special. The bonus tracks, from Sun Studios and now Abbey Road, deliver that. They’ve waited over twenty-five years for this album, and we’re giving them everything we can. Abbey Road is our thank you to the fans. But it’s also a thank you to the greatest band ever, the Beatles. They are why we have rock and roll today.”

The Abbey Road session legitimized this album.  Lost at the Circus is destined to be one of the most explosive albums of 2014. This band is crazy. To the untrained eye, they may seem scattered at best. But without a doubt, these guys know what they are doing. And they’re laughing the whole time.  Skum: fun mixed with sinister brilliance.

 

 

 

MACHETE KILLS PREMIERES

By Inside Celebrites

 

On October 11th at the Regal South Beach Cinema in Miami Beach, Skum’s Hart Baur and John Eaton joined their friends Dan Trejo and Alexa Vega on the red carpet for the premiere of their new film, Machete Kills.

Just back from the world premiere of their own film, Skum Rocks! at the Raindance Festival in London, Baur and Eaton said they were happy to be there.  “Machete Kills is a great film,” said Skum’s lead guitarist John Eaton.  “Danny knocks it out of the park and Alexa was just awesome — both gave a wonderful performance — and it was great that we were back able to attend.  And it’s always good to see Danny and Alexa.”

Danny Trejo

 

Machete Kills made it’s premiere in Miami, which is quickly becoming a first choice for film premieres. “It’s great to be here in Miami,” said Vega.  When asked about their friends from Skum attending she replied, “It’s amazing to have those guys here — are you kidding me?”

The theatre was packed for the premiere,  and afterwards the fans were treated to a Q & A with Trejo and Vera, as well as with the director Robert Rodriquez.  When asked what he thought of Clay Westervelt’s work directing Skum Rocks! Rodriguez replied, “I liked his work on the film. It was tremendous.”

Alexa Vega

Following the premiere, Baur and Eaton joined the movie’s cast, crew, and invited fans at the SoHo Beach House in Miami for the private after-party.  “Things got a little out of control — especially after John got thrown in the pool — but that’s to be expected when you  mix rock and roll with Hollywood,” said Skum lead singer Baur.  “But it was all good. An altogether great evening for Machete Kills as well as for Dan and Alexa.  Skum had our premiere moment in London.  It was great, and now I’m happy we could come out and support our friends for their premiere.”

 

 

LAUREN CONRAD ENGAGED

Lauren Conrad & John Eaton

Lauren Conrad, star of Laguna Beach and The Hills, and a long-time fan and  friend of Skum’s lead guitarist John Eaton, has announced her engagement to singer-songwriter boyfriend William Tell.

John was quick to offer his congratulations.  “Lauren is a doll and it was great to see her and Willy take this big step. He’s a great guy and they make a perfect couple.”

Conrad, who said she was “beyond thrilled” about the engagement, remained coy regarding a date —but did hint at a summer wedding. The actress and best-selling author (L.A. Candy, Sweet Little Lies), wouldn’t give specifics on the location either, but according to John, it will most certainly be in Southern California, where both William and Lauren grew up.

Any word on whether she will call upon her good friend to provide some entertainment at the wedding —perhaps in the form of a guitar solo wedding march?

“Sure I would do it,” said John.  ”Lauren’s a friend.”

Lauren Conrad Shares Her Secret To Success

The former MTV star told all on the E! special ‘Pop Innovators.’

When Lauren Conrad was a regular high school senior 10 years ago, the Laguna Beach native was like every other teen trying to chase her dreams. And now, she’s living proof that if you work hard to achieve your goals, it’s possible to get everything you always wished for — and then some.

“I think if I were to have a life philosophy, it’s just do what makes you happy, and try and do good,” Lauren advised — with her trademark smile — in a clip from the show. “Try your best not to worry too much about what other people think.” A motto we’re pretty sure she used while navigating those LBHS hallways and eventually in Tinseltown.

Meanwhile, those closest to Mrs. Tell — including another notable MTV alum — sang her praises and explained just how great her impact has been since her mainstream debut in 2004.

“Nobody was doing what she was doing 10 years ago,” Trey Phillips explained. “She has trail-blazed a new path to creating your own identity, making your own rules.”

But in what may be the best instance of mother doesn’t always know best, LC’s mom Kathy dished about a funny conversation they had more than a decade ago.

“I can remember early on in high school, joking with her, because her grades were kind of average, saying, ‘Well, you might have to end up marrying a rich guy.’ And she just laughed and said, ‘I’m going to make my own money; I’m not going to marry somebody for money,’” Kathy said. “I think everyone should have that attitude. Every girl out there can make their dream come true.”

George Kotsiopoulos Leaves Fashion Police

George Kotsiopoulos is sadly no longer a part of Fashion Police, which he co-hosted with the late, great Joan Rivers, critiquing celebrities’ outfits for more than 200 episodes. So why isn’t George Kotsiopoulos returning to Fashion Police when the new season premieres Jan. 12? He has not yet made an official comment about why he left the show, and neither has the E! Network, but there are a couple of possible reasons for his absence.

One big possible reason is the passing of Rivers. Kotsiopoulos, like many, was saddened by the tragedy and immediately tweeted an emotional response after her death about how much he would miss his fellow co-host and the comedienne who changed his life. Though the show was announced to go on with Joan’s daughter Melissa Rivers’ blessing, it is possible that Kotsiopoulos felt that the show would not have been the same without her or that it would have been too painful to continue on.

And another reason could be to get back into his personal work in fashion, including both styling and designing. After all, just because he is not returning to the show this season doesn’t mean that he’s not keeping busy in the fashion world. Quite the opposite is true.

Kotsiopoulos is now taking a much more hands-on approach in the industry — by designing his own fashion line, according to Women’s Wear Daily. The fashion line, named GK George Kotsiopoulos for QVC, will reportedly feature nine styles of vintage-inspired pieces, such as blouses, a jumpsuit, and a lace-sleeved motorcycle jacket. They will retail for between $40 and $90 on the TV shopping network.

Though Kotsiopoulos has never designed a collection before, he originally made a name for himself by working in the style department for the New York Times Magazine for over eight years. He has also done recent styling work for big ad campaigns, such as The Gap Inc.’s Factory Outlet stores. So in short, he’s no rookie when it comes to fashion. And it’s exciting that after schooling others in great style on Fashion Police, he is rolling up his sleeves and actually creating his own.

As seen in the photo above that Kotsiopoulos posted to his Twitter account, he is clearly putting all his efforts into his collection, which he will officially promote on the air in February. But as he told Women’s Wear Daily, he is realistic about his ultimate expectations for the line:

I never aspire to be Marc Jacobs. I’m trying to bring a little chic to everyone.

Chic for everyone is something that fans should easily be able to get behind, especially since the line will be available in sizes 0 to 28. Also, Kotsiopoulos clearly has not forgotten his roots in styling. Even when working on his own line, he has also been promoting his styling work for Gap, as seen by his recent post of his campaign, where he appeared with model Chanel Iman.

Even though the line is relatively small, it will be exciting to see what Kotsiopoulos does with this new collection. Hopefully, he will take his own great advice as a former critic on Fashion Police and put it into his new work.

 

 

Bret Michaels To Perform at Halftime Show

On Tuesday January 27, 2015 musician, entrepreneur and philanthropist Bret Michaels returns to Detroit, Michigan bringing along his high octane live show as asked to perform a sold out NBA halftime concert during the Detroit Pistons vs. Cleveland Cavaliers game at the beautiful Palace Of Auburn Hills.

A sports fanatic since birth, Michaels is honored to bring his rock n’ roll party to the NBA, this pair of storied basketball franchises and their fans. “Around the NBA, both Pistons and Cavs teams in particular have an amazing amount of talent with a passionate, sports minded fanbase.” said Michaels, “The showdown between Pistons star Brandon Jennings vs Cavs star and MVP LeBron James is one for the ages and we are bringing the right mixture of rock n’ roll to help set the vibe”.

Bret Michaels, winner of the highest rated season of NBC’s Celebrity Apprentice is coming off of a highly successful year in 2014 where his “Life Rocks” tour played to sold out, record breaking audiences around the globe including a stop in Detroit in conjunction with Goodwill Of Greater Detroit’s Rock For Jobs initiative. Michaels has also personally donated hundreds of thousands of dollars to the Detroit area.  

Michaels promises to bring a party vibe like no other when he rocks the NBA on January 27, 2015 in Detroit where a sold out crowd will hear a rockin’ relevant mix mash-up of his hits with Poison and from his highly rated TV shows such as Rock Of Love (VH1), Celebrity Apprentice (NBC) and Rock My RV (Travel Channel).

“The good people of Detroit and fans of the NBA are ready to party as are we. Get ready because we are bringing the big show of music, pyro, cryo and dancers.” said Michaels.

IMG_3298.JPG

 

 

 

 

 

Nude Photos of John Eaton Hacked!

It was reported yesterday (September 1st) that the FBI was addressing allegations that several online celebrity accounts, such as Jennifer Lawrence, Kate Upton and Skum lead guitarist John Eaton, had been hacked, leading to the acquisition and posting of their nude photographs online.

Eaton learned of the hacking late Sunday night when friends began informing him that private photos were popping up on several websites, alongside photos of several other celebrities, including Upton and Lawrence.

The FBI did not clarify the actions being taken in the investigation or who was responsible for posting naked photos of Lawrence, Upton, Eaton, and other stars. Apple stated on Monday they were looking into whether their online photo-sharing service had been hacked in order to obtain the intimate images.

Oscar winner Jennifer Lawrence contacted authorities after the images began appearing Sunday. It is unclear if Eaton and Lawrence spoke, although acquaintances reported they have been in contact via e-mail.

“I reached out to both Kate and Jen to let them know not to worry about it too much. This stuff happens,” said John.

“This is a flagrant violation of privacy,” Lawrence’s publicist Liz Mahoney wrote in a statement. “The authorities have been contacted and will prosecute anyone who posts the stolen photos of Jennifer Lawrence.”

The alleged photos of John appear to show him in various stages of undress in a shower with two unnamed females, and several shots of John in a hot tub at the Roosevelt Hotel in Hollywood, holding what appears to be a shrimp cocktail in one hand.

Skum attorney Walter Bruning also threatened legal action against anyone posting any of the leaked photos. “We unequivocally deny these photos are of John.  However, if any of these photos are posted, the offending websites will be getting a cease and desist letter from me as well as a seven figure lawsuit.”

“This happens all the time,” said John. “These people have nothing better to do than get into our phones and hack photos. Get a life, guys.”

The FBI said it was “aware of the allegations concerning computer intrusions and the unlawful release of material involving high profile individuals, and is addressing the matter.”

“Any further comment would be inappropriate at this time,” spokeswoman Laura Eimiller wrote in a statement.

SKUM ROCKS US ROCKSTAR COVER

After their January 17th reunion show in Melbourne, Florida, Skum garnered the coveted cover on US Rockstar Magazine’s February edition. Written by Sunset Strip veteran insider, Johnny LeRue, the cover story captures the moment in a real time style article, that well, it is pretty rock and roll.

The very fact that LeRue ventured out of LA for the story surprised many colleagues, as he is known to rarely leave the sanctity of the Sunset Strip. “I had to be there,” said LeRue. “Nigel was slated to do the story, but I was talking with Gilby (Clarke) and he said I was crazy not to take the assignment. Then I heard that Frankie (Banali) was joining them on stage as was Martika and I thought hell, I need to be there. I called Nigel and asked if he would mind if I did the piece and he was so cool. He said ‘no problem mate, this way I can enjoy the show.’ So Boe flew me out.”

The show was more than just a concert, it was also the final scene in the massive film “Skum Rocks!’, directed by famed LA director Clay Wetservelt, which has chronicled the band and their subsequent comeback. “I was focused on the shoot and the show, but Pat told me backstage that Johnny was there, so I knew this was becoming a bigger story.” said Westervelt. “He never leaves LA. So yeah, we knew.”

“I’m pretty happy the way the piece came out,” said LeRue.  ”These guys put on one hell of a show, this could easily have been at the Whiskey back in 87′. It was a special event and I just hope I did it justice. Great night!”

“I was pretty pumped when I heard we were on the cover,” said lead guitarist John Eaton. “I am big fan of Johnny LeRue, so it was just cool that he was there.”

Look for the article in the February edition of US Rockstar Magazine or you can view it online at www.usrockstarmagazine.com