ROCKLAHOMA DAY THREE
Show Date: July 14, 2007
Location: Pryor, Oklahoma, U.S.A.
Band Website: www.rockfeverfest.com
Already the name games have begun.
It wasn’t Rocklahoma, more like Cokelahoma according to wig wearing Kevin DuBrow of Quiet Riot. I don’t know about that…DuBrow still thinks it’s 1987.
It’s not complicated. The Glam/Sleaze drug of choice was cocaine (Hollywood and sunshine), the Grunge drug of choice was heroin (Seattle and rain).
The 80’s style of music featured at this festival fell out of favor with the masses during the early 90’s because all the ugly people rallied around Kurt Cobain and Nirvana. It was all about jealously. Some people couldn’t stand how much fun the Glam/Sleazesters were having…misery loves company…and that whole depressed, flannel wearing, stare at your shoes scene called Grunge was able to thrive for several reasons. It wasn’t just Nirvana, MTV quit playing the videos they once played and “hair bands” left the door open by becoming complacent (nobody called ’em “hair bands” back then…that is a derogatory term that was created by the media after the scene had fizzled). If you would have told people on the Sunset Strip in 1989 that the scene was gonna go away you would have been laughed at…
Rocklahoma was a huge success because of the loyalty that this style of music creates. Real rock never really went away.
Saturday’s line-up was the strongest of the festival. Another cool feature of this festival was that each band got to play for a full hour.
Bang Tango got things started at noon. Joe Leste recorded their most recent album in Austin and it was produced by a member of The Addictions. The highlight of the set was when Steven Adler came on stage. They played Paradise City and Welcome to the Jungle. Appetite For Destruction was released 20 years ago, but everyone still loves Guns N’Roses. Adler raced to the side of the stage to shake fans hands like he had done on Thursday night, but Bang Tango was running out of time, so their drummer returned and they played Highway to Hell. Which was an interesting choice because they were out of time and didn’t get to play their hit “Someone Like You”. They tried…but the security chased ’em off the stage.
Vince Neil was standing side stage with two beautiful girls as the BulletBoys took the stage. Marq Torien has a huge ego…he made a comment about being one of the people responsible for the music scene that came out of L.A. in the late 80’s. The BulletBoys didn’t sound very good, they butchered AC/DC‘s Riff Raff to open their set. They milked their hit “Smooth Up In Ya” for as long as they could before exiting for…
Faster Pussycat…(Eddie Trunk was side stage with Vince Neil). Faster Pussycat‘s set was a complete disaster. Taime Downe came across as a total loser…he wished death upon his former bandmate who has cancer…he made the guitar player re-start “House of Pain”…and then he threw down his mic and stormed off stage after only 30 minutes. Dressing up in leather during 95 degree heat wasn’t the best career decision.
Enuff Z’nuff never gets any respect. They sound like Cheap Trick meets The Beatles…Howard Stern‘s favorite band. They were good, but it was sooo hot that most people missed their set.
Firehouse…a very under-rated band. It’s popular to knock them like people knock Poison but they sounded great. Every time that I have seen them they have been impressive.
Warrant…Jamie St. James instead of Jani Lane…they were good.
Skid Row…I thought they had the best set of the festival. Johnny Solinger wins the award for best replacement band member. It was scorching hot and Solinger had the comment of the day, “What’s with all the complaining about the heat? I’m from Texas, this is just another summer afternoon”. The crowd was really into it.
Winger…no way should they have had this prime time slot. The crowd was bored half way through until they broke out the MTV hits.
During the break I was able to check out Rufus Fontain from Nashville on a side stage. They had a cool frontman similar to Jesse James Dupree from Jackyl. They were killer and would fit right in here in Austin with the amazing music scene that we have happening in the Red River District. It may not be as glamorous as the Sunset Strip, but it is the best scene in the USA at the moment. Bands like Broken Teeth, New Disaster, Hellapeno, Adrenaline Factor, Dealer, Adrian & the Sickness…Austin rocks 52 weeks out of the year.
Anyways, back to Rocklahoma.
Dokken was next. Wow, they were much better than I anticipated. John Levin wins the second best replacement band member award.
It was midnight and I decided not to stick around to watch Vince Neil skip half the words and butcher the Motley Crue hits.
Since I had to drive back to Texas on Sunday…Rocklahoma 2007 was over for me. The festival put tickets on sale for 2008 and people are already starting to talk about bands for next year. The festival has promised that the theme for bands will remain the same.
If you can’t wait a year…move to Austin…and discover the incredible scene that we have. Real rock is alive and well in Austin, TX