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DECEMBER Issue

THE Custom Lifestyle Magazine for Car, Motorcycle, and Music Enthusiasts

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Contents... HAVEN & Mystic Photography: An Intimate Evening with DAVEY SUICIDE News You Can Use, Car Edition...How They Decide Your Car’s Residual Value Dave Sabatino Memorial Ride Gear the Pros Use...featuring drummer Scott Westbrook Gear the Pros Use...featuring guitarist Todd Kennedy ‘67 Ford Fairlane Convertible: December’s Hot Rod of the Month News You Can Use, Motorcycle Edition...Wash It Yourself! Tattoo Gallery...readers send in pics of favorite tattoos

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Sherry Keith, as always, highlights the best in local shows, this month featuring BRAZEN, the Misfits, and the Bones...and in conjunction with Metal Exiles, also features the band Filter.

Jeffrey Easton, always one to push the envelope with his edge and insightful interviews, spends some quality time with Richard Patrick of Filter.

Kevin Lastovica keeps you abreast of the latest happenings in Sin City, including news on Zito77, Stoney Curtis, and Threedom Rock.

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Bella Electric Strings, lead by rock violinist and arranger Nina Di Gregorio, has rocked audiences worldwide with their blistering solos, unique arrangements — not to mention their beauty and charm. The girls have performed with some of the biggest names in the business, from BEYONCE to SHAKIRA to ANDREA BOCELLI, and have appeared on AMERICA‘S GOT TALENT Season 1. The girls perform on Yamaha instruments and their music can be heard during many Yamaha String Educator clinics; they keep a busy corporate schedule, and simply, are one of the most sought-after acts in North America. CV SouthWest slowed down Nina just long enough to speak with her about her start, her rise, the team, and what's next for this incredible group of performers.

Let‘s talk a little about you, about how Bella got started, and when it took off: how did you first get interested in music? I've always been interested in music. My dad had me singing Italian arias at age 2. By 6 I was playing piano, by 9 violin, and later picked up some guitar and bass.

and skiing for my school.

Musically, what helped you decide to gravitate toward the violin? When I was in 4th grade and had to choose an instrument, I chose the saxophone, but the band director told me it was very heavy and I was small and couldn't carry it to the bus. He suggested I play the You grew up in Buffalo, NY - violin because it is lighter. So I what prompted you to decide to obliged. move to Vegas? When I was an undergrad, I visited You said that the " ―violin is one of Las Vegas with my parents. We the toughest instruments to play went to see the Scintas, who are well‖ - why do you say that? also from Buffalo and were head- There is no instant gratification. lining at the Rio at the time. I end- Chances are, on a piano, you can ed up meeting Wayne Newton's plunk out a tune fairly quickly and then-MD, Scotty Alexander, not sound god-awful. Not so on a through them after a show, and he violin. Every millimeter matters, offered me a gig with Wayne. I de- there is so much subtlety to the incided to stay in Vegas and work strument. with Wayne as well as get my Master‟s degree. You initially learned classical music on the violin, what are the big Did you do anything else growing differences between the old classiup? cal and the rock you play? I was a huge jock. I played compet- Classical requires a lot of techitive soccer, softball, basketball, nique...but having that base helps

in rock music as well. There is no margin for error in classical music. It trains you to be a perfectionist. It's either be perfect or get fired. So when you bring that sense of urgency to rock music, it makes it that much better. You started off early, in high school, had a little string quartet tell us a little about that. It was called Sweet Expressions String Quartet. I remember we had one big gig a year, an annual Christmas Party…they had the biggest tree I have ever seen. You made a funny reference to the ―dark days of college"- can we travel down that rabbit hole and have you describe those years? College is the grind. Strict routines, grueling schedules. My undergrad days were some of the best days of my life. My early teachers, Magnus Martensson and Movses Pogossian instilled a lot of passion for music, insight, and wisdom into my approach to not only music, but everything. I developed my intellectu-


ha was a big part in the transfor- violin. I'm still a long way off. The mation as well. recognition comes naturally if you work hard and put everything you What were your initial goals when are into it. you started the team(s)? In the beginning, I just wanted to At some point you had to transihave a few gigs a month… tion from a ―band to a brand‖ as enough to cover rent, and have fun. you received accolades, more gigs, Trying to just have fun paid off and and popularity - tell us about that it grew and continues to grow. process? Was it harder or easier than you imagined? Tell me about the initial days – Much more difficult, and we are still in the process. There is much was it hard? The hardest part was the process of more to be done even now. It remaking mistakes to learn. There quired business and management were some failed business partner- experience that I was not trained to proach to not only music, but eve- ships and a struggle to find the handle. So I surrounded myself rything. I developed my intellectuwith people who could teach me. al identity during those years at UB. Can you tell us about ―the big break‖, that incident or show You launched Bella Strings as a where you really made the step to poor college kid...no investors, all the next level? Our biggest moment was being your own money (we feel ya on featured in a David Foster and that one LOL)...were there any Friends concert as Bella Electric days when you were ready to say Strings. He's legendary. ―eff this, this is too hard!‖? What kept you motivated? There were a lot of teary-eyed You said that many people helped phone calls home to NY saying, "I you out - that's great, who gave think I have to move home...I can't you that ―big break‖ in support? afford rent...life is tough…people OK here comes the "academy lie and cheat and steal in the real award" speech: world…" But in the end, it's sink or right combination of people. And My first mentor was the Scintas‟ swim. I've never been one to roll the money. We never used invesover and die, or to back down from tors, and thus it was a slow process a challenging situation. as I started out a broke college kid eating Mac and Cheese. When did the idea to put Bella together happen – tell me about how You all are CLEARLY talented, that came about? were things easy in the beginning, It started very early. I had the or was it a struggle for recogniSweet Expressions String Quartet tion? in high school as I mentioned. We I never really worried about the played into college together, and recognition. I just did my thing. they were my first guinea pigs for My grandfather always told me trying my pop and rock music ar- "the cream always rises to the top." rangements. Over the years, I met a So I focused on being the lot of people that helped Bella best player I could be for what I evolve into what it is today. Yama- wanted to try and do on electric


asked me to guest spot with his band, and eventually join full-time. He gave me my first high profile performance opportunities as a rock electric violinist. He has also been a constant collaborator and friend over the years. Ken Dattmore with Yamaha stuck it out and watched my career develop, and we wouldn't be playing all these wonderful instruments without him. Matt Dela Pola of David Foster's camp has always supported us over the years as well, and it has meant a lot to me, and given us Pete O‟Donnell. He gave me tons great opportunities. of great advice as a kid who didn't know much. He believed in me, and at that age, that's all you need really to get going. Lisa Viscuglia, a local violinist, also with a Niagara Falls connection through her father, introduced me to many people and provided me with my first freelance gigs in Vegas. My years working with her were very important to my development. Dave King, our Bella tech, has been with me almost since the very beginning, and he has been a constant friend, confidante, and integral part to Bella. Doug Taylor and John Meanor joined the team and it made us that much stronger. Of Any particularly memorable course all of the players, both past shows? and present, have played a huge The first time we played with Richrole in the evolution of Bella ard Marx as a quartet was aweStrings, and I thank them all for some. We made it into his "video their talents and hard work. blog." Ron Gutierrez was a huge help in recent times, in terms of Now, how much of a task is it to dealing with the unprecedented manage, do you get to play still? growth that we were not set up to It consumes my life and I don't handle. He helped set up our cur- sleep. HaHa. I play as much as I rent infrastructure. Jeanne Deroode can, but not as often as I used to. and Dana Fitzpatrick have kept it running smoothly. How often do you really get to My recognition as a player, personally play these days, with I can thank Lon Bronson for. He managing and scheduling and

such? I play when I am needed, or when I really, really want to play. However, whenever Lon Bronson or Brody Dolyniuk calls, I'm there. Do you still get nervous before shows? I never really got nervous, except when I first played with David Foster…I got pretty sick to my stomach and called it "David Foster's Revenge." I liken it to Montezuma's revenge…HaHa. Do you travel personally to perform with your teams, or do you stay based on Vegas? I travel on occasion. It all depends on the type of show and where I am most needed. How do you decide who is playing where, and how do you construct teams? Availability, which parts they have memorized, and also the type of gig and any special requests from clients. Everyone has their favorite “Bella girl." Is there any decision process as to what songs you play during a show? Once again, I try to read the audi-


ence. For a corporate show, we froze up. I went home and wrote usually start slow and end with a out a solo and memorized it. After bang. that I hunkered down and just went for it. How long does it take to transcribe a song? Talk to us about the practice I have gotten pretty fast, I can schedule, how rigorous is it? knock out an average custom chart I generally give instruction and in around 4-6 hours depending on trust that everyone is pro enough to the demands. It can be done faster learn the music. Obviously, the if it is half-assed, but I don't like to better the players know the music, do that. the more they will work. Each player is different. Some can learn What considerations do you have in an hour what takes others much to take into account, translating more time. guitar into violin? Have you found a musical number that just doesn‘t translate well? We use a bow, we have a curved bridge, and obviously range. I hear cool songs all the time that I think would be good Bella Songs, then when I go to write it, it just doesn't work. Now I can weed them out just by hearing them. You also stated that when you arrived in Vegas, you had never seen a musical solo that was not visual & transcribed on paper was that a difficult habit to change or overcome? The first band I was ever in asked me to take a fiddle solo in D…I Aside from music, how much physical training does the team do? We have done some dance and choreography classes, and also try and hike, or do yoga together when we can. I saw on the site that you have current auditions going on now, is that right? Many try but few are chosen? Do you also take time to recruit potential musicians if you hear of someone with talent? We have already expanded to Los Angeles and will continue to ex-

pand into other cities. So yes, we are always auditioning. Many times there will be a waiting list for a spot to open up or to launch a new city. What do you look for in a prospective member? They must be skilled at a high level both reading music classically as well as having background in soloing and improvisation. They also have to maintain the "Bella" image of classy Hollywood glam. I have to ask, even though I understand the business…has there been any feedback at all on your request for a ―fit & youthful appearance‖? I would agree, it‘s about musical ability and beauty, and the physical demands of performing require a person to be physically fit, I was just wondering if people have said anything about that to you. When we book shows, sometimes our clients request a certain look, hair color, or dress from our girls. It is similar to a modeling call or an acting audition, only the talent involves music. Unfortunately, image is a big part of the entertainment industry at all levels. We


young and inexperienced and help them develop. I wish I had been equipped with the knowledge at that age that I try to pass down. I had to figure it all out by doing it wrong once, and right the second time. :) Tell us about the high tech instruments. We perform on all Yamaha electric and silent string instruments. I am an endorsed Yamaha artist and they have been an integral part in

Tell us about how big 2013 was, and all big plans coming down the pike for 2014 The business has grown leaps and bounds every year since it began, and I was lucky enough this year to have a great team assembled to help us organize and prepare for the next big wave. Our admin, accounting, legal, PR, and all coordinators, management, and concept colleagues have helped us get to where we are, and where we will expand to in 2014.

have fun doing makeovers and hair tutorials, though. We keep it as human as possible. I usually show up to first meetings with girls in sweats and a hat with no makeup, to make them comfortable. I tell them this is how I look 99%of the time. We just play the game, that's all. I'm a train wreck when I'm not on stage...HaHa. But let‘s face it, the team members are incredible musicians and show people, but are also stunningly beautiful. A friend who I spoke to about doing the feature said ―Is this where all the geeky band girls went?‖ What do you say to that? :) We get that a lot. But so far I haven't seen any awkward 12 year old band dork shots of any of the girls… You mentioned the ―farm system‖ in Bella - that would seem to indicate that you will accept ―potentially great‖ players who could use some mentoring and training/practice, during auditions do you ―see‖ more than ability & look as a part of the process, instead of pure ability? Yes, I often take on players that are

you manage to stay humble in this business? Some of the first advice I ever got…"Be kind to those you meet on the way up, because you will meet them again on the way down." I never feel that I am above anyone or anything. At any given moment I could be waiting tables, teaching, and hustling for wedding gigs again. There is no shame in that. As John Lennon said, "a working class hero is something to be…"

our success and the creation of the "Bella sound." Why Yamaha, is there anything particular about that brand that you like? They have a tone much more versatile than a lot of the other electrics I have played. I can sound like a violin…or not like a violin. Their structure is also similar to a real violin making it easier to switch back and forth. Listening to you talk, listening to some interviews and such you've given, you're really down to earth and a regular lady who's stunning and can shred the violin, how do

BELLA Electric Strings

www.bellastrings.com


"PREPARING YOU FOR GREATNESS"


To understand Davey Suicide is to understand the contrast of a man with two sides‌ As you chat with him, he is soft spoken, almost to the point of being shy. But as you speak to him, you realize that he is truly humbled by the fame, the success, and so thankful for the support of his many fans in the Suicide Nation. He is generous with his attention, kind with his words, and genuinely friendly. On stage is where Dr Jekyll becomes Mr Hyde. Davey Suicide is a cacophony of energy and mayhem, his stage show powerful, his vocals diametrically opposed to the quiet man with whom you shared words earlier. Davey Suicide revels in the music, the show, and his charisma draws you into his fold, into his world. He is a force to be reckoned with in the music world. Nicki Hiers of H.A.V.E.N. and Sherry Keith of Mystic Photography spent time with Davey before his show at Vinyl and Sherry stood tall in the pit to take this group of incredible concert photos...let CV SouthWest guide you on our journey with Davey Suicide...


Nicki & Sherry here…we are honored to spend a little personal time with Davey Suicide at The Hard Rock Hotel Nov 9th right before his show. I must say that personally, I was somewhat giddy at this opportunity…as I am a huge fan and had no idea what I was in for with this bigger than life figure… Nicki: We know you are originally from the East Coast and we have heard in the past that you’ve spoken of opportunities you may have slipped away in the past and we’d like to know a little about that. Davey Suicide: I’d pretty much started a tour with another band I’ve been together with for a while and one of the guys decided he didn’t want to tour anymore and just like that we had to cancel the tour two days before we left. It is was basically “I’ve done all I could do here”. I spoke with my dad he said it is pretty much your life and you have to do what you want to do. The next following week, I packed the minivan drove across country and didn’t know where I was going to live, didn’t know where I was going to work. I had some money in reserve that I saved and was going to kind of piece it together in when I got there. Basically, I thought “alright let’s figure this out.”

journey so far. Davey: I think I’ve just learned that you have to be accountable for everything that you do. You can’t blame someone else for failing, you have to take a hard look in the mirror and just realize that you’re in control of everything that happens to you. I’ve known so many people since I’ve moved to Hollywood that just blame other band members or whoever for the reasons that they are not where they want to be, and the reasons they didn’t get there is probably because they did it wrong. So it made me realize what things I was doing wrong and helped me to work on changing that every single day. That’s a maturity I’ve come to know about myself.

Nicki: What about the debut album Generation F*ck Star, do you think it’s a calling card, introduction of the band and you to the world and what do you think the message is the fans should take from it? Davey: Well, it isn’t like a single and that’s why I thought it would take everyone back of how the band is. This is the first song from it and it kind of sets the tone that we are in a time that what the idea of a star is has been so watered down, manufactured, and we have television shows that have people singing gloriNicki: What was the inspiration of your persona fied karaoke songs and stuff. The idea of what makes a change to “Davey Suicide” and the decision to pur- real gritty person that has actually lived through stuff sue it? and has actual stories to tell because they’ve had hardDavey: I think I’ve always been misrepresented to the ships and they’ve learned to communicate through public in general and I needed a reminder that I have always been in control of how things come out in the end, so I’ve always said unless I kill myself I’m going to get everything I want out of the world. I’ve always known that, it’s who I am now. Davey Suicide, that’s it; I am living the life and death of myself. Having that name is a reminder of that attitude. Nicki: Put your trust in Suicide, what is the true meaning? When you look at yourself in the mirror is that what you see? Davey: Yeah, it’s self-belief, confidence in myself. I think a lot of people try to pay homage to a supreme being, to something higher, or stuff like. Or when something happens the first thing they think of is God, but really you were doing all the practice, you were doing all the work, you did all the time...it wasn’t someone else that gave you’re the strength. You did that, so that’s what that’s about, really just trusting in yourself. Nicki: The rise of Davey Suicide really represents the rise of a man breaking free of some really tough circumstances at a young age and growing into yourself, tell us about the emotional and intellectual


need the fans the most. Nicki: The band mates you have now, who are they? Davey: Draven is our drummer, Needles is our keyboard player, Brent our bass player. Nicki: You just finished a tour in the UK, how did that go? Davey: Awesome, it was the best experience. Kids would be like in the rain while we were trying to load in the van and they realized we were in the van and they started chanting “Davey”...a huge line of kids actually knowing you were are, knowing all the words to the songs and would do whatever I asked them to do on stage. It was really exciting and made the whole globalizing the band, made it all real. Sherry: Was this your first time in the UK? Davey: Yeah, out first time playing there. Nicki: We hear you are recording a new album now…. Davey: Yeah, Needles is producing it and I’ve been writing a lot of stuff since probably earlier this year. I thought once we did the first album, how would we ever top cuz when you finish something you put everything into it and you feel like it’s the best you can do, we’re crushing it right now so I feel really good about the next once we fine tune it. music so they can share their stories with people is what a real star is, not any of this bullshit that’s happening. That’s the whole Generation F*ck Star. What kids are growing up with is real and what isn’t real it’s stupid and you got to find these art bands that are really artists and when you find them hold on tight because those are the bands that sing with conviction, they mean what they say and write what they say and not something from a assembly line sold to the masses. Nicki: Was there an intended message that you want to make sure the people listening, even the younger fans that you wanted them to take away from it? Davey: Yeah, I think it is important to find something that is pure because everything is accusable. Anyone can have a band, make songs. Weed through it and find that special thing, support it, because the only thing that can survive is because of fans; big corporate machines will always pop of the One Direction type shit bands and they always do that making big bucks off it and screw the band over and the band will have nothing to show for it in the end. The special bands really

Nicki: When do you think you’ll be finished with it? Davey: Hopefully we’ll release it late spring or early summer. I think we’ll have it done in the next couple of months, that’s what we’re doing when we finish this tour. Nicki: How much longer do you have on this tour? Davey: We end December 3rd in Colorado, do the record…..probably start touring again in early spring.


Nicki: Are you going to start in the States? Davey: I don’t know yet. Now this is a game changer since we went to the UK the fans there are like...let’s see if we can get them back here. It’s cool in the UK they don’t have the same social standards like Hollywood , people don’t have to act, it’s all more down to earth, not trying to impress people. It’s like the grass is always greener; I see bands come over here to tour and they like it over here, you know. It’s easy from a distance to love something, but when you really dig your nails into it, it’s not always what it’s cut out to be. Sherry: I saw you in Seattle Davey: Yeah, you saw one of our first shows. We had been playing one off shows before then, but that was really our first tour. Sherry: Honestly, at that time, I was brought out for Wednesday 13, and when you hit the stage, I was like “holy shit, these guys rock!”. Davey: Thank you! Nicki: Well we are very excited about seeing the show tonight, we know you have things do to prepare; we really appreciate you spending some time with us and we’ll be upfront center with cameras in hand. Davey: We had to bring in a new guitar player for the night, it’s his first show…..our guitar player will be in tomorrow and our keyboard player is getting his wrist worked on. But it’s all right, if we can get though this tour it’s going to be just fine! As the interview ended I was pleasantly surprised by the sincerity of this young man. I believe big things will come from Davey Suicide and his future will be bright! - Nicki & Sherry


Residual value, or resale value, is one of the most important factors to consider when buying a car—nearly all of them depreciate, but some much less than others.

W

hen you buy a new car, it's fairly easy to research the costs involved, such as MSRP, local taxes, and delivery charges. We know, however, that the moment a car leaves the dealer's lot, it starts to lose value. But how is that math figured, anyway? The amount you'll get when you trade in your car, the amount you'll have to put down on your next purchase/lease, and even the interest rate you can get on your next car loan are all impacted by the term you'll hear a lot: "residual value," which is synonymous with resale value. If you don't know the ins and outs of residual value, you're hurting yourself when it comes to buying a new or used car. All cars (except vintage collectibles) lose money over time (think of a used car as you would any used appliance—its worthwhile life expectancy is reduced with age). But buying cars that hold their value better than others isn't hard to figure out, and it's a good way to hedge against the costs of owning a vehicle. The Basics There's

no

consensus on the value of a car after a year or five years from its first sale. There are just too many variables at play, including the market for the car, whether the economy is up or down, and the price of gas. Plus, if there are 40,000 used 2009 Accords on the market, each one will have been driven and cared for differently. But there are variables that can be benchmarked, such as an automaker's and a model's past performance in keeping value, that organizations like Black Book use to estimate what a new car will be worth a few years down the line. Black Book is a lot like the Blue Book you hear about regarding the value of a car, but Black Book is the go-to that most car dealers use to price a new or used car. It also helps them know what interest rates you'll be charged on a loan. We talked to Black Book's Ricky Beggs, in charge of the publication's research department, to get an idea of how they figure out what a 2013 model will be worth in 2018.

How Carmakers Keep Values High hard-and-fast Supply and demand plays a big role in the value of a particular model in a particular year. Too much "car," just like too much of any single commodity, will depress the value of a car over its life cycle. Put another way, you might think Mercedes wants to sell as many C-Classes as it possibly can. And if demand were always bullish,

that would be true. But Mercedes, just like Honda and every other carmaker, has a vested interest in keeping residual values high because that enables Mercedes to have a "cheap" money supply: How much interest they're charged through their captive finance arm (a bank whose sole job is to finance car loans for a single carmaker) directly influences whether they can offer you that nifty 0.9 percent financing deal. High residual values also mean that the certified-preowned (CPO) program Benz dealers run can continue to be highly lucrative. A flood of C-Classes two years from now would depress that CPO market. Carmakers try carefully to match production to demand because otherwise they have to crank up incentives (cash-back offers) to generate sales, and that's just the type of thing that led to GM and Chrysler falling into crisis. Eventually the cheap money spigot shuts off and the debt must be repaid. So carmakers are smarter than ever at predicting sales volumes and will restrict production if they see storm clouds ahead. Today the cost of used cars is at or near an all-time high because carmakers cut supply during the recession, and


because people started holding on to old cars instead of getting new ones. Add in a variable like high gas prices and in the past five years we've seen crazy things happen, like the value of a used Prius topping that of a new one, and diesel VW Jettas commanding nearly new-Jetta pricing. All of it has to do with carmakers being very careful with supply. The Fuzzy Math of Leasing Ricky Beggs of Black Book explains that high residual value not only favors frequent buyers and sellers (or leasers), it also favors the dealer. Let's consider Mercedes again. The automaker is fighting for prestige in the luxury marketplace, and that means the company would prefer a tighter supply. So, for instance, Mercedes might offer its dealers an incentive to buy back current leaseholders' cars a few months early and give them the same lease rate on next year's model, especially at the start of a new model's life cycle. This has two effects. One, it tightens supply of that new model, in effect goosing demand so new customers have to pay a little more. Two, it increases the stocks of CPO cars the dealer has on hand.

But doesn't that second factor depress the marketplace, since it leads to more pre-owned cars sitting around? Not quite. That leasebuyback car the dealer gets on his lot a little early when he puts the customer in a brand-new C-Class increases the dealer's cash flow. He sells a lease on a brand-new C-Class, presumably with money down. And that tightened supply means the "value" of that car is probably higher, too, so the check the dealer gets from the bank/finance arm is fatter. As for the leased car that's now a couple of years old: It comes offlease, goes into the CPO program, and the bank probably pays the dealer for its remaining value, since most customers finance their cars and pay back the bank over time. Remember: Either the dealer or the bank (usually a captive finance arm) actually owned the car while the customer leased and drove it. If the bank owns the car, they sell it back to the dealer or to another dealer and pay back that difference to themselves once the car comes off-lease. If the dealer holds the paperwork, then they pay the bank back for the difference and move the car through their CPO program, paying themselves back. Either way, the lessee is just making a monthly payment on the

projected depreciation of that car, plus interest. And don't forget that all those hidden fees and interest from the customer pad everyone's bottom line. All of this means that leasing is a lot like renting an apartment. You're always putting your dough into the landlord's pocket, paying for the privilege of using an apartment (or a car) but never owning any of it. But if you either can't afford to buy, or want to live in a classier pad (or drive a classier ride) than you can otherwise manage, renting/leasing makes that possible. Leasing a car that'll hold a higher resale/residual value softens the blow of that monthly payment. The bank and the dealership can give you a better deal if the car is going to lose comparatively little value while you lease it. We're wading into some quirks of finance here. But it's worth noting that even if you never lease or buy used, this part of the marketplace determines how much a company can charge us for its new cars.


A number of Vegas musicians stepped up for a memorial event held for one of their biggest local fans. On November 10th, The 1st Annual Dave Sabatino Memorial Ride brought together friends and of Dave Sabatino, who was tragically lost in a motorcycle accident on November 10th, 2012. Dave was a huge fan of local Vegas bands like “Outta the Black” and the “John Zito Band” as well as others. These and many other musicians stepped up to remember Dave by volunteering their time and their equipment to help put together what hopes to be a long running annual tradition. Dave's best friend, Nick Griffith, who was with Dave the night of the accident, spear-headed this event along with Tanya Stegner and Dave's girlfriend & domestic partner, Patty Tagliamonte. Close to 100 people, both on motorcycles and in cars, joined in on the journey that begun at Davis Park, where the Memorial Tree & Plaque are located. From the park, the mile long trail of bikes and cars traveled past the accident scene on the Rainbow Overpass of Hwy 95, so everyone could pay tribute to Dave. The Run continued down the 95 the Searchlight, over to Nipton for a break, back to I-15 and to Nick's shop, Extreme Auto Customs.

in the celebration with bands playing and massive amounts of food and drink setup. Everything about this event was about donations and everyone stepped up to supply more than enough food and drink for the entire event. We would like to thank the bands & musicians that donated their time and equipment to make sure this event was a huge success: Outta The Black, Smashing Alice, John Zito Band, Threedom Rock, Jay Cee, and Jason Constantine. One band in particular that brought an overwhelming feeling of togetherness over the crowd was the John Zito Band, performing the song that John wrote for Dave called 'Burning Bright'. There wasn't a dry eye in sight. The song is on Zito's CD “'Lonely Broke & Wasted”. The 'inner-circle' of close friends gathered around the large picture of Dave, next to John as he worked his guitar, showed the emotion of just what Dave meant to everyone. This definitely was the highlight of the event. This annual event will only get bigger every year after the success of the first outing.

In Tribute… Kevin Lastovica

When the Ride returned to the end point, they were greeted with hundreds of people already reveling


The gorgeous girls of Brazen (see page 32) returned from the tundra up north to take the Vamp'd stage with Doc's Angels. Doc Ellis and the ladies always bring a packed house. Just one glance at the stage and you will know why. The Sin City Sinners had their 4th CD Release Party for "DiveBar Days Revisited", reliving all those nights where the band made its name known. Threedom Rock took the stage at the Fiesta Casino in Henderson again, bringing up the attitude once again down in the southeast part of the valley. This power trio is taking things up a notch with every performance. Outta the Black made a return to the new new-old DiveBar to try to out do the packed-house performance from their previous visit. With multiple musicians sitting in and blasting out some new and different versions of everyone's favorites, they definitely outdid the last show.

Stoney Curtis and the boys opened for a group with a name synonymous with the 80's, The Baby's. One of Stoney Curtis' many other projects, Count's 77, with Vamp'd owner Danny 'The Count' Koker, is taking the stage regularly at the Count's rock club.

Vince Neil from Motley Crue opened another venue, this time on the Strip but in a very unexpected location. Circus Circus of all places is the location for the new ‘Vince Neil's Tatuado, Eat, Drink, Party'. Vince aim to stir up a party-like atmosphere powered by a backstage vibe from tattoo imagery to some of Neil’s prized possessions on full display including one of his motorcycles and a few gold and platinum Motley Crue albums. I guess the strange name goes right The John Zito Band and Leav- along with the obscure location. Not an easy ing Springfield opened a night at In & Out for Local's and probably a big part of Vamp'd for Gilby Clarke's return. It's why Rock N Rita's was not a huge success in always a good time when Gilby and the same location. Sin City KISS & Cyanide the boys rock the house. Always hanging out after the show and having performed for the Grand Opening celebradrinks with the fans, Gilby is definitely tion. a Vamp'd regulars' favorite. Zito and the boys, once again, were signed to play the Las Vegas Rock N Roll Marathon; one of the few Vegas bands that has played this event multiple times.

Speaking of Zito, they are back at it, rocking the Vamp'd stage every Wednesday night. You never know who is going to show up to jam with these guys. This is the only place to be in Vegas on a Wednesday night.

A venue that isn't usually known for live bands, Babes, down in southeast Vegas, hosted a benefit for the Wounded Warriors Foundation. KOMP Radio was on site doing a live remote with performances from Whiskey Breath, Twenty8, Three Swank Bastards, Megan Barker, Wicked Garden and Whiskey Southern!


Making a good pair of sticks begins by selecting the best wood possible. We manufacture many different models of sticks using Canadian maple and American hickory. Our maple is considered to be the best in the business and our hickory from the southern USA is known the world over as the top choice for stick manufacturing. We also use red hickory which comes from the heart of the tree, making it stronger and more durable for those who need a bit "more" from their sticks. We use only the finest grades of wood. Every dowel is hand inspected to ensure that the grain is straight and free from any defects. Only then does it go to our lathes to be turned into a LOS CABOS DRUMSTICK. When you purchase a pair of our sticks, you are investing in quality craftsmanship. With nearly two dozen models to choose from, Los Cabos Drumsticks offers something for every drummer. Contacts • Website: www.loscabosdrumsticks.com • Blog: www.loscabosdrumsticks.tumblr.com • Twitter: @loscabossticks • Facebook: www.facebook.com/loscabossticks


Gear the Pros Use!

Scott Westbrook - Drummer for Outta the Black I’ve played TAMA Drums exclusively since the late 80’s and constantly find reasons to stay with ‘em. Currently, I keep 3-4 Kits in rotation ranging from the Starclassic Performer to my completely over-the-top Rockstar Custom. The hardware is rock solid without being too bulky and the drum tones have always been exactly what I want to hear. Some situations require tighter, more focused drum sounds and other call for a big, bombastic sound. The sizes will vary from situation to situation depending on what the music calls for. In regard to CYMBALS, I’m extremely fortunate to be a Sabian Cymbal Artist. Sabian cymbals have a fuller sound that’s not too “tinny” but, fills the sonic spectrum that provides me what I want to hear. I prefer the Sabian AAX series as they are designed to be very responsive at all volume levels. I’m also using Cympad cymbal enhancers instead of traditional felt pads to really let all the cymbals sing. Hot Sticks worked with me to develop my signature model “VooDoo Hammer” drumstick a few years ago. It’s a slightly elongated 5B with Hot Stick’s Strike Zone and a natural, unfinished grip end. The Strike Zone is a compressed area along the shaft of the stick that is used mostly for cymbal striking and rimshots which takes the most wear. I’m using that stick exclusively with a nylon tip and LOVE THESE THANGZ!! Tama Starclassic Performer (Birch) Red Sparkle Fade Finish 18” x 22” Kick Drum 8” X 14” Maple Artwood Snare Drum 8” x 10” Rack Tom 9” x 12” Rack Tom 14” x 14” Floor Tom 16” x 16” Floor Tom Evans Drumheads (w/Level 360): Kick Drum: EMAD 2/EQ1 Snare: Power Center Reverse Dot/Clear 300 Toms: Clear G2/Clear G1 Floor Toms: Hydraulic Glass/G1 LP Rock Cowbell

Sabian Cymbals 17” AAX Stage Crash 20” AAX China 14” AAX Stage HiHats 18” AAX Dark Crash 10” B8 Pro China Splash 18” AAX Stage Crash 19” AAX V-Crash 22” AAX Metal Ride 19” AA Holy China 20” AAX Metal Crash Monitors/Electronics/Accessories: JH Audio In-Ear Monitors JH16 Pro BES Audio Wireless - IEM600 Kelly Shu Kick Drum Mic System

It’s crucial for drummers to be willing to alter your sounds to fit the music you’re playing and not be afraid to experiment, not only with different sounds but different techniques as well. Mixing styles and genres help expand a musician’s “musical vocabulary”, much like playing a funk groove in a hard rock song. It can totally change to feel of the song and create something completely unique and interesting. There’s a great big world out there just full of new things to influence your playing. The camaraderie within the drumming community is extremely cool and drummers are always happy to share new licks, fills, techniques and whatnot to help each other, which helps all of us, progress and learn. Personally, I’ve always tried to keep in mind that, regardless of how good you are, you will never be as good as you could be! There are endless opportunities to grow, learn, and develop while sharing with and inspiring not just other drummers but, all musicians. Keep your groove goin’! Scott Westbrook Outta The Black, Witching Hour, Independent


Gear the Pros Use!

Todd Kennedy - Lead Guitar for SMASHING ALICE I picked up my first guitar at age 11 in 1972. I made a living playing music through most of the 1980's, during which I spend a lot of time on the road. I exited the music scene in the early 90's to focus on career goals, but I returned back to the music scene in 2009 after making my riches in the real world. Now I’m just having fun with it and enjoying playing for the sake of playing. I have over 30 guitars currently in my stable (I think) I’ve never really count them and they come and go on a regular basis. Guitars My main gigging guitar that has been with me for many years is a 1959 Gibson Les Paul Replica built by a well-respected Luthier and former vintage Guitar Magazine Editor. It has a slight twist though; it’s built with Korina (or more correctly, Limba) instead of Mohogany. It’s a little lighter and to me has a little more mid-range warmth. This, however, is all negated by its current set of pickups, which are an EMG 81/85 active set. They make every guitar basically sound the same but give great clarity and tightness with drop tunings, and 3/4 of our set is drop tuning. My #2 is A Gibson Les Paul custom shop 1968 re-issue in Alpine White with a 50's fat neck. Pickups are stock 57 classics. I prefer lower ouput pickups and use these and Lollar imperials in most of my gigging guitars. The fat necks are harder to play but definitely have a different sound compared to a thin neck guitar. All that extra wood stiffens up the neck and gives a fatter and more sustained sound. Pedals I try to keep my pedals to a minimum and don't use distortion pedals. I do have various pedals on my board however to replicate various song requirements. After going through dozens of wahs the Fulltone Deluxe Clyde Wah was hands down my favorite and has been the only constant on my board for many years. For effects I do prefer individual analogue pedals over EFX units but for gigging it was just more convenient to use a digital modeler -"Line 6 - m9"; I run that in the loop and it has over a 100 stomp boxes in it. I mostly use it for timed effects, chorus, delay, reverb etc. The other two pedals I run are line drivers "MXR Custom Audio Electronics MC-401 Boost Pedal". One in the front for a gain boost and one in the loop for volume boost for leads. They are extremely clean and do not color the amp tone at all. Next is my Diggitech whammy pedal which is a necessity for the 5 Rage Against the Machine songs that we cover. Last, a tuner and Line 6 G30 digital wireless. I've had many wireless systems, and it was always a compromise to go wireless until I got the "Line 6 G30". I don't hear any signal degradation with it whatsoever. Amps My work horse is a Marshall DSL 100 watt. Not the greatest amp in the world but a git-r -done no frills amp. Lately my Baron custom single channel Marshall flavored 60 watt head has been seeing a lot of stage action. I grew up on Marshall Super leads and any amp I play has to get in that sonic range or it ain’t for me. The super lead is just too loud before it hits the sweet spot so is just impractical in the modern era . I have gravitated to 18 to 30 watts amps and have really liked the results. My new favorite "65 amps-Producer" may be my last and main gigging amp. Sounds really close to my old Marshall Super Lead and does it at a manageable volume, which is something I have been searching for a long time . Also has a stellar Fender clean which is a nice bonus. Strings I buy in bulk, 25 sets per box from D'Addario, 10-46 gauge. Picks V-picks 1.5 mm or Tortex III 1.5mm. I like my picks pointy and I don't like to have any flex at all. For a time I used steel picks but found they were too hard on strings and guitars. When I do my Pete Townsend windmill imitation and drag a steel pick across the entire front of the guitar it can leave some pretty nasty gouges and scratches. LOL


When not delivering Presents, Santa takes out his other “Sleigh” for a ride 1967 Ford Fairlane Convertible 500  Owners: Charlene Huddleston  purchased in 2006 and restored in 2010  289 high performance engine  C4 transmission  Dual four barrel carburetors  Dual Performance exhaust  Lowered 3 inches  BF Goodrich tires with magnum wheels  Victory red paint: Black interior and black top

Pictures: MayDay Photography

Model: DVa Devon Carnera


20 years of music. 20 years of mayhem. 20 years of kickin’ ass and taking names…that is the legacy of Hemlock. The brothers Smith and the gang have been packing venues since 1993, and even though some others in the band have come and gone, Hemlock perseveres and thrives because of their talent, their drive, their show, and because they focus on their fans, and work hard to make sure their fans go home from a show with ears ringing and hearts thumping. CV WorldWide had a chance to sit down with Brian Smith, drummer and resident PR spokesperson…oddly enough, he had quite a bit to say…

<CV WW> Alright, we always start these off the same way...tell us who‘s in the band and their role… <Brian Smith> Well, Chad and I are brothers; I am 2 years older but about 10 years more immature! :P You got Chad Smith on lead vocals and bass, Brian Smith on drums, Jezy Ward on guitar and backing vocals and James Gelber on guitar and backing vocals. <CV WW> Of the original members, only Brian and Chad are still in the band. What were the original goals – modest or just ―shoot from the hip and see where this train goes‖? <Brian Smith> Yes Chad and I are the only original members remaining. Jezy has been with us for about 4 years now and James is the new guy. As far as the band goes it's seriously all we've done and what we're interested in. I wouldn't say we had any game plan starting out. We just started playing shows and always pushed forward. And before we knew it 20 years had flown by! <CV WW> Who were/are your musical influences? <Brian Smith> We listen to all styles of music, and I mean all sorts. Seriously, everything from Neil Diamond, Sade, Alicia Keys, Faith No More, 2 Live Crew, Huey Lewis, Whitesnake (I personally am a

huge fan of anything and everything 80's)...everything! As a band early influences would be mostly 90's thrash and groove metal such as Pantera, Sepultura, Pro-Pain, Biohazard, Machine Head, Slayer, Hatebreed, Suicidal Tendencies, etc. <CV WW> Before you guys started the band, did you have any other interests? <Brian Smith> Not really, because we were so young when we started. I hadn't acquired my taste for booze and women yet! And Chad still carried his love and passion for Garbage Pail Kids! Other than that we were just young kids so I'd say playing with toys and Saturday morning cartoons were our other interests! <CV WW> Any cool stories on how you decided on the name ―Hemlock‖? <Brian Smith> Nah, it was just a name that we thought sounded good for a rock/metal band. We bounced around a couple other ones first but gravitated back to Hemlock and it stuck. We drew names out of a hat and pulled Hemlock first. Our guitar player protested that they weren't mixed up properly. So we shook „em up again and pulled out a different name. We went with the winning name for a while until we saw a band on Star Search using the same name so we instantly reverted back to Hemlock.


with any common sense) would have jumped ship from long ago. We definitely love what we do and are too stubborn to do anything else! <CV WW> What do you think has been your secret to longevity & success for all these years? <Brian Smith> Yeah, my last answer pretty much summed it up – we love what we do, nothing else will suffice.

<CV WW> Tell us about the early years – how much of a struggle was it back then – if I remember, the early 90‘s was grunge rock‘s heyday, how was the beginning for the band? <Brian Smith> I think it's always been a struggle to be in a metal band. No matter how many fans there are of the genre it's not main stream. We have seen metal climb and metal come and go along with so many other styles of music. All the while we just kept plugging along playing the music we enjoyed playing. We have just always pushed to be the best Hemlock we could be regardless of what's going on around us and we have a very high energy, entertaining live show which I think has always set us apart from a lot of other bands and other trends. You can't argue that writing good music and having a good live show should be the forte of any band. Unfortunately that's not always the case.

<CV WW> Okay, I‘ve got to call you out on this… on your website, in the bio, you state ―Hemlock has been called ‗The Kings of self-promotion‘ and have been noted as the hardest working up and coming metal band.‖ – really, ―up and coming‖ still after 20 years?! ROFL <Brian Smith> Kind of chuckle worthy, but still very true in fact. We have never had any great commercial success, no hand outs and have gotten stepped over by so many less worthy and (I feel) less talented bands with less heart. We've seen many bands come and go, and THAT shows you the integrity in their hearts. The record industry is, and has been for many years, a complete crock of shit. We stay hands on with pretty much everything we do. So yes, we are very involved in promoting ourselves. We still hang posters and hand out fliers for our shows. It's very disheartening to go to a show and not have any posters of yours hanging in the club. People have gotten very lazy (bands, promoters etc.) and everyone thinks a Facebook post is all you gotta do...well once again very few bands can claim the longevity of 20 years.

<CV WW> What do you think was your biggest hurdle just starting out those many moons ago? <CV WW> A lot of years and a lot of members – tell <Brian Smith> Our biggest hurdle has always been us about the journey through the years, about the having the money to invest in and push our crazy ideas. That and being naive and getting sucked into bad management deals and being taken advantage of by promoters in our early years. Our age didn't help back then either. We had to sneak into several of our own shows because we were too young to get in to our own performance! <CV WW> Tell us about the ―big break‖ that took you guys to the next level. <Brian Smith> “Big Break”?! What "Big Break?" LoL! We have had to work hard for any success we've ever gotten. We've had perhaps stepping stones that have helped further our career but we have fought a long hard battle that most bands (or anyone


people that have come and gone? <Brian Smith> Well I'm not gonna include guys that just filled in for a tour but noteworthy members sure...Hemlock started as 3-piece including me and Chad and our guitarist/ longtime friend Richard Burnett. We played clubs and bars around Vegas and eventually added our friend Mike Johns on rhythm guitar and backing vocals. We started touring regionally and eventually Richard had to step out so we replaced him with our roadie D.J. Kinsley. We continued touring for a few years with this line up....fast forward a few years we actually did an impromptu song live with all original members (including Rich). We hadn't all been in the same place at the same time in a long time. We got up and did one song and killed it! The magic was still there so we planned a tour with all original members. After about 6 months Rich couldn't commit to touring full time so we pulled out our good friend Bryan Gentry (who was in Hemlock for a while after D.J. quit.) That was a great line up but eventually Bryan had to put in notice because his wife was pregnant...with all our shows, Iâ&#x20AC;&#x;m not sure if it was his kid or not! HaHa I'm just kidding Bryan! So anyways that's when we brought Jezy on board. I met Jezy at a Walmart in Missouri. We got talking

music. He was in a different band at the time. I kept an eye on him thinking we might need him eventually. I finally picked a good one! When we brought him on board, I had known him for that while and was kinda prepping him anyways. Mike didn't last too much longer...we'll call it creative differences (even though that's not what it was. I'm just being politically correct and taking the higher road here). Well then we had a short string of fill in guitarists trying to find the right guy to fill the slot. We finally settled on Aaron Cobb. 2012 was a fun year for us but alas Aaron's time with us was short lived so here is where James comes in. We have known him for years. He's a very talented guy and we knew him as a sound guy in Lubbock, Texas. Well he showed up for touring knowing like 20 of our tunes (and the kid can sing really well might I add). So here we are today! <CV WW> Brian, you left the band for a few years in the early 2000â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;s, can we ask why? <Brian Smith> I did take a few years off yes....combination of many things. I was frustrated with our current management but I also had a kid that I love dearly and I needed to be there for him. I was also in a horrible controlling relationship at the time too. I guess I just needed a break and even though Chad and I had some ups and downs in the past, it was actually after the shooting of Dimebag Darrell when we realized life is short and we needed to be brothers again and patch things up. I went to the Hemlock show next time they came through Vegas and after that Chad was inviting me back constantly. I filled in one tour and weekend runs when I could but I was trying to balance family life and a 9-5 job. Eventually all the planets aligned and I was able to come back full time! I enjoy touring now more than ever before and couldn't be happier to be back! <CV WW> What is it about THIS lineup that works so well, and allows you guys to mesh on stage? <Brian Smith> Chemistry, good musicianship, and the fact that we love doing what we do. We have high energy shows and we get up and throw down as hard as possible every night! <CV WW> Do you try to convey any specific message with your music? <Brian Smith> The only time we are serious is when we play music. Lyrically Chad puts a positive spin on most everything. Live we just try to bring the party


ed to be home for them. They are older now so it's much easier for me now and I enjoy touring more now than I did in the earlier years. <CV WW> Seven full length albums – does the process get any easier each new record? Or do you just get better at it? <Brian Smith> The process does change. Usually it's the recording equipment that changes. Yes we definitely get better at it ourselves. From song writing to knowing how we want it to sound on the recording. We are pretty seasoned at this point, very professional. I try to nail my parts in 1 or 2 takes. I like a lot of pre-production and knowing what you're gonna do as opposed to writing in the studio and over experimenting. I truly do love recording! <CV WW> You‘ve toured all over the WORLD – Canada (eh?), Europe, and Japan – what can you tell us about how the fans are different in those areas versus the US? <Brian Smith> There's a great appreciation from other fans in other countries for sure. And I hate to say it and have fun! Even our pics aren't the normal tough but most of the world has better taste in music than guy metal band photos. It's ok to have fun and even the U.S. We have so much radio rock, hip-hop and smile! pop shoved down our throats while so much good music goes unnoticed. I'm not a fan of radio and very <CV WW> Any of your songs really speak to you on little new music excites me anymore. a personal level (or is that too touchy-feely a question for a Metal band)? <CV WW> What is the smallest crowd you can re<Brian Smith> We're an open book and very secure member playing for? How about the biggest? as people. We don't have to put on the tough metal <Brian Smith> Smallest...probably 3 people. Largguy front. I pride myself on being real and don't mind es…several thousand, probably somewhere between getting personal. Yes our songs often have deep 5,000-8,000 people. meaning and connect with the fans and ourselves personally as well. We have had fans tell us how our <CV WW> You guys typically tour 9 or so months songs have helped them and even saved their lives out of the year, did I read that right? What kind of before. On a personal note the song that got hard for grind is that for you, especially after 20 years? me to play several years ago "Kill Your Children." <Brian Smith> When it's a fun tour it's no grind at all! The song is about divorce and broken families and We love what we do! But yes sometimes you get the effects it has on the kids. I remember playing in tired, or sick and worn out. Luckily we get to party Corona, California and there were big mirrors on the with our friends every night so we can't complain! side of the stage. I looked over while playing that song and it hit me. I was living the song and my son <CV WW> Your live shows are pretty much pandeand step son (who were really young at the time) monium, entertaining and energetic – how are you were home while I was on the road. I felt very guilty able to focus even after 20 years? about my divorce and how it was affecting them. I <Brian Smith> We're definitely very seasoned at this actually cried in the van that night after the show. point but I feel like we continue to grow and get betTheir mom wasn't the best mom and that was a huge ter as a band both in writing and also live. I don't part of what took me off the road for a while. I need- know how we do it but the shows seem to get more


hand and I could tell a lot of horribly amazing, inappropriate stories! I'd have to give some thought on a crazy fan story...or at least what I consider crazy. We have definitely become desensitized to what most people consider extreme or crazy.

energetic and even crazier! Just fun high energy from the first note to the last! <CV WW> Do you guys still do the ―Wall of Death‖? Has anyone gotten seriously hurt doing it? Have you guys ever jumped into the mix? <Brian Smith> We don't do it as often as we have in the past. Some people have gotten hurt in the past not just from that but just the high energy in the crowd and the aggression that comes out from us and the audience. We try to always maintain a positive vibe at our shows and Chad always keeps an eye out if someone falls down or someone gets a little too drunk or too rough. We definitely push for a fun vibe throughout our performance. And yes at some of our earlier shows I was known to hand off my sticks to my drum tech halfway through the last song and I'd stage dive and finish out the song in the pit before jumping back up onstage. I don't so much anymore. As we achieved more success and got bigger I remember one of our shows when Hatebreed opened for us that I tried to get in the pit during their set and as opposed to simply "moshing" I was actually getting mobbed and people were grabbing me! I couldn't get anywhere and actually had to get out and go backstage! It was crazy but funny and I realized then that we were starting to get some fanatic fans.

<CV WW> Do you guys have any memorable shows – why were they memorable? <Brian Smith> The show I like to share when asked this question is the first time we headlined the House of Blues in Vegas. We were headlining over bands that had huge labels behind them and radio was pushing them. Well when it was show time for us I remember walking out with the lights dimmed, intro playing and the roar of the crowd just gave me the most intense goosebumps! I got up behind my drums and we killed it! That will always be a stand out performance to me and it was definitely a moment where I felt a huge sense of accomplishment. <CV WW> Okay, HOLY SMOKES! I was just looking through the photos on your official website, and what the heck is up with Great Falls and the dude in the bikini briefs?! <Brian Smith> Great Falls is always a great time! We love all of Montana! I thought you were referring to our recent Halloween show there where I was wearing short shorts, a fanny pack and a bra but I realized you're talking about Van, my old drum tech. You literally lose your mind on the road. Sometimes we get crazy and do silly things for fun. I used to talk him into wearing women's clothing or underwear only and doing stupid stuff. It's all in fun and part of crazy life on the road!

<CV WW> For a long time you guys toured with some heavy hitters like Slayer, Slipknot, Otep, Lamb of God, and others – what did you learn from bands like those about being on the road, about showmanship? <CV WW> What are some of the craziest things <Brian Smith> By the time we were touring with bands like these we had already been playing for a your fans have done at a show? <Brian Smith> HaHa sometimes we do crazier things long time and already headlining our own shows so than our fans! Some of the backstage antics get out of without sounding cocky I don't know that we really


learned a lot from touring with other bands. We already knew the game quite well. The most exciting thing was playing to bigger crowds and winning over new fans. <CV WW> These days you are headlining your own tour – how different is it to be headlining? Is there any more pressure when you‘re a headliner? <Brian Smith> There are differences and yes there is sometimes more pressure. You usually get a longer set and full production. We have always remained humble and enjoy varying it up. It is rewarding to know that everyone is there to see you as the headliner but it also goes back to the whole staying hungry thing...it's sometimes equally fun to just have an opening half hour set and come out swinging, (and in sounds like crap. Sure the tape trading days were a a friendly way) schooling other bands, and winning similar concept but again, they sounded like shit and over new fans in the crowd. you'd go out and get the new album of the band when it was released. A million YouTube views doesn't <CV WW> We hooked up through Facebook; tell us mean much as far as financial gain for the artist. Sure what the band thinks about social media – critical you may reach a bigger audience but does that mean they're gonna come to a show? And again some crap component or necessary evil? <Brian Smith> The whole music industry has com- videos have 20,000,000 views while some amazing pletely changed. Yes a necessary tool, however it bands fly under the radar. And the million likes on shouldn't be a replacement for hard work on a bands Facebook doesn't always translate to numbers at a part. I can't blame young bands (because they may show. I encourage people to come to a show and fornot know better) but promoters should know better get about your stress and worries and just party and than to just rely on Facebook to promote a show. It's have a good time. definitely made people lazier. And no one can sell albums like they used to since everything is digital <CV WW> How has the music industry changed these days. I do support legal downloads where artists since the first Hemlock album in 1996? get compensation. I'm not a fan of a free download of <Brian Smith> Back up on the soapbox. LOL The a song that someone ripped from YouTube that biggest thing is the lack of album sales these days. Bands that would have sold 20,000,000 albums are lucky to sell a million. I think there's even less loyalty to artists, especially as far as mainstream goes. I'm not a fan of much current music out there. It seems like people forgot how to write a catchy, memorable song. Record companies are crumbling and music stores are closing and that's sad to me. I was excited to go flip through records and you'd count down the days „til a new release came out. Now you can download the album a month before its release date. The fact that buy-ons exist and you rarely see bands take out up and coming bands just because they like them and want to help their career is also disappointing. So if a shitty band has a lot of money they can just buy onto tours and festivals...ehhh it's always been about money more than talent anyways. I'm done with this answer I suppose.


<CV WW> After 20 years in the studio, concert venues, and on the road, what advice would you give a young Hemlock band, what do you know now that you wished you knew back then? <Brian Smith> I would definitely say be yourselves and play the music you love playing. Don't follow the trends, set the trends. If you have a song you don't like, toss it „cause you may get stuck playing it for years. Just work hard and make sure you get along with everyone in your band and respect each other. You really get to know someone on tour and it's already hard enough with everyday life struggles on the road but it's far worse if you're with someone you hate. And communication is huge. Have band meetings and let everyone talk and just hang and be friends. Learn your instrument well and rehearse your songs and put on an entertaining show. I'm not a fan of bands that just stand still and look down at their hands while they play. You're an entertainer so entertain! And just be careful because there are a lot of sharks out there. We got ripped off and screwed over a bunch in our early days. Everyone preaches support of the scene, support other bands but few bands actually do. We are always the first ones to the show and the last to leave. So if you get an opening spot be respectful and don't be a whiny prima donna and be easy to work with. Set up, don't whine about stage space because the headliner often wants to or needs to backline (most opening bands don't use all the stage space given anyways), get off in a timely manner so not to push the whole show behind. Get out of the way quickly. You can wind cables up and take cymbals off by the side of the stage instead of dicking around onstage and pissing everyone off. Stay humble if you're gonna make a career out of it, minimalize your overhead. If you have the girlfriend or wife, a couple kids, a nice car and a huge house payment you're probably never gonna be able to tour so make your choice and stick with it. One guy that isn't on the same page as everyone can ruin a break for everyone else in the band if an opportunity arrives. <CV WW> Of course, the fact that you‘ve been around and still packing them in after 20 years is significant, but what would you think is your greatest accomplishment to date? <Brian Smith> I think to show 20 years is the greatest accomplishment in itself. I know so many bands that have had much more success that have lasted a fraction of our time. I don't want a million dollars of debt

hovering over us. We've seem so many bands and trends come and go but we've just kept plugging along doing our own thing on our own schedule on our own terms. Time sure does fly! It sure doesn't seem like 20 years.

<CV WW> With all your success through the years, have you ever thought of sitting down on a warm beach with a fruity drink and saying ―we made it‖? After all this time, you‘ve probably earned the right to sit on your laurels and get fat & happy. <Brian Smith> Well, thank you but no, if we sit around too long we go stir crazy and just wanna get back out and play again. And I think any time any band sits back and thinks "oh we made it" and they let success go to their head then the band loses touch with reality and doesn't progress anymore. There is


something to be said about a band that stays hungry and raw that keeps the creative juices flowing and makes them want to strive for more. I'm glad we've never lost sight of who we are. <CV WW> Where do you guys think you are in the ―journey‖ of Hemlock? <Brian Smith> The Hemlock journey will probably always continue. I can't imagine not doing it. I've been doing this since I was 10 years old. It's the only thing I truly love. I can't stand sitting still too long. The 9-5 will kill you. There is a great big world out there and I encourage people to get out and see some of it. As far as Hemlock goes we constantly have a list of projects in front of us that we want to work on so that keeps us motivated and moving forward. And the excitement of writing new music and filming new videos and always trying to be creative and outdoing ourselves keeps it challenging too. <CV WW> It‘s late 2013, you guys are home from touring, what‘s in store for the band in 2014, what can we look forward to? <Brian Smith> We are going to do some new writing over the winter break. We've been kicking around

some riffs and tunes and even have left over songs from our last album. Not that they weren't good enough to go to album, just that we had so many songs so off the bat we already have a half album worth of kick ass tunes. Some of which we've already performed live. We have a new DVD and live CD coming out that we filmed and recorded at our Vegas 20 Year Anniversary show. So those are on deck next. We also need to get a new video editor. Not only for music videos but we have so much footage (we need to convert and get edited) that spans our whole career. I'd like to see that get done next year. We hope to head back to Europe and Ireland and eventually Australia. That's the next country we'd like to tackle. And of course we'll be all over the U.S. again. When the tour bus fire ups we'll definitely role to a town near you! (click on a face for band links)


T

here is no stopping Filter. After almost 20 years and six records, Richard Patrick still shows he has creativity to spare. “The Sun Comes Out Tonight” is bar none the best Filter album to date and one of the top records of the year. Life is hard on the road but Richard found a few moments to talk to Exiles about the album and what really moved him to create this masterstroke. As if that wasn’t enough, following excellent interview with Metal Exiles, CV WW presents Filter in concert, done by Sherry Keith of Mystic Photography, along with a review by Miranda Trenholm.

An Interview with Richard Patrick by Jeffrey Easton Metal Exiles: To start off with, I know that “The Sun Comes Out Tonight” was supposed to be a selfreleased album. What made you decide to go through Wind Up instead? Richard Patrick: They offered us a deal and with their huge amount of resources we could not say no. We are on our second video and the budget for it is bigger than any I have had in the last five years. They are completely behind us so it’s a no brainer. They told us to deliver the goods and when we turned the record in they were very happy with it and so far it has been a rewarding experience. I would not trade any record company for them. Metal Exiles: Why did you want to do it independently in the first place? Richard: The original thinking is that we have enough fans, you make 100% of the money when they buy the record and then the next thing you know you really miss the resources and power that record companies have so we made that change and moved on. Metal Exiles: “The Sun Comes Out Tonight” is to me one of the most commercial Filter albums but still has a lethal punch. Did some of this come from Jonathan Radtke or were you pushing Filter’s boundaries again? Richard: Johnny and I made a deci-

sion that we were not going to have an adversarial conversation with our label and the word hit single cropped up in our conversations. When the record company signs you they tell you they want something that will make it to radio, we need something that’s going to connect and I understand that. I have been listening to the Rolling Stones since I was a little kid, I know what a hook is so Bob (Marlette – Producer) and I said ok let’s go do that. Johnny said we cannot have record companies telling us what to do but I explained to him that record companies are here to benefit us and we are going to work in the confines of our creativity. Once you have the Filter creativity in there and it’s in the realm of something they want then everybody is happy. You have to think of something catchy like ‘Hey Man Nice Shot’. Every time I sing that song the crowd sings it right back to me. Metal Exiles: And it is still a heavy song. Richard: Yeah, it’s mean and its heavy. ‘Self-Inflicted’ was written like that, it has that same catchiness to it. There are ways to work with the people around you whether it’s the record company, producer or guitar player, as long as it is truly what you feel your music is about. I think Johnny was apprehensive because he was pushed up against the wall with Kill Hannah (his former

band) but for me it was easy. We wrote ‘Surprise’ in 15 minutes, which he thought was great and I told him that’s a hit single. We’re just here to have fun and make music, not fuck ourselves out of opportunities. I wrote ‘Take A Picture’ from the most personal time of my life, I am trying to apologize to my parents through music on the radio thinking maybe they will hear this and understand what I am going through. It’s relevant to me but when people hear acoustic guitars in a Filter song they say “Filter is just trying to get on the radio” but we have always been on the radio. I am just trying to get across how I feel and if you are a real Filter fan you will understand it. Metal Exiles: The original thought was to do a very heavy record and you succeeded but you also have stuff like ‘Surprise’. Why did you decide to include the mellower stuff? Richard: Because I like that stuff, it is who I am. There are twelve songs; do you want every one of them to be the same? I find that bands find their niche and they stick to it. Then you end up at 60 years old wearing the little School Boy Outfit jumping around and the singer grabs his balls for every song. You have to open your mind and explore what’s out there. I love AC/ DC but I am not wearing purple pants. This is why we change shit


up and do mellow stuff, because we are artists. ‘It’s My Time’ is probably one of the most beautiful songs I have ever recorded, it was just me and my piano, I love that song. Metal Exiles: Lyrically, this is a dark record, even ‘Surprise’. For the title track, ‘The Sun Comes Out Tonight’, what was it like mentally reliving the drug days for the motivation? Richard: It was great because those were amazing times. You just have to channel the energy and relive it. I have to accept the fact that I have done some crazy things but at least I am still here to talk about it. Metal Exiles: Would you ever go back and do drugs again or are you done with that? Richard: I think I would just kill myself if I did that. Metal Exiles: You survived doing the stuff but you have artists that die left and right. Richard: Well, I stopped doing drugs 11 years ago. Metal Exiles: I thought the original idea behind ‘Surprise’ was someone rescuing you from your addictions. How does it feel to have people take your material many ways? Richard: I want people to take their own interpretations. Metal Exiles: It was nice that you wrote that to your wife. Richard: I want to talk about what is in my life and it is pretty universal, everyone goes through it. I have seen my kid 16 days in the last six months, it is horrible being on the road. You have to do what you have to do and I am out here paying the bills. She is by herself, almost being a single mom with two kids is tough.

out is ‘We Hate It’. Do you ever have the feelings expressed in that song or is that from someone else’s point of view? Richard: I really hate someone right now; in fact, I am pissed off at a bunch of people. I do not want to spoil the surprise as to who it is but people can come up with their own names. It’s like ‘Hey Man Nice Shot’; it was always up for interpretation but I wrote it about a guy that held a press conference and killed himself.

kids kill themselves and the parents blame the music for making them doing it. No, your kid had a screw loose already. Richard: And maybe the parenting wasn’t there as well. You have to look at why these kids get assault weapons online, why they weren’t parented very well or why they were bullied the way they were. There is something to say to why these kids have a screw loose. The kids also want fame, they say “Fuck this, we are going to Metal Exiles: A Lot of this album kill everybody and we are going to has the feel of the early Filter ma- be famous, this will be our crowning terial. Do you at times feel the achievement.” way you did when you were first starting your band? Metal Exiles: I was bullied some in Richard: We created a whole type elementary school but when I of sound and when you sound like grew my hair long and wore black yourself and you are writing all new all the time it stopped. I got past verses and lyrics, that’s a good it but seemingly some people thing. We went for that, let’s write cant. You just have to find a way our type of music and stick by our around it and you know, not shoot guns. That’s the Filter sound and everybody. I know in the past you we actually sat around and won- have been super political and this dered what it was about ‘Hey Man album is everything but. With Nice Shot’ that was so amazing. You everything that’s going on right have these dark verses, you have now do you think you will write these vocals that bring you in and that way again? explode in the chorus and these Richard: This band is my therapeumesmerizing guitar riffs. We paid tic couch where I lay down and spill homage to that and wrote some- my guts, I just sit here and talk thing completely different of that about what’s going through my model of the Filter sound. When the head. Right now, my political activthird single, ‘Self Inflicted’, comes ism is just on my Facebook pages, I out, that will really make people say rarely involve the band in it unless I that Filter is staying true to who really feel that something needs to they are. Having said that, there are be done. songs like ‘Surprise’ and ‘It’s My Time’ that you get to discover when If you have yet to pick up The Sun you buy the whole record. With ‘Self Comes Out Tonight, you are deprivInflicted’ I wanted to talk about the ing yourself of a massive music exschool shootings and how these ass- perience. Deny yourself no longer. holes show up and say “You made me do it society, I am going to kill all Official Filter Site of these kids because of you”. It’s like trying to say that its society’s BUY The Sun Comes Out Tonight fault that they kill like they do when it’s just the person. BUY The Sun Comes Out Tonight on Vinyl

Metal Exiles: One of the other Metal Exiles: It is always the persongs on the album that stands son in question. It is like when


"The Sun Comes Out Tonight" A truly intense evening with the band "Filter" at Vinyl located at The Hard Rock Hotel and Casino. Straight out of the gate I have to say "Richard Patrick" sounds just as amazing as the first time I heard him in concert. The opening song was off the newly released album titled "The Sun Comes out Tonight" called "We Hate It". Talk about knocking you out with the first punch, if this was a fight it would have been a T.K.O. for sure. With such a powerful opening song the crowd was steeping up the tracks of a roller coaster called "Filter". If you have ever seen the band prior to this album release you know what I am talking about, If not welcome to the world of

"Filter". All I can say about the new album is that it is truly brilliant, everything you expect from "Filter" leaving you in awe and wanting more. My first day of listening to the new songs I think I listened to the CD over 20 times. The song "We Hate It" is loosely based around the idea of how we all strive to get exactly what we want, only to turn it around then ruin it for ourselves through greed and jealousy. We even go as far as hurting one another to get what we want. I am guilty of this myself and I know many others who can relate with this song and entire album. Just do yourselves a favor and purchase an album, you wont regret it. The band 'Filter" formed in "93" and seemed to have been aiming towards a darker industrial music style, similar to outer influences of Nine Inch Nails, where "Richard" was a touring guitarist from 89-93. My first experience with "Filter" was back in "96". Now I can truly say to you as a long time fan, these boys never let you down with out bringing your spirit back up in the music. "Richard Patrick", knows just how to take life experiences to the next level giving us listeners deep song lyrics we can all relate to. The lyrics are critical to the bands expressions ranging from love songs to industrial anthems and everything in between.

from Miranda Trenholm

"What Do You Say" is another great example of where "Filter" reaches out to us asking to not only listen to what is happening in our world but pushing us to do something about it. So how many times can you tell people what you want them to hear, knowing they arenâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t even listening? Sometimes you just have to stop your own insanity and let them fend for themselves. I truly enjoyed watching the audience throughout the entire experience. There were many longtime fans as well as new younger fans that held such energy in watching the band perform, it made it very easy to get caught up into the excitement of the evening. I sugguest, each and everyone of the readers get out there and buy this CD. Buy it for yourself and the ones


you love, it will make a wonderful gift for this coming holiday season. Many of us have friends and family caught up in the War in Iraq and Afghanistan, needless to say so do the band members. Rich-

ard wrote "Soldiers of Misfortune" Released in 2008 and added it to the set list in honor of a long time "Filter" fan who had been deployed off to war, then lost his life due to an improvised explosive device only 2 months out of his deployment. The is an anti-war song and prior to beginning it, they take a moment to remember and share his memory. Not only did "Filter" give us new music but they keep us rolling through the night with anticipation for the 1995 release hit "Hey Man, Nice Shot" the single that brought the crowd to a frenzy back in the day and still today. I still carry with me the set list from my first "Filter" show back in "96" in a folder with other memorabilia. The time between albums may have progressed but the song and the meaning remain the same for all of us fans. I hope everyone who chooses to read my article will take the time to listen and judge for themselves. I

would like to give a huge "Thank you" to Richard Patrick (vocals), Johnathan Radtke (guitar), Tim Telleher (bass) and Jeff Fabb (drums) of "Filter" for keeping the music porous after all these years (see what I did there, just a little funny)!!! In all reality I am thankful for all of your music through out the years.

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Why Wash it Yourself? Whether you own a custom cruiser or a sport bike, you'll want to keep your motorcycle away from commercial washing facilities and perform the cleaning ritual yourself. Those high-pressure hoses can damage bike parts, which are more vulnerable than mechanical parts in cars. Be sure you find a shady spot to wash (and dry) your bike, since the sun can create temperature differentials that harm paint and allow water to leave spots.

Assemble the following items as needed:            

A bucket for soapy water Soap or liquid detergent Gloves (to keep your hands clean) Bug and tar remover Degreaser and/or engine cleaner A toothbrush WD40 A brush for wheel cleaning Wheel cleaner At least 2 microfiber or 100% cotton sponges A variety of soft cotton towels and rags A chamois cloth for drying

Prepping the Water While some people swear by washing their bikes with plain water, others insist on using specific brands of soap. Whatever your style, use warm water with the mix and fill up a bucket for convenience. Keep the sponge nearby, and don't let it touch the ground (since it can pick up pebbles or abrasive particles that could damage your paint.)

De-Bug! Dead bugs and grime are the bane of every motorcyclist, but using the right tools will get them off your paint easier than you think. Bug and tar removers work surprisingly well, and some people also use WD40 for this duty. Don't scrub too hard into the paint when loosening bugs, and be sure not to use the same sponge for other cleaning duties.


Getting the Hard Parts Clean A motorcycle's hard parts (like the swingarm and matte exhaust pipes seen here) require different treatment than more sensitive parts (like paint or chrome.) Using a degreaser, scrub hard parts carefully and individually, making sure not to let the powerful solvents touch paint or chrome. No need to use microfiber materials here; a rough rag will do. Some people use oven cleaner to remove boot marks from chrome exhaust pipes, but extra care must be taken to keep strong cleaners away from the sensitive bits.

Washing the Body Microfiber sponge gloves are great ways to clean a bike's painted parts, and should be used with warm, soapy water from the bucket in Step #2. Be sure to get the paint good and wet before scrubbing, so the soapy water can act as a lubricant and not scratch the paint. Only use 100% cotton or microfiber sponges, as other materials can cause damage. Rinse the soapy residue off with a gentle Don't Forget the Nooks and Crannies stream of water from a hose, or by pouring water You might not need to get your motorcycle from the bucket. to concours condition, but a toothbrush will go a long way towards making hard to reach parts look clean. Apply degreaser on the tip for non-chrome engine parts, and oil and grime will disappear.

Erasing Brake Dust Wheels can be difficult to clean, and a longarmed brush is usually the best way scrub off brake dust and dirt. Apply a wheel cleaner first and let it settle before scrubbing it off. Chrome wheels will require specific cleaners, so be aware of your wheel's finish before purchasing a cleaner. Don't use tire dressing products, as their glossy finishes can compromise grip.

Last But Not Least, Dry With your bike still parked in the shade, use a chamois cloth to soak up the moisture from the paint. The chamois will keep the finish from getting scratched, and prevent streaks and spots from accumulating. Feel free to reward yourself with a ride on your newly cleaned bike; not only will you enjoy the breeze after your hard work, the air movement will dry out many of the parts you might not have been able to reach while you were drying it.


CVSW December 2013