JANUARY 22nd, 2016

Review and Photos by Char Tupper

PHOTO GALLERY: http://www.metaltitans.com/concertpics/nammjam-2016/

It is my third night in sunny Anaheim, California for the annual NAMM Show, but tonight I had special plans to attend and cover a show I had been looking forward to since the line-up announcement. This was the evening I get to finally witness, the one and only, John 5 and the Creatures, Beasto Blanco, L.A. Guns, Danny B Harvey, and of course the Jonny Coffin fashion show. First off, for me, I was thrilled for John 5 alone since myself, I am a big Rob Zombie fan and knowing how skilled John 5 is with his guitar, I knew only amazing things could happen from tonight’s show.

First performance tonight however, is Danny B. Harvey, the country jazz performer from Austin, Texas. I personally didn’t know what to expect seeing Danny B. Harvey, since I’m not a huge country fan, but, I decided to keep an open mind. Danny B. Harvey performed various songs from his catalogue including a special performance with former Morbid Angel vocalist, David Vincent, who by the way, has the most amazing voice for country. I can hear all the “hardcore death metal fans” typing in absolute anger over this, but get over it, David has the talent to pursue country, which I hope he does someday. Besides David’s performance with Danny, a special song was performed that was dedicated to Lemmy Kilmister from their project together, “The Head Cats”. The performance was fantastic overall and refreshing to hear true country instead of “pop country” like most artists today.

Next was heavy metallers,  L.A. Guns. Forming back in 1986 in Los Angeles, California, they quickly gained success from their self titled album and quickly began touring with legendary bands like Def Leppard and Iron Maiden. From visual, I instantly thought of Deathstars from Sweden who I saw a few months back on a 3 show tour with friends of mine. The classic leather jackets, studded belts, and chains give off that punk vibe. Musically however, they had that traditional rock sound that you almost expect to hear when you see them onstage. Great performance, that being said, the audience was very unenthusiastic towards their set. It was a surprise that the crowd had little to no reaction for a band like this.

It was now time for a band I had never seen or heard of before, all I knew was it had Chuck Garric of Alice Cooper and that my friends said “Char, if you like Rob Zombie, you will like these guys”. Well, from that, I was very eager to hear the next band. Beasto Blanco, a group unlike any other on this bill. Forming only a few years ago in 2012 from various parts of the United States, both Chuck and Chris formed a band that would bring raw power of rock and roll back to the scene. Let me just say, this band does exactly that, they have such energy on stage alongside great sound and presence. A few songs in, Calico Cooper comes in to do guest vocals on various songs throughout the set and enjoys “stage banter” with Chuck. I was pleasantly surprised with how much I enjoyed Beasto Blanco and yes, my friends were 100% right, if you enjoy the sound and music of Rob Zombie, these guys are for you, no question about it. Halfway through the show, Alice Cooper enters the stage with his daughter Calico to perform “Feed my Frankenstein”. Always a pleasure to see Alice, he is such a performer himself, so to watch him again is a bonus in itself.

It is now time for the annual Jonny Coffin fashion show. This time around the runway show had 2 drummers performing alongside the models walking across the stage. The show had various styled women with some having outfits dedicated to those musicians we have lost this year including David Bowie and Lemmy Kilmister of Motorhead. Various other outfits walked out on stage like Beetlejuice, chains, spiked hair, corpse paint, and much more. The runway show is always interesting to watch all the unique and new styles both Jonny Coffin and his wife come up with. Every year is a new surprise of girls and outfits, always a joy to see.

Now, it is time for the one and only, John 5 and the Creatures. The infamous guitar player is currently legendary for his work with also famous performer/film director, Rob Zombie as well as previous workings with Marilyn Manson, Lita Ford, Paul Stanley, and others. That all being said, John 5 is extremely well known for his various guitars, but also his guitar skills and to say “Oh, he is good at guitar” is one of the biggest understatements…ever. The guy has signature Fender guitars, worked with countless artists both in rock, metal, and even a little country and pop, John 5’s career is very diverse and has opened many doors along the way. Late 2014, “The Creatures” was born in support of his last record, “Careful with that Axe” and in early 2015, the group started touring. This was my first chance to see the performance due to the tours never coming far enough north, but since I happened to be in Los Angeles and my friends in Delve Texas announced they would be performing, I knew I had to be there 110%, guaranteed! Watching the performance, I knew he was great at guitar, no doubt about it, but still to this day watching him at work just blows me away, never missing a single note while also doing small snippets of covers ranging from Iron Maiden, AC/DC, even his buddy, Rob Zombie got thrown in the mix. John 5 played many of his various Fender guitars as well including the LED Light up, liquid filled, plus including his new signature, J5 Squier Tele in Frost Gold. The performance included guest appearances from Buckcherry’s own Josh Todd and guitar player,  Keith Nelson. John 5 and the Creatures were an amazing performance all around, such a blast to finally see their show. It is now time to wait for their next tour and bring Metal Mom with me ASAP !!

Overall experience, as always, NAMMJAM 2016 was the hottest show at NAMM in my opinion, yes, other shows were in town that I’m sure were awesome, but nothing compared to the amazing performances of this show plus, the production team, Delve Texas. There is no one like them, putting on amazing shows, out in the lobby meeting fellow fans of their events and all around genuine, amazing people, that is simply who they are as a company. Thank you Delve Texas, you all put on one hell of a show once again, I cannot wait for 2017 !