Las Vegas, Nevada, December 8th 2012
Today sucks. I mean it’s 8:16 am. I just woke up but I feel well rested and it’s quiet. Coffee is brewing and I have nowhere to be today.
None of that makes today suck.
What sucks is the realization that we have been robbed of 32 years of magic, 32 years of what could have been. I am still floored by the fact that anyone born in 1980 is now 32 years old. That is madness to me.
John Lennon was taken from us 32 years ago today. There is an alternate universe somewhere where that didn’t happen. I wonder what that universe is like? I would be very curious to have heard John’s commentary on the world today.
I know in my heart of hearts that the Beatles would have reunited in some form. Maybe not a full tour brought to you by Budweiser or playing halftime at the Super Bowl but I’m sure they would have gotten together for a benefit show here or there. Can you imagine how insane that would have been?
When they did Free As A Bird and Real Love those could have been four LIVE Beatles rather than with John from beyond the grave.
Yea it’s a bitter realization to imagine all that we have lost.
Add to that the senseless loss of someone as special as Dimebag Darrel and it’s just a dark vacuum of a day. By all reports Dime was the coolest guy ever. I never had the pleasure of meeting the man though I consider his brother, Vinny, a friend. I have always said as awful as Dime’s passing was I think the fact that he went with his guitar in his hands in front of thousands of people is the most noble way I can imagine. He was born to do what he was doing and he left us that way. I like to think that he went into the afterlife with that guitar in his hands.
Jim Morrison was born today which is fascinating. Did the lunatics that took Dime and John know that? Jim would have hated that I’m sure.
Today I think we celebrate the lives of these men rather than lament their loss. The impact all of them made on what I do is immeasurable.
Razzle Dingley died on the 9th. He was the drummer for the most promising band in the world at the time. They were called Hanoi Rocks. Hanoi were so far ahead of the curve that they made everything else look dated and irrelevant. People like to categorize them as hair metal but more accurately they would simply have been glitter rock/punk. I say glitter rather than glam because they were more akin to the New York Dolls than what the Sunset Strip had morphed into in the 80s.
Without Hanoi there would have been no GNR. That is a fact. I’ve heard it from the horses’ mouths.
Enough of all the heaviness. My birthday was 3 days ago. I was still in the throes of exhaustion from 9 months at war with the mighty Conspirators. Each day the exhaustion fades. Slowly. Why am I up at 8am on a Saturday you might ask? I’m settling in! I’ve never been much of a sleeper anyway. My mind races. 6 hours is a good night’s sleep for me.
A last minute birthday dinner was held at our friend’s restaurant, Bootlegger, the amazing classic Italian place. The Sinners were there, The Conspirators were there, my old friend, producer, Kevin Churko (Ozzy, Five Finger Death Punch) was there, Scot Coogan from Ace Frehley and Lynch Mob was there. Quite a cast of characters.
Afterwards a bunch of us went to KISS mini golf. I spend entirely too much time there but my boy, Mikey Ramone, works there so it is an inevitable random destination for me.
Thank you so much to all the people who sent wishes via the internet and otherwise. Completely overwhelming. I tried to respond but was quickly swallowed by the outpouring. It really means a lot. More than I could ever convey here.
Since I’ve been home I went to a screening of the 20th anniversary of Pulp Fiction, which was a blast. Quentin picked out the trailers to play before it and they were fun. DePalma’s Scarface and The Killer’s original trailers. Total blast.
I have seen Pulp Fiction a gazillion times but never tire of it. Getting to see it on the big screen again was a real trip. Most people would find this absurd. To me, it’s a blast.
I promised to catch everyone up on the South American leg. As I mentioned it had been such a cavalcade of insanity it seemed I rarely had a second to breathe. I may be just making excuses but I really was overwhelmed down there. That and flat out exhausted!
Everyone remembers the adventure we had getting home from Italy where we were trapped at Heathrow airport in London. Well, we got home for a couple of days at least before being whisked away to Rio De Janeiro.
Rio is one of those stunning places where you can’t believe you are lucky enough to visit let a lone get to play. We are truly blessed.
The audiences in South America are the most vociferous on the planet. For whatever reason certain bands have really been latched onto down there. The Ramones (they have great taste down there, what can I say?), KISS (good taste again), Maiden and others including Guns N Roses. Guns N Roses and all spinoffs and incarnations.
Of course we had been down there in 2011 and that was amazing. This time was bigger than ever.
Just as all the other 2012 destinations the concerts in Latin America have ballooned to larger venues than the We’re All Gonna Die Tour.
We normally save Welcome To The Jungle for special occasions. Like if the audience is so crazy that Slash wants to take it up a notch he just springs it on us. I’m always good to go. I have no idea how I ended up singing that one but I’ve been singing it for as long as I can remember. I can sing, play guitar or bass for every song on Appetite For Destruction. With a gun to my head I’d probably even be able to play the drums too!
I think it’s pretty telling that on the first night of the Latin American tour that we encored with Welcome To The Jungle. That should give you an indication of how insane that crowd was. It also gave us an indication of what to expect for the remainder of the month.
As always there are hundreds of people at the airport, hundreds of people at the hotel and the most passionate audiences in the world at the shows. I have no idea how the people know what restaurant we’re going to but no matter where we end up there is a crowd of people waiting for us. Fascinating really.
We were carted around by security which is for safety reasons but ultimately makes you feel trapped. We are advised to not leave hotels except for organized group trips to restaurants etc. In the meantime you are trapped in a hotel room kinda climbing the walls. Hard to complain though. Small price to pay for some of the best concerts of my life!
All in all we did 5 shows in Brazil alone. The promoters there Rick and Bruno are amazing. There were many promoter meals savoring all the local culinary delights. We ate like kings and were simply spoiled rotten. We should be ashamed of ourselves. But we’re not.
We did shows in Brasilia, Sao Paulo, Curitiba and Porto Alegre, all of which were astounding. The blur of it all. Brazil is amazing. I met a lot of amazing people down there and now there’s a Todd kerns Brazil Facebook page. Go figure. Always an honor!
From there we went to Santiago, Chile. There Fitz and I had breakfast with Tommy Thayer and Eric Singer from KISS. Eric has been a good friend to the band and Tommy is always a great guy.
I also got to see one half of the team that runs my #1 Friend page on Facebook (some people call it a fan page. I prefer friend). Camila and I had lunch with a friend and though I speak no Spanish and she speaks limited English we managed to make sense of everything.
She and her friends came to the show that day which was a dusty, outdoor affair. We played the festival with the Deftones. KISS had played the night before.
It was a lot of fun. It was surreal to play such a short set. We normally do 2 plus hours. It was an amazing time.
After the show back at the hotel we hung out with Dave Lombardo from Slayer. He’s a great guy. They had played the night before as well. We said hello to Chino from the Deftones as well. He’s a super nice guy.
We only ever do one show in Chile. That’s a shame cuz it’s such a rocking time.
Next up we were in Motevideo, Uruguay. We had never been there before. Won’t be the last. Another boisterous evening. So boisterous, in fact, that out came Welcome To The Jungle for the encore. What a great time. I am the luckiest man alive getting to see all these amazing places and getting to meet all these amazing people.
Next up we found ourselves in Argentina for 3 shows. Our awesome promoters there Chino, Pablo and Juan take amazing care of us.
First show was in Cordoba which was amazing. Great crowd, great people.
The next night was our first of two shows in Buenos Aires. The first night we played with our pals in Black Label Society. Those guys are always a blast. Frank and I hovered around Zakk’s guitars and amps as it is such a fascinating display.
Zakk got up and jammed some blues with us during our set. Slash and Zakk going head to head. Good times.
That night as well out came Welcome To The Jungle.
We were in Buenos Aires for a few days. What a lovely place. I’d like to see more of it.
I got to have lunch with Rosita who runs the Todd Kerns Argentina page. We all devoured amazing amounts of coffee and delicious food there.
Our old friends like Day and Naty were around for food and coffee. I never wanted to leave!
While in Buenos Aires Frank, Myles and I shot the video for the upcoming Pledge Music campaign for Hello Cruel World, my forthcoming solo album. Watch for the video on December 13th. It’s hilarious.
The second night in Buenos Aires was a more intimate show at El Teatro Vorterix after the arena of the previous night. Always fun to do a smaller show after spending so much time in cavernous venues. That was a really fun show. Last time we played there we did Dr Alibi with Lemmy. He’s a good man.
We had to say a sad farewell to Buenos Aires which had been so good to us and say hello to the lovely Caracas, Venezuela where I got to have some time with the other half of my main Friend page, Valentina. We had some coffee with her mom and a friend. We had a great time.
That night we played an outdoor show that was awesome. What a blast.
After the show hung out with Valentina and the gang and took pix with half of Caracas in the lobby. Fun.
That was technically our last show in South America. 3 shows in Mexico up next. First night was in Monterrey and it was a doozy. Sure enough out came Welcome To The Jungle. Awesome.
Guadalajara was amazing too. Ain’t nothing like genuine Mexican food, by the way!
The final Mexican show was in Mexico City which is gigantic! It was a massive show and an amazing way to end our Latin America tour. We even closed with Welcome To The Jungle!
It was Myles’ birthday that night and we had us some cake and dancers to commemorate.
I was lucky enough to meet Itzel who runs my Mexican Friend page. Always nice to make new friends!
I cannot say what an honor it is to be able to play for the great people of Latin America. Some of the greatest audiences in the world. I say that without hyperbole. It is simply fact. Ask any musician that’s played there. They will all say the same thing.
We closed the Apocalyptic Live Tour 2012 in Los Angeles at the Wiltern Theater. It was a makeup show for the one we’d cancelled. It was a great way to wrap up the year.
There had been a rumor that Joe Perry from Aerosmith was gonna come jam with us but that never materialized. That would have been very exciting.
We did our show with no guests, no pyro and no video. I really don’t believe we need those kinds of distractions. Music first, I say.
We got to do Welcome To The Jungle one more time in 2012. Goodnight and thank you, Planet Earth!
It’s been a thrill seeing those DAMMIT shirts all over the planet. It’s so funny cuz they started as a shirt Doc Ellis made for me for my birthday. I wore it on the Made In Stoke DVD and then the requests started pouring in. My webmaster, Norma, took the initiative and now they are everywhere. Almost every night I see them. I can’t tell you how much that kind of support means to me. Thank you!
After the Wiltern Theater we ended up at the Aerosmith show at Staples Center as I believe I mentioned in my last blog. Johnny Depp and Izzy Stradlin got up and played. Pretty cool. Depp can actually play. Impressive.
Aerosmith are mind bogglingly good. I hope I can still pull it off at their age. Damn.
Gene Simmons was standing by us. Still have never met the man. I even appeared on his tv show but haven’t met him. Jeff Pilson from Foreigner/Dokken was there and it was great to catch up with him. Great guy.
So now here I am back in Vegas. Reacquainting myself with my couch, my television, getting to drive my car. That’s a weird one. You go so long without driving it’s a trip.
I’m way into American Horror Story on Netflix. I don’t need anymore shows to be hooked on. Boardwalk, Walking Dead, Dexter, Breaking Bad etc etc. Enough already!
We are five days away from the big kick off to the Pledge Music campaign for my new solo album Hello Cruel World. I’m super excited about it. With it, exclusive to the pledge, will be the Near Life Experience EP. 2 pieces at once. We will be unleashing a funny video on the 13th with the campaign. Stay tuned. Check it out here and get a rare unreleased track, Little Grace for free!
I’ll be back with the Sin CIty Sinners next Friday night at the Railhead in Boulder Station Casino. Be sure to pick up our Xmas album. It’s hilarious with George Lynch, Slim Jim Phantom and more. There will be Xmas ornaments available too. Gonna be fun.
This has been an amazing year. Thank you to everyone all around the world for sharing it with us. This has really been one of the most amazing chapters of my life.
It ain’t over yet. I will be in Vegas and then on to Vancouver for Xmas. Gonna be amazing and much needed.
Stay tuned. Next weekend is gonna be huge with the Hello Cruel World kick off and back to Sinning!
Slash, Myles and the Conspirators will be back in action in February. See you then, Planet Earth!
Your loyal and humble servant,