JOHN 5 AND THE CREATURS
With Dead Girls Academy and Jared James Nichols
The Chance Theater
Poughkeepsie, New York
March 14, 2019
Photos & Review by Frank Piercy
Another night at The Chance! That makes four times in just under four weeks for me. Surely this place is a hot spot for some great music coming through town.
This time though, I am here to review the tour for the latest album of guitarist extraordinaire John 5. On a short break from between Rob Zombie albums and tours, John has put together an interesting line up. Kicking the night off is an LA Band, Dead Girls Academy followed by Jared James Nichols.
Before the night started though, I did something that is starting to become a bit of a habit. I bought the John 5 VIP meet n’ greet package. For an additional cost, not only do you get to meet him, but get a special laminate, limited edition poster, key chain, drawstring bag and up to 3 items of your own signed. So I had one of my photoshop creations printed up and brought that. Yea, it isn’t as cheap as others I have done, but was still worth it. I got one of my prints signed and my picture taken with a very pleasant and humble guitarist.
While this was going on, the crowd started to gather before the doors opened, a varied crowd of young and older humanity. All there to hear this man play guitar, and the banjo.
First up on the stage this evening was Dead Girls Academy, a band from Los Angeles that I had heard of but not really paid much attention to. A pop punk sounding band, leaning a little more towards a harder almost metal sound, signed to Victory Records last year. The crowd actually gave them a warm welcome. I wish I knew a bit more about this band, but even finding info on the net about them is difficult, a very energetic set with no one standing still. They do have a Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/DeadGirlsAcademy/
DEAD GIRLS ACADEMY
Next up on stage was Jared James Nichols. The night’s draw for me was not only John 5, but also this young man. Another Los Angeles based singer/songwriter and guitarist, that I have been hearing a buzz about from other concert photographers and music fans out on the west coast and I finally get to see and hear what they are. A three piece outfit with Jared on guitar and vocals with Gregg Cash and Dennis Holm on bass and drums. WOW is all I have to say. A fantastic set by this young man, great blues driven playing. I know he is inspired by Stevie Ray Vaughn, but to be honest the sound reminds me of a young Ted Nugent. Check out Jared James Nichols on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/Jaredjamesnichols/
JARED JAMES NICHOLS
John 5 has to be one of the most hard working musicians out there. Not only is he doing the usual gig with Rob Zombie (hitting the road this summer with John 5s former associate, Marilyn Manson) but touring till the middle of April for the release of his upcoming album “Invasion” The music videos are killer!! Go see them.
The stage is set up like the yard of that neighbor who cant get enough of Halloween as the lights slowly dim down and a man dressed up as a robot comes out pointing a laser gun at the audience amid warning sirens and warning announcements about a giant robot blaring out.
The crowd erupts with roars as John 5 emerges from behind the door and starts the night off with “Season of the Witch”, “This Is My Rifle”, then one of my favorites, “Six Hundred and Sixty Six Pickers in Hell, CA” watching him play is amazing, especially during this song. A song from the upcoming album was next “Crank It” which brought out his Lava guitar and a chance to bring out his inner Jimmy Page as he played it with a bow, this was followed by “Hell Haw”, “Howdy” and “Here’s to the Crazy Ones”. “First Victim”, “The Black Grass Plague” lead into another new song, “Zoinks”. “Behind the Nut Love” slowed things down a bit, then the mandolin came out of hiding and he went into his Mando Jam.
I never figured he was a Michael Jackson fan, until I heard his cover of “Beat It” which had the crowd mesmerized, then one of my favorite parts of his shows, the medley… which touched upon so many great songs. Snippets of Rush, Nirvana, Led Zeppelin, Black Sabbath, The Police, The Knack (who doesn’t love ‘My Sharona”), Metallica, Queen, Van Halen, Megadeth, and then everyone went wild when he started a lil bit of White Zombie followed by a snippet of Beautiful People, Soundgarden, Motley Crue, even a bit of Pantera, there were some others that were thrown in there, but I have no clue who they were, but the crowd ate it up.
As he left the stage to a bit of feedback, the lights didn’t go up and the crowd kept hollering and whistling, then returned with the latest single off of his forthcoming album, “I Am John 5”.
Seeing John 5 live is a great show, not a lot of talking thru out the show, just a lot of music. If your expecting to hear him do Zombie and Manson tunes, your out of luck, except for the minute or two during the medley. Your going to see a talented guitarist who actually plays music inspired by his interests and not just a screaming guitar being played by someone who you cant tell was inspired by the music he claims.
PHOTO GALLERY John 5
On tour till mid April with greatopening bands, go!
Go and see John 5. You wont be disappointed!