Matt Smith's life has a lot of interesting turns, if you love heavy metal. Such is the case with his latest run-in with Motley Crue's Vince Neil. Here, from the Mind of Matt:
As everyone knows by now, or should, MOTLEY CRUE is my favorite rock band of all time. I love those guys and the way they party is the stuff of legend. So, of course I went on Vince Neil’s Motley Cruise.
After we wrapped up a week in the Miami area recently, we headed out for the Bahamas with a shipload of crazy fools. What a good time! Now, I’m not a real fan of the cruise experience. I’ve done this before and I’m just to hyper active for all of the planned activity. I’m too much of a rebel to listen to a set time to do anything. Dinner at 8 p.m.? Every night? No way! But, hey, Vince is on this thing so we roll out. Info at www.myspace.com/motleycruise
What a blast! I’ve never seen Vince this happy about his band when he has played with out the CRUE. But, this is the best set of non-MOTLEY musicians that he has ever had backing him up. What a winning team with a smooth attitude. Dana Strum is the bass player – he was in the Vinny Vincent (formerly of KISS) Invasion, and then went on to be a founding member of SLAUGHTER. Jeff Blando is on the lead guitar axe – also a veteran of SLAUGHTER and Will Hunt is behind the drum kit. Jeff, Dana and Will spent ’06 on tour with Mark Slaughter while also working on the new studio album. It was a great tour with my favorite show being in Detroit
back in September. Will has also done some kit work with Tommy Lee on the
“ Never A Dull Moment” and “Tommy Land” solo efforts. Strange that a drummer needs a drummer – well on his solos tours Tommy plays guitar, and/or sings on several songs. So Will handles drums. Tommy also does a lot of piano and DJ cuts with his solo records. (I think Kid Rock sits at home at night wishing he were Tommy!) Will also substituted for T. Lee on about the last 10 shows of Motley’s Carnival Of Sins tour in April of ’06. Lee was suffering from tendentious. They were the Canada show dates, and he did pull it off. Willis knows the Motley material well – I liked hangin’ with him in Canada, but the Bahamas are much warmer!
Several events took place on both the ship and in the Bahamas. A golf tournament, concerts, a bikini contest for the 12 Hooters Girls in the 2007 calendar, an auction and other fundraisers for charity, including a poker tournament. There were about 400 people that were on the ship just for Vince’s charity cruise. The event raised enough money to encourage a repeat performance, so it should be on again next year. There were about 30 of us in the VIP entourage. It was a surprise, really. I haven’t seen Vince in this great a mood much in the last three years. He really had a good time. Even his security team relaxed for a change! Sun, fun, hanging out with Vince and the boys – it just doesn’t get any better than that!
The Vince Neil Band has a few concert dates coming up in March in Kentucky, Illinois and Arizona. I will be hitting those. Then they head off for Australia for a total of 10 shows. They may record a little before Jeff and Dana go back to Slaughter, and Will returns to his main band “Dark New Day”. To get some more info hit up these sites: Vince Neil @ www.vinceneil.net Dana Strum and Jeff Blando @ www.myspace.com/slaughterfanpage
Will Hunt @www.myspace.com/darknewday
Tommy Lee @ www.myspace.com/tommyleetv
I’m off to Ohio for Tommy Lee and Super Nova! -- Matt Smith