Category: News



Bob Kulick’s debut solo album, ‘Skeletons in the Closet’ hits stores in North America today.  The album features the following guests:

Lead vocalists – David Glen Eisley, Andrew Freeman, Todd Kerns, Robin McAuley, Dennis St. James, Dee Snider, Vick Wright.
Bassists – Kjell Benner, Bobby Ferrari, Bruce Kulick, Dennis St. James, Rudy Sarzo, Chuck Wright
Keyboardists – Doug Katsaros, Jimmy Waldo
Drummers – Vinnie Appice, Frankie Banali, Chuck Burgi, Scot Coogan, Brent Fitz, Bobby Rock, Jay Schellen, Eric Singer
Pick it up for the sale price of $12.99 (+ shipping) NOW.




Upcoming Chicago modern rockers Frontline release their debut full length album, Cold World, on June 2 via Vanity Music Group’s new imprint, Shock Records, distributed through AISA / RED / Sony Music.  Produced by Mike Brezen, the album was recorded over a six month period at AMG Studios in Chicago.Formed by singer / guitarist Jason Delismon in early 2016, Frontline came to life when Delismon hooked up with lead guitarist, Mike Nowak, bassist, Alex Loeber and keyboardist Diane Tragos when the three of them began writing together, which soon led to the concept of an actual band coming to life.  “It was just a writing thing at first,” relates Delismon, “and soon things just started to click and it became obvious that we needed to see this thing through. Before long we began auditioning drummers and Jason Jaros entered the picture.” Soon after the recording of Cold World commenced Nowak had to step down due to personal reasons, to be replaced by Steve Vuko.  “After auditioning more than enough guitarists, it was obvious that Steve just had the chemistry needed to fill Mike’s shoes,” Jason recalls.

Delismon says of Cold World, “I’m confident it will break through and dominate the mainstream rock scene with its edgy and heartfelt lyrics. Fans won’t be disappointed with the innovative originality we’ve put into this.”

The band tapped former In this Moment drummer Tom Hane to design the album art for Cold World. Jason met Hane back in 2012 when the former was a drum tech for Eve to Adam on the ‘Jagermeister Presents …’ tour, which In This Moment was also a part of. “We were talking one day and the subject of photography and graphic design came up. He showed me some of his work and I told him we’d be interested in hiring him for the Frontline artwork when it came time.  He wound up not only doing our album art but our photo shoot, as well, ” says Delismon.

Cold World track listing:
Cold World
Don’t Misunderstand
Falling For You
Cold World (Reprise)


Throughout his forty year music career Bob Kulick has worked with an astonishing array of artists: From Meat Loaf to Motorhead. From KISS to Michael Bolton. WASP to Diana Ross as well as legends such as Roger Daltrey, Alice Cooper, Lou Reed and Paul Stanley’s first solo album and tour.

After serving as a sideman and producer for much of his professional career, Kulick has decided that it was time to release a solo album – and he brought along a few of his good friends to support him in the endeavour. Joining Bob on the album are
Lead vocalists – Dee Snider, Robin McAuley, Andrew Freeman, Vick Wright, Todd Kerns, David Glen Eisley, Dennis St James
Bassists – Rudy Sarzo, Chuck Wright, Bobby Ferrari, Bruce Kulick, Dennis St James, Kjell Benner
Keyboardists – Doug Katsaros, Jimmy Waldo
Drummers – Vinny Appice, Frankie Banali, Eric Singer, Brent Fitz, Scot Coogan, Chuck Burgi, Bobby Rock, Jay Schellen
With Bob himself providing all of the guitar tracks and co-producing the album along with Bobby Ferrari at Vegas View Recording in Las Vegas, NV.
Skeletons in the Closet will be released in late Spring through Vanity Music Group (distributed via RED / Sony Music).

Half of Skeletons in the Closet is comprised of brand new material while the other half is comprised of retrospective material from Bob’s albums with Murderer’s Row and Skull. “After finishing the five new songs, the idea of including five of my favourite songs from my past rounded things out nicely,” Bob says. “Brand New songs and then the ‘skeletons in the closet!'”

The tracklisting for Skeletons in the Closet is as follows:
Not Before You
Rich Man
India (from Murderer’s Row)
Skeletons in the Closet (from Murderer’s Row)
Guitar Commandos (from Skull – also features a guitar duel with Bruce Kulick)
Can’t Stop the Rock (Previously unreleased track)
Eyes of a Stranger (from Skull)

His talents have earned Kulick a dozen gold and platinum records, and aside from writing for the traditional album format, he’s written and performed songs for Nickelodeon’s SpongeBob Square Pants (David Glen Eisley’s “Sweet Victory”) and the theme song for WWE’s Superstar Wrestler Triple H, “The Game.”


Dallas metal mongers Hostile are streaming their new Ep, Hypnotic Regression via the popular Dutch outlet Lords of Metal through the 12th of December.  The four song mini album can be listened to here.

When you come from Texas, you’re expected to be bigger than everything else in your wake and with Hypnotic Regression (out now via Hostile Music / Vanity Music Group) the quintet have done just that.  Teaming up with producer Rob Swarthout (Flickerstick, Deep Blue Something, Ruff Ryders, etc) at Audio Science Laboratories in Dallas to create a larger than life head crushing affair reflecting the influence that Savatage, Crimson Glory and King Diamond, amongst others, has had on the band.

Opening with the take no prisoners riffing of “Broken,” the track is a song about fighting back against the abusers and the bullies of the world.  “Demons” touches on dealing with one’s inner beast and who we may be turning into.  “Through the Eyes of the Wicked” was actually written on the way to rehearsal and encourages you to get rid of those who tie you down and force feed you nothing but lies, while Ep closer and title track, “Hypnotic Regression” opens with an impressive bass solo from Lafuente before throwing you straight into the pit of hell with an all out assault led by sticksman Robert Goss.  A very personal song for Acosta the intensity of the track is reflected, not only in the savage riffing but in the song’s lyrical content as it deals with losing a close friend to heroin


Vanity Music Group’s Red Tide Rising takes to the road tomorrow night with longtime compadres Drowning Pool and new friends Gemini Syndrome and 9Electric.  The first two dates are in the band’s backyard – Colorado Springs and their hometown of Denver.


29 Nov – Colorado Springs, CO – The Black Sheep
30 Nov – Denver, CO – The Roxy Theatre
01 Dec – Wichita, KS – The Cotillion
02 Dec – Springfield, MO – The Regency
03 Dec – Waterloo, IA – Spicoli’s
04 Dec – Lisle, IL – BaseCamp
06 Dec – Flint, MI – The Machine Shop
07 Dec – Ft. Wayne, IN – The Rusty Spur
08 Dec – Mansfield, OH – Whiskey Warehouse
09 Dec – Stafford Springs, CT – The Palace Theater
10 Dec – Lawrence, MA – Claddagh
11 Dec – Poughkeepsie, NY – The Chance Theater
12 Dec – Stanhope, NJ – The Stanhope House
14 Dec – Clarence, NY – Nashvilles II
15 Dec – Amityville, NY – Revolution
16 Dec – Jacksonville, NC – Hooligans
17 Dec – Raleigh, NC – The Maywood
18 Dec – Leesburg, VA – Tally Ho Theater
20 Dec – Dayton, OH – Oddbody’s
21 Dec – Evansville, IN – KC’s Time Out
t22 Dec – Merriam, KS – Aftershock
23 Dec – Dallas, TX – Trees



Hard rock upstarts Red Tide Rising have released a new lyric video for the track, “The Sound of Voices Screaming” from their highly acclaimed Ep, Voices.  Produced by Drowning Pool drummer Mike Luce, Voices was released in May of this year via Vanity Music Group.

Regarding the track, guitarist, Andrew Whiteman says, “The ‘Sound of Voices Screaming’ is about making yourself known and showing the world who you are. It’s a call to arms to stand up together for each other. It’s definitely a highlight in the set for me.”

The band spent the month of August on the road in the United States and Canada with Sevendust and Crobot.  They are making plans to head back into the studio in early 2017 with the intention of recording a new full length album set to be released in summer.


Save big all through August as we discount every item in our store from our own releases to titles we’ve distributed and released in the past as part of the Dreamscape, F-Bomb, WTO, Regeneration and High Vaultage families.
Go here to start shopping NOW!


Due to circumstances beyond the band’s control, they will NOT be appearing at Full Throttle in Sturgis as part of the Kill The Flaw Summer 12016 Tour with Sevendust and Crobot.


Hard rock upstarts Red Tide Rising have enlisted the services of world class drummer Glendon Crain (John 5’s Loser, Hollywood Undead, gODHEAD) as they take to the road with Sevendust and Crobot. Crain fills in for the band’s regular drummer, Matt Guerin, who will be unable to join the band on this run due to his celebrating his honeymoon.

Kansas City native Crain began his music career with Capitol Records recording artists, The Feds, whom he played with from 1995 – 2001 before transitioning to the band Loser, featuring Rob Zombie / Marilyn Manson guitarist, John 5. After his stint with Loser (2001 – 2004) he found himself doing time with goth metal act godHEAD from 2005 – 2007 after which Hollywood Undead came calling from 2008 – 2010. Glendon also formed but no longer plays with All Hail the Yeti. On teaming up with Red Tide Rising, he says, “I’m very excited for the opportunity to fill in on drums for Red Tide Rising, The resolve to create quality music is very apparent in this group and that in turn pushed me to bring out the best I’ve got. We hope to see you guys out on the road with Crobot and the mighty Sevendust!”

On Crain’s coming aboard for the run, guitarist, Andrew Whiteman says, “I’m super psyched to have Glen Crain filling in for us on this tour! He’s a badass drummer who also happens to be friends with our buddy Mike Luce from Drowning Pool and he’s a great fir for this run. He brings it every night and we mesh as if we have always been in a band together.”

Red Tide Rising’s Voices, which was produced by Drowning Pool drummer Mike Luce, is out now through Vanity Music Group The Kill the Flaw 2016 Summer Tour dates are:

02 Aug – Bloomington, IL – Castle Theatre
03 Aug – Minneapolis, MN – Mill City Nights
05 Aug – Sturgis, SD – Full Throttle
06 Aug – Ft. Collins, CO – Aggie Theatre
07 Aug – Salt Lake City, UT – The Complex
09 Aug – Regina, SK CANADA – Conexus Convention Hall
10 Aug – Calgary, AB CANADA – Marquee
11 Aug – Edmonton, AB CANADA – The Ranch
12 Aug – Saskatoon, SK CANADA – Saskatoon Events Ctr
14 Aug – Winnipeg, MB CANADA – Burt Cummings Theatre
17 Aug – Toronto, ONT CANADA – The Opera House


After successful tours in the past alongside the likes of In This Moment and Drowning Pool, Denver’s Red Tide Rising will be taking to the road this August with hard rock heroes Sevendust and Crobot in support of their recently released Voices Ep.

Red Tide Riisng frontman Matthew Whiteman says, “To share the stage with metal legends Sevendust is a huge honour and we can’t wait to join them and Crobot out there. Also, getting to spread the RTR sound to our new Canadian friends as well as hitting some new US markets will be incredible.

The dates are:

02 Aug – Bloomington, IL – Castle Theatre
03 Aug – Minneapolis, MN – Mill City Nights
05 Aug – Sturgis, SD – Full Throttle
06 Aug – Ft. Collins, CO – Aggie Theatre
07 Aug – Salt Lake City, UT – The Complex
09 Aug – Regina, SK CANADA – Conexus Convention Hall
10 Aug – Calgary, AB CANADA – Marquee
11 Aug – Edmonton, AB CANADA – The Ranch
12 Aug – Saskatoon, SK CANADA – Saskatoon Events Ctr
14 Aug – Winnipeg, MB CANADA – Burt Cummings Theatre
17 Aug – Toronto, ONT CANADA – The Opera House

Red Tide Rising’s ‘Voices’ is in stores now.


This week (23 May – 29 May) at 9:00pm CET / 3:00pm EST / noon PST you can tune in to French radio station United Rock Nations to check out Red Tide’s Rising’s ‘Voices’ in it’s entirety.Listen in here.


Red Tide Rising kicks their ‘Voices’ Tour off tonight in Colorado Springs, CO. You can watch them from your computer anywhere in the world! Right here.


The Mid Atlantic region’s best kept secret, The Fifth, has unleashed their first new music in over seven years today with “No Going Home,” the lead single from their upcoming, as yet untitled Ep.

Regarding the single, singer Roy Cathey says, “This song is a departure from anything we have released before. It has a very organic sound like Sabbath or Zeppelin – gritty, raw and a bit bluesy,” while guitarist, Icky Jim comments on the video itself: “We were very fortunate to get Justin Reich (Five Finger Death Punch, Ace Frehley & Paul Stanley, Black Label Society) for the video. He actually took a short break from working with Shinedown to do us. Justin’s a laid back, cool dude – so easy to work with. And he did an amazing job on the video. We couldn’t be happier.”

The quintet, who blasted out of the eastern North Carolina area in 2001, releasing three albums and an Ep along the way and hitting radio hard with their hit single, “The Gift” as well as storming Japan in 2009 have laid low since coming back from that tour. Cathey explains, “The past few years we have had some member changes looking for the right combination of players and personalities. We feel like we have the right group of people in the band to take this to the next level now. I couldn’t be more excited.”

“No Going Home” can be purchased on iTunes and previewed on Spotify.


With ‘Voices,’ Red Tide Rising’s new release, out today through Vanity Music Group, the Denver based quartet have set the bar higher than they could have imagined. Produced and co-written by Drowning Pool drummer Mike Luce (aside from first single, “You’re Nothing …,” which was co-written with Luce and Ill Nino guitarist, Ahrue Luster), the veteran sticksman found talent within the band members they never realized they possessed and, more importantly pulled it out of them.

“Aside from our run with In This Moment a little while back, our first taste at unrelenting touring was with Drowning Pool,” relates Red Tide Rising guitarist, Andrew Whiteman. “We shared the bus and formed some of the best friendships out on the road. To this day I actually tech for them when I’m not doing Red Tide Rising stuff. It’s because of that run and that friendship, that Luce decided he wanted to produce ‘Voices.'”

‘Voices’ is fueled by rage, the realities of life and the ugliness of the world we live in. Opening track, “Writing on the Wall” is about making sure you don’t allow yourself to be held down by your past. “You’re Nothing” is dedicated to the asshole who repeatedly tells you how great his life is, all the while living a complete facade. With “Suffocate” lead vocalist, Matthew Whiteman touches on the different types of addiction we all carry with us through life, whether they come from the pursuit of material possessions, giving into to drug culture or whatever one may be attached to. “Sound of the Voices Screaming” gives an audience the power to rise as one, while the Ep’s closer, “New Breed” instructs the band’s fans to distance themselves from people who claim to have their best interests at heart while leading them down a road that will eventually lead them to a life of peril. A call to arms for people to stand up for themselves.

Red Tide Rising also hits the road in support of the ‘Voices’ release beginning next week. The first leg of the tour is as follows:

5/18 – Dallas, TX – Renos
5/20 – Colorado Springs, CO – Sunshine Theater
5/21 – Spearfish, SD – Z Bar
5/26 – Joliet, IL – The Tree
5/27 – Janesville, WI – Backbar
5/28 – Fargo, ND – Rick’s
5/29 – Sioux Falls, SD – The Phoenix Lounge

‘Voices’ is available via iTunes, eMusic, Google Play and available for preview on Spotify.



Go right here and click on Red Tide Rising – ‘Voices’ and vote once an hour, every hour!


Transatlantic progression metal conglomerate Zierler, featuring members of Beyond TwilightFates WarningScar Symmetry, and Circus Maximus, have released a lyric video for the song “No Chorus”, the first single off the band’s long awaited debut album, ESC, out 16 October via U.S.-based Vanity Music Group.  The track is exclusively streamed by Revolver magazine at this location
”No Chorus” is about breaking norms and conventions.  Whether it’s approaching music, song structures, life, culture or solving problems in new innovative ways. Articulating a point of view in relation to a particular situation in ways we had never thought of before. Most of all, it’s about encouraging people to foster the ability to look at things differently from the way we typically look at them,” explains mastermind/keyboardist Finn Zierler the inspiration behind the song.  
The track itself is written without a chorus.  The line, “I’m so sick of verse, bridge and chorus” expresses the sentiment at the core of it all.  Writing a song without a chorus and making it work as a song is hard.  Writing a song without a chorus and making it work so that the listener doesn’t notice is really hard! “No Chorus” seemed like a fitting title as the line, ‘this song has no chorus’ actually takes on the role of the chorus although the song lacks a traditional chorus. Music nerds won’t be disappointed.”
His first new album in a decade, ESC is Finn Zierler’s most mature as well as his most daring musical work to date.  Drawing from a wide array of influences that bring to mind everything from the unabashed pomp of classic Queen and the madness of Devin Townsend, to the virtuosity of Dream Theater and the eclectic stylings of Hollywood wizard Danny ElfmanZierler masterfully walk the fine line between genius and insanity, combining a powerful, multi-layered progressive metal foundation with an often dark, majestic orchestral feel. The result is an intricate musical tour-de-force that took the better part of two years to complete.
Joining Finn on ESC are Swedish guitarist Per Nilsson (Scar Symmetry, Kaipa) – the first to come aboard – and Norwegian bassist/vocalist Truls Haugen (InsenseCircus Maximus) on the Scandinavian side. Finn also reached out across the pond to a pair of Texas standouts, drum veteran Bobby Jarzombek, whose stellar resume includes the likes of Fates WarningHalfordRiot, and Spastic Ink and vocal powerhouse Kelly Sundown Carpenter, who sang on Beyond Twilight’s 2005 album, ‘Section X,’ and was last seen with Ozzy Osbourne guitarist Gus G‘s band, Firewind, as well as Darkology.
The album’s stellar mix comes courtesy of another Beyond Twilight alum and long-time friend, noted studio whiz Jacob Hansen, best known for his  affiliation with Danish superstars Volbeat as well as his work with Amaranthe and Destruction amongst others.  Last but not least, acclaimed London-based graphic artist Rob Sindermann has been tapped to create the stunning visuals for the ESC  album packaging which includes an elaborate 28-page deluxe booklet.
ESC track listing:
01. A New Beginning
02. Aggrezzor
03. Darkness Delight
04. Dark To The Bone
05. Evil Spirit
06. Married To The Cause
07. No Chorus
08. Rainheart
09. You Can’t Fix Me No More
10. Water
11. Whispers


Transatlantic progressive metal conglomerate ZIERLER have announced the long awaited release of their debut album,ESC, via U.S.-based Vanity Music Group.  Masterminded by Danish songwriter and keyboardist Finn Zierler (ex-BEYOND TWILIGHT), who has assembled some of the world’s most well respected metal musicians for his latest venture, ESC is set for an October 16 release worldwide.

His first new album in a decade, ESC is Finn’s most mature as well as his most daring musical work to date.  Drawing from a wide array of influences that bring to mind everything from the unabashed pomp of classic QUEEN and the madness of Devin Townsend, to the virtuosity of DREAM THEATER and the eclectic stylings of Hollywood’sDanny Elfman, ZIERLER masterfully walk the fine line between genius and insanity, combining a powerful, multi-layered progressive metal foundation with an often dark, majestic orchestral feel. The result is an intricate musical tour-de-force that took the better part of two years to complete.

“I set different goals for myself in making this new album. I wanted to accomplish doing an album that was 100% uncompromising in every way.  I wanted to break through new creative areas. And I wanted to show compositions, structures and techniques that no one has ever heard or seen before”, reflects Finn on the making of ESC.

“This is by far the most time consuming, complex and detail oriented album I’ve ever worked on.  I took the time necessary to record this beast out of respect for the players, the compositions, and the music itself.  I put a lot of emphasis on not taking the easy way out, not using technology to do edits to save time or whatever. The musicians involved are all so talented – there’s no cheating, no copy/paste anywhere.  Everything on the album is recorded as organically as possible. Personally, I’m sick of listening to “plastic” albums that sound more like machines than humans!”

Joining Finn on ESC are Swedish guitarist Per Nilsson (SCAR SYMMETRY, KAIPA), the first to come aboard, and Norwegian bassist/vocalist Truls Haugen (INTENSE, CIRCUS MAXIMUS) on the Scandinavian side. Finn also reached out across the pond to a pair of Texas standouts, drum veteran Bobby Jarzombek, whose stellar resume includes the likes of FATES WARNING, HALFORD, RIOT, and SPASTIC INK, and vocal powerhouseKelly Sundown Carpenter, who sang on BEYOND TWILIGHT’s 2005 album, ‘Section X’and was last seen with Ozzy Osbourne guitarist Gus G’s band, FIREWIND, as well asDARKOLOGY.

The album’s stellar mix comes courtesy of another BEYOND TWILIGHT alum and long-time friend, noted studio whiz Jacob Hansen, best known for his  affiliation with Danish superstars VOLBEAT as well as his work with AMARANTHE and DESTRUCTION, amongst others.  Last but not least, acclaimed London-based graphic artist Rob Sindermann has been tapped to create the stunning visuals for the ”ESC”  album packaging which includes an elaborate deluxe booklet.

ESC track listing:

01. A New Beginning
02. Aggrezzor
03. Darkness Delight
04. Dark To The Bone
05. Evil Spirit
06. Married To The Cause
07. No Chorus
08. Rainheart
09. You Can’t Fix Me No More
10. Water
11. Whispers


Leap Dog Music and Vanity Music Group are proud to announce that on the heels of his successful ‘Southern Paradise’ release, John Taglieri is set to release his new Ep, Days Like These on 19 August 2014. The date is also Taglieri’s birthday and the title track symbolizes what the Ep is all about.

“Coming off of how great ‘Southern Paradise’ did, having my first baby, hitting Billboard, & charting overseas, I just cannot believe how blessed and lucky I am with my career.” said Taglieri. “I have an amazing fan base and they just keep me going. And Days Like These is exactly what life is about for me right now.”

For his twelfth effort, Taglieri wanted to pull out all the stops and make music that truly represents who he is and where his career is right now. “15 years ago I released my first CD, ‘Leap Of Faith’ which is exactly what it was.”…says Taglieri. “To be here 15 years and 12 releases later and to be as blessed as I am in my career really shows what my ‘Days Like These’ is. I get to do what I love everyday and I can’t ask for more than that.” Enlisting the help of some friends – both old and new – John worked with several writers and a true A-List crew of musicians to craft six songs that reflect on life and all the amazing things that have happened in it for him as of late.

For the Days Like These release, Taglieri recruited Kenny Aronoff (John Mellencamp, Elton John, Bob Seger, etc), Alan Jax Bowers (Parrot Bay, Rachel Allyn) , Rich Redmond (Jason Aldean, Ludacris, Kelly Clarkson, etc), Lee Turner (Darius Rucker, Sara Evans, Big and Rich), Eric Ragno (Alice Cooper, Paul Stanley, Billy Gibbons, etc), Joe Gilder, Greg Juliano (Juliano Brothers), Chad Cunningham and Keith Lubrant (whose music you have heard on TV shows such as Real Housewives of Miami, Beavis and Butthead, Here Comes Honey Boo Boo, Young and the Restless and dozens more). “Its been SO cool to have my friends help me make this EP. Keith and I go back 15 years and started out together. Eric and I grew up together and its like life coming full circle. Its also amazing to me to be able to have some of my idols like Kenny Aronoff and Rich Redmond on this release. Its been very surreal to be working with them and really part of what my ‘Days Like These’ is about.”

Days Like These releases on 19 August and the Ep will be preceded by the release of the “Days Like These” single on 29 July.

Please check out the promo video at


1780877_10202736856878521_760267918_nJason Merito: May 20,1970 – March 2, 2014

To say that writing this tribute is weird and awkward is a bit of an understatement. Only partially because the person that it’s being written about is the person who proofread the previous tributes to Steve Harris of Shy and Michael Sunden and made a few suggestions and improvements to each one. And now, Jason is the one I’m writing about. It’s just after 1:00am CST right now, which is the time he and I held most of our “pow wows” about our artists. Not going to lie, this is really difficult. In fact I’ve written and rewritten this three times now – the last rewrite was actually about 5 pages long. Noone wants to read that much about anyone …I met Jason Merito at a Lillian Axe reunion show at The Galaxy Club in Dallas, TX back in 1999 when we were both working in different capacities for the band. We were introduced after the show by Lillian Axe guitarist Steve Blaze and you could just tell the guy was this huge ball of fire, a jolt of pure energy that was barely containable. And it was infectious. Incredibly infectious. He dragged me out to the streets of Deep Ellum that night with the members of Dallas heavy hitters Big Iron and no sleep was had for at least another 24 hours. He and I exchanged numbers and said we’d keep in touch, adding each other as friends on AOL and whatever other outlets existed back then and we would chat for hours on end about obscure 80’s hard rock bands and brand new bands we had just discovered. This practice would continue literally up until the night before he went into the hospital.

At the time he was working for Proper Distribution and he had the opportunity to work with bands like Iron Maiden, Cheap Trick, Front 242, Bruce Dickinson (solo), Pat DiNizio of The Smithereens and other great artists while there. We would send each other boxes of CD’s that we were working … In 2002, when I was basically a one person operation he asked if he could do anything to help and thus began our working relationship. in 2006 we put together the foundation for a new company called Head First Entertainment and to make a long, boring story short, we worked together up until his passing. He also worked for Hot Topic and for Glazer’s Beverage Distribution during this time. A busy, busy guy but I never heard him complain. If I needed him to make a certain number of calls that day you could safely bet that I would have a report from him the very next morning. That is, after he worked all night at the beverage company.

Jason’s life revolved around music. He lived it, breathed it, consumed himself with it. Everytime I spoke to him it seemed he was excited about a show coming up, whether it was a week away or a month out, the excitement was pretty much the same. And it wasn’t always just national touring acts, he had his fair share of favourite local and regional artists, as well and he bought tickets to their shows, although he could get on a list pretty much anytime. He did that to support the bands, because that’s the way he was. Every now and then I’d call him and say, “Hey man, I got you on the (WHATEVER BAND) list and his reaction was always something like, “whoa, really?!?!?! SWEEEEEET!!!!” It was kind of funny to hear him get all giddy like that. Sort of like a little kid at Christmas. He wasn’t ONLY into hard rock and metal bands, either. We’d be talking about business or the newest Butch Walker album (he was INSANE for Butch) and suddenly he’s switching things up out of the blue and we’re singing the praises of Andy Kim, ABBA, The Bee Gees or The Sylvers or something. He was an across the board music fan and that’s one thing that set him apart from a lot of people. Good music is good music, there were no genre specific limitations.

He came to Phoenix a few months back and we went to dinner with him and his wonderful girlfriend Ann and hung out for a bit. It was way too short of a visit but we just figured we’d see him again in the not too distant future … And now we’ll never have that chance …

Jason Merito was one of those rare people who did things for all the right reasons. He was the most happy go lucky person you’d ever meet and he was fiercely loyal to family and friends, deeply spiritual, had a knack for making friends instantly, whether in person or on social media platforms. He was everyone’s best friend it seems and that was a title he wore with honour. He even knew which of my dogs was nearby from the sound of their bark. Random, I know, but it’s true.

Jason Merito’s passing was completely unexpected and heartbreaking for so many people. He loved everyone and we all loved him, This is quite apparent as you can read in the quotes I managed to get from some of his closest friends:



BobJovi (deepellumradio)
Jason was a great friend.  If he knew I was in trouble or feeling down he would always give me a call to assure me that everything would be ok. When I was going through my divorce we went to lunch and told me this was not your decision so go on with your life and be happy. Just recently Jason asked me to go with him to the Butch Walker documentary and that will be something I will always cherish. These are just a few examples of a bond u don’t get these days!!

John Inman (Former guitarist for Dallas band No Respect)
Jason was a beautiful, compassionate, humble, and loving soul. We shared many days out in the work force, as well as musical adventures. Always a great sense of humor, as well as pure genuinism that was very unique.

Dean Schachtel (Product Manager, UDR Music USA)
Though I only knew Jason from Facebook, I considered him to be a good friend! We shared a mutual love for the Dallas Cowboys, Metal and cheesy 70’s music! I always liked reaching his posts about music. Jason was just an all round great guy and very well liked by many! My thoughts, love and prayers go out to his family and friends!

Patrick Kennison (Lead vocalist, guitarist for Heaven Below)
Jason was the kind of person you could hang with after the show and feel comfortable and open about any topic of discussion. He was cut from the same mold as people like Dimebag Darrell. I immediately let my guard down as soon as I met him. He made me feel like family whenever we spoke.

Andrew Paul (Lead vocalist, Scream Arena)
A man of class and integrity, A man of music.

Brentt Arcement (drummer, The New Black 7)
On behalf of myself and the band, we are truly saddened by this news. Although we only knew Jason for a short time, we knew the passion and love he had for music. I myself had a few long conversations with him about music and the music business. I also knew he was an aspiring song writer and had sent me over some lyric ideas he had been working on and wanted my thoughts on it. Truly a great guy and he will be missed. (Brentt, Jason, Tory and Scooter)

Rico Gtz (drummer, Junk, Generator)
My wife and I were truly saddened by the loss of our friend Jason Merito, he was one of, if not the biggest, DFW music supporter we have known. His knowledge, love and devotion will be greatly missed!!!

Charlie Bagarozza  (President, Constant Motion Entertainment)
Jason and I go way back over 20 years when we used to be tape trading pals. We met via Goldmine Magazine in the classifieds. Jason is a true music lover and does it for all the right reasons. We need more Jason’s in the industry. Then maybe it would be more enjoyable and fun to try to earn a living. I’m going to miss him but at least I can say I’ve know him.

Steve Blaze (guitarist, Lillian Axe)
Jason Merito will be sadly missed. He was that constant happy face that would always greet you at every show in Houston or Dallas. He was the constant uplifting smile, the true fan, and the person you were glad to see when you came to town. He believed in music and its limitless power. I always felt so happy to see him in the crowd, smiling and letting me know how much our music meant to him. Whenever we were in the area, we just expected to see him. He was a part of the fabric, woven into the essence of the music and the scene. It wont be the same without him there. He was going to be working with us in April at the 2 Texas shows, and I was really looking forward to seeing him. To his family, please know he was a jewel of a human being, and brought me a ray of sunshine many times over the years. Jason my friend, I know you’re looking down smiling with that grin, seeing how many lives you touched. Keep a warm spot for us, and we’ll see you someday.

Michael Pierce (Lead vocalist ES3, Black Symphony)
Jason was the consummate friend and lover of life and music. I’ve met many people over the years performing concerts, but it’s not often that you get to build tangible friendships like the one Jason, my ES3 band mates and myself had. I always knew we were going to have a great show when we play Dallas, but know that we would get to hang with Jason and his crew, which we all became friends with as well, was the highlight of our travels. Jason whole-heartedly love music and made every effort to share what he loved with his friends. Not to get bodies in a club, but to show them, hey, I dig these guys and I want you to see why I dig them. That was awesome! In reflection of our past conversations, I can’t recall of a single time of Jason complaining about anything. I know there were tough times in his life, but he hit those situations head on. He always showed the utmost optimism. I know he loved a lot bands, but I always looked forward to seeing him when we would meet up at a Butch Walker show in the Dallas area. I’m sure the next BW show will be a bit awkward. But I thank God for giving us such an awesome friend to learn from and be more like. Thanks Jason for being an awesome friend. Your contagious smile and presence will be greatly missed. Love you Brother, PIERCE.

Dan Lehmann (vocalist Big Iron)
Jason was a beautiful person. A good natured guy with a positive spirit. Was passionate about music and being part of the local scene.

Alapeno Ward (guitarist, Hellgoat / Black Summer Rain, ex Big Iron)
I’ve known Jason for quite awhile. One of the biggest Fans of music, I’ve ever seen! Always there to give you support, whether it was music related or just needing a Friend to talk to. You will be missed my Friend… R.I.P.

Big Mike Rios (Red Blood Club, independent Dallas agent)
I first met Jason in the late 90s. He was always out supporting the scene. The Dallas Music Scene has lost one of its greatest supporters. R.I.P. my friend.

Billy Bogges (ES3)
When ES3 started playing the Dallas circuit, Jason was one of the first people that I became acquainted with. Since that time, we became great friends and he always supported me in all of my projects. Not only have I lost a great friend, the Dallas music scene has lost an icon. He will truly be missed.

Justin Elliot (Vocalist / guitarist, The Valentine Failures)
Jason had a huge love of music, specifically rock and metal. When I first started frequenting the club scene as a teenager, I remember thinking “this guy is always here.” He loved the scene and just being around music. He started hanging around TVF when we started up and pulled me to the side and said, “I want to be apart this. You guys have a great thing going here, and I want to ride it to the top with you.” This is how he became our “Mr. Do It All”. He was incredible. Above anything else Mex had the biggest heart for people. Anyone he called a friend could count on him to always be there. Just a great guy. I love him, and am going to miss him terribly.

Wayne 15 (drums, The Valentine Failures)
It’s hard to sum up so many memories and such a great life in a quote so I won’t try. I will say that I’ll miss his quiet wit, level headedness, and the calm cool way he always seemed to have in adversity. Most of all I’ll miss the talks. God knows how many hours we spent discussing with passion bands and albums only a handful of people know exist. Those conversations created a strong bond and over time those music discussions turned into life discussions and he always had a way to put you at ease no matter what you were going through. That’s what a good friend does and that’s one of the many things I’ll miss the most and I know that’s one of the reasons he touched so many people. We live in a world that’s fake and Mex was as real and genuine as they come. R.I.P Brother.

Robert Miguel (deepellumradio, former KEGL Radio personality)
Jason was an irreplaceable part of the Dallas rock scene: a capable musician and a world-class fan. An excellent example of how we all should live: generous & caring, always there with a kind word, but capable of valuable constructive criticism. He supported whole-heartedly anything he loved. I will miss his passion for music and life. I will miss his smiling face. But most of all I will miss the soft strength and peace in his voice. When I get to rock n’ roll heaven I expect to find Merito rocking on the main stage. And if he isn’t…I know he’ll be right up front smashed against the barricade with fists held high. R.I.P., Jason. I love you, man.

Darrin DeLatte (Guitarist, Lowside, ex-bassist, Lillian Axe)
Jason, we thank you for being a brother, friend and a fan. You were definitely a “true believer” and greatly appreciated!  We will always remember you and you will live in our hearts forever until we meet again.

Ron Taylor (lead vocalist, Lowside, ex Lillian Axe)
Heaven has a new music lover today and I’m sure Jason is hanging out with the likes of Dime, Hendrix, Freddy Mercury, John Bonham, Layne Staley, Bon Scott, Cliff Burton, Steve Clark and countless other musicians, looking down on us, thinking, “you guys down there don’t know what you’re missing”. Jason was one of the nicest guys I’ve ever known. He always had a smile on his face and just seemed to bring such a good vibe with him every time he walked into a room. It was always a pleasure having him around. Jason had a love and a passion for music far beyond most people I know. It was music that moved him, was in every fabric of his being and made him who he was. He loved the songs, the artwork, the liner notes, the b-sides, the singles, the unreleased tracks that no one else had. He loved the posters, t-shirts, rock clothing gear and wore it all with pride. Jason was Rock n Roll thru and thru! He loved the people of the music community which loved him back just as much, if not more. He loved the fans and friends at shows, the bartenders, the bouncers and yes, even the promoters and agents. Anyone who was part of the gig, was part of his family. He loved the artists and wanted to know them, wanted to know what made them tick, where they came up with songs, lyrics, concepts and most of all, he wanted to know “how can I help”? Jason has supported my bands for as long as I can remember and would always go above and beyond to help us out. I know he helped countless other musicians too, whether it was just telling them how much he loved their show or music, helping move gear, sell merch or just standing in the front row, rocking out. He loved being part of the music business and was always telling me about a band he was into, saying “you gotta check these guys out”! He was also always formulating a master plan to get our band out to the masses so everyone could see us play and hear our music, saying “you guys should be HUGE”! The last conversation I had with him was at our rehearsal when he came by to get some posters to take up to the club we were about to play. I took the time to walk away from rehearsing to talk to him about his band and the fact that he had started singing. This time it was me who had the master plan so I was telling him that I wanted to work with him and wanted to help make him a badass singer. He had the biggest smile on his face. I walked him out the door, said goodbye, locked the door and he was gone. Jason was genuine, a one of a kind, and people like him don’t just walk into your life every day. I feel blessed to have known him and especially honored to have been high on his list of favorite musicians. Jason, we had some great times and I know this isn’t the end. We’ll all join you one day and have ourselves one heck of a super music festival in Heaven. Much Love!


RIP Jason Merito: May 20,1970 – March 2, 2014
We Love You.

– Dave Tedder (Head First Entertainment/ Vanity Music Group)


With his eleventh release, Southern Paradise, Boston based singer / songwriter John Taglieri has hit the Billboard charts. Fueled by his residency at Irish Kevins in Key West, FL, where he performs every other month, the combination of Taglieri’s electrifying stage show and the benefit of a new crowd every day, as well as his constant touring schedule around the Eastern US, has pushed John’s sales to #134 on Billboard’s New Artist Chart. With a solid combination of live and online sales, the CD has established itself as one to be noticed.

“I’m so truly excited to have finally hit the Billboard charts!” said Taglieri. “We’ve worked really hard for a long time to make a career to be proud of and it’s nice to see that things are still moving in such a positive direction. I have an amazing fan base and they just keep me going.”
Combined with winning Rockwired Radio’s’s ‘Best Recording Of The Year 2013 (Ep)’ (announced 1/27), as well as currently sitting at #1 on ReverbNation for the Boston Area, and charting on Hit-Tracks Top 100 Charts in The Netherlands at #61, 2014 has started off with a bang for Taglieri. Southern Paradise also charted at #5 on’s Hot New Releases with the single for ‘Southern Paradise’ also hitting #13 on The video for the single also has nearly 5000 views on YouTube.
Southern Paradise was released in the Spring of 2013 via Leap Dog Music / Vanity Music Group and has broken new ground for Taglieri in the pop and country genres. “I worked with producers Sean Mormelo and Mark Cohn out of Nashville for this release and we naturally gravitated to a more pop/country vibe. It was a very comfortable place song wise and style wise for me. I’ve always sort of been on that line of rock & pop country and we just wrote some great songs in that vein”…said Taglieri. 
You can view the video for “Southern Paradise” at the following link…