This Halloween the “Danzig Legacy” show will be happening at the Universal Amphitheater. This show features Glenn Danzig performing many hits and playing with Doyle from the MISFITS, SAMHAIN and DANZIG (the band). As you may know, Danzig "is an American singer-songwriter, musician, author, entrepreneur, and a progenitor of the horror punk subgenre of music.”
And if you didn’t know that, really, what are you doing reading this? I’m here to pontificate, not educate. Ahh, Danzig. The butt of so many short jokes, fat jokes, gay rock star lifestyle comic books, and You Tube cat food exposes. He’s not unlike a punk rock Dio: great talent, strong business sense, appears to be on first name terms with Beezlebub…and kinda funny for some reason.
Say what you will about Danzig the critics’ cardboard cutout, but his musical and creative abilities cannot be denied. Just listen to the MISFITS with Danzig and the MISFITS after he left. Danzig’s suburban (Lodi, New Jersey) MISFITS fused punk, horror and melodic, sing along choruses with weight lifting and a look that brought in plenty of goths and ex-jocks to the punk/heavy music world. Sort of like a less self-destructive, more focused TSOL. There’s good reason Cliff Burton was so into the MISFITS. Or take a look at any of Henry Rollins’ “Fanatic” books to see what the MISFITS’ catalog of re-recorded tunes, unreleased albums and seven inches can do to the record collector’s brain.
Samhain were no laughing matter either. It’s hard to remember now, but at the time it wasn’t clear where the disparate offshoots of goth, punk and metal were going. (SAMHAIN actually shares a lot with the pre-CULT “Southern Death Cult,” and it’s odd they both ended up with Rick Rubin doing stripped down sounding heavy music.) SAMHAIN were pretty damn cool, mysterious and unique at the time.
Of course we know what happened after Danzig became DANZIG. With Rubin, he created another sub-genre of heavy music. He sold a lot of records. He made some cool videos. Unfortunately for my purposes, a lot more idiots started liking his music, but I guess he deserved the money at that point. Danzig’s had a fair amount of creative kicking around since then, with classical music, more record titles that play on Satanic puns than one man should have in his catalog, and a comic book company. He must not have full ownership rights in the MISFITS merch, otherwise he’d be living in Beverley Hills. I know a good lawyer for him.
Danzig is saying these “Danzig Legacy” shows are winding down for good. He’s quirky enough to be chopping off the head of the golden goose, but he’s a enough of a businessman that you never know for sure. It is cool that he isn’t totally turning his back on the music that meant so much to so many people. (Greg Ginn, anyone?) There is so much crap out there now. I’m a parent, and I’ll tell you it’s frightening thinking about what my kids will be listening to. Real music, real artist --the Legacy show should be a good one.
Also in the Halloween cool punk goth realm, THE DAMNED are coming Sunday to the House of Blues on Sunset to play all of the Black Album and Damned Damned Damned. Curious if they really play “Curtain Call.”