Sat 12/14 @ 5PM
Almost exactly 30 years ago, a band called Priscilla burst onto the Cleveland music scene in a blaze of publicity and big hair. It was the last halcyon days of hair metal, the last years before the genre was eliminated by the advent of Nirvana and grunge, and places such as Silky Sullivan’s in the Flats and Flash’s at Kamm’s Corners overflowed with “posers” whose musical tastes ran to Poison, Warrant and Skid Row. Priscilla, with their flowing locks, catchy tunes such as their radio-friendly “Wake Up the Neighborhood,” and tireless promotional drive — they hit seemingly every utility pole in Cleveland with flyers and even flyered cars in a hospital parking lot — epitomized all that. They recorded an album that unfortunately was never released.
They also knew when to bow out. They disbanded around the time Nevermind hit the charts. They did a couple of reunion concerts, the most recent in 2001. Now, for those who fondly remember the era or those who weren’t there and want to see what it was all about, the group is performing as the headliners at this year’s Cleveland Metal Holiday show at the Beachland Ballroom.
It’s the 11th year for the annual show, which is presented by WJCU 88.7FM, The Exchange and German fan of Cleveland metal Iron Ingo Stührenberg, and put together by longtime Cleveland metal maven Bill Peters, who hosts the Friday evening Metal on Metal show on the station. He openly admits Priscilla isn’t his kind of music — he likes metal on the heavier side — but he also likes to present as diverse a representation of the local metal scene as possible at his events.
The lineup, which will alternative sets in the ballroom and tavern, also includes Nunslaughter, Chemikill, Olathia, Hostile Omish, Vandallus, Kurnugia, Dead Earth, Sparrowmilk, Vadiat (making their debut), Dying Desolation and Iron Maiden tribute Maiden Voyage. It’s also a CD release event for Chemikill and Vandallus, who will have their new albums, Edge of Wasteland (Chemikill) and Outbreak (Vandallas) available at the show. Hosts for the show are Olathia’s Chris Emig, who has done the honors in past years, and Vic Rattlehead.
The show is free. Attendees are urged to bring food (human and pet) and cash donations for the Greater Cleveland Food Bank and Friends of the Cleveland Kennel, who have been longtime beneficiaries of the event, as well as donations for the Alzheimer’s Association, which was added as a charity beneficiary last year after Peters’ wife Wendy was diagnosed with the disease. To raise more money, there will be numerous raffle baskets, many featuring rare heavy metal-related collectibles donated by musicians, fans and friends. Local music photographers Joe Kleon and Anastasia Pantsios will be on hand selling their photos, with part of the proceeds donated to the charities.
“Please make a difference and support the good causes of this benefit show,” says Iron Ingo in the event press release. “Enjoy a great night with rockin’ live music and meet up friends and good people who are also giving a little bit to help a lot! To say it with the wise words of Winston Churchill: We make a living by what we get, but we make a life by what we give.”
Doors open at 4, with music starting at 5. Find a schedule of stage times here, and know that they adhere to them closely!