Archive for Tampa Bay Music

Glam Rocks: Roxx Gang Florida Rich

Posted in 80s rock music, Entertainment, Glam Metal Rock Music, Glam Rock, Glitter Rock, Guns N Roses, Heavy Metal Music, L.A.Guns, Mott the Hoople, Music, New York Dolls, Sleaze Rock Music with tags , , , , , , on September 15, 2018 by glamrock4ever

     Hello, fantabulous, freaking awesome, and zero cool (as in ‘super-cool’) Glam Rock and Glam Metal fans, here is another fearsome, formidable and mind-blowing post for you. This one is on Tampa Bay, Florida glam rock artists Roxx Gang.  As yours truly aka GlamRock4Ever was perusing and prowling the internet, I came across this item, and almost fell off my damn chair: Roxx Gang has a net worth of $2.5 million! Wow, that’s majestic for a band that last recorded an album in 2001 ( titled Bodacious Ta Tas). FNA records put out two re-issues of Roxx Gang’s music:  Boxx of Roxx (2011) and Last Laugh: Lost Roxx Gang Demos (2014). Of course, that $2.5 mil is a paltry sum compared to artists still out there, entertaining the masses: Guns N Roses guitarist Slash reportedly made $45 million last year, and the net worth of rock legend Paul McCartney is now at $1.2 billion. (See the website www.celebritynetworth.com)

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     Roxx Gang were an American Glam Metal band formed in 1982 by Kevin Steele and guitarist Eric Carrell in Saint Petersburg, Florida. After numerous gigs with a prodigious following in the Tampa Bay area, the band scored a record deal with Virgin Records in 1988 with two singles: “No Easy Way Out,” and “Scratch My Back.” After the unfortunate death of Eric, the band’s line-up was Kevin Steele (vocals), Jeff Taylor Blanchard (guitar), Wade Hayes (guitar), Roby Strine (bass), and David Blackshire (drums).  The record Things You’ve Never Done Before sold over a quarter million copies.

     Two events happened that lead to Roxx Gang never truly hitting the big time, which makes their global worth that much more remarkable. The first was the inauspicious death of Eric Carrell in 1986 under -according to band members ,‘mysterious circumstances.’ Eric died in a drowning death off a fishing pier. Was he pushed? Was he intoxicated and fell in? GlamRock4Ever searched death records in all the Tampa Bay newspapers and could not find anything about it. The second event was the ill-timed entry of Roxx Gang onto the Glam Rock scene. As Kevin Steele explained it, the record executives that had signed the original members to CBS/Epic records departed all at once. Steele said, “That’s when grunge hit, and all of a sudden it was like murder for us, and we eventually got this independent deal and released it, but that’s how long it took us.”  (You can find this interview on ‘The Pure Rock Shop’ http://www.tprs.com/interviews.) So Roxx Gang got their record deal in the late 80s just as Glam Rock glory days were ending, replaced by Kurt Cobain’s grunge movement as what was ‘hot’ at the time.

     Steele also commented to The Pure Rock Shop about Glam Rockers in the 80s saying this, “In the eighties, all the metal bands used to say to me ‘oh, Roxx Gang is all image’ right. That’s another thing ‘Glam Rockers, they’re all show and no go.’ Well first of all, bull shit, I’ve always had good musicians in my band.  And second of all, I feel so sorry for anybody who can’t appreciate the image side of rock n roll-that’s half of it! That’s the way it’s been, why do you think Elvis was so huge? If he had looked like Buddy Holly, he wouldn’t have been.”

     Here is the Discography for Roxx Gang:  Things You’ve Never Done Before (1988), The Voodoo You Love (1995), Love ‘Em and Leave ‘Em (1997), Old, New, Borrowed, and Blue (1998), Drinkin’ TNT and Smoking Dynamite (2000), Bodacious Ta Tas (2001). “Love ‘Em and Leave ‘Em earned stellar reviews on both sides of the Atlantic and got Roxx Gang a spot on the Top Ten Heavy Metal Albums of the Year in Tower Records’ Pulse.”  (Hard Rock Heaven 5.13.14 http://www.hrheaven.wordpress.com)

“FNA records has released a regular version, autographed version, and super fan pack version with a t-shirt featuring the Roxx Gang skull and cross bones logo.” See http://www.fnarecords.net.

    So how did front man Kevin Steele get the job he so desired and when did it start? He told Suits and the Platform Boots this:  “When I was about 8 years old, I saw an episode of ‘The Monkees’, where Davy Jones was being chased all over the Eiffel Tower by a group of rabid, screaming girls who tore off his shirt when they caught him. I knew right then that that was what I wanted to do.” And why choose vocalist instead of guitarist? “I always wanted to be up front,” Steele said. “I started writing songs before I ever had a band. Plus singers have no gear to carry, and let’s face it, they get the best-looking girls.” As for the Roxx Gang’s musical influences, Steele gave this answer:  T. Rex, New York Dolls, Mott the Hoople, Iggy and the Stooges, and surprisingly, Jim Dandy of Black Oak Arkansas.