John Corabi, current lead singer of The Dead Daisies (former singer for Union, Motley Crue, The Scream), recently finished a 17-date run of acoustic shows. No stranger to performing, armed only with his voice and an acoustic guitar, he wrapped up his mini tour with two back to back nights at Potawatomi Casino in Milwaukee, WI.
The Fire Pit’s Side Bar provided the perfect intimate setting for a night that was as much about the music as it was about the storytelling. With a large catalog to pull from, his hour and a half set on the second night started off with Love (I Don’t Need It Anymore) from the first Union album and Crash, from his 2013 solo acoustic album, Unplugged.
Those that have seen John in a solo acoustic setting in the past are most likely familiar with how he met one of his idols, Steven Tyler of Aerosmith, during the making of the self-titled Motley Crue album. Similar to how some fans often can’t get up enough nerve to speak to their own idols, this was the same reaction John had after he found out Aerosmith were recording in the same studio. After a couple weeks had passed, he was sitting in the lounge/common area, noodling around on the guitar, playing songs including Aerosmith’s Seasons of Wither. As the story goes, John had been avoiding Steven, until that is, Steven took the opportunity and tapped John on the shoulder to tell him he was playing the song the wrong way. After showing him the correct way, they played/sang it together and it’s still the greatest highlight of his life. As John sang the song for this audience, you quickly could tell how perfectly suited the song is for his voice and he absolutely did the song justice.
Prior to If I Never Get To Say Goodbye, another from his Unplugged, album, John shared the tragic story of the loss of long time friends with the message to always tell the people close to you that you love them, because you never know what tomorrow will bring. John mentioned he wanted to try and change it up for those that had been at the show the previous night and asked if anyone had a request. After a few songs had been yelled out he decided to go with If I Had A Dime, another from the Unplugged album.
He continued with a couple more Union songs. He shared that his son, drummer Ian Corabi, told him Hypnotized was his favorite song his father had ever written, and another from the first Union album, October Morning Wind. While it’s great these Union songs live on in John’s acoustic set, I know I’m not the only one that wishes Union would get together and make some more music. Never say never, right? Next, John treated everyone to a pretty amazing heartfelt cover of David Bowie’s Lady Stardust before he switched out his 6-string guitar for a 12-string. You can imagine the fullness it brought to Misunderstood and Loveshine, both from the 1994 self-titled Motley Crue album. He picked up the 6-string again and joked the next song, I Never Loved Her Anyway, was for all his ex-wives. He also commented how surprised is his at the number of woman that actually like the song considering the lyrics.
He shared that Father, Mother, Son from The Scream’s Let It Scream album is his most requested song. Not surprising as the song deals with the loss of parents and has an honest telling of thoughts and feelings associated with the situation. While the song is more than 20 years old, it still holds up as if it written yesterday. He played a partial combination of two Motley Crue songs, Driftaway and Home Sweet Home, which segued together perfectly. He ended the night with, “the one that started it all,” The Scream’s Man in the Moon and one final Motley song, Hooligan’s Holiday, which had a more than positive reaction from the crowd. “I’m on a holiday, hooligan’s holiday.”
Off and on during the night, whether he was making jokes during the stories, or throwing out quick comebacks to comments from the audience, John’s sense of humor was apparent. He also took the time to thank the fans, including pointing out a woman earlier in the night that had flown in from Japan. He mentioned he had been playing music professionally since he was fifteen or sixteen and was very appreciative of those that have been following his career. As a seasoned veteran of Rock ‘n’ Roll, John Corabi’s performance showed all the signs of an artist that still fully enjoys what he does for a living. It may be a while before there is another acoustic tour, but in the meantime, The Dead Daisies have announced tour dates for a short headline run in the U.S. and the Chicago date is on sale here.