By Jake Rage, Rock At Night Orlando
Venue: House of Blues, Orlando, Florida–October 12, 2018–RATT and Leaving Haven
Last night I attended the Ratt concert at the House of Blues in Orlando, Florida. The opening band Leaving Haven is no stranger to the venue. As an Orlando favorite, they had no problem packing the HOB a few weeks back, playing along with three other Orlando bands. I have been to the HOB many times over the last 6 months but this was probably the most diverse crowd I have seen age-wise. I am by no means a young guy, heck’, I hate to admit it but I’m not even middle-aged. Regardless, while talking to the crowd, I spoke to teens who were 15 years old as well as people who were senior to me. This tells me that the fans are dedicated–and even veteran bands can draw young people who embrace music created long before some of them were born.
Leaving Haven is a band who doesn’t just perform but carries a mission statement concerning mental health and the importance of supporting others who are dealing with those types of issues. I give them so much credit. Not every band realizes how important they are as role models and how they can effect change and make a difference in others lives.
With that said, they did what I have seen them do more than once on that stage. They drew the crowd in with their music, energy and style. They are a mix of Rock and Metal, intertwined in a positive message. If you haven’t heard them yet, check out their song “Silver Lining” on Youtube. Young talented and driven, I only see continued success for Leaving Haven. If you are a fan of rock and metal, please put them on your list!
After a short break you could tell people were anticipating the band of the night. To be honest, I have had difficulty being assigned veteran bands to cover. I was born in the early 60s and had an older sibling that exposed me to music beyond my years. I grew up listening to RATT. I remember the first time I heard them on MTV. Yep, MTV (I’m dating myself) but there was a time when MTV was the place to see bands new videos. I was an instant fan of the band and have never stopped.
With that said, sometimes times our rock ICONS succumb to age, injuries and vices, just like everyone else in the world. For some reason people think rock stars are super human– well, they aren’t. Again, I have turned down assignments because I want to remember those bands as they were. I was a bit apprehensive about RATT. Sadly with the internet you can have one bad day or experience and through the magic of cellphone cameras you have to relive it over and over the rest of your life. Most people have probably seen the video released a few weeks ago showing Stephen Pearcy having difficulty performing. He made a statement concerning the fact he is facing knee surgery and made the mistake of mixing meds with alcohol. As the recipient of a total hip replacement at 51 myself, I not only understand but give him credit for touring the country in, I am sure, what is constant pain.
I can’t tell you how stoked I when the band hit the stage. I am not going to lie and say Stephen Pearcy ran all over the stage throwing kicks in the air, but I am going to say he along with the entire band was a force to be reckoned with. Pearcy and the band gave 150%. One of my friends asked me what songs they played? I told him it was easier to tell them what songs they didn’t play. RATT played virtually every hit they had as well ever all their B-side songs. I’m giving credit where credit is due.
The band currently made up of Stephen Pearcy, Juan Croucier, Pete Holmes, Jordan Ziff, and Chris Sanders. Each member talented in their own right brought it all together in one completely perfect package of rock. Music is the sound track of our lives, and RATT was definitely a huge part of my life growing up. It’s great to see that not only are they still rocking venues thrilling their dedicated fans, but they are still drawing in new and younger fans who want to know the people who made an impact on the rock of today. If you were there last night like me, count yourself lucky. Don’t believe the hype, RATT delivered as promised. It was one of the best shows I have seen this year!!!!
For people around the country don’t hesitate to check out RATT at your local venue, I guarantee you won’t be disappointed.
His work resume runs from working in a locked psychiatric ward,to producing national television commercials. There was a lapse in creativity for the last few years until he once again decided to pick up a digital camera, and the rest is history. Combining his love for music and photography has been a rewarding surprise.
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