SKUM ROCKS! Brevard Live Review

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Brevard Florida LIVE April 2015 issue had a great write up and review of the SKUM ROCKS! Miami Beach premiere.  Check it out below or online at: http://brevardlive.com/index.php

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SKUM ROCKS! Miami Premiere

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In what is being described as the most over the top film premiere in Miami’s storied history, the long awaited debut of the rock and roll documentary “Skum Rocks!” took place at Miami Beach’s historical Colony Theatre on Lincoln Road March 5th.

The red carpet was filled with stars as Eddie Money, Frankie Banali with Quiet Riot, the Fabulous Miss Wendy, Phoenix Benjamin, Scan Man, and of course, the entire Skum crew arrived on the scene. Lincoln Road became pure rock and roll chaos as the six limousine caravan unloaded an army of celebrities into the star crazed group of fans, erupting into an explosion of flashes, screams, and cell phone selfies as the stars made their way into the crowd. Throngs of people crowded and rushed the celebs as the red carpet turned into an impromptu meet and greet, and Eddie Money was heard to say, “Is this turnout great or what?”

Skum’s lead bassist, Pat Burke, said, “This is exactly what we wanted. The chance to give our hometown Miami fans an inside look at what we’re all about. Eddie, Frankie, all of us in Skum, everyone was having a great time, and I don’t think I ever took more photos with fans—ever. Eddie said he hadn’t seen this much fan excitement in years, and couldn’t wait to see the film.”

The fabled Lincoln Road Colony Theatre, built in the 1930’s, was packed, with the premiere sold out before show time, and a handful of additional tickets left at the box office were gone once the window opened up. Some tickets were sold on Craigslist for twice their face value, and there were reports of ticket scalping on Lincoln Road, though no arrests were made by the Miami Beach Police Department.

“It was the wildest red carpet I’ve ever seen,” said Skum drummer Tommy Craig. “And I was on the red carpet in Hollywood the night Brad Pitt was attacked! But this one blew that one away. This one was sheer madness.”

The Fabulous Miss Wendy, who has a cameo in the film and was to join Skum on stage at the Grand Central after party, said, “I’m from LA where they do premieres, but this was the craziest of any I’ve seen. The crowd was huge, with the stars and fans all mingled together. It was like Lincoln Road became just a huge backstage.”

Rock journalist icon Bobby Newcastle tweeted, “I was backstage having a sit down with Scan Man when everyone arrived, and I heard it was a madhouse out there. Eddie (Money) told me later it was one of the coolest entrances he’d ever been a part of, and that’s saying something.”

“It rocked, bro,’ added Phoenix Benjamin.

The movie house was rocking once the premiere started, as scene after scene delivered true laughs, and the fans were loving every second of it. “This is a great moment for the band in many ways,” said Skum lead singer Hart Baur. “We finally get to tell our story in front of our hometown. There’s been a lot of talk about the film and how this will be our legacy, but I say this is just the beginning of it, and I can’t wait to get on stage later and blow the place away.”

“Skum Rocks!” director Clay Westervelt was blown away, both by the size and enthusiasm of the crowd and by the response. “This is a huge premiere for an independent film—one of the biggest I’ve seen. But the real gauge for me was how the crowd of close to four hundred in the audience reacted. To say it went over well is a vast understatement.”

“Killed it,” said Skum rhythm bassist Todd Middlebrook. “Straight up killed it. Bang on.”

Forget everything you’ve heard about the difficulties filming “SKUM ROCKS!” Forget the troubles they had, including the misbehavior of two of its spotlighted stars. The memorable thing about “Skum Rocks!” is that it’s not only stellar entertainment, it’s one of the most important rock and roll films of our day.

John Eaton Kicking Back With Alex Morgan

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Sunday night, Skum’s John Eaton was out in support of US Soccer’s Superstar and Skum fan Alex Morgan. Alex was in town with Coca Cola, and as a guest of Miami Beach, promoting young kids to get active and involved in sports. The event was held at the Washington Avenue McDonald’s, and was packed with excited fans who were able to meet with Alex as well as get a signed copy of her new book “The Kicks: Sabotage Season.”

“Great turnout tonight,” said Alex. “Great to see people out in this weather.”

John, who is a huge US Soccer Fan of both the women’s and men’s teams said, “Of course I was going to be out to support Alex. She’s an awesome player and what she does with her books and her support of the youth sports programs nationwide says all you need to know.”

“Really appreciate the support,” said Alex, who was also doing an event with Miami Beach the next day.

“I was joking with her about who’s going to win the World Cup in Canada next year, and she was laughing ‘USA for sure!’. I love this game, we are a soccer band, as Pat, Todd, Hart and Tommy all played, so they got me into it. Saw a Premiere League game when we recorded at Abbey Road last year and now I’m really hooked.”

“We are winning it, no doubt about that,” said Alex. “You are going, right?”

John, depending on the band’s schedule next summer, is planning on being in Canada at some of the U.S. games and has announced that he will be composing a song for the team.

“As always, it will come own to our shoot schedule,” said John. “But once they do the draw and get a schedule up, I’m booking tickets. Tommy already said he wants to go, as he’s thinking about doing a book about seeing the World Cup like a rock star, so that’ll be fun.”:

“For sure I’m going,” added Tommy, who was unable to attend the event. “Hopefully I will have my travel show all set up by then.”

Pat Burke was unable to attend. “Wait, Alex was in town this week?” said Pat when reached by phone.

Skum gets Sexy, Dirty, Funny with Jenny McCarthy in Miami

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Tommy Craig backstage with Jenny McCarthy

Tommy Craig backstage with Jenny McCarthy

Saturday night the guys were out in support of their good friend Jenny McCarthy as she brought her comedy ensemble show “Dirty, Sexy, Funny” to the Magic City Casino in Miami. Jenny didn’t disappoint the sold out crowd with her edgy brand of comedy and video vignettes, and her troupe of female comics brought the house down.

But not before the band hung out backstage with Jenny where they talked and joked about old times.

“I first met Jenny at the Playboy Mansion back in 93′ or 94′,” said drummer Tommy Craig. “The metal scene was ending out there, it was right after the GNR situation, so was kind of a weird time for me. But Jenny was just a great girl. Great times.”

“I am glad they all were out,” said Jenny. “Last time was when I was in town for my book tour I think.”

John & Jenny

John & Jenny

“Yeah, we last hung out when she was here with her book,” said lead guitarist John Eaton.  “It is great to be out here supporting her with this show and the show rocks it. Really funny. And Jenny looked amazing as always.”

After her departure form The View and with her upcoming marriage to former teen idol Donnie Wahlberg, Jenny is just moving full speed ahead.

“This show is getting picked up by SiriusXM so, shhh!” she said laughing. “Don’t tell anyone!”

“How can you not love Jenny,” said lead singer Hart Baur. “Beauty, brains and a great

Hart & Jenny Hanging  Backstage

Hart & Jenny

sense of humor. Of course we are going to come out to say ‘hello’ when she is here in town.”

Jenny had the audience in her hands from the start and was great on stage in front of a live audience. The sold out crowd loved it and from the looks of it she has found a new venue for her many talents. She is a natural for stand up comedy.

“It was great to see Jenny again and wish her well with her marriage to Donnie. She deserves it all,” added Tommy. “Always was a big fan of NSYNC.”

“Would be great to have her on the TV show as a special guest. She would just nail it for sure.”  said John. “Would be just magical.”

 

 

 

 

Skum Rocks the Transformers Premiere!

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Hart and Michael Bay on the Red Carpet

Hart and Michael Bay on the Red Carpet

The guys were out in force last Thursday at the Miami premiere of fellow Miami resident Michael Bay’s Transformers: Age of Extinction at the beautiful Aventura Fashion Mall.   The red carpet festivities were in full swing as hundreds of screaming fans were there to greet director Michael Bay and Jack Reynor (who stars in the film) were there for the event.

Hart joined friend Michael Bay on the red carpet as Tommy Craig and John Eaton were late arrivals due to rush hour Miami traffic and missed their time slot on the red carpet.

“Dude I didn’t look at the invite,” said John. “Last time Michael had his premiere he did it at South Beach Regal and I just assumed it was there. Then getting up to Aventura from South Beach at six o’clock on a week day?  Forget it.”

Pat and Todd missed the event as they were at the USA -Germany match in Recife, Brazil and thus were unable to attend. “I called Tommy and told him I was going to game to let everyone know. No disrespect to Michael, but this is the World Cup. I just didn’t realize he would miss it as well,” said Pat.

“I was calling John and he said he went to the wrong theatre, so we were all hoping they would get here in time,” said Hart. “ But Michael was cool about it, he understood. Besides Dwayne (Wade) was stuck in traffic as well and missed the whole thing.”

The premiere was sold out as expected and Michael said “This is a big franchise around the world, we just got back from China and its massive over there.”

The huge crowd made parking a nightmare as Tommy and John were stuck in the parking lot looking for a space for about twenty minutes. “Should have valet parked,” said John.

In the theatre it was a mad house as fan scrambled to get autographs and seats as the cast walked into the VIP area.

Once inside the mall Tommy stopped  to get a pretzel at Auntie Anne’s and was held up in line further delaying his entrance. “I figured we already missed the red carpet and I was starving, so had to get one of the Auntie Anne’s Originals for the screening. They bake them with real butter. Just amazing stuff” said Tommy.

”Oh yeah, “ added Hart. “They use real sea salt. Those things are fantastic.”

“It sucks we missed the red carpet,” said John. “ I apologized to Michael and told him he should direct our video for “Hanging out with Fred and he just laughed.

“Michael is a great director,” added Tommy. “Would love it if he did ‘Fred”.

 

Skum’s Miami Night With Wilmer Valderrama

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Hart Baur and Wilmer Valderrama on the Red Carpet at Voto Latino Dinner

It was a great night in downtown Miami Saturday as the band welcomed Wilmer Valderrama to their beautiful city. At an event held at the world famous Miami Freedom Tower, Hart Baur, John Eaton, and Tommy Craig were out in support of their longtime friend and fan, and “That 70’s Show” star Valderrama, as he hosted an event for Voto Latino. Valderrama is co-chair of the Voto Latino Artist Coalition, an organization that works to inspire young Latinos to exercise their right to vote.

John and Tommy arrived late for the red carpet festivities, and band members Pat Burke and Todd Middlebrook weren’t there at all prompting Valderama to ask “where’s Burke?” (Pat was attending his son’s high school graduation, and Todd was at a private London screening of the World Cup).

“Bummed we missed the red carpet,” said drummer Tommy Craig. “But at least we had a chance to say hello to Wilmer and support him with this event.”

“I was joking with Wilmer that when we get our TV show signed, he should call Ashton and Mila, and join us for an episode,” said John. “He laughed and said he would love that.”

“Wilmer was unable to attend the Hollywood screening of Skum Rocks! last month, but he sent his best wishes. So when he learned he was coming to Miami, we had to get out to see him,” added Hart. “He’s a great role model for the Latin community, and just a great guy all around. We’ve discussed doing some future projects, and hopefully we can get him on the TV show with us.”

“It was great to have these guys come out. Their support means a lot,” said Valderrama.
“It’s amazing what these Skum guys have accomplished.”

The invitation-only crowd dined on jumbo shrimp cocktail with a mango-lime cocktail sauce, Caribbean chicken topped with a pineapple glaze and finger beef and cheese enchiladas with a side of spicy guacamole.

“The spicy guacamole was simply outstanding,” said Tommy Craig.

Skum Rocks Hollywood!

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Skum really rocked the house at the Hollywood premiere of their rockumentary tour de force, Skum Rocks!  The first official US showing, held May 30th at the 17thAnnual Dances With Films Festival on Hollywood Boulevard in LA, was a stupendous success. And with a theatre packed with fans, friends, and celebrities, the members of Skum couldn’t have been happier.

Skum’s lead guitarist, John Eaton, was elated. “The Chinese Theatre? Are you kidding me? I could get used to this. Tommy [Craig] and I stayed at the Roosevelt, and hung out in the Lair of the Hollywood Vampires at the Rainbow.  It’s been a great week, and it’s great to be part of Hollywood Folklore.”

“This was a huge step for the film, being screened here at the Chinese Theatre,” commented Clay Westervelt, the film’s Emmy-winning director. “And this is just the beginning. I’m very proud of what we’ve accomplished.”

“Tonight was great, being out with the band and all these fantastic fans”, added Phoenix Benjamin, the uber-talented guitarist, who, from time to time, rocks his guitar with Skum.

Master musician and friend of the band, Frankie Banali, agreed, stating simply that “Skum does rock!”

The roaring triumph of the band’s Hollywood premiere is not the last you’ll be hearing from the rockers of Skum. According to lead singer, Hart Baur, there may be another Skum big project in the works. “There’s been talk of a TV show,” Baur revealed after the premiere. “If that happens, it’ll be way over the top.”

For now, the members of Skum are taking things one day at a time, and they’ve had some pretty great days. Tommy Craig, Skum’s drummer extraordinaire, left me with this comment. “A few months back we had the world premiere at Raindance in London, and then cut tracks at Abbey Road. That was amazing. But now, being on the big screen in Hollywood? That’s really something. I can’t wait ‘til we play at the Whiskey later this year.”

We can’t wait either, Skum.

Skum Rocks in Hollywood’s Vampire Lair

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Lair of the Hollywood Vampires

Lair of the Hollywood Vampires

After the sold out Dances With Films premiere of their film “Skum Rocks!”, narrated by Alice Cooper and held at Hollywood’s fabled Chinese Theatre, the Skum guys headed off to the only place fitting to celebrate, the famed Rainbow Bar and Grill, on the Sunset Strip in Hollywood. Skum members John Eaton, Tommy Craig and Hart Baur, joined by a few select fans, were whisked away for a special night upstairs at the Rainbow, in the exclusive Lair of the Hollywood Vampires, where Alice Cooper once presided over one of the most infamous private clubs in Hollywood folklore.

Hart with long time fan Jonas Cedergren in the Lair

Hart with long time fan Jonas Cedergren in the Lair

“Not too many people know this is here,” said drummer Tommy Craig. “I  used to come to the Rainbow all the time back in the 80’s but never went up there, so this is a special night.” The story of the Rainbow’s Vampire Lair is a true Hollywood legend. It’s where Alice Cooper, John Lennon, Ringo Starr, Keith Moon, Mickey Dolenz, and others, would come to hang out, and talk, and do other things. “Alice had told us about the Lair, and we wanted to see it, but to get the VIP treatment was unexpected, and much appreciated,” said lead guitarist John Eaton. “We are now among the few who have been in the Lair and lived to tell about it.”rainbow

The guys spent about 2 hours there, relaxing after the Skum Rocks! premiere, and were able to kick back and talk with the fans who managed to get in with the band. “It was a great day,” said lead singer Hart Baur. “The film premiere rocked, we played to a packed house, and the crowd loved it!  And then to come to the Rainbow, and to have Mike just totally take care of us and get us into the sacred room, was the icing on a great week here in Hollywood.”

Famed rock journalist Johnny LeRue, who was also at the Rainbow that night covering the band, and for a sit down with drummer Tommy Craig, said, “These guys, Skum, are adding another rock and roll chapter to the legend of the Lair. They don’t let a lot of people up there, much less party there.” “We’re coming back here soon,” said Eaton. “Once we sign this TV deal, we’re playing the Hollywood Whiskey. That will be episode one.” —

John Eaton Joins The Fabulous Miss Wendy on Stage at Churchill’s!

The Fabulous Miss Wendy

The Fabulous Miss Wendy

The Fabulous Miss Wendy, who is just on the verge of releasing her debut album, was in town doing a show at the legendary Churchill’s, was joined onstage by Skum lead guitarist John Eaton.

Wendy, the Princess of Punk who hails from West Hollywood and a sage veteran of the Sunset Strip having sold-out shows at venues such as the legendary Whiskey and The Viper Room, is known for her blazing guitar riffs, rock and roll voice and pin up looks is on the verge of hitting it big.

Her album was produced by none other than Kim Fowley, who of course produced such acts as the Runaways and Joan Jett. Fowley recently called Wendy ‘the twenty first century Joan Jett.”

It is no surprise that many on the scene are comparing Wendy to Joan Jett herself. Fowley knows what he is doing, so it is no surprise he is heavily involved in her album. “She is the future of female rock and roll,” said Bobby Newcastle of US Rockstar Magazine.

Before Wendy hit town she called John to see if he could come out and join her on stage  for a song and John was of course there. “I knew she was coming to town and was planning on heading out there anyway, but when she called and asked if I would get up there for a song or two, I was stoked,”  said John. “She sent me a couple of tracks to learn and I couldn’t wait. She is a star on the rise.”

“I have been lucky enough to share the stage with some amazing guitar players, Slash, Vinny Moore, and now John Eaton. My life is blessed!”

After a rousing first half of a set to a sold out crowd, Wendy brought up John and the place went wild. “We played here back in the day and the fans obviously remember us, but are excited about it happening,” said John. “Wendy and I blew it away.”

Wendy and John jammed on an impeccable version of MC5’s “Kick out the Jams” which had the crowd delirious.

“Great show!” added Wendy.

“What a great night,” John added backstage. “Wendy is super cool and a great rock and roller. Can’t wait to get her on stage with us in LA.”

There have also been discussions of Wendy playing on a bonus track for the album “Lost at the Circus”  in which lead bassist Pat Burke says will be an “epic track.”

Skum Rocks with Blondie

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Eaton, Burke, Harry, Stein & Baur

On Saturday, Feb 15, John Eaton and Hart Baur of SKUM joined Deborah Harry, Clem Burke, and Chris Stein of Blondie on the red carpet at Miami Beach’s Fontainebleau Resort. Blondie’s sold-out show was held in the Fontainebleau’s BleauLive, the same grand ballroom where Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin and other music legends performed in the resort’s heyday.

Eaton and Baur spoke with Blondie about the band’s impact on rock and roll and pop culture. “It was sort of a natural progression,” said Deborah Harry. “People learn what they hear. We did the same.”

Eaton agreed, commenting, “The difference was that everybody learned your songs. They were the soundtrack to an entire generation.”

“The last time we stayed at the Fontainebleau in the 70’s, I opened a window and the humidity blew out the television,” laughed founding Blondie member and guitarist Chris Stein.

“I told him that was just an excuse,” Baur laughed. “Everybody knows rock and rollers destroy TV’s in hotels. It’s just what we do.”

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Blondie was excited to hear about Skum’s collaboration on their classic track “Dreaming” with 80’s superstar Martika at their reunion show in January. “I was telling Clem that Tommy (Craig) killed it on drums that night, and he wants Mark Brasel to send him the track,” said Eaton. “Clem is an amazing drummer himself, and it’s cool to be out here tonight with people who are genuine legends.”

After walking the red carpet, Skum was invited backstage to watch the show. Blondie rocked the room, and the crowd responded with a prolonged standing ovation at the conclusion of the concert. “Blondie always delivers,” said Eaton. “They went out and put some much needed rock and roll back into the Miami Beach scene. No club music tonight, just straight up rock, and the people ate it up.”

“A lot of bands owe their livelihood to these guys,” said Baur. “No one might have ever heard of No Doubt, the Go Go’s, Madonna, or any of them if it weren’t for the Runaways and especially Blondie. They were the first band to mix pop with punk, and they were doing rap in the 70’s. They blazed a trail for everyone else. ”

John Eaton added, “The catalog of songs Blondie’s written is simply amazing, and they gave an amazing performance tonight — a real piece of rock and roll history. It was a privilege to be a part of it.”