Our HOH Winner Kimberly’s Rocklahoma 2007 Blog! by Kimberly Kucharczyk of Neosho, MO who listens to the HOH on KXDG-FM, BIG DOG 97.9 Joplin, MO
Rocklahoma Day 4: July 15th
Bittersweet is the only word that can define Sunday. I knew that would be the day I got to meet Dee Snider and the other members of Twisted Sister, but it also meant that my journey was coming to an end.
Among the bands that performed the last day were: Steelheart, Britny Fox, L.A. Guns, Great White, Jackyl, Queensryche, and last but not even close to least, Twisted Sister. I probably sound like a broken record, but once again, the fans were brought to the edge of frenzy by the songs that they grew up with.
Paul Black of L.A. Guns followed the steps of some of the other lead-singers and walked the seat backs to sing among the screaming fans. Tracii Guns dazzled the audience with his guitar playing. Paul Stewart beat the drums to a pulp, and bassist Jeremy Guns played so hard we could feel it in our chests. “Ballad of Jane” brought back the good old days.
Jackyl “Lumberjack”ed their way into our hearts. A real chainsaw was used for the opening part of the song and then later used to destroy a barstool on stage. The broken pieces of the stool were passed out to some of the fans in front of the stage. We even got to see the lead-singer’s hiney as he took much pleasure in mooning the audience. Riotous applause reverberated throughout the venue.
While the past few days had been a blast, what I had been waiting for since my phone call from Dee to tell me I had won, was meeting him and the rest of the band. As Great White played on stage, my boyfriend and I were at Twisted Sister’s press conference. We then went to the HOH Lounge where we got tons of pictures taken with them and got autographs from the entire group.
Dee Snider is a man who is larger than life. He has a smile and demeanor that go straight to your heart and soul. I used to think he was really cool, but now when I hear his name, I see his face that day and the word that comes to mind is reverence.
After Queensrÿche performed, it was time to meet Dee and the gang in full costume for even more pictures. When he walked out, all I could say was “Hell yea!” Of course, everyone laughed. I couldn’t help myself; I was in awe.
We originally thought we would once again be on the elevated platform at the side of the stage to watch their performance. Much to our surprise, we were literally seated ON THE STAGE not 10 feet from the bassist. I cannot put into words the quality of their set.
Dee had said earlier in their press conference that “Every band goes on trying to mop the stage with the last one. We intend to mop the stage with every last one of them.”
Someone grab a bucket, because that is exactly what happened. “Captain Howdy” made an appearance. The entire venue screamed “I Wanna Rock”. The music world was given 35,000 mutual opinions of what we thought of “today’s” attempts at music, in that “We’re Not Gonna Take It”. As if their larger than life personalities weren’t enough, they felt it necessary to give us Christmas in July, filling the air with snow as they did their version of “Silver Bells”. Candy canes flew through the air to raised fists and horns.
The lights have gone dark, and the stage is now empty. This Twisted Sister’s “Come Out and Play” weekend came to a bittersweet end. Yet, my spirit burns bright with the revelations that I made over those four short days. My inner teenager will always stay at the surface instead of hiding behind maturity. Rock & Roll keeps you young!
But, what really hit home was what hit me when I kept waiting all weekend for someone to ask who my favorite band is from back in the day. I realize now that it’s not only impossible to choose just one, it’s also unnecessary. Like them, hate them, or love them, they were (and still are) ALL the voice of an entire generation.
As it turns out, the era is not dead, it is not buried, it is not OVER! Raise your horns America. Call your radio stations. Tell them you’re not going to take this cookie-cutter commercial crap anymore. We are the ones who buy the CDs and merchandise. Don’t stand by and let some corporate p.o.s. buy a house with your money because he decided what you should listen to. Rock & Roll is here to stay.
We laid a foundation for it in Pryor, Oklahoma in July 2007. We will build on that foundation every year until our numbers stand so strong and tall we have a true beacon of hope for future generations to look up to. As for me, I will be at Rocklahoma next year! I hope to see every last one of you there! There’s room for everyone, and even if it was at capacity, we could always make room for just one more.
If it ain’t Metal, It’s Crap!
– July 17, 2007 Kimberly Kucharczyk of Neosho, MO