Damon Johnson

Thu
18
Apr

DAMN YANKEES - The Truth Behind Their Mythical 3rd Album

Artist: 
Categories: 
 
DAMN YANKEES remain one of the most loved American bands of the hard rock era. Two very popular albums and two tours were completed before the band split.
 
Recently there has once again been talk about a fabled 3rd Damn Yankees album, with one prominent American DJ claiming he had never even heard of this before, astonished with the revelation.
 
And there has been a lot of incorrect information posted over the years, as to what exactly was recorded and went on with DY3.
 
With this MelodicRock.com exclusive - for the first time, the full information and truth behind this album – what was recorded, what went wrong and why it won’t ever see the light of day.
 
 
Damn Yankees were signed to Warner Bros. in 1990. Their self-titled debut went double platinum (2 million units) and the follow up Don’t Tread in 1992 was certified Gold (500,000 units).
Aside from one additional song Bonestripper (recorded for the Nothing But Trouble soundtrack), that was it for the band.
 
In 1999, A&R guru John Kalodner moved back to Sony Music and reopened the Portrait Records imprint with plans to record new albums with classic artists. One of the bands he approached was Damn Yankees. A deal was signed and the band was to start writing and recording. Except they didn’t, or at least not in the way that the two previous albums were done.
 
Tommy Shaw was busy with Styx, so his part in the recording was considerably reduced. Michael Cartelone was also busy with Lynyrd Skynyrd.
So…in came an additional guitarist Damon Johnson, who co-wrote with Jack and even signs lead on one track and while Michael was present for some recording, Kelly Keagy also recorded some drum parts.
 
The band over the course of a year wrote 10 songs and recorded 11 – the extra being a cover of Sunshine Of Your Love.
The album was turned into Kalodner and Sony – who hated it. Kalodner had been battling cancer at the time, so had less input into the making of the record.
But the band weren’t happy either. None of the guys were familiar with the producer Sony had hired, Luke Ebbin who influenced the band to sound more contemporary, but the style didn’t suit.
 
A little-known fact was that the label sent the 11 tracks to producer Kevin Shirley, given the task to try and remix it into a record that would sound more like a Damn Yankees record should sound like.
He wasn’t able to.
 
I interviewed John Kalodner in the mid-2000s and asked him about the record. He stated “I didn't think it was quite good enough and at the time with 80's style rock you'd have to come up with something pretty spectacular. I was disappointed in the record mostly because of Tommy Shaw's non-participation. I say that was probably the greatest problem. Tommy was totally an integral part of it. He was busy with Styx and it was sort of my mistake because I just couldn't control him. It's one of those projects that I failed on. I mean the buck stops here. It lacked the input of Tommy Shaw.”
 
So the album was ditched. But only just before the full international release was planned. In fact, it was on Sony’s books in 2000 – with Sony Japan announcing a pending release on September 13, 2000.
 
 
The record was never sequenced or mastered and since then, a number of songs have appeared elsewhere among the members own projects. But there are also several tracks attributed to the Damn Yankees 3 album that weren’t in fact a part of it.
There were additional songs written – but not recorded at the time – that have also appeared on solo albums.
 
So what was the final track list (unsequenced) for the album?
 
THIS:
 
Even Though
Give Nobody Nothing
Too Much On My Mind
We Are The Ones
Sunshine Of Your Love
Mona Lisa
Don’t Say Goodbye
Shine On
Yes I Can
Damned If You Do
Don’t Stop Dreaming
 
 
The tracks from above that have been heard on other projects:
 
Damned If You Do – appeared on Ted Nugent ‘Craveman’
Yes I Can – appeared on Styx ‘Cyclorama’
Shine On – appeared on Jack Blades ‘Jack Blades’
We Are The Ones – appeared on Jack Blades ‘Jack Blades’
 
The rest of the tracks remain locked away in Sony’s vault.
 
 
 
Tue
31
Mar

One On One With Mitch Lafon - DAMON JOHNSON & GUNS N ROSES

Artist: 
Tuesday, March 31, 2015
Categories: 
http://www.spreaker.com/user/talkingmetal/one-on-one-100-guns-n-roses

"Clearly there were difficulties between the manager and Axl. They were having problems with Slash."

BLACK STAR RIDERS' Damon Johnson and former GUNS 'N ROSES manager Doug Goldstein join Mitch in celebrating 100 episodes of One On One With Mitch Lafon. The episode is co-hosted by Talking Metal's Mark Strigl.

Our first interview is with guitarist extraordinaire, Damon Johnson who discusses Black Star Riders, the decision to not use the well established Thin Lizzy brand name, their fantastic second album The Killer Instinct, their upcoming UK tour opening for WHITESNAKE and DEF LEPPARD, the Damon Johnson Trio, his upcoming solo dates, working with ALICE COOPER , his work on the the unreleased third DAMN YANKEES album called 'Bravo' (he replaced Tommy Shaw to work alongside Jack Blades and Ted Nugent) and more.

For more about Damon or Black Star Riders visit on TWITTER: @DamonJOfficial or @BlackStarRiders and on the web: http://www.damonjohnson.com or http://www.blackstarriders.com

Damon's upcoming solo tour dates include:

April
1 - New Hope, PA - Havana New Hope
2 - Northampton, PA - The Gin Mille & Grille
3 - Pittston, PA - Bar On Oak
4 - Queens, NY - Blackthorn 51
8 - Moline, IL - Rascal's Live
9 - Berwyn, IL - The Wire
10 - Pekin, IL - Twisted Spoke
11 - Middletown, OH - Old Crow Bar
12 - Richmond, IN - Firehouse BBQ and Blues

In our second interview with sit down with former GUNS 'N ROSES manager Doug Goldstein (current CEO When Pigs Fly) for an epic two hour chat discussing the entire history of the band including the feuds, lawsuits and riots. More specifically we talk about AXL ROSE becoming the sole owner of the GNR name, the firing of Steve Adler, working with KISS' Paul Stanley and Bob Ezrin, the Montreal Riot and why it was Metallica's Lars Ulrich's fault, the 2 1/2 years of documented yet unreleased Use Your Illusion Tour film, Yoda aka Sharon Maynard, Iron Maiden's manager Rod Smallwood (and his potential involvement in a GNR reunion tour), controversial songs One In A Million and Look At Your Game Girl, working with Black Sabbath featuring Glenn Hughes and current KISS drummer Eric Singer, the ROSE FESTIVAL featuring Van Halen and Guns N Roses, his letter to Axl, the 'Denver Incident', John Reese, are there 100 unreleased songs sitting in a vault, Slash, Duff and MUCH MUCH more.
 
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