Tuesday, April 21, 2009

From Van Halen To Motley Crue

I was going to tell a Ed Van Halen story but I'm switching gears and telling a Motley Crue-related story. I was in a serious relationship with guitarist Chet Thompson (Hellion, WWIII). During our relationship, Chet became the guitarist for Mick Mars' wife's band named Alice In Thunderland. I was very supportive of Chet, who was an incrediblly talented guitarist. One July 4th, I believe 1991?, we spent the day/night with Mick and his wife/backup singer Emi Canyn, Tommy Lee and others and we were having a great time BBQing, sitting on the balcony talking, dancing in the living room to videos on a big screen TV, etc. As I was hanging out with Mick on the balcony enjoying the ocean air, I noticed my boyfriend had not been around for about an hour. I went in Emi's bedroom and Chet and Emi were sitting on the floor facing each other, very close, talking, and it became apparent to me my relationship had just ended right before my very eyes. I ran out and ran down to the beach and cried on the beach. Chet ran after me and was calling my name but I didn't want to answer because I knew he was emotionally unfaithful to me. We ended up leaving the party and...well, I can't say what happened in the car on the way home but it was ugly and I immediately broke up with Chet and told him to move out, which he did. I have never talked to him since and he's never expressed any concern for me. He ended up having an affair with Mick's wife after Mick bought him tons of new gear for his wife's band, and I am happy to report she put him through the Cuisinart blender of love! She just tore him up and spit him out. Karma's a bitch! I ran across this online today...oh, which is why I'm writing about it, because I accidentally came across this website:


Mick files for divorce from Emi Canyn, fuming that her relationship with guitarist Chet Thompson in her Alice ‘N Thunderland project went deeper than just band activities. Mick had helped the band a lot, including producing their recordings. Matt Sullivan soon replaces Jeff Dennis on drums, while Danny Wilder replaces Mitch Laney on bass after the two members quit, unhappy with Chet and Emi’s actions. When the Alice ‘N Thunderland CD is eventually released, three different recording sessions can be heard: one produced by Mick and recorded at Chatsworth Studios, a second recorded at Talon and produced by Mikey Davis, and a third session of four songs featuring the new rhythm section of Matt and Danny.

Mick, Emi and Chet had thrown a birthday party for me at Chatsworth Studios, which I later learned Emi felt obligated to throw, as a favor to Chet, not me. Little did I know that lust was brewing between Mick's wife and my boyfriend. It is my belief that this was the start of Chet and Emi's affair...or sometime right before this. Mick was really cool and we bonded over his gorgeous sunburst Gibson mandolin. Mick is an extremely smart man. I liked him very much and Emi should have NEVER underestimated this quiet genius.

I have never been able to tell anyone about this extremely painful period in my life. I have had to keep silent about an affair that a man I truly loved had behind my back. AND, what is worse, during the start of Chet's "friendship" with Emi, Emi and I talked and I thought we were friends but she later basically laughed about it. It was never her intent to be my friend - just to pretend friendship in order to get close to my boyfriend! - but I could not see the thoughts she held secret. I felt emotionally kicked in the stomach.

Well, I find myself not being able to say anything more... It's just nice to be able to talk about it finally. I've had to hold all of that inside since 1991. I wanted to talk for closure but I think Chet doesn't talk to me because I remind him of his guilt. But that is okay now. I don't need to reconcile the issue anymore. I'm better having someone like that entirely gone from my beautiful life, don't you think? Peace out.

Monday, March 30, 2009

Post #2: From Electric Guitar To Harp And Back Again

3/30/09, 1:22 a.m.: Most people don't know that I used to play lead guitar in my band Matriarch (and, just for the record, I would not choose that name for a band today). I come from the Zeppelin school of music and my first electric guitar was a Gibson SG then a '52 Les Paul Goldtop. More about the fate of the goldtop in another post...

Lisa Lynne Franco (Matriarch bassist) dug out this VHS tape gem from her dusty treasure chest. We are being filmed at FM Station (L.A.) for a TV show and Lisa and I decided to post it on YouTube (link below). Please be sure to click on the "more info" link while you are watching. It tells you everything you need to know:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lX8cn5HxLtc (MATRIARCH Are We Not One)

And, yes, that IS my own hair! As Lisa said, "The bigger the hair, the closer to God."

So, from electric guitar to harp, then back to electric guitar PLUS harp. I have come full circle...it's really nice ~ and a relief ~ to finally know exactly who you are.

Next time, I'll tell you about the band I played in before Matriarch, rehearsals financed courtesy of Ed Van Halen...
Good Night,
Carol Tatum

Sunday, March 29, 2009

My First Blog Post

Greetings, everyone. This is Carol Tatum and I am a professional musician as you probably already know. I have had the idea to have a blog for some time now so I could reveal just what it is like being a professional female musician in the 80s, 90s and the 21st century. I have MUCH to tell (!), many interesting stories, be they happy, sad, insightful, terrifying, sobering, hysterical, inspirational, mystifying, shocking, etc.

Please check back soon for my first ever story from the road as a female musician. I guarantee you it will be a look into a world that will be compelling and entertaining and sobering.
~ Carol Tatum