Heavy metal heavyweights to pound out hits in Bangor

Posted by ADDICTEDtoStAiND on May 17, 2012 at 2:20 AM
Heavy metal heavyweights to pound out hits in Bangor

By Ray Routhier
Staff Writer

Shannon Larkin loves playing outdoor concerts.

Is it because the scenery is nice? Or because the crowd is more into it?

"I love the fact that the wind hits me and dries my sweat," said Larkin, drummer for the heavy metal band Godsmack. "It just seems like a more organic place to play."

Larkin was psyched when told that his band was playing outdoors on Friday along with Staind at Bangor Waterfront Pavilion.

He was even more psyched to learn it would most likely be pretty cool out when the show started around 7 p.m.

"I like it when it's not too hot outside," he said.

Larkin says Godsmack's current tour with Staind has put him and his bandmates in a good mood. When metal bands tour in groups, it's often a roll of the dice as to who tours with whom. And the bands don't all necessarily get along, which can make a long tour seem even longer.

But in this case, Larkin refers to Staind as "our brothers," and says the two bands not only get along, they like hanging out with each other.

"If you tour with a band you don't like, you don't really see them," said Larkin, 45. "But with Staind, they're a lot like us. They're all about the fans and the music and putting on a good show."

Godsmack formed in Lawrence, Mass., in 1995, and was already well-established when Larkin -- a longtime friend of frontman Sully Erna and a veteran of Candlebox, Ugly Kid Joe and other hard-rock acts -- joined around 2002. The band has had several albums hit high on the Billboard 200 chart (including three No. 1 studio albums) and almost two dozen rock radio hits. Its latest release, the live album "Live and Inspired," was released just two days ago.

Staind is another Massachusetts-bred band (from Springfield), and is a hit-making machine as well, with five studio albums hitting the Top 5 of the Billboard 200 -- three at No. 1. So metal fans are in for quite a treat Friday.

Larkin's success as a metal drummer began early, around age 13, with heavy involvement from his parents. While most teens who drum join a teen band and play in some family's garage or basement, Larkin was just barely a teenager when he joined bands that played in bars and clubs around his home in Martinsburg, W.Va.

"I was lucky that I chose my career, or it chose me, at a very early age. But to work in the clubs as someone under 16, you needed a parent to accompany you," said Larkin. "So I'd be there playing a club and look up, and there was my dad (who worked as a mechanical engineer) in the back of the audience sleeping.

"All my parents asked of me was to get As and Bs if I wanted to keep playing, so I studied my (butt) off to get those As and Bs."

So that's the school of rock lesson for today, kids: If you want to be a heavy metal drummer, study your butt off and take your parents to all your gigs.

Categories: May 2012, Staind News

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