1988 Poison – Fallen Angel
Singer Bret Michaels started out in the band Laser in Pennsylvania in the seventies. He and his childhood friend, drummer Rikki Rockett, formed the band the Spectres in 1979. In 1980 they recruited guitar player Matt Smith and bass player Bobby Dall and formed the band Paris. While they gained a following playing in local clubs, the band moved to Los Angeles in 1983 to pursue a better future. They also changed the name of the band using a song title from Kix: Poison.
Matt had gotten a woman pregnant and moved back to Pennsylvania. The band considered replacing him with Slash, who later became a member of Guns And Roses. The also decided against a guitar player from the Joe Perry Project (Steve Silva) and finally chose C.C. DeVille as their new lead guitar player.
The group’s first album, Look What the Cat Dragged In, came out in 1986. The first single from the album failed to chart except in the UK (where it only reached #97). The next year the album started selling and the record company released the top ten single, Talk Dirty To Me. Three more singles followed with uneven results.
The group’s second album, Open Up and Say…Ahh!, came out in 1988 and was even more successful: it sold over 8 million copies. The band got three top ten singles off the album including the number one hit, Every Rose Has Its Thorn. The other single from the album only reached #12, so Fallen Angel tends to be overlooked.
The band stepped away from their big hair image with the release of their third album in 1990 but still managed two more top-five singles. They followed that with a double album that featured four new studio recordings and three sides full of live performances.
C.C. was struggling with cocaine addiction and was fired from the band in 1991. The band chose Richie Kotzen as his replacement in 1991. The result was more blues than glam metal, and the hits evaporated. Blues Saraceno became the new guitar player in 1993, but by 1996 C.C. returned to the group and the band’s hit lineup and glam metal roots returned to the fore.
Since 2000 there have been a few solo albums by members of the group, but Poison still continues to appear in concerts. The group hasn’t recorded a new studio album since 2007.
Bret found a new career appearing in reality television shows and continues to record singles and videos. While none of his singles has charted, his 2010 single Nothing To Lose featured Miley Cyrus on vocals and its video had a cameo from a very young Donald Trump Jr.
In 2020, Bret appeared as one of the masked contestants on The Masked Singer.
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