Shame Club

Shame Club is one of the best original rock bands in the local music scene today. The four-piece lineup features two former members of Ghoul 5 (Jon, guitar and vocals) and (Brain, drums) who started the group back in 2000. When playing live, they create an explosive, heavy, and original guitar sound that is sure to satisfy concertgoers; fans can look forward to their first CD, due out by year's end.

The band's most recent noteworthy performance took place at the Hi-Pointe Café, where their set was cut short due to the fact that one of the stage monitors caught fire. I had a chance to talk with Shame Club members Jon and Brain at the Hi-Pointe Café shortly after the show took place.

1. Was the fire at the Hi-Pointe one of your most memorable shows and what exactly happened with that?

Jon: Yeah, it was pretty cool. We got paid to play two songs.

Brain: There were two wires that were inside the monitor that weren't built right or something and they were sparking off each other and one wire had to overcompensate for the power and it turned into our own little Guns 'n Roses riot.

Jon: There's a whole list of just bizarre shit that's happened to us on stage, like all of us getting into a fight onstage at the Way Out Club one night or showing up to do Pridefest after driving there at 80 miles an hour because we're totally late, and then getting there just be told we couldn't play.

Brain: By a large drag queen. It was really great.

Jon: The first Shame Club show sticks in my head. I knew we were extraordinarily loud that night and there were people out there in the audience who looked like deer caught in the headlights. They were just terrified.

2. Who would you say are your biggest musical influences?

Jon: The bands that are the biggest influence are the bands that have that explosive feeling when they play live. Black Flag was a huge influence because they were exploding when they played. The records are great, they're killer, but if you ever find an old bootleg or something they sound like they're all on fire and they have to play fast to put it out.

Brain: David Lee Roth-era Van Halen. Van Halen doesn't come across as much in us but I rip off Alex Van Halen quite gratefully. The Who is definitely an influence.

3. I think of your band as being a great band to see live, where as some groups are better in the studio. Are the live shows a big part of what the group is about?

Brain: I think so. I would love to just spend months in a studio and just toy around with stuff and go the Alan Parsons Project way, but it's rock. You've got to treat it, in essence, as just dance music. There's exceptions with Pink Floyd and stuff like that, but you've got to be sweating on stage to pull it off. I love the Cure, I love Tones on Tail, and I love a lot of Jazz and stuff that's not that crazy. They spend a lot of time in the studio but I just don't have patience for it.

4. Do you have a title for your new CD yet?

Jon: It's called Bad Idea Realized. I think it's a great title. We have to thank Gary Copeland for it, though. It was him misunderstanding a song lyric, thinking I was singing "bad idea realized," and I thought, "Damn, that is a good album title."

5. How do you like playing music in the St. Louis music scene?
Brain: Over the years, with all the bands I've been in, I've spent months out of the year, gone. There's only one other town that really impressed me more than St. Louis and that's Minneapolis. I love St. Louis. There's always gonna be at least one good band in St. Louis or Kansas City or Louisville or something that's just going to smoke anybody on the coast. |  John Kujawski

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