In case you missed the inaugural Headbangers Con this past November 10th and 11th in Portland, Oregon, and you’re still kicking yourself in the ass for not going, well my metalhead friend, you’re in luck. Raise those metal horns high in the air while screaming to the metal gods above or below, because Chris 51, owner and founder of Headbangers Con, has been recently scouting cities and for where the next future Headbangers Cons will be located and experienced at.
Chris 51 posted on the Headbangers Con social media that he was in Sacramento, California, and Sayreville, New Jersey doing some scouting. While in Sacramento he stopped by the music venue the Ace Of Spades and posted a video saying, 'what’s up Sacramento, I am here location scouting for the next Headbangers Con. Who knows it may be here. I’m liking what I see, so stay tuned for more California, stay metal.' Ace Of Spades has quickly become the destination in Northern California for big heavy hitter music names to play at such as Snoop Dogg, Papa Roach, Rob Zombie, and Wu-Tang Clan.
Also, while in Sacramento, he checked out a place called Holy Diver for possibly having the Red-Carpet VIP Press Party there. Holy Diver is a new all-ages music venue from the guys who brought you the Ace Of Spades also.
Then, once off the plane and back home in Springfield, Oregon, with no time to waste, Chris 51 was back on a plane traveling to Sayreville, New Jersey to possibly find the next location. Once there, Chris 51 posted a video saying, 'what’s up everybody, per all of your suggestions, and I thank you for it, I am at the Starland Ballroom in New Jersey checking out this venue for, who knows, a possible next location for Headbangers Con. So, I’m liking what I see so far, and I'm about to go in, and I will let you know, stay tuned, and there's a fucking tank park across the street, so you know this place is rad. Thank you, Wayne, from Hatebreed for suggesting this and all my others friends, I’m gonna go check this out alright, stay metal.'
We here at Metal Pulp And Paper chatted with Chris 51 just days before the inaugural Headbangers Con was about to kick off, and this is what he told us, 'I have never been so excited and so confident, yet scared shitless of something in my life! I have put 13 months into building this event that could completely change the landscape of metal culture for both fans and musicians in a positive way. I hope everyone attending can have as much fun geeking out here as I did making it. As always, stay metal!'
There was not a single moment from the beginning of the red carpet event to the last day of the Headbangers Con with the School Of Rock closing out the evening with their exclusive metal set where not one single person wanted the night to end. It was non-stop fun for all that attended. Headbangers Con is the only event where music fans can meet and mingle with Rock and Roll stars of yesterday and today in a comic con style setting that's totally metal in every which way you can imagine, and then some.
Jose Mangin, from Sirius XM’s Liquid Metal satellite channel, was the metal ambassador of the inaugural event, that had guests that included Morgan Rose, of Sevendust, who is also a founder of the Headbangers Con, the hair metal legend Eddie Ojeda of Twisted Sister, and Aaron Patrick from All That Remains. There was also Carla and Heidi from the Butcher Babies, David Ellefson from Megadeth, Burton C. Bell of Fear Factory, and Corey Glover from Living Colour. Brian Fair of Shadows Fall, along with so many others, including television celebrity, former child actor Butch Patrick, best known for his role as child werewolf Eddie Munster on the CBC comedy television series The Munsters from 1964 to 1966 were part of the two-day convention. One of a handful of other celebrities attending were Brandi Brandt, who at the age of 18 appeared as Playmate of the Month for the October 1987 issue of Playboy, and then also appeared on the cover of Playboy with Donald Trump in March 1990.
To go into further detail, some of the activities that happened throughout the course of the weekend were the Wedgiepics guitar pick scavenger hunt for all the kids; various booths were set up selling multiple items all the way from record albums to hot sauces in the exhibit hall. Then to close out the first night, Silent Theory, Hyro The Hero, opened for Chicago, Illinois’s hard-rock band Soil, playing to a packed crowd also at the Bossanova Ballroom Saturday night.
And if you weren't there, you missed out on Hyro the Hero getting tattooed at the Geeksterink Legends Booth by Lucky 13 Sinakhom with a large group watching on. Another highlight durring the weekend was the hard-rock Christian band Stryper after the Red-Carpet VIP Party closing out Friday night.
Of course, you had the live panels throughout the day during the weekend that was hosted by Jose Mangin who interviewed in a casual setting the Butcher Babies, David Ellefson, Burton C. Bell, and Brain Fair. Even Chris 51 got in on it and interviewed Derek Riggs, whose Facebook about section says he paints pictures of stuff with a little brush and some paint, but he’s better known to the metal music community as the artist known for creating the Iron Maiden's mascot, 'Eddie.'
Brett Stuhler, who hails from New Jersey, and who was there and a part of the inaugural event, and is also a Geeksterink Legend Tour Member, and owner of Tattooine Body Art had this to say to Metal Pulp And Paper on New Jersey hosting the event and who he’d like to be there and maybe possibly tattooing; 'New Jersey is a great metal state full of some really great venues, such as the Starland Ballroom, and in Asbury Park we have one of the most iconic venues in the county, the Stone Pony! I am hoping my friends from Gemini Syndrome can make it this time, and I have talked to the Killswitch guys about it too! My ultimate would be to finally tattoo someone from Killswitch Engage or someone from Iron Maiden! I might be shooting too high on the second one.'
Chris 51 also posted this after the dust settled and all the rock stars had checked out of their hotel rooms and were long gone, 'one of the best parts of Headbangers Con was seeing all the rock stars meet, reunite, and bond over the weekend.' And Brad who also attended said this, 'chance of a lifetime meeting some of my favorite musicians and being a part of it next year would be even more exciting. Was fun Representing KURT FM and The Burn.'
And you'd think that after doing everything he did to make the first Headbangers Con happen, he would take a year off from everything, and just chill out, but no, he is obviously one not to sit still or even relax, because he was stoked to recently announce Headbangers Live. He said, 'it's a division of Headbangers Con that will bring you live Metal shows, starting in Portland and then beyond. In between bringing you incomparable con’s we will fill your Metal void with crushing concerts!' This announcement is big news, and the first Headbangers Live show will be Max Cavalera's Soulfly playing at the Bossanova Ballroom in Portland, Oregon on February 24th with Kataklysm, Incite, Skinflint, along with Portland’s Ligature Marks opening the night of madness.
This is just the beginning of round two, and is in the very early stages of planning, but there is so much plenty of time for you to clear your calendar in 2019 to be able to go to the next Headbangers Con whether it’s in Sacramento, California, or Sayreville, New Jersey. Where ever Chris 51 decides to have it, you have no damn excuses this time this time to miss it. Or, if you were at it in Portland, there is no reason why you can't go again!
We here at Metal Pulp And Paper were glad to be a part of the inaugural Headbangers Con, and wereglad to get to meet and hang out with so many fans and musicians. We look forward to this next one, along with the many to happen in future from here on out.