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Poison’s Resurgence, Bret Michaels Sets Sights on a Grand Reunion Tour in 2025

  • February 18, 2024

Rock icon Bret Michaels reveals Poison’s imminent return, hinting at a grand reunion tour in 2025. In an interview, Michaels expresses unwavering certainty about hitting the road again with Poison’s greatest hits. Despite challenges in crafting new studio material, the band aims to integrate the Poison reunion seamlessly into Michaels’ solo “Parti-Gras” experience. As Michaels reflects on his musical journey, fans eagerly anticipate the resurgence of this iconic rock force.

Bret Michaels plans for Poison tour 2025

Poison Hitting the Road Again

In a recent interview on SiriusXM’s “Trunk Nation With Eddie Trunk,” Bret Michaels, amid promoting his “Parti-Gras” solo tour, hinted at an imminent revival of Poison. The rock icon expressed his unwavering certainty, stating that Poison will tour again, and he envisions a reunion featuring all the greatest hits as part of the “Parti-Gras” extravaganza.

During the chat, Michaels reminisced about the 2022 “The Stadium Tour,” where Poison shared the stage with Mötley Crüe and Def Leppard. When questioned about the prospect of repeating such a massive tour with other iconic acts, Michaels enthusiastically responded, “One million percent.” He emphasized the deep connection he feels with his Poison bandmates, acknowledging their vital role in his musical journey.

Bret’s Solo Experience

While Poison’s future excites Michaels, he also cherishes the unique experience of his solo performances. With the Bret Michaels band by his side, he values the camaraderie and energy they bring to the stage. This blend of solo and band dynamics has become a defining element of Michaels’ recent musical ventures.

A Glimpse into the Future: Looking ahead to 2025 and 2026, Michaels envisions a grand Poison reunion. The plan is to integrate the Poison greatest-hits reunion seamlessly into the “Parti-Gras” experience. Michaels aims to curate a lineup of great bands, promising an unforgettable musical journey for fans, complete with all the iconic Poison hits.

The Long-Awaited Return

Poison’s North American tour, initially scheduled for 2020 and subsequently postponed to 2021 and 2022, faced multiple delays. Now, Michaels sees the upcoming years as the perfect timing for Poison’s triumphant return. The anticipation among fans for a Poison reunion is palpable, and Michaels is determined to make it a reality.

Poison plans to tour again in 2025

Legendary rock band Poison, led by charismatic frontman Bret Michaels, is gearing up for an explosive comeback. With hints of a 2025 reunion tour and the promise of revisiting their greatest hits, Poison continues to capture hearts. Despite occasional challenges in creating new music, the band’s impact remains undiminished, leaving fans eager for their triumphant return to the stage

The Band’s Studio Dilemma

Addressing the longstanding question of new Poison music, Michaels acknowledged the desire among band members to create a new studio album. However, practical challenges, including conflicting schedules and family commitments, have hindered the process. Despite this, Michaels remains optimistic about the prospect of new Poison songs in the future.

 In a candid moment, Michaels reflected on his musical journey, expressing gratitude for the incredible people he has met and the remarkable places he has played. The challenges and adversities faced along the way have only fueled his passion for music. As Michaels continues his solo endeavors, he is determined to keep the spirit of Poison alive.

The History of the Iconic Group

Poison, the iconic rock band, has etched its name in the annals of music history, captivating audiences with its high-energy performances and timeless hits. Led by the charismatic Bret Michaels, the band’s journey has been a rollercoaster of success, challenges, and a profound impact on the rock music landscape.

Formed in 1983 in Mechanicsburg, Pennsylvania, Poison quickly rose to prominence in the glam metal scene of the ’80s. The original lineup featured Bret Michaels (lead vocals), C.C. DeVille (guitar), Bobby Dall (bass), and Rikki Rockett (drums). Their infectious blend of anthemic rock, catchy hooks, and glam-inspired stage presence catapulted them to fame.

Poison’s debut album, “Look What the Cat Dragged In” (1986), set the stage for their ascent. With hits like “Talk Dirty to Me,” “I Want Action,” and “Every Rose Has Its Thorn,” the album became a multi-platinum success, solidifying Poison’s status as a force to be reckoned with.

The band’s subsequent releases, including “Open Up and Say… Ahh!” (1988) and “Flesh & Blood” (1990), continued to dominate the charts. The power ballad “Every Rose Has Its Thorn” from the latter album remains one of Poison’s most iconic songs, earning them a Grammy nomination.

Amidst their musical triumphs, Poison faced internal conflicts and underwent lineup changes. C.C. DeVille left the band in the early ’90s, only to reunite later, bringing both challenges and renewed energy to their dynamic.

In 2002, Poison released their last studio album of original material, “Hollyweird.” While their focus shifted to touring and engaging with fans, discussions about creating new music persisted over the years. Despite Dall’s acknowledgment of the importance of staying “viable,” crafting new material proved elusive, given the band members’ diverse commitments and the changing dynamics of the music industry.

Poison’s enduring appeal lies not only in their chart-topping hits but also in their unforgettable live performances. The band’s stage presence, characterized by Michaels’ charismatic showmanship and the electrifying energy of their music, has left an indelible mark on rock history.

The year 2022 marked a significant chapter in Poison’s journey as they joined forces with Def Leppard, Mötley Crüe, and Joan Jett for “The Stadium Tour.” Performing in iconic venues across North America, the tour showcased Poison’s ability to command massive audiences and deliver memorable performances.

Poison’s Journey Continues

Bret Michaels, at 60, is not slowing down. As he headlines the Titletown Parti-Gras in Green Bay, WI on September 8, fans can expect a high-energy performance. Joined by other rock legends like Dee Snider, Lou Gramm, and Steve Augeri, Michaels promises an unforgettable night filled with classic hits and, perhaps, a glimpse into Poison’s future.

Bret Michaels remains an eternal optimist, navigating the music industry with a blend of nostalgia and a forward-looking vision. As he readies himself for the “Parti-Gras” and contemplates Poison’s resurgence, fans can’t help but join the anticipation for what promises to be a spectacular reunion tour in 2025. The journey continues, and the poisonously good times are set to roll once again.

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Poison’s Bret Michaels Announces 2023 US “Parti-Gras” Tour

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The post Poison’s Bret Michaels Announces 2023 US “Parti-Gras” Tour appeared first on Consequence .

Poison singer Bret Michaels has announced the Summer 2023 US “Parti Gras” tour featuring a stacked support cast of Night Ranger, Jefferson Starship, Steve Augeri (ex-Journey), and Mark McGrath (Sugar Ray).

Dates kick off July 13rd in Clarkston, Michigan, and run through August 6th in Charlotte, North Carolina.

A Citi Cardmember ticket pre-sales goes live today (December 5th) at 10 a.m. local time, and a Live Nation pre-sale begins Tuesday (December 6th) at 10 a.m. local time (code: CHEER ). General public sales start Friday (December 9th) at 10 a.m. local time. You can pick up tickets via Ticketmaster .

In addition to the aforementioned support package, a surprise guest will make an appearance each night to “rock your world,” according to the press release. The tour poster emphasizes that each performer will play “all the killer hits, no filler.”

“I created Parti-Gras as a sincere and grateful thank you to the fans, friends, and family who have rocked with me over the years,” Michaels said in a statement. “I promise to deliver positive energy, live, raw, real music, and all the bands will deliver sing-a-long hit after hit songs. Your voice will be hoarse after an epic, big, fun stage show.”

Added Rick Franks of Global Touring Live Nation: “After seeing Bret bring the party in every market of the Stadium Tour [supporting Def Leppard and Mötley Crüe] this past year, we are looking forward to more of his ‘nothing, but a good vibe, high-energy performing’ on the Parti-Gras Tour next summer.”

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Below you can see the tour poster and a full list of dates for Bret Michaels’ “Parti Gras” US tour. Get tickets here .

Bret Michaels’ 2023 US Tour Dates with Night Ranger, Jefferson Starship, Steve Augeri (ex-Journey), and Mark McGrath: 07/13 – Clarkston, MI @ Pine Knob Music Theatre 07/15 – Burgettstown, PA @ The Pavilion at Star Lake 07/16 – Holmdel, NJ @ PNC Bank Arts Center 07/21 – Mansfield, MA @ Xfinity Center 07/22 – Gilford, NH @ Bank of New Hampshire Pavilion 07/23 – Camden, NJ @ Freedom Mortgage Pavilion 07/28 – Maryland Heights, MO @ Hollywood Casino Amphitheatre 07/29 – Tinley Park, IL @ Hollywood Casino Amphitheatre 07/30 – Noblesville, IN @ Ruoff Music Center 08/04 – Tampa, FL @ MIDFLORIDA Credit Union Amphitheatre at the FL State Fairgrounds 08/05 – Alpharetta, GA @ Ameris Bank Amphitheatre 08/06 – Charlotte, NC @ PNC Music Pavilion

Poison’s Bret Michaels Announces 2023 US “Parti-Gras” Tour Jon Hadusek

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Bret Michaels checks in from the Stadium Tour: 'When I hit the stage, it's a party'

poison reunion tour

In March of 1983, Bret Michaels and his bandmates left Mechanicsburg, a town just west of Harrisburg in central Pennsylvania, to try their luck on the Sunset Strip, where the glam-metal scene was exploding, as Poison.

Nearly 40 years later, he's having what he calls "the time of my life" on the Stadium Tour with one of that scene's other most successful exports, Motley Crue, joining Def Leppard, Joan Jett & the Blackhearts and a young group known as Classless Act.

As Michaels has been saying since the tour was first announced in late 2019, pre-pandemic, to take place the following summer, "If I wasn't on this show? As a rock fan, I'd have bought a ticket."

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'When I hit the stage, it's a party'

As it turns out, that's exactly how a lot of rock fans have responded to the twice-delayed Stadium Tour. It's one of this year's main events, grossing just under $5 million a show. 

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And Michaels swears the energy he brings to leading Poison through their greatest hits for an average of 36,000-some people a night is really not much different than the energy he brought to rocking Pennsylvania in his teens. 

"When we were playing at the Pine Grove Inn, we had to use their slogan, 'Shake your hiney at the Piney,' while we're playing to a crowd of 30 people at a bar in central Pennsylvania," Michaels says. 

"And we loved it. Treated every set like we were playing Madison Square Garden."

It's just how he's wired.

"When I hit the stage, it's a party," Michaels says. "I charge out there like it's my first show, possibly my last show. That's really how I feel.

"And due to some of my medical history, I laugh about it, but I treat it like this could be it. So I'm gonna go out there and leave it all on the stage."

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Poison's early days in Hollywood

Despite that extroverted personality that made him what my brother swears was the most entertaining act on the bill when the Stadium Tour hit Pittsburgh, there was some culture shock involved in leaving small-town Pennsylvania for the Sunset Strip.

"When I got to Los Angeles, I'm not gonna lie, at first you're like, 'Wow, this is overwhelming,'" Michaels says. 

"We had no money. We thought we'd be one of the few bands out there. Little did we know there's 40,000 other bands trying to write original material. So we got real smart and adapted real quick."

One thing Poison quickly figured out was they could make enough to scrape by if they lined up some gigs on the outskirts of town.

"Los Angeles at that point, you actually had to pay to play," Michaels says. 

"We had a windowless Chevette, or pretty much no windows left, an old ambulance van and a Ford pickup truck. We could load all of our gear in and play all these outlying cities and towns to make money to eat."

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'No record label would touch us'

For a while, he says, they lived behind the back half of a dry cleaner.

"There was one running faucet that had no hot water," Michaels says. "And that was your shower or what you boiled to make food. We slept in sleeping bags. That was how we existed. When I say we paid our dues, we paid our dues."

For three years, Michaels says, "We literally starved, but we kept writing original stuff."

They also kept building a fan base. But even then, nobody wanted to sign them.

"We would play this place called the Palace across from Capitol Records and sell it out," Michaels says. "National acts would co-headline or open for us. But no record label would touch us."

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'Look What the Cat Dragged In' 

Finally, in 1986, an independent label called Enigma Records took a chance and signed them, releasing a "glorified demo," as Michaels has called "Look What the Cat Dragged In," a glam-metal classic that spent a full year climbing to its Billboard chart peak, No. 3. 

"Our big signing party was sitting on a cement floor in a warehouse, boxing up albums," Michaels says. 

He and his bandmates were putting promotional items in with the record stores' orders, shrink-wrapping their own cassettes.

"I'm thinking, 'This sure as hell isn't like the Kiss autobiography. They had jets and parties and limousines," Michaels says with a laugh. "But honestly, we had the time of our life. We didn't know any better. We were like, 'OK, this is it!'"

They hand-delivered the album to KROQ in Los Angeles.

"We went right in there and handed them our record and they played it," Michaels says. 

"We sat out in the car, in the Chevette, and listened to them play 'Talk Dirty to Me' and 'Cry Tough.' I thought, 'Man, touchdown!'"

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When 'Talk Dirty to Me' exploded

From there, they tried the same approach in San Diego and Phoenix.

"We just took our records and we'd walk in," Michaels says.

"The radio station's like, 'Who are these freaks trying to get in our front door?' And we'd have to explain that we were popular in L.A. but the rest of the world didn't know us yet. Then finally 'Talk Dirty to Me' exploded."

Released in February 1987 as the second single from "Look What the Cat Dragged In," "Talk Dirty to Me" peaked at No. 9 on Billboard's Hot 100, followed by "I Won't Forget You," a bluesy power ballad that peaked at No. 13. 

Those were exciting times that included a lot of what Michaels calls Spinal Tap moments.

"We would do in-stores and sometimes there would be 100 people and we'd run out of the 10 records we had," he says. "And we'd be signing Butte, Montana, roadmaps, you know what I mean? But we lived and learned."

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'Every Rose Has Its Thorn'

They even managed to avoid the dreaded sophomore slump with four Top 20 entries on the Hot 100 from 1988's "Open Up and Say... Ahh!" — "Nothin' But a Good Time," "Fallen Angel," a spirited cover of Loggins and Messina's "Your Mama Don't Dance" and the ballad that remains their biggest hit, "Every Rose Has Its Thorn."

That last one, which topped the Hot 100, was a tough sell at rock radio.

"We had had great luck with 'I Won't Forget You,' but that one didn't start with an acoustic kind of country-esque Eagles Americana feel," Michaels says. "I said, 'Please, this song is from the heart.'"

Michaels credits a cluster of stations in Dallas with breaking the single, which "went No. 1 like a freight train" from there. 

"No one believed in this song, and we just kept at it," he says. "Then, suddenly, everyone's like, 'Oh, we always knew this was a No. 1 song.'"

Michaels laughs.

"And I'm like, 'Yeah, that's because it's a No. 1 song now.' I said, 'Three months ago, you guys wanted to take it off the record.'"

He laughs again, then adds, "All of this is as true as it gets."

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Riding go-karts with Alice in Chains

The '90s took off like a rocket for Poison when their third hit album, "Flesh and Blood," sent two songs to the Top 5 on the Hot 100 — "Unskinny Bop" and "Something to Believe In."

Things started unraveling in 1991, when Michaels got into a fistfight backstage at the MTV Video Music Awards with C.C. DeVille, their lead guitarist, who was subsequently fired.

That awards show was Sept. 5. Five days later, Nirvana released a single widely seen as the beginning of the end of the glam-metal era.

"I blame nobody," Michaels says. "There was definitely a change in the music business but I only blame myself. There was a lot of partying."

He never understood the animosity people just assumed he would've felt toward artists like Nirvana. 

"Grunge was great," he says. "We used Nirvana's director, Sam Bayer, on the video to 'Stand.' Alice in Chains' first arena show was opening for Poison.

"I was like, 'I didn't know I was in a fight with Alice in Chains. They were just at my house riding go-karts,' you know what I mean?"

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'All you can do is just be who you are'

By 1996, DeVille was back on board, rejoining Michaels, bassist Bobby Dall and drummer Rikki Rockett to complete the classic Poison lineup.

Three years later, they were drawing crowds as large as 18,000 on the Greatest Hits Reunion Tour.

"All you can do is just be who you are and stick to your guns," Michaels says. "And it all came back bigger and better than ever.

"I don't have a victim mentality. I take responsibility for things that happen. You own it and you just keep rocking. That's what happened. Within a couple years, everything comes right back around."

To Michaels, the massive success of the Stadium Tour is not the slightest bit surprising.

"The truth is this: They all were at those concerts all that time, selling out the arenas and amphitheaters," he says. 

"A rock audience is a lot like a country audience. They're very loyal. So they never got the Post-it Note that said, 'You're not supposed to like this.'" 

Bret Michaels' life in Arizona

For Michaels, the Aug. State Farm Stadium concert in Glendale is a bit of a homecoming show, having divided his time between a home in northern Scottsdale and his L.A. ranch for more than 15 years. 

"I love it," Michaels says. "If half my friends show up on the guest list, we'll have a sold-out show."

Further strengthening Michaels' connection to the Valley, he credits St. Joseph’s Barrow Neurological Institute in Phoenix with having saved his life.

That's where Michaels was treated in 2010 for a brain hemorrhage and again in 2011 for a procedure to close a hole in his heart. A year after that second procedure, he opened  the Bret Michaels Hospitality and Music Room at St. Joseph's Hospital.

The singer's interest in philanthropy dates to childhood. He was diagnosed at 6 with Type 1 diabetes and his parents started a diabetes youth camp in Harrisburg.

"That's where the philanthropic side of me came in, seeing how much good it did," he says. 

Through his Life Rocks Foundation, Michaels is able to give back to communities along the tour, from helping kids with diabetes to assisting veterans and beyond.

"It's just something that I want to do and need to do," he says. 

Solo gigs during gaps in the Stadium Tour

In addition to rocking the Stadium Tour with Poison, Michaels has filled in the gaps in his schedule with solo performances.

"These are my dad and mom's exact words in one of the Behind the Music shows," he says. "They're like, 'I don't know what it is with my son Bret. He has a unique extra energy, an extra gear that is unexplainable.'

"I don't know why. I just like being active. Smart musicians take a day off. I'm like, 'That'd be a great day. We can get to Minneapolis, do the Moondance Festival and get back in time to play the next stadium date."

His approach to the solo shows is the same as the Stadium Tour.

"The way I mentally and physically treat both is 1,000%," Michaels says. 

"If you said, 'Look, a bunch of our buddies are gonna get together, we're throwing a charity event in a 100-seat room, I would bring the same energy as if I'm playing Glendale at the stadium."

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Parti-Gras and 'Chicken Soup for Rock'

Michaels plans to focus on more solo dates in 2023, with an amphitheater tour based on a concept he calls Parti-Gras.

"Like Mardi Gras," Michaels explains.

"It's gonna be that summer mega-party. A festival bigger than any one name. One night could be me and Jimmy Buffett. Last night in Tulsa, Josey from Saliva did 'Nothin' But a Good Time' and the place went crazy. I call it 'All killer, no filler.' Nothing but hits."

There's a photo journal on his website,  bretmichaels.com,  reliving highlights of those solo dates and the Stadium Tour in images and words as a digital outgrowth of "Auto-Scrap-o-Graphy," the singer's photo memoir.

"It's like Chicken Soup for Rock," he says. "In other words, stories that get right to the point and I've got a picture. So I'm not talking about some friend for 13 chapters and you're like, 'Can I see a picture of him?' I've got the picture of us in the basement with my parents' laundry stacked up on the washer and dryer while we're playing."

'I'm sorry I knocked your tooth out'

As for Poison, Michaels says they're in a good place as bandmates and friends. 

"Here's the truth," he says. "We always get along great.

"No one has ever made me laugh harder or been through as much as we've been through together, from the ground up. I'm talking the basement, sump-pump water on the floor. We're definitely four uniquely different personalities. But on that stage, it's electric."

When Michaels says they "always" get along great, he's not counting the 1% of the time it all goes straight to hell.

"When it goes bad, it goes straight to a fistfight," Michaels says.

"It's like, 'What'd you say?! Oh, yeah?!' And the next thing you know, it's a bar fight on the tour bus or backstage. Then the next day we're playing on stage together and I'm like, 'I'm sorry I knocked your tooth out.' They're like, 'Yeah, I'm sorry I hit you in the gut.'"

That potential for a fistfight may be part of the appeal of seeing Poison live, Michaels adds with a laugh. 

"Hell, me and Bobby got in a fistfight on stage. Me and C.C. at the MTV awards. I think half the time, people who come to Poison, they're like, 'Wait, good tunes I can sing along to, good pyro and occasionally a prize fight? You get your money's worth.' 

It's been 20 years since "Hollyweird," their latest album of original material. And Michaels isn't necessarily eager to get back in the studio and make another album. What he would be into, though, is adding one more classic single to the repertoire

"I know I could get outvoted on this," Michaels says. 

"But I said, 'Guys, I beg you. Let's just write a straight-up rock song.' A 'Nothin' But a Good Time.' But modern. 'Talk Dirty to Me.' A great guitar riff, good lyrics, a hook in the chorus. Just something that's fun for us to write. And who knows? Maybe it could be a modern-day 'You Shook Me All Night Long.'"

But just one song.

"You give us a whole album," he says, with a laugh, "you'll get the best prize fight you've ever seen."

The Stadium Tour

When: 4:30 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 25.

Where: State Farm Stadium, 1 Cardinals Way, Glendale.

Admission: $99.50 and up.

Details: 800-745-3000,  ticketmaster.com.

Reach the reporter at [email protected] or 602-444-4495. Follow him on Twitter @EdMasley .

Support local journalism. Subscribe to azcentral.com today.

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POISON Will 'One Million Percent' Tour Again, Says BRET MICHAELS

During a February 15 appearance on SiriusXM 's "Trunk Nation With Eddie Trunk" , Bret Michaels , who is continuing to promote his "Parti-Gras" solo tour, was asked if he foresees possibly taking POISON out again on the road with another two or three or four other big acts, like he did as part of the 2022 "The Stadium Tour" . "One million percent," he responded (as transcribed by BLABBERMOUTH.NET ). "I was grateful to be out there again. With MÖTLEY [ CRÜE ] and [ DEF ] LEPPARD and to be out there with Joan [ Jett ], I one thousand percent see that [kind of thing happening again]."

The 60-year-old musician continued: "I wouldn't be doing any of this without being out there with [my POISON bandmates] C.C. [ DeVille , guitar] and Bobby [ Dall , bass] and Rikki [ Rockett , drums], but with the Bret Michaels [solo] band and that feeling I get having Pete Evick out there with me and Dean [ Cramer ] The Machine and Norman [ Voss ] and Meri [ Schaefer ] and Rob [ Jozwiak ] and all of us, we all carry that same feeling."

Circling back to the possibility of POISON touring again in the not-too-distant future, Bret said: "I think in 2025, 2026, one million percent. We're gonna bring all the POISON greatest-hits reunion and make it part of what 'Parti-Gras' is. We'll make it the POISON reunion 'Parti-Gras' and bring a lot of great bands and just, without a doubt, unleash all those POISON greatest hits."

POISON 's long-delayed North American trek with DEF LEPPARD , MÖTLEY CRÜE and JOAN JETT & THE BLACKHEARTS was originally planned for 2020 and later moved to 2021 and then to 2022.

In 2018, POISON completed the "Nothin' But A Good Time" tour with CHEAP TRICK and POP EVIL .

POISON 's last album of new material was 2002's "Hollyweird" . An album of covers, "Poison'd" , followed in 2007.

Back in 2018, Dall said that POISON "should" be making a new studio album but claimed that he didn't know if it would happen. "I'm not going to bullshit you and say there's any [new music] in the process [of being made]," he told All That Shreds . "Would I like there to be? Yes. But, it's a matter of everyone having the time. Everybody in the band has other commitments. Some members have younger children than others. So between those two issues, it's difficult, and, you know, [there are] health issues as we get older. Should we be making a new record? Yes, definitely. But will it happen? I don't know."

In a 2017 interview, Rikki acknowledged that part of the reason the band hasn't been motivated to work on new music has been the fact that fans rarely show interest in hearing fresh material performed live when classic rock groups go on tour. "We could write the second coming of 'Talk Dirty To Me' , and I don't know if people wanna hear it or not, and that's a frustrating thing; it really is," he said. " AEROSMITH was able to do it, but not everybody is. I mean, even THE ROLLING STONES have had problems with that in the last few years. So… I don't know. But I do think it's important to stay viable. For the 'über fans,' it's always a really, really good thing. And that's what you do it for — you do it for you, you do it for the real fans, the real true fans."

More recently, Rockett admitted that he and other members of POISON harbored some resentment toward Michaels , whose frequent tours as a solo artist caused the band to take a five-year break from the road.

"I think we need to get away from each other and do other things, but at the same time, I think he spent a little too much time away," Rockett said. "There's definitely some resentment, but not resentment like I want him to fail. I want him to do good. I just want POISON to be important too, and I would like [him] to put a little more energy into POISON ."

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Bret Michaels Gives Promise To Poison Fans Ahead Of Tour

Bret Michaels Gives Promise To Poison Fans Ahead Of Tour | I Love Classic Rock Videos

Bret Michaels in an interview with Dan Rathers - AXS TV / Youtube

Bret Michaels, the lead singer of Poison, recently shared exciting news about the band’s upcoming tour. During a Q&A session aboard Rock Legends Cruise XI, Michaels revealed that the band plans to reunite their original lineup for a big stadium and arena tour in 2025. Michaels affirmed that the tour would feature all the original members of the band, including C.C DeVille on guitar, Bobby Dall on bass, Rikki Rockett on drums, and himself.

Poison’s Original Lineup and Future Plans

Michaels, who has known his bandmates since junior high, expressed how important the original lineup is for him.

“I wouldn’t be here without Bobby or Rikki or C.C. And then, as you go along, we’ve been together a long time… still great friends,” Michaels shared.

He also talked about their most recent tour, The Stadium Tour, which took place in 2022. Poison performed alongside iconic bands such as Def Leppard, Motley Crue, and Joan Jett, making it an unforgettable experience for Michaels. “When you’re out there with Def Leppard and Mötley Crüe and Joan Jett, you’re talking A-plus awesomeness. And we just came out and brought it,” Michaels said.

In a previous interview with Eddie Trunk on SiriusXM’s Trunk Nation, Michaels mentioned that the band would regroup in 2025 and possibly release some new tracks.

“We’re gonna bring all the Poison greatest hits reunion and make it part of what Parti-Gras [solo tour] is. We’ll make it the Poison reunion Parti-Gras and bring a lot of great bands and just without a doubt unleash all those Poison greatest hits,” Michaels said.

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Poison’s Musical Direction

The band’s most recent album, Poison’d!, was released in 2007, and they haven’t released any new material since then. In 2017, drummer Rikki Rockett shared that the band had no interest in creating new music due to the limited interest from fans. Rockett expressed that even if they wrote a hit song, they weren’t sure if fans wanted to hear it.

“We could write the second coming of ‘Talk Dirty To Me’, and I don’t know if people wanna hear it or not, and that’s a frustrating thing; it really is,” Rockett said.

However, he also pointed out that it is important to remain relevant in the music industry for loyal fans who are excited to hear their favorite band’s new music.

Poison fans can look forward to an upcoming tour with the original lineup in 2025. Michaels promised that the band would not disappoint their fans during this reunion tour. Fans can also expect to hear Poison’s greatest hits, and with the possibility of new tracks being released, it’s an exciting time to be a fan of the band.

You can watch the Q&A session in the video below to hear Michaels’s announcement.

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Poison is an American glam metal band formed by Bret Michaels, Matt Smith, Bobby Dall, and Rikki Rockett, from Mechanicsburg, Pennsylvania, U.S.

Originally performing under the moniker Paris in their hometown of Mechanicsburg, Pennsylvania, the band moved to Los Angeles, California in 1984 and changed their name to Poison. Lead singer Bret Michaels, bassist Bobby Dall, and drummer Rikki Rockett, held auditions for a lead guitarist and soon after invited C.C. Deville to fill the role. Poison then developed a knack for creatively and thoroughly promoting their gigs and soon garnered a sizeable following, which led the band to sign with Enigma Records in 1986.

The same year Poison released their breakthrough album “Look What the Cat Dragged In” which introduced the band’s brand of glamorous metal androgyny. Aided by the single “Talk Dirty to Me” and “I Won’t Forget You”, the album went on to sell over two million copies. With the release of their sophomore album “Open Up & Say…Ahhh!” Poison were propelled to the level of super-stardom topped only by the likes of Bon Jovi and Def Leppard. The album spawned the hits “Fallen Angel”, “Nothin’ But a Good Time” and the band’s first No. One Hit, “Every Rose Has Its Thorn”.

The release of their subsequent album “Flesh and Blood” and resulting tour however marked a decline for the band. After the live album “Swallow This Live” in 1991, Poison parted ways with C.C. Deville who was replaced by the 21 year old Richie Kotzen. The new guitarist only stayed for one album, however, 1993’s “Native Tongue” after it was revealed he had begun an illicit relationship with drummer Rockett’s fiancé. A compilation album entitled “Greatest Hits: 1986-1996” was issued in 1996, shortly after which Deville returned to the group and Poison embarked on a successful arena reunion tour of 1999.

“Crack a Smile” was released in 2000, followed by “Power to the People” a mix of new and live songs from the reunion tour. Following the release of the disappointing “Hollyweird” in 2002, Deville appeared in VH1’s “The Surreal Life” and Michaels hosted his own dating show “Rock of Love with Bret Michaels”. It wasn’t until 2006 that Poison reconvened to celebrate their 20th anniversary, with a nationwide tour and a new greatest hits box-set collection. The album “The Best of Posion: 20 Years of Rock”, aided by Michaels’ new reality TV status, rose to the Top 20 of the Billboard 200, as did its successor “Poison’d!” in 2007.

Live reviews

Pop Evil, Cheap Trick & Poison put on an absolutely amazing show but I am completely disenchanted with the promoters, venue and ticket sellers.

I purchased 200 level seats in row L @ $135/ticket for my wife and I via an American Express Presale, months in advance of the show.

While waiting for the gates to open at Ontario Place/Budweiser Stage, the usual assortment of scalpers were hanging around the front gates when we heard one of them offering half-price tickets to the show. I pulled out my phone and checked Live Nation and Ticketmaster's web sites to find that they were offering, amongst others, tickets two rows in front of our seats for $83.75. These were not resale tickets, and there were several of them.

To make matters worse, while standing in line at one of the food trucks, I overheard several people saying how fortunate they were that their $20 lawn tickets had been upgraded for FREE and yup....they were sitting two rows in front of us when the show started.

Apparently the show had not sold well, so the venue decided to close the lawn area and give everyone with $20 lawn tickets a free upgrade. Lucky for them, but what about those of us who paid full price for the tickets months in advance? Should we not have been offered a partial refund, or at the very least a gift certificate?

I understand that Labatt's and Live Nation (who also happens to own Ticketmaster) own the venue which was recently renamed from Molson Amphitheatre to Budweiser Stage and this was certainly not our first trip to this venue, but it was our first trip to the venue under it's new name.

As I said when I started this, we LOVED the show he bands put on, but if the promoters/venue/ticket sellers are going to continue this practice of shafting those of us who purchase tickets early, we will definitely thing twice before buying tickets to other shows.

We've typically attend 3-5 shows each summer and have definitely noticed a drop in attendance at most shows over the last couple of years. Despite the fact that music lovers will pay dearly to see their favourite bands, there comes a point where there are only so many dollars to go around. I realize that many bands demand higher compensation when touring, but perhaps the drop in attendance is directly related to the ticket prices for shows of late.

There have been several shows that we would love to have seen, but not even folks like us who have been life-long fans of certain bands can't afford $200-$300 for a ticket to see a band who's last hit record was 20-30 years ago.

If the venue's aren't selling out, maybe the ticket prices are too high......

Cheap Trick is my wife's all time favourite band and we've seen them every year for the past 20 years when they've passed through town, but for the price we paid this year, and then to find out that had we waited until the last minute, or purchased the cheap lawn seats and gotten a free upgrade to better seats, we definitely feel cheated this year and will almost certainly take our chances by waiting until the day of, or buying cheap lawn seats if they come through town again next year. Who knows, we may actually end up with better seats than someone else who shows their support for a band by buying tickets early...

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If there’s such a thing as glam metal standards, does it really get any more classic than ‘Every Rose Has Its Thorn’? Poison have certainly earned themselves a place amongst the genuine titans of the genre, and like a handful of their contemporaries (I’m looking at you, Motley Crue), they’ve defied years of debauchery and excess and remain a going concern today. More recently, though, there’s every chance that the wider public are more familiar with frontman Bret Michaels for the slew of appearances that he’s made on reality TV shows - he won the third series of Celebrity Apprentice - or his recent health issues that put his life on the line and the band’s future in serious doubt. Happily, though, Michaels recovered, and Poison hit the road in the summer of 2011 for a tour with the Crue, as well as New York Dolls. The sets were typically silly affairs - big hair, big guitar solos and big, big volume and had Michaels rolling back the years, showcasing a voice that’s stood up remarkably well to the ravages of a rock n’ roll lifestyle. The band have yet to make it back to the UK since Michaels’ recovery, but the fact that Motley Crue still play arenas over here should demonstrate that there’s plenty of demand for this kind of show; it can only be a matter of time.

Joeg_67’s profile image

American rock outfit Poison really do set the bar high in the field of glam metal. Innovators of their time, the band who have been working for over thirty years amassed a huge following during their heyday and many of those fans still attend their shows to this day.

Having achieved a great deal of commercial success in the 80's and 90's, the band now tends to play a setlist featuring a selection of their hits as well as their own personal favourite material to showcase their abilities. The gig sways between these two mentalities, the crowd are loudly singing along to 'Unskinny Bop' before clapping along intently to coax on the musicians as they perform complex guitar and drum solos.

The biggest cheer of the evening is reserved for the encore of 'Every Rose Has Its Thorn' and 'Nothing But A Good Time' which both include extended instrumentals and those recognisable anthemic choruses. Despite the band no longer being a frequenter of the charts, their iconic glam rock status remains unchallenged.

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andrew-iven’s profile image

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Awesome show!! I have seen a lot of concerts from 1980 forward, in all this time I have never seen a frontman so full of energy and get the crowd into the show the way Bret Michaels did! He is by far the best frontman I have seen. The band sounded great and the lighting show was fantastic. Tesla opened the show and the crowd remained sitting most of the show but when Bret came on stage everyone was standing and remained so all night. All in all it was a magnificent high energy show and I would go again!

The Poison,Cheap Trick & Pop Evil NJ show was amazing. They were all energetic and had great stage presence. All front men were great!Since this is a Poison review, I give them a 100%. From the opening flames, commentary,tribute dancing and singing.. til the very end,completely impressed. Hope they will continue to rock for many more years to come!

Midorystar’s profile image

This band is amazing. I am a true fan and will always be. Win I was in high school back in 1989 my best friend had me listen to them. Since then he has past away. Your songs bring him back for just a short while. Thank you for this great gift that you share with us. Your friend and brother. Shane Cynova.

shane-a-cynova’s profile image

I’m so happy that Poison came back to UTAH, 5/22/18 @ USANA! We had so much fun. We love you guys so much. Please come back soon. Thank you so much USANA! Please keep the bands coming and thank you for reasonable prices. Safe Travels and Rock On..

Barracuda1973’s profile image

Great as always. 4th time seeing them. Bret never disappoints. And hearing him talk about veterans and people serving in the military really touches my heart, as my son is on his third deployment for the Air Force.

melissa-tilley-steel’s profile image

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Bret Michaels Announces POISON Reunion for New Music and Touring

Bret Michaels Announces POISON Reunion for New Music and Touring | Society Of Rock Videos

via Reaction Guitarist / YouTube

Bret Michaels, the rock sensation who recently wrapped up “The Stadium Tour” with POISON, alongside MÖTLEY CRÜE and DEF LEPPARD in the summer of 2022, has some thrilling news for fans. In a chat with The Oakland Press, Michaels spilled the beans on his exciting future plans.

He’s all set to bring POISON back together in 2025 for more tours and even the chance of cooking up some fresh tunes.

Reflecting on his incredible journey, Michaels shared his bright and hopeful perspective, saying:

“When we started, I never knew what the future held, but I never believed it couldn’t happen. I always found a way to make things work and enjoyed every moment of it.”

For him, the real treasure lies in the experiences he’s gathered along the way – meeting fantastic people, rocking out in incredible places, and traveling the globe to share his music.

  View this post on Instagram   A post shared by Rebel Discord (@rebeldiscord)

Despite facing various hurdles, Michaels has embraced change and welcomed new opportunities, including performing at country festivals.

As this 60-year-old singer continues to shine in his “Parti-Gras” 2023 solo tour, he remains genuine, passionate, and an unwavering music enthusiast. He’s immensely grateful for the unwavering support of his fans and approaches every performance with the same gusto and excitement that he had during his early days playing at smaller joints like Harpo’s or Blondie’s. The only difference now is that he’s gracing bigger stages with top-notch equipment. ( https://discoverstillwater.com/ )

Peering into the future, Bret Michaels’ unyielding determination and love for music assure fans that there’s plenty more to come. He’s gearing up to reunite with POISON for more electrifying tours, and the prospect of new musical creations in 2025 adds an extra layer of excitement to the mix. So, mark your calendars and get ready for a rocking good time with Bret Michaels and POISON!

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About poison.

Poison is an American rock band that achieved great commercial success in the mid-1980s to the mid-1990s. Poison has sold over 40 million records worldwide and has sold 15 million records in the United States alone. The band has also charted ten singles to the Top 40 of the Billboard Hot 100, including six Top 10 singles and the Hot 100 number-one, "Every Rose Has Its Thorn". The band's breakthrough debut album, the multi-platinum Look What the Cat Dragged In, was released in 1986 and they hit their peak with the second album, Open Up and Say... Ahh!, which became the band's most successful album, being certified 5x platinum in the US. The popularity continued into the new decade with their third consecutive multi-platinum selling album, Flesh & Blood. In the 1990s following the release of the band's first live album, Swallow This Live, the band experienced some line up changes and the fall of pop metal with the grunge movement, but despite a drop in popularity the band's fourth studio album, Native Tongue, still achieved Gold status and the band's first compilation album, Poison's Greatest Hits: 1986–1996, went double platinum. In the 2000s, with the original line up back together, the band found new popularity after a successful greatest hits reunion tour in 1999. The band began the new decade with the release of the long-awaited Crack a Smile... and More!, followed by the Power to the People album. The band toured almost every year to sold out stadiums and arenas. They released a brand new album, Hollyweird, in 2002 and in 2006 the band celebrated their 20-year anniversary with The Best of Poison: 20 Years of Rock tour and album, which was certified Gold and marked Poison's return to the Billboard top 20 charts for the first time since 1993. Band members have released several solo albums and starred in successful reality TV shows. After 25 years, the band is still recording music and performing. Since their debut in 1986, they have released seven studio albums, four live albums, five compilation albums, and have issued 28 singles to radio. In 2012 VH1 ranked them at #1 on their list of the "Top 5 Hair Bands of the '80s".

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Mötley Crüe, Def Leppard, Poison Set 2020 Stadium Tour

  • By Andy Greene

Andy Greene

Mötley Crüe released a video Monday officially announcing their upcoming reunion. In 2020, they’ll be kicking off a U.S. stadium tour with Poison and Def Leppard . While specific dates and venues have yet to be announced, the three acts will perform at stadiums around the country.

The band doesn’t appear in the video, but Machine Gun Kelly, who portrayed Tommy Lee in the movie adaptation of The Dirt , announces that they are blowing up their “cessation of touring contract” because the fans demanded a reformation.

“I never thought I would see the day when this would become a reality,” Kelly says in a press release. “But the fans spoke and Mötley Crüe listened!” The video shows this supposed legal document bursting into flames on a desk.

Mötley Crüe played 164 shows on their 2014-15 Final Tour, wrapping up with a hometown show at the Forum in Los Angeles on December 31st, 2015. Prior to the tour, the band claimed to sign a “cessation of touring agreement,” which they said was a binding document that would prohibit them from ever playing again after the tour ended. At the time, the group’s management failed to produce this alleged document despite repeated requests.

“Legally, we can’t play again,” bassist Nikki Sixx claimed to Rolling Stone backstage at a 2014 show in Denver. “The only loophole is if all four band members agreed to do it, we could override our own contract. But we know that will never happen. There are people in this band who will refuse to ever do it again, and you’re talking to one of them. There is no amount of money that would ever make me do it again because I have such pride in how we’re ending it.”

“If anybody ever — and I don’t believe anybody ever would — would call any other band members and say, ‘Hey, it’s been 10 years, let’s just do 10 shows. A million a pop,’ it could never happen unless all four band members agreed,” Sixx added. “And if we did agree, the way we’ve set it up — including this conversation right now — we’d have so much egg on our face. We have so much pride that that alone would stop it.”

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Reports of a possible Mötley Crüe reunion have been circulating the past few weeks, with the official Mötley Crüe Twitter account sharing a fan petition calling for the band to reunite and adding “This is interesting . . .” (The Tweet was later deleted.) Reps for Mötley Crüe, Def Leppard, and Poison did not immediately reply to requests for comment.

Def Leppard remain one of the most popular touring acts in rock. They stayed largely out of the U.S. this year with the exception of their Las Vegas residency, where they broke out extreme rarities like “Die Hard the Hunter” from 1983’s Pyromania and “Have You Ever Needed Someone So Bad” from 1992’s Adrenalize . In 2018, they played a highly-successful co-headlining tour of U.S. arenas and stadiums with Journey. Def Leppard were inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame earlier this year.

“We are having an Indian summer and it’s because we have this integrity,” guitarist Phil Collen told Rolling Stone the night of the induction ceremony. “We never stopped, actually, in the 40-odd years that the band’s been together. We just keep going through thick and thin, all the bad stuff, good stuff. And I think that shows, and we’re just enjoying this Indian summer.”

Def Leppard toured with Poison in 2017, which marked the first outing by the Bret Michaels-led band since 2012. In 2011, Poison toured with Mötley Crüe and the New York Dolls. It was the first time the two biggest bands of the hair metal era hit the road together. Unlike nearly every other act from that time, both bands still have all of their original members.

Mötley Crüe will join a long list of acts that continue to tour after farewell tours, including Kiss, the Who, Black Sabbath, Phil Collins, Ozzy Osbourne, Tina Turner, Cher, and LCD Soundsystem.

In February, Sixx reiterated to Rolling Stone that the group had no plans to reform even as he expressed doubts about the decision. “Sometimes I look out at my friends, like the guys in Aerosmith and Metallica, and I’m like, ‘Goddamn it, did we retire too soon?’ ” he said. “But there will be no one-offs in our future. Maybe we’ll just get together and jam in Mick Mars’ front room.”

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Bret Michaels Says POISON Will Reunite For ‘More Thrilling Tours & New Music’

  • July 19, 2023
  • 1 minute read

poison reunion tour

Bret Michaels, who recently completed “The Stadium Tour” with POISON alongside MÖTLEY CRÜE and DEF LEPPARD during the summer of 2022, shared exciting plans for the future. In an interview with The Oakland Press, Michaels revealed his intentions to regroup POISON in 2025 for more touring and the possibility of creating new songs.

Reflecting on his journey, Michaels expressed his optimistic outlook, saying, “When we started, I never knew what the future held, but I never believed it couldn’t happen. I always found a way to make things work and enjoyed every moment of it.” For him, the real treasure lies in the experiences along the way – meeting incredible people, performing in amazing places, and traveling the world to share his music. Despite facing various challenges, Michaels embraced change and was open to exploring new opportunities, such as playing country festivals.

As the 60-year-old singer continues to promote his “Parti-Gras” 2023 solo tour, he remains sincere, passionate, and a true fan of music. Grateful for his fans’ support, he approaches every performance with the same energy and enthusiasm as he did in the early days of playing at smaller venues like Harpo’s or Blondie’s, only now on grander stages with superior equipment.

Looking ahead, Bret Michaels’ determination and love for music assure fans that there’s much more to come, as he plans to reunite with POISON for more thrilling tours and the exciting possibility of new musical creations in 2025.

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  • Owais 'Vitek' Nabi

Can you email me when any rock or heavy metal groups are touring Canada or eastern USA

Would love to see Bret Michaels in person and also in concert. I love Poison, I have two of there t-shirts would love a chance to get another one or two t-shirts

He’s coming to Medicine Hat, Alberta, Canada in July 2024…

SCOTLAND DATE PLEASE, maybe the last chance to see the group i loved to listen to growing up

It would be great if Poison would come to Colorado. There hasn’t been alot of 80s band here in a while.

Saw Poison 3 times in concert! Would love the chance to see them again! 😉

Bret be sure you come back to Kansas City Mo. I seen you Motley Crue and Def Leppard at the Royals Stadium on July the 18th 2022 and as you know it was a sellout everyone loves Poison!

Love the ideas of new music, but is it like the music of yesterday pretty hard to Capture the sound of the old sound that made them hits

Come to New Zealand 🇳🇿

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Contact Us Back to Artists

The Music Mafia’s Invincible ‘Poison Dwarf,’ in the Crosshairs at Last?

The DOJ says Live Nation has been colluding with its former chairman Irving Azoff to fix artist fees and ‘pimp’ Ticketmaster.

by Maureen Tkacik , Krista Brown

May 24, 2024

Tkacik-Brown-Live Nation Azoff 052424.jpg

Chris Pizzello/AP Photo

Irving Azoff is pictured at the Night of Comedy benefit honoring Julia Louis-Dreyfus, June 7, 2022, at Neuehouse in Los Angeles.

Sixteen months ago, music mogul Irving Azoff sat on a stage in The Beverly Hilton with three of his closest friends and calmly explained , to frequent laughter and applause, how everyone in Washington was comprehensively wrong about his industry.

A cluster of technology meltdowns surrounding the sale of tickets to Taylor Swift’s concert tour a few months earlier had provoked the rage of the singer’s feral fan base, which happened to include the immediate family members of most members of Congress. Within weeks, the business press was reporting that Ticketmaster and its parent company Live Nation were—not for the first time —the subject of a federal antitrust investigation. In January 2023, Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) had convened a hearing in which some 20-odd senators quoted Swift lyrics in the service of demonizing Ticketmaster.

The real villain of the Swift snafu, Azoff insisted at the panel, put on by the concert industry trade mag Pollstar , was Big Tech–enabled scalpers, with their armies of “bots that pretend like they are fans and steal massive amounts of tickets,” and battalions of lobbyists turning “the attention of Congress away from their greedy, predatory business models, to demonize Ticketmaster.”

More from Maureen Tkacik | Krista Brown

It’s hard to imagine that anyone in the audience viewed Azoff, the 5'3" former Ticketmaster CEO who had masterminded the company’s 2010 merger with the then-ailing Live Nation and is so infamously cutthroat he is widely known in the business by the nickname “Poison Dwarf,” as a neutral party in the music monopoly discourse. And yet many portrayed him that way. A Fortune recap of the event identified Azoff merely as “the most powerful artist manager in the music business”; the Los Angeles Daily News called him the “CEO of Azoff MSG Entertainment,” though that’s just one of dozens of businesses he’s helmed over the years.

Indeed, it’s sometimes hard to keep track of all Azoff owns; one of his oldest friends, Steely Dan front man Donald Fagen, wrote in his 2013 memoir , “My manager, Irving Azoff … over the years, has acquired a piece of just about every valuable asset in the music business (or what’s left of it), including the acts, the venues, the company you have to buy the tickets from and various other entities that just seem to spit back money at him.”

Nevertheless, Azoff, who still manages hundreds of musicians and owns a music licensing agency, has long managed to cast himself as someone who is, at heart, merely a champion of the struggling rock stars he made his reputation representing in the 1970s. And at the Pollstar panel, and on into 2024, Azoff orchestrated what seemed like a masterful shadow lobbying campaign geared at controlling the narrative about Live Nation, Ticketmaster, and who were the real villains of the music business.

“Our government has a long history of screwing artists,” he noted, railing (rather correctly) against legislators for enabling Google and Facebook to “build massive businesses on artists’ backs without properly paying them.” Next to him sat Makan Delrahim, the former assistant attorney general at the Justice Department Antitrust Division. Delrahim agreed with Azoff, saying “many of the problems would go away” if artists only controlled how tickets were distributed.

In the end, though, it didn’t work. While he is not referenced by name in the DOJ complaint against Live Nation, Azoff is at the center of some of the most damning allegations the government made against his old employer, Live Nation, thanks to a little-known company called Oak View Group he co-founded in 2015. Oak View just happened to be the parent company of Pollstar , the publication behind the panel at which Azoff had attempted to take back the narrative.

Azoff has long managed to cast himself as merely a champion of the struggling rock stars he made his reputation representing in the 1970s.

Oak View, which Azoff established with longtime business partner Tim Leiweke, bills itself as a “venue development and management company,” but in its earliest days the company dabbled in concert promotion, and Live Nation identified it internally as one of its “biggest competitor threats,” according to the DOJ complaint. Indeed, Azoff only founded the firm upon the expiration of a two-year noncompete agreement with Live Nation. Within a year or two of its founding, however, the company evolved into a self-described “pimp” for Azoff’s old employers at Live Nation.

As Luke Goldstein explains , Azoff and Leiweke had an understanding with Live Nation not to promote artists and “only do tours with Live Nation.” When Oak View put together an “alliance” of sports venues to “provide insights and access to premier sports and entertainment content,” it invited a Live Nation executive to join the board of advisers. And when an Australian events promoter named TEG threatened to compete with Live Nation for artist promotions, it was Azoff himself who stepped in, approaching the private equity firm Silver Lake Partners, which owned both TEG and Oak View, and demanding they sell TEG.

The symbiosis between Oak View and Live Nation worked in part because each chose to focus on its own cash cow: Live Nation on the lucrative ticketing business, Oak View on sponsorships, parking, and, increasingly, concessions. (Oak View’s head count ballooned to 60,000 as it has amassed concessions contracts since it acquired a hospitality unit owned by Comcast Spectacor in 2021.) But it also arguably worked because of the consent decree to which Live Nation agreed as a condition of its merger with Ticketmaster, which prohibited Live Nation from retaliating against venues that chose to use ticketing services other than Ticketmaster by cutting off their flow of pop stars and music festivals. Although Live Nation repeatedly retaliated against venues anyway—so flagrantly that Azoff’s buddy Delrahim was forced to sue the company for violating the consent decree in 2019—Live Nation CEO Michael Rapino increasingly outsourced the act of retaliation to Oak View, which the complaint states repeatedly described itself as Live Nation’s “hammer.”

While the vast majority of American concert venues already use Ticketmaster as their exclusive or near-exclusive ticketing service, Oak View has been able to reel in the holdouts, “flipping” six venues to Ticketmaster in 2023 and projecting it would flip an additional 16 at minimum by 2026, according to the complaint. Oak View now owns or controls 200 venues in North America, almost as many as the 265 owned or controlled by Live Nation, enabling Ticketmaster’s sphere of domination to nearly double in the shadows.

OAK VIEW WAS IDEALLY SUITED TO SERVE as Live Nation’s “hammer” because Azoff has been the music industry’s chief enforcer dating back to the 1970s, when he made his name as one of the most powerful men in rock music by displaying quick wits and a knack for the sort of details that might escape David Geffen. As the manager of Steely Dan, Boz Scaggs, Jimmy Buffett, and the Eagles, Azoff deftly wielded access to the era’s hottest musical acts to help political candidates get around post-Watergate campaign finance laws that capped the amount of cash they could accept from a single donor by hosting massive concert fundraisers. He was legendarily good at both supplying rock stars with drugs and hiding them from the authorities. (“Irving’s role was to keep us out of prison, basically,” recalled Eagles guitarist Joe Walsh in 2020.) And in 1970, he saved a Memorial Day concert festival from being shut down by a circuit court judge who deemed it an improper use of land zoned for agricultural use by rebranding the event as a cattle auction that would happen to feature live music from 30 bands.

Azoff spent the 1980s helming MCA Records, which spent much of that decade under an FBI investigation into organized-crime ties that was ultimately shelved at the personal direction of then-Attorney General Ed Meese. (One of several books on the investigation suggests that various MCA executives were somehow connected to Iran-Contra.)

During those same years, however, Azoff kept a wide array of side hustles in the concert and marketing businesses. He helped promote a Jackson family reunion tour alongside boxing promoter Don King that ended up getting him sued by the operators of the Fabulous Forum in Los Angeles—a venue he would come to control when his buddy and longtime business partner Jim Dolan, scion of a New York cable industry fortune, acquired it in 2012; he launched a marketing firm with then-Ticketmaster CEO Fred Rosen in 1990 to capitalize on the company’s surfeit of valuable consumer data; and he worked on a radio syndication venture with Robert Kardashian, the famous O.J. Simpson attorney whose wife is still close friends with Azoff’s wife Shelli.

Around the turn of the millennium, the company now known as Live Nation was a voracious debt-financed rollup of a couple dozen regional concert promoters and 120 venues called SFX that was—perhaps simply as a ploy in its negotiations with Ticketmaster—threatening to launch its own ticketing service, and Azoff and Leiweke were tapped by oil billionaire Phil Anschutz to helm a potential SFX competitor that could lure away talent and venues from the emerging juggernaut; Azoff’s team wooed Britney Spears’s concert tour the following year, but it would never come close to rivaling the SFX footprint. In 2007, Live Nation announced it was going to allow its Ticketmaster contract to expire and was launching a competing ticketing service, leading Ticketmaster to begin talks to merge with Azoff’s upstart competitor AEG Live; the following year, Ticketmaster instead bought Azoff’s talent management company Front Line and appointed him as its new CEO. Azoff in turn immediately began talks to merge with Live Nation.

At a congressional hearing to discuss the anti-competitive implications of the deal, Azoff promised the public that partners “would most certainly leave” Ticketmaster if the merger went through. “AEG has notified us by letter that they believe they have the right to terminate our agreement in connection with this merger. If that’s not competition, I don’t know what is.” But AEG had not at that point invested any funds in developing their own ticketing software, and its CEO Randy Phillips said he’d been completely blindsided by the merger. Azoff’s “testimony is completely disingenuous,” he told the Associated Press.

AEG would ultimately launch its own ticketing service, AXS, in mid-2011. It was the service the alt-country singer Zach Bryan used when he decided to boycott Ticketmaster for his 2023 concert tour. But AXS never really took off; according to the DOJ complaint, AEG’s minority-owned concert venues—which it co-owned with the private equity firm Onex until late last year—have been reluctant to use the service for fear of being shut out of Live Nation’s flow of events. Bryan abandoned his Ticketmaster boycott for his 2024 tour.

But the DOJ approved the merger after Live Nation agreed to abide by a consent decree promising not to use its roster of concert tours to retaliate against venues that chose to use another ticketing software, and Azoff left a couple of years later, with a series of tweets playing up his hotel-trashing persona as someone who was just a bit too much of a loose cannon to be leading a publicly traded behemoth operating under a DOJ consent decree. “Hey lawyers, try to shut me up now,” he posted on New Year’s Eve 2012.

Hey lawyers, try to shut me up now. — Irving Azoff (@irvingazoff) December 31, 2012

The following year, he mounted a comeback tour with two ventures that signaled he was returning to his “roots” as a champion of working artists: Global Music Rights, a performance rights organization formed to negotiate royalties with radio stations and streaming platforms on behalf of musicians and songwriters, and a $300 million joint venture with his old friend Dolan called Azoff Madison Square Garden Entertainment, pitched as an artist-friendly check on the increasingly cartelized music industry. Upon Leiweke’s firing from AEG the following year, Azoff founded Oak View, which immediately got to work on multiple projects with AMSGE. “Everybody in the business whines, ‘There’s no place to go. There’s only three record companies and Live Nation and AEG,’” he told Billboard upon the launch of AMSGE. “Hopefully, people will think of us as a place equal to one of those [companies] to come [to us] with a great idea or a great project.” Such remarks are likely a big part of the reason why artists and their agents felt so comfortable trying to get better deals from Azoff’s various entities than they could from the gorilla that is Live Nation—and why Azoff felt so comfortable casting himself as the gorilla’s “neutral” attack dog when it came under long-overdue attack from Congress in late 2022.

Because the truth was, Live Nation achieved theretofore unimaginable dominance after Azoff left, its stock doubling in the year after his departure and its revenue quadrupling in the decade after that. At one point, Billboard even published an analysis theorizing that Live Nation’s stock was better off without Azoff, though a veteran music executive assured the magazine that there was no separating the man from his masterwork: “The truth is, Irving is the reason Live Nation is healthy today and why they’re impossible to compete with.”

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COMMENTS

  1. Tour

    Poison tour information, tickets and VIP packages

  2. Bret Michaels Announces POISON Reunion for Exciting Tours and New Music

    Rock fans have something to look forward to, as Bret Michaels, the iconic frontman of POISON, recently unveiled thrilling plans for the band's future. Following the successful completion of "The Stadium Tour" with fellow rock legends MÖTLEY CRÜE and DEF LEPPARD in the summer of 2022, Michaels revealed his intentions to reunite POISON in ...

  3. Bret Michaels Confirms POISON Will Announce Massive Tour Featuring

    Looking ahead to the potential revival of POISON on tour, Michaels projected into the future, foreseeing the band hitting the road again in 2025 or 2026, with a lineup featuring all the classic POISON hits. ... He envisions integrating the POISON reunion into the "Parti-Gras" experience, bringing together numerous iconic bands for an ...

  4. Poison Tickets, 2024 Concert Tour Dates

    Find Poison tour schedule, concert details, reviews and photos. Buy Poison tickets from the official Ticketmaster.com site. Find Poison tour schedule, concert details, reviews and photos. ... The reunion seems to have reinvigorated Poison, as it holds true to everything the band ever was and everything it ever will be in the public's eye. Songs ...

  5. BRET MICHAELS: POISON To Regroup In 2025 For More Touring And Possibly

    In 2018, POISON completed the "Nothin' But A Good Time" tour with CHEAP TRICK and POP EVIL. POISON 's last album of new material was 2002's "Hollyweird" . An album of covers, "Poison'd" , followed ...

  6. Poison's Resurgence, Bret Michaels Sets Sights on a Grand Reunion Tour

    The rock icon expressed his unwavering certainty, stating that Poison will tour again, and he envisions a reunion featuring all the greatest hits as part of the "Parti-Gras" extravaganza. During the chat, Michaels reminisced about the 2022 "The Stadium Tour," where Poison shared the stage with Mötley Crüe and Def Leppard.

  7. Poison's Bret Michaels Announces 2023 US "Parti-Gras" Tour

    Night Ranger, Jefferson Starship, Steve Augeri (ex-Journey), and Mark McGrath will provide support. Poison's Bret Michaels Announces 2023 US "Parti-Gras" Tour Jon Hadusek

  8. Bret Michaels of Poison on touring with Motley Crue, Def Leppard

    Reach the reporter at [email protected] or 602-444-4495. Follow him on Twitter @EdMasley. Support local journalism. Subscribe to azcentral.com today. Bret Michaels of Poison, who's on ...

  9. Poison Concerts & Live Tour Dates: 2024-2025 Tickets

    Poison 3. Motley Crue Reunion 4. Def Leppard. The show was great until, Def Leppard. They were horribly boring and lacked the punch that Motley Crue and Poison had. ... They are currently planning a summer tour with fellow hair metal elite Cinderella and have just released a new 20th anniversary greatest hits cd. In the 2007 game Guitar Hero ...

  10. POISON Will 'One Million Percent' Tour Again, Says BRET MICHAELS

    In 2018, POISON completed the "Nothin' But A Good Time" tour with CHEAP TRICK and POP EVIL. POISON 's last album of new material was 2002's "Hollyweird" . An album of covers, "Poison'd" , followed ...

  11. Bret Michaels Hints at Upcoming Massive Poison Tour Featuring POISON's

    Looking ahead to the potential Poison reunion tour, Michaels envisioned the band hitting the road again in 2025 or 2026, performing all their classic hits. He even suggested integrating the Poison reunion into the "Parti-Gras" experience, where multiple iconic bands would come together for a memorable celebration of rock music. Michaels stated,

  12. Bret Michaels Gives Promise To Poison Fans Ahead Of Tour

    Poison fans can look forward to an upcoming tour with the original lineup in 2025. Michaels promised that the band would not disappoint their fans during this reunion tour. Fans can also expect to hear Poison's greatest hits, and with the possibility of new tracks being released, it's an exciting time to be a fan of the band.

  13. Poison Tour Announcements 2023 & 2024, Notifications, Dates ...

    A compilation album entitled "Greatest Hits: 1986-1996" was issued in 1996, shortly after which Deville returned to the group and Poison embarked on a successful arena reunion tour of 1999. "Crack a Smile" was released in 2000, followed by "Power to the People" a mix of new and live songs from the reunion tour.

  14. Bret Michaels Announces POISON Reunion for New Music and Touring

    Bret Michaels Announces POISON Reunion for New Music and Touring. Published Sep 27, 2023 By John Lerit. via Reaction Guitarist / YouTube. Bret Michaels, the rock sensation who recently wrapped up "The Stadium Tour" with POISON, alongside MÖTLEY CRÜE and DEF LEPPARD in the summer of 2022, has some thrilling news for fans.

  15. Poison

    Poison is an American rock band that achieved great commercial success in the mid-1980s to the mid-1990s. Poison has sold over 40 million records worldwide and has sold 15 million records in the United States alone. The band has also charted ten singles to the Top 40 of the Billboard Hot 100, including six Top 10 singles and the Hot 100 number ...

  16. Mötley Crüe, Def Leppard, Poison Set 2020 Stadium Tour

    Mötley Crüe released a video Monday officially announcing their upcoming reunion. In 2020, they'll be kicking off a U.S. stadium tour with Poison and Def Leppard.While specific dates and ...

  17. Bret Michaels Says POISON Will Reunite For 'More Thrilling Tours & New

    Looking ahead, Bret Michaels' determination and love for music assure fans that there's much more to come, as he plans to reunite with POISON for more thrilling tours and the exciting possibility of new musical creations in 2025. Bret Michaels, who recently completed "The Stadium Tour" with POISON alongside MÖTLEY CRÜE and DEF LEPPARD ...

  18. Poison Tickets, 2024 Concert Tour Dates

    Find Poison tour schedule, concert details, reviews and photos. Buy Poison tickets from the official Ticketmaster.ca site. Find Poison tour schedule, concert details, reviews and photos. ... The reunion seems to have reinvigorated Poison, as it holds true to everything the band ever was and everything it ever will be in the public's eye. Songs ...

  19. Poison Concert & Tour History

    Poison Concert History. Poison is a glam rock band from Los Angeles. Formed by drummer Rikki Rockett and singer Bret Michaels. they started out in Pennsylvania in the early 80s. Their first band together was called the Spectres. They left the Spectres and started Paris with bassist Bobby Dall. They then moved to Los Angeles, where they parted ...

  20. Poison (band)

    Poison is an American glam metal band formed in 1983 in Mechanicsburg, Pennsylvania.The most successful incarnation of the band consists of lead singer and rhythm guitarist Bret Michaels, drummer Rikki Rockett, lead guitarist and backing vocalist C.C. DeVille, and bassist Bobby Dall.The band achieved huge commercial success in the mid-1980s through the mid-1990s and has sold 30 million records ...

  21. Poison discography

    The following is a comprehensive discography of Poison, an American glam metal band that achieved huge success in the mid-1980s to mid-1990s. Poison sold more than 16 million records in the United States alone. [1] The band has also charted ten singles to the Top 40 of the Billboard Hot 100, including six Top 10 singles and the Hot 100 number ...

  22. Escape Journey

    In May of 1999, Stu Simone was invited to play keyboards and vocals on-stage for the long-awaited reunion of the four original members of POISON, a tour which became the surprise hit of the summer. Stu became the touring member for the whole tour. Gary Ponder. DRUMS

  23. The Music Mafia's Invincible 'Poison Dwarf,' in the Crosshairs at Last?

    The following year, he mounted a comeback tour with two ventures that signaled he was returning to his "roots" as a champion of working artists: Global Music Rights, a performance rights organization formed to negotiate royalties with radio stations and streaming platforms on behalf of musicians and songwriters, and a $300 million joint venture with his old friend Dolan called Azoff ...