Hairball to perform rock classics

Big hair and classic rock will be performed by legendary tribute band Hairball, Saturday at the North Dakota State Fair Center.

From Mexico to Japan, Hairball has delivered stadium anthems, timeless power ballads and mesmerizing performances.

Throughout their elaborate set, spectators can anticipate rising fog and flashing lights along with glamorous costumes and spirited performances.

Sparing nothing yet giving everything in their musical arsenal, Hairball considers themselves for the fans by the fans.

Each night, Hairball strives to give the ultimate tribute experience to faithful concertgoers and first time spectators. “We’re really just fans,” said Happy, the lead guitarist for Hairball. “Since grade school, nothing has changed for us. Growing up, we used to dress up like KISS. The reward for us is being able to perform on stage and have the show spectacle that is Hairball.”

In addition to their showstopping theatrics and flamboyant stage presence, Hairball takes pride in their reputation as must-see performers.

“One of my favorite moments of the show is in the opening when the lights go down,” Happy said. “There’s this anticipation by fans and it’s great. It’s an exciting feeling when you look in the face of fans or people who’ve never seen us before. Whether it’s a 50-year-old who remembers seeing Alice Cooper or a 12-year-old who believes Guns N’ Roses or AC/DC is classic rock, the feeling we share with the fans stands the test of time.”

Part of what makes Hairball a timeless spectacle is their mastery and appreciation for the legends of rock.

From Van Halen to Prince, Hairball continues to garner praise from fans and artists alike for their spot on impersonations.

“One of the great things about Hairball is if you don’t like Journey, our show turns into Motley Crue,” Happy said. “Our show can become Twisted Sister and Queen. We throw so much out there for the fans and things are constantly changing very fast. We are a feast for the eyes and the things we do makes our concerts fun for audiences and what we do is never the same.”

On any given night, anything and everything is possible.

During a past performance, KISS icon Gene Simmons took the stage with Hairball.

“Most of the singers we have done tributes for share the stage with us,” Happy said. “We usually come together for charities and raise money for good causes. When I’m standing next to or performing with Dee Snider, Alice Cooper, Vince Neil or Gene Simmons, it just shows why I buy their records and why they’ve been around so long.”

When taking the stage with Gene Simmons, Happy admitted to feeling butterflies around the “Love Gun” performer.

“At first, Gene was actually a little intimidating,” Happy said. “Then, he hit this show business button and became the demon he created. He was doing all the choreography and I realized how commanding he is on stage.”

Founded on their passion for timeless music, Hairball can be regarded as disciples of rock.

“We spend so much time buying records and watching their every move,” Happy said. “Over the course of time, everything has become rather natural. I’ve studied the different elements and as a guitar player, I’ve studied the nuances that make Brian May sound like Brian May and Eddie Van Halen sound like Eddie Van Halen. My guitar playing and personality is just a little slice of every guitarist I grew up studying.”

Before taking the stage and jumping around for hours at a time, each member of Hairball has their unique style of pre-performance rituals.

Happy likes to swim laps and do sit-ups while Freaky, the bassist of Hairball prefers feasting on corn dogs.

Along with having distinct practices for upcoming shows, Hairball also has exceptional chemistry.

Vocally, Hairball features a high caliber trio comprised of Bobby, Steve and Joe Dandy.

According to Happy, each vocalist has an extraordinary gift that provides to Hairball’s dynamic versatility.

“I don’t know anyone who sings AC/DC as well as Bob,” Happy said. “Each singer has their own style which is really great. It’s not very much Hairball can’t do because one of our singers is able to do justice. Steve has a clean voice and does well at a higher range. He does Journey very good and has strong ability to go in and out of falsetto really well. This can be heard when Steve is doing Queen. When it comes to Joe, he’s dead on for David Lee Roth.”

While the vocal trio lifts the crowd with their voices, instrumentalists Happy unleashes spirited guitar solos as Freaky runs through masterful bass lines which accompany the frenetic drumming of Blake.

Before closing out a show, Hairball finds a moment during the set to honor military veterans and fallen heroes.

“For me personally, this makes me aware of our country’s patriotism,” Happy said. “Why not take a couple minutes in every show to say thanks.”

To learn more about Hairball or purchase tickets to their upcoming show, visit www.hairballonline.com.

ALLAN BLANKS

Staff Writer
ablanks@minotdailynews.com