Iron Mike


Shinedown-Breaking Benjamin-Nothing More Rock Everett

If you went to this Shinedown/Breaking Benjamin/Nothing More concert you definitely left the Xfinity Arena in Everett, WA thinking that was one of the best all around concerts you paid your hard earned money for! Opening the night was the Texas/New Orleans based progressive low-end rockers Nothing More. How have I never heard or seen these guys live? Amazing! Singer Johnny Hawkins is this energized morphed Brandon Boyd (Incubus) meets Jim Morrison (Doors) on a Jonathan Davis (Korn) body contorting fit onstage. No wonder he's at near zero percent body fat. With their hard driving progressive hard rock/metal tones, crazy 3 man bass solo, 4 man drum solo etc. Nothing More live are a headline act in themselves. Check them out at

Next up was Pennsylvania's Breaking Benjamin. Well known in the hard rock community with more than 7 million records sold in the U.S. alone that includes two RIAA-certified platinum records, two gold records, one platinum single, one gold single, and their recent #1 charting album "Dark Before Dawn" on the Billboard 200. An amazing feat for a band that was on hiatus for some years after some legal issues with former band members, lead singer and guitarist Benjamin Burnley put together a whole new lineup that includes former guitarists from Adelitas Way (Keith Wallen) and Red (Jasen Rauch). 

Breaking Benjamin cruised through a 17-song set that included "So Cold", "Failure", "Give Me A Sign", "I Will Not Bow" and even a cool covers mash that included "Imperial March (Star Wars) / Schism (Tool) / Smells Like Teen Spirit (Nirvana) / Walk (Pantera)". Great set, great crowd response and left their fans screaming for more. Visit

If you thought Breaking Benjamin's show was good Shinedown came out and showed who's boss. Now that was a ROCK show! Opening their set with their recent hard punching single "Cut The Cord" Shinedown's 14-song set included many radio favorites like "Bully", "The Crow & The Butterfly", "If You Only Knew", "Sound of Madness", "Second Chance" and the Lynyrd Skynyrd cover "Simple Man". 

The band delivered top notch showmanship, crowd interaction, stage show with massive lights, fireworks, fire and more! They even paid respects to all the security up front working. 

Supporting their latest album "Threat To Survival" (buy now) on this tour, Shinedown have been around long enough now that their set is this monster list of radio hit after radio hits. One of the best diverse rock bands for the past decade keep rolling and growing and thank goodness keeping (what seems to be dying in the new generation) rock arena alive and well for generations to come! Visit

A huge thanks to THANKS to the Zach and the band asking/letting me shoot the entire show! For a full gallery of all three bands from this show visit my concert photo page and - "Iron" Mike Savoia

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Ghost Rock Seattle - Late Show next

Can you believe this! A week after playing at KISW and El Corazon the Swedish hard/classic rock occult band Ghost are gonna take over American TV on the Late Show with Stephen Colbert October 30th! With their current album "Meliora" debuting in the Top 10 on Billboards 200 album charts there's no doubt this band is sweeping the world with its brand of unique classic/hard rock. On October 20th, Papa Emeritus and 2 of the Nameless Ghouls flew in to Seattle from Idaho (bus broke down) to do a 2 song acoustic set and then one of the Ghouls did a interview with KISW's Metal Shop [Click here to listen to 20 minute interview].

After the KISW visit the guys had time to waste cause the bus and equipment wasn't arriving till later because of the breakdown. So yes me, Papa and the Ghouls spent the afternoon walking EMP, record stores and lunch in Seattle. With the bus arriving late it was a mad dash to unload and setup the stage. An amazing job by the crew got them on stage and only 15min behind their original start time. 

The sold-out crowd at El Corazon (show should've been at Showbox or Moore Theatre) was packed tight (see show photos here) and the band pounded out an amazing set of Ghost tunes that left the crowd begging for more after the hour and a half set that included classics like "Con Clavi Con Dio", "Per Aspera ad Inferi", "Ghuleh/Zombie Queen" and "If You Have Ghosts". The classics rocked, but it was the new tracks like the show opening "Spirit", the bass grooving "From The Pinnacle To The Pit", the eerie "Cirice" and especially the heavy rocker of "Mummy Dust" that got the crowd flying all over each other in excitement. Check out my video from the shows:


Have you seen (my favorite video of the year so far) Ghost's "Cirice"? A kid talent show with a spooky 70s film look in the vein of the movie Carrie.

Then there's the latest video that has that early 20s film vibe of "From the Pinnacle To The Pit". 


If you missed my popular August blog "Ghost Overwhelms Silver Platters" check it out HERE! Between the video and photo albums I had over a million interaction views/shares/comments.

Ghost are the best rock band to come around in years and from the popularity growth these past three years I expect them to be rocking bigger theaters or smaller arenas soon. The music is there, the show is entertaining and visually it's getting better and bigger with each tour. Just remember, if you have have everything! Buy the new incredible "Meliora" album HERE! Facebook: 


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Win a copy of (Soundgarden) Photofantasm: Nudedragons to King Animal

Want to win a copy of the incredible limited edition Photofantasm: Nudedragons to King Animal Soundgarden fan created photo book?

With 1000's of photographs with lots of stories, reviews and interviews it's more like a bible! Photofantasm covers Soundgarden photos from the authors (Jaye & Mike English), fans, press, and even from some big-time musicians themselves during the Nudedragons to King Animal era. Over 300 contributors from around the world, including myself. When they contacted me and explained this book was a project benefiting the Canary Foundation, the first and only foundation in the world solely dedicated to the funding of early cancer-detection solutions and that all net proceeds go to charity, I was all in!! Dedicated to our local Soundgarden superfan Tiffany Patterson-Gross who passed away from cancer 2 years ago on September 6, 2013. One of my sections in the book is the Seattle Paramount Theatre show on 2.7.13. Tiffany, sick and all, was present side stage for the show. My fellow photo buddy Stacy Albright caught a photo of her at that show that made the book too. I can't believe how awesome this book looks. It's huge with close to 600 8.5x11 pages encased in it's hard cover. It weights nearly 8lbs!!! Yes, I checked with my suitcase weigher and had my dog Bella double check my readings ha! ;)


There are so many incredible photos throughout this book it's a must for any die-hard Soundgarden fan! Well worth the $99.95 price. Remember it goes to charity so satisfy your Soundgarden cravings and help the fight to cure Cancer. Huge thanks go out to Jaye & Mike English. The work, time & money they put into the project is amazing. I can't imagine the nightmare of email and print organization that had to happen. The final project is breathtaking. As good as or better than the classic big rock photo books from the bands of the 60s/70s that I've studied and littered our living room coffee table with. Those are cool, but this addition to the collection is extra special knowing some of my work is majestically displayed in it. What makes me the most proud are pages 528/529. One of my favorite Chris Cornell shots with a special nod to the Seattle Times review, by my cousin and legendary Seattle music reviewer Gene Stout, printed on the same photo spread. If only our passed-on family members could see that! Photofantasm authors didn't even know that family relation so its kinda magical that even happened!

The reviews keep pouring in on how awesome this book is. Check out these:

Rating: "11/11 ... this book was 100% fan created, but it is nothing if not professionally crafted and brilliant in execution, let alone mind-boggling in conception. I don't know how they pulled this herculean feat of a book off..."

"Photofantasm is an extraordinary photographic collection... an incredible visual spectacle of the acceleration of Soundgarden. One awesome literary tribute."

"The book is SUPER gorgeous! Amazing amount of detail, quality, and love. Such a ridiculous job you guys!!"

Buy the book and check out page samples and more here: 

Wanna win a copy? I know the price is a little steep, but I've teamed up with SpoonDog Entertainment to giveaway a copy to my KISW & Savoia Photography Live followers.

CLICK HERE TO ENTER (contest ends 9.31.15)

"Iron" Mike Savoia - KISW 99.9 Photographer/Blogger

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Queensryche Headline Evergreen State Fair 8/31

So if you were not lucky enough to get a ticket to the sold out Scorpions/Queensryche Kent Showare Center show in October this is your next best bet!

Due to a medical emergency Pat Benatar had to cancel her show at the Evergreen State Fair on August 31st so here comes our very own Queensryche to the rescue to fill the spot and truely kick the Fair in the ass! Monday August 31st at the Evergreen State Fair - show starts at 7:30pm!! Public On Sale: 10AM, Friday, August 21 (no pre-sale) Tickets will be sold online or in person (no phone sales) Tickets: Reserved Chairs: Emerald $25 and Saffire $20 Festival Grandstand: $15 Prices Includes Fair Gate Admission

New album "Condition Human" out on Century Media October 2nd Worldwide! PRE-ORDER CD HERE
It's amazing! Over an hour of classic Ryche!!


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Ghost Overwhelms Silver Platters in Seattle

I've been to a lot of free record in-store performances over the years, but Ghost last night in Seattle at Silver Platters was over the top surprising! With fans lining up for hours down the block in the hot heat, people who pre-orderd the new CD releasing Friday (Buy "Meliora" now) at Silver Platters received a yellow wrist band for early entrance into the store for the show. When it was all said and done this photo says it all to the turnout!!

With each pre-order fans got to meet the band after the show and received a limited edition lithograph of this special 5 city acoustic tour called the Unholy/Unplugged Tour. 

Ghost featured singer Papa Emeritus III and two of the Nameless Ghouls on guitars. Few fans in the crowd got to keep beat for the band with various hand instruments given to them from Papa. Check it out on the video I did of the performance. Already nearing 25k views just today!!

The band played a 3 song set that included "Jigolo Har Megiddo", the epic "Ghuleh/Zombie Queen" & the classic Roky Erickson cover "If You Have Ghost" then had a 2 hour meet & greet with fans afterwards. Ghost delivered everything a fan in one night could ever want from a band. Ghost are fast becoming the most important rock band in this decade with their blend of classic 70s rock with a melodic style and fierce bite at times to even satisfy the real metalheads. The occult imagery/lyrics might be a turn off to some but if you don't believe all that silly nonsense and focus on the music as I do this might be the greatest rock band you don't know of yet. "Meliora" comes out this Friday on Loma Vista Recordings. I expect it to crack the Top 10 on Billboard. Who says Rock music is dead? Take a listen and remember "If you have Ghost, You have everything!". 

Ghost are back to Seattle October 20th at El Corazon in a full production show. Buy tickets HERE!

For a full album of show photos CLICK HERE!
"Iron" Mike

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GHOST in Seattle 8/18/15

Sweden's GHOST, the greatest up and coming rock band this world has seen these past couple of years is playing a free acoustic set at Silver Platters in Seattle tomorrow at 7pm!

The Unholy / Unplugged Tour will be coming to Silver Platters (SoDo) to help promote the release of their new album "MELIORA" this Friday. You can stream the full album as of today before you buy it (we all will) this Friday. It's a Top 10 of the year release for sure....awesome blend of classic heavy rooted 70s rock with modern rawness and melodic tones of today to even interest the metalheads!! 

One of my favorite rock bands to cover live. I've had the pleasure of working with them since they arrived to America!! Even had a cover photo of Papa shot here in Seattle on Italy's biggest rock Magazine "Popular 1" back in 2012 {CLICK HERE TO SEE}

Seattle 1/30/12 Concert Photos {CLICK HERE}
Seattle 4/30/12 Concert Photos {CLICK HERE}
Seattle 4/27/12 Concert Photos {CLICK HERE

Pre-order the new CD, Digital or Vinyl HERE!

See everyone tomorrow at Silver Platters in Seattle for a little Occult Rock at it's best. Watch for my photo/video coverage here soon!

"Iron" Mike

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Motley Crue Fading Away Alice Cooper Lives On

Let's face it, the world of arena rock is starting to die off. Motley Crue is hanging it up soon on this final tour and with it I expect many others from the same time period of the record industry glory days to follow. Kiss, Aerosmith, Scorpions, Rush, Black Sabbath, Ozzy, Rolling Stones, U2 etc. You get the picture. Arena filling rock bands are grandpas now and what's to replace these great live arena filling bands? Nothing! So if you're not getting out and seeing these spectacular over the top concerts I'm afraid within the next 5-10 years they will things of the past cause there's no format for younger bands to develop into stardom with a record industry dying out like these bands. 

Motley Crue took a page right out of Kiss' book and added steroids with a stage show of over the top explosions, fire, fire and more fire. Not only did they debut a new stage prop of extended elevators over the crowd this night, but 'The Crüecifly' drum solo was UNREAL! Tommy Lee's drum solo on a slow rotating roller coaster that will NEVER be duplicated by any band ever! The thought of how much money it cost to put together is mind boggling. Watch my video in amazement! Watch full screen and turn it up! 

CLICK HERE to see what it looked like from the "Crües Nest" on "Home Sweet Home" filmed by my buddy Jean-Marcus Strole. See me, buddy Neil and Alice Cooper guitarists Nita Strauss and Ryan Roxie standing at 5:50-5:51 in the spotlight. That's were I filmed the video ya see above at front of house.

Everyone was barking about Vince Neil's voice being shot, true but it wasn't as bad as watching David Lee Roth with Van Halen trying to make it through a show and from the sounds of it there might of been some backtracks going on to cover it cause I know those background vocals by the rest of the band were way too clean and processed sounding. A shell of a band from the past covering up the aging parts with theatrics and trickery in the name of entertainment still worth the price of admission. Getting to shoot only 1 song and from the soundboard wasn't the best entertainment for photos so don't expect much. Great setlist: Girls, Girls, Girls - Wild Side - Primal Scream - Same Ol' Situation (S.O.S.) - Looks That Kill - Louder Than Hell - Smokin' in the Boys' Room - Mutherfucker of the Year - Anarchy in the U.K. - T.N.T. (Terror 'n Tinseltown) - Dr. Feelgood - In the Beginning - Shout at the Devil - Don't Go Away Mad (Just Go Away) - O Fortuna - Tommy Lee Drum Solo - Mick Mars Guitar Solo - Live Wire - Saints of Los Angeles - Too Young to Fall in Love - Kickstart My Heart - Encore: Home Sweet Home.

Alice Cooper opened the show and clearly showing no signs of slowing down. Alice still has it vocally and entertainment wise. His band is top notch and really outplayed the Crue in all aspects of talent. Plus he let us shoot 4 songs and from the pit which for you fans is better viewing than what the Crue gave us. Get out and see this tour! Alice Cooper setlist: Hello Hooray - No More Mr. Nice Guy - Under My Wheels - I'm Eighteen - Billion Dollar Babies - Poison - Dirty Diamonds - Welcome to My Nightmare - Feed My Frankenstein - Ballad of Dwight Fry - Killer - I Love the Dead - School's Out

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Rush Still Rocking 4 Decades Later

3/18/1980 - Yes look at that date!! Three fourth of my lifetime ago I first saw Rush in the sold-out Seattle Center Coliseum 10 rows up section 228 for the Permanent Waves tour!! 35 years and 4 months later I walked into the same sold-out building tonight, now called Key Arena on their 40th and possibly last big tour. Can't believe that 13yo kid is now 48 years old and was nearly elbows on stage in the photo pit shooting Rush in that same building. We got to shoot the first two songs which was awesome cause they were "The Anarchist" & "The Wreckers" which rang in about 12 minutes. Setlist was an incredible 2.5+ hrs worth. 

The only difference between then and now was back then there was so much pot smoking going on in the arena I could barely see the stage from my seats and rowdy it was. Definite first contact high back then. Tonight all those fans are now middle aged plus, more more laid back and there to enjoy the show and witness a band no one thought would last this test of time. Still three of the greatest rock musicians around. Geddy Lee, Alex Lifeson and Neil Peart still masters of the musical universe when it comes to progressive epic rock music. 

With technology now so far advanced from decades ago, Rush's show is still musically dynamic, but extra special with the stage props (loved the popcorn machine), lights and video screens. Visually WOW in many ways. Overall if you're a Rush fan I don't think you left the show in any disappointment. That 2-set setlist has something for everyone, new or old fans. Better go see Rush on this tour, it's big it's a long show and the end is unfortunately coming sooner or later from the greatest Canadian rock band of them all and probably forever with Rush

View more show photos HERE!

"Iron Mike Savoia - -

Set 1:
The World Is...The World Is 
The Anarchist 
The Wreckers 
Headlong Flight (with 'Drumbastica' mini drum solo)
Far Cry 
The Main Monkey Business 
How It Is 
Roll the Bones 
(with 'Celebrity Rappers' video)
Between the Wheels 
Set 2:
No Country for Old Hens 
Tom Sawyer 
The Camera Eye 
The Spirit of Radio 
Jacob's Ladder 
Cygnus X-1 Book II: Hemispheres Part I: Prelude 
Cygnus X-1 (Book One: The Voyage Parts 1… more )
Closer to the Heart 
2112 Part I: Overture 
2112 Part II: The Temples of Syrinx 
2112 Part IV: Presentation 
2112 Part VII: Grand Finale 
Mel's Rock Pile starring Eugene Levy 
Lakeside Park 
What You're Doing 
Working Man

Anyone remember this KISW Button from 1980 Rush show?


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The Aristocrats Blow Seattle's Mind!

Last time The Aristocrats played Seattle in January 2012 at the The Rendezvous, no one knew, including me! I heard both shows were attended by maybe a few handfuls at most each night. If that was true, there was NO WAY I'd let that happen again for this 7.11.15 show. I pounded Facebook and my musician peeps on this band and who they are. Yes, musicians from other planets here on planet earth! Guys that back the bands/artists like Steve Vai, Joe Satriani and my favorite artist ever in Steven Wilson of Porcupine Tree fame. You delivered with hundreds & hundreds of music and musician fans turning out to Studio Seven to watch this spectacle! 

Guitar wizard Guthrie Govan (Steven Wilson, Asia/GPS), Bass God Bryan Beller (Joe Satriani, Dethklok) and the unfathomable drumming insanity of Marco Minnemann (Steven Wilson, Joe Satriani). Marco was runner up in the Dream Theater job Mike Mangini got. It it all worked out the best for Marco though cause his Steven Wilson gig rocks and gives him the flexibility to run with The Aristocrats!  

Their brand of instrumental rock, jazz, funk, twang metal gives me ear visions of ZZ-Top meeting George Benson, Rage Against The Machine and Stanley Clarke on a hill-top fight against Rush, Dream Theater and Megadeth with Frank Zappa as the referee! I know it's confusing, but it's so damn awesome!! Their third studio album "Tres Caballeros" just came out and the band opened the show playing the whole album from start to finish. Fantastic mix of instrumental rock that's played at a masterful point that if you're a musician and think you're higher than the clouds in your skills you'll be crashing down to earth after hearing these guys play and their intertwining riffs of insanity and precision.

Seattle setlist: Stupid 7, Jack's Back, Texas Crazypants, ZZ Top, Pig's Day Off, Smuggler's Corridor, Pressure Relief, The Kentucky Meat Shower, Through the Flower, Get It Like That (w/ drum solo), Bad Asteroid & Flatlands. *all songs except the last 3 off the new "Tres Caballeros" CD {BUY HERE or off iTunes}

Over all The Aristocrats are more than just an instrumental band for musicians, they don't bore you with a bunch of over the top riffs and the usual "look how awesome we are and how fat we can play". They blend great catchy sounds with musicianship hailing from some other galaxy. Check them out, for the remaining U.S. tour dates through 8/25/15:

With a packed house at Studio Seven what amazed me the most was the crowd was 1/3 girls! Very cool and maybe it had something to do with the opening act the Travis Larson Band? Yes the world renowned bassist Jennifer Young plays in Travis' band! When you say "Chicks that Rock!" her name better be on that list. The female Billy Sheehan? Check out the Travis Larson Band, he's a great guitar player with some GREAT instrumental full throttled rock-fusion jams! - I'll add a live video here later today from Travis Larson Band too.

For full show photo gallery CLICK HERE.

"Iron" Mike Savoia

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Van Halen Slam The Hammer Down in Ridgefield, WA

Ok I'm gonna admit, the last time I saw Van Halen in the Tacoma Dome 5.6.12. it was, in my eyes, a little bit of a train wreck with David Lee Roth in what I call the "not in performance mind" vibe. Forgetting lyrics and basically just acting out the part it seemed. Not last night! Holy smokes that's the show I was expecting back in 2012. 


Lets face it, Diamond Dave doesn't have the vocal pop or leg kicks he once had, but this time around he actually looked like he had something to prove with what he has left in his 60 year old rock in roll tank. Energetic, focused and as always having fun on stage. Little too happy at times but hey it's Diamond Dave! Opening with (surprised me) Light Up the Sky the band ran throw a killer set that included: Runnin' With the Devil - Romeo Delight - Everybody Wants Some - Drop Dead Legs - Feel Your Love Tonight - Somebody Get Me a Doctor - She's the Woman - China Town - I'll Wait - Alex Solo - Little Guitars - Dance the Night Away - Beautiful Girls - Women in Love - Hot for Teacher - In a Simple Rhyme - Dirty Movies - Ice Cream Man - Unchained - Ain't Talkin' 'Bout Love - Edward Solo - You Really Got Me - Panama and the encore of (no surprise here their biggest hit) Jump. 

Crowd was really great at Amphitheatre Northwest in Ridgefield, WA too. Over 10k+ filling the venue and for many a flashback to their more youthful days growing up on Van Halen as most of us 40+ year olds did. What can you say about Eddie Van Halen that hasn't already been said about his guitar playing? He's still the king! So effortless, so precise and so inspiring to guitar players around the world, the ticket alone for admission to watch Eddie play is worth it! Check out Eddie's guitar solo from YouTube account Ima Starman in the front row!


It was hard to see Alex Van Halen behind the drums from the photo pit and perfect back in my seat. He's still playing loud and undeniably still powerful. His drum solo is an interesting jungle tango of sounds. Not the usual pound away and see how fast you can go style of many drummers in rock. 

Eddie's son Wolfgang kept the bottom end roaring and just like his dad pretty damn good player. I know there's the crowd like myself that would die to see Michael Anthony back in the band, but that's history and to tell ya the truth...Van Halen live is watching Eddie Van Halen! Love how he still smiles and has about as much fun as David Lee Roth up there. Overall from what I saw on this second night of the 2015 tour I'd say GO! The show is awesome, setlist killer and loved the stage lighting. Had a warped rig look and from a distance in my seat in section 205 I felt like I was watching a show at the Hollywood Bowl in California. For full show photos please visit here on - and as always we'll also get some posted on KISWSavoia Photography Live Facebook pages later today! 

For full tour dates and info on Van Halen Live on Tour 2015 visit:

For those that attended the tour opening night 7/5/15 at the White River Amphitheatre in Auburn, WA check out the review from Northwest Music Scene HERE.

"Iron" Mike Savoia -  

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