Charles Womack meets the original Chemical Brothers

by Charles Womack

Charles Womack publisher

I just flew back from Las Vegas and boy are my arms tired. Scratch that, I mean my legs.

After joining about 15,000 Aerosmith fans at the MGM arena and standing throughout the entire Sammy Hagar opening set and the bad boys of rock and roll’s best stage set-up and show in years, all I can say is, “It was worth the pain.”

Joined by my nephew, Adam Louhoff, and YES! Weekly coworker Brad McCauley, we boarded the plane last Friday morning on our way to play, relax and blow off a little steam.

We arrived in Las Vegas about noon and headed straight to the MGM. After checking in and freshening up, I headed to the blackjack tables and my cohorts to eat. Friday was a blur of walking from casino to casino, hitting the shops including visiting the made-famous-by- TV Gold and Silver Pawn Shop, and then taking it to the streets for the amazing lights of Vegas. Nuff said.

We pre-gamed for Aerosmith by hanging at the pool and hitting the tables for a few more hours until it was time for the show.

It’s kind of an office joke that I’m an official member of the Aerosmith Fan Club, but I am proud of the fact that it gets me great seats and, this time, the chance to hang out with the band.

My backstage adventure started at 4.30 p.m. as I lined up with a few dozen hardcore Aerosmith fans to receive our passes. After all the paper work was handled we headed backstage to a large room and enjoyed a catered meal, drinks and some raffle-ticket fun. After about 30 minutes, the leader of our tour informed us that Joey Kramer, drummer, and Brad Whitford, guitarist, were on their way in to answer a few questions and take some photos. I chatted with both guys for a bit and really impressed Whitford when I asked him, “When was last time you spoke to Derek St. Holmes?” Holmes was the lead singer for Ted Nugent and sang all the hits for the Motor City Madman include Stranglehold. Amazing voice!

Back in 1982, Whitford had quit Aerosmith and St.

Holmes had quit Nugent, so they teamed up to put out a great album. The album didn’t sell well and the pair never toured. When I asked Whitford about St. Holmes, his head cocked up and his eyes lit up in amazement. “I just talked to Derek two weeks ago!” he said with excitement. “We are writing songs and playing together.”

We talked a while until his handlers moved him along, but after about 10 minutes, he made his way back to me! This was cool! We discussed the album and some of our favorite songs and he told me they planned a tour with St. Holmes very soon. So I got an inside scoop.

As both the guys moved out of the room, the tour leader marched us into another room where standing there were the Joe Perry and Steven Tyler, the CHemical Brothers, the two coolest dudes on the planet. We spent a brief time talking and I made sure to get a photo to prove my encounter. What I night it was and the show was fantastic!

I know they say whatever happens in Vegas stays in Vegas, but this is something I proudly bring home.