SAPD Issues Thousands of Tickets for Homelessness

SAPD Issues Thousands of Tickets for Homelessness

News: Data and records obtained by the Current show that between January 1, 2013, and early October of this year the... By Alexa Garcia-Ditta and Elaine Wolff 10/22/2014
‘Walking the Camino’ Explores a Treacherous Trek Through Spain

‘Walking the Camino’ Explores a Treacherous Trek Through Spain

Screens: In the Middle Ages, pilgrims walked the 500-mile El Camino de Santiago de Compostela as a pilgrimage to the tomb of Apostle St. James. It was an... By Stephen James Ross 10/22/2014
A Closer Look: The ins and outs of a few important races

A Closer Look: The ins and outs of a few important races

News: For more than a year now gubernatorial candidates Wendy Davis and Greg Abbott have dominated airwaves and secured way... By Mark Reagan 10/22/2014
Chris Pérez, Selena’s Husband, Faces His Past and Looks Forward, Musically

Chris Pérez, Selena’s Husband, Faces His Past and Looks Forward, Musically

Music: Chris Pérez never saw it coming. “All I ever wanted to do was play guitar,” he told the Current. “I never thought I’d be the subject of an interview... By Enrique Lopetegui 8/28/2013
5 Awesome Ways to Survive on Ramen

5 Awesome Ways to Survive on Ramen

College Guide 2013: Nearly every college student has lived off of ramen noodles at one point or another. What a lot of them didn’t know was that the classic just-add-water... By Mary Caithn Scott 8/20/2013

Search hundreds of restaurants in our database.

Search hundreds of clubs in our database.

Follow us on Instagram @sacurrent

Print Email


Mad axeman Michael Schenker driven by optimism, self discovery

Photo: Courtesy photos, License: N/A

Courtesy photos

God in his temple — a peachy Michael Schenker comes to SA.

Bon Scott, John Bonham, and Jim Morrison are names frequently heard when talking about rock 'n' roll excess and its inevitable outcomes. Rare are the encouraging stories of rockers who have teetered on the brink of icon-by-virtue-of-being-dead status only to run from it giggling.

Michael Schenker — unknown to most, but legend to his fans — started down Debauchery Road at a young age, having played lead guitar for the revered Eurometal bands UFO and Scorpions by the time he was 18 years of age. He'd fully solidified his reputation as a non-functioning alcoholic by the time he found himself out of the Scorpions a second time when even guitarist/big brother Rudy Schenker could no longer tolerate his belligerence. Despite the success of his own Michael Schenker Group in the '80s and his gift for singing with his guitar as vividly as Goethe sang with his words, Schenker continued to embody the worst aspects of the Selfish Decade through his self-destructive behavior.

Yet he never seemed to view death as a viable career move. Quite the contrary. The Schenker Ideal — to constantly evolve the essence of the inner self and to translate that to the art of music — is more intact than ever, thanks in no small part to another bout of rehab after a disastrous UK performance in 2006, where he was so incoherent he could barely stand, let alone shred.

"It's all about development," he told the Current. "I always move forward and develop new from the old to try to get close to the answers of life. The aspects of moving forward and knowing that there's another surprise around the corner make it an ongoing thing."

Instead of the weary husk of a disillusioned Keith Richards, one instead hears an affable, boyish excitement. Schenker is enthusiastic about life, about the success of his recent tours, and about the fact that his old friend and bandmate Robin McAuley is joining him for his current American tour, which stops at Backstage Live on March 16.

"[McAuley] did an excellent job singing 'Lover's Sinfony' on [new album] Temple of Rock," Schenker says, "and he just happened to be available for America." But while this might seem like a perfect opportunity to dust off old McAuley-Schenker Group favorites like "Anytime" and the acoustic megahit "Never-Ending Nightmare," Schenker is clear that on this tour he "wanted to promote Michael Schenker classics."

Despite his past's more harmful tendencies, Schenker has always been known as a lover of life and humor. His aforementioned boyishness is perhaps most obvious on the title of his 2001 album Be Aware of Scorpions, a friendly jab at his older brother's better-known band. "It's even funnier now," Schenker says, "because my brother ended up with James Kottak from MSG, and I'll be playing with the Scorpions' old rhythm section of Herman Rarebell and Francis Buchholz in Europe."

While Michael Schenker may not be a household name, his indelible influence on four generations of rock and metal guitarists cannot be understated. Heavyweights such as Iron Maiden and Metallica have claimed him as a hero, and you can almost hear the Blind Guardian sound being invented on "This Night Is Gonna Last Forever."

"I decided early on to express things the way I see them," he says, "and to do that you have to go inside yourself, where only you have access. That's the Temple of Rock." •

Michael Schenker featuring Robin McAuley, Bone, Devil May Care, Black Thunder, Sound & Shape

$15-$20, 21+ free until 9pm (H-E-B stores/Flip Side Records)
All ages
7pm doors
Friday, March 16
Backstage Live
1305 E Houston
(210) 698-2856

We welcome user discussion on our site, under the following guidelines:

To comment you must first create a profile and sign-in with a verified DISQUS account or social network ID. Sign up here.

Comments in violation of the rules will be denied, and repeat violators will be banned. Please help police the community by flagging offensive comments for our moderators to review. By posting a comment, you agree to our full terms and conditions. Click here to read terms and conditions.
comments powered by Disqus