Like many monster kids I grew up with the magazine Famous Monsters of Filmland. One of my favorite aspects of this magazine were the Captain Company ads that appeared in the back, showcasing so many cool monster toys and collectibles. One ad in particular always drew my attention; it was the one for Don Post Studios masks. My favorite has always been the Grey Timberwolf but at the time I couldn’t afford one so all I could do each month was look at the ad and dream.
“We need you to go help Santa.”
It was the last thing I wanted to hear as I strolled into the volunteer office of Brookfield Zoo the Sunday before Christmas. I’d been employed there back in the late ‘90s but, after a few years of discovering the elephants weren’t the only ones working for peanuts, decided to seek a job elsewhere. This should not, however, imply that I have any ill feelings towards the place, in fact it’s quite the opposite. I’ve loved animals since I was a kid and, growing up in Chicago, this was the place that helped cultivate that. I believe in the zoo’s message as well as its conservation work which is why it was only a matter of months before I’d return as a docent and remain one ever since. Usually volunteering entails talking to the zoo’s visitors about animals but, every once in awhile, you’re asked to do something different. Helping out with their Santa Claus event would be a prime example of that.
(Gene Simmons at Fright Night Continues)
The door opened and we were escorted into a large ballroom full of empty chairs facing an almost equally vacant stage. There stood Gene Simmons in front of a long table, arms folded. He was clad in a dark blazer, button down shirt and jeans while wearing sun glasses. With his head tilted up, it almost looked like he was trying to recreate the Sphinx cover from the KISS Hot in the Shade album.
Making the journey towards him in silence was nerve wracking enough before Simmons started snapping at the crew member accompanying us. “You DO realize that at the rate you’re moving we’ll be getting through about sixteen people per hour, don’t you? You HAVE done this before, correct?”
Welcome back! This is part 3 of my series of blogs on Halloween novelty songs. If you missed part 1 click here or if you missed part 2 click here. What originally started out to be a 2-part blog ended up being in three parts because of all of the great stuff I have found (and to be honest, I could probably do a part 4)! Hopefully these cd recommendations will help rock your Halloween party or add just a little bit of fun to your yard haunt this October 31st! So…for this edition…I will be covering horror host Zacherley, some great imports and a recently discovered (by me anyway) rarity box set that is a must have for any monster music cd collection!
Upon hearing the news that the latest issue of SCARY MONSTERS MAGAZINE had hit the stands, I immediately headed to my nearest “Borders” bookstore. This is a magazine I have loved since its early years and the latest issue was very special to me. Back in May I had submitted a fan piece and interview on Michigan horror host, Wolfman Mac & The Chiller Drive-in. Now the story would finally see print along with an article I had written for Chicago artist, Jeff Carlson. Jeff, as you may recall, created an amazing replica of the famous medallion worn by Bela Lugosi during the original Universal classic, DRACULA! To revisit the blog piece we did on Jeff, please click HERE and then go get a much more in depth description on the piece and ways you can get your own in the newest issue of SCARY MONSTERS!
I have been a collector of Halloween masks and collector’s busts since the early 80’s. When I used to read FAMOUS MONSTERS OF FILMLAND magazine one of my favorite parts of the magazine were the Captain Company ads in the back, in particular the ads for Don Post Studios and their amazing masks. I was always partial to the Grey Timberwolf but back then my parents wouldn’t buy me a Halloween mask for $42.75.