Day 1 – 2/9/22

Miami and At Sea

First off…Hands up who was sweating through their mandatory Covid Test before even getting to this point?! Outside of a rescheduled Smith/Kotzen show a week before cruising, I had completely quarantined myself and was pretty sure that I was ok.  But MAN… That seemed like the longest 15 minutes waiting for those results. (Not mentioning the JOKER who messaged me from an unknown number when I arrived in Miami stating that my results were inconclusive and I had to retest at the port – Revenge will be sweet). 

Covid Prankster

After 2 years, it was finally here.  A Lyft to the port and that beautiful view of the Freedom Of The Seas: Floating, waiting for thousands of Monsters to start invading the halls like blood running through veins. 

Seeing MORC friends from all over the world is incredible and the first few people that I ran into on the boat happened to be some of my LA Family. Namely the wonderful Gabbie Rae and her amazing Dad, Roger and the incomparable, unapologetic (and always in need of adult supervision) Izzy Presley.

Next up..  Room Check.  I opted for the Promenade View this cruise instead of interior cabin to allow me to escape the feeling I was stuck in the middle of a black hole.

And as you can see from the view I had of the Pub, some livers were already being primed.


Enuff Z’Nuff (Studio B)

So..  who had the honor of kicking off the music on the cruise?!  While some people were still boarding, MORC had officially begun with Enuff Z’Nuff in Studio B.  

The room that normally acts as an ice rink was still “sweating” and looked like a staging area at this point.  No back curtain and the guts of the room on full display.  But that didn’t matter…  Chip, Tory, Tony and Dan walked onto the stage with accompanying Circus music and kicked into the Beatle’s “Magical Mystery Tour“.  And with that, the cruise officially started.

Enuff Z’Nuff at Monsters of Rock Cruise 2022 Setlist

The Hosts

“BUTT” how else are we going to know which band it is that we’re standing there waiting to see?!

Did any of you know that Eddie Trunk has been friends with every single artist on the boat for 35 years?  True story…

They all Rock!

H.E.A.T. (Surprise Sail-Away Band) (Pool Stage)

Although some figured out who the “Surprise” Sail-Away band was…some didn’t.  So the arrival of H.E.A.T. with new (old) singer, Kenny Leckremo was an amazing way to crank up the energy as we left Miami behind for distant shores. 

I think I can say that most of us loved Erik Grönwall in the band, however having Kenny (their original singer) back added another level to their performance. Kenny at the front is like watching a yoga class, if the yogi was on speed.

The band were amazing, the energy was on fire and the buzz on the boat was starting to get really loud!  How could you follow that up?!


Beasto Blanco (Studio B)

Well..  THIS is how you follow it up.  With BEASTO BLANCO! (As usual) The first day delays had started and Beasto were running late.  The fun part for some of the photogs, is that we were able to come in and watch some of the soundcheck.  The members of Beasto are amazing people and if you ventured their way through the photo experience you’ll know that they are just full of mischief.  They bring that energy and playfulness to everything they do and their soundcheck was as fun (in a different way) as their actual show. 

In the best possible way…They are goofballs!

The show was pure Beasto…A Post apocalyptic, industrial metal fest that traded off vocals between Chuck Garric and Calico Cooper while Brother Latham shred, Jan Le Grow pummeled and Sean Sellers pounded.  Catchy songs and visually, one of the best bands out there. 

Killer Dwarfs (Pool Stage)

This was my first time catching the Killer Dwarfs and to my surprise… everyone of them looked totally full sized.  Go figure.

Great set with lots of energy and humor.  Russ “Dwarf” Graham cracked jokes and flailed around the stage and it was nice seeing Gerry Finn play with the Dwarfs as the only other time I had seen him was when he joined Diemonds on the 2020 Cruise.

Killer Dwarfs at Monsters of Rock Cruise 2022 Setlist

Richie Kotzen (Royal Theater)

Early contender for show of the Cruise. I can’t stress this enough… If Richie Kozten is playing in your town.  GO. TO. THE. SHOW!  It’s that simple.  You’re going to get one of the finest musicians around who is going to perform his heart out and bare his musical soul to you.  No Kotzen show is the same and after seeing him… well I can’t count how many times now…he still manages to leave me in awe.  

Richie still has the amazing Dylan Wilson on bass and his friend of 35 years, Tal Bergman on drums. Watching them weave musical magic together transports you to another place.  You can tell that Richie gets caught up in that same frame of mind..  About halfway through his set he announced he had 1 more song, then realized that he’d only played about 4 songs.  Luckily one of his crew let him know that he still had plenty of time.

Easily one of the best shows on the Cruise.  Again…  GO TO THE SHOW!

Ted Poley Band *Surprise Band (Pool Stage)

Another of the “Surprise” acts on the cruise and doing double duty was the solo debut of “Captain” Ted PoleyTed put together a great band consisting of Fred Gorhau (guitar), Chris Tristram (bass), Chris McCoy (keyboards) and Paul Del Boccio (drums).

The set was basically all Danger Danger tunes outside of the HIM cover of “Poison Girl“.

Ted Poley at Monsters of Rock Cruise 2022 Setlist

Electric Boys (Studio B)

The surprise band of the day for me. Ironically enough The Electric Boys are NOT just All Lips and Hips.  They were so much more.  I had planned to stop in and just grab some pics and then to head over to see the next band, but their funk and groove held on to me and I stayed for most of their set.

The Electric Boys are a band that I feel have to be seen live to be truly appreciated.

Electric Boys at Monsters of Rock Cruise 2022 Setlist

Resist & Bite (Royal Theater)

Before I hit the boat I wanted to check out ex-Tesla guitarist, Tommy Skeoch’s new band, Resist & Bite.  The few songs I found online, I really enjoyed and looked forward to catching them.  I have to say, whether it was the late night and my fatigue or it was opening night jitters, the band didn’t “float my boat” live. 

I stayed a while, but have to say I wasn’t too into it.  I will say it was amazing seeing Tommy rocking again.  I do look forward to getting another opportunity to see them and proving to myself that I had the wrong impression first time out.

Resist & Bite at Monsters of Rock Cruise 2022 Setlist

Karaoke with Izzy and Brian

Is it really a Monsters of Rock Cruise if you don’t hit Izzy and Brian’s Karaoke at the end of the night?!  Last cruise there were some great songs by George Lynch, Richie Kotzen and who can forget Eric (ex-H.E.A.T.) BLASTING out an amazing version of Skid Row’s “18 and Life”  Well for the brief moment I stopped by I got to check out Geoff Tate and his guitarist, Alex Hart grooving along to The Rolling Stones classic “You Can’t Always Get What you Want“. 

It’s really why you gotta go and check it out.  Like Forrest’s Mama always said, “… Ya never know whatcha gonna get”.


That was Day 1.

I have no idea what time my head hit the pillow, but I know I was unconscious before it did.

MORC ’22 Pre-Party Coverage: Here

MORC ’22 Day 2 Coverage: Here

MORC ’22 Day 3 Coverage: Here