Friday, December 26, 2014


1990 - It was the day after Thanksgiving.  I had structured a tour for Sepultura, Obituary and Sadus....the SOS TOUR. It took some persuasion to get the tour booked.  Sepultura's previous tour with Faith or Fear had a miserable turnout, and many of the US clubs did not want them back.  I had just done a very successful Sacred Reich tour, so I got on the phone and called the clubs and assured them I would book a proper tour for the Seps and it would pack the venues, that's how I was able to book the dates.  

Sepultura was recording Arise.  They finished in the wee hours of early morning of the first show.  We were jammin for time, and headed to the first gig.

At the venue, I met Obituary and Sadus.  Roadrunner had hired me to tour manage them, since both bands had no one to look after them.  It was a killer tour, and the venues were packed, like I promised.  By the time we got to Phoenix, it was a couple days before Christmas, when the bands arrived at my house, Christina had surprised us and put over 30 stockings on our living room wall!!  One for each band member, each roadie, and our family.  We laughed our butts off when we saw them because it covered the entire wall.  

December 23rd we played in Oakland.  It was the last show of the tour.  It was also Sadus' home town.  Back in the day, we all raged daily and this was going to be the ultimate bash!

I can truly say it was the craziest Sepultura show in all the 7 years I was with them.  Sadus set up scores of mudslide shots in the dressing room.  When we got to the stage, all the amps were covered in shots.  

Chaos broke out during the show, a fight brewed on the side of the stage and it ended up with Max's stack (speaker and amp) getting knocked over, and a visiting member of another band getting thrown down a ramp to the stage. When Max played Black Sabbath twice, it was too much for Andreas and he walked off the stage.  I coaxed him back on just as Max fell over.

We made it to the end, and I was speaking to the promoter arranging to collect the fee.  Max came over and saw me, grabbed Iggor and said "Come on, this dude is fucking with Gloria."  They approached us, but Max suddenly pulled an Exorcist.  He puked on the floor and then belly flopped in it!  I used this as an opportunity to steer Mr. Cash into another corner.  

It wasn't over yet.  The bus driver dropped us all at the Oakland airport, but our tickets were from San Francisco!  By the time we got on the plane to Phoenix, we were dead tired and collapsed in our seats.

On Christmas Day, in Phoenix, Iggor answered a phone call while I was cooking.  We were both in the kitchen.  It was another manager, you all know, calling my house to steal the band!! Iggor laughed and said "no" shaking his head.  We all had a good laugh.  

Merry Christmas!  Class dismissed.......

Class Dismissed...

Friday, December 19, 2014


You all know we love our holidays around this house...our big family, luscious meal, lots of laughs and hugging! Oh yeah, don't forget the music! That's a must with our headbanging fam!! This year we were home all December, so I made Christmas cookies with the grandkids while the radio belted out carols.

This year we have 17 stockings hanging. This is Max, me, Christina, Dana, Roxanne, Richie, Jason, Zyon, Igor, Roki, Marlie, Daina, Jadore, Nadja, Aggy, Shonda and Sian. The only year I had more was in 1990 when the SOS (Sepultura, Obituary and Sadus) Tour was raging across the US! I had 30+ stockings covering an entire wall of the living room! The bands were super surprised when they arrived and saw the huge stocking collection, all for them!

We usually have a giant tree but this year we let the wee ones decorate for us, so we decided on a shorter model. We always place the tree in our living room, and we don't get it too early. In Arizona, the dry air gets to them quickly and they fry up. One year, I swear our tree turned grey because it was up a couple weeks. I learned my lesson that year!

Above the TV in the living room, near the tree, we have 3 glass cabinets full of awards but the top cabinet is full of unusual artwork. A voodoo doll from Papau New Guinea, a masked dancer from the Brazilian candomble religion, a skull cup from Bulgaria, a crazy statue of Max and me raising hell (from a famous Brazilian artist), dolls from China, and Jamaica, and even a statue from Easter Island made from the stone the statues there are made of. It's a very interesting cabinet!

We also receive a good amount of fan objects made by Max's fans. We have many, many items depicting Dana...wooden wall carvings, pencil and charcoal sketches and this giant painting of him, painted on a t-shirt. We save them all and they are displayed in our home and the homes of our children.

On another wall of our living room, we have a painting of our family that Christina commissioned from Christopher Scarvell. She gave it to us for Christmas one year. It is tucked behind a grandfather clock and an Indonesian mask that Uncle Iggor put on top of his drums, one year on a Sepultura tour. To the left is a mask the Xavantes Tribe presented us when we went there to record. To the right, a framed newspaper with Max and the tribe and a photo of Max and me that has my green hair hand painted on it.

Our kitchen is where Old Saint Nick resides. He has spent over 40 Christmases with me and has never run off or wilted! He stands in front of my Holy Corner. I am Russian Orthodox and the Holy Corner is where we all pray and light candles for specific people and blessings or simply to give thanks. This is also the corner where Max wrote many songs during the Sepultura daze. I can still see him and Dana at the table, excited about their lyrics for Attitude.

This wraps up our Christmas tour of our first home we ever bought. We love its coziness and the many memories that can never be distorted or stolen. Come visit anytime and I will show you some of the secrets...there are zillions!! And please, from our home to yours...Have a very Metal Christmas!!!!

Class dismissed....

Friday, December 12, 2014


Having participated in at least 15 albums with Max and countless others, I can pretty much predict when it's time to write and record. I make the schedules for releases and touring, so I just let Max know a couple weeks ahead, to start thinking about his topic, his riffs that will represent his vision, and who he will work with as the architect of his art. A couple times he gave me a blank stare...shock?....but usually he just goes with the flow.

The first steps are preparatory...he buys a simple notebook and then looks for a spot in the house to set his gear up at. It was the kitchen table for Sepultura's Chaos AD and Roots and also for the early Soulfly records. Starting around Soulfly 3, Max began tearing up the bedroom, and wrote several records there. He relocated to our Arizona room that overlooks the pool for the next couple Soulflys, and wrote the first 2 Cavalera Conspiracy records in his man-cave trailer out front, in our driveway. Killer Be Killed was birthed at our home in Unincorporated Phoenix. This ranch was also the location he co-wrote Son Song with Sean Lennon. This upcoming Soulfly release, like the previous Soulfly, is being labored in our living room.

Max first gets his small, 12 track Korg Digital Recording Studio, connects his drum machine and makes his beats, which are his spine. He then uses a Digitek Distortion Guitar Pedal and layers the guitars and bass. For speakers, he uses a Bose home stereo system. To add vocals, Max sings into a pair of Beats headphones.

When all the layers are completed, usually without vocals, Max burns a cd and we send this cd to the band members, to get familiar and start thinking about their parts. Max and Zyon spend time rehearsing and structuring the tracks and before we know it, we are in the studio...and the Tribe gets new music!! It's all for YOU!!!!

Class dismissed.......

Friday, December 5, 2014


April 6, 2005...our friend, Joey Nugent called and said he was picking up Paul Gray from Slipknot. They had been friends for a while and Joey knew our son, Igor, was a big fan. Joey said he and Paul were going to hang until the show, which was at the Glendale Arena, in Glendale, Arizona. He asked if it was cool to stop by later.

Joey, Paul, Igor, and Max

We were all excited, since we had not met Paul before. Slipknot was on tour with Lamb of God, in North America and there was a big buzz on the package.

They ate at La Fonda Grande, a killer Mexican restaurant in Phoenix, on Shea Rd and 32nd Street, cruised around in Joey's slick Buick Regal and eventually worked their way to our house. Paul was super chill and toured our home, checking out all the memorabilia. He hung for a couple hours and then headed to the Arena, with Joey.

Paul, Igor and Max

Igor and Paul

While it's true you meet many people on tour, it's a different vibe chilling in your home with them. No stress, no peeping toms, no demands, just talking about gossip, music and people...petting dogs and meeting kids...laughing, asking the questions you always wanted to know the answers's real.

Back to practice...

Class dismissed....