Look what the Cat Dragged In: Pitbulls and Poison (Kinda)

By on November 27, 2013

From Butler, Pennsylvania to LA to St. Petersburg, Bret Michaels still shines after over 20 years  (photo by Christine Failey)

The Bret Michaels Band rocked a full house at The Palladium in downtown St. Petersburg on November 15th.  Hundreds of fans, both young and the young at heart, were packed inside The Palladium waiting for entry into Hough Hall. While the show was originally scheduled to start at 8 p.m., apparently the Bret Michaels Band had some bus trouble, and Pitbull Toddler took the stage shortly after 9 p.m.


Luckily for me, the concessions were open for business; vendors had that $60 bedazzled pink cowboy hat that I was looking for, and glam rock, for better or worse, made a comeback for one more night!  Better because Bret Michaels, 50, can still melt the ladies hearts and rock like he did twenty plus years ago.  Worse because, well like it or not ladies, that shirt that you wore when you were 18 doesn’t look so good at 40, at least not with that muffin top you’ve acquired since then.

Pitbull Toddler’s frontman Josh Maloney,  Cowhead (L)  and John Brennan in the background (photo by Christine Failey)


Pitbull Toddler is fronted by vocalist, Josh Maloney, 102.5’s Mike Calta (Cowhead) on bass, Galvin is on the drums, John Brennan and Chicago Pete Larios, are on the guitars.  Josh did a great job firing everybody up as he had endless amounts of energy, moving from one end the stage to the other, often leaving his feet.  Galvins’ facial expressions were almost as entertaining as his drumming and excuse me if it’s not PC, but Cowhead looks noticeably thinner from the last time I saw this band perform.  I can only assume that Josh has recently also lost a lot of weight because I couldn’t help but notice that Josh was having a hard time keeping his pants up all night.

Mike Calta, better known as “Cowhead” is one of Tampa Bay Bay’s favorite radio personalities (photo by Christine Failey)


Pitbull Toddler really got the crowd going with its cover of Def Leppard’s “Pour Some Sugar on Me,” followed by Don Henley’s “Boys of Summer.” Then Josh really got the crowd, particularly the women, all hot and bothered with Buckcherry’s “Crazy Bitch,” only to bring it back down with a fantastic version of Creedence Clearwater Revival’s “Fortunate Son”.  They closed out their set with “Save a Horse (Ride a Cowboy)” by Big & Rich and then the G’N’R  anthem “Paradise City.”

Josh goes airborne as Galvin works the percussion (photo by Christine Failey)

These guys epitomize what a cover band should be, professional, entertaining, & enthusiastic, all the while keeping the crowd engaged and not taking themselves too serious.

If you are looking for a good time, party band, check these guys out.


Bret Michaels (photo by Christine Failey)

Bret Michaels and his band then took the stage to the delight of hundreds of screaming women, and busted out with the panty-dropper, “Talk Dirty to Me” followed by “Look What the Cat Dragged In.”  His touring band consists of seasoned veterans in Pete Evick, guitarist, Lucky Chucky on the drums, “Dirty” Ray Scheurin on bass, and Robi W. on the keyboards. They were all solid in their performances, knowing their roles and when to shine and to take a step back to their frontman.


Lucky Chucky (photo by Christine Failey)

After playing the two Poison hits, they slowed it down with his version of Lynyrd Skynyrd’s classic “Sweet Home Alabama.” Bret then busted out his harmonica, his very, very, very loud harmonica, and played a soulful rendition of “Your Mama Don’t Dance” by Loggins and Messina.


Its amazing the longevity that Michaels career has had. He has been touring endlessly since his days in Poison and still does festivals with his old band. Recently he has been on the road since the June 2013 release of his new album, “Jammin’ With Friends,” which features several legendary artists, including Joe Perry, Loretta Lynn, Jimmy Buffett, Ace Frehely, Michael Anthony, and members of Lynyrd Skynyrd.


Bret Michaels (photo by Christine Failey)

Brett knew how to finish up the night with some of Poison’s classic radio hits and fan favorites in “Something to Believe In” and “Unskinny Bop.”  Throughout the night Bret engaged with the crowd and reestablished what everyone already knew, that he is the ultimate frontman who knows what his fans want and expects and provides them that at every performance.

They closed their set with an encore consisting of “Every Rose Has its Thorn” and “Nothin’ But a Good Time.” And that’s exactly what the audience in attendance and I had, nothin’ but a good time.

Chicago Pete of Pitbull Toddler (photo by Christine Failey)

Josh Maloney (photo by Christine Failey)

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