Damn Yankees (band)

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Damn Yankees
Damn Yankees today.JPG
Damn Yankees in 2009. Clockwise from upper left: Tommy Shaw, Ted Nugent, Michael Cartellone and Jack Blades.
Background information
Origin Los Angeles, California, U.S.
Genres Hard rock, [1] arena rock, [2] glam metal [3]
Years active
  • 1989–1996
  • 1998–2001
  • 2004
  • 2010
Labels Warner Bros.
Associated acts
Past members

Damn Yankees was an American rock supergroup formed in 1989 consisting of Tommy Shaw of Styx, Jack Blades of Night Ranger, Ted Nugent of The Amboy Dukes, and Michael Cartellone (then an unknown drummer who would later join Lynyrd Skynyrd). [2]


They are remembered for the songs "High Enough" and "Where You Goin' Now", both Top 40 hits in the early 1990s.


Produced by rock producer Ron Nevison, the new band's self-titled debut album [4] went double-platinum in 1990. Jack Blades's leading single "Coming of Age" hit No. 60 on the U.S. Hot 100, and No. 1 on the AOR charts, while Tommy Shaw's "Come Again" received extensive AOR airplay.

1990's power ballad "High Enough" rose to No. 3 on U.S. Billboard Hot 100, [4] and No. 2 on AOR charts. "High Enough" was Ted Nugent's first mainstream top ten single. The band's songs appeared on several Hollywood film soundtracks, such as Gremlins 2: The New Batch , Nothing But Trouble and The Taking of Beverly Hills .

After the release of their debut, the Damn Yankees went on an 18-month world tour with the likes of a revamped Bad Company, Poison and Jackyl. Their U.S. tour coincided with the Persian Gulf War, in which the band unfurled American flags and made patriotic statements.

In 1992, Damn Yankees went gold with their follow-up album Don't Tread. [4] The title song, sung by Blades, was included on the album Barcelona Gold , released in coordination with the Barcelona Olympic Games. Nugent also appeared on Rock the Vote, voicing support for the GOP against Bill Clinton. Although the second release was not as successful as the first album, it contained a few hits, such as "Mister Please," "Where You Goin' Now," and "The Silence Is Broken," a power ballad featured in the 1993 Jean-Claude Van Damme film Nowhere to Run .

Shaw Blades

In 1994, Nugent revived his solo career, leaving Tommy Shaw and Jack Blades to record their own album as the duo Shaw Blades. Released in 1995, Hallucination received very little support from its label as a personnel change brought industry executives more sympathetic to alternative and grunge bands[ citation needed ]. Ultimately, the Shaw Blades album came out to some critical praise, but it vanished without major single support or a national tour (which had been cancelled by Warner Bros.). "I'll Always Be With You" did garner some AOR airplay, and the title track was heard in the hit movie Tommy Boy , but after a brief West Coast tour, both Shaw and Blades went back to their respective original bands, Styx and Night Ranger.

In 2007, Shaw Blades released their new album Influence, which consisted solely of cover songs that influenced them, mostly from the 1960s and 1970s. The pair also recorded a cover of the classic Christmas song "The Twelve Days of Christmas" on the "A Classic Rock Christmas" album by various Classic Rock artists in 2002. Both members still principally record and perform with their respective original bands.


During a hiatus in both Night Ranger and Styx, Shaw and Blades met with Ted Nugent to record a new Damn Yankees album in 1999.[ citation needed ] However, the album, provisionally titled Bravo, failed to please either the band members or the prospective record labels.[ citation needed ] Some of this unused material may have surfaced on various group and solo albums of the band members.[ citation needed ]

While on the VH1 Classic show Power Ballads of 88, Jack Blades commented about recent rumors regarding Damn Yankees. Jack said he, Ted, and Tommy had been talking and hanging out. Jack then said there would be new music and a tour from Damn Yankees in the future.[ citation needed ]

In 2004 at Alice Cooper's Christmas Pudding, an annual charity concert to benefit Alice Cooper's Solid Rock Foundation and Teen Center in Phoenix, AZ, Damn Yankees reunited on stage. [5] The band played "Don't Tread", "High Enough" and "Coming of Age".

On January 15, 2010 at the NAMM Show in Anaheim, California, the original members of Damn Yankees made a surprise appearance at the Taylor Guitars exhibit. Jack Blades, Tommy Shaw, Ted Nugent, and Michael Cartellone performed an acoustic set on the Taylor Stage including hits such as "Coming of Age", "High Enough", and the Ted Nugent anthem "Cat Scratch Fever".[ citation needed ]

In 2011, Nugent joined Jack Blades' band Night Ranger to record an extended version of "Coming of Age" as a B-side for their album "Somewhere in California." In place of his original solo, Nugent plays a version of the guitar solo from "Stranglehold." [6]

In May 2017, Cartellone joined Night Ranger at the Wildflower Festival in Richardson, Texas for a performance of "Coming of Age." [7]

As far as a potential Damn Yankees reunion goes, Cartellone told Cleveland NBC affiliate WKYC that he and other members of the band have continued to meet and write over the years. While a new album has yet to materialize, he says that does not mean the Damn Yankees are finished. They never purposefully disbanded and are keeping a reunion an open door to this day. [8]

Band members

Former members

Session members


Studio albums

TitleReleasePeak chart
Damn Yankees 199013
Don't Tread 199222
  • RIAA: Gold

Live albums

Compilation albums


TitleReleasePeak chart
"High Enough"19903257
"Coming of Age"601
"Come Again"1991505
"Bad Reputation"31
"Where You Goin' Now"1992206
"Don't Tread on Me"3
"Silence Is Broken"19936220
"Mister Please"3
"—" denotes a recording that did not chart.

Soundtrack appearances

Music videos

"High Enough"1990Larry Jordan [10]
"Coming of Age"Ethan Russell [11]
"Come Again"1991Ethan Russell [12]
"Don't Tread on Me"1992
"Where You Goin' Now"Larry Jordan [10]
"Silence Is Broken"1993Piers Plowden [13]

Related Research Articles

Styx (band) American rock band

Styx is an American rock band from Chicago that formed in 1972 and is best known for melding hard rock guitar balanced with acoustic guitar, synthesizers mixed with acoustic piano, upbeat tracks with power ballads, and incorporating elements of international musical theatre. The band established itself with a progressive rock sound in the 1970s, and began to incorporate pop rock and soft rock elements in the 1980s.

Night Ranger American hard rock band

Night Ranger is an American hard rock band from San Francisco formed in 1979 that gained popularity during the 1980s with a series of albums and singles. The band's first five albums sold more than 10 million copies worldwide and have sold 17 million albums total. The quintet is best known for the power ballad "Sister Christian", which peaked at number five in June 1984.

<i>Cornerstone</i> (Styx album) 1979 studio album by Styx

Cornerstone is the ninth studio album by the American rock band Styx, released in 1979. Styx's third straight multi-platinum selling album, Cornerstone was Styx's first album to earn a Grammy nomination, which was for Best Rock Performance by a Duo or Group. Like the four previous Styx albums, the band produced the album themselves. Styx recorded the album at Pumpkin Studios in Oak Lawn, Illinois.

Tommy Shaw American musician

Tommy Roland Shaw is an American guitarist, singer, songwriter, and performer best known as the frontman and guitarist for the rock band Styx. In between his stints with Styx, he has played with other groups including Damn Yankees and Shaw Blades as well as releasing several solo albums.

<i>Damn Yankees</i> (album) 1990 studio album by Damn Yankees

Damn Yankees was the self titled debut album by the American hard rock supergroup Damn Yankees. It was certified double platinum in the US and featured such chart topping hits as "High Enough", "Come Again", and "Coming of Age".

Jack Blades American musician

Jack Martin Blades is an American musician. He has worked in the bands Rubicon, Night Ranger, and Damn Yankees. He has also recorded with Tommy Shaw under the name Shaw Blades, and has done work alongside the Tak Matsumoto Group. Blades' most recent efforts include a second solo CD. He is also a member of the band Revolution Saints.

<i>Styx World: Live 2001</i> 2001 live album by Styx

StyxWorld Live 2001 is a live album by the band Styx released in 2001. It is drawn from performances at the Kosei Nenken Hall, Tokyo, Japan, February 10–11, 2000, Stadthalle, Offenbach, Germany, October 27, 2000, and the Shaw Center, Edmonton, Alberta, Canada, February 11, 2001.

<i>Craveman</i> 2002 studio album by Ted Nugent

Craveman is the twelfth studio album by the American hard rock guitarist Ted Nugent, released in 2002.

<i>7 Deadly Zens</i> 1988 studio album by Tommy Shaw

7 Deadly Zens is a solo studio album by Styx guitarist/vocalist Tommy Shaw. It was released in 1998 by CMC International Records. The album is in a hard rock style.

<i>Dont Tread</i> 1992 studio album by Damn Yankees

Don't Tread is the second and last studio album released by the American hard rock supergroup Damn Yankees. It features their second highest charting single, the power ballad "Where You Goin' Now" which peaked at number 20. The album itself reached number 22 in the Billboard 200 album chart.

Where You Goin Now 1992 single by Damn Yankees

"Where You Goin' Now" is a single from the band Damn Yankees. A power ballad, was peaked at #20 at the Billboard Hot 100, making it their second and final top 40 hit.

Ted Nugent American rock musician

Theodore Anthony Nugent is an American singer-songwriter, guitarist, and activist. He initially gained fame as the lead guitarist and occasional lead vocalist of The Amboy Dukes, a band formed in 1963 that played psychedelic rock and hard rock. After dissolving the band, he embarked on a solo career. Nugent is known for his Gibson Byrdland, his bluesy and frenzied guitar playing and his energetic live shows. Despite possessing a distinctive, wide-ranging singing voice, Nugent recorded and toured with other singers during much of his early solo career, including Derek St. Holmes, Brian Howe, and Meat Loaf, only taking on full lead vocal duties later on. In the late 1980s and early 1990s, he was part of the supergroup Damn Yankees.

Shaw Blades is an American musical duo/group formed by Tommy Shaw of Styx and Jack Blades of Night Ranger, both of whom played in the supergroup Damn Yankees. It is an informal duo which has produced two albums between other projects, 1995s Hallucination and 2007s Influence. The first two songs on "Hallucination" -- "My Hallucination" and "I'll Always Be with You"—received modest airplay. "Influence" consisted solely of 1960s and 1970s cover songs that influenced them. Blades' son Colin, a songwriter himself, contributed backing vocals and arrangements to the album. Shaw Blades also recorded a cover of the classic Christmas song "The Twelve Days of Christmas" on the A Classic Rock Christmas album by various classic rock artists in 2002. Shaw Blades did a short tour of America in Spring 2007 and another in Autumn 2007. Both members still principally record and perform with the acts which made them famous.

Michael Cartellone Musical artist

Michael Cartellone is an American musician and artist. He was a founding member of Damn Yankees and is the current drummer of Lynyrd Skynyrd since 1999.

High Enough 1990 single by Damn Yankees

"High Enough" is a song by American supergroup Damn Yankees from their self titled debut album. A power ballad, it is their most successful single in terms of chart position and sales, rising to No. 3 on the US Billboard Hot 100 chart, the group's first top-ten pop single. It also reached No. 2 on the US Mainstream Rock Tracks chart. The success of "High Enough" helped send its parent album into the top 20 on the US albums chart.

<i>Regeneration: Volume I & II</i> 2011 greatest hits album by Styx

Regeneration: Volume I & II is a compilation album by the band Styx released in 2011. It consists of re-recordings of classic Styx songs, one new track entitled "Difference in the World" and two Damn Yankees covers. The album was released first as two separate EP releases, Regeneration: Volume 1 in 2010 and Regeneration: Volume 2 in 2011. The EPs were sold on every date of Styx's The Grand Illusion/Pieces of Eight tour, which began October 14, 2010 in Evansville, Indiana, and they were sold at some of their concerts since July 2010, as well as on their website. The album would be the last Styx studio release with longtime producer Gary Loizzo before his passing in 2016.

William Eric Evankovich is an American singer/songwriter and producer from Santa Rosa, California, best known for his performances with the Guess Who and rock duo Shaw Blades, his co-production of Tommy Shaw's 2011 debut bluegrass album The Great Divide and for producing and co-writing Styx's sixteenth studio album, The Mission.

<i>Somewhere in California</i> (album) 2011 studio album by Night Ranger

Somewhere in California is the tenth studio album by American hard rock band Night Ranger, released on June 21, 2011. It is the first album since the departure of original guitarist Jeff Watson in 2007. The album introduces new guitarist Joel Hoekstra and keyboardist Eric Levy. Although the previous three releases are regarded as different and more experimental for Night Ranger, this album has been noted as somewhat of a return to the signature Night Ranger sound from the successful 1980s releases. The first single and video from the album is "Growin' Up in California".

Revolution Saints is an American supergroup conceptualized by Frontiers Records president Serafino Perugino, and formed by Jack Blades of Night Ranger, Damn Yankees and Shaw Blades; Deen Castronovo formerly of Wild Dogs, Journey, Cacophony, Marty Friedman, Joey Tafolla, The Dead Daisies, Ozzy Osbourne, Bad English and Hardline; and Doug Aldrich of Whitesnake, Dio, Hurricane, Lion, Bad Moon Rising, Burning Rain, House of Lords and The Dead Daisies.

<i>Crash of the Crown</i> 2021 studio album by Styx

Crash of the Crown‎ is the seventeenth studio album by American rock band Styx. The album was released on June 18, 2021, by Universal Music Enterprises. The album charted for one week on the US Billboard 200 album chart, peaking at #114 on July 3, 2021.


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  10. 1 2 "Larry Jordan Videography". mvdbase.com. Retrieved October 1, 2011.
  11. "Ethan Russell Videography". mvdbase.com. Retrieved May 1, 2012.
  12. "Ethan Russell Videography". mvdbase.com. Retrieved February 26, 2017.
  13. "Piers Plowden Videography". mvdbase.com. Retrieved February 26, 2017.