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|Origin||Los Angeles, California, U.S.|
|Years active||1981–1987, 2000–2002, 2016–present|
|Members|| Dave Alford |
Steven St. James
|Past members|| Paul Shortino |
Jake E. Lee
Rough Cutt is an American heavy metal band from Los Angeles, California, United States, who released two studio albums on Warner Bros. Records in the mid-1980s.Rough Cutt never achieved the commercial success enjoyed by many other Los Angeles bands of that time but various members went on to success in other groups, including Jake E. Lee with Ozzy Osbourne, Amir Derakh with Orgy, Paul Shortino with Quiet Riot, and Craig Goldy and Claude Schnell with Dio.
The current line-up of Rough Cutt, which debuted on November 29, 2019 at the Bossanova Ballroom in Portland, Oregon is drummer Dave Alford, first guitarist Chris Hager, second guitarist Darren Housholder (Shrapnel Records recording artist, Love/Hate, War & Peace), bassist Jeff Buehner (The Loyal Order), and lead vocalist Steven St. James.
The first Rough Cutt line-up featured vocalist Paul Shortino, drummer Dave Alford, guitarist Jake E. Lee, keyboardist Claude Schnell, and bassist Joey Cristofanilli.Both Lee and Alford had also previously been in another Los Angeles band, Ratt. Both Schnell and Cristofanilli had previously been in the band Magic.
Two other former Ratt members and bandmates in Sarge, guitarist Chris Hager and bassist Matt Thorne a.k.a. Matt Thorr (who replaced Cristofanilli) would also soon join Rough Cutt. After his departure, Cristofanilli temporarily joined Ratt himself, later joining forces with members of the band Sin who went on to release the album Made In Heaven under the name Jag Wire in 1985.
Lee left Rough Cutt in 1982, auditioned for, and was hired briefly by the band Dio, and then replaced the deceased Randy Rhoads as Ozzy Osbourne's guitarist. Lee in turn was replaced by Craig Goldy, formerly of the San Diego band Vengeance.Ronnie James Dio greatly influenced the development of the band. Dio's wife Wendy Dio was the group's manager, and Dio himself helped write one of the band's songs. Rough Cutt contributed two tracks, "A Little Kindness" and "Used & Abused", both produced by Dio and featuring Jake E Lee on guitar, to the compilation album L.A's Hottest Unsigned Bands, issued in 1983. Another Dio-produced track, "Try A Little Harder", with Goldy on guitar featured on the KLOS 95 1/2: Rock to Riches compilation, along with another Wendy Dio project NuHaven, released later on in 1983. Goldy soon left the band, and went on to play in Giuffria, and later in Dio's band. Goldy was replaced by Amir Derakh, another San Diego band alumnus.
With the line-up solidified with Shortino, Alford, Derakh, Hager, and Thorne, Rough Cutt was signed to Warner Bros. Records in 1984.The band gained national exposure when they appeared on the 'Rock Palace' TV show performing the songs "Crank It Up", "Dreamin' Again", "Street Gang Livin'", and "Try A Little Harder." Hosted by comedian Howie Mandel, the recording took place on January 1, 1984 at the Hollywood Palace, now the Avalon Hollywood. Rough Cutt also made their way to Europe showcasing at London's famed Marquee Club on April 13, 1984 and playing a badly promoted show at the Fabrik in Hamburg, Germany, both well in advance of recording their first studio album.
After waiting around for a year to work with producer Ted Templeman, who had signed the band to Warner Bros. but was busy with David Lee Roth, Eric Clapton and Aerosmith at the time, Rough Cutt decided to record their debut album, Rough Cutt (1985), with Tom Allom instead.The band toured extensively in the United States as an opening act supporting Krokus on their The Blitz tour, alongside Accept, followed by an extensive trek with Dio on their Sacred Heart tour, which lasted from August through December 1985. Rough Cutt were also part of the Super Rock '85 festival bill on August 10, 1985 at Odaiba-Undohiroba in Odaiba, Tokyo, Japan, sharing the stage with headliners Dio, Foreigner, Mama's Boys, Sting, and Japanese act, Earthshaker. The show was commemorated with a VHS release titled Super Rock In Japan '85; Rough Cutt was featured with four songs from their debut album, "Black Widow", "Take Her", "Dreamin' Again", and "Piece of My Heart."
Veteran producer Jack Douglas of Aerosmith fame guided the band's follow-up effort Wants You! (1986).Rough Cutt joined Dio on the last date of their Sacred Heart tour at the R.C. Coliseum in San Juan, Puerto Rico on October 10, 1986 and once again made their way to Japan. While in Japan, Shortino made the decision to leave the band due to internal differences about what direction their music should take, Rough Cutt's manager Wendy Dio introduced Shortino to Quiet Riot and engineered a deal for him to step in as their new lead singer in place of Kevin DuBrow who had been fired. Shortino was briefly replaced by Parramore McCarty of Warrior before Rough Cutt called it quits. Derakh, Thorne and Alford re-grouped with singer Danny Simon and guitarist Michael Raphael to form Jailhouse, releasing a live EP, Alive in a Mad World, in 1989; while Hager would team up with Jeff Warner of Black 'N Blue in Woop & the Count. Thorne was also briefly a member of L.A. Rocks, renamed Eyes once vocalist James Christian entered the fray, while Derakh found major success with self-proclaimed death pop band Orgy in the late 1990s.
In 1996, DeRock Records released Rough Cutt Live which contained three new studio cuts, "House of Pain", "Prowler", and "Peyote", as bonus tracks. The same label would also issue a full-length studio album by Rough Cutt offshoot Jailhouse in 1998, with all five songs from the 1989 Alive in a Mad World EP added as bonus tracks.
Shortino reformed Rough Cutt in 2000 with an all-new lineup that included former Aerosmith guitarist Jimmy Crespo, keyboardist James 'J.T.' Garrett, Shortino's former Quiet Riot bandmate bassist Sean McNabb, and Magnitude 9 drummer John Homan. The band announced the release of an EP, titled Sneak Peek, in 2000 but it was canceled and expanded into a full length-album instead. Sacred Place was released in 2002 under the name Paul Shortino's The Cutt on Shortino's own MusicWorks Entertainment label and featured additional contributions by guitarists Brad Gillis, Carlos Cavazo, Howard Leese, and Dave Whiston as well as bassists Chuck Wright and Jason Boyleston.
The classic Warner Bros. era line-up of Rough Cutt reformed for a one-off reunion show in October 2002 at the Viper Room in Hollywood with Shortino, Alford, Derakh, Hager, and Thorne performing together once again.
In late 2005, Wounded Bird Records re-issued both Rough Cutt Warner Bros. studio albums as a two-for-one single disc, Rough Cutt/Rough Cutt Wants You. British label Rock Candy re-issued remastered versions of both albums in 2016, complete with 16-page full color booklets, 3500 word essays about the making of the album with new band member interviews, and enhanced artwork.
In 2008, Deadline Records issued the double disc Anthology consisting of pre- and post-Warner Bros. era demos and a live set recorded in Syracuse, New York in 1985.In October 2019, 10 songs from the Fiddler's Studio Sessions portion of the Anthology were released as The Fiddler Sessions '84 on limited edition red vinyl, with only 300 copies made.
In 2016, the classic lineup of Shortino, Alford, Derakh, Hager, and Thorne reunited again. They played on the Monsters of Rock cruise in 2018.
2019 saw Shortino singing and playing lead guitar for Carlos Cavazo's Rough Riot and Alford and Hager began auditioning to complete the Rough Cutt line-up. After hiring vocalist Steven St. James, whom Hager had previously played with in Sarge in his pre-Rough Cutt days, the band added Buehner and then Housholder. After three rehearsals, the new Rough Cutt played its first live show as a band opening for L.A. Guns featuring Tracii Guns and Phil Lewis in Portland, Oregon at the Bossanova Ballroom on Black Friday, November 29, 2019. Rough Cutt closed its 10-song set by playing "You Wanna Be A Star," a song written by Hager, St. James, and Alford. According to Alford in an interview after the performance, the song aired on an episode of the 1980s television series Fame (1982 TV series), and has not been played live by Rough Cutt since the 1980s when arena audiences of the time failed to appreciate it.
Rough Cutt is currently writing and recording new music and is in negotiations with an unnamed record label.
Former Rough Cutt bassist Matt Thorne most recently played rhythm guitar with the band Platinum Overdose whose debut album, Murder In High Heels, was released on the Demon Doll label in August 2019.
Dio was an American heavy metal band formed in 1982 and led by vocalist Ronnie James Dio. Dio left Black Sabbath with intentions to form a new band with fellow former Black Sabbath member Vinny Appice, the band's drummer. The name Dio was chosen because it made sense from a commercial standpoint, as the name was already well known at that time.
King Kobra is an American hard rock band founded by drummer Carmine Appice after his tenure with Ozzy Osbourne from 1983 to 1984. For their first two albums, the band consisted of four relatively unknown musicians: vocalist Marcie Free, guitarist David Michael-Philips, guitarist Mick Sweda, and bassist Johnny Rod. After two albums on Capitol Records—Ready to Strike and Thrill of a Lifetime (1986)—and the independent release King Kobra III in 1988, Appice decided to dissolve the band and join guitarist John Sykes for his Blue Murder project in 1989.
Vapor Transmission is the second album by American Industrial rock band Orgy. It was released on October 10, 2000.
Hear 'n Aid was a charity record recorded by a large ensemble of 40 heavy metal musicians and released in 1986. The project was organized by Ronnie James Dio, Jimmy Bain, and Vivian Campbell, all from the band Dio. Proceeds from the album were used to raise money for famine relief in Africa.
Amir Davidson, known as Amir Derakh is an American musician & producer. He is currently the guitarist and the synthesizer player for the band Julien-K, and guitarist for the band Dead by Sunrise. He was once the guitar synthesizer player in the rock band Orgy, and has also played guitar in the bands Rough Cutt and Jailhouse.
Paul Shortino is an American rock singer and musician who has sung for Rough Cutt/The Cutt, Quiet Riot, Bad Boyz, and Shortino. He briefly recorded with J.K. Northrup as the duo Shortino/Northrup. He has also recorded as a solo artist, writing and performing the song "E.G.G.M.A.N." as the theme for Dr. Eggman in Sonic Adventure 2 for Sega and in Shadow the Hedgehog as "E.G.G.M.A.N. Doc Robeatnix Mix". Shortino recorded lead vocals for the Heavy Metal benefit project Hear 'n Aid in 1985. The single from this project, "Stars", also features lead vocals by heavy metal singers Ronnie James Dio, Rob Halford, Geoff Tate, Don Dokken, Kevin DuBrow, Eric Bloom and Dave Meniketti.
Thomas "Craig" Goldy is an American musician, best known as the guitarist of bands Dio and Giuffria.
Giuffria was an American rock band that was formed in 1981 by Gregg Giuffria after his departure from the band Angel, a glam/hard rock band from Washington, D.C..
Rough Cutt is the self-titled debut album of the 80's hard rock/heavy metal band of the same name. It was produced by Tom Allom, who is most famous for producing Judas Priest.
Wants You! is the second album of the band Rough Cutt. On certain versions/portions of the album, the full title appears as Rough Cutt Wants You!, as opposed to simply Wants You!.
Rough Cutt Live is a live album by the American heavy metal band Rough Cutt. The live album contains three new studio tracks.
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Matt Thorne, also known as Matt Thorr, is a bassist who has played in the glam metal band Ratt, Rough Cutt, and Jailhouse. He co-wrote the song "Back For More" with Stephen Pearcy on Ratt's album Out of the Cellar. He currently owns MT Studios for BlueThumbProductions in Burbank, California where he has produced, engineered and mixed albums for artists such as The Eels, Trapt, and 8th Day.
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Leonardo Gustavo Gimenez, better known by his stage name Oni Logan, is an Argentine American rock vocalist, best known as the original lead vocalist of the band Lynch Mob. He joined the band in 1990, only to leave after the release of the first album. He rejoined in the late 2000s, then subsequently left and rejoined several times, with his most recent exit being early 2018.
Anthology is a collection of previously unreleased Rough Cutt material.
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