Icon (band)

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Icon
Origin Phoenix, Arizona
Genres Heavy metal, glam metal, hard rock
Years active 1979–1990, 2008–present
Labels Capitol Records
Atlantic Records
Website http://www.myspace.com/officialiconpage
Members Dan Wexler
Stephen Clifford
Dave Henzerling
John Aquilino
Gary Bruzzese
Past members Tracy Wallach
John Covington
Pat Dixon
Steven Young
Jerry Harrison
Kevin Stoller
Drew Bollmann
David Lauser
Scott Hammons
Sheldon Tarsha

Icon is an American heavy metal/glam metal band that formed in 1979, disbanding in 1990. Icon has fully reformed as of 2008, currently consisting of three-fifths of the classic lineup: Dan Wexler (guitar), Stephen Clifford (lead vocals), and John Aquilino (guitar), along with Dave Henzerling (bass), and Gary Bruzzese (drums).

History[edit]

Formation[edit]

Originally known as The Schoolboys in 1979 (maybe earlier), Icon was formed in 1981, in Phoenix, Arizona by high school friends Dan Wexler (guitar), Stephen Clifford (lead vocals) and Tracy Wallach (bass). They were joined by Dave Henzerling (guitar) and John Covington (drums). Schoolboys released an EP Singin' Shoutin' and had a few songs on compilation albums. In 1984, Icon was signed to Capitol Records. By this point, Henzerling and Covington had left the band and were replaced by John Aquilino (guitar) and Pat Dixon (drums).

Background[edit]

In 1984, Icon released their self-titled debut, Icon and toured heavily to support it. The tour set list featured quite a few new songs intended for the next album as well as a few Deep Purple ("Highway Star") and Judas Priest covers. In 1985, Night of the Crime was released, produced by Eddie Kramer, mixed by Ron Nevison and featuring the songwriting talent of Bob Halligan Jr.. During the mixing of the album, vocalist Stephen Clifford decided to leave the band for personal reasons. Regrouping, the band tried out a few different vocalists, lost their record deal and released a local-only cassette called A More Perfect Union, featuring a polished pop-rock sound, a new singer (Jerry Harrison) and a keyboardist (Kevin Stoller). Although it was only released locally, it garnered enough attention to renew major-label interest in the group.

In 1989, Right Between the Eyes was released on Atlantic/Megaforce, with Jerry Harrison on vocals and Drew Bollmann on second guitar. A video for "Taking My Breath Away" was played on MTV's Headbangers' Ball. Following the release of Right Between the Eyes and a supporting tour in the US opening for Ace Frehley and in the UK for King´s X, the later included David Lauser on drums (currently Sammy Hagar's drummer) replacing Dixon, Icon disbanded. Singer Harrison recorded with a new project called Harlequin. The other band members continued to be involved in music projects; guitarist Dan Wexler in particular wrote and recorded with Alice Cooper (who had performed backing vocals on "Holy Man's War" from Right Between the Eyes). In 1994, (An Even) More Perfect Union—an expanded version of A More Perfect Union, including tracks recorded for potential release on Right Between the Eyes—was released on CD. Icon also did a project together with lead singer Randy Baker, founder of the original Strange Daze a Tribute to the Doors[1] band which included a 4 song demo and performing live.[2] According to Baker, the project was "suggested by mutual management which in retrospect was a bad idea and lost me a record deal. As they were crashing and burning they took me with them."[3]

Icon was one of those few bands that historically many feel never got enough credit and has been ranked as one of the most underrated heavy rock bands of the 80's by fans.

2008 Reunion[edit]

In August 2008, Icon celebrated their reunion with a re-issue of a 1984 Bootleg Concert on DVD. Original members Wexler, Aquilino and Dixon, along with former member Dave Henzerling and new singer Scott Hammons had plans to record new material potentially for a new album.

On November 29, 2008, Icon opened up for Tesla at the Dodge Theatre in their home town of Phoenix, AZ. They received a very warm reception. Copies of their 1984 DVD were signed and sold and the band promised that new material was on the way. 93.3 KDKB, the local rock station, plugged Icon as a band they love yet rarely play.

In May 2009, singer Scott Hammons decided to pursue a solo career so he decided to leave the band and was replaced with former Adler's Appetite vocalist Sheldon Tarsha, with whom the band played at Rocklahoma and opened for Queensryche in 2010. Previous plans to record new songs, possibly for a new album, still exist, however Tarsha has left the band and original singer Stephen Clifford has re-entered the picture.

There is a possibility both the original self-titled album Icon and Night of the Crime will be re-released in the near future.

Side projects[edit]

Wexler participated in other musical projects after Icon's disbandment, most notably co-writing several tracks with Alice Cooper. Henzerling was one of the guitarists for Carmine Appice's band 'King Kobra', and also played on the Lizzy Borden album "Master of Disguise" and later joined forces with Wexler and Dixon in the band Tomcats.

Members[edit]

Discography[edit]

Studio albums[edit]

Other releases[edit]

  • An Even More Perfect Union (CD release) (1995) set to be re-issued in 2009
  • 1984 Live Bootleg official concert CD and VHS (1999) - reissue (DVD) (2008)

References[edit]

  1. ^ http://www.youtube.com/user/strangedaze81
  2. ^ http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=od_ltSHhtMU
  3. ^ http://www.last.fm/music/Bad+RandaLL/+videos/+1-ph7a_oI3mxE

External links[edit]