How can you not love Bret Michaels? Any 80s hair metal star that makes it through the Aqua Net haze and it still relevant two decades later is doing something right. Michaels has recently been in the news due to a near-fatal brain hemorrhage that put him in the hospital and on the cover of People magazine. He spent almost two weeks in the ICU but is expected to make a full recovery.
Michaels rose to fame as the lead singer of 80s hair metal band Poison. His long blonde hair and eyeliner infested blue eyes made him the perfect front man for one of the most notorious party bands from the decade of decadence. Poison’s debut album Look What The Cat Dragged In was released in 1986 and contained their breakout hit, “Talk Dirty To Me.” In 1988 the band released the song “Every Rose Had Its Thorn” about Michaels’ breakup with Tracy Lewis, which would become one of the most recognized rock power ballads in music history.
“Every Rose” was on their most successful album entitled Open Up and Say… Ahh! Released in 1988 through the Enigma label of Capitol Records, Open Up ultimately sold ten million copies worldwide and spawned three other hit singles including “Nothin’ but a Good Time,” “Your Mama Don’t Dance,” and “Fallen Angel.” In 1990, the band released Flesh & Blood which produced hits like “Ride The Wind” and “Life Goes On.”
In recent years Michaels has released solo albums that have leaned more to the country and blues genres and have generated hits like “All I Ever Needed” and “Nothing To Lose.”
Besides being known as a rock star, Michaels gained a whole new genre of fans and threw himself into the mainstream by starring in the VH1 reality show Rock of Love which spanned three seasons (2007, 2008 and 2009). While there was no question that Michaels loves the typical rock and roll elements such as women, booze, stripper poles and Ed Hardy clothes, there was a question about whether or not those blonde locks are really his. Either way he has become a fixture on reality television and currently appears as a contestant on the reality television series Celebrity Apprentice 3. Michaels’ next show will take a break from the boozy porn star nutjobs and take a look at his struggle to balance his family with his rock and roll lifestyle in VH1’s Life As I Know It.
Regardless if you are a Poison fan or a reality television show watcher, Bret Michaels is hard to ignore. Even with his salon commercial hair that may or may not be real and his ever-rotating bandanas, he is still well-spoken and charming. We will be hearing “Every Rose Has Its Thorn” and “Nothin’ But A Good Time” for many years to come and Bret Michaels is the reason for that. I’m definitely glad to hear that a brain hemorrhage didn’t turn our rock and roll hero into someone to remember and that instead he is still someone to watch. And you should be too.