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STEEL PANTHER: we haven’t been affected by cancel culture

'people that come to our shows, they know what to expect'


In an interview with Canada’s The Metal Voice, singer Michael Starr of California glam metal band STEEL PANTHER — whose songs contain what some critics say are racist, misogynistic and lewd lyrics — was asked if he and his bandmates have been affected by “cancel culture”, a term which describes efforts to shun, silence or demonetize people who express unpopular beliefs. He responded: “No, not really. I mean, I don’t wanna say ‘not really.’ I would just say… I mean, the only pushback we got was for a plug-in that (STEEL PANTHER guitarist) Satchel designed called the ‘Pussy Melter‘. And it was on the TC Electronic web site and a girl guitar player saw it and she got extremely offended by it. And she wrote the company and they took the plug-in off because one person was upset with it. And so Satchel came up with the idea, and he said, ‘Why don’t we just make a fucking guitar pedal?’ So we got into the guitar pedal business. Man, that thing flew off the shelves so quick. ‘Cause people were trying to cancel us. We only made, like, I think, ten thousand of ’em or something — just a small order of ’em. Because it’s expensive to get that capital to make ’em all. So we made, like, ten thousand and we made it a limited edition and it cut off at a certain number. And we sold ’em all in, like, two weeks. And so that (was a situation where) somebody tried to cancel us — like a subcategory of us — and it kind of backfired on them.”

Starr went on to say that people who attend STEEL PANTHER concerts are fully aware of what they are going to see at the performances, including girls being invited girls up on stage to flash their breasts and single-entendre lyrics that seemingly objectify women and demean everybody.

“People that come to our shows, they know what to expect,” Michael explained. “No one walks off the street and just goes, ‘Oh, that looks like a fun show. I’m gonna go in.’ And they buy a ticket and go in and go, ‘Oh my God! I am so offended by them saying ‘fuck’,’ or whatever. ‘They said ‘Asian hooker’. That’s so racist.’ People that come know what they’re coming into. They know they’re coming to a show where they’re gonna laugh and hear some profane, politically incorrect humor. And if it’s their first time (seeing the band), it’s because their friend brought ’em. And people are pretty aware of what’s going on. So I think everyone is there for the same party. So we reallyreally haven’t experienced any of that (cancel culture).”

Starr added: “Our shows have been selling out on this tour. And I like to attribute it to how great my hair looks. But it’s not that. It’s more like people are sick of not being heard. And people are sick of fucking getting bullshitted and they want something that they can count on.

“You go to a sports game and, for the most part, you can count on it being an even match. The refs may fuck up a couple of calls. At the end of the day, at the end, somebody wins and somebody loses. There’s truth to that. And when you come see us, at the end of the day, you’re gonna get drunk, you’re gonna laugh and you’re gonna have a good time. You can’t argue with that. And I think people really wanna just do that.”

Less than two years ago, Satchel lamented the current stage of the world when asked about the future of comedy and entertainment during an appearance on the “2020’d” podcast. At the time, he said: “I know that wokeism is out of control and cancel culture is out of control right now, but people love to laugh and people love to be able to speak their fucking mind. And you can’t be funny, I think, if you can’t push the envelope a little bit and joke about shit that you’re not supposed to joke about. And that’s one of the things that is great about the differences in people — being able to joke about cultural differences. Because there’s huge differences between black and white culture, there’s huge differences between Asian culture and black culture, or gay culture and heterosexual culture. Gay guys are fucking hilarious; they’re really funny. And I don’t understand a lot of it, but they’re funny as fuck. I’m not gay, so I don’t suck dicks, but, to me, the whole idea of being gay is very funny, and there’s a lot of funny shit in that.

“Listen, stereotypes are stereotypes because they are fucking funny,” he explained. “It’s funny to joke about Asian people being bad drivers, ’cause there’s a lot of ’em.”

Satchel went on to say that STEEL PANTHER concerts provide a safe space for people to make fun of all situations and individuals equally without fear of offending someone.

“One of the things that I love about being in STEEL PANTHER, and one of the things I love about our shows, is that people who go to our show, and it doesn’t matter whether they’re white or black, or male or female, or gay or hetero, they go to our show because they love that they’re in a place where everybody’s… The playing field is level, because we make fun of everybody, and everybody can laugh at everything, and you don’t have to worry about it,” he said. “And you don’t have to watch what you say because everybody can joke about everything. Everybody’s in on it, so everybody has fun. And it really lets everybody let their guard down and everybody can have fucking fun.

“When you’re out in public normally, most people are very aware of what they can and can’t say in this day and age,” he added. “And God, that gets fucking old after a while. Most people are just, like, ‘Fuck, I just wanna cuss and make fun of a gay person for once. Come on.'”

STEEL PANTHER‘s sixth studio album, “On The Prowl”, was released on February 24.

The band’s “On The Prowl” world tour 2023 kicked off in February and will run throughout North America through April. CROBOT and TRAGEDY are joining the band on the trek. STEEL PANTHER will take a short break before bringing the party to the United Kingdom and Ireland in May.

In September, STEEL PANTHER announced the addition of Spyder as the band’s new bassist.

The group’s music has been described as “VAN HALEN meets MÖTLEY CRÜE meets RATT meets ‘Wayne’s World’, complete with operatic shrieks, misogyny, shredding guitar solos and libidinal overdrive.”

Fifteen years ago, STEEL PANTHER changed its name from METAL SKOOL to its current moniker and shifted the focus of its act from ’80s metal covers to originals.

Also watch the previously released “Never Too Late (To Get Some Pussy Tonight)” below (age restricted in some areas).

‘On The Prowl‘ will be released digitally and on CD, Cassette, and 2 different color variant records. Purple/Blue Marble is wide and Pink/Purple Marble will be a limited edition signed. All versions will be the entire 13 song album.

Tracklisting ‘On The Prowl’1) Never Too Late2) Friends With Benefits3) On Your Instagram4) Put My Money Where Your Mouth Is5) 19876) Teleporter7) Is My D**k Enough (feat. Dweezil Zappa)8) Magical Vagina9) All That And More10) One Pump Chump11) Pornstar12) Ain’t Dead Yet13) Sleeping On The Rollaway

Pre-order ‘On The Prowl’ AT THIS LOCATION.

To celebrate the release of “1987”STEEL PANTHER has also announced a massive world tour. The “On The Prowl” world tour 2023 is set to kick off in February and will run throughout North America through April. CROBOT and TRAGEDY will be joining the band on the North American tour. The band will take a short break before bringing the party to the United Kingdom and Ireland in May.

“On The Prowl” 2023 tour dates:

Support act: Winger (USA)May 14: Glasgow, UK – O2 AcademyMay 15: Newcastle, UK – O2 City HallMay 17: Manchester, UK – AcademyMay 18: Birmingham, UK – O2 AcademyMay 20: London, UK – O2 Forum Kentish TownMay 21: Bristol, UK – O2 AcademyMay 23: Leeds, UK – O2 Academy

Support act: TBCMay 25: Belfast, UK – Ulster HallMay 26: Cork, IE – Cyprus AvenueMay 28: Dublin, IE – Vicar Street

Jun 3: Nurnberg, Germany – Rock Am RingJun 4: Nurnberg, Germany – Rock Am Park

Earlier this year, STEEL PANTHER singer Michael Starr spoke to the “Everblack” podcast about his relationship with the band’s original bassist Lexxi Foxx who left the band in July 2021. “I just talked to him today,” Michael said. “He’s doing good, man. He did exactly what he wanted to do. He started a family. He’s living in Chicago. Him and his wife just had a baby. So Lexxi Foxx is not gay. I thought he was gay this whole time. It’s so weird.”

Starr continued: “The party never stops. Just because he’s not on tour doesn’t mean he’s fucking having a good time. And we miss him. I fucking miss him. And we still stay in touch and talk. We talk just about every other day — just stay in touch with one another. I mean, we were together for 27 years, 26 years, and we know each other’s moms and dads and all of our cousins. We know everything about one another. So it’s been really, really sad not having him in the band, but I understand why he’s doing what he’s doing. And he was one of the smart guys — he saved up all his money. Not me — I’m still living at my mom’s. Let’s go.”

In September, STEEL PANTHER announced the addition of Spyder as the band’s new bassist.

Photo credit: David Jackson

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