What do AC/DC, Black Sabbath, Fleetwood Mac, Motley Crue, Van Halen, Jefferson Airplane, Pink Floyd, Foreigner, Deep Purple, Journey, The Moody Blues, Judas Priest, Styx and Milwaukee’s 5 Card Studs all have in common?
“All of these bands changed lead singers," says drummer
Matt Liban Asti Spumanti (all of the band members have stage names). "Nothing lasts forever. And most have done quite well after a frontman change. We’ll see what happens."
Spumanti is referring to the 5 Card Studs’ change in lead singers after longtime favorite
Chris Tishler Cesar Palace decided to hang up the schmaltz after 25 years and 1,500 performances at festivals, concert series, wedding receptions and large-scale corporate events.
“No one likes change, because it's easier to like what you know. On that same hand, no one can or should fault Cesar for making the decision to step down,” says vocalist
Amy O'Neill Rocky Mountains.
Thus, the Studs welcomed a new lead singer,
Tommy Hahn Rex Caliber, who debuted in early May. Caliber also doubles as the band’s bass guitar player.
Hahn, ahem Caliber, is a musical theater professional, vocal instructor and rocker. He was the frontman of the '80s-inspired, power pop band, Revolush, and has performed with Skylight Music Theater, The Milwaukee Repertory and starred in "Dee Snider's Rock & Roll Christmas Tale," at the Chicago Playhouse.
Band members agree that Caliber is the perfect replacement for the Studs lead singer and should appeal to new and longtime fans.
"We auditioned a few guys who were very talented, but we needed the perfect fit for our style and genre. Rex is that guy," says guitarist/vocalist
Jeff Benske Blake Tahoe. "It’s really not that different, but it was a welcome change. Rex has a great vocal range, so we're excited to introduce new songs that showcase his vocals."
The '70s-style, festive band – that self-describes as "music for sexy people, by sexy people" – has a spankin' new website and a loaded schedule this summer. Upcoming gigs include Friday, June 11 at Action in Jackson Village Park (Jackson, Wis.); Saturday, June 12 at Mequon/Thiensville Lions Days; Saturday, June 19 at Biergarten in Regner Park (West Bend, Wis); Saturday, July 3 at Sprecherfest in Glendale. For the band's full summer schedule go here.
"The shakeup has injected fresh, new energy," says bassist/vocalist
Paul Jonas, Reno Nevada. "We are excited to play music again, better than ever!"
Molly Snyder started writing and publishing her work at the age 10, when her community newspaper printed her poem, "The Unicorn.” Since then, she's expanded beyond the subject of mythical creatures and written in many different mediums but, nearest and dearest to her heart, thousands of articles for OnMilwaukee.
Molly is a regular contributor to FOX6 News and numerous radio stations as well as the co-host of "Dandelions: A Podcast For Women.” She's received five Milwaukee Press Club Awards, served as the Pfister Narrator and is the Wisconsin State Fair’s Celebrity Cream Puff Eating Champion of 2019.