Wednesday, November 5, 2008


I am just blown away by the recent story I just read at Spectator online. It's nothing earthshattering mind you, just that one of the singers I idolized back in high school, and throughout most of my time as a wannabe singer myself, is making wine. Geoff Tate, frontman for Seattle-based metal band Queensryche, is teaming up with the husband-and-wife team at Three Rivers Winery to make a wine called, interestingly enough, Insania.

I first thought wine was cool when years ago, I read that Sammy Hagar was a huge collector, with a deep cellar of some 8,000 bottles. And that dude sang with Montrose! Then, as a big Tool fan (stop snickering you b-holes), I discovered that Maynard was not only a big wine geek (he even has an impressive vertical of Grange) but he is an aspiring winemaker (see Caduceus Vineyards and Arizona Stronghold Vineyards).

So Geoff Tate, the guy whose voice I really emulated back in the day, is at it too. It's pretty cool, but I wonder if it's an age thing. I mean, Hagar is up there, Maynard is in his 40s (like me) and Geoff is closing in on the big 5-0. I wonder what the attraction is for rock singers (Vince Neil has his own wine too) and wine. Maybe it's because the girls like wine. I don't know. I do know that Three Rivers is no slouch in the biz. They make some pretty nice reds up there in WA. Maybe that's what Geoff meant by the song "I Dream in Infrared." (Yeah, that's probably a stretch.)

It's funny how even now, wine can conjure up memories of standing in the middle of my room, "training" myself to sing along with "Take Hold of the Flame," or actually covering "Jet City Woman" in my cover band, Perfect Tommy (which is still going strong down in North Carolina in one of its newest incarnations). Although I think the wine that really makes me remember all of that stuff is beer.

More power to ya, Geoff. Tomorrow might find me listening to Rage for Order and knocking back some Washington State wine (like maybe an Andrew Will or L'Ecole red). As for all you metalheads, past and present, check out Spectator's wine talk with Geoff Tate.

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