Video from METALLIC‘s James Hetfield and Lars Ulrich to introduce RAVEN as their opening act at last night’s concert (Sunday, November 6) honoring the life, legacy and achievements of Megaforce Records founder Jon “Jonny Z” Zazula and his wife Marsha Zazula can be seen below.
During the show, which took place at the 7,000-seat Hard Rock Live at the Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino in Hollywood, Florida, the Bay Area metal legends played only songs from their first two albums, from 1983. “Kill Them All” and 1984’s “Ride the Lightning”both of which were originally released on mega force. On METALLICA’s first tour they opened for RAVENwhich was also originally signed with mega force.
A portion of the proceeds from this show will be donated in Johnny and marshaname to MusicCares, a safety net supporting the health and wellbeing of the music community with preventive, emergency and recovery programs for musicians and industry professionals. Additionally, Everything in my hands supported again Feeding South Florida with a donation after the show.
Jonny Z died in February at age 69. Johnny died of complications from the rare neuropathic condition chronic inflammatory demyelinating polyneuropathy (CIDP), chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) and osteopenia, his family said. marsha died of cancer in January last year.
mega force is widely credited with launching the career of METALLIC by releasing the band’s first two albums, 1983’s “Kill Them All” and 1984’s “Ride the Lightning”before METALLIC made a major label deal with electricity. mega force‘s selection also includes artists like ANTHRAX, TESTAMENT, OVERKILL, Ace Frehley, MINISTRY, KING’S X, STORMTROOPERS OF DEATH and RAVEN.
Born in 1952, Johnny began his extraordinary journey as a renegade boy who went from living on the streets of the Bronx in New York City to Wall Street and eventually (and unexpectedly) transitioned into the music business and discovered METALLIC, ANTHRAX and others.
After Wall Street, Jonny Z began selling records in a flea market store in 1981 to put food on the table for his family. The store, called Rock N’ Roll Heaven, eventually grew into a major record store that influenced the heavy metal movement as we know it today. In the winter of 1982, Jonny Z received an unexpected demo tape from an unsigned underground band called METALLIC. Eager and determined to let the music be heard all over the world, Johnny and marsha Founded mega force the following year and released “Kill Them All”. Because of this release mega force cemented its position as the de facto music label in America for heavy metal.
Jonthe acclaimed autobiography, “Heavy Tales: The Metal. The Music. The Madness. As Lived by Jon Zazula”was released in October 2019. The book tells the story of how the Zazula’s eventually ended up drawing a band that shaped the sound of heavy metal for decades to come.
Considered part of the “New Wave Of British Heavy Metal” movement of the early 1980s, RAVEN is perhaps best remembered for his pioneering tours of America in the early ’80s that featured groups like METALLIC and ANTHRAX their first encounter with the road.
RAVEN‘s albums “Rock Till You Drop”, “erased” and “All for One” has virtually invented both the speed metal and power metal genres, consistently pushing the boundaries while maintaining its unique sound and attack – both in the studio and in their true element: on stage.