May's Classic Rock Record of the Month - Poison - Open Up and Say... Ahh!
Hair metal legends Poison were one of the definitive bands to carry the torch for the genre from the mid-80's into the early 90's. Formed in Pennsylvania in 1983 by longtime friends Bret Michaels and drummer Rikki Rockett, the lineup was eventually rounded out by bassist Bobby Dall and guitarist C.C. Deville. Originally calling themselves Paris, the group soon changed their name and moved to Los Angeles with the intention of breaking through.
Poison signed their first deal with Enigma Records in 1986 for around $30,000 and released their debut album, Look What the Cat Dragged In, later that year. The record sold 4 million copies worldwide and had four singles, three of them charting on the Billboard Hot 100.
Open Up and Say... Ahh! is Poison's masterpiece. Released on May 3rd, 1988, it was their second full-length record. The record features two of the band's biggest hits, including their first #1 single "Every Rose Has Its Thorn" (Billboard Hot 100) and "Nothin' But a Good Time" (#6 on Billboard Hot 100). It sold 8 million copies and reached #2 on the American charts. Tom Werman (Mötley Crüe, Ted Nugent) produced the record which was mixed and mastered at Conway Recording Studios in Los Angeles. Also charting on the Billboard Hot 100 were singles "Fallen Angel" at #12 and the Loggins & Messina cover "Your Mama Don't Dance", which went to #10.
We chose the reissue of Open Up and Say... Ahh! for May because it's a Limited-Edition red-colored vinyl, and to highlight one of the most recognizable and longest-lasting hair metal acts out there. It's the most cohesive album Poison released and this awesome re-pressing is a great way to experience some of party rock's best anthems!
B.T.R.C. - Rudy Newman
What critics had to say about Open Up and Say... Ahh!
"Based on just the album cover and title alone, Open Up and Say… Ahh! screams "quintessential hair metal." Add in weekend-warrior anthem "Nothin' But a Good Time" and Number One single "Every Rose Has Its Thorn," and you have a genre classic. The latter tune, from the opening acoustic strums, to the lighter-waving chorus, to singer Bret Michaels' shirtless sigh as he rolls out of bed at the beginning of the music video, is a master-class in Eighties metal power balladry, and has since been tackled by everyone from Miley Cyrus to Tom Cruise."
Rolling Stone - "50 Greatest Hair Metal Albums of All Time"