Steel Panther is back with more hilarious metal music—and a rockin’ tour. The funsters are ready for some on-stage mayhem in Baltimore
If you’ve never been to a Steel Panther show, the group’s lead singer, who goes by the stage
name Michael Starr, wants you to know it’s long past time to do so. Fortunately, the satirical
metal band will be rolling into Rams Head Live! in Baltimore on March 14.
For the uninitiated, the Panther’s catalog contains hilariously naughty lyrics that even Tipper Gore couldn’t have imagined when she insisted on those “Parental Advisory” stickers. A select few: “Bukkake Tears,” “That’s What Girls Are For,” “Asian Hooker” and “Eatin’ Ain’t Cheatin’.”
You’ve been warned…or perhaps entreated.
“It’s not like radio is ever going to play ‘Never Too Late (To Get Some Pussy Tonight)’, so you
have to spread the word like herpes and let everyone know we’re coming back,” Starr said on a
recent phone call.
“Never Too Late (To Get Some Pussy Tonight)” is the opening track from the band’s new album, called “On the Prowl,” which hits the streets Feb. 24. Indeed, Starr says the chance for an assignation is always there, even very late in the evening.
“Even when the birds start chirping and you’re out of blow, you can still go find some pussy,” Starr said. “And it’s safer for you than taking Xanax…especially if you’re buying it off the street because it could have fentanyl in it. You gotta be careful these days.”
In addition to such sage advice about knowing where your drugs come from, Starr reminds music fans that the opposite sex can be the magical medicine for, well, pretty much anything.
“‘Oh, I got a headache,’ [or] ‘my back hurts.’ Find a chick!” he said. “Sometimes you’ll end up partying and alone in a bathroom doing blow, [then] you just put on a Steel Panther song—and that’s when you realize it’s never too late to get some pussy tonight.”
“On the Prowl” hitting stores so close on the heels of Valentine’s Day is no coincidence, says Starr, considering that the band is all about “having a good time with somebody.” Anybody.
“Steel Panther promotes love, being together, drinking, partying, staying up all night, and that’s what Valentine’s Day is all about,” he said of the recent holiday.
In addition to “Never Too Late (To Get Some Pussy Tonight),” the new album contains the equally un-PC “Put My Money Where Your Mouth Is,” “Is My Dick Big Enough?” and “Magic Vagina.” As with Steel Panther’s earlier releases, their songs are both tongue-in-cheek as well as purposely over-the-top. And loud, as befits a metal band who refuses to ever grow up. One of the most riotous songs on the new album is “1987,” a middle-aged man’s lament for a return to the folly of youth—long before “the Snappy-chats” came along, as Starr sings.
“It’s basically a love story about a time when things were different,” Starr said of “1987.” “We decided to take a look back at 1987 because it was a great time. ‘Oh my God, dude, I can’t believe I wore that shirt!’ People didn’t have a cellphone to bury their heads in. People were watching music videos on MTV.”
But 1987 is now an astonishing 36 years in the rearview. While Starr and his bandmates remain unapologetic about their love of the metal music that raised them, he nonetheless acknowledges the culture has essentially moved on.
“Shit changes, and as you get older you’re able to look back and think about all the good times you’ve had in your life,” said Starr. “But when you’re going through it you don’t realize it does have a shelf life. I thought heavy metal would last forever, and man it was only three years shortly after that everything changed,” which was when grunge and the Seattle sound essentially took over the world.
However, the love for metal remains, both for the Panther and their rabid fan base. Yes, the height of metal is decades in the past, and Starr and his bandmates are older, but you’re never too old to rock. That’s the theme behind the fist-pumper “Ain’t Dead Yet.”
“I look at myself and think, I’m almost 60 years old, bro,” Starr said. “My right knee hurts really bad, I got arthritis in my fingers, I have a couple extra chins. But then I think, you know what, the girls don’t care. They still want to rock; just use your other fingers, you know what I mean?”
He advises fans—or anyone, for that matter—to grab life by the horns so as not to have regrets later on. Many people don’t realize what brings them joy until too late, Starr said, but he’s fortunate to have found his happy place.
However, he needs to stretch out more now before a gig to be kind to his aging body. The frontman also takes more vitamins, consumes more fiber and makes sure to drink enough water to keep the rock machine rolling on.
“Man, when I was younger I didn’t give a shit about that. All I needed was a beer and some blow and I was ready to rock,” Starr said. However, he’s got a new pre-show and during-show routine. “I don’t do any drugs before the show; I wait till the guitar solo to do some blow and maybe have some shots.
“And then I wait till after the show to really get into it. Every now and then we’ll ask for a hooker,
but most runners know how to get that.”
The Rams Head Live! crowd will also be introduced to the band’s new bassist, called Spyder, who is taking over from Steel Panther founding member Lexxi Foxx, who left the group in 2021 to spend more time with family.
“Get your webs ready because he’s going to kick your ass,” Starr said of Spyder. He added that the band remains on good terms with Foxx and hopes at some point to play with him again.
“Our hats are off to [Foxx because] he saved all his money. I haven’t, so I’m looking forward to this tour [so I can] move out of my mom’s house finally.”
The covid pandemic notwithstanding, the Panther has issued a new album roughly every two to three years. Their last was 2019’s “Heavy Metal Rules,” and the band is set to tear up a countrywide swath of metallic mayhem in support of “On the Prowl”—including their March 14 stop in the area.
“D.C. has been a supporter of Steel Panther since the getgo,” Starr said. “When we put out ‘Feel the Steel’ [in 2009] we did radio out there. We played the Rams Head Live! every year for every record that we’ve done.
“Everyone’s always supported us out there, so we’re looking forward to a great fucking show.”
Steel Panther plays the Rams Head Live! in Baltimore March 14 at 7:30 p.m. For tickets visit RamsHeadLive.com. “On the Prowl,” which comes out Feb. 24, is available for pre-order from SteelPantherRocks.com.
A native of New Jersey, Eric Althoff has published articles in “The Washington Post,” “Los Angeles Times,” “Napa Valley Register,” “Black Belt,” DCist, ScreenComment.com and Luxe Getaways. He produced the Emmy-winning documentary, “The Town That Disappeared Overnight,” and has covered the Oscars live at the Dolby Theater. He lives in Fredericksburg, Virginia, with his wife, Victoria.
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