My Top 10 Favourite Hair Metal Bands: Part 2

If you missed part 1, I sincerely recommend you catch up on no’s. 10-6 here:

My Top 10 Favourite Hair Metal Bands: Part 1

Now that you’ve caught up…on with the top 5!!!


The Band: Jani Lane (Vocals), Erik Turner (Guitar), Jerry Dixon (Bass), Steven Sweet (Drums), Joey Allen (Guitar)

The Album: Cherry Pie (1990)

The Song: Cherry Pie

Warrant – Cherry Pie

If you don’t know the song then you either weren’t born yet or hiding under a bush. The raunchy rocker catapulted Warrant into the stratosphere. Opening for bands e.g. Bon Jovi, Poison and Motley Crue they soon built up a huge following based on the talented songwriting skills of Jani Lane. Cherry Pie may have gotten all the attention, but songs like Uncle Tom’s Cabin and I Saw Red showed a more bluesy side to the band. A little known fact is that Poison’s C.C Deville played as a session guitarist on the album.


The Band: Sebastian Bach (Vocals), Rachael Bolan (Bass), Dave “the Snake” Sabo (Guitar), Scotti Hill (Guitar), Rob Affuso (Drums)

The Album: Skid Row (1989)

The Song: 18 and Life

Skid Row – 18 and Life

Dave ‘Snake’ Sabo left Bon Jovi before they became really famous and so Jon owed him a bit of a favour. He helped sign the band to his management team and took them on the road with him giving Skid Row an awful amount of exposure…however it was Sebastian Bach’s earth shattering vocals that made this band one of the best in the business. At only 17 he was a diamond in the rough and his tour antics brought just as much attention as his voice. Justin Bieber could’ve learnt a thing or two. Their debut sky rocketed and then they followed up with a dirty, grittier heavier second album that stunned their fans with its major departure from the more radio friendly tunes of their debut. I love both albums but it was their debut that got me hooked and it was this song that did it…after all I was 17 going on 18 when it was released.


The Band: Jon Bon Jovi (Vocals), Richie Sambora (Guitar), David Bryan (Keyboards), Alec John Such (Bass), Tico Torres (Drums)

The Album: Slippery When Wet (1986)

The Song: Living on a Prayer / Wanted Dead or Alive

Bon Jovi – Living on a Prayer

Bon Jovi – Wanted Dead or Alive

oh oh, we’re half way there…oh oh LIVING ON A PRAYER!!!! Who hasn’t belted those lyrics out in the back seat of the car going 120km on the freeway road tripping with your mates? Ok, maybe that’s just my mates when I’m driving…

So who doesn’t know the story of Bon Jovi, the blue collar rockers from New Jersey ably lead by the intrepid Jon? If anyone wants a lesson on how to run a band and stick around for 3 decades he’s the man to talk to.

I remember sitting on the beach in 1987 listening to my bro’s Walkman and hearing I’d Die For You for the first time. I took the tape out to check which band it was and thought it was Ratt at first as it was one of those blank cassettes my bro had copied from a friend. On the other side was written…Bon Jovi. I had no idea what they looked like or who they were. I was experiencing my first unrequited love at 15 and that song just spoke to my achey breaky heart…ok I’ll stop now. I didn’t yet know that Jon was the most beautiful man in rock and that Bon Jovi would play a huge role in my musical journey. I can still sing all these songs word for word and know the transition of one song into the next based on the original track listing (this is true for all top 3 of my favourites). It was a while before I found the LP on a sale rack in my local OK Bazaar and even then I still didn’t know what they looked like as there were no band pictures on the cover. It was only when I saw the video for Wanted on a PoP ShoP episode that I finally got it. They were hot and my 15 year old girlie hormones kicked in. Even if they did have bigger hair than I did.


The Band: Axl Rose (Vocals, Keybords), Slash (Guitar), Duff McKagan (Bass), Izzy Stradlin (Guitar), Steven Adler (Drums)

The Album: Appetite for Destruction (1987)

The Song: Welcome to the Jungle / Sweet Child ‘o Mine

Guns ‘n Roses – Welcome to the Jungle

Guns ‘n Roses – Sweet Child ‘o Mine

You may be wondering what this band is even doing on this list. I know there’s a lot of debate and many believe that they are not a hair metal band. But take it from someone who lived through this period…They were a hair metal band!!!! Just look at Steven Adler’s hair if you don’t believe me…and Axl’s spandex pants and white leather jacket…come on!!! So the music may have caused them to gain the reputation of being the most dangerous band on the planet, but they still rocked the sunset strip with alongside Poison and Motley Crue. A little dirtier and edgier maybe and a little less lip gloss, but still a hair metal band…they just took it to the next level. A level that bands like Pantera, Nirvana and Pearl Jam would exploit and refine and end the reign of the hairspray brigade. They can thank Guns ‘n Roses for paving the way.

This album became the most successful debut album by a band ever. There are no surprises why when you listen to the tracks on this album…from Slash’s iconic guitar intro on Sweet Child to the gritty Welcome to the Jungle, the sweeping Paradise City and the dirty Mr. Brownstone…every song is a classic.

And just so we’re clear…there is no other Guns ‘n Roses other than this classic lineup. They created magic that can very rarely be replicated.


The Band: Bret Michaels (Vocals, Harmonica, Guitar), C.C Deville (Guitar), Bobby Dall (Bass), Rikki Rocket (Drums)

The Album: Open Up and Say…Ahh! (1988)

The Song: Every Rose Has It’s Thorn / Fallen Angel / Nothing But a Good Time…because they are my favourite hair band you get 3 songs…

Poison – Every Rose Has its Thorn

Poison – Fallen Angel

Poison – Nothing But a Good Time

This should be no surprise to anyone who knows me…there is no other band that could take the top spot when talking about my favourite hair metal band. From the moment I spotted Bret Michaels swinging from the stage curtain in the video for Every Rose when I first saw it on my folks little portable black and white TV, I was hooked. Bon Jovi was my favourite band at the time but Poison quickly took over the no. 1 spot in my heart. Over the years the no. 1 spot has rocked back and forth between the two depending on who had a new album out, but if you ask me my favourite band from that era the answer will automatically be POISON. Ask any friend of mine and they’ll tell you about my legendary crush on Bret, that I had my walls plastered with Poison posters and rocked the head scarf before it became popular.

Their irreverent attitude, their humorous lyrics, larger than life antics and belief that they didn’t want to be the most talented band only the biggest band on the planet gave them a pure party rock band reputation. They surely lived the rock and roll lifestyle. The big hair, lip gloss and pretty boy looks made them MTV darlings and all of a sudden girls everywhere were listening to metal.

And yet they have some of the most classic songs from the era. Every Rose, Fallen Angel, Nothing but a Good Time, Talk Dirty to Me, Cry Tough, I Want Action, Look but you can’t Touch, Something to Believe in, Poor Boy Blues, Flesh & Blood, Unskinny Bop and the bluesy addition of Ritchie Kotzen on Native Tongue gave us classics like Stand, Bastard Son of a Thousand Blues, Strike up the Band, and the list goes on. If you’ve ever been to an 80’s party I can guarantee you’ve heard a Poison classic.

The opening sigh in the beginning of Every Rose is still my favourite music moment…

Honourable Mentions:

These are bands that I’m sure you’re wondering why they aren’t on the top 10. Well they would be but for the one reason I excluded them from my picks and that is that they were all pretty huge before the hair metal era took off in the mid 80’s. They’re kinda like the grandfathers of the genre and the inspiration for a lot of the bands on my list. As the originators and having begun their careers in the ’70’s I thought I’d add them here instead…kinda like the Sammi Dee Glam Metal Hall of Fame…


AC/DC – Thunderstruck (1991)


Aerosmith – Janie’s Got a Gun (1994)

Motley Crue

Motley Crue – Dr. Feelgood (1989)


KISS – Rock ‘n Roll All Night (1975)

Alice Cooper

Alice Cooper – Poison (1989)

And that’s all folks! Feel free to add your list to the comments, would love to hear your favourites…

Love Sammi


About sammid72

extroverted introvert; lover of books, music, food, people and my couch. not necessarily in that order. exploring life unshackled

Posted on 24/11/2015, in Lists, Music Musings, My Top 10 Everything, Uncategorized and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 7 Comments.

  1. thisandthatdad

    Great list! My boys love AC/DC Thunderstruck. Mostly because it is in the Disney movie Planes Fire & Rescue. They get crazy and run around the house every time we put it on. Which doesn’t seem to funny until you learn that they are 2 and almost 4. They run around screaming “Thunder!”

    Liked by 1 person

  2. So are you going to submit this intelligent consensus to rolling stone tho you should probably have included the name sakes in your list 😆

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Brad Pearsall

    and lets not Forget Van Halen


  1. Pingback: My Top 10 Favourite Hair Metal Bands: Part 1 | Sammi Dee

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