One of the few Glam-rock bands to work hard at transcending the genre, Poison came along in 1984 as the remnants of a band called Paris. Singer Bret Michaels, bassist Bobby Dall, and drummer Rikki Rockett went to L.A., found guitarist C.C. Deville, and commenced rockin’. People listened, and danced, and waved their cigarette lighters, and made those little horn-hands to show the band how into it they were, and everything was cool. They got signed to Enigma Records, released three top-selling albums, and popped out a succession of hard rocking singles (including Talk Dirty To Me, Fallen Angel, Every Rose Has Its Thorn, and Unskinny Bop), the success of which was bolstered by the accompanying videos, with their sex and their spandex and their dry ice fog. The audience ate it up, and they were every bit as popular as fellow pop-metal practitioners Whitesnake and Def Leppard.
But then (with impeccable VH-1-Behind-the-Music timing), fate dealt a bitter hand. Deville succumbed to heavy substance abuse, and was fired from the band. His replacement, Richie Kotzen, did not click, and the band jettisoned him for Blues Saraceno, who did, but only until (again with impeccable VH-1-Behind-the-Music timing), Deville returned for a triumphant 1999 reunion tour. Then, in a tragic turn of events, bassist Dall was seriously injured in an accident, and the band waited six months while he recuperated from major surgery. In the end, however, they were back together, the original quartet, still rockin’ hard with their big hair and their competently performed, Zeppelin/Aerosmith-inspired rock & roll. 2002 brought a brand new album, and a tour… sponsored, quite unsurprisingly, by VH-1.