The planned Eat ‘Em and Smile reunion was a bust as the fire marshal shut down Lucky Strike before the second set began.

It was supposed to be the most epic Ultimate Jam Night yet. The legendary Eat ‘Em and Smile band were reuniting for the first time in 30 years. Steve Vai, Billy Sheehan, Gregg Bissonette, and Brett Tuggle were set to play at Lucky Strike, with Steel Panther’s Michael Starr, aka Ralph Saenz filling in as frontman. Or was he? Rumors were swirling that an even more epic surprise was in store for fans that night.

The joint was beyond packed. The line reached nearly to the corner by 7pm and press were told that they wouldn’t be allowed entry if they weren’t there before 8pm. The night started off with a brief acoustic set from John Flanagan and then the madness began.

The house band started off the first set with some Who and then Damon Fox (The Cult) took to the stage with the fabulous Okai Sisters backing him, for “Communication Breakdown.” American Idol’s Tyra Juliette was up next, and then Kill Devil Hill’s Dewey Bragg made his jam night debut (on his birthday!) with Ira Black and Sean McNabb.

Gabbie Rae was next, showcasing her incredible voice on Foreigners’s “Double Vision.” This was followed by Steve Ferlazzo teaming up with members of Filter for “The Hand That Feeds.” Next up was the blistering Jam Night debut from John 5 (Rob Zombie/Marilyn Manson) and the Creatures. He ripped through a mini set that featured a mind-blowing medley of his tunes, showcasing what an incredible guitarist he is. The house band then returned to the stage to close out the first set with AC/DC’s “Long Way to the Top,” complete with bagpipes from John Allen.

And then it all came crashing down. The fire marshal arrived and members of the press and VIPs were ushered into the back hallway as the MC pleaded with the crowd to leave so the show could go own. It just wasn’t going to happen, and after waiting around for an hour, we got the final word that the place was closed down and the Eat ‘Em and Smile stage reunion, complete with surprise guest David Lee Roth, would have to wait for another day. Fans and performers waited on the street together for the final outcome. Also in the house was a familiar face who turned out to not be a regular Jam Night performer – it was Rage Against the Machine’s Tom Morello.

Even though the night ended on a disappointing note, it was still one hell of a night. In the midst of all the chaos, 1,000 pounds of food and 400 pounds of warm clothing were donated to Mama D Feeds the Homeless to benefit the Los Angeles Regional Food Bank.

Ultimate Jam Night
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Chuck Wright
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Matt Starr
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Mitch Perry
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Steve Ferlazzo
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John 5
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Gabbie Rae
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Lucky Strike Live
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