Singer Brett Scallions had as good an excuse as any to leave his rock band Fuel for a few years. “Robbie and Ray called me to do the Doors thing.” That would be Robbie Krieger and Ray Manzarek, the original members of the Doors who asked Scallions to step into the late Jim Morrison's role for their project, Riders on the Storm.
“It was surreal. Anyone who is a musician would fall hand over foot to work with anyone as iconic as The Doors. Their catalog is the soundtrack to our lives.”
Scallions grew up in Tennessee. Listening to Elvis records as well as metal, blues, and country motivated him to play in local bars where he was discovered by his future Fuel bandmates. The rockers gigged for years before the grungy ballad Shimmer became a radio hit in 1998, paving the way for their second album, 2000’s Something Like Human. Its single "Hemorrhage (In My Hands)" claimed the number one spot on the modern rock charts for twelve weeks. While Fuel found great success, in 2006 Scallions decided to call it quits.
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“Besides the Doors thing there were some other projects,” he says. Those projects included playing guitar with World Fire Brigade and playing bass for Circus Diablo with members of Guns N' Roses and The Cult. But after a few years away, Scallions’ motor needed more Fuel. “I was craving to play those songs again. I felt it was time to get back to them and be fun and creative.”
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Scallions will be the only original member onstage when the current incarnation of Fuel comes to Culture Room on June 10, but he guarantees long time Fuel fans will have a good time. “We play the songs you know. We enjoy pulling out obscure songs that are fun to listen to as well, but we always bring out the hits.”
He says the band has no problem keeping those hits fresh even after all these years. “Once you get settled in after a few dates, you get tight as a band. You can really feel a unity on the stage.”
Fuel’s fifth and most recent album, Puppet Strings, came out last year but Scallions says he’s working on new songs, though he’s unsure whether they will be part of a new Fuel album or a solo album. When searching for songwriting material, he usually looks towards two things in his life. One is paying attention to his family. The other is clicking on the TV. “I enjoy watching the news. The crazy things going on in the world can inspire you. Either in an angry way or a loving way.”
Fuel with Fall to June and Godsend. 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, June 10, at Culture Room, 3045 N Federal Hwy, Fort Lauderdale. Visit cultureroom.net or call 954-564-1074 for more info. Tickets cost $15 plus fees via ticketmaster.com.