News: Black Label Society pledges support to North Carolina Marines
Story by Sgt. Joshua Cox
WINSTON SALEM, N.C. - Black Label Society, led by guitar icon Zakk Wylde, known for their unwavering support of the armed forces, entertained fans during a concert in Winston Salem, N.C., Nov. 27.
The band performed an awe-inspiring show at the Lawrence Joel Veterans Memorial Coliseum for a massive audience of fans during the recent concert, playing alongside metal legends Judas Priest and Thin Lizzy.
In an interview conducted before the Nov. 27 concert, Wylde pledged the band’s support of the armed forces, and personally thanked fans who have served in the military.
Wylde said the band often visits with service members during BLS shows, and takes time to shake hands and thank veterans face-to-face.
“It’s always awesome when the [Marines] come down,” Wylde said.
Wylde said he could relate to veterans, and has a deep respect for men and women in uniform, since his father fought during World War II.
“My dad has some awesome stories,” he added, laughing.
Wylde said he is honored his music inspires service members serving around the globe, and hopes his songs can relieve stress during hard times.
“Whatever I can do to help out — it’s awesome,” he said.
In the past, BLS has joined forces with the USO to offer service members free tickets to concerts, including admission into Ozzy Osbourne’s Ozzfest, and shows in Korea.
“We are trying to hook up another USO thing with Black Label,” Wylde said. “We are trying to figure out how we can go overseas.”
Wylde said the band would like to travel to Afghanistan to perform for the troops serving there.
The recent concert in North Carolina was filled with intricate guitar riffs, rock anthems, bright lights and flashing pyrotechnics. Wylde appeared on stage wearing an American Indian headdress, and played an array of intricately painted guitars.
Judas Priest wore leather costumes, and dazzled fans with hits spanning 40 years. Judas Priest’s show included flaming pyrotechnics, laser lights and a roaring chrome motorcycle.
Large venues like the Winston Salem’s Lawrence Joel Veterans Memorial Coliseum and Raleigh’s Time Warner Cable Music Pavilion at Walnut Creek, host events year-round featuring huge bands like Black Label Society — giving service members an opportunity to relieve stress, connect with music, and enjoy famous artists in person.
Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune also hosts big acts several times a year, including artists like The Lt. Dan Band.