SKID ROW's ERIK GRÖNWALL Opens Up About Australian And Japanese Tour Cancelations: 'Health Always Comes First'
May 27, 2023
SKID ROW singer Erik Grönwall has shared a new video blog in which he discusses the band's decision to cancel the remaining dates on its Australian tour, as well as a Japanese tour, because of his flu-like symptoms.
SKID ROW initially scrapped its May 17 concert in Brisbane due to Erik's illness but he soldiered on and put on a show in Sydney on May 19. However, it quickly became clear that the Swedish singer's symptoms had only persisted, and SKID ROW announced that it was rescheduling the remaining dates of its Australian tour.
In the video below, Erik says in part (as transcribed by BLABBERMOUTH.NET): "Last night in Sydney, I was so determined to just make this work and to do the shows, all the three shows we had left. We had to cancel the first show in Australia because I wasn't really feeling well. And I felt pretty good warming up [before the Sydney gig]. I knew the voice was tired, I knew my body was tired, but come show, we opened with 'Slave To The Grind'. We [did] the first song. And after the first song, I just realized, 'Shit. This is not going to work. My body is just telling me to, 'Hey, you need to stop. Pull the brakes.'' And so I had to take time out during the show and just talk to the [other] guys [in the band]. We talked in the dressing room. I was, like, 'I can't do this.' And they were, like, 'Okay. What can we do? Can we find solutions?' It was such a fucking cool team effort. We went back on stage and we did power through — we did the show. After that show, it was just so clear that I wouldn't be able to do the remaining shows in Australia. My body is telling me I have to rest."
The 35-year-old Grönwall, who was diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic leukemia in March 2021, continued: "It's so easy for me to forget that it's not even two years ago that I did a bone marrow transplant. Since I'm feeling great, I'm out there, I'm having a great time, it's so easy to forget that my body will always be a bit affected by the bone marrow transplant. My immune system is new. Remember when you were a kid and you brought shit home all the time, viruses and shit? Well, that's me now in my thirties. This is just my assessment and what I think. But I think the flu-related symptoms are a result of my body being tired from all the traveling between different time zones. Even for a person without my medical history, this would be a tough run. Sweden, California, play a show in California, fly to Sydney [laughs], and then fly to Brisbane. And it just didn't work this time."
Erik added: "What I wanna say is my apologies to the Australian fans and Japanese fans. I am very, very sorry. I tried my best, but this time I just have to be honest with myself and take care of my health first.
"This blog was all gonna be about how fun it is in Australia, all the great shows [laughs] — the koalas, the kangaroos, all the great traveling experiences. But it turned into a blog about health.
"Health always comes first. Nothing, nothing is worth risking your health for — no money in the world."
SKID ROW's four-date Australian tour was originally slated to take place in December 2022 but was rescheduled due to guitarist Dave "Snake" Sabo's neck surgery.
Erik, who made his recording debut with SKID ROW on the recently released studio album, "The Gang's All Here", spoke to The Rock N' Roll & Coffee Show about how he has been accepted by the band's fans since he joined the group last year as the replacement for ZP Theart. He said: "There's so many different types of fans. I've realized that… 'Cause when we did the show in California, [some] people came up to me after the show, and they were, like, 'Sebastian [Bach], you've still got it.' [Laughs] Yeah, that happened. Then you have the fans who still think that Sebastian is in the band, and then you have the fans who know the whole story."
Erik went on to say that he isn't bothered by the fact that some fans are still clamoring for a reunion of the band's classic lineup.
"I understand the fan perspective of wanting the original lineup — I understand that — because I'm a Bon Scott guy myself," he explained, referencing AC/DC's late singer. "But I think that people are really excited about this new album, and I feel like even the people who want the original lineup are actually starting to approve."
He added: "When I joined this band, I realized that it's such a privilege to have people so interested in the band, talking about the band, discussing everything. A lot of bands would kill for that, and that's a privilege. You have all these people talking about SKID ROW and they like that singer or they like that song or they like that era, and that's just incredible, having people so excited about it or hating it. [Laughs]"
Bach fronted SKID ROW until 1996, when he was fired. Instead of throwing in the towel, the remaining members took a hiatus and went on to play briefly in a band called OZONE MONDAY. In 1999, SKID ROW reformed and, after a bit of shuffling over the years, featured a lineup consisting of bassist Rachel Bolan and guitarists Dave "Snake" Sabo and Scotti Hill, alongside drummer Rob Hammersmith and singer Johnny Solinger. SKID ROW fired Solinger over the phone in April 2015, a few hours before announcing ex-TNT singer Tony Harnell as his replacement. Eight months later, Harnell exited the band and was replaced by Theart, the South African-born, British-based singer who previously fronted DRAGONFORCE, TANK and I AM I.
"The Gang's All Here" arrived in October via earMUSIC. The group recorded most of the LP in Nashville, Tennessee with producer Nick Raskulinecz, who has previously worked with FOO FIGHTERS, STONE SOUR, HALESTORM, EVANESCENCE, RUSH and ALICE IN CHAINS, among many others.
Grönwall, who auditioned for the competition show "Swedish Idol" back in 2009 by singing a cover of SKID ROW's "18 And Life", joined SKID ROW in January 2022. Theart, who had been in the group for more than six years, played his final gig with SKID ROW in February 2022 before being officially given the boot.
Grönwall was a member of the Swedish hard rock band H.E.A.T. with whom he recorded four studio albums — "Address The Nation" (2012),"Tearing Down The Walls" (2014),"Into The Great Unknown" (2017) and "H.E.A.T II" (2020) — before exiting the group in October 2020.
In September 2021, Grönwall announced that he was cancer free after receiving a bone marrow transplant. "Some anonymous wonderful human being somewhere in the world donated his/her blood cells so that I could get a second chance at life," he told Headbangers Lifestyle in January. "Sometimes I can just get tears in my eyes when I think about it. It's so beautiful that one person who is not connected to me in any way wanted to do that for me. He/she doesn't know that the blood cells were for me. It's completely anonymous."
In September 2021, Grönwall released his cover version of SKID ROW's "18 And Life" via all streaming platforms.
In 2018, Grönwall debuted in the U.S. for 10 million viewers in NBC's live broadcast of Andrew Lloyd Webber's and Tim Rice's musical "Jesus Christ Superstar". Along with John Legend, Alice Cooper, Sara Bareilles and others, Erik played the key role of Simon Zealotes.
BLABBERMOUTH.NET uses the Facebook Comments plugin to let people comment on content on the site using their Facebook account. The comments reside on Facebook servers and are not stored on BLABBERMOUTH.NET. To comment on a BLABBERMOUTH.NET story or review, you must be logged in to an active personal account on Facebook. Once you're logged in, you will be able to comment. User comments or postings do not reflect the viewpoint of BLABBERMOUTH.NET and BLABBERMOUTH.NET does not endorse, or guarantee the accuracy of, any user comment. To report spam or any abusive, obscene, defamatory, racist, homophobic or threatening comments, or anything that may violate any applicable laws, use the "Report to Facebook" and "Mark as spam" links that appear next to the comments themselves. To do so, click the downward arrow on the top-right corner of the Facebook comment (the arrow is invisible until you roll over it) and select the appropriate action. You can also send an e-mail to blabbermouthinbox(@)gmail.com with pertinent details. BLABBERMOUTH.NET reserves the right to "hide" comments that may be considered offensive, illegal or inappropriate and to "ban" users that violate the site's Terms Of Service. Hidden comments will still appear to the user and to the user's Facebook friends. If a new comment is published from a "banned" user or contains a blacklisted word, this comment will automatically have limited visibility (the "banned" user's comments will only be visible to the user and the user's Facebook friends).