Music Industry News Network [03-12-2001]

Rick Nielsen Shaves Braided Beard At Rockford Show


March 12, 2001


ROCKFORD, Ill. -- After much conflict and debate within his always-active mind, Cheap Trickís Rick Nielsen decided to shave off his long, braided beard on
Friday, March 9 at Coronado Theater in the band's hometown.

What better time to do it, he reasoned, than at a show in front of a hometown crowd (not to mention 300 Trick International fan clubbers who flew in from various
states across the U.S. and countries all over the world)? Prior to the show, the band had a quick, impromptu meeting to figure out the best time to do the deed -- at
the end of the set after "Surrender" seemed to be the perfect spot, right before the band's encore. But who would do the actual snipping? Road manager Carla
Dragotti volunteered to do the honors, with help from Rick's son Daxx, who had to hold the braid steady while I cut away.

One quick, hard snip and it was done. A collective gasp was heard from the audience, followed by applause. Rick rushed offstage, shaved the rest of his beard off
and proceeded to finish the show with his new (old) look.

According to Rick, "I've made some positive changes in my musical and personal directions in the past year, and I still feel like I'm 16. From baseball caps, to
checkerboards, guitar designs, inventions, patents, soundtracks, songs, band longevity, long braided beards, and much, much more, I felt it was the right time to get
rid of the follicle facial expression, and return to the clean shaven, smooth dimpled baby skinned face of my past. The new look is just one part of the new me."

Contrary to rumor, the braid is not going up for sale on eBay!

Cheap Trickís new double live album, Silver, recorded at Rockfordís Davis Park before a packed audience from all over the world, and featuring cameos from Billy
Corgan, Slash, Art Alexakis and more, was just released on the bandís own Cheap Trick Unlimited Records (distributed by the Proper Sales & Distribution group.)
The album, whose list price is $24.98, is available at retail or via

1. Rick Nielsen before the chopping
2. The chopping, photo #1
3. The chopping, photo #3
4. Completing the look: shaving backstage
5. The disembodied beard

(Photos by Mike Graham.)

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