|Jon Bon Jovi and Sebastian Bach|
Bassist Sheils formed Skid Row in Dublin in 1967, along with drummer Noel Bridgeman, guitarist Bernard Cheevers and singer Phil Lynott. After some lineup changes, guitarist Gary Moore was brought in, marking his first appearance in a professional band; Lynott and Moore would later team up a few times in the 70s in Thin Lizzy.
The Irish band released two albums and a bunch of singles in the late 60s and early 70s, long before a more modern-era group named out of New Jersey named Skid Row – fronted by Sebastian Bach – appeared on the scene.
Sheils is getting set to release a new Skid Row project, and has recorded and posted a video online explaining his need to clear up the confusion caused by two bands using the same name – and he’s looking to track down Jon Bon Jovi for answers.
Bon Jovi manager Doc McGhee signed the US band in the late 80s, and they were reportedly signed to a publishing company owned by Jon and guitarist Richie Sambora.
“A couple of years ago,” explains Sheils, “I’m looking at MTV, having a look at this guy Sebastian Bach; somebody asked him a question and he said they paid Gary Moore $35,000 for the use of the name. Now, I know for fact that this is a lie.”
In his video, Sheils explains that he was told that Jon contacted Moore about the use of the name, who told Bon Jovi that he would have to contact Sheils to explore the issue further.
The US band released their debut in January of 1989 and, for whatever reason, it’s taken Sheils 23 years to raise this issue publicly while he asks for Bon Jovi to contact him on it.
“All I’m saying is, Jon Bon Jovi – if you’d like to contact me or one of your representatives and explain what happened, and why these guys got to use the name Skid Row without contacting me. Because, when I tried to contact you, I found it impossible most of the time.”
“Jon, if you’re out there - from one rock professional to another – give us a call, Brush Sheils, Skid Row, the republic of Ireland.”