NAME: Jason Bittner
BAND AFFILIATION: Shadows Fall, Burning Human
1. THE FIRST ALBUM I EVER BOUGHT WAS … I already had quite a few albums that I’d received for Christmas or that my parents had bought for me, but the first one that I remember buying with my own money was Kiss’ “Love Gun.” I bought it years ago at Two Guys back when there was a Two Guys store on Nott Terrace (in Schenectady). I remember it like it was yesterday. It was after my aunt’s wedding, and the reception was down at the Grecian Hall across from the library. At the reception, some of my relatives had slipped me a buck or two. So I had about six bucks, and I knew that was enough to buy a record. I forced my parents to take me to Two Guys on the way home, and I bought “Love Gun.”
2. MY FIRST DRUM HERO WAS … Keith Moon. My dad used to listen to the Who all the time, and I was drawn to his craziness. Although, the first guys that I used to try to jam along with – you know, with pencils or something – were the Allman Brothers and the Doobie Brothers – ironically, both two-drummer bands. And from Keith Moon, it went to Peter Criss, because I wanted to be a rock star, and I really wanted to be in Kiss.
3. THE FIRST CONCERT I EVER SAW WAS … I was lucky. I went to a lot of concerts when I was a kid, because my parents used to take me along with them. I remember seeing a lot of bands at SPAC with them – bands like America, the Doobie Brothers, the Marshall Tucker Band. But the first concert that I went to by myself with my friends was the Kinks in 1982 at the Glens Falls Civic Center. And the first metal show I went to was Iron Maiden at Glens Falls – Aug. 23, 1983. It was a life-changing event.
4. THE FIRST BAND I WAS EVER IN WAS … Gladiator. Oh God, it was a sort of Top 40 band when I was a freshman in high school. We played everything from Quiet Riot to Billy Idol to Men at Work. We played on Schenectady Public Access Channel 16 once – and it was repeated quite a few times because my grandmother worked for the cable company – but Gladiator never actually played a real gig.
5. THE FIRST GIG I EVER PLAYED WAS … Does dressing up as Kiss and lip-syncing at an elementary school talent show count? No? Well then, my first real gig was at a battle of the bands in Averill Park in 1987. I was playing in this band named Hotwired.
In support of their new album, “Retribution,” powerhouse drummer Jason Bittner will be manning the drum kit with his band Shadows Fall at Northern Lights in Clifton Park tonight, Tuesday, October 6. Also on the bill are 5 Finger Death Punch, Otep and 2 Cents.