Hair Supply: The epic third coming of the world’s greatest rock band

By Matthew Young, RealWV

In fairness, the epic story of Hair Supply is one which should have ended some 40-years-ago, in a bizarrely-violent flurry of bloody spandex and glitter. 

On March 19, 1984, frontman Tyler Stevens, just 26 at the time, met his tragic end in an industrial-grade wood chipper. Originally believed to be a homicide, investigators eventually ruled the incident a comically unfortunate landscaping accident. Questions, however – as well as suspicions – have surrounded the events of that fateful day ever since. 

Colostomy For The Devil guitarist Lips Montana, a lifelong friend of Stevens, is but one of many who remains doubtful. While much of what Montana told RealWV had to be redacted due to his penchant for making unfounded accusations and his excessive use of inappropriate language, what we are able to publish presents more questions than it answers. 

“It was that REDACTED Weedles, and the ugly one with the dirty name,” Montana told us, referring to Hair Supply’s founding members and current lead and bass guitarists, Weedles Von Frankenberry and Philthy Trenches. “It was them two that done that to Tyler, I just know it was. Weedles was REDACTED REDACTED REDACTED after they ate them racoons, and Trenches was REDACTED REDACTED REDACTED with Tyler’s mom. There was a lot of bad blood after that.”

Despite the lingering rumors, Trenches and Von Frankenberry have unwaveringly maintained their claims of innocence, blaming Stevens’ “clumsy” nature for the accident. 

“Weedles and I have always been accused of pushing him into the wood chipper because he wouldn’t sing the way we wanted him to,” Trenches told RealWV during a recent exclusive interview with the band. “But there’s no substantiation to that, so I don’t think it’s not true.”

Only Stevens, Von Frankenberry, and Trenches know what really happened that day. Unfortunately Stevens was left too small to identify his possible attackers, and the other two can’t remember what they did yesterday much less 40-years-ago. But regardless of the truth, March 19, 1984 lives on in musical infamy as the day that the world lost the guy David Bowie once referred to as the most androgynous human being he had ever seen, and the greatest band in the world lost its voice.

But when the door of one wood chipper closes, fate has a way of opening another. 

Although Pipes Vidovich was born closer to the end of the grunge-era, his appreciation for hair ballads and arena rock is second to none. And while many have said he was born with a microphone in his mouth, it was a different instrument the young vocal sensation first put between his lips. 

“There was a time when I was totally dedicated to the recorder,” Vidovich told us. “There’s no freer feeling in the world than to be standing in a field with your shirt off and your hair blowing, and spitting out a wicked rip of Hot Cross Buns.”

Vidovich’s penchant for the recorder brought him a fair degree of regional acclaim, culminating with his inclusion in Teen Tweet Magazine’s Top 10 Fluties Under 10 of 2006. Shortly before his ninth birthday, however, Vidovich encountered the moment that every recorderist fears…he lost his two front teeth. With his airflow dispensation rate irreparably altered, Vidovich’s blow capacity was significantly diminished, thus ending a promising career before it began. 

“I was deflated,” Vidovich said with tears in his eyes.

Hair Supply: Seymour Tayle, Jett McVain, Weedles Von Frankenberry, Pipes Vidovich, Philthy Trenches, and Jazz McVanderhalen.

While Vidovich was struggling with his first musical heartbreak, Hair Supply was languishing at the bottoms of both the Billboard charts and liquor bottles. Though their 1987 release, “Hair No Evil, Speak No Evil,” sold well initially, its commercial vitality waned once radio stations refused to play any of its tracks. 

“Rick had just had that bad car accident not too long before we recorded that,” Hair Supply drummer Jazz McVanderhalen said, referring to former Def Leppard drummer Rick Allen, who tragically lost his left arm in a motor vehicle accident in 1985. “He inspired me, you know? I thought if he can play drums without an arm, then we can play songs without a singer.”

At McVanderhalen’s urging, the band added a sign language interpreter to perform the lyrics that were previously sung by Stevens. And while this approach worked well for live performances and music videos, it did not translate to studio recordings.

McVanderhalen – who was financially motivated by his court-ordered alimony payments after fathering 25 children with 45 different women – believed his idea would revolutionize the music industry. Sadly, the concept was simply too far ahead of its time. By 1990, the band was relegated to steadily playing Dollar General grand openings. 

“Those were dark days,” Von Frankenberry said. 

The 2000’s progressed even more slowly for the band. As Vidovich grew into adulthood, the members of Hair Supply descended further into irrelevance. The low point came in 2014, after guitarist Seymour Tayle was sentenced to 18 months in federal prison for his involvement in an illegal moonshine operation. Tayle’s popularity during his incarceration led to his sentence being extended by an additional six months. 

“Those were dark days,” Tayle said.

Unbeknownst to the band, kismet was about to turn on the lights.

Unnamed sign language interpreter, Seymour Tayle, Jazz McVanderhalen, Pipes Vidovich, Philthy Trenches, and Weedles Von Frankenberry of Hair Supply perform during the 2022 Sternwheel Regatta in Charleston.

“I was at a FireHouse concert in high school,” Vidovich said. “Somebody told the band that I was a mega-fan. I think they started with ‘Shake and Tumble,’ and then they went into ‘All She Wrote.’”

While FireHouse was playing, Vidovich explained, the band called him up on stage.

“So I ran up on stage, and Bill Leverty, the guitar player, was like, ‘Sing this next verse with us man, you can use my mic.’ So I started singing into Leverty’s mic, and then C.J. Snare, the singer, he hands me his mic. It was a very cool experience.”

Little did young Pipes know that his future Hair Supply bandmates were studying his every move from the audience that night. The rest is the stuff of musical legend.

Hair Supply rose from the ashes of rock-n-roll purgatory, and experienced the most commercial success of their storied history between 2019 and 2023. Then something completely expected and utterly inevitable happened.

“Pipes turned into a diva,” Trenches told us. “He was just an innocent kid when we found him, but then something changed.”

“He got hooked up with that cross-fit guru, that’s what it was,” Von Frankenberry added. “Thought he was bigger than the band all of a sudden.”

In what has become an all-to-familiar rock-n-roll story, ego threatened to put an end to the second coming of Hair Supply. With their 2024 tour on the horizon and the band’s future threatened by Vidovich’s primadonna attitude, Trenches, Von Frankenberry, McVanderhalen, and Tayle called the only man who could reign in their wayward singer – legendary vocalist Jett McVain.

“Come to find out that Jett is Pipes’ father,” Trenches explained. “We had to go out into the hills of Utah, because he was farming ginseng with his donkey. Jett was living in a hut that he built out of mud. He totally detached from society because he was so embarrassed that his son was wearing spandex.”

“We knew that Jett was the only guy who could save us,” Trenches added. “He said he’d only do it if we quit wearing spandex.”

And so begins the denim and leather infused, dueling lead-singer third coming of Hair Supply. Their summer tour kicks off on May 18, when the band shares the WaterWays Amphitheater stage in Julian with That Arena Rock Show. 

For more information about the band, including full concert schedule and ticket availability, visit hairsupply.live

AUTHOR’S NOTE: I’m aware that today is April Fool’s Day. And while aspects of this story may seem admittedly ridiculous, and may-or-may-not be not untrue in the truest sense, these guys are definitely a real band. I swear. 

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