The GODZ, Ohio’s Rock N’Roll Machines

My Home State of Ohio has had countless successful bands go on to do great things in the music world. However, those of us who Know the Rock the House down Truth of seeing THE GODZ live on Numerous occasions, band line ups, and timelines realize they were something special. If you liked that kind of Rock n Roll…and we LOVED it. The same as AC/DC and countless other Legends they were a Down and Dirty Straight forward Guitar driven Band.  They were Their Own Legends “Ohio’s Rock N’Roll Machines”, and Eric Moore’s Fender Bass should be in the Smithsonian. Few more instruments ever saw the kind of Work Horse Life.

I was still a kid when the band lineup I’m primarily focused on here is that of Eric Moore on Bass and Lead Vocal, Mark Chatfield Guitar and vocal, Glen Cataline Drums and vocal, and Bob Hill guitar. They were first revving up the Motorcycles, Amps, and Whiskey in 1975.

OHIO'S ROCK N'ROLL MACHINES On on Motorcycles

If you were a fan or not this Band had extensive Vision and within two years’ time  They worked endlessly and without a contract were out of the road playing with KISS on their “Love Gun” Tour as well as Cheap Trick.

Ultimately they became Label mates on Famed Casablanca Records and The Kinship with KISS continued. In addition to being on the Kiss Love Gun tour, they played on what was billed as the “Heaven and Hell Tour” by embarking on the road with Angel. “Godz are macho, mean biker boys,” wrote Sylvie Simmons in 1978. “Their songs are about dope and bikes and rock and sex. They’re loud, brash, crude, but a bloody good rock band.”

After Casablanca turned The Band’s distribution over to another label They Released the second record  “Nothing Is Sacred” 

Despite the new Record distribution failing them, they continued on touring which was the same as so many bands They were really a Live Band. During the tours of the late ‘70s and early ‘80s, they were out on the road with Kansas, Blue Oyster Cult, Angel, and Judas Priest to name a few. 

Mark Chatfield came and went as he had many Irons in the fire working with the band “Rosie” and Touring as guitarist for Bob Seger and Michael Bolton. Mark would come back here and there and do some great shows with different Versions of THE GODZ. Ultimately Opening up “Cow Town Guitars” in Columbus, Ohio. I frequented the place often and never got to speak a great deal with him as he might be busy selling a guitar over the Phone to John Fogerty, or who knows what legend. He had the working Musicians’ stuff, and he dealt with the vintage market as well. Cowtown eventually Moved to Las Vegas and you may have seen his Partner in the biz on “Pawn Stars” coming to check out music gear.

Eric Moore was the Superman of Rock. Despite illnesses, at times he always came back to the Stage. I began to sneak in underage to see them in the late ‘80s at The Alrosa Villa many times, The Newport many times. By the Mid 90’s I was well Legal and Had seen the band countless times. Joe Walsh said the most terrifying thing that ever happened to him was when Keith Moon decided he liked him. Thus it was with Eric Moore and me. I’ll never understand it but we reached a point where Eric would have this evil fun Grin and motion me backstage at different places. pre-show. I didn’t really care for Liquor much…yet but When Eric hands you a shot or 3 of Whiskey or a toke you did it. I had to hang with the Big Dog, you didn’t tell the Big Dog NO.  

OHIO'S ROCK N'ROLL MACHINES

The last time I saw Eric personally was a small club gig and he said as we left the backroom ” Watch this.” Now it was his tradition to smoke a joint here and there onstage and usually, he’d not go the distance, but this night I’m watching him as Instructed. It was like being back in school when all the kids were talking before class. He’s standing up there smoking the whole thing and surveying the scene. When he was done with it as loud as any Human could he lays into the Mic ” HEY! SHUT UP. NOW LISTEN! IT”S SATURDAY NIGHT AND YOU GOT ALLLL DAAAYYY TOMORROW TO GET OVER IT! WE ARE GONNA HAVE US A PARTY IN HERE!!! ” Then He pointed at my first wife and a couple of other girls and told them to hit that Dance Floor. Well, my wife hit the exit door. “That GUY is your Buddy? “well kinda yeah.” .”He scares me.” I replied, “Well yeah if you are on his bad side, but you aren’t”.  

OUTLAWS in Music are always fascinating. The GODZ never failed to please and to shake the walls. Lemmy once said that he had heard a story about what Deep Purple had done to a promoter who didn’t pay them, and he didn’t know if it was true or not but he hoped it was. I’m the same. I was told an absolute riot of a Story and as Lemmy, I hope it was True. Knowing they lived in the early days by shooting squirrels and Birds with a 44 to try and eat what might be left I tend to believe this story.  The Story goes that someone along the way was booking entertainment for a youth camp, and their thought process wasn’t exactly “minding the store” Booking The GODZ as a Praise and Worship act. Marshall stacks, Jack Daniels bottles, and all showed up on stage, and Eric looking around mid smoke  realizes somethings off and announces on the mic looking down at the Crowd before him ” Man, Y’all  are LITTLE!”  “We’re gonna do a song about these cool little pills (Quaaludes) and Rips into “Feeling fine on a 714”. Power cut off, “Thank you Gentlemen here’s your money can we help load up your gear?”  

The other thing about the Band is the Two Guitar Blend of Chatfield and Hill isn’t just the roots Rock Blues leads that were so solid, they had the Valued ability to make the Rhythm Guitars, vamps, and Power chords Really shine. A melodic blend with little nuances that were as captivating as the Brilliant Leads. Sometimes it might sound simple, I assure you only great players put the kind of thought into every detail. They Worked as Master Builders. This was Honored and not lost on the guitarists who filled their shoes in the years following. That band didn’t have any Halfway “, ah That’ll Do” members. As Wild as any of any Rockers, they were Professionals. Many times people think Rock bands are all Haphazard, and some are. To say that about the GODZ would be a Mistake of epic stature. Pro– Fess- ion-al  Period. Eric was quoted when interviewed about total Global success eluding the band on more than one occasion as “On Turn 4..the wheel comes off.” He shrugged it off with no ill reaction, more so amused and accepting in his later years. The Group always defined success on their own terms anyway. 

The Godz Ohio’s Rock N’Roll Machines Live in Cleveland

Too Easy never makes a great story. He was also asked about a discovery that cassette tapes of The Band had become an Underground Treasure in Russia He replied “Well Ronald Reagan and jets and Tanks were one thing, but my personal opinion is the reason the Iron Curtain fell was Blue Jeans, Long Hair, Marijuana and Rock N’ Roll” “It Works”.

Tenacity and Kicking down the door Taking no Prisoners was the operation from the beginning to end. Glen Cataline, drummer on the first two Godz albums, died on April 14, 2019, at age 67.] Eric Moore died on May 17, 2019.No Less than Kerrang Magazine paid one of many tributes. I want to acknowledge the other guitar players and band members as well, that helped keep the machine going for 40 to 50 years. 

I make the wise suggestion of researching that fully as There are conflicting names and numbers and I don’t want to misinform. During periods of time Eric Moore Himself would take on the role of wielding a Gibson Les Paul and handing over the Bass duties to others.

An Estimated 12 albums be its official release, compilations, or Live works and enough touring to Make a young man old in half the time, THE GODZ were Truly Ohio’s Rock N’ Roll Machines. They worked as hard as any band ever and Partied Harder. The Ohio men who tore up the world, many times. I tip my hat to them all.

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Jimmy Flemming