Tackett's receiver catches heavy metal


June 08, 1994|By Tom Keegan | Tom Keegan,Sun Staff Writer

Heavy metal.

To many, the only thing more distasteful than the music itself are some of the freaks who listen to it.

You know the stereotype. Long, stringy, greasy hair. Rotting teeth. A faint mustache that easily could pass for either axle grease or cookie crumbs. Jeans so badly in need of a spin in the washer that they should be condemned, or at the very least fumigated.

You know, brain-dead burnouts.

Giggling, drug-abusing, head-jerking, devil-worshiping human pollutants of the planet earth.

Or so goes the stereotype.

Not all heavy metal fans fit the profile. Some even contradict it.

Orioles reserve catcher Jeff Tackett, devoted husband and father of two (soon to be three), is living proof that you don't have to be a brain-dead burnout to enjoy heavy metal music.

"I like something with a hard beat to it," Tackett said. "Something that's aggressive."

Such as? "I'm still a big KISS fan myself," Tackett said. "I like to listen to Metallica, Megadeath, AC/DC. Judas Priest, Iron Maiden. I could go on all day listing heavy metal bands I like to listen to."

Noisy stuff.

"If it's too loud, you're too old," Tackett said.

Tackett also likes to listen to rock-and-roll, country and other types of music.

He has found the nightclubs in Minneapolis and Seattle to have the best local bands.

"But by the time we get done with games, there really isn't much time to go out after a game anyway," Tackett said.

He has wide-ranging musical tastes, but when he's in the mood for hard stuff, he knows where to turn. Heavy metal.

"It motivates me," Tackett said. "Some people care to listen to country, rap or opera. It puts them in whatever state of mind they care to be in. To me, heavy metal motivates me."

There have been instances of angry parents attempting to link their children's self-destructive actions to lyrics from heavy metal bands. Tackett doesn't buy it.

"With all the crazy things going on in the world today, all the robberies and shootings and killings, everybody is always looking for an easy out, looking for something to blame it on," Tackett said. "I listen to the music, and it doesn't make me feel like going out and doing crazy things like that. I mean, devil worship? That's the farthest thing in the world from me. I say ignore the message and listen to the music. I just like the way it sounds."

But that doesn't mean his wife, Wendy, does.

"She's always telling me she doesn't want to listen to that stuff," Tackett said.

The Tacketts are expecting their third child late next month. Their daughter, Katie, is 4, and their son, Chase Wilson, will turn 2 in October.

Heavy metal is just one of Tackett's interests. He also enjoys riding motorcycles, watching Nick at Nite and surfing.

Once while surfing with friends, Tackett survived the scare of his life.

"It was 6:30 in the morning and three buddies and I were freezing in the water, waiting for a wave," he said. "A seal popped up next to me and I thought it was a shark. I yelled, 'Shark,' and we were all back on shore in no time. That was the scariest thing that ever happened to me."

A heavy metal fan scared to death by a seal? Then again, maybe it makes sense. After all, Tackett isn't a Seals & Crofts kind of guy.

Baltimore Sun Articles
Please note the green-lined linked article text has been applied commercially without any involvement from our newsroom editors, reporters or any other editorial staff.