James Zahn is best-known as The Rock Father™, a media personality, commentator, adventurer and raconteur. He is the Owner, Publisher, and Editor-in-Chief of THE ROCK FATHER™ Magazine. In January, 2019, after nearly a decade of publishing The Rock Father™ Magazine, he joined Adventure Media and Events as Senior Editor of The Toy Book—the leading trade publication for the toy industry since 1984, as well as The Pop Insider — a destination for all things pop culture, and The Toy Insider — the leading consumer guide for toys and games. He is also editor of The Toy Report, a weekly newsletter published by The Toy Book each Thursday. Zahn has over 27 years of experience in the entertainment, retail and publishing industries.
He regularly serves as a Brand Ambassador and spokesperson for several Globally-recognized pop culture and lifestyle brands in addition to consulting for a number of toy manufacturers.
Creatively, James has directed/edited music videos, lyric videos, and album trailers for bands such as FEAR FACTORY, has appeared as an actor in feature films and commercials, written comic books, and performed in bands. He currently serves as an artist manager and video director for PRODUCT OF HATE, whose debut album was released by Napalm Records in 2016, distributed by ADA/Warner Music in the U.S. with Universal Music handling global. A new album has been completed and is set for release this year.
Zahn and/or his work have been featured in/on CNN, NBC, ABC, WGN, CBS, GCTN, G4, The Chicago Tribune, Forbes, MarketWatch, Reuters, BusinessWire, Fangoria, Starlog and more. He's appeared as a music expert on CNN's AC360 alongside Anderson Cooper, and has been interviewed by Larry King. In the past he served as a writer for the Netflix Stream Team, Fandango Family and PBS KIDS, penned articles for Sprout and PopSugar, and was a contributor to Chicago Parent.
Learn more here.
There's a big update coming to Six Flags Great America's Hurricane Harbor in Gurnee, Illinois next year.
Tsunami Surge will be the tallest water coaster in the world, towering over the park's Riptide Bay area at over 86-feet tall. Water-blasting jet propulsion technology will power riders through more than 950 feet of enclosed tunnels and open air slides at speeds above 28 mph. The 25th attraction within Hurricane Harbor, Tsunami Surge will be the first ride at any Six Flags park to use AquaLucent visual events to create "mind-blowing bursts of colors and dreamlike patterns, intensifying the ride experience."
“Six Flags is the undisputed leader in delivering record-breaking rides and world-class thrills,” says Six Flags Great America Park President Hank Salemi. “The new Tsunami Surge water coaster is in a class all by itself, defying gravity to blast riders uphill through 950 feet of exhilarating drops, twists and turns. This exciting, new addition is the perfect complement to an already incredible lineup of the biggest and most innovative attractions in the Midwest.”
Tsunami Surge is scheduled to open during the park's 2020 operating season.
On Sept. 27, GRAMMY winner Sturgill Simpson will release Sound & Fury — a Netflix Original Anime Film — alongside a companion album. Set for release via Elektra Records, the new album features 10 new tracks, the first of which, "Sing Along," was released today. Check out the music video by Japanese anime legend Jumpei Mizusaki below...
If you've ever dreamed of flying high in a craft made famous during the daring missions of World War II, you now have a chance to do it.
The B-17 Aluminum Overcast Tour kicks off on Aug. 16 in Waukegan, Illinois. The Experimental Aircraft Association (EAA) will bring a fully-functional B-17G to Waukegan National Airport for ground-based walk-around tours, and hourly mission flights through Aug. 18.
The Aluminum Overcast is a beautifully restored B-17 Flying Fortress that's been a staple of air shows for many years. Based in Oshkosh, Wisconsin, the plane will tour the eastern half of the U.S. through November, with ticket sales supporting the ongoing maintenance and operations cost for one of the last 10 remaining B-17's in the world that are still airworthy.
Flight tickets can be ordered online via the EAA website.
The band will offer 311 Amber Ale and 311 I'll Be Here Awhile Honey Apricot Ale at concerts in West Palm Beach on Friday, Aug. 2, and Tampa on Saturday, Aug. 3. This is the first time the two beers have been made readily available for fans.
In 2017, in celebration of 25 years as a band, 311 partnered with Rock Brothers Brewing to create their 311 Amber Ale. Originally brainstormed in the band’s Hive Studio in Los Angeles, 311 Amber Ale "shines bright as roasted caramel malts are blended with Equinox hops, bringing subtle hints of tropical citrus and kush aromatics." This past February, the band debuted their second Ale, 311 I’ll Be Here Awhile Honey Apricot Ale. The new beers follow the release of last year's Beautiful Disaster Imperial IPA.
311's latest album, Voyager, was released on July 12.
Six Flags Entertainment Corporation kicked off Independence Day in style this year, partnering with the Coca-Cola to set a new record for the Biggest July 4th Toast in the U.S.
A total of 22,555 guests and team members across 11 Six Flags theme parks — including Six Flags Great America here in Illinois — raised a Coca-Cola beverage to toast America and usher in the annual Coca-Cola July 4th Fest. This year's event features exclusive ride times through July 6, with new Coca-Cola Cool Zones, and a spectacular fireworks show to close each night.
The village of Rosemont is a pretty busy place of late, and during the summer months, things are heating up on the west side of I-294. Anchoring the expansion of the entertainment district to the other side of the Tri-State Tollway is Impact Field, which opened in 2018 for the inaugural season of Chicagoland's newest professional baseball team — The Chicago Dogs.
Until recently, we'd only driven by the park — happening to catch the post-game fireworks on a few occasions as we clipped by at a brisk pace. The modern ballpark benefits from its visibility, including the double-sided digital scoreboard that's absolutely unmissable for the millions of drivers who pass by annually.
During a recent media night (which also happened to be superhero night), we finally had a chance to check out everything that this new ball club — part of the American Association of Independent Professional Baseball — has to offer, and for families, it's a lot. It's not only tremendous fun, but it's affordable, with single game tickets starting at just $9 for bleachers, and topping off at $25 for the Wintrust Home Plate Club.
On a beautiful Friday night, The Chicago Dogs clobbered the Sioux City Explorers 9-2, but the game was just a piece of the overall experience. Fan engagement was high, and the laid-back vibe of the ballpark was evident from the get-go. From the moment you enter the main gates on the park's right field corner, it's apparent that this is a different type of ballpark. It's very open, with a 360-degree concourse that offers a great view that's free of obstructions.
For kids, there's activities in left field — inflatables that include are set up to give little ballplayers a taste of the action with pitching and batting. One of the most popular activities is one that really gets kids moving — a running contest that clocks kids' speed as they run from "third base" to home plate.
Throughout the park, families will find plenty of great food options — and for grownups, there's quite a few fine beverage options as well. Keep an eye out and you'll spot The Dogs' mascot, Squeeze, and his nefarious counterpart, Ketchup. A reminder, especially for those not in Chicago: #NoKetchup. Never, ever put ketchup on a hot dog — NEVER!
On Friday nights, kids run the bases post-game, and there's special events throughout the season, which runs through August. Check out the official site for schedule and tickets!
Bonus: The Chicago Dogs have a great merch store. Now, the merch isn't cheap, but it's completely worth it. We bought The Rock Daughters™ plush versions of Ketchup and Squeeze, while I couldn't resist the New Era fitted Chicago Dogs on-field cap.