Sunday, December 26, 2010

Looking back @ 2010

Yeah, it's been a while since my last post. We've been a bit busy. I'm going to do a post about our trip to Canada for SFContario but I know there is a lot of folks wondering how the Who ARTED? 2010 event went. It was a huge success! I'll be putting together a post with all the numbers and stuff so stay tuned!

But for now a bit of end-of-year stuff: First off we want to thank all of you for supporting Billy Tackett Studios. It is a great warm and fuzzy like feeling when one can do what one loves to do and the public approves. And that's what happens every time one of you orders a print online or at a con, commissions me for a portrait of book cover or just stops by and looks through the portfolio and gives me some sort of "thumbs up".

Secondly, thanks to all the event promoters and gallery curators that invited to their events and establishments. Again, you gave us that warm and fuzzy feeling by rolling out the red carpet!

During 2010 we had the opportunity to:
Climb the Sears Towers
Visit Graceland
Climb the St. Louis Arch
See Niagara Falls
Climb the Seattle Space Needle
Visit Sun Records
Climb the Toronto CN Tower
See the Pacific Ocean for the first time
Leave the U.S. for the first time
Publish my first book
Met some wonderfully awesome folks!

Without your support we wouldn't have the opportunity to travel to travel country...scratch that! the continent! And your support to me is me! But just as important is your support of the zombie/horror genre. For so many years we have been on the outside looking in at mainstream but now we are mainstream so let's keep it up and look out for each other!

And just as important if not more so is your support of the arts including art, literature, film, music and especially the independent arts. The arts are being cut from our school systems so it's up to you parents, siblings, family, friends and neighbors to educate the younger ones and to expose them to the things that you loved when you were young...and still love today!

So what will 2011 have in store for Billy Tackett Studios? The Dead White & Blue graphic novel will be completed and you can be damned sure there will be an ass load of Dead White & Blue art! I'm looking into some really cool merchandise to tie in with the graphic novel but that's all in the R&D stages right now. There could possibly be some new publications from Billy Tackett Studios as well. We are also planning on bringin' our ooey gooey zombie goodness to some new cities around the US! We may be invading to new countries as have been warned!

Thanks to all and Happy 2011!!
Billy & Heather

Wednesday, December 01, 2010


One more big promo! Who ARTED? is almost here and I wanted to share a video from our friend Phil Hepfinger that he shot at last year's event.

This Saturday, 6 to 10, Art on the Levee at Newport on the Levee. Wine tastings, refreshments, art, art, art!

go to for more details

Monday, November 29, 2010

Who ARTED? is almost here!!!

Yes, our charity event is this Saturday! For those that don't know Who ARTED? is our way of accomplishing a few things: 
First, it's a way for us to get those that may not feel artsy to get creative and art for a good cause.
Second, we take vinyl records that will probably find their way into a landfill and give them a new lease on life.
Third, by keeping the prices at a minimum it's possible to get original art into the hands of art lovers that don't necessarily have a ton of cash to shell out for art.
And lastly, we are raising money for a worthy cause and having a blast doin' it!

The charity this year is the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation and the money raised will be donated in memory of Heather's mother Connie Perry.

The event will take place at Art on the Levee which is located at Newport on the Levee in Newport KY 6 until 10 pm. Stonebrook Winery will be offering wine tastings for a small fee. Other refreshments will be available free of charge.

We have some great artists lined up this year. Some of the talented folks that have donated their time and creative juices this year include:
Survivor's Rupert
Jim O'Rear
Mark Kidwell
Sam Flegal
Travis Fessler
Dick Starr
Daniel Emery Taylor
Rob Meyer
Bobby Nash
Black-N-Bluegrass Roller Girls
...and tons more! Will give a full list of contributing artists with links as well as photos next week.

Friday, November 26, 2010

Zombies of the Universe Christmas sale!!

For a limited time I'm making the Zombies of the Universe print available online! Nov. 26 through Dec. 3!

Monday, November 15, 2010

Horrorhound Cincy etc...

Horrorhound Cincy is over and it was a blast. Got to hang out with our friends Dick Starr, Twilight Creations, Jason Crowe, Mike Holman, Rondo award winner ScottRa, Nathan Thomas Milliner, Joel Robinson, and so on and so forth. Thanks to Aaron, Nathan and the crew for a great show and thanks to everyone that stopped by and supported us and the event.

This comin' weekednd we're headed up to Toronto for SFContario. If you're in the area stop by and say hi.

And now for some housecleaning:
We met some of the folks from the Zombie Research Society while at ZomBcon (some of which we were supposed to have shared some air time with on National Geographic's Truth Behind Zombies but we haven't been able to confirm whether they used any of my art or not...). Anyway, they bought some prints and have showed us some love on their site: Debbie Does Zombies by Billy Tackett. And yes, Debbies Does Zombies will be a t-shirt in the near future.

Speakin' of ZomBcon; I did an interview with Undead Air podcast. Check it out!

While at the Memphis Comic & Fantasy convention I sat with friend Jon Klement for an interview on Dragon Talk Radio.

Promo for Macabre Mansion's The Fall of the House of Usher audio book starring Kevin Sorbo and Jim O'Rear featuring art by yours truly.

And lastly but not leastly Ghost Walk did a write up on me for their Haunted Path ezine.

I zombified Survivor's Rupert! The art will be auctioned off at the Rupert's Kids charity event Tuxes & Tennies.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Free Speech?

Hell yeah! I'm sure EVERYONE has heard about the Amazon fiasco. If not read it here on USA Today's blog. This has raised issues. Free speech issues. Personally I think the book should have been removed. Yet I am pro-free speech. How's that possible?

Firstly, without free speech this blog would never exist. Nor would my career.But I do understand that although I have the freedom to say something I do not have the right to be heard. And if heaven forbid I say something controversial my right to say is also the same right that protects those to disagree with me. And that goes both ways. I don't agree with flag burning but it free speech protects those that do. I think it's biting the hand that feeds you but oh well.

I have tons more I'd like to say but I want to get to the point which is the deal with Amazon wasn't a matter of free speech. The perv can write and say what he wants but free speech does not protect him from the repercussions of what he says or writes. (I'll try not to get into any personal feelings on the subject and stick with the facts of what happened.) Amazon's removal of the book is a type of censorship.But people forget that if you want free speech online you have to make it yourself. For instance I have heard of several people getting their Facebook profiles deleted for something they said or some photo they uploaded. "Free speech!" they cried. Wrong. Facebook owns the servers that you are storing this information on. Facebook is allowing you to use there software, hardware etc for free. They own it. So they get final say on what goes on on Facebook. You have no rights. Especially since you agreed to their terms when you signed up. It's basically like if you came to my house and started insulting me or something so I boot your ass out. Or you rent an apartment and get evicted because you have loud parties every night. The same goes for Amazon. And Yahoo. And so on. If you truly want free speech online you must have your own servers. So if this guy truly wants to spread the gospel of pedophilia he will have to self publish and sell it on his own website otherwise he is subject to censorship.

There were a lot of people screaming about this issue. But I don't think I heard anyone ask for him to be censored. Most of what I heard was for Amazon to remove the book. And there was lots of talk about boycotting Amazon. There were those that condemned this action. I don't understand why. Companies get boycotted all the time when there is a group of people that think the company's policies are wrong. Check this out:
Boycott Target for giving money to an "antigay' candidate
Boycott BP for, well, you know...
Boycott Shell for something going on in Nigeria (I tried to figure it out but the website is pretty damned convoluted)
Boycott Exxon for any number of things apparently
Boycott Chevron because they support a Burmese dictatorship(?)
Boycott Home Depot because they are pro gay apparently
Boycott The Hobbit Because-er-never mind. That one's over...
Boycott Red & Black Cafe because cops in their store makes them really nervous for some reason
Boycott the circus I dunno about this one. I love the circus but I also love a naked woman...lemme think about this one a bit...
Boycott Wal-mart because they are an instrument of the devil...that rolls back the prices on a regular basis!
Boycott Walgreens for any number of reasons whether you're liberal or conservative
Boycott Wikipedia for some reason
Boycott Real Housewives DC because there are some attention whores on the show. Go figure...
Boycott Lebron James for getting another "job" with another "company" that pays better
Boycott Dr. Laura because she said something bad or wrong about Tourettes ..THAT STUPID BITCH!!
Boycott Mel Gibson for being a dick
Boycott YouTube because they don't believe in free speech (see paragraphs above)
Boycott Mars because now vegetarians can't get their chocolate fix...wait a minnit, isn't it milk chocolate? In that case boycott Mars because vegetarians don't have enough products and companies to boycott. (Imagine my dismay when I typed "boycott ma" into google and the headlines "Boycott Mars" pops up and it turns out to be a frickin' candy bar)

All these were found by typing "boycott" and then a letter or two and letting Google do the rest. Speaking of Google: 10 Reasons to Boycott Google.

So the uproar about Amazon censoring an "alleged" pedophile is lost on me. It was a type of protest. And this country has a long history of fixing things society deems wrong by protests and boycotts. Especially when it comes to companies that are looking for a profit. How many people that want to give the pedo guy his free speech want to take it from Glenn Beck? Or the Dixie Chicks?

Granted are lots of gray areas when it comes to freedom of expression and free speech. Being an artist I try to keep up with what's going on especially the big cases. Sometimes I agree with the outcomes, sometimes I don't. But I do think that a how-to guide to something illegal such as murder, rape, pedophilia, etc. crosses a line. Writing about those subjects are OK but instruction manuals are not. That may be an opinion. And if so it is protected speech ;-)

Just for the record, I could moderate all comments to my blog but I refuse. That's my way of giving you free speech here. If you disagree with me let me know. All comments are posted unedited. That's not to say I wouldn't delete something but it would have to be pretty bad...And I don't want to have my Blogger account deleted because this is their property after all.

Keep my free speech alive! Buy my book!

And for what seems to be a good dissertation on free speech click here.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

For The Love Of Monsters pre-orders

We finally got our galley copy of our book and we are ready for pre-orders! We will be taking pre-orders until Nov. 31. When you pre-order you get free shipping, free autograph and free sketch on the inside cover! That's a whole lotta frees in there. You may ask "Billy, how can you afford to give away free autographs like that?" It's true that in this economy ink is very expensive and with the all the social upheavals in the ink rich countries it's kinda hard to come by. But I do it because I love you. I love each and every one of you. In a brotherly way of course. And not in a creepy way. Because I'm not like that. Not since the therapy...

Anyway! Go to and get your copy for only $35. It's not just a book but a little auto-biography. And it not only contains what may be the oldest surviving piece 'o art by me it also has pictures of my in Mickey Mouse ears and a McDonalds hat! Not at the same time of course.

I'll also be taking pre-orders at Horrorhound Weekend Cincy this weekend!

And while I'm at it: I discovered some photos from Darkwoods 1.5 that I had neglected to I did.

 Ami & Heather

Me & my David Fultz art challenge: Draw a zombified single celled organism

 Sam Flegal and his David Fultz art challenge: Draw a zombified single celled organism...I can't compete with color!

 David Fultz, me & Sam Flegal

 And just to prove that Sam and I are NOT the same person as some of you have suspected

 Sam, Mike Holman, Adam Thomas, Daniel Emery Taylor, Ami Taylor & Heather

Back row: Sam, Nightmare on Elm Street's Ken Sagoes, Adam, Daniel, Ami
Front row: Matt Essary, Heather

Monday, November 08, 2010

Stalkin' in Memphis

So after rollin' in from Memphis at around 6am Sunday morning I think I'm back on track. We had a great time at the Memphis Comic and Fantasy Convention.We had the opportunity to meet some old friends from Mid South Con and make tons of new ones.

First a big thanks to Carlin Stuart for driving us around for dinner! I only wish we had had more time to spend on Beale St.... And thanks to Shorty for being our "handler"...Holy crap, that sounds creepy! Anyway, some highlights...

So Denise Crosby approaches me at the VIP party and introduces herself and tells me she's a fan! For those that don't know Denise is known for her roles in Star Trek: The Next Generation, Pet Sematary, X-Files, and Dexter! How cool is that! Also I found out that her ex-father-in-law is Blake Edwards! Blake is the director of the classic Pink Panther movies as well as Breakfast At Tiffany's! I couldn't let the opportunity pass so I gave her a copy of my Breakfast Is Tiffany print with the inscription : "Denise, Yeah, I think I dismembered the film" which is in reference to the song. I asked her how she thought Blake would feel about my zombification of his creation she replied that he would most likely love it because he has a pretty twisted sense of humor! There is now one degree of separation between Breakfast At Tiffany's and Breakfast Is Tiffany!

We also had the pleasure of meeting Suzanna Leigh who has been in films such as Paradise Hawaiian Style with Elvis, Lust for a Vampire, Deadly Bees and Son of Dracula. We also got to hang out with Sean Taylor, Bobby Nash, Adam Shaw, Sam Flegal, and some guy named Marc Ballard.

We were set up across from Ghost Rider creator Gary Friedrich. We've been to a few shows with Gary but I never really had the opportunity to check his stuff out. Man, was I surprised to learn that in addition to Ghost Rider Gary also wrote some of my favorite comics like Captain America, Monster of Frankenstein and Sgt. Fury and his Howlin' Commandos! I had no idea! During my down time I did a sketch of Ghost Rider and got Gary to sign it along with a copy of page #1 script of Ghost Rider's first appearance. Sweet!

I also sat down with Jon Klement and did a half hour interview for his podcast Dragon Talk Radio.

We rounded out our weekend when Carlin took us to Beale Street for dinner. Us consisted of Sam Flegal, Arne Starr, Heather and myself. This was the first time I had met Arne. He has worked for DC and Marvel and is probably best known for his work on the Star Trek comics. He now acts and has been on My Name is Earl, Mad Men, Medium and CSI as well as parts in Flags of Our Fathers, Blades of Glory, Spiderman 3, Transformers, Rush Hour 3, Iron Man and Star Trek. The man had some interesting tales to tell and we look forward to meeting up with him again.

Jon Klement

Pull My Finger is a great game to play while on the radio!

Sean Taylor just wanted to know what it's like to be me.


Beale Street

Dinner with Carlin, Sam, me, Heather and Arne

 Gary signing my sketch

Heather and Arne

Thursday, November 04, 2010

Memphis Comic & Fantasy Convention

That's where we're headed this weekend! Get all the details here Guests include Jerry Lawler, Martheus Wade, Gary Friedrich, Jason Craig, Bobby Nash, Sam Flegal and Sean Taylor.

Here's the Big Announcement: We will have a copy of my book For The Love Of Monsters on hand and will be taking pre-orders. When you pre-order and the convention I will not only sign your copy but I will also sketch, doodle, or otherwise deface it before I send it out at no extra charge! And to think there was a time when I got in trouble for drawing in books. Take that, high school librarian!

Wednesday, November 03, 2010

ZomBcon re-cap

We're back! Our first event in Seattle WA was a huge success. The staff was awesome, the guests were awesome and the fans & attendees were awesome! First a big thanks for Ryan, Kimberley and everyone that coordinated and/or volunteered for the hospitality.

So first off we shared space with Stephen Romano, the author and designer of Shock Festival. Great guy who does some great work. I got to meet Chuck Palahniuk who stopped by the booth and flipped through the portfolio. We did some red carpet-y stuff towards the end of the event and I was introduced to George Romero! Photos were taken and I'll be postin' those babies when I get 'em!

The event was in an area that was full of great restaurants and pubs. We were just a couple blocks from the Space Needle which we visited of course. It was a great trip and we're really looking forward to returning in January for Rustycon at which I'll be the artist Guest of Honor.

My art on our right, Stephen Romano's on our left

Me & Hello Kitty are tight

From the Needle

From the Needle

Under the Needle

Green screen photo. The dude taking the pic kept telling me that my hat was covering my eyes and finally I snapped "Just snap the photo!"

He captured my frustration beautifully I think...

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Tis the season...

Halloween is here! I am also here...and there...and everywhere! "Here" means I have original art hanging in the "Of Switzerland County" gallery in Vevay IN now through November. They also carry a selection of my Matted & Splatted prints. The gallery will be hosting a reception at which we will be present on Nov. 3rd. If you've never been to Vevay you really must do so. We spent a few hours there after hanging the art and I think it has become my favorite little town.

"There" means Seattle WA. I'll be a guest at ZomBcon this weekend. Guests include Chuck Palahniuk, Max Brooks, Malcolm McDowell, Jeffrey Reddick, Ben Templesmith, George Romero and Bruce Campbell among a slew of others! 

"Everywhere" means National Geographic's The Truth Behind Zombies Saturday at 10pm. The producers asked for some of my art to be used in the program so they may have used all, some or none of my stuff. It will be like playing Where's Waldo...only with zombies!

Vevay, IN

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Halloween music...week 4

Last week! Halloween is almost upon us. For the final installment I thought I would showcase some bands that I have some connection which whether they are friends or clients or what ever.

Goblin Queen Impaler
Listened to these guys back in the day and recently had the honor of having them as booth neighbors at a local show. I believe their music is better than ever.

Soul Seller First Jason
Ari Lehman is pretty awesome. High energy on and off stage. We do several shows a year with him and he never fails to entertain. He is also working on Abyss Walker inspired music so keep your eyes peeled for that! for more info.

Sick Things Alice Cooper
I did t-shirt designs for both the US and UK chapters of Alice's unofficial fan clubs, both called Sickthings.

What's the Count Jack? Eerie Von
Chatted with Eerie online numerous occasions and just waiting for the opportunity to meet him in person. The guy is also a great artist. Stop by to see for yourself.

Changed Switchblade Syndicate
Some great friends of ours. I did the cover art for their debut CD. I only wish there was a better quality video of them but stop by for samples of their music.

Devilution The Reanimated
I've met some of these cats a few times. Check the out if you get the opportunity.

Sex Drugs & Formaldehyde Pagan Holiday 1313
Lastly but definitely not leastly, great band who musically is equal parts 80s metal, punk and Italian horror! And any band with a song called Dead White & Blue is pretty fuckin' cool in my book!

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Halloween music...week 3

Undertaker Batlord

Creature with the Atom Brain Roky Erickson

Entrance of the Devil Zior

Munster's Theme Surfin' Lungs

Black Ju Ju Lydia Lunch

Hot Rod to Hell Elvis Hitler

I Believe in Halloween The Voluptuous Horror of Karen Black

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Day trip!!

On Saturday we'll be heading out to Vevay IN to set up for a gallery showing. I'm gonna be the featured artist in the "Of Switzerland County" Stores for November...and the showing just happens to overlap with Halloween! How's that for coincidence! I'll have a ton of original art on display as well as Matted & Splattedprints available for purchase. You can go here for more info! Unfortunately we won't be there for the opening this time but we will be making plans for a show there in 2011! The reason we can't make the opening is because we'll be knockin' 'em undead at...

You know. The con out in Seattle that is featuring Chuck Palahniuk, Max Brooks, Malcolm McDowell, Jeffrey Reddick, Ben Templesmith and a couple up and comers named George Romero and Bruce Campbell! 

I'll have more to say about that later but until then I will leave you with this:

...and this: Some of my art should be featured in a National Geographic documentary called The Truth Behind Zombies. It's scheduled to air Oct. 30th at 10 pm est. They asked for a bunch of images but I don't know what made the cut so it will be a surprise for all of us I guess!

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Halloween music...week 2

Short 'n sweet.

Bloody Hammer Roky Erickson

Little Demon Screamin' Jay Hawkins

Riboflavin 45 Grave

This House is Haunted Alice Cooper

Nightmare/Dreamtime Motorhead

Bad Moon Rising 16 Horsepower

Teenage Werewolf The Cramps

Friday, October 08, 2010

Halloween music...week 1

Here some songs for Halloween or Amateur Night as I like to call it! Making a Halloween playlist can be pretty easy. Misfits, Rob Zombie, Alice Cooper etc. But I'm not gonna take the safe 'n easy route. I'm gonna turn lay some shit on you that will either leave you wanting more more or turnin' yer Fruit o' the looms into a fudge factory! Muahahahaha!

Jack the Ripper Screamin' Lord Sutch
I've never heard Alice Cooper refer to this underrated performer as an influence but the seeds are here...especially for the mid-70s Alice

Night of the Vampire Entombed
Great cover of a Roky Erickson classic

I Walked With A Zombie Roky Erickson
If you ain't familiar with Roky's work please check him out...because he's just passin' through our reality...

Murderdolls She was a Teenage Zombie
B horror movies, eyeliner, perfect mixture of punk and 80s metal & they like to say fuck...Perfect!

Bela Lugosi's Dead Bauhaus
The perfect goth band

Monster's Holiday Buck Owens
One of the first records I ever owned.

Nosferatu Blue Oyster Cult
Tryin' to decide which BOC song to add is a bitch!

Next week I'll have seven more!

Monday, October 04, 2010

Please don't touch

Song evolution installment! The classic Please Don't Touch originally recorded in 1959. Never heard it you say? You were missin' out but I have remedied that. You're welcome.

Versions to check out: Johnny Kidd & The Pirates, Girlhead, The Downing Street Years & Hastyfishbone

Johnny Kidd & the Pirates

Girlhead (Motorhead & Girlschool)

Stray Cats



Kidd Kane & the Pirates

The Downing Street Years

Tom White & His Friends

The Meteors

Las Furias

Rachel Stamp

The Housewreckers


Friday, October 01, 2010

Darkwoods Con 1.5

Darkwoods Con 1.5
Lebanon KY
This friggin' weekend!

Survivor's Rupert, The Honky Tonk Man, Tiffany Shepis, Daniel Emery Taylor, Sam Flegal, World of Strange, Ari Lehman, Al Snow and on and on and on!

This is gonna be one helluva weekend!

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Walkin' the Dog

I'm gonna try to chronicle the evolution of some of my favorite songs for better or for worse. For some reason I have always been a sucker for a cover song and have tried to collect them as much as possible. Thanks to the internet that is so much easier now! I'm gonna try to keep these in chronological order but that can be difficult. I'm also staying away from most concert recordings because 90% of them suck! The only time I'll break this rule is if the quality is exceptional or the content is rare and/or unusual. And if you have any that I missed send 'em along!

I also recommend looking into some of these more obscure musicians. There's some great music out there just waiting to be rediscovered. I would link to the bands listed but I'm kinda lazy and why should I anyway? I gave you the band and the song. Do some work for yourself for once! I ain't gonna hand you everything on a blood splattered platter , y'know!

Startin' off with the classic Walkin' the Dog written by Rufus Thomas and released in 1963. I find it rather odd that after almost 40 years of being re-interpreted by mostly white singers the song has evolved into a more bluesy composition than the original.

My recommended versions:
The original by Rufus Thomas of course, The Sonics because it just rocks your f*ckin' face off, The Everly Brothers because it was more hip and garage sounding than what I expected, Aerosmith because early Aerosmith = good Aerosmith, The Roosters because those Japanese guys know how to do it, Green Day just so you can hear what they could have sounded like, Joe Deninzon because electric fiddles are awesome, Dizzy Cats to see how the Russians do it and Sweet Jam because...well...just because ;-)

Rufus Thomas

Jackie Shane

Rolling Stones

Georgie Fame & the Blue Flames

PJ Proby

Johnny Rivers

The Dennisons

The Sonics

The Everly Brothers

Davy Graham

Mitch Ryder & the Detroit Wheels

Stevie Ray Vaughan

Randy California & Spirit

The Jam

Roger Daltrey


The Roosters

Ratt (this EP was my first exposure to the song)

Steve Marriott & the DTs

Chris Wilson

Green Day

Dumpy's Rusty Nuts

Joe Deninzon & Stratospheerius

Aerosmith Unplugged

J├Ârgen Falk and Inge Josephson

Hans Theesink

The Dizzy Cats

Sweet Jam

And if you think this is a lot just wait'll I get to Louie Louie!

Friday, September 24, 2010

Zombie Portraits!!!

Hey gang! We'll be in Newport at Art on the Levee, which is ironically (?) located at Newport on the Levee, tonight and tomorrow night. We are celebrating the Twisted & Talented Halloween Art Exhibit. That ain't the big news. The big news is that I'll be doing zombie caricatures while you wait, shop or drink! you'll get stuff like:


Stop by after 6 to get your zombie on!!

Also in other news: The Cincinnati Comics Expo was friggin' fabulous! It was a great turn out and thankfully they are doing another next year. 

 We were actually having a better time than we look like we are

Arthur who?
We just got back from Chicago. This time we had time to do some touristy shit...and we have the photos to prove it!

 Indiana Dunes
 I got to pull the finger of a dude named Octave

 Sears Tower...103 stories up!

They call me Sunshine...