James Zahn is best-known as The Rock Father™, a media personality, commentator, adventurer and raconteur. In January, 2019, after nearly a decade as Publisher of The Rock Father Magazine, he joined Adventure Publishing Group 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. He is also editor of The Toy Report, a weekly newsletter published by The Toy Book each Thursday. Zahn has over 25 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.
James and/or his work have been featured in/on CNN, FOX Business, NBC, ABC, WGN, G4, The Chicago Tribune, BusinessWire, Babble, 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.
When I shared the news in November that Hot Wheels Monster Trucks Live would be making the rounds for its inaugural U.S. tour, one tantalizing possibility I discussed was the original "King of the Monster Trucks" joining the party... Bob Chandler's BIGFOOT. Turns out, the rumble on the horizon was true, and the iconic blue Ford will be on the tour in 2019! But what version of BIGFOOT will we see? If the artwork above is any indication, looks like a modern spin on the classic BIGFOOT 1.
If you love holiday music like I do (and I make a list that's checked more than twice) and have an Amazon Echo device (something else that I love) at home, this is for you! SiriusXM wants to enliven your home with the perfect holiday music this season – FOR FREE. Now through December 25, anyone in the U.S. and Canada who is not a SiriusXM streaming subscriber (this includes those who are currently satellite radio-only subscribers) can tune in and listen free to SiriusXM’s suite of 15 commercial-free holiday channels on Amazon’s popular Echo smart speakers and other Alexa-enabled devices. No email, credit card or credentials are required - it's just FREE HOLIDAY MUSIC!
As the end of 2018 draws near, we're just three months out from the theatrical launch of Marvel Studios' CAPTAIN MARVEL - a film with a lot riding on it when it comes to the future of the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Of course that also means a bunch of new toys and collectibles, and the folks at Funko are right out in front with the announcement of a full range of Pop! Vinyl Figures, Pocket Pop! Keychains, Pens and Dorbz. As always, it's the core Pop! Vinyls that will be the most sought-after, and for Captain Marvel that's gonna me a lot of running around for completists. From a consumer standpoint, I'm not a big fan of exclusives, though retailers use them to draw the crowds. For Captain Marvel, that means keeping an eye out at mass retailers, specialty shops like Entertainment Earth and hunting down variants at GameStop, FYE, Walmart, Target, Boxlunch and Hot Topic to collect them all!
For the first time in park history, Six Flags Great America in Gurnee, Illinois has thrown open the gates for a holiday season, with Holiday in the Park set to delight guests with a truly magic experience. We're season passholders, so our whole family attended on opening weekend (Black Friday), but I also had a chance to attend the media preview this week, stepping into the park for an experience that most will never have... at 4am on a Thursday, just after a fresh snowfall. Check out my video below to see the park along with my full ride on the Peppermint Swirl - the teacups of Chubasco given a festive spin!
With the holiday season in full-swing, all eyes are on the great gift ideas, and on Friday, December 7, 2018 - you can join The Toy Insider and yours truly for a #PJMasksHoliday Twitter Party! Sponsored by eOne, we'll be showing off all the cool new PJ Masks electronics from VTech, including the PJ Masks Super Learning Watch and PJ Masks Learning Headquarters! As always, we won't just be talking about these awesome items based on the hit Disney Junior series... we'll be giving you chances to win them as well! They're the perfect holiday gift for the little superhero on your holiday shopping list! One important note: You MUST RSVP and PARTICIPATE to be eligible for prizing. Check out The Toy Insider's new Play x Play Video for more:
They say that "winter is coming," but as far as I'm concerned, it's already here in the snow-covered landscape of northern Illinois. While Game of Thrones is still hot, beer should be served cold as snow, and on Black Friday the crew at Cooperstown, NY-based Brewery Ommegang unleashed their fourth beer inspired by GoT. King in the North, a beer brewed for Jon Snow, is the fourth and final beer in this year’s Royal Reserve Collection, a series of four limited release beers, each designed and brewed as an homage to one of four epic figures engaged in the battle for the Seven Kingdoms.
According to the brewery: "King in the North pours jet black with a thick tan head. Aromas of roasted malt, coffee, and chocolate blend with those of oak, bourbon, and vanilla. The flavor is rich and full with notes of chocolate, vanilla, coffee, and roasted malt up front followed by smooth bourbon and a hint of oak. The finish is thick and chewy with oatmeal creaminess, and pleasant lingering roast. King in the North pairs well with funky aged cheeses, rich dark meats and decadent desserts. It also makes a great dessert on its own."
They say it's intended to "sustain a leader through a long, dark night," and I could see that. After downing a sample bottle that arrived here at Rock Father™ HQ, I can attest to the fact that there's some heft to this brew!
King in the North is available in draft and in 750ml bottles at the brewery, with bottles and a limited-edition gift pack featuring all four Royale Reserve Collection Beers available through specialty retailers. It would make a great gift for the hardcore Game of Thrones fan! Want even more GoT gift ideas? Check out my friends at Entertainment Earth.
Game of Thrones Disclosure:
I'm always upfront and honest about things here in the virtual pages of The Rock Father™ Magazine, so with that I feel obligated to reveal that other than watching a YouTube supercut of Emilia Clarke saying "dracarys" to her dragon to unleash all kinds of firepower, I have never seen an episode of Game of Thrones (we don't have HBO). Maybe I'll catch it somewhere down the line.
As always, please consume your royal beverages responsibly.