Famed rock producer finds 2nd act as bed and breakfast innkeeper

NEW YORK -- Folks looking to get out of the house and take a break during this pandemic have headed to a bed and breakfast in Massachusetts that offers peace and serenity at this stressful time.

But what makes this place truly unique is the innkeeper: A former music business insider with plenty of stories to tell.

Tom Werman is best known for making hits with the likes of Motley Crue and Twisted Sister, but in the decades since, he has turned down the volume and found a wonderful second act far from the raucous crowds.

In another time and place, far from Stonover Farm, Werman's life was all about heavy metal music and "Girls, Girls, Girls." He produced that seminal hit for Motley Crue, and the sounds he made with that group and others sold a total of 60 million albums.

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The former producer described Los Angeles in the 1980s.

"Explosive, just explosive," he said. "Indulgent...you could do anything you wanted."

When I was a CNN entertainment reporter, I joined Werman in an LA recording studio with the band Poison, when they were mixing the album, "Open Up and Say...Ahh."

I've never forgotten the calm efficiency he showed in the midst of so much turmoil.

"I was good at it, because I could say, 'Play me something. I'll tell you what's good. I'll tell you what's bad,'" he said. "If it could use something to make it better, then I was usually thinking of what that something was."

That album turned out to be Werman's last big hit.

"I was getting a little burned out, and the music was changing," he said.

So he decided to head to Massachusetts and open Stonover Farm, which he describes as "A classic Berkshire B&B."

It was a radical change that ended up playing to his strengths.

"A good producer can take a slightly better-than-average band, and if he does a good job, he can make it a special, musical product," he said. "You can do the same with a lodging."

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Stonover Farms' first guest in 2001 was Linda Ronstadt, and folks from all walks of life followed. Werman's colorful past is part of the draw.

"Everyone wants to hear stories," he said.

And why not? He has so many of them. In fact, the innkeeper is writing a book about his rock and roll years, and the journey that led him to find peace and serenity in the Berkshires.
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