20 QUESTIONS WITH…
Quiet Riot/Beautiful Creatures guitarist ALEX GROSSI!
For the last few years, we’ve been bombarded with requests to do a 20 Questions interview with Alex Grossi. We’ve gotten e-mail, postal mail, voice mail, faxes, and even a message via carrier pigeon, all begging us to track down Alex and to hit him with Metal Sludge’s famous 20 Questions. Well, we aim to please! We had to go through all kinds of agents, publicists, tour managers, personal assistants, and a fuckload of red tape, but we were finally able to gain access to Mr. Grossi and hit him up with an interview.
Actually, we’re making all of that up. Nobody’s ever asked us to do 20 Questions with Alex Grossi, but we’re doing it this week anyway. We figure a lot of you probably don’t know who Alex is, so what better way to introduce the Sludgeaholics to the new guitarist in Quiet Riot. Plus he’s also in Beautiful Creatures and probably a shitload of other bands we’ve forgotten about. Anyhow, here’s this week’s 20 Questions with Alex Grossi. Enjoy.
1. What are you currently up to? This is your one and only chance to plug your shit.
I am currently preparing for a series of overseas dates with QUIET RIOT. We are going to Spain,Guatamala,Columbia,Canada and possibly India! We will then jump right on the ?Rock Never Stops? tour w/ CINDERELLA, RATT and FIREHOUSE. I have also been writing w/ Kevin Dubrow at his home studio in Vegas for the new QUIET RIOT album which we will start recording this fall. You can get all the 411 as it unfolds at WWW.ALEXGROSSI.COM
2. Considering that no one really knows who you are, why in the fuck are we doing 20 Questions with you? Which of the following reasons do you feel is most applicable:
a) We have you mixed up with someone who used to be in Anthrax
b) We are as cheap and desperate as you
c) You?ve been wondering the same thing
d) We owe you money from a bad gambling debt and you ?know? people
e) Kevin DuBrow and Frankie Banali flat out paid us to interview you
I am going to have go w/ ?D?….. being Italian and all.
3. You were in the backing band as part of the Bad Boys of Metal tour, and were playing 4 different sets a night. Then Jani Lane quit the tour halfway through, and then you had to play 3 elongated sets every night. How quickly did that get old? Did you ever get burnt out and consider of quitting like Jani did?
Actually, when Jani left, my night got shorter. I had a blast on that tour, it was pretty crazy to be on a bus with your childhood tape collection in real life! Every day of that tour made the ?Surreal Life? look like fucking ?Full House?. It never got old to me, I like challenges. Being able to play 35-40 songs a night and play them WELL is what separates the guys who are always out on the road playing and the guys who hang out at the Rainbow every night. I prefer to be on the road.
Jani Lane and Alex Grossi share a rare moment on stage
4. ?Deuce,? the new Beautiful Creatures CD, is supposedly coming out this year. Do you really expect anyone to believe that? Why has it taken so long to put that fucking CD out, and why is it only being issued in Japan?
?Deuce? WILL be coming out in Japan on JVC this spring. As far as the U.S. goes, we are still weighing out our options. I have to give BC a lot of credit for sticking it out through all the bullshit and drama that seems to follow them. It is easy to get along when you are on OZZFEST and have Warner Bros. checkbook in your back pocket, but when that all goes away most bands implode and BC did?nt. That says a lot.
I think the main reason why it took so long was because we went back into the studio after the initial 12 songs were recorded and did more. Joe and I had an opportunity to write more songs together while touring as Bang Tango. A lot of people think us doing Tango was one of the main reasons for the hold-up, but truth be told, it actually made for a better BC record. I think a lot of people are going to be very surprised!
5. Rate the following guitarists on a scale of 1 to 10. 1 being someone who sounds like they play with broken fingers, and 10 being a virtuoso-type.
Jeff LaBar = 7, that guitar twirl thing he does is great!
George Lynch = 6 ?not my thing.
Vito Bratta =8, but those headless stienberger guitars are gay as fuck.
Carlos Cavazo =7, but from what I have been told –3
Warren DeMartini = 8?..coolest guy in RATT!
Yngwie Malmsteen = 10, but I would rather watch grass grow, than listen to one of his records.
C.C. DeVille = as a player, 3? as a character, 10+!
Mick Mars = 8, god bless ?em?. love the tone on ?Shout at the Devil?
DJ Ashba = 9, He gets a lot of shit, but underneath it all, he is a hell of a player.
Slash = 10. ?nuff said.
6. Name the three highest points and the three lowest points of last summer?s Bad Boys of Metal Tour.
1) Playing ?Firewater? in Dallas, Texas?AMAZING VENUE, great ?Local
2) Going to Mexico on a day off w/ Jeff Martin and Mark Rojas?.DONKEY
3) Leaving our Crackhead driver asleep in his hotel room while we
switched buses and took off.
1) Jani leaving, I had a lot of fun playing the WARRANT stuff.
2) The trailer FALLING OFF the bus on the highway in Michigan.
3) Seeing Kevin Dubrow in his underwear first thing in the morning.
7. If you could be the faceless side guy in the revolving door roster of any of the following washed-up hair bands, which one would it be and why?
a) LA Guns
Well, none of the above. I am perfectly happy where I am now in QR. I have actually been asked by a good number of current artists to play guitar for them since joining Kevin and Co.- I even turned down the NIN audition!!!— plus? Haven’t I already been in all those bands?
8. What ?rock star? deserves a smack in the mouth and why?
Axl Rose. Cut the shit and put the band back together, or at least put a record out and tour to support it?.I am huge GN?R fan, and it is a bummer to see such a great talent go to waste, and oh yeah?.SHOW UP AT YOUR SHOWS!
Dizzy Reed and Alex
9. Of the following, which do you prefer and why:
Cheetos or Bugles = Cheetos
Motel 6 or Super 8 = Super 8
Pac Man or Frogger = Pac man
Nail polish or eyeliner = Both
Cinderella or Firehouse = Cinderella
Star Wars or Lord of the Rings = neither.
Ol? Dirty Bastard or bastard boy floyd = Old Dirty?. sorry Floyd.
Franco-American or Chef Boy-Ar-Dee = Chef Boy-Ar-Dee
?It?s So Easy? or ?Rocket Queen? = Rocket Queen
Pearl Jam or Nirvana = Niether.
10. Rate the following band whores on a scale of 1 to 10. 1 being someone who constantly turns down gigs, and 10 being the ultimate band whore.
Brent Fitz = 3
Matt Starr = 1
Jizzy Pearl =10
Jason Hook = 9
Troy Patrick Farrell = 10
Chuck Garric = who?
John Corabi = 5
Keri Kelli = 10
Vikki Foxx = 4
Chuck Wright = 10
11. Keri Kelli: Role model for unemployed, L.A. side musicians, or the musical equivalent of a crack whore giving hand jobs in alleys for change to support her botox addiction?
I would say anyone who can earn a living by playing music and touring the world is defiantly doing something right and could be considered a role model. A bad day at being a "band whore" is still way better than a good day at a "real job". I have been lucky enough to play w/ a lot of my favorite bands. Sometimes I feel like I’m living the movie ?Rock Star".
12. Anthony Focx: real name or fake? If fake, is he pissed that fellow Chicago native Vikki Foxx got the ?cool? spelling of Foxx, while Anthony thought he could slide his second-rate spelling of ?Focx? past 13 year old girls 20 years ago and no one would notice?
I always thought he should have gone w/ FOCKS!!!— Anthony is by far the coolest, most real friend I have met since moving to Hollywood 3 years ago. He gets a lot of shit, sometimes even from me, but he is a true friend which is hard to come by in this town. I don?t know what his view is on who has the right to ?Foxx?.I think he spells it ?Focx? to be different. If that is the case, it worked! — We’re talking about it aren’t we?
13. If Carlos Cavazo wanted back in Quiet Riot during the middle of the Rock Never Stops tour, how much notice do you think the rest of the band would give you?
a) 2 hours
b) 1 hour
c) 15 minutes
d) They wouldn?t tell you at all; they?d simply ditch you at a truck stop while you’re taking a dump.
e) None of the above. Neither Kevin nor Frankie want Carlos in the band.
Carlos has his own band and has moved on. Carlos knew that QUIET RIOT would continue without him and Kevin and Frankie are both very happy with me being in the band. — I don’t know why, but they are…
14. What do you remember most about touring or being in the following cities:
Detroit = Bowling before soundcheck. MAGIC STICK rocks!
Tampa = Kidnapped by a Hooters girl who lived in a double wide trailer. Almost missed the next show. For real.
Chicago = Rock-n-Roll McDonalds!!!!
Salt Lake City = Mormon Chicks?..crazy!!!!
New Orleans =I spent a week there one night??.
New York =Don Hills, Rats in the dressing room as big as my cat!
Cleveland = Kevin Dubrow strangling Steven Adler
San Francisco = O?farrell Theater!!!
London = Some girl "hanging out" on our bus while her boyfriend waited out in the snow for 2 hours.
Boston =Mama Kin — R.I.P.
15. You worked the Bad Boys of Metal Tour AFTER it was turned down by Keff Ratcliffe and Anthony Focx, both who passed on the tour based on the amount of money being offered. How does it feel to know that you are considered a ?bargain? amongst the three of you, and how little did you end up actually making on that tour?
WRONG. I was already hired at that point. Keff and Anthony were asked to play rhythm guitar AFTER I was on board as the MD and lead guitarist. I heard they were offered a very low salary and passed. I was paid well for that tour ? a lot more than people think. When it comes to $$, it is good to have Kevin Dubrow in your corner!
Chuck Wright, Kevin DuBrow, and Alex somewhere on the Bad Boys of Metal Tour
16. Yes or no, has Alex Grossi ever:
Lied about your age = no
Spent the night in jail = no
Been asked for your autograph = yes
Spit in someone’s contact lens case = no
Had phone sex with an underaged girl =not sure
Jacked off in an ice cream truck =no
Smoked rocks with Steven Adler = no
Smelled Jani Lane?s flatulence =yes
Touched another man?s penis = no
Drove drunk = I don?t have a license, but if I did probably not.
17. What hard rock/heavy metal band should give it up and call it a day?
18. For a tax-free $25,000 in cold, hard cash, which of the following would you do (and you have to pick one):
a) When no one?s looking, push Steven Adler down a flight of stairs;
b) Give Jeff Martin a hand job until he ejaculates, making out with him the
c) Shoot Kevin DuBrow with a tranquilizer dart, then while he?s unconscious,
completely shave his head.
I would have to go with A. I love Steven, but if all the damage he has done to himself by now hasn’t taken him down yet, what is one trip down a flight of stairs gonna do?
19. The Last of Alex Grossi:
Last drug you did = Xanex
Last song you learned = ?Washington Square? by Jani Lane
Last CD you purchased = ?Velvet Revolver?
Last fast food drive-thru you hit = ?In-and-out? beeee?atch!!!!
Last movie you saw in the theater =Freddy vs. Jason
Last time someone called you a ?band whore? to your face =This is L.A., no one says anything to your face!
Last concert for which you actually bought a ticket = Can’t remember
Last thing that really pissed you off = Food poisoning in Brazil
Last time you got into a fistfight = Never been in one
Last time you barfed = Christmas eve
20. Time for Metal Sludge’s Word Association. We mention a name, and you give us your thoughts.
Jani Lane = Super nice guy, great songs! Glad to see him doing better.
Anthony Focx= My partner in crime!
Frankie Banali = The heartbeat of QR!
Steven Adler = The ONLY drummer in GN?R
Gene Simmons = Fire extinguisher
Mark Rojas =?RockStar Roadie?
Joe LeSte = Great friend, true rock-n-roll survivor. Say what you will, but he did it TWICE!
Dizzy Reed = The coolest keyboardist I have ever met. Great guy. Sorry about the Axl comment! Love ya Diz!
Kevin DuBrow =The most honest person I have ever met, sometimes the truth hurts!
Nikki Sixx = great songs, really great hair, hot wife.
Well, there you go. Everything you probably ever cared to know about Alex Grossi. Maybe even more than you cared to know! But if you still find yourself yearning for even more info about Mr. Grossi, head on over to his official Web site at www.alexgrossi.com.