20 QUESTIONS WITH…
DJ Tawn Mastrey
If you don’t know who Tawn Mastry is, chances are you’ve heard her voice. If you haven’t, then you shouldn’t be at our page to begin with so get the fuck out!
She was the voice on KNAC and Pirate Radio during the Sunset Strip heyday as well as co-hosting "Heavy Metal Thunder & Mud" and being in "The Decline Of Western Civilization Part 2." She’s also interviewed pretty much every single hair band we’ve ever talked about. She’s a wealth of metal knowledge and enough stories to last for days, so we hit her up for 20 Questions and tried to get some good shit out of her! Enjoy!
1. What are you currently up to? This is the only chance to plug whatever it is you are up to.
I still host a bi-monthly syndicated radio show called "High Voltage" for Westwood One Entertainment; I’m the hard rockin’ mid-day jock at 93X (93X.com) out of Minneapolis, Minnesota (a very rockin’ town); I wrote a cookbook titled "Eat This", which you can buy via 93x.com; I manage an amazing artist in town called DODD (doddmusic.com or check out mp3); and I do voice over work for whomever pays me.
2. Are you still nicknamed the Leather Nun and why did you chose this to be your on the air personality identity?
Yes, on occasion "The Leather Nun" still pops up. I rarely ever called myself by that name. A program Director I worked for in the San Francisco area gave me that handle. Apparently he thought I resembled the animated character of a German comic book by the same name. You know, a dark haired, scantily clad dominatrix type, donning a habit.
3. How did you get your start in radio?
I studied broadcasting at Ron Bailie’s School of Broadcast in San Francisco and had to job offers before I graduated with honors.
4. After working for KNAC for so many years where did you go after you left them and why did you leave?
It was time to move on. KNAC never did pay very much and when Pirate Radio offered me 3 times the money with the promise of rocking in Los Angeles officially, it was an offer I couldn’t refuse. After Pirate closed shop, I was offered a position at KLOS, but then the opportunity never materialized. So I went to KLSX and KTYD part time until I took a morning show gig at KUFO in Portland, OR.
5. Rate the following past and current DJs on a scale of 1-10. 1 being a waste of your hearing and 10 being a the best.
Howard Stern =
Dee Snider =
Long Paul =
Wolfman Jack =
Kevin DuBrow =
Danny Bonaduce =
The Rack =
Riki Rachtmen =
Scott Shannon =
1 – The Rack (I’ve never heard her, so this isn’t really fair)
2 – Scott Shannon
3 – Wolfman Jack
4 – Riki Rachtman (sorry dude)
5 – Danny Bonaduce
6 – Mancow
7 – Kevin DuBrow
8 – Dee Snider
9 – Howard Stern (gotta respect his bank roll)
10 – Long Paul (KNAC P.D., is there a brown spot on my nose?)
6. What hard rock/heavy metal band should give it up and call it a day?
If Van Halen doesn’t bring DLR back into the fold, they get my vote.
7. Did you ever audition for an MTV VJ spot? If so, when, where and what the hell happened?
No, I never auditioned for an MTV VJ spot. I always thought the VJ’s were so idiotic and irritating. They should hire a bunch of really good comedians to host the shows. I was considering going for Adam Curry’s job as host of "Headbangers Ball" when Riki suddenly took over. It sure helps to have powerful friends like Axl Rose.
8. Time for some dirt, which rock guys have you had a little ‘somethin-somethin’ with? Don’t lie either or we’ll have to reveal the goods!
Geez! Can you spell extortion? It’s no secret that I was in love with Ronnie Montrose for 8 years… and if you have one of the first 500,000 copies of Great White’s "Twice Shy" CD, there’s a tell tale sign in the credits. The list of men I’ve turned down is pretty interesting. Next time.
9. Of all the bands you’ve interviewed, who gave you the roughest time?
A classic story is one with Ozzy Osbourne. This was either 1979 or 1981 when Ozzy came to KSJO (San Jose) in a black stretch limo with Sharon. Both were rather wasted. Ozzy stumbled into the station with a drink in his hand and some white stuff on his face. He was full of attitude, totally obnoxcious and slurring his words. He was making a mockary of the interview so reduced myself to his level. I ended up asking him dumb-ass questions like "What’s your favorite color" and he answered "Sabbath, Bloody Sabbath". Then I asked him what his favorite album was and he said "red", etc. I ended up getting a pretty good interview after all and Ozzy, Sharon and I are the best of friends to this day.
Patti Smith was really difficult the moment I walked in the door. There she was with Lenny Kay, looking out a window in a hotel in San Francisco. Her room was decorated with things she brought on the road with her; a home made flag with "Liberty" sewn on it, some candles, her own bed spread. She has bruises on her legs from "fans" throwing objects onto the stage. The first words out of her mouth were "You have 5 questions so pick the best ones". I said "Five questions?". She said "Yes". I asked her "Does that make four?" We ended up talking for about two hours. It was a wonderful interview and I have some great pictures out of the session as well.
Perhaps the saddest interview was with the late Tommy Bolin. I was the last person to interview him before he died two weeks later. He’d done some heroine and asked me if I could get him some. We’d just met for Christ sake. I told him I couldn’t help him and we did the interview in his hotel room while he and his Italian girlfriend were in bed. She wouldn’t shut up and is all over the tape. I never did air the interview.
10. Rate the following guys on a scale of 1 to 10. 1 being a scrub and 10 being a hottie.
Vince Neil =
Rob Jones =
Bret Michaels =
Mick Mars =
Scott Stapp =
Kid Rock =
Jani Lane =
David Lee Roth =
Tracii Guns =
Stephen Pearcy =
1 – Scott Stapp
2 – Mick Mars
3 – Jani Lane
4 – Stephen Pearcy
5 – Rob Jones
6 – Lemmy (great legs)
7 – Kid Rock
8 – Tracii Guns
9 – Vince Neil
10 – Bret Michaels
11. Tell us about how you got involved with being an MC for the Heavy Metal Thunder & Mud show?
HMT&M was voted the worst home video of the year by Playboy Magazine. A proud moment, indeed. Penelope Spheeris and I had worked together on several projects including "Decline of Western Civilization, Part II: The Metal Years", and an MTV special. She directed "Mud" and invited me to co-host the show. I sucked.
12. What rock star deserves a smack in the mouth and why?
Courtney Love. She’s self absorbed, selfish, rude…I didn’t like the way she treated our 93X listeners at our summer concert called 93X-Fest. She insulted them. As if she were too good for them. She should have given them their money back. Melissa Auf der Maur was fabulous, however, and seemed embarrassed by Courtney’s behavior.
13. What is your take on the whole Napster thing?
Napster is a wonderful concept, however, I think Lars and Metallica were courageous in leading the way to ensure royalties are paid to artists. I realize radio isn’t the best place to discover new music anymore and Napster is a necessary source, but there has to be a way for the artists to get their due as well.
14. After working with music for so many years you had to of heard almost everything under the sun. Name 3 bands you feel deserved much more respect and success than they received?
Love Hate, Shark Island and Cara Mastrey *(yes, my sister)
15. Yes or no, has Tawn Mastery ever:
Relieved yourself behind a dumpster = of course
Ate raw meat = never… unless it was alive
Weighed over 200 lbs = never
Surfed = only on my knees
Stole from a friend = No
Masturbated in your car = absolutely. While driving and while parked.
Had a threesome = hasn’t everyone?
Cried after sex = why would someone do that? No.
Given somebody else a prize on the radio when they really weren’t the winner = Sure. I’ve given into a sob story before.
Smoked pot with anybody in Warrant = No. Fine wine and French Champagne are my drug of choice.
16. Please give our Sludgeaholics your religious beliefs and opinions? Note: That way they’ll know which holidays they can send gifts.
I’m an athiest. My favorite holiday is the birthday. As for gifts, see "drug of choice" above.
17. Which do you prefer:
Metallica or Megadeth = I plead the 5th here
Warrant or Winger = Warrant
Lonn Friend or Gerri Miller = Lonn’s a better writter, but Gerri’s the queen of self-promotion.
VH1 or M2 = VH-1
Hollywood or Minneapolis = Hollywood
Carson Daly or Adam Curry = Carson (lucky bastard)
Glam rock or Grunge rock = Glam
KNAC or Pirate Radio = KNAC
Tuff or Wildside = Tuff now (have you heard their spin on "American Bad Ass"?)
AC/DC or Aerosmith = Aerosmith up until "Jaded"… gag me.
Riki Rachtman or Taime Downe = Taime does better make-up
18. Back in the day you did many special events, concerts and parties with KNAC. Name the 3 best & 3 worst memories of working with KNAC?
One of the best was at the Palace, 1,200 of my closest and dearest friends dropped by Great White, Shark Island, my sister, Don Dokken all jammed. It was a blast.
The first show I ever hosted for KNAC was with Great White at a dive of a place in Orange County. I can’t even remember the name right now, but it was also the first time I saw Great White. When they played "Down on Your Knees", mine buckled.
Irvine Meadows… Ratt, Dokken, Great White, all on the same bill in their hay day. Good stuff.
The Worst: Long Beach Grand Prix. I was there with Duff McKagan (of GnR’ course) and a video magazine crew. We had approval to shoot Duff at the races and he’d get VIP treatment in return. He decided to bring a female "friend", when he was dating someone else. He got paranoid and decided not to allow us shoot the interview. This really screwed things up because there I was with my crew, pit passes, his entourage, and NO INTERVIEW. Pretty soon I’m the bad guy and I’m being yelled at by Doug from BFD (their management). I ended up getting something do-able but not great.
The there’s the infamous Long Beach Arena Ozzy Osbourne / Metallica show where one person was so high they fell from the balcony to their death and seats went flying from the floor so that people could mosh. Metallica had to pay the thousands of dollars in damage and Ozzy was accused of writing music that killed people – again.
19. This might take some writing, but give us a good story on the following bands:
There are so many about each of these bands. I’m going to condense the answers to a quick first thought that comes to my head.
Guns N Roses = When I asked about whether "Mr. Brownstone" was a song about heroine, Izzy Stradlin said, "No… it’s a little ditty about junk."
Poison = The band rode Harley’s to their second record release party and CC DeVille obviously just learned how to ride and couldn’t kickstart his bike when they were to make their grand exit. I’m so glad he survived his demon and is back on his feet. He’s too smart fir that crap. Brett still has the best abs in the biz… probably.
Warrant = Right before they were signed there was this jam night at the Whiskey and my sister was supposed to jam with Jani Lane. He upstaged her every time she was supposed to sing her part. I guess that’s part of why they got a deal.
Faster Pussycat = Too adorable for words. Where’s Greg Steele now, anyway?
L.A. Guns = I fell in love with their first release the moment I heard it. Let’s not forget cover artist Maxine Miller for her talents.
Dokken = I’m a fan for life.
Kiss = Gene has always been a total gentleman and one whom I consider a friend. The first time I interviewed him he was in the studio producing an album. So, I thought it would be nice if I brought him a home-cooked meal; traditional Italian style cuisine complete with a fine bottle of chianti. He declined the wine (as he doesn’t touch the stuff) and dined while we talked. You’ve got to admit, they earned everything they have.
Anthrax = I love John Bush. I wish they would hit it big and make a fortune. I hear John’s a pretty good jock on KNAC.com, too.
Megadeth = I’m very proud of, and happy that, Dave Mustane got his life together and turned around to make some of the best music of his career. Have you heard the new CD?! I remember the day he could barely speak… let alone stand up just after a show at the Country Club.
Ratt = Stephen Pearcy owes me money. Ask him why. Bobby and the rest of the guys a sweethearts, though. What happened to you Stephen????
20. Time for Metal Sludge’s Word Association. We mention a name and you give us your thoughts.
Gene Simmons = a very rich man whose cod-piece reaches my rib cage… when we stand next to each other.
Nikki Sixx = Still handsome.
Penelope Spheeris = Very talented. You never call, you never write… wazzup girlfriend?
Bill Gazzari = R.I.P. I must say, he was always precious to me and certainly did a lot for rock from the very beginning.
Pauly Shore = Seems like a nice enough guy. Not nuts about his style of humor.
Warrant = Bobby Brown?
Jessica Hahn = Wasn’t she in "Heavy Metal Thunder and Mud"? A bit of a primadonna.
Tommy Lee = What was he thinking? Leaving or losing Heather and marrying a woman he hardly knew just cuz she was purdy.
Jesse Ventura = I’m so sick of his Navy Seal analogies.
CC DeVille = Very funny! He could do stand up and make a fortune.
Lars Ulrich = He hasn’t forgotten people like me who were there for Metallica since the lean years. That’s impressive. You rule!
Limp Bizkit = Fred, please sign Dodd to your label. Remember me? I’m the DJ from 93X whose cleavage you loved so much you put a nice close-up of it in your "Poop" video. It was pretty hilarious seeing my breasts on a screen the size of a house at Family Values. By the way, when is "Poop" coming out?
Rob Jones = Did you write these questions, Rob?
Thank you for the opportunity to be part of your fantastic site.
Not a problem Tawn, thanks for being down.
To find out more about Tawn, you can check out www.93x.com.