20 QUESTIONS WITH…
Twisted Sister’s Dee Snider
We couldn’t think of a better way to kick off 2003 than with somebody we’ve wanted to do 20 Questions with since we started the page. It’s none other than the man himself, Dee Fucking Snider! This is our 200th 20 Questions that we’ve done and what a perfect person to be #200!
On December 16, 2002, we had Jim Bob Dwarf do 20 Questions with Dee over the phone. This came out so good, we even included a few MP3′s of Dee’s answers along the way. This is the blueprint for how all 20 Questions should be done. In fact, these 20 Questions are worthy of a Super Balls Award!
METAL SLUDGE SUPER BALLS AWARD
Congratulations to Dee for winning the Super Balls Award! Who needs a Grammy when you can have that?
Now sit back and prepare yourself for one of our most honest and brutal 20 Questions ever! Enjoy!
1. What are you currently up to? This is your only chance to promote all your projects and shit.
Ah, you don’t really want to hear all the projects I’m up to. What do you want to know about?
JB: Twisted Sister!
Twisted Sister reunion. Yeah, there’s a Twisted reunion coming, ah, next summer. Should start around mid-May and run through the summer, probably. Yeah, I guess the summer. That’ll about cover it. Start rehearsals this week, actually Wednesday, as far as rehearsal really, and uh, should be interesting.
JB: Excellent. Anything else going on you want to plug?
Plugging wise….nothing I’m prepared to plug right now. Got a number of projects I’m working on but nothing I want to, uh, talk about just yet, but things are good. And they’re not…..I tend to do things that aren’t really musical, you know. I’m not so much focused on that anymore. Then again, I just lied. So…(Dee laughs)…no new music from ‘me’ per say, how’s that?
2. What are your thoughts on the whole Guns N Roses drama and Axl not being able to make it onstage in time?
You know what? People — I’ll give you sort of an analogy, you know – people say, "Oh! I can’t stop smoking. It’s a…..it’s a habit, you know, I couldn’t stop smoking if you paid me." How about I put a gun to your fucking head and threatened to pull the trigger? Could you stop smoking? I’m asking you, Jim Bob. Could you stop?
JB: Uh, yeah, absolutely!
And then it would dawn on you suddenly, "Whoa! I don’t need to have that cigarette." And the same thing with Axl. Oh, he’s all emotional, he’s got this, he’s got that. If some big motherfucker like me came up and grabbed him by the fucking collar, and bitch-slapped the fucker, and said "Get on stage and behave yourself, and act like Axl fucking Rose, and give these people the fucking show they paid their money to get, ON TIME, on fucking time," he would fucking do it with his tail between his legs!!! No, but he’s surrounded, he’s insulated by his fucking bodyguard – who he pays well. And, you know, he’s a tough man – he can beat up women. So, I think it’s fucking disgusting. And why do people fucking give people like this the time of day? I have no clue. I always did it ass-backwards, Jim Bob. You see, I was always clean and sober when I went on stage on time and gave everything I fucking had into a performance. Apparently that wasn’t enough. People like to be abused.
Click here to listen to an MP3 of that answer!
3. What new breed of rock bands does Dee Snider back?
Ah, big fan…I like contemporary rock. Love the Audioslave record. I don’t know if you’d call it ‘New Breed,’ it’s a bunch of old – I don’t know what they are now. Love Tenacious D. Love Andrew W.K. Always been a Tool fan, umm…..there’s Disturbed. Great. I’m sitting here trying to look at my record collection, it’s all the way across the room, but I really like contemporary heavy shit. But unfortunately, it tends to be a bit faceless. Andrew’s an exception to that I think, in his dirty white clothes. Uh, but for the most part it’s a little bit faceless, and that’s the big thing that I miss about, you know, the rock scene today. I don’t think that the music was better in the 80s or anything, I think it’s fucking amazing music coming out. It’s that just the bands, they aren’t rock stars anymore. It’s not larger than life. And I, for one, as a fan of rock, who grew up on the Alice Coopers and the David Bowies and the Led Zeppelins, you know, and the Sabbath. That’s what I wanted, and I tried to give that to the audience. And, um, I don’t know. Maybe the audience is happy with facelessness. I, for one, miss it.
4. What hard rock/heavy metal band should give it up and call it a day?
‘What hard rock or heavy metal band should give it up and call it a day,’ he says, stalling for time while he reflects on the MANY hard rock and heavy metal bands who should give it up and call it. You know what? It’s not so much that I think people should give it up and call it a day. I think people should stop being unrealistic with their expectations. And my peers kill me with this whole, you know, well, I got to give it to ya. Sorry Bruce! Sorry Dick (meaning Dickenson)! ‘Iron Maiden for the 2000′s.’ You know, and they have this whole, like, you know, we’re moving, we’re continuing on where we left off, bigger and better. It ain’t fucking happening! It’s all an oldies show, and everybody should just accept it. And there’s nothing wrong with an oldies show – that’s what I’ll be doing next year. Enjoy it for what it is! People coming to see it, maybe for the first time, maybe one last time. But nobody’s picking up and putting on the denim and leather and the patches and startin’ buyin’ the records and following the band around. And I’m not just talking about Iron Maiden, I’m talking about all of those fucking bands. All of my peers. They all think – and you know what, KISS almost dodged the bullet when they first came together and they reunited, they seemed to have a clear picture. "We’re giving you KISS, 1974, Destroyer tour, the music, the look. We’re bringing you back to that time." And then when the stadiums started to be packed in, all of a sudden Gene’s going (Dee impersonates Gene), "We’re KISS, we’re back, boom." And you got Psycho Circus, new costumes, new staging, and it didn’t sell for shit! Because people are not going to start, guys in their thirties are not following the band again. Going for one last fucking hurrah. So, truth is, all of ‘em! Everybody should pack it up. Do your fucking reunion tour. I’m doing it! That’s cool! Who better to make money off your fucking legacy than you? We all deserve it, you know. But do it, and wave goodbye, and you know, and walk off stage. Don’t fucking hang around like a fart in a paper bag!
Click here to listen to an MP3 of that answer!
5. Rate the following singers on a scale of 1 to 10. 1 being somebody who needs to be slapped by Captain Howdy and 10 being on top of their game.
Jani Lane = Foof! What a minute, wait a minute. Can I qualify these? You said ‘on top of their game.’ That would mean to me like as good as they ever were. As opposed to what I think of them as vocalists. So what am I doing here? Jani Lane isn’t as good as he ever was. But I was never crazy about him in the first place. So I give him a 4.
Bret Michaels = Bret? 4. 3! He’s not much of a singer!
Rob Halford = Geez, 10. 10 was the highest right?
Alice Cooper = Alice Cooper. Alice Cooper, umm, he sounds as great as he ever sounded, pretty much, you know, I’d say 9. And I’m a big Alice fan.
Vince Neil = 1. Vince Neil stinks on ice by the way, vocally. Out of tune. Made me mental the fact that he was selling more records than me. But I’m not bitter.
Don Dokken = Don Dokken. Don’s a good singer. Not my cup of tea, but it’s like a 7.
Marc Slaughter = (Dee holds back laughter) Uh…5!
Tony Harnell = I haven’t heard Tony. I’m assuming he still sings. He was like a banshee, he was always a great vocalist. I’d give him an 8.
Lajon Witherspoon = Lajon? Oh, he’s like a contemporary artist, you know, I really like his stuff a lot. I’d put him in an 8 category.
Kevin DuBrow = Kevin DuBrow!!!!! Well, um, he sounds exactly like Noddy Holder, and I really love Noddy Holder. I’ll give him a 7.
6. Twisted Sister has always been the same group of guys (with the exception of Joey Franco’s tenure). What are your thoughts on bands that still tour with only one or two original members left?
It’s fucking hysterical. It’s hysterical. Ratt! Oh my God, what’s going on there? I liked it when there were multiple Ratts out on the road. Now that’s a good time! Hey why not? Why not split into five different bands, each with one original member. (Dee chuckles) They should go out there and milk this bad boy. I can’t believe people show up to see them! At what point do you say it’s no longer the fucking band? And Guns ‘N Roses. Rose and Roses maybe, but Guns ‘N Roses? I mean he swapped out a really cool looking guy with a top hat for a dick with a bucket! I mean, what?! And they sold out!!! The tour was sold out!!! Was it just the fucking name? I don’t know, you know. To me, for my money, you know, uh, Jay Jay owns the name Twisted Sister. And I will say publicly, which is what I said to Jay Jay, is I believe that, uh, legally, I could’ve performed and used the name. And he knows I believe that. That I could have. He would’ve taken me to court, and we would’ve fought for it, but I believe in my heart of hearts that I could’ve taken the name and gone out and performed as Twisted Sister. But – I never did. Because it wasn’t fucking Twisted Sister. Even with Dee Snider, the lead singer and the frontman and the face and the guy that wrote the songs, it’s not Twisted Sister. I never even thought of going out as Twisted Sister, ’cause it would’ve been misleading the audience. Again, what do I fucking know? What do I know? I’m the fucking idiot who’s, you know, ah, fuck! Axl Rose is selling fucking Madison Square Garden out, so what do I know.
Click here to listen to an MP3 of that answer!
7. There is a new shock Metal band out called Murderdolls who have a song called "Twist my Sister." Have you heard the song and what is your take on the last decade of shock rockers like Manson, Slipknot, & Mudvayne?
Haven’t heard, umm, haven’t heard, uh, Murderdolls. Saw their picture, love the picture. I’ve heard them referenced as Twisted Sister included in descriptions of them. Um, so I have to check them out for sure. Uh, I really love Manson. Love, love, love. I see him perform, and I get a little tear in my eye. (Dee sniffles.) I’m like, uh, Dr. Evil. "That’s my boy!" So I mean, like, here’s a guy who, you know, grew up on my music and has cited our influence on him. Of course, we’re not one of them major ones. There’s Alice and there’s other people, but at the same time, as me, he got it. He got what it was like to be larger than life and the sensational aspects of a rock and roll show, and I adore it, you know? When I see that kind of stuff, I applaud it. It’s just great to see a band that when they walk into the building, you know they’re the band, as opposed to the road crew! I mean, I go to so many shows, I’m backstage, and I’m nice to everybody. I don’t care if you’re a roadie or in the band, but it’s always nice to know who’s in the band. It’s that I just marvel some of the time I’ll talk to the guitar tech like he’s fronting and he’s like, "oh, that’s not me, that’s that guy over there." And I’m like, "oh, OK, sorry." So, I really like the shock bands and I’ll have to check out that song "Twist My Sister."
8. The last of Dee Snider:
Last CD you purchased = Last CD I purchased. Hmm. And I purchase CDs deliberately, because, sometimes as a statement. I think it was, oh, it was Audioslave. Yeah, to show my solidarity. Even though I can get all the CDs for free. But sometimes, especially if it’s a newer band like Andrew W.K. or Tenacious D. Like, every sale counts with those guys.
JB: It’s your consumer vote.
You know what I mean. You’re at a point where, you know, ‘oh, they sold 300 units,’ they’re like, ‘do we keep them out on the road or not?’ You know. So I make sure to go out and buy the product if I can.
Last horror movie you saw = The last horror movie I saw…nothing’s registering. What did I…I want to say ‘The Ring’ but I haven’t seen it yet. Oh what the fuck? I’m just stumped, I can’t even think of it. God! Tell me something that came out recently.
JB: Oh, lord, I wouldn’t know. I don’t go see films very often.
I should just be able to pop something off the top of my head. Nothing fucking impresses me, I’ll tell you that. That’s for sure. Nothing fucking impresses me. And, uh, not that I’m not impressed myself, I just, you know, I’d just kill for a little originality. That’s what I tried to do with my movie, you know? And I think I achieved that at least. It was a low budget film. We fucking had a couple of dollars, it was like a MacGuyver movie, you know? What can you make out of this shit here. A wad a gum, and some string, and you know, and some tinfoil, but at the same time, I tried to at least do something imaginative, and I just think the whole horror genre is so fucking played out and disappointing that I, and, uh, I know I’ve seen some recent ones and I can’t remember what I saw.
Last time you talked to Howard Stern = Howard and I. Um, it’s been awhile since I spoke to Howard. There’s no real problems with Howard and me. It’s just that he got divorced, and I don’t know if anybody reading this has experience with couples, and when they get divorced, then it gets kind of weird. Suddenly, he was a single guy, hanging out with other single guys and going out to strip clubs, and I was still the married guy with the kids. When he and I met we were married and had kids, and that was kind of our bond. That we were both guys that went home at night and saw our wives and hung out with our kids. And, uh, all of a sudden he was like a single guy, so we really haven’t socialized at all. I guess the last time I spoke to him was at a Black Crowes record release party. We hung out, and it was just a little weird. Him and his girlfriend, and me and my wife. And my wife says, ‘man, I feel like I’m cheatin’ on….’ you know, on his ex. We were friends, it’s kind of weird. So, that’s about it on that.
Last song you wrote = The last song I wrote. Uh, I don’t write hardly at all anymore, and the last original thing I wrote was for the soundtrack of Strangeland. It was called ‘In Conclusion.’ I co-wrote that song. It was the last original thing that I wrote.
Last movie script you read = Last one I read, was uh, probably, my own. It was Strangeland II. Yeah.
Last concert you watched from the audience = Concert I watched from the audience. It should be on the tip of my tongue, shouldn’t it? Uh, let’s see, oh my God!!! Now I’d like to qualify this by saying, I was out to dinner with a group of business associates, and they took us all there. NO DOUBT! Fucking No Doubt! And what really killed me, what stunned me, was that at this No Doubt concert, it was filled with like, you know, high school and college aged kids, and I was nearly mobbed in the place. Jesus Christ, why would they even remember me? But I guess between, you know, some radio and some video and some movies, things I’ve done, people still, the face, they can’t forget the face. It haunts them. But yeah, it was No Doubt. You’re not going to qualify that, are you? You’re gonna fucking put No Doubt! (Dee laughs)
Jim Bob: No, these are transcribed word for word.
I was taken there!
Jim Bob: You’re in trouble!
I didn’t enjoy it!
Last alcoholic beverage you drank = Um, I’ve always been clean and sober. About 3 years ago though, I started having a glass of wine with dinner. Uh, so, once in awhile, a glass of wine with dinner, ’cause I heard it was good for ya.
JB: It’s supposed to be.
It’s supposed to be. So that’s why I have it. So it’s a glass of wine. Boring.
Last album you listened to by one of the "Filthy Fifteen" = Fuck! Who’s on the Filthy Fifteen besides Twisted Sister? W.A.S.P. was on there, umm, Prince. I’ve got a pile over there, I just did it. Was there any other metal bands on there? Oh yeah, Priest! Priest was on there. What was the song they had on there? What was it called?
JB: Uh, ‘Eat Me Raw’ or something. ‘Eat Me Alive.’
Yeah, (Dee sings) ‘Eat Me Alive!’ It took on a whole new meaning after good old Rob came out, didn’t it? All the songs did!
Last trip you made to Hartford, CT = Uh, last trip to Hartford was, um, after I left, parted company with them, I went up there for something or other. I guess, uh, what, do you want the date?
JB: Nah, I don’t know. (Jim Bob cackles)
I guess it was to have lunch with some friends. That’s why I went up there.
Last time you grew a beard = That was the Desperado days, and I had a beard for a short time when I was in the band Desperado. People thought I was trying to go with the Western theme. I’d actually had a speed boating accident. A wave had shattered the windshield, and it blew out my face. Big loss. And, uh, severe, some pretty bad cuts along my beard line, and I had some plastic surgery, so I grew…plastic surgery…like, uh, when they give you reconstructive stitching. It wasn’t that bad. Believe me, if it was really bad, I would’ve had a different face put on! I had to grow a beard. I couldn’t shave so I had to grow a beard to cover it up.
Last time you were pissed at Jay Jay French = Angry at Jay Jay French. Umm, I, it’s got to be before 1987, ’cause after I left the band, and had the notoriety, I kind of wasn’t mad at anyone anymore. So, uh, it had to be back in like 1986. ’86, ’87.
9. Deesnidersstrangeland.com has purported that "Strangeland II: Cult of Personality" is ‘coming soon’ for quite some time. When exactly is "soon?"
And he sits and looks at the fabulous Strangeland II poster on the wall. Umm, I wish I could tell you, you know, you know it’s just horrible because like on my radio show, like 2 years ago, we gave away parts as extras in the movie. People, you know, really, I haven’t been trying to stroke people. Basically, the company that made it, The Shooting Gallery, that made the original, they had an Enron situation happening. The CFO cooked the books, killed the company, and the copyrights – the rights to the property – have been in litigation with the whole company. And I’ve been sitting here waiting for it to be released back to me. And the script is ready, I got people ready to go, it’s been greenlit, other people – studios – are ready to make the movie. And I can’t get the rights to make the movie back. So that’s what’s been going on. And I keep saying, ‘coming soon,’ and it’s only because I’m being told, ‘it’s probably going to be released to you soon,’ and it’s been, now, fucking, I don’t know, 2 years waiting on this thing. It’s fucking nightmarish. Fortunately I’ve been doing other shit, otherwise I’d be ripping my hair out ’cause I’m dying to make the sequel. And I think that there’s a cult audience for it, you know, I mean, there’s people that want to see it and I’m dying to bring it back. And the next movie will be sicker and darker, I promise. But that’s, I should just pull it down until we get the rights back to it and then stick it back up there and say, ‘We’re in production!’ Instead of dicking people around.
10. Give us a memory about either writing or recording the following songs:
Burn In Hell = Uh, memory, OK. A memory about writing or recording Burn In Hell. Um, writing Burn In Hell. Burn In Hell, the interesting thing about Burn In Hell and writing it, or more of the result of it, is that it’s like a very misunderstood song. You know, a lot of people think it’s like, you know, a satanic song. You get the understanding that Barren Brusahawahahawaghohhhhrrrghhhhhh, that Norwegian Death Metal band that re-recorded it. And it’s actually a hellfire and brimstone sermon. If you listen to the words, it’s saying, you’re gonna burn in hell, basically be careful, and people completely misunderstand the tune.
You Can’t Stop Rock ‘N Roll = Can’t Stop Rock ‘N Roll. Umm, recording or writing You Can’t Stop Rock ‘N Roll. Ah, thinking, this is like so abstract. No, you know, what pops into your head, you know. Is that the end of Can’t Stop Rock ‘N Roll, uh, with that (Dee sings), ‘doo doo dah doo, dah do dah doo daht do dah,’ is taken from a song by Captain Beyond. And me and Mark Mendoza are Captain Beyond fans. Us, and King’s X, and uh, nobody knows that fucking band is. I don’t know. I don’t know what to really tell you here. I’ll try. Keep going.
Shoot ‘Em Down = Shoot ‘Em Down! Hmm. (Dee sings again.) ‘Shoot ‘em Down, Shoot ‘em Down.’ Um, uh, interesting thing about Shoot ‘Em Down, is that I wanted to, uh, first of my heavily AC/DC influenced songs, which was really an outgrowth of wanting to write my own version of The Dictator’s ‘Next Big Thing.’ And, I really like that song, and inspired by
that song, and in my growing love of AC/DC, I wrote ‘Shoot ‘Em Down.’
We’re Not Gonna Take It = We’re Not Gonna Take It, uh, a lot of people thought that the song was written, you know, well I shouldn’t say a lot of people, but people that were like hardcore fans of the band, and said, "Ack! That’s when Twisted Sister jumped the shark." To coin a new phrase, you know. And the fact of the matter is, is the hook for that song was written in 1980. And I was sitting on that hook for that song even back when I was doing, uh, I remember we were recording ‘Bad Boys of Rock ‘N Roll,’ and Eddie Kramer said, "do you have any more like this?" And I said, "I do, but it’s not ready." And I kept trying to finish ‘We’re Not Gonna Take It,’ and I didn’t finish it until 1982. So, in fact, the song was written in 1980/1982, well before Twisted Sister ever had any real fame or notoriety. It’s just, you know, some of those types of songs I wrote were these big anthems, and this was the biggest of the big.
The Price = The Price, uh, this is kind of fairly well known, um, that it was inspired by Jay Jay French’s sister in law. Uh, we were in England recording You Can’t Stop Rock ‘N Roll – again, again these songs for Stay Hungry were all written while we were recording and before we recorded You Can’t Stop Rock ‘N Roll. So the whole idea that this album was sort of a conjured up record, you know, like Twisted Sister’s commercial album or whatever – really, they were written at a time when we were broke and unsigned. So they were just not, I guess, not ready to be, I don’t know. Maybe, I guess, I put ‘em out when I put ‘em out. But anyway she called England, I was particularly blue, missing my wife and my kid. And uh, I talked, she said how’s it going, I said "ah, I’m kinda blue," and she said "well I guess that’s the price you gotta pay." I said, "Jay Jay, here’s the phone," I went into the bathroom at Sol, at Jimmy Page’s Sol studio, took a tape recorder, and wrote The Price.
Captain Howdy = Captain Howdy, uh, the thing about Captain Howdy was that it was inspired by, a news item and I can’t remember the specifics of it. I was a new father at the time, Jesse was born in 1982, and I started to get painfully aware of crimes against children. And I saw a news report on some sick piece of shit who had abused some kids and gotten off on a technicality, and I was just infuriated, and I wrote Captain Howdy and Street Justice.
Be Chrool To Your Scuel = Uh, Be Chrool To Your Scuel, uh, memory about writing or recording, was uh, the recording was, getting celebrity guests in. And, uh, we got Brian Setzer from the Stray Cats to play lead guitar, Billy Joel to play piano, and we called, uh, (snaps fingers) the Big Man, from the Bruce Springsteen band, Clarence Clemons! And we called his people, and Clarence said, "gotta get $2000 dollars."(Dee laughs.) I remember going, "Really? OK." And I guess, I don’t know, maybe the Bruce gig doesn’t pay as well as we think. Or I guess, you know, bad man who learn a day. You never know how long this gravy train’s gonna be running. Because the fact of the matter, they were just coming off the Born in the USA tour. Before they would even think about it, we had all these people going, "Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah." And I figured he’d be like, you know. I mean, I think that he might say no, but not "yes, but I gotta get two grand to do it." Whatever it was, 3 grand.
Hot Love = Hot Love. Writing or recording the song. Uh, recording, um…..I don’t remember anything about it, other than my wife ended up naming our boat Hot Love. The boat that I had the boating accident with. Yeah, that boat was called Hot Love. I don’t remember anything else about it.
Snot Nose Kid = Oh, that, Snot Nose Kid. Umm, recorded that with, um, well, the fact of the matter is that was written during the Desperado days, and recorded by me and by Bernie Torme I believe. Or just me. I can’t remember. But it was written during those times, but I felt it was too Twistedey a song for Desperado. And so we didn’t wind up recording it. And not that Widowmaker was Twisted Sister, but it was a little more in…..I felt better, more comfortable doing it with Widowmaker, so I held it. Didn’t use it until then.
The Heart is a Lonely Hunter = Heart is a Lonely Hunter is one of my proudest moments as a songwriter, and uh, virtually nobody knows about the song.
JB: Oh, it’s a great song.
Thanks! It was on that ill-fated Desperado record, which has only seen the light of day through bootleg and most people don’t even know about it, and that saddens me to no end.
Heroes Are Hard To Find = Um, Heroes are Hard To Find. That was a Snider/Torme song, that we didn’t wind up using because it was really Twisted Sistery. I mean it was just this, you know, big anthem, fists in the air kind of thing. And when Twisted was looking for a song to do for the Strangeland soundtrack, and I knew right where it was going to go. It was going to be on the end credits after the cop defeats Captain Howdy. You know, it was always in the back of my mind, you know, I said, "I’ve got this song," and I showed it to the guys and they all thought it was fucking great. And we recorded it. I wonder if it would’ve been a hit if Twisted Sister was actually, you know, really together and hadn’t already blown its load.
JB: Are you gonna do it on the next tour?
I don’t think so, but now that you mention it, I’ll add it to my list.
11. Are you worried about Mark Mendoza snapping during the middle of the show and beating you with his bass?
I don’t worry about anybody snapping, at all. I don’t worry about too many things, um, and I know people have said things but words and actions are two different things. You know, I’ve always noticed…I don’t know, people get calmer when I’m around. Plus me and Mark have really made some tremendous inroads in reestablishing our relationship and I won’t say it’s back to where it was but it’s definitely…put it this way, he’s slept at my house on two occasions when we’ve gone and done, we co…what do you call it….when you lead a motorcycle run for charity. A grandmarshall, that kind of thing or whatever. On two occasions he’s stayed at my place before we went out early and did these motorcycle runs together. I didn’t worry about him sneaking up on me in the middle of the night or anything. (Dee laughs)
12. What rock star deserves a smack in the mouth and why?
Well I think I established that early on and I think the number one candidate with a bullet would be Axl Rose, and you can’t say it enough. He’s deprived people, he’s cheated people, and he certainly does not appreciate the good fortune that he’s had.
13. Which do you prefer & why:
John Denver or Frank Zappa = Frank Zappa! You know, but uh, I got to tell you boy, that John Denver had a voice like a bell! Like a bell, I tell ya!! He was the Rocky Mountain High! It’s so weird, you know, after you come to know people, it’s very difficult to not like them anymore. You know, and a case in point for that one would be Fleetwood Mac. I HATED Fleetwood Mac. Hated, hated, hated. And I wound up at this record industry function and I wound up spending a good part of the day with Stevie Nicks and she was really cool. She wasn’t an asshole at all. And all of a sudden I’m sitting there going, "you know, that ‘Rhiannon,’ that’s a pretty catchy tune." (Dee laughs). You can’t really hate her with quite the same venom when they’re actually like not assholes. You know, you want ‘em to be assholes.
Brooklyn or Queens = BROOKLYN! Brooklyn! I have nothing more to say except Brooklyn. (Dee chuckles) My wife is born and raised in her early years in Brooklyn, so I owe them a debt.
David Letterman or Jay Leno = You know I like both of ‘em. Letterman. I just, you know, it brings something a little…a little darker about Dave. You know, when you see him up there you’re thinking, "he’s hating this." He won’t admit it and there’s something about that I’m attracted to. (Dee chuckles)
Amityville Horror or Nightmare On Elm Street = Nightmare On Elm Street! I live on Long Island and the Amityville Horror was just a farce and a fraud, and it’s nothing. It never happened and the whole book was fake. Everybody on Long Island knew it, so with that in mind, I just think that Nightmare On Elm Street was so much more original at the time.
Al Pitrelli or Ronnie LeTekro = Well, Al Pitrelli, cause he’s my bro and he’s a killer guitar player. But Ronnie LeTekro is pretty friggin staggering.
Trent Lott or Al Gore = Um, Big Al! Big Al. You know, Saturday Night Live blew it. We actually tried to get in touch with him, Twisted Sister offered to be the musical guest on this Saturday Night Live and I don’t know if we were through the right channels or whatever, but I thought they would be so all over it. I mean, how funny would that of fuckin’ been? You know, after all that shit and all this time to have Twisted Sister as a special musical guest. Um, you know, I mean, Trent’s a fucking bigot! And a racist. And I thought Al did a great job on Saturday Night Live with his comment, "all I want to do is keep the whites and blacks separate." (Dee laughs) That’s brilliant. So yeah, I’ll go with Al.
Sit ups or hanging leg lifts = Wow, wow. Sit ups or the handing leg lifts. Never done the hanging leg lifts but would like to try it but I don’t have the boots. I’m also a little weary of ‘em cause one of my brothers was getting a BJ in the moonboots hanging upside down, and when he was climaxing the boots broke lose and he fell on his head. So..(Dee laughs), I’ve been weary to put ‘em on so I’ll have to go with the sit-up.
Stephen Furst or Tom Hulce = Oh, oh, oh, oh, Pinto or Flounder!
Jim Bob: correct!
Stephen Furst! That guy doing "I Wanna Rock," it was a long shoot and he sat their patiently while we made his recite every line from Animal House. "Say the ‘Negros stole our dates!" (Dee laughs and then impersonates Stephen) ‘The Negros stole our dates.’ Ahahahahahaha!"
MTV2 or VH1 Classic Rock = MTV2
Clear Channel Communications or the PMRC = Ooohhh, Clear Channel Communications because I don’t have a problem with Clear Channel Communications, I have a problem with the regional management in that particular building. So my problems aren’t with Clear Channel and I hope to do business with them in the future.
14. We interviewed Jani Lane the other day and mentioned to him the comment were you said, ?We know what it is and we really want to give people a Twisted Sister like they remember us, not some bastardization. You know, Warrant’s out there and I don’t think one person wants to see Jani Lane with baggy pants and a wallet chain!? Jani seemed bummed out about that. Do you care?
Actually, yeah. I mean, yes and no. Like I said it’s tough to not like people when they like you. And when I’ve seen Jani he’s been so flattering and so complimentary. Uh, ah, you know, that I go, ‘wow, shit’ I kind of feel bad. But I think that I would say it to him. "Jani, you’re kidding yourself." I’ve seen Warrant. And you know……they’re fine. They’re tight and they’re good and he sounds good but they’re clearly trying to fight the image that they created for themselves. And try to pretend they are not what they were. They’re the ‘Down Boys.’ You know, and uh, and he does his big hits in like a quick medley with an acoustic guitar in the middle of the set. It’s like he wants to pretend they didn’t happen. He should embrace his fuckin’ 20 million record sales, you know what I’m sayin’? Sometimes…this is a long answer…it’s like Jani you know what, sometimes things run away with themselves. I mean, Twisted became a parody of itself and, you know, we were the original badasses and one day you wake up and there are little kids in the audience and they’re thinking you’re funny. And you go, "what the fuck happened here? How did this happen?" It’s the same makeup, the same costumes, the same songs, and within 12 months I went from being like the scurge to fucking being like mom and dad’s favorite band. You know, and uh, but you have to recognize it for what it is. It is what it is and be grateful on one hand that at least people bought your record.
Click here to listen to an MP3 of that answer!
15. Yes or No, has Dee Snider ever done the following:
Operated a backhoe = no, but I am willing to learn.
Planted a flower garden = yes, I was a landscaper for a long time before I was in… And I’ve also worked on my own yard.
Shot a potato launcher = eh, how did you know about that?!?! (Dee gets excited!) I was….my buddy Dave lives on Lake Minnetonka in Minnesota, and I go, "what the fuck is that thing in your yard," and he goes "a potato launcher, man." And I was like, "oh fuck, we gotta do this." So we went shooting potatoes into Lake Minnetonka.
Been arrested while wearing full makeup = Yes. Yes. Last time I wore makeup home, actually as well I spent the night in jail. Wearing full makeup and not famous, by the way.
Jim Bob: That must’ve been fun.
Oh, yea, it was a long night. I still have my virginity but I will say, you wanna talk about having to represent! Represent when you’re on the inside with a face full of makeup.
Prank called another rock star = no, but if I had numbers I might.
Visited Amsterdam’s Red Light District = yes, only window shopping which is the funniest thing about it is…have you been there?
Jim Bob: Absolutely!
The shits in the window.
Jim Bob: It is. It’s like a candy store.
It’s mind blowing. It’s a great way to do it if you’re going to do it. I didn’t partake but I did walk the streets and check it out.
Caught a band member jacking off in a tour bunk = no, thank God. I don’t think I could get that image unburned from my mind.
Used a lyric sheet or teleprompter on stage = Uh, lyric sheets yes, telepromoter no. Uh, only with like lyrics to new songs. I’ve actually, this is on Twisted Forever SMF CD if you’ve ever heard it, I forgot the words to "We’re Not Gonna Take It." And I’m sitting there going, (Dee sings) "Sha fi da ma di dated," and I finally just went, I stopped the song and said, "I can’t do this to ya, most of ya probably paid your money to hear this song and you know the words better than me." It was my first time back after not playing for a long time.
Refused a fan’s request for an autograph = never!
Touched another man’s penis = no, not consciously. (Dee laughs) Maybe like in a karate move, (Dee screams) "Ahhhhhhhh!!" You know, like a tiger claw to the crotch type of thing. (Dee laughs and does karate scream again) "Ye-ahhhh!!"
16. Whatever happened to the third Widowmaker album, "Let The Pain Begin" – will this ever see the light of day, or are you too embarrassed to release it?
Are you a fan or you just know a lot of shit or did somebody give you these questions?
Jim Bob: Uh, I think a bunch of people helped put them together.
"Let The Pain Being" was never recorded, never written, never even started. Uh, I hoped their would be a third one but unfortunately….you know, I’m involved actually in a new project production wise with the guys, Widowmaker productions, Joe, Al. Joe and I are working on something not that we’re performers on. And you know, I love that band, but it got really hard to keep going when there is no record in the stores and no support from radio stations. It got harder and harder to keep doing it and I’m sorry. I’m sorry, I didn’t mean to lie, my intentions were there.
17. When you formed Desperado, you said you wanted a ?guitar hero? type of band. Were you basically saying that Eddie and JJ sucked?
You know, I’ve seen that mentioned and I’ve realized that….that was hurtful to them. And I did not, it was not my intention. Uh, I thought JJ and Eddie were guitar heroes. But they were never picked up on as that. You know what I mean? Like they were never grabbed by the guitar playing community and embraced as heroes. And so when I formed Desperado, I really wanted to make sure that I had my Jimmy Page. I wanted to make sure I got somebody who is like GUARANTEED to be a guitar hero. Bernie Torme already had a following over in Europe and I talked to other people. I remember I talked to, who’s the guy who ended up in Whitesnake and is now with Def Leppard?
Jim Bob: Vivian Campbell.
Vivian Campbell. I talked to a lot of people like that, you know, looking for that person. But yea, I’ve seen it mentioned by the guys as a hurtful comment and um, and that wasn’t my intention.
Jim Bob: No problem
Not for you!
Jim Bob: Ah, you cleared that up, they’ll be happy.
18. What?s the current status of Dee Snider Radio?
Actually, we’re talking to a couple of radio stations right now. Some pretty major markets, actually. Um, so I don’t know. Dee Snider Radio stopped because of contract issues and negotiations. I think it’s kind of a tough thing for people to negotiate with somebody who doesn’t have to. And fortunately, I don’t live or die by my morning radio show. And so when the company, management didn’t want to come to the table in a fashion that I wanted them to, and didn’t want to commit to the show, and by the way it was a monetary issue with the commitment to syndication that made me part company with them. But anyway, I walked, and so as I would negotiate with people now, and there has been considerable interest because the rating were good and it was a successful show, it’s not the easiest negotiation in the world because I’m not like sitting here on the balls of my ass saying, "gee, my severance is running out, what will I do for money I’ve got to take something." So I’m in a position to pick and choose and I’m taking my time. But we are in negotiations with a couple of markets.
19. Do you ever wish that the CD ?Never Let The Bastards Where You Down? suffered the same fate as the Desperado CD and never saw the light of day?
Uh, I never wish it, but if it did I wouldn’t have cared! When the Desperado thing happened that was like a death. I worked so hard on that I was emotionally friggin’ destroyed. I mean, it was really just unbelievably devastating. But uh, when Koch Records came after me and just said they wanted to do something I said, "No." And they said, "well do you have anything laying around that you’d like to put out?" And I said, "well, I’ve got some demo stuff, songs I liked but never saw the light of day." And they said, "well, we’ll record those." I was like, "h-h-h-how much?" And they kept offering me a lot of money and I said, "well ok." So if at some point they decided to shelf that I would have said ok. (Dee laughs) I’m not ashamed of it, I’m not ashamed of it. There are songs that I personally liked but it wasn’t something I was anxious to put out either.
20. Time for Metal Sludge?s Word Association. We mention a name and you give us your thoughts.
Jani Lane = Sorry Jani! Nice guy, just cut back on the alcohol.
Howard Stern = Loyal, and I owe him a fucking lot.
Sebastian Bach = Great guy. One of my few business friends.
Nikki Sixx = Uh, arrogant, self important and uh, you know, see ya down the road, dude. I’m not sure what that means, by the way.
Tommy Lee = Tommy! Biggest dickest. (Dee laughs) That’s got so many meanings, doesn’t it?
Gene Simmons = (brief pause) Man after my own heart. He’s alright.
Ozzy Osbourne = I hope he doesn’t hurt himself up there on stage! (Dee laughs) I love Ozzy but I just think he looks so confused when he performs, like he’s not sure where he is.
David Lee Roth = David Lee Roth. Psychotic!
Ted Nugent = Awesome guy. Great guy. Also a little psychotic. (chuckles)
Bubba The Love Sponge = You know what, I don’t even know anything about him. Uh, you know, to say he’s my replacement isn’t like accurate because it was when they realized the negotiations were going South, that’s who they got. It wasn’t like they dumped me for him. It was like they got him to replace me. So I don’t even know him.
Pee Wee Herman = Uh, Pee Wee Herman. Uh, what can I say about Pee Wee Herman? There’s so many things to say about Pee Wee Herman. (pause) Not as gay as he once was. Really. I mean the big thing was, people don’t realize Pee Wee was jerking off in a heterosexual theater. So that’s a step in the right direction!
Bernie Torme = My favorite guitar player of all time. And such a shame that the world does not ever really get to know Bernie Torme.
Mark Metcalf = "Neidermeyer!!!"
I hope I gave ya some stuff to work with.
I’ve checked out your website and you guys have the right attitude and I’m happy for ya that you’re making some noise. People are starting to acknowledge and recognize and check out Metal Sludge! It’s amazing, from humble beginnings right?
Jim Bob: Exactly.
That’s the way it all starts.
"Hope I gave ya some stuff to work with" is a bit of an understatement! How do you even recap an interview like that? There are too many classic quotes in there for us to go over so just read it again and make up your own recap!
Thanks to Danny Stanton at Coallier Entertainment for putting this all together and of course thanks to Dee Snider & Jim Bob for making it happen.