Ex-MÖTLEY CRÜE Singer JOHN CORABI Says Writing His Autobiography Was A 'Cleansing' And 'Tedious' Experience
May 24, 2022
Former MÖTLEY CRÜE singer John Corabi spoke to Australia's May The Rock Be With You about his upcoming autobiography, "Horseshoes And Hand Grenades", which is tentatively due on June 14 via Rare Bird Books. It was written with the help of MÖTLEY CRÜE historian/author Paul Miles.
Regarding the writing process for the book, Corabi said (as transcribed by BLABBERMOUTH.NET): "It was tedious. I wrote it with a guy from Melbourne [in Australia], Paul Miles. He was very thorough with his research, and we kind of conducted it like an interview. And then he put it in like a transcript form and then sent it to me and then I went through it and I crisscrossed things off and then I rewrote things and then I sent it back. And we did this — God — eight or nine times. So it was very tedious, but it was also… It was good and bad. There was very cool moments in the book where I was kind of happy and I kind of relived that while I was reading it. And then there was other moments where it was, like, oh my God. Leaving MÖTLEY, the lawsuit, divorces… And I was just going through some of the insanity. A couple of times I had to walk away from it, go make myself a coffee or a tea and then come back and get back into it. And I'm, like, 'Oh my God. I'm getting a fucking stomach ache over this.' But at the same time, I think it was a bit cleansing as well. So it was cool — definitely an overall positive experience."
Asked if "Horseshoes And Hand Grenades" covers his time with MÖTLEY CRÜE in great detail, Corabi said: "I really tried to make the book not about any of the people that I was in the bands with or any of the women that I was married to. It's more like what I was going through mentally and physically going from a pauper to joining MÖTLEY CRÜE — the excitement, all those things. And then also how I felt when I was leaving the band or going through a divorce or whatever. So it's really kind of more an in-depth look into me trying to process everything and how I was feeling while all of this shit was happening. And we go all the way back to the very beginning — like birth. So the book is long; you definitely get your money's worth with the book. Everybody that's read it so far is pretty pleased. They're, like, 'It's a great read. It goes into depth.' And, again, it wasn't written to throw anybody under the bus. I'm just being as truthful as possible. And hopefully, I keep my fingers crossed that I don't piss anybody off."
Corabi joined CRÜE in 1992 as the replacement for the group's original singer, Vince Neil, who was dismissed due to personal differences. With Corabi on vocals, MÖTLEY CRÜE released one critically acclaimed full-length CD, which ended up being a commercial failure in the wake of grunge despite a Top 10 placing on the album chart. When Neil returned to the fold in 1997, Corabi was left on his own and formed the band UNION with ex-KISS guitarist Bruce Kulick.
Last year, Corabi told Meltdown of Detroit's WRIF radio station about his book: "It goes all the way back to, obviously, me being born, but it talks about my parents. My grandparents were first-generation Italians from the Calabria section of Italy. My mother's side of the family, I talk about them. It talks about me being born, my childhood being very kind of 'Wonder Years' — whatever — and then just it completely derailing and falling apart. And it goes into everything. There's a lot of things that fans don't know about me — some of my marriages. It talks about, again, my youth, childhood. I dive into the Uncle Jack stories.
"Basically, the book is really kind of a testament to [the fact that] I knew at a very young age that I wanted to do what I'm doing for a living," he continued. "Now, has it panned out the way that the magazines, the articles — you know, Learjets, limousines and all that other stuff? Probably not. But I'm still pushing forward, still trying to find my slice of the pie. But it's really kind of a testament to perseverance. And it goes right from the time I took my first breath to maybe a year ago."
When asked in an interview with 80's Glam Metalcast if he is concerned at all about what his former bandmates will think about his book, Corabi responded: "To be honest with you, I don't really think that I'm telling anybody anything that they didn't already know. What the book really kind of goes through is me joining the band, being in the band, leaving the band, and it really kind of explains my mental state. Obviously, the MÖTLEY thing, all of it's been so publicized with [the band biography] 'The Dirt' and just interviews and different things like that. I'm just explaining how I was feeling while certain things were happening and how I feel like I fit with the band but I never really did. So I'm kind of talking about my mental state through the whole thing. So I don't really think I'm saying anything that will surprise anybody. And to be honest with you, and I don't mean this to sound weird, but I don't really care what those guys think... The minute they told me they were bringing Vince back, I walked away from it and I kind of accepted everything. It's not me who keeps bringing it up. I'm still writing new music. I've done — in the last 10 years, between my solo records and the records I did with THE [DEAD] DAISIES and the new music that I'm doing, I think I've done five or six records. So I'm past it, I'm over it, I don't even think about it.
"Paul talked to me about doing a book, which I really didn't want to do in the beginning," he continued. "But he said, 'You know what, dude? You're just one of these guys that, like, even though you kind of had a few chapters in 'The Dirt', you're largely a mystery. There's not a lot of stuff that people know about you. And I think your story is pretty fascinating.' So I was, like, 'Okay. Whatever. We'll do the book.'
"It's not a tell-all book about any band that I've been in; it's not a tell-all book about any of my marriages; it's basically a tell-all book about John Corabi from the minute I took my first breath till about a year ago or six months ago," he explained. "I have an ex-wife or two that it might piss off, and I don't give a shit about them either. So, whatever… [The book] is about perseverance and it talks about my life from the beginning to now. And the title is just about somebody that's been close a lot. It's a book about a guy that's been in all the right places but at all the wrong times. So it's pretty cool. It's fun."
Corabi went on to say that he doesn't hold a grudge against any of the guys in MÖTLEY CRÜE. "Honestly, it may not seem it, but I don't have any issues with the guys in MÖTLEY at all," he said. "I love those guys. I don't know why Nikki's [Sixx, CRÜE bassist] had a hair up his ass for the last couple of years about me; I couldn't tell you why. I don't know. I don't care. My only beef with those guys was I really wish they would have just left me out of ['The Dirt' biopic]. I really felt like — I don't know if it was intentional, if it wasn't intentional, but I really felt like my portrayal in the movie just made me look like a complete fucking babbling moron. And they also made it look like we were playing in high school gymnasiums to 10 people. Obviously, it wasn't great — we all know that; it's common knowledge — but the attendance wasn't that bad; not as bad as they made it look. So I wish they would would have just left me out of the movie altogether and whatever. But it is what it is. I don't care. I'm over it."
In February 2018, Corabi released a live album of his performance of MÖTLEY CRÜE's entire 1994 self-titled album, recorded on October 27, 2015 in Nashville, Tennessee. "Live '94: One Night In Nashville" documents the album in its entirety along with the bonus track "10,000 Miles", which was originally released as a bonus track on the Japanese version of the "Quaternary" EP.