FRANKIE BANALI: 'I Felt It Was Unfair For Me Not To Be Able To Continue' With QUIET RIOT

FRANKIE BANALI: 'I Felt It Was Unfair For Me Not To Be Able To Continue' With QUIET RIOT

QUIET RIOT drummer Frankie Banali and the band's former bassist, Rudy Sarzo, were interviewed on a recent episode of "Talk Is Jericho", the podcast of Chris Jericho, the world champion pro wrestler, actor, New York Times best-selling author and lead vocalist of the metal band FOZZY. You can now listen to the chat at A few excerpts follow (transcribed by BLABBERMOUTH.NET).

On late QUIET RIOT singer Kevin DuBrow, who died in November 2007 of an accidental cocaine overdose at the age of 52:

"Kevin was always bigger than life — not just on stage. He'd walk into a room and he would literally suck the oxygen out of the room, because he was so dynamic. I mean, Kevin wanted everything out of life, and he got it — both good and bad. He was the complete package… He was animated… If you're a singer, you have to have a certain amount of ego, because you have to go out there, essentially, bare naked — no guitar, no drums, nothing — and sell it. And he had an incredible amount of self-confidence. I always tell people about Kevin — because, with everything, there's the duality of it — and I always tell people that Kevin was my biggest asset and my biggest liability. Because with everything that he did over the top, it was both over-the-top good and over-the-top bad. But I think, once you see the [recently released QUIET RIOT documentary 'Well Now You're Here, There's No Way Back'], you will understand not only the personality and the individual that Kevin was, and how dynamic but also how troubled he was, but you'll also see how difficult it is for those shoes to be filled, because he was the complete package. I've told people so many times that Kevin had only two bad shows in his entire career… You know, people have great shows and good shows, but bad ones… he only had two in his entire career. One, because he had an incredibly bad cold, and the other one because he had been partying for two days solid. But beyond that….? And when he got up on stage, that was his happy place; that was where he loved to be most. But because he loved it so much, when the curtain came down, he couldn't turn it off. And that's when those problems would surface. And with success came a situation where Kevin just, basically, did whatever he wanted to do, and nobody could call him on it, because, as long as the band was successful, they didn't wanna rock Kevin's boat. And that just escalated and escalated and escalated until, finally, we had no choice but… In 1987, the label, the management, the American agent, the European agent — everybody across the board — wanted Kevin out, because he had become a liability."

On how difficult it was to fire Kevin in 1987:

"It was more difficult… Believe me, it's been really difficult, but it was more difficult for me emotionally, because, even though the decision to fire Kevin in '87 was not a decision that was made by one singular person — it was made by everyone — Kevin always held me responsible for it. So that was an emotional aspect of it."

On his decision to resurrect QUIET RIOT in 2010 with a new singer:

"The idea of getting somebody other than Kevin in the band was unthinkable to me. It was three years before I even considered it… three years. And it was not an easy decision. And when you watch the film, you could see how difficult it was, and how difficult it was to continue, and with all the different dynamics and everything that has happened."

"I had three years where I didn't pick up drum sticks, I didn't play, I didn't do anything. I was in mourning for three years. As far as the situation with Kevin's mother, I will accept any criticism — bring it on; as much as you wanna criticize me… The world can criticize me, if they want, for doing QUIET RIOT without Kevin — as long as one of those critics is not Kevin's mother. That is at the heart of it. If she had a problem with it, then I wouldn't have moved forward. That's the only person that I didn't wanna insult or hurt, or, in any stretch of the imagination, be inconsiderate of. Everybody else can say what they want; it makes no difference to me. I want their support, but if they don't offer it, then that's their business. Life goes on."

On how difficult it was to bring QUIET RIOT back knowing that Kevin would never be part of it again:

"The dynamics of it are so intricate, it wasn't until Regina [Russell, director of 'Well Now You're Here, There's No Way Back'] wanted to make the film that I seriously… 'Cause it was in the back of my mind to maybe try it again. Because I'm one of those people, I will always try the most impossible thing, I will always try, to see if I can overcome it. And if I don't, you don't. But it wasn't until I was really forced to look at all this footage that I had, and all the pictures, and all the magazines… 'Cause, remember: it's not just live performances, [it's] home movies, pictures of us backstage… stuff that nobody saw but the people that were in our little party… that I came to realize that I miss Kevin, but I miss being in QUIET RIOT, because I've invested almost my entire adult career in this band. And I felt it was unfair for me not to be able to continue — even though a critical component was now not part of the picture."

In addition to Banali, QUIET RIOT's current lineup, which includes singer Jizzy Pearl (LOVE/HATE, L.A. GUNS, ADLER'S APPETITE, RATT), bassist Chuck Wright and guitarist Alex Grossi.



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