GEORGE LYNCH Says MICK BROWN Doesn't Return His Phone Calls: 'I Would Love To Still Be Friends With Him'
April 23, 2023
In a new interview with the VintageRock Pod, George Lynch was asked if he thinks there will ever be another reunion of the classic DOKKEN lineup, featuring him on guitar, Don Dokken on vocals, Jeff Pilson on bass and "Wild" Mick Brown on drums. He responded (as transcribed by BLABBERMOUTH.NET): "No. The short-version answer is no. The reason is, for one, Mick has retired. He sold his drums, got rid of his drums. He doesn't play anymore. Maybe he goes and jams here and there. And for his own mental and physical health, he's just kind of disconnected from the whole world, and he doesn't return our calls. That's okay. I think that's probably what he needed to do, and I respect that. It's sad in a way, because we were friends for decades and built something together; we came up together. It was Mick and I before anybody else — before Jeff or Don. I would love to still be friends with him and maintain a relationship, but that's all right.
"Jeff has been in, I think, FOREIGNER for — I don't know — maybe 15 years," George continued. "They're doing very, very well. It keeps him very, very busy. And we do our side things — THE END MACHINE and other projects; the 'Heavy Hitters' projects, we do that together. We live down the street from each other, so we're always working together. We love each other, and we always dream of kind of doing something else band-wise that we can take out on the road and kind of do that whole DOKKEN building-the-band process again. Even at our age, we talk about that and hope that we'll be able to do that someday.
"But doing it in the context of DOKKEN, I think that ship has sailed, as I said in other interviews, because we tried so many times to put it together, and it's like Humpty Dumpty," Lynch added. "Don's got his thing. He owns the [DOKKEN] name, and he has hired-gun guys that are great. And he's very happy with that, and they've been together for a lot of years. And they service the songs, and people dig it, and if it's not broken, why fix it? For him to come back into a true band situation where everything is split up equally and he's not the king and he's not getting the lion's share of the money, I think that has something to do with the fact that it probably won't happen. Jeff and I would probably do it, but we would do it with Steve Brown, which is Mick's brother, who we used on THE END MACHINE records. [He] looks just like Mick, plays just like Mick — a younger version of Mick. So that would work. But I really don't think it's gonna happen. Maybe if we were still in our 50s, maybe early 60s, but I'm gonna be 69, Don's gonna be 70. I would wanna make sure that if we did that last record, it would be a great bookend to the whole story. And if it was anything less than that, I don't think it's worth doing, because it would be… It's better to leave people with the memories of the good stuff, like the first four or five albums and just leave it at that rather than go for a cash grab."
George was also asked what his relationship with Don is like nowadays in light of the fact that Lynch has gone up on stage and jammed with DOKKEN a number of times in recent years. He said: "Wonderful. We're old men, [and] we don't care. We're out there grateful for where we are and we're having fun. And the band sounds great. Don's band sounds great. We've been doing this for a few years now. LYNCH MOB opens the show. We do our thing. Obviously, we don't play any DOKKEN songs. DOKKEN comes out, [and Don] does his thing. And I come out at the end of the night and play three or four songs. And it's all kumbaya."
In October 2016, the classic lineup of DOKKEN reunited to play the Loud Park festival in Japan. Fortunately for fans outside of Japan, cameras were there to capture the performance and Frontiers Music Srl issued "Return To The East Live 2016" in April 2018. In addition to the Japanese performance, the set featured footage from the classic lineup's only U.S. show in September 2016 at Badlands in Sioux Falls, South Dakota. The package also included a new song called "It's Just Another Day", the first DOKKEN track featuring the group's classic lineup since 1997's "Shadowlife", and two acoustic re-workings of classic tracks.
Since completing the Japanese reunion dates, DOKKEN has continued to perform with the group's current lineup — including bassist Chris McCarvill, guitarist Jon Levin and drummer BJ Zampa (HOUSE OF LORDS).
DOKKEN recently finished recording a new studio album, tentatively due later this year via Silver Lining Music, the label owned by Thomas Jensen, one of the founders of Germany's Wacken Open Air festival. It will mark the group's first disc since 2012's "Broken Bones".
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