MICHAEL SWEET: 'It Was Great To Be Able To Bury The Hatchet' With SEBASTIAN BACH
January 26, 2023
During a January 24 appearance on SiriusXM's "Trunk Nation With Eddie Trunk", STRYPER's Michael Sweet spoke about how he and former SKID ROW singer Sebastian Bach ended their long-running feud at last year's edition of the Kiss Kruise where both STRYPER and Bach performed. Brought together by Metal Edge's Paul Gargano, Bach and Sweet buried the hatchet in private, and later teamed up on stage during Bach's solo set to perform KISS's version of "God Gave Rock 'N' Roll To You" and VAN HALEN's "Ain't Talkin' 'Bout Love".
Sweet said (as transcribed by BLABBERMOUTH.NET): "We were on the boat, and I was talking to Paul Gargano about how silly it is that Sebastian and I have this beef, and I've tried to reach out to him numerous times, and blah blah blah. And Paul just said, 'Oh. Really? Okay. Wait here.' And he came back, and he said, 'I just talked to [Sebastian's wife] Suzanne. And Suzanne is talking to Lisa right now' — my wife Lisa. 'And she's talking to Sebastian. And Sebastian was in tears, 'cause he wants to bury the hatchet.' It was just crazy how it all evolved in a great way. And then he basically invited me up to do a song, and I didn't know this song in particular — 'God Gave Rock 'N' Roll To You', believe it or not. And obviously, everyone can watch a video of that and get a good laugh. And then we did 'Ain't Talkin' 'Bout Love'.
"Some people, in the comments section, said, 'Ah, this feels awkward and weird,' but I can tell you it was legitimate," Michael continued. "And we are friends, and we're in contact. We've e-mailed each several few times, we had dinner with Suzanne when we were in [Las] Vegas, and it's real. And it's really amazing. Really cool.
"It was great to be able to bury the hatchet and to actually talk to Sebastian after so long, and realize that we're just two guys… We're just two guys doing the same thing, who are both trying to enjoy life and make the best of it," Sweet added. "And why feud? Why fight? Cliché — life is too short, and it is."
The war of words between Bach and Sweet began in November 2016 when Sweet shared a video on Facebook of then-16-year-old emerging artist Moriah Formica performing the SKID ROW track "I Remember You", along with the caption: "Moriah Formica kills this and in my humble opinion, smokes the original singer." He also proceeded to call Bach a "tool" in the comments section after being questioned about the caption by a fan.
After being alerted to Sweet's post by a fan, Sebastian fired back, writing in a tweet: "Michael Sweet has a big fucking mouth. Behind a keyboard that is. Can't wait to see this pussy in person again someday."
While speaking to "The Blairing Out With Eric Blair Show" at an October 2017 "Bowl For Ronnie" event in Studio City, California, Bach was asked about his war or words with Sweet. He said: "All I know is that when I see a headline on Blabbermouth and it says, 'Bach Slams 'Pussy' Sweet,' you've just kind of gotta do a double take on that one."
Pressed about whether he likes Sweet on a personal level, Sebastian said: "I don't, actually. I think STRYPER sucks. I've always thought that — since I was a little kid. I think their songs suck, I think their fucking clothes suck. Should I go on? What are they gonna [do] — whip a Bible at me? [Laughs]"
After clarifying that his opinion of STRYPER doesn't have anything to do with the Christian messages in the band's lyrics, Bach said: "I think they just make bad records. And I don't think they ever did make good records."
In November 2016, Sweet released a statement in response to Bach's "pussy" comment, saying that "anyone who knows me knows that I express my opinion and I'm more than willing to back it up. I do my best to be honest yet not to be mean-spirited or destructive. I'm also no pussy. Obviously, Sebastian doesn't know me, because if he did, he'd know that as fact."
He added: "Unfortunately, I think because I'm a Christian, some people think that I'm supposed to 'turn the other cheek' and let people say and do whatever they want. I guess the 'pussy' in me won't let me do that."
Sebastian and Michael previously traded barbs in 2015 when the STRYPER leader claimed he was asked to produce a Bach solo album, only for those plans to be squashed because Sebastian couldn't make up his mind. Sweet said: "I was approached to do a Sebastian album… to produce it and to co-write with him and basically try to kind of go back to those powerful songs from the past. Not make a dated record, but just that style, the anthemy SKID ROW stuff that everybody loves. And that was the plan."
Michael also offered a theory as to why so few of Bach's at-the-time-eight hundred thousand Facebook followers purchased the former SKID ROW singer's latest solo album, "Give 'Em Hell", when it was first released. Sweet said: "This isn't a bash against Sebastian at all; it's just my opinion. I think people wanna hear Sebastian of old. They wanna hear the SKID ROW Sebastian. They wanna hear the hits. And he's giving them modern rock. It's ['Give 'Em Hell'] a good album, it's a good-sounding album, but it's not the glory days."
After a fan wrote on Twitter that "the points M. Sweet made about fans wanting 'old school' Bach sounds - are ACCURATE. Not rude or mean. Just true," Bach responded: "ACCURATE? FACT: No member of STRYPER was EVER asked to produce ANY album by Sebastian Bach! EVER. Who do U think asks that?? Omg!"
Sweet later took to his own Twitter to clarify his proposed role in the making of Bach's solo album. Michael wrote: "I was asked by the LABEL to produce Sebastian Bach. I never said by Sebastian."
When Michael and Sebastian shared the stage at last year's Kiss Kruise, Bach told the audience: "In the spirit of rock and roll music… We've only got one life. We're lucky to be here. From our Lord Jesus, God, I'm being totally serious right now… Ladies and gentlemen, I'd like to welcome to the stage Mr. Michael Sweet of STRYPER. Rock 'n' roll brings us together; that’s what rock and roll does. Let's hear it right now… Life is too short."
Following the performance, Sweet and Bachsat down with Gargano to discuss what had transpired. Regarding how the feud between them began, Bach said: "The Internet happened. Every single headline is, this guy said this about this guy, this guy said this about this guy. It's not about the new record, it's not about the new video. It's about this guy called this guy a name. And everybody reads shit about themselves online that they don't like, and then they say something back. So it never ends."
Added Sweet: "You know, one thing said is maybe misconstrued or misunderstood, and another thing is said in retaliation, and then it heats up and people start fueling the fire and it just becomes a nightmare. That's what happened. And it went on for a long time and today was the day that we put all that aside, buried the hatchet and said, 'This is stupid.' "
"Life is too short," Sebastian repeated. "I don't wanna fight with anybody. There's enough rotten shit in the world. We don't need rock and roll to piss us off. Rock 'n' roll is supposed to be fun."
Michael later took to his social media to share a photo of him and Sebastian hugging it out, and he included the following caption: "One of the best moments of my life. Forgiveness. When you can forgive, you can do anything. Brothers… Thank you @kisskruiseofficial and thank you @paulgargano".
'I don't wanna fight with anybody,' Sebastian Bach told us about his feud with Michael Sweet
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