August 7, 2020

STEEL PANTHER drummer Stix Zadinia has once again come to Chris Jericho's defense after Sebastian Bach accused FOZZY's lead singer of using pre-recorded vocal tracks during live performances.

Last month, Jericho challenged Bach to a "singoff" with "no effects, no tuning, no bullshit" in response to Sebastian's allegation that Chris "mimes to a tape" during FOZZY's live shows. "Bas is a great singer...but I'm better," Chris wrote on Twitter." The wrestler-turned-singer added: "I've never mimed anything ever! I will fucking sing in your face anytime, anyplace dude. I've been a fan & a defender of u since day one...but don't u ever question my rock abilities!" Bach fired back: " You're full of s*** bro. Every clip on the Internet is you miming to a tape. I will sing in your f****** face anytime. Wrestling is not rock and roll. I will show you f****** rock and roll. Check your texts set up The Sing-Off I am ready when you are".

A few days after the exchange, STRYPER's Michael Sweet defended Jericho, writing in a social media post: "[Chris] doesn't have anything to prove as a singer, a wrestler or a person. He's achieved success and made quite the name for himself. He's about as active as anyone I know and is also a great guy with a big heart. He's also my friend… Chris is a very talented individual and a grounded human being. He doesn't need validation from anyone. He's made his mark and will continue to do so."

After BLABBERMOUTH.NETreported on Sweet's comments, Zadinia — whose real name is Darren Leader — took to his Twitter to share a link to the article headlined "MICHAEL SWEET Defends CHRIS JERICHO Over Lip-Syncing Allegations: He 'Doesn't Have Anything To Prove As A Singer'", and he included the following message: "I'm with this. Jericho is a Fucking rock star and one of the coolest motherfuckers in this business."

In a brand new interview with Rock Feed, Stix elaborated on his comments, saying: "I don't know what kind of history [Sebastian and Chris] have. I know Chris pretty well, and he's an awesome dude. In my tweet, I said he's one of the coolest motherfuckers in this business, which is true. We toured with them — FOZZY opened for us — and the entire band, Chris and the band and everybody, were so humble and so grateful to be on the road with us. We had a fun time. A lot of times when you tour with bands, you're, like, 'Oh, cool. We've got a cool band with us,' but you don't hang, because schedules are different, soundchecks are different and then, by the end of the night, sometimes bands do what they do and everybody's got their own lives. But when we toured with FOZZY, we hung out and it was fun — it was really fun. Really super-nice guys."

Zadinia went on to say that he personally doesn't care if bands use pre-recorded tracks during live shows.

"IRON MAIDEN, from what I know, does not use tracks," he said. "That's all I know — they don't use tracks. Bruce Dickinson sings fantastic. If Bruce lost a little bit of the sauce in the voice and he said to his guys, 'Hey, guys, I would like to use some tracks, because I wanna be able to present those notes to the fans who are waiting for them.' 'Cause, look, everyone wants to hear the big notes. If a singer wants to rely on some tracks for that, I don't give a fuck because live, it's a presentation. You're not listening to the record. And to me, whether a guy uses tracks or not, I don't care.

"Sebastian Bach cares a lot about whether or not you use tracks, apparently," he continued. "We just feel different about it. It's important to him, obviously — enough to sabotage what sounded like a friendship. But I don't know. I'm not claiming to know. But it seemed like they were friends."

Stix also reacted to Sebastian apparently challenging Jericho to a fight. Last month, Bach tweeted a screenshot of what appeared to be his text messages to Chris which went unanswered. In the texts, Bach wrote: "I accept your challenge to a singing match if you accept my challenge to a whooping your f****** ass match. Believe me it won't be much of a match unless you bring like a phonebook to stand on or something you fuxkin pussy. You are such a joke I can't wait to kick the s*** out of you just for fun."

Zadinia told Rock Feed: "Look, I'm not the smallest dude in the world, and I'm pretty fit. But if I was gonna pick a fight with somebody, it would not be a Canadian professional wrestler. Say what you want about wrestling — I never got into it as a kid, but I do recognize the fact that those guys are tough as fucking nails.

"I can't even be mad at Sebastian Bach for what he said, because it's a bad idea to pick a fight with a guy like Jericho — first of all, 'cause he's super cool; second of all, 'cause you're a 60-year-old man, and you're picking a fight with somebody," he continued. "That's ridiculous, in and of itself. Think about it.

"I don't know what is going on. And we've met Sebastian Bach, and he was very nice to us — except for one time. At the Viper Room, he was not nice one time," Stix added. "But for the most part, he's been nice to us. I don't know what his issue with Jericho is, I don't know what his issue with taped tracks is, or computer tracks, but it just seems like a whole lot of energy going into something that you can so be better served by putting that energy into writing music, or recording music, or putting some shit out that his fans, and that we all [will enjoy]. 'Cause I'm a fan too — I love SKID ROW, and Sebastian Bach is one of the best singers in heavy metal of all time. Whether you like his, you know, fight challenges or not, the dude can sing. And I would love hear some killer shit come out. But instead he's busy trying to beat people up. I don't understand it."

When Bach first went public with his Jericho accusation last month, FOZZY guitarist Rich Ward called Sebastian "universally disliked" and said that seeing Bach "publicly go after the only guy that I have ever witness utter a nice word about him is sad."

Sebastian, who has been outspoken about rock bands using pre-recorded backing tracks during live shows, later tried to explain his outburst, writing: "I'm not trying to beat anybody at anything. I'm actually trying to say hey Chris maybe you're right maybe I'll stop singing live and prance around while the tape is playing just like you do Chris. I'm tired of trying so hard it's like beating my head against the wall."

After a self-proclaimed Bach fan called Sebastian "an asshat" on Twitter for firing "the first shots" in his war of words with Jericho, Bach came back with: "Hey man f*** you. I have spent my life learning how to sing live on stage. When someone comes along and mimes to a tape it sucks for all of the rest of us that don't. You want to go see a wrestling match good. Don't call it rock and roll"

Jericho has long been suspected of relying on backing tapes during FOZZY's live performances. When the band played in Canada in November 2018, several concert-goers accusedJericho of singing along to pre-recorded tracks. After a video of FOZZY's Toronto gig surfaced online, Bachweighed in, writing from his personal Facebook account: "Wow he mimes to a tape very well".

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