TESTAMENT's ALEX SKOLNICK Refuses To Shut Up And Play His Guitar

March 29, 2021

Alex Skolnick has defended his right to speak out on political issues, saying that part of his motivation in pursuing music in the first place was to not be forced to suppress that which he wanted to express.

The TESTAMENT guitarist discussed his decision to publicly express his political views in an opinion piece for Newlines Magazine.

Skolnick wrote, in part: "True artistry includes challenging your fans on occasion. Some will come along and discover new ways of seeing. Others will prefer the comfort of their prejudices, hurl insults, and hit 'unfollow.' At a time when attention has become a prized commodity, the fear of losing one's audience is understandable. But we forget that it was fearless acts of imagination that built that audience in the first place. If there are risks to political activism, there are also gratifications to offset them. Every time I have spoken out on a political issue, I've alienated a few. I have also had my views amplified by journalists and opinion-makers, some of them household names. This in turn has brought me to the attention of people beyond my immediate audience — new follows, more retweets. The biggest loss to me would be to succumb to fear and suppress my voice at a time like this.

"Part of my motivation in pursuing music in the first place was to not be forced to suppress that which I wanted to express," he added. "I wouldn't have lasted long in a regular job that requires you to bottle up your feelings, put on a happy face, and suck up to those on whom your income depends. The 1999 Mike Judge film 'Office Space' deftly satirizes such an environment. And in some respects, the hordes of disgruntled social media followers who respond to your political tweet with some version of 'Stick to guitar!' are trying to impose a similar type of conformity on the nonconformist world of an artist."

You can read Skolnick's entire opinion piece at Newlines Magazine.

Ahead of the 2020 U.S. presidential election, Alex frequently tweeted against then-President Donald Trump's policies, including the last administration's handling of the outbreak of of COVID-19, the disease caused by the novel coronavirus first observed in China. In March 2020, the 52-year-old guitarist blasted Trump for not being able to "convey a sense of reassurance during a time of emergency."

Last fall, Skolnick released two anti-Donald Trump rap songs called "Trump Sucks" and "Wear A Fucking Mask".

TESTAMENT's latest album, "Titans Of Creation", was released in April 2020 via Nuclear Blast.

Find more on Testament
  • facebook
  • twitter
  • reddit
  • email

Comments Disclaimer And Information

BLABBERMOUTH.NET uses the Facebook Comments plugin to let people comment on content on the site using their Facebook account. The comments reside on Facebook servers and are not stored on BLABBERMOUTH.NET. To comment on a BLABBERMOUTH.NET story or review, you must be logged in to an active personal account on Facebook. Once you're logged in, you will be able to comment. User comments or postings do not reflect the viewpoint of BLABBERMOUTH.NET and BLABBERMOUTH.NET does not endorse, or guarantee the accuracy of, any user comment. To report spam or any abusive, obscene, defamatory, racist, homophobic or threatening comments, or anything that may violate any applicable laws, use the "Report to Facebook" and "Mark as spam" links that appear next to the comments themselves. To do so, click the downward arrow on the top-right corner of the Facebook comment (the arrow is invisible until you roll over it) and select the appropriate action. You can also send an e-mail to blabbermouthinbox(@)gmail.com with pertinent details. BLABBERMOUTH.NET reserves the right to "hide" comments that may be considered offensive, illegal or inappropriate and to "ban" users that violate the site's Terms Of Service. Hidden comments will still appear to the user and to the user's Facebook friends. If a new comment is published from a "banned" user or contains a blacklisted word, this comment will automatically have limited visibility (the "banned" user's comments will only be visible to the user and the user's Facebook friends).