TWISTED SISTER's classic lineup of Dee Snider (vocals),Jay Jay French (guitar),Eddie Ojeda (guitar),Mark Mendoza (bass) and late drummer A.J Pero will be inducted by guitar virtuoso Steve Vai and ex-DREAM THEATER drummer Mike Portnoy at the sixth annual Metal Hall Of Fame charity gala, set to take place January 26 at The Canyon club in Agoura Hills, California. Portnoy and Vai will both share stories of how TWISTED SISTER influenced them in their early days on the music scene.
On January 7, Ojeda took to his Twitter to write, "Looking forward to our induction into the Heavy Metal Hall of Fame on Jan.26th 2023 in LA". A short time later, Snider shared Ojeda's tweet and added: "Looking forward to playing together for the first time since 2016...especially the rehearsal!"
In 2016, TWISTED SISTER embarked on one final trek, titled "Forty And Fuck It", in celebration of its 40th anniversary. These shows featured the band's "core lineup" of Snider, French, Ojeda and Mendoza, along with Portnoy. The band's last-ever concert took place in November of that year — 20 months after the passing of Pero.
TWISTED SISTER's original run ended in the late '80s. After more than a decade, the band publicly reunited in November 2001 to top the bill of New York Steel, a hard-rock benefit concert to raise money for the New York Police And Fire Widows' And Children's Benefit Fund.
The surviving members of the classic lineup of TWISTED SISTER — Snider, French, Ojeda and Mendoza — reunited virtually in March 2021 for a special episode of Mendoza's Internet TV show "22 Now". The hour-and-a-half-long program was a tribute to Pero, who died exactly six years earlier at the age of 55 while on tour with the band ADRENALINE MOB.
Prior to the March 2021 virtual reunion, the four surviving members of TWISTED SISTER reunited for two days and nights in November 2019 to celebrate the 35th anniversary of the band's classic album "Stay Hungry".
In a 2021 interview with the "Metal From The Inside" podcast, Snider was asked if he is still steadfast about not wanting TWISTED SISTER to reunite. He responded: "[I am] one hundred percent committed to not reuniting. Now, let me just be clear: we're friends. I did a [solo] show a couple of weeks ago [on June 11 at Stereo Garden in Patchogue, New York] and [TWISTED SISTER bassist Mark] Mendoza showed up, and we did [TWISTED SISTER's] 'Under The Blade', and it was awesome. I talk to the guys all the time. I can show you my text messages. We have a little text group, and we were sending messages back and forth.
"To me, that was the reason to reunite, was to fix the relationships [between the members of the band], and we did fix' em, and we're friends," he explained. "I feel we did what we could do without just doing the same thing over. And I wanted to do some new, challenging things that I couldn't do within TWISTED. And the solo records I've done I could not have done with TWISTED SISTER. I could not have done 'Dee Does Broadway' with TWISTED SISTER — 'Twisted Does Broadway'. And I could not have done 'For The Love Of Metal' with TWISTED SISTER; people would never have accepted it. But as a solo artist, I'm allowed to change and evolve. And some things [fans have] liked; some things they've not liked. But at the same time, I'm allowed; no one's ever questioned [it]. And, again, if TWISTED SISTER did it, it would be, like, 'Hey, it doesn't sound like TWISTED SISTER anymore'; it would have been that kind of thing."
Circling back to the prospect of TWISTED SISTER reuniting, Dee said: "I could see us doing a charity — a couple of songs for charity, for the right reasons. We got [back] together originally for charity, which was a good reason to get together. I could see [talk show host Jimmy] Fallon — he's a big fan — if he said, 'Hey, guys, can you guys come on '[The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon'] and do 'White Christmas' for us?' Fuck yeah. But to do a tour, to do 90 minutes, two hours on a stage, I don't see that happening. And credit to everybody in the band, and I know some people — without naming names — some guys, they would have kept going; others did not wanna keep going. But I'm sure we get offers. Jay Jay French [TWISTED SISTER] is the manager of TWISTED, 'cause it's still an entity — there's still royalties and licenses and things like that, and merchandise — he's not presented one offer, and I'm sure we've gotten 'em. 'Cause we're not even considering it. It doesn't matter what they're offering; we're not doing it."
Proceeds from the annual Metal Hall Of Fame charity gala go to the non-profit organization D.A.D. (Drums And Disabilities). D.A.D. brings free music programs and therapy services to help special needs children and wounded veterans in various health facilities and community centers.
The Metal Hall Of Fame is a non-profit organization that enshrines forever those iconic musicians, artists, music industry executives who are responsible for making hard rock and heavy metal music what it is today. Their contribution to the genre is invaluable, and they keep inspiring fans throughout the world, from generation to generation.
A special Rocavaka meet-and-greet with Snider, Rocavaka's brand ambassador, will take place after the induction ceremony where limited-edition Snider numbered Rocavaka bottles will be made available for purchase and signing.
Tickets are $35 in advance or $45 at the door via www.metalhalloffame.org.