W.A.S.P.'s BLACKIE LAWLESS On His Upcoming Autobiography: 'It Was A Process Of Self-Discovery'
October 25, 2022
In a new interview with Rockin' Metal Revival, W.A.S.P. leader Blackie Lawless spoke about the status of his long-in-the-works autobiography. He said (as transcribed by BLABBERMOUTH.NET): "When I sat down to start writing the book, it just poured out of me. And that was an interesting process, too, because, never having done that before, you always think of the… the first thing that comes to anybody's head is the things that stand out. But what I found that more than anything is it was a process of self-discovery, because if you look at any given event that may happen in your life that's significant — we all have those; those signposts that point us in one direction or another — it's one thing to write about it, but to get to the root of it, what you have to do is go back and do some real self-examination and say, 'Okay, what led me to this? And then what led me to that?' And so forth. And when you do that…
"It reminds me. I've heard stories of psychiatrists, when they tell people, if they've gone through something that's intense in their life or they've lost a loved one or something like that, write them a letter," he continued. "And I found that doing this is very much like that. Because I've never done the thing that the psychiatrists have said — fortunately, I've never been put in that position — but it reminded me of hearing what they were saying, because it ends up being a letter to yourself. And you discover some interesting stuff — the good, the bad, the ugly and all that. And it's quite a revealing process, because the person you are now is not the person you were when you were doing some of those idiotic things, or when something intense happened in your life that wasn't idiotic. But again, what led you from point A to point B to become that person, and you look back on it now and you go, 'Wow, look how I've changed.'
"Writing, whether it's lyrics or anything like that, you try to write them as multi-dimensional as you can because the listener, when they listen to it today, you want them in five years to be able to look at those same lyrics and see something totally different, because who they are in five years is not who they are right now," Lawless added. "So that's really what you're trying to do."
Lawless previously talked about his autobiography this past May in an interview with Meltdown of Detroit's WRIF radio station. At the time, he said: "It's taken a whole lot longer than I thought it would, but it's been one of the most fun things I've ever done in my life. It's a tremendous amount of work because there's so many things, over the course of a lifetime, that you forget about, especially when you do what we do for a living. Anybody that does what we do, it's not like the average person out there where you go to work and you do your thing and you get into a routine. And there's nothing wrong with that; it's different.
"I've often said that I've already… because of the schedule and the way that any band has to do things — you're here today; you're somewhere else tomorrow — it's like you've already lived four or five of somebody else's lifetimes," he explained. "And because of the amount of intensity that goes into the same amount of space that everybody has. Twenty-four hours for somebody that does this is not the same as twenty-four hours for somebody that's in a routine. And it can get a little on the insane side.
"The first thing I did was interview everybody that I could think of and said, 'What are your memories of this?'" Blackie revealed. "So I got those. But then where I got the majority of it from was really going back in my own head. And the deeper I got into it, the more things I had totally forgotten about. Because, like I said, there's so many things that will happen in a given day that the only thing you remember is the most intense thing. But maybe the two or three other things that were just under it were just as intense, but you don't remember it. You remember being on the flight the time the guys got angry with a stewardess and stuffed her in the overhead bin, but you don't remember the two or three things that happened under that. That's a true story, by the way."
Asked what he has learned about himself from digging into his life while writing his book, Blackie said: "In the preface of the book, I write that this has been a process of discovery — both good and bad. I would say, after it's all said and done, that it's been far, far more good than bad, because what it's done for me, it's been like writing a script to a movie. And again, like I said, there's a lot of stuff you forget about. But also at the same time, what it does is it helps you connect the dots of your own life, of maybe things that you didn't really think about were connected, and you go back and you look at it and you go, 'This is as plain as the nose on my face. Why couldn't I have seen this before?' And there's been a number of incidences like that — just things that are personal that might not be something that you could share with anybody else, because it wouldn't make sense to them. But then again there may be things that are. So I'm hoping that when people read this, they'll see a lot of themselves in it."
As for whether fans can expect to see Blackie's book and a new W.A.S.P. album released simultaneously, Lawless said: "That was the plan to begin with, but the book is taking way much longer than I thought. We were talking about doing records and trying to get 'em right. Well, it's the same with this — I'm gonna do it once, and I want it to be right."
W.A.S.P. will embark on its first U.S. tour in a decade later this week. The trek will coincide with the band's 40th anniversary and will include support from ARMORED SAINT and MICHAEL SCHENKER on select shows.
Lawless has led W.A.S.P. as its lead vocalist and primary songwriter since its beginning. His unique brand of visual, social and political comment took the group to worldwide heights and sold millions of records alongside a legacy of sold-out shows across the globe for four decades.
Joined by bassist Mike Duda and guitarist Doug Blair, whose tenures in the band span 26 and 18 years respectively, along with drummer extraordinaire Aquiles Priester, Lawless will take the band and the fans back to where it all started.
W.A.S.P. recently postponed its European 40th-anniversary tour, originally scheduled for spring of 2022, until the spring of 2023. The new dates will take place in March, April and May of 2023. All tickets previously purchased for the 2022 tour will be valid at the rescheduled 2023 shows.
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