There isn’t much that Dee Snider hasn’t done in his career. His music career has seen him be the frontman for Twisted Sister and he has frequently made Top 100 lists of Best Metal Vocalists right around the world. But Snider is more than a musician, his appearances on Celebrity Apprentice introduced him a new way to the younger generation and that popularity has seen play a character on Sponge Bob Square Pants and even appear in The Sharknado franchise. Now Snider is coming to Australia to showcase his talents as a musician and thrill his fans with the spoken word elements of his show.
When I catch up with Snider to talk about the tour he becomes fixated on the name of the magazine I proudly work for. “HEAVY!!! HEAVY Magazine! I love it,” he exclaims. “You know I am the original metal head. I am the Grandfather Metal Head. Day One Mountain, Day One Sabbath, Day One Zepplin, Day One Grand Funk Railroad – album one, day one, it wasn’t even called metal then it was called hard rock. I was one of those teenagers who didn’t like the Woodstock nation. Up until heavy metal was born everybody was kind of unified and ‘loving it all man’ they all went to Woodstock and cheered just as loudly for Crosby, Stills and Nash as they did for The Who but I would have going booooo. I am true metal head and that has never changed. Once a metal head always a metal head. I have always loved it and think my new album is proof of that.”
“I just found myself thinking ‘this speaks to me more than that’,” Snider says when I ask if he can remember the first time he ever heard ‘hard rock’ for the first time. “I was a Beatles guy, they were a game changer for us sixteen year olds, but I loved “Helter Skelter” and “Come To Together” more than I loved “She Loves You Yeah, Yeah, Yeah” and “Yes.” And then you graduated and along came The Monkees but there was another band out of California on television at the same time – Paul Revere And The Raiders and they were one of the earlier heavier bands. The Monkees were all “I’m A Believer” and “Daydream Believer” but Paul Revere And The Raiders were singing “Kicks” and “Just Like Me.” It was songs about drug addiction and sex and it was a little growlier and I was like “Hey”, then there were The Kinks over The Beatles. There was something happening in the zeitgeist of the community, there was something changing, there was a whole new generation of young people and they were starting to get angry. There had always been the rebels and there had always been the trouble-makers but there was always an upbeatness to it. But now there was something going on – was it society, was it the Vietnam War – I don’t know but then Alice Cooper came around and not only was it hard but what he was singing was dark and there was some sick things. And we were being drawn to that, drawn to Sabbath, drawn to Alice and for the first time it became pick a side. It was either the Woodstock Nation or fucking heavy metal and I can remember a party where there friends of mine from childhood and we nearly came to blows over the music. They made fun of Deep Purple and my friends and I who were sitting there in our glitter platform shoes were like ‘FUCK YOU!’”
Dee Snider is the kind of person you can listen to talk for hours so there is no way I am going to miss his tour when he comes to Australia… and you shouldn’t either!