DOKKEN leader Don Dokken, who is currently working with his bandmates on the follow-up to 2012's "Broken Bones" album, has told "The Classic Metal Show" that he is "trying to stay away" from subjects like COVID-19 and "the government" while writing lyrics for DOKKEN's new songs.
"I've never been a political person," he explained in an interview which aired on December 19. "I never got involved. I don't think I voted — shame on me — until I was pushing 50. I just wasn't a political person.
"I'll be happy in 31 days when [Trump] is out of office," he continued. "I think our country has gone in the shitter, and I'm embarrassed. And I feel like [when] I go on tour again, if someone says, 'Where are you from?', I'm gonna say, 'Canada.' [Laughs] We're not real popular right now.
"When you've got a president — let's be honest — whose favorite two people [are] [North Korean chairman] Kim Jong-un and [Russian president] Vladimir Putin, two mass murderers, and those are his buddies, that tells me something. I mean, c'mon, man. Putin was KGB, threw tens of thousands of people in jail, took all their money, grabbed all the billionaires' money, took it for himself, and then we find out, what, two days ago that the KGB has hacked into all our own defense. And Trump said nothing, because Putin's his buddy.
"I can't change the world," Dokken added. "But I'm just trying to do the best I can. I kind of try to stay away from news and CNN, 'cause I don't wanna write songs about just what's going on, 'cause I've always done that before, about what's going on in my life. But the world's a mess."
Don went on to repeat the debunked claim that Pfizer withheld positive news about its coronavirus vaccine until after Joe Biden secured enough electoral votes to become president-elect on November 7.
"I do find it ironic that I said something a week before the election, I said, 'Don't be surprised if — whoever wins, Trump or Biden — don't be surprised if, a week after the election, magically they have the vaccine. One week. You don't think they had that vaccine already on the backburner for months? Because they didn't want Trump to take the credit. They were, like, 'Oh, we out the vaccine out,' Trump is a braggadocio, and that's the way it goes. They didn't want Trump to get the credit for doing [White House's Operation] Warp Speed [initiative], so they just held it all back, and then, as soon as the election is over, 'Hey, we've got a vaccine — two of them.' That was a total political move. You know damn well Pfizer said, whoever you are, Republican or Democrat, they didn't want Trump to get the credit, even though he started Warp Speed. He basically opened up the checkbook and said, 'Any scientist in the world that wants to work on this, get on — everybody.'"
Trump has repeatedly credited Operation Warp Speed initiative with providing the money and resources the government and private companies need to bring a vaccine to the population quickly. But Pfizer, the company behind the vaccine which received FDA approval two weeks ago, has distanced itself from Operation Warp Speed. In early November, Kathrin Jansen, a Pfizer executive, told The New York Times Pfizer was "never part" of Operation Warp Speed, and that the company had "never taken any money from the U.S. government." However, Pfizer did agree to a $1.95 billion purchase order with the federal government, providing the company a massive guaranteed market if the vaccine proved to be safe and effective.
Tentatively due in 2021, DOKKEN's new album will be released via Silver Lining Music, the label owned by Thomas Jensen, one of the founders of Germany's Wacken Open Air festival.
DOKKEN released an album called "The Lost Songs: 1978-1981" in August via Silver Lining Music. Featuring sleeve art by renowned U.S. artist Tokyo Hiro (MOTÖRHEAD, MOTLEY CRÜE), the effort contains material written and recorded 40 years ago as Don embarked upon a journey which started in Southern California and Northern Germany.