Michele from Long Branch, New Jersey radio station 107.1 The Boss recently conducted an interview with QUIET RIOT drummer Frankie Banali. You can listen to the entire chat below. A few excerpts follow (transcribed by BLABBERMOUTH.NET).
On surpassing both Michael Jackson and THE POLICE on the charts with 1983's "Metal Health":
Frankie: "It was interesting because at the time that the album went No. 1, we were still a support act. We were out on the road supporting BLACK SABBATH on the 'Born Again' tour. On the one hand, it was popping bottles of Dom Pérignon, but at the same time, it was stopping at a truck stop and getting a greasy cheese sandwich after the show. It balanced out."
On the story behind vocalist James Durbin joining QUIET RIOT in 2017:
Frankie: "I didn't know James. My only association with him had been when he was on season ten of 'American Idol'. I didn't watch the show at the time and a friend of mine called me up and said, 'There's finally a rock guy on 'American Idol'.' I checked it out and I saw him singing with JUDAS PRIEST and I said to myself, 'Yeah, this kid has pipes.' Then I turn the TV off and out of sight, out of mind. A number of years later, we found ourselves in the position that we needed to replace a singer and as it ended up, our guitarist, Alex Grossi, was working on a side project with James and he said, 'What do you think about James?' I said, 'Let's give it a shot.' He came in and he did great. He's been with us now for two years. So far so good."
On Durbin's lyrical contributions to QUIET RIOT thus far:
Frankie: "What happened was all the music was written for an album that came out [in 2017], August of , that was called 'Road Rage'. All the music was written, so he had the task on a very short timeline, to write all the lyrics and all the melodies for those songs. He did a phenomenal job. We were able to get the album released on time. Subsequently, last April, we recorded a live record ['One Night In Milan'] in Milan, Italy, which was just released January 25 of this year. QUIET RIOT never stops. Right now, we're almost done recording the next studio record, which I hope will come out probably at the end of this year."
On deceased original vocalist Kevin DuBrow:
Frankie: "Kevin was one of a kind. There's never going to be anyone like him again. It was never a case of replacing Kevin. Sadly, he passed away [in 2007] and you had a rather, or I had, some choices to make. It was never about replacing Kevin. He's irreplaceable. An amazing singer, an amazing performer, my best friend and a really funny guy. We went through a lot of trial and error with a number of different singers which, at the end of the day, didn't work out. James has been the one that… first of all, he's younger than all of us. He's got this energy that Kevin always had. That was a plus, but he's got a great voice and he's got a great range. It's possible for him to interpret the songs that Kevin sang in a manner that not only I expect, but the fans expect."
Banali resurrected QUIET RIOT in 2010, three years after DuBrow's death.
QUIET RIOT initially featured the late guitar legend Randy Rhoads and went through some early lineup shifts before securing the musicians that recorded the band's multi-platinum-selling 1983 album "Metal Health".
Bassist Chuck Wright has been a part of QUIET RIOT, on and off, since 1982, having initially been involved in the "Metal Health" recordings (he played bass on the tracks "Metal Health" and "Don't Wanna Let You Go"). Guitarist Alex Grossi was in the last version of the band, from 2004 through 2007, before Kevin passed away, and was asked by Banali to return in 2010.
QUIET RIOT went through two vocalists — Mark Huff and Scott Vokoun — before settling on Jizzy Pearl in 2013. Pearl announced his exit from QUIET RIOT in October 2016 and was briefly replaced by Seann Nichols, who played only five shows with the group before the March 2017 arrival of Durbin.