Heart of Steel: Interviews

WARRANT Interview
With Vocalist Jani Lane

Interview by Celtic Bob

How are the rehearsals for the tour going?

Rehearsals went great - we are excited about this tour. We really are Whitesnake fans and will look forward to working with them.



Who is in the band now?

Jani Lane/vocals, Erik Turner/ guitar, Jerry Dixon/bass, Billy Morris/Lead Guitar & Kevan Phares/ drums.




What happened to Billy?

Billy still with us. He was going to go work on a side project he has, but fortunately this tour did not cut into what he was working on. So, he is back!



Why tour right now with no new album to support?

Why not tour? We have plenty of hits that people want to hear live. Fans like to be able to sing along and go down memory lane. Actually, None of us on this tour have a new album, but we are selling out arenas!



What can fans expect live this time around? Any setlist changes?

We are trying to fit in as many songs as we can. When you are the headliner you have much more time to play all your material. We have about 50 minutes, so we have to play all the basics that the fans look to hear - Uncle Toms Cabin, Cherry Pie, Down Boys. we added Bonfire and intend to add more as we go along.



I was going to attend the Hamilton show in Aug but it just got cancelled. What happened there?

That is not something we would know about. We just get a list and follow the map. That is a question for the booking agents.



Any thoughts on a small scale Canadian tour in the near future, especially eastern Canada?

We love Canada. Hopefully we can start going up there. For now, we have the US and after this tour, some dates in Trinidad and Puerto Rico.



What would it take to get you to play live? Is it a certain amount of money or certain number of people in attendance?

We don't handle all that side of what we do. Our manager and bookers negotiate that. We would not limit why and where we play.



What is your view on Canadian reception to Warrant as compared to other places in the world?

So far we have been fortunate and receive great reception wherever we play.



Do you think the Canadian metal scene differs much from the US scene?

I think metal is pretty universal.



Do you think the image, especially the early days of matching white leather and teased hair, ever got in the way of people taking Warrant seriously as musicians?

We definitely did not choose the white leather. That was the record label - I think that we hold our own in the industry as musicians or we would not have earned platinum albums. You can't fool the fans with crap.



Does it bother you (the band) that Warrant get tagged with the label an 80's band, when in fact you were active through all of the 90's and into the new millennium?

Naw, we still tour and record and sell-out. We may not be the mainstream, but we are still selling.



Warrant was/are often considered and described as a “GLAM” or “Hair Metal” band. What do you think about those terms and how would you describe Warrant’s sound?

They can describe us however they want - we just play rock n' roll.



Do you consider the band a nostalgia act? Some fans/people do.

I consider us a band that has a had a successful, long-term career. It is nostalgia to anyone born after 1986 - but, we find that at our shows we have many young adults singing every word to our music - it's pretty cool!



Last time around you sported a mohawk on tour. What made you do that?

The mohawk was from Tracii Guns - he dared me and then he shaved me! What the hell - it grows back!



It seemed like after Ultraphobic came out it took you down a slightly different road with some new members, including James Kottack, and though it was still Warrant it had a slightly different feel. A little heavier and maybe a little bit of a grunge sound thrown in as if you were trying to find a new niche for the band?

I've always written rock. I don't approach it....It approaches me......very carefully.



You haven’t released a CD of all new material since 1998's BELLY TO BELLY. Are there plans for a new CD and what direction will it take?

We hope to do a new Warrant album soon - we are constantly touring, so it can make it tough. I would like to do one and release next April. What will it sound like? Whatever comes out and sounds good will be laid down on tape!



Under The Influence was released on your own label DOWN BOYS RECORDS. Why was it released on your own label and do you intend to release any other material in this manner?

We have no decisions on how we would release another album. Owning your own label means you can only yell at yourself!



Any plans for another solo cd?

No plans as of yet.



Tell us a bit about the Jabberwocky project. Is that on permanent hold or will fans ever get to hear it?

I can't even answer myself on that one!



What does the future hold for Warrant?

Touring, touring and - more touring - hopefully an album too!



Will we see a dvd release of a full live show and a bunch of classic stuff?
Any plans for a boxed set with unreleased and rare cuts?
Is there much stuff sitting around in a vault somewhere?

There is a ton of stuff to put together. That is a project that we have been considering for a long time, But, like I said before - we have to slow up from touring to get it all set - the way we would like to -



You are the main songwriter in the band. Why hasn't there been more contribution from the other members?

Jerry has written songs and we collaborate in different fashions. It's just the way we work together. So far, it has worked well for the band.



Did you ever feel any resentment, pressure etc. from the other guys?

We all have felt pressure from each other at one point or another. When you are constantly living with 4 guys, you can get on each others nerves. But, that goes for any type of relationship.



Do you have any contact with former members like original guitarist Josh? What about Joey or Steven?

Not recently. I don't live in California anymore and have been out touring.



I spoke with Joey a few months back and he never seemed bitter about the split and said he wouldn’t say no to a reunion tour of the original 5 as long it was just fun and not money motivated. Think it’ll ever happen and would you consider doing it?

Never say never.....



What are you listening to these days?

Warrant every night on stage!



What are some of your fav Heavy Metal bands (old or new) that you listen to a lot and really enjoy?

Cheap Trick, Queen, Judas Priest, Ozzy - you can name just about any of them - I dig it all.



What is your view on the whole mp3/file-sharing situation? Do you feel it’s a good way to hear new bands or does it really hurt the artist?

It's a total catch 22 - it hurts and helps- it's not been a big issue for me.



Anything you'd like to say or share to the readers of Metal-Rules?

Throw money!!!!! LOL!


Thanks alot for your time. I hope to get to see you on tour sometime as I have yet to. All the best with the tour.