WARRANT: Joey Allen
Warrant – Back Again
It’s been some time since we’ve seen a release of new material from the 80’s hard rock band Warrant. Not since the band was signed to CMC International has there new original material, even though the covers albums was a cool idea it did not sell very well.
The band returns with 4/5 of it’s original line-up, missing lead singer and main songwriter Jani Lane who all know by now that he has had a hard enough time keeping his shit together. But as Jani has sunk to new lows, Joey Allen and the boys return with a new album ‘Born Again’ with ex-Black N Blue singer Jamie St. James leading the way. As the band readies a new tour in support the album, I had the chance to speak with Joey Allen about the new album and what lies ahead for the one-time platinum rockers.
Does the album's title have anything to do with Warrant being a "new" band with your revamped lineup?
The title has to do with a renewed since of what Warrant was all about when this whole thing started back in 1984 and that is to “Have some Fucking Fun”…period! We are having fun in this band again; otherwise none of us would be here. There are “no bad eggs” to quote Willy Wonka!
How would you describe the new material on 'Born Again'?
I think that the CD is well rounded. This CD falls somewhere between Cherry Pie and DED sonically. We aren’t trying to reinvent the wheel here. Every member of this band contributes on a different level at a different time of the day so by the end of the day what you have is a band; there’s no ‘I’ or ‘Me’ in band…right?
The new single has been getting some airplay. How difficult is it getting spins in this new climate for hard rock?
What’s airplay??? Radio today, with the exception of the “mom and pop” operations, is a mere shell of what it once was. If satellite radio was free broadcast radio would be completely dead!
Do you see any similarities in Warrant now promoting a new record as you did when 'Dirty Rotten..." came out?
We have distribution, we tour and we are having a great time. Those are the only similar things.
How much has the hard rock and music industry changed since Warrant released its debut album?
I would say that image doesn’t matter any longer. I would say that staying power is worth one CD. The music industry is a ghost compared to what it once was. Yeah…let some young kid out of school run your label into the ground…a dollar late and many billions short…just my opinion!
What are the expectations of this new release? What would you describe, in sales, as this record being a success?
The expectation was to release a CD with new material on it, past that we have no expectations. Sales…hmmm…I’d say 10 to 30k would be great…will we get there…who knows.
How has Jamie worked out so far? How much of a difference is it from jani singing lead?
Jamie is my brother and has worked out perfect, we couldn’t have asked for more. He is a professional 110% of the time, he is a team player, and he likes his bands stage volume loud…that rocks! Most singers are pussies and don’t like the stage volume up too much…The Saint is a fucking TRUE Rock ‘n’ Roll Singer/Front man in my opinion.
Have you heard about Jani's troubles of late? Have you had a chance to speak with him or are things still unsettled?
I certainly wish him well.
Who handles most of the songwriting? Is it much of a change considering Jani handled most of the writing?
Jerry, Erik and Saint did most of the work. I contributed one idea, the ballad, to this CD. The guys worked their asses off and I fully appreciate it. Maybe the next CD will be even more of a writing collaboration; there will certainly be another CD.
How much will you tour in support of this new record?
We will tour until I run out of beer…ha, ha, ha! We will continue to support this CD well into 2007. I would imagine another CD from us around 2008 sometime if I had to guess.
How has the reuniting of the other original members helped the band?
We sound like Warrant with a new singer. We have great shows; we have fun on stage.
Did you think that getting 4 of the original guys together would ever happen? It did take a long time.
It took a few phone calls, emails, dinners and one bodily injury threat…ha!
Do you think that Jani will ever get his shit together and rejoin the band and make it a complete reunion? Is that something you would even consider down the line?
I’m happy with the way things are now. I have no desire to relive the past. So many people said that we couldn’t do this and here we are in our third year. Have we had a few speed bumps…of course…but they have been very small ones and we take them at 100mph!
What is the future for Warrant?
Touring, recording, touring, recording…etc…