Interview Done By Mike Wilkerson
MW: What was your first bands?
SC: I started my first band in 6th grade, Battle Axe. We played Iron Maiden & Judas Priest. My first band in High School was Crossfire. Let’s see, I performed the song “Carrie” by Europe at my sister’s wedding, that’s her name. LOL
MW: Tell me about playing for Sinéad O’Connor?
SC: It was great playing with Sinead, a nice woman with an amazing voice. My fellow Edna Swap band mate, Rusty Anderson (Paul McCartney) and I worked with Sinead. We recorded the “Faith, Hope & Courage” album and performed on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno and The Late Show with Craig Kilborne. Great memories!
MW: Tell me about playing for Peter Yorn?
SC: I was one of Pete Yorn’s original Dirty Birds! The album we recorded, “MusicForTheMorningAfter” went Gold while I was in the band. We shot a video for the single “Life On A Chain”. Pete and I had a lot of fun working and touring together, we remain friends.
MW: Tell me about playing for Vanilla Ice?
SC: In 1999, I was on the Hard To Swallow Tour with Vanilla Ice, two six week tours of the US. We had a great band of all star musicians, Scott Shriner (Weezer), Doug Ardito (Puddle of Mudd), Rob Patterson (Orgy) and Dave Kushner (Velvet Revolver). I had a blast!
MW: Tell me about playing with Otep?
SC: I was referred to OTEP by Rob Patterson (Orgy). The OTEP drummer was injured and I had 2 days to learn the OTEP set for 2002 European Oz Fest Tour. What a great lineup, we were on the road with Black Label Society, Tool, System of a Down, Drowning Pool, Slayer, Chavelle and of course Ozzy. We came back to the states and did a few more OTEP shows.
MW: Tell me about getting the job playing Brides Of Destruction?
SC: I am the lead singer and drummer for my Led Zeppelin cover band, 6 Foot Nurse. We had a long running, weekly residency at a club in LA. Steve Bruno of Clown Records took Tracii Guns to see us perform one night, next thing I know, I was auditioning for Nikki and asked to be in the Brides.
MW: How was it playing with Nikki SIxx?
SC: Motley Crue was one of my favorite bands growing up, so it was awesome having the opportunity to play, write, record and tour with Nikki.
MW: How was it playing with Tracii Guns?
SC: Tracii and I play really well together, wouldn’t mind doing it again sometime.
MW: Why did you not try to get the gig in Sixx A.M.?
SC: I never even thought about it. They have never really had an official drummer, right?
MW: How was it working with Stephen Pearcy in Rat Bastards?
SC: I love Stephen and we had a lot of fun on the Rat Bastard tours. I talk to him regularly, we are good friends.
MW: How was it working with a legend like Ace Frehley?
SC: It’s always an honor working with ACE. Performing KISS songs with ACE is an incredible experience. I recorded a few songs for ACE’s “Anomoly” cd in 2009, that was awesome. ACE and I have become very good friends over the years, always fun hanging out with him, just spent some time at his place in Cali a few weeks ago.
MW: Do you got any good stories?
SC: So many, here is a quick one… One day in rehearsal, ACE stopped us in the middle of a song and asked me what lyric I was singing, I responded “I have trouble walking” right? ACE said , “No poppy, it’s I ‘AM’ trouble walking, but, I do have trouble walking. ” We all started laughing!
MW: How was it working with George Lynch in Lynch Mob?
SC: George and I have been good friends for years, the first time I recorded with him and Oni Logan was in 1994. I love working with George, he very intelligent, we get each others sense of humor. Believe it or not, I find it very easy to work with George musically, our styles compliment each other. You can hear this on the Lynch Mob cds we have done, 2009’s “Smoke & Mirrors” and 2012’s “Sound Mountain Sessions”.
MW: You also toured with Lita Ford in 2012 how was that?
SC: I was on the Rock of Ages US tour with Lita Ford, Poison and Def Leppard last summer for 15 weeks, a once in a lifetime experience! Our band sounded great, I met so many amazing people, musicians and crew, it was almost surreal. Bret Michaels had me record vocals and percussion for his upcoming solo release, “Good Songs, Good Friends”. Phil Collin said he wants to work with me on a project. I was jamming Zeppelin in between the tour buses with Joe Elliott after shows. Talked about drums and gear with Rick Allen almost daily, lol. One of the best things was catching up with my old friend CC DeVille. My favorite part of the tour was having the opportunity to see my family and friends from around the country. I reconnected with people I had not seen since High School! It was awesome, I didn’t want that tour to end…
MW: Did you play a small club in Lexington, KY on that tour?
SC: Yes, I we did a Lita Ford solo show there, it was on a night off during the Rock of Ages Tour. We did about a dozen Lita Ford solo shows in clubs last summer, gave us a chance to do a full 75 minute set, on the Def Leppard tour, we only had 30 minutes on stage.
MW: So how did you become a Rock Star Counselor at Rock and Roll Fantasy Camp?
SC: During the Rock of Ages Tour, Lita personally referred me to David Fishoff, the founder and genius behind Rock and Roll Fantasy Camp. My manager arranged for an introduction and tour of their new Las Vegas facilities in December 2012. They offered me a position as a Rock Star Counselor and Music Director for their Rock Star For A Day program.
MW: How does Rock and Roll Fantasy Camp Work?
SC: There are a few different facets to the Rock and Roll Fantasy Camp. There are week long “camps” where a group of about 5 campers, ordinary people, not professional musicians, that either play instrument, sing or want to learn to play, are assigned to a Rockstar Counselor. We come up with a set list, practice during the days, sometimes for 8 hours, write and record an original song, then perform live at the MGM Grand at night for 3 nights. Featured artists such as Roger Daltrey, Alice Cooper, Steve Vai, etc. come in for a day, perform with each of the bands, do question/answer sessions, give playing tips, take pictures, etc. At the final night’s performance, there is a battle of the bands. One of my camp bands, TOE TAG, won in February. It’s a pretty amazing experience, life changing for some campers, a few keep coming back each month for more!
The Rock Star For A Day program is more of a Vegas type attraction. A Las Vegas visitor (or local) can come in for a few hours, jam and hang out with a band of Rock Stars that have toured and recorded like myself, Oz Fox (Stryper), Blas Elias (Slaughter) Ron Keel (Keel), Jeff Duncan (Armored Saint) and very talented, locally known Vegas musicians. The Rock Camp staff hand picks the band based on client’s instrument needs and preferred music genre. They also try to accommodate requests for specific Rock Stars, when available. It’s a totally customized, unique program. Our goal is to make sure that the client feels like a Rock Star For A Day. Red carpet, limo, you name it… They can even bring family and friends to watch and take home a recording and some souvenirs. In my opinion, it’s a lot more fun than indoor skydiving!
MW: What rock star have you been psyched to work with?
SC: Slash when he performed with us during the ACE show at the Viper Room for the Sunset Music Festival in August 2009. My Rock and Roll Fantasy Camp band, Safety in Numbers (SIN), had a chance to play “Bad Motor Scooter” with Sammy Hagar during the March 2013 camp. He had a lot of fun with us and said my band sounded great, that was a very rewarding moment for me and very inspiring for my campers!
MW: Tell me about your new band The Bones?
SC: I was approached by my good friend, Patrick Vitagliano, who along with his wife Christina, own KISS Monster Mini Golf, a popular attraction here in Las Vegas. Patrick had a successful cover band in Rhode Island, The Bones. When I started living part time in Vegas, Patrick asked me to be in The Bones – Las Vegas. We are a Pop-Punk band, performing amp-ed up versions of 80’s Pop songs. We just released our promo video and have a 3 song EP of originals coming out soon. We are ready to take over Las Vegas with a big show at the Hard Rock Cafe next week!
MW: What else do you have going on?
SC: I am very excited to announce that I have a new recording & production studio in Las Vegas with LIVE DRUMS! When I am not on tour, I have always done a lot of session work, over 35 albums to date. Now, I can create original drum tracks from my own studio, using my awesome CRUSH drums & hardware and email wave files to anyone, anywhere.
I am working on some other original projects, one with a super talented guitarist, Stephen Chesney and Robert Mason (Warrant). Also, I have been writing my own music, different genres, including country, believe it or not! And you will probably see me doing stuff with my old bandmates of the past few years too. That’s all I can say about that right now… 😉
As for performing, besides The Bones and my guest appearances with various bands, I am really looking forward to shows with my Led Zeppelin cover band, 6 Foot Nurse, in Las Vegas this summer!
MW: What would you like to say in closing?