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Don Dokken on Bret Michaels: “It’s like I’m on tour with David Cassidy.”

Don Dokken on Bret Michaels: "It’s like I’m on tour with David Cassidy."


Dad, why are you wearing Mom’s scarfs again?


Our friends over at KNAC recently conducted an interview with Don Dokken.

KNAC.COM: Was the sinus problem from doing blow?

DOKKEN: I never did blow. Everybody in the band—that was their drug of choice. It wasn’t my thing.

KNAC.COM: Over time you got hooked on pills, right?

DOKKEN: Yeah, I was on opiates. I got hooked on pills from a back injury and it just escalated over the years till it was up to morphine levels. Enough was enough, so I went to rehab.

KNAC.COM: What does the typical audience look like on your current tour with POISON?

Dokken: I’m laughing, because there are a lot of people I’ve noticed at the shows who don’t seem to know the POISON songs. They’re not really hardcore fans of the genre. A lot of them come because they want to see [POISON singer] Bret Michaels from the reality show "Rock of Love". All these MILFS. These forty-year old women, screaming "Bret Michaels, Bret Michaels!" And they’re wearing the cowboy hat. You can see they’re having a good time, enjoying watching the show, and liking DOKKEN. It’s been a very strange, interesting demographic of women. I’m used to going onstage and hearing the roar, and now I go onstage and hear this high-pitch screaming. It’s mind-boggling. It’s like I’m on tour with David Cassidy. God bless Bret. I’m glad Bret found all this success. I’m really happy for him, but you gotta chuckle at this point in our career and go, "You girls don’t get it, do you?" They just wanna see the David Cassidy up there. Bret’s reinvented himself as a reality star, and it’s paying off for him and POISON. It’s like curiosity…I don’t know what it is. That TV show turned a whole generation of people on to POISON, who had never heard of POISON.

KNAC.COM: Dokken toured with the real heavyweights and not so many so-called hair bands, right?

DOKKEN: People ask me, “How many times have you toured with Poison?” In the ‘80’s we never toured with the Poisons, or the Warrants, or the Wingers, or the Faster Pussycats, or the LA Guns, or even the Motleys…or the Bon Jovis. We toured with AC/DC, Priest, Van Halen, Scorpions, Sammy Hagar, Dio. The list goes on and on. Always the heavy bands. Krokus. We toured with all the Euro bands, the more heavy bands. We never toured with the MTV bands, and they still put Dokken in the hair band pile. I’m like, “Where have you guys been? We toured with Judas Priest Turbo, and Dio Last in Line, and we did stadiums with AC/DC on the Back in Black tour. We weren’t out there doing the Poison tours. But I get their success. I didn’t get them for many, many years—didn’t really understand it. But I get it. It’s about good times and fun. It’s a party…certain songs are light, not serious. I mean, you got a song like “Unskinny Bop” and songs like that…

KNAC.COM: I hate that song. When I hear it I want to do a drive-by shooting.

DOKKEN: Then I write a song like, You weave your spell. Your eyes they beckon me. Your eyes they speak lies and misery. “Into the Fire.” It’s a dark, brooding song. We’re just from two different worlds, as writers.

To read the whole interview go HERE now.

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