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20 Questions with James A. Rota, II, 1/27/04



Fireball Ministry’s Singer Rev. James A. Rota, II

 We tried to think of what we could write to introduce these 20 Questions with Fireball Ministry, but we’re lazy so we’ll just take what Sludgeaholic Iann Robinson said about these guys and use that. Iann said, “As the idea of rock heroes keeps fading into the background, along comes Fireball Ministry to pump life back into it. No bitching, no politics, just a party, fueled by the amazing music they create and James Rota’s powerhouse vocals. If I do one thing right at MTV, it’ll be to make Fireball Ministry the biggest band in the world.”That’s a pretty good endorsement. They currently have a song called “The King” that’s getting good spins at radio so you if you haven’t heard of them yet, you probably will be very shortly. And now that James is doing 20 Questions with us, they’ll probably go Platinum tomorrow. Enjoy!

1. What are you currently up to? This is your only chance to promote what it is you have going on and to make a good first impression.

We are currently getting ready to go to the UK with CKY in March and getting the summer tour plans together.

2. Iann Robinson has said, “If I do one thing right at MTV, it’ll be to make Fireball Minstry the biggest band in the world. You will not find a better rock band in America right now.” How much are you guys paying Iann to ride your nuts so much?

We toured with Iann’s band Puny Human a while back (who are totally amazing, by the way). He took a liking to us and the rest is history, so to speak.

3. What hard rock/heavy metal band should give it up and call it a day?

As much of a fan as I am, Kiss. Too many products to buy, not enough music to listen to.

4. You married your guitarist Emily. Ever think of bringing in the bass player chick for a threesome?

What makes you think I haven’t?

5. Rate the following singers on a scale of 1 to 10. 1 being somebody who sounds like they gargle with razor blades and 10 being a singing God.

Lemmy = 10

Vince Neil = 3

Sebastian Bach = 2

David Lee Roth = 10

Kid Rock =Does He sing?

Ronnie James Dio = 10

Justin Hawkins = 8

Brian Johnson = 10

Bruce Dickinson = 10

Steven Tyler =10

6. Fireball Ministry has been called Stoner Rock. Are you guys all stoners for real?

One of us is a stoner. Can you guess which one? I’ll give you a hint, she’s blonde and about 5′ 11″

7. You guys are originally from Cincinnati and moved out to LA in the late 90s. What’s the best and worst thing about living in LA?

Just to set the record straight, Emily and I met in Cincinnati, but Emily is from Indiana, Janis is from California and John and I are from the Greatest State in the Union, New Jersey. The best thing about living in L.A. is being able to ride a motorcycle 365 days a year without freezing your ass off and the worst thing is the pizza.

8. You guys tried to get signed to a major label for a while until you finally realized major labels generally suck. What’s some of the most ridiculous things you heard while dealing with major labels?

We met with this A&R guy from a major label that after listening to our demos asked us if we thought the songs were “ready” to be recorded. After looking at him totally confused, he asked us if we would be opposed to having the guy who wrote the songs for some band called SR-71 write our songs for us. That was good. Another time a guy came out to see us and said that he was going to pass because we didn’t sound enough like Crazy Town.

9. Now that you guys are having some success, do you ever wish that you were single and able to have dirty, anonymous sex with groupies instead of having your chick in the band and out on the road with you?

I feel that answering that question will incriminate me.

10. Yes or no, have you ever:

Received a blow job just off stage =No

Had dinner at Iann Robinson’s house = No

Had pyro during a show =I wish, but No

Seen Metal Shop at the Viper Room = Yes

Met a member of Poison = Yes (C.C.)

Gone to a NASCAR race =No

Been to a pro wrestling match = Yes, with Danzig

Had a mullet = No

Worn a trucker hat = No

Been arrested =Yes

11. If Fireball Ministry could tour with any three bands playing today, who would they be?

Judas Priest, Judas Priest and Judas Priest

12. What rock star deserves a smack in the mouth and why?

Any short haired, smarmy, whining about some chick who broke their heart wuss who’s just a member of a boy band in disguise

13. Answer the following questions with either True or False, as well as any additional comments you want to add:

Metallica’s “St. Anger” CD sounds like shit = True (Cliff Burton is rolling in his grave)

Van Halen should get back together with David Lee Roth = True (What else is left?)

I like young boys = Like?

The White Stripes are totally overrated = True (Iann once called them “The Great Rock and Roll Swindle” I think that sums it up)

Tits are cool = True

Fred Durst needs to die a painful death = True (career-wise anyway. oh wait…)

LA traffic isn’t that bad = False (It is far worse than anyone can imagine)

Kelly Osbourne is a fat pig = False (She’s just a victim of circumstance)

Bands with short, spikey hair, genereally suck = True

I like bacon = True ( Especially in my coffee)

14. Your name in the CD is listed as Rev. James A. Rota II. Is the middle initial and the “II” really necessary? Are there other Rev. James Rotas out there singing in bands you don’t want to be confused with?

You’d be surprised. We are involved in a lawsuit right now with a Rev. James A. Rota II from Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia who says I totally ripped off his act. I think I’m gonna win though.

15. The last of Rev Jim:

Last CD you purchased = The 1st Bullet Boys Album (My copy from High School had seen better days)

Last movie you saw = The Fog of War

Last book you read = On the Road with The Ramones

Last concert you saw = Dimmu Borgir

Last illegal drug you did = Weed (about 12 years ago)

Last time you threw up from drinking = last summer some time

Last rock star you met = Rudolf Schenker

Last time you went to church = Whew, I gotta ask my Mom

Last romantic thing you did for Emily = Married Her

Last foreign country Fireball Ministry played in = Germany

16. When you emailed us, you wrote, “You guys asking me to do this is just as big as the time we opened for Motorhead or when I got to be the fit model for Rob Halford’s tour jacket.” Fit model for Rob Halford’s tour jacket? Please explain.

There is an amazing woman named Agatha who has made some amazing clothes for me to wear so that I look more like a Metal God and less like a Car Mechanic. She also makes clothes for Rob Halford and was doing so for the last Halford solo tour. She knows of my devotion to Priest and asked if I wanted to come over to be the fit model for the coat while she worked on it and I spent about 4 hours standing in the jacket while she pinned and prodded. It was a totally insane floor length, leather duster that was covered in studs and had a giant studded iron cross on the back. It also weighed about 50 pounds, I don’t know how the hell he does it. I wanted to wear it to the supermarket and just buy some cereal and shit and have my picture taken, but that never happened.

17. You’ve opened up for Motorhead and now you’re doing 20 Questions with us. What’s left for you to accomplish?

To share the stage with the greatest band in the history of music, Judas Fucking Priest (Halford version of course)

18. Being that Iann Robinson has done so much for you guys, would you let him hook up with Emily as a token of your appreciation?

This is by no means a rip on Iann, but he wouldn’t know what to do with her.

19. Do you realize the photos on your CD cover and in the booklet make you guys look a lot younger and cooler than you really look?

Isn’t that the point? By the way, they are paintings.

20. Time for Metal Sludge’s Word Association. We mention a name and you give us your thoughts.

Nick Menza = Great Drummer, ate 2 double doubles from In and Out faster than anyone I have ever seen

Alice Cooper = A True Original

Ozzy Osbourne = Thanks for making it all possible

Iann Robinson = A True Warrior of Metal

XM Radio = Great. Everyone should have it for The Bone Yard alone

Nikki Sixx = 2 Great Albums

Tenacious D = Heavy Metal is fun, not funny. Death to irony!!!

Kid Rock = Who?

Judas Priest = The epitome of what it’s all about, True Metal Gods

Gene Simmons = Behave Yourself

For more info on Fireball Ministry, you can visit www.FireballMinistry.com

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