Metal Sludge — Who is ready for a little bit of mud slinging?
Well, it appears there is a bit of that coming from the WildSide camp.
Maybe not full mud, but partial mud for sure.
WildSide drummer Jimmy Darby and co-founder of 80’s Metal Recycle Bin along with Drew Hannah has come out with a interesting and lengthy interview over at Sleazeroxx.
So much so, that Sleazeroxx principal Olivier wrote: “WHICH TURNED LATER THAT EVENING INTO THE LONGEST INTERVIEW, AND ONE OF THE MOST INTERESTING, THAT I HAVE EVER DONE FOR SLEAZE ROXX.“
Darby goes into great detail with his side of how the WildSide band fell apart after their major label debut “Under The Influence” on Capitol Records 1992.
He also talks about the follow-up self-titled (Lizard) record, and how in his eyes, they fired both Brent Woods and Benny Rhynedance.
Below are a few excerpts from Part 1 of 2 with Jimmy Darby from Sleazeroxx and a link below to read the full interview.
We will patiently await Part 2 with Jimmy Darby of WildSide.
Jim Darby: It’s just really weird for all of us to read some of these stories of something that we all lived together and hear these whacked out versions of it. Some of the stuff that he says is true — Benny, the person telling these stories — but a lot of it is really made up parts of it, if not the whole thing. But I’ll answer whatever you want to know. You’ll get the real deal.
Sleaze Roxx: Alright. Why don’t we start with what you just started from what I understand which is the 80’s Metal Recycle Bin. So what prompted you to start that and how is it going so far?
Jim Darby: Yeah, so Drew and I had this idea. When we were touring on our first several tours with WildSide promoting ‘Under The Infuence’, I would bring along a little Super Eight video camera and filmed everything. I mean, backstage and tour bus stuff. We’d have one of our road crew, whomever was available, to film the show or just put a camera on a tripod and we had hours and hours — hundreds of hours of footage from touring. And along with that, we were always considering somehow sharing that, releasing it, in some format but then we also had this idea of doing a documentary of sorts with the subject not necessarily being, ‘Hey, look at what we did’ or about WildSide in particular but more about the reason our band did not break bigger than we did. And that reason for the most part was grunge coming in and all of that.
So in preparing what we figured was going to be that story, we kind of felt like there was a much larger group of bands that were affected that were much bigger than certainly we were, that were also affected by the same thing in the same way or even worse. Other than the ‘too big to fail’ type like Metallica, Bon Jovi, Van Halen, AC/DC bands — even bands like Mötley Crüe were or smaller bands like some of the bands that we have on the YouTube channel were affected by it, if not shut down for a while or even forever for some bands. So we figured it would be better to have other more well known people tell their story and we set out on this journey to do interviews and to interview anybody that was willing to do it, anybody that was relevant that was willing to do it.
And then we got some really great interviews of bands like Guns N’ Roses. We got Vince Neil from Mötley Crüe, Stephen Pearcy and Bobby Blotzer from Ratt, George Lynch, Mark Slaughter, Erik Turner from Warrant… We just last night released Steve Whiteman from KIX and these are just the first part of a multi-part interview with each guy. We have 30 to 40 minutes a piece. All of these guys, part of the story that they are telling is what I started with — how they were affected in the grunge years — but they said so much more. And a lot of it is upbeat and it’s the good years, the good times on the Sunset Strip and Hollywood, getting signed.
So it’s really interesting and what ended up happening was the reason that it’s now a YouTube channel, the labels are making all of their money from that music on licensing and it would have cost a fortune to be able to use the real music of these bands, which was really necessary to have a viable documentary. We were talking with distributors for HBO and for Netflix, and the only way to do it would have been to have the correct music including the music of Nirvana or grunge bands to show the comparison and what was going on, and use that as part of the story. We just couldn’t do it. It would have cost more than any documentary could possibly generate. So we were sitting on all of this material and all of this footage of interviews, and decided — actually, Stevie Rachelle was talking with Drew a few months back and he knows all about it. We actually did an interview with Stevie…
Sleaze Roxx: Cool!
Jim Darby: …that is part of this. He knows all about it and he suggested to Drew [Hannah] and Drew conveyed to me that in their conversation, ‘Why let it sit?’ It’s not going to go anywhere and it’s too good to leave in the basement so we decided to release it this way. We’re really stoked with the response that we have gotten. It’s a baby. It’s in its infant stage so I don’t think that many people know about it. The ones who do seem to be enjoying it. I think that it’s going to do well. Anybody that loves this music I think will appreciate the interviews, and these guys being candid, just being themselves and talking about the real deal, the struggle that they had in those particular years. I think that it’s really interesting and much more so than it would have been to just talk about WildSide.
Sleaze Roxx: When I spoke to Benny almost two years ago, he had mentioned that there really wasn’t any songs in the can to go do that second album when Capitol requested that you get off the road.
Jim Darby: Not true. That’s not true. I just saw something on your site. I mentioned Stevie [Rachelle] and Drew speak often. Benny had some quote about Stevie’s album [WildSide’s ‘The Wasted Years’ which was released in 2003] that was definitely not a bootleg. That was actually a WildSide record but you know, WildSide also, that is a name that we came up with by force. We couldn’t use our original name Young Gunns because the movie ‘Young Guns’ owned the rights to the merchandising. There was all of this legal stuff so we just had to come up with a name. That was the last thing on our minds, thinking of a band name.
Sleaze Roxx: [Laughs] Sure.
Jim Darby: So when somebody says it’s technically not a ‘WildSide’ album — well, whatever that means — it might be songs that had been written before we changed the name or not. I don’t know but we were WildSide and Brent was writing music all of the time. As I said, we lived together so I don’t know that Benny would be even privy to that fact. They weren’t the closest of friends — Brent and Benny. They weren’t adversaries but they just didn’t… Again, I was all the time around Brent — year round and on the road 24/7. I know what he was doing and there were definitely some really great songs. A couple of them are on that ‘[The] Wasted Years’ release that Stevie put out.
Sleaze Roxx: Who did the majority of the writing for the first album then?
Jim Darby: Well, that’s another…. For ‘Under The Influence’?
Sleaze Roxx: Yes.
Jim Darby: That’s another one that you might get different answers along with that question.
Sleaze Roxx: [Laughs] OK.
Jim Darby: You know, on paper, that is Benny — I would say more Brent, Drew and Benny. However, really, I joined the band, their demo did have “Just Another Night” on it. I think that it had “Hang On Lucy” and then it had some songs that didn’t make the album. We recorded them. There’s a song called “Dance Swing” and a song called “Easy As 1 2 3” that we did record with Andy Johns for potentially ‘Under The Influence’ but they didn’t make the album. So those were there before I joined the band. Like the majority of that record — “Hair of The Dog”, “Clock Strikes”, “Lad In Sin” and “How Many Lies” — those, the parts were worked out. The main parts were worked out by Brent writing the music. Drew writing most of the lyrics. Benny lived with Drew on and off, and they grew up together. So he would contribute to lyrics and to what extent, I wasn’t in the room but I know that he had something to do with that. However, the actual complete song that you hear, that was the whole band. We all worked it out all together. At the end of the day, I think that everybody agrees on that. The main songwriters are Drew and Brent, and Benny did some contributions. We all did the music side of things, especially the arrangements.
Sleaze Roxx: And what happened with Benny in your view?
Jim Darby: Well, what really happened in reality and it’s not just my view — Bruce Draper was the guitar player on the second album. He was also the guitar player in my first band. There’s a band called NRG. We did a record in Texas [USA]. This producer is now famous — Howard Benson. He did right after the NRG album — Bang Tango heard that record, they hired him and went to do their big record. ‘Psycho Café’ I think it’s called. So Bruce was the guitar played of that band and we were looking for somebody. We had Jon E. Love of Love/Hate in the band for about two weeks and we just didn’t get along with him. So we kept the search going. Bruce was a really unique, very good — and that’s why you hear the music the way you hear it — very unique and different [guitarist] kind of like John Frusciante of the [Red Hot] Chili Peppers. It’s really out there, eclectic guitarist who was in his own right also a virtuoso. Those NRG guys ended up becoming The Graveyard Train on Geffen Records. They had broken up when we were looking for a replacement for Brent so we knew Bruce was available, and were well aware of how amazing — albeit different — he was. So we went from Brent to Bruce. They are polar opposite on guitar but both are amazing.
So in terms of the music, it wasn’t just trying to fit with grunge. It was also the guitar played that we had in the band that sort of led the way. We started to write those songs with Bruce and you know, this is where things get dicey as far as Benny is concerned. Bruce was not feeling compatible playing wise with Benny and frankly, neither did Brent. So we were rehearsing and we were writing songs, and I know as Benny told you, he wasn’t feeling the music but what really happened was that Drew had gone down to Australia for a couple of months to take a break and he went there with his girlfriend at the time. And Benny ended up selling some of Drew’s gear without Drew knowing about it and that’s simply what happened. There was already musical tension with Bruce. Drew came home and found his very beautiful and expensive guitars gone, and we let Benny go.
Sleaze Roxx: Oh wow.
Jim Darby: Him saying that he quit the band is not truthful. This is not meant to be a put down. It’s actually what happened. If that is a put down, then it is I suppose. It is really weird to read — even Brent has said, it is weird for Brent to read that Benny says Brent quit the band. I think that it suits Benny’s story better to say that. But Brent did not quit the band. And Brent will tell you that. He would have no reason to — if he actually did quit, he’d tell you he quit. It’s the real truth. I do a lot of other things now and have done since. Things are great for me. There’s no weirdness for me other than — the weirdness was created by reading these weird stories like he quit the band. That just didn’t happen. He could have left it alone and I would have left it alone. Not left it alone. He could have told the truth and then I wouldn’t even have anything to answer to.
Sleaze Roxx: Right. So…
Jim Darby: Sorry dude. You’re right. The idea is not to slam Benny in any way [based on an off the record conversation] but the truth is pretty damning for him unfortunately.
Sleaze Roxx: It is what it is. It is 30 years ago so at the end of the day, I think that everyone has moved on.
Jim Darby: There is that [laughs]!
To read the Full Interview please visit Sleazeroxx