One day after High School i went to the record store with my friend Cat. She bought Ride The Lighting by a band i had never heard of called Metallica. We went to her house, got high, and put the record on. I was literally blown away. Previous to hearing that record i was listening to Led Zeppelin, Iron Maiden, Scorpions, etc. All great bands in their own right but none of them sounded like this. Not long after hearing this record i went all "Metal" snob, only listening to fast, dangerous metal. Slayer, Metallica, Venom, Celtic Frost, D.R.I., etc. I would bring these records to parties and be verbally abused. I started hanging out with different friends, Going to different shows. I started "moshing" and wearing inverted crucifixes.
Within this chaos i remember congress and the Parent Music Resource Center taking "objectionable" music to task for corrupting the youth. Within this shit storm non-metal and non-rap artists took up for the rights of music to not be censored or regulated by government tomfoolery. artists like John Denver and Frank Zappa spoke before Congress on the dangers of Censorship. Dee Snider of Twisted Sister spoke as well and forever cemented in my mind the fact that he is a bad ass rock and roll legend.
Being a metal "snob" teen in the 80's guarantees you that Twisted Sister was no where on my radar (or turntable) as far as music goes. Their videos played round the clock on a young then Mtv but i dismissed them as pop-rock. All looks-no substance. But having long hair and wearing leather jackets lumped me in with the band by association in high school. I would walk down the halls of high school to the cry of "I WANNA ROCK" from jocks and preppies followed by laughter. So for a time i actually started to resent the band.
And then i saw Dee talk in front of Congress.
BAD. FUCKING. ASS.
He's 30 years old. Speaking before Congress! He shows up in his colors! Fucking legend. I wish the whole hearing was available somewhere. I can't find it. Hell, the damn thing should be in the Rock and Roll hall of fame.
Dee's friends with wrestler Mick Foley and Mick does lot's of charity stuff and met a kid who was dying and his one wish was to meet Dee Snider. So Dee visited the kid in the Hospital. And kept visiting. And they became friends. Then Dee had his new friend over to his house numerous times to eat with his family. I learned all this reading Mick Foleys book.
And lastly Twisted Sister are in one of my favorite movies, in, one of my favorite scenes. Singing one of my favorite songs by them. Yep, he was friends with Pee Wee as well (damn this guy has the coolest friends!)
Dee Snider - Legend