Interview with Silent Rage lead vocalist / guitarist Jesse Damon (Part 2 of 2)

INTERVIEW WITH SILENT RAGE LEAD VOCALIST / GUITARIST JESSE DAMON (Part 2 of 2)
Date: May 15, 2019
Interviewer: Tyson Briden

GOING INTO PART 2 OF THE JESSE DAMON INTERVIEW, THERE IS MORE DISCUSSION OF GENE SIMMONS AND HOW HIS INFLUENCE RELATES SO MUCH TO SILENT RAGE. I THINK IT IS EVEN MORE INTERESTING TO FIND THAT EVEN AFTER THE BAND’S ‘DON’T TOUCH ME THERE’ ALBUM WAS LONG PAST ITS RELEASE DATE, SIMMONS WAS STILL VERY MUCH INVOLVED WITH THE BAND. I WON’T GIVE AWAY TOO MUCH HERE BECAUSE I FEEL THAT AS THE READER, YOU NEED TO FIND OUT FOR YOURSELF. ENJOY!

Sleaze Roxx: The song “Tonight You’re Mine” had the word ‘hit’ written all over it. After “Rebel With A Cause”, were there plans to release another single? To me this could have been the ever so popular hit ballad that could have put the band over the top.

Jesse Damon: Very possible. I know a lot of young bands were doing that. Warrant chose to come out with “Heaven” as their first single. I’m pretty sure it was. Then they came out with “Down Boys.” Then they came out with the credibility songs. I was thinking, “Tonight You’re Mine” was one of our best songs, although I figured Gene was voting for “Rebel [With a Cause]” because it was an anthem. He goes, “That’s your ‘Rock And Roll All Nite, Party Everyday’ — ‘Rebel With A Cause’! That’s it!” I said, “I’m for that!” What was hard to stomach or swallow was that we’d already had that song on the first album. He goes, “That’s alright! You had a certain amount of people who hear that and now you’re going to have the world hearing it!”

As far as another one, I thought about as a second follow-up single was “Can’t Get Her Out Of My Head” because of what I said, it’s a proven hit. It’s possible it could have taken off because of that. The other thing I liked about “Tonight You’re Mine” is that that was one of the songs we didn’t have back-ups on. I got a chance to just sing it alone. That’s kind of selfish in a sense but I’m just saying it made it stand out ’cause a lot of our songs have harmonies. We’re known for those harmonies. To be a good song — I actually wrote that song. I figured it would have a big chorus, but it never did. Everybody said, “You know what? This stands on its own!” I think it’s just fine. It was unique in that way.

Sleaze Roxx: That is very unique, especially for the times.

Jesse Damon: I know. Exactly. I liked a lot of bands growing up that had harmonies as well as bands that only had a lead vocalist with no harmonies ever. I liked both kinds of bands. So, it wasn’t any kind of a conscious thought of writing in a certain way. We got to the point and kept listening back to mixes. We hadn’t gotten to any back-ups yet and they just said, “Done!” “Alright! Cool!” There was another suggestion from Gene and I think it was a title. He liked the title ‘Don’t Touch Me There.’ That was early in on us starting to write and come up with things. He was teaching us and kind of enlightening us saying, “When you talk and write lyrics, try to say I and me! Try to talk about yourselves. Don’t say them all the time unless it’s a specific thing once in a song that’s furthering the story. For the most part, you want to talk about yourself. You want to put yourself in the driver’s seat.” So he says, “Have you ever thought about the song ‘Don’t Touch Me There’?” I said, “I know that title by The Tubes!” Gene says, “Yeah, but I’m talking about a rock song! Come up with something cool that’s a rock song!” So E.J. came up with some fantastic lyrics. E.J. was a driving force at writing a lot of great lyrics. He wasn’t the vocalist but he was a great lyricist.

Sleaze Roxx: One of my favorite tracks on ‘Don’t Touch Me There’ is “Running On Love.” Lyrically, what was the premise? Sometimes, it’s interesting to hear the story behind a song. There are times when what the listener thinks is totally different from that of the artist.

Jesse Damon: It’s one of my favorite tracks too. I think it’s a strong opening song for the album. It was a polished Cadillac. It had the foyables and the paraphrasing of a car within the confines of loving a woman, if you know what I mean? It was a, “I’m sitting around. I’m ready to roll! You’re driving love, about to lose control!” All these things that you’re talking about the girl you wanna go meet. It’s got all the youthanism’s about a car. That’s another clever thing that E.J. did. That’s the song that he kind of took on. You have E.J. writing lyrics for “Don’t Touch Me There” and “Runnin’ On Love”, then I wrote “Tonight You’re Mine”, “Rebel [With A Cause]”, songs like that. Then Mark, had his flare in what he wrote. So you had three kind of different vibes going into the band. There were a lot of writing styles.

Sleaze Roxx: As you mention that, it shows on the album too!

Jesse Damon: Yeah, I hope that it would. If you think about [it], don’t look at it blindly, but you read and listen to what’s going on.

Sleaze Roxx: The album has different — you know how some albums you listen to and throughout the course of it, it all kind of blends together. Where with ‘Don’t Touch Me There’, there’s highs and lows. You can tell the difference. There’s different songwriting and there’s different types of songs. Possibly different speeds and what not. Which I think makes for a good album.

Jesse Damon: I agree. It’s got to have that variable. You don’t want to have too many songs in the same key. You don’t want to have too many fast songs or too many slow songs. It’s gotta be almost like a movie. You wanna make a pathway and it has you going up and down hills and around corners. I think we all agreed to have that balance. Balance was what won in the sense of trying to come up with — there wasn’t any known thing where we said, “Okay, we’re going to do 11 songs!” No, it just happened to be 11. It could have been 12 or it could have been just 10. The other thing as far as Gene’s input into the songs, “I Wanna Feel It” was an outside song also. We heard the demo to it and it was written by a guy named Bob Held, Al Greenwood, the keyboardist from Foreigner, and Joe Lynn Turner, so these three guys, however they got together and wrote — they had a section of time where probably wrote some songs for a project or something.

I don’t know really the background, but Gene got a hold of this song and I said, “I love the way this demo is! It’s kind of us!” It’s got a little bit of bluesy-ness. I love that, but it’s also got that anthem again. Almost like, but not quite as hard, almost a Twisted Sister vibe. So I was behind that and the rest of the guys liked it. So we decided and I kind of kept that vibe the way I sang it like the writer Joe Lynn Turner. It worked out and Gene loved that song. He was in there stomping around. Always an inspiration. It’s a good thing when you’ve got somebody like that who you look up too. All of a sudden you’re a working relationship. He’s just being himself.

Sleaze Roxx: But it wasn’t intimidating!

Jesse Damon: No. It’s possible though, he is so intelligent, you can go from having that moment of having so much fun, to sitting down and taking a break. He’ll ask you this question you really need and you kind of have to think about it for a second, but he wants to hear what you want to say right now. Then you go to try and say something. Then you start to stumble. He’s catching you on it. “Wait, what are you trying to say?” He starts to make you feel intimidated [laughs].

Sleaze Roxx: I could see how he would do that.

Jesse Damon: It’s just him being real. There wasn’t a lot of that. A little bit because still you have the angst of working with a legend. We got a chance as a band in 1991 to work with — we had a girlfriend of the band that was working with Sammy Hagar. He was coming out with a new line of clothing called ‘The Red Rocker Clothing.’ He was debuting it at a club in Las Vegas. We happened to be playing there at that time. So we were the guests of hers, to the Sammy Hagar debut of the clothing line. It was at The Shark Club. It held about 500-600 people, so we knew it was gonna start, supposedly there was going to be a band that was going to be there to jam for Sammy. He was going to go up and sing. We were gonna try and get there about 7:00 or 8:00 and stay till 10:00. We had to go on at another club down the street aways and start at 11:00. We didn’t have all night.

So we get there — first I get there and I show up right when Sammy and his manager are there. We’re the only ones besides the workers in the club. So he goes, “Let’s start drinking! Get out the Jagermeister’s!” We each had a shot and I talked with him a little bit. I said, “The rest of the guys should be here soon, but we’re friends with Rachel who’s a friend of yours!” He goes, “Oh yeah, man! That’s cool! You’re a band!” I go, “Yeah, we’re playing up here and blaw, blaw, blaw!” I told him a little background on us. He says, “Well, that’s cool man!” So then, he comes upstairs and all the rest of the guys are there. He meets all of them and we start talking. He goes, “Hey guys, I kind of got a problem! The guys that brought all their gear, warmed up and everything. They’re not showing up. No one can get a hold of them and I don’t know what to do. This gigs got to start. Would you guys go down and play a few of your songs? You guys know my songs don’t you?” Then we go, “Oh yeah! Absolutely we’ll do that!”

Well E.J. had to put on a bass that was strung left-handed. Oh my God, so he still played it right, but had to play upside down. It was crazy, but he kept it simple. We went into a few hot covers and we did some rockers, but we knew Van Halen and Van Hagar stuff. We knew a lot of Montrose. We knew Sammy Hagar solo stuff, so when he came on, there was a spiral staircase on the stage that went from the second story and came all the way down to the stage. He’s ready, he’s up there, they’ve got the spotlight, he comes spinning around and we go into “Bad Motor Scooter.” Here I am thinking, “How the hell did this happen?” [Laughs] That was a great moment for me and for our band to do that with Sammy. Just to have him be so cool, gracious and easy going.

We met him again in Hawaii where we were guests of one of the technicians for Michael Anthony. That tour was in Blazedale Arena in Honalulu and we were over there playing ourselves again. So we go to the Van Halen show, we get the passes to go in and sit inside this little tiki hut, side stage. We got to see Michael Anthony and all of a sudden here comes Sammy running off the stage. He goes, “Silent Rage!” [Laughs] That was another moment that kind of made us smile and we just went with it, but it’s things like that that happen in life that I guess are meant to be. Whether it be coincidence or fate, you’ve just got to love it and carry it as a treasured memory.

Sleaze Roxx: With Gene Simmons, there is a bit of connection between drummer Brian James and KISS in a way sort of. Before joining Silent Rage, he had played with former KISS guitarist Mark St. John in White Tiger. How did he actually come to join the band? Was it through that KISS connection or was it something that was just coincidence.

Jesse Damon: Brian is a really skilled, really cool drummer. We had gone through a lot of drummers, but once Brian got in the band, we knew the caliber of drummer he was. His favorite drummers were John Bonham and Ian Paice from Deep Purple, along with probably a lot of other drummers. We used to do the song “Frankenstein” by Edgar Winter. He was really good you know covering quite a bit of it. He brings that great powerful forceness. The days he had with Mark St. John, he had a lot of fun. He had some momentum going. I guess he played before Mark got in joining KISS and recording with them. So he played with Mark before that and then he played again after for a little bit, then Mark had problems. So Brian was out of a gig. He was coming in and sitting in with us doing some sound in Covington Beach, California. We’d go down there once and awhile and play a club or something. We’d have him come up and he’d always kick ass. That was the thing, we’d have a lot of players that would come up in different cities. When we were in Redondo Beach, we had Great White singer Jack Russell and Don Dokken come up. It was a lot of fun to do that while you’re doing a circuit. You’re not on tour doing your originals. You’re just going out for the night and playing some covers. Maybe playing a few originals [while] having a good time! Brian fit in great. He’d try a new song and he’d get through it. The songs he really knew, he really nailed it. When we called and said we were booting the drummer, he was already in a project and that’s why we couldn’t have grabbed him earlier. It was all meant to be for a reason in the time frame it happened.

Sleaze Roxx: As we’re talking, I am looking at my White Tiger vinyl on my wall, autographed by Mark St. John. I have actually never played it. So I am looking at Brian as we’re speaking.

Jesse Damon: Ah cool! He was a nice guy. I got to meet Mark through Brian. Most of the guys, you know — I had a pretty good relationship with Eric Carr. I used to go to a club called the China Club in Hollywood. Between ’85 and ’89, there was a jam night every Thursday or Wednesday. I’d go up to watch these people and Eric was there playing a lot. I loved it. It’s funny how you meet people and it’s kind of the same way how I met Eric Singer. Singer was in Lita Ford. He was in Black Sabbath. He would come to our gigs and see us at places like [the] Whisky and The Roxy. After I’d come off stage, I’d go and I’d see him. I’d say, “Hey man!” He’d say, “Hey, you guys are doing good tonight!” I remember Eric [Carr] was asked by Gene to come to our first show with the Black Sabbath tour because Gene couldn’t make it. He had something going on, but he sent Eric. So Eric shows up and he was really good. What he had to say to us to get us to go on. He really made us feel calm. He made us feel that strength. So that was a nice pep talk by him. He was also funny and really just non-chalant, a nice guy to hang with. No rock star ego. Just another guy. We’re friends. We both know the same people kind of thing. He left after the show, going to the after-party knowing a lot of people and talking. He was having a good time and he thanked us, “I’m glad I got a chance to come see you guys and see everybody!” When I got to finally talk to Eric, I said, “Remember, I met you at the China Club?” He says, “Oh yeah, that was a great jam with everybody coming down there!”

There’s a few other things that tied a closer bond because at a point which I haven’t even got into, but I think it was between coming back off the road and starting to think about recording again, Gene wanted us to start helping him demo songs for KISS. So besides us trying to write — we were in such a writing process, with us slamming in the studio, in our own songwriting studio, Gene said, “I’m going to give you some songs of mine and have you demo them up as a rock song!” Sometimes he’d give us something that was an acoustic and his voice. He’d say, “This is what I want, blah, blah, blah!” We’d turn it into this thing and we might make changes or we might just take it as is. So we were doing a lot of that kind of stuff. Eventually, it ended up — he said, “Jesse, do you want to song write with me?” I said, “Absolutely, when and where!” He goes, “Alright, well come on up to the house and we’ll do [that] tomorrow!” So I go there and I had to come in with the goods. I just had to have the best of the best ready. I brought about eight of the strongest riffs I had. I played a few and he finally said, “I like that one! That one right there! Let’s work on something for that!” It ended up being “Thou Shalt Not.” There was another one that I came in with, that was “Everybody Needs Somebody” which was one on my first solo album. That was one of the few and very first riffs that I played for him too. He liked that and we wrote a whole song around that.

Sleaze Roxx: You’ve touched a bit on demoing with Gene. When I got the KISS box set, I found it interesting that Silent Rage had actually played on the demo for “Domino.” Tell me a bit about that?

Jesse Damon: It was in its rough form. He basically talked it out. He said, “Listen, I’m kind of looking for it to be that plucky thing. Maybe an AC/DC kind of vibe!” So he’d always talk our every song, how he wanted it and what way he was looking for so we weren’t wasting our time and we weren’t wasting his. There were several songs that we demo’d for that. We demo’d “Paralyzed” for him. “Thou Shalt Not” — or actually we didn’t do that one. He did that one. Besides me coming in, he would ask me to come in and do back-ups too! I remember doing a session with him and he had Randy Castillo as the drummer, him on bass and me on guitar. Talk about pressure. I’ve got Ozzy’s drummer, Gene on bass and me! [Laughs] I knew at some point I’d either sing or I’d do some back-ups with him. I’d feel confident. You have to step up and hold your own. Do the best you can. It was those kind of things you grow from. It gets you feeling a little more confident and a little more comfortable once you get into those situations.

Sleaze Roxx: Did you know when the box set came out that he was going to be putting that song on it?

Jesse Damon: No! That was something that came along later. To be involved in stuff that was being written for KISS I thought was unbelievable. I thought we were actually just demoing songs for him, but he said, “Some of these songs I don’t always write for KISS, but I have to just get them off my chest, so I’m gonna have you guys demo some stuff up! But some of these might end up being ones I pitch for KISS songs!” By that alone, we’re going, “Anything!” It was good for us. We did that and he paid us too. He’s a very fair guy. So we went to that time which was trying to pay back and help him with what he asked. From that then came him asking me to write with him. Then after that, I remember “Thou Shalt Not” came out. I should say ‘Revenge’ came out. That was another changing moment in my life because I knew he was in the studio with Bob Ezrin and I had worked with Bob. So he calls me up and says, “Jesse, what are you doing today?” I said, “Not much! Do you need me?” He goes, “Yep! Backing vocals for ‘Revenge’!” I said, “I’m there!” He then says, “Okay, there’s gonna be a few other people that I’ve invited too!” It ended up being — I think it was Tommy Thayer, Jaime St. James, James Christian from House of Lords and me. Then Gene and a couple other friends that I didn’t know. We did a couple gang things. He says, “Okay guys, everybody thank you for coming. Jesse stay!” James also stayed. James did a couple other things. We then went in, it was me, James Christian, Paul Stanley and Gene doing back-up vocals. I’m thinking, “Oh my God!” I knew the songs. I’d heard some of them, especially the ones that were Gene songs that I’d already demo’d, so I was familiar. So we did one song and James had to go. So James left and it’s just the three of us in there singing. That was just a great experience to go in and help.

I got a plaque from KISS for writing on it, from Mercury Records. We got a gold CD. That was fun. Then a few years later, I really don’t know what year that box set came out. It might have been mid ’90s. Maybe ’96 or so. I don’t know if it came out after that, but I know that they were about to put the band back together and do ‘Psycho Circus.’ They were actually writing for the next album and I went in and started to write more songs with Gene, which turned out to be ‘Carnival of Souls.’ I was writing for that. They put that on hold because they went out and they were doing conventions — KISS conventions. All of a sudden, they had Ace [Frehley] come and sit in. Then they had Peter [Criss] come to one. All of a sudden, it ended up being the make-up reunion tour. For that they knew after that tour they had to do a new album. Meanwhile, ‘Carnival of Souls’ is still on hold.

So Gene calls me up and says, “I need some songs to demo.” So he comes over to my house and I have a songwriting demo studio now in an apartment. He comes over and I end up helping him to the point where one of the songs I kind of — he basically wanted myself and Mark Hawkins to just demo, but I was starting to interject things. He goes, “Look, I like some of the things you’re doing but I can’t offer you any writer’s credit because we’re just getting back the original members. We’re not having any outside writers. I was fine with that. It was another session to do with Gene, to try and help him on another album. That’s really that’s the main thing why I told you that. Eventually, ‘Carnival of Souls’ came out and I did not have anything on that album, although I tried demoing songs with them, but I didn’t land one. It’s just another nugget of trying to work with them guys.

Sleaze Roxx: With that album it was kind of unfortunate that it had to be ‘Carnival of Souls: The Final Sessions’, which was the line-up Gene, Paul, Eric Singer and Bruce Kullick.

Jesse Damon: Well, it was because that actual real KISS re-appeared.

Sleaze Roxx: That album itself is really — Toby Wright produced it. It was very different for KISS.

Jesse Damon: It was. It think it might have been from some of the outside elements and outside writing. I know the guy Van Zandt who wrote with Gene, had some really darker, but really cool stuff. Bruce Kullick was a driving force of the riff. He’s just a great player. It might have been colored a little bit because of the normal, mainstay songwriting had stretched a bit into who they were actually writing with possibly.

Sleaze Roxx: It’s funny because Tommy Thayer writes with Bruce Kulick and Gene Simmons on “Childhood’s End.” Which is kind of cool to see Kulick and Thayer on a song together.

Jesse Damon: I remember when I was coming in with a back vocal and Tommy had taken the recorded version of a song “Everybody Needs Somebody”, that Gene recorded when we were songwriting. He ended up giving it to Tommy to demo. Tommy came up with — I listened to it and said, “Oh yeah, yeah, what you did was great!” I didn’t have a Marshall at Gene’s house. I just had a small little amp. Everything was very basic and not the sound that you’re gonna want to record with or anything. He ended up giving it to Tommy and Tommy recorded it. I believe he demo’d it with a drum machine, Gene on bass and Tommy playing the part. I said, “That’s exactly how I would have recorded it sounding like that! It really sounds good!” It was the same riff I was playing, but he had it sounding great. The crunch, the processing and the sound of a Marshall playing high intensity. Tommy was helping back in that time. That was probably — he was friends with the band going back to the mid ’80s. So he knew Gene for a long time.

Sleaze Roxx: Yeah, Gene produced Black N’ Blue albums ‘Nasty Nasty’ and ‘In Heat.’ People always make the comparison that Gene stole “Domino” from the song “Nasty Nasty.” I am not sure if you’ve ever heard that.

Jesse Damon: I’d have to listen to it. I don’t know.

Sleaze Roxx: I actually never picked up on it. Okay, here’s “Nasty Nasty”, here’s “Domino” — two great songs. Online, people always talk about Gene stealing it. I guess it’s the same kind of groove. So moving on, ‘Don’t Touch Me There’ has been reissued? I believe it was on Z Records. Is that version still available? It is also available on iTunes and Spotify? Personally I prefer the physical copy. I own the original on CD, but I am going to hunt down the vinyl.

Jesse Damon: I believe it is available. I’m not sure about Z Records, if he has that on his catalog or he’s still selling it. I know it’s out there. You can still get it.

Sleaze Roxx: I mean with doing this interview, it may sell a few more copies with it being the 30th anniversary. For me, I have to hunt down the original vinyl. I remember actually seeing the original vinyl in the store. That’s my Silent Rage story from 1989!

Jesse Damon: That’s cool. Thank you. It’s good. It really did get a lot of exposure. We got a lot of fan mail from Japan, Australia, England, Germany, Italy, France and Sweden. All over. I feel bad that we didn’t get over to Europe until our second coming, which was in 2001. Once that started happening, we got over there a lot. We played 2002 in Manchester, England for Z Records — Z-Fest. We played another Z-Fest in Germany in 2002.

Sleaze Roxx: I am not even sure if that label is still releasing music.

Jesse Damon: Oh, I don’t know. I think they are. At the time, I was actually looking to release my first solo album. E.J. got a hold of me and said, “You know I’m getting a lot of people calling me seeing if we want to re-issue the back two albums and do a new album!” So we ended up looking into it and we thought at the time Z Records — a friend of mine had the in’s with that record label. He was decent enough to get us a decent advance to record it, so it wasn’t out of our pockets. Also, was willing to bring us over there. He ended up bringing us over there twice in one year. I mean, that right there is showing some commitment and not a lot of other labels are willing to do that. So you go after what you can for the betterment of the band, for the promotion and the kick-off of us coming back if we want to try and make a go of it. We also took a stab at Frontiers, but it was a bit of a weaker album. You know we really wanted Paul Sabu [to] produce that. It would have turned out better and would have been better.

Sleaze Roxx: Was this around that same time? Or after?

Jesse Damon: This wasn’t until five years later. We came out with our third release on Z Records, ‘Still Alive’ and then we wanted to do another album. I went and found out from Serafino Peragrino of Frontiers that it was taking off. He was making strides with a lot of big names. So I called him up and talked to him on the phone and said, “You know this is Jesse Damon from Silent Rage and we’re interested in trying to get signed by you! I think we can do pretty good with a next album. I’ll send you a few demos of what we’re doing!” He says, “Ah yeah. That sounds good. I like it!” He took a chance. We ended going over and touring Italy and Switzerland then back to England. I think that was in 2009. The album came out late in 2008. We didn’t make it over until — because we were playing the States. We didn’t make over there until 2009. That same year, we played Rocklahoma. So coming back from Europe, we then played Rocklahoma and that was a blast.

Sleaze Roxx: It always looked like it was a blast. I never actually made it there. Then they kind of changed the format right?

Jesse Damon: Yeah, they did. AEG got involved. They started making it a multi-genre style event. Then even heavier music. More metal. It just kind of lost a certain element. Have you ever made it over to Europe? Did you ever go to Firefest?

Sleaze Roxx: I have not, although I would love to. I wish I had been able to go to Frontiers Fest that just passed.

Jesse Damon: Yeah!

Sleaze Roxx: They had Hardline, Danger Danger. Just a bunch of the Frontiers artists. I love to go to that one day.

Jesse Damon: Yeah, that would be good. I know another one that is supposed to come back and I think it would bring Silent Rage over to do that is — I was talking to one of the promoters for Rockingham. It took over for Firefest about two years after. I think it started with David Harrison who works with Rock City in Nottingham. He started the fest, then it was bought out and taken over by another guy who’s really done it right. He’s put some good line-ups together.

Sleaze Roxx: So before I let you go, in 2019, in terms of Silent Rage, are there any plans?

Jesse Damon: I have spoken with E.J. Curse and he’s into the idea. The same with Mark Hawkins and Rodney Pino. For me, any chance I get to perform with the members in Silent Rage, it’s exciting and fun. It brings back so many memories. I always hope for the opportunity to do so. That being said, we don’t have any dates lined up. I am trying to work on that. If we’re going to do it, I want a measured amount of work to make it worth you know! I would like to be able to do a short run tour or a certain amount of dates we can go out with somebody. That kind of thing. All these aspects are for the fans. You’ve got to think about the publicity, the scheduling and the promotion for it. It’s tough. As of right now I would say there’s probably going to be a few dates that we do, but I don’t have them to get out right this minute. Know that Silent Rage is still alive. We have not called it quits. I’m hoping to grab some festivals coming up. The other thing I’m working on is a campaign to get us on — we should be and I don’t know who exactly I have to talk to, I am hoping to talk to Gene about it where I want to get “Rebel With A Cause” on regular rotation on Hair Nation. That’s Sirius XM. It will put us on the map again.

Sleaze Roxx: How is it that it is not?

Jesse Damon: I don’t know. I wrote to some of the DJ’s and I guess that’s not the way to go. I guess you have to go through corporate channels. It’s just a bureaucracy where you get somebody like Gene who could go, “Hey, play this!” He might be able to have that done. Then again, he’s been there. He’s done that for us and I don’t know if he’d do it. Have you had a chance to look at or check out any of Gene’s ‘Vault’?

Sleaze Roxx: I am familiar with ‘The Vault’, but it looks so cool.

Jesse Damon: Well he sent every one of the Silent Rage members one. If you didn’t know, I wrote at least five or six songs in it. These are the demos that I wrote with him.

Sleaze Roxx: I so wanted to buy it, but I couldn’t justify it to my wife.

Jesse Damon: I get that. They’re going for two grand. Then he was asking for meet and greets. You had to pay an arm and a leg to do that. It’s hard. Some people have that.

Sleaze Roxx: Is the material available on YouTube? With something like that, I want the actual physical copies.

Jesse Damon: There’s ten CDs. Then a big book. Within the book and I don’t know how many pages it is, but let’s say there is 100, there’s 10 pages promoting the CDs. There’s a page dedicated to talking about each song. There’s 10 songs on each CD, so there’s 100 songs. It’s quite a bit. He’s still got more to do. I am sure he could put out another one. He put pictures in the era of us in it. I guess we had a soft spot in his heart for us.

Sleaze Roxx: I kind of wish he’d put a condensed version out. Maybe just the CDs not in the ‘Vault.’ I know it’s a special thing for him, so I don’t think he would do that. It’s cool though. So Jesse, thank you so much.

Jesse Damon: Thank you Tyson.

Sleaze Roxx: No problem man. It was my pleasure. The stories were amazing and I appreciate that.

Jesse Damon: Thank you and take care!

Silent Rage‘s “Tonight You’re Mine” song:

Silent Rage-Tonight You’re Mine

Album: Don’t Touch Me There 1989 lyrics: Fighting off the loneliness on a cold and silent night But it’s hard to see through the emptiness when there’s not an end in sight To be in crowds, feelin’ desolation, is what I’ve had to do I’ve been hangin’ on a thread,

Silent Rage‘s “You’re Not The First One” song:

Silent Rage – You’re Not The First One

Great song of the 1987 album Shattered Hearts of the group Silent Rage!