Steve Riley wants to do W.A.S.P. reunion with Lawless, Holmes and Piper
Could the classic W.A.S.P. line-up be reuniting in the future?
Blabbermouth recently conducted an interview with L.A. Guns drummer Steve Riley who expressed his interest in having a W.A.S.P. reunion with singer/former bassist (now guitarist) Blackie Lawless, guitarists Randy Piper and Chris Holmes.
The following are excerpts from the interview conducted by Blabbermouth:
“BLABBERMOUTH.NET: When is the last time you played with Randy Piper?
Riley: “It’s been forever. Almost 30 years. I’ve seen him in between and I know he’s stayed active, and I’m so looking forward to playing this Thursday at Vamp’d in Vegas. The SIN CITY SINNERS, they’re a great band and good players. Randy and I are going to sit and play half a dozen, maybe eight of the old W.A.S.P. songs from the first couple of albums. It’s going to be a blast.”
BLABBERMOUTH.NET: Do you think this will lead to anything serious?
Riley: “I hope so. A lot of bands have gotten back together and had reunions. The original W.A.S.P., we have never gotten back together. I’m talking about the four guys who were on the first couple of albums. Blackie [Lawless] has always had good technical players with him, but we had four personalities in that first lineup of W.A.S.P. It was not only great players, but we had personal things going on, too, where each guy was controlling a section of the stage. If it was up to me, I would love to see, even in a limited edition, a W.A.S.P. reunion where all four of us got together. Even if it was limited, that’s what a lot of bands are doing; they’re doing their regular gigs, then specialty gigs on the side. Even if it turns into something like that, I’m totally down.”
BLABBERMOUTH.NET: Have you been in touch with Blackie at all?
Riley: “I haven’t talked to him for about five years. The last time I talked to him was when W.A.S.P. and L.A. GUNS went on a tour together in the U.S. It was a lot of fun seeing him. We put everything aside. We had so much fun, the four of us in those three or four years.”
BLABBERMOUTH.NET: You left W.A.S.P. for L.A. GUNS. Do you think you could have hung around longer?
Riley: “I was ready to do the long run with W.A.S.P. It really got to a point where you could almost feel that the four of us, the four original guys were not going to be in the mix for long. Blackie, it was his band. It was his project. We all knew that anyway. We all loved putting our little piece into it during those early years. What’s really promising is that Randy has been in touch with him [Blackie]. Those two… they had a pretty bad falling out when Randy was let go. I’m glad to hear that they’re talking and they’re friends again. I’m still friends with Blackie, Chris [Holmes] and Randy. If they’re talking, it raises the possibility that we could do some dates. I’m not saying it’s done. I’m just saying with open communication, it’s really promising to see.”
BLABBERMOUTH.NET: The big one would be getting Blackie and Chris together. Chris is in France now, though.
Riley: “With Randy calling me last week, we touched base on what songs we’re going to do in Vegas this week, and we talked about Chris and how he made a great move by going to Europe and getting away from all the things that were destroying him. He cleaned up and he’s been in touch with Randy, and he has done some shows with Randy. So just hearing that, and I love the guy so much, that makes me feel really good. He’s a real brother of mine. It’s nothing worse than watching someone destroy themselves. So if he’s doing well, we’re all doing well.”
BLABBERMOUTH.NET: Time certainly isn’t on your side, but, a full-fledged W.A.S.P. reunion would certainly be received very well.
Riley: “Absolutely. The good thing about it is that we’re all still alive. Everybody has stayed active musically, so it’s not like picking somebody out of the mothballs. Everybody’s been playing a lot, so this is maybe the first salvo with me and Randy playing some shows and doing the old W.A.S.P. material. I hope it leads to something, even a limited thing like what DOKKEN is doing, it would be great and I’d be all in.”
Riley also touched upon the two versions of L.A. Guns that Phil Lewis is playing or planning to play in which include Lewis and guitarist Tracii Guns in one version and Lewis and Riley in the other:
BLABBERMOUTH.NET: As for L.A. GUNS, Phil and Tracii are doing an album next year. But you’re still a member of the existing band. What’s your take on the current situation?
Riley: “Here’s the deal: I have always been in the mode since the ’90s that you could do one, two, maybe even three things if you juggle them around. It’s not like in the ’70s and ’80s when you were tied to one specific project and you couldn’t do other things. Nowadays, especially because of how the financial situation is, most of the money is made instantaneously, it’s live or in advance. The thing is, I have no problem with that at all. I know me and Phil are partners. I know I have a ton of gigs on the book with them. I just saw him; we just did two really great shows on the Monsters of Rock Cruise. We have a lot of shows to finish the year. I know people must wonder if I’m bugged at all by them doing it. I’m not at all. If you have an extra way to pull in some money as a musician, go for it. I’m all for it. I realize that these specialty shows are going to go on and there will be two or three people [doing them], and everyone will go back to the band’s they are working with. That’s what Phil is doing right now. But we’re going on and moving on and they’re already booking next year for us. I don’t have a big problem with it at all. I just want people to know that. This is the genesis of what started with Tracii. Phil and I thought Tracii, he could have done his thing with Nikki Sixx and stayed in L.A. GUNS.”
You can read the rest of the interview at Blabbermouth.