Conversation with Warrant’s Robert Mason & Jerry Dixon

Warrant are no strangers to M3 festival. They have performed eight times. Last year they did an acoustic set and this year played a rocking set that made us wish they could keep playing. They are in the middle of the yearlong Dirty 30 tour celebrating the release of their debut album Dirty, Rotten, Filthy, Stinking, Rich.  A few hours before they hit the stage, I was able to sit down for an interview and a few laughs with singer Robert Mason and bassist Jerry Dixon. 

Angel Alamo: How does it feel to be back playing at M3 Festival?

Robert Mason: It feels great I only have to sing with one band this year. It is half As much work.

AA: I remember last year you have to do a double duty having to sing with Walmart’s and then go out again with Lynch Mob.  

Jerry Dixon: It’s a half day for Robert but yeah feels good. We were stoked that the festival has done well.

RM: I think this is the 7th. It is 10th or 11th for M3 it is our 7th or 8th

AA: Wow!

RM: I can’t believe we have done that many of these things. It’s a really cool thing we honestly look forward to it.

AA: How hard is it putting together the setlist?

RM: We let Joey do it

JD: Joey is the setlist guy and then what happens is nobody opens him up to read then we go on stage we’re like what the f*** is this.

RM: I don’t want to play this.

JD: Well you f*** didn’t say anything.

AA: Now the fans know who to blame when they don’t hear their favorite songs

JD: Exactly.

RM: Go immediately stage left. 


RM: Jo mama on Instagram (laughs) Jo mama warrant

AA: Does the band have any outtakes from previous albums that they would put together for future release?

JD: I don’t think we really do because when you are in there making a record there is not a lot of time to be goofing around?

AA: I remember back in the day people used to write 30 or 40 songs for an album.

RM: We are usually too focused, yeah you are right we usually write more songs recorded than they end up on the record. Even back then like in Japan import they always want to add another song or two. Sometimes they will end up getting used on the next record or never. 

RM: Is there really that much demand for outtakes from our records?

AA: Not really but people are always curious and looking on YouTube for them curious to hear early demos.

JD: There is one extra song released for so far for louder, faster, harder.

Editor’s note: for fans who are curious about the extra song on Japan release it is a song called stop the world.

AA: This year the band is doing the dirty 30 year to celebrate 30 years since the release of Dirty Rotten Filthy, Stinking, Rich. Could fans next year see the band performing Cherry Pie album in its entirety?

JD: I still can’t believe that cherry pie came out the next year. I am still arguing with Joey about that.

AA: I know I can’t still believe it either. I was 11 years old going like yeah.

JD: Let me shake your hand. 

Editor’s note: If someone would have told me 30 years ago that I would be shaking Jerry Dixon’s hand talking about the release of the cherry pie album. I would have thought they were crazy.

RM: Technically 89 and 90 right must have been late 90.

JD: It must have been

AA: It was September (1990) that the record came out. 

RM: I swore it was like 91′

JD: It must have been 90.

RM: You know when you come out with the first record they like it to be out in the spring. Then when you come out with the next record they want to see it early in the year or later in the year so it is like a Christmas record. That was supposed to be fall record as a 2nd album. It makes a great Christmas gift kids.

JD: We had to do the POISON (Flesh and blood) tour. I don’t know if we would but you never know.

AA: As a fan, I have been dying to ask this question who came up with the name

Blood, Sweat, and Beers tour?

JD: I don’t know we were drinking. (laughs) I don’t know Erik might have thrown that out there. 

RM: Then Eric Church stole it.

AA: Did you guys imagined that you would still be doing this 30 years later.

JD: That’s a hard question. You hit a patch of 4 or 5 years where things are messed up. It’s more of like do you want to play through the pain and wait for stuff to come. It is not the band or the artists it is the cycles of what’s happening.

RM: Image in your early 20’s do you image that in your 50’s you would be doing the same thing. no of course then again, I look up to the stones by the times the 90’s came around they had been around for 30 years. So there you go. They have already done that so if that is what you inspire to yeah. You do a great thing for a living so yeah.

JD: you just have to be willing to be around through the good and the bad. You can’t be around when s*** is great. You can’t just play when the market is up. It goes up and it might go down. WE don’t fuck we are going to quit you just do what you love whether you are playing in front of five people or 50,000 people you are fine. You don’t think about it we are lifers we are walking to take the highs and lows.

AA: A lot of bands doing the Las Vegas residency. Would Warrant ever do a Las Vegas residency?

JD: Yes, I live there. I am in. I think eventually what I would like to see is a residency package. Warrant, Bret Michaels, and warrant great white, warrant, firehouse. Maybe we can do residency for two nights we are not that big of a deal. 

RM: With an added 3rd night.

JD: We can go from April 1st to April 1st and a half. 

RM Afternoon April 3rd with a matinee.

AA: How does the band manage to stay together after all of these years?

RM: I joined this band 10.5 years ago and I saw four guys who are willing to do this and have fun and firing on four out of five cylinders and I became the 5th one. We are all here for the right reasons. We like what we do we still love doing this. The b***sh*t you endure for 22 and a half hours is worth the one and a half on stage.

JD: Within our band it is like a safe zone. We try and leave the family stuff, hardship, and heartache of life everyone comes out here we block that out we give everyone room to do what they and be what they want. If Robert wants to make a record with (Jeff) Pilson and his buddies  

RM: It’s not like no you have to be in Warrant dude you can’t do interviews.

JD: We let each guy be themselves.

RM: Erik did a punk record with his friends from Orange County, it was cool.

JD: Anybody who doesn’t want to be here we don’t want them here.

RM: Everybody knows this is our priority and where we stand.

JD: It works out that way.

Laughs & good times with Robert Mason & Jerry Dixon

Jani Lane: Song & dance man

Jani Lane the former lead singer from warrant was perhaps one of the most underrated talented songwriters of the 80’s hair metal genre. He is known as the Cherry Pie guy. The guy that wrote the song that was all over radio and MTV in 1990.

As a fan I really enjoy warrant’s whole catalog of music not just the cherry pie song. Janie Lane was a talented singer and songwriter on the first three albums he wrote all of the songs. He could play an acoustic guitar and sit at a piano and write a great song like I saw red.
The purpose of this blog is to simply give Jani Lane the recognition that he deserves not as the Cherry Pie guy but at the song and dance man. He was more about the songs than anything and if you listen to Warrant’s catalogs of songs you can clearly hear how talented he was. The first record I still love listening to a song like cold sweat a song that still sounds as good today as it did in 1989.

Cherry pie album is a great record there are better songs on the Cherry Pie album than cherry pie. Mr Rainmaker,bed of roses, love in stereo, song and dance man. The third record to listen to a song like bitter pill it takes talent to write a song like that I still love that song. Janie Lane  passed away four years ago but the band continues to play his songs and his legacy lives on. This is not to take anything away from the band because for Jani Lane to do the songs he needed the other four guys at the end of the day is not anything to take away from Jerry,Eric, Steven or Joey they are four talented musicians and it’s good that they are still performing and playing live because I still love those songs and I still want to hear them and they have a great lead singer Robert Mason who was also a friend of Jani Lane. I am glad that they got a singer like Robert Mason.

The songs are still great and the music is still fun to listen to not just for one song but the records that he made which became soundtrack to our lives. I loved listening to Love in stereo in my walkman.

James Kottak: Rocking & Rolling Forever

SCORPIONS drummer James Kottak has had the career that most drummers would dream. Playing arenas, playing on records with other great musicians. Playing in bands Kingdom Come, Wild Horses, Warrant where he played and co-wrote a few songs on the band’s 1995 album Ultraphobic. He also plays in his own band KOTTAK. For the past 18 years has been the drummer in the SCORPIONS.
Angel Alamo: How was it working with WARRANT on the Ultraphobic album?

James Kottak: That was a very special album for me as I co wrote 3 songs including Family Picnic, the title track.

AA: Why do you think a lot of drummers play with one tom opposed to playing with multiple toms?

JK: I only use one tom with The Scorpions because the music only calls for three…I would use more if needed.

AA: Are you putting out any new Kottak music?

JK: I am always writing songs but KOTTAK is on a break at the moment so I can focus on family, life, and other projects

AA: Which do you prefer playing drums or being a frontman/guitarist?

JK: I enjoy both very much. Fronting a band gives me that rush that i used to get when I first started playing drums like when i was 14 years old!

AA: Is there any city or country that you would love to play at live but haven’t had a chance to play yet?


AA: What are your favorite songs to play live?

JK: I always love BIG CITY NIGHTS!

AA: Are there any songs that have ever presented a challenge for you to play as a drummer?

JK: I sing on almost every song in the Scorpion set…drumming AND singing really kicks my ass sometimes…but i LOVE it!

AA: Growing up who were your favorite drummers? Are there any new drummers that you like?

JK: John Bonham/Led Zep, Don Brewer/Grand Funk Railroad

AA: You spent a lot of years playing with Rick Steier do you guys still keep in touch? Is there any chance of you and Rick doing anything together?

JK: Rick & I talk everyday & live 1/2 a mile from each other…we hang. We are also starting a new project and opening a studio…More on that soon!
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