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Drummer Frankie Banali is a bit of a legend having been a founding member of Quiet Riot plus playing on the most commercially successful WASP album 'The Headless Children'.

1. What are you currently up to?

QUIET RIOT, occasionally W.A.S.P. Sessions when the opportunity presents itself.

2. What has been the highlight(s) and lowpoints(s) of your career to date?

High points? Professionally speaking, The US Festival, Metal Health reaching #1 in Billboard, getting a Ludwig drum endorsement. Low points? I don't dwell on them, I move on......

3. How did you first get into the music business? Who have been your main influences on your career to date?

Too many to list. For rock drumming, John Bonham. For traditional Jazz drumming, Buddy Rich. For all around, Simon Phillips, Dennis Chambers, Vinnie Coalliuta, just to name a few. .

4. How did Quiet Riot decide to get back with the classic line-up again?

Carlos and Kevin started to work together in 1991, they asked that I rejoin 1n 1993, I asked Rudy to rejoin in 1997.

5. How did the package tour with Poison &co. go last year? Would the band like to do another arena package tour this summer?

I enjoyed certain aspects of that type of touring and being on arena stages again, Poison were really gracious to us, and we stayed out of everyone's way. Whether we do any future package tours depends on the package, the timing, and a plethora of other factors.

6. Quiet Riot ruled the charts and airwaves in the US in the 80's. What do you think were the main reason(s) the band made it so big? Any good rock'n'roll tales from those days?

A few good songs and extremely lucky to be at the right place at the right time. Good stories? None printable...

7. WASP - you've played & toured with them for over ten years now. What have been the highlights? Do you have much input into the studio albums or is it all very much Blackie's ideas?

I enjoy working with W.A.S.P. To this day one of my favorite albums that I've been a part of is 1989's "The Headless Children." I have an excellent working relationship with Blackie. We work closely together on the parts and the end result is a combination of both our ideas and the understanding of their place within the song.

8. Anything else you would still like to achieve musically? What other artists would you like to work with?

I've achieved more that I had imagined. If I were to stop playing drums tomorrow I'd have no regrets other than not having had an opportunity to play with Led Zeppelin. Beyond that, it's been a fun and sometimes bumpy ride.

9. What was the best career move you ever made?

Moving to Los Angeles at the right musical time.

10. Message for your fans...

Not a day goes by that I don't appreciate the fans for making it possible for some of my musical dreams to come true and that they allow me to continue to be involved in music.


Interview © 2003 Jason Ritchie/
Format and edit: The Music Index.

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