Ratt vocalist Stephen Pearcy recently talked with Robert Cavuoto of Guitar International, and he touched on a few topics including his new solo album “Sucker Punch”, a new album and DVD from Ratt, the relationships within the band, and the possibility of bassist Juan Croucier coming back into the Ratt pack.
Guitar International: Tell me a little about your new (solo) CD, “Sucker Punch”. One of the sample songs, “Too Much Is Never Enough”, sounded like it was from Ratt’s EP. What can the fans expect?
Stephen Pearcy: Well, it’s probably one of the first records that I’m actually doing all the guitars on. Most people don’t really know me as a guitar player, even as a writer, but those songs came from somewhere. The Ratt EP was literally all of my songs from the Mickey Ratt days, with the exception of “You Think You’re Tough”, which Robbin (Crosby, late Ratt guitarist) and I had penned together. That’s the song that ended up getting us signed. I’ve been a guitar player for years, it’s just overlooked. I’m doing the solos on both of the sample singles. I’m currently the label, but Roadrunner has an option on it. Whether they pick it up is irrelevant, because it will be heard. What I wanted to do this time, since I was writing so many songs, is for my fans to hear the process. Not just give them a basic track, but to give them a rough version. Feedback has been good. Depending on how the record is picked up, my manager and I have talked about a whole other approach to releasing a record that nobody has ever done before.
Guitar International: Are you going to save any of these songs for a new Ratt album?
Stephen Pearcy: This is so ironic. I haven’t spoken to Warren (DeMartini, Ratt guitarist] in quite awhile. We had a break and I ran into him in a store the other day and we actually talked about getting together and starting the writing process. I told him I’d been writing Ratt music, which is totally different than my solo stuff. I’ll tell you right now, you hit the nail on the head. Some of this stuff is early Ratt-like stuff that I’m writing, and it’s a shame because it could be used for Ratt, but Warren’s a total riff kind of guy. He’s got plenty of stuff. He told me he’s been writing, so when it goes down he and I will have plenty of songs. We even have some unfinished songs that were never used on Infestation. We’ll be very prepared.
Guitar International: Do you have any demos from back in the day that never really got released that you could incorporate into Ratt? That would be pretty cool.
Stephen Pearcy: Yeah, but I have a plan for that stuff, like the real first Ratt live DVD I want to put out. I’ve got the biggest collection of bootlegged DVDs of Ratt music ever on the planet, every format. We have some unreleased songs, I’m not gonna tell people where to get it or what they are, but they’re out there and I’ll include them. The thing is finding out who really threw down those riffs. Back in the day we would just go in a room and jam and somebody could be playing bass. Somebody else could be playing guitar. We’ll throw in some of those early tunes, never before heard. It’s weird that they’re out there. I think somebody lifted them from Robbin or the studios. You know how it happens. Some engineer says, “Fuck those guys. I’m gonna take this and one day it’s gonna be worth something.” [Laughing] “They’re all loaded. Fuck those guys.” And we probably were too!
Guitar International: Ratt is on hiatus due to taking care of some “business stuff.” Can we assume that “business stuff” has all been taken care of?
Stephen Pearcy: We’re just projecting that it should be by 2012. I mean, it should have been this year. If this all happens or something arises and he wants to start writing next month, I’ll be available. That’s the way it works. It should be a priority, but sometimes if things aren’t in their proper alignment, there’s no way we can be ready. All I know is we’re both getting antsy. That’s usually what brings us back together anyway, regardless of foolishness, lawsuits and all this other crap. That is over and done. It’s time to be musicians and friends again.
Guitar International: Have you and Bobby Blotzer resolved your issues from the fallout from his book?
Stephen Pearcy: Yeah, until my book gets released. [Laughs] Life’s a bitch, you know. I’ve got to tell you, the thing that bothered me wasn’t the foolishness of the things said in the book, which were far from the truth. It was how he released it the day the tour started and the record came out. It was like this whole thing that kind of pissed us off. That’s neither here nor there. We’re dysfunctional, but we’re not the most dysfunctional rock band out there. I don’t give a shit.
Guitar International: What are the chances of ever getting Juan [Croucier, former Ratt bassist] back in the band? I know that a lot of longtime fans would like to see that happen.
Stephen Pearcy: The bottom line: the band is never gonna be what it once was. We can only do the best we can to present that same music that you want to hear. Even if he were to come back, it probably still wouldn’t be the same. So what’s the better course? The bass player that we have now who’s been there much longer than Juan was ever in the band. Probably twice as long as Juan was in the band, he’s been there, so it’s an interesting Catch-22. It would be great. Me, I’m all for that kind of thing. The more of the original gang, the better. But we don’t know. I don’t know. Who knows?
Check out the full interview here: guitarinternational.com