Following up on my interview with Michael Starr, I got the chance to speak with the drummer for Steel Panther, Stix Zadinia. I’ve said time and time again that Steel Panther puts on one of the best live shows of all time and a lot of that has to do with the character of the band members. Stix has a genuine appreciation not only for heavy metal, but for his fans as well. He can often be seen on Twitter candidly chatting with Fanthers.
With that said, I was very excited to ask him about an eclectic list of topics including the band’s upcoming tour with Judas Priest, Regular Show, Nick Lachey, Corey Taylor, and of course, much talk about Steel Panther.
Alex Obert: So big news right off the bat, Steel Panther will be touring with Judas Priest in the Fall, what was your initial reaction to that?
Stix Zadinia: Holy shit. That was my initial reaction.
Alex Obert: What does it mean to you to be touring with them?
Stix Zadinia: It is an absolute honor to be going out with Judas Priest. I mean they’re Judas Priest and I think any band that gets to play with Judas Priest should feel lucky. And you better go out and do a fucking good job or you’re gonna get ripped apart.
Alex Obert: And are you ready to party with Rob Halford?
Stix Zadinia: I’m ready to throw down a party with Rob Halford. Hell yeah!
Alex Obert: What are some of your favorite Judas Priest albums?
Stix Zadinia: I’m gonna be pretty obvious and say Screaming for Vengeance. I’m also gonna say Defenders of the Faith. And I just remember listening to those records, just listening to a lot of Judas Priest when I was younger. I realized how great those songs were and how they were a part of the soundtrack to my life growing up. It helped make me the heavy metal fan that I am and the heavy metal musician that I am.
Alex Obert: Which other bands do you consider to be your biggest influences?
Stix Zadinia: I would say Iron Maiden, Dio, Motley Crue, and Def Leppard.
Alex Obert: You mentioned Dio, what are your thoughts on Satchel playing guitar on Rainbow in the Dark on the Dio tribute album?
Stix Zadinia: I think it’s fucking awesome and I think he killed it on that track. Dio is one of my all-time favorites. Those records were put in all the time for me. And I think it’s bitchin’ that he got a chance to play on that track. Corey Taylor killed it and he’s a friend of ours, so that was kind of special too.
Alex Obert: Also coming up, you will be playing at the Chive Fest in Seattle. What are your thoughts on the grunge chicks from Seattle?
Stix Zadinia: I don’t think about grunge chicks from Seattle, I think about chicks with shaved vaginas from Seattle. Those are the ones I’m goin’ after. I’m not gonna complain if a grunge chick wants to get down and I’ll do it because I’m that kind of guy. But I’m really focused on the heavy metal chicks up in Seattle and most chicks that shave their underarms.
Alex Obert: With your live shows and the recent release of All You Can Eat, how did you and the rest of the band move around the setlist to fit the new songs in there?
Stix Zadinia: It’s fuckin’ difficult, you know? We knew this after our first record that after record two or three, we’re gonna have problems because we feel like all our songs are good. But our fans, they wanna hear Asian Hooker and they wanna hear Death To All But Metal and they wanna hear Just Like Tiger Woods. And fitting in these new songs, it has not been easy. It’s something we talk about and debate about every time we do a new setlist. It has not been easy, but I think we’re doing a pretty good job of it.
Alex Obert: In your opinion, which songs you wish you played more often?
Stix Zadinia: I wish we played Let Me Cum In more often. I wish we played Weenie Ride more often. I wish we played all of them because it would be really fun. (laughs)
Alex Obert: What’s your favorite song to play off the new album?
Stix Zadinia: Gloryhole.
Alex Obert: Whether it’s Eyes of a Panther, Supersonic Sex Machine, or Gloryhole, what does the first song of a Steel Panther show mean to you?
Stix Zadinia: That’s why they’re live openers because they’re the, “Hey, we’re gonna walk through the door of this ass kicking song. And it just opens it up, it says, “Okay, we’re here. You guys are getting rocked and this is what’s happening.”
Alex Obert: When I saw you live in Boston, I didn’t expect for you to play If I Was The King. What’s that song like for you?
Stix Zadinia: I love that song, that song goes off. People fuckin’ dig it. I think the groove of that song and the rhythm of that song, it seems to resonate with crowds. They all start clapping.
Alex Obert: What are your thoughts on closing the set with Party All Day?
Stix Zadinia: I think it’s a great anthem and I think it’s something that sums up our entire show. Usually we close with Death To All But Metal, but every now and then, we find ourselves with a little bit more time, and that’s when we’ll do Party All Day. It sums up the whole deal.
Alex Obert: I’d love to get your thoughts on some Steel Panther songs past and present. The first one is Bukkake Tears.
Stix Zadinia: I think it’s a great song. It has a huge hook. I think lyrically, it’s something that every guy’s thought about. I think it’s something every girl’s thought about. I think it’s a huge hook, I just think radio has a slight problem with some of the content.
Alex Obert: And how about I Like Drugs?
Stix Zadinia: I Like Drugs is kind of an autobiographical song for each one of us. I think it’s a killer song. It’s a ripping, kind of driving song. It’s a good song to put your arm out the window and feel the air as you cruise along in your Camaro GT. It’s a kickass tune.
Alex Obert: Eyes of a Panther.
Stix Zadinia: I think you put that one on when you’re getting ready to fight somebody.
Alex Obert: One of the big hits off of All You Can Eat, The Burden of Being Wonderful, you recently performed it with Nick Lachey on Big Morning Buzz. What was that like?
Stix Zadinia: It was really cool, man. He sings really good and he’s a cool fucking guy. It was nice to be able to do that on a show that reaches people that we don’t normally reach. It was really fun, he was a good fuckin’ sport.
Alex Obert: Aside from Nick, you performed with many different guests. Who are your favorites to have performed with?
Stix Zadinia: Oh, man. Jerry Cantrell, Cuba Gooding Jr., Alfonso Ribeiro, Juliette Lewis, Tom Morello, Perry Farrell, and Tony Romo. Those are my favorites.
Alex Obert: When I interviewed Michael, I asked him which guest he’d love to have come up and he said Steve Perry, what do you think about that?
Stix Zadinia: Steve Perry would be amazing to have up there. I think Celine Dion would be cool.
Alex Obert: Which song would you want to have her perform with you?
Stix Zadinia: I’d wanna perform Bukkake Tears with Celine Dion.
Alex Obert: (laughs) That would be cool!
Stix Zadinia: Yeah!
Alex Obert: We were talking about being on Big Morning Buzz, but interestingly enough, there is a poster of Steel Panther on Regular Show. How did you find out about that?
Stix Zadinia: I found out about the poster on the show from Twitter and I love that show! I love the Regular Show and I wanna be on it!
Alex Obert: Would you write a song for the show?
Stix Zadinia: Dude, yeah! It would be amazing to be on the Regular Show! If JG Quintel reads this, he should know that we wanna be on that show, dude.
Alex Obert: Once again regarding your shows, how do you feel the Steel Panther concerts have been as of late?
Stix Zadinia: Our show’s as good as it’s ever been. Every time we go out, we get better. We’re getting ready to go do this Judas Priest thing and it’s gonna be fuckin’ awesome.
Alex Obert: What’s it like having all those girls come up on stage?
Stix Zadinia: Really, really fun.
Alex Obert: Do they ever try to invade your drum kit?
Stix Zadinia: Yeah, sometimes. If they’re annoying, I’ve gotta remove ’em. But usually, I’m totally down cause who doesn’t like boobs?
Alex Obert: (laughs) Wth the recent touring this year, what was one of your favorite places to have played?
Stix Zadinia: Download Festival and Graspop Festival in Belgium. Those were two of my favorites.
Alex Obert: For Download 2012, I remember Corey Taylor performed with you on Death To All But Metal.
Stix Zadinia: It was awesome. We didn’t know we were gonna play with Corey until ten minutes before we went on stage. He was there and we were like, “Dude, you wanna come up and jam?” And he’s like, “Yup!” It wasn’t planned or anything, it just was what it was. It was really cool.
Alex Obert: When he was on That Metal Show, he was asked what the best live show he has ever been to was, and right away, he said Steel Panther. What does that mean to you?
Stix Zadinia: It means everything. It’s nice to get recognition from dudes that we respect and that we’re friends with. I think it’s great that he said it on That Metal Show because I don’t think Eddie Trunk likes it.
Alex Obert: On the upcoming Judas Priest tour, one of the dates will be at the Foxwoods Casino, located where I live, Connecticut. Are you a casino guy?
Stix Zadinia: I am. I like blackjack.
Alex Obert: What’s a night out like for Stix Zadinia?
Stix Zadinia: If it’s gonna be a night out, if that’s the plan, I plan on staying out for three days because it’s gonna get weird. It’s gonna get real weird.
Alex Obert: Is it gonna be with all the band members?
Stix Zadinia: Those guys will usually drop off after a day, day and a half. Lexxi Foxxx will hang for two, two and a half days. Then I will usually burn out after the third day.
Alex Obert: In closing, what you have to say to readers who are considering going to see the big tour this Fall?
Stix Zadinia: I think it’s gonna be the tour of the year. And I think if you don’t come, you’re gonna be fuckin’ really bummed out because all your friends are gonna come. They’ll be talking about it and you won’t be able to say shit.
Alex Obert: Awesome! I’m looking forward to it. I’d like to thank you so much for your time and a great interview.
Stix Zadinia: Thanks, dude!