Why performing for Dee Snider wasn’t fun

Dee Snider looked back at the early period when he did not enjoy fronting Twisted sisterand said his attitude was responsible for the feeling.

In a recent interview with Classic rockhe discussed what he had learned during the difficult periods of his career and why music was that no longer the main part of it.

“I saw acting like I was an assassin,” Snider said. “I’d come to town under the cover of darkness, I’d hang out by myself in my room and get ready, and then I’d go out and kill the crowd and disappear. I’d be completely drained every night, exhausted, mentally and physically, and then I’d I go out and do it all over again.” He added that “acting was not fun for me because I took it too seriously. Touring was not a fun existence; it was often a miserable and painful existence. People say, ‘So why did you do it?’ and I cannot explain it, I was driven to do it. For me, it wasn’t about whether I had fun; it was about them, not me.”

Snider continued to reflect on the low point he reached in the early 90s. “I made a lot of money and I lost every penny,” he said. “Not because I was high—because I didn’t drink or do drugs—and not because I was ripped off by managers or lawyers: I had no one to blame but me. The ego that makes you think you can be a star, against all odds, is the same ego that, when you do, refuses to acknowledge the warning signs when things go to shit.”

Recalling that he had to take a $200-a-week job answering phones in an office, he admitted that “people would walk in and say, ‘Aren’t you …?’ And I would lie and say, ‘No, I just look like him’.” He said he “learned the hard way that music doesn’t last forever… Maybe 1% of successful musicians have lifelong careers— Elton John, Ozzy [Osbourne], Eric Clapton – but most of us only have a moment, and then you have to take that energy and invest it in other things. Music is now the least of my artistic endeavors: I do radio and TV, I just sold a children’s animation series to Netflix, I act, I produce films.”

Snider added, “I have an obsessive personality and I recognized that I couldn’t rely on alcohol or drugs. Thank God I didn’t go down that road. I didn’t have some of the big experiences that other out-of-control rockers have, but I am still here to tell my own stories.”

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