eddie-trunk400 Aimee List of Legendary Rock Interviews spoke with our very own Mr. Trunk. Excerpts from the interview appears below.

LRI: Since there are crazy college courses like the study of Keanu Reeves movies, have you ever considered teaching a class about your incomparable wealth of knowledge in music?

Eddie: No, you know, I haven’t. If somebody approached me about it though, I would actually consider it because one of the things that happens for me when I am out and about in public meeting and people want to know about my history and my career, my experiences and what have you. If there was somewhere out there that felt that was a viable thing I would be open to it. I do a lot of speaking stuff live, I go out in clubs and do my own appearances. I do some of that in that context, in a rock bar setting. But I would be more than happy to do that if somebody came up to me and wanted to approach that. I am happy doing what I am doing, plugging away at my various projects. Anything is possible.

LRI: Do you think [That Metal Show] has exceeded it’s potential, or are you still thinking bigger?

Eddie: I personally don’t think we have even scratched the surface. I think there are a lot of limitations being on VH1 Classic. A lot of people make the error when they talk about my show and they say, “Oh yeah, yeah, VH1.” I’m not on VH1. I’m on VH1 Classic, there’s this huge distinction there. Because VH1 Classic is a much smaller channel with much smaller budgets. As a result, we have a lot of limitations on what we can and can’t do, how often we can and can’t tape, when we can’t have music on the show because of publishing and the fees that go along with that. There’s a lot of ‘workarounds’ that make this work within the budget. Out of anything, I just feel we are slowly beginning, there are a million more things that I would love to do to grow and expand to take it to the next level. But the thing about that is, I don’t own the network (laughs). It’s not my decision, it’s not my call. When and if they want to go to the next level with it, I am there ready to go. It’s not the question of a meeting, it is more of a network decision. The network has been so supportive of the show, it has been the anchor for the channel. It’s been great for us, but it’s more of a question of where they want to take the channel as a whole. VH1 Classic has existed now for probably 15 years as a channel. I think it’s a broader question than just my show, it’s about whether they’re going to go as a channel. If they are really going to the next step and develop it further, or how they want to do things. We will see what they do as we go and I can only worry about things I can control. I’ll roll with the punches.

LRI: Do you have a flat-out idol? Even as a kid, who did you want to be?

Eddie: I certainly did love KISS for decades, and I continue to as far as the good stuff that I loved. The guys and I grew up having these real rock heroes, when it came to KISS it was definitely Paul Stanley. I was always a huge fan of Paul’s. Which is ironic because he is the guy in the band who dislikes me the most. So be it. But again keeping with honesty, I was always a fan of his back in the day and the performances, the singing and the songs. I was always a huge Aerosmith fan, and continue to be a huge Aerosmith fan. I have a big poster of Joe Perry on my wall. All the stuff that anybody who, well I’m almost 50, so anybody who grew up in the 70s and into exploring rock music would be in to: Black Sabbath, AC/DC, Van Halen. I was a huge Billy Squier fan, which I don’t talk about all that much because it never seems to come up, because his band Piper was the first band I ever saw live. And I still love Billy Squier’s music. And of course UFO, and so many other things as I began to discover stuff. All the 70s-based stuff is what really got me going.

LRI: Was it about the hook, song or band itself?

Eddie: It was always about the song, without a doubt. The vocal and the melody. I like heavy music, but I absolutely need some level of singing and melody. One of the big things I have a hard time with is some of the metal is that all these guys are screaming instead of singing. Once I hear screaming or growling, in large doses I am kind of out, you know? I need to have some melody, people singing on any music I really like.

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  • MetalMania on

    I guess my opinion echoes most others here about the screaming/growling. I can only take so much of it. It’s not that I don’t like heavy, but being extreme heavy and all screaming/growling ALL the time just becomes numbing after a while. I really do feel that at some point the quest to be heavier/faster/darker than whatever marks a previous “era” or “generation” of metal took it beyond the point where it was music anymore. Not every band of course, but it’s like you were a “poser” if you weren’t gurgling like the undead or screaming as if being tortured all the time, while the guitars are tuned so low you can’t even make out the riffs being played. Even Kreator back in the day had wicked riffs that might capture my interest while I tolerated the vocals. Pantera lost me after “Far Beyond Driven”, Phil became ever more screamy and even Dime was making too much crazy noise in his solos. The quality of songs was giving way to the attempt to be the heaviest band ever. I don’t expect everyone to try to be the next Rob Halford or Bruce Dickinson, but at least a Master of Puppets era Hetfield level of ability would open more doors, musically speaking, for bands. Even “mixing it up” could work. When I first heard Opeth, I almost quit on them right away – but Mikael Akerfeldt (hope I spelled that right) alternates between the rough stuff and surprisingly melodic clean signing – and it works. Add a high level of musicianship and it’s an interesting formula.

  • Doug on

    Awesome interview. Eddie, if you taught a class and it was offered online, the class would fill up in seconds…and your textbooks could be your two books. 🙂 Totally agree about some of today’s hard rock, metal singers. While the riffs are great, when they start growling I too check out. Melody is so important. Take for example the greatness of Steve Perry and the late Brad Delp, phenomenal singers, and compare to let’s say Brian Johnson. We all would agree that Johnson cannot hang with these two, but he recognizes and understands the importance of melody and is in tune with the music around him.

  • Mark Ellis on

    I have always interpreted the cookie monster vocal as a conjuring of the voice of the horned one himself. I’ve always totally dug the Dokken/Whitesnake school of clean singing, and Savatage-style of rough but essentially melodic singing (and have a case full of cassettes in my basement), but I also like certain of the growl-fest bands. Interestingly, King Diamond was a kind of crossover between the two. When I first heard Celtic Frost, my immediate reaction was, “Oh, I get it, he’s (Tom Warrior) trying to make himself sound like Satan himself.” There’s a place for that in metal, but you certainly don’t want to hear such vocals as your checking out.

  • Mr. Rock And Roll on

    Celtic Frost and Venom at least knew how to write catchy songs, however heavy and noisy. I hear some of these other screaming bands and it’s just noise. No sense of arrangement.

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