Danzig Says He Would Have Played Wolverine Less 'Gay' Than Hugh Jackman
Glenn Danzig is a hard man to get face time with, so we were extremely psyched to meet up with him at his management company's Wilshire Blvd. office. The veteran metalhead cut an imposing figure: compact and muscular frame, long dark hair, sunglasses, leather jacket and intense demeanor. Adding to the scene was a creepy life-sized Clown from Slipknot doll staring at us from the corner of the room. You can see it below.
To our surprise, he turned out to be polite and forthcoming, talking about his Danzig Legacy Tour, on which he and his band will be performing songs from the Misfits, Samhain and Danzig, in similar fashion to his Halloween show at Gibson. (It hits SoCal tomorrow night, May 26 at Verizon Wireless Amphitheatre.) It was a thrill talking to him, and topics discussed included his feelings about the current Misfits, folks he talks to (Rick Rubin), folks he doesn't (Jerry Only), his fighting background, how he would have played Wolverine in X-Men and how our story about a guy who stalked him was wrong.
You have been performing for over 35 years. How has your songwriting process changed over time?
It's become more streamlined, I think. I come to conclusions much more quickly about what works and what doesn't. I hear exactly what I want to hear, like the finished product way ahead of time. So the guys in my band say, "I don't see it yet, I don't see it." Then finally when they come in and hear the whole thing after we have added all the different layers, they say, "Wow, I would never have pictured that."
Do you approach Misfits, Samhain and Danzig songs differently onstage for the Danzig Legacy tour?
No. [Laughs.] If you've seen the Legacy thing, it's pretty intense and it's pretty much the way I've always done it. I get to the front of the stage and I look at everybody and go crazy and hopefully they go crazy. I try to get them to become part of it. I want them to experience what I'm experiencing.
How do you feel about people producing music under the Misfits' name without you?
Well, obviously, it's not the Misfits. If you ask Doyle [Wolfgang von Frankenstein], he'll tell you the same thing. I see it like a crutch. To use the Misfits name as a crutch instead of doing your own thing afterward is kind of sad. It means that you don't have any confidence in yourself and you have to rely on that name. Of course, we are talking about Jerry [Only]. If he wanted my respect, he would go out there and do some kind of thing called the Jerry Only Band or whatever.
Have you talked to Jerry Only recently?
No. Why would I talk to him? [Laughs.]
You worked closely with Rick Rubin for a couple of years, but you had a falling out over money in the latter half of the '90s. Are you two on better terms now?
Rick and I still talk. We might be doing stuff together, I'm not sure. It wasn't ever a malicious thing. There were things that had to be solved. It ended kind of amicably once we met up, talked and settled it. We never went to trial or anything. We both looked at each other and said, "Why are we even doing this? This is retarded." And that's how it ended.
You explore some very dark themes in your lyrics. Why do you think you focus on this side of the human experience?
I don't see it as darker. I just see it as the stuff I've always been interested in. A long time ago, I felt like [a member of] a part of society that was disenfranchised, hence the name "the Misfits." I feel like my audience is the same. An unrecognized, disenfranchised part of society that never gets any kind of say in government, TV, media or anything.
Do you feel like an outsider?
I always have. I still do.