Jay Jay French

TWISTED SISTER’s JAY JAY FRENCH Defends Producer TOM WERMAN’s Work On ‘Stay Hungry’: ‘I Don’t Wanna Smear’ Him

In a new interview with “Heritage Musicians In Conversation With Joe Matera”, TWISTED SISTER guitarist Jay Jay French was asked how important veteran hard rock producer Tom Werman was to the commercial success of the band’s triple-platinum “Stay Hungry” album. He responded (as transcribed by BLABBERMOUTH.NET): “Boy, that’s a complicated answer. Because Tom Werman, as a symbol, represented success, because he had enormous, multi-platinum successful records and artists — Ted Nugent and MÖTLEY CRÜE and CHEAP TRICK; I mean, he had a track record. So when the record label said, ‘We’ll get you Werman,’ that was basically like telling Jimmy Stewart in 1940, ‘We’re getting you Frank Capra to direct your movie,’ or someone telling you ‘We’re getting Francis Ford Coppola to direct a movie.’ I mean, if you’re getting those kinds of names, you’re going, ‘Oh, wow. That’s heavyweight.’ Werman was a heavyweight. Regardless of what anyone thinks of his records, how they sounded, he was a heavyweight. So he came on board. And it was controversial because Dee [Snider, TWISTED SISTER singer] didn’t get along with him, and he didn’t like a lot of the songs. Putting that aside, he knew how to make a record sound good on the radio. ‘We’re Not Gonna Take It’ just exploded on the radio. So regardless of whatever personal issues we had with Werman, the fact is that you can’t deny that he produced a record that has now sold six million copies. It’s like AC/DC saying, ‘Well, [‘Back In Black’ producer] Mutt Lange is bad’ or ‘terrible.’ Well, I’m sorry — he sold you 18 million copies of a record. So it’s unfair to just smear him. I don’t wanna smear Werman. He did what he did, and life moves on.

Music Industry Is ‘Criminal Enterprise’ Says Jay Jay French

Twisted Sister guitarist Jay Jay French called the music industry a “criminal enterprise” and compared it directly to dealing drugs. French, who also managed the band, said he wouldn’t argue against the suggestion that dealers know more about transacting business than people who teach the process in college.
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TWISTED SISTER’s JAY JAY FRENCH Says Record Companies Are ‘Criminals’: ‘Everyone Lies’

In a new interview on A Discussion With Dean Cramer, TWISTED SISTER guitarist Jay Jay French spoke about record labels’ reputation as crooks who rip off artists at every turn. He said: “Rock and roll, let me be clear, is a criminal enterprise. The record labels are criminals. It’s simple as that. They’re just legal criminals. So when you’re in a cesspool of criminality, whether it’s obvious criminality, in other words, whether it’s blue-collar criminality where someone is threatening your life with a gun or it’s white-collar criminality, you’re dealing with criminals. So you’re dealing with the sleaze, the lowlives, the lying. You don’t believe any of this shit ’cause everyone lies. So you kind of have to get used to it.”

Twisted Sister's Jay Jay French on playing affordable guitars: "The neck has to be great, and if the neck is great, my attitude is, I'll figure the rest of it out if I have to"

You can get a lot of electric guitar for less money than ever, as the impending Black Friday guitar deals will prove again, but it's always good to hear a pro musician flying the flag for more affordable guitars onstage. Twisted Sister guitarist Jay Jay French is one who owns an enviable vintage guitar collection, but on Twister Sister's final tours before bowing out in 2016 he'd often use Epiphone Les Pauls onstage. In a new interview with Ultimate Guitar he explains why.

JAY JAY FRENCH – TWISTED BUSINESS: Lessons from My Life in Rock ‘N’ Roll

Author: Jay Jay French (with Steve Farber) Book: TWISTED BUSINESS: Lessons from My Life in Rock ‘N’ Roll. Publishing: ‎ RosettaBooks (September 21, 2021) Jay Jay French—founder, guitarist, and manager of the world-famous heavy metal band Twisted Sister—delivers his “bizoir”: part memoir and part business primer. In addition to founding...