Statement from Twisted Sister

Forums SMF Slamboard Statement from Twisted Sister


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    I can’t believe this. I’m crying since yesterday. I saw him performing with Twisted Sister four times but never never had the chance to meet him. He was the greatest drummer I ever saw on a stage. My deepest condolences to his friends and family.


    Shocking, unbelievable news. At least he could go peacefully, doing what he loved best. R.I.P. My condolences to everyone.


    I’m still trying to come to terms with this.
    Even though he was band, he considered himself a part of the crew. He rode to the shows with the crew, ate with us, hung out with us–we loved him dearly. For the past 2 years, his son served as his drum technician–something that just filled him with pride. Everyone is just devastated and trying hard to hold it together the next few days.


    Still can’t believe it. When I heard the news yesterday I was in complete shock. I saw it first on another forum where we were discussing the next Graspop edition. It was a fun discussion but when I read it tears popped in my eyes… Those cowbells will never sound the same 🙁

    • This reply was modified 6 years, 8 months ago by Hellburner.
    • This reply was modified 6 years, 8 months ago by Hellburner.

    I feel like someone ripped my gut out. I am just in utter disbelief. I feel like a close family member has passed and it pains me. And to think this happened in my own home town, one of the places where the boyz got their start, it’s just surreal. I took my 11 year old Son to his first big show at the Best Buy Theater in September to see the Boyz. It was amazing, he’s grown up listening to me play this music all his life and then gets to go see them in person. I am glad I got to share that moment with him, I never thought it’d be the last time…
    I constantly nagged Frank at The Chance to get the Boyz back to Poughkeepsie, sadly, I don’t ever see that happening again. Rest In Peace my Brother AJ. Thank you for all the music, all the shows, all the good times, ahh one of the best times that just came to my mind is when I took my young Sons and threw them into the car and drove to NYC to the Stay Hungry 25th Anniversary release at J&R Music. AJ took the time to make jokes and make my then 3 year old smile all while signing his Pink LP. What a great time, I’ll never forget that. RIP my Brother…


    no words right now. i tried to listen to a TS album in his honor yesterday and couldn’t make it through 3 songs before i broke down. its like a part of my youth died


    Damn….Its taken a few days for me to sit and face my keyboard. I’m struggling to compose myself..even now…

    I recognize what tssm4lyfe said…”…its like part of my youth died…”

    How so true.

    I discovered Twisted Sister way back in the early 80’s. I good friend of mine banged on my front door and said..”Play this…NOW!!’ It was Ruff Cutts. And since that moment…TS has been a constant…and I mean…CONSTANT…backbeat in my life. Their music has always been there. As singles. As LP’s. As CD’s. As video…always something….somewhere. Of course there were other bands, other songs…but all intertwined with TS. And before I sound like some pathetic, half baked sop of a fan….let me tell you why.

    The early 80’s were a horrible time for my family and I. We lost our business. Our home. Our livelihood. My parents were fighting…literally. To make matters worse, my kid brother had a huge motorcycle accident that put him in the hospital for five months. In short…at 17 years old…my family was torn apart. My life….was torn apart. And I’m telling you straight….the only thing…ONLY thing…that saved me….was music. Rock music.Heavy metal music, glam rock…call it what you like…but it saved me…kept me going. Now I said there were plenty of bands…plenty of songs…so why were TS so different?? Easy…..attitude. They were…are…all about fighting back, keeping going, not taking shit. 1984 came around and Stay Hungry came out…for crying out loud….that record was written for me. I absorbed it…I breathed it. I lived it. All those songs became the anthem for my life. The backbeat. The constant foot tapping of the songs rolling around in the back of my head. 30 odd years later…its still the same. Same songs, same attitude. I am….by most accounts…considered a success. Educated. Well traveled. Skilled. Achieved many, many things. I even managed to emigrate to the USA a decade ago. And there is so much more left to do, to see, to try…

    I am telling you straight. All of you….I honestly say….that none of this would have happened…if I had not had that backbeat in my head. The attitude, the aggression, the fight….that was instilled in me by all those songs. They were…they are…my war music. They kept me going when I was pushing, fighting back. Kept me on track when I was scared, when making tough decisions, taking chances. I’m now 50 years old. I dont bullshit. And I regret nothing. Why? Because I’m still doing it. Still playing the same music. Same songs. I still go to concerts and I hang with music heads, with petrol heads…there is quite a crossover. And they are the greatest people on the planet. And you probably wouldn’t believe me when I say they are doctors and nurses…save lives by day….rock and ride by night…

    Now…a major cause of that backbeat has gone. To say I am upset, is an understatement. I had the fortune to meet AJ and the rest of the band at the Christmas show in Vegas in 2009. I said several times to each of them…’thanks for the influence’ I doubt they had any idea what I meant.

    Well…guys….if you read you know what I meant. I can only thank you for what your music and your attitude (encouragement) has done for me. My parents thank you for it too. Never doubt just how influential you have been on this particular SMF.

    As a band, you have some decisions to make. Know that whatever you decide to do for the future. We support you. 100%

    Been thinking about all this over and over. I think the hardest thing to accept…is this. I had had the distinct pleasure in seeing Twisted Sister play 14-15 times. Never again will I hear Dee bellow out “….and on the drums…MR..A..J…PERO!!!”

    Gutted. Truly gutted…

    Thank you AJ. We will miss you.

    • This reply was modified 6 years, 8 months ago by Evel.

    I’ve been a member of this slamboard for some time. At first, I was quite involved and later stood back and simply observed all that was going on. Posting today reminds me of something Dee said the first time I was lucky enough to see the band “Well, some people around these parts said they always knew it would take a national disaster to reunite Twisted Sister…” Having lurked for quite some time, it could only be a major event that would draw me out of the woodwork. Sadly, that event was so tragic.

    Always a fan before, I was hooked from my first show at NY Steel and I caught every performance I possibly could thereafter because those 5 guys were magic on stage together. And living in the NYC area I was luckier than many to have the number of shows I did within my reach. It’s heartbreaking to know I’ll never again experience some of the best times of my life.

    I’ve spent some time, in fact much too long, trying to put my thoughts together and it comes down to this: I can’t say it any better than what’s already been said. From the pain evident in the statements by his bandmates to the reminiscing and outpouring of love from the fans, I can’t possibly add anything of substance. It is infinitely apparent how much A.J. meant to so many.

    I can only declare my melancholy over A.J.’s passing but, more importantly, my appreciation for his life, his music, and – foremost from the few opportunities I had to meet him – his humanity. This is truly a loss of a great person. My mind and heart have been, and will continue to be, with his family, his friends, and his fans worldwide.


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