POISON drummer Rikki Rockett spoke to “Rock Talk With Mitch Lafon” in a new interview about the possibility of the band ever returning to the studio to write and record a new album of all-original material. He said: “I really wish that we would… I’ve been wanting to do that from the beginning. I mean, I love going in the studio and I love creating and writing songs and things like that. It’s why I started DEVIL CITY ANGELS [Rockett‘s side project] — because I was very frustrated that POISON wasn’t doing anything creative in that way. It’s always on my radar to try to get the rest of the guys to get on board and work again like that. I don’t know why we can’t just get together and make that happen. It just seems like it’s just this huge thing that is this obstacle. I don’t know why.”
Rockett acknowledged that part of the reason POISON hasn’t been motivated to work on new music has been the fact that fans rarely show interest in hearing fresh material performed live when classic rock groups go on tour. “That’s the thing about being a band that’s been around for a while. It’s hard to break… I don’t wanna say ‘break free from the past,’ ’cause you don’t wanna do that — at least I don’t. But at the same time, you wanto be able to move forward, and that’s a very gray area, that’s a slippery slope,” he explained. “Because we could write the second coming of ‘Talk Dirty To Me’, and I don’t know if people wanna hear it or not, and that’s a frustrating thing; it really is. AEROSMITH was able to do it, but not everybody is. I mean, even THE ROLLING STONES have had problems with that in the last few years. So… I don’t know. But I do think it’s important to stay viable. For the ‘über fans,’ it’s always a really, really good thing. And that’s what you do it for — you do it for you, you do it for the real fans, the real true fans. Not, like, to really change your popularity at this stage. I don’t really think that moves the needle these days. [Laughs]”
Rikki also expressed a desire to perform more of POISON‘s early catalog, possibly as part of very special tours that would each focus on a specific period in the band’s career.
“If it were up to me, for the next several years, we would just go do each record from top to bottom,” he admitted. “Let’s do ‘Open Up and Say… Ahh!’ , let’s do ‘Flesh & Blood’ , let’s do ‘Look What The Cat Dragged In’ . I think it would be great. And at the end, you can come back out and do the hits that came later, whatever, just to wrap it up. But it would be great to go from top to bottom, track to track. I would be all over that.”
Back in 2015, Rockett and fellow POISON members Bobby Dall (bass) and C.C. DeVille (guitar), plus vocalist/rhythm guitarist Brandon Gibbs (CHEAP THRILL, DEVIL CITY ANGELS), played several shows as THE SPECIAL GUESTS in what was widely perceived as a not-so-subtle message to POISON singer Bret Michaels that they weren’t willing to remain completely inactive while he pursued a solo career. Rikki explained: “It was sort of like… POISON isn’t POISON without Bret; it’s not POISON without any of us. However, we got offered a few gigs, and they were gigs that we all really wanted to do. And Bret had some other things that he had going on. And we didn’t dicuss it with him, we just said, ‘You know, let’s go out and do this. And we’re not gonna do it as POISON, because we’re not gonna try to pull the wool over anybody’s eyes, we’re not gonna try to fake it, like this is the new POISON.’ But everybody knew I was working with Brandon because of [DEVIL CITY ANGELS], if you were into rock and you were paying attention at all. And Bobby and C.C. both liked him. So we were, like, ‘Why not do this gig? Why not do a few gigs with him? Let’s just do it. Why should we sit home while Bret does things?’ You know what I mean? That was the only message: ‘Hey, Bret, we’re not gonna sit around either.’ It wasn’t like, ‘We’re replacing you, Bret,’ but it was kind of like, ‘We’re not gonna just sit on our thumbs either.’ That’s more or less what it’s about… And honestly, we didn’t do it as a message to Bret, but that message, I’m sure, [came across]. Honestly, we just wanted to go do it, and when he said, ‘Hey, I’ve got some stuff going on,’ it was, like, ‘You know, I’m tired of this. Let’s just go do this anyway. I wonder if they’ll have us, though, if we have somebody else.’ And the answer was yes. And the fans actually really liked it. Brandon did an awesome job.”
POISON‘s last album of new material was 2002’s “Hollyweird”. Back in 2007, they released “Poison’d”, an album of covers.
POISON kicked off its North American tour with DEF LEPPARD on April 8 at the SNHU Arena in Manchester, New Hampshire. The trek will wrap on June 25 in Indianapolis, Indiana.
POISON and DEF LEPPARD first hit the road together back in 2009, and then again three years later.
Rockett was recently declared cancer free after undergoing an experimental treatment. He was diagnosed with oral cancer back in 2015.