Anthrax: Interview with Scott Ian

If I’m correct you guys are doing a Jersey show, Friday June 3 at Starland Ballroom.

Yeah, that one East Coast date. We’ve only been able to pop in and out of the states for now. We did Detroit, we did two Chicago’s, and on the way back from Australia we’re doing Vegas and L.A. And we’re like, we gotta do an East Coast show, I mean, we’re a New York band and not even playing our hometown.

Yeah, at the press conference I looked at the tour dates and I’m like, there’s no shows around here..I can’t go to Chicago, or Australia!

(laughs) We’ll be back, we’re going to do a fullblown tour in the fall! Look at this way, we’ll be that much tighter when we get back there. (laughs)

So you’re taping the Jersey show huh, that should work out good then. Looking forward to that show.

Originally we were going to film the Chicago shows for this DVD we’re putting together. But ya know what, as great as Chicago is, we gotta do this at home. So that’s why we booked the Jersey gig.

I’m looking at a picture in this article of you holding a new Dimebag guitar onstage. Is that one of his models or is it one he gave to you at some point?

Nah, it’s one of his signature models, one of the last ones that Washburn made. I was given a gift of that by the same Washburn distributors that deal with my signature model. I’m like, I’m not gonna let this thing sit in the house, this guitar needs to be played. So I took it out on tour with me.

He would definitely want it out there. He will be missed.


So what’s the set list going to be like at the Jersey show?

Well, we know more than we’re playing now, and there’s a lot of stuff we want to get on tape so…Jersey might actually be the longest show of the tour for that reason! (chuckles) Like we did ‘Time,’ not ‘Got The Time,’ but ‘Time,’ the opening track on the Persistencerecord, we haven’t played that song since the Maiden tour in ’91.We busted that out the other night in Melbourne…that was great.

Back to that press conference at Sirius a month or so ago. So it looks like your involvement with the Anthrax Vaccine issue has made some headway. I think I’ve read that the mandatory vaccination program has been put on hiatus.

I don’t know if we had anything to do with that, that was already in the works before we got involved. All we are doing is lending our name to something to raise awareness to a situation that we think is terrible. And if anything positive can come out of this because of our name or our band, or I should say the name we are borrowing for the last 24 years, then that’s a good thing, all I can say about that.

I am trying to stay more politically aware lately, because of issues like this that get swept under the rug by the current administration in power.

Well, that’s why we’re trying to help make people more aware. It’s happening a lot with this administration. Whether it’s the administration and the media that they’re in cahoots with, basically focusing on crap to keep all the real stuff that’s going on behind the scenes. That seems to be how it works in America now. Let’s get everyone talking about Terri Schiavo and letting 15 other things happen when no one’s looking because they’re focused in on stuff THAT DOESN’T REALLY MATTER!!!

Oh you mean like the same governor Jeb Bush who passed the law to allow hospitals to cut off life support after 10 days if you don’t have any money? They cut off the life support for a baby against the consent of the parents there, but in the same breath fought to stop the legal guardian husband from pulling the plug on his wife who has been in limbo for 14 years?

Exactly, I don’t want to get into a big anti-government thing here, but I think people need to open their eyes a little and pay attention. Stop towing the party line so much, look at it as an American, or a person, and not as from a republican or democrat point of view. It’s ridiculous already. People need to get this religious right morality out of our government, it’s the worst it’s ever been. And people always bring up our founding fathers all the time.Well, our founding fathers started this country to keep the Church, and now its like that’s all they’re trying to do. It’s insane to me how anyone is letting this happen.

I thought the Reagan era was bad.

Nah this is worse, way worse.

Anyway, enough of that, what are you listening to these days? What interests you out there?

Well, I’m looking forward to the new System Of A Down and Audioslave records, I can’t wait to hear both of those. I don’t know…I’m still listening to the last Lamb Of God record, Killswitch Engage, off the top of my head.