Faster Pussycat's Chad Stewart

By Jay Oakley

Chad, it's M3! Second year in a row back and third year overall. The set was a little different tonight but how did it go?

Stressful.

I can imagine. Many people know about it but Taime (Downe) was down for this weekend.

The boss got acute pneumonia, too much fluid in his lungs, they wouldn't let him leave the hospital once they checked him in. Actually, we took him to urgent care and then they said, "No, it's too severe." They took him to the ER and they wouldn't let him out. So, what are you going to do? We had to figure it out. They said it was a one o'clock call yesterday on whether or not they were going to let him out to do the show or not. They said they might let him out for an hour to do the gig but decided he was to sick.

So then it's like, "Fuck! What do we do?" It's a scramble to figure it out. I knew I could do a couple of songs because I do a lot of his background vocals anyway but it's a whole other thing to carry a show. Especially, as a drummer. Kelly Keagy (Night Ranger) is one of my favorite human beings on the planet, he's my hero actually, to be fair, Kelly Keagy is my hero. He's amazing but I'm not Kelly Keagy and I'm not the other lead singer in Faster Pussycat. Night Ranger's got two singers, we have one. So, I knew I could cover a couple things but having nobody up front is just boring to the crowd, I knew that. So, I called my friends. I called my real friends, the family, Vixen, Danger Danger, Dangerous Toys, the people that we've been on tour with, the people that I knew I could count on and the people I know that if I say, "Guys, it's serious!" That they're going to help and would go, "Whatever you need, we're here." and that's exactly what they did.

Absolutely, dude. They killed it.

And killed it! Not only above and beyond, not only did they show up and do it, they fucking killed it! And, I've seen some of the views on the interwebs that were like, "Oh..." Bullshit! Bullshit! I have not met a single person in this audience in the last forty-eight hours that hasn't gone, "That show was fucking epic! You guys pulled it together." Was it what they expected? No. Was it Taime? No.

But, was it awesome? Yes.

But, did we do something kind of cool? We absolutely fucking did. And look, this isn't some drug induced thing, he's got fucking pneumonia. Fuck you, guys!

Seriously. You're dead on.

Seriously! How many people get sick on a daily fucking basis and then all these fucking trolls out here, crying. It's, actually, not even anybody that was even here. It's people that are on the internet, like in Sheboygan, in their mom's basement going, "Oh, he's just an asshole." No, he's not an asshole. Actually, he's pretty fucking great and he was bummed, I mean, seriously bummed that he couldn't do this. But, his band, who has been his band for almost twenty years, not the original guys who were there for six, not that I have anything against the original guys because they're still in the family, Brent (Muscat) and Greg (Steele) are still a phone call away and they show up all the time and Eric's (Stacy) in fucking Jetboy. It's not like we have any issue. That's why I don't get it. I don't fucking get these dumb-dumbs, I just don't get it. We're all a family. The original band started something great. They were there six years. I've been in this almost two decades, almost twenty fucking years. Ace (Von Johnson,) the new guy, has been here eight.

Close to ten!

He's been here almost a decade. [Laughs]

And, Danny's (Nordahl) been there right with you too and Xristian (Simon!)

Right there with me. So I don't get these people. I was back stage with Tom Keifer. Tom was the one guy who called Taime yesterday to check on him. Sebastian (Bach) didn't call, Kip Winger didn't call, Tom Keifer called and they had a conversation. I was backstage with Tom and he said, "Look, your boy is the real deal and I don't know that you know this but my favorite band of the era is Faster. Not the original Faster, this Faster. Because, It's a different animal." And, it is. It's a different animal. Like it or hate it, whether you were team one way or team another and I don't actually see it as either team because I consider both Brent and Greg part of this version.

I can only speak for myself but I am a Faster fan. A thirty year start to finish fan.

Correct, from start to finish. That's the way I see it. But anyway, Tom was like, "We'll get your boy healthy and we're back out. If you guys want to go out with us, we're ready to go." Tom made Taime feel so much better, I know that. Props to Tom Keifer.

And, Taime's out now from what I here.

He is at the hotel. He's going to fly out with Ace and I in the morning. There's still more to do but a summer tour is going to happen.

So, it sounds like you have some time off after this weekend.

Well, Danny and Ronnie Sweetheart have decided that they are going to put The Throbs back together. They're the band that David Geffen signed after Guns N' Roses. They were touted to be the New York Guns N' Roses. Unfortunately, they had way worse drug problems then GNR did. [Laughs] But, Ronnie moved to LA and Danny and he have been working on songs and they want to do a couple reunion shows. So, we're going to do that. We're doing one, June 8th at the Whisky and then we're opening up for Kix in Denver.

You're playing?

I am and Ace is as well. We've been in rehearsals and it sounds fucking fantastic. I'm really excited, actually. It's a whole different deal because it's a whole different animal then Faster.

Absolutely. So, talk a little bit of history because I'm a beg fan of that. How did you get in with Faster because you were with Tracii Guns in L.A. Guns with Danny before that.

Well, no. I was in Faster first. Tracii was, kind of, a byproduct.

For anyone reading this and curious what I'm talking about, I'm talking mainly about the Acoustic Gypsy Live record that you guys were on.

Right. And, he's selling that album at the live shows now that neither Danny, nor Jizzy (Pearl,) nor I have been paid for. So, please go purchase it and send me a couple bucks. [Laughs}

That's crazy. It's funny, Jizzy didn't want to sign it for me. He did and he was super nice about signing things for me but that explains why he was hesitant to do it.

It's a great record. Thanks, Tracii!

[Laughs] So, back to you joining Faster.

I was in a band with a guy named Coyote Shivers, from Empire Records, he was the rock star guy and he was married to Bebe Buell who's Liv Tyler's mom. I was in Coyote's band when he moved to LA. I had just gotten into LA from New York as did he and we started playing together and Taime had just started The Pretty Ugly Club and I was also playing with a guy named David Casper so I was playing in a couple of bands that were playing Pretty Ugly, Taime's club. The drummer for The Newlydeads wasn't cutting it and they were going to let him go and Taime came up to me and said, "You're my guy." and I said, "Yup, I'm your guy." because I loved industrial music and it was fun but literally, I wasn't even half a year into it, we had Tim Sköld from Marilyn Manson playing lead guitar and Taime said, "We have the opportunity to put Faster Pussycat back together with Greg and Brent. Getting Eric and Brett Bradshaw is just not going to happen. I don't want to deal with the nonsense with them so I want you and Danny." So, that's how it went. So, Pussycat started again and I've been here since 2001.

Awesome, dude. So, for what's going on right now, you have more dates coming up but you guys have always been ridiculously active, you've always been out on the road, you've always been doing stuff. What can the fans expect for new music. I know you get it all the time and I'm going to ask you also.

The new record, we've done this new record about three times. [Laughs] Did you talk to Ace about it already?

I did. There was only so much he would say.

We've don't this record about three times. But, now Gilby's producing. So, Gilby Clarke is producing the record and we're going to get it done. We'll get it done shortly. Now, that Gilby's in, we need to get Boss healthy and then get him into the studio on the down time and we wrote some stuff and then it changed a few times, once Gilby got involved then it changed again. So, we basically need to have everyone come together, decide what parts we want to keep, what we want to get rid of and get everyone to agree on what we're doing. But, I will say this, I know for a fact, it's exactly what the fans want. We're right on track. It's a lot of old school, it's a little new school, not industrial at all. It's definitely in the vein of where they started and where we want to continue as being Faster Pussycat and what the future of Faster Pussycat will be.

So, it's got a little bit of the Faster record and a little bit of the Glory Hole record.

It does. It's got a little bit of early Aerosmith, it's got a lot a bit of Ramones, it's got a lot of New York Dolls, it's got a lot of Dead Boys, it's got some Turbonegro, it's got some Supersuckers, It's got some Hank 3. There's a lot of all our influences, it's a different band then it was in '87. But, this was the band for two decades that they've seen. This record is going to be that band's record.

And, speaking of Supersuckers, Danny sang "Pretty Fucked Up" in the set last night.

He did and Eddie (Spaghetti) can right me a check anytime he wants for making his song more popular then he did. Anytime he wants to write that check, he can. [Laughs] No, he got sick and we did the benefit for him and we wish him all the best. He's family. Again, you have to understand something, we have a lot 80s bands that we are friends with. Danger Danger certainly, you saw (Ted) Poley last night, Tom, fucking (Stephen) Pearcy but, we've got Sugar Ray, we've got the Supersuckers, we've got fucking Maroon 5, Adam Levine's a huge Taime Downe fan, it goes a lot of ways. It's weird, but it is what it is. So, we're gonna do something good this year. From what I know, we're all in the right headspace to make this record pretty fucking great.

To wrap things up on a fun note, M3, it's such a great weekend. What is it for you? What is M3 weekend for Chad?

All our friends. Vixen, Ratt, Danger Danger, fucking Rhino Bucket, Kix, it's like a high school reunion. All the guys that we see throughout the year and get to hang out with. This is all family, it's what we do.

Absolutely. Chad, thank you so much.

Thank you, brother. I appreciate it.