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PIT MAGAZINE #18, 1996

   Few words can describe the exhilerating excitement of experiencing 
your hopes and dreams in your lifetime.  As 37-lear-old Jerry Only sits 
across from me, his trademark eye make-up and hair bigger than life, I 
almost have to pinch myself to see if I'm dreaming that I am going to 
witness America's cult icons, the MISFITS, perform tonight.  An appearance
the early 80's held as a permanent retirement, until now.  "I was worried 
about that for along time, too.  We're not a drop out organization, as you 
can see," Jerry said, smiling.  Guitarist Doyle, Jerry's borther, sits 
brooding in the background.  Unlike the talkative Jerry, his personality--
the tall, silent-but-ready-to-brawl type--is strikingly opposite. 
   There are many questions to be answered, and Jerry is all too eager; 
he jumps right to their parting with original vocalist- Glenn Danzig, on 
Halloween of '83.  Danzig and drummer Robo had a falling out, he said, 
leaving the group short their rhythmic backbone prior to their European 
tour.  Not being able to find a suitable replacement and Jerry 
"overshooting my [Doyle] welcome with my dad as far as going on the road 
and coming back to work" brought a major conflict of interests and 
Danzig's immediate resignation.
   The break-up found Jerry and Doyle back working for their family's 
business, a machine shop and knife company.  Both worked there throughtout 
the duration of the MISFITS' legacy.  "At the time we were with Glenn, we 
were doing around 3 million dollars a year selling knives," Jerry 
explained.  "Everytime we went on the road, we never got paid as the 
MISFITS.  The money always went into Glenn's pocket to go towards the 
band.  In the end, it just wound up in Glenn's pocket.  Every time we 
toured, it cost me fifty grand."  Robo also returned with them to work 
at the shop for many years.  He eventually got married, had a child and 
moved to Columbia to open his own restaurant.
   Jerry worked for two years, to 'settle in', before forming his KRYST 
THE CONQUEROR project in '86.  However, a self-titled, five song EP didn't 
emerged until '89, as the predecessor of their full length album.  This 
full length album has yet to be released for two reasons, he said.  The 
first was lack of funds, due to not being paid for the EP by the 
distributor for voer a year.  The second?  "I had a song on the 
full-length called "Wherever I Roam" and I made the mistake of giving it 
to a bunch of guys in a band called METALLICA."
   At this point, things got really touchy as this unexpected story 
unfolded.  According to Jerry, this major blow occured when a back stage 
meeting went sour between himself and METALLICA guitarists Kirk Hammett 
and James Hetfield during their ...And Justice for All tour.  After the 
show he brought both the tape and two custom guitars he personally 
crafted for them.  The MISFITS custom manufacture all of their own guitars 
and basses with solid graphite bodies, mahogany necks and custom fret 
inlays.  Jerry said he was harassed and thrown out by the venue's 
security personal in front of METALLICA's members for not having a back 
stage pass.  METALLICA walked off with his guitars and tape, not lifting 
a finger to held with security.  "I didn't give [the guitars] to them so 
they would be our friends; I wanted to get some feedback on what they 
thought of our guitars.  You live and learn.  They had these really big 
heads.  I'm really aggravated with them.  I don't know if that comes 
across here," he grinned, menacingly.  Jerry's raw nerve, I take it, is 
continually struck by METALLICA's multi-platinum Metallica release. 
"What wound up happening was they came up with a song called 'Wherever 
I May Roam'.  Every time I looked in magazines, I'd see 'METALLICA: On 
The Roam' or 'METALLICA: Still Roaming Around'.  They didn't steal my 
song.  They made their own song, but they stole my idea and based their 
whole fucking big tour around it," he said.  "For me to (release the 
song) then and be in the shadow of METALLICA--I would have been answering 
for it for the rest of my life.  Instead of arguing with people, I 
figured, fuck it.  They ruined the moment.  They're too big.  How am I 
going to go out against a band who sell five million records saying, 
'These bastards ripped me off'.  Nobody wants to hear that cry baby 
   Arguably, METALLICA did play a role in the MISFITS expanding cult 
status, considering the numerous promo shots circulated during the 
mid-eighties with them wearing MISFITS regalia.  Personally, I'd have 
to say that the deceased bassist Cliff Burton was the most notable of 
the four.  "I think the guy who probably liked us the most is in the 
grave now," Jerry agreed.  "They made us a household word, and I thank 
them for that.  We wouldn't be having ANTHRAX opening for us today if 
they didn't wear our shirts, but now I've met them [METALLICA] and I 
don't have much respect for them.  What they did to me was very low 
class," True.
	Jerry concurred the MISFITS had originally intended to have 
vocalist Glenn Danzig round out their legendary circle.  "We owed it to 
our fans.  Me and Doyle discussed it and we came to  the conclusion that 
all fans want to see the MISFITS play with Glenn."  Danzig rejected 
their proposition forthright.  "He had us thrown out of his hotel.  But, 
that will come back to bite him in the ass.  That's probably the one 
thing that would have saved his career.  We didn't want him as a 
permanent entity, only to do one big tour for the fans.  He was the best 
man for the job, until we found Mike.  He holds no value as a singer 
anymore now that we have Mike."
   Jerry's refering to Danzig's long sought replacement, 21 year old 
Dumont, New Jersey native Michael Graves.  The discovery of Graves came 
from an open audition the band held nearly three years ago in their 
hometown of Lodi, New Jersey.  "He's fantastic.  Michael brings an 
energy to us that Glenn has totally forgotten about--that a lot of 
these new bands have forgotten.  It's about being alive!  Let's fucking 
go off!"  Besides Graves, drummer Dr. Chudd rounds out the newest MISFITS 
line-up, which Jerry persistently insisted, "will take the MISFITS to 
the next level.  This is going to be the best band ever."
   Only six songs comprise their new arsenal of conquest.  He listed 
"Black Light", "The Haunting", "The Hunger", "Talons of Steel", as well 
as "Mars Attacks"--a song he submitted for a major motion picture of the 
same title this year.  Mathematically speacking, I don't see how this 
domineering leap will be expedited.  With Glenn Danzig, the MISFITS 
recorded 53 songs and released numerous albums.   Without Danzig, the 
MISFITS have recorded one song with no new album or record deal in their 
13 years of lapsing time.  When questioned, these points made the bassist 
visibly uncomfortable.  Jerry responded, "touring distracted us a little 
bit.  We have to substantiate out worth in the industry and take back 
what's ours.  We're in a very unique situation.  We have 47 MISFITS songs 
that take 90 minutes to play, so we have more material than we need.  So, 
we added a few new ones."  He added later, "The only thing that's 
aggravating me is that we're not geting together (writing songs) because 
we're not putting in enough time as a unit."
   He continued to say Glenn Danzig legally owns all the older songs 
today, as well as their subsequent publishing royalties.  The remaining 
members sacrificed their share during the litigation in exchange to 
continue as the MISFITS.  "He could have stopped us from being the 
MISFITS ever again.  We let it all go to come back and play the music.  
For us, playing the music is more important than getting paid."  From the 
outside, their sudden reappearance, for all practical purposes, looked 
like a reunion tour.  "This has nothing to do with a re-union.  This is a 
brand new band.  We just happen to play a bunch of old stuff because 
everybody wants to hear it and we want to play it," he exclaimed.
   Coinicidentally, Caroline Records released a MISFITS box set prior to 
this tour, which contains their long lost classic Static Age.  Spending 
$55 for a collection of back catalogue titles just to own Static Age and 
the outtakes disc seemed a little unfair, I said, I already own all the 
previous titles, to which Jerry quickly fired back, "The mixes in that 
box piss on everything you got.  Take the rest of your collection, just 
pull your dick out and piss all over them.  It's all re- mastered!" Jerry 
wouldn't comment on whose idea it was to release their legendary album 
from limbo.  According to Jerry, he mastered the Static Age album from a 
cassette tape original MISFITS guitarist Franche Coleman stored for 17 
years in a safety deposit box after the original recording sessions in 
'78.  Otherwise, Static Age came within a hairs breadth of being lost 
forever.  "I took the tape, played it one time to get it one DAT and it 
fell apart.  I mastered the DAT and it sounds better than the 12" tapes 
Glenn owns."  Static Age was supposed to be released on Halloween by 
itself, but "Glenn called his lawyers and stopped us."  Static Age will 
supposedly come out individually in the fall of '97.  Jerry fully 
supports the box set stating the contained historical document guarantees 
ownership of "everything worth having by this band."  He contends MISFITS 
bootlegs have absolutley no variable to accentuating anyones collection, 
especially to newer diehard fans.  "Please don't believe those records 
are worth anymore than the $1.50 it cost to make them.  It's an imaginary 
sense of value.  If you think your buying something better than anything 
in that box set, you're totally out of your mind," he stressed.  "The box 
is much better than every recording we have ever released!"  I've seen 
an original pressing of Walk Among Us go for $100.  "Nobody has that 
kind of money for that shit,"  he spat.  "Could you imagine a young kid 
who is really into our band saving $150 to buy a Three Hits From Hell 
record that he thinks is an original and it's a bootleg.  That kid could 
have really enjoyed his $150 buying hockey gear or saving for college 
instead.  It's stupid!  If your a serious collector of rare records, 
that's one thing.  Don't make these kids think that's how (you prove) 
you're a big MISFITS fan.  Spend the $50 and own every original recording, 
produced better than it ever was, and the best fucking case ever created 
under God's good sky.  That's all there is to it."
                  Kurt Hubert