Bassist Rudy Sarzo spoke to Lee Jackson's "Friday Night FeedBack" about his recent decision to rejoin the band after an 18-year absence. He said (as transcribed by BLABBERMOUTH.NET): "I did my first show with the band, and it's a great band. We have Jizzy Pearl, who was in LOVE/HATE, the founding member [and] singer. We have Johnny Kelly, [whom late QUIET RIOT drummer] Frankie Banali handpicked to replace him. He played in DANZIG and TYPE O NEGATIVE, so he's got a beautiful résumé — a great drummer. And Alex Grossi, who's actually the third guitar player in QUIET RIOT — first Randy Rhoads, second Carlos Cavazo and third Alex Grossi. So he's been with the band for 18 years and he's a phenomenal guitar player [and] songwriter. So we have a really strong band. And by having that, we can go onstage and celebrate the memory of Frankie and Kevin [DuBrow] and Randy with dignity — with total dignity. So that, to me, it's a blessing to be able to do that."
Rudy played his first show back with QUIET RIOT on November 6 at The Groove Music Hall in Thornburg, Virginia.
Sarzo was one of the members of QUIET RIOT's "Metal Health" lineup. He played bass on the classic LP, which sold over ten million copies and spawned the hits "Cum On Feel The Noize" and "Metal Health" and on the follow-up record "Condition Critical".
Rudy appeared in the most notable music videos in the MTV age and toured with the band until 1985 and again from 1997 to 2003. During his years out of the band, Sarzo was a member of OZZY OSBOURNE, WHITESNAKE, DIO, BLUE ÖYSTER CULT, QUEENSRŸCHE and THE GUESS WHO.
Banali died in August 2020 after a 16-month battle with pancreatic cancer.
Frankie's history with QUIET RIOT spanned over 37 years and he had the distinction of being the only member of the band to have recorded on every single QUIET RIOT release from 1983's "Metal Health", which was the first heavy metal album to reach No. 1 on the Billboard chart, through 2019's "Hollywood Cowboys".
Banali resurrected QUIET RIOT in 2010, three years after the death of singer and founding member Kevin DuBrow.
Sarzo discussed his return to QUIET RIOT in a recent interview with Adika Live!. He said: "My decision, in addition to [it] being [late QUIET RIOT drummer] Frankie's [Banali] request that I return to the band, was a decision that I had to meditate on it, because it is that important. Not meditate whether it was the right decision to make or not — no, that wasn't the point — it was to meditate about the timing of it. Because it could not be an abrupt decision that you drop everything you're doing and you change the band.
"Regina [Frankie's widow] and I, we sat and we talked about it, and we said, 'Okay, the best thing to do is to let everybody fulfill their commitments.' Because I have commitments to the band that I've been playing in for the last five years, THE GUESS WHO. And I wasn't about to tell them, 'Hey, I'm outta here, guys. Good luck.' I've never done that. So I have commitments with them. And QUIET RIOT has commitments with [longtime bassist] Chuck Wright. And we felt that the only thing that we can do, really — [we felt] that all these commitments must be fulfilled so our agreements with everybody is fulfilled."
Rudy went on to say that he has been "making the transition" and "embracing again the whole QUIET RIOT consciousness" by going "back and playing the songs" again. "And actually, it's been wonderful because, I've gotta tell you, to be able to go back to something that you did 40 years ago with the musician I am today, I'm looking at the songs a little bit different, as far as my own contributions," he said. "Of course, it's not gonna be something that is gonna turn into completely something else, but there are certain note choices that I can improve on."
As for what fans can expect to see when he returns to the road with QUIET RIOT, Rudy said: "At the core of the show is gonna be a celebration of the legacy of our bandmates. It's our responsibility as the ones left behind that we must celebrate. It's a must. So that is at the core of the show."