Dee Snider

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Dee Snider
Twisted Sister - Wacken Open Air 2016 25.jpg
Snider performing at Wacken Open Air 2016
Background information
Birth nameDaniel Snider
Born (1955-03-15) March 15, 1955 (age 64)
Astoria, New York, U.S.
  • Singer
  • songwriter
  • musician
  • actor
  • radio personality
  • television personality
  • voice actor
  • screenwriter
  • spokesperson
  • Vocals
  • guitar
Years active1974–present
Associated acts

Daniel "Dee" Snider (born March 15, 1955) is an American singer-songwriter, screenwriter, radio personality, and actor. Snider came to prominence in the early 1980s as lead singer and songwriter of the heavy metal band Twisted Sister. He was ranked 83 in the Hit Parader 's Top 100 Metal Vocalists of All Time. [1]

Heavy metal is a genre of rock music that developed in the late 1960s and early 1970s, largely in the United Kingdom. With roots in blues rock, psychedelic rock, and acid rock, the bands that created heavy metal developed a thick, massive sound, characterized by highly amplified distortion, extended guitar solos, emphatic beats, and overall loudness. The genre's lyrics and performance styles are sometimes associated with aggression and machismo.

Twisted Sister American rock band

Twisted Sister was an American heavy metal band originally from Ho-Ho-Kus, New Jersey, and later based in Long Island, New York. Twisted Sister's best-known hits include "We're Not Gonna Take It" and "I Wanna Rock", which had music videos noted for their sense of slapstick humor. Many of the band's songs explore themes of parent vs. child conflicts and criticisms of the educational system.

Hit Parader was an American music magazine that operated between 1942 and 2008. A monthly publication, it was a general popular music title until the 1980s, when its focus turned to the genres of hard rock and heavy metal. The magazine reached its peak during the 1980s as heavy metal music achieved high levels of popularity and commercial success.


Early life

Born in Astoria, Queens, New York, Snider grew up in nearby Baldwin, Long Island, and graduated from Baldwin Senior High School in 1973. [2] His father, Bob, is a retired New York State Trooper and Nassau County court clerk, and his mother, Marguerite, is a retired art teacher. [3] His father is Jewish, whereas his mother is from a Catholic family of Swiss descent. [4] Snider and his siblings were raised as Episcopalians after his mother joined the church. [4] As a child, he sang in a church choir, several school choruses and the Baldwin High School Concert Choir. Snider was also selected for the All-State Chorus for singing. [5]

Astoria, Queens Neighborhood of Queens in New York City

Astoria is a middle-class and commercial neighborhood in the New York City borough of Queens, bounded by the East River and is adjacent to three other Queens neighborhoods: Long Island City, Sunnyside, and Woodside. It is located in Community Board 1, and is patrolled by the New York City Police Department's 114th Precinct. As of 2016, Astoria has an estimated population of 78,793.

Baldwin, Nassau County, New York Hamlet and census-designated place in New York, United States

Baldwin is a hamlet and census-designated place (CDP) located in the town of Hempstead in Nassau County, New York, United States. The population was 24,033 at the 2010 census.

Baldwin High School is a public secondary school located in Baldwin, Nassau County, New York. The school serves students in grades 9 to 12 in the Baldwin Union Free School District. It is the eighth largest in Nassau County.



In early 1976, Snider joined Twisted Sister and became the sole songwriter of the band thereafter. The group released their first studio album, Under the Blade , in September 1982 and developed a following in the UK. Less than a year later, Twisted Sister released their second album, You Can't Stop Rock 'n' Roll . Their third album, Stay Hungry , hit shelves on May 10, 1984. This would become the band's most successful record with the hits "We're Not Gonna Take It" and "I Wanna Rock." To emphasize the "twisted sister" image, Snider adopted a trademark persona of metal-inspired drag with long blonde curly hair, an excessive amount of eye shadow and rouge, a Beauty mark and bright red lipstick.

<i>Under the Blade</i> 1982 studio album by Twisted Sister

Under the Blade is the debut studio album by American heavy metal band Twisted Sister, released on Secret Records on September 18, 1982. It was produced by UFO and Waysted bassist Pete Way and featured a very brutal and rough sound, which was eventually totally ignored on a remixed re-release by Atlantic Records on July 14, 1985. The re-release also added a remixed version of the song "I'll Never Grow Up, Now", the band's long forgotten 1979 single. The Atlantic Records release was both a try to emphasize on the commercial success of Stay Hungry and, by then the only official way to get the album as Secret Records was no more. However, bootlegs with the original mix were still in circulation. On May 31, 2011, Eagle Records re-released Under the Blade in a digital remastered form with the original mix finally restored. Under the Blade has sold over two million copies worldwide.

<i>You Cant Stop Rock n Roll</i> 1983 studio album by Twisted Sister

You Can't Stop Rock 'n' Roll is the second studio album by American heavy metal band Twisted Sister, released in April 1983.

<i>Stay Hungry</i> (album) 1984 studio album by Twisted Sister

Stay Hungry is the third studio album by American heavy metal band Twisted Sister. Released on May 10, 1984, the album features the band's two biggest hits, "We're Not Gonna Take It" and "I Wanna Rock". It also features the power ballad "The Price". According to RIAA certification, Stay Hungry gained multi-platinum status with U.S. sales of more than 3,000,000 copies.

During the mid-1980s, before the premiere of Headbangers Ball , the first MTV program to consist entirely of heavy metal videos was Heavy Metal Mania. The first episode aired in June 1985 and was hosted by Snider. It featured metal news, interviews with metal artists, and in-studio co-hosts. That same year in November, Twisted Sister released Come Out and Play which sold over 500,000 copies in the US, but was marred by a poor concert tour.

<i>Headbangers Ball</i> music television program

Headbangers Ball was a music television program consisting of heavy metal music videos airing on MTV, MTV2, MTV Australia, MTV Rocks, MTV Adria, MTV Brand New, MTV Portugal, MTV Finland, MTV Arabia, MTV Norway, MTV Sweden, MTV Denmark, MTV Greece, MTV Türkiye, MTV Israel, MTV Hungary and MTV Japan. The show began on MTV on April 18, 1987, playing heavy metal and hard rock music videos late at night, from both well-known and more obscure artists. The show offered a stark contrast to Top 40 music videos shown during the day.

MTV American pay television channel

MTV is an American pay television channel owned by Viacom Media Networks and headquartered in New York City. The channel was launched on August 1, 1981, and originally aired music videos as guided by television personalities known as "video jockeys" (VJs). At first, MTV's main target demographic was young adults, but today it is primarily teenagers, particularly high school and college students.

<i>Come Out and Play</i> (Twisted Sister album) 1985 studio album by Twisted Sister

Come Out and Play is the fourth album by the American heavy metal band Twisted Sister, released by Atlantic Records on November 9, 1985. It was less successful than its predecessor Stay Hungry (1984), both critically and commercially although the album sold more than 500,000 copies, earning it Gold status,

In 1985, a Senate hearing was instigated by the Parents Music Resource Center (PMRC), who wanted to introduce a parental warning system that would label all albums containing offensive material. The system was to include letters identifying the type of objectionable content to be found in each album (e.g. O for occult themes, S for sex, D for drugs, V for violence, etc.). Snider, John Denver, and Frank Zappa all testified against censorship and the proposed warning system. [6] Such a system was never implemented, but the result of the hearing brought about what is now the generic "Parental Advisory: Explicit Content" label.

Parents Music Resource Center

The Parents Music Resource Center (PMRC) was an American committee formed in 1985 with the stated goal of increasing parental control over the access of children to music deemed to have violent, drug-related or sexual themes via labeling albums with Parental Advisory stickers. The committee was founded by four women known as the "Washington Wives" – a reference to their husbands' connections with government in the Washington, D.C. area. The women who founded the PMRC are Tipper Gore, wife of Senator and later Vice President Al Gore; Susan Baker, wife of Treasury Secretary James Baker; Pam Howar, wife of Washington realtor Raymond Howar; and Sally Nevius, wife of former Washington City Council Chairman John Nevius. The PMRC eventually grew to include 22 participants before shutting down in the mid-to-late 1990s.

John Denver American singer, songwriter, and activist

Henry John Deutschendorf Jr., known professionally as John Denver, was an American singer-songwriter, record producer, actor, activist, and humanitarian, whose greatest commercial success was as a solo singer. After traveling and living in numerous locations while growing up in his military family, Denver began his music career with folk music groups during the late 1960s. Starting in the 1970s, he was one of the most popular acoustic artists of the decade and one of its best-selling artists. By 1974, he was one of America's best-selling performers, and AllMusic has described Denver as "among the most beloved entertainers of his era".

Frank Zappa American musician

Frank Vincent Zappa was an American musician, composer, activist and filmmaker. His work is characterized by nonconformity, free-form improvisation, sound experiments, musical virtuosity, and satire of American culture. In a career spanning more than 30 years, Zappa composed rock, pop, jazz, jazz fusion, orchestral and musique concrète works, and produced almost all of the 60-plus albums that he released with his band the Mothers of Invention and as a solo artist. Zappa also directed feature-length films and music videos, and designed album covers. He is considered one of the most innovative and stylistically diverse rock musicians of his era.

The PMRC was initially formed by the wives of Washington, D.C. power brokers Senator Al Gore (D-TN), and Secretary of State James Baker. Tipper Gore in particular became the face of the PMRC and a public foil for Snider in the hearings. [7]

Al Gore 45th Vice President of the United States

Albert Arnold Gore Jr. is an American politician and environmentalist who served as the 45th vice president of the United States from 1993 to 2001. Gore was Bill Clinton's running mate in their successful campaign in 1992, and the pair was re-elected in 1996. Near the end of Clinton's second term, Gore was selected as the Democratic nominee for the 2000 presidential election but lost the election in a very close race after a Florida recount. After his term as vice-president ended in 2001, Gore remained prominent as an author and environmental activist, whose work in climate change activism earned him the Nobel Peace Prize in 2007.

James Baker former U.S. Secretary of State

James Addison Baker III is an American attorney and political figure. He served as White House Chief of Staff and United States Secretary of the Treasury under President Ronald Reagan, and as U.S. Secretary of State and White House Chief of Staff under President George H. W. Bush.

Tipper Gore American writer and photographer

Mary Elizabeth "Tipper" Gore is an American social issues advocate who was Second Lady of the United States from 1993 to 2001. She is the former wife of Al Gore, the 45th Vice President of the United States, from whom she separated in 2010.

A fifth Twisted Sister album would be made in 1987's Love Is for Suckers . The record was originally planned to be a Snider solo effort, but Atlantic Records encouraged a release under the Twisted Sister name. Touring lasted only into October that year and on the 12th of that month, Snider announced his departure from the band. It was during this time that Snider formed Desperado, a band featuring ex-Iron Maiden drummer Clive Burr, ex-Gillan guitarist Bernie Torme, and bassist Marc Russel. [8] The group's only album, Ace, has never been officially released, but was heavily bootlegged on CD under the title Bloodied But Unbowed.


Snider performing in Manchester, England, in his iconic stage makeover. Dee Snider on stage.jpg
Snider performing in Manchester, England, in his iconic stage makeover.

In the 1990s, Snider formed Widowmaker with Joe Franco, a good friend to Twisted Sister and drummer on the album Love Is for Suckers , as well as Al Pitrelli and Marc Russel. The quartet recorded two albums with limited underground success, titled Blood and Bullets and Stand By For Pain. In the late 1990s, Snider toured with a "self-tribute" band called Dee Snider's SMFs (Sick Mother Fuckers), sometimes featuring ex-Twisted Sister drummer A.J. Pero. The usual line up included Snider, Derek Tailer, Charlie Mills, Keith Alexander, and Spike.

In 1993, he composed the theme song for The Terrible Thunderlizards .

In 1997, Snider began hosting The House of Hair , a syndicated 1980s hard rock/heavy metal radio show that airs on over 200 radio stations across North America. It is syndicated by the United Stations Radio Networks. The show's format runs two hours and features Snider's closing catchphrase, "If it ain't metal, it's crap!"

In 1998, Snider had penned a song entitled "The Magic of Christmas Day (God Bless Us Everyone)" which would be recorded in 1998 by Celine Dion for her album These Are Special Times . According to Snider, Dion at the time was not aware of who wrote the song. Later that year, he also wrote and starred in the horror film Strangeland . Snider has also penned the script to a sequel which has the working title of Strangeland: Disciple. In January 2008, however, Snider was less than optimistic that it would ever see the light of day, saying in an interview with that he had reached a point where he should "put a sign on my website that says, 'Y’got ten million dollars? Give me a call. I’ve got the script ready to go, Robert Englund’s attached, I’m attached. If somebody’s serious and wants to make it, call me. But don’t call me ‘til you’re ready to hand the check over.'" In May 2009, Dee Snider revealed on his radio show, "The House Of Hair," that Strangeland: Rising Sons will go ahead and is set to begin shooting in the fall of 2009 and was originally slated for a 2010 release. Snider indicated in a fall of 2016 interview that there was still no movement on the development of Strangeland: Disciple.

Radio 104 Dee Snider Euro Sticker DS Euro.JPG
Radio 104 Dee Snider Euro Sticker


From June 1999 to August 2003, Snider hosted a morning radio show on a Hartford, Connecticut Clear Channel station, Radio 104 (104.1 FM WMRQ), called Dee Snider Radio. His show returned to the air at night in August 2004 on 93.3 WMMR in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania until June 2005. He fondly referred to his listeners as his "Peeps," and "DEE" euro stickers, printed by the station, could be seen on the bumpers of his fans' cars throughout Connecticut, New York, New Jersey, and Massachusetts. Other members of the morning show included Nick Lentino, Beth Lockwood, "Psycho Dan" Williams, Sean Robbins, and "Darkside Dave" Wallace. He frequently featured high-profile guests, including Ozzy Osbourne, pro wrestler Mick Foley, and KISS singer/bassist Gene Simmons.

In 2001, Snider was the voice of Gol Acheron, the main villain for the PlayStation 2 video game Jak and Daxter: The Precursor Legacy . The following year, he rejoined with the reunited Twisted Sister. Snider also played himself in the 2002 TV-movie Warning: Parental Advisory . In 2003, he appeared with actor Arnold Schwarzenegger at campaign events during his drive to recall incumbent California Governor Gray Davis. Snider sang the Twisted Sister hit, "We're Not Gonna Take It," which was adopted by the Schwarzenegger campaign.

Snider also voiced Angry Jack in the episode "Shell Shocked" for the Nickelodeon cartoon SpongeBob SquarePants . He admitted to being a huge fan of the show during an hour-long 10th anniversary documentary of the show in 2009, and to be asked to voice a character on the show was a real honor. He changed the lyrics of his famous "I Wanna Rock" to "Goofy Goober Rock" for The SpongeBob SquarePants Movie .

Snider narrates and hosts many shows and specials on VH1, movie trailers, behind the scenes segments, and DVD special features. He was featured as the "voice" in the bumpers for MSNBC's 2001/2002 "Fiercely Independent" branding campaign. Every year since 2004, Snider has narrated a live show known as Van Helsing's Curse which tours the US around Halloween giving a mix of famous music with dark overtones and an occasional part of a storytelling to accompany the music. The concert has also been released on CD. Snider hosted VH1's 2008 "Aftermath" concert in remembrance of the victims and survivors of the 2003 Station nightclub fire.

Snider returned to radio in June 2006 with Fangoria Radio on Sirius Satellite Radio channel 102 from 9–12 Eastern.

During winter of 2008, Snider was featured as a contestant on CMT's Gone Country . The show recruited famous musical celebrities who competed against each other to win a chance to release a country song. Also in 2008, Snider appeared on the first episode of season two's Kitchen Nightmares who Gordon Ramsay had recruited as part of the marketing for the re-launch of the Handlebar restaurant. On the show, Snider donated a motorcycle for auction in which customers of the Handlebar were able to bid on through the Handlebar restaurants website.

Snider hosts DEAD ART on Gallery HD, a show about the beauty and art of cemeteries. He also hosts House of Hair , a radio show that plays heavy metal music. Snider has made appearances on the IFC Channel's original series Z Rock as himself playing the character of a "rock guru."

On July 27, 2010, [9] Snider and his family began appearing in the reality television show Growing Up Twisted, airing on the Arts and Entertainment Network.

On October 8, 2010 started an 11-week run in the cast of Rock of Ages as Dennis, the owner of The Bourbon Room, with his official start date being October 11. [10]

In 2011, Snider performed with Ohio-based metalcore band Attack Attack! on stage at the Bamboozle Festival playing their song "Turbo Swag". On the May 15, 2011 episode of The Apprentice, Snider appeared to assist John Rich with his final challenge. He starred in a commercial featuring a mock audition where he came on as himself, and after drinking a soda turns into the lead singer from Twisted Sister (himself). Snider agreed to come because he is personal friends with Rich and wanted to support the charity effort for St. Jude Medical Center.

Snider guest starred in the video for "Immaculate Misconception" by the metalcore band Motionless in White. [11] Snider's son, Cody Blue Snider, directed the video. [12]

Dee Snider Live 2017 in Montebello Dee Snider 2017.jpg
Dee Snider Live 2017 in Montebello

Snider and his family appeared on Celebrity Wife Swap January 10, 2012. His wife Suzette traded places with Flavor Flav's long-time fiancée Liz. [13]

On the Valentine's Day 2012 taping of Late Night with Jimmy Fallon , Snider partnered with Donald Trump in a skit based upon the format of the TV game show, Password . On February 19, 2012, Snider began appearing as one of 18 contestants vying to become Trump's next Celebrity Apprentice and was fired after the eighth task during the seventh episode.

In 2012 Snider appears as main character of a commercial airing for the company Unibet. The video [14] has been broadcast on commercial Norwegian television from March 5, 2012 thorough the whole summer. In the spot Snider sings, in his typical look as leader of Twisted Sister, a rock song called "Bet", written by Snider himself and composed by the Norwegian heavy metal artist Ronni Le Tekrø.

Snider asked Republican vice presidential running mate Paul Ryan's camp not to play his hit song in their campaign. [15]

On September 6, 2012 Snider performed "We're Not Gonna Take It" on America's Got Talent . Also in 2012, Snider played Larry, the owner of a dive bar in the mockumentary Future Folk [16] about an alien bluegrass band.

On January 24, 2013, at the City National Grove of Anaheim, Snider was honored as roastee at the Revolver Magazine / Guitar World Rock and Roll Roast of Dee Snider. [17]

On November 4, 2014, he debuted his original Christmas musical, Dee Snider's Rock and Roll Christmas Tale, at the Broadway Playhouse in Chicago. [18] During the 2015 Christmas season, he took the musical to Toronto. [19]

Snider provided the narration for Attack of Life: The Bang Tango Movie , which is a documentary film directed by Drew Fortier about the 80's hard rock band Bang Tango. [20] [21]

Personal life

Snider has been married to his wife Suzette, a costume designer, since October 21, 1981. [22] They have four children, Jesse Blaze Snider (born September 19, 1982), Shane Royal Snider (born February 29, 1988), Cody Blue Snider (born December 7, 1989), and Cheyenne Jean Snider (born October 31, 1996) who was in the band They All Float. He also has four grandchildren. His eldest son Jesse hosted MTV2 Rock , a music video countdown program in 2003, and was the runner-up in MTV's 2008 show Rock the Cradle . Dee appeared on the show as Jesse's mentor. Jesse is also the lead singer of the punk metal band Baptized By Fire. Cody directed a music video for the band, Motionless in White (for the song "Immaculate Misconception") to where Dee guest-starred in its filming. [12]

In the 1985 Parents Music Resource Center (PMRC) Senate hearings, Snider stated: "I was born and raised a Christian and I still adhere to those principles." [23]

In 2003, Snider's brother-in-law, Vincent Gargiulo, was murdered. [24] [25] The killer was apprehended in 2009.

Snider lived part-time in East Setauket, New York. [26] He appeared on MTV Cribs in 2005 to show his Long Island home, along with two of his four children, Shane and Cheyenne.

In 2008, he stated in a TMZ interview that he would be voting for Barack Obama because John McCain (whom he liked and supported for many years) would not acknowledge George W. Bush's mistakes that he made while in office. [27]

On July 11, 2013, after pro-choice activists sang "We're Not Gonna Take It" to protest abortion restrictions in Texas, [28] Snider tweeted that he is pro-choice, [29] and that he did not believe that being Christian and pro-choice were mutually exclusive. [30]

In the wake of teachers' strikes in West Virginia and Oklahoma, Snider dedicated "We're Not Gonna Take It" to teachers during his "Rocktopia" performance at the Broadway Theatre in New York on April 9, 2018. [31] The song had become an anthem for protesting teachers in West Virginia, Kentucky, Oklahoma and elsewhere, and Snider had tweeted his "support [of the] underpaid teacher's cause" after seeing a video of music teachers in Oklahoma performing the song. [31]

During an interview with Larry King in 2016, Snider revealed that he would be voting for Hillary Clinton in the Presidential Election.



Solo albums

Guest appearances


Other appearances in media

Related Research Articles

<i>Love Is for Suckers</i> 1987 studio album by Twisted Sister

Love Is for Suckers is the fifth studio album by the heavy metal band Twisted Sister. It was released by Atlantic Records on August 13, 1987, with the single "Hot Love" being released on August 1.

I Wanna Rock 1984 single by Twisted Sister

"I Wanna Rock" is a song written and composed by Dee Snider and performed by his band Twisted Sister. It was released on the 1984 album Stay Hungry.

Were Not Gonna Take It (Twisted Sister song) song by Twisted Sister

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<i>Big Hits and Nasty Cuts</i> 1992 compilation album by Twisted Sister

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<i>Still Hungry</i> (Twisted Sister album) 2004 studio album by Twisted Sister

Still Hungry is the sixth studio album by the American heavy metal band Twisted Sister, released in 2004. The album is a re-recording of the 1984 album Stay Hungry, with seven bonus tracks. "Never Say Never" and "Blastin' Fast & Loud", were demoed during the original 1984 sessions, completed by the classic line-up in 2001 and recorded for the release of Club Daze Volume II: Live in the Bars in 2002. "Come Back", "Plastic Money", "You Know I Cry" and "Rock 'n' Roll Saviors" are brand new 2004 studio tracks. "Heroes Are Hard to Find" was originally recorded and released in 1998 by the reunited band for the soundtrack of Strangeland, a horror movie written by and starring frontman Dee Snider based on the character Captain Howdy from "Horror-Teria".

Captain Howdy may refer to:

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