Bassist Rudy Sarzo has announced he will return to Quiet Riot after an 18-year absence from the veteran metal band.
“I am returning home,” Sarzo told Eddie Trunk on SiriusXM on Monday (August 2nd), “going home to Quiet Riot in the beginning of 2022, next year.”
“Next year marks 50 years of my journey with Quiet Riot,” he added (as transcribed by Blabbermouth), “because that’s when I met and I started playing with [late drummer] Frankie Banali, another founding member of the Metal Health version of Quiet Riot. To me, that was a turning point [for me] as a musician.”
Sarzo first joined Quiet Riot in 1978, and played on the band’s influential 1983 album Metal Health. Bolstered by a hit single — an arena-ready cover of Slade’s “Cum on Feel the Noise” — the LP became the first metal album to hit No. 1 on the Billboard 200, paving the way for the ’80s glam metal explosion.
Over the years, Sarzo has had a number of high-profile gigs. After the first incarnation of Quiet Riot disbanded in 1979, he joined Ozzy Osbourne’s band in 1981 on the recommendation of one-time Quiet Riot member Randy Rhoads. The bassist then returned to Quiet Riot for Metal Health, staying on until 1985. After that, he joined Whitesnake in 1987 and played with that band until 1994.
In 1997, Sarzo rejoined Quiet Riot before exiting in 2003. Bringing things up to speed, longtime on-and-off bassist Chuck Wright — who twice took over for Sarzo — graciously stepped aside so Sarzo can return in 2022. Wright will instead focus on his solo work and his regular participation in the “Ultimate Jam Night” residency show at the Whisky A Go-Go.
Sarzo said that the Banali had wished for Sarzo to rejoin the band before the drummer’s passing in August of last year.
“[Banali’s wife Regina] expressed to me that Frankie wanted me to come back to the band, that he wanted to have a founding member there in the band,” Sarzo recounted. “So, we talked about that.”
Sarzo continued: “I was already traumatized by Frankie’s passing, so it was a decision that I had to take a lot of time to think about it — let the mourning period [pass]. I had to do that. So, the time came when I was ready to accept the reality, that it’s our responsibility, of us left behind, to carry on with the legacy and celebrate it. So that’s when I decided. I said, ‘Okay, it’s time for me to come home.'”
Quiet Riot formally thanked Wright for his many years as a member of the band. He performed on the hit “Metal Health (Band Your Head)” and helped co-write the QRIII LP. When it wasn’t Sarzo holding down the low end for Quiet Riot, it was often Wright on bass.
Listen to a snippet of Sarzo’s interview with Trunk below.