Daniel Dee Snider
(born March 15, 1955) is an American musician, radio personality, and actor. Snider is most famous for his role as the frontman of the heavy metal band Twisted Sister
in Astoria, New York, Snider grew up in nearby Baldwin and graduated from Baldwin High School in 1972. As a child he sang in a church choir, several school choruses, and Baldwin HS Concert Choir. He also was selected for the All State Chorus by singing.
In early 1976 he joined the recently formed Twisted Sister
and became the only song writer of the band thereafter.
On MTV in the 80's before Headbanger's Ball, the first Heavy Metal show to feature all metal videos was called Heavy Metal Mania. The first show aired in June 1985. Metal Mania was hosted by Dee Snider
and featured metal news, interviews with metal artists, in studio co-hosts, etc..
In the late 1980s, after Twisted Sister
was disbanded, he formed Desperado, a band featuring ex-Iron Maiden drummer Clive Burr, ex-Gillan guitarist Bernie Torme, and bassist Marc Russel. The group's only album Ace
has never been officially released but was heavily bootlegged on CD (under the title Bloodied But Unbowed).
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). Dee Snider
, John Denver, and Frank Zappa all testified against censorship and the proposed warning system. Such a system was never implemented, but the result of the trial brought about what is now the generic "Parental Advisory
: Explicit Content" label. The PMRC was initially formed by the wives of Washington DC power brokers Al Gore
(D-TN, Senate) and Secretary of State James Baker. Tipper Gore
in particular became the face of the PMRC and a public foil for Dee in the hearings. Ironically, in the 2000 presidential election cycle, Snider endorsed Vice
for office. Public statements at the time (as noted in a July 2000 Reason article) have Dee justifying the decision based on Gore
's environmental stance; however, other comments attributed to Dee quote him as saying he was backing the obvious winner.
In the 1990s, he formed Widowmaker
, with Joe Franco (good friend to Twisted Sister
, and drummed on the Love Is For Suckers album), Al Pitrelli, and Marc Russel. They recorded two albums with limited underground success, titled Blood
and Bullets, and Stand By For Pain
In the late 1990s, he 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 Dee Snider
, Derek Tailer, Charlie Mills, Keith Alexander, and Spike.
In 1988, he penned a song entitled "The Magic of Christmas Day (God
Bless Us Everyone)", 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. He has also penned the script to a sequel which has the working title of Strangeland : Disciple. As of January 2008, however, Snider was less than optimistic that it would ever see the light of day, saying in an interview with Bullz-Eye.com that he had reached a point where he should "put a sign on my website that says, 'Y‚Äôgot ten million dollars? Give me a call. I‚Äôve got the script ready to go, Robert Englund‚Äôs attached, I‚Äôm attached. If somebody‚Äôs serious and wants to make it, call me. But don‚Äôt call me ‚Äėtil you‚Äôre ready to hand the check over.'‚ÄĚ
From June 1999 to August
2002, he 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 his friend and KISS singer/bassist Gene Simmons
In 2001 he was the voice of Gol Acheron
, the main villain for the PlayStation 2 video game Jak and Daxter: The Precursor Legacy
In 2002 he rejoined with the reunited Twisted Sister
Snider played himself in the 2002 TV-movie Warning: Parental Advisory
In 2003 he appeared with actor Arnold Schwarzenegger, 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. Every year since 2004, Dee has narrated a live show known as