Adam Lawton of MediaMikes.com recently conducted an interview with former PANTERA and current KILL DEVIL HILL bassist Rex Brown. A couple of excerpts from the chat follow below.
MediaMikes.com: What made now the right time to release this book?
Rex Brown: A friend of mine who runs Bass Player magazine in the U.K. mentioned that he was friends with a guy who writes books and that I should get in to it. At the time it was something I was not interested in at all. I figured I wasn’t dead yet, so why write a book now? After thinking about it for awhile, I figured it really did make sense to put this out now and then move on down the line. The thing that happened to Dime [late PANTERA guitarist "Dimebag" Darrell Abbott] really fucked me up. I mean, he was murdered. This was my best friend who was the best man at my wedding. I lived out of a brown bottle for a long time and doing crazy shit not knowing at the very that that’s not the way to go. I got in touch with my author and started talking about how we wanted to do this thing. I read all of the rock and roll books that come out, as it’s my passion. That’s what I want to be doing. One thing just led to another and he started writing things down and then submitting them to me. He really had to develop my slang when he put it to print, as I don’t line up in ques. I wanted to tell my side of the story, my experiences, and my truths of what went on and it is all true. My author also brought me the idea of have friends and family write various passages to help fill in some gaps. I have short term memory but my memory of the past is pretty fucking vivid. There’s collaboration and corroborating. It’s all true and that’s what I wanted the book to be about. My author really wanted me to dig and that’s what I did.
MediaMikes.com: What was it difficult looking back on some of these stories and hearing perspectives from other people involved?
Rex Brown: When I first read them, yes. When I got to know a little more about what they were trying to say, no. So it’s a yes-and-no-type answer. My sister is in this book a lot, so I called her the other day to tell her that when this thing comes out, it’s not a cookbook or a kid’s book. I told her she probably wouldn’t want to put this out to all her friends. She is 17 years older than me and didn’t lead the hippy lifestyle like I have. The book is different than most books, but it’s real. As real as it is, it’s the truth. That was something I had to explain to my 13-year-old twins. I told them they may get a little flack over this, but not to worry about it, because everything is going to be all right. This is just dad’s previous life. What I did then is definitely not what I am doing now. I have come full circle and we all grow and mature.
MediaMikes.com: Being that the book is so truthful, are you worried in any way about the backlash it may receive from fans or those mentioned in the book?
Rex Brown: I don’t give a fuck! Go write your own fucking book. This is my truth and my experience. This is the best way I knew how to tell things. I wanted to come honest and clean. I am tight with both Philip [Anselmo, former PANTERA singer] and Rita [Haney, Dimebag's longtime girlfriend], but I don’t talk to Vinnie [Paul Abbott, former PANTERA drummer and Dimebag's brother]. You have to read this book as a whole not just take a chapter here or there. You have to go from the very beginning to the very end. The ending tells its own story and there are some really fun parts to this book. I am proud of this book and I wouldn’t have put it out if I wasn’t. Of course, somewhere in my mind there is maybe 10% of me that is concerned about some dickhead behind a computer that’s going to blast on me. I am certainly not worried about it, though. I was put in the middle of so many situations during the band’s career and I never said a word to the press about it. I just did what I had to do to keep things going. It’s now time for me to tell me story. There is always the good, the bad and the ugly, and this book is not about ribbing one person more than another. It’s about making a band work and making it go through what we went through. That’s why the book is called “Official Truth”. I could have given you some bullshit book, but I didn’t. I gave everyone the fucking truth.
Read the entire interview from MediaMikes.com.