Scott Ian Founding Guitarist, Anthrax, On being a Heavy Metal Dad

Scott Ian of Anthrax

“I hardly ever drink anymore, too. Maybe a couple beers or some wine with dinner. My hard drinking started to taper off around 04 or 05. Early in our relationship, Pearl and me would rage. Five nights a week, out of our f-ing minds. How we survived that I have no idea. Just glad we did. By the late 2000s and the year before she got pregnant, we were pretty much done partying. For me, bottom line was I just couldn’t take the hangovers anymore. I still love to drink; I just choose NOT to be hung-over. Can’t deal with it. It’s a combination of the agony, the pain of the hangover and the lost time. The idea of losing a day because I decided to get drunk just doesn’t balance for me anymore. I can’t balance lying on the sofa all day like a sloth. Because the hangovers go until 8 or 9 o’clock. How can you deal with that when you’ve got a kid?

I think my last grand mall hangover was New Year’s Eve, which is also my birthday, 2007, San Francisco. Losing time to the hangover is really the biggest issue of all. Having your birthday on NY Eve, you can imagine. And this year, I’m gonna be 50 and actually kinda stressed about it. I wanna go nuts but at the same time, I DON’T want to. I don’t want to feel like shit January 1st and 2nd. If I really go nuts, that’s what it is. TWO lost days. Might as well just check into Cedar’s on the 1st and get an IV for two days and start my new year like that. Just take to Cedar’s straight from the party, hook me up to the saline drip and hydrate me for two days. You know, my doctor would probably do that for me (laughs). I’m still a relatively new parent but my focus and priority and everything in my life changed so radically the day Revel was born. It sounds cliché but everything I do is for my family. Everything. Before my son, it was Pearl and I. We had an awesome time, used to say “no kids, no pets.” We did whatever we wanted whenever we wanted. We’d pick up and fly to London, take the train to Paris – because we could. And we both gave up all that. Pearl’s a performer too, and gave up say more than me ‘cause I still gotta go to work. I still travel the world with my band. She’s giving up everything. But now that Revel’s a little older Pearl’s got back into her music. She’s finishing a record now and we’re gonna give it the full push. She’ll tour if it means hiring a nanny, whatever it takes.

My whole focus now is to be as healthy and as good of a dad as I can possibly be. I see a lot my friends who are in really bad shape either its because of substances or physically they’re just way out of shape – they can’t even run in the backyard with their kids, let alone go snowboarding or surfing. I’m gonna do all that stuff! Can’t wait. This winter, we’re getting him on skis. Was just in Hawaii for a week, North Shore of Oahu, I was in the ocean with Revel, four hours a day, swimming with him. I want to be 70 and still be able to ride a snowboard when my son is 22.

“Everything I do is about longevity and remaining fit and healthy because I want to be there…for him.”

Charlie and Frankie (Anthrax drummer and bassist) – I used to never understand when kids would come before the band. I kinda got it. Right, they got kids. But when my son was born, I really got it. You don’t know until you have a child. I was always so uncomfortable and awkward with children. Couldn’t hold a baby for fear of dropping the kid and ruining a life. I never had any experience. Then I became a dad and of course, now I’m a pro (laughs). I swear, I would worry about dropping someone else’s kid all the time. “Hold the baby, Scott.” “NO.”

“Times have changed.”

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Interview by Lonn M. Friend For “The Rockstar Remedy”