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Quiet Riot Biography


Home > Music > Q > Quiet Riot > Biography


Birth Place: Los Angeles, California, United States
Years Active: 1973-2007
Genres: Heavy Metal, Hard Rock


Quiet Riot is an American heavy metal band. They were founded in 1973 by guitarist Randy Rhoads and bassist Kelly Garni, under the original name Mach 1, before changing the name to Little Women and finally Quiet Riot in May 1975. The original line-up featured lead vocalist Kevin DuBrow, Rhoads, Garni, and drummer Drew Forsythe. Their current lineup features no original members from the Randy Rhoads era, and consists of lead vocalist Mark Huff, drummer Frankie Banali, bassist Chuck Wright, and guitarist Alex Grossi.

Quiet Riot were one of the more successful hard rock acts in Los Angeles in the late 1970s, but were nonetheless unable to procure a US recording contract. By 1977 they were able to secure a deal with Sony, but their records would be released only in Japan.

The original four members recorded their debut album “Quiet Riot,” in 1977. Their second album “Quiet Riot II,” was recorded at The Record Plant and released in Japan in 1978. Once recording was completed, bassist Kelly Garni left the band.

In 1979, guitarist Randy Rhoads joined Ozzy Osbourne's new band. DuBrow and Drew tried to keep the band together following Rhoads' departure, with the addition of guitarist Greg Leon and former Suite 19 bassist Gary Van Dyke. During this period of 1980-1982, the band changed its name to DuBrow and also played shows with former Gamma drummer Skip Gillette.

Later, DuBrow attempted to reform Quiet Riot. None of the other original members were interested. Carlos Cavazo, whom DuBrow had previously played with in a band called Snow, joined as lead guitarist. Rudy Sarzo re-joined the band on bass, and his friend, drummer Frankie Banali, completed the lineup.

In September 1982, with help from producer Spencer Proffer, they were signed to CBS Records in America. In 1983, their American debut album “Metal Health” was released. Their two previous albums, have still not been released in North America, despite the band's subsequent success. In August 1983, Quiet Riot's second single "Cum On Feel the Noize" was released. Their cover of the 1973 Slade hit spent two weeks at #5 on the Billboard Hot 100 Singles chart in November 1983. It was the first heavy metal song to make the Top 5 on the Hot 100. The success of the single helped carry “Metal Health” to the top of Billboard 200 Albums chart, making it the first American heavy metal debut album to ever reach #1. Quiet Riot was the first heavy metal band to have a Top 5 hit and a #1 album in the same week. The “Metal Health” album would ultimately sell over 6 million copies in the U.S.

The group's follow-up, “Condition Critical,” was released in 1984. This release included yet another Slade cover, the single, "Mama Weer All Crazee Now." Reportedly frustrated over the sophomore release's failure to duplicate the success of its predecessor, DuBrow outspokenly began expressing his opinion in the heavy metal press that many bands on the L.A. metal scene owed their success to what he saw as the doors opened for them by Quiet Riot. He went as far as comparing his band to The Beatles. DuBrow's verbal assaults angered many of Quiet Riot's musical contemporaries, and alienated fans.

Rudy Sarzo quit the group in January 1985. He resurfaced in Whitesnake two years later, in time for their hugely successful 1987 tour. Sarzo was replaced in Quiet Riot by Chuck Wright (formerly of Giuffria), who had previously contributed bass to two songs on “Metal Health.” The group also temporarily added a keyboardist, John Purdell, for their 1986 tour.

Purdell appeared on their next release, “QRIII,” in 1986, another commercial disappointment. Fed up with DuBrow's antics, the rest of Quiet Riot fired him from his own band in February 1987 and replaced him with former Rough Cutt vocalist Paul Shortino, leaving no original members. Chuck Wright was also fired. The group then recruited Sean McNabb for the bassist slot.

The revamped band released their second self-titled album, “Quiet Riot,” in October 1988. It failed to return the band to its commercial glory. After a tour that ended in Hawaii in April 1989, the band members went their separate ways.

A show from the tour was documented and later released on a DVD entitled “'89 Live in Japan.”. Sean McNabb joined House of Lords in 1991, where he ironically replaced Chuck Wright, the bass player that he also replaced in Quiet Riot. Kevin DuBrow subsequently fought in court to keep control of the band's name.

Having won the rights to the band's name, DuBrow teamed up with 21 year old English born blues guitarist Sean Manning, bassist Kenny Hillery, and drummer Pat Ashby to reform Quiet Riot. Initially using the moniker Little Women to tour under (the name Rhoads and DuBrow were using in the 1970s before settling on Quiet Riot) to avoid any adverse publicity, Dubrow and Manning compiled songs for a new album, which would eventually become the 1993 album “Terrified.” The band played venues throughout America until 1990 when Manning left to join the band Hurricane.

As the nineties began, tempers had cooled between former bandmates Carlos Cavazo and Kevin Dubrow, and they started to communicate again. They eventually formed the band Heat in 1990 with bassist Kenny Hillery and drummer Bobby Rondinelli. They reverted back to the Quiet Riot name the following year and released the aforementioned “Terrified” in 1993 with Frankie Banali rejoining on drums. Quiet Riot, with Chuck Wright again on bass, toured in 1994 in support of “Terrified.”

That same year, DuBrow released “The Randy Rhoads Years,” a compilation featuring remixed tracks from Quiet Riot's two Japan-only releases along with previously unreleased material, many of which featured newly recorded vocals.

The band released “Down to the Bone” in 1995 and a “Greatest Hits” album in 1996. Bassist Kenny Hillery, who had left the group in 1994, committed suicide in 1996. After that, Rudy Sarzo joined up again in 1997, and the band continued touring.

The group, now featuring the “Metal Health” lineup again, released “Alive and Well” in 1999 which featured new songs and several re-recorded hits. They followed this up with “Guilty Pleasures” in 2001, which also featured the same lineup.

Quiet Riot officially broke up again in September 2003. Kevin DuBrow released his first solo album, “In for the Kill” in May 2004, which was followed by the announcement of a Quiet Riot reunion in October 2004. That line-up included DuBrow, Banali, Wright, and new guitarist Alex Grossi. In December 2005, guitarist Tracii Guns of LA Guns briefly worked with the Quiet Riot lineup. Guns left less than a month later after one rehearsal due to musical differences.

In early 2006 Chuck Wright and Alex Grossi left the band. Other members of Quiet Riot during this era have included guitarists Billy Morris and Neil Citron, and bassists Sean McNabb and Wayne Carver. Ex-The Firm and Blue Murder bassist Tony Franklin has worked in the studio with Quiet Riot.

Quiet Riot released “Rehab” in 2006 with a lineup of DuBrow and Banali, with Tony Franklin and Neil Citron. Former Deep Purple bassist and singer Glenn Hughes made a guest vocal appearance on the album.

In late 2007 Kevin DuBrow died of a cocaine overdose. Despite his previous insistence that Quiet Riot could never return as a live performing entity, in September 2010 Frankie Banali announced a new version of Quiet Riot: himself on drums, Chuck Wright on bass, Alex Grossi on guitar and newcomer Mark Huff on vocals (formerly of Van Halen tribute band 5150).