Steve Stevens Says Working With Vince Neil Was A Culture Shock

Steve Stevens recently joined Eddie Trunk Podcast and talked about working with Vince Neil in his solo album ‘Exposed.’ He stated that as a musician coming from New York to the LA scene, it was a change and a culture shock working with the Mötley Crüe frontman.

After Vince Neil was fired from Mötley Crüe in 1992 and replaced by John Corabi, he took the opportunity to establish a solo career. Neil wanted to release a record that would show the world that he is his own musician and not part of Mötley Crüe anymore and hired musicians to back him up in the record. He recorded his solo album in Record Plant Los Angeles after hiring Steve Stevens, Vikki Foxx, Dave Marshall, and Robbie Crane.

Exposed‘ was released in 1993 and took its place as number 13 on the Billboard 200 chart in the US. Unfortunately, Neil was never able to reach the success he did with Mötley, but according to his solo band member Steve Stevens, they still had a great time. Stevens recently recalled working with Neil and stated that he had a culture shock coming from New York to LA’s party and rock and roll scene, especially with Vince Neil.

In addition to the LA lifestyle, Neil also pushed Stevens into playing faster and heavier, which was a different concept for the guitarist. Steve described the experience as being a ‘kid in a candy store’ and mentioned how fun it was to play heavy and pure rock and roll.

Here are Stevens’ words about working with Vince Neil:

“It was a culture shock. I was in New York, and I was signed to Warner Brothers through Atomic Playboys, and Templeman was the guy who signed me, producer of Van Halen. I got a call from Ted that said, ‘We’ve just signed Vince Neil, he’s not in Mötley Crüe. Would you be interested?’ And I said, ‘Sure, yeah. I’ll fly out.’ And it was something different than New York. It was very LA, with a lot of debaucheries a lot of drugs, sex, and rock & roll.

But I loved making the record. I’ve absolutely loved making the record with him, Vik Foxx on the drums, Robbie Crane, and Ron Nevison was the producer. So, I stand by the record. I think the record is still really good and obviously coming off the strains of Dr.Feelgood I was like, ‘Man, what an opportunity to really play heavy rock guitar.’

I remember we’d be in the studio pre-production and I’m used to Billie Idol. Guitar solos are pretty economical, it’s eight bars, and get the hell out of there. So, guitar solos, 16 bars, ‘Nah, make it longer.’ 32 bars, ‘Nah, make it longer.’ ‘Can you play faster? Can you play heavier?’ I was like a kid in a candy store as far as playing heavy rock guitar, and I had a hell of a lot of fun doing the record.”

After the release of the album, Vince Neil and his band started to tour, initially opening up for Van Halen in 1993. However, like with Mötley Crüe, Neil also had problematic relationships with his band members, and it got violent. Robbie Cane left the band after he had a physical fight with Neil, and Foxx was reportedly fired for stealing equipment.