Rikki Rockett


Rikki Rockett: Drums, percussion, backing vocals Real name: Richard Allan Ream Albums: All Poison albums Rikki and Bret hooked up when Rikki came over to cut Bret's sister's hair. Rikki was with the band from the very beginning, and has been on every album. He has several side projects besides drumming; he is also into creating comic books, web sites, and clothing lines. 1978 - 80 Spectres. My first semi-pro band. We played parties, high schools, roller-skating arenas,VFW halls and finally bars and clubs. Bret became the singer in late '79' and we began to find our niche' among all the covers we played. Late nights and day gigs weren't enough to make it happen. We started to become our own agents. We also made much of our own gear including PA speaker enclosures, lighting rigs and pyro blast cannons. We started to actually get paid once in a while and began to attract girls. There was no turning back! 1982 - 84 Poison. After many discussions with the other members of Spectres, Bret and I decided in a parking lot one day that we needed to do what we always wanted to see in a band. We wanted high energy rock coupled with all of our glitter influences, pop songs with a punk edge and a stage show that would make Kiss proud. We began looking for the third member.


Bobby Dall was just leaving a Zeppelin cover band when I had heard that there was a guy willing to do anything to make it. He was a guitarist turned bass player and had black hair. If he had the right attitude, that's all we cared about. If he couldn't play that well, he'd learn. We were sick of the jaded litter in our small town. Bret and I jammed with Bobby for fifteen minutes and knew he was right. He helped change our minds about how we did things and Poison was born a half hour later. In an answer to an ad in the paper, Matt Smith walked into our lives. He sounded like Joe Perry and in a time when everybody sounded like K.K. Downing, we were stoked! Poison played everywhere and anywhere. Small bars, clubs, opening gigs and our "ace in the hole"... the infamous skating-rink concerts. Poison was first called the Kidz and then changed to Paris. Paris became Poison in 1984 when we moved to the West Coast. 1984 Poison had to move. We weren't the nice little clubbing band that PA and Maryland wanted us to be. Hard rock was on the rise and it was all coming from the West Coast. We wanted to be original and play our own material. The clubs wanted cover songs and people to drink a lot of beer. We left for California in March of '84' in a van that was converted from an old ambulance. It was "sink or swim". We had $800 dollars between us and that ran out fast. We lived hand to mouth and knocked on every door. We had our gear and each other. ( At the time I had a 1981 Pearl kit and a mixed array of cymbals with a 1972 Slingerland snare. ) We also had a drum riser that we had stolen from a high school back in PA. We wrote songs, hustled gigs, put flyers up everywhere, spray painted walls, wrote lies about ourselves in women's restrooms and practiced. 1986 Poison had been turned down by every record label at least twice even though we were the top drawing band in Los Angeles by now. We were working off a demo that Jim Faraci had produced and got financed through Atlantic Records (Atlantic passed on us by the way). We finally got a break from an Indie Label called Enigma. We made our first record in twelve days with $30,000. Herman Rarebell from the Scorpions lent me a Ludwig kit for the record. (Thanks Herman!) I changed my name officially to Rikki Rockett and considered myself as finally "going pro". Mike Morse from Zildian Cymbals gave me my first endorsement deal (Thanks for believing in me Mike!) and I played Zildjian up until recently. (I recently signed with Paiste Cymbals.) I was still playing the Pearl kit. Late 1986 we hit the road in a camper with Quiet Riot. (Quiet Riot had a tour bus). With the exception of Frankie Banalli the drummer, we were treated like shit on that tour. (Thanks Frankie for making it bearable.) 1987 - 1999 What can I say, it's been an unbelievable road and life that I have led so far. Poison has taken me around the world eight times and allowed me to express myself both as a drummer and a songwriter. After seven records selling more than 17 million copies and 12 top ten hits there are still people who doubt Poison. I've been doubted all my life and I still have what I really care about to show for it... my career as a musician! I can't control the press or people's perceptions about me or Poison, but I can control my music and my drumming. To this, I am dedicated.