Sully Erna - Vocals
Full Name: Salvatore Paul Erna
Astrological Sign: Aquarius
Birth Date: February 7, 1968 - Feet first!
Birth Place: Lawrence, MA
Siblings: Sister Maria and a half-sister Elizabeth
Last School Attended: Lawrence High
Has Lived In: MA, NC, GA, and FL
Marital Status: Single
Children: One daughter, Skylar Brooke. Born December 17, 2001.
Shoe size: "A full size 9."
Sully started playing drums at 3 years old.
Sully's dad is a professional trumpet player.
Sully's great grandfather was a famous composer in Sicily where every year they honor his birthday and his pictures are hung in a museum.
When Sully was little, his dad was in a jazz band and would fall asleep in the members' guitar cases. (Spin, December 2000)
Drummer that inspires Sully:
John Bonham [Led Zeppelin]. Also likes Neal Peart [Rush] and Joey Kramer [Aerosmith]. (Guitar One, December 2000)
Favorite Bands: Dead Can Dance, Sevendust (like.com)
Favorite Singer: Lisa Gerrard
First Concert: Aerosmith at the Boston Garden in 1982 (like.com)
First album bought: Aerosmith Rocks (hottopic.com)
Strip Mind, Meliah Rage, The Fighting Cocks, The Scam (early Godsmack).
On his vocal skills:
"I was really bad. I was so bad at first that when I was doing vocal tracks, Robbie would just shake his head and walk out of our studio and leave for two days. He wouldn't come back." (Metal Edge, May 2001)
"Every time Tommy doesn't show up for soundcheck I'm the first one to jump on the kit and mess around with the guys. I do miss it." (Drum, March 2001)
What Sully's parents do:
"My mom's been a nurse her whole life. My father worked with computers and stuff like that." (hardrocklive.com)
On his mom:
"...My mom's been with me since day one. She's always supported me. Never discouraged me. Shipped my drums all over the country. She's always been there for me. We have a really good relationsip." (hardrocklive.com)
ON HIS CHILDHOOD
"I grew up in a very poor, violent neighborhood, Lawrence, Mass., about twenty minutes north of Boston. My mom raised me and my sister single-handedly. We had it rough. We were poor. We lived in a three-tenement home with my relatives upstairs. The streets were always filled with sirens and gunshots and car chases, fights and drugs. I wouldn't change it for the world, but it was a violent, rough upbringing. It was survival." (Rollingstone.com 12-2000)
"Ninety-eight percent of my gray hairs are from Sully," says Connie Erna. "He drove me crazy, but he's matured. (Spin, December 2000)
Sully admits that "I've been pretty damn close to prison. I've done jail a couple times, but never full-blown prison." (Revolver, Winter 2000)
"Of course. Ive never, to this dayas much as Ive hated certain times in my lifegot down on anything Ive done in my live, because I actually cherish it. Its important that I joined all these bands. Its important that I moved to all these different states. Its like connecting the dots. Because I moved to North Carolina in like 85 with my mom, I met some bands that I played covers in. Because I was down there, I met people like Shannon [Larkin] from Amen, who was playing in Wrathchild America, and because I met him, he referred me to Meliah Rage when I got back home." (Metal Edge 06-2002)
First thing did with money from
the band's success:
Sully bought his mom a new Cadillac. He bought his best friend (and drum tech) a Harley. He gave his sister and his father and his wife money. And, he bought a house for himself. (Hit Parader, April 2001)
On his daughter:
"Ive been a daddy for two-and-a-half months! Shes a gift from heaven! Its amazing. Everything you hear about it changing your life is true. It instantly changes your life and its so awesome, its not something that you mind changing your life for. This baby comes out, and its you. Its a little you, and you go, Fuck, I made that! And now shed getting to the point where shes really alert, shes starting to laugh and smile, she knows my voice, and she turns her head and looks when I come in the room. Shes just so beautiful. The first morning after she was born was the first morning in my whole life where I woke up and didnt think of myself. I dont mean that in an egotistical way, we just all wake up and go, Ive got to do this, Ive got to do that That first morning my eyes opened, I went, Baby! Wheres the baby? its the first time I woke up and didnt think about something I had to do, you know? But youre not going to hear any fuckin ballads coming out about! I aint pulling that Creed shit!" (Metal Edge 06-2002)
MEMORABLE TOUR MOMENTS
Most memorable celebrity encounter:
Getting to sing "Heaven and Hell" with Black Sabbath during a soundcheck on the Ozzfest tour. (drdrew.com)
Memorable stage dive:
"There was one time that really scared me. I don't remember where it was. I think it was Cedar Rapids that I had jumped in and the crowd kind of lost their balance when they had me up in the air so I fell in a hole. The crowd started to collapse over my legs and I felt like the whole arena started to fall in over me. It got me nervous because I felt like I was going to get crushed and suffocated down there. Security ended up swimming out there and pulling me up and getting me back out..." (Shoutweb.com 11-2000)
Cross on his middle finger:
"When I was 14, I hid in the welding booth at school, stoned out of my mind! I stole some India ink from the art department, wrapped a needle in some thread, and started stabbing myself." (Savage Magazine)
Most of his tattoo work done by Dana Thornell and Pat LaFontaine of Tattoo Fever in Pelham, NH. His left arm fully sleeved. His right arm half sleeved. Triple X is tattooed on his lower back, there is a portrait of Pinhead from Hellraiser on his right thigh and he plans to have more work done on chest, legs and back. (Savage)
That is Animal from the Muppet Show tattooed on his right arm. It was his first tattoo. (Yahoo chat)
Sully's XXX tattoo on his back is because he's a big porn fan.
JOBS BEFORE GODSMACK
Would he would be doing if not
in a band:
"I would be a bill collector, 'cause that I was doing. ...This was collections for an attorney. So I was doing, like, mortgages and credit cards and student loans, and that kind of thing..." (hottopic.com)
Before Godsmack was signed:
"I was working for an attorney doing collections. I was the pain in the ass that called you about your credit cards." (Alternative Press, November 2000)
Worst day job:
"Scrubbing the bellies of airplanes. That was about ten or fifteen years ago. I lasted about an hour and a half on the job. As soon as lunchtime came, I quit." (drdrew.com)
Favorite Record store: Newbury Comics in Boston (like.com)
Favorite Mall store: Circuit City (like.com)
Talk radio host/station you like: Mistress Carrie on WAAF 107.3 in Boston (like.com)
Favorite Meal to eat on tour: Pasta and Chicken (KROQ)
Best show on TV right now (2000): The Sopranos (KROQ)
Favorite actor: Al Pacino (KROQ)
Favorite Actress: Liv Tyler (KROQ)
Favorite horror/vampire movie: Interview with a Vampire (hardrocklive.com)
Favorite beer: Corona
Favorite soda: Canada Dry ginger ale
Favorite sport: Boxing
Hangover Helper: Pedialyte. It is on their tour riders. (Rolling Stone)
Sully opened his club, Dorsia, in New York City on West 19th Street on Halloween (October 31, 2002). The club is named after novelist Bret Easton Ellis' fictional status-symbol restaurant.
Sully has been writing down stories to include in an autobiography that he may put out in the future. (penthouse.com 05-2001)
Moment in studio that stands out:
"Having wheelie contest on Zappies. We are in a really long warehouse recording our new album. Tony kicked all our asses." (Like.com)
Sully is openly Wiccan, practicing under Laurie Cabot
Additional information credits: Sexnrocknroll.com and SullyErna.org.
ALSO- SULLY IS WRITING IS OWN
AUTOBIOGRAPHY WHICH WILL BE RELEASED WITH THEIR 3RD ALBUM IN SPRING 2003
June 4, 2000
Name: Salvatore Erna
Astrological Sign: Aquarius
Sully has lived a musical lifestyle from the beginning, starting formal percussion training when he was only 3. He continued formal classes until he was 11. His father was also a musician, being a trumpet player in a jazz band when Sully was young. When he got older he played drums in a few bands before stepping up to the mic for Godsmack, including Strip Mind (Sire/Reprise Records) and Meliah Rage (Epic Records).
Although raised in a Catholic family, Sully has been a practicing Wiccan under Celtic Witch Laurie Cabot for over a decade. Godsmack recently released the video "Voodoo," which contains an actual Wiccan ritual performed by Laurie and several members of her Coven. The video was filmed at Hammond Castle, near Salem, Mass.
Some memorable quotes from Sully:
About Godsmack's recent success
and their debut album's Platinum certification:
"None of us were raised with money so we really don't know what that lifestyle entails anyways. We like our McDonalds and our Budweiser - the basics!"
About Wal-Mart pulling "Godsmack"
of its shelves, and the release of an 'edited' version for chain store retail:
"If I wanna say fuck you I'm gonna say fuck you, if you beep it out it's not my problem. I still said fuck you."
"They should be more worried about getting crack off the streets and stopping wars instead of Rock & Roll, Rock & Roll isn't gonna hurt anyone!"
About the inspiration for some
of the songs on 'Godsmack':
"I had a really bad relationship that I fucked up...and so I really beat myself up over it. One girl was the right one, and then another entered my life who turned out to be the devil in disguise."
About success and their 'rock star'
"I just always knew. I mean, I quit school for it. I lost relationsips over it. I sacrificed having an apartment and nice cars when all my friends were graduating high school and getting all this stuff, and I was still looking like the loser, schlepping off my parents. It's in my blood, and I just could never let it go."
Talking about his beliefs:
"This is the book. This is the way. Believe it or go to hell" Fuck that. And who knows? I could be wrong. Maybe when I die I could go to purgatory and there could be Jesus going, "See? We tried to tell you the whole time. You fucked up, now go to hell."
His thoughts on making the change
from drummer to frontman:
"I'm finding out new things about myself. It's easy to hide behind the drums when a gig isn't going well. But when twelve people show up and you're in the front, you have to control things."
Some random facts and rumors:
Sully was an altar boy for his Catholic church as a kid.
He says his favorite food is lobster.
The necklace Sully wears all the time is a Celtic rune called Kano.
After Strip Mind broke up, Sully spent some time working as a bill collector for an attorney before forming Godsmack
Godsmack was originally named The Scam.
I hear that his beer of choice is Corona
Sully said he'd like to learn to play the sax. He also plays guitar, keyboards and harmonica.
I read that Sully has been touring and playing with cover bands since he was 15.
The X X X tattoo on his back is there because he is a big fan of the porn industry.
He once played rums in a bar band called 'The Fighting Cocks'.
He said that Al Pacino is his favorite actor and that 'Scarface' was his favorite movie.
His favorite soda is Canada Dry ginger ale. I've heard that he requires it to be in the dressing rooms at the venues for gigs.
His favorite sport is boxing. I heard that he once stopped a show long enough to find out who won the Tyson fight that night.
Sully says that he'd like to branch out into other fields in the music industry, such as producing. As most know, he produced most of the self-titled album himself and had a hand in the mixing as well.
© 1999, 2000 Kal Julian/Cassandra
Grindle and SullyErna.org Productions. All Rights Reserved.