As a wrestling superstar or a musician, Chris Jericho is always up for doing something creative that produces headlines.
Not one to let a pandemic get to him, Jericho jumped at the chance to join Kuarantine, a Kiss cover band that covers on the years 1983 to 1996 with drummer Kent Slucher (Luke Bryan), guitarist Joe McGinness (Klassik ’78) and bassist PJ Farley (Trixter).
“Only in a pandemic could you form a non-’80s makeup Kiss cover band with the guitarist from Kiss. We’re four guys who all really enjoy that era of Kiss; a forgotten era in the land of ‘Kisstory,’” Jericho says.
“They have all of these great tunes from ’83 to ’96 that no one’s really focused on. We were ready to do that. It came together very easily. It was very organic.”
Kuarantine was founded by Slucher, who sent the drum parts to the Kiss song “No No No” to Jericho and asked him to guess the song. The band sent its cover of “No No No” to Kiss’ Gene Simmons, who liked the song. He sent it to his guitarist, Bruce Kulick. The axeman joined Kuarantine for the next single, “Heart of Chrome.”
This time, Jericho played the song for Kiss’ Paul Stanley, who said the singer was “pulling off quite the task.”
“‘Heart of Chrome’ is a very hard song to sing,” he says. “I’ve been singing that song for 28 years, since ‘Revenge’ came out. I’ve always loved that song. It was my suggestion to do it. It’s high and in my range. I know the nuances. ‘No No No’ was harder. I never sang it before, and I wasn’t the biggest fan of it until we actually recorded it.”
In addition to his wrestling career—first with World Wrestling Entertainment and now with All Elite Wrestling—Jericho is the lead singer of Fozzy, which will release its eighth full-length album this fall and features its latest single “Nowhere To Run.”
Jericho also hosts “The Rock Of Jericho,” a weekly radio show on SiriusXM Octane and the “Talk Is Jericho” podcast.
For Kuarantine, Jericho surrounded himself with top-notch touring musicians. Slucher has backed Bryan for 12 years in small clubs and giant stadiums. McGinness is a rising country singer/guitarist, who has shared the stage with artists such as Old Dominion, Florida Georgia Line and Granger Smith, and is also a member of Klassik ’78, a digital tribute to ’70s KISS. Farley rose to fame in the New Jersey-based gold-selling rock band Trixter, which toured with Kiss, Poison, Scorpions and others.
“When you get a guy like Kent who’s known for being a great live drummer, it’s cool,” Jericho says. “He has a rock background. In Nashville, those guys often have their own session musicians. They don’t use their own guys in the studio. He’s dying to do some of his own stuff to really show off his chops. Recording ‘No No No,’ he said, ‘My legs are killing me from the double bass drums. There’s not a lot of double bass in a Luke Bryan show.
“He wants to let loose and do what he can do. For me, I don’t sing like this in Fozzy. They don’t have super high vocals. It’s fun for me as a singer and doing ‘Heart of Chrome’ in the original key and knock it out of the part is awesome.”
As for Farley, Jericho says he has “street cred” because he toured with Kiss as a member of Trixter.
“One of the pros of a pandemic and lockdown is a lot of people found other kindred spirits to be creative with, ipso facto bands to record songs with,” Jericho says.