During a recent interview with Hair Metal Music, KIX guitarist Brian Forsythe spoke about why founding member, songwriter and bassist Donnie Purnell hasn’t been involved with the band since it first reunited about a decade and a half ago.
“I talked to Donnie about six months before Steve [Whiteman, vocals] initially called me,” he said. “I hadn’t talked to him in 10 years. We talked about old times and it was cool. Then, when Steve and everyone were talking about putting the band together, no one wanted Donnieinvolved, so we went with Mark [Schenker]. Donnie hasn’t spoken to any of us since except [producer] Taylor [Rhodes], who he sent a scathing e-mail to for his involvement in our new record,” Forsythe added, referring to KIX‘s 2014 comback release, “Rock Your Face Off”.
Asked what it was like writing the material for “Rock Your Face Off” without Purnell, Forsythe said: “That’s why it took us so long to finally decide to do a new record. We were worried about doing it without Donnie, and weren’t sure we could pull it off. Luckily, Mark had writen some good songs. Some were on the heavier, ‘metal’-sounding side, but we worked them out and got them sounding like KIX songs.”
He added: “My main concern was keeping it sounding like KIX, so by bringing Taylor Rhodesinto it, it made it a lot easier to achieve that.” Rhodes had previously collaborated with KIX on 1991’s “Hot Wire” album.
Whiteman recently told the “Cobras & Fire” podcast that Donnie is “a very bitter person,” who isn’t involved with the KIX reunion because “there was no need to bring in the headache, the iron fist, the guy that’s gonna rule everything and control everything.”
In 2012, Whiteman explained that Purnell was deliberately left out of KIX‘s reunion after the singer endured “the most unpleasant and nasty conversation I’ve ever had in my life” with the bassist.
Whiteman said: “There was a song Donnie and I had written that I wanted to release. I called him up so he wouldn’t be blindsided by it — and he tore into me. He called me every name in the book. He accused me of using his name and his talent and said I was taking the song from him. Right then I decided I never wanted to go through that ever again. When it came time for KIX to reform, it was our decision not to have him involved.”