GEORGE LYNCH: why I returned to using lynch mob name for solo project
Legendary DOKKEN axeman George Lynch has explained his decision to return to using the LYNCH MOB name for his solo project.
For much of the last year and a half, George had played dates around the U.S. under the name ELECTRIC FREEDOM, which he previously said was the new name of his “touring entity” after deciding to retire the LYNCH MOB band name in 2020. However, earlier this month, it was reported that LYNCH MOB was once again playing shows, with George joined in the band’s current lineup by his longtime drummer Jimmy D’Anda (BULLETBOYS) along with TANTRIC bassist Jaron Gulino, and singer Gabriel Colon.
Lynch discussed his change of heart in a new interview with Full In Bloom. He said (as transcribed by BLABBERMOUTH.NET): “(LYNCH MOB is) just a brand I’d established for decades, obviously — over three decades. Nothing’s perfect, and I’ve gotta just live with the fact that it has some negative connotations that I probably have to continue explaining for the rest of my life, and I don’t mind doing that. But it is a brand that I built, and I’m just gonna stick with it. As far as a marketing thing and a brand thing and a business thing and a working thing, and it keeps my band guys working and it keeps the fans happy, it makes sense.
“I really felt, when I adopted ELECTRIC FREEDOM, that I was really going against the grain more than keeping the old name,” he laughed. “I really felt a lot more resistance than I’d ever felt having LYNCH MOB; that was actually the reality of it. Nobody really liked it. And I didn’t like living with that; it was just kind of uncomfortable. It’s, like, ‘Okay, well, we’ve just gotta put up with George‘s decision here to do this, but nobody agrees with it. We’re not comfortable with it.’ It has a sort of disingenuous ring to it. As much as my motives were pure — I felt honest — it just never caught on, on all kinds of levels.”
Asked if he had gotten any negative comments from fans over the LYNCH MOB name, George said: “I may have had a few in the 35 years it’s been around, but I’d say probably the most negative criticism I’ve had of it came from me. So I was my own worst critic with the name, especially in later years. I got a lot more criticism with ELECTRIC FREEDOM.
“It’s a brand,” George explained. “I mean, nobody wants Coke to change their recipe. Just stay the same, and that’s what you built over the years. Why would you…? ‘Why would you change it’ is a rhetorical question. Why I’m probably not more successful in some ways in my career is because I followed my aspirations musically rather than sometimes be smart about just sticking to the plan. (Laughs)”
The news of LYNCH MOB‘s return was first reported by the Metal Sludge web site on October 1.
In August 2020, Lynch announced that he was ending LYNCH MOB due to the racial insensitivity of the moniker, saying he would no longer record or perform under that name.
A few months later, Lynch offered a lengthy explanation for why he was ending LYNCH MOB during an interview with George Dionne of Metal Express Radio. Addressing questions about why it took him three decades to call it quits with LYNCH MOB, George said: “When we first formed the band in ’89, the name had sort of already been around. While I was in DOKKEN, it’s what I called our little group of guitar fans — I had picks made; it was kind of a little subculture within DOKKEN. When we started working on developing and building the band after DOKKEN broke up, that was just the name that we always thought we’d use, ’cause it was a perfect fit — it’s my name, and it describes it pretty well. And, of course, the negative connotations were always there, and I was aware of ’em, but not as aware as I probably should have been. (Laughs)
“I had made numerous attempts over the decades to kind of let that name go and had walked that back for multiple reasons — usually because of business considerations,” he continued. “For instance, if you try to go out on a tour and not use the name, promoters aren’t gonna be happy with you changing it. People aren’t gonna know who you are. They’re not gonna show up, because what’s THE GEORGE LYNCH EXPERIENCE, or whatever you call it. Or record labels are not interested, because it’s a brand that they can count on and sell a certain many albums or whatever.
“For instance, the LYNCH MOB record ‘Smoke This’ that came out, I think, in ’99 or 2000, that was not supposed to be a LYNCH MOB record; that really wasn’t anything to do with LYNCH MOB. At the end of the day, after the record was done and we were delivering it to the label, they insisted on using that name as insurance. And if I hadn’t agreed to that, we wouldn’t have had a record. That’s the kind of pressure I’m talking about.
“But then, with the onset of everything that’s happened in the last year, I didn’t have that kind of pressure anymore,” George added. “I could take it or leave it at this point. And I didn’t really feel comfortable with it; I didn’t feel comfortable with the name. ‘Cause I’m a very progressive person politically, and it just so flies in the face of everything I believe in, and it makes it hard. It makes it hard to have relationships with people and explain yourself, and I got tired of rationalizing it. I think the music is bigger than that, and it’s had a great run.
“Another reason, too, is the band fell apart again. The band has fallen apart so many times, I can’t even count. And it was just, like, ‘No more Oni (Logan, vocals), no more Brian Tichy (drums), no more this guy, no more that guy. Oh, great. Now what do I do?’ It’s, like, ‘Okay, build another band from scratch, call it LYNCH MOB?’ No. How about just build something new? It gives me a lot more freedom to basically play anything I want live… I can go out and play everything from my catalog — new, old, covers, jams, you name it, and go deep and have fun and change it up every night.”
Oni first hooked up with LYNCH MOB in 1990, but exited the group after the release of its first album, only to rejoin the outfit in the late 2000s.
Logan is featured on five of LYNCH MOB‘s eight albums, including 1990’s “Wicked Sensation”, as well as 2009’s “Smoke And Mirrors”, 2014’s “Sun Red Sun”, 2015’s “Rebel” and 2017’s “The Brotherhood”.
In August 2021, LYNCH MOB celebrated the 30th anniversary of “Wicked Sensation” with a special limited print/deluxe edition of the album. “Wicked Sensation Reimagined” features re-worked and re-recorded versions of the LP’s classic songs, and was made available via Rat Pak Records.