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Quiet Riot Drummer Reveals Stage-Four Cancer Diagnosis

Kory Grow

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Quiet Riot drummer Frankie Banali has revealed that he has been battling stage-four pancreatic cancer since this past April. Since the 2007 death of singer Kevin DuBrow, Banali has been the only member of the band’s classic lineup to continue to play with the band. He’s also been the group’s most consistent band member since 1982.

“The original prognosis was very scary,” he said in a statement posted to podcast host Mitch Lafon’s Facebook page. “I had quite a battle on my hands and it took a lot, but I am thankful to say that after several rounds of chemo and other treatments I am on the mend. The road ahead is not going to be easy but cancer has met its match and I plan to continue fighting.”

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Banali said he felt the need to address his health publicly since he had missed a few gigs in recent months. “I wish I could have been with you all at every Quiet Riot performance as this is the first time in 38 years I have ever missed a gig,” he wrote. The reason for his absences, he revealed, was that he was not allowed to fly.

“I intend to play the Quiet Riot concert at the Whisky A Go Go on Saturday October 26th and to continue touring in 2020 with Quiet Riot, so I hope to see you there,” he wrote. “I appreciate all the fans that support Quiet Riot by coming to shows and I hope you will all continue that support as well as keeping me in your thoughts and prayers.”

The Whisky gig is the only one the band currently has on its schedule.

Banali joined Quiet Riot in 1982, when DuBrow sought to reactivate it after a two-year hiatus with bassist Chuck Wright and guitarist Carlos Cavazo. The group had previously existed in the mid to late Seventies with guitarist Randy Rhoads playing with them. Rhoads later decamped for Ozzy Osbourne’s band and previous Quiet Riot bassist Rudy Sarzo later followed him; when Rhoads died in a tragic plane accident, Quiet Riot linked back up with Sarzo and they recorded Metal Health, the first heavy metal album to go to Number One on the Billboard chart.

Wright, who played bass on two Metal Health tracks but officially joined Quiet Riot in 1985 after Sarzo’s departure, is a member of the current Quiet Riot lineup. Since DuBrow’s death, the band has had five singers, the most recent of which — American Idol runner-up James Durbin — recently parted ways with the band. A previous replacement for DuBrow, Jizzy Pearl, who sang for Quiet Riot from 2013 to 2016, took over the mic stand earlier this year.

Read Frankie Banali’s full statement:

I just want to let all of my friends and fans know what’s going on with me and why I have unfortunately missed some appearances this year. Since April 17th I have been battling stage four pancreatic cancer. 

The original prognosis was very scary. I had quite a battle on my hands and it took a lot, but I am thankful to say that after several rounds of chemo and other treatments I am on the mend. The road ahead is not going to be easy but cancer has met its match and I plan to continue fighting. I wish I could have been with you all at every Quiet Riot performance as this is the first time in 38 years I have ever missed a gig.

Please know that if I had been able to fly on a plane and play a show nothing else would have stopped me. I am feeling much better and stronger now.

I intend to play the Quiet Riot concert at the Whiskey A Go Go on Saturday October 26th and to continue touring in 2020 with Quiet Riot, so I hope to see you there. I appreciate all the fans that support Quiet Riot by coming to shows and I hope you will all continue that support as well as keeping me in your thoughts and prayers. 

Peace and Love, Frankie Banali

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