Satchel (musician)

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Satchel performing with Steel Panther in 2017
Satchel performing with Steel Panther in 2017
Background information
Birth nameRussell John Parrish
Also known as
  • Rikki Ratchet
Born (1970-11-24) November 24, 1970 (age 52)
Redwood City, California, U.S.
OriginLos Angeles, California, U.S.
Years active1992–present
LabelsUniversal Republic
Member ofSteel Panther

Russell John Parrish (born November 24, 1970), better known as Satchel, is an American musician. He is the lead guitarist for the comedic glam metal band Steel Panther.

Early life[edit]

Russell John Parrish was born in Redwood City, California. He graduated from the Guitar Institute of Technology at the Musicians Institute in Hollywood in 1989.[citation needed]


After graduating, Parrish became an instructor through the early 1990s while playing with Racer X offshoot Bad Dog with vocalist Jeff Martin and The Electric Fence[1] with Martin on drums and Paul Gilbert alternating guitar and bass. When Paul Gilbert joined Mr. Big, Parrish rented a room in Gilbert's Los Angeles home and house-sat for him when Gilbert would go on tour, simultaneously recording demos in Gilbert's home studio.[2] He has worked extensively with Gilbert and has writing credits on several Paul Gilbert tracks.[3] Parrish is seen playing bass (alongside Jeff Martin on drums) in the tuning section of Gilbert's "Terrifying Guitar Trip" video.

He played guitar for Jeff Pilson's band, War & Peace, appearing on the Time Capsule album, a collection of demos released on Shrapnel Records. After the breakup of War & Peace, Parrish was playing in a Thin Lizzy cover band when Jeff Martin introduced him to Judas Priest singer Rob Halford, resulting in Parrish joining Halford's band Fight and recording the War of Words album.[4][5]

Upon exiting Fight he joined Cleveland's Outta The Blue, a local glam metal band that closed their show with Racer X covers, and who later became The Szuters. In 1995, Parrish played guitar in Kevin Gilbert's touring band in support of Gilbert's Thud album. He can be seen performing with Gilbert on Welcome to Joytown – Thud Live at the Troubadour, a DVD and CD released in 2009, documenting the band's 1995 concert at The Troubador in Los Angeles. In 1996, Parrish played guitar with Sebastian Bach on the song "Rock Bottom" for an Ace Frehley tribute album, Spacewalk (A Salute to Ace Frehley).[6] From 2002 to 2006, he also played guitar in a Van Halen tribute band with future Steel Panther bandmate Ralph Saenz aka (Michael Starr) called The Atomic Punks. Around the same time, he was in a Rush cover band called Moving Pictures with Atomic Punks drummer Scott Patterson. In the early 2000s, he was the leader of his own band, The Thornbirds, with Darren Leader (future Steel Panther drummer Stix Zadinia), Jeff Duncan, and occasional Steel Panther songwriter Dean Cameron.

In 2000, Parrish was simultaneously playing in various bands and acting in the production "Rockalypse Now", a play written by Dean Cameron.[7] Around this time, he and Ralph Saenz started glam metal cover band Metal Shop as the characters Rikki Ratchet and Michael Diamond, respectively, and appeared in a Discover card commercial as "Danger Kitty", a fictional one-hit-wonder band that spends all their royalty money on opulence and goes bankrupt.[8] In 2003, Metal Shop (now renamed to Metal Skool) released their debut album, Hole Patrol, and began incorporating original songs into their live sets. The "classic" Steel Panther lineup was also cemented by this point, with Lexxi Foxx (real name Travis Haley) on bass and Stix Zadinia (real name Darren Leader) on drums, and with the Rikki Ratchet and Michael Diamond aliases being replaced with Satchel and Michael Starr, respectively. Six years later, the band renamed to Steel Panther and released their first album under the name, entitled Feel the Steel. They have become successful worldwide, with numerous celebrity fans and selling out arenas and festivals, including Download Festival in the UK.

Parrish also appeared with Corey Taylor in the Ronnie James Dio tribute album entitled "This Is Your Life" on the track Rainbow in the Dark.


In his early days, Parrish used a white Ibanez RG770 with sharktooth inlays as his primary guitar. During the Fight era, he primarily played a Heartfield/Fender Talon and was endorsed by Fender.[citation needed] Parrish endorsed Kramer Guitars during early Steel Panther, utilizing the Pacer model into EVH 5150 III 100 watt amplifiers through EVH Cabs. He ran his Kramer Pacer to his amp through a Line 6 G90 Wireless Relay system.[citation needed]

In 2014 Kramer released a signature model featuring both a yellow leopard paint and purple leopard paint. It has the same body as a pacer vintage but has one volume knob, a Seymour Duncan SH-4 and SH-2.[citation needed] In 2017, he was endorsed by Charvel.[9]

In July 2018, the "Pussy Melter", a delay toneprint (preset) which had been manufactured by TC Electronic in an endorsement deal with Satchel, was removed from sale and discontinued following criticism of its alleged sexist marketing strategy.[10]


Parrish has cited Tony Iommi, Ritchie Blackmore, Buck Dharma, Eddie Van Halen, Alex Lifeson, and Yngwie Malmsteen as his main guitar influences.[11]


Year Album Band Credited as
1993 Time Capsule War & Peace Russ Parrish
War of Words Fight
1994 Smoke On The Water: A Tribute To Deep Purple Various
1996 Spacewalk: A Salute to Ace Frehley
2003 Hey That's What I Call Sludge Vol. 1
Hole Patrol Metal Skool Rikki Ratchet
2004 All the Same The Thornbirds Russ Parrish
2009 Feel the Steel Steel Panther Satchel
2011 Balls Out
2014 All You Can Eat
2017 Lower The Bar
Under the Covers: Volume II Ninja Sex Party
2019 Heavy Metal Rules Steel Panther


  1. ^ "Paul Gilbert – Into The Fire". racerxsurgeon. November 7, 2014. Archived from the original on February 4, 2017. Retrieved July 12, 2018.
  2. ^ "Amps & Axes #141 – Paul Gilbert". The Amps & Axes Show. November 7, 2016. Archived from the original on April 10, 2017. Retrieved April 8, 2017.
  3. ^ "Paul Gilbert – Paul The Young Dude: The Best Of Paul Gilbert (CD) at Discogs". June 3, 2003. Archived from the original on October 31, 2013. Retrieved May 19, 2014.
  4. ^ "Russ "Satchel" Parrish – Metal Storm". Retrieved May 19, 2014.
  5. ^ "Russ Parrish – Fight – War & Peace". MusicMayhem. Archived from the original on April 9, 2017. Retrieved April 9, 2017.
  6. ^ "Kiss Related Recordings; Spacewalk ; A Tribute to Ace Frehley". July 1, 1997. Archived from the original on March 27, 2010. Retrieved May 19, 2014.
  7. ^ "CRIME SCENE – Rockalypse Now". Sacred Fools Theatre. October 1, 2000. Archived from the original on April 5, 2016. Retrieved April 9, 2017.
  8. ^ "Danger Kitty – Love Rocket Discover Card Commercial (Steel Panther)". YouTube. Archived from the original on April 10, 2017. Retrieved April 9, 2017.
  9. ^ Instruments, Fender® Musical. "Steel Panthers Switch Up A Few Things for 'Lower the Bar' | Charvel Guitars". Archived from the original on April 1, 2017. Retrieved March 31, 2017.
  10. ^ Waters, Lowenna (July 11, 2018). "TC Electronic pull 'sexist' guitar pedal following outrage in the musical community". the Independent. Archived from the original on July 12, 2018. Retrieved July 12, 2018.
  11. ^ "Interview: Steel Panthers Satchel". May 6, 2009. Archived from the original on May 13, 2014. Retrieved May 19, 2014.

External links[edit]