Originally founded by guitarist Jay Jay French, Twisted Sister began in Long Island in 1972. The group initially featured Michael O'Neil as lead vocalist and over the course of the next several years established a reputation on the New York/New Jersey/Connecticut club circuit. A major change came about in 1976, when Dee Snider, an intimidating loud and outspoken New Yorker, replaced O'Neil as the band's new vocalist and primary songwriter.
Together, French and Snider rebuilt and reshaped Twisted Sister into the version of the band that the world has come to know. The glam rock movement of David Bowie and T. Rex was already long out of fashion when Snider and company decided to re-launch Twisted Sister in the latter half of the 1970s, but several years of hard work would eventually pay off big in the 1980s.