Warrant was formed in Los Angeles by guitarist Erik Turner in July 1984. Turner was soon joined by bassist Jerry Dixon. Warrant had a different bassist named Chris Vincent for a few months before Dixon joined. Prior to his involvement with Warrant, Vincent played with a local band called SilverPants. The band's early members included vocalist Adam Shore, guitarist Josh Lewis, and drummer Max Asher. Vocalist Jani Lane (who replaced Shore) and drummer Steven "Sweet" Chamberlin (who replaced Asher) joined the band in September 1986, and guitarist Joey Allen (who replaced Lewis) completed the line-up in March 1987. Lane and Sweet were previously in the band Plain Jane, which had recorded several demos. The recruitment of Lane proved pivotal in the band's future, with the singer quickly assuming the role of Warrant's song writer.
After having gained some notoriety on the L.A. club scene, the band recorded a demo tape in September 1987 for Paisley Park Records, a record label owned by musician Prince. At this time, A&M records purchased an option to sign Warrant and invited the band to contribute a song for the soundtrack of the motion picture Bill and Ted's Excellent Adventure. Both deals would prove unsuccessful, with the band's contribution "Game of War" being pulled from the soundtrack and A&M allowing its option to lapse.
In January 1988 Warrant signed a contract with Columbia Records, and in April they began recording their debut album Dirty Rotten Filthy Stinking Rich. It was a significant success, spawning 3 hits: the #2 power ballads "Heaven" and "Sometimes She Cries", and the rock anthem "Down Boys". Shortly following the release of the album, Warrant toured with Paul Stanley, Queensrÿche, Cinderella, Poison, Mötley Crüe and Kingdom Come. Kingdom Come members Rick Steier and James Kottak would later join Warrant.
The band's second record, Cherry Pie, was released in September 1990, and featured guest appearances by Poison's C. C. DeVille, Danger Danger's Bruno Ravel and Steve West, and Fiona. The album, which spawned the hits "Cherry Pie", "Uncle Tom's Cabin" and "I Saw Red", reached the Top Ten in the United States, and went on to sell 3 million copies. The record's title track, only included on the album as a result of record company pressure, received strong exposure on MTV and became the band's most successful single.
The release of "Cherry Pie" was followed by a tour with the band Poison, which ended in January 1991 after a conflict between the two bands over stage room.
The band's European tour with David Lee Roth was cut short after Lane fractured several ribs in a stage dive in Birmingham, England. Warrant soon continued touring, however, performing headlining shows in America on their 'Blood, Sweat And Beers' tour, supported by FireHouse and Trixter.
Over time Warrant has proven themselves to be one of the top bands of our time!