Motley Crue

by Thom Hazaert
February 2009

Motley Crue

Motley Crue

In 1981 when an underdog LA Rock band released an independent LP called Too Fast For Love, no one could have predicted that they would follow up with a string of hit albums (Shout At The Devil, Theatre of Pain, Girls, Girls, Girls, and Dr. Feelgood), that would go on to sell over 80 million copies, and, almost singlehandedly, usher in a new era of American Hard Rock.

Nearly 3 decades (of decadence) later, Mötley Crüe is still going strong with their original line-up Vince Neil, Nikki Sixx, Tommy Lee, and Mick Mars- with their latest album The Saints of Los Angeles, debuting at #4 on the Billboard charts and a series of hugely successful “reunion” tours.

Now, on the heels of CRÜE FEST (last summer’s highest grossing festival tour), Motley is gearing up for another arena run kicking off in February with the likes of Hinder, Theory of a Deadman, and The Last Vegas (winners of the Guitar Center online battle of the bands) in tow, set to hit Madison’s Alliant Center on the 14th, and Green Bay’s Resch Center on the 19th.

So what is it that has kept Mötley Crüe relevant, while the majority of their 80’s Rock contemporaries have become cautionary tales?

“I think that every time we release a record, you get really good songs, every time we play live you get a great show”, says bassist Nikki Sixx. “And then of course the main thing is we just refuse to die. We’re still here, and were still doing what I believe to be good work, whether it’s live or in the studio. I think that’s the most important thing you can do.”

And while the bands personal and professional up and downs have been chronicled excessively, both in the band’s 2001 autobiography The Dirt, and Sixx’s recent bestseller The Heroin Diaries, Nikki insists that Motley Crue is here to stay.

“Sure we fight. So do brothers. But we get along better than we have in a long time… I think bands have cycles, and back to the question before, we refuse to die. So we lived through the cycle, we lived through things and we’re still here. It’s what Aerosmith has done, it’s what The Stones have done.”

Nikki adds, “Compared to them [The Stones] we’re like Spring chickens, and I don’t mean that in a bad way. This ride ain’t over, we’re gonna be doing this for a long, long time. People say “how much longer can we do this?” Then you look at the Stones and a lot of these Blues and R&B cats and jazz artists, and that’s cool. We can keep doing this as long as we want. “

And coming up on the band’s 30 year anniversary, there seems to be no end in sight as fans old and new - still flock to arenas year after year to see Motley pound out an endless parade of hits and fan favorites, which have seemingly found their place with a whole new generation of rock fans.

“There’s an energy with the band that is sort of like a celebration. When you see Mötley Crüe it’s a celebration - you’re cutting loose for the weekend, it doesn’t matter if you are 14 or 40. It’s your time. And I get it, ‘cuz I feel it too. I feel it when we’re onstage. It feels good.”

So what does the future hold for Mötley Crüe?

“I would like Mötley Crüe to be what Mötley Crüe is, I don’t want us to change in any way. I want us to do what it is we do, and do it better than anybody else. We’re a rock band.”

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