Band Photo: Motorhead (?)
From: London, United Kingdom
Last Known Status: Active
Lemmy spent the sixties in a number of small-time bands including Opal Butterfly, Sam Gopal, and The Rockin' Vickers as well as working as a roadie for Jimi Hendrix in 1967 for about six months, and as a roadie for The Nice. In 1971 he joined archetypal space rock UK Underground outfit Hawkwind who were centred around the very in Ladbroke Grove. His distinctive style of bass playing, involving the use of chords rather than the single notes preferred by most players, was a fundamental part of the Hawkwind sound during his tenure. He also provided lead vocals on a number of songs including the band's biggest UK chart single, Silver Machine, which reached No.3 in 1972.
By 1975 Lemmy's forceful personality and propensity for ingesting copious quantities of amphetamines were leading to conflict with other members, and this culminated with his sacking after being arrested for drug possession while on tour with the band in Canada. Lemmy went on to form a new band with guitarist Larry Wallis and drummer Lucas Fox. Wallis's former bands included the Pink Fairies, Steve Took's Shagrat and UFO. Lemmy's connection with Took (formerly of T Rex) was not limited to Wallis, as they were personal friends and Took was the step-father to Lemmy's son Paul. This new band was originally called Bastard. However, after the band's manager pointed out this name would lose them TV and radio exposure, it was changed to Motörhead - the last song Lemmy wrote for Hawkwind.
After a short period both Wallis and Fox were replaced with guitarist "Fast" Eddie Clarke and drummer Phil "Philthy Animal" Taylor, and with this line-up the band began to achieve success. The uncompromisingly intense nature of their sound appealed to both Lemmy's original metal/rock constituency as well as the new punk fans — intrigued, perhaps, by Lemmy's brief stint in The Damned — and Lemmy's guttural vocals were unique in the world of rock at that time. The band's success peaked between 1980 and 1981 with a number of UK chart hits, including the classic single Ace of Spades (still a crowd favourite today) and the No. 1 Live Album No Sleep 'til Hammersmith . Motörhead have since gone on to become one of the most influential bands on the heavy metal scene and, although Lemmy is the only constant in a changing line-up, are still performing and releasing records to this day. Despite Motorhead's many member changes over their 30 year history the current lineup of Lemmy, Phil Campbell and Mikkey Dee has remained constant since 1995.
Lemmy has also worked with a number of other musicians over his career, and occasionally guests with Hawkwind. He was brought in as a songwriter for Ozzy Osbourne's 1991 No More Tears album, providing lyrics for the tracks "Hellraiser," (which Motorhead later released) "Desire," "I Don't Want To Change The World," and the massive hit "Mama I'm Coming Home." Lemmy has noted in several magazine and television interviews that he made more money from the royalties of that one song than he had in his entire time with Motorhead.
He has made a number of appearances in film and television, including the 1990 science fiction film Hardware and the 1987 comedy Eat the Rich, for which Motörhead also recorded the soundtracks. In the 1994 comedy Airheads (in which he is credited as "Lemmy von Motorhead"), he shouts (truthfully) about being the editor of his high school newspaper. He has also appeared in several movies from the Troma studio. Having a predilection for self-deprecating parody, he once appeared in an advertisement for Kit Kat chocolate bars, miming a piece of chamber music on the violin, in an upper-class tea-room. Motörhead performed the entrance theme song "The Game" for World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE)'s Triple H, as well as "Line in the Sand" for his now defunct wrestling stable, Evolution. In 2006, they once again provided theme music for the WWE as they recorded the song King of Kings for Triple H on the Wreckless Intent CD.
Lemmy collects Nazi memorabilia, and has an Iron Cross encrusted on his bass, which has led to accusations of right-wing extremist tendencies; however, Lemmy considers himself to be an anarchist. According to Keith Emerson as written in his autobiography, two of Lemmy's Hitlerjugend knives were gifted to Keith Emerson himself during Lemmy's time spent as a roadie for The Nice. Emerson used these knives many times as "keyholders" during his famous wrestling sessions with the Hammond Organ during the shows with The Nice and Emerson, Lake & Palmer.
He published his autobiography, White Line Fever in November 2002.
Latest Motorhead News
Below is our complete Motorhead news coverage, including columns and articles pertaining to the band. Some articles listed may be indirectly related, such as side projects of the band members, etc.
Note: We began associating news directly with bands in late 2003. Therefore, earlier band news may not be listed on this page.
Today the band issued this update about cancelling two more gigs with the intention to return to live stages down the line:
"Regrettably Motörhead have had to cancel their Dallas and Houston appearances. Saxon will still be playing in each city (please check local media for up-to-date venue information).
"Lemmy fully intends to resume touring duties as, and when, his doctors give him the all-clear. STAY TUNED FOR FURTHER UPDATES, and as always, THANK YOU for your support, understanding and good wishes."
Motorhead's new album "Bad Magic" saw release last month and is now available everywhere. More...
It seems like the era of Motorhead performing live with Lemmy may be coming to an end. There have been numerous tour cancellations over the past year, including a recently nixed Denver date.
During last night's show in Austin, Lemmy cut the set short after playing through three songs and left the stage, unable to complete the night's performance.
Footage from the gig can be seen below (the first clip shows where he ended the set, the previous two are from earlier songs). The band subsequently posted this message on Facebook:
"As you might have heard, Motörhead again had to abbreviate a performance due to Lemmy not feeling well. This is a DIRECT follow-on from the altitude issues in Colorado, and clearly, Lemmy tried to get back at it too quickly. For this reason, Motörhead will not play in San Antonio tonight, but the show will still go on with Saxon headlining. Lemmy will resume duties the moment he is PROPERLY rested and firing on all cylinders again. The legendary Motörheadbanger patience is much appreciated, and the band send their deepest thanks. More details will be released soon."
Over the past year a series of health issues with front man Lemmy has caused Motorhead to repeatedly cancel live shows, and it appears that has occurred again now that the group has nixed a Denver tour date. Motorhead comments:
"The Rocky Mountain High has affected Lemmy like the high altitude of Salt Lake City.
"It's been quite a while since Lemmy was this 'high' in the US, and thus having got a burst of altitude sickness (which made it hard for him to breathe and sing properly) he has very reluctantly decided not perform in Denver.
"Lemmy is really sorry and wants to thank the fans for their support and trust. He looks forward to the next-up Texas shows…at low elevations."
Motorhead is touring in support of newly released album "Bad Magic," with a music video off that release available below. More...
Motorhead has a new lyric video online for the song "Electricity" (listen in below), and the band also comments:
"We’re proud to announce the release of our first official single and lyric video to ‘Electricity.’ a track from our forthcoming album ‘Bad Magic’ (to be released on August 28th).
"So, crank up the stereo and make sure you (and your neighbours) get your dose of loud, new Motörhead today!
"If you have already pre-ordered 'Bad Magic,' you will automatically have access to the single, along with ‘Thunder & Lightning.’ If you haven’t already pre-ordered, you can grab your copy of the album right here." More...
Motörhead is streaming pro-shot live footage of the band's June 26 performance at the Glastonbury Festival in Glastonbury, England.
Check out "The Ace Of Spades" now below.
The final day of a festival always seems to be the most subdued and relaxed, most likely a result of tiredness, but with such a solid lineup to look forward to, who has time to take it easy? Graspop Metal Meeting still had plenty to offer the head bangers on this Sunday, with things getting off to a great start at the second main stage, where New Zealand hard rockers, Like A Storm got things underway. This was another case of checking out a band I had never heard of and they proved well worth a gamble, as their brand of hard rock with a tinge of alternative metal was the perfect way to wake up the sleepy unwashed and accentuate a few hang overs. Like The Dead Daisies two days before, Like A Storm are all about having a good time. It's rock the way it was designed to be, a lot of fun and high energy, though they put their own, native stamp on things by utilising the didgeridoo, which believe it or not, actually works really well with their music. The instrument was first used in a solo performance, before being brought out again for their song, "Love the Way You Hate Me," and there were other surprises in store too, most notably a cover of the Coolio hit, "Gangsta's Paradise." A great way to start the day.
A little bit of Pop Evil followed, which continued the theme of enjoyable hard rock, before the day's first trip to the Marquee came, this time to check out Winterfylleth. This was another band I was unfamiliar with, despite seeing the name in passing a number of times. I assumed from the name that they were a black metal group, but there's a lot more to them than that. They display an amazing musical talent which goes beyond the simple goal of making music just to be extreme, which some bands are guilty of, and don't conform to the uniform of corpse paint and spikes out of a mistaken sense of obligation, something else young black metal groups have done from time to time. Winterfylleth are another outfit that let the music do most of the talking, which is guaranteed to win over newcomers and please fans who turned up to see these metal Mancunians. More...
Motörhead is streaming the brand new track titled "Thunder & Lightning", taken from the upcoming new album "Bad Magic" which will be released on August 28th (UDR Music/Motörhead Music).
Check out now "Thunder & Lightning" below.
Motörhead is due to release upcoming new album "Bad Magic" later this summer, with the band commenting:
"And here is the news we’ve all been waiting for… It’s official! We’re releasing our 22nd studio album 'Bad Magic' on August 28th this year!
Are you excited? Well you should be! As well as the album release on August 28th (UDR Music/Motörhead Music) we would also like to announce our Anniversary European tour this fall, with more international dates to follow.
After canceling a show in São Paulo due to health issues, Motorhead has checked in with the following update about the situation:
"Due to a food related tummy problem, unfortunately Lemmy was not able to perform the show in São Paulo.
"He is already feeling much better and ready to continue the South America dates! Next stop Curitiba!
"Lemmy regrets this mishap very much and is looking forward to making it up to all the fans."
Motörhead was forced to cancel its performance at the Monsters Of Rock festival at Arena Anhembi, São Paulo, Brazil yesterday because Lemmy was suffering from gastric distress and dehydration.
Lemmy is undergoing tests at a local hospital and is unable to perform this weekend. British NWOBHM legends Judas Priest, who were scheduled to play right after Motörhead, added 30 more minutes to their set as a result of Motörhead's cancelation.
Check out one of Lemmy Kilmister's rare 2015 live appearances performing Chuck Berry's "Let It Rock" with Foo Fighters, Zakk Wylde and Slash at The Forum in Los Angeles on January 10, 2015.
Motörhead's Motörboat will embark on its second voyage September 28th through October 2nd, 2015 on Norwegian Sky, departing Port Miami with stops in Nassau and the private picturesque island of Great Stirrup Cay in The Bahamas.
The "Loudest Boat In The World" will feature performances from Slayer, Motörhead, Anthrax, Suicidal Tendencies, Hatebreed, Exodus, Crobot, Phil Campbell’s All Starr Band, Motor Sister, Kyng, Fireball Ministry, Huntress, and more.
Staterooms go on sale Wednesday, March 25 at 2:00 PM ET at this location. Motörhead founder Lemmy Kilmister: "And so the Motörboat sets sail one more time - better get your tickets now, or be left sobbing on the dock! Oh - and we promise not to run out of beer this time!"
Slayer’s Kerry King adds, “Slayer is crashing the Motörboat party!! I, personally, will be keeping the bar in business. Hell will be coming with us. Light it up!!!” More...
Celebrating a 40th anniversary as rock n’ roll’s undisputed rebels, musical legends Motorhead will appear on this weekend’s edition of VH1 Classic’s That Metal Show.
The show airs this Saturday, March 7th at 9pm/8pm Central, and features Lemmy, Phil and Mikkey of Motorhead as the honored Metal Modem guests via remote video. Make sure to tune in, and for more information on the show, head to this location.
Motorhead is currently in the recording studio with longtime producer Cameron Webb working on an upcoming album, which is due out in the Fall of 2015.
The revered trio will support the Foo Fighters on tour this July in Japan and Korea (including a stop at the longest-standing music fest in Japan, the Fuji Rock Festival on July 24th, and the Ansan Valley Rock Festival in South Korea on July 26th) in addition to planning a U.S. tour for late Summer 2015. Additionally, the band will set sail on the Motorhead Motörboat cruise in late September.
The 43rd episode of the MetalUnderground.com Official Podcast opens up with "Pull The Trigger" by Portland band of the week Never Awake. This week co-hosts Kevin Perez (n0thinghead), Ollie Hynes (Diamond Oz) & Dustin Beaudrey ("F.A.N.") embark on a dark and gloomy discussion on the subject of metal icons' mortality and how illness and lifestyle can deeply affect the metal community along with their own legacies. Concluding with Kevin announcing more local concert ticket giveaways while Never Awake's "The Will To Live" plays us out.
Check out the new podcast at this location and feel free to leave us your feedback!
This week on the official MetalUnderground.com podcast, regular co-host Kevin Perez (aka N0thinghead) is joined once again by Ollie Hynes (aka Diamond Oz) to discuss what's been happening, with particular focus being on the recent Grammy Awards and the decision to give the Best Metal Performance Award to Tenacious D. Not only this, but Kevin has tickets to give away for August Burns Red's upcoming show in Florida, as well as for Behemoth and Cannibal Corpse's stop at the same venue.
We also have music from unsigned Canadian band, Ape War, with their songs, "Born of Sodom" and "Templar" being played at the beginning and end of the show respectively.
Check out the new podcast at this location and feel free to leave us your feedback!
The nominees for the 57th Grammy Awards have now been revealed, which includes a "best metal performance" category. The nominees in the category for the 2015 awards are:
"Neon Knights" by Anthrax (Ronnie James Dio cover)
"High Road" by Mastodon
"Heartbreaker" by Motörhead
"The Negative One" by Slipknot
"The Last In Line" by Tenacious D
Who do you think should win, and who should have been nominated instead?
In other metal-related nominations, Metallica's "Through The Never" movie is also nominated in the "Best Music Film" category. The Grammy Awards will take place on February 8th, 2015 and the full list of nominees can be seen at this location.
"Stagefright" by Motorhead and "Showtime" by UFO will be released through SPV/Steamhammer for the first time on Blu-ray.
Both Blu-rays will be released in Germany on November 28th, in Europe on December 1st, and in the USA on January 20th. 2015. SPV/Steamhammer comments:
"'Stagefright' was recorded during a show at the Phillipshalle in Düsseldorf, Germany on December 7, 2004. The set features 20 songs from the entire Motörhead history, including 'Overkill,' 'Ace Of Spades' and 'Iron Fist.' This memorable occasion was shot with 23 high definition cameras under the direction of Sven Offen (Papa Roach, Heather Nova, Grönemeyer, Toten Hosen, among others). The late Gert Hof, famous not only for his work with Rammstein, was enlisted to take care of the show's light design. The fans can also expect a lot of bonus material like making of, a fan special, testimonials, slide show, backstage rider and much more.
"During the world tour for the album 'You Are Here' UFO filmed a concert in May 2005 at the Pumpwerk Wilhelmshaven in Germany. Now 'Showtime' will be released for the first time as Blu-ray incl. a fantastic acoustic session which was recorded at the Peppermint Park Studios in Hannover, Germany. More bonus material, like making of and history interviews, is also included and you can see the last performances with the band of Drummer Jason Bonham, the son of Led Zeppelin drummer John Bonham, and Pete Way who had to leave the band due to health reasons soon after."
There will be more Blu-ray releases in 2015 including Axel Rudi Pell and much more. Stay tuned for more info. More...
I can tell you exactly when my love of music began. It was the fall of 1987 and my friend, Nathan, had brought over a new cassette that he promised would blow my mind. It took somewhere around five seconds, but from the first time I heard Axl Rose's air-raid-siren scream that opens Guns N Roses' "Welcome To The Jungle," I knew I was to be a metalhead for life.
Shortly after that, nearly every penny I could spare went toward the latest works by the likes of Metallica, Anthrax, Megadeth and their ilk. Then, as college and the Grunge Era hit simultaneously, I found my musical tastes expanding into alt-rock ranging from the likes of Nirvana and Alice In Chains to the Red Hot Chili Peppers and Primus. In my junior year of college, I discovered the Beatles, with their total disregard for genre limitations. More...
The official Motorhead website is currently running a competition inviting submissions for a live video version of “Killed By Death” from the special tour edition of the "Aftershock" album (reviewed here).
Motorhead fans who have dreamt of making an official video for their favorite band have finally gotten their wish. To celebrate the Tour Edition of the "Aftershock" album (a double-disc set containing "Aftershock" and a bonus live disc from Motorhead’s Spring U.S. dates titled "Best of the West Coast Tour") fans are invited to create a video for the live version of “Killed By Death."
Creativity is greatly encouraged (don’t be boring!) and the production can be as mighty or modest as the imagination desires. Let the thunderous riff and wry lyrics conjure your best Motörvisions, and the video that wins will be premiered on major music video stations plus websites worldwide.
The winning director/creator will also receive some very exclusive Motorhead prizes, as well as the satisfaction of having one of the band’s official videos under their creative belt.
Entrants must use the audio of “Killed By Death” from the new touring edition of "Aftershock" and entries should be uploaded to YouTube with “Killed By Death Fan Video Motörhead Contest” in the subject line. All entries must be uploaded by NEXT TUESDAY, September 30th, 2014.
Motörhead’s Motörboat regrets to announce that Megadeth has been forced to withdraw from the September 22nd - 26th cruise due to medical reasons. Heavy metal all-star band Metal Allegiance – including Megadeth’s David Ellefson and Chris Broderick – has now been added to the Motörhead’s Motörboat music lineup.
Metal Allegiance promises Motörboaters the rare opportunity to see a diverse group of metal legends interacting and performing together on the same stage. Singers Philip Anselmo (Down, ex-Pantera), Joey Belladonna (Anthrax), and Chuck Billy (Testament), guitarists Chris Broderick (Megadeth), Jon Donais (Anthrax, Shadows Fall), Scott Ian (Anthrax), Mark Zavon (Kill Devil Hill), bassists Frank Bello (Anthrax), Rex Brown (Kill Devil Hill, ex-Pantera) and David Ellefson (Megadeth), and drummers Charlie Benante (Anthrax) and Mike Portnoy (The Winery Dogs, ex-Dream Theater) will put their spin on a scorching set of heavy metal’s most influential and recognizable songs.
Megadeth issued the following statement about the unfortunate cancellation: “Due to complications arising from a previous cervical spine surgery, and upon his doctor’s strict recommendations, Dave Mustaine has cancelled all performances for the next 8 weeks. With rest and treatment, he is expected to recover and resume performing soon. The band was looking forward to the concerts and cruise, and is disappointed that they will not be able to see their fans. Megadeth expects to return to the road and will see their fans soon!”
“You can’t replace a band like Megadeth, who have done so much to change the landscape of heavy music over the past 30 years. We wish Dave Mustaine all the best in his recovery,” says event producer Alan Koenig of ASK4 Entertainment. “But we’re excited that Megadeth’s David Ellefson and Chris Broderick will still be joining us. The whole reason to do these music cruises is to give fans an experience that they can’t get anywhere else – and bringing Metal Allegiance onboard with metal’s most loyal fans fits that bill.” More...
The first annual Motörhead Motörboat - featuring Megadeth, Motörhead, and Anthrax -will sail from Miami, visiting the ports of Key West, Florida and Cozumel just off Mexico’s Yucatan Peninsula for the September 22nd - 26th, 2014 cruise on the Carnival Ecstasy.
The fest will also include Testament, Down, High On Fire, plus Kill Devil Hill, Zakk Wylde, Jim Breuer Band, Danko Jones, Fireball Ministry, and Wilson. While onboard, guests will have a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to interact with band members and will see unforgettable performances on various stages throughout the ship.
A limited number of cabins are still available for Motörhead’s Motörboat at this location.
Additional onboard performances and activities have been announced for Motörhead’s Motörboat, including a spoken word performance by heavy metal musician, author, and television personality Scott Ian.
Scott’s spoken word performances in support of his upcoming "Swearing Words In Glasgow" CD (out November 13th via Megaforce Records) are an honest look at the insane life that he has led for the last 31 years, the people he’s met, and the events that coincide. After decades-worth of international touring with Anthrax, bumping elbows with illustrious (and sometimes ridiculous) characters all over the media spectrum, and undergoing general “you won’t believe this” experiences, Scott certainly has some hilarious and surprisingly personal stories to share.
Those onboard Motörhead’s Motörboat will also be treated to a screening of the 2010 documentary film "Lemmy," directed by Greg Olliver and Wes Orshoski. In addition, theme nights for Motörhead’s Motörboat are as follows:
Monday, September 22 -- Löud and Hometown Pröud
Motörhead’s Motörboat will have a very diverse and international crowd. Guests are encouraged to be proud of where they come from. Wear a state jersey, don your Nordic horns, paint your face and show your city/state/country pride. More...