Mötley Crüe recently announced the details of their final round of North American dates.
The tour—Crüe’s last, ever—will conclude on New Year’s Eve in their hometown of Los Angeles, the same city where they began their career more than 34 years ago.
Vince Neil, Mick Mars, Nikki Sixx and Tommy Lee first announced plans for their two-year-long Final Tour last year, when they signed a "cessation of touring" document. It was an agreement that solidified the end of their touring career.
To celebrate their legacy and thank their fans, Mötley Crüe are offering exclusive VIP packages for their final tour dates; these packages include opportunities to meet the band and offer up-close-and-personal views of the show from a newly designed stage setup.
In addition to accumulating worldwide album sales in excess of 80 million units over the course of three decades, Mötley Crüe also have garnered three Grammy nominations, four best-selling books and a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.
I recently spoke with guitarist Mick Mars about the final Mötley Crüe shows, new music and more.
GUITAR WORLD: With these last few tour dates in LA being announced, has it begun to sink in that this is the last go-around for Mötley Crüe?
Yes, absolutely. This is it. We're done after this one. I think ending in LA is kind of like coming full circle. Although the place we actually started in, [the Starwood] is torn down and the venues we’re playing now are a lot bigger than when we started! [laughs].
What will you miss about not touring with Mötley Crüe?
It's a bittersweet thing, but all four of us are still in business together as a corporation. So we’ll still see each other. And even though I may not see the guys on stage, I'll still be touring myself.
What were some of the challenges the band faced coming up in the LA scene?
From what I recall, a lot of the LA bands that were going around at the time were trying to copy Quiet Riot, who were already signed. So it really came pretty easily for us because we came out with a different look and sound. We were something that was different.
I’d like to ask you about a few Mötley songs and get your thoughts on how they began, starting with "Dr Feelgood."
Usually when I write a song, I’ll first write a chorus and a verse part and then throw in some other chords to bridge the song together. That song came about from a riff that was going around in my head. I remember going in and recording it on my eight-track recorder and putting down the initial lick and a few chords. Then Nikki came over to my house about a week later and started singing the lines to it. We brought it to rehearsal and started working on it from there.
"Girls, Girls, Girls"
Tommy and I started out collaborating on that one. I remember going to his house and he showed me the chords he had for it. I didn't like them that much so I went home and started thinking about it more. Then I went into my room, popped open a bottle of Jack and worked on the riff until I felt that it was right. I took it to rehearsal the next day and played it for the guys and they started freaking out. But it all started with a lick.
Are there any other projects you’re working on at the moment?
Having some down time has given me a chance to go in and look at some of the older stuff I've written over the last few years and also to work on some new material. Right now, I’m working with Tommy Henriksen and have written about nine songs in the past month and half. I’m coming up with some really cool, aggressive stuff that’s far removed from what I would be writing for Mötley.
If you could write an epitaph to the career of Mötley Crüe, how would you like the band to be remembered?
That's easy. I'd like to be remembered as the best fucking band on the planet.
Congratulations on all of your success and thank you for all of the years of great music.
Thanks so much, but it’s not over. I've still got many more of them to go!
For more about Mötley Crüe, visit motley.com.
James Wood is a writer, musician and self-proclaimed metalhead who maintains his own website, GoJimmyGo.net. His articles and interviews are written on a variety of topics with passion and humor. You can follow him on Twitter @JimEWood.