“It’s like you’re looking at Mozart and you’re like, ‘I’m gonna improvise over this part.’ No. That’s how those songs should be performed”: John 5 shares his approach to learning Mötley Crüe’s back catalog

John 5 performs onstage
(Image credit: Per Ole Hagen/Redferns via Getty Images)

Last year saw a sizable – and rather high-profile – shake-up in Mötley Crüe’s electric guitar department: after Mick Mars retired from touring, citing health reasons, his boots were filled by John 5.

Though what seemed like a straightforward switch soon turned into a drawn-out and bitter legal battle between Mars and Mötley Crüe, John 5 himself has been focused on one thing: nailing his new gig.

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Matt Owen
Senior Staff Writer, GuitarWorld.com

Matt is a Senior Staff Writer, writing for Guitar World, Guitarist and Total Guitar. He has a Masters in the guitar, a degree in history, and has spent the last 16 years playing everything from blues and jazz to indie and pop. When he’s not combining his passion for writing and music during his day job, Matt records for a number of UK-based bands and songwriters as a session musician.