Christmas Eve would be Lemmy‘s 71st birthday, but the only candles to be lit are of remembrance.
Motorhead was louder than everything else, but Lemmy didn’t have to say a word to be heard.
Lemmy was Motorhead and Motorhead was unlike anything else in music history. Not just loud, but proud, brutal, honest and full of skill, guts, sex, drugs, fight, and bite. Motorhead was everything Rock and Roll legends were made of and Lemmy was the captain at the helm.
His legacy has launched many other ships from Motorhead’s dirty harbor, but none will ever compare and never dare try to.
And the bastard could play, too.
Even though his training consisted of basically winging it on the fly, no one had his sound or his grit. “I learned to play bass onstage with Hawkwind. I never picked one up in my life before that gig. So I walked onstage with this thing hanging around my neck — it was a Rickenbacker, too — and Nik Turner [vocals, sax, flute] said really helpful stuff [sarcastically]. He came over and said, ‘Make some noises in E,’ and then he walked away from me. None of that old-fashioned stuff like, ‘Two verses and a solo.’ Just ‘make some noises in E.’ That’s really helpful. But it was the best way to learn, because you learn if you can do it or not right there [laughs].”
But, he wasn’t just a rock star. Lemmy was an intellectual, a philosopher, and a saint.
Tales of his generosity are endless, even from RIP’s former editor-in-chief, Lonn Friend, who described how Lemmy took a grand out of his pocket to help him through a tough transition. He had no patience for ignorance or dogma, but his kindness was immortal.
Lemmy lived fearlessly; he loved fearlessly, hated fearlessly, partied fearlessly, and worked fearlessly. From the time he lugged gear for Jimi Hendrix to the day he died while tapping his foot to a beat no one else could hear, Lemmy was the embodiment of life, itself.
“I don’t do regrets. Regrets are pointless. It’s too late for regrets. You’ve already done it, haven’t you? You’ve lived your life. No point wishing you could change it.”
Lemmy Denied Element Naming: http://loudwire.com/lemmy-kilmister-snubbed-new-heavy-metal-elements-naming/
Rolling Stone: “The Tao of Lemmy” (Tessa Stuart, Dec 2015): http://www.rollingstone.com/music/news/the-tao-of-lemmy-18-great-quotes-from-the-motorhead-frontman-20151229