Los Angeles, CA (The Hollywood Times) 1/5/15 – It’s a beautiful California afternoon and my cameraman, Hugh Cornwall and I are at the Rainbow Bar and Grill on the Sunset Strip for our appointment with Mr. Lemmy Kilmeister. It’s early for the Rainbow, and the place is inhabited by the afternoon pizza and beer crowd. Lemmy strolls up to the bar for his trademark Jack and Coke. He is wearing a Black Cowboy shirt, the kind with the piping and snap pocket.
His pants are super tight and he is wearing black and white German Eagle Cowboy boots. He is a sexy beast…
He walks up to the bar and they pour his favorite without a word exchanged.
A small crowd of Rainbow regulars greet him fondly, “Lemmy, you are the greatest” one man says. Another says” “you deserve to be interviewed.” His name turns out to be Joey from the Jefferson Airplane. All the men are shaking hands and patting him on the back. One man says” his guy is the hardest working man in show business.”
I reckon, I know he is on tour most of the year and he loves it!
Now, it’s time for the interview to start. It only takes a nod and we are transported to our seats in the center of the patio. I’m having a pint and Lemmy and I are chain smoking while we chat.
The first thing Lemmy says is, “What is your real name?” Only the doctor that birthed me and my parents know and I think my mom has forgotten, I’ve been Tequila Mockingbird so long”. I am tempted to say Rumplestiltskin, but I tell him.
I remembered that his name is Ian and so we are properly introduced.
That is funny because we have known each other 20 years.
H.B.C. turns the camera on and we are off on our visit to the Wonderful world of Lemmy.
I ask the first question:
Tequila: This is one of your favorite places isn’t it?
Lemmy: Yes, it is!
Tequila: What do you like best about the Rainbow?
Lemmy: I like the fact that they built this patio out back for the smokers, that’s what I like best!
Tequila: you seem to always be at that machine over there, what’s your favorite game?
Lemmy: I dunno, probably one of the cards ones.
Tequila: Do you play cards in Vegas?
Lemmy: No Slots
Tequila: Are you a winner?
Lemmy: Sometimes, you know, like everybody else, most times…
Tequila: So, I hear you have a new band project?
Lemmy: Hedcat, been going a long time, 6 years with Slim Jim Phantom from the Stray Cats and Danny B. Harvey for The lonesome Spurs. We been going a long time 6 years. We just started playing out.
Tequila: When are you going to tour?
Lemmy: I can’t really do it because I’m in Motorhead. Motorhead’s working all the time. So, you know, I’m fucked for that, but we do what we can.
Tequila: When’s your next tour with Motorhead?
Lemmy: We are doing June and July in Europe and August in American Market’s It is called the Heaven and Hell tour. Shed’s Away!
Tequila: How do you feel about the political situation in America?
Lemmy: The political situation has be fucked for a long time, you know but we hope it will change soon. There’s never anyone to vote for, only people to vote against. It’s the lesser of 2 evils. The lesser of 2 evils is not a good option is it? England’s the same, (England has had 2 landlords this century) no one to vote for either, or even Bulgaria is just the same.
Tequila: Do you live in England or here?
Lemmy: I spend most of my time here. I live in England the whole summer while I’m doing shows. I guess you could say when I’m touring I live there.
Tequila: What’s your favorite strip club?
Lemmy: I haven’t got one now, now it isn’t no good. My favorite was Crazy Girls. They tried to make it the weasel lounge you know I suppose.Cheetah’s I suppose but it’s far.
Tequila: Where is Motorhead playing next?
Lemmy: That’s a very interesting question. Probably Germany of Croasia somewhere, I don’t know I haven’t gotten my map yet.
Tequila: What’s your favorite place in Germany?
Lemmy: I guess I’d have to say Berlin really cause it’s very lively even though the heart has been torn out of it. But, I like Munich as well, I even like Stuttgart for Christ sake, which is kinda quiet. I like Germany, and it’s of interest for me because of my collection. (Lemmy is speaking about his million dollar memorabilia collection from Deutchland including a Christmas card from Adolf Hitler.) That is where it all happened. East Berlin is interesting to me. No one else is interested in it.
Tequila: Where are the other places you like to hangout?
Lemmy: Stringfellows in London. It’s a High end strip club. There’s a big welcome there always. I’ve know the owner Peter since 1964, he tried to open one over here, but it didn’t work out.
Tequila: The Palace, it’s not called the Palace anymore what’s it called?
Lemmy: The Avalon, depending on who’s playing. The Knitting Factory is cool.
Tequila: Tell me about your fans?
Lemmy: Well they range in age from 14-60.
Tequila: How do you like your fans to approach you?
Lemmy; quietly, with some good manners. There’s no harm in good manners. They don’t cost anything. People shout lyrics at me from my songs from from 30 years ago before they were born, Lemmy is suddenly animated. Ace of Spades dud!!!They spit all over you. Who need it?
If they come up and have a quiet word that’s fine.
Tequila; what makes you happiest?
Lemmy; SEX probably I think.
Tequila; I was reading in Wikipedia about you…
Lemmy: Wikipedia? What the fuck is that? Tequila it’s the World online encyclopedia and it said you bedded over 200 women. That’s bullshit I said 1000.2000 that’s idle boasting. I’m 62 and I was never married so 1000 is reasonable when you think about it in those terms. That 2000 quote has been going around for years, I never said i.e. don’t know where they got a hold of that. Lemmy shakes his head and sighs.
Tequila: What kind of Women do you like?
Lemmy: Female ones. I do like the exotic ones, dark skinned ones you know, what the difference is. In the old days I would have been hung as a nigger lover or some shit. Well there you go, that’s what I am, eat shit…
Lemmy marshals the 1 finger salute. Middle finger standing proud.
Tequila: What are your plans for yourself?
Lemmy: I plan to grow old gracefully. I want to settle down and be responsible. Fucking arrested development is my aim to be an old timer.
Tequila: You have the heart of a small boy.
Lemmy: a small nasty boy! His devilish eyes twinkle. He laughs and lights his 15th cigarette.
Tequila: What makes Motorhead tick?
Lemmy: We are so different the three of us. We don’t hang out. We used to but it was never a big thing. Sometimes we like hanging out, the old Motorhead used to But Philthy’s been gone 22 years so you’ve heard all the conversation except for current events so we go out when the gig’s over where we are working.
Tequila: What was it like when you were a roadie for Hendrix?
Lemmy: We was tripping all the time on LSD and it was hard to get the wires in the right holes, you know, when all 27 of them are pink. It was interesting. I spent about 7 years on acid, a lot of acid, I should have been fried but I’m not. It was a great time. You can’t describe it to people. Hendrix was monstrous. You’ll never see anything like him again. Even if he wasn’t on, if he wasn’t in it he was terrible. But on a good night magic. Even if he was bad you wouldn’t know. He could tune up while he was playing. Take away the tuner and most guys ehhhh…
Lemmy laughs, Do you think you learned anything from him and if so what?
Lemmy: I learned to fake it and look really cool.
Tequila: Is there anything new that’s happening now that you like?
Lemmy: Well I guess Evanescence. Good Music, Good instrumentation, good singer. I used to like Skunk and Angie but they broke up, it doesn’t matter I still like them. There’s a band called the sex slaves that are really good.
Tequila: Where are they from?
Lemmy: They live here now, they are from New York. Every Time we do a tour we find a new good band. Nashville Pussy 6 years ago, REO Speeddealer. Supersuckers, Yeah.
Tequila; what are you listening to on the RADIO? I told Lemmy that Steve Jones from the Sex Pistols had played Hawkwind the day before on www.Indie ;103.1.com.
Lemmy replied “That Steve is a good bloke, I’ve done his show a couple of times”.
Lemmy: When is his show on?
Tequila: Mon-Fri 12-2pm and again for a rebroadcast at 6pm onwww.103.1.com here, in Orange County and Malibu.
Lemmy: I’ll have to remember that, Steve’s alright, the radio? There’s no point in listening to the radio. All you get is bleeding Adverts. It kills it, the adverts. It was great when I come over. Now 5 guys own the TV and the radio in this country mow. It’s terrible now. It’s terrible. When I came over there were lots of independents. It was great the radio now its shit, but they wouldn’t kiss anybody’s ass you know. I used to tune in to this blues station in Chicago, You would get blues all night, maybe 3 adverts all evening. Imagine that now, and I’m not saying the old days cause I’m old, they were better that’s all. Sorry, fucking everybody they were fucking better it’s not my fault. Lemmy laughs out loud, a mixture of cherub and devil. Tell me other things about Hollywood that you like or don’t like?
The landscape for on one thing their always knocking something really good down and building something crappy in its place. Hollywood doesn’t cherish its history. There would be an outcry if you tore up the stars on the sidewalk. They knocked down a lot of old theatres. It’s just ashamed. They will build if they guy’s got the money. Money leads to a lot o good things but it leads to a lot of shit too. So there you are that’s how it is. It’s an interesting place America, if you come from Europe America feels vibrant and new. Europe is stuck in its ways. I like tradition to a point, but it’s gone mad over there. Also the economy, The prices in Europe are reductions now as you know, 9 bucks for a gallon of gas, and you think you guys are bad off, and it’s going up again. If you are going abroad this summer kids don’t go to Europe. You’ll spend all your money in 2 days! How anybody lives there I’ll never know anymore. The only thing Europe’s got that America doesn’t is history which is interesting if you like it. If you don’t it’s got nothing. You know you grow up with all these American TV shows and when you get over here it’s just the same. I like it over here once you get throw customs. Lemmy lets out a hearty laugh.
Tequila: what were your favorite TV shows in the Americas then? They changed as the seasons came and went. It started like Barney Miller and then in the end you got shit like Dynasty and Dallas. But the old shows with pictures of the majestic prairie with nobody living in it it was huge, had that farmed, irrigated and planted with council house by then. Have you ever thought about scoring TV and Film?
Lemmy: I don’t think of myself as a musician. I think of myself as a personality, though I don’t spend much time on the Red Carpet. I never get invited. I won a Grammy but even then the stuck the knife in. They gave us a grammy whiplash, it’s not even one of our songs thank you.
Tequila: Would you like to be in the Rock and roll hall of fame?
Lemmy: Have you ever be there?
Tequila: I was born in Cleveland
Lemmy: It sucks, it’s a monumental waste of space I’ve ever seen. When I was there the biggest exhibit was the Gift shop..I wasn’t impressed and anyway, I lent them my Motorhead Ace of Spades jacket for an exhibition on Heavy Metal and they said they lost it! You know somebody’s girlfriend is walking around in it. Yes, it’s a crime. You shouldn’t have done it, Bad news Cleveland…Lemmy’s hot under the collar, the Rainbow s waking up. Lots of noise and a playful mood ensues.
Tequila: You told me that you like the Beatles. They went through a lot of changes. What period did you like?
Lemmy: I liked all of them I think. Sergeant Peppers was not their best album. I didn’t like it. I liked Sargent Peppers reprise, a day in a life, and she’s leaving home. I rather liked Revolver or the White Album in 1965, I think. And I got to see them live. You see you can’t describe it to people. The came out as a four headed Monster and anyone else just paled in significance. When they got really loose in the end. Abbey Road was a disappointment.
Tequila: What’s your favorite Drink?
Lemmy: Jack Daniels a fine libation that will cost you close to nothing in America and will cost you a fortune in England. Cheers!