Most of us are probably still coming to terms with the news which stopped and shocked (some of) the heavy music industry yesterday following the sad passing of Motörhead front-man and legend Lemmy Kilmister who died following a very short battle with an extremely aggressive cancer which he had only found out he had on Boxing Day, 3 days before he died. However it was no secret that Lemmy was suffering from other health issues as we reported back in September when he was forced to leave the stage, 3 songs in during a performance with the band.
This should have been an indicator for fans that his time could have been up at any time because here we are now 3 months later saying goodbye to a man who has inspired some of the biggest bands/musicians in the world such as Slayer, Anthrax, Dave Mustaine, Ozzy Osbourne and more notably documented Metallica
But what does this mean as an average fan like you and I? Well if you got the chance to see them when they toured Australia back in 2011 you would have been covered, if you didn’t that means you should have attempted to fly somewhere around the world and to catch them live and in the flesh. Luckily for myself I went along to the 2014 Coachella Festival with a bunch of mates and experienced my first (and last) Motörhead concert with Lemmy fronting. It was by far the most mental gig I have ever experienced complete with extensive drum solos, heavy as fuck riffs and a surprise cameo from Slash, who joined the band on-stage to shred along to my favourite song “Ace of Spades” which can only be described as a metal head’s wet dream. It was perfect and that to me will forever be the lasting impression Lemmy and the band had on my life.
Now because of this spectacular moment in history I find myself sitting here sad and feeling like something has been unwillingly taken from my life, but strangely not as incomplete as I could have been, had I never got the chance to see Lemmy doing what he did best since 1975, especially now that the last remaining original member of the band drummer Mikkey Dee has stated Motörhead is officially over and will not be touring or recording music anymore. So now I’m trying to put myself in the shoes of someone who never got that chance to witness them live or who had wanted to but didn’t follow through with their intentions and I can only imagine how devastating it would be.
The one band for me that I can put myself into that situation for is the Blink-182 line-up consisting of Mark Hoppus, Tom Delonge and Travis Barker who last toured Australia together back in 2004 (before their first hiatus, Travis’ plane crash, their 2013 Soundwave slot with Brooks Wackerman filling in on drums and now their new line-up with Delonge out and Matt Skiba in his place). I remember thinking when tickets went on sale that I should probably go and experience my first concert seeing my favourite band in the whole world but sadly that’s as far as the idea ever got. And FUCK DID I MISS OUT. It was all everyone was talking about at school the next day and even still to this day, it hasn’t been the same since their last venture here together. Now when Travis Barker came close to losing his life following his plane accident, that’s when something clicked inside of me and I made it my goal after they reformed that I’ll follow them around the country if they ever made it back to Australia.
What I should have done was saved my money and flown over to the states to catch them during their reunion shows which followed their reforming back in 2009. But because once again I left that idea too late and it never came to fruition I missed out on seeing them in full again. We all now know how that story ends and I’ll probably never get the chance to see them full band live but I’m holding onto hope that one day the band will work their shit out and tour, record and play better than they have ever before. But who knows when that’ll happen.
Which is why I urge you, as music fans of whatever genre you love and appreciate (especially metal \m/) that you get out there and watch those bands you want to see, as soon as they announce shows, get tickets, if it’s a farewell and you haven’t seen them before, get involved so you can at least so you were part of the experience of their career and more importantly if one of your favourite bands or a band that have been on your bucket list announce a reforming or end their hiatus and the only shows they have announced are overseas, get tickets, get a loan and get over there. You don’t want to have a life full of regrets and “what if’s” when you should be living a life full of accomplishments and “fuck yeah I saw insert band here“. In the long run it’ll all be worth it and the memories will stick with you for the rest of your life.
Rest in Peace
Ian “Lemmy” Kilmister
1945 – 2015
Until next time, rock the absolute fuck out