Words: Brooke Ellis
Legions of ghosts roam the City of Angels, a few notable ones, such as Marilyn Monroe and Errol Flynn, allegedly make their home at the historic Roosevelt Hotel. Earlier today, the walls of the restored Hollywood Boulevard landmark were permeated by an apt mix of supernatural energy and sombre fortitude – for, within its basement, now dubbed the Beachers Madhouse, an unusual procession took place: a funeral for more-contemporary Hollywood legends, the Saints of Los Angeles.
Before taking their own place among those ghosts, Motley Crue confirm they have one more mission to accomplish: a final tour.
Hosting the media event is veteran radio host Johnny Vendetta, who directs the crowd’s attention to video screens where a high-speed visual montage recounts the band’s colourful history, reminding the mourners present that Crue began over 30 years ago by mimicking the theatrics of KISS and embracing the satanic controversy of heavy metal. After witnessing an overview of those iconic music videos, platinum albums and unlimited cans of hairspray, it becomes hard to believe the Crue are in fact calling it a day.
To the wild delight of all present, Vendetta then introduces Alice Cooper, who confirms he will serve as opener on the the final 72 dates in US and Canada. “They’re all friends of mine. I am their spiritual advisor,” he says. “We started the genre of theatrics in rock – but we have two shows that are completely different. What do you get what you put together Motley Crue and Alice Cooper? Rock’n’roll! We’re two bands that are going there out to kill the audience. It’s going to be pretty exhausting – for the audience!”
Finally it’s time for Vince Neil, Nikki Sixx, Tommy Lee and Mick Mars to take their places. In front of them stand tombstones adorned with each of their names. Vince speaks first: “We want to go out with the four founding members of Motley Crue, and go out on top.” Nikki recalls, “None of us finished high school, but we figured out how to form a record company. Nobody believed in us in Los Angeles. Since then I’ve been very proactive about everything we do, including the end of our career. We don’t want to hobble off into the sunset.”
In regards to the band’s affinity with their fans, Tommy relates how they always make tickets affordable: “It’s always been important to us. We like to involve the fans in the show; it’s something that we’ve always taken a lot of pride in.” Not to be left out, Mick Mars offered his own insight: “We had every intention of accomplishing everything we did, and now we’re announcing our final tour. We love each other like brothers.”
To seal the deal, a contract drafted by the band’s lawyer prohibiting any more tours using the Motley Crue trademark is signed by each member, onstage, as the world watches.
But one is left to wonder: after a series of infamous farewell tours – The Who in 1980, Ozzy in 1992, KISS in 2000 – is this really the last time we’ll see the beloved bad boys? Vince fields such concerns: “I don’t see us going back on our word and saying ‘Ah, forget it, we were just kidding!’ No, we won’t be doing any more concerts.”
Motley Crue’s farewell tour will reach the UK in 2015.