A very quick post today, I booted what I had originally planned in order to address this.
Just a few days ago, it was officially announced that Mick Mars would no longer tour with Motley Crüe. Mick is still a member of the band, but due to his long-running health issues, he is bowing out of the planned 2023 world tour and future speculated touring activities, which include a possible Las Vegas residency.
This news is not sudden – the rumor mill was churning for awhile that Mick would step aside as the touring guitarist, and his replacement was already named. And last night that news came to official light – John 5, a long time collaborator with Rob Zombie and with a resume that includes David Lee Roth and other luminaries, will be assuming the mantle of Crüe guitarist.
Mick joined the group very early on after Nikki Sixx and Tommy Lee had something going. Mick was a few years older than the rest, hell the dude is 71 now (at least). He has been the sole guitar player for the band in all their existence – while both Vince Neil and John Corabi have contributed on the instrument, the guitar in Crüe is purely a Mick Mars experience. Mick is one of the band’s two constant members, along with Nikki.
Mick’s retirement is well-earned. His guitar work set the stage for what would become a pioneering act in 1980’s metal. And even when certain albums didn’t offer the best we thought the group had, we often fell back to “at least Mick is going off on this stuff.” On their most filler of filler tracks, there was still Mick giving it his all and making his playing the highlight of the song.
Mick has fought a decades-long battle with Ankylosing spondylitis, a serious condition that affects the spine. While this issue is the cause of Mick’s retirement today, it was also the catalyst for the band’s reunion of the original line-up in the early 2000’s. It’s no secret that certain members of the band don’t get along with each other, but “doing it for Mick” got everyone on the same page enough to get out rocking again in the way the fans wanted.
And don’t forget this point – the four members of the band decided to tour on four separate busses when they got back together. While one part of that might have been to mitigate the tension between people, one other reason for it was so Mick could have access to the care he needed.
It is a sad day that Mick can’t continue on. But he is still with us, and hopefully life away from the road will afford him the care and comfort to live in a satisfying way. It’s been an honor to have Motley Crüe around all these years, and Mick is a huge part of what made the music work. And maybe there will be some new studio music that Mick can contribute to that will give some new Crüe memories for the faithful.
Thanks for everything, and may your days be filled with peace.