Ian "Lemmy" Kilmister
December 24, 1945-December 28, 2015
Lemmy Kilmister, legendary lead singer and frontman for metal band Motorhead, passed away earlier today. He was 70 years old. The news was confirmed by the surviving members of Motorhead, citing the bassist/singer had died after a short battle with "an extremely aggressive cancer." Earlier in August of this year, Motorhead had to cut a show short as Lemmy was having breathing problems. According to the band's statement, Lemmy had only known about his cancer since Saturday. The news of Lemmy's death was first reported by radio personality and That Metal Show host Eddie Trunk.
Born on Christmas Eve of 1945, Ian "Lemmy" Kilmister lived a life full of sex, drugs and rock n roll. Before become a famous musician, Lemmy was already active in music. From seeing the Beatles at the Cavern Club to even being a roadie for Jimi Hendrix, Lemmy was beginning to establish his place in rock. Eventually, he found himself playing bass for space rockers Hawkwind. From 1972 to 1975, Lemmy was in Hawkwind. During his time in the band, he played on the band's live classic Space Ritual and the band's best known song "Silver Machine," the latter of which he sang lead vocals on. After a drug bust during a North American tour in 1975, Lemmy was fired from Hawkwind. Not too long after being sacked from Hawkwind, Lemmy formed his own band- Motorhead, named after one of the last songs he wrote and performed with Hawkwind. With Motorhead, Lemmy was able to achieve success. Throughout the band's four decade career, Lemmy was the sole original member of the band. With hits such as "Ace of Spades," "Overkill," "Killed By Death" and "Iron Fist"- Motorhead were extremely influential with their combination of heavy metal and punk rock. The band released a total of 22 studio album, their last being this year's Bad Magic.
It is devastating to hear of Lemmy's passing. If this obituary is seems to short, it's because I'm still trying to process this. It was well known that Lemmy was not healthy for some time in recent years, to the point where he couldn't perform any more. The guy had no plans to retire and I think that's something to admire: the guy kept going until the day he died.
If you are reading this, I want you to immediately listen to some Motorhead... and make sure to play it LOUD. Loud enough so that Lemmy can hear you.
Rest in peace, Lemmy.