While the announcement of John 5‘s addition to Motley Crue‘s touring lineup may seem sudden, the guitarist’s association with the group goes back some time now. In fact, he’s long had ties to the iconic rock band.
The news has been rumored for a while now, with Mick Mars announcing his retirement from touring with the band last night (Oct. 26). Mars will still remain a member of the band, though taking a step back from the road, with John 5 now stepping in.
Did you realize that John 5 already has Motley Crue credits to his name? He worked with the band on soundtrack for their 2019 film The Dirt, earning writing credits on “The Dirt (Est. 1981),” “Ride With the Devil” and “Crash and Burn” as well as lending his guitar talents to the recordings.
5 also has a longtime friendship with 6 …. Nikki Sixx, that is. In a 2019 with Outburn, he referred to Sixx as his “best friend,” “He’s my best friend, we love each other,” stated the guitarist at the time. “He has inspired me and taught me so much about life in general. He’s a phenomenal songwriter, lyricist, author, everything. He’s always telling me to listen to this audio book or see this movie. He has a happy marriage, a happy life, a successful band he started from the ground up. He’s one of the most inspiring people. He’ll text me all the time to read something or try something. It’s wonderful. He’s a phenomenal photographer as well. I remember him telling me that he’s going to take bass lessons again and get into playing with his fingers. He was so dedicated.”
That friendship has carried over to a guest spot on Nikki’s “My Favorite Riffs” video series and the two collaborated on record with John 5’s other employer Rob Zombie on a cover of “I’ve Been Everywhere.” The four-piece group, which also includes drummer Tommy Clufetos, recorded the cover under the moniker L.A. Rats for the The Ice Road soundtrack.
John 5 also has shown his love for the material in Motley Crue’s catalog, taking on “Home Sweet Home,” “Kickstart My Heart” and “Shout at the Devil” at his own solo shows. Back in 2018, he even pulled up Sixx for a performance of “Shout at the Devil” with Scott Ian and Pearl Aday joining them onstage for the song.
So it’s not as if John 5 is joining the band starting from scratch. And John 5 has a history of making a smooth transition with some well known rockers, having played with David Lee Roth, Marilyn Manson and most recently Rob Zombie throughout his career.
So get ready to catch John 5 touring as part of Motley Crue’s lineup when the “Stadium Tour” continues in Mexico, South America, Europe and the U.K. in 2023. More info on the tour can be found here.