I interviewed Lemmy the first time for TV around 2005 for VH1 Classic. This is way before That Metal Show which we had him on several times. He was the only artist that insisted on a call time after 3 p.m. and a bottle of Jack Daniels in the green room. When he showed he had a couple strippers with him and we got around to shooting maybe 5?
I also was seeing Slash play in L.A. at House Of Blues a few years ago. I had a few drinks after the show in the dressing room and was chatting with Lemmy when I realized it was late and I had an early flight back East the next day. So I walked away for a second and grabbed a water from Slash’s refrigerator. When I turned back to continue the talk with Lemmy he looked at me with great disdain. “What’s with the water Ed? What’s that about? You think you are going to get hydrated or something? Get yourself a proper drink and then come back”. It was classic Lemmy! And of course I did as the man asked. You couldn’t say no to Lemmy! He was a true gentleman and the real deal in every way!
It was very tough to watch a guy who lived for the stage and loved playing live so much struggle as he did in the last couple years. You could see how his will to perform was still very strong, but his body was failing him. I appreciated how he wanted to play right until the very end and pretty much did. But I’d be lying if I didn’t think he should scale way back and maybe just do special events.
A week before he passed I read an interview with him in Classic Rock magazine and even though he admitted he was having a tough time, he would not let that stop him from booking a European tour. I was also at his 70th birthday and he didn’t look well at all. It was telling that he never took the stage and just sat there and took in the accolades. It’s all very sad and so many thought Lemmy was bulletproof having made it as long as he did living the ultimate rock lifestyle. But in the last few years it had clearly caught up to him.
Eddie Trunk is the co host of That Metal Show on VH1, the host of The Eddie Trunk Podcast and host of the Eddie Trunk Live syndicated Sirius XM radio show.