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The Night I Met Lemmy from Motorhead

Photo by Gaye Gerard/Getty Images

Every radio DJ has a hundred pictures with, and 500 stories about, famous people they met one time.  Today, I was reminded of my brief encounter with one of the most notorious rockers on the planet, Lemmy Kilmister from Motorhead.

It was 1999 and I was 22 years old.  Fresh out of college and working at the legendary KILO-FM in Colorado Springs, Colorado.  Motorhead had a gig scheduled at a great venue called the Colorado Music Hall and, for some reason, I was chosen to represent the station and introduce the band.

When their stage manager set eyes on the punk ass kid who was about to introduce rock ‘n roll royalty, he was not pleased.  He gave me a short speech about what a privilege it was to introduce such an iconic act.  He then insisted, repeatedly, that I was not  to talk into Lemmy’s microphone,  I was not to approach Lemmy’s mic, I was not to touch Lemmy’s mic.  Instead, I was to proceed directly to Phil Cambell’s mic, stage right.  He then then pointed out that if I refused to comply with his order, he would run onto the stage, tackle me and kick my ass.  I must admit, I was tempted to disobey the stage manager and talk into Lemmy’s mic anyway.  But this dude was big, surly and had a very unpleasant disposition.  I figured it wouldn’t look good for our radio station if I got the crap kicked out of me on stage in front of 1,000 people.

So I followed orders, made my stage announcement and got the crowd pumped up.  On way my off the stage, I saw Lemmy walking towards me.  As I approached Lemmy, I began to bow.  He was not amused. The venue had a small ramp that led from the stage to the dressing rooms.  Lemmy literally had to turn sideways to get past me.  Luckily, I was a lot thinner in those days.  As I maneuvered past him, I seized my opportunity to tell Lemmy how awesome he was by saying “Lemmy is God”.  He paused for a second and said “F@#$ off, kid”.  Then he smirked.  I was honored.

Years later, I had a similar encounter with Jerry Cantrell’s stage manager at a show in Modesto, California.  Evidently, it’s disrespectful to belch into a rock star’s mic after slamming a beer on stage.  Who knew?

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