Lemmy (born Ian Fraser Kilmister, December 24, 1945 – December 28, 2015), also known as Lemmy Kilmister, Ian Willis or Lemmy von Motörhead, was an English singer and bass guitarist, most famous for being the founding member of the Heavy metal band Motörhead. His appearance, facial moles, mutton chops (sideburn-moustache combination), and gravelly voice, have made him an instantly recognisable cult figure.
Associated acts Edit
Motörhead, Hawkwind, The Damned, The Rainmakers, The Rockin' Vickers, Opal Butterfly, Sam Gopal, The Head Cat, Girlschool,
Lemmy was born Ian Fraser Kilmister on 24 December 1945 in Burslem, England, United Kingdom. At three months of age, his father, an ex-Royal Air Force chaplain, separated from his mother. His mother and grandmother settled in Newcastle-under-Lyme then moved onto Madeley, Staffordshire.
At the age of 10, Kilmister's mother married George Willis, who had two older children from a previous marriage, Patricia and Tony, with whom he didn't get on. The family moved to Benllech, Anglesey, North Wales and it was during this time that he started to show an interest in rock and roll music, girls and horses. He attended Ysgol Syr Thomas Jones school in Amlwch, where he was nick-named Lemmy, although he is unsure why, and it would later be claimed that it originated from the phrase "Lemmy a quid til Friday" due to his habit of cadging money off of people to feed his addiction to fruit machines. Upon leaving school and with his family relocated in Conwy, Kilmister undertook menial jobs including working at the local Hotpoint factory while also playing guitar for local bands, such as The Sundowners, and spending time at a horse riding school. At the age of 17, he met a holidaying girl named Cathy and he followed her to Stockport where she had his son, Sean. Sean was put up for adoption.
Lemmy has made a number of appearances in film and television, including the 1990 science fiction film Hardware and the 1987 comedy Eat the Rich, for which Motörhead also recorded the soundtracks. In the 1980s Motörhead were the musical guests on the cult British TV show "The Young Ones", episode entitled "Bambi". In the 1994 comedy Airheads (in which he is credited as "Lemmy von Motörhead"). One scene involving Brendan Fraser, Adam Sandler, and Steve Buscemi, has Brendan Fraser's character, "Chazz" Chester Darvey talking to an undercover cop who is pretending to be a record executive — Chazz asks him, "Who'd win in a wrestling match, Lemmy or God?", the cop replies, "Lemmy", to which Rex, played by Steve Buscemi, imitates a game show buzzer and the cop quickly changes his answer to "... God!". Rex replies saying, "Wrong, dickhead, trick question. Lemmy is God". Lemmy appears in the film and shouts out (truthfully) that he edited his school newspaper as other people in the crowd admit geeky pastimes in their youth. Lemmy has also appeared in several movies from the Troma studio.
Having a predilection for self-deprecating parody, he once appeared in an advertisement for Kit Kat chocolate bars, miming a piece of chamber music on the violin, in an upper-class tea-room, and he also appeared in an ad for Walkers where he gets his crisps stolen. He also appeared on an intro scene on The Drew Carey Show in which Motörhead plays outside Carey's home, startling him awake. Lemmy is one of very few musicians to have been mentioned on Beavis and Butt-Head who was not made fun of. Upon seeing Lemmy making a cameo appearance in the Ramones' "Substitute" video, Butthead exclaims, "He's Lemmy. He can be in any damn video he wants to!".
Motörhead performed the entrance theme song "The Game" for World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) wrestler Triple H (who at one point wore his mustache and sideburns like Lemmy as a tribute), as well as "Line in the Sand" for Triple H's now defunct wrestling stable, Evolution. In 2006, they once again provided theme music for WWE as they recorded the song "King of Kings" for Triple H on the Wreckless Intent CD. He's currently set to voice the Kill Master in the video game Brütal Legend.
Lemmy also appears in the new Airbourne music video for "Runnin' Wild". he plays a trucker driving wildly while the police chase him down a highway. A documentary/rockumentary on Lemmy has been announced for release in 2009.2009 Entitled "Lemmy: The Movie," It is co-produced by Greg Olliver and Wes Orshoski, and shot on a combination of 16mm and HD film. It will feature interviews with friends, peers and admirers such as Dave Grohl, Slash and Steve Vai and is said to set the record straight on a number of rumors and myths regarding Lemmy's lifestyle.
On December 28, 2015, Lemmy died from cancer, four days after his 70th birthday.