Whisky a Go Go

Music Kickstart My Heart Mötley Crüe (morceau - 1989)
A roaring guitar sound rips through the silence. Like a big engine ready to roar on the asphalt. Then the guitar riff is heard. With their feet on the ground, Mötley Crüe reaffirms their power to strike and puts the counters back to zero on the Whisky a Go Go side. Well, almost.
Whisky a Go West Hollywood
"Whisky a Go Go" by ncole458 is licensed under CC BY-NC-ND 2.0

“Tom Zutaut, the artistic director of Elektra, showed up at one of our sold-out shows at the Whisky. He liked what he saw so much that he decided to sign us.”

Vince Neil, singer of Mötley Crüe

Caught up in the turmoil of the 1980s, Mötley Crüe was not at its best when it released Girls, Girls, Girls, its fourth studio album. Drugs are an integral part of the daily life of Tommy Lee, Mick Mars, Vince Neil and Nikki Sixx. This last one makes besides an overdose during a party, not far from the Whisky a Go Go, where are also present Slash and Steven Adler of Guns N’ Roses. A seasoned junkie, Nikki Sixx is no stranger to overdosing on heroin. However, this time, his friends can’t wake him up. Witnesses say his skin turned blue. When the ambulance arrived, he was clinically dead. It is said that one of the paramedics was a fan of Mötley Crüe and that for him, it was out of the question that his favorite bass player died under his supervision. True or false, this story is of little importance because the bassist wakes up thanks to an injection of adrenaline. Pulp Fiction before its time! When he emerges, Nikki Sixx decides to get up, rips out his IV and insists on going home. In the meantime, the news of his death has spread like wildfire. On the parking lot where he stumbles, the musician sees two young girls in tears. The latter think that the beautiful leader of Mötley Crüe has passed away. However, it is indeed him that the two fans see disembarking before taking him home. Over time, the story has become one of the most famous in rock and roll mythology. Steven Adler, the first drummer of Guns N’ Roses even told in his autobiography that he actually owed his life to him. But in the end, it doesn’t matter because this untimely and momentary death inspired Nikki Sixx to write the song Kickstart my Heart.

The almost fatal overdose of the bassist and the cumulative antics of the other three members of the group encourage their manager to push them to detoxification. And so it is almost back on their feet that the four artists record the album Dr. Feelgood on which appears Kickstart my Heart. A real rebound in the career of the combo! To celebrate, Mötley Crüe returns to the Whisky a Go Go, where it all began, to give a warm-up concert before the start of a major world tour. Cameras capture the moment and the images appear in the introduction of the clip of Kickstart my Heart, where it is mainly about racing cars. At the Whisky a Go Go where Mötley Crüe started, even if the first official concert took place at the Starwood. But it was near the club that the then new musicians rented a house. It is still here that the glam metal scene was partly shaped. Where anything could happen. Including a resurrection!


Bassist Nikki Sixx was declared dead for two minutes following an overdose on December 23, 1987.

Whisky a Go Go

A Los Angeles club, Whisky a Go Go witnessed the birth of some of the most important bands of the 1960s, 1970s and 1980s.

It was on January 15, 1964 that Whisky a Go Go opened its doors on the Sunset Strip in West Hollywood. Borrowing its name from an old Parisian nightclub, the bar quickly became the epicenter of the Los Angeles music scene. The bar, often referred to simply as the Whisky, welcomed the finest Californian bands and played a major role in their influence. In 1966, Jim Morrison and the Doors were expelled from the venue after a sultry performance of The End. In the 1980s, the establishment was used as a launching pad for the heavy metal scene. The Guns N’ Roses are notably programmed there.

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By Gilles Rolland

Wednesday, March 9, 2022

Passionné de cinéma, de rock and roll, de séries TV et de littérature. Rédacteur de presse et auteur des livres Le Heavy Metal au cinéma, Paroles de fans Guns N' Roses, Paroles de fans Rammstein et Welcome to my Jungle : 100 albums rock et autres anecdotes dépareillées. Adore également voyager à la recherche des lieux les plus emblématiques de la pop culture.

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