Lemmy Reveals How He Started Playing Bass

Lemmy KilmisterIn a recent interview with the Quietus, Motorhead frontman Lemmy Kilmister revealed how he got his start on bass. Though he was originally a guitar player, a chance opportunity came up with the band Hawkwind after their bassist no-showed.

”I was mediocre at guitar,” Lemmy explained. “I couldn’t play lead to save my life, or yours. I went for a job with Hawkwind as a guitar player but they didn’t need one. The bass player didn’t show up because it was a free gig, but like an idiot he left his bass in the gear van. It was like, ‘Please steal my gig,’ – so I stole his gig. They wanted me in the band, so when someone asked ‘Who plays bass?’ they said, ‘He does’… I’d never played bass in my life. But I must have done something right because I was with them for four and a half years. I found my instrument. I could really play and do something unique on it. Nobody can copy my style – it’s still unique.”

A documentary on the bassist, entitled Lemmy, is set for a U.S. theatrical release sometime mid-January, with a DVD and Blu-Ray release on February 15. The DVD release will span two discs and include four hours of bonus material.

Get daily bass updates.

Get the latest news, videos, lessons, and more in your inbox every morning.

Share your thoughts