10 Infamous Moments From Mötley Crüe’s Career

In their pomp, Mötley Crüe was the poster child for unabashed rock n’ roll hedonism. As The Dirt (both the Netflix movie and biography) can attest, few bands can rival the sheer rate of mayhem the foursome was delivering at the height of their fame.

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Despite all the antics, the group has endured, continuing to excite fans across several decades. As they are in the middle of a colossal tour alongside Def Leppard, Poison, and Joan Jett, let’s take a look back at some of the moments that earned them the reputation of “The World’s Most Notorious Rock Band.”

1. The Apartment From Hell

The band has long admitted that in their early days they enjoyed reveling in their own filth (in fact the first three items on this list involve failings of personal hygiene). The band’s Sunset Strip apartment apparently had a roach problem at a near biblical scale. They couldn’t afford pesticides at the time, so they’d use lighters and hair spray as their extermination measures. Another innovation came in the absence of toilet paper. They’d use socks, band fliers, magazines, or whatever else was on hand in its place.

2. The Burrito Deodorant

The band would hide the fact that they’d been playing away from home from their significant others by visiting a restaurant called Noggles. The band would allegedly buy egg burritos and rub them on their bodies to “mask the smell.” A shower didn’t seem to cross their minds it seems.

3. The Hygiene Wager

Tommy Lee and Nikki Sixx once had a bet to see who could go the longest without showering and still hook up with fans. After weeks of wearing leather and sweating on stage, one lucky lady vomited spaghetti all over the bassist after getting a little too close. The moment allegedly went on to inspire Guns N’ Roses’ album The Spaghetti Incident?

4. The Jaguar Transaction

Lee apparently once slept with a fan just so he could drive her Jaguar XJS. As Vince Neil recalls in The Dirt: “He buttoned up his pants and looked at us. ‘I gotta go, man.’ He beamed, proud, ‘I’m gonna drive her car.'”

5. Vying for Studio Time

After the band ran out of money mid-session into a three-song demo, Lee offered to sleep with the studio engineer to earn some free time in the studio. The plan worked and they recorded the Too Fast For Love album in just three days, completely drunk.

6. The Undercover Cop Incident

After a night at the Rainbow, Sixx saw some bikers harassing girls on the street and decided to intervene. Sixx told one of the bikers to chill, to which the biker responded “f*** off.” Sixx then removed the metal belt he was wearing a hit him in the face. In a classic Crüe turn of events, the bikers turned out to be undercover cops. They broke Sixx’s cheekbone before dragging him to jail. One upside is that he did get “Knock ‘Em Dead, Kid” out of the experience.

7. Hanoi Rocks Drummer, Razzle

In 1984, Neil was with the members of Hanoi Rocks at his home in Redonda Beach. Running low on drinks, he and Rocks drummer Nicholas “Razzle” Dingley took a booze run. On the way there, Neil crashed into another vehicle, which tragically resulted in Razzle’s death. Neil, blessed by the Crüe name, did a mere 15 days in jail (he was originally sentenced to 30 but got out early for good behavior).

Neil has since expressed some public remorse for the accident. “I wrote a $2.5 million check for vehicular manslaughter when Razzle died,” he told Blender magazine in 2005. “I should have gone to prison. I definitely deserved to go to prison. But I did 30 days in jail and got laid and drank beer, because that’s the power of cash. That’s f***** up.”

8. Trying to Fill the Time

As near-constant touring led to an escalation of boredom, drinking, and drugs for Lee and Sixx, the duo found interesting ways to fill the time (to say the least), including breaking bottles over each other’s heads and swallowing light bulbs for fun. They threw a bed out of their hotel window onto a Mercedes. Lee set his hotel bed on fire in Switzerland. Whatever works, I guess.

9. Near Death Experiences

Sixx nearly died from a heroin overdose in 1987. He told Rolling Stone about the experience, “It hurts to come back. My heart stopped. My body stopped. It’s like you turned the computer off and they restart the computer. That reboot is a bitch.”

He continued, “I got a lot of great one-liners now like, ‘Jesus Christ and I both died and came back.’ That doesn’t sit well in the Bible belt. But you’ve got to laugh.” Despite the trauma, he did get “Kickstart My Heart” out of it.

10.  Antics With Ozzy Osbourne

After Vince Neil and Ozzy Osbourne were alleged to have stolen a car and gone joyriding around Memphis, Ozzy upped the ante by snorting a line of ants and drinking his own urine. “Ozzy is one of the sweetest men I’ve ever met,” Sixx told Rolling Stone. “But when Sharon wasn’t around, it was like a five-person gang. It was always like, ‘He topped us again.’ I remember the day he walked into our dressing room in a dress. He didn’t act like anything was wrong. We were like, ‘F***, I gotta get a dress now.’ He was a role model … for rock & roll.”

Photo by Chris Walter/WireImage

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