MTV News Report, Motley Crue At The Roxy, November 1981


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Back in February 2011 there surfaced an extremely rare video, a minute and a half MTV News clip of Motley Crue performing ‘Too Fast For Love’ & an interview with mostly Nikki Sixx at the Roxy Theatre on November 12, 1981. This high quality pro-shot footage was part of a lot of other rare Crue collectibles that were being auctioned off on Ebay:

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‘MÖTLEY CRÜE: 1981 'Too Fast For Love' Pro-Shot Tour Footage Surfaces - Feb. 14, 2011

30-year-old footage of MÖTLEY CRÜE performing live at the Roxy Theatre in West Hollywood, California has surfaced to promote a series of hard rock/heavy metal-themed auctions from eBay seller EliteWorks.

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The MÖTLEY CRÜE segment, which also includes a brief interview with a 22-year-old Nikki Sixx, was shot on November 12, 1981, just prior to the independent release of MÖTLEY's debut album, "Too Fast For Love".
Several one-of-a-kind MÖTLEY CRÜE collectables are featured in the auctions, including a June 1981 promotional Umatic master videotape of the band's first two music videos ("Take Me To The Top" and "Public Enemy#1"), a test pressing 12-inch single from "Theatre Of Pain", a 24-year old stage used items from the "Girls, Girls, Girls" tour as well as guitar picks, early press kits, import singles, t-shirts and much more.’

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As soon as I saw this baby I immediately downloaded it & it has since been removed from YouTube.

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This video is a treat to see because there is so little live & candid footage of the band in these years & the high quality of the video is a bonus.

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(Readers of Motley’s biography THE DIRT will likely remember the book’s infamous introduction with a Tommy Lee reminiscence of a former girlfriend nicknamed ‘Bullwinkle’. Online rumor has it the lady above in the vintage Crue shirt is ‘Bullwinkle’ herself.)

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So here it is with a little bit edited out (complete video will be posted down the road). This shit is the coolest. And because we aim to please at the Sleaze Patrol Files, below is the complete text from the Roxy Theatre clip.

‘Look out Van Halen, here comes Motley Crue!
The band recently showcased their act at the Roxy Theatre in Los Angeles & the crowd loved them.
MTV Music TV was at the scene to talk to the Glitter group.

Nikki Sixx: We're not teeny-bopper by no means, on stage. I mean, just, the pretty look or whatever you want to call it, it just happened, it wasn't really planned. Sometimes it may be a little bit against us, but, the music kinda speaks for itself.

Motley Crue predicts that they're Rock n Roll's new fashion trend-setters.

Tommy & Vince: It's already happening/starting . . .
Nikki: In LA it's happening.
Tommy: There's people walking around everywhere with the same haircuts, the same look.
Nikki: You'll see that at our show tonight, take a look.
Tommy: They all show up at the shows with the hair & the . . .
Nikki: Anything different is gonna catch on, right? A few people cut off their hair like the Sex Pistols & rebelled against that & look it, it caught on.

From LA with Motley Crue, this is Tony Kilbert for MTV Music Television’

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Motley World Invasion 1984-1986



This classic article from an unknown magazine is unremarkable as far as what is written (just another ‘The Crue are tearing up the road!’ report), but it comes with some rare Motley images from video shoots. Above we see the boys with some of the cast of the ‘Too Young To Fall In Love’ video from early 1984 & a shot of the band incarcerated with Jimmy, the hero of the ‘Smokin’ In the Boys Room’ clip from 1985.


The Vince pic above is from the promo shots for the Shout At The Devil record & I think is the image used for the album’s gatefold. The Tommy pic inset looks to be a still from the ‘Looks That Kill’ video.

Magazine Readers’ Awards #2: 1986-1987



The Motleys were the darlings of Hit Parader, Circus & Metal Edge magazines in the mid to late 1980s & would often top the annual Readers’ Polls. It’s surprising how many Crue fans were filling out those ballots because they would often beat bands that outsold them, record-wise. Our Readers’ Awards posts will cover the years 1986-1992. [The first Readers’ Poll post for Metal Edge in 1987 can be found HERE]


Hit Parader fans edge Motley for the 1986 ‘Group Of The Year,’ garnering around 30,000 more votes than the second place Ratt. Although The Hit Parader writers insist that Motley are ‘the most popular band in the world’ they were more accurately only one of the world’s biggest bands (Bon Jovi sold approximately 6 million MORE records than Motley in those years) & were riding the high off another smash record with Theater Of Pain.


The Motleys almost swept Circus Magazine’s 1987 Readers’ Poll with wins in Best Band, Concert, Vocalist, Drummer, Bassist, Songwriters, Album, Video (‘Wild Side’), Producer & Best Long-Form Video (‘Uncensored’). Anne Raso caught up with Vince in Knoxville, Tennessee where the Crue were playing the Civic Coliseum on November 17th, 1987. Honored that it was his fourth year in a row winning Circus’ Best Vocalist Award he admits, ‘I’m not really that good of a singer’ & talks about his life on & off the road in 1986-87.



Nikki is interviewed by Adrianne Stone in his Knoxville hotel room & responds to the news that he has been chosen Best Bassist by Circus readers by confessing that he stole a subscription of the magazine as a teenager! This classic interview has him telling wild road stories including one involving Slash of Guns N’ Roses (who were then currently on tour with the Motleys & on the brink of becoming the biggest Rock band in the world).

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Tommy got top honors (his fourth year as well) but Mr. Mars did not  win the blue ribbon spot in his category. Although Mick would usually place & even won Best Guitarist in Circus’ 1985 Poll he was not often awarded first place in these polls. Does that make him the least talented or least important Crueman? No sir. These polls were popularity contests & Nikki Sixx’s appearance was as important as his songwriting or instrumental abilities to the average Circus reader.


The staff at Faces Magazine seem to be less than impressed with Motley’s reign of their 1987 Readers’ Poll. P. T. Barnum & even Oscar Wilde are quoted to sum up the writers’ opinion that Motley are essentially style over substance & that their fan base consists of a whole lotta suckers. 


So Randy Rhoads wins Best Guitarist & he had been dead how many years by 1987?? [edit-commentor reminded me that Ozzy Osbourne’s Rhoads ‘Tribute’ album was released that year] Mick ties second place with Metallica’s Kirk Hammett, that’s cool.


Motley win Hit Parader’s Readers’ Award for Best Band for the fourth straight year in 1987. When asked why he thinks Motley’s appeal has endured, Nikki insists it’s the authenticity of the band & offers up one of his favorite sayings from the 1980s:

‘Look, you can paint a garbage can with gold paint, but underneath it’s still a garbage can.’


More Magazine Readers’ Polls in future Sleaze Patrol File Posts, stay tuned!!!!

Crue Photo Sessions I Hate



Crue’s Theater Of Pain era is often cited as the moment the band jumped the shark musically with the frilly, sequined, pink polka dot costumes highlighting that misstep.


I like the absurdity of the Theater gear & the whole cartoonish & garish take on Glam they were doing. By Girls & Dr. F the band had moved into a more straight-ahead Rock n’ Roll appearance & began wearing what could be called more ‘designer’ duds . . . which casts the Crue in a kind of mainstream Rock light. The late ‘80s were a pretty bland age, culturally, & you saw a lot of acts trying to impress rather than shock or inspire. Below we have the Crue looking almost like glamour models wearing the latest designs in a fashion magazine . . . which isn’t that far from the truth!

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Of course, you can’t judge a band by a photo session, but if the Motleys didn’t have the capability to mostly look like cool, gnarly dudes, it MAY have effected their popularity. The band in some of these pin-ups & posters looks more like guys who play soft Hard Rock like Bon Jovi & not the gang who wrote ‘Wild Side.’



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The DR. Feelgood era saw more of this kind of  rich Rock star look. You know things are headed in the wrong direction when Vince starts wearing a beret.




I’m kinda kidding around with this post but it’s true that this kind of established & successful Rock band image was not as compelling as the violent Road Warrior maniacs of years past. Is it a coincidence that the music is less powerful as well? That may be more a matter of opinion.



Although you’ll hear Nikki insist that everything was created & designed by the band, Ray Brown is the man behind this phase of the Decade of Decadence (see more Ray Brown Motley designs HERE). Ray has worked with a lot of other Rockers over the years & you could say that Motley from 1987-1990 were more likely to look like other bands than they previously did. A little bit of their originality disappeared image-wise & this effected their rep amongst the more hardcore Hard Rock & Metal fans. Most of these posters & pin-ups were made for the fan of the fairer sex which left us hardcore Crueheads appreciating the Shout At the Devil days even more.