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Mötley Crüe

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Mötley Crüe
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Formed in 1981, Mötley Crüe earned instant infamy for their debauched on-and-off-stage behavior and outrageous fashion sense. From their teased hair to their high-heeled platform boots, the Los Angeles quartet – comprised of drummer Tommy Lee, vocalist Vince Neil, guitarist Mick Mars, and bassist Nikki Sixx – were the very picture of ‘80s glam metal. Released on the band’s own Leathür Records, Mötley Crüe’s debut album, entitled Too Fast for Love, became a surprise hit, setting off an industry-wide pursuit. Though Elektra Chairman Bob Krasnow had concerns about their commercial potential, A&R man Tom Werman encouraged the label to sign the band. Too Fast For Love was remixed by none other than Queen producer Roy Thomas Baker, remastered, and rereleased in 1982. An RIAA platinum-certified heavy metal classic, the album kicked off a decade of decadence that saw the band define rock ‘n roll overkill with their unabashed love of motorcycles, whiskey, and strip clubs.
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Beginning with 1983’s Shout At The Devil (featuring “Red Hot”), the Crüe unleashed a chain of Tom Werman-produced albums, each of which received four-times platinum certification from the RIAA. 1985’s Theatre of Pain broke the band further with a hugely popular video for their first Top 40 pop hit, a cover of Brownsville Station’s “Smokin’ In The Boys’ Room.” Girls, Girls, Girls, which followed in 1987, peaked at #2 on the Billboard 200, although it clearly appeared to be the week’s biggest seller – a turn of events allegedly due to industry insiders who weighed the scales in favor of allowing Whitney Houston’s Whitney to continue its 11-week run at the top.

Mötley Crüe got their revenge in 1989 by conquering the #1 spot on the Billboard 200 with the Bob Rock-produced Dr. Feelgood. The six-times platinum-certified collection – featuring “Kickstart My Heart” and the Top 10 title track – would prove the Crüe’s last with Neil at the microphone until the band reunited in 1996 for what would be their final Elektra release, Generation Swine.

The band has carried on, in one form or another, ever since. Their rock ‘n’ roll tales of excess – featured in the Crüe’s best-selling 2001 memoir, The Dirt: Confessions of the World’s Most Notorious Rock Band – have made them legends whose influence can be heard in every generation of metal that’s followed.

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