Mötley Crüe’s position against Mick Mars is reportedly that retiring from touring is retiring from the band

Photo by Joe Schaeffer Photography

Mötley Crüe’s position against Mick Mars is reportedly that retiring from touring is retiring from the band

The rather sad and now public fall out between guitarist Mick Mars and his three Mötley Crüe bandmates — bassist Nikki Sixx, lead vocalist Vince Neil and drummer Tommy Lee — appears that it will come down to whether the guitarist actually retired from the band when he decided to stop touring with the group.

A press release from the guitarist back on October 26, 2022 indicated that due to his ongoing painful struggle with Ankylosing Spondylitis (A.S.), he would no longer be able to tour with the band but would continue as a member of the group. A day laterMötley Crüe issued a press release indicating that they accepted Mars‘ “decision to retire from the band due to the challenges with his health” while announcing that guitarist John 5 would be joining them moving forward.

Mötley Crüe‘s litigation lawyer Sasha Frid reportedly told Variety:

“After the last tour, Mick publicly resigned from Mötley Crüe.”

“Despite the fact that the band did not owe Mick anything — and with Mick owing the band millions in advances that he did not pay back — the band offered Mick a generous compensation package to honor his career with the band.  Manipulated by his manager and lawyer, Mick refused and chose to file this ugly public lawsuit.”

“That’s correct. Retiring from touring is resigning from the band.”

“The band’s primary function is to tour and perform concerts. And as you saw from the amendment, if a shareholder resigns, he cannot receive any compensation from touring — which is what Mick is trying to get. It’s clear-cut that Mick is not entitled to any more money.”

Mick’s lawsuit is unfortunate and completely off-base. In 2008, Mick voted for and signed an agreement in which he and every other band member agreed that ‘in no event shall any resigning shareholder be entitled to receive any monies attributable to live performances (i.e., tours).’”

In a recent interview with Variety, Mars provided a different view in that he agreed with Variety that his position was that he had not retired from the band altogether but simply from touring. Mars indicated:

“Yes, exactly. Things get twisted around sometimes from other band members. I don’t really know if I should say this, but… Those guys have been hammering on me since ’87, trying to replace me. They haven’t been able to do that, because I’m the guitar player. I helped form this band. It’s my name I came up with [the Motley Crue moniker], my ideas, my money that I had from a backer to start this band. It wouldn’t have gone anywhere. And then to be hearing stuff from people like Bob Daisley from Ozzy Osbourne’s band, when we were touring with them, and Carmine Appice… [In his 2014 memoir, Daisley recounted a conversation with the other members of Motley Crue on a tour bus in 1984 when they allegedly solicited his advice about firing Mars, and he strongly advised against it, saying Mars was an integral part of their chemistry. Daisley retold the story in an interview four months ago with Blabbermouth.]

The thing that they keep pushing, for many years, is that I have a bad memory. And that’s full-blown, out-of-proportion crap. Around 2012, when they first started saying that my memory was bad and I didn’t remember the songs, I came home and saw all my doctors, because I keep myself together, because I’m an old bastard. They had all the 10th Street people there [from the band’s management] — probably about five or six people — (versus) all my doctors going: “There’s nothing wrong with him.” And now they’re still playing that game with me.

So, no, the truth is: I want to retire from touring because of my AS [Ankylosing spondylitis, an inflammatory, arthritic disease that causes vertebrae to fuse]. I don’t have a problem remembering the songs. I don’t have a problem with any of that stuff. But I do have a problem with them, constantly, the whole time, telling me that I lost my memory. No. Wrong. That’s wrong. Absolutely wrong.

But my stupid body is telling me “No, don’t do that” [stay on the road]. You know, I’m gonna be 72 years old, and I’ve been touring with these guys 41 years, helping build the brand, helping do this and that. And you’re served with papers and going, this is crazy. This is stupid. I mean, come on.”

In terms of a precedent for his position, Mars stated: “An example would be Ace Frehley. Ace Frehley still owns everything that he had when he was in Kiss. And Foreigner, with Lou Gramm — he doesn’t wanna go back. There was too much brain damage, I guess, from (conflict with) Mick (Jones), the guitar player who formed it, who’s not doing too well now. It’s things like that. And with me… I don’t know why I’m being sued. I’m confused and I don’t get it. There’s no reason for me to be having to do it under arbitration or anything else.”

You can read the interview with Mick Mars via Variety‘s website.