Nikki Sixx and his rockin’ picksRodney
Nikki Sixx gives us his picks of favourite musicians who influenced him.
In an interview with Classic Rock Sixx gives his thoughts of the musicians who influenced him. He also notes how artists were more dangerous in the past.
“My friends say to me, ‘You know, Nikki, not everyone in a band has to look like a rock star.’ … I’m like, ‘Why the fuck not? The artists I loved would blow your mind and change your life’.”
Sixx formed a list of some of the songs that made the biggest impact on him, he starts with Queen’s 1974 track “Ogre Battle.” “It was the most mind-blowing moment for me, because of how it mixed the coolest, hardest rock riffs and the most extreme, beautiful melodies,” he said. “Brian May once told me that Freddie Mercury wrote that guitar riff, which I didn’t know. It’s hard as shit to play! But when you really study Queen’s music, you get such an incredible education in the art of songwriting.”
Nikki Sixx loves T-Rex’s 1971 album Electric Warrior, he exuberated “What a cool-looking album! There was Marc Bolan with his guitar and this huge Marshall stack just looking like the coolest rock star on earth. You’d be getting excited even being you dropped the needle, and then it was just wow!”
He explains his admiration for Bowie’s 1974 LP Diamond Dogs. “When I listened to Bowie on headphones, it was like theatre for the mind,” he said. “Diamond Dogs is the ultimate Bowie record for me, everything you’d want from your favorite rock star is right there.”
The Beatles or Wings?
He also talks about a friend asking The Beatles or Wings?, “My friends and I have had many conversations asking, The Beatles or Wings? And when my friends say, ‘Wings’, I’m like, I know, right? Sacrilege to some, I know, but I’m sorry, Band On The Run has it all. My uncle was the President of Capitol and when I was a kid he would send me out boxes of vinyl every couple of months, and I distinctly remember getting this album. I couldn’t stop listening to this song. That song, and that album, was a total game-changer for me, and to this day Wings are still one of my favourite bands. McCartney is a genius, obviously.
And we can’t end without hearing Nikki Sixx’s opinion of one of Motley Crue’s biggest hits. Yes, the song that was written about a heroin overdose in 1987 that saw Nikki Sixx die for two minutes. “I’d written this kinda punk rock riff on acoustic guitar and I wrote this smart-ass lyric about getting high on speed, knowing that it would never get played on the radio, just to see what we could get away with. It became a really magical moment for Mötley Crüe.”
He continues “I’m not saying, Yeah man, I’m bad-ass, I wrote Kickstart My Heart, because I kinda think these songs are just delivered to you if you’re open to ideas, and, if you’re lucky, you will capture the moment. But if I’m remembered as a songwriter, I think this will be a song that stands up, and it’s one I can look back on and think, Yeah, that was cool.”