heavy metal

Did Tommy Lee's Drum Rollercoaster Really Come To Him In A Dream?

As Motley Crue's big Summer tour with Poison and NY Dolls comes to an end, it is time to put Tommy Lee's tricked out drum rig in storage. One of the big attractions of this years tour was Tommy Lee's roller coaster drum kit with a full 360 degree loop. Crue drummer Tommy Lee stated to about his idea in 2010 "My dream and goal, and I will do it, is to build a rollercoaster that can pack up and travel from city to city. It will have all the workings of a rollercoaster, but I'll get rid of the car and replace it with a drum riser with two seats on the back. I'll run out into the audience, grab a couple of fans, strap them in and go!"

Lee finally got to realize his dream this Summer...but was it really his dream? It turns out a Los Angeles based 70's rock band WHITEHORSE did this very thing, although with a lesser budget in 1975. Whitehorse drummer Jack Valentine was the first to attempt strapping his drum rig to a 'rollercoaster' and having it take him upside down. He used a garage door opener and tracks with his drumkit nailed down to a platform as the car. (see video below)

How could Tommy Lee have known that? He has done a lot of crazy things on the drums from playing over the crowd, playing in a gyroscopic type device that spins to playing vertical. Plus this video only recently came to light and Tommy Lee has been talking about a contraption to allow him to play upside down for a few years now.

Turns out that in the 70's, Whitehorse guitarist was none other than Bob Deal (aka Mick Mars) who later went on to become the founding member of Motley Crue.

Another interesting fact about Whitehorse was in the 70's, a lot of the clubs were unionized. Bands would have to join their local Musician's Union in order to perform. Once in the union, you'd be fined for performing at non-union clubs. To get around this, Whitehorse also performed as Mottley Croo...until the union found out.

Turns out there was also a short lived vocalist in Whitehorse that went by the name Micki Marz. Bob Deal, who later became Mick Mars first called himself Zorky Charlemagne...glad he later adopted Mick Mars.

If you are interested in more, pick up the book "Motley Rock Stories" by Jack Valentine.

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Tags:  Motley CrueTommy LeeJack ValentineWhitehorseMick Mars

    August 15, 2011

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