Among the rock-n-roll titans that roamed the Sunset Strip in its glory days, Lemmy Kilmister of Motorhead always represented a man of the people. As we all know, he spent countless nights and early mornings at his barstool at the Rainbow Bar & Grille playing video poker, sipping a Jack and Coke—your friendly neighborhood rock god who didn't mind shaking hands or receiving a pat on the back from fans as they passed though. So it's only right that about nine months after his death, Motorhead fans saw to it that the tradition of going to the Rainbow to see Lemmy could continue.
Last night, the unveiling of the 6-foot, 300-pound, life-like statue of Lemmy was unveiled on the back patio of the Rainbow, now dubbed the “Lemmy Lounge.” Just like the creation of the statue itself, it was a fan/family affair amongst diehard Motorhead fans who braved Hollywood traffic on a Wednesday to fawn over the heavy metal god (now more heavy metal than ever) and hopefully grab a selfie.
Among the honored guests at the statue unveiling were Motorhead's manager Todd Singerman, the Rainbow’s Maglieri family, statue artist Travis Moore, Lemmy’s longtime girlfriend Cheryl, his longtime boot maker Pascal and Wendy Dio—whose Stand Up and Shout Cancer Fund founded by her late husband Ronnie James Dio received some of the excess money raised for the creation of the statue.
What started as a simple crowdfunding campaign by Long Beach heavy metal frontman Katon W. De Pena of Hirax blossomed into a full-on movement mobilized by the Motorhead army that gained 10,000 signatures and raided $22,771. In full view, the statue is about as authentic as you can get when it comes to a metallic rendering of our favorite rock icon. From the weathered leather of his jacket and signature boots, to those luscious warts on his left cheek, this entire thing was almost spooky to look at because of how dead on it is. The fans let us know as much, not only by their cheers (“Lem-my! Lem-my! Lem-my!”) but by their willingness to travel from all over California and beyond to stand in line for hours just to catch a glimpse and pose with it.
“This is really amazing. To be honest with you, it's more than I even thought,” says De Pena out in front of the Rainbow prior to the unveiling. “I thought it would be cool, but I have really mixed emotions because I haven't even seen the statue yet so I'll probably shed a tear. Everybody here is a big Motorhead fan, but I'm a really huge Motorhead fan, so I was really just trying to do something for a hero of mine but to see all the love, the emotions are all over the place but I'm really proud…People might look at Motorhead fans and think we're a bunch of crazy people, and we are. But in a really good way.”
Among the best fan endorsements of the statue that night: “Damn, that thing is so sexy I'd let it give me crabs.”
Yep. We agree. And in time, that may very well be a possibility.
Here are a few pics of fans posing with the statue: