Former MÖTLEY CRÜE drummer Tommy Lee recently spoke to the Chicago Sun-Times about ex-wife Pamela Anderson, prison and lessons learned. Several excerpts from the interview follow:
Chicago Sun-Times: Let's start with rock 'n' roll. What's it like to play in a stadium full of screaming fans?
Tommy Lee: "I don't think there's anything better than that. I live for that. You've poured your heart into your music, you're there performing it live, and when you get it back, when people are like [mimics roar of crowd] that's it, man. As an artist, that's the ultimate thank-you."
Chicago Sun-Times: So is rock better than sex? You've had lots of experience with that, too.
Tommy Lee: "I'm gonna say yes, because it just gives you so much more. Sex is fun, but it ain't that great, know what I'm sayin'? And it's short, you know? It's like, OK, that was fun. I guess you could compare it to sex, but I wouldn't put it on the same pedestal. Music is much more powerful to me."
Chicago Sun-Times: What's your most insane groupie experience?
Tommy Lee: "It was before a show. We had done an in-store, and we were done, but there was a s---load of people out front, everyone wanting to get another picture, autograph or whatever. We just make a beeline straight for the van. And we get in there, and these girls had opened the hood and taken the distributor cap off the motor. So we're sitting there, we couldn't go anywhere. And we look, and both of them were hiding in the very back of the van. And we were like, man, you know what? That is an A for effort! You all can hang with us, let's go. I mean, these girls got all MacGyver on us. It was cool."
Chicago Sun-Times: What's it like to go from a totally hedonistic and reckless lifestyle to a somewhat less indulgent and more responsible one?
Tommy Lee: "I'm trying to age gracefully here, [laughs] and I have to give credit to fatherhood and being a parent. That's really kind of made me focus on being able to flip the switch. It's like, OK, rock star maniac, flip the switch, responsible dad/parent. So I have those two things in my life to keep me pretty balanced."
Read Tommy Lee's entire interview with the Chicago Sun-Times at this location.