MÖTLEY CRÜE Guitarist JOHN 5: How AC/DC 'Changed The World'

October 19, 2023

Former ROB ZOMBIE and MARILYN MANSON and current MÖTLEY CRÜE guitarist John 5 was interviewed for the latest episode of "The Kenny Aronoff Sessions", the podcast hosted by Kenny Aronoff, one of the most accomplished drummers in rock and roll history. You can now watch the chat below.

Asked to name some of his first electric guitar heroes, John 5 said (as transcribed by BLABBERMOUTH.NET): "I had many, many epiphanies. I think it was [Jimi] Hendrix because I saw the Woodstock thing on cable TV when it first came on. Hendrix, and then it would go to Eddie Van Halen and Randy Rhoads and Yngwie [Malmsteen] and Paul Gilbert. But luckily, I still — I'm always searching, always. Oh my God, I love it. 'Cause I can learn so many new things. I learn everything, everything. I'm always studying. I love it."

Elaborating on his willingness to learn new things, even from musicians who are seemingly less technically skilled than he is, John 5 said: "The simplicity of even — and you can say anything like Buddy Holly or AC/DC. AC/DC, you hear at the beginning of 'Highway To Hell', and you're, like, 'Oh my God.' It changed the world. I mean, three chords… You're, like, 'Oh my God.' It just changed the whole world. How is that possible? How? It's something you cannot describe. And back in the mid-'70s when they were doing it, still today when they just played [on October 7], and we're in 2023, and they played in front of 10 billion people — people loving it. And that says something. It doesn't have to always be technical. It's like doing research of just things that were, like, rip your heart out."

John 5's band JOHN 5 AND THE CREATURES recently announced the first tour since he joined MÖTLEY CRÜE as the replacement for Mick Mars. The trek will kick off NAMM weekend in January 2024 with two special Southern California performances with special guest Jared James Nichols before continuing through early March.

For over 30 years, John 5 has been one of the most in-demand guitar players on the planet. As well as a songwriter/guitarist for hire, John 5 has shared the stage as axeman for ROB ZOMBIE, MARILYN MANSON and JUDAS PRIEST singer Rob Halford. He has also worked with an impressive array of names, from all walks of music, including Steve Perry, KD Lang, Rod Stewart, David Lee Roth, Alice Cooper, Tina Guo, LYNYRD SKYNYRD, Meat Loaf, Ricky Martin and Steven Adler.

John 5 has worked with a varied range of artists, performing as guitarist for some of the biggest headlining rock bands in the world. Slash has called John 5 "one of the most mind-blowing guitarists around" and Rob Zombie has dubbed him "a fucking shredder". John 5 has released seven solo albums to date, as well as a remix album.

In 2015, following a series of web shows to celebrate the release of his solo album "Careful With That Axe", John 5 decided to take his solo set on tour and formed THE CREATURES band to support his live shows. Initially joined by long-term friend Rodger Carter on drums, the band continues touring to this day, and now work as a unit on 5's solo albums, including "Season Of The Witch", the live album "It's Alive", "Invasion" and 2021's "Sinner".

In October 2022, it was revealed that John 5 would be joining MÖTLEY CRÜE as their guitarist following the announcement that Mick Mars would be retiring. John 5 spent several weeks on the road earlier this year with MÖTLEY CRÜE as part of "The World Tour" with DEF LEPPARD.

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