‘John 5 Is Not The Right Guy For Mötley Crüe,’ Ex-Mötley Crüe Guitarist Claims
During a recent conversation with Andrew Daly of Guitar World, Mötley Crüe’s former guitarist Greg Leon argued that John 5 isn’t the right fit for the band.
When asked about his thoughts on John 5 performing with Mötley Crüe, the musician explained:
“I don’t think John 5 is the right guy. He’s not tough enough. There’s no aggression in his playing. That band needs a player with attack and fire. John 5 is not that guy. I remember jamming with Mick at the studio during the ‘Theater of Pain’ sessions, and he was having trouble getting his sound. And Tommy said, ‘Get Greg in here; he can make anything sound good.'”
Leon’s Role In Mötley Crüe’s Sound
Leon further talked about how he achieved the band’s signature sound, saying:
“So, I went over, messed with Mick’s amps, and dialed them in. Those guys were jumping for joy to the point of hugging me and screaming, ‘Nobody touch those controls!’ Then they went and got a magic marker and marked where all my settings were. So, yeah, I’d be an excellent fit for Mötley Crüe because I get the sound. John 5 doesn’t, but whatever…”
Greg’s Views On Joining Mötley Crüe
Although he thinks he would be a better fit for Crüe instead of John 5, Greg also stated in a previous question that he would say no if they asked him to join the band following Mick Mars’ departure. When asked whether he received a phone call or an offer to join Mötley Crüe when Mick left the group, the guitarist responded:
“No, definitely not. I knew it wasn’t great between Mick and the guys, but I didn’t think it was that bad. Mick is a hell of a nice guy and a great player. I’ve only met him a few times, but I’ve always found him to be a total sweetheart. It sucks what happened to him. But even if they did ask me to join, I’d decline. I’m not into all the phony stuff with the tapes and sh*t.”
Phil Lewis’ Take On Mötley Crüe’s Guitarist Choice
Still, Leon is the only musician who thinks that John 5 is not the right for the band. L.A. Guns’ frontman Phil Lewis also shared his perspective on the situation in an April chat with Rock Interview Series and said the following when the interviewer hypothetically asked if Lewis would step in as a replacement for Vince Neil if he were presented with an offer of $50 million:
“I would never get that offer. But they really f*cked up when they went with John 5 [as Mick’s replacement] and not [L.A. Guns guitarist] Tracii Guns. And I’m glad they did, obviously. [John 5] is not the right f*cking fit at all. And Tracii would just be so perfect. He’s, like, Hollywood; he’s a brat like them.”
John 5, on the other hand, is happy to join Mötley Crüe as he wants to pursue new opportunities. He felt it was essential for personal growth. He also mentioned, speaking to the Talkin’ Rock podcast, that the thrill of performing on large stages with Mötley Crüe and Def Leppard is invaluable.