"Mötley Düde: Vince Neil Uncensored"
Mötley Crüe's Lead Singer Gives a Behind-the-Scenes Look at His Show, The Surreal Life, and Speaks Candidly About His Viagra Use, Groupies, Prostitutes and the Death of His Child.
Interview by Giddle Partridge and Dan Kapelovitz
Photos by Giddle Partridge
Mötley Crüe frontman Vince Neil has reached a whole new audience thanks to his starring role on The Surreal Life, the WB network's contribution to the reality-show craze. The program featured Neil, Webster's Emmanuel Lewis, MC Hammer, Corey Feldman, Beverly Hills 90210's Gabrielle Carteris, Baywatch actress and Playboy Playmate Brande Roderick and Jerri Manthey, better known as "that bitch from Survivor." The seven celebrities were forced (i.e. paid) to live together in a house for ten days as their actions and interactions were videotaped. Oddly enough, Neil comes off as the group's voice of reason, especially compared to Feldman's irrational and tedious behavior. HUSTLER met Neil and his fiancée, Lia Gerardini, at the Beverly Hills Hotel's Polo Lounge a few days after Neil's performance at the AVN Awards Show. The rocker spoke at length about sex, drugs, fast cars, Corey Feldman and the needless cancer death of his four-year-old daughter, Skylar.
HUSTLER: Are you still in contact with any of The Surreal Life cast members?
NEIL: Actually, on Thursday night, we just watched it with Hammer, Jerri, Brande and Gabrielle.
HUSTLER: Have you thought about starting a band with Corey Feldman?
NEIL: I don't think so. No.
HUSTLER: So everyone's friends minus Corey?
NEIL: Minus Corey.
HUSTLER: Is he a handful?
NEIL: He's just a pain in the ass, is what he is. There's always got to be drama:
"Something to eat?"
"No, I don't eat that kind of food."
"Let's go fishing."
"No, it's murder."
HUSTLER: Do you like how they edited the show?
NEIL: I think it's edited great. They even told me that, even though Corey's coming off so bad, they could have made him look a lot worse, because there's a lot of stuff they edited out.
HUSTLER: What didn't they show?
NEIL: A lot of stuff. Like in the camping episode—the next morning, we went fishing. That's when Corey got on the kick, "I can't be a part of murder." And it's like, "What are you fucking talking about? It's fishing." He goes, "God put them on the earth." He's going on this whole religious thing. I said, "One of Jesus' disciples was a fisherman. He didn't bitch about it." We get back from fishing, and Corey had made these signs and put them all over the campground; murderers. He's a fucking moron.
HUSTLER: Do you think Feldman needs to get back to drinking and drugs?
NEIL: Oh, man, maybe. He just needs to loosen up, period.
HUSTLER: Didn't Michael Jackson have something to do with both Corey Feldman and Emmanuel Lewis?
NEIL: It was so funny, because we were on our way to go camping near Santa Barbara; they're going, "Take this road, and you go to M.J.'s place." I'm thinking, Michael Jordan lives there? How do they know Michael Jordan? Then it finally dawned on me it was Michael Jackson. And then I just kind of creeped out, because I could just picture both of them sitting on Michael Jackson's lap, just hanging out with him and who knows what. I wouldn't really brag that I stayed at the Neverland Ranch.
HUSTLER: Who do you think would make a good Asshole of the Month?
NEIL: The National Enquirer. They just print crap all the time—they put me in there for stuff that never happened. I just got word I'm in this week's issue, saying that I'm going to get arrested for back child support, which is a complete lie. My daughter's 20 years old. You don't pay child support when they're 20 years old, but they go ahead and print that I'm going to be thrown in jail for nonpayment of child support. Believe me, if that was true, the police know how to get a hold of me. It's not like I don't have published management numbers and attorneys and stuff. It's very simple.
HUSTLER: Have you ever sued the Enquirer?
NEIL: No, but I've been close many times—fistfights that never happened. Mainly it's wives and ex-wives, and stuff like that, and they pay these people to get crap on you that isn't true.
HUSTLER: What's the last fistfight you were in?
NEIL: Well, the last one I was allegedly in, according to the Enquirer, was when we were parked at the Rainbow [a club on the Sunset Strip]. We go out and get in my Rolls Royce. And this guy is parked across the driveway on Sunset so we couldn't get out. I honk the horn, let him know we're there. The guy looks at us—nothing. So we wait a few minutes. Honk again. The guy flips us off. Fucking honk again, and the guy's all, "Fuck you." I'm like, "You know what? Fuck you." The guy gets out of his car. I get out of the car. This guy's right in my face. All of a sudden, this kid—he's about 18 years old, big, buff motherfucker—goes, "You don't talk to Vince Neil like that." And the guy goes, "I don't give a fuck who he is." The 18-year-old just hauls off and—boom!—knocks this fucking guy over into the tables where people are eating, beat the fucking crap out of him, broke his jaw, broke his arm. I give the guy 100 bucks and say thanks. We get in the car and drive away. That's it. [Later] there's a news thing in the Enquirer; There's a warrant out for my arrest in California. The police are looking for me; they can't find me. Gee, I have a fucking tour schedule on the Internet. They can't fucking find me?
HUSTLER: How did you feel when Mötley Crüe replaced you?
NEIL: I didn't care.
HUSTLER: You weren't jealous?
NEIL: No, because I had a hit single out with "You're Invited But Your Friend Can't Come" within a month after I was out of the band. Jealous? No. I was laughing because they didn't do good at all. I sold a million records; they sold 50,000. I never heard the album. It really didn't even interest me.
HUSTLER: What kind of groupie stories do you have for Hustler?
NEIL: We told this girl to sit on a bottle of champagne, and she squatted on the bottle. We told her not to move. We came back an hour later; she was still on it. It's like, "What are you thinking?" We would always have the contest where we took a two-headed, double-ended dildo and we tied a $100 bill in the middle of it and gave it to two girls. Whoever could reach the $100 first won the hundred. So they would be squirming against each other, trying to get that hundred.
HUSTLER: What's the most girls you've been with at one time?
NEIL: Four. Last year on my birthday. That was Lia's birthday present for me. She took me and my friends to the [Nevada brothel Moonlite] BunnyRanch for a few days.
HUSTLER: How many girls have you dated that have appeared in Hustler?
NEIL: A few, but they're all porn chicks. Like Savannah. Janine. A couple other girls. I'm sure a lot of the girls I dated would fit in there; I just maybe missed it. I've known Larry for years. We used to go to his house back in the '80s with Althea. In the Generation Swine album, Larry was the star of our video. He's like a doll maker. He's sitting there carving mannequins and shit.
HUSTLER: How would you improve HUSTLER?
NEIL: Celebrity pictorials.
HUSTLER: No celebrities will do it. Unless you want to.
NEIL: Yeah. Me, Lia and a couple of girls, like a bus thing. Like at the back of a tour bus.
HUSTLER: You'd pose nude for Hustler?
NEIL: I'd have to get in shape a little more, but yeah.
HUSTLER: You already got some practice when you put out that video of yourself with Janine and another chick.
NEIL: I didn't put that out. That's another Enquirer thing. Now if you look at the video, gee, there just happens to be one girl whose face is blurred out. Don't you think that maybe she's the one who did it? It was a girl named Brandy Sanders; she was the Penthouse Pet of the Year. I never had the tapes. She had the tapes and, all of a sudden, I get a call from these people who are putting this thing out, and I have no fucking clue. I could not do anything about it. But instead of making a mistake like Tommy and Pam did, going on air and going, "Oh, my tapes, my tapes," which just brings more attention, I just didn't talk about it, and it went away.
HUSTLER: Have you seen the VH1 show called Graveside Groupies, which [Mötley Crüe bassist] Nikki Sixx hosts?
NEIL: No, but I do a bunch of those VH1 one-offs. I just did one for cars called Sex Drive. I got a Lamborghini, four-wheel drive. It's like a Hummer, but it's made by Lamborghini. They call it the Rambo Lambo. It's got a V-12 in it. They do 150 in the sand. They only made, like, 400 of them. Eddie Van Halen is the only other person I know who has one. Then we have the Rolls Royce and the Mercedes.
HUSTLER: At one point, didn't you have 37 cars?
NEIL: No, I only had 20, 22 cars. I had four Ferraris, Lamborghinis, a couple of Rolls Royces, a limousine, four-wheel-drive trucks. I had lifts in my garages so I could stack cars on top of each other. Then you get older and you're like, "What the fuck am I doing? I can only drive one at a time."
HUSTLER: Did you guys stay for the entire AVN Awards Show?
NEIL: No, because I went out there singing, and, all of a sudden, I see this girl standing in front of the stage. I'm singing "Girls, Girls, Girls" with all the girls and everything, and I looked down. My fucking ex-wife Heidi, who was a Playmate, is standing there. I haven't seen her in two years. Everybody was sitting at their tables, but she's standing there. There's a stalker story, absolutely. Speaking of stalkers, there's some chick on a plastic-surgery show on the E! Channel. I'm sure I probably met her once. She tells E! that [she's] my girlfriend. This girl says, "Me and Vince, we were together for so long, and I made all of his costumes, and we were together through everything." I'm like, "Who the fuck is this girl?" And the funny thing is—because there were two girls [on the show]—the other girl I actually dated. I had my attorneys call E! and say, "Reedit that show." But they keep playing it; it just pisses me off that this girl tells everybody that she was my chick.
HUSTLER: Do you still do drugs?
NEIL: No. I can't even remember the last time I did any kind of drug.
HUSTLER: What do you think of bands who say, "Just say no to drugs?"
NEIL: I think that sucks, but I'll have to say, in all honesty, I was guilty of it. I did one of those Rockers Against Drugs [public-service announcements]. And I did this thing, we're on the motorcycle with this chick, and I go, "Don't use drugs." I just did a big line right before that.
HUSTLER: Have you ever taken Viagra?
NEIL: One time I took Viagra just to see what it would do. I was in Atlantic City, and it was when it first came out. I went through about $15,000 in hookers so I could try to come, because it just wouldn't happen. I had no idea the effect that that pill would have.
HUSTLER: How many prostitutes did you go through?
NEIL: I don't know. It was for three days.
HUSTLER: You only took one pill, and you had an erection for three days?
NEIL: Yeah, one pill. I'll never do that again. That was fucked up.
HUSTLER: Do you have any other good drug stories?
NEIL: We had a doctor in Denver that—
HUSTLER: The Elvis doctor?
NEIL: Yeah. He gave us every fucking pill you ever wanted. I took like six Halcyon one night and, I think, a Placidyl. I was fucking wasted. I remember getting into a Suburban limo, and they had this TV screen that had those loops of the fireplace. And I just remember sitting by the TV, trying to get warm. Here's another story; Mortoni's is a really nice restaurant in the Hard Rock Casino in Vegas, and I was really out of it, and we're sitting there with a bunch of people. Everybody's all dressed up, and I had to go to the bathroom. I got up, I took about two steps to this tree, and I just started pissing in the middle of the restaurant. Everybody in the whole place was watching me. They were a little upset with me.
HUSTLER: Was it weird at the church, on The Surreal Life, when MC Hammer kind of singled you out because of the death of your daughter?
NEIL: Oh, yeah. I was shocked.
HUSTLER: Do you get uncomfortable talking about your daughter's death?
NEIL: No, not uncomfortable; I love talking about the good times, the memories and stuff. It makes me sad at times. It's good to be in L.A. for a little bit; I haven't been to the cemetery in awhile, because we live out there [in Las Vegas]. So we're gonna go there tomorrow and hang out a little bit. And so that kind of sits good.
HUSTLER: What happened with your lawsuit against Rocketdyne? [Neil sued the company, alleging that it polluted his neighborhood with radioactive waste, causing his daughter's 1995 cancer-related death.]
NEIL: The judge threw it out because it's such a government-owned thing. There's not just my case, but there was the whole city around it. They only kept like five cases open, and mine was one of them; mine actually ended up going to court. But the judge—this was the most idiotic thing—I tour constantly, and, in the L.A. Times one day, there was an article about the dangers of Rocketdyne. And they said, since I didn't read it—it was like, if I'd have read it, then I would have known the dangers, and then my case would have been okay. And since I wasn't home, and I didn't read it, they threw it out.
HUSTLER: Were they saying that, because of the statute of limitations, you only had one year to sue once the information was in the L.A. Times?
NEIL: It was that and something else too.
HUSTLER: Didn't Rocketdyne's lawyers want your lawyers to give them some documents?
NEIL: We had every document of everything. There's a whole lot of cancer cases revolving around that, because we're talking about fucking rocket fuel being dumped. I lived on top of a hill. The bottom of the hill was owned by Rocketdyne. That's where they do the rocket tests and everything. All the shit goes into that area, and it's just covered up by dirt and stuff. And it's been there for years. So obviously it's gonna seep into the well water.
HUSTLER: Wasn't there a nuclear meltdown at Rocketdyne in 1959?
NEIL: Yeah. So we had them dead to rights. If it was privately owned, that would be a different thing, but it's a government thing, and they're wrong. Of course I asked the doctors, why did [Skylar] get cancer? Obviously they don't fucking know. But you hear these reports; "Oh, it's the smoking," "It's the food you eat," "It's the this," "It's the that." You're fucking four years old; you're not exposed to that much yet. Give me a break. It's weird, because she went through six operations, and they actually cut the cancer out of her. It weighed like four pounds. You only weigh 30 pounds when you're four. It's like most of your body. They took me down to pathology, and they actually showed me her cancer. I was just like, "I gotta see what's killing my daughter." It was like looking at evil. It was black, and that's what pure evil looks like, what was on that fucking table. There were lots of people that lived out there that got it. I sued not only the government, but the developers that sold the house and developed the community. Obviously they fucking knew. You've got to disclose that shit. If you've got to disclose if there's fucking ghosts in your house, you've got to disclose that you're living in a crap neighborhood, even though it was multimillion-dollar houses.
HUSTLER: What happened with that lawsuit?
NEIL: Since one went away, they all go away.
HUSTLER: You definitely blame your daughter's death on Rocketdyne?
NEIL: Absolutely. They just keep that shit open. People die, and they don't give a shit. It's fucked up.
HUSTLER: Does the government own it?
NEIL: It's like the NASA Space Program. It's run by Boeing [who now owns Rocketdyne], but Boeing is contracted through the U.S. government to run the tests. They said they cleaned up that basin down there. They said they took like a foot of dirt out, then sealed it and carted it away. But it's been there since the fucking '50s. It's not a foot down; it's 40, 50 feet down. You can't fight city hall. There's another Asshole of the fucking Month; the U.S. government.
(This article first appeared in the August 2003 issue of Hustler Magazine)