How Lemmy saved Twisted Sister’s career
Dee Snider has recalled how Lemmy saved Twisted Sister from the wrath of angry Motorhead fans – and how the moment set them on the road to stardom.
In an excerpt from his autobiography Shut Up and Give Me the Mic, Snider tells how he worried that his first UK appearance would be his last.
Twisted Sister were opening for Motorhead and their start time meant the stage would be flooded with daylight – so their trick of having played half a song before people set eyes on their eccentric stage gear wasn’t going to work.
Snider says: “We’d been warned about the potential reaction and we were freaking out. As we stood in our dressing room Lemmy came in and made an unsolicited proposition that blew us all away. Lemmy offered to introduce the band.
“To this day I am not sure why Lemmy showed us this kindness. It’s probably just the way he is wired and one of the reasons he is so beloved.”
When Twisted Sister hit the stage the Motorhad fans began to react badly, unleashing a barrage of missiles – until their hero walked on.
“The crowd froze mid-throw,” says Snider. “Lemmy said: ‘These are some friends of mine from America. Give ‘em a listen.’ That was all it took.”
The singer recounts that, during their “blistering” performance the concept of exactly what his band was crystallised in his mind, and he abandoned “the last vestiges of camp. I fully realised my inner monster and I never looked back.”
After their show the Motorhead fans, completely won over, kept shouting for more. The response was so positive that Lemmy returned to their dressing room and asked Snider to return the favour.
“I walked onto the stage and the crowd went mad. I introduced Motorhead then head banged to every song along with the other fans. Halfway through their set Lemmy turns, points to me and says, ‘This one’s for him. It’s called America.’”
Snider reveals that a source close told him the Motorhead frontman had said: “This is the first time I’ve ever been afraid to go on after a band.”
He concludes: “A day that had started out as a nightmare had turned into an incredible dream. I will always be grateful and have nothing but love for Lemmy.”
Shut Up and Give Me the Mic is on sale now.