The news was first reported Monday evening on Twitter by radio/TV personality Eddie Trunk. The official Motörhead Facebook page confirmed shortly thereafter with this note:
"There is no easy way to say this…our mighty, noble friend Lemmy passed away today after a short battle with an extremely aggressive cancer. He had learnt of the disease on December 26th, and was at home, sitting in front of his favorite video game from The Rainbow which had recently made it’s way down the street, with his family.Formed in London in 1975, Motörhead became rock icons for their breakneck style that combined hard rock with thrash metal, millions of records sold, and reckless/badass attitudes.
We cannot begin to express our shock and sadness, there aren’t words.
We will say more in the coming days, but for now, please…play Motörhead loud, play Hawkwind loud, play Lemmy’s music LOUD.
Have a drink or few.
Celebrate the LIFE this lovely, wonderful man celebrated so vibrantly himself.
HE WOULD WANT EXACTLY THAT.
Ian ‘Lemmy’ Kilmister
Born to lose, lived to win."
Lemmy, who was born in England in 1945, battled health issues in recent years, including hematoma and an irregular heartbeat. Rock lore contends he drank a bottle of Jack Daniels every day since the age of 30. Lemmy recently switched from whiskey to vodka "for health reasons," and told the Guardian last year that he's "still indestructible."
"We are Motörhead and we play rock 'n roll!" Lemmy exclaimed at the beginning of Motörhead's 2011 First Avenue show. Ya goddamn right ya did, Lemmy. Below, you can view this fan clip of the band playing their biggest hit, "Ace of Spades," at that very show (and you can listen to Motörhead's entire First Ave set, circa 1985, here): Rock star pals and contemporaries took to Twitter on Monday to show their respects for Lemmy. Here's a sampling:
Lost one of my best friends, Lemmy, today. He will be sadly missed. He was a warrior and a legend. I will see you on the other side.
Oh my. Lemmy got let in on the big secret. One of the greatest rockers of all time. Amazingly unique incredible bass player. My hero. Wow.— Flea (@flea333) December 29, 2015
REST IN POWER BIG DOG pic.twitter.com/r8N10kRWNK— WAVVES (@wavves) December 29, 2015
Lemmy: Rest In Peace. Shake the heavens, my friend.— Gene Simmons (@genesimmons) December 29, 2015
Rest in peace Lemmy— Laura Jane Grace (@LauraJaneGrace) December 29, 2015
My dear friend, Lemmy, passed away today. I’ve known him for 38 years. He will be so missed but he will never be forgotten.— Sharon Osbourne (@MrsSOsbourne) December 29, 2015