Motorhead star guitarist, Eddie Clarke, 67 died on Wednesday while being treated for pneumonia according to band.
According to Motorhead’s Facebook page, the guitarist passed on after suffering a serious pneumonia infection that led to his death.
Clarke joined Motorhead soon after it was founded in 1975 by former Hawkwind bassist Ian “Lemmy” Kilmister. He was the final survivor of the band’s classic lineup: Lemmy, Clarke and drummer Phil “Philthy Animal” Taylor.
Eddie Clarke’s early life
Clarke began playing guitar at an early age and by the time he was aged fifteen, he had been through many local bands like The Bitter End.
He continued playing local gigs until 1973, when he turned professional by joining Curtis Knight’s blues prog rock band, Zeus, as lead guitarist. He later secured a deal with Anchor Records, and called the band Blue Goose. Eddie later quit the band due to misunderstandings.
He later formed another band called Continuous Performance which lasted until early 1975, when their demo tracks failed to secure them a record deal and the band split up. It was after this incident that Clarke joined Motorhead.
In the early days Eddie rehearsed with Motörhead, before going on the road, at Snobs Rehearsal Studios. Motörhead’s popularity increased along with their UK chart successes. The threesome (Lemmy, Clarke, Taylor) are considered the classic Motörhead line-up and have the Motörhead, Overkill, Ace of Spades, Bomber, No Sleep ’til Hammersmith and Iron Fist albums plus a string of hit singles to their credit.
He also performed as the lead vocal on five Motörhead songs: “Beer Drinkers and Hell Raisers“, “I’m Your Witchdoctor“, “Step Down” and an alternative version of “Stone Dead Forever” which later appeared on the Bomber Deluxe Edition.
Clarke’s time in Motorhead produced some of the band’s biggest hits, including the ferocious anthem “Ace of Spades.” Clarke left Motorhead in 1982 and later formed the band Fastway.
A later Motorhead guitarist, Phil Campbell, said on Facebook that Clarke “will be remembered for his iconic riffs and was a true rock n roller. RIP Eddie.”
Allan Bangirana is a freelance writer for Newslibre and Spur Magazine. He is also the co-founder of the Innovware project.
He is a freelance consultant passionate about tech, programming, games and entertainment.