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The Biggest Rock N Roll Cover-Up Ever: MÖTLEY CRÜE, Matthew Trippe and The Devil

Before MÖTLEY CRÜE decided to make a comeback with the popular but ultimately ill-fated The Stadium Tour, there was one problem standing in the way of bassist Nikki Sixx keeping control of the band. Actually, make those two problems.

Mick Mars… and Matthew Trippe.

The latter name you probably have never heard of. We all know Mick was kicked out of the circus after 36 North American gigs in 2022, therefore breaking up the original Crue lineup. It is my assertion this was all carried out so that millions of dollars could be “ripped off” by Sixx and everyone else connected to the glam metal band, essentially robbing Mick Mars.

As the story goes, it was Sixx’s ‘studio sub’ on bass named Matthew Trippe who was the first point of contention in the battle of Sixx versus Mars for ownership of the band going back decades ago.

Once the band hit mega stardom Mick was attempting to replace Sixx with Trippe, because he felt that Sixx was not a real musician and so when the Crue got signed to Elektra, they could no longer rely on the clown-miming satanic antics of Sixx, who was purportedly more interested in doing dark rituals and chasing “virgins” around Hollywood, according to the glam metal band’s ex limo driver. There was hardly any time to actually practice on his instrument.

“It was in this climate of unrest – this snake pit of dead-end confusion and unfulfilled promise- that Matthew Trippe, looking for a way out, left home for good in the Summer of 1982.”

Arriving in LA, Trippe first bought a used car, which he often slept in. Next, after scouting the local bar scene – Sunset Strip landmarks The Rainbow, Troubadour, and Whiskey A Go Go – Trippe would eventually settle on The Troubadour club his base of operations. Though the plan had been, and always would be, to make his stand as a musician, progress was slow. Initially, he would find himself whiling away entire afternoons ensconced at the bar, nursing a single beer, making small talk with the bartender, waitresses, fellow stragglers.

This is when, as he later would come to tell it, Trippe was approached by a man named Mick Mars. Mars was the  guitarist for Mötley Crüe, then what you would have called the new band on the street. Although the ‘Crüe were essentially unknowns beyond the clique of Hair Metal musicians and hangers-on populating the Sunset Strip at the time, Mars nevertheless cut an imposing figure, with his full-on Goth attire and haunted, Kohl-encircled eyes. Trippe was stunned to learn Mars had been watching him, sizing up this solitary figure at the bar, for days. Now it was time for Mick Mars to make his pitch.

In 1988, Mr. Trippe filed suit against Mötley Crüe and their management, citing civil theft and claiming that he had written a series of Dr. Feelgood songs later recorded by the band, including Knock Em Dead Kid, Girls Girls Girls, All I Need, Dancing On Glass and Wild Side

Mr. Trippe was found dead in December of 2014.

My theory is that Sixx saw far in advance the opportunity to keep the power for himself, by eliminating the man who tied up the loose ends, and that is Mr. Trippe, in my opinion. Sixx could not have himself being exposed to the media this way There was too much money on the line. Next, he sabotaged The Stadium Tour by using backing tracks for main instrumentation and lead/backing vocals, as Mick Mars confirmed in his lawsuit launched last year and TMD busted drummer Tommy Lee fake performing at a gig on The Stadium Tour. Then Sixx and Kovac pointed blame at the ‘advanced age’ of Mick, gaslighting the legendary guitar hero to ruin his legacy.

A quote from Roger Hemond of Sixx Pakk on the Trippe mystery:

“I don’t know whether or not anything he said was true (but) I have seen copyright forms processed by the Library of Congress that had every member of Mötley Crüe’s full real name, aka name, and social security number, with the exception of Nikki Sixx. All it said was Nikki Sixx and gave a social security number, which I swear to God was the same number on Matthew John Trippe’s social security card which I was holding in my other hand.”

Why did the case really get dropped?

Jerry Rollins Oglesby, the private investigator that worked on the case takes this point up and says that the case “was dismissed on a technicality in the statute of limitations in contract tort law. In Florida, the statute of limitations is four years on a contract tort. We sued in Florida. In California, it is two years. They, the record label’s attorney joined forces with Thaler and McGee Entertainment and contrived a viable statement that is a matter of record in Tampa Florida Circuit Court.”

It is entirely possible that Mr. Trippe was a small fish in a big dark ocean and got swallowed up by the dark forces that ultimately hold dominion over the rock n roll music biz.

“I quote: ‘We are not saying that a contract was struck with Matthew Trippe but if it was signed, it would be signed in California, therefore the statute of limitations would have expired.’

In a world based on power by earning as much money as possible, then sometimes things must be done to keep the lies covered up. A legal stall could have been done to drag Trippe deeper into the abyss where the real demons of rock n roll awaited.

There was enough evidence for a case. Doc McGhee himself confirmed that the case would have happened.

Steve Contrascere who was part of Trippe’s legal team along with Jerry Oglesbey and Attorney Tom Smith, said of Trippe later:

“It’s a shame that the power of the media will never give him his due. Mick Mars is the only one who can tell the true story. If you could hear Matthew play and sing the music he wrote for them and play the studio tape at the same time, it was like stereo and genuine.”