…BLOOD WAS SPURTING ALL OVER THE CLOSET…AND I WAS JUST SLAMMING THE DRUGS ANYPLACE UNDER MY SKIN PRAYING THEY WOULD TAKE THE PAIN AWAY…
MARCH 1ST, 1987
Van Nuys, midnight
Today I checked my answering machine. I hadn’t played it back for days. Steven Tyler had called, asking if I was OK. So weird–this guy I idolized as a kid is looking out for me as if he is my dad. Which is more than my dad ever did…
BLIND FAITH HAS
I’ve left messages for Keith Richards, asking if he wants to meet up and write songs together, but he never calls back.
MARCH 3RD, 1987
Van Nuys, 2:30 a.m.
T-Bone came over after rehearsal. The usual routine…chill out with a couple shots of Jack in front of MTV, then I bring out the gear and we shoot up…why can Tommy do the drugs better than me…why doesn’t he get hooked?
Tommy is the brother I never had. He has this energy and positivity I just haven’t got…I get off on that, and I give him…what? Maybe a darkness and edginess he doesn’t have…and which in some twisted way he admires…it freaks me out that Tommy has never mentioned how I fucked up his wedding…I love him for that…
NIKKI: When Tommy had told me a year earlier that he was to marry Heather Locklear, I’d replied, “Great, dude! I’m so excited to be your best man!” Come to think of it, he’d never actually asked me to be his best man. Maybe I was jumping the gun a little there.
I was still with Nicole, and we checked into the Biltmore Hotel in Santa Barbara for the wedding weekend. We had decided to try to kick heroin again, so we took just enough drugs to get us through the wedding. After that, we were going cold turkey.
People were shocked by my appearance at the wedding. Not only had I lost loads of weight and looked gaunt and kind of yellow, but I also was not very lucid. I kept vanishing to the bathroom and I felt really uncomfortable because I had simply forgotten how to socialize and be around people. When it came to the best man’s toast, I had no idea what to say. Somebody told me to say, “May all your ups and downs be between the sheets,” and I tried to, but I fucked it up. It all came out wrong. Heather was from a very wealthy, conservative family, and they must have been truly horrified at this junkie best man swaying about at their daughter’s wedding.
After the wedding, Nicole and I went back to the hotel, shot up our last bit of dope and threw away everything. We broke all the needles. We kicked at the Biltmore, and it was horrible. I was really sick, and the weirdest thing I can remember is that there was a Little House on the Prairie marathon on TV. Every time I came to from my kick before passing out again, it was on. I still can’t watch that fucking show today: it brings back that memory too clearly. Years later I sat in an airport with a girl from the show and even that gave me the creeps. Not her–the thought of that damn show.
Eventually Nicole and I drove back from Santa Barbara to Van Nuys. For the first time in months, we were clean. When we got home we scoured the place, found all our dope and needles, and put them in the garbage can. They were out in the street for two or three days waiting for the garbage man to come.
Then on the third day I started getting a second stage of withdrawal. It’s not as intense as the first stage, but it still hits you. Your brain tells you to just have a little: you’ll be OK. So I said to Nicole, let’s chip a little. She said, “I’d love to, but I don’t want to get strung out again.” I said, “Me neither, I can’t believe we’re off junk.” So Nicole went out to the trash, found the dope and the dirty needles, and…that was it. We were strung out again like we had never even stopped.
TOMMY LEE: When Nikki showed up at my wedding, he was…transparent, dude. He wasn’t white, or even gray–I thought I could see straight through him. Nikki couldn’t have looked any worse if he’d been knocked down by a Mac truck. He looked fucking terrible.
He was doing everything in his power to pull it together and be a part of the day, but I’ll never forget how bad he looked. He was drinking everything in sight to try to stay even, but you could tell he just wanted to get away from everyone and get high: he had that look of panic in his eyes. Then as soon as the wedding was over, he was gone. I never gave him a hard time for it, but…best man? He sure fucked that one up…
Been playing a lot of open tunings on guitar. It’s interesting how I play with more rhythm. I think I’ll buy a piano and see where I go musically…I need inspiration…I feel like I’m onto a different journey sometimes. Metal is boring me. I’m being drawn to Tom Waits, Rickie Lee Jones and Velvet Underground–I guess it’s the heroin. I wrote a song today called Veins.
I know I’m medicating I know that you been praying I know that God is waiting Something tells me he can’t save me
I know now I’m procrastinating I crumble under cravings I know that I’m novacating God is laughing and he won’t save me
Drug under the tracks again I’ve lost another and it’s my only friend
I miss my veins, I miss my everything Collapsed and punctured have I gone insane? I miss my veins, I cannot beat this thing One more shot and I’ll be just fine again
I miss my veins
MARCH 4TH, 1987
Van Nuys, 11:30 p.m.
I’m finding it hard to find veins to inject into lately. My arms are fucked and it’s getting harder and harder to find a good vein in my feet. Tonight I sat in my closet injecting into my neck with a shaving mirror.
Weird shit on the freeway today. Pete and I were driving down the 405 in my jeep, both in our leather pants and no shirts. Some redhead girl waved at us from her car and I asked Pete if he knew her. He said no, and I said I didn’t either. Then she pulled alongside us and said, Hey Nikki, it’s me! How you doing? I tried to play along with it but she looked furious, gave us the finger and drove off. This city is full of fucking insane chicks…
Had wild dreams Walkin’ the streets Hell, we were young Never looked back So we took our dreams Ran like hell Lived our youth From the wishing well Me and the boys Made a pact To live or die No turning back Scarred for life
MARCH 5TH, 1987
Van Nuys, 11:40 a.m.
I just got woken up after one hour’s sleep. When I answered the door some crazy woman started yelling at me and calling me an asshole…it took me a minute to recognize her as the freak who flipped us off on the freeway yesterday. I asked her what her fucking problem was, this made her go even more insane. It turns out she gave me a blow job at my party here last week and expected me to remember it.
Shit…this girl really doesn’t know me too well.
NIKKI: When Mötley got big, we would fuck anybody and everybody, and usually did. Or rather, me, Tommy and Vince did: Mick always danced to his own tune. But I was always bored by girls and wanted them gone as soon as I was done. Sex to me was always about conquest. Girls were a form of entertainment, nothing more, and when heroin came along, it blew them away. The girls were like a crush: it was when I met heroin and freebase that I fell in love.
If ya wanna live life on your own terms You gotta be willing to crash and burn
MARCH 6TH, 1987
Van Nuys, midnight
We were in the studio today and I heard Tommy playing a really cool lil piece of music on the piano in the other room. I ran in, sat down and joined him, and we wrote a gorgeous song that Barry fucking Manilow would be proud of.
I have the cassette with me now and I have a brilliant idea. I’m going to write this one for Nicole.
NIKKI: Nicole and I had finished after she came out of rehab clean in the middle of ’86 and we discovered we’d had nothing in common except heroin. So no hard feelings, you might figure…but it wasn’t that simple. I was convinced that Nicole had cheated on me while I was away touring Theatre of Pain. I was pretty sure she’d been fucking Jack Wagner, a pretty-boy actor from General Hospital. The fact that I must have cheated on her two hundred times during the same tour didn’t even enter my mental equation. Jack Wagner had had a chart hit with a piece of slop called “You’re All I Need.” And in my twisted head it felt like the time for some serious revenge.
MARCH 7TH, 1987
Van Nuys, 7:45 p.m.
We’ve finished You’re All I Need, the song Tommy and me were working on yesterday. I guess it’s a take on Taxi Driver in the sense that if you really love somebody, you would kill them so nobody else can have them, right?
The blade of my knife Faced away from your heart Those last few nights It turned and sliced you apart This love that I tell Now feels lonely as hell From this padded prison cell
So many times I said You’d only be mine I gave my blood and my tears And loved you cyanide When you took my lips I took your breath Sometimes love’s better off dead
You’re all I need, make you only mine I loved you so I set you free I had to take your life
You’re all I need, you’re all I need And I loved you but you didn’t love me Laid out cold Now we’re both alone But killing you helped me keep you home I guess it was bad ’Cause love can be sad But we finally made the news
Tied up smiling I thought you were happy Never opened your eyes I thought you were napping I got so much to learn About love in this world But we finally made the news
You’re all I need, make you only mine I loved you so, so I put you to sleep
I mean, I don’t think I can ever really love anybody, but murder is not out of the question…considering that this fucking whore was fucking somebody else while I was out on tour. How dare she cheat on me? So today Vince sang the vocals, and I plan on hand-delivering the cassette to Nicole tonight to see if she gets the joke. If it IS a joke.
Just got back from Nicole’s house–it went like a dream. When I got there she looked kinda nervous, but I sat down with her and said, “We had a really nice relationship but we’ve had a hard time, so I’ve written a song for you about our time together.” Nicole looked real emotional and reminded me that the last time we talked I told her I was gonna slit her throat. I’d forgotten that. I told her that I’ve changed.
I put the song on and Nicole looked touched as the beautiful piano kicked in. Then I sat there hiding my smile as the lyrics started to flow. When Vince sang, You’re All I Need, I could see her thinking, That’s Jack’s song! Then when the song ended, she just looked at me and said, You’re a fucking asshole, and you’ve always been an asshole. Nice!
I told her she could keep the cassette and as I walked out, I said, How’s Jack doing, anyway? She said I had no idea what I was talking about. I said, Tell Jack to kiss his knees goodbye…
NIKKI: When I got home that night I phoned some local bikers and hired them. Their job was to wait in the bushes outside the TV studio and break Jack Wagner’s kneecaps, then tell him Nikki Sixx sends his love.
WAYNE ISHAM: I shot Mötley’s video for “You’re All I Need,” but at the time I never made the connection that Nikki saw the song as partly about him and Nicole. Nikki was so paranoid but his fears of her betraying him were totally unfounded. Nicole was a great girl with a real cool smile but Nikki took her down to the depths. Every time you saw her, you could see she was just being sucked into this vortex. It was too bad because she was a real nice person. Taking the song to play it to Nicole is such a Nikki thing to do. He would enjoy doing it as well. He always had the Devil’s wiseass smile in his eyes. I guess that’s why he always wore sunglasses.
MARCH 8TH, 1987
Van Nuys, 3:50 p.m.
Nicole just phoned me screaming and crying and telling me that I was a sonofabitch for getting Jack’s legs broken. I told her I had no idea what she was talking about, but it’s fucking cool!
NIKKI: This was a truly bizarre eventuality. Shortly after Nicole phoned, my contact called and apologized, saying they hadn’t been able to get to Jack. I was baffled until it came on the local news that, by pure coincidence, Wagner had fallen over during filming that day and broken his knee on the soundstage! My head was so messed up, I thought it was divine retribution.
MARCH 9TH, 1987
Van Nuys, 11:30 p.m.
I did the stupidest fucking thing today…I still can’t quite believe I did it. I called up Rick Nielsen to say hi. When he picked up the phone, I asked him to wait a minute then I went and drank a whole bottle of water, shot some blow, and puked down the Jacuzzi before I picked up the phone to talk to him. Rick had just waited the whole time. I must have sounded fucked ’cause he asked me if I was OK and if I was using. I said I hadn’t touched drugs for months…
WHY DO I DO THESE THINGS? WHAT IS FUCKING WRONG WITH ME?
NIKKI: Rick Nielsen from Cheap Trick was an early hero of mine. I can’t quite believe I was so fucked up that I phoned him, then made him wait while I shot up and puked before I talked to him. It’s even harder to believe that I thought he wouldn’t notice me behaving in this bizarre manner.
RICK NIELSEN: Nikki would sometimes call me at home and say he was having trouble. He’d call and say he was high and didn’t want to be–or he’d tell me he was clean and I would know that he wasn’t, because I would hear it in his voice. I’d tell him, “You can lie to your mom or your girlfriend or the priest, but don’t lie to me!”
I used to tell him that he could tell me about anything–that he was doing drugs, or screwing a girl, or that his dick was going to fall off. A friend tells you the truth, that your breath stinks and you need a bath. An enemy tells you that you look great and you shouldn’t change a thing.
I do remember one time Nikki calling, then going away from the phone for minutes. I figured he was just doing a line of blow. I had no idea about shooting up; I wasn’t around that kind of stuff. Then he came back on the phone and could hardly talk, but he was telling me he hadn’t done anything. It takes a fool to know a fool and, man, I heard a fool.
If Nikki called me when he was making no sense, I would say that I had to go, but he was often pretty lucid. I was flattered he wanted to talk to me, even if he was talking bullshit. Who else can a musician call? He calls his peers. He can’t tell the other guys in the band he’s in trouble because they’ll tell the manager. Sometimes he’d call me all excited, saying he wanted to get together and write, and I would say sure, when? Then he would get all vague. I’d tell him, be honest, try to do AA, take one day at a time…but he was pretty stubborn.
Before he was on junk, Nikki Sixx was a big teddy bear with a nice smile. He could barely play the bass, mind you, but that never stopped Gene Simmons. I wanted to help him but I guess ultimately you can only slay the dragon yourself. All that I could do was help him sharpen his sword if he needed me to.
MARCH 11TH, 1987
Van Nuys, midnight
I’ve been working on a little theory I call my hygiene maintenance theory. Basically, it’s very simple…
1. Why take a shower if you’re only going to get dirty again?
2. Why make your bed if you’re only going to sleep in it again?
3. Why get sober if you’re only going to get drunk again?
Showering is something you only have to do when the people around you can’t stand the stink. The only reason to be sober is if you have to do something. When I’ve got a few days off at home, neither of those situations apply.
MARCH 12TH, 1987
Van Nuys, 3:10 a.m.
Tonight I realized something that terrified me. I was in my closet, worried that I could hear voices in the walls…then I went to lock all my doors at the security box and I realized that I only need to push a button to talk to West Tech.
Who is to say that they can’t hear me whether I push the button or not? Who is to say they haven’t got fucking secret cameras that can see me?
NIKKI: When I was high on cocaine, West Tech Security was the bane of my life and I was certainly the bane of theirs. They were a security company who had fitted all the alarms on my house and I also had a panic button that I could push to alert them in the case of intruders. When I was shooting or freebasing coke I invariably thought there were SWAT teams on the roof and storm troopers in the garden, and I often ended up phoning West Tech. Then when I got equally convinced that my security company was spying on me, it made our relationship very strained to say the least.
MARCH 13TH, 1987
Van Nuys, 4:20 a.m.
Pete and me went down to the Cathouse tonight. I felt pretty cool. I wore my new tailored jacket for the first time, with the big Nazi armband on the arm. The Nazis may have been sick fucks but they sure looked cool. Riki showed us straight into the VIP bar and Pete and I hung out in a corner checking out the chicks.
I asked Riki to show me where the VIP bathroom was…he took me down there and I asked him if he had a bottle cap for some blow. Riki looked surprised but he got me a bottle cap and I pulled my baggy from my boot and shot up in the toilet. When I came out of the stall Riki’s eyes were wide open. He looked disgusted…fuck, he’ll get over it.
MARCH 15TH, 1987
Van Nuys, 2:30 a.m.
It’s getting to the point where life only makes sense to me when I’m here, in my closet.
People don’t make sense to me…I have no comfort zone. I don’t know how to live. I feel like an alien.
When people talk to me, I can’t hear them. When I go places, I feel alone. I see messages in the TV shows…I hear things other people don’t hear…I decipher what they say wrong…
Am I insane? Sometimes it seems like suicide is the only solution.
TOMMY LEE: I only realized how uncomfortable Sixx was in his own skin when I saw him sober. If he was sober, he would not leave his house. He was so antisocial that he couldn’t be around people for more than two minutes. A sober Nikki Sixx would never enter a room full of strangers–no fucking chance. I would look at him and see his face scrunch up, and I could see he was sweating and thinking, I’ve got to get out of here; I don’t know how to act or what to say. I could see it all over him, and I’d predict to myself, Just watch, Sixx will be out of here in one minute! When he was high, he was fine with everybody, but as soon as he sobered up, he had major issues about being around people.
MARCH 16TH, 1987
Van Nuys, 7:35 p.m.
Having no needles left when you’re jonesing is the worst thing in the world. Last night I was shooting up with my last syringe and it broke. The needle snapped right in two. I was dying for the fix so I was just trying to cram the broken stub into my fucking vein…gouging and ripping at my skin trying to force it in. The blood was spurting all over the closet and I was just slamming the drugs any place under my skin, praying they would take the pain away. Thank God that they did.
DOC McGHEE: By this stage, Nikki wasn’t taking heroin to get high–he was taking it to try to stay normal. That’s the way it is with junkies after a while: they use it in order to not get sick. It takes away the withdrawal symptoms, the aches and the pains, and it’s clear to me now that Nikki was taking heroin to stay out of the pain that he was in every day of his life.
MARCH 17TH, 1987
Van Nuys, 3:40 a.m.
I found myself thinking about Lita today…we were pretty cool together…
Maybe if I’d met her later in life we’d have worked out, but I wasn’t ready for settling down back then. But we had some good times. When I met her just last December, I could see she was shocked at the state I was in. Maybe I was too, but she never said anything. For some reason, people hardly ever do.
They can all see how strung out I am–why don’t they fucking say something?
NIKKI: I’d met Lita Ford in 1982 at the Troubadour in Los Angeles. She’d walked up and introduced herself by putting half a quaalude on my tongue, and in a matter of days we were living together. But back then I was in full-on party animal mode, and after Mötley finished the Shout at the Devil tour, I moved out from her place to live with Robbin Crosby from Ratt.
We met up again just before Christmas ’86 when I wrote a song, “Falling In and Out of Love,” to go on her album, and she was horrified at my condition. I was waif-thin, out of my mind, doing drugs non-stop, snorting off the piano as we were trying to write. I’d taken things much further than she’d ever dreamed, and she felt she didn’t know me anymore. Lita liked to party, sure, but I had become a full-blown addict.
MARCH 19TH, 1987
Van Nuys, 1:15 a.m.
I just took a shit and realized yet again that I haven’t bought toilet paper in weeks…
ODE TO MOM
I woke to the sound of screaming in my head There was a dead body laying next to me in bed A knife had so neatly cut out her heart Ripped and tore and shredded it apart I hadn’t had a drink, hadn’t left the house So I was scared half to death, trying to figure this out I tried to scream, but my words came out low I was drowning in confusion, panic without hope Then the sound, a blessing I swear My alarm going off, waking me from fear I opened my eyes, a nightmare I gasped Then I realized I was holding a knife in my grasp I get out of bed, following a trail of blood There lies mother, no heart But looking good.
MARCH 22ND, 1987
Van Nuys, 11:30 a.m.
Last night it happened again.
I remember going into my closet and pulling out my Dom Perignon box. I love it when that box is full. Some might see it as opening a casket and peering at death, but to me it’s like seeing a hole in the sky with a ray of light from God coming in. Whenever I open that box I know I’m gonna feel good in just a matter of seconds…
Then I shot up the coke, into my neck, my leg, my arm or even my cock…and then it started. I knew that West Tech was listening in on me, that they could hear my heart beating, that they had cameras spying on me. I stood with my ear to the security box, not daring to breathe, and I was terrified. Did they have police coming to get me, or guys with straitjackets? They know that I’m insane, right?
Then I realized I was wrong…West Tech isn’t my enemy—they are the ones who can save me from the people outside, trying to get in…so I pushed the panic button. Then I didn’t know–had I pushed it? Or did I just think I’d done it?
So there I was…naked, strung out, my shotgun loaded, knowing people were about to break into the house…were they coming to save me, or to get me? So I quickly flushed my drugs down the toilet and waited for what was about to happen. My biggest decision was this…do I go quietly, or shoot to defend myself?
Now I wake up to discover it was just another night of insanity. I didn’t press any button and nothing happened…except I flushed all my fucking drugs down the toilet again.
I hate mornings like today, when I wake up or come down…whichever comes first…and I have these memories of things that I’ve done that feel like they were on TV or I read them in a book. It’s getting harder and harder to know what’s real.
MARCH 23RD, 1987
Van Nuys, midnight
Well, today we finally wrapped up the Girls album. All in all I think it turned out pretty good…of course you always say that when it’s your newest album, don’t you?
We’re leaving for New York tomorrow to master the record. Mastering always brings out all the life and sparkle…so I will reserve judgment until the master to decide whether this is a great Mötley Crüe record or just a good Mötley Crüe record. But the fact that we’ve managed to finish a record is amazing to me.
NIKKI: Tommy and I flew out first class to New York to master the album. Our engineer and mixer, Duane Baron and Pete Purdul, weren’t flying out until the next day. So what did Tommy and I do in NYC with a night off to ourselves? We went out to the sickest underground dance club we could find. All was well as far as I was concerned–I was a few thousand miles away from my junk and our album was done. But as usual the devil wears many masks…he kept on and on in my ear about how we should get some junk…finally I set out to find some, only to come back with pockets full of cocaine. Thank God–but, of course, none of us slept before mastering the album.
MARCH 31ST, 1987
Van Nuys, 9:15 p.m.
Just got back from mastering the album. I forgot to take you diary, but if I had, I doubt I’d have written anything in you. They say New York is the city that never sleeps. I guess if we did nothing else, we fucking proved that one…I need my bed…