Mötley Crüe guitarist Mick Mars, who is battling a crippling degenerative disease, has announced that he is retiring from touring.
However, Mars has made it clear that he will continue to be an official member of the rock band.
A statement that Mars’ rep provided to Variety says, “Mick Mars, co-founder and lead guitarist of the heavy metal band Mötley Crüe for the past 41 years, has announced today that due to his ongoing painful struggle with Ankylosing Spondylitis (A.S.), he will no longer be able to tour with the band.”
“Mick will continue as a member of the band, but can no longer handle the rigors of the road,” the statement adds. “A.S. is an extremely painful and crippling degenerative disease, which affects the spine.”
The disease had been troubling Mars since his late teenage tears.
Mötley Crüe recently announced a co-headlining tour with Def Leppard in South America and Europe, which is scheduled to begin in February, 2023.
Fellow Mötley Crüe members Vince Neil, Tommy Lee and Nikki Sixx later released a statement in response to the news.
“While change is never easy, we accept Mick’s decision to retire from the band due to the challenges with his health. We have watched Mick manage his Ankylosing Spondylitis for decades and he has always managed it with utmost courage and grace,” they wrote.
“To say ‘enough is enough’ is the ultimate act of courage. Mick’s sound helped define Mötley Crüe from the minute he plugged in his guitar at our very first rehearsal together,” the band members added. “The rest, as they say, is history. We’ll continue to honor his musical legacy.
Mötley Crüe said they will continue to tour the world as planned in 2023 with John 5 filling in for Mars.
“I’m honored to carry on Mick’s legacy and am looking forward to playing these songs,” John 5 said.
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