Former Motorhead and Fastway guitarist “Fast” Eddie Clarke passed away on Wednesday (January 10th) after a battle with pneumonia. He was 67 years old. Clarke, a member of Motorhead from 1976 until 1982, was not an original member of the group but one-third of its classic lineup, which also included drummer Phil “Philthy Animal” Taylor and singer/bassist Ian “Lemmy” Kilmister.
Taylor died in November 2015 of liver failure, while Kilmister passed away from cancer in December of that same year, making Clarke the last surviving member of Motorhead’s best-known lineup until now.
- Clarke, Taylor and Lemmy appeared on five albums together: Motorhead’s 1977 self-titled debut, 1979’s Overkill and Bomber, 1980’s Ace Of Spades and 1982’s Iron Fist.
- Clarke left Motorhead in 1982 while on tour in the United States and was replaced by Thin Lizzy guitarist Brian Robertson. In 1983 he co-founded Fastway with UFO bassist Pete Way, with that act going on to make seven albums.
- The current surviving members of Motorhead issued a statement saying, “We are devastated to pass on the news we only just heard ourselves earlier tonight . . . Edward Allan Clarke — or as we all know and love him Fast Eddie Clarke — passed away peacefully yesterday . . . keep roaring, rockin’ and rollin’ up there as goddamit man, your Motörfamily would expect nothing less!!!”
- Motorhead drummer Mikkey Dee called Clarke’s passing “a complete shock.”
- Metallica drummer Lars Ulrich tweeted, “Thank you for the riffs. Thank you for the solos. Thank you for the attitude. Thank you for being in the coolest band. Thank you for inspiring me to go down the same path.”
- Clarke’s last LP, a solo effort called Make My Day — Back To Blues, came out in 2014.