Thomas Lee Bass, best known as Tommy Lee, is a Greek-American musician and founding member of heavy metal band Mötley Crüe, celebrating his birthday today.
Born on October 3, 1962- he turns 54 and is known just as much for his musical talent as he is for his ‘bad boy’ ways. He has been married to model Elaine Starchuk and actresses Pamela Anderson and Heather Locklear.
Lee was born in Athens, to father David Lee Thomas Bass, an American Army serviceman, and mother Vassiliki Papadimitriou – a 1957 Miss Greece contestant and has a younger sister, Athena. His family moved to California a year after his birth. Lee received his first drum when he was four and his first drum kit when he was a teenager.
Mötley Crüe quickly built a strong fan base and they released their debut album ‘Too Fast for Love’ 1981, on their own independent label- Elektra Records decided to sign the band shortly thereafter, reissuing their debut in 1982. The band then began a string of hit releases throughout the decade—1983’s ‘Shout at the Devil’, 1985’s “Theatre of Pain’, 1987’s “Girls, Girls, Girls’ and 1989’s ‘Dr Feelgood’ establishing the quartet as one of the biggest and most popular hard rock/heavy metal bands of the ’80s.
Lee used several memorable gimmicks during his drum solos at concerts, such as having his entire kit revolving and spinning, or having the entire kit float above the crowd while he continued to play. He was legendary for mooning the crowd at nearly every show. The band was known for their decadent behaviour both on and offstage, often consuming excessive amounts of drugs, such as cocaine, heroin, pills and alcohol.
In 2004, Lee reunited with the original Mötley Crüe line-up to release the double-disc album of hits entitled ‘Red, White & Crue,’ which went quad platinum and launched a monumental reunion tour to support it, The Red, White & Crüe Tour 2005: Better Live Than Dead, the band’s first in six years. They finished the year number 8 on the top concert money earners list.
There is no denying Tommy has been on the wrong side of the law on many occasions and even served six months jail after pleading no contest to abusing his former wife Pamela Anderson.
Lee also faced a 1998 lawsuit when he allegedly exposed a right-facing Nazi Swastika tattoo on his arm to public scrutiny (the tattoo was in fact a left-facing swastika). Lee’s attorney reported the swastika was a “stupid tattoo obtained several years ago.
One thing that Lee definitely loves is his Greek heritage and wrote this poem in June 2012 and posted it on it on his public social media pages →
-Because we are a small, poor country full of people with big hearts
-Because we never visit anyone empty-handed
-Because there is no way to tell foreigners the word “Kapsoura” to properly (burning desire for someone)
-Because there is still something valuable in Greek families
-Because we always do, even if at the last moment
-Because we were slaves for 400 years, but never take this as an excuse for our current state
– Because we are scattered all over the Planet
-Because we have the word “filotimo” (Honor for his friend?) In any other language
-Because foreigners, if they can not find a word, use one of our
-Because we share our problems and bad times with our friends and family and not with psychiatrists
-Because Socrates, Plato and Aristotle were Greeks
-Because we invented theater
-Because we gave birth to democracy
-Because we discovered logic
-Because we made the start in the science
-Because we are proud of our culture, not our war
-Because when we started to make the Parthenon, the others still slept in trees
-Because we have all these lights, which have made efforts to create peace through war
-Because we see a difference between “eros” (in love) and “Agapi” (Love), while we feel both passionately
-Because Eros was a Greek God
-Because we gave the curse “Freedom or Death”
-Because we already woven leash than any other are still attracted to wolf skin
-Because “Greeks do not fight like heroes, but heroes fight like Greeks” (Winston Churchill, 1941)
-Because we gave our ancient alphabet to the Romans and our Medieval alphabet to the Slavs
-Because we are not ashamed to cry
-Because we dance when we are sad
-Because we work to live, not live to work
-Because 97% of the star names are Greek
-Because if we ‘brother or cousin “on the road every scream turns
-Because our churches are not dark inside full of special lighting
-Because our parents do not forget that we exist when we are already 18
-Because if we want to get a sun tan, we go to the beach
-Because we confront every difficulty with humor
-Because the Olympics were born in Greece. As we unite with our Olympic light the world and send the message of peace
-Because our sky is blue white
-Because 40% of the Oxford dictionary consists of Greek words
-Because we know what “Kefi” (joy in the fun?) Means and how to live it.
*Sources include Wikipedia