A statue of Lemmy at Wacken Open Air. Credit: Didier Messens/Getty
The renowned British metal band Motörhead frequented Wacken Open Air Festival countless times throughout their extensive careers. As part of Wacken’s ‘Lemmy Forever’ celebrations this year, Lemmy’s ashes were enshrined ensuring Lemmy rests at several of his favourite places around the world.
On the momentous date of August 2nd, 2023, a spectacular event unfolded at the renowned Wacken Festival in Germany. It was a weekend like no other, known as “Lemmy Forever,” dedicated to celebrating the everlasting legacy of the legendary and immortal Ian ‘Lemmy’ Kilmister. Some of his ashes found their eternal resting place at the festival, honoring his unparalleled contributions to the world as one of the most influential and cherished cultural icons in history.
Lemmy, whose real name was Ian Kilmister, passed away in December 2015 at the age of 70, shortly after revealing his prostate cancer diagnosis. Festival co-organizer Thomas Jensen expressed deep honor at Lemmy’s return to Wacken, emphasizing the significant impact he had on the genre and beyond. The connection between Motörhead and Wacken Open Air has always been special, with few bands playing there as frequently as they did. Thus, Lemmy’s final resting place at Wacken holds profound meaning.
The band’s manager, Todd Singerman, shared their delight in Lemmy finding a permanent place at Wacken, a cherished home for him. Their aim was to ensure Lemmy’s resting places worldwide, allowing fans to pay their respects and celebrate his enduring legacy and influence. “He was a man of the people, and as such, he ‘lived’ in many places worldwide. It’s our aim to allow him to rest permanently in all his ‘homes’ globally and allow his fans worldwide to have a place close to them where they can both pay respects and celebrate his enormous continuing legacy and influence.”
Before his passing, Lemmy requested that some of his ashes be used for tattoos for Motörhead’s tour manager and production assistant. Additionally, he wanted his ashes to be placed inside bullets and sent to his loved ones.
Recently, the band’s rare 1998 cover of Metallica’s ‘Enter Sandman’ was officially released on major streaming platforms. The track was initially recorded for a wrestling company’s compilation album and had been limited to CDs and unauthorized online copies until Motörhead Day (May 8), when it became widely accessible.
Drummer Mikkey Dee stated earlier this year that Motörhead would never tour again under that name, out of respect for Lemmy. However, the band may perform occasional shows in the future.