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Nikki Sixx founded and played bass in the heavy metal band Mötley Crüe. He has written two autobiographies, and hosts the radio show Sixx Sense.
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Nikki Sixx was born on December 11, 1958 in San Jose, California. After performing as a bassist in various bands in Los Angeles, Sixx formed the group Mötley Crüe with drummer Tommy Lee. Their most successful album, Dr. Feelgood, remained on the charts for 114 weeks. Sixx's autobiography, The Dirt, was a New York Times best-seller. He currently hosts the morning radio show Sixx Sense with Nikki Sixx.
"In the moment, I'm so passionate, but then I move on quickly. I do the same thing as a songwriter—I write it and I have a lyric and it really touches me, and then we record it and I'm on to the next thing."
Frank Carlton Serafino Feranna Jr., later known as Nikki Sixx, was born on December 11, 1958 in San Jose, California. His father, Frank Feranna, left the family shortly after, and Sixx was raised jointly by his mother, Deana, and his grandparents. Between various moves, Sixx attended seven schools within 11 years. While living in Jerome, Idaho, he was expelled from school for selling drugs, and his grandparents sent him to live with his mother in Seattle. Sixx became interested in music, and his first instrument was a stolen guitar, which he later exchanged for a bass. At age 17, Sixx moved to Los Angeles and worked odd jobs while auditioning for bands. At this time, he changed his name to Nikki Sixx.
Shortly after moving to Los Angeles, Sixx joined the group Sister, led by Blackie Lawless. In 1978, after being fired from Sister, Sixx and bandmate Lizzie Grey formed the band London. They recorded a number of demos, but shortly after, Sixx left to form his own heavy metal band. In 1981, Sixx founded Mötley Crüe with drummer Tommy Lee, guitarist Mick Mars and singer Vince Neil.
In November 1981, Mötley Crüe recorded and released their debut album, Too Fast for Love, on their own record label. After signing with Elektra Records, the band re-released the album. In 1983, they recorded and released Shout at the Devil, which became a national hit. Next, they released Theatre of Pain (1985) and Girls, Girls, Girls (1987).
On December 23, 1987, Sixx was declared dead for two minutes after a heroin overdose. He was revived by paramedics and taken to the hospital, wich he escaped to rush home and shoot up in his bathroom. Soon after this near-death event, Sixx and his bandmates went into rehab. Afterward, the band produced their most successful album to date, Dr. Feelgood (1989), which remained on the charts for 114 weeks.
In 2001, Sixx, his bandmates and writer Neil Strauss collaborated on the autobiography The Dirt: Confessions of the World's Most Notorious Rock Band. The book was at the top of The New York Times Best Seller list for 10 weeks. In 2006, Mötley Crüe completed a reunion tour called "The Route of All Evil," which featured the four original members and was co-headlined by Aerosmith.
Currently, Sixx appears on a nationally syndicated morning radio show called Sixx Sense with Nikki Sixx. The show launched on February 8, 2010, and is broadcast on rock stations Monday through Friday, from 7 p.m. to midnight. Sixx's side projects include the band Sixx:A.M. and photography work.
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