Doro meets Lemmy, disaster ensues

Singer describes first encounter with the Motorhead main man, offers update

By Peter Lindblad

Anyone who dares to have a drink with Motorhead’s sage rock ‘n’ roll outlaw Lemmy Kilmister does so at
DORO - Raise Your Fist 2012
his or her own peril. Doro Pesch found that out the hard way.

“When you drink whiskey cola with Lemmy, you know, it is 90 percent whiskey and 10 percent Coca Cola,” cautions Pesch, fresh off a North American tour in support of her newest Nuclear Blast release, Raise Your Fist.

Such a ratio would normally kill a lesser man or woman, if consumed in ridiculous amounts. Doro survived her first encounter with Lemmy … but just barely. And she almost did irreparable harm to her burgeoning music career in the process. “I don’t think Lemmy remembers it, but I remember it,” says Doro.

It was the early ‘80s, as Pesch recalls. Warlock, the traditional German power-metal band she formed in 1982 with Rudy Graf, Thomas Studier, Michael Eurich and Peter Szigeti, was still in its infancy and looking for their big break.

“The first time I got invited to go to London, to England, by a magazine … that was very important,” explains Doro. “It was Kerrang magazine, and it was before I had even gotten an American release. And back in the day, it was like you had to do really good in England to get a chance to go to America.”

At the behest of Kerrang, Doro was invited to a party and asked to play a couple of songs. The significance of the occasion was not lost on Doro. There was a lot on the line for her and Warlock. Fully aware that she needed be on the top of her game, she agreed, even though her band was back in Germany.

“I said, ‘Okay,’ but the record company [Warlock was first on Mausoleum Records] said just one person goes over from Warlock, and I said, ‘Well, okay,’” recalls Pesch. “So, I went over and they put together a band for me, like a couple of other musicians, and we were doing sound check and it was maybe ’82 or ’83. And yeah, we were rehearsing, it sounded really good. I covered a couple of Free songs and they sounded good, but the pressure was on. I was so stressed out. I thought, ‘Oh God, I’ve got to represent well for the record company, for the magazine people,’ and there were tons of press there.”

After sound check, Doro had some time to kill. So, she went around the corner and walked into a pub to get something to eat or drink. And who should be there but Lemmy, one of Doro’s metal idols.

“I saw somebody who was standing there, and I thought, ‘Is that Lemmy? And then I walked up to him and said, ‘Are you Lemmy?’ And he said, ‘Yes. Are you Doro?’ And I said, ‘Yes.’ And I thought, ‘Oh, that’s great,’ but I couldn’t speak English at all. I had no idea what he was saying, and I said, ‘Do you wanna have a drink – whiskey cola?’ And I thought, ‘Oh yes, yes,’” says Doro.

Lemmy, of course, does not drink like normal people. As Doro says, a whiskey Coke for him is a whole lot of whiskey and just enough soda to add a hint of sweetness. Young and naïve, she had no idea what she was getting herself into.

“And we smoked some cigarettes, and it was one whiskey cola after another,” remembers Doro. “So, I had a couple of drinks, and I didn’t want to say, ‘No,’ because I didn’t want to chicken out. So I had a couple more, and I thought, ‘Oh my God.’ And he said, ‘Dora, don’t you have to do a gig?’ I said, ‘Oh, yeah.’ And then I walked out of the pub. I couldn’t even … I think I was probably shaking. I didn’t even know where I was going.”

Amazingly, Doro found the club where the party was in full swing. “And then people were saying, ‘Doro, you have to jump onstage. Your show …’ And I went onstage and I couldn’t remember the lyrics anymore,” says Doro. “I couldn’t stand up, and then I was sitting on the drum riser, and then I waited until the band was finished. And then I walked off. And the record company and everybody were in shock.”

In her inebriated state, Doro had some explaining to do.

“They said, ‘What happened to you? What happened?’ And I said, ‘I met Lemmy,’” says Doro. “And then everybody started laughing. They said, ‘Okay, little girl. Now that’s a good excuse.’ And that’s how we got our record deal in America. So that was my first time meeting Lemmy, and we’ve become real good friends.”

So good in fact that two years ago, DORO, the band, toured with Motorhead. And Lemmy sings a duet with Pesch on the pained ballad “It Still Hurts” off Raise Your Fist. She feels that fans were quite receptive to the new material on the month-long North American tour she just wrapped up at the end of February, a jaunt that was somewhat hazardous due to inclement weather.

“It was a wonderful tour. It was awesome,” says Pesch. “There was lots of snow, though, and lots of snowstorms, and oh man, in some cities, there was so much snow and ice, we were afraid that nobody would show up. But, it was always packed, even though it was cold out.”

Now that it’s over, Doro and company aren’t ready to take a break just yet.

“Next week, we go to Russia,” says Pesch, who lives now in both New York City and her native Germany. “The Full Metal Cruise, that’s another cruise liner metal thing going in Europe. And then we want to do all the summer festivals and do some more gigs in the States. And keep touring for the rest of the year, and then I celebrate my 30th anniversary in music. And I want to do it a couple of times. I want to do it the first time at Wacken, at the Open Air festival in Germany in August. And then I want to do it once in New York and in Paris, and then probably do a great DVD out of it, because, of course, I want to do it great, with great guests and spectacular shows and the best pyrotechnics and whatever … it’s great, great, great. And then I just did the second part of [the film] “Anuk – The Way of the Warrior.” [In the first movie, released in 2006 with Krokus’s Marc Storache also acting in the film, she played the warrior Meha] We did the first part and now we’re doing the second part. I’m writing some more songs for the soundtrack, and I hope it will come out in 2013 or 2014. It always takes a little longer to break into cinema, so probably the beginning of 2014 – and then more touring and hopefully, another long American tour.”

More of our interview with Doro Pesch will soon be available. In the meantime, visit to find out what DORO are up to. 

1 comment:

  1. AnonymousMay 04, 2013

    Doro is the best, gives her fans eveything she's got. Saw her in Feb , 2013 and I can't wait to see her again.