Mötley Crüe announced in October that guitarist Mick Mars would be stepping down from touring duties due to his worsening Ankylosing Spondylitis, and a few days later announced John 5 as their new touring guitarist. The retirement made sense given Mars' health, and the wording was clearly that Mars is still a member of the band for every other purpose outside touring. But still – former Mötley Crüe vocalist John Corabi isn't buying it.
In an interview with Backstage Pass Rock News, said he's willing to admit he's wrong if Mars makes his own statement, but notes he's "just looking at things the way I look at 'em and I can't help but think that they just went for the upgrade — in their minds. You do have a history there; the fans are used to that history."
Corabi then goes on to say he played most of the guitars on Crüe's 1997 record Generation Swine, and that DJ Ashba played on both the three new songs on the 2005 compilation Red, White & Crüe and the 2008 record Saints of Los Angeles. Or as Corabi puts it, he believes Mötley Crüe hasn't used Mick Mars since 1995.
"Personally, my verdict is… I have an opinion, I have a thought on what transpired, but I haven't heard anything from Mick," said Corabi. "The statement that we've all gotten was from Mötley and their management and whoever's on that side of the camp.
"I know John 5. I think he's a brilliant guitar player. I am not taking away from John, because I love the guy to death. He is a guitarist's guitarist. But I can't help but think, when we were doing the Generation Swine record, there was a rub between me and Mick, which transpired during… They had already told me that they were bringing Vince back, and their manager said to me, 'Can you help them finish the record?' And I said, 'Yes.'
"And every day they would call me at nine or ten o'clock in the morning, and it was Nikki, this guy Scott Humphrey and Tommy — [they] were producing the record — and they would call me every day, and they would go, 'Hey, can you come by the studio and play some guitar?' And I said, 'Well, as long as Mick is cool with it, sure.' Well, every day I'd get to the studio and they just complained, like, 'Oh my God. We had Mick here yesterday till two o'clock in the morning. We couldn't get anything out of him,' and blah blah blah. So, that was '95. And then they did the record.
"Now, I can tell you right now most of the rhythms on that record were mine. And if Mick was sitting here, he'd go, 'Yeah, most of the guitars were his.' So I played on the Generation Swine record. I don't know if Mick played on New Tattoo — I'm not sure — but I know it was DJ Ashba on Red, White & Crüe, on the new songs, and I know on Saints Of Los Angeles, it was DJ Ashba. And then I know on the movie The Dirt, the new songs that they did, [the cover of Madonna's] 'Like A Virgin' and all that shit, it's John 5. So they haven't had Mick… they haven't been using him since — fuck — '95."
Corabi was in Mötley Crüe between 1992 and 1996, and has previously expressed his belief that the band was looking to get rid of Mars in the present day.