I met Lemmy once, well…I sat behind him at the U.S. Embassy in London whilst waiting to be seen to obtain my visa to enter the States about 5 years ago. I was kinda nervous of saying ‘hello’ to him as I didn’t want to disturb him and I didn’t think that the U.S. Embassy in London was the ideal place to strike up a conversation. I wasn’t going to go all ‘fanboy’ on him and fawn over him (I was 40 years old at the time!) but if I did have the nerve to say ‘hi’, I’d have just said thanks to him for three things.
1. For producing the best rock ‘n’ roll of the past 30 years.
2. For the opening riff to ‘Dead Men Tell No Tales’, the first Motorhead song .
3. For covering ‘Beer Drinkers And Hell Raisers’ and introducing me to the music of ZZ Top
and once I had told him all this , he would have smiled politely, thanked me and we had have resumed an awkward silence whilst waiting for our numbers to be called. Very British I can assure you!
Anyway, the point of all this (there’s a point?) is that both Motorhead and ZZ Top were two of the bands featured in a top 20 albums poll I submitted on a forum I frequent and the albums were ‘Bomber’ and ‘Tres Hombres’ and I noticed two things: both albums are quite old (’79 and ’73 respectively) and both albums are the first albums that I heard from both bands. Now I know that both bands have released many more albums since those two and I own quite a lot of them, but for me both ‘Bomber’ and ‘Tres Hombres’ resonate with me in ways that their other albums don’t. Perhaps it’s because I was young when I was first discovering Rock/Metal ( I was 12 in 1980 when I heard both these albums) and these two albums left a huge impression on me and that’s why, 30-odd years later, they still ranked in my top 20 albums list and my favourite albums by these two bands because it brings back memories of a childhood of being carefree without any ‘adult’ responsibilities, the joy of removing the record from the sleeve, hearing the ‘pop’ of the neddle on the vinyl and being absorbed by the album artwork and discovering new bands in the ‘Thanks’ credits (though that can be frought with danger! I rememberreading the ‘No Sleep Til Hammersmith’ credits and it’s mention of Carlsberg Special Brew! I had one of them at the age of 13…………….never again!)
I know that it’s not the case with every bands’ first album I heard (eg: AC/DC- first album heard was ‘Highway To Hell’ but my favourite and their best (imo) is ‘Powerage’. Thin Lizzy- ‘Chinatown’/’Bad Reputation’. Rush- ‘Fly By Night/’Moving Pictures’) but it’s usually the case that the first album I hear from a band will usually become my favourite. So how about you? Is this the same in your case? Do you still find the first album you heard by a band is their best, in your opinion? Or am I just talking pish and mince?