“Fast” Eddie Clarke, the quick-fingered hard-rock guitarist and last surviving member of Motorhead’s classic, best-known 1976-82 lineup, died Wednesday night in a hospital. Todd Singerman, the band’s manager, confirmed the death in a telephone interview. The band released a statement on its Facebook page saying that the hospital had been treating Mr. Clarke for pneumonia. He was 67.
“We are devastated to pass on the news we only just heard ourselves earlier tonight. Edward Allan Clarke – or as we all know and love him ‘Fast’ Eddie Clarke – passed away peacefully yesterday,” the group wrote. “Fast Eddie…keep roaring, rockin’ and rollin’ up there as goddamit man, your Motörfamily would expect nothing less!!!”
While Clarke went on to form Fastway with former UFO bassist Pete Way, he is best remembered for his work with Motorhead, which despite a blistering hard-rock sound and leader Ian “Lemmy” Kilmister’s harsh vocals had several high-charting records in the U.K., including a No. 1 with their legendary 1981 live album “No Sleep ‘Til Hammersmith” — even the album’s title has become an oft-parodied catch-phrase, not least by the Beastie Boys with their 1986 song “No Sleep Till Brooklyn.” Clarke left the band at the peak of its success, yet their influence has been vast and lasting: they were a prototype for many thrash and speed-metal bands and their songs have been covered by Metallica and many others.
As for the other members, legendary drummer Phil “Philthy Animal” Taylor died of liver failure in November of 2015, and beloved frontman and bassist Lemmy Kilmister, for decades a staple at the Rainbow Bar and Grill on Hollywood’s Sunset Strip (where a statue of him now stands), passed away from cancer the following month.