According to the people over at Brave Words & Bloody Knuckles, former MOTÖRHEAD guitarist Michael “Würzel” Burston sadly passed away earlier today in the UK. He was aged 61.
According to Wikipedia, before joining Motörhead in 1984, Burston had been a corporal in the Army, serving in Germany and Ireland with the 1st Battalion of the Gloucestershire Regiment, and had played in the bands BASTARD and WARFARE. Joining another relatively unknown guitarist, Phil Campbell, they played together at a Motörhead audition, and both were taken on. Würzel eventually left the band in 1995 and can be heard on the following records:
No Remorse (1984), Orgasmatron (1986), Rock ‘n’ Roll (1987), Nö Sleep at All (1988), The Birthday Party (1990), 1916 (1991), March ör Die (1992), Bastards (1993), Sacrifice (1995).
More recently, Würzel had launched a new band called LEADER OF THE DOWN, who headlined the main stage at Never Mind The Bullocks!, a fundraising music festival in aid of Midlands Air Ambulance in late June.
Burston acquired the nickname Würzel while in the Army, being compared to the character Worzel Gummidge due to his scarecrow-style hair and bumpkin-like manner. Motörhead singer Lemmy demanded that Würzel add an umlaut to the ‘U’ in his name, for heavy metal effect.
Würzel joined Motörhead for the classic ‘Ace Of Spades’ at the Hammersmith Apollo on November 28, 2009. See the video below: