HERE’S MUD IN YOUR EYE
Sharise Neil, former wife of Motley Crue star Vince Neil and now a leading lady in the TV series “Ex-Wives of Rock,” tells all in Metal Sludge exclusive
By Gerry Gittelson
Metal Sludge Editor at Large
HOLLYWOOD — In the latest Metal Sludge series detailing the co-stars of the new reality TV show “Ex-Wives of Rock,” we visit with Sharise Neil, the former wife of Motley Crue singer Vince Neil – by far the biggest rock star among the show’s ex-hubbies including Warrant’s Jani Lane (Bobbie Brown’s ex), Warrant’s Jerry Dixon (Susan Ashley-Dixon’s ex) and Scorpions’ James Kottak (Athena Lee’s ex).
The weekly half-hour show airs Fridays on Fuse at 7:30 p.m., and frankly it’s not as bad as you would think. Of course, the first episode deals a lot with the ex-husbands, so from here it’s going to be a challenge for the ladies to keep things interesting.
But Sharise Neil gives her word that “Ex-wives” is going to be great, and who are we to doubt the former mud wrestler-done-good?
In this compelling two-part interview, the ex-Motley Crue wife does not hold back a thing, providing a utterly rare window into Vince Neil’s world after the concert lights fade and the last pair of panties has been tossed on stage.
It’s a gripping tale, though not necessarily a happy one, but there’s a good ending, as Sharise has rebounded by forming a successful clothing company and co-starring in the new show.
Sit back, crack open a Budweiser and read on. It’s worth it!
"Ex-Wives of Rock" Bobbie, Sharise, Susan & Athena
SLUDGE: The show is about ex-wives of rock stars, but the ex-husbands are going to be fazed out as the episodes continue, right?
SHARISE NEIL: Yeah, I mean, being married to rock stars, that’s how the girls and I know each other, but it’s more about us and our friends and how we live now and how we’re intertwined.
SLUDGE: You were together with Vince Neil of Motley Crue for six years, married for five. What happened at the end?
SHARISE NEIL: I would say it got unhappy at the end. I was blissfully unaware until the end. At first, I didn’t like rock and roll. I was a punker, surf chick from Huntington Beach in Orange County (southwest of Los Angeles). I hung with all those bands from the beach.
SLUDGE: You didn’t even go to the Rainbow?
SHARISE NEIL: No, I never went to the Rainbow. I never went to Hollywood with Vince. That wasn’t my thing. He had two different sides – the sweet and gentlemanly and the other side. I didn’t know that when he went on the road, he turned into a different person. I was 21. I was naïve.
SLUDGE: Wait a minute. Didn’t you work at the old Tropicana club in Hollywood as a mud wrestler?
SHARISE NEIL: I worked there a total of six months, just in the night time for some extra money. I phased it out. Every night, I was thinking, “Just don’t go,” but I was a girl who lived in a bikini her life anyway, and that’s how I first got into it.
SLUDGE: How much would you make?
SHARISE NEIL: On a bad night, at least $275 cash, and on a good night $400 to $500. And the work is just 20 minutes, and that’s it. So you can see how you would be very tempted?
Sharise & Vince
SLUDGE: In the intro to the show, there’s a flash of you with a shiny red Porsche with a bow on it. Was that a typical gift when you were married to Vince Neil?
SHARISE NEIL: Oh yeah, that was for an anniversary, but it was typical. At one point, we would break up, and another point he would be swaying me back. That Porsche was the one he gave to me after lunch at the Bel-Air Hotel. He surprised me with it in the parking lot. It was there waiting for me. We were on the rocks at the time.
One thing about Vince, he was a good gift-giver. He would bring home Chanel bags, not just one a whole bunch of them, for no reason at all. Maybe it was because he had a guilty conscience, but I’m just guessing.
SLUDGE: That red Porsche is a Carrera, right?
SHARISE NEIL: It was actually a very rare Porsche Carrera 930. There were only three in the United States at the time.
SLUDGE: Hmm, sounds like he might have bought it just so he could drive it, too.
SHARISE NEIL:No, no. That was my car. Vince didn’t care. He had three Ferraris at the time.
SLUDGE: So Bobbie Brown tells us HERE that you’re pretty well off financially from designing dresses.
SHARISE NEIL: I’ve had my own company for 15 years. I have done OK, thank god. I first got the idea from Daniella Clarke. She is the wife of Gilby Clarke. She had started a denim company with her own line, so I started my own line together with her. That was 15 years ago, and I’m still in business. She designed super low jeans, I designed the underwear, the panties that were low, also.
Sharise and some of her panties!
SLUDGE: What has been Vince’s reaction to your success?
SHARISE NEIL: I don’t know, but I think he’s happy for me. I haven’t run into him much over the years, but I think he is OK with it. I think he wishes me no ill will. I did nothing wrong, so how can he be mad?
SLUDGE: I’m assuming he doesn’t make an appearance on the show. Do any of the ex-husbands make an appearance or maybe Tommy Lee?
SHARISE NEIL: Well, you’re just going to have to see. We have lots of surprises.
SLUDGE: So how popular was the show in Canada? The information is a little vague.
SHARISE NEIL: I only hear from the producers, and they say it did excellent. The Canadian fans are excellent. We just know we outperformed what their expectations were, and we were in a pretty challenging time spot. The word is, we outperformed their expectations, huge. But as far as the numbers go, we don’t have anything like that. We started filming in January for five months, but otherwise I don’t know too much. I’m low on the totem pole.
SLUDGE: I know some of the questions might be kind of sensitive, but I have to ask more things about Vince Neil.
SHARISE NEIL: That’s OK.
SLUDGE: You say you never keep in touch anymore, but lots of other married couples that divorce still keep in touch. There has got to be more to it, Sharise.
SHARISE NEIL: Well, we had a daughter together who passed away, so there is no reason to talk anymore. I was really good friends with Heidi Mark, who was with Vince after me, and I didn’t want to butt in. She was already jealous of me.
Sharise, Susan & Heidi Mark.
SLUDGE: Have you ever run into Vince by coincidence?
SHARISE NEIL: It was funny. We were at the same party like five years ago at Jeff Franklin’s house. He was the producer of Full House. Metal Skool was playeing. They’re called Steel Panther now of course, and Vince got up and sang a couple of songs. It was amazing, the old Vince and the new Vince. The singer of Steel Panther looked like the young Vince. I thought we were going to say hi, but he bolted off right after.
SLUDGE: He’s gained a lot of weight through the years, on and off, on and off.
SHARISE NEIL: When he is on the road, and he’s more strict about his diet on the road, so he keeps the pounds off. He tends to gain weight when he is off the road. When I first met Vince, he was very thin. When he was 30, 31, 32, he gained weight. That’s the drinking. When we were together, I had to police him, I kept him on the right path. We had a gym in our house, and a trainer come everyday – but Vince would send him away half the time.
SLUDGE: Did you read the Motley Crue book, “The Dirt.”
SHARISE NEIL: I read the parts about me. Some of the other girls don’t all agree on the timeline and about what was written.
SLUDGE: All four of the Motley Crue guys seem very intelligent in the book.
SHARISE NEIL: I don’t remember Vince ever having such a huge memory of things. I think the writer was really intelligent. I know Nikki Sixx is really great at speaking, and Tommy is a great storyteller, too. Mick Mars is a little low on words. He’s so shy, so I’m sure he had some help on his parts of the book. Vince is more of a “hey-what’s-up-dude” kind of guy.
SLUDGE: You got a chance to get close to Nikki Sixx. Can you shed some insight into his personality?
SHARISE NEIL: Nikki, Tommy Lee and Vince, those three were always struggling for the power position in Motley Crue. Nikki is very well read and a deep-thinking cerebral thinker. I was best friends with his wife. We were like best, best friends.
SLUDGE: The night Nikki OD’d and almost died, the night he went to Cedars-Sinai. Bring us back.
SHARISE NEIL: They had just got off the road. I remember Vince and I were sleeping in our Hollywood apartment. This is before Brandi Brandt. Nikki had a lot of different girlfriends. Vince’s reaction, he was freaking out, going: “Oh my god! Oh my god!”
SLUDGE: We haven’t talked about drugs. Did Vince Neil do a lot of cocaine?
SHARISE NEIL: When we would go out, people would hand him drugs. They would literally put things in his hand, and he would go to the bathroom. Later, he’d be passed out, and I would go through his pockets and his wallet, and I would hide the drugs or flush them down the toilet. He wouldn’t remember the next day. He’s by like, “Where did I put that?”
When we first met, he had been to rehab like three months prior, so I tried to keep that stuff away from him as much as possible.
SLUDGE: What about you? Did you do drugs?
Brandi Brandt & Sharise
SHARISE NEIL: I have before. I mean, I tried it, but coke wasn’t my thing. I learned early on that I didn’t like the feeling. I would much rather have a couple of drinks, a couple of Jack-and-cokes to feel relaxed. I don’t drink until I’m drunk. I don’t like feeling like I’m out of control.
SLUDGE: What about pot?
SHARISE NEIL: I hate pot.
SLUDGE: What about Vince Neil? Did he smoke pot?
SHARISE NEIL: No, never.
SLUDGE:Really? I would think people would hand him pot, not coke, because pot is a much more popular drug, right?
SHARISE NEIL:Yeah, people didn’t offer it to him. He didn’t like it.
SLUDGE: So you married in 1987, and you stayed together for five years. Motley Crue was unbelievably huge at the time.
SHARISE NEIL: They had just got off the road from the “Theatre of Pain” tour, but remember, when I first met Vince, I didn’t know who he was. I met him at a summer pool party at his house in Northridge (north of Los Angeles). It was like a track home, and never in million years would you know someone like Vince Neil lived there. It was one of those neighborhood with 2.2 kids, you know, a cookie cutter kind of house, but still a pretty big house, about 3,000 square feet, I think.
SLUDGE: Talk about falling in love with Vince Neil.
SHARISE NEIL: Well, if you ask his next wife, Heidi, Vince says it’s because I had the best body. I think that was a big mistake to say something like that. The truth is, what Vince really liked about me, I think, was I was hard to get. I was impressed. I told him, “No, you’re not my type.” I made him pursue me with the hard-to-get thing, and he treated me very nicely. Eventually I saw how really talented he was.
SLUDGE: Ah, talent. A new issue. What are thoughts about Vince not singing all the words to the songs.
SHARISE NEIL: Oh, he never did that when I was with him. In the beginning, he sang every word and ran across the stage, back and forth, for two hours.
SLUDGE: Sharise, Motley Crue has never played for two hours. You’re crazy.
SHARISE NEIL: Oh, or 90 minutes or whatever.
SLUDGE: Do you feel like Vince’s talent has deteriorated?
SHARISE NEIL: I think as his drinking has escalated, he isn’t as healthy.
Promotional picture for Sharise’s club "Club Ugly" @ "Dragon Fly" in Hollywood
SLUDGE: Out of the blue: Did any of the other Motley guys ever make a pass at you?
SHARISE NEIL: After we broke up, I ran a club called Club Ugly in Hollywood, and Tommy Lee would come, and one night Tommy wanted to bring me home with him. I told him: “You’re crazy. You’re like my brother. Get out of here.” He was drunk, by the way.
"Tommy wanted to bring me home with him. I told him: “You’re crazy."
SLUDGE: What was it about Vince Neil that you liked the most?
SHARISE NEIL: He was amazing, pursuing me like a gentleman. We went to L’Orangerie, a really fancy restaurant in Beverly Hills, on our first date. He ordered escargot.
As the relationship progressed, he did more drinking, and I was like, “Oh shit, I’m in trouble.” We had already planned the wedding when I first realized that oh my goodness, it was never going to work. To be honest, he was a beautifully intelligent, well-spoken, worldly man. I was a little beach girl, and he treated me well and sent limo’s. He took good care of me.
Vince & Sharise on the "Dr. Feelgood" tour, limos & lear jets!
SLUDGE: The band must have made millions and millions of dollars when you were together with Vince. Did you get a big settlement in the divorce?
SHARISE NEIL: He made millions of dollars but he spent it as fast as he got it. I won’t tell you the exact amount of the settlement because that would be a teeny bit tacky, but it was less than $100,000.
SLUDGE: What? You’ve got to be kidding! Didn’t everyone tell you that you were crazy to sign for that?
SHARISE NEIL: It came at a time when I was very weak. I had no fight in me about money. He was sic-ing his lawyers on me, and our daughter had just died three weeks earlier, and I couldn’t even get out of bed. They kept calling me or whatever. I just wanted to settle. The divorce took three or four years. The lawyers drug it out, and he wouldn’t show up for court. No offer was ever made, but there was many papers. There was rent, child care, so when he offered that, like I said I had no fight in me. I just said whatever.
SLUDGE: So you basically started over from scratch, right?
SHARISE NEIL: Oh yeah. I just started over with a (fashion) idea.
SLUDGE: Didn’t you’re mom and your brother or whoever tell you that you were crazy for doing that?
SHARISE NEIL: Yes. They were telling me to hold out, that it wasn’t fair. But it just wasn’t in me. I couldn’t even get out of bed, and to think about doing more depo’s and courthouse appearances, I barely wanted to live, to tell you the truth. Did you know Vince filed bankruptcy during the divorce proceedings? The band had fired him. He did the BK eight months before the final divorce, if I remember.
SLUDGE: What about the home? You said you were living in an apartment. Did he have houses, too?
SHARISE NEIL: He had a home but sold it for the divorce. He didn’t have a house because he was always on the road, so he got an apartment for me.
SLUDGE: Was it nice?
SHARISE NEIL: It was gorgeous, a penthouse apartment.
SLUDGE: Where was it exactly? What street?
SHARISE NEIL: It was on Fuller and Hollywood Boulevard, the St. James.
SLUDGE: The St. James? That place is a dump!
SHARISE NEIL: No, it was brand new back then.
Heather, Tommy, Vince, Sharise, Brandi, Nikki, Mick & Emi going Platinum!
SLUDGE: I still can’t figure out where the money went. Motley Crue had a gigantic hit records and songs on the radio all the time.
SHARISE NEIL: It’s not as much as you think. He was always spending, and the taxes and stuff were enormous. He had 12 cars. He would go to a car auction to buy a car, and he would come home with two. With his driving record, it cost $8,000 to insure each car, and we had 12.
SLUDGE: Didn’t you tell him that’s ridiculous?
SHARISE NEIL: Yeah, I would tell him to please not buy any more cars. But instead he installed an hydrolic lift in the garage to stack them on top of each other. I have pictures of it.
SLUDGE: Talk about Vince’s skills in resolving conflict. This stuff is fascinating.
SHARISE NEIL: I think we were both young, and he had a lot of power and a lot of alcohol, but Vince was a nice person who had some issues from his youth, and he just wasn’t good at resolving problems. He threw fits. He would break things. He was very jealous of Nikki Sixx and Tommy Lee. He once threw a chair off a balcony at a hotel and broke a glass table in front of me. I could have gotten glass in my eyes. I broke up with him about that. It was in Canada. I was like, I’m not putting up with this.
Pink PolkaDot @ www.PinkPolkaDotUSA.net
E-mail @ [email protected]
Twitter is @Shariseneil
Stay tuned for Part 2. It’s just getting started folks and make sure to tune into "Ex-Wives of Rock" on Fuse Network on Fridays.
Gerry Gittelson can be reached at [email protected]