Nikki Sixx is a multi-talented American artist who has achieved fame and fortune as the co-founder, bassist, and primary songwriter of the heavy metal band Mötley Crüe. He is also known for his other musical projects, such as Sixx: A.M., 58, and Brides of Destruction, as well as his best-selling books, clothing line, radio shows, and photography. Nikki Sixx net worth as of 2023 is estimated to be around $45 million to $65 million.
Nikki Sixx Early Life and Career Beginnings
Nikki Sixx was the name given to Frank Carlton Serafino Feranna Jr. at San Jose, California, on December 11, 1958.
He is of Italian descent on his father’s side, from Prato, Tuscany. His father left the family when Nikki was young, and he was raised by his mother, Deana Richards, until she abandoned him. He then lived with his grandparents, who moved him from place to place. He had a troubled youth involving vandalism, shoplifting, drug dealing, and expulsion from school.
Nikki learned to play the bass guitar while living with his mother in Seattle. He bought his first bass with the money he made from selling a stolen guitar. He also changed his name to Nikki Sixx at this time. When he was 17, he moved to Los Angeles, where he worked various odd jobs while auditioning for bands. He joined the band Sister after answering an ad in a newspaper. After recording a demo with Sister, he was fired from the band along with another bandmate, Lizzie Grey. They then formed the band London in 1978.
Mötley Crüe and Other Musical Projects
In 1981, Nikki Sixx founded Mötley Crüe with drummer Tommy Lee. They later added guitarist Mick Mars and vocalist Vince Neil to the lineup. The band self-recorded and released their debut album, Too Fast for Love, 1981, on their label, Leathür Records. The album was re-released in 1982 after the band signed with Elektra Records. Mötley Crüe then recorded Shout at the Devil in 1983, which was a huge success and established them as one of the leading bands of the glam metal scene.
Mötley Crüe released three more albums in the 1980s: Theatre of Pain in 1985, Girls, Girls, Girls in 1987, and Dr. Feelgood in 1989. Dr. Feelgood was their most successful album, reaching number one on the Billboard 200 chart and selling over six million copies in the U.S. Despite lineup changes and personal issues, the band continued to record and tour throughout the 1990s and 2000s. They released their ninth and final studio album, Saints of Los Angeles 2008. They announced their farewell tour in 2014 and played their last show on December 31, 2015.
Besides Mötley Crüe, Nikki Sixx has also been involved in other musical projects. In 2000, he formed the experimental rock band 58 with Dave Darling, Steve Gibb, and Bucket Baker. They released one album, Diet for a New America. He collaborated with L.A. to establish the hard rock supergroup Brides of Destruction in 2002.
Guns guitarist Tracii Guns. They released two albums: Here Come the Brides in 2004 and Runaway Brides in 2005.
In 2006, he formed the alternative rock band Sixx: A.M. with songwriter/producer/vocalist James Michael and guitarist DJ Ashba. The band was initially created to record an audio accompaniment to Sixx’s autobiography, The Heroin Diaries: A Year in the Life of a Shattered Rock Star, chronicling his struggles with heroin addiction in the late 1980s. The album, The Heroin Diaries Soundtrack, was released in 2007 and spawned the hit single “Life Is Beautiful.” The band released four more albums: This Is Gonna Hurt in 2011, Modern Vintage in 2014, and Prayers for the Damned and Prayers for the Blessed in 2016.
Books, Clothing Line, Radio Shows, and Photography
Nikki Sixx is also a successful author, fashion designer, radio host, and photographer. His first book, The Heroin Diaries: A Year in the Life of a Shattered Rock Star, was published in 2007 and became a New York Times bestseller. The book was based on his diary entries from 1986 to 1987 when he was at the height of his drug addiction and near-death experiences. The book also included commentary from his bandmates, friends, family, and ex-lovers.
His second book, The Dirt: Confessions of the World’s Most Notorious Rock Band, was co-written with his Mötley Crüe bandmates and journalist Neil Strauss. It was published in 2001 and also became a New York Times bestseller. The book detailed the history and exploits of Mötley Crüe, including their sex, drugs, and rock and roll lifestyle. The book was adapted into a biographical film by Netflix in 2019, with Douglas Booth playing Sixx.
His third book, This Is Gonna Hurt: Music, Photography, and Life Through the Distorted Lens of Nikki Sixx, was published in 2011 and became a New York Times bestseller. The book combined his personal stories, photographs, and lyrics from his Sixx: A.M. album of the same name. The book explored his views on beauty, art, creativity, and mortality.
In 2006, he launched his clothing line, Royal Underground, with Kelly Gray, formerly the co-president and house model of St. John. The line initially focused on men’s clothing, such as leather jackets, jeans, t-shirts, and accessories. It later expanded to women’s apparel, such as dresses, skirts, tops, and jewelry. The line was inspired by Sixx’s rock and roll style and attitude.
In 2010, he started hosting two nationally syndicated radio shows: Sixx Sense with Nikki Sixx and The Side Show Countdown with Nikki Sixx. Both shows were based in Dallas, Texas, and co-hosted by Jenn Marino. Sixx Sense was a daily show that featured interviews, music, news, and commentary from Sixx’s perspective. The Side Show Countdown was a weekly show featuring the top rock songs of the week and Sixx’s personal stories and opinions. Both shows ended in 2017.
Sixx has exhibited his work as a photographer in various galleries and publications. He has also collaborated with other photographers, such as Leica Camera, Corey Parks, and Paul Brown. He has used his photography to raise awareness and funds for various causes, such as human trafficking, homelessness, and addiction.