R.I.P. Lux

The Core Belief

What happens when you cross all that is certifiably American from the 1950’s, rockabilly, roots rock, Iggy Pop showmanship, an Alice Cooper fetish and a seemingly tawdry stage show and look?

The Cramps, baby.

They seemed to rely on gimmicks a bit too much for my taste therefore I had a problem finding an emotional center in their work and I was never a fan.  However, I would always want to jump up and down when their tunes came on the box.  Besides, how could you dislike any band whose guitar player was named Poison Ivy and lead singer named Lux?

As time went on, the Cramps, formed in 1975, would go on to have a huge influence on the rockabilly and roots rock (not to mention Marilyn Manson) revival of the late 80’s and 90’s.  They would experience a brief resurgence of their own a decade later but it was cut short, like many things, by the 9/11 attacks.

My shock came yesterday when I read that singer Lux Interior aka Erick Purkhiser, died of a long time heart condition at the age of 62. He leaves long time companion Cramps guitar player Poison Ivy aka Kristy Wallace and a huge body of work that will thrill fans for years to come.

By the way, Lux and Poison Ivy were together for 36 years.  Not bad for a couple of near transvestites, right?

Rest in Peace brother.  


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