Lux No More

Lux Interior, the lead singer of the psychobilly band THE CRAMPS died yesterday of heart-related illness. He was 62.

Born Erick Lee Purkhiser, Lux started the band in 1973 with Poison Ivy (Kristy Wallace), who would later become his wife. The rest of the band members changed constantly throughout the years, but Lux and Poison were rock steady. Their sound was a mix of punk and rockabilly and their songs featured lots of references to B-movies and horror flicks, as well as sexual double-entendres. They were punk pioneers of the early 70s, playing clubs like CBGB’s, and part of the scene that included The Ramones, Patti Smith, and Television.

Through the years, they put out a bunch of great albums, and great singles that included “Goo Goo Muck,” “Can Your Pussy Do the Dog?” and my favorite “Bikini Girls with Machine Guns.” Their song “Surfin Dead” was prominent on the soundtrack of the movie THE RETURN OF THE LIVING DEAD. And their videotaped concert, ” Live at the Napa State Mental Hospitalin 1978 is considered something of a classic.

The band was great in concert. The time I saw them, Lux removed more and more clothes as the night went on, and starting climbing the speakers at one point.But he was amazing for the sheer energy of his performances.

I loved their music, and they were definitely one of my favorite bands. Lux will be missed.

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