Saturday, May 29, 2004

Make-up Queens of the World Unite, You Have Nothing to Lose but Your Sister's Rouge!

My favorite left-wing rag, the UK Guardian, wastes precious anti-American propaganda space Friday to run New York Dolls memories and reflections by Malcolm McLaren, Thurston Moore and Glenn Matlock (among others) in preparation of their reunion of remaining members next month during Morrisey's Meltdown. Morrissey was the president of the New York Dolls fan club.

McLaren describes his first experience with the ruffians (link below):

All of this stuff was situated in a field of glitterdom that I had named Let It Rock in 1972. Within a year, I was bored with it all. Bored with the same surrogate suburban teddy boys that drifted in from God knows where. Bored with the hippies and refugees of Chelsea's swinging 60s looking for charity and kindness. Bored with the demands of the BBC wardrobe department and their dreadful revivalist TV shows. I felt like Steptoe and Son. I was lost in dead tissue. I wanted something new. On a typically rainy, grimy London day, I stood by the jukebox glumly listening to the antique rock'n'roll music, occasionally falling asleep to the whining semi-literate, pimply, racist wannabes debating whether to buy pink or yellow fluorescent socks.

Suddenly, a force-10 gale blew open the doors of my pathetic sartorial oasis, and in burst a gang of girly-looking boys looking like girls dressed like boys. Tiny lurex tops, bumfreezer leggings and high heels, this gang with red-painted lips and rouged cheeks and hair coiffed high ran riot. They crawled all over the jukebox, destroying the neat racks of teddy boy drapes in their wake. Their tongues revealed they were not from the old country. The Uxbridge teddy boys were stunned into silence by this alien invasion - from Harlem? Dressed up to mess up, their shoulders became enormous in their new teddy boy clothes. I learned that they were called the New York Dolls before they vanished.

More fun (including the Doll's adventures in Cajun Country) can be found here: Dirty pretty things

UPDATE: Found this, an earlier story that goes into more detail on the Dolls reunion:

Johansen hasn’t spoken with Kane or Sylvain for more than a decade, but the three will reunite, with Steve Conte taking over for Thunders (who died of a drug overdose in 1991) and the Libertines’ Gary Powell replacing drummer Jerry Nolan (who died of a stroke in 1992), for performances at the Festival Hall on June 16 and 18.

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