Sex Pistol Johnny Rotten Leads Tribute to King of Punk Malcolm McLaren…
Former Sex Pistols frontman John Lydon led tributes to the band’s former manager Malcolm McLaren, who has died from cancer at the age of 64.
McLaren died in a hospital in Switzerland following a fight against mesothelioma, a cancer that most commonly affects the lungs, his girlfriend Young Kim said.
Lydon paid tribute in a statement signed “Johnny Rotten”, which was his stage name when he performed with the band.
“For me, Malc was always entertaining and I hope you remember that,” he said.
“Above all else he was an entertainer and I will miss him, and so should you.”
News reports said his remains would be flown back to his native London for burial in Highgate cemetery in the north of the capital.
McLaren was a former partner of British fashion designer Vivienne Westwood, with whom he set up a boutique on King’s Road in London’s hip Chelsea district which they renamed Sex, selling fetish-inspired outfits.
Westwood, who said she had not been in touch with McLaren for a long time, remembered him as “a very charismatic, special and talented person”.
McLaren, a one-time art school student, began to manage the Sex Pistols in 1975, bringing Lydon on board as frontman after spotting him in a torn Pink Floyd T-shirt and green hair.
The band released God Save The Queen in 1977, the year of Queen Elizabeth II’s silver jubilee. Its provocative lyrics propelled it to the top of the pop charts despite the BBC banning it from its airwaves.
It was followed later in the year by the quartet’s only official studio album, Never Mind The Bollocks, Here’s The Sex Pistols.
The Sex Pistols embarked on a US tour in 1978, only to split up after a gig in San Francisco.
The band fell out with McLaren and he later lost a court case over royalties.
After his time with the Sex Pistols, McLaren continued to work on music, film and art.
He split his final years living between New York and Paris, according to his girlfriend.
The British press Friday remembered a man who, despite the controversy he stirred up when he first caught the public’s attention, had become a national institution.
The Times hailed him as the impresario responsible for “the punk movement that traumatised and thrilled 1970s Britain in equal measure”.
“King of punk is dead,” declared the Sun.