Darby Crash, 2005 Oil on linen 46 × 42 inches
Darby Crash, 2005
Oil on linen 46 × 42 inches

Darby Crash was the leader of the seminal Southern California punk band "The Germs," the band that was one of the primary leaders of the movement. Listening to the Germs now, they don’t seem dated, they seem even more artful, skilled Dada artists creating a sound that still rips and feels right-on target.

Darby was gay, and according to one of my friends who knew him well at the time, it was one of the reasons he committed suicide. He couldn’t stand the fact that the other punks might hate him because he loved ballet. He was a virtuosic poet, and his lyrics come close at times to being a 20th century Rimbaud, and as he shouted them, not always into the microphone, he created a sound that exactly replicated the fury of his content.