Pop & Hiss

The L.A. Times music blog

« Previous Post | Pop & Hiss Home | Next Post »

Cramps founder Lux Interior dies at 60

February 4, 2009 |  8:51 pm

Lux Interior, the singer, songwriter and founding member of the pioneering New York City horror-punk band the Cramps, died Wednesday. He was 60.

Interior, whose real name was Erick Lee Purkhiser, died at Glendale Memorial Hospital of a previously-existing heart condition, according to a statement from his publicist.

With his wife, guitarist "Poison" Ivy Rorschach, Interior formed the Cramps in 1976, pairing lyrics that expressed their love of B-movie camp with ferocious rockabilly and surf-inspired instrumentation.

The band became a staple of the late '70s Manhattan punk scene emerging from clubs like Max's Kansas City and CBGB and was one of the first acts to realize the potential of punk rock as theater and spectacle.

Often dressed in macabre, gender-bending costumes onstage, Interior evoked a lanky, proto-goth Elvis Presley, and his band quickly became notorious for volatile and decadent live performances.

Read more Cramps founder Lux Interior dies at 60

UPDATE: The original version of this post misstated the date of Lux Interior's death. He died Wednesday morning, not Tuesday. Also, the band hasn't toured since 2006; the current tour dates on their official website have not been updated since then.

Comments 

Advertisement










Video