Born on 22nd of January 1946
Died on 8th of April 2010
British hero of the week April 8th 2010
Quotes from Malcolm McLaren
'The Pistols were like my work '... More
Svengali, entrepreneur, fashion revolutionary, artist, musician: Malcolm McLaren was creative in everything he did, and above all was never dull Ė only McLaren would have suggested selling alcohol in libraries as part of his imagined manifesto should he run for London Mayor, though sadly he never did. In self-publicity terms he could have made Boris Johnson seem like Lord Lucan.
Born in North London in 1946 to a Scots father and a mother of Jewish descent, he was raised by his grandmother, once of a wealthy family, who instilled in him the drive to dare, and not conform. He attended Goldsmiths, St Martinís, Croydon and other art schools, but never graduated from any.
In 1971 he and girlfriend Vivienne Westwood set up a shop on the Kingís Road that eventually became Sex, selling S&M-influenced clothing. Fashion was a major part of his background and life: his mother and step-father were in the rag-trade; long-time partner Westwood became one of Londonís most important designers; his son Joe Corre set up Agent Provocateur; and McLaren in the mid-70s saw the twin hungers in the capitalís youth for new fashion and new music. He gave them both, and changed British pop-culture.
Having already briefly managed proto-punks The New York Dolls he had the contacts and know-how to make an almost instant success of The Sex Pistols. He and they set out to shock, succeeding most famously with his Jubilee Day 1977 stunt of playing their brash God Save the Queen on a boat opposite Parliament, inevitably getting arrested and publicised. He made them stars, but they later had to fight for their earnings in court.
McLaren also managed Adam Ant and Bow Wow Wow, two of the more interesting acts of the 1980s. And his own contributions to music will probably be seen as very influential by future generations: he promoted hip-hop on his Duck Rock album; was a pioneer in Electro and Techno; and even foreshadowed the brief Voguing craze.
Confrontational, controversial and seemingly easily bored he featured on several reality TV series, most famously exiting Iím a Celebrity... the day he arrived to film it as he thought the other celebrities in fact werenít, and he had better things to do with his time. Amen to that.
McLaren died of cancer in Switzerland on April 8 2010.
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