Malcolm McLaren, January 22 1946 – April 8 2010

Proud to have known you.


“It all seemed much more romantic with him than without him. It made you feel you had potential, made you feel you could do something. He was that kind of guy, he gave you that sort of sense. It’s a wonderful and rare talent. He was a wonderful man.”

Malcolm McLaren on Robert Fraser, Groovy Bob, Harriet Vyner,Faber & Faber, 1999.


John Dove and Molly White said,

April 9, 2010 @ 12:19 pm

First met Malcolm at the end of 1971 when Bradley Mendelssohn had sold him a concession in Trevor Myles’Paradise Garage. Malcolm outlined his Rock’N’Roll agenda, he said he wasn’t really a shop manager, he was trying to raise money for a movie he was making about Billy Fury. We swapped raves and faves – he showed me some of his rare 78’s and some moody black and white pin-up girl photos while his assistant Teds were plundering the Juke-box. We lost Paradise Garage but there was little bitterness and we continued to meet up with Malcolm and Vivienne over the following years.

We kept in touch on that same level up to the end of the decade when our directions ended at the intersection with World’s End. While our lives followed very different paths, we shared the same edge of the culture. I’ll never forget Malcolm’s wry, mischievous smile while he would tell you his latest adventures from the Pistols practice sessions at Riverside Warehouse to Sid’s recording of ‘My Way’. Malcolm always pushed the possibilities to the limits and beyond. His entrepreneurial power developed through the 70’s until it became an art form where the Situationist ideas he adopted in ’76 would render a scorching trail of appropriated images and blistering Punk Rock until the crest of the wave crashed into the deluge of 1978. ‘Anarchy in the UK’ had been monumental and the Sex Pistols the greatest band since The Rolling Stones. But Malcolm would survive with C30,C60, C90 – Go! Bow-Wow Wow! were magnificent!

The link up with Vivienne’s brilliant fashion concepts for Buffalo Girls produced yet another global success story and clipped into the Hip Hop extravaganza which surprisingly is still with us.

Malcolm continued to create new images and sounds – his hypnotic movie ‘Shallow 1-21′ , a series of slow motion studies he described as a map of feelings that navigate both the “look of music” and the “sound of fashion.” This would have given him a wonderful new direction for future work. He also produced the beautiful and haunting “About Her,” a remix of the Zombies’ “She’s Not There.”

Malcolm’s presence and his awkward style of creative Art anomalies hewn from the edge of chaos will be hugely missed by all those who love the beauty and surprise of the new and who dwell in the parallel universe of Art, Fashion and Rock’N’Roll. Malcolm McLaren Artist, R.I.P.

CARL said,

April 9, 2010 @ 12:41 pm

Punk is dead. Vive le Punk…

Rollergirl said,

April 9, 2010 @ 12:46 pm

Great pic. Not the easiest of people to know from what I hear but a creative icon nonetheless. A true original and a voice I never tired of listening to…

rockpopfashion said,

April 9, 2010 @ 3:00 pm

John & Molly
You show the generosity of the truly creative, something we believe you shared with MM.

And you are quite correct to point out that some of his recent work was among his greatest.

Paris the album will one day be recognised for what it is – a forlorn masterwork – and the latest film/installation Paris City Of The 21st Century is even better – imho – than Shallow.

For these and all that you mention, we shall remember him as a true cultural force.

We agree with Young Kim; he picked up the baton from Andy Warhol; who will pick it up from him?

Finally from an email sent exactly a month ago today:

“Any more thoughts? Don’t hesitate to pass them by me.”

Ever active, percolating ideas until the very end.

David said,

April 9, 2010 @ 6:55 pm

what chance anarchy now?

That's Not My Age said,

April 10, 2010 @ 8:41 am

Great quote.

johnny deluxe said,

April 13, 2010 @ 1:54 pm

the world has lost a very vivid and brilliant colour…an inspiration, and romantic…

rockpopfashion said,

April 13, 2010 @ 2:04 pm

Too right Johnny.
I don’t mean to name-drop but Mick Jones said to me: “How sad. We’re going to miss all those great ideas – Surf Nazis in Hollywood, Fans, Waltz Darling…”

johnny deluxe said,

April 15, 2010 @ 7:45 am

it’s an amazing thing though, eh paul, youth culture by it’s definition is a bright fleeting mayfly, guided by older hands, and to me a great artist gets better with age, and mr mclaren certainly did. i agree that the paris album will be recognized as a great piece of work. he rekindled my childhood love of opera with fans.
for me his thought processes seemed like an infinite meccano set, which you could add or subtract to at will, and bend the rigid lines, and create something wild and free. through he and his contemporaries, like john and molly, we were able to have the best open university course in culture, dreaming and action, available…
all you had to do was listen, look, regard and disregard, then take action……sex, style, subversion? yes please.

rockpopfashion said,

April 15, 2010 @ 11:59 am

Johnny, when are you starting your Open University course in Culture, Dreaming & Action?

johnny deluxe said,

April 16, 2010 @ 1:13 pm


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