R.I.P. Poly Styrene

Poly Styrene (Marianne Elliot-Said), who formed the punk pioneering X-Ray Spex in the late 70s, died at age 53 from cancer last night. Like many fans, I learned about it on facebook late yesterday night after one of her close friends posted the news. Poly Styrene was a real fighter and will be sorely missed. Her music was brash, loud, wild, fun, full of anti-consumerism, and helped usher in the Riot Grrrl movement and the bands that followed. Poly Styrene was also known for creating the punk-feminist anthem, “Oh Bondage Up Yours!” (above), and a classic punk record, “Germ Free Adolescents” in 1978. Two of my favorite X-Ray Spex songs are “I Am A Poseur” and “Obsessed With You”. This is from a statement released by friends, “She dissected gender politics, consumer culture, and the obsessions of modern life in a way that made us all want to sing along with her. At the core of Poly’s work, from Germ Free Adolescents through Generation Indigo, is a revolutionary with a genuine love for this world and the people and things in it.” R.I.P.

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