A few birthdays to celebrate today include Jimmy Page of Led Zeppelin, Joan Baez, Dave Matthews and one of my favorite innovators of the New York punk movement of the 70’s.
David Johansen, lead singer of the New york Dolls turns 63 today. David Jo led the group that mixed glam with garage rock n roll to form what would eventually become the sound of New York punk. Critics hated them. Called them Rolling Stones rip-offs and a joke. But the combined talents of David Jo, Johnny Thunders, Arthur “Killer” Kane and Jerry Nolan could not be stifled.
The first Dolls album remains a classic and one of the most played albums in my collection of late 70’s punk/glam.
David Jo went on to an illustrious, albeit confusing, solo career which included the character of Buster Poindexter. I never really understood why he stuck with that character but it probably brought him more fame than anything else with the hit “Hot Hot Hot”, played at every wedding, and Disney parade in the 80’s. He also had some memorable movie roles. You may remember him driving a New York City cab, as the ghost of Christmas Past, in Scrooged.
I was lucky enough to see The Dolls back in the day and was blown away. Saw David Jo solo a few times and was equally knocked out by his performances.
Happy Birthday to a true icon and an under appreciated artist in the realm of rock n roll.
He will always be Funky but Chic to me.