Back in June of 1990, I opened up a New York Times to see the obituary of a punk legend, Stiv Bators. That night, I went out to have a cocktail at the Gingerman Tavern, and when I announced the death of Stiv, the reaction was universal: "That junkie? What did he OD of?" My late friend Bobby Scarpelli, who was the doorman at the Gingerman and other establishments, recalled bouncing him from a punk club.
Bators had, in fact, not OD'd-- he'd been hit by a taxi in Paris, where he lived, and after waiting several hours in an emergency room, went home and died in his sleep of the concussion he'd recieved as a result of the accident.
Stiv, born Steven John Bator, was from Youngstown, Ohio and was the singer for the Dead Boys, one of the bands along with the Ramones, the Talking Heads, Blondie and others who formed the early punk scene that centered around the late, great rock club CBGB's in the late '70's. He later formed the Lords of the New Church with Brian James of the Damned and Dave Tregunna of Sham 69, making this, improbably, sort of a punk supergroup. Their first album was great, but they're probably best known for their twisted cover of Madonna's Like A Virgin. The cover of that record had Stiv in a wedding dress that was quite revealing. It wasn't for the weak of stomach.
I heard the Dead Boys classic I Need Lunch a couple of days ago on Little Steven's Underground Garage on Sirius radio. After checking my music collection, I realized that I didn't have the song, so I went to Itunes and bought it as one last little Christmas present for myself. What can I say-- I'm just a sentimental guy, I guess.
I found a Youtube clip of Stiv and the Dead Boys playing I Need Lunch at CBGB's in 1977. Enjoy!