Monday, August 11, 2008

Scott Murphy - Sail On You Punk Bastard!

My old friend Scott died this week. Drugs took him in the Pacific Northwest. He was easy for drugs to find, difficult for friends. I'd only seen Scott once in 20 years. He roamed into the Outland in the middle of a set I was doing in 1999. He gave me a wave and was gone. I had so much catching up to do.

Scott was punk rock. He was the "get your ass kicked for just being a punk" punk. Only, Scott fought back. We skated ditches, parking garages, ramps. We wrestled over issues of Maximum Rock and Roll. We wore old man bermudas. Swapped decks and folded pizza the proper way, down the middle. We stayed up late with Tony, Andy, and Kellett watching URGH! A Music War. We took punk rock to the roller skating rink and busted our asses doing DEVO flips in the back. We worshipped the The Jam. We lived together. We stole food. Shared girlfriends. Scott and I took a trip to see Die Kreuzen, skated all over Kansas City, did an interview with The Star. We dropped acid for the first time together. Thanks be to DEVO for getting that party started.

Murphy and I were mates. Thick as fucking thieves. Scott took all the English Punk Rock shit he could take, blended it with really early and cutting edge American Hardcore, and turned himself into a one man wrecking crew. Crass, Husker Du, Throbbing Gristle, Black Flag, The Jam, Minor Threat, Bad Brains, J.F.A., Bauhaus, Youth Brigade, were just a few of the bands that passed from his wide eyes and fast talking mouth into my record collection. Scott moved at a speed that none can imagine. He was firmly electric.

After Scott moved back to the Queen City from Tulsa, where we had moved to further ourselves, I moved towards Modism and we lost touch. Scott became a father of two and ventured towards Seattle. And there he stayed.


His Glendale yearbook featured a blurb about Scott and his punky new wave ways. This nifty skate ditch photo purports to show Murphy in action. The QCR staff is not sure about the short shorts and safety gear. They may have been needed to teach good, responsible boarding. I can't make out the deck but I think it's mine. The yearbook staff asked Scott what he thought about society…

"I think people are too caught up with other people's standards. Society suppresses people and strips them of their individuality. Individualism is my main idea on what I really stand for."

That sounds a lot like Paul Weller and like Weller, Scott made the standards and he made the rules. I'll miss him.

Take care brother.

AP - 2008

1 comment:

BECCA said...

i remember those days at the skating rink. kellett and murphy use to call me cat i use to love listening to the sex pistols. i went to the skating rink almost every afternoon for practice and couldnt wait to see "johnny rotton and sid vicous" during the regular skating session. i remember going to the restroom to change from my skating dress to my punk rock garb before they all showed up. and andy was a great back of the rink kisser..hehehe anyway alan thanks for the memories and my condolences to scotts family and friends.
sincerely, becky