Ari Up R.I.P.

October 21, 2010 at 11:59 pm (Uncategorized)

White German punk Rasta girl Ari Up passed away yesterday at the age of 48. A Note on John Lydon’s homepage said she had died from a serious illness.

When I was about 13, I remember reading a four-part special on punk in the Sun of all places. The second installment had a feature on the Clash, but little sections on some other bands. The Slits were there along with a picture of Ari Up. The article noted that because of their “unwashed appearance” they were frequently denied service and abused in the street. Ari did wear her underpants on the outside, but all in all fairly surreal.

If you get the chance, listen to the Slits Peel Session (available on the deluxe version of Cut). Raw, crazy. I prefer then to the later recordings, but maybe that’s just me. Cut is a great record though. The band deepened their affinity for dub: Recording with the Pop Group, cutting a marvellous version of “Man Next Door” and then dissolving into individual projects.

Ari Up played the Pride festival in Toronto a few years back. I missed the show,; something I deeply regret. 48 is far far too young to leave us.

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