Author

Malcolm McLaren cover

photo credits: CC-BY-SA-2.0

Malcolm McLaren

English artist, performer and fashion designer

1946   -   2010

genre: rock music, new wave
country of citizenship: United Kingdom
educated at: Goldsmiths, University of London
occupation: singer, screenwriter, songwriter, talent agent, record producer, talent manager
www.malcolmmclaren.com

Malcolm Robert Andrew McLaren (22 January 1946 – 8 April 2010) was an English impresario, visual artist, performer, musician, clothes designer and boutique owner, notable for combining these activities in an inventive and provocative way. He is best known as a promoter and manager of bands the New York Dolls and the Sex Pistols. Brought up unconventionally by his grandmother after his father, Peter, left the family home, McLaren attended a number of British art colleges and adopted the stance of the social rebel in the style of French revolutionaries the Situationists. With a keen eye for trends, McLaren realised that a new protest style was needed for the 1970s, and largely initiated the punk movement, for which he supplied fashions from the Chelsea boutique SEX, which he operated with girlfriend Vivienne Westwood. After a spell advising the New York Dolls in the U.S., McLaren managed the Sex Pistols, for which he recruited the nihilistic frontman Johnny Rotten. The issue of a controversial record, "God Save the Queen", satirising the Queen's Jubilee in 1977, was typical of McLaren's shock tactics, and he gained publicity by being arrested after a promotional boat trip outside the Houses of Parliament. McLaren also performed as a solo artist, initially popularising hip hop and world music and later diversifying into funk and disco, the dance fashion for "voguing" and merging opera with contemporary electronic musical forms. When accused of turning popular culture into a cheap marketing gimmick, he joked that he hoped it was true. In his later years, he lived in Paris and New York City, and died of peritoneal mesothelioma in a Swiss hospital.
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