Posts Tagged ‘punk rock’

Been on a kick lately. Listening to music from the late ’70s and early ’80s. Which means lots of classic New Wave and Punk Rock.


Due to this, it was time for a portrait of Poly Styrene. For those who don’t know, Poly Styrene is best known as the lead vocalist for the seminal British Punk band X-Ray Spex. X-Ray Spex’s album Germ Free Adolescence is considered a Punk classic.


X-Ray Spex. 

Born to a Scottish-Irish mother and Somali-born father, Poly was born Marianne Joan Elliott-Said in 1957 England. Her mother raised her as a single parent. After trying her hand in Ska and Reggae, Poly was inspired to form a band after catching The Sex Pistols in concert. That band was X-Ray Spex.


After performing at a gig in 1978, Poly started getting visions. Her mother, alarmed about Poly’s hallucinations, took her to the hospital. There, the singer was misdiagnosed with schizophrenia, and taken out of the public eye. Thirteen years later in 1991, she was diagnosed with bipolar disorder. In 1983, she converted into the Hare Krishna faith.

Around 1980 she embarked on a solo career. Poly Styrene released a few albums over the past few decades. Her last album, Generation Indigo was produced by Martin Glover, best known as Youth from the band Killing Joke. Generation Indigo was released on April 24, 2011, a day before Poly’s passing. The cause of death was  metastatic breast cancer.

In 2017, her daughter started a crowd funding online for the documentary Poly Styrene: I Am A Cliché. Two years later in 2019, a biography titled Dayglo! was published. The documentary is expected to be finished in 2020, unless Covid19 gets in the way.

Without further ado, here’s a portrait of Poly Styrene, in one of her famous stage outfits. After doing the illustration, I read that Poly later complained about the ensemble. While I could understand why she wasn’t fond of the gear, like many others, I beg to differ. If anything, it would be considered highly couture today.  The illustration was done in pen, ink and watercolor. Another little bit of irony. After just finishing the piece, I discovered Poly Styrene’s birthday was only a few days away, on July 3rd.


Poly Styrene, from X-Ray Spex, and later on solo singer. Completed June 27, 2020. Pen, ink and watercolor. Done by Michele Witchipoo. 


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If you haven’t heard, I’m doing my radio show again. This time remote. You can hear the show every Wednesday from 7-8pm ET on WHCSradio.org.


Last week I interviewed returning guest Maria Photinakis. She recently had an article in the Boston Globe about her Covid19 diaries, which you can check out on WEBTOON. Hopefully I can upload the latest interview here. Past episodes can also be heard on Spotify, iTunes podcast, and other outlets.


This Wednesday I’ll be interviewing punk rock artist and musician Anthony Begnal. He’s done comics and co-founder, along with his wife, of the band Chesty Malone and The Slice Em Ups. Self proclaimed as ‘Satanic Brooklyn Scum’, the band has played the East Coast and Midwest for over 13 years. Chesty has merch available for sale.

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This past Saturday, IncrediCon over in Middletown, NY went pretty well. Now that I’m back from Upstate NY, here’s the Psycho Bunny sketch of the week.

It’s a sketch from 2018, but decided to post now.


Punk’s not dead. Psycho Bunny takes a clue from The Exploited. Based on the comic written and drawn by Michele Witchipoo on WitchesBrewPress. Drawn 2018, posted on June 2019.

Of course I have some new greeting cards for sale. Three new designs. Below is a photo of two of the new designs. Each card is $3.00, comes with envelope, card and envelope inside plastic sleeve. Unless ordering by mail, the cost is $4.00 ($3.00 + $1.00 S&H). The Siouxsie Sioux card is already sold out. While I’m printing another Siouxsie batch, check out my Quentin Crisp card, just in time for Pride. While I need to update my website to include an online shop, I’m currently taking payments through Venmo and Square. My Venmo is @Witchipoo.


Latest greeting card designs from Michele Witchipoo/WitchesBrewPress. Siouxsie Sioux and Quentin Crisp. June 2019.

You can also order my latest comic, Temptation of Squeaky, again through Venmo. If doing mail order, the comic is $4.00 ($3.00 + $1.00 S&H). Please specify what you’re ordering, and include your mailing address. Example: Quentin Crisp card, Siouxsie card or Squeaky comic.


Latest comic. Temptation of Squeaky. Written and drawn by Michele Witchipoo on WitchesBrewPress.

Social media links you should follow:

Facebook: pages for Psycho Bunny and for Michele Witchipoo – WitchesBrewPress.

 Twitter: One account for me, and one for Psycho Bunny.

Tumblr: World Ov Witchipoo

Instagram: there’s WitchipooArt.

Going to promote my RedBubble shop again. 

 Get yourself some cool stuff on RedBubble, featuring my designs.


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Today is a special entry. It’s a guest blog from blogger who for the time wants to remain private. When this writer offered this piece, I was very honored. Besides, it’s always nice to meet another music aficionado.

The open letter below is dedicated to Wendy O’ Williams. Best known as the vocalist for The Plasmatics, later a solo career and sometime actress. Wendy O Williams was also an animals right advocate who openly promoted vegetarianism.

Looking back, I often feel as if Wendy O Williams was misunderstood, and well ahead of her time. Her shock rock stage antics were quite controversial, especially for a woman. Yet behind the aggressive chaos of her public persona, here was an entertainer who sincerely stood behind what she was doing, warts and all. Unlike today’s publicity stunts from today’s performers, there was a method to Wendy’s madness. Perhaps this article will explain better.

I did a portrait in tribute to Wendy O back in 2009, which you can see on Deviant Art. In honor of her birthday, which is on May 28th, I did new art to both accompany the guest blogger contribution and for WOW herself.


Dear Wendy O. Williams,

Yesterday was your birthday – you would have been 66, if you were still alive.  I’ve thought about you quite a bit in the last couple of days.  Wondering what happened and who you were because, of course, I didn’t actually know you.

When I was in 9th grade, I was attending the same school you dropped out of at age 16.  You lived in my hometown.  The town’s motto is, “Where Life is Worth Living.”  I doubt you felt that – you got the hell out of there as soon as you could, started traveling the country, selling crocheted bikinis to make some extra money.  You ended up in NYC working as a stripper, where you met Rod Swenson, your longtime companion and bandmate / manager.

When I was in 9th grade, I didn’t feel like I was where life is worth living either.  I was sleep-walking through everything as best I could.  I remember when I first heard about you:  I was riding the school bus, reading through my favorite book, New Wave A to Z.  My next door neighbor must have glanced over my shoulder and been overcome by something, because she talked to me about the book, and she rarely talked to me about anything at that point.  She told me that you were also from this town.  I looked at your picture, and your blurb, and sure enough, it said Webster, NY.  My mind was blown.  How could someone who looked like that, who became so famous, be from here, and no one’s talking about it!  And it’s true – throughout my life, no one has talked about it, and I’ve forgotten all about you for long stretches of time, only to have my mind be blown all over again.

Your father was a chemist at Eastman Kodak.  Mine was too!  I wonder where, exactly, you lived, and what you did for fun.  What your childhood was like.  I can’t find these details anywhere, so I feel compelled to make them up.  All I know is that your family moved from Rochester to a sprawling piece of land in Webster, a couple of acres worth.  I doubt you can find property like that here anymore – everything’s been rationed out into sub-divisions and new shopping plazas in this suburb.  I bet you used to play in the woods when you were a kid.  Seems like you loved nature and animals all throughout your life.  I did that a lot too; we used to take mini-hikes down to the bay all the time, collecting bottles and cans to cash in for candy money.  Identifying different plant life – both my parents are science types.  I wonder what your mom was like.

Anyway, just wanted to think about how our lives may or may not have intersected.  I could go on, but maybe I’ll save more speculating for next year around this time.

Your pal,


Portrait of Wendy O Williams, done in honor of this guest blog. Michele Witchipoo June 2015.

Portrait of Wendy O Williams, done in honor of this guest blog. Michele Witchipoo June 2015.

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Hey ho, let’s go! Last week’s Sketch Lottery character was the late, great Joey Ramone. So you know I didn’t want to miss a chance drawing him.

Joey Ramone, drawn by Michele Witchipoo. Nov. 2014. Pen brush, ink and watercolor. Done for Sketch Lottery.

Joey Ramone, drawn by Michele Witchipoo. Nov. 2014. Pen brush, ink and watercolor. Done for Sketch Lottery.

Funny part was I never saw The Ramones live. However, I did see Joey Ramone walk around St. Mark’s Place twice. I didn’t go up to him. Perhaps I should have. This is why later you always end up regretting you haven’t done.

However, I was lucky enough to see Joey Ramone sing with Ronnie Spector live at the venue Coney Island High. This was sometime during the late ’90s.

Enjoy my Joey Ramone sketch, and don’t forget to check out the other artists.


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This past Friday was the benefit for Punk Island, taking place in Williamsburg, Brooklyn. There were bands which afterwards was an art auction. Local artists donated artwork to raise money for Punk Island 2013.

So not only have I not managed to make it to any of the Punk Island shows, I almost didn’t make it to this event. You see, I was exhausted and ready to call it a night. Yet my friend convinced me to go. Plus I had flyers to pick up and promote for the Welcome To My Nightmare show next month. Missed the bands but arrived just in time for the auction.

Rev. Wodka glitter painting. Created Fall 2012. Mixed medium with acrylic and glitter. Sold May 2013 at the Punk Island Art Auction benefit.

Rev. Wodka glitter painting. Created Fall 2012 by Michele Witchipoo. Mixed medium, acrylic and glitter. Sold May 2013 at the Punk Island art auction benefit.

I had donated a mixed medium painting created seven months ago titled Rev. Wodka. The acrylic and glitter painting was originally on sale at my Esty site, but I figured it would would be better off at the auction. In theme with all things Punk. So off went Rev. Wodka, who found a new home that night. I also included an old mini issue of my comic Psycho Bunny.

Phil Lentz starting the action at the art auction to benefit Punk Island 2013. Williamsburg, Brooklyn. NYC. May 2013.

Phil Lentz starting the action at the art auction to benefit Punk Island 2013. Williamsburg, Brooklyn. NYC. May 2013.

There were lots of awesome artists who donated their time and talent to this benefit. There were original signed and numbered concert poster prints by Joe Simko, who did  illustrations for bands like The Misfits and GWAR. Original concert photography was also donated to the cause. The best was saved for last, when Justin Melkmann, comic book artist and member of the band WW9 donated a personal letter from G.G. Allen to the auction.

Here’s a few other photos from that night. Can’t say I know of the exact date of Punk Island itself, but it’s usually free and takes place during the summer on Governor’s Island. Best bet is to do a search for info regarding the exact time date and location for the event.

Art auction/benefit for Punk Island 2013. May 2013 Williamsburg, Brooklyn. NYC.

Art auction/benefit for Punk Island 2013. May 2013 Williamsburg, Brooklyn. NYC.

Actual flyer and letter sent to Justin Melkmann from G.G. Allen, when G.G. was in prison. Donated to the art auction to benefit Punk Island 2013.

Actual flyer and letter sent to Justin Melkmann from G.G. Allen, when G.G. was in prison. Donated to the art auction to benefit Punk Island 2013.

Actual letter from G.G. Allen. Donated to the art auction benefit for Punk Island 2013. Photo taken May 2013 in Williamsburg, Brooklyn, NYC.

Actual letter from G.G. Allen. Donated to the art auction benefit for Punk Island 2013. Photo taken May 2013 in Williamsburg, Brooklyn, NYC.

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Photographer extraordinaire Otto Yamamoto snapped pics of last weekend’s Welcome To My Nightmare V show at The Lake in Brooklyn:


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Last night was of course, the Welcome To My Nightmare V event. If you’ve been following this blog, you might be sick of seeing the flier posted every other day.

Here’s some of the photos from last night:

My display for the Welcome To My Nightmare V show.

Part of my table display at the Nightmare show. March 26th 2011.

Part of my table display for the Nightmare V show. March 26th, 2011.

Shitty Mickey painting. Done winter 2011. Acrylic on canvas.

Psycho Bunny painting. Acrylic. Created winter 2011.

Black Rabbit painting. Acrylic. Created winter 2011.

Photographer Otto Yamamoto next to his display. March 26th, 2011.

For Sale at the Nightmare show. March 2011.

Abby's already a legendary artist in the "Alternative comics" genre. March 26th, 2011.

Abby Denson display for Welcome To My Nightmare V show.

Xtene (Christine) Kucinskis paintings. Xtene was the mastermind behind putting this show together. She's also put together the previous Nightmare gigs, 1-4. She's also the bass player for the band Skum City. She gave me a Skum City tee which I will proudly wear.

Xtene Kucinskis painting. Looks like Andy Warhol, doesn't it?

Nonlee, bass player for two bands: Highteen Boogie and Iconicide. March 26th, 2011.

All girl Japanese/NYC based punk band Highteen Boogie. I want to be thier (non-sexual) groupie. They rock. March 26th, 2011.

Highteen Boogie, March 26th, 2011.



Sarah B MC'ing & doing some poetry. Sat. March 26th, 2011.

Iconicide. Sat. March 26th, 2011.

Iconicide. Sat. March 26th, 2011

Iconicide. Sat. March 26th, 2011.

Skum City. Saturday March 26th, 2011.

There were some bands that I couldn’t take photos of, because it was getting crowded. All in all, a good time. Thanks goes to Christine (Xtene) Kucinskis.

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Next month I’m going to be showing my artwork at the fifth semi-annual “Welcome To My Nightmare” event. My art/illustration will be on exhibit along with other artists and bands:

Flyer for Welcome To My Nightmare V show, March 2011

See you there!

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Whether you loved him or hated him, Malcolm McLaren did have an impact of music still being felt to this day.

McLaren is best known as the controversial, double handed yet charismatic manager behind The Sex Pistols. After a short stint as a manager for the seminal Glam band The New York Dolls, he went back to his naive U.K. and helped create the British Punk movement. Along with his former girlfriend, fashion designer Vivienne Westwood, and a dwindling English political climate, McLaren helped shaped the iconic images associated with early U.K. Punk. Let’s just say the notes he took during his time with the Dolls served him well.

Later on he added Adam & The Ants and Bow Wow Wow on his management list. Controversy followed McLaren yet again, particularly with the lead singer of Bow Wow Wow. Annabella Lwin was only 14 years old when she posed for a band publicity photo based the Manet painting The Luncheon on the Grass (Le déjeuner sur l’herbe). The images teenage dreams are made of.

Speaking of controversial album covers, my own mother was outraged. So thanks to Lwin’s nude posing, along with a Nina Hagen album these records were banned from my own household. Ah, the good old days.

Not to outdone, Malcolm went to New York City yet again, and tapped into the budding Hip Hop movement. Mixing Bronx street life, international music and English art school fashion, the result was the hit song ‘Buffalo Gals’ from the album ‘Duck Rock.’ Other solo ventures Malcolm ensued, such as the hybrid of electronic music and opera in the 1984 single ‘Madame Butterfly.’ Later solo projects, although innovative, were not as successful.

Was not aware of this fact, but supposedly Malcolm McLaren was involved with a film project, using a script by comic book writer Alan Moore. The film itself was never made. Later on, Malcolm went on to be one of the producers in the film adaptation of Fast Food Nation.

Why Malcolm McLaren could be considered a “favorite villain” was due to the fact of his questionable manger practices. During the 1980s, former members of The Sex Pistols took McLaren to court over contract rights. Johnny Lydon, formerly known as Pistols’ lead singer Johnny Rotten won and gained complete control from McLaren (and rightly so). After the Pistols’ breakup, Lydon formed the post punk band Public Image Ltd.

Personally speaking, I saw P.I.L. on concert during the mid-eighties. Not only showing my true age when admitting this; I will also humiliate myself when I tell you about accidentally getting kicked in the head by a ‘slam dancer’ (now known as ‘mosher’) during the show. Johnny Lydon insulted everyone during the entire concert, and the audience retaliated by throwing pennies at him. The pennies was the crowd’s physical way of telling Lydon he was a “sell-out.”

Back to Malcolm. My ex-boyfriend from high school met McLaren during his usher shift at a local NYC art film theater. McLaren had gone to see a movie, and my ex took his ticket stub. According to the ex, McLaren was a nice guy.

A few weeks prior to his death, somehow the song “Buffalo Gals” kept on running through my head. It was a song I had remembered from my pre-teen years. This was when I was growing up in Queens, NY. I was a huge Joan Jett fan during this period, but a friend was trying to get me into Hip-Hop. So she played “Buffalo Gals” for me. However, I was too into Rock music at this time and wasn’t willing to budge. Years later, I realized this tune was way ahead of its time.

I’ll end this with two videos posted on YouTube. One is Adam Ant with a spoken tribute, the other is the promo video for Buffalo Gals.

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