Saturday, June 20, 2009

Roky Erickson

A couple years back, I discovered the Pretty Things and couldn't figure out how I had never heard their music before. Recently, it happened again with the Texas band, the 13th Floor Elevators. The Elevators can best be described as a proto-punk/surf/garage/psychedelic group with a lead singer who had one of the most amazing voices of the day! Roky Erickson was described somewhere as a Twilight Zone Buddy Holly and I can see that! The group was a major proponent of the creative powers of LSD and, like Syd Barrett, it exasperated what may have been an already present tendency toward mental illness in Roky. Unlike Syd, Roky received many years of treatment and, while still struggling with issues today, has continued to make music. Here's a video of him in 1985, 16 years after the 13th Floor Elevators disintegrated.

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