Malcolm McLaren, the art/punk swindler/genius who managed the Sex Pistols, died this morning in Switzerland. He had cancer, and was 64.
Throughout a spotty but rather fascinating forty year career in pop culture, McLaren had hands in fashion, all forms of music, and film. He famously lost his virginity to his early London punk co-conspirator, fashion designer Vivienne Westwood, who coincidentally turns 69 today. After the Sex Pistols, he briefly managed Adam Ant (and then convinced the Ants to leave their frontman and form Bow Wow Wow), put out solo records dabbling in disco, opera and milquetoast Euro-techno. He produced Richard Linklater's Fast Food Nation, contributed a song to Quentin Tarantino's Kill Bill Volume II, and made a ridiculous music video with Catherine Deneuve. He will be missed, at least by me, for his tendency to give amazing quotes to The Guardian. I also really, really love that opera record, in a completely sincere way.
Below the jump, a completely arbitrary sampling of McLaren-related YouTube clips, including that Deneuve clip (in which McLaren commands, “Sing away, Cathy”), the Kill Bill song, a clip from Sofia Coppola's Marie Antoinette featuring a Bow Wow Wow song that McLaren wrote, and–last but definitely not least–the incredible bath house-tastic music video for McLaren's “Madame Butterfly.”