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19+ quotes from Please Kill Me: The Uncensored Oral History of Punk by Legs McNeil

Quotes from Please Kill Me: The Uncensored Oral History of Punk

Legs McNeil ·  488 pages

Rating: (23.6K votes)


“Rock & Roll is so great, people should start dying for it. You don't understand. The music gave you back the beat so you could dream. A whole generation running with a Fender bass...

The people just have to die for the music. People are dying for everything else, so why not the music? Die for it. Isn't it pretty? Wouldn't you die for something pretty?

Perhaps I should die. After all, all the great blues singers did die. But life is getting better now.

I don't want to die. Do I? - Lou Reed (1965-1968)”
― Legs McNeil, quote from Please Kill Me: The Uncensored Oral History of Punk


“The old sound was alcoholic. The tradition was finally broken. The music is sex and drugs and happy. And happy is the joke the music understands best. Ultra sonic sounds on records to cause frontal lobotomies. Hey, don't be afraid. You'd better take drugs and learn to love PLASTIC. All diffrent kinds of plastic- pliable, rigid, colored, colorful, nonattached plastic. - Lou Reed (1965-1968)”
― Legs McNeil, quote from Please Kill Me: The Uncensored Oral History of Punk


“Arturo Vega: I always thought the ONLY way to really conquer evil is to make love to it. My favourite dream is always the one where I face the devil. I'm in the nude and the devil appears, and he is a beautiful blue. He looks like a mannequin, he looks like a robot. He doesn't have any clothes on, of course, and he's blue and shiny. I keep hearing voices that say, "It's him! It's him!" And I go, "Okay."

So he comes and faces me and I look at him and he's a little taller than me, not much taller, but a little taller, and I say, "I like you." And he says, "I like you too." But he starts beating me up, RA RA RA RA, and I'm down on the floor - and then all of the sudden, he turns into a little baby, like a baby, just a few months old, and then I fuck him, ha ha ha ha. And while I'm fucking him, he's moving his hands, he's moving them like a helpless baby.

So I always thought that to conquer evil, you have to make love to it. You have to understand it.”
― Legs McNeil, quote from Please Kill Me: The Uncensored Oral History of Punk


“The sixties have a reputation for being open and free and cool, but the reality was that everybody was straight. Everybody was totally straight and then there was Us - this pocketful of nuts. We had long hair, and we'd get chased down the block. People would chase you for ten blocks, screaming, "Beatle!" They were out of their fucking minds- that was the reality of the sixties. Nobody had long hair- you were a fucking freack, you were a fruit, you were not like the rest of the world. - Ronnie Cutrone (1965-1968)”
― Legs McNeil, quote from Please Kill Me: The Uncensored Oral History of Punk


“Ed Friedman: [talking about Patti Smith] One time she told me, "Allen Ginsberg thought I was a cute boy and he tried to pick me up, so I said, "LOOK AT THE TITS, ALLEN! NOTICE THE TITS!”
― Legs McNeil, quote from Please Kill Me: The Uncensored Oral History of Punk


“Penny Arcade said: At that time, the DRUG world and the ART world ran through each other. (1971 - 1974)”
― Legs McNeil, quote from Please Kill Me: The Uncensored Oral History of Punk


“How can U say one style is better than another. You ought to be able to be an Abstract Expressionist next week, or a Pop artist, or a realist, without feeling you"ve given up something. ... I think that would be so great, to be able to change styles. And I think that's what's going to happen, that's going to be the whole new scene. - Andy Warhol, 1963”
― Legs McNeil, quote from Please Kill Me: The Uncensored Oral History of Punk


“DEE DEE RAMONE: Sid Vicious followed me all over the place...the worst time was one night when we had a big party...They were serving beer and wine, and everybody was bombed. The whole bathroom was filled with puke -- in the sink, in the toilets, on the floor. It was really disgusting...All of a sudden I had a huge amount of speed in my hand. I started sniffing it like crazy. I was so high. And then I saw Sid and he said, 'Do you have anything to get high?' I said, 'Yeah, I got some speed'. So Sid pulled out a set of works and put a whole bunch of speed in the syringe and then stuck the needle in the toilet with all the puke and piss in there and loaded it. He didn't cook it up. He just shook it, stuck it in his arm, and got off. I just looked at him. I'd seen it all by then. He just looked at me kind of dazed and said, 'Man, where did you get this stuff?'.”
― Legs McNeil, quote from Please Kill Me: The Uncensored Oral History of Punk


“RONNIE CUTRONE: I loved Jim Morrison dearly, but Jim was not fun to go out with. I hung out with him every night for just about a year, and Jim would go out, lean up against the bar, order eight screwdrivers, put down six Tuinals on the bar, drink two or three screwdrivers, take two Tuinals, then he’d have to pee, but he couldn’t leave the other five screwdrivers, so he’d take his dick out and pee, and some girl would come up and blow his dick, and then he’d finish the other five screwdrivers and then he’d finish up the other four Tuinals, and then he’d pee in his pants, and then Eric Emerson and I would take him home. That was a typical night out with Jim. But when he was on acid, then Jim was really fun and great. But most of the time he was just a lush pill head. RAY MANZAREK: Jim was a shaman.”
― Legs McNeil, quote from Please Kill Me: The Uncensored Oral History of Punk


“Rispetto a quello che stava succedendo nel mondo reale, la decadenza sembrava un vezzo. Quindi il punk andava oltre la decadenza: il punk era l'apocalisse. Era l'annientamento. Non funzionava più niente, e allora tanto valeva passare direttamente all'Apocalisse.”
― Legs McNeil, quote from Please Kill Me: The Uncensored Oral History of Punk


“Bob Gruen: La gente veniva da noi per farsi mordere, non per farsi accarezzare.”
― Legs McNeil, quote from Please Kill Me: The Uncensored Oral History of Punk


“That record became very key for me, not just for what it said, and for how great it was, but also because I heard other people who could make good music without being any good at music. It gave me hope.”
― Legs McNeil, quote from Please Kill Me: The Uncensored Oral History of Punk


“Панк казался нам свежим и ярким явлением, могучим культом. Панк не был явлением политическим. Хотя, возможно, в некотором роде он все же был связан с политикой. Однако панк был замечателен тем, что в нем не было политической программы. Сутью панка была настоящая свобода, свобода личности. Делать что угодно, лишь бы задеть взрослых. Просто быть таким отвратительным, каким сможешь. Это казалось восхитительным, радостно возбуждающим. Быть такими, какими мы были на самом деле. Знаете что? Я просто обожал это.”
― Legs McNeil, quote from Please Kill Me: The Uncensored Oral History of Punk


“Hippies survived Nixon, but punk caved in to Ronald Reagan, know what I'm saying? Punk actually couldn't take a good challenge.”
― Legs McNeil, quote from Please Kill Me: The Uncensored Oral History of Punk


“The only thing that made the music different was that we were taking lyrics to places they had never been before. The thing that makes art interesting is when an artist has incredible pain or incredible rage. The New York bands were much more into their pain, while the English bands were much more into their rage. The Sex Pistols' songs were written out of anger, wheras Johnny was writing songs because he was brokenhearted over Sable...”
― Legs McNeil, quote from Please Kill Me: The Uncensored Oral History of Punk


“So punk wasn’t about decay, punk was about the apocalypse. Punk was about annihilation.”
― Legs McNeil, quote from Please Kill Me: The Uncensored Oral History of Punk


“Everyone thought in the early days of punk, certainly once English punk got going, and even American punk, everyone thought it was a horrible right-wing Nazi thing—violent, racist, and against everything good in life.”
― Legs McNeil, quote from Please Kill Me: The Uncensored Oral History of Punk


“Mass movements are always so unhip. That’s what was great about punk. It was an antimovement, because there was knowledge there from the very beginning that with mass appeal comes all those tedious folks who need to be told what to think. Hip can never be a mass movement. And culturally, the gay liberation movement and all the rest of the movements were the beginning of political correctness, which was just fascism to us. Real fascism. More rules.”
― Legs McNeil, quote from Please Kill Me: The Uncensored Oral History of Punk


“Вообще-то искусство — занятие для эгоистов. Иногда мне кажется, что музыкантам и художникам вообще нельзя иметь постоянные отношения, пока им не будет далеко за тридцать, потому что до тех пор их отношения всегда будут на втором месте после искусства.”
― Legs McNeil, quote from Please Kill Me: The Uncensored Oral History of Punk


About the author

Legs McNeil
Born place: in Cheshire, Connecticut, The United States
Born date January 1, 1956
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