1996 Press

Jimmy Skafish broke punk in Chicago in 1976 during an audition night at the now-defunct BGinnings nightclub in Schaumburg.  Wearing an old ladies one-piece bathing suit and a purple page boy haircut, Skafish sprinkled the crowd with holy water while spewing bilious, fury-driven songs that terrified the entirely unsuspecting crowd.  It was the first of countless performances at which the audience would literally desire to kill the outrageous singer, but it was also the birth of punk in Chicago...

...Skafish is also thought to be among the first out-of-town punk performers to play New Yorks infamous CBGBs nightclub, where he appeared in 1977.  Big name artists like Cheap Trick, the Police, Iggy Pop, the Ramones, XTC, the Dead Boys and David Johansen considered Skafish an originator and highly valued his work.  His brilliant eponymously titled 1980 album - complete with horrifying cover - is among the most important records ever produced by a Chicago artist.  It, however, like Skafish himself, is virtually unknown today....

I was the freak, the weirdo, the one who could be pushed down the stairs and made fun of.

- Bob Kurson - Spirit lives on for Chicago punk pioneers - Chicago Sun Times - Sunday, August 11, 1996

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