Classic Albums: Stay Sick! by The Cramps

Why isn’t Poison Ivy rated as one of the greatest guitar players? She should be up on all those greatest guitarists which is just full of male rock type players. Is it because she a woman? Or it’s because she’s in a punk band and/or rockabilly band? It’s funny because The Cramps never had their feet in nether camps, maybe it was in the early days of the band in New York and the CBGB’s punk scene were the rockabilly thing wasn’t cool and then leaving for California were that was bigger but they were too punk for them too. Then they’re the band who created psychobilly, the best of both worlds.

Anyway because last month I did three female artists: Rid Of Me by PJ HarveyHorses by Patti Smith and Vespertine by Björk and it was American Black History Month and I got four African-American artists done then: I’m New Here by Gil Scott-HeronAscension by John ColtraneThe Definitive by Blind Willie McTell and Flesh Of My Flesh, Blood Of My Blood by DMX so I figure because it’s American’s Women’s History Month I’ve got to done at least four female artists/bands this month, right? I’ve done one so far with In My Own Time by Karen Dalton on Friday so after today post two more or should it be more? Does even The Cramps count anyway?

They are a four piece band but it was the husband Lux Interior singer and wife duo of lead guitarist and she occasional bass guitarist Poison Ivy as the only permanent members and the co-songwriters. Real name Ivy Rorschach and on the Stay Sick! album Ivy was the producer too. That’s her on the cover, she topless but facing away from the camera but they is more clothed version of the album cover so am I being a sexist pig by using the unedited cover? Not that you can see anything but on the inside the blokes in the band are dressed in drag and oh my god they do make some ugly drag queens too. Lux always wore high heels but I think this was the first where they bite the bullet and when all out, is it the first band to do so? Most likely not but did come after their biggest hit single.

The album was recorded the late 80’s and release in the early 90’s but the single Bikini Girls With Machine Guns in put out in mid 1989. Which in the 90’s I think every artist guest programmer of that Aussie TV show called rage I’ve talked about a bit before played that song. So it was my intro to The Cramps too, most likely the early album/s are the classic album/s on every other music list but this album really does hold a special place in my heart. I think it would be the next album’s tour is when I got to see them live too, this guy next to my in the mosh pit just scream all night long how much he wanted to fuck Lux in the most explicit terms too.

Stay Sick! album is only their fourth studio album but including two live albums it’s their sixth album overall, then they have some comp albums too of 7″ singles and stuff so some say if you count them too it’s eighth even ninth somehow. More fun facts are it’s last studio album to feature drummer Nick Knox. Yet another of my Classic Albums to have an old Traditional song on it plus old 1930 Jimmie Rodgers track closes the album and the opening track is a mid-50’s Sun records artists Macy “Skip” Skipper cover too. All the other track are Lux and Ivy co-written tracks.

Ivy & Lux

The Cramps was formed in 1976 but Ivy survived her husband and then they split after his death in 2009, he was the lead singer. I wish she would write her autobio, I keep seeing a book about The Cramps at my local bookshop so sooner or later I’m going to buy it maybe I might have to go and get it right now!

Who else love The Cramps? This album or another one is your fave?

Stay Sick! track listing and times:
All tracks written by Lux Interior and Ivy Rorschach; except where indicated.

1. Bop Pills (Macy Skipper, Arthur Melton McNatt) – 2:24
2. God Damn Rock & Roll – 2:38
3. Bikini Girls With Machine Guns – 3:17
4. All Women Are Bad – 3:09
5. The Creature from the Black Leather Lagoon – 3:06
6. Shortnin’ Bread (Traditional, arranged by Ivy Rorschach) – 2:50
7. Daisys Up Your Butterfly – 2:38
8. Everything Goes – 3:46
9. Journey to the Center of a Girl – 4:49
10. Mama Oo Pow Pow – 2:33
11. Saddle Up a Buzz Buzz – 2:43
12. Muleskinner Blues (Jimmie Rodgers, George Vaughan) – 2:51


All my Classic Albums posts are in that link or they’re all linked below too!

So the idea here is simply for me to write a post about each of my favourite albums that I consider total stone cold classics!

Please do leave a reply below and tell me what you think about this album and/or artist or whatever you’d like to say about it?


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