Sid Vicious (John Simon Ritchie)
Photos with Sid Vicious
BiographyLewisham Hospital, Lewisham, London, England, UK
Along with fellow Sex Pistol member, Johnny Rotten, lanky, sneering, pock faced Sid epitomised the punk movement born in the mid 1970s in working class England. Sid Vicious (real name John Beverly) wasn't an original member of the Pistols, but rather joined the band after original bassist, Glen Matlock dropped out after personality clashes with lead singer Rotten. On stage, Sid (often stripped to the waist) would incite the audience to get wilder and more frenzied, and his infamous antics included spitting and spraying beer into the audience. Read more... a crude, foul mouthed hoodlum corrupting English youth with his unclean image. Unfortunately for a naive Sid, he fell into the company of alleged drug user, Nancy Spungen, and his world spiralled out of control leading to the break up of the Pistols (their last show being in San Francisco), and Sid's lame attempts to kick start his own solo career, which included a demented cover of the popular Frank Sinatra song "My Way", accompanied by a violent video clip. Vicious and Spungen took up residency in the Chelsea Hotel in New York City in early 1978, however their self destructive personalities meant a tragedy was fast approaching, and on October 12th 1978, Spungen was found dead in their hotel room from stab wounds. Vicious was charged by police with Spungen's murder and released on bail, pending trial. However, only four months later in February 1979, Vicious himself was found dead of a heroin overdose. Sid was dead at aged 21. His will requested his ashes be poured over Nancy's grave at the King David Cemetery in Bucks County, Pennsylvania. Along with Janis Joplin, Brian Jones & Jimi Hendrix, Sid had assured himself a place in rock and roll history, as another iconic music figure dead at a young age.