Thirty five years ago today, Malcolm Owen, the lead singer of the Ruts died from a Heroin Overdose – He was 26 years old.
The Ruts as a band never got the recognition they richly deserved, being overshadowed by contemporaries like the Clash for example, but for many of us – they were easily the most exciting, angry and musically gifted band of the post-punk era, and had Malcolm not died prematurely, who knows what they could have gone on to achieve.
So for Malcolm, and indeed for guitarist Paul Fox, who passed away in 2007 ….
WEST ONE (Shine On Me)….
“Lights are burning red and white,Lost on an island in the night,Rescue me or here I’ll stay,A traffic island castaway,Lost in a bar,Inside it’s only me who’s straight.
Out in the dark and on my own (shine on me),I’m stranded here with no way home (shine on me).
Glasses smash full of champagne,It trickles down the drain,A treat for sewer rats,You’re like a rat when you get high,People falling on the floor,Or running out the door?
Lights in the night burning red and white,Shine on me so I can see,Out in the cold out on my own,Shine on me so I can see, shine on me.
Out in the dark and on my own,I’m stranded here with no way home ( shine on me),Lost in the dark, standing here alone (shine on me),Out in the night, where traffic wardens roam (shine on me),On an island where you abandoned me (shine on me, shine on me),Lights are burning,Bright so I can see.
(shine on me, shine on me)Lights in the night, burning red and white,
(shine on me, shine on me, shine on me).
“Words/Music: OWEN/FOX/RUFFY August 1980