His mother dropped out of school early due to a lack of academic success and went on to join the RAF , where she met her husband-to-be, Ritchie's father, a guardsman at Buckingham Palace and a semi-professional trombone player on the London Jazz scene. However, after the first few cheques failed to arrive, Anne realised he would not be coming.
Anne later married Christopher Beverley in , before setting up a family home back in Kent. Ritchie took his father's first name and stepfather's surname and was known as John Beverley. In the pair moved to Hackney in east London. He also spent some time living in Clevedon , Somerset.
Lydon describes Ritchie at this time as a David Bowie fan and a "clothes hound". There he met American expatriate Chrissie Hynde before she formed the Pretenders. Though at least five years older, she tried but failed to convince Ritchie to join her in a sham marriage so she could get a work permit. They would play Alice Cooper covers, and people gave them money to stop. Once a man gave them "three bob" three shillings, i. Soured by the experience, Vicious held a personal grudge for this perceived slight perpetrated against him by Vanian and The Damned, a grudge which would become violent.
During The Damned's performance at day 2 of the Club Punk Special, the day after making his debut drumming with Siouxsie and the Banshees, an intoxicated and amphetamine-fuelled Vicious hurled his glass at the stage. He was attempting to strike Dave Vanian as an act of retribution, but the glass missed, shattered on a pillar and partially blinded a girl in one eye.
Vicious was arrested the next day and imprisoned at Ashford Remand Centre. Westwood sent him a book about Charles Manson to keep him occupied during his imprisonment. Sid, on image alone, is what all punk rests on. Vicious was in the band, but he could not play well and had no bass guitar experience, so guitarist Steve Jones played bass on the band's debut album Never Mind the Bollocks, Here's the Sex Pistols.
Vicious appeared on only two songs: He was also absent from the album because he was in hospital with hepatitis most likely from his drug use and during that period his main visitor would have been his girlfriend Nancy Spungen , an American groupie and heroin addict he had met in She was also a part-time prostitute and stripper, and she is said to have introduced Vicious to heroin , although he was already abusing multiple drugs supplied by his mother, Anne Beverley before he met her.
John Lydon claimed in the documentary Never Mind the Baubles that Vicious needed a serious talking-to beforehand because he wanted to be the "hardcore, tough rocker bloke" and that swearing and being tough wasn't "the right way" to "get the message across" to the children. The recording of the Johnny Thunders song "Born to Lose" which appears on Sid Sings , featuring Vicious on vocals, was recorded during this performance, when Johnny Rotten stepped offstage to pose as Father Christmas.
These were the Sex Pistols' last performances in England until the Filthy Lucre reunion tour of with the original quartet together again. These issues primarily involved tension between Malcolm McLaren, Johnny Rotten and Vicious, with Rotten accusing Mclaren of trying to "wreck the very thing that made the Sex Pistols great,"[ citation needed ] and the issue of Vicious' worsening heroin habit and negative interactions with members of the audience.
In San Antonio, Vicious famously hit an audience member who meant him physical harm on the head with his bass; the audience member had antagonised Vicious, who shouted out "faggot fucker" before hitting him. The song was most likely Vicious' only contribution to the band during his tenure as a member,[ citation needed ] even though it was composed during his time in the Flowers of Romance. Vicious would also perform this song during his brief solo career after the band's split. He embarked on a path to destruction, while recording lead vocals on three cover songs at the same time for the soundtrack album for the film The Great Rock 'n' Roll Swindle.
He performed the majority of his performances at Max's Kansas City and drew large crowds, though some performances were "hellish," especially when Vicious insulted some of the audience. Examples of this can be heard in the in-between tracks on his live album Sid Sings. Please help improve this article by adding citations to reliable sources. Unsourced material may be challenged and removed.
January Learn how and when to remove this template message Vicious' mugshot from 9 December On the morning of 12 October , Vicious claimed to have awoken from a drugged stupor to find Nancy Spungen dead on the bathroom floor of their room in the Hotel Chelsea in Manhattan , New York.
She had suffered a single stab wound to her abdomen and appeared to have bled to death. The knife used had been bought by Vicious on 42nd Street and was identical to a "" flip-knife given to punk rock vocalist Stiv Bators of the Dead Boys by Dee Dee Ramone.
He was hospitalised at Bellevue Hospital , where he also tried to kill himself by jumping from a window shouting, "I want to be with my Nancy" or other similar words, but was pulled back by hospital staff.
In a November interview he said that Spungen's death was "meant to happen" and that "Nancy always said she'd die before she was In reply, he asked the interviewer if he was kidding, adding that he would like to be "under the ground.
He was released on bail on February 1, Malcolm McLaren, the Sex Pistols' manager, worked to raise money and the bond was eventually covered by Virgin Records. He had apparently spent hours during the party looking toward the future, planning an album he would record to get his life and career back on track should he be acquitted.
Vicious overdosed at midnight, but everyone present worked together to get him up and walking around to revive him. In the book Please Kill Me: Spungen, who was Jewish, is buried in a Jewish cemetery in Pennsylvania. Vicious' mother Anne Beverley later traveled to Spungen's family's home in Philadelphia and asked Spungen's mother, Deborah Spungen , if she could scatter Vicious' remains over Spungen's grave. Spungen's mother denied the request. Polk said that despite Spungen's mother's refusal, Jerry Only drove Beverley and her sister, and two of Vicious' friends to the cemetery where Spungen was buried, where Beverley scattered Vicious' ashes over Spungen's grave.
May Learn how and when to remove this template message Shortly after Sid Vicious' death, his mother Anne Beverley claimed that Vicious and Spungen made a suicide pact and that Vicious' death was not accidental.
Beverley claimed that after Vicious was cremated, she found a handwritten note in the pocket of Vicious' leather jacket. We had a death pact, and I have to keep my half of the bargain. Please bury me next to my baby. Bury me in my leather jacket, jeans and motorcycle boots.
Anne Beverley went into the bedroom. In , Beverley confessed to journalist Alan G. Parker that she had then purposely administered a fatal dose of heroin to Vicious because she knew that he was afraid of going back to prison and had doubts about how good his lawyers were, even though the lawyers were certain they would clear his name. In an interview some time after this documentary's broadcast, it was revealed that the show's production team lied to Parker to obtain his "confession".
Musicianship[ edit ] Though regarded by many including Steve Jones and original Sex Pistols bassist Glen Matlock as a talented vocalist,  Vicious's abilities as a bass player were debated.
During an interview for Guitar Hero III , when Jones was asked why he, instead of Vicious, recorded the bass parts of Never Mind the Bollocks , Jones responded, "Sid was in a hospital with hepatitis , so he couldn't really play, not that he could play anyway. He'd taken a load of speed and taught himself.
He was so quick. I don't know, but one thing I do know was that Sid did things quickly. One night, he played the first Ramones album nonstop, all night, then next morning, Sid could play the bass. That was it; he was ready! I told you Sid did things quickly! Biopic[ edit ] The UK feature-film Sid and Nancy , directed by Alex Cox , portrays the chaotic last phase of their lives, ending with a fictionalised stabbing scene.
Oldman's performance was praised by Uncut as a "hugely sympathetic reading of the punk figurehead as a lost and bewildered manchild.