Here's another recent find from my time as the self-proclaimed Minister of Propaganda of the Dahmer Fan Club back in high school (read the book for a full explanation of this). As I wrote in an earlier post, last month while cleaning out my Mom's basement, I pulled a box from under the stairs, one that was buried beneath a pile of other things. It was full of old sketchbooks and drawings from high school. Sure enough, there were several drawings of my old pal Jeff.
Our little hometown was on the outskirts of Akron, the recession-devastated factory town that was, in the late Seventies, the dying Rubber Capital of the World. Akron had, as I wrote about in loving detail in my last graphic novel PUNK ROCK & TRAILER PARKS, an influential and incredibly lively punk rock scene. In fact, Ohio Punk, now largely forgotten, was just as much a spawning ground for punk rock as was the New York City scene! Akron alone produced seminal artists like Chrissie Hynde, The Cramps, the Dead Boys and a host of other lesser-known bands. But the earliest and most successful band was Devo. By 1978, after years of playing small clubs and house parties around Akron, Devo broke big with the release of Are We Not Men?, their major-label debut album.
I, and others in the Fan Club, intellectual nerds all, were huge Devo fans. The drawing above is Dahmer as a member of Devo. Note I spelled his name "Dahmier." That's not an error. We often called him this, pronouncing his name in a French accent "Dah-mee-AY!" I had completely forgotten about that until this drawing reminded me.
Twenty one years after Jeff's crimes came to light, and the hair still stood up on the back of my neck when I uncovered this drawing in Mom's basement.