So it's toodle-pip to a person who appeared to be loved and hated in equal amounts. Some of today's news stories have gone, quite predictably, with the "Godfather of Punk" tag and have also described him as an impressario, mover, shaker, manager and "ideas man".
I've often wondered at that last description as to what constitutes to being labelled as such. It gives a lot of people the impression that Malcolm always had fresh, original and exciting ways to help promote whatever he was up to at the time. Wherever his own inspiration came from God only knows and whether his ideas were his own rather than borrowing them from someone or somewhere else is perhaps neither here nor there, but what he was great at was promotion.
McLaren had said himself that he was a good mis-manager of The Sex Pistols and I firmly believe that he was, despite spending much of his career putting on a bit of a spin when commenting on his own achievements. Inventor of Punk? As in loud noisy guitar music with an attitude that teenagers would love and adults would hate? Don't worry about it, it was all part of his 'Cash From Chaos' initiative. What I wouldn't give to be a fly on the wall when the solicitor reads out his Will.
So he turned lots of people onto Snot Rock, Hip Hop and Opera which was, musically speaking, his finest moment. The Sex Pistols charade, according to him, was always expected to turn into a bloody mess. As to what extent he actually meant this to happen is questionable, but I'd like to think that he perhaps had some form of a human heart lurking behind his internal cash registers. If you ask Viv Westwood, he did. Ask John Lydon and the answer may differ.
When I heard of his passing, the only emotion I felt was empathy for his family and friends. It's best to leave all the ground-breaking, culture-defining, svengali type tributes to writers like Jon Savage.