We all know that “mimicry is the sincerest form of flattery” but in my case it’s less mimicry and more like murder.
Rock In Purgatory started as a bit of a fun idea but as the comic has progressed, I find that I am drawing ever more inspiration from real bands and musicians. Many of the stories have been influenced by urban legends about rock bands and their antics on tour. The more I wrote using those ideas as a foundation, the more I stated to use actual bands as models for the characters.
I’m not a big fan of caricatures, so I have done as much as possible not to stick too closely to any particular person when I design my ill-fated rock stars. I try to design someone unique, while taking cues from some of my favourite performers. This beard, that jacket, a certain type of guitar – it’s all crossing over but remaining close enough in style that you can take a good guess who I was thinking about when the story was being written.
In the end, I kill these guys off! Not because I hate them; in fact it’s quite the opposite. If I base a character on a real person then that is a musician I have respect for. In killing off a character, I am paying tribute to them. Yes, it sounds a bit macabre, but that’s the point. Like a any great album, each Rock In Purgatory strip is a concentrated burst of creativity from a band which takes you on a journey, but ultimately, ends. The beauty of albums and comics is that once its over, you can start it again.
When the full book is released, I will be including tribute pages to some of these musicians and they stories behind the comics. In the meantime, here are some bands who I tip my hat to in Rock In Purgatory. If you don’t already know them, go check them out.
Cradle of Filth
If you have a band you think I should listen to, or a musician you think would work as a Rock In Purgatory character, leave me a comment or tweet me your suggestions.