foxy has left the building

I read this today:

PAUL FOX OF THE RUTS DIES AGED 56

Legendary guitarist, Paul Fox, died at home in Uxbridge at 3AM this morning.

Over the years Paul has performed and recorded with many of the worlds greatest musicians but he will mainly be remembered for his revolutionary punk/dub reggae fusion guitar playing with influential punk band The Ruts.

Paul had been in semi retirement for several years but went back out on the road again in 2006 playing the Ruts music with Foxys Ruts which featured his son Lawrence Fox on drums. The band were well received, both in the UK and Europe.

Following his diagnosis with cancer at the end of May 2007 a benefit gig was organised featuring many of the musicians that Paul had worked with or alongside over the years. There was no doubt about the high esteem in which Paul was held by his fellow musicians as the line up read like a who’s who of the UK punk scene with performances by The Damned, Misty in Roots, the UK Subs, Tom Robinson, John Otway, Splodge, TV Smith and many more.

For the first time in 27 years the surviving members of the Ruts took to the stage together with Henry Rollins standing in for the late Malcolm Owen who died of a drugs overdose in 1980.

The night was a fitting tribute to one of our much under rated and unsung guitar heros.

Paul leaves behind his sons Lawrence and William and his wife, Sharon.

He will be dearly missed.

Sarah Pink, on behalf of the Ruts.

The Ruts are part of my life’s soundtrack, and Foxy’s guitar work was central to making the band the visionaries they were. His ability to mash up the chaotic power of punk with the laid-back dub chops was a blast of fresh air to mine and many other young (and not so young) ears, taking me in new directions and giving me a much-appreciated musical lesson. He’s been frequently imitated but never bettered, which seems like a fitting memorial to the bloke.

‘Staring At The Rude Boys’ is my favourite track, and pretty much sums up some of the best and worst nights of my life. Listen with a smile and raise a glass to the man.

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