30 Albums, 30 Stories: Damned Damned Damned


This November, I’m telling 30 stories about 30 albums. The albums on this list are not necessarily my favorite albums, but they are the ones that are instantly associated with a time and place. All of these albums represent a chapter of my life. This is the story of those albums, and by extension, the story of me, presented mostly chronologically.

Album 21: Damned Damned Damned by The Damned.

One positive thing I will always remember about Boston is the number of amazingly awesome shows I saw. Those were good years for live music. I was going to shows with a friend of mine who became my show buddy, i.e., we always went to shows together, at least half a dozen times a month, sometimes, more.

One of my favorite shows was The Damned. They had just gotten back together with members of the original lineup including Dave Vanian, Rat Scabies and Captain Sensible, a founding member who hadn’t been part of The Damned for nigh on decades.

How many of you 80s brats are now thinking, “Wait, Captain Sensible? Isn’t he that guy that had that hit song in the 80s?”

To which I reply, yes! You were listening to a founding father of punk and you didn’t even know it. See how cool you are?

Anyway, the night that I saw them, my friend and I were hanging outside after the show, deciding what to do next when Dave Vanian and Captain Sensible came out. Dave Vanian was immediately mobbed by screaming female fans. For some reason, more than likely alcohol (I am always so bold when I drink), I went over to him, took him by the arm and led him away from the fans. He thanked me.

Captain Sensible, who was a good twenty years older than me, came over and said, “Would you like a lollipop, little girl?” He brandished what was, in fact, a lollipop, lowered his trademark circular sunglasses and flashed me a smile. The three of us talked for a few minutes about I don’t know what. All I remember now is that Dave Vanian was incredibly nice and that Captain Sensible was intently hitting on me. He wanted me to go with them to something or other. Fortunately, my friend came over and grabbed me before Captain Sensible swifted me away.

I kept the lollipop for years, but I lost it in one of my many moves. Good times.

Favorite track:

I’m fairly certain that this video is from the same tour I saw, though the night that I saw them, Captain Sensible wasn’t in drag. I do believe Dave Vanian (the singer) was wearing this exact outfit though.