Rammellzee created, and lived in, a unique mythology whose origins go back to monks making illuminated manuscripts in medieval times. I could try to begin to explain it, but it would be fruitless. Experience this genius for yourself! His work, along with Machine Dazzle and Narcissister, is currently in the show Otherwordly; Performance, Costume and Difference at Parson’s Arnold and Sheila Aronson Galleries, 66 Fifth Ave. Anything Rammellzee did, film, music, artwork, is worth checking out.
I’ve been entranced by Rammellzee since I first encountered his rapping in Beat Bop (produced by Basquiat) in 1982. No other rap song comes close to sounding like this.
Soon after I saw him in his brilliant cameo in Jim Jarmusch’s first release, “Stranger Than Paradise.”
Through the 90s and 00s, he chose to live in obscurity, occasionally putting out a record or performing in one of his spectacular costumes of recycle garbage.