I’m sure that if you care you’ve already heard that Rudy Ray Moore, aka Dolemite, aka the Human Tornado, aka the Disco Godfather, aka Petey Wheatstraw, aka Prince Dumar, died Sunday in Akron at the ripe old age of 81.
This post is mostly to make sure that if you care you also read the funny, touching remembrance Clinton McClung has posted on WFMU’s blog, which recounts a weekend he spent with Moore in 2006. (You might also want to check out the piece David Whiteis wrote about him for the Reader a few years back.)
My old band the Afflictions had the good fortune to play one of the opening slots for Moore at a Beat Kitchen show in 2002, and though I hardly managed to hang out with the guy, I still remember the grand swaggering entrance he made. It’s shocking to learn now that he was 74 at the time.
Moore and his right-hand man were both wearing floor-length fur coats and matching fur hats, one ensemble white, the other purple, and they made a badass procession of two, glad-handing their way through the capacity crowd and bestowing a long-stemmed rose–that is, a plastic long-stemmed rose with a blinking red LED in its heart!–upon any woman they found suitably bodacious. Later I learned that my friend Camilla had gotten one. “I think he’s trying to turn me out!” she said. “I’m kinda excited about it.”
The world is a slightly less funky place without him.