Number 5 in our continuing series on Rockin’ Clients, today I am focusing on Billy Idol.  He was one of my favorite artists back in the early ’80s, and so it was really exciting to me when we worked on his 2010 tour.

Billy Idol was born William Michael Albert Broad in Middlesex, England, in 1955, and spent most of his childhood in England (apart for a short time in New York when he was a young child).  His early days in punk rock were spent as guitarist for  several bands, including “Siouxsie and the Banshees” and “Chelsea.” In 1976 Idol, along with Tony James and John Towe, formed the band “Generation X,” with Idol serving as lead vocalist.

In 1981, “Generation X” disbanded, and Idol went on to pursue a career as a solo artist, as he is known to most today.  MTV was in its heyday, and heavy rotation of Idol’s videos in the early ’80s helped make  hits of several of his songs, including “Dancing with Myself,” “White Wedding,” and “Eyes Without a Face.” 

Idol also pursued an acting career in the late ’80s and early ’90s, making several appearances onstage and in feature films.  He was slated for a major role in James Cameron’s film, “Terminator 2,” but a motorcycle accident in early 1990, which caused serious  damdage to Idol’s leg, prevented him from appearing in the film.

Though Idol’s popularity diminished in the late 1990’s, he continued to have a loyal fan base, and appearances in films such as “The Wedding Singer” (1998) were well regarded.  Idol continues to record and perform today, most recently performing in Russia, Europe, and the U.S. in 2010.  His memoir, “Dancing with Myself,” is scheduled be released in late 2011 or early 2012.

We did some terrific digitally printed backdrops for Billy Idol’s 2010 tour – a center panel with two reverse and repeat panels on either side, beautifully drawn by John Rios of GrafixJam.  Check out John’s working drawing: