CRIME

HISTORICAL CRIME PERFORMANCE AT SAN QUENTIN STATE PRISON, 1984.

Proclaiming themselves as "San Francisco's first and only rock & roll band," Crime was a forerunner in America's do-it-yourself punk history, releasing their first single in late 1976. Though they never referred to themselves as punk (a term they felt was a media concoction), Crime had all the elements of a classic punk band, with their snotty attitude and garage rock-meets-Raw Power-era Stooges sound. Guitarists Johnny Strike and Frankie Fix began rehearsing and learning their instruments together in 1975, with the idea of forming a glam rock group named the Space Invaders and appearing around town in extreme outfits. By the time Ron "The Ripper" Greco joined (Greco was a veteran of many '60s bands, notably the Chosen Few, who would evolve into the Flamin' Groovies), the glitter rock era had ended and the band opted to change their image -- now donning black leathers -- and change their name to Crime. Once drummer Ricky Tractor (now deceased) came aboard, Crime's first lineup was in place.