Roky Erickson was the lead singer of the late 60’s psychedelic rock band the 13th Floor Elevators. He has always been a bit of an enigma for Rock N Roll fans as he disappeared from the scene after a few full length records. As drugs were extremely prevalent in the psychedelic rock scene in San Francisco, Roky started to get a little out of control and eventually got thrown into an institution after getting in trouble with the law for drugs one too many times. He eventually got released and started making music again as a solo artist. By this time he had increasing mental issues and he was getting back into drugs. He eventually gave up music altogether and put himself under his Mothers care.
The movie documents his life, his music and the legal battle that his brother instigated to to wrest him away from his Mother’s care so he could help Roky get into a healthier lifestyle.
Here is the films trailer.
I was surprised a how instantly enjoyable and impressive Roky’s music was both in the Elevators and his solo stuff. I found his story to be very interesting and I immediately started rooting for him. The film does a fair job at telling his story with archival footage and interviews with characters from his past and other musicians that are fans. I would say what the film does best is featuring his music from over the years. Check some of my favorite tracks out below.
Posted originally: 2009-03-02 22:22:41