Screenshot 2018-12-10 at 23.27.36The bass clarinet player from Captain Beefheart’s Magic Band, Victor Hayden aka Mascara Snake has died after having been hit by a van ten days ago and never recovered.

A member of the classic line up for Trout Mask Replica he wasn’t really a musician and his bass clarinet was a curveball in an album of curveballs and his zonk image was perfect for coolest looking wig out band of all time – we used to listen to the album to scramble our minds and look at the bands photos to acramble them even further!

A schoolfriend of Pamela Des Barres, Victor was the Captain’s cousin and can famously be heard speaking on the “Fast and Bulbous” routine On “Trout Mask..”. He was also a great painter (he did the cover to “Bluejeans and Moonbeams” and he actually created the original cover art for Trout Mask which at that time was to have been called Neon Meate Dream Of A Octafish. The album title was changed and the painting seems to have disappeared.) He was represented by Des Barres in recent years rekindling a lifelong friendship from school and working together in a factory where he turned her onto the Rolling Stones and made her president of the Captain Beefheart fan club.

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Award winning journalist and boss of Louder Than War. In a 30 year music writing career, John was the first to write about bands such as Stone Roses and Nirvana and has several best selling music books to his name. He constantly tours the world with Goldblade and the Membranes playing gigs or doing spoken word and speaking at music conferences.


  1. The image is of John French/Drumbo. Appaling and disrespectful journalism to post the wrong person’s image on the sad occasion of someone’s death, especially as it was pointed out at the time of ghis article’s posting. Sort it out.


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