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Dead Kennedys drummer DH Peligro dies aged 63

Drummer of the iconic American punk band since 1981, Darren Henley died on October 28, 2022, following a head trauma caused by an accidental fall.

This is on Instagram that the Dead Kennedys announced the death of DH Peligro, drummer of the essential American hardcore punk band since 1981, which occurred on October 28 in Los Angeles following a head trauma caused by a fall. He was 63 years old.

Born in 1959 in St. Louis, Missouri, Darren Henley Peligro started playing drums at an early age. Absolute fan of Kiss and Black Sabbath, it was when DH arrived in San Francisco during his adolescence that he discovered Television, The Ramones or even The Go-Gos and Devo, and joined the group SSI, thanks to which he became the one of the emblematic musicians of the scenes of San Francisco and Los Angeles.

Revealed by a punk and sharp game, with all that is necessary for hardcore, DH Peligro joined the Dead Kennedys in 1981, that is to say three years after the formation of the legendary group. The drummer thus participates in In God We Trust, Inc., the EP released in 1981 symbolizing the opposition of the band to the then president, just elected at the head of the United States, Ronald Reagan. This EP also contains Nazi Punks Fuck Offone of the acidic, bulldozer-like anthems of the Dead Kennedys.

An iconic drummer

Peligro continues to bring its grain to the group until 1986, date on which the band separates. DH then briefly joined the Red Hot Chili Peppers in 1988, who had been looking for a drummer since the departure of Jack Irons.

In 2001, the Dead Kennedys reformed for a few tours. In parallel, DH Peligro collaborates with other artists like Moby or The Feederz. He also launched his own project under the alias of Peligro, the time to release three discs.

In addition to having been an emblematic drummer of the San Francisco hardcore punk scene, Darren Henley was an icon of the American black community. In an interview given to LA Weekly in 2018, he confided: “The music has taken me to places I would never have normally gone and it’s very cool as long as you’re on stage. But when you come off stage, everyone is drunk and calls you names.”

He adds : “You shoot in the South or in the Midwest and there people think it’s music for white people. They take me for the janitor or the security. You take the experience of racism in your face because no one was as open-minded as in San Francisco. It’s a little better today but there are still those who want to use punk/rock to spread hatred.





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