Sad news to pass along this morning. Chrissy Amphlett, flame-haired lead singer of the Australian alternative outfit Divinyls, passed away this weekend at the age of 53 after a long battle with breast cancer and multiple sclerosis. She is best known on these shores for her group’s 1991 smash “I Touch Myself,” a song that reached #4 on the Billboard charts back then but remains in rotation today.
Amphlett co-founded Divinyls back in 1980, and the band released five studio albums over the course of their tenure. Although they were recently inducted into the ARIA Hall of Fame, Australia’s version of the Rock And Roll Hall of Fame, back in 2006, the act is best known Stateside for their one and only mainstream hit here in America. Their ode to monogamy (and masturbation), “I Touch Myself,” generated equal amounts of controversy and radio spins upon its release in ’91, and the song’s video (which, btw, was directed by Michael Bay) spent months in heavy rotation at MTV. The tawdry video became so well known that it was even made fun of by Beavis & Butthead, arguably the most influential cultural critics of that time.
Amphlett is survived by her husband Charley Drayton, who was the drummer of Divinyls.