Bob Biggs, a larger-than-life Los Angeles entrepreneur and painter who harnessed the energy of the Los Angeles punk scene to create the essential independent label Slash Records, died on Saturday, due to complications from Lewy body dementia. He was 74.
His death was confirmed by his wife, Kim Champagne Biggs.
Founded in 1978 as an extension of a successful punk magazine, Slash delivered to the national stage bands including X, Los Lobos, Germs, the Blasters, Misfits, Violent Femmes, Faith No More, L7 and dozens more.
Hardly a stereotypical punk himself — he preferred a nice pair of shorts to bondage jeans — Biggs sensed that what was occurring at Hollywood clubs such as the Masque and the Whisky A Go Go marked the beginning of something special that might resonate beyond Southern California.
“From the beginning, our aim was to take music with specific cultural value and take it to a larger audience,” Biggs told The Times in 1983, after Slash had signed a distribution agreement with Warner Bros. Records. “In a business where huge sums of money are the norm, we started with $1 and parlayed it into a company that’s going to be around for a while. And we did it our own way and continue to do it our way.”
Biggs was born in Los Angeles and raised in Whittier. The son of an inventor, his athletic skills and 6-foot-5 frame earned him