Though he's not talked about quite as often as names like The Clash and The Sex Pistols, Richard Hell was as influential on the beginnings of punk rock as anyone. With a style that impacted the look of the genre (including ripped clothing, safety pins and spiked hair) and the classic Blank Generation album he recorded with his band The Voidoids, he is often considered one of the godfathers of punk. Born in Lexington, Kentucky, Hell grew up in a relatively comfortable household until his father died when he was only seven. After a move to Delaware, he began to find trouble with his friend Tom Verlaine, as the two would would be caught for vandalism and arson. A move to New York City helped establish him as a formidable musical entity, as him and Verlaine formed The Neon Boys--which would eventually turn into the influential art-punk band Television after Hell moved on. He formed Richard Hell & The Voidoids in 1976 and the song "Blank Generation," from the album of the same name, became a bit of a summation of the punk movement's disenfranchisement with mainstream culture. Hell continues to perform music on occasion and has also recently taken to writing and acting in his spare time.