Keith Alexander Bonanno
November 23, 1963 – July 11, 2005
Our good friend and true SMF met his tragic end in a bike accident.
In lieu of flowers please consider a donation to the Lance Armstrong Foundation.
His wake will be held on Thursday July 14, 2005 from 2-5:30pm and 7-9pm at
Scarpaci Funeral Home
1401 86th Street
Brooklyn, New York 11228
Keith Alexander lived more in his 41 years on this earth then most of us will live in our entire natural lifetime. He was as vibrant, warm, enthusiastic and positive a person as you could ever hope to meet, and I am honored to have called him my friend.
I first met Keith while doing research for my movie “StrangeLand”. He was a body piercer, brander and cutter at The Gauntlet in NYC and recognized me as I was browsing in the waiting area of the shop. Openly proffessing his status as a hardcore, original S.M.F. and fan of myself and Twisted Sister, he offered to help me with my research by inviting me back to witness an actual peircing he was about to do. I seized the opportunity for some first hand experience. I was treated to the artful execution of a “Prince Albert” which I was soon to find out was a male genital piercing. I was off to the races on the StrangeLand screenplay.
Coincidently, at that time I was thinking of putting together a band to go out and play some live shows. Keith had told me that he had played guitar with Carnivore (Pete Steele from Type O Negatives first signed band), he seemed like a cool guy (my instincts did not fail me in this instance) and was a fan of my music so I figured, what the hell and asked him on the spot to be the first to join “Dee Snider’s S.M.F.’s”. Keith happily accepted.
Keith and I played many memorable shows together all over the world. Each time we went out, Keith never ceased to amaze me with some new look, technology or lifestyle he was passionately embracing. Keith was living every moment to the fullest.
Throughout it all I continued to work on my screenplay for StrangeLand and pursue my hopes of getting it into production. Keith was my inhouse (in van would be more accurate) consultant on all things body modification. His insights and wealth of knowledge on the subject were invaluable in helping me make StrangeLand a powerfully accurate script. I can say that the education I received from Keith on this lifestyle dramatically affected and changed my original story for the better.
I remember one 12 hour drive on Christmas Eve Day in particular. We were coming back from an S.M.F. show on the Canadian border desperately trying to make it home in time for Christmas with our families. Keith and I talked, non-stop the entire way home. We talked about body modification, my movie, music, philosophy, books, art, television and life in general all through the night. Not only did it keep me awake at the wheel, and did we make it home in record time, but I had never before and never since been in such a compelling exchange of ideas with another human being. I will always treasure the memory of that ride and his friendship.
When StrangeLand finally went into production, Keith became the technical advisor for the film helping to create Captain Howdy’s powerful look. When the movie was finally ready to be released, Keith helped organize and run the premier party “A Night of a Thousand Scars” and make it the legendary event that it was. Over the past several years, StrangeLand has gone on to become a bonifide cult horror hit. It has particularly been embraced by the body mod community. I believe this is largely due to the authenticity and sense of realism that Keith helped me bring to the screen.
Due to its success, StrangeLand 2 (StrangeLand: Diciple) is well on the road to going into production. In appreciation of Keith’s contributions to the first film and to the sequel, I have a scene in the movie where one of the main characters visits a body modification shop called “Modern American Body Arts” (the name of Keith’s shop a few years back ) and is engaged in conversation and pierced by the shop owner, Keith Alexander. I planned on having Keith play this role (for obvious reasons). Unfortunatley, he won’t be able to. In honor of his memory, when this film is finally made, the name of the shop and the shop keeper will remain the same.
I am profoundly saddened by the untimely passing of my dear friend. I will miss his energy, passion for life and our free wheeling conversations. I loved him and I will never forget him.
Modern American Body Art