Jacqui Vixen of Devilish Presley in 2008
Jacqui Vixen of Devilish Presley in 2008

Gothabilly (sometimes hellbilly[1]) is an offshoot of psychobilly influenced by the goth subculture. The name is a portmanteau word that combines gothic and rockabilly, first used by the Cramps in the late 1970s to describe their somber blend of rockabilly and punk rock.[1][2] Since then the term has come to describe a fashion style influenced by gothic fashion, as seen in its use of black silks, satins, lace and velvet, corsets, top hats, antique jewellery, PVC, and leather.[1]


The term gothabilly was not popularized until the release of a series of international gothabilly compilation albums released by Skully Records in the mid-1990s.[3][4]

Occasionally, the Cramps have been associated with gothic rock, primarily because of their use of fetish clothing and outlandish makeup, including heavy, dark eyeliner on both male and female members of the band, which is also popular in the gothic subculture.[5] The Cramps are considered to be equally influential to the psychobilly genre.[6]

Gothabilly is particularly active in the western portion of the United States, with many of today's bands originating in California.[7]


  1. ^ a b c Breen, Meagan (2009-03-05). "An Introspective into Gothabilly". Auxiliary Magazine. Retrieved 2009-04-16.
  2. ^ Uutela, Deanna (2007-10-04). "Case of the Zombies". Eugene Weekly. Eugene, Oregon. Archived from the original on 2009-04-30. Retrieved 2009-04-16.
  3. ^ Valarie Thorpe: Interview with Ghoultown's Count Lyle, reallyscary.com. Retrieved on April 14, 2009
  4. ^ Kirst, Sean (2007-10-31). "A Halloween Greatest Hit...The Tale of Skully Records". The Post-Standard. Syracuse, New York. Retrieved 2009-04-16.
  5. ^ Montgomery, James & Aswad, Jem (2009-02-04). "Cramps Singer Lux Interior Dead At 62". mtv.com. Retrieved 2009-04-16.
  6. ^ Rambali, Paul (June 1978), "The Cramps: Psychobilly and Other Musical Diseases", NME.
  7. ^ Johnson, Daniel (April 09), "The Growth of Gothabilly", RSEE, Riverside County, CA.