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Cynthia Albritton, Rock’s ‘Plaster Caster,’ Dies at 74

Cynthia Albritton, Rock’s ‘Plaster Caster,’ Dies at 74

Mr. Kramer related some details of his casting session.

“Personally, I thought being asked signaled my arrival as a bona-fide member of the rock and roll community,” he said. “A real career milestone! Sadly, on the night of my casting, Cynthia was ‘short handed’” — that is, the assistant whose job was to make sure the penises were erect wasn’t there.

“Timing was crucial, and on this night it all fell apart,” Mr. Kramer said. “I was left to attempt to reach my full manliness alone, and I failed miserably. My finished cast ended up as a small plaster representation, a mere shell of what could have been. I think it’s one of the funniest of the collection, as do so many others. And, no matter, I’m proud to be included.”

Cynthia Dorothy Albritton was born on May 24, 1947, in Chicago. Her father, Edward, was a postal clerk, and her mother, Dorothy (Wysocki) Albritton, was a secretary. For decades Ms. Albritton would not give her last name in interviews because she didn’t want her mother to know what she was up to.

She grew up in Chicago, a big stop on the circuit for touring rock bands major and minor. She was particularly drawn to the British bands, she said — “cute British boys with long hair and tight pants.” Pamela Des Berres, in her 1987 memoir, “I’m With the Band: Confessions of a Groupie,” wrote that Ms. Albritton seemed an unlikely person to get zippers unzipped.

“She was painfully shy,” she wrote, “and I couldn’t imagine her with the alginate and plaster, buried in Eric Burdon’s crotch area, but I saw the casts for myself, and was wowed by the artistry involved.”

Ms. Albritton, in a 2005 interview with The Sunday Age of Melbourne, Australia, said Mr. Zappa’s backing was key.


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