Monday, February 7, 2011

I will wear my hair long

As I mentioned before, while in college I worked some video shoots. There were two reasons for this. One, it was very very easy work and
it lasted only two days at the most. And two, they shot a ton of said videos at my college campus (California Institute of the Arts). Very little travel required.

I have sprayed water on Kevin Dubrow's forehead, so it looks like he's sweating (as well as sprayed black hair color on his bald spot). Been
yelled at by David Lee Roth (see earlier post), not to mention been completely charmed by Ian Astbury of the Cult. All hair, feathers and
leather, this dude has the charisma! Which I can only attribute to him being one of the Fae (his ears weren't pointed...or were they?) I have
been a fan of the Cult since the days of Southern Death Cult, so the idea of working as a wardrobe assistant for their video shoot was very

I arrived at the sound stage and was immediately immersed in the
leather, velvet, and makeup of the wardrobe trailer. The costumer
Susie and Ian were engaged in a discussion about his hair. She wanted
it pulled back and he wanted it loose. It seemed an odd debate, and
clearly she had never seen the band perform. They both turned and
looked at me as I entered and paused, then Ian demanded "back or
loose" I smiled. I was between a rock and a hard place, and I knew it.
However, Art is art, so I smugly said, "Loose but maybe with a hat?"
He loved that. Susie, however, gave me the "look of death."

After that I was just pretty much steaming jackets in the wardrobe
prison. It was fine; it's what I was hired to do. I heard the playback
start and figured they must finally be filming. All of a sudden the
music stopped and I didn't think too much of it. That is, til the
yelling started.

Then the trailer door slammed and I turned to see Ian standing there
very perplexed. "This jacket hurts. It's fucking killing me," he
whined. It was clear that he was teetering on the edge of true rockstar angst.

I helped him off with the the velvet coat only to see blood dripping
down his arm. "Holy fuck!" I exclaimed.

He wasn't whining --- he was bleeding.

It seems that the costumer had left a pin in the shoulder seam, and
each time he moved, it scratched his arm. When he saw what had
happened, he boiled over in a cacophony of cussing and flailing arms.
Like a cresting wave, he tumbled out of the trailer door shouting in
annoyance. I fixed the jacket amid distanced shouts, then suddenly:

The assistant director for the shoot came in, smiled and said,
"Congratulations you just got promoted. Susie quit."

Yipes! I'd been had! Ian returned, and I patched his shoulder with a
bit of gauze and tape, then got him back inside the jacket. I also
added a small heart just under his left eye. "Better?" I asked.

His answer was a nod and a kiss on the cheek. Oh Ian, you sly devil...
He took my hand and pulled me out of the trailer to the sound stage,
where the band and dancers were waiting. He let go of my hand and
cautioned, "Make sure I look perfect." The rest of the band voiced
their concerns and we fixed them all except one: Billy Duffy was
worried he looked too much like Billy Idol. Short of hair dye I
couldn't really fix that...

There were some makeup fixes, but apart from that, the shoot went
smoothly. The boys were quite nice and thanked me profusely for taking
over. They gave me a signed LOVE poster (which hung in my hallway all
through the 80s and 90s). Ian also gave me the skull ring he was
wearing (yes, yes I still have it, although I never ever wear it). I
went on my way, pleased that I did a good job. Every time I see the
RAIN video I still feel satisfaction.

Years later, I am at a VH1 Doors filming where Ian is to take the lead
singer reins from Jim Morrison (AGGGGHHHHH! GURGLE! NOOOOOO). His hair
was short and his edge was gone. His charm, however...yep, still
there. He came up to me, hugged me and was genuinely nice. He talked
about a new album coming out, prefacing it with, "Its more metal than
you like, but give it a go." Wait what? I don't like metal? It's like
he didn't even know me! Oh yeah, he doesn't really...

The album BORN INTO THIS did okay --- not my cup of tea, as I
preferred the tribal ritualistic side of The Cult. Still, it was a
good foray into metal/rock. And mostly I am glad to see that Ian kept
his humanity. Sometimes it just works that way. Thank the Gods.

***I've been waiting for her for so long
open the sky and let her come down************************


  1. What a wonderful story! I enjoyed the little peek into the video-making world.

  2. Okay, now that I know the story, I think I can like the heart. ;)