Lenora Claire Interview MusicThatJumpedTheShark.com
People have always been trying to compare Jayne and Marilyn but really other than the color of their hair I feel there is very little in common. Marilyn radiated this vulnerability and desire to please everyone around her while Jayne projected a more dynamic over the top appeal. Jayne was a master of media manipulation who would have absolutely thrived in todays TMZ/US Weekly climate while Marilyn was always struggling for control and following the advice of whomever was important to her at that moment in her life. I also have to point out that Mamie Van Doren the other beautiful blond bombshell of that era is still around and looking GORGEOUS. I was absolutely thrilled that she attended my last art show Bettie Page: Heaven Bound and even went for a round on the spanking machine. Mamie also put out some fun records as well.
Diamanda Galas – has she ever put out any bad albums? How did you get into her?
Like any artist some work is better than others. My favorite album of hers is probably the most accessible one “Guilty, Guilty, Guilty”. That may not be the most popular choice but it’s the one I play the most. Her cover of “Interlude” gives the classic version by Siouxsie and Morrissey a real run for it’s money. However Diamanda really has to be seen in person to be appreciated. The way her voice makes the hair on your arms stand up doesn’t translate as well on record. Can’t honestly remember how I got into her. Probably sometime as a teenage goth.
Yes, absolute GENIUS! I’m also familiar with the story. You can actually see the clip on Youtube.
What do you think of the newer Kraftwerk tracks / the public in-fighting between the band members?
I think it’s fair to say they “jumped the shark”.
Klaus Nomi - what did you think of the film pic on him / Whats his best song?
Funny story…I actually got in a little bit of trouble as I was the first person to screen a bootleg copy of the film Nomi Song in the US. A full year before it had distribution and found it’s way to theaters. I had a little communication with Andrew Horn who I think was upset at first but he could tell I was just a super fan and ended up being very cool. I think he did an amazing job given that large parts of the footage were recovered from the bottom of peoples closets. The documentary is absolutely beautiful and makes me cry a little every time I see it. I think he mentioned somewhere that he’ll be doing a documentary on Twisted Sister next. I’m sure it will be great as well. Klaus was an epic talent. A true original. I can’t pick a favorite song. He would have sounded amazing singing the alphabet.
Crispin Hellion Glover – is he serious genius or mad or just taking the piss? Did you dig his album?
Well, he isn’t “crazy” but he certainly qualifies as an eccentric. I had the opportunity to chat with him a few years ago at Sundance about his film What is it? and some counter-culture friends we have in common. He was very polite and entertaining. Quite foxy as well. I very much enjoyed his album and wish he would do more but he seems pretty keen on his slideshows, books, and films now.
What was it like posing for Olivia? How did you arrange that?
Olivia is a goddess. I attended one of her shows and the LA Weekly took a photo of me. Shortly after I was part of a documentary series by Canal Plus on Los Angeles and was about to have an epic birthday party that was filmed at the Houdini Mansion. I invited Olivia who came and saw me in all of my PT Barnum with boobs glory and asked if I would pose for her. Best birthday present I have ever had. I ended up posing for her and really hitting it off with her and her husband/partner Joel. From there we collaborated on the Bettie Page: Heaven Bound show. I have a deep love and respect for Olivia. She’s one of my favorite people on the planet.
What music videos have you been in?
I’ve done about 30 or so from everyone from Marilyn Manson to George Michael but my most famous video moment is in Dean Karr’s video for Billy Talent‘s “Fallen Leaves” which won the Much Music video of the year award. I hear my bazooms are quite famous in Canada now.
My favorite Marc era is Marc and the Mambas. It’s actually my favorite (double) record of all time. Yes, I very much like the two albums he did with Foetus. There is some Mambas cross over stuff on there as well.
Is Nick Cave to predictably good now so he’s boring and jumped the shark because he keeps putting out the same kind of great cd’s or?
I’ve loved Nick from the Birthday Party on so I can’t really be non-partial on that one. I wish he would get rid of that awful mustache though.
PIL – favorite albums/would you like to see another PIL cd/What did you think of the “John Lydon” solo cd?
Never saw PIL live but I may have to brave Coachella again to remedy that. Of course I would like to see another PIL cd.
Should DAF get more respect on the international stage?
In a perfect world yes but we live in a world that makes Nickleback rich so what do I know.
When did Dead Or Alive go wrong?
Pete Burns can do no wrong in my eyes. Bring on the cowbells and collagen.
I love all things Fad Gadget/Frank Tovey and wish he was alive to thank him for helping Mute get started.
Why did Depeche Mode get huge & Fad Gadget go to the cut-out bin?
I’ve asked this question before and you can really hear Frank’s influence on parts of Speak and Spell. I think it all boils school girl crushes quite frankly. Frank Tovey’s work just wasn’t accessible music for the masses the way Depeche Mode is. I miss that feathered up weirdo. Would have loved to see him perform.
Remember when Joy Division received zero press – now do they receive too much?
Stephin Merrit used to live a block away from me and I loved running in to him with his dog. I once told him how 69 Love Songs had gotten me through a few bad breakups. I still love just about everything he does. That little guy is a big talent.
Why did everyone name check Marianne Faithfull in the 90s?
Because the crazy bitch deserved it. I think she’s pretty amazing.
Did you read the London Suede self bio book which they pretty much sum up that they just were out for crack money & could care less about the music & thats also why they kicked out their original founding member/main song writer after the 1st cd? Did reading it ruin the for you?
I haven’t read it but I used to spend a lot of time in London and heard some crazy stories about him. I still love their first three albums.
Will the genius of Coil ever reach the mainstream? As they say – after people die they become huge etc?
Well, John lost his “balance” and fell off the roof a few years ago so I kind of think that would have happened by now. They probably hit their commercial peak with Loves Secret Domain but who cares. I LOVE Coil. Like in an intense crazy way. I wish people gave albums like Ape of Naples more respect. So good!
Why does everyone name check Leonard Cohen?
Well, he has some great lyrics that I think other bi-polar singer/songwriters can really identify with. I may have dated a few. That’s what they say anyway
I read an article where he said that. Now Reed is doing Tai Chi on Letterman. LAME.
I agree. This is Hardcore is their best. I like what he did semi-recently with Marianne Faithfull but it sounds like he is busy being a dad and working on other projects at the moment. I really like Scott Walker so I think there are worse things to aspire to be but Jarvis is a great gangly talent and I want him singing as much as possible.
Is the 1st Lunachicks album really the only good one?
I have a soft spot for those ladies and their luxury problems. I can’t pick up a spork without thinking of them.
Is Neubauten still relevant?
YES. I don’t care how many years it’s been since Tabula Rasa. Silence is sexy and so is Blixa.
My Bloody Valentine -will another cd really ever come out? Will Kevin Shields have to die first?
Haha you wouldn’t be a music journalist if you didn’t ask that question at some point. God I hope so.
Why is Devo’s Shout their secret great cd?
I love everything about Devo/Mark/Mutato. I got to hang out with him at an art show a few years ago. Have a photo some place.
That’s kind of a trick question because they were a music collective that Liz Frasier was part of and her voice is so unique you’re always going to make the Cocteau Twins connection. They were also smart and had Martin McCarrick on strings. I love every record that guy is on. I may have busted many stupid over the top teenage goth moves to 16 days/Gathering Dust.
Was the mid 90s the last push of true original alternative music of any kind and what has been coming out since and all that will come out in the foreseeable future will be bands reinterpreting those bands but not putting anything original out?
I think with all of the available technology and the breakdown of the music industry that we’re going to see all kind of new art and artists emerging. I’m sure most jaded music types will disagree but I’m finding out about new artists all the time.
Did Paul Ruebans not really get recognized for what people refuse to see as a truly great film about existentialism through the human journey in his 1st film?
I feel bad for Paul because his scandal came before the current celebrity sex tape era where “bad behavior” just makes you more of a star. It was great seeing how the audience went crazy for him at the recent Pee Wee shows here in LA. There is a whole lot of love for that dude.
Houdini died too early – what do you think he would have went on to do if he lived?
I think he would have gone on to be a great debunker and helped start what is now the modern skeptic movement.
PT Barnum’s genius is often left out of history books – intentional?
I agree that it’s a real shame. Barnum, Houdini, and Mansfield are my greatest inspirations. They all knew how to put on a show and work a crowd.
Elvira seems very cool & real /self-aware in real life from interviews, etc. – is that true?
Elvira/Cassandra is the coolest. I actually have a photo me between her and Pee Wee Herman/Paul out of costume at my friends Xmas party. I feel like they’re my spiritual parents in a way as the two of them are why I got in to entertainment as a child. She really couldn’t be any more lovely and funny. I enjoyed every moment of our interview and was thrilled that she agreed to be part of my Bettie Page show as well.