I have never felt so lost in my life. My now-former manager and I have officially parted ways after he robbed me blind of my bank account money and everything I owned. It all started when I walked in on him with a needle plunged four inches deep into his thigh. He was using steroids. It didn’t take long for things to get out of control.
When one of his weightlifting friends died in a motorcycle accident, he broke into the dead guy’s house to steal his steroids and whatever else was laying around. Little did I know I was next on his hit list. He actually took my personal information and emptied my bank accounts and E*Trade account! He took everything, even my piano! I knew he’d lied to me about his abilities as a manager, but I never expected this!!!
With nowhere to live, no piano, and not a penny to my name, I came home to my mother’s house in Oregon to find sanctuary.
Even after spending many beautiful afternoons in the shade of pine trees and in the company of my family, I wasn’t happy to be in Oregon. KISS FM putting my music into rotation was nice, of course, and my sister’s tremendous laugh and my brother’s way of growing up before my eyes stirred my love. But I had to get out of there. It’s hard to admit, but at some point after I moved to California, my whole family changed from cool, one-of-a-kind characters into over-the-top run of the mill Right Wingers, who go to church four times a week and believe Oregon is the only place in the USA where people will be safe during the Apocalypse.
So needless to say, I had enough of that after a few weeks. And in order to get out of there, I had to do something drastic. Really drastic. That’s why, when I got a message from someone on MySpace, specifically the lead singer of The Lords Of The New Church, I accepted his invitation to record some Alice Cooper covers the very next week… all the way in Florida.
This is something I normally never would have done. Not under ordinary circumstances. But my family is anything but ordinary, and desperate times call for desperate measures. I had a choice: recording Alice Cooper songs with a make-up faced man I barely knew or going to church where my mother and her church buddies would surround me and lay their hands on me without asking. So yeah, I went to Florida.
When I was at the airport I had this sudden flash of panic. I didn’t know what was going to happen to me. I mean, maybe this guy was going to chop me up in tiny little pieces and sell my flesh to weirdos on the internet. Stranger things have happened, just not to me. But I wasn’t staying in Oregon, so the die had been cast.
En route to Jacksonville, I convinced myself I was going to be okay. After all, I had met the guy once, face to face, at Snake from Skid Row’s wedding reception, and he seemed like an okay guy. Sure, he might have come across as just a little bit attention starved, but hey, he seemed harmless. And he did seem to have some type of sexual identity issue, judging from the effiminate gestures and mascara’ed eyes. But that was no biggie. Basically, he was your average rock singer.
After meeting him at Snake’s wedding reception, I had no contact with him (or anyone) for several weeks. After that time, when I was leaving California, I logged onto MySpace and found something like ten messages from a scary looking person named Steven Marque. At first I didn’t recognize him, since his picture showed him in full costume with oily black face paint. But then I read a slew of message from him, telling me how he couldn’t stop thinking about me and that he wanted to do some music project together.
I know, I knoooow. To anyone in their right mind that would have been creepy, sure. But I felt like I had no choice. I had to get out of Oregon, so I accepted the invitation and left the little green town I’d been in and headed east to Red Elephant Studios in Jacksonville to record a punky duet version of the Alice Cooper classic “Is It My Body?”
When I arrived in Jacksonville, Steven greeted me with a professional hand shake, and our adventure was off to a smooth start. In addition to setting up the recording session, Steven took it upon himself to school me in the darker curricula of music appreciation, covering everything from classic Lords tunes like “The Seducer” to the entire black metal repertoire of Cradle Of Filth. This is not something I would typically be interested in, but now that I was there, I felt like I needed to keep the music dialogue going. It didn’t take long to realize Steven was not only a Satanic music expert, but a good old fashioned Satanist as well. He quoted Aleister Crowley and talked all things occult, to the point where I could almost see Jesus looking down at me and shaking his Almighty finger, my mother by his side.
In my typical chameleon fashion, I didn’t let on that I was getting creeped out. Not at first. But when Steven leaned over and tried to plant a wet one on me, I shoved him away and flew into a spastic freak out.
“What in the hell are you doing?!” I screamed, jumping up and shaking my head back and forth like a licey monkey. “If you think I came over here to do anything other than make music, you’re wrong. What kind of sicko are you anyway? Did I do anything to lead you on? Did I say anything to make you think I wanted you to slobber on me? No! So back the #@$ off!”
I stormed to the guest bedroom and locked myself in for a good 24 hours, racking up a mind bending Verizon bill from calling everyone I knew to tell them how creeped out I was. When I finally came out the next day, Steven was quite apologetic, saying he didn’t know what had come over him, but that I was obviously a magical creature with special powers to have caused him to behave so irrationally, and “so unlike himself.”
But he didn’t stop there. He went on to say that when he was looking at me the day before, I began to glimmer, and I took on the appearance of an otherworldly oil painting, no a mosaic, that’s it. He said that I surely had practiced some form of black arts to manifest such glamour around me, and at the time of the sloppy kiss attempt, he said he felt like he was staring at an angel, and he just couldn’t help himself.
“But you look totally normal now,” he added, as if that would make things better. “Just like a regular girl.”
Needless to say, the remainder of the trip was rather awkward, and as if that wasn’t enough of a stressor, Hurricane Ivan was stirring up trouble. We were eating tacos at Moe’s in downtown Jacksonville when the power went out, blacking out the commercial district for blocks. One minute the lights were on and “It’s A Wonderful World” was drifting out of the speakers overhead. The next minute everything was cloaked in total blackness.
The blackout was accompanied by a torrential downpour of rain. Being from sunny California, I was excited about the hurricane, and had no problem running through the river that flooded the streets. A hurricane seemed… novel. Something to experience. But the blackout shut down the chocolate shop I wanted to visit, and that was a bummer. And in my trademark tradition of cutting things close, I barely made it out of Florida before Ivan hit.
Now I’m back in Oregon, and although no one in my family knows it yet, I’m getting ready to head back to LA… for good. My mother told me that if I leave her and return to California, I will surely “die or end up in prison” because I will “no longer be under her prayer covering.” Apparently, my mother’s prayers are responsible for keeping me alive this long, and if I don’t give up my musical dreams to stay with her in Oregon, she’s going to stop praying for me, and I’m going to wind up dead.
Haha, ya gotta love mom!
But I’m not going to just stop doing my music because my manager turned out to be a steroid-using drug dealer who was only posing as a manager so he could steal my money and my piano and everything I owned. Sure, I admit that he pulled one over on me, but I’m smarter and stronger because of it. And now I’m going to do what I came to California to do in the first place:
If you’re in the Los Angeles area, come on out to Cinespace on Wednesday the 22nd. It’s a sweet venue, and I’m going to put on an incredible show. I can just feel the rage building inside of me, and that, my friends, makes for a good performance. There’s going to be a very cool CGI projection screen behind the stage, and I’m going to be playing a bunch of new songs. I’m going on at 9:30 and there’s no cover, so bring some friends and enjoy the music. I’ve received some emails from fans asking about taking photos. Yes, photos are just fine, and in fact, I encourage live concert photography.
I will be posting photos from the concert in my VIP Backstage club. If you would like to join the club, you can sign up in my online shop, and I’ll email you with directions on how to get there. It’s only $10 and it goes to support me, your favorite starving artist.