- Let Me On by Jessie Evans
- No Tomorrow by Jessica Will
- Untouchable by Stimulator
- West Wham by KB
- What Do by Go Indi (Indigo)
- Dog Star (Fly On) by Blackbyrd McKnight w/ G. Clinton and P-Funk
- Got me Like by Marquis Canaan Da Lion
- Bookenka (The Adventurer) by Ancient Future
- Life String by Scouts Honor
- Class Magic by Jessie Evans
- Flower Lei by Scott Katsura
- I Feel Love by ElectroSexual & Sunday Luv
- Kool by Mo'Fone
- In My Blood by Star & Dagger
- Culbutos by Djizoes
- Mosquito's Buzz by KB
- Run 2 U by Shawn Michael Perry
- Piano Sonata #3 by P. D. Witter w/Fred Horowitz, piano
- I'm Good To Me by Go Indi (Indigo)
- Come Home by Marquis Canaan Da Lion
- Breathing (Instrumental Ver) by KB
- Bring The World by Jessica Will
- Love Conquers All by Scott Katsura
- Speakeasy by Brent Goodbar
- Blood & Silver by Jessie Evans
- Kick It With Me Now by Blackwash
- Honest Opinion by UAF - Feat. Eric McFadden
- Crosswind by Mo'Fone
New York, New Orleans, Los Angeles
Donna She-Wolf Q&A
[Author's Note] This is the first in a series of Q&A's with artists, musicians, promoters, managers, publicists and other industry insiders by yours truly. The general focus is to get an idea of how these people do their thing, with an eye towards surviving/coping in the current state of the music business.
Donna She-Wolf is a longtime industry vet, best known for her part (as "Honey One Percenter") in the cult band CYCLE SLUTS FROM HELL, a New York City act that put out one record on major label Sony Records, which contained the classic track (co-written by Donna), "I Wish You Were a Beer". The song's video was played on MTV's 'Beavis & Butthead', thus cementing its cult status and generating a lot of attention for the band. Unfortunately, the band soon dissolved due to mismanagement and internal squabbles, forcing Donna to move on and form her own act, SHE WOLVES, whose various incarnations have played in NYC-area clubs and gone on self-booked tours of the US and Europe. The Wolves have several excellent indie CD's and EP's out, including a fantastic collaboration with underground legend Jayne County.
Donna has now formed an excellent new band with Sean Yseult (ex-White Zombie & Famous Monsters) called STAR & DAGGER, which has several scalding new tracks posted online at ReverbNation.
Trivia: Donna also has the distinction of writing/performing the "Theme Song" for my TV show, REALITY CHECK TV, which also features Sean Yseult on bass, and long-time collaborator Tony Wolfmann of She Wolves on drums.
Q: Tell us about your new project with Sean Yseult, STAR & DAGGER--how did it develop? Will we see a record coming out at some point? Live shows?
A: Sean and I have been good friends for a while now. Back in the day we'd see each other at the Lismar Lounge, or at shows or just around the East Village and she was always very nice. CSFH opened for White Zombie once at the Ritz, with Danzig being the headliner. I remember that show because it was one of our very last ones.
A few years ago she and I were at the bar at Bowery Electric and Lenny Kaye (of Patti Smith Group, also former publisher/editor of Rock Scene Magazine) came over and said, "You two should start a band". We kind of laughed it off at first, but Sean and I share a lot of the same influences and eventually we wrote some stuff. Then Sean suggested that another friend of ours, Von Hesseling, sing on the demos. Well, she did and it sounded pretty great, so we got this drummer named Dustin Crops, and we all went out to Joshua Tree to record 5 songs. We've since written 9 more so we're going out again to record again this May. The album should be ready in the fall, and we've also been offered some tours, so live shows will follow.
Q: Your other project, SHE WOLVES, has done some recording as an independent band for quite a few years. What are some of the recordings people should seek out? What labels are they on?
A: The most inclusive She Wolves CD is the one put out by Poptown Records called "Mach One: The Early Days". Chris Laubis, who runs the label, and his cohorts did an amazing job of compiling, remixing & remastering some of our stuff that was out there. The CD also has guest collaborations with Sylvain Sylvain (NY Dolls) and Jayne County. We also recorded a fantastic album with Jayne that no label has put out yet. I hope it gets to see the light of day. Things really clicked between Jayne and She Wolves. She is just magnificent! There have also been several international She Wolves releases on various compilations.
Q: You have done some touring with SW as well, all without a label giving any "tour support" and very little in terms of publicity/promo. How did you pull it off? Any tips for bands who want to brave the rigors of the road?
A: DIY is not very glamorous but we were lucky that we found small, yet very professional promoters throughout parts of Europe. Plus we were getting paid in euros, which at the time wasn't bad, and was better than what we'd be making in the US. The other perk of touring small towns abroad is the great food and wine that we got to enjoy. One night we'd be playing in a castle, after the show get back in the van and the next night it would be a squat, either way -a lot of fun. It was way more work on a logistics end than I was used to in CSFH, where absolutely everything was done for you, but it was totally worth it. I've made some lifelong friendships from those tours and had experiences I wouldn't trade for the world. As for tips: If you are professional about what you do, are fairly organized and can connect with like-minded people who are interested in your music, it's entirely feasible to tour on that level.
Q: You've also been on the Major Label merry-go-round--describe your experiences as a member of Cycle Sluts From Hell on the business end.
A: We made a lot more money for other people than we ever made for ourselves, but I don't think that was unique to just us. Looking back, the same thing happened to a lot of bands in that era, especially with the huge 80's signing glut. Unfortunately we were terribly mismanaged, the best evidence of that being the awful cover of our first CD, which incidentally, was shelved soon after its release. If it wasn't for Beavis & Butthead I'm sure no one would have ever heard of us.
Q: You've seen a lot of madness in the NYC club scene as a long-time indie act--what are some of the best stories, and worst experiences as a self-managed artist?
A: Before we got signed the beginning of Cycle Sluts From Hell was fun, despite extreme financial hardship. Joey Ramone had taken us under his wing and opened so many doors, so it was all very exciting. We had a really great buzz and were filling up clubs like CBGB's, and getting great opener gigs at the Ritz and other good venues. Also at that time the press flocked to us. We must've seemed kind of interesting in the sea of Guns N Roses prototypes.
She Wolves started from the ground up, playing small clubs like Otto's Shrunken Head, a place where I still love to play. We worked our way to CBGB's while it was still alive and kicking and eventually our audience grew enough where we could headline at Bowery Electric. If a venue has a cool vibe and good sound, then I can't argue. The worst thing about being a self-managed artist, or as in my case, being in a self-managed band is that if everyone in the organization doesn't pull their weight it really takes a toll. You're only as strong as your weakest link. The upside of being self-managed is that there is less chance of an incompetent middleman screwing things up.
Q: Tell us a little bit about your career prior to CSFH, how did you start out?
A: Before Cycle Sluts I was playing guitar, mostly for fun, in a couple of bands whose names I honestly can't remember. Needless to say, we didn't get very far.
Q: You've had many ups and downs over the years--tell us about some moments that stand out--good, bad, or both.
A: Touring with Motorhead, and accompanying the Ramones onstage were definitely big "Ups"! But playing any good show is always an up. The bad moments don't really stand out as much and if you're going to dedicate your life to making music, bad times come with the territory. At least that holds true for most people.
Q: Any tips for those dedicated or crazy enough to want to attempt a career in the Music Biz?
A: You better love it.
Q: Any final thoughts, recommendations, cheap shots or bon mots?
A: Don't let the bastards get you down, and check out our new band Star & Dagger.
Q: Thank you so much for being my first Artisthead.com online interview!
A: Thank you, Ace!
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