And the Literary Honors Award goes to…

•November 25, 2011 • Leave a Comment

This is the second year for the Literary Honors Award and we were fortunate enough to receive 80 submissions from all over the world.  Made for a lot of reading for us Naked Girls, but we narrowed it down to 5 finalists.  We then sent the finalists’ works to our judges and they picked the winner.  We held the award gala on Nov. 18th at the Everleigh Social Club.  We had the pleasure of meeting one of the finalists, Valya Dudycz Lupescu, author of ‘Everywhere Silks’, an excerpt from her book, ‘The Silence of Trees‘.  Her piece was very emotional and had us ladies crying.  There’s something extremely vulnerable about sitting naked in front of an audience and crying and becoming very aware of the tears hitting your breasts.  Oh, we’re just softies, I guess.

We then used Skype to allow the winner to hear her story read (she didn’t know she was the winner yet).  When I was finished reading her work, I announced that Elizabeth McClellan, author of ‘Razor Hair Girls’ had won the Literary Honors Award! I’m so happy that we used technology to capture her surprise.  It was so gratifying for us to hear her reaction.  So sincere and grateful.  It was a nice treat for the audience too.

I wanted to know more about this writer from Memphis, TN.  Here is my interview with Elizabeth:

What drew you to writing?
Reading. I have been a reader since almost my earliest memories, and writing came soon after that. Loving words can express itself in a lot of different ways. More recently, a writer’s workshop I did a couple of years ago really challenged me to produce a quality poem after a couple decades of dabbling. The practice is addictive, and here we are.

What authors, past and present, inspire you?
So many, and for so many different reasons. Here’s a brief cross-section: C.S.E. Cooney. Hart Crane. Amal El-Mohtar. Allen Ginsberg. Shira Lipkin. Rose Lemberg. Katie Moore. Shweta Narayan. S.J. Tucker. Catherynne M. Valente. Buddy Wakefield. Walt Whitman.

What are your favorite books?
I dread this question because a real answer would take up reams of time and require footnotes. I thus tend to answer it with ten books I find indispensable or at least fascinating, this time in the realm of poetry. 1.) Arvind Krishna Mehrorota’s translation of the Songs of Kabir. 2.) Catherynne M. Valente’s A Guide to Folktales in Fragile Dialects – my entry point into her wonderful poetry and a darkly fascinating collection in its own right. 3.) Amal El-Mohtar’s The Honey Month – flawlessly delicious. 4.) Cardinal Cox’s Codex series of chapbooks, which are so short they should count as one book, and which I recently reviewed for The Legendary. 5.) Jo Carson’s Stories I Ain’t Told Nobody Yet, to which I was introduced as a very young poet at a summer writer’s camp and which continues to teach me things well over a decade later 6.) Bob Hicok’s Animal Soul, which I fell violently in love with despite a few sour notes in the otherwise flawless collection. 7.) Buddy Wakefield’s Live for a Living, which is worth it for his tremendous performance piece The Information Man alone (not least because I hear the performance in my head when the words roll off the page). 8.) Hone Tuwhare’s Deep River Talk, which I spent this fall soaking up like a poetry sponge and some of which I am still mulling over – talk about poems about the moon, wow. 9.) Ginsberg’s Howl and Other Poems – I read Song at my sister’s wedding, and it remains one of my favorite poems of all time. 10.) Devadatta Kali’s In Praise of the Goddess: The Devi-mahatmyam and Its Meaning – for years I have sat with this book, and expect to be sitting with it for plenty more.

What are you reading right now?
I just finished the fantastic Catherynne M. Valente’s The Folded World, second in her A Dirge for Prester John series. It’s an amazing alternate history of the world had the Letter of Prester John been real and not a hoax, and his country a place you could reach. Now I’m burying myself in the equally fantastic Nnedi Okorafor’s Akata Witch. I’ve been anticipating both of these for quite a while now, so I spent all of Thanksgiving Day gobbling delicious novels.

Do you read naked?
I certainly do. When you live in Tennessee, where the humidity is killer, one summer survival strategy is to sit around naked as much as possible, sometimes in a tub of lukewarm water . . . and what better way to spend a steamy summer day when it’s too hot to do much of anything than reading a good book?

What does winning the Literary Honors Award mean to you?
It’s an incredible honor. Patty Templeton is a very talented writer; to be in her company – and to know that your readers and your judges singled out “Razor Hair Girls” as this year’s winner – is just extraordinary. Rose Lemberg said to me when she accepted two of my poems for her Moment of Change feminist speculative poetry anthology “You won’t be a new poet for long.” Being selected by the Naked Girls Reading as the emergent writer of the year really validated that feeling that I am doing something right. (On the practical side, this poet’s getting the heat in her truck fixed before it gets really cold down here, thus sparing her another winter of chilly feet and no defrost, so thank you, Naked Girls Reading.)

What was your inspiration for ‘Razor Hair Girls?’
A thing that happened over the course of some time between two people who love each other very much. All the details that the world is entitled to know are in the poem. Poems are the stories I tell in pieces—and private stories are best told that way, in glimpses and metaphors that spare secrets.

What is your opinion on electronic books?
I am excited about the technology, unsure that anyone has settled on the correct model to make sure that an ebook is profitable for everyone in the process, particularly the writers. I am concerned that Macmillan and Amazon went to war over ebook prices and pissed off that when they did it hurt a lot of writers who had no voice in the process. I’m excited about some of the ebook projects that writers, traditionally published and not, are undertaking – for instance, some of Cat Valente’s older work is available as direct-purchase ebooks, and Alexandra Erin, my favorite serial webnovelist, did a great project called Gift of the Bad Guy that allowed her to reach the audience she’s built with her other self-published writing. Tobias Buckell, who everyone should read as he is marvelous, wrote a really good breakdown on Where Ebooks Are At, Realistically during the Macmillan/Amazon flap that I think is still mostly accurate, containing details I wish more people were aware of.

Me, I love a good e-publication – I’ve published several times in Apex Magazine and their issues are lovely works of art that never see paper for which more people should give them the very reasonable $3 they ask per issue. For e-publication to thrive we have to give it our support.

Do you have any advice for writers, or for poets in particular?
Cultivate relationships with other writers and with readers. Learn to give edits, and take them – I work with Edits, Full Stop and without the mighty Ashley Full Stop of EFS I would never even have heard of the Naked Girls Reading.Literary Honors. Submit constantly. You’re allowed to get grumpy-faced over rejections – I think we all do it – but only for a few minutes, then back to writing, editing and submitting. Don’t turn up your nose at genre, either in fiction or poetry. Make a conscious effort to read things by people who don’t look or fuck or live or think like you do. Write color into your work and your worlds. And for God’s sake don’t act like a fuckmuppet on the Internet or anywhere else.

Where can people read your work? 
You can find my poetry in Apex Magazine, Goblin Fruit, the Legendary, and Stone Telling. You can also be on the lookout for the Moment of Change anthology, due in the spring and full of fantastic poets. For a taste of my fiction, check out my guest story “A Question of Ownership” on Alexandra Erin’s Tales of MU. I’m on Twitter (@popelizbet) and Facebook, as well as Goodreads and Amazon. I don’t have a personal website, but I blog when I have time.


And here is her winning poem:

Razor Hair Girls

You and me, we’re both hag-ridden, haunted
by past and present specters of razor hair girls
who looked so soft when we wanted to touch them,
who leaned in close, got sado-artistic, left legacies of
whip-thin scars that show through clear in the light

of five a.m. Elvira when we’ve talked since ten
the night before. I’m scared of girls, you say
and we understand each other perfectly, ‘cause I know
however soft she looks, she can cut you.
We both freeze, afraid to reach out or keep going—

careful of your hands,
says lived experience in her snotty
know-it-all voice, those curls
might be razor wire

That winter you sheltered me
from the lonely sharp edge of
unfamiliar city wind, I knew you
could not possibly want me,
strange stressed expatriate
who talked too much, stayed too long, paused
at all the wrong times with you—

I thought you knew you were iridescent.
I didn’t know radiance could think herself dull
with the whole moon spiraling out of her heart in waves—

luminosity dysphoria: you can’t see
what light you truly reflect.
You always struck me as girl
who knows when to laugh
I never do

the rictus I get when I try to smile on purpose
is my least favorite thing about my face

girls like you shine cool as moonlight but
sometimes what reflects the light is broken bottles,
rusty tops of cans torn jagged, ersatz starshine
faked up with ground glass, set to coax me closer,
to rip my flesh and sit winking

I didn’t give you enough credit
for the way you never cut me
with that razor wit of yours—

somewhere in our saturn return of pure silence
I forgot how my mama taught me
always cut away from yourself.

My lips rusted shut around how I missed
your tiny mouth smiling big as the moon
left my tongue marinating in copper, vinegar, tear-salt

so I sewed my own lips together
around the oxidization, to spite your face.

In flickering black and white film corona
we took what we’d stewed in, reduced,
derived pure essence of left-out girl
suspended in a sludge of insecurity,
decanted it out, stock to brew reassurance,

slow going simmer with no recipe,
guided only by past missteps,
a pot we look at sidelong as not to run the boil

even knowing there is no potion of undoing,
no liquid forgetfulness to remake us
into tabulae rasae unscarred and unflinching

but even still

you didn’t draw your hand back bleeding
when you sank begging fingers into my hair
and twisted while I twisted you, in you
whispering mantras into the core of
your coming, moonlit face a divine contortion,
eyes rolled back in the
fullness of the spirit, the cunt, the all
of your being one thrumming galaxy of
vibration, my hand miraculously whole—

this is what I wanted all along, somehow
to show you my tantra, my poems,
my soft and secret places in the flesh,
the recesses of what passes for my soul.


Congratulations to Elizabeth McClellan, winner of the 2011 Literary Honors Award!  Thank you to all who submitted.  Continue to work hard and practice your art.  Looking forward to reading your work next year!

Filthy. Blasphemous. Obscene. Unacceptable.

•October 7, 2011 • Leave a Comment

  This month, the Naked Girls had the opportunity to honor Banned Books Week.  Banned Books Week  is an annual event celebrating the freedom to read and the importance of the First Amendment.  Held during the last week of September, Banned Books Week highlights the benefits of free and open access to information while drawing attention to the harms of censorship by spotlighting actual or attempted bannings of books across the United States. (For more info on this important cause, please check out )

I had been super excited about this event!!  Oddly enough, in Chicago’s Naked Girls history, this was the first time we’ve explored this theme.  I’m crossing my fingers though that it will have an annual spot!  I was delighted to be able to read two classics, one of which has been a favorite target of censors since its publication, The Catcher in the Rye by J.D. Salinger, as well as Slaughterhouse-Five by Kurt Vonnegut.

The Catcher in the Rye was challenged as recently as 2009 while Slaughterhouse-Five was again challenged in 2007.  Mind you, the publication of these novels was 1945 (Catcher in the Rye) and 1969 (Slaughterhouse-Five).  Seriously, can we get over our big, bad selves?!  Sitting at my computer, typing this blog, I have instant access to a world of bomb-making tutorials and porn at my fingertips, yet people are still challenging a classic novel as wonderful as The Catcher in the Rye?  I just don’t understand…

The highlight of the evening for me though, was reading And Tango Makes Three by Justin Richardson and Peter Parnell.  If you are unfamiliar with this book, let me begin by informing you that And Tango Makes Three was the most challenged book of 2006, 2007, and 2008.  The book dropped to second position in 2009 but returned to the top slot in 2010.  Most are inclined to think that a banned book with a title like that MUST be some salacious, dirty novel…right?  Well, it’s actually a children’s picture book.  Oh, but that’s not all – it’s not even a fictional novel!!  All of the events in the story are true and based on three penguins that currently reside in the Central Park Zoo.  Banned – 5 YEARS!!!  And the story is just lovely.  It literally brought tears to the eyes of several people in attendance that night.  Please, go and read this beautiful book and exercise your rights!!!!

Join us on Friday, October 28th for our third annual Naked GHOULS Reading and while you’re on making those reservations, check out the excerpts from our five finalists for the second annual Naked Girls Literary Honors Awards.  After you’ve enjoyed the excerpts, go and SUPPORT THE WRITTEN WORD! Contribute to the entirely Fan and Reader funded literary prize to be given away in November 2011. Check out the Kickstarter link below for details.


See you soon ~ Greta

Above the Ruckus

•July 23, 2011 • Leave a Comment

To say that I learned a lot while researching for this month’s Naked Girls Reading is an understatement.  There are SO MANY directions that you can go in under the topic  of hip hop.  The night was filled with lyrics, bios, instructions on how to rap, and even a break dancing tutorial!!  It was, yet again, another epic evening.  One book that I read from was The Tao of Wu by The RZA.

First of all, I’m going to start off by telling you to go and get this book – NOW!  Even if you’re not a fan of hip hop or have never heard of Wu-Tang Clan (which I really hope you have…) this book is a necessity.  It is as entertaining as it is influential.  RZA is not only the chief producer of Wu and a prominent figure in hip hop, but also a rapper, author, director, screenwriter, and actor that also has the amazing talent of being able to play several different instruments beautifully.  Phew!!  That’s quite a list!  In other words, this man is incredible. 

The Tao of Wu is a philosophical perspective on life that was created by blending spirituality, hip hop culture, and the lessons learned along the way from living in the Staten Island projects to gaining international fame.  I had such a difficult time narrowing down what I wanted to read from this book because it is all quite profound.  I ended up, spur of the moment, choosing to read about Gangsta Chi at Naked Girls.  Being that there was so much from this book that I wanted to share, I figured I’d leave another segment here for you to enjoy.  But, seriously, after you read this, go and buy this book!

Wit – A Prison Parable of Verbal Kung Fu

The first word in one of Wu-Tang’s acronyms is witty:  Witty Unpredictable Talent and Natural Game.  That’s because wit is a form of wisdom, a form that deflects and absorbs, a kind that can save your life.  I learned this lesson during a card game in jail.

We were playing spades, and in jail spades is a very serious game.  You deal thirteen cards to each player, and each team tries to win the most “books”.  You and your partner use strategy and give subtle hints to each other, so it actually gets mad complex and psychological for such a simple game.  On top of that, in prison you play for prison stakes – cigarettes, food, whatever –  so the stakes are higher than they are outside.

In this one game, me and my partner were playing two guys for our breakfast.  I was probably about three days in, eighteen or nineteen years old – young, skinny, and new.  My partner, Mike, was a muscular giant who had been in for a while.  He was the kind of nigga you did not want to fuck with – everyone was afraid of Big Mike.

At first Big Mike and I were playing and communicating with each other well.  I’m a good player, and we were doing some work on these other guys; we were busting some ass.  But I made a crucial mistake because I didn’t know my partner well enough.  In a way I lacked the wisdom for this particular game.  Our bet was two-for-ten, which is a do-or-die bet.  If you make it, you win the game, if you miss, you lose the game – all in a single hand.

Mike threw me a signal that I didn’t read.  And this on time, on the game-winning hand, I blew it.  My mistake led to us losing our hand, our game, and our breakfast.  This was bad.

Mike jumped up and got like an animal.  “Motherfuckin’ Slim, why the fuck didn’t you play the diamonds?”  He came at me and – boom – it was about to be me and him.

I didn’t know what to do- I almost came with the violence back at him.  But instead of bringing it, I though of kung fu.  I got loud and flipped it.

I yelled, “Man, fuck them bitchass niggas, Mike.  We gon’ get those niggas next time!”

In a second, I deflected the beef to the other guys who beat us and reestablished myself as being on Mike’s side.  We both lost, we were both going to go hungry, and Mike wanted to put his hands on me – but I deflected it.

And it worked.  Suddenly, Mike chimed in “Yeah!  Fuck y’all bitchass niggas, we gon’ get y’all niggas next time.”  And he gave me a pound.  It was a close call.  I was saved by wit and wisdom.  It’s like Bruce Lee said: “I practice the art of fighting without fighting.”  He also said, “You don’t have to fight the giant every time.”

~Greta Layne

Rap Appreciation

•July 19, 2011 • Leave a Comment

I’ve been excited about the hip-hop NGR concept for months now and I was so thrilled we got to do it. I’ve longed believed that the playful and powerful verses in rap lyrics are of literary merit in addition to being great to bump to.

Growing up my generation was still not encouraged to listen to rap. It wasn’t mainstream and the little that was getting radio play was quite a bit homogenized. Vanilla Ice and Criss Cross may have made the local radio station airplay but public enemy was making news! Clearly controversial then and still stigmatized now the genere of hip hop is ripe with questioning, showing off, politically motivating, and celebrating language.

So in that spirit I want to share with you a few of my favorite Rap lines & verses.

The following are examples of word play and experiments with language in rap:
“Real Gs move in silence like lasagna.” – Lil Wayne (get it the G is silent)
“Obey me like peasants / or get opened like presents.” – Juelz Santana (play on rhyme)
“just check me, I’m chess, bitch.” – Lil B (double meaning of check)
“‘I’m going to do it again like nigga backwards'” –lil wayne (Palindrome albeit misspelled)
“I’m a literary genius/bury niggaz with words/a cemetery linguist” – Slaughterhouse
“My attitude is celibate, I don’t give a fuck.” – Fabolous (def. Of celibate – related to slang)
“I’m in the green like a crouton.” – Drake (double meaning green)
“got summer hatin on me cause I’m hotter than the sun, got spring hatin on my cause I ain’t never sprung, got winter hatin on me cause I’m colder than y’all, and I would I never, I would never, I would never fall.” – Lil Wayne (extended metaphor)
“I’m a fucking walking paradox / No, I’m not.” – Tyler, the Creator (playful definition)
“I don’t owe you like two vowels.” – Lil Wayne (vowels are aeioandu two of which are words)
“I’m a father, I don’t drink with kids / These youngins think they hard / I think harder than they think they is / I’m ’bout as proper as my English is / Hope I did my thing before I die for the things I did.” – Method Man

I also love the Humor & Wit demonstrated in rap –Here’s Some Funny Shit:
“So I started selling cocaine *and* weed, merged the business / That white girl helped a nigga, Fergalicious.” – Fabolous
Still got the glock and I still got the 40, put me under pressure I’m a pull a Robert Horry (shoot)- Lil Wayne
“I’m so far ahead of you, we got a time difference.” – Lil Wayne
“If Lil Jon can ice his cup, I top that shit and ice my nuts”- ghostface
“I got techniques drippin out my buttcheeks/ Sleep on my stomach so I don’t fuck up my sheets”-biggie
“You don’t like it, you can blow me like an old Nintendo cartridge.” – Na’Tee
“I’m going harder than a midget jumping over me.” – Tyler, the Creator
“Step to this and get shanked up/I knocked out so many teeth, the tooth fairy went bankrupt”-Big L
“Fuck a Maserati / I pull up in a minivan, swaggin’ like mommy.” – Lil B
“I’m old enough to know better / young enough to not give a fuck.” – Fabolous

Finally not all rap is light-hearted there are some really great militant and revolutionary m.c’s from chuck d, to common, to boots riley!

“…as I leave my competition respirator style / climbed the ladder to success escalator style / hold ya’ll breath, I told ya’ll, death controls ya’ll, BIG don’t fold ya’ll / I spit phrases that’ll thrill you / your nobody till somebody kills you” –biggie (ready to die) foreshadowing of that album

“Go to hell this is god engineering, this is a hail mary pass yall interfering.” – jay z

Death to the pigs is my basic statement
I spit street stories ’til I taste the pavement
Tryin’ to stay out the pen while we face enslavement
Had a foolproof hustle ’til they traced the payments
I was grippin’ my palm around some shitty rum
Tryin’ to find psalm number 151
To forget what I’m owed, as I clutch the commode
Alright, put down the bottle and come get the guns
Now get off the chain like Kunta Kinte with a MAC-10
They want us gone like a dollar in a crack den
Steadily subtracting seeds and stems
Mind cloudy through the wheeze and phlegm
I weed my brain off that and the Jesus hymns
If we waiting for the time to fight, these is thems
Tellin’ us to relax while they ease it in
We gettin greazed again
truth I write is so cold it’ll freeze my pen
I’m Boots Riley it’s a pleasure to meet you
Never let they punk ass ever defeat you
They got us on the corner wearing pleather and see-thru
All Y’alls’ gold mines they wanna deplete you
I ain’t just finna rap on the track, I’m finna clap on em back
N it’s been stackin’ to that
Five hundred years fore Iceberg ever leaned back in the ‘Lac
Before they told Rosa Black in the Back
Before the CIA told Ricky Ross to put crack in a sack
Before Gil Scott traded rappin for smack
This beat alone should get planum plaques
I’d rather see a million-a-us ecstatic to scrap
‘Cause if we bappin’ them back we automatically stacked
-Boots Riley

The fat nigga singing “show over” in opera
Leader of the crack Rat Pack, I Sinatra
They say I dissed Oprah, I’m like “so what?”
I never get to jump up n down on a sofa
Now watch me as I Cruise like Tom through the slums
Where the education’s poor and the children growing dumb

In the section of the city where civilians don’t come
Where Mr. Cosby and Mrs. Winfrey won’t come
Unless it’s a hurricane, then FEMA don’t come
Comin live from the city where the Dreamer came from
Standing on the same corners that he stood upon

I got violence in my waistband, death in my palm
Ask em am I a bad guy? “Ya goddamn right!”
I done seen how ya do a nigga when he doing right

The Dream died on a balcony, standing at a hotel
Now niggas whipping coke gel that I hope fail
He desegregated – put black with the white
No longer marching for rights – they sparking a pipe (that’s life)
Pipe dreams, crack fiends, cars look like ice cream
Kids see the bling bling, and they want them nice things

All cuz of tennis shoes, our kids drop out of schools
They said be like Mike, so ball nigga (that’s life)
-Killer Mike


Mimi First

‘I don’t run rap no more, I run the map’ – Jay-Z

•July 18, 2011 • Leave a Comment


It is no secret how much I admire Jay-Z.  Not only do I admire him, but most all pioneers of hip hop.  I think there is a lot of similarities between hip hop and burlesque, the biggest being the control you have over your artistic product.  The stars in hip hop, for the most part, are not fabricated.  Their lyrics are real and their persona is exaggerated.  There aren’t many other artistic careers where you can say this is true.

I am now reading the book Decoded by Jay-Z and I’m surprised at how much I relate to his stories.  I’m not a hustler on the streets and I have never been, but the lessons are framed in a way that most people can relate to them.  I think my favorite story in the book thus far is Jay-Z’s encounter with Bono and Quincy Jones.  What a fun night that must have been!  Jay was talking about how big of a star Bono is and how he was surprised that Bono still got nervous and just really wanted people to enjoy his music.  In an interview, Jay-Z was saying that he wouldn’t want to be in Bono’s position of always having to be better than the last thing he did.  It’s a lot of pressure.  At the time, Bono was finishing up a new album when he read this interview.  This urged him to go back to the studio and work harder and not stop till it was perfect.

I love this story because there is never a time when you can just rest on your laurels.  You have to keep getting better and work to stay relevant.  I have to admit that I feel these pressures myself.  I always strive to make the next act I do, just as good or better than the last act I did.  It was really reassuring to me that people who are at the top of their game also feel this way.

I’ve also come to realize that the more ambitious you are, the more you open yourself up to judgement.  It’s a strange thing how that works, but it is very true.  However, that is not going to stop me from pushing myself and trying new things, and it shouldn’t stop you.




Rock HIM like a hurricane

•May 24, 2011 • Leave a Comment

    Dominique Trixx’s True (not Tall) Tales of Rock, In Which Dominique Comes Face to Face With…. —

Some know me as a quiet person, others know me as someone who may throw a half full beer mug  across a bar at the slightest provocation (yes, mug..take note, because they use those in Germany).   Is this true? Or Rock & Roll Lore? Let’s put it this way- I’m too well mannered to dump a TV out of a fancy high rise hotel.

Naked Girls Rock is an event to savor and an event where we all get especially down and dirty.  “It’s early morning, The Sun Comes out, Last night was Shaking, and pretty Loud.”    I have a true Hollywood story. I found myself hanging out in LA with a group of … people… and one of them had a relatively thick German accent. What was his name..? We went around the table making introductions. His name was…. Klaus?… Rudolf? Shit, I’m bad with names. And those rock memories can be very hazy. However, he claimed he made his living as a gigolo when I asked what had brought him to LA, (feeling pretty confident he wasn’t, indeed, from LA, or the US, for that matter.)   After a few snickers around the table, he confessed he was a member of the group the Scorpions. “Oh”, I said, in true Dominique fashion. “I know you guys…Rock Me Like a Hurricane.” “Well, no.” he said. He became agitated.   “Why do all the girls get it wrong? It’s “Rock YOU like a Hurricane”.  hmmmm… this was scintillating.   I did not have a glass to throw, but I did..debate. This made me a little mad. (and I did probably have a glass to throw, but I still have a little patience sometimes.)   I countered,  “Well, perhaps a girl would prefer to BE rocked, as oppposed to GETTING rocked, if you l know what I mean.”  (Those album covers and lyrics…come on , he deserved a little hassle). Although I do love that Helmut Newton cover.  “Now” , he said, smiling, “I really know it’s Rock YOU like a hurricane.”   Hmm.  Did I feel threatened?  I try again. “Really,  a guy is going to need to Rock ME like a Hurricane, get it, not the other way around”.   As you can see, a mixture of drugs, alcohol, and egos can lead to very innane kitchen table banter. This doesn’t even make sense. But it went on for far longer than you really need to know, as we split hairs at a Hollywood kitchen table over this apparently common mis-remembering, or not ever remembering at all,  the title of this song, on my part, and the part of many of the woman of the world that my new friend has engaged in conversation.   This truly was a rock battle with epic ramifications.  HA…   We agreed to disagree. We ended up clinking glasses, not breaking them over each other’s heads, and I smiled and told him I was very happy to meet a real Hollywood Gigolo.   (Actually , that’s not true. We did not agree to disagree and didn’t talk to each other for the rest of the night. Listen, this was a real sore spot for my new German pal, and I feel for him, having to tolerate all the mis-rememberings of the title of his classic hit.)  OR..wait a minute. Was I really the only one to do this? ……… You tell me!

Rock on, Naked Girls!! Next year, watch out for hurricanes.

xoxo Dominique Trixx

NGR Rock Forever!

•May 23, 2011 • Leave a Comment

So as usual Naked Girls Rock was a spectacle. If you came out you got to see four very
foxy naked ladies Un-dressed up like the band K.I.S.S.

I was your drummer, Peter Criss aka. Cat! Which I was thrilled about because I’ve
always wanted to be a drummer and I have a few greatest hits of my own, all of which
were well displayed during our NGR set!

It was fun to hear the legends of rock in their own words through the sexy growl of our
own voices. I like to think of us as a literary uncover band covering some of the most
interesting moments in rock –n-roll. Discoursing for you on the proper attire for the
heavy metal aficionado, or Gene Simmons feelings about male and female social roles,
Or about the painful discomfort experienced when one is subjected to someone else’s
musical taste against their will. There were some wonderful readings and some even
more wonderful Freudian slips. Gene Simmons has forever been dubbed Gene Semens
(thanks Michelle)

The evening had more high-moments then our NGR tour bus. I personally got a real kick
sharing the 33 1/3 series with our audience. From the series I chose Carl Wilson’s, “Lets
talk about love” In which what we really talked about was HATE – as in my god how I
hate the over emoting catalog of Celine Dion. She’s been dubbed the anti-christ of indie
sensibility and her mega-popularity and mass appeal baffle me to this day. I’m thrilled
that Carl Wilson legitimized my knee-jerk disdain for Dion with his scholarly discouse.

Another high moment was a TomWaits interview read by Greta and Dominique. You
ladies crack me up and I completely forgot myself I was so wrapped up listening to you

But for me the evening will always be most remembered by the crescendo of a high
I experienced driving home in my Toyota Camry with my face paint still in place.
Stopping at every light to grimace at any one stuck waiting at the intersection beside me.
Turns out revving your engines, coming to an incomplete stop, and blaring “Larger than
Life” on repeat with your windows rolled down and your face painted like one of the
knights in Satans Service = ONE HELL OF A GREAT TIME.

Mimi First

Play It F%*#ING Loud!!

•May 19, 2011 • Leave a Comment

  Naked.  Rock & Roll.  Magnificence.

Seriously.  Everything about our second annual Naked Girls Rock was incredible!!!  From the readings to the photo shoot to the ever-popular Naked Guitar Hero ChallengeBut lets rewind a second here…the photo shoot.  Holy fucking photo shoot!!  It was some of the most fun I’ve EVER had on a shoot and…um…the images?  Yeah.  Amazing.  (psst – check out Michelle’s blog for our pic as Gina Simmons and Paula Stanley!)

Of the readings I did this year, I had so much fun with my segments on Tom Waits and Johnny Cash.  The piece I did on Johnny cash was taken from his autobiography.  I read about the time he was attacked by an ostrich.   It was actually a pretty brutal attack that had him hospitalized.  Yes…I said ostrich.  I have seen, with my own two eyes, an ostrich attack someone before – it’s insane!!  It is truly bizarre to witness something like that.  When I read this, I could literally picture Johnny Cash being attacked!!  Naturally, I had to bring it to this event.

But what really made my night, was reading a Tom Waits interview with Dominique Trixx.  First of all, if you’ve never attended a Chicago Naked Girls event, I’ll let you in on a little secret…Dominique Trixx & I have a ridiculously amusing time role-playing with each other and we try to do it quite often.  The interview was fantastic and involved much, much laughter.  In addition to the interview, I read a wonderful quote by Waits which I’d like to share once again:

“My kids are starting to notice I’m a little different from the other dads. “Why don’t you have a straight job like everyone else?” they asked me the other day. I told them this story: In the forest, there was a crooked tree and a straight tree. Every day, the straight tree would say to the crooked tree, “Look at me…I’m tall, and I’m straight, and I’m handsome. Look at you…you’re all crooked and bent over. No one wants to look at you.” And they grew up in that forest together. And then one day the loggers came, and they saw the crooked tree and the straight tree, and they said, “Just cut the straight trees and leave the rest.” So the loggers turned all the straight trees into lumber and toothpicks and paper. And the crooked tree is still there, growing stronger and stranger every day.”  

Keep rocking, beautiful stranger.

~Greta Layne

The Man Behind the Mask

•May 18, 2011 • Leave a Comment

For our 3rd annual Naked Girls ROCK edition, the girls and I decided to ‘dress’ as KISS.  That really means being naked with KISS make up on and some great boots.  Here’s a picture of me (Gina Simmons) and Greta Layne (Paula Stanley):

This was one of the craziest photo shoots I have ever done.  I didn’t realize how awesome it would be to have that make up on and be naked.  Quite a thrill.  Really, if could be Gene Simmons every day, I probably would.  There’s a lot of power in that make up.  I could have a delightful disposition, but with that make up on, I look intimidating.  People suddenly backed away from me…got a little scared.  It was great!!!  I gained a great appreciation for the man behind the mask, Mr. Gene Simmons.  Say what you want about the man, but this make up was the best idea he’s ever had.  I also gained an appreciation for his tongue!  Playing the part, I was sticking my tongue out as much as possible and I was sore the next day!  I expose lots of things, but not usually my tongue.

I never really understood the appeal of the mask.  I’ve worn them before, but they didn’t have a thrill for me.  I like being myself and I don’t have an interest in being someone else, unless that someone else is Gene Simmons! I wanna rock ‘n’ roll all night, and read books all day!

Stay tuned for the NAKED KISS tribute band!

Where No Man Has Gone Before

•April 11, 2011 • 1 Comment

I have to admit that finding material for the SciFi event was a daunting task for me.  I wasn’t too familiar with the subject and I had preconceived thoughts about what SciFi meant.  I just thought it was about aliens and rocket ships.  I had no idea that so much philosophy was involved in SciFi.  Some of the concepts that are dealt with in this misunderstood genre were mind blowing.  For example, I read ‘The Man Born Blind’ by CS Lewis.  In this story, a man gets eye surgery and can see for the first time.  He was talking to his wife and asked the simple question, ‘What is light?’  She tried to explain it, but nothing makes him understand what light is.  We ‘see’ it everyday but how do you explain this concept to someone who has never seen the light?  His wife points to a light bulb and says, ‘That is light.’  This is confusing to him because at first, she said that light is all around us. So why then, is light dwindled down to 2 wires in a bulb? Is that light?  He continues his search for light and one day he visits a quarry.  There is a painter who is trying to capture the scene.  Our man born blind asks the painter what he is doing.  The painter then says, ‘I’m capturing the light.  This is the only time where you can see the light.’  How interesting that a painter is also on a quest for light and has a mission to interpret the light.  The man born blind is relieved and fascinated and reaches out to touch the light and ends up falling to his death and the bottom of the quarry.  A tragic story.

Ever since reading this, I have tried to come up with an answer of how to explain light.  I don’t yet have a way to describe light, but maybe this is something you can think about and can share with me.