Wednesday, July 24, 2013

The Girl in the Video: “Addicted to Love” (1986), part 1 of 3

Introduction to series “The Girl in the Video” (including list of interviewees).

The video: “Addicted to Love” by Robert Palmer.

The girls-now-women: see below.




I’m gonna have to face it. I’m addicted to finding and interviewing pop culture fixtures who have rarely if ever been interviewed before.

And I’m particularly pumped about this entry in the 1980s music video series because it is the first article ever to include all five original Robert Palmer women from “Addicted to Love”:


  • Julia Bolino
  • Kathy Davies
  • Patty Elias (Patty Kelly)
  • Mak Gilchrist
  • Julie Pankhurst

Let’s do that again, but from left to right when watching the video:


  • Julie Pankhurst (keyboard)
  • Patty Elias (guitar)
  • Kathy Davies (drums)
  • Mak Gilchrist (bass)
  • Julia Bolino (guitar)

[In some online postings the order is different, but both Mak and Julie confirmed that the above is correct.]


Julie

 Patty

 Mak

Julia

Unfortunately, due to logistics (addressed below), Kathy did not get a close-up.

Not one but two of them (Patty and Julia) got married the summer of 2013.

Patty was the hardest to find and, to be precise, I did not find her. Julie had not been in recent touch but had a lead, and luckily, it panned out. Thank you again, Julie, for enabling us to complete the set and achieve the first virtual reunion of what many would consider the most visually memorable “band” in music video history.


Hopefully an in-person reunion will follow…

How old were you when you appeared in the “Addicted to Love” video?

Julie: 21.
Patty: I believe that the video was shot in 1985. Could have been ‘84. You can confirm. I was 18 in 1984. [MTN: The video came out in 1986.]
Kathy: 24.
Mak: 21.
Julia: 19.


 Julie then

 
Kathy then

Mak then

Julia then

Where were you living at the time?

Julie: London.
Patty: I was living in London, a model with Models 1 on Kings Road.
Kathy: I was living in Hampstead with another model friend. I grew up in South Kensington.
Mak: Paris and London.
Julia: London.

Patty, you were the only American of the five. Where did you grow up?

Patty: I grew up [through] my pre-teens in Deer Park, Long Island. Then my family moved to Longmont, CO to try “ranching.” I left home for Tokyo at 17, the day after I graduated high school.

What music videos, shows, or movies had you appeared in prior to that?

Julie: None (eeks, what was that about “not one-line answers”…?) [MTN: I asked participants to be as forthcoming as possible and avoid single-line answers.]
Patty: This was [the] early period in music video history. Truth be told, I didn’t know what a music video was. I had been living in Europe, not watching much television, so I did not know about MTV or music videos.
Kathy: I was in the video for “Figures” by Zaine Griff [the woman who walks straight at the camera close to the beginning of the video] and also one directed by Paul McCartney, a Jamaican reggae group called the Simeons; I honestly don’t remember [the name]. I was also in Octopussy, just another Bond girl.




Mak: I’d done plenty of commercials.

1987

Julia: A Rod Stewart video and one (“All the Love in the World”) for a band called The Outfield.



Kathy, what was it like to work with Paul McCartney?

Kathy: Great. It was a family affair as Linda came to the studio with the kids. He was incredibly charming and kind. He was very relaxed and made everyone feel comfortable.

How were you cast?

Julie: I had just joined Models 1 model agency and Terence Donovan (a photographer and the director of the video) held a casting at his studio. He based his decision on looks and persona.
Patty: I was cast by Terence Donovan and I believe that I was the prototype for the casting. Terence and I had shot several ads for Neutrogena and he was familiar with me and the way I looked on film.
Kathy: Strangely, I didn’t go to any casting. I was just booked direct at the agency.
Mak: I didn’t go to a casting. I was known to the director, Terence Donovan, and he booked me direct via my agent.
Julia: A normal casting with the director Terence Donovan; they looked at my portfolio and took a Polaroid pic.

Do you remember what your reaction was when you were cast?

Julie: Being a model was very new to me so every booking was a great adventure. To work with one of our legendary photographers so soon gave positive vibes for the potential of my career.
Patty: My reaction was total bliss. I was young and game for anything—especially anything that Terence Donovan was working on. Everything he did at the time was magic.
Kathy: I was very excited when I heard I [would be] working with Terence Donovan again and doing a video.
Mak: I had no idea then what this video would become. It was just another booking, except this one was with someone whose music I liked. I wasn’t easily starstruck.
Julia: I had never heard of Robert Palmer at the time as I think I was more into funk bands, so not overly excited!

Kathy, why were you assigned to be the drummer?

Kathy: I guess the naughty ones always get sent to the back!

Did it bother you that you were blocked by Robert Palmer for most of the video?

Kathy: Not really. He had a good bum.

Where was the video filmed? How long was the shoot?

Julie: It was a very small production in the depths of Holborn Studios, in central London. The shoot took one day and Donovan liked to work in a relaxed manner so it was a very chilled day. Prep in the morning (hair, makeup, and styling) followed by a long lazy lunch and then RP arrived for the filming.
Patty: The video was filmed in a studio in London. I don’t remember where, but I remember that the tea cart always rolled in about 3 in the afternoon. Union, I think! I believe that the shoot was either three days or five…probably three.
Mak: Holborn Studios in Back Hill [London], in a basement. One day.
Julia: It was filmed in Holborn Studios (sadly now closed). It took one day. We started at 8:00 a.m. (?) and finished around 7:00 (?).

Was this shoot the first time you met the others, or did you already know them?

Julie: I may have met Patty and Mak at Models 1 but most probably at the casting because the shoot was just after I joined the agency. I met Julia and Kathy at the shoot.

How did you feel making the video?

Julie: It wasn’t every day we got to be involved in a pop video so the whole experience was great fun.
Patty: Since I had never seen a music video before, I was unsure of what was going on. We spent many hours in makeup and then we would come out and the music would start. It really felt quite experimental.
Kathy: It was a great day. We all had a lot of fun and there was a terrific atmosphere.
Mak: Hmmm, well, the makeup was transforming, I barely recognized myself. The other girls and creative team were all lovely so there was a great vibe. I didn’t feel nervous. I was working hard at that stage so took it in my stride.
Julia: It was a really fun day. I got to pretend to be a stroppy [bad-tempered or hostile] lead guitarist!

What was the hardest part of the shoot?

Julie: Keyboards…playing to cue! Not such a tough shoot.
Patty: The hardest part may have been the makeup. It took a long time and it was quite heavy.
Kathy: Leaving! We all got on well.
Mak: There wasn’t a hardest part. It was an easy day.
Julia: Having lip gloss applied every three seconds!

How was it to work with Robert Palmer?

Julie: He was polite and the ultimate professional…and of course he was exceptional at performing on cue!

We had very little interaction with him because…

1. He clinched the song in a few takes so the group filming was very fast.
2. He seemed rather intimidated by five ladies towering above him.
3. His wife was present…!

Clearly if Robert Palmer had been a heartthrob of my generation, I would have been less blasé about his presence!
Patty: Robert Palmer was always a professional and a gentleman. He took great care of us always.
Kathy: It was great and he was very friendly and happy with the shoot.
Mak: Well, he’s a legend…and was a humble guy with it. You could tell he was a hardworking man who took his music seriously. I had a conversation with him about his using Sly and Robbie, a Jamaican drum and bass duo, on his album. I asked him about what it was like to work with them.
Julia: He was very polite and a little remote (his wife was there!).

Tweet about this interview to @_ms_mak and @Juliabolinoslap!

Part 2.

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