The video: “Summer of ‘69” by Bryan Adams.
The girl-now-woman: Lysette Anthony.
What Bryan Adams videos did you appear in, and which was first?
I’m the girl in the [videos for the] entire Reckless album. Apart from one shot of a close-up of a woman’s legs in “Summer of ’69.” [Director] Steve Barron shot that before I arrived in Vancouver. Big mistake. Mine are better!
How old were you when you appeared in the first one?
I take the 5th. Seriously, I have no clue—you’ll have to do the maths. [She was born in 1963 and the video came out in 1985. Readers, you’ll have to do the maths.] I’m still friends with Bryan. No matter how decrepit we all become I’ll always be his Reckless girl. That’s kinda cool!
Where were you living at the time?
London. We shot “Run to You” first in a studio, Pinewood perhaps, outside London. Bryan was simply a skinny boy in a white T-shirt with the most incredible voice I’d ever heard. He was cool, so confident; I was shy, convent school-fresh…hopeless! But it wasn’t until we arrived in Canada that I realized he was already a Rock God! There were crowds queuing for days simply to be extras in the concert scenes. He insisted on giving them a free show. That’s so Bryan—the People’s Rock Star.
What music videos, shows, or movies had you appeared in prior to that?
I’d already shot Krull. Ivanhoe. Oliver Twist (the TV movie and the BBC series), Dombey and Son, and more. My first 10 years were incredibly busy. [The] Reckless [videos were] my first. My year as a model I’d made a ton of commercials. Worked with everyone [i.e. photographers] from [David] Bailey [who called her the “Face of the Eighties”] to [Clive] Arrowsmith to [John] Swannell.
How were you cast?
Do you remember what your reaction was when you were cast?
It was just a job. With some Canadian. I was intensely interested in proper theater. It didn’t register other than a nice trip to Vancouver, to be honest.
How long was the shoot?
How did you feel making the video?
I had fun apart from a massive silent crush on Bryan. I’d never met anyone like him. But I suffered in silence! I was soooo young.
What was the hardest part of the shoot?
How was it to work with Bryan Adams?
He wasn’t Bryan Adams—he was a singer in a band to me. I loved it. The boys were sweet to me. I was one of them…sorta!
Are you hinting that there was some romance with any of them?
Oh lordy no. No romance ever, [with] any of them. No. I think the best way to describe it was they treated me rather like a kid sister. A little carefully. It was sweet.
What did you think of the video?
Cool! Though I was too plump. So young—ghastly! Now I think, “Bryan…those glasses [in “Run to You”]…why?”
What did your parents think of it?
It barely registered.
What did your friends think of it?
We were theater groupies. Jonathon Pryce’s Hamlet got us hot and bothered.
Did the video generate any controversy that you know of?
Nope. Not as much as Bailey’s picture of my rope-tied legs.
Do you have a copy of that image?
Bailey’s poster was banned. I don’t have a copy.
Which Bryan Adams video that you were in was your favorite?
I love them all. It was so fresh—pounding with energy. But in truth it was super-cool being #1 on Top of the Pops. You kinda had to have been here, in Blighty [the UK], with our three little channels…Top was massive.
Did any video you did affect your dating life in any way (i.e. when you first told boyfriends you were in it)?
Well, Depeche Mode “I Feel You” certainly made me quite popular. But I was married by then. It was a different era. Rock videos were what other people did. Not serious actors—darling!
Did you receive fan mail? If so, do you still have any of it?
Er, yes. Still do. I think you need to google me.
What were you paid per video?
Did you watch the MTV World Premiere of the video, and if so, where and how did that feel?
Were you ever recognized in public? How often and when last? Any stories about that?
Still am, bizarrely. From a Tel Aviv supermarket to Willesden Green bus stop.
The best story: at a concert in Hyde Park, [with] over 50,000 people [in attendance], myself and my two young stepsons were passed from the back of the crowd, over all their heads, carried on high, hand after hand, to the front. It was amazing! My youngest, Dylan, said that night, “Oh, you are the coolest stepmum.”
Bryan has always stayed in touch. A postcard from here, a random call from there, tea at least every 10 years. He once played me a few bars of “When a Man Loves a Woman” [MTN: she may mean “Have You Ever Really Loved a Woman?”] over the phone, asked me what I thought. I replied that I was sure most women would grip their steering wheels tight hearing that one.
When in New York shooting Woody Allen’s Husbands and Wives, I went to watch Bryan record the Spanish version of another beautiful song. I forget now. We’ve been in each other’s lives for a long time. Not every day, just in the periphery. I love that.
If you ever met other women who were female leads in a mainstream ‘80s rock video, who?
We’ve all done so much. You need to do a little homework!
If you went to university, where and what did you study?
Nope. Started work at 16 and 33 years later I’m still learning.
What are you doing these days?
Busy on a yearlong tour with the Agatha Christie Theatre Company. [NOTE: Lysette has extensive theater/film/TV credits, easily searchable.]
Where do you live?
My son and I have homes in London and seaside Norfolk.
If you are/were married, what was your future husband’s reaction when he learned you were in this video?
It simply was a fun gig.
How old is your son?
Jimi (after Hendrix) is 9 (going on 16)!
What does he think of the video?
He thinks Bryan rocks!
What did you think when you first heard from me?
“Oh f***—what a lot of questions!”
Has anyone else ever interviewed you about this? If so, who, when, and for what publication?
Have you appeared at any fan conventions to sign autographs?
Sci-fi, not rock.
When was the last time you were in touch with Bryan?
We’re in touch.
How did that start on a purely logistical level? After the last Reckless shoot, did you two simply exchange phone numbers?
In all honesty I can’t remember. I guess we must have exchanged numbers—but these days we’re streamed out! So much insta-choice!
How do you look back on the experience?
Anything you’d like to add?
Only the Greats stand the ultimate test of Time. Bryan has a gift from the Gods’ quarry. He is a tireless pro and I’m proud I am his Reckless Chick.
I wrote [the following] after Bryan’s Bare Bones [2010 show] at the Royal Albert Hall. (He always gets me seats [to his shows] no matter how late I leave it. This was a tough one as the entire place was packed.)
In 1984 (or was it ‘85?) one miserable, rainy morning, I stepped up into a trailer outside some stage, at some studio outside of some bit of London, and there met a skinny Canadian in a white T-shirt and jeans.
I was plump and shy with convent school teeth and a head stuffed too full of Lawrence and Keats. He oozed confidence and cool, with a voice distilled by years he had yet to live, graveled in honey. Honestly, I was the least equipped to Run to Him, let alone all the “You’s” I was yet to recklessly hurl myself at. Yet 28 years later it could be argued that my life has been more reckless, his clever and in control…and I’m still running, through the bloody rain, as I’ve done tonight. For here I am, rather like in that video, [sitting] at the back and still proud, watching Bryan rock.
The Royal Albert Hall is packed, up to gilded rafters, and he truly is the People’s Rock Star. I like my job.
A heartfelt extra thank you to Lysette for being so gracious as to complete this interview during an especially difficult and exhausting time. She sent the last of her answers the day after an emotional life passage moment, which was also the night before this was set to post.
Tweet about this interview to @bryanadams and @chezLysette!
Copy and tweet to help me find more 1980s music video girls:
Real research question: if you know the Annie Hubbard who was in 1984 Night Ranger video “Sister Christian,” pls contact @MarcTNobleman
Real research question: if you know the woman—even just her name—in 1986 Cinderella video “Shake Me,” pls contact @MarcTNobleman
Real research question: if you know woman—even just her name—in ‘87 Richard Marx video “Should’ve Known Better,” pls contact @MarcTNobleman
Next: Robert Palmer, “Addicted to Love” (1986).