Friday, December 9, 2011

The Meg Lee Chin show from a few years ago

Note: I didn’t think this was substantive enough to post when I first wrote it nine months ago. Now I guess I do. I can’t explain why. I’ve just been very introspective lately and have been doing a lot of thinking about the past. So here’s a thing about the past.
Today (well, March 16th when I wrote this) is Meg Lee Chin’s birthday, which gives me something to write about.

If you don’t know, Meg Lee Chin was kind of the most prominent female vocalist for Pigface. Like, most of their best songs have her singing. Chikasaw, Dive Bomber and others are some you might be able to hum right now. If you’ve heard Pigface, you’ve probably heard Chin’s vocals. I’m certainly no expert on industrial music, so I can’t really give you any kind of history or anything. I just know she sang with Pigface for a few years and has a couple of solo CDs of her own that are very good. Good enough that when I heard she was going to be playing in Atlanta I definitely wanted to go (which is what today’s late, last-minute post is about).
I was still living with Crazy at the time, and in all honesty she was a big part of the reason I liked Meg Lee Chin in the first place. I found Pigface on my own years before in a used book store that used to be one of my regular stops (why it isn’t now is its own story). But I really didn’t know who any of the people involved with Pigface were other than the fact that Trent Reznor did a song with them. And maybe Flea. I was still working for Wherehouse Music when this story took place and we had the most awesome special order system ever. If a CD existed, we could get it for you – eventually. Crazy mentioned that Pigface’s singer had some solo stuff, so I looked in our book to see if anything was listed.
I know it sounds crazy, but our database for available CDs was this giant telephone book-like thing. We had to look up the title or artist and then fill out a little index card to be submitted weekly (I think). Sure enough, both of Chin’s releases were available, so I ordered them. They came within a couple of weeks and I immediately loved the music on them. It’s basically like Pigface, but maybe a little more structured and fun (“Heavy Scene” is one of my favorite songs – you should go download it right now).
Naturally when I got home, Crazy claimed ownership of the CDs. When I explained that they were not, in fact, for her but that I would be happy to make copies she informed me that I shouldn’t own them because I didn’t really like industrial music anyways and I wouldn’t even know who Meg Lee Chin was if it wasn’t for her. Not wanting to deal with yet another infantile tantrum, I handed the discs over. I figured I could make copies for myself later. I’m such an enabler.
Sometime after that I saw that Meg Lee Chin was playing at Center Stage (I think it was) with Martin Atkins and some band called Voudou. Atkins basically is Pigface and Voudou sounded familiar for some reason. Regardless, I knew I wanted to see Chin’s powerful vocals live. I kind of had to take Crazy with me, so I bought two tickets.
I think that show was one of the few good times I had with Crazy, at least after the false front came down and I saw who I was really dealing with (and by then it was toooo laaaate!). Obviously times were great initially. My penis thought so, anyway.
We got to the venue and it would be fair to call it deserted. Well, sparsely populated at best. I want to say that Martin Atkins was on stage when we got there. That doesn’t really make sense in my head because you’d think Voudou would go on first, but I’m almost positive we saw Voudou’s whole set and only part of Atkins’.
I seem to remember Crazy knowing some of the people at the show. I sure didn’t. Now that I think about it, maybe Voudou did go on first. I think I just spent all of Atkins’ set talking to one of the dudes from Voudou. Invisible Records had a setup there selling CDs and stuff and I ended up talking to their rep and the Voudou guy for quite a while. Voudou Guy was really cool and at some point during the conversation I realized they were the band that did the awesome cover of “Striptease” on the Faith No More tribute album. I bought their CD and Voudou Guy gave me his e-mail address so I could get in touch with him. He said they’d be playing at The Chamber soon and he’d get me in if I sent him an e-mail (I never did – I’m terrible about that kind of thing. I don’t want to feel like I’m imposing on anybody. Tom Feister told me to give him a call sometime and I’d be welcome to drop by his studio to pick up those GI Joe prints I’m missing. I still haven’t. It’s the guy’s workplace. I don’t want to bother him, you know?).
So then Meg Lee Chin went on and she was absolutely mesmerizing. She’s this tiny little girl just chock full of energy. I don’t know if she’s even really performing anymore, but if you get a chance you should go see her.
And that’s kind of it. Amazingly enough I don’t think Crazy acted like a jerk that night even once. I’m not sure what the point of that story was. It certainly wasn’t any kind of concert review. I guess it’s just something I hadn’t thought about in quite some time and felt like putting out there.
Until next time, stay creepy

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