Friday, July 15, 2005

Women In L.A. Punk - Part XIV - Rover

Rover is one of those girls who added life and color to the early punk scene and made it so interesting. She received one of the first wounds (six stitches in the scalp) in the "us against them" skirmishes that seem to occur whenever people are afraid or intolerant of those who look different from them. It's hard to imagine a time and place when having short, crazy-coloured hair could provoke a violent reaction from a stranger, but that is what it was like in the 1970's.

I had no idea that it was Rover who came up with the idea of selling "best friend" status for a quarter. After awhile, the idea caught on at the Canterbury and people would offer to be your friend for the price of a burger or if you agreed to help them out with something.

Rover's interview captures the youthful innocence that was part of the early punk days but which is often overlooked for the more sensational aspects of the scene. She remembers the "in crowd" being an "impossible clique to penetrate" and says that it was "self-protective, justly so." I only recall that my friends in the scene, Rover being one, made up a sort of extended family of like-minded individuals who were similarly outcast from "normal" society.

Click on the thumbnail to read Rover's interview.


MrBaliHai said...

Y'know, Alice, after watching your all-too-brief snippet on Punk: Attitude this weekend, I'm convinced that someone needs to do a punk documentary about women like Rover, Jenny, and Pleasant, who were integral to the scene but weren't headliners or club-owners; they're a lot more interesting than listening to Henry Rollins waste oxygen on film.

Jenny Lens said...

Alice's timing, as usual, is perfect. Someone just wrote me, asking if I knew Gabby and Rover. Gabby I remember well. She was such a sweet woman and I have a few shots of her, outside the Masque, the only place I recall ever seeing her. Rover, however, I don't recall.

But I'd love to be in touch with her for my documentary! Because, yes, Mr. Bali Hai, my doc will focus on women in punk, particulary LA punk. Alice/Greg, could you please ask Rover to drop an email, when she's got time between her 10 kids!!

Spent a GREAT evening with Peter Urban, who managed the Dils, Zeros, Negative Trend and hung out during the first Masque's early days. He too remembers Brendan kindly, as do I. Brendan allowed not only a lot of bands great exposure and the only place to play for many, but as Rover stated, a place to stay til they found someplace like the Canterbury. Peter thanked me for posting shots of him, even though I didn't even know it was him. He, like so many of us, are tired of being written out of our own history that we made.

I admire Alice and Greg for making time to update their interviews in the midst of their life-altering move to my side of town. How do they do all they do and so well? What inspirations to the rest of us!


Trudie said...

I can't believe you have 10 kids! Wow. Sheila lives in Vegas too. Trixie knows more, when are their interviews appearing? Thank you Alice for the blog reunion.

Jenny Lens said...

Spent a couple of really great hours talking with Rover! She is such a trip! I don't know what's more fascinating: her early punk life or her life with her 10 children. What lucky kids to have her as a mother, so loving, great instincts and yes, she home schools. Her husband sounds just super too. We talked a lot about her family and she is very grounded these days.

I know the powers-that-be get bent outta shape when their kids lead wild lives, but think how many punk women are wonderful parents. Alice, Rover, Trudie, Hellin, Cherie the Penguin and I'm sure there's more.

And those of us who opted not to have children, such as Pleasant and myself. Still leading our crazed creative lives.

Here's to all us capable women!

Anonymous said...

WOW! It's about time....! I am listening to an old tape of Castration Squad live on "KPFK", and it still sounds fresh today.. Alice and Jenny Lens deserve HUGE kudos for their undying efforts. And reading Rover's story brings back many memories. Rover...Your 1 of a kind definitely! Trudie and Pleasant rule also!!! Keep those profiles coming, and when are we gonna hear from kira???!!!!!!!!!

Willy said...


I don't know if you remember me but I have very fond memories of you even if it was only in the context of seeing you at shows and talking to you. I mentioned you in a recent article I wrote on my web site. Please check it out and get in touch.


Willy said...

My email is