What a gift

Yesterday, I was listening to an interview with a famous musician and he mentioned something about always having to play his biggest hits at his shows because fans can be really sentimental about certain songs, for instance, remembering that the” first time they fucked Susie, they were listening to such & such a song.”

Well, that really surprised me, because I thought he was going to say “the first time they ever had sex [at all, ever — as in losing one’s virginity].” But he didn’t.

And I realized that the guy (the famous musician) must be really faithful to his wife. Because, by that one comment, he’s implying that the guy went on to continue fucking Susie for a really long time, and how the memory of that first time still means so much.

Whereas my brain immediately goes to that very first time, ever, and then just forgets about everybody else involved — eternally.  I thought it was such an interesting differentiation.

But later in the day, I thought about that comment again, and something kind of magical happened.

As an aside, though, I do practically require music to be playing when I’m with somebody and having sex, and I’m really, really specific about what I want to hear at any given time, but I have no clear memory of a specific song playing when I was with a specific person, first time or not.

I do remember in the early 90s, that anytime I was with anybody in a  B&D scene, Enigma’s MCMXCa.D. had to be playing — loud. I think every New Yorker into BDSM in the early 90s played that CD during scenes. It was just too fucking phenomenal, how it felt to hear that CD, be overwhelmed by its pacing, and be sort of indescribably tied up and, well, I guess flogged for awhile, and then arrive at that plateau, then that really intense penetration  juncture with the person Topping you… (i.e.,  The Principles of Lust and Mea Culpa —  just super loud.) (In most B&D scenes, penetration doesn’t happen until way into the scene and then you are just sort of forced into this incredible energy-space that you can’t control because, well, you’re tied up.) (The Principles of Lust, wow. What a piece of music. Further proof that there is nothing better on earth than a highly intuitive Top. Pushing you, challenging you, taking you one step past what you think you can handle.)

(You know, I’m thinking this is why I never really responded much to  a date that consisted of “dinner and a movie”… I could do that all by myself; this other stuff — not so much.)

Wow. I do indeed digress.  Wasn’t expecting to go there at all. What I was going to say was a lot more vanilla. It was about Marc Anthony’s song, I Need to Know, and while I don’t remember any specific person I was with while playing this song, I do know that I’ve been with a number of people (in bed or in the vicinity of it) while playing this song. I don’t know, it just takes me to this zone. So amazing. Of course, you have to play it really loud and have it endlessly on repeat because the middle of it builds so awesomely, and you need that intensity to just keep on continuing. Or I guess I do. I’m all about the plateau.  (However, don’t take my word for any of this. Try it for yourself — you know; candlelight, bed or vicinity thereof, expensive French red, any person at all, and then play this song loudly, like, deafening, over & over, and see if that person doesn’t become your lover posthaste.)

(You know, I’m just going to insert here that Mob Guy #2 is actually, literally, way more intense than me.  Hard to believe, isn’t it? Such a blessing.  A very mild example (HIM): “Why the fuck  are you wearing that? That’s not what I asked you to be wearing. You gotta change. Right now.”  ME: “But I wanted to lose, like, 5 pounds –” HIM: “No, uhn-uhn. Fuck the 5 pounds. You gotta wear it. Now. Go get it.”)

All right, anyway. The “magical thing” I mentioned, somewhere, way, way, way at the top of the page. It has to do with a blog post from July about me basically forcing that older guy to teach me how to have sex when I was 13. (Something about “throwing up” is in the title but vomiting has nothing whatsoever to do with him.)

Well, when I was with him in his room and had finally worn down his resistance (and I will stress again that he had no clue I was only 13), he wanted to pick the perfect music for my first sexual experience. He was a professional musician, a hippie — long blonde hair, beard, mustache, hash-smoking, anti-Nixon, really tall, super, super smart — but he was getting a PhD in classical music, violin. Music was very important to him. And for my grand deflowering, he chose Janis Joplin and Big Brother and the Holding Company. Cheap Thrills. Okay, not the most auspicious album title, but his focus was on Janis Joplin. I knew who she was. I knew she was dead. But I knew nothing about her beyond that. And he said, “I know you are going to like her.”

Well, I ask you, what could be more perfect than to be me at 13, losing my virginity to a guy I chose — this incredible guy that I would never lay eyes on again — and listening to this? (Yeah, listen if you dare. It only takes 8 minutes…).  Janis just seemed to me like the most powerful woman, ever. Even though I knew she had died from a heroin overdose in some cheap motel. She still seemed more powerful than anything I could ever contain.

He could have chosen a million other rock songs where women are portrayed as stupid, stupid girls, you know? There are so many songs like that. But he chose Janis, for me — for my memory of what was getting ready to happen to me.

And after that day, of course, I wanted to know everything about Janis. I already knew a few things about myself. One being that I knew I wanted to be a singer and a songwriter. I already played guitar, piano, violin. I had already written dozens and dozens of songs. I also knew I was bisexual by then. I didn’t talk about it much, but I also didn’t not talk about it. I was selective about who I talked about it with, but I knew I liked girls as much as i liked boys.

I found a book in the bookstore, called Going Down with Janis (first issued in 1973, link is a re-issue) and it was written by a woman who had been Janis’s lover. The book was about Janis and having sex with her. This book blew my mind because, when I was reading it, I felt totally, 100%, completely like I was okay. I didn’t often feel that way, I can guarantee you that. But by the time I was 13, I learned that Janis Joplin was one of the few people on earth (or in Heaven, as it were!), who made me feel like I was okay, just the way I was.

And then, of course, I fell in love with her for the rest of my life. She brought me to tears; she brought me to joy; she brought me an understanding of what it can be like to be a singer and be a girl (and go to New York and try to deal with the fucking music industry). In short: It can really suck. But try to make your life good, regardless, you know? Don’t give in to the cruelty and the crap and OD yourself on heroin in some cheap motel. Just don’t do it.

I worked with a VP at Columbia Records who had known Janis very well. He had really loved her. He also really loved my songwriting, seriously went to bat for me. There were a few amazing high points to my music career; he was one of them, but most of it turned my stomach.


So, yesterday, I thought about that guy who I “lost my virginity to”  — a guy I really have so much gratitude toward because I really, really did practically force him to do that to me, and he was really kind of not super happy when he found out how old I was, but it was too late. Anyway, he gave me that gift of music to go along with that ordeal of intercourse for the first time, and he chose so carefully. And Janis became this incredible gift to me, for decades, because of him.

How cool was that? Some men are really just awesome.

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