Cookie CUTTER Girl
"THE COVER ZONE"
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"Cookie Cutter Girl: Pop Superhero"
INTERVIEW for "THE COVER ZONE"
Reporter: Mel ... Date: 11/06 ... TheCoverZone.com
. What influenced you most in pursuing
a career and
looking back on your career what do you believe
are your biggest influences today?
Cookie Cutter Girl, Pop Superhero, fights for women's right NOT to live their lives as *they* see fit, rather than within the narrow confines of the rules that society has laid out for "women." They can “break the mold” and be whoever they want to be – professionally, personally, sexually ... the potential is limitless. I want women to feel secure in being a source of support for each other, instead of feeling forced into competing with each other for men, jobs, and security. Cookie Cutter Girl, Pop Superhero, is fueled by the Girl Power of every women before her that dared to open a locked door, and held it for all women to push through. I believe in the power of people to change the world ... one person at a time. It is my dream that Cookie Cutter Girl will be someday by remembered for opening doors ...
2. When you first begin performing, do
that first night when you took the stage and how you felt?
OH YES ... Scared! Cookie Cutter Girl's first "gig" was live on TV for a show called "No Hit Videos." Cookie Cutter Girl's costume had a "wardrobe malfunction," and I spent the 2nd half of the set holding up my top with my guitar! *wink* I've always been one to dive right in *smile*. My first time EVER playing guitar in front of anyone was live on TV too, for a show called "Songwriter's Corner." I could barely play, and had NEVER hosted a TV show before, but there was NO way I was turning down Martin Swinger, the host's, generous offer to fill-in for him that night! So, not only did I play in front of people for the 1st time, it was filmed and aired on TV for all to critique!
3. What was the first concert you ever
and did it influence you at all?
My 1st concert was going to see the Stray Cats with my Dad. I LOVED the raw energy of Rockabilly: the sound, the moves, the sneer, the clothes! I KNEW I wanted to be on stage, performing raw rock n roll like them, from a VERY young age. My Dad is a talented Jazz musician in his own right, and would drive me to voice lessons as a girl. I would sing into my hairbrush in the kitchen bathroom, clapping and dancing in front of my reflection in the windows. I've always had a dream ...
4. Tell us about your gear and
any professional training you have had.
Cookie Cutter Girl, Pop Supehero, endorses Minarik Guitars. I LOVE my "Inferno" named "Sparky," who Minarik custom dipped sparkle orange to be the ONLY one in the world! CCG also endorses S.I.T. Strings that DO "Stay In Tune." *smile* We also LOVE "SAM ASH MUSIC," or "Uncle SAM ASH," as we affectionately call him! *wink* I've been performing on stages since I was 5 years old, having wanted to be a "singer" since I was a little girl. (Oh yeah ... I rocked out on MANY a hairbrush!) My Dad, who is a wonderful Jazz musician in his own right, drove me to voice lessons as a pre-teen and he and Mom attended EVERY music recital throughout my school years.
5. Can you share with us the biggest
obstacle you faced
while recording your Debut CD.
Anyone who's done studio recording with more than one person in the room knows how hard every artist struggles to get *their* ideas recorded. My struggle was with the owner of the studio, who was also the engineer and co-producer on some of the songs. We had some BIG FIGHTS over artistic differences. He kicked me out of the studio more than once, then I quit on him. After a few months off, I finally went back to finish what we started. All in all my "Cookie Cutter Girl" CD took 2 years to record. Then the final disc accidently got double compressed before being sent to be mastered ... $800 in mastering down the drain!
6. With your music you strive to represent
so much more than your
own sound. Tell us about Cookie Cutter Girl in your own words and what you believe you represent.
Girl Power Pop Superhero, Cookie Cutter Girl, as a strong, feminine role model grew out of my own personal experience of being forced to conform to the standards set by strangers of what a "girl" should be. My personal success in rising above the negative feelings, and in refusing to remain a victim, led me to this poster child for Girl Power. CCG actually appeared to me, mentally, during a solo performance, asking why I was performing in a restaurant to the backs of people who weren't listening. This soon to be Girl Power Icon inspired me to come out of my own shell, face my fear of judgement and stand tall.
The theme behind “Cutter” is that women don’t need to live their lives within the confines of the rules that society has laid out for them. They can “break the mold” and be whoever they want to be – professionally, personally, sexually, you name it. Women can be a source of support for each other, instead of competing with each other for men, jobs, and security. While this is a decidedly feminist message, I am NOT by any means a "man-hater." Men DO fill positive roles in my music and writing, and are not portrayed as being evil in any stereotypical way. The message is one of strength and power for women, it’s not about men being bad because they’re men.
7. Can you tell us the story behind the track, "Other Girls Do."
"I don't care what the other girls ... doooooo!" Yeah ... I LOVE the bridge on that tune. It might be my favorite section of production on the entire album. ALL the stories (aka songs) on the "Cookie Cutter Girl" CD are TRUE, which makes them different than your average pop tune. "Other Girls Do" one of the first songs I ever wrote, which was many years before that CD was recorded. It grew out of my frustration of *constrantly* being reprimanded and judged for not behaving like "other girls do" by my boyfriends, my girlfriends, my parents, my teachers, etc. I became so defensive and angry at having to justify being ... ME. My boyfriend would fight with me and justify his anger with "my last girlfriend always did this" or "never did that." My teacher would scold me and say, "My other students always did this" or "never did that." I would fire back defensively that I am NOT "other girls" and "I don't care what the other girls do." DON'T be a 'cookie cutter' girl ... Be yourself ... and LOVE IT!
8. You are involved in many projects,
but is there any one project
you hold closer to your heart than the others and why?
I DO wear a LOT of hats indeed! I run the following
companies almost single handedly:
CookieCutterGirl.com (Webmaster, Began 9/11/2003)
Cookie Cutter Records (President, Began 9/11/2004)
Cookie Cutter Publishing (President, Began 9/11/2004)
Power of Pink Promotion (President, Began 9/11/2006)
Velvet Chokers (President, Began 9/11/2003)
Tiaras, Chokers & Dresses ... OH MY! (President, Began 9/1998)
By far, Cookie Cutter Girl is my "passion project" and I would give up all other endeavors to see her live on after I am gone. Our plan is to use the publicity we garner for CCG to bring National attention to women's issues such as domestic violence, eating disorders and the medical conditions, such as PTSD (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder), that can result from them. We are in the process of researching grants and government funding available for projects targeted at female empowerment and women in crisis. Our goal is to distribute the CDs and Comic Books to schools and crisis centers across the USA to help educate and empower young women.
9. One of the biggest obstacles indie
bands regardless of how
talented they are, is receiving airplay. Now with airplay
currently on over 500 radio and TV stations, what do you attribute
your success to in breaking through this common barrier.
I can sum up success in one word: "FOLLOW-UP." The number one mistake indie musicians make when promoting themselves and their music is they don't follow-up after they submit music or make a new contact. You MUST follow-up 2 weeks after EVERY submission, and continue to do so, until you receive a response. If the response is positive, congratulations! If the response is negative, find out what you can change to improve your submission. If the response is neutral, IE you're just not right for us, ask if they can give you a contact or two of theirs that you *might* be right for. Turn a CLOSED DOOR into an OPEN ONE!
10. What is your most difficult song to perform live and why?
We never perform "Dear Bob" live because it's got 5 time changes and it's very emotional for me to get through. I wrote that song as therapy for myself just days after the death of my music partner and best friend. Singing that song was the ONLY thing that got me through that desparate and lonely time. I still sing it to myself, and to him, when I need his strength and guidance ...
11. As an artist that represents the women's movement on and off the stage, what do you feel is the biggest obstacle women face today in the music industry?
I feel aging is our biggest obstacle. The music industry is seeking out, styling and image for, and promoting younger and younger girls, now starting at ages 8 - 12 years old! They dress them up as teenagers with sexy clothes, hair and make-up, and sometimes lie about their age to make them older by a few years, so noone feels guilty about seeing them as a "sexy" teenager. This is unhealthy on SO many levels. The men of our society are being conditioned to equate youth with beauty. The girls are forced to "grow up" to quickly, miss out on their childhood, and all the priceless learning experiences that come with it. Let girls enjoy being girls. There's PLENTY of time for them to be women later ...
11b. How can fans help tip the balance of those scales?
I'm SO GLAD you asked! *smile* FANS *CAN* HELP change the world ... one person at a time. Simply support female artists of ALL AGES by listening to and sharing their music with your friends. Go to their concerts and bring your friends. DO NOT BUY INTO THE MEDIA HYPE surrounding every new teen idol that TV & major record labels purchase MILLION DOLLAR MARKETING CAMPAIGNS to convince you to love. They illegally BUY RADIO AIRTIME through a process called "Payola," and this is finally being exposed by New York district attorney, Elliot Sptizer. DON'T be told what or who to like ... THINK FOR YOURSELF!
12. Describe Julian in one word. BOLD
13. What can fans do to help spread the word?
*YOU* can CHANGE THE WORLD! *Really* you can ... One person at a time. You've heard of "Pay it forward," right? It's *that* simple. We are ALL 1 link in an endless chain of people power. The more people, or links, we connect to each other, the more power each of us possesses to induce positive changes. Don't just complain about what you feel is wrong with your world, IE your neighborhood, school, office, church, gym, etc. DO something about it. DO ONE THING ... ANYTHING. Just ONE ACTION will help you to feel empowered, and may lead you, or someone else, to take a 2ND ACTION ... and so on ... and so on ... until you have an ENTIRE GROUP OF PEOPLE working toward the same goal with STRENGTH THROUGH UNITY. *THAT* is CCG'S MISSION: GIRL POWER STRENGTH THROUGH UNITY!
14. What can fans expect from Julian in 2007? Any plans to tour?
We just returned from our 1st NACA CONFERENCE and are planning a college tour in 2007. We are currently being courted by several agences with contracts we're considering, but are keeping our options open at least until 2007. As our last BIG HURRAH before we sign anything, we are giving away FREE V.I.P. PASSES to EVERY COLLEGE THAT BOOKS CCG for our 2007 college tour! The FREE V.I.P. PASSES include: 6 BACKSTAGE PASSES, 6 TOUR BUS PASSES, 6 ON STAGE PASSES, SIGNED T SHIRTS, SIGNED CDS & PHOTOS of *YOU* and the POP SUPERHERO BAND posted on our official website!
15. Anything we haven't touched on that you would like to share?
I believe in KARMA. I've been in Rolling Stone,
on MTV, FUSE TV, NHK TV in Japan and dozens more, all without submitting to
be reviewed or interviewed in ANY of them. I believe that is because I work
everyday to share my successes with my fellow indie musicians, so that they
may benefit from the contacts that I have worked so hard to make. I do this
by adding daily to the FREE MUSIC DIRECTORY I've built in "PowerofPink.com."
Yet, NONE of those difficult acheivements makes me feel as good as when I
actually connect with someone. Honestly, my heart soars everytime an Indie
Musician sends me a thank you email for helping them via email or the Free
Music Directory. Cookie Cutter Girl's is a Pop Superhero with a mission: to
help *everyone* find their "Inner Superhero" and change the world
by "Strength Through Unity." We're all a single link, with limited
power, but ... united together, we are an unstoppable force of GIRL POWER!
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