Kathy Nichols

Goth Talk with Scary Lady Sarah

By - Jul 6th, 2010 10:03 am
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Image of Scary Lady Sarah copyright by theta_sigma on Flickr

Step in to the realm of all things gothic lead by world-renowned d.j. Scary Lady Sarah with her guest William Faith of Faith and the Muse at Club Anything, 807 South 5th Street, Tuesday night for the bargain price of…nothing.

Sarah’s musical selections typically include “classic bands like Siouxsie and the Banshees, the Cure, Joy Division, Sisters of Mercy, and Bauhaus along with newer ones like Faith and the Muse, Frank the Baptist, and Pretentious, Moi?,” she says. “Most of the newer things are definitely considered more underground; they don’t have major label releases like the classic bands did.”

William Faith, one half of Los Angeles-based Faith and the Muse, has performed with Christian Death, Shadow Project, Mephisto Walz, and the Sex Gang Children. He and Sarah are embarking on a d.j. tour across the U.S. in September. The two have been friends since she went on tour with Faith and the Muse in 1999.

Sarah started her event, Nocturna, 22 years ago at Neo, a nightclub in Chicago. Nocturna is an 18+ event featuring d.j.s spinning a mixture of current and classic goth, post-punk, industrial, new wave, ebm, and other music of the same realm. Moving to the Smart Bar in 1997 and then the Metro (which is just upstairs from the Smart Bar and allowed her to change the event from being 21 and over to being 18+), the event has featured bands (such as Faith and the Muse in April), a fashion show (the 2010 Valentines’ Day “New Loves and Broken Hearts Valentines’ Ball featured a fashion show at 1 a.m.), and chances to win tickets for upcoming local performances (patrons at 2009’s Nocturna won passes for the October performance of the Damned, September’s The Cult show, and The Psychadelic Furs, who performed in September of that year at the House of Blues).

Sarah has djed at Convergence 5 times since its inception in 1995. Lasting between 2 and 4 days, Convergence is a unique event that has taken place in cities throughout North America. Including live bands (past performers have included Peter Murphy, Skinny Puppy, Switchblade Symphony, Combichrist, Frontline Assembly, the Cruxshadows, Voltaire, Bella Morte, Boole, More Machine Than Man, Stromkern, Rasputina, Imperative Reaction, and countless others), art shows, club nights, bazaars, fashion shows, and tours of goth-themed attractions in the host city, Convergence is a place for all things goth.

She’s also traveled across the U.S. twice coast to coast, in both 1999 and again this year “6 weeks back and forth and then up and down across the country,” says Sarah. She d.j.s the yearly Wave Gothic Treffen festival, one of the largest gothic events in the world, held in Leipzig Germany (past performers have included Peter Murphy – solo artist and vocalist of Bauhaus, Steven Severin – bassist from and founding member of Siouxsie and the Banshees, Tyske Ludder, VNV Nation, My Dying Bride, Scandy – solo project of Norwegian Andy LaPlegua of Combichrist and Icon of Coil, and Nosferatu, along with many others).

Also to Sarah’s credit is the Chicago Goth Meetup Group. The group holds gatherings for members, typically at an art gallery or coffeehouse or another all-ages venue. Sarah leads things, including handing out nametags and making ‘goody’ bags which include a compilation cd of newer ‘dark’ music along with Halloween toys or coupons or fliers for bands or other events going on in and around Chicago. “I orchestrate it so that even if someone is shy, they don’t really have to initiate the conversation–I’ll do that,” says Sarah. “I’ve been doing it for over 4 years and it’s proven to be a really good, useful tool. It’s just a way for people with similar interests to meet and socialize without trying to strike up a conversation in a nightclub or at a concert, where it’s usually a little harder to do because usually people have already come with someone and it’s loud and dark and can be a little intimidating,” she continues.

American Gothic Productions is Sarah’s company which promotes bands and d.j. events of the “gothic, Ethereal, dark alternative, darkwave, electro, and industrial music” nature, according to their website, americangothicprod.com. She’s also co-owner of SpaceTime Tanks in Chicago, a ‘floatation and relaxation center’ where one can ‘float in secluded tranquility of warm salt water’ and/or enjoy a massage given by certified (massage) therapists.

3 thoughts on “Goth Talk with Scary Lady Sarah”

  1. Anonymous says:

    Ive been visiting your site for a long time now and i also always get a gem with your new posts. Appreciate your sharing.

  2. Anonymous says:

    I guess William spent all his profits from Faith and the Muse on Liposuction and Facelift xD

    So Scary Sarah is girlfriend 2.0 (?)

    Monica finally had enough of William’s chatting up and snogging pretty young swedish goth girls at after parties?

  3. I remember when Sarah took me back to the Orange Line in middle of January of 2003; it was 22 degrees below zero and it was with her then husband at the time. What happened with the falling out between me and Sarah [Rose] shouldn’t really had happened because I challenged Carrie Monster to try my career as a publsiher; what had her in a sense that she will not even have anything to do with me is when I pointed out that Delamancha who she praised was a childhood friend. She had a missed opportunity to learn about me or about Billy Porras if she and JV read The Cabbie Homicide. I created a conversation piece with the one project you have linked as I am in touch with Gitane Demone and got my buddy in Chicago, Leper discovered by Mick Mercer after he handled the introduction duties for my second namesake project.

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