London's latest rock goddess has a killer sound and a look that girls die for.
Wendy James is in love with Bob Dylan, Patti Smith, The Sex Pistols and pink lipstick. The lead singer of Transvision Vamp, a punky British group that's just released it's second LP, Velveteen, she's convinced that rock 'n' roll can change your life. Look what it's done for hers. Five years ago James ditched drama school to form a band with her then-boyfriend-but-still-best-friend, guitarist Nick Sayer. Today the 23 year old not-quite-natural blond from Surrey is a pop star with her own wannabes, "It's odd," she says of her bottled blond fans, I've never thought I looked distictive."
Oh Sure! Though she's traded in last year's antique lingerie and combat stompers for jeans, halters and bangles -, "It's a shame that Madonna ruined crucifixes for everyone" - James still looks, if not feels like a sex symbol. "Frankly," she says, "I think boys are intimidated by me."
Who could blame them? Off stage this amiable rebel speaks in a hoarse whisper that's the sure result of screaming her head off in a rock 'n' roll frenzy every night. Now James is psyched for a long hard slog across America - making sure to play CBGB, the temple of Punk - to spread the message of Transvision Vamp. "Teenagers have become very complacent," James explains. "They buy any old junk, but music is meant to provoke and inspire us. It isn't meant to be safe."
Certainly not in her hands.