More Grunge Blogging: My Favorite Drummer of the 90s

Patty Schemel of Hole, #2 pencil on paper, c.1995

This is a picture I drew in probably 1995, when I was 16, of my #1 musician-crush at the time: Patty Schemel, the drummer from Hole.  Classic high-schooler art, in that unmistakeable high-school-art style: slightly disproportionate but gently shaded #2 pencil drawing after a photo of a celebrity in a magazine; invested with deep, fierce teenage love.  It’s from a sketchbook which is full of various doodles, some weirdly-proportioned sketches from life (why did I always draw legs so short?), cartoons and comics, and occasional other drawings from photographs; but this is the one which I seem to have taken the most time over.

I saw her, as I recall, focussed on briefly in footage from a Hole live show, and though it was a brief glimpse, there was just something about the way she moved, playing those drums.  It may seem like a pretty random celebrity crush to have, even for a kid, but she was badass and beautiful behind the kit and adorable in photos and interviews.  (I never understood why it was Melissa Auf Der Maur that everybody I knew, boy or girl, had the hots for; she seemed kind of boring to me. )  I would strain my eyes peering at MTV, waiting for the half-seconds she would appear in Hole videos; I clipped out every picture of the band with her in them and put them on my wall; I used the fledgling Internet to download every interview and picture of her I could find, back when jpegs would download in stages, slowly resolving from big ugly blocks into a washed-out, still-pixelly picture over the course of five minutes. I was totally smitten, with this faraway obscurely famous lesbian who was 12 years older than me.

Now she’s got a movie coming out, about her life in Hole and doing drugs and fucking up and getting back on her feet, I guess, and having just watched the clips on YouTube, I can say I am still totally smitten by this faraway obscurely famous lesbian who is 12 years older than me.  Maybe thanks to those anti-commercial alterna-punk years, I always feel kind of weird about promoting products by people I don’t know, but fuck it, it’s my blog and I love Patty Schemel and I can’t wait to see her movie and you should go see it too.

pretty much the only solo photoshoot she was ever in

Funnily enough, my #1 musician-crush of nowadays is Pikacyu, from the sadly ended Afrirampo.  Drummers, man!

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1 Comment

Filed under Inspirations, just writing

One response to “More Grunge Blogging: My Favorite Drummer of the 90s

  1. Anonymous

    Rad drawing John. I like the idea that the lovingly crafted #2 pencil drawing of a celeb copied from a photo executed on printer paper is THE archetypal American art form. Wouldn’t it be cool to mount a show entirely of examples of this format? This seems like an awesomely challenging curatorial task…

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