sex pistols

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I Deserve My T-Shirt. Do You?

Published May 15, 2022 by Maryanne
Summer, 2019 at Randy Now’s Man Cave

The above photo is from a super fun memory almost three summers ago at Randy Now’s Man Cave in Bordentown, NJ.

My husband and I went to see a Sex Pistols tribute band called “No Future.” They totally kicked ass, but that’s not what this post is about. The post is about me wearing a Sex Pistols t-shirt.

Why would I wear a Sex Pistols t-shirt? Because I love the band. And that’s how it should be. There is no false advertising on my body. I listen the band. I have both albums, “Never Mind The Bollocks Here’s The Sex Pistols” and “The Great Rock ‘n’ Roll Swindle.” I also have albums from their spin off bands, like Public Image Ltd., The Professionals, Neurotic Outsiders, and even the super crappy “Sid Sings.”

I’ve met all of the Sex Pistols except for Sid Vicious and Glen Matlock. And I KNOW that Glen Matlock is the REAL bassist who played on the album. I saw The Professionals many times. I saw Public Image Limited.

I fully support The Sex Pistols.

See where I’m going with this? I am a Sex Pistols fan, and I deserve to wear a Sex Pistols t-shirt. Or any other band t-shirt because if someone stops me in the street to talk about the music, I will be able to contribute to the conversation.

A few days ago I ran into a stranger at Whole Foods who was wearing a Ramones t-shirt.

I excitedly blurted out, “I like the Ramones too!” Again, I have their albums, met all of them, and saw them perform more times than I remember. I may not be as fanatical as some Ramones fans, but I can definitely carry on a conversation wjtb a another Ramones fan.

However, this girl just shook her head and said, “I never heard their music. I collect rock t-shirts.”

WTF?!?!!? Can someone tell me, I’m not the only person who sees what is wrong with this picture?!?!? Why on earth would you wear a t-shirt of a band you are completely unfamiliar with? Do lyrics not mean anything to you? Do you not know what you are representing? And you are totally fucking with true fans. You, my dear, are a joke.

And stupid me, because this isn’t the first time something like this has happened. People have been wearing band t-shirts, just to be cool or fashionable for as long as I remember. I told myself over and over again, “Do not talk to people with band t-shirts on. Ever.” Because there is no truth in it.

Way back in the 1980s, there was a dance club called Aldo’s Hideaway. I saw a girl with a Bauhaus t-shirt on. Bauhaus is another favorite band of mine. Again, several albums from Bauhaus, including the spin-off bands and solo efforts of the musicians/artists. Also seen Bauhaus, and Peter Murphy (many times) as well as Daniel Ash. I’ve also had the luxury in my career to interview Peter Murphy.

And stupid me, I uttered those three dumb words, “I like Bauhaus.”

“Wha?” she asked in a stupor. Not sure if it was a drunken stupor, but it was a stupor–a response lacking enthusiasm.

I repeated myself, “I like Bauhaus.”

No response.

“The band on your shirt!”

Her response, “I just like the shirt.”

Oh. …

It absolutely makes no sense. And if you like the shirt, why not explore the music?

I called Ramones Girl out on her bullshit. In a nice, friendly way, of course. “You Tube them, they’re great.” Smile.

I mean, I love those adorable colored dancing bears that represent The Grateful Dead, but it will be a cold day in hell before I wear a dancing bear t-shirt. I have no right to. I never saw The Grateful Dead. I do not have any Grateful Dead albums. And I can count the amount of Dead songs I actually know on one hand.

I would never disrespect a Grateful Dead fan by wearing a colored dancing bear shirt even though I LIKE the shirt and the bears are so freaking cute.

No, it’s not cool.

So, to all you people out there who are into rock t-shirts, I encourage you to explore the band. You are what you wear. If you don’t know the band and if you don’t support the band, you don’t deserve to wear their t-shirts.

Cool photo found on Facebook

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My Prized Guitar Pick Collection

Published July 7, 2013 by Maryanne

SAM_1496The late Dee Dee Ramone played bass with this very pick!

As some of you know I’m a major music fan and went to hundreds of shows over the years. And over the years, especially in my younger day, I was always up front at the shows and therefore built up quite a collection of guitar picks from famous guitarists and bassists. Tonite I present to you, from my very own scrap book, some of the more impressive ones!

I saw The Ramones play so many times, and the above is from Dee Dee, the bassist.

SAM_1491From legendary late Johnny Thunders

I was too young to see the original New York Dolls, but I followed Johnny Thunders all over NYC, seeing him perform at least 25 times (the most I’ve seen any performer!)

SAM_1505Steve Jones 

I was too young to see Steve Jones play guitar with the Sex Pistols, but followed him all over NYC and New Jersey when he played with The Professionals a few years later. Amazing guitarist and song writer, great guy too!

SAM_1485Richie Stotts of The Plasmatics

SAM_1494More picks from Richie Stotts, Plasmatics

The Plasmatics were always my favorite live band and it was so easy to get picks from them, as I have six from Richie Stotts. And for years I’ve kept pieces of flower pots that Wendy O. Williams smashed onstage, as well as pieces from the demolished television sets, etc.

I love how banged up Stotts’s picks are! How great is that?

From what I can remember, other picks I have include: Steve Diggle of The Buzzcocks, Dick Dale, and Rick Nielson from Cheap Trick.

Funny story about the Cheap Trick pick. It was in the early 1990s when rubber dresses were in vogue. (Remember Pamela Anderson in “Barbed Wire” or Heather Locklear on the cover of Details magazine?) At the time I was young, single, good looking and in excellent shape. So, being in vogue, I had a rubber dress too. Mine was similar to the one Heather Locklear wore on the cover of Details magazine. I was in the front, wearing my rubber dress and Rick Nielson kept trying to get pick in my cleavage! Well, he succeeded and I still have the pick.

Another time, I’ll share set lists! ENJOY!

Chapter 2 of My Music Book

Published March 26, 2013 by Maryanne

Lori BurtonLori Burton inspired me! (Photo from Google Search)

Here is chapter 2 of the music memoir I am working on. Any feedback appreciated.

CHAPTER 2 – Number 9 Dream

High school was not a fun place for me and I never got why. It wasn’t until many later years, when I started my own home-based business that I learned I am way too creative to live by any structure. And I am not a team player either.

I did my duty and got good grades in some classes like art, music theory (I, II and III), creative writing, English and child development. And got by the skin of my teeth in other areas, including gym, which is surprising because later in life I became a health advocate who exercises regularly and follows a pretty impressive health regimen.

I found it so hard to fit in with other kids. No one really interested me except a dreamy poetic soul named Sandy who I became friends with. Sandy, like me, wore satin pants to school. She once told me, “When I brought these pants I said, ‘Good-bye to Sandra Dee’” quoting from the popular movie “Grease.” Like me, Sandy was trying to find her way. But Sandy found her niche with the smart kids who wrote for the school newspaper and those who went to Bible studies; whereas I never found my niche, only a part of me could connect with any given group. I just couldn’t commit myself as others did. I was too much a free spirit.

I crossed my school days off the calendar like a prisoner counting down his jail time. I dreamed about being like the rock chicks and rock muses I saw in Rock Scene magazine. I bleached my hair blonde to look like they did – Cyrinda Foxe, Debbie Harry, Cherie Curie and Nancy Spungeon.

Needless to say, this did not fly in 1979 where suburban kids in Little Falls, New Jersey were still grasping on to the Summer of Love and thought Jim Morrison was God. All fine and good, but at the time I fancied myself a modern girl at heart and was more into The Sex Pistols (but kept my Doors records stashed away in a closet because every so often I liked hearing the song “Touch Me.”)

My room didn’t even look like the rooms of other kids – well, at least not the girls, who kept dolls on their canapé beds. The walls of my bedroom were plastered with Creem magazine covers. And my prized collection was a beautiful bookcase my mom got me, where the bottom part was large enough to fit records. My growing album collection was filling up the bookcase nicely.

Kids in school threw rocks at me because I wore a lot of eye make-up and had bleached blonde hair with the roots showing. Extremely tame compared to what rock kids eventually morphed into in years to come. Today young people have magenta hair and facial piercings, and depending on where you live, it’s socially accepted. But sad to say bullying is still a very serious issue, which no child or teen should have to endure.

Even though my musical tastes were more modern than my school mates, I did get along fine with my music theory class and spent some time hanging out with some of the guys in that class, like my friend Teddy, an easy going, laid back Dead Head who was very nice to me and allowed me into his circle, even though some of his friends didn’t get me.

Teddy had a very cool cousin, George Hall who went to another school in West Milford, but came down to visit from time to time. George and I were both very into music and became friends fast. We went to see the movie “Hair” one night and the next night George invited me over to dinner at his father’s.

His father, Warren Hall, lived in a townhouse, The Claridge House in Verona owned by his girlfriend, Lori Burton (Cicala). Lori was a famous singer and song writer. She sang back up with May Pang and John Lennon on his song, “Number 9 Dream.”

The gold record was hanging up in the dining room. She also wrote the song, “Ain’t Gonna Eat out My Heart Anymore” which was recorded by the Rascals, as well as one of my favorite bands at the time, Angel. So needless to say, I was impressed to have met her.

I got along great with Lori and she was a loyal friend to me even when not in my presence. George once told me he shared with Lori that I was having problems with other kids in school because I had bleached blonde hair and wore heavy eye make-up.

But Lori defended me and said, “So what’s a little bit of eye make-up?” Little did she know at the time her words changed my life.

While guidance counselors and the school psychiatrist felt it best that I change my image to fit in with the other students, I stuck to my guns and continued to be the “me” I felt most comfortable with.

The only time I ever looked somewhat like the other students was one Halloween when I came to school without make-up and wore jeans and a Grateful Dead t-shirt I borrowed from a girl who borrowed my clothes to be a rock chick. Everyone told me I looked pretty without make-up, but it just wasn’t me. I couldn’t wait to get back to being the real Maryanne again the next day. Back to normal. My normal.

Thank you, Lori Burton, for making me realize that everyone has their own personality and should embrace wherever they are at – at that moment.

No one should change for anyone. I’m glad I didn’t.

 By Maryanne Christiano-Mistretta, COPYRIGHT 2013

St. Patrick’s Memory from 2003

Published March 16, 2013 by Maryanne


I was going through some of my old journals and I found this story from St. Patrick’s weekend, 2003. I was 39-years-old.

I was in midtown Manhattan with a friend and saw the play, “H.P. Lovecraft: Nightmare Suite” at the Common Basis Theatre. The play was decent, but the real fun was the bus ride home.

The night before I was out and did some heavy duty drinking, so after the play I was very tired. I just wanted to get back to my place and share a bottle of wine with my friend. I figured I could take a nap on the bus ride home and be rejuvenated 40-minutes later when the bus reached my apartment.

But no such luck.

In the seat right behind us, there was this annoying teenager, thinking the world revolved around her, yakking into her cell phone. Her voice was beyond piercing and she wouldn’t shut up!

Since I couldn’t nap and she was so irritating, in order to drown her out I decided to be equally as obnoxious and have some fun by singing Sex Pistols songs at the top of my lungs in a cockney accent.

After singing, “Wanna Be Me,” “Anarchy in the U.K.” and “No Feelings” I moved on to themes from children’s television shows like Mr. Rogers’ “It’s a beautiful day in the neighborhood …” and the Flintstones theme — also in a cockney accent. Then I sang a punk rock version of “Born Free.”

Surprisingly, no one on the bus got pissed off and the teenager finally stopped talking on her cell. So I stopped to catch my breath.

After a brief moment of silence, a couple of drunken Irish men started singing Irish songs. I thought it was very polite of them to wait until my “concert” was over and they were really good. In fact they were so good that my friend and I applauded after every song and encouraged them to: “Sing another one! Sing another one!” So they did.

They entertained us all the way to the bus stop in front of my apartment in New Jersey. I almost didn’t want to get off the bus!

I filed this memory under “The Day I was the Warm-up Act for a Wonderful Drunken Irish Singing Group.” Probably one of the best St. Patrick’s weekends I ever had! And I’m not even Irish.