Rev. VainJayne – Musician/Artist Of The Flesh/Ordained Minister
Interview By: N. Schallon
Date: July 13, 2010
Rev. VainJayne, a self proclaimed, one woman Cirque De Sade! Her body is a living canvas of art. From tattoos to piercings, she has it all…and then some! A gifted artist with many diverse talents, a unique individual and a beautiful woman…both inside and out!
Check out our exclusive interview with RVJ below!
SB: I’ve known you for quite some time now, but for those who don’t, tell us a little about yourself.
VJ: I am an artist of the flesh, but any canvas will do. My efforts are exhausted throughout various mediums so long as the feeling strikes me. I have a passion for body adornment and ritual. Music is my love with my most notable project being the front woman for ‘the She-Devils’, providing vocals and guitar. I am a non-denominational minister having been ordained by Steven Haworth and BekiB in 2002. I have a serious interest in Parapsychology which leads me to go on paranormal investigations from time to time.
SB: You’ve been involved in many fascinating projects over the years. Which ones are you currently devoting your time to now?
VJ: I am currently focusing on photography, graphics and professional web design, development and print. A book is currently in the works displaying a collection of my art. The She-Devils are rumored to have a 2 song anniversary release due to be recorded this year. And I recently began making my dried flower sculptures once again.
SB: Of all your projects, which one gave you the most personal satisfaction?
VJ: My ministry has led me down some very difficult yet rewarding paths. Music has played a huge role in my life, however I must say body modification, manipulation and ritual has also “sculpted” me into who I am today. I really gain satisfaction from everything I put myself into.
SB: Tell us about your own body mods. Any plans for more in the future?
VJ: A masterpiece is never finished. Albeit, I’m far from a masterpiece either. (LOL) I have many intentions, enough resources, but unfortunately the funds fall short. Perhaps it does make you a bit more appreciative when you do obtain a new piece of work and a bit more sincere in your choices.
SB: I know you were into some pretty intense stuff in the past, ie; fleshpulls. Do you still participate in these types of rituals?
VJ: IF the opportunity is presented in the company of safe and competent professionals I would absolutely become involved.
SB: Explain to the masses what the concept is behind this type of “extreme” form of self expression.
VJ: I don’t understand why the world’s oldest art form known to man is still revered as “extreme” and “self-mutilating”. Cutting your hair, getting a manicure, even shaving are all modifications to the body yet no one puts any thought into it. One does need to be aware that body modification walks a fine line in association with mental disorders such as Dysmorphia and Cutting. General misdiagnosis is common to those who are modified and seek out mental help with no relation between their actual condition in which they are seeking help and their modifications. It’s all about the intent.
Let me also address under what conditions I do find body modification to be extreme for example, the unconsented modification to a minor such as piercing a newborn’s ears. Everyday parents take their children to the local mall to be pierced by an untrained employee who most likely started working there that day. The procedure is done with a “piercing gun” which has been “sterilized” with an alcohol swipe in between customers. Piercing guns are known to cause blunt force trauma, possible and likely infection, and use inferior jewelry. A piercing gun cannot be sterilized, the apparatus would melt if attempted. Therefore it carries a plethora of bloodbourne pathogens which can pass on a disease from one person to the next. All the while the parents remain completely unaware of what they just exposed their child to.
I don’t consider what I do to be extreme. I like stretched lobes and pretty pictures on my skin which were acquired in a clean environment with autoclaved materials and a sterile field. Doesn’t seem quite so extreme once you break it down in comparison to the piercing gun at the mall with the alcohol wipe does it?
SB: No it doesn’t.
SB: Are rituals something that you participated in for spiritual reasons or simply for performance art?
VJ: This is a tricky one. I had no intention nor interest in the performance aspect of suspension, flesh pulls, glass walking, etc, however when the opportunities did arise for me to be involved in such things it always happened to be because someone needed someone else to do it. Some people pass out getting hooks. Others get their hooks misplaced generally by an amateur which jeopardizes their experience and safety. Pretty soon you need a volunteer.
SB: Were you ever involved in or witnessed a suspension gone wrong? Give us the details!
VJ: My 1st suspension was botched due to ill placement of the hooks. I still went through what I believe to be the most physical pain I have ever experienced. I broke my skull when I was 12, and never experienced anything like that.
Of course I was one of the lucky ones. I’ve never witnessed it, but I’ve seen footage of hooks that were placed too shallow thus ripping in the suspension. Since suspension is illegal in most states, you had better hope someone there can stitch it up because the hospital isn’t going to be so receptive to the cause. The western medical world already wants to have you mentally evaluated for a piercing, try explaining this. – Yet getting a breast augmentation or a tummy tuck is completely acceptable.
SB: Were you into your “alternative” lifestyle before or after you met your wonderful husband?
VJ: I took interest in body modification at the tender age of 3. My mother had 3 ear piercings that I adored. I remember telling her one day, “Mommy, I want holes.” as I grabbed my lobes. She made me wait a year and when my attention had not waivered she took me to the doctor to get them done. I really admire that about her, the fact that she essentially tested my desire for such a thing. At 4 I began asking for a tattoo. I remember being scrubbed till I was raw every Sunday morning so I could go to church with my Grandma. Thank God for Cracker Jacks, they always had temporary tattoos that rocked!
When I was 15, I pierced my nostril and was forced to remove it thanks to the assholes who staffed the private school I attended even though I wore a tiny piece of a flesh colored band aid over it without being asked to. You’ve got kids going through metal detectors these days and this is my big “bad girl” story of my time. Ugh.
At 16, I received my 1st tattoo. Yes, I had switched schools by that time. No one cared so much at the public school, they had better things to occupy their time. By the time I was 18, I had pretty much fully committed myself to body modification with 3 tattoos and various piercings that started to become more noticeable as they spread rapidly over the next few years.
SB: Do you find that today people are more accepting of the “modified”community than they were ten years ago?
VJ: In my community, society as a whole have more or less embraced modification as an everyday form of art compared to 10 years ago. I can only imagine how it will change a grow in another decade.
SB: Tell us about your music.
VJ: I am the front woman and baritone guitarist for the She-Devils, founders of the genre ‘Cuntcore’ as 1st published in the MMD circa 2000. Known as Springfield’s loudest band. Dark, moody and violent, what more could you ask for? You can listen and download our 8 track demo here: http://theshedevils.vainjayne.com or now available via this site.
SB: How did the “cuntcore” genre evolve?
VJ: Cuntcore (aka Cuntrock) is a genre of female driven music founded by the She-Devils (formerly Baby Jayne), circa 1997. Originally, the definition in essence, was a humorous play on the term “Cock rock”. As the band developed the term carried over with the band’s name change in early 1999, and the She-Devils were now defining a new genre of music while taking stance against the Riot Grrrl movement.
A former Riot Grrrl myself, I dropped from the scene after experiencing first-hand sexual discrimination against my male band mates and the failure to respect individualistic differences when the She-Devils were invited to play the 1999 Riot Grrrl Convention in Memphis, Tennessee.
Riot Grrrl embraced a whole new feminist movement by promoting equality between the sexes in the male-driven world of rock-n-roll. In later experiences I discovered this was not the case at all. Riot Grrrl is just another name for male-hate, female driven angst. While the original intentions were good ideals, the truth to the situation is quite ugly and fell far from it’s expectations.
I now understand why reputable bands refused to be lumped into the genre. While I realize that there may be some out there who truly believe and uphold these ideals, the majority does not. I strongly urge any self-proclaimed “Grrrl” out there to re-think their position and involvement with this group.
The She-Devils were the first band to be published under the newly founded Cuntcore genre as recorded in the Midwest Music Directory, and Nil8 member Bruce Williams’ Orange Juice Records, in 2000. Soon after, a plethora of girl bands started popping up screaming “Cuntcore” as their new feminist genre. After releasing their debut cd, “Drugtrash”, the She-Devils felt that is was time to step back and begin getting more serious about their music and in doing so dropped away from the genre it created. Today you will find girl bands, and oddly enough some male groups, using the definition.
I’m not happy how it ended up being manipulated. It was as if these new bands coming into the genre twisted Cuntcore back into the direction Riot Grrrl was headed. I will not be responsible nor to blame for a group of angsty females with an unfounded case of male-hate. I’m not a feminist, I am an equalist, and that was what it was all about.
SB: Who were some of your biggest influences in music that made youdecide that you wanted to be a “rock star”?
VJ: “Rock Star”. That’s something you realize only exists in the mind of a 5 year old once you’ve seen how this business really works.
SB: LOL, very true!
VJ: Sure it’s nice to have your picture taken here and there but those people are working hard behind the scenes and ready to go broke just like anyone else. I’ll admit, the glam is enticing but I think I’ll maintain my where, when, why’s and what’s.
I would say I draw my influences from Hole, Babes In Toyland, Unsane, Alice Cooper and Lynyrd Skynyrd. I get influenced more by individual songs rather than bands, like The Cult’s ‘Firewoman’, Motorhead’s ‘Ace of Spades’ -or- Motley Crue’s ‘Kickstart My Heart’. That’s the kind of playing that really makes me want to improve. Great guitar songs. Vocal influence is a bit difficult. I definitely took influence by Courtney Love, PJ Harvey, and Grace Slick (Jefferson Airplane). All excellent women in their fields.
SB: You are quite the entrepreneur RVJ. Along with all of your other projects, you still find time to run your own Web Design Company; KrownDesign. Tell us how you got started in the business and where you draw inspiration for your designs from.
VJ: I started my web existence in January of ’99, via WebTV. That in itself makes me laugh. I met my husband not long after that (NOT through WebTV for the record), and he had a real computer. I was dying to have a site put up for my piercing shop and he had just happened to be a college taught web developer. Two fed up years later and still no website I started looking at code and what I couldn’t figure out he would guide me through. In July of 2001, I opened my 1st website HateFlesh.com. With experience brings knowledge and with time a whole lot of it. 11 years later he comes to me with questions. I truly thank him for the knowledge he shared with me so I could get to where I am at today.
As far as inspiration goes, I’ve noticed there are generally two types of web designers: ones who are good at making a site functional and those who can make a good design but lack the former. I believe beauty AND functionality are what it takes to make a good site. I see sites out there with some awesome capabilities but it’s hard to take them seriously because even though they can code a good script they’re an eye sore. Then there are some that have such a beautiful design but there’s no substance. Combine the two and the possibilities become endless.
SB: Now for some personal stuff….What do you do for fun in your spare time?
VJ: Recently I’ve taken a serious interest in terrariums and gardening. I love keeping arachnids. And my #1 free time activity would be playing Pet Society on Facebook. Add me: http://www.facebook.com/vainjayne – Quit laughing.
SB: LOL OK!
SB: So, are you a chick flick kinda girl, a horror queen, or some where in between?
VJ: Comedy and Horror – even better if you can combine them. My most recent love would have to be ‘Repo! The Genetic Opera’! It goes right up there next to ‘The Rocky Horror Picture Show’ and ‘Reefer Madness: The Musical’. I do love some Rob Zombie and Tim Burton films.
SB: OK we all know nobody is perfect, so tell us YOUR bad habits.
VJ: Menthol cigarettes and Starbucks.
SB: What causes are you a supporter of these days and what would you tell our readers to convince them they should support your cause too?
VJ: I strongly support NORML (National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws). Some basic general facts about the substance:
Marijuana is far less dangerous than alcohol or tobacco. Around 50,000 people die each year from alcohol poisoning. Similarly, more than 400,000 deaths each year are attributed to tobacco smoking. By comparison, marijuana is nontoxic and cannot cause death by overdose.
Enforcing marijuana prohibition costs taxpayers an estimated $10 billion annually and results in the arrest of more than 847,000 individuals per year — far more than the total number of arrestees for all violent crimes combined, including murder, rape, robbery and aggravated assault.
NORML supports the eventual development of a legally controlled market for marijuana, where consumers could buy marijuana for personal use from a safe legal source. This policy, generally known as legalization, exists on various levels in a handful of European countries like The Netherlands and Switzerland, both of which enjoy lower rates of adolescent marijuana use than the U.S. Such a system would reduce many of the problems presently associated with the prohibition of marijuana, including the crime, corruption and violence associated with a “black market.”
Marijuana, or cannabis, as it is more appropriately called, has been part of humanity’s medicine chest for almost as long as history has been recorded. Of all the negative consequences of marijuana prohibition, none is as tragic as the denial of medicinal cannabis to the tens of thousands of patients who could benefit from its therapeutic use.
Modern research suggests that cannabis is a valuable aid in the treatment of a wide range of clinical applications. These include pain relief — particularly of neuropathic pain (pain from nerve damage) — nausea, spasticity, glaucoma, and movement disorders.Marijuana is also a powerful appetite stimulant, specifically for patients suffering from HIV, the AIDS wasting syndrome, or dementia. Emerging research suggests that marijuana’s medicinal properties may protect the body against some types of malignant tumors and are neuroprotective. Currently, more than 60 U.S. and international health organizations support granting patients immediate legal access to medicinal marijuana under a physician’s supervision.
Educate yourself and others, visit norml.org for more information.
SB: What do you feel that is happening in the world today that will have the greatest effect on the next generation?
VJ: A lack of spirituality and education. I believe it is a parent’s responsibility to provide and present the spiritual choices and freedoms one has in his or her own life, while our school systems need to step it up a few notches. I know people in their 30’s that still can’t read. That’s a true sign of the system up to and including parents, teachers and faculty failing our children miserably. There’s just no excuse at that extreme.
SB: Where do you see yourself in the next 5-10 years?
VJ: I hope to be happy, healthy, and doing something I love with the ones I love.
SB: What do you want people to remember most about you when you leave this Earth?
VJ: Oddly enough my sense of humor and my ability to love. I would like to think my music and art could leave a positive impression of some kind.
SB: Thanks so much for taking the time to share yourself with us!
VJ: It is I who should be thanking you for yet another wonderful opportunity. The pleasure is surely all mine. Nancy, you’ve been a wonderful friend through the many years I’ve known you. I am always happy to offer my support to you and your projects. Thank you again. – RVJ