The Unsinkable Janice Dickinson
By Noah Michelson
Supermodel, reality TV star, owner of her own modeling agency, mother -- Janice Dickinson has crammed a lot of living into her 50-odd years (her real age, like her claim that she coined the term "supermodel," is hard to confirm). Her newest ventures -- including a one-woman show, a new reality series, and a foray into the music industry -- prove that there's little she won't try, regardless of how unsuited for the challenge she might seem to be. And it's that unsinkable drive that we probably love most about her -- that and her dirty, straight shooting, gossiping mouth.
We caught up with Dickinson just after she had descended upon the Warren Tricomi Salon in the Plaza Hotel with her daughter, Savannah (Savvy), for a day of pampering and $10,000 worth of Great Lengths hair extensions. Though we'd heard from reliable sources that she can be a nightmare interview, she was gracious, charming, goofy, and she looked remarkable (in person there's none of the harshness that the camera can sometimes add to her face). We chatted about Lady Gaga, her fear of and love for Perez Hilton, getting hit on by Simon Cowell, dating, being gay in the fashion industry, and Ricky Martin's exit from the closet.
Out: OK, are you ready Janice?
Janice Dickinson: [To her daughter] Savvy, look at his aqua Reeboks, they're the same color as your nails! Fabulous.
Thank you. They're very '80s, right? Though I hear the early '90s are what's coming back in now.
Look, we've had '60s, '70s, '80s, '90s -- the deal is I've been there, done that and I'm over all of it.
So what do you want now?
I want new. New and I want memory. I want memory. I've lost 30 years of my memory.
Let's start by talking about your venturing into the music industry. Why now?
The gays need more money. My gays need more money for AIDS and AIDS research. Elton John, pediatric AIDS -- we need to find a cure for AIDS. I'm obsessed. Here's the deal: I love my daughter, she's out there, Mother's Day is coming, Mother's Day to all you queers, but we need to find more money for AIDS. That is why I decided to do music -- to raise money for AIDS, more research, and the cure for fucking AIDS. Thank you.
Tell me a little bit about the song, "Crazy," that your publicist played over the phone for me.
Well I'm... crazy. You're crazy. We're all crazy together. And I don't know if that's the song that's going to be released, because I always want more provocative, more' [lowers her voice to a whisper so that her daughter can't hear her] sex. Rock 'n' roll. I was going to say drugs, but I don't do any. Sex, rock 'n' roll, and formerly sex, drugs and rock 'n' roll. There's no drugs in my life. So, just energy, dance music -- rock on. I've played these songs all over the United Kingdom and my queens love it. We went to [London nightclub] G-A-Y and rocked. We went to Ireland and we rocked. So where there's a song, there's Janice, and there's going to be dance music from Janice.
Earlier before we officially started the interview, we were talking a bit about Lady Gaga. She's the queen of the dance floor right now'
Oh is she? I love how Stefani Germanotta has chosen the art world as a reference. Phenomenal. Stefani -- Lady Gaga -- has to refer to the art world as reference, because honey she ain't no beauty to look at, but, she becomes beautiful in the eyes of the beholder -- the way her performance transcends her persona. Her music to me -- I mean come on -- "Paparazzi" and all these kitschy little songs, they're good, really good. To see her live in Vegas, at the Mirage -- I walked out. I'm sorry. I watched her at the piano and I had to go out and have a' [once again lowers her voice] smoke. We walked out because I was thinking, Stop talking about "Your sex, I want your sex." I don't give a fuck about her I wanting "your sex." But you know, I get where she's coming from, and it's phenomenal, along with the perception that her gays put together her performance art for her. But it's all who you surround yourself with -- the team. Example: me -- Janice Dickinson -- I wouldn't be shit if it weren't for my gays. I wouldn't be even sitting here if it weren't for late great Way Bandy, for the late great Ara Gallant, for the late great Richard Avedon, for the late great every single queen from the '70s, '80s, '90s that made me La Janice. Match that Gaga! Aight?