330 - My Life as a Groupie



Speaker: Mark Worden (Standard British accent)

Jenny Fabian is the co-author (along with the late Johnny Byrne) of the cult novel Groupie, which was first published in 1969. The heroine is called “Katie,” but the book is really a fictionalised account of Jenny Fabian’s own experiences in London in the 1960s:

Jenny Fabian (Standard British accent)

The interesting thing about the Groupie situation is: were we... were we independent women... or girls, making our own choices, or were we brainwashed victims in the name of free love? It’s a difficult one to decide. Linguistically, “groupie” is... is... well, is it a dimin... it comes from “group” and so “groupie” puts you sort of outside the... the... the male bastion, so it diminishes you, but if you look... if you turn it round, the... the... the rock star, or whoever it is that you’re pursuing, or after, he could equally well be looked on as a commodity, because it’s the girl chasing the rock star, so it’s not just the girl that’s the commodity being, say, abused or used, but the girl is also chasing the rock star, to get the notch on her belt, too. So it works both ways. So I’ve often wondered who was in control in the... in the Groupie situation. There weren’t many... Pamela Des Barres was a sort of early “fuck and teller,” wasn’t she? And then, I suppose, there was Cynthia Plaster Caster, who’s actually a really nice girl. I’ve... I’ve met... I’ve... they’re both nice, but... Pamela told the truth as she knew it. Groupie is fictionalised, so that we could mess about with the story and have fun with it because we actually thought it was rather a funny situation that she was going through. She was on a mission, Katie in the book, which she achieves because at the end she rejects the big star because she’s her own person at the end of the book. And she may have been many other people’s along the way! But at the end she’s her own!

(Jenny Fabian was talking to Mark Worden)