For many people, strippers and Rock and Roll go together like rum and Coke (or heroin and death for that matter). Both lifestyles are associated with sex, drugs, travel and lots of heavy partying. Perhaps that's why people forge a mental connection between the two.
By late 1989, I had developed a good reputation at the magazine I was working for. As one of three music writers I was responsible for covering many of the acts that gigged regularly in the west end of Toronto. I had already interviewed the likes of Mick Taylor, Nash the Slash and had developed a niche as the classic rock specialist at a time when classic rock was still a happening part of the scene. That's why I found my next assignment a little confusing. I knew something was up the way my editor, Stephen, hemmed and hawed as he spoke to me on the phone. The conversation went something like this. Keep in mind the prevailing rock attitude in 1989 was heterosexual in the extreme.
Stephen: Ummm, your next assignment is a little different. It's a uh, well - they call themselves the Hotshots.
Me: What sort of music do they play?
Stephen: Well ummm. They don't. They dance though. Have you ever heard of Chippendales dancers?
Me: What? You mean they're the female equivalent?
Stephen: No. They're guys.
Me: Male strippers?! You want me to cover male strippers!? I'm the rock guy?
Stephen: Well they kind of go together you know. Strippers and rock bands.
Me: Groupies maybe. Female groupies. These are guys!!
I think he knew his logic was flawed so he changed his tact. This story needed some "delicacy" in its delivery and he felt I was the only one who could write it and keep it clean. It was probably a lie, but it worked and I accepted the story. Thankfully I didn't have to go see one of their shows. I could interview their spokes-stripper on the phone.
The guy I interviewed was actually very cool and had a good sense of humor about what he did. The article was relatively painless to put together and I even had enough confidence in my masculinity to put my name on the by-line.
Looking back on my article the thing that amuses me most is the line about their group getting into a fight with Chippendales over the rights to use a name once associated with old furniture and two animated chipmunks.
I am sure the fight was metaphorical and involved legal teams rather than fisticuffs, but I still have this Jerry Springer type image in my mind of a battle-royale between the two groups and all you can see are massive shoulders and little pre-tied bow ties flying everywhere.
As to Mr. Lyndall, whom I interviewed. I tried looking him up on the web without success. He must have retired from stripping to a quiet public relations job somewhere - his co-workers quite unaware of his past.