I will confess that when i was growing up all the kids in the neighborhood and at school gave me the moniker of “Monster Girl. In retrospect, I consider it a great honor. I have always identified with “the other” or ” otherness”. And i spent a great deal of my childhood exploring the world through the lens of imagination. I emancipated myself from the often cruel treatment i felt from the outside world, and the pressure i felt in trying to keep up with what was perceived as “normal” So I turned inward and I turned toward the dark light. I found comfort in the mysterious landscapes of the macabre and haunting tales translated on film.And so I developed an intense appreciation for the art of Horror.
I particularly love the works of Val Lewton and Mario Bava. The visually nightmarish landscapes that are hauntingly beautiful and surreal. I love Curtis Harrington’s “horror of personality” with his characterizations of the fractured mind and injured soul that do extreme harm in order to define themselves.The grand days of Universal and the timelessly atmospheric and socially conscious creep shows of the ’70s.The campy and ridiculous cautionary fun of the ’50’s sci-fi films
The incredibly atmospheric tales that were visually stunning and narrative that were way ahead of their time, in Boris Karloff’s Thriller anthology television series. The visually self conscious and epic morality plays of The Outer Limits. and the quirky and charming Kolchak The Night Stalker series that eventually inspired The X-Files.
There are very noble and introspective ideas not so hidden in the genre of horror and sci-fi. Horror explores the world in a very poetic way, though dark and often disturbing,it examines the details of our existence by way of the fantastical, fable,allegory and the mysterious. These themes chosen by film makers make them cinematic philosophers, anthropologists and social voyeurs.
These creature features and chillers, became my companions and helped me find myself in the darkened hallway of my youth and yet still do, and will forever be a great inspiration to me in my work as a songwriter as well as being a more sympathetic person and lends to having more of an expansive visionary sensibility. These themes and certain characters became my extended family. They also became the mirror with which I viewed myself and the world.
I wish that Boris Karloff had been my grandfather. He was a gentle soul and a comforting image to me even at his most ghoulish, and I wish that Vincent Price had been my uncle. To have been read a bedtime story by either of these two wonderful characters would have been a truly great privilege.
So that is just a bit of what impels me to now write about this monumentally significant genre and the impression it has left on my life…