BY JOHN ZEWIZZ
ADULT MATERIAL … Mature 18+ Only
A 3rd Post Reflection ov the SLEEP CHAMBER Historic performances in the 1990s at THE MIDDLE EAST Club in Cambridge, Mass. All Content Exclusive. Reproduction Permission iz granted yet must include all info that may be provided. I Really can not remember performing at THE MIDDLE EAST Club in Cambridge-Mass before 1991. It waz not until I included THE BARBITCHUETTES into the SLEEP CHAMBER Live performances were we allowed to get booked into THE MIDDLE EAST. Yet we had done many shows around Boston previously. THE RAT, MANRAY, GROUND ZERO, THE CAGE, THE PARADISE, AXIS and others. THE MIDDLE EAST waz a real local scene for hard rock with included national touring bands regularly. I waz a frequent visitor for their Middle Eastern food and atmosphere. The people booking the shows were quite proud ov their positions. Even personally knowing the brothers who owned the 2-story venue were disconnected to the live entertainment and were not interested in being involved in the booking ov the club. THE BARBITCHUETTE concept waz kinda new and I had to establish my potential. After they had heard ov the MANRAY Performances and other local Boston shows they gave SLEEP CHAMBER a chance in 1991. (Downstairs). Also az the headliner. I had respect from some ov the bouncers and bar crew. Yet the booking hippies were somewhat doubtful ov SLEEPCHAMBER charging $12. a head to enter. I assured them it waz not a problem. And it waz not. The problem waz we Sold-Out and received a substandard payment. I claimed ‘Foul’ .. only to find out almost 40% ov the audience waz on the Guest-List’ ov the promoters. At this stage ov THE BARBITCHUETTES it consisted ov girlfriends, ex-girlfriends and their friends. Yet within a year THE BARBITCHUETTES included the elite vixens ov most local strip clubs. See theze erotick performers would much rather entertain within a concept that offered them a professional class ov presentation instead ov a stinky, sleaze pit ov perversion lacking any sense ov respect or control over their own sexuality. Stripping waz a job. Being a BARBITCHUETTE waz being part ov a sisterhood. Their sexuality waz up to them to present. The way they wanted. Not demanded az exploitation for employment.
Being almost 10 years older than them and having a sense ov Musickal live performance it all organacly evolved on its own. There were times were the direction went off track. There waz alcohol, drugs and sex constantly distracting my vision ov a Fetish Burlesque performance. It waz not eazy at the beginning. Some BARBITCHUETTES would stop short ov performing and just walk across the stage to join up with a friend. Other times THE BARBITCHUETTES were influenced by other sexual underground performers and assumed that waz the intended direction. I waz not concerned with kissing or topless improv. It waz the S&M content and ‘shock’ attempts I discouraged. That waz too eazy.
Every time there waz a change in the Line-Up things were unpredictable. Sometimes good, sometimes not. Az the more professional strippers and uninhibited women outnumbered the original BARBITCHUETTES I lost some ov the original ones. Some were not interested in the bi-sexual interactions and felt pressured. And eventually left. Az bad az I felt I also noticed that My Pride ov BARBITCHUETTES were all hybrid elite sexual performers. Az a matter ov fact they were all 9’s and 10’s visually. All contained unique talents and acquired a confident stage presence. I never assumed it would reach the level ov entertainment it did. Never mind successfully last from 1990-2001.
There were constant Club owners and Booking agents requesting me to hook up with certain BARBITCHUETTES. It waz non-stop. I told them all the same thing. “I’m not a pimp… theze girls are professionals and only perform in SLEEPCHAMBER … nothing more, nothing less. Respect them. Offending them iz offending me …” There waz also the issue ov Band members dating THE BARBITCHUETTES. I waz against it. Yet I waz az guilty, involved in romantic interludes and relationships az some band members did. Differences were my concubine would develop a jealous possessive issue towards the other BARBITCHUETTES being too affectionate towards me on stage. The Band members would engage in a boy friend-girl friend conflict and I would loose a BARBITCHUETTE for a show or two because ov immature nonsense. The major BARBITCHUETTE and Queen ov the Pride waz Laura Graff. If not for her constant efforts in building up a female league ov fetish performers I know I could not give this part ov the Musickal concept the attention that she provided. Besides her being the only real Love-ov-my-Life she ran much ov the organizing ov retail products, took photographs ov the shows, waz featured on cover products, stared in some videos, designed covers for products and ran the organization while I waz writing and rekording Musick. I waz overwhelmed when I saw that DISCOGS presented her with her own Page ov Credit. I can not express my shock when they had to be very knowledgeable ov her history and efforts az a BARBITCHUETTE and vocalist on SLEEP CHAMBER Musick. Laura waz always there for me more than any other. Never refused any ov my requests. I personally wrote the SLEEPCHAMBER Songs for and about her: NO ONES HEART BEATS HARDER, SILVERMOON, DREAMS NEVER KUM TRUE. The only one who made SLEEPCHAMBER what iz waz besides me waz LAURA GRAFF -(R.I.P.)- 2001 – This Page iz in Memory ov her. – “Our Love Will Last Forever and a Moment” … John Zewizz 1991
Photos of THE MIDDLE EAST 1995 by LUNA TSUKI
SLEEP CHAMBER Never had a bad show at THE MIDDLE EAST Club. That iz not saying that any show goez off az planned. You are lucky if half the performance goez az planned. Its like a rocket. Once it starts, you can ot stop it till it iz completed its mission. You just work with the energy and flow ov the audience. I claim dominance right away …loud, aggressive and audience provoking. My adrenaline explodes and I spend the whole show trying to settle it. I make sure the drum machine haz no more than 15 seconds before the next song starts. That energy demands attention and there iz no time for chitter-chatter or short attention spans. With the Fog machine and Incense on full, most people drink very heavy. The 65 minute set goez by so fast. Its hard to remember mistakes. Usually sound mixes from the stage monitors. Or on occasion you are singing and the mic drops out in the middle ov the song. You got to be very careful not to step in puddles ov beer spilled on the stage. I got zapped a few times standing in beer and grabbing the mic … Shocking !!
ARTHUR WOZNIC joined SLEEP CHAMBER in 1989 and when we were rekording the vinyl LP “SLEEP OR FOREVER HOLD YOUR PPIECE” at BFVF Studio in Boston he waz busting my balls about having this track. He waz unaware I waz using the Lyrics from the 1st SLEEP CHAMBER vinyl Ep from 1982. He waz amazed I wrote the song so fast. Ov course he waz super pissed when he found out it waz a remake ov an early SLEEP CHAMBER Song. I met up with DARLINE VICTOR on day after not seeing her for years. Last release she played on waz SUBMIT TO DESIRE. She did a fantastick job on drums & Bass. I got her to play Bass at this show and a MANRAY Show a month later. She hated THE BARBITCHUETTES ! I have this Complete Show I will be uploading on THE MIDDLE EAST SHOWS #4. Along with a few other MIDDLE EAST SHOWS. The Set-Lists vary greatly …
THE MIDDLE EAST Club-Cambridge, Mass- March 10th 1994 FULL SHOW (Set List)- Nightshade & Lemmonaid / Catwoman/ Cockwork / Way ov The Flesh / Animal Magnetism / No Ones Heart Beats Harder / Beside Dannae / Silvermoon w/Laura / Snakebite / I Can Be Anyone-(Andrew Woolf) / Salome / Cobra Heartbeat / Kiss The Whip / Mrs Goodbar / BAND LINE-UP : Andrew Woolf / John Zewizz / Craig Wein / Ashley Swanson / Jay Kegan / Cameo BAND additions – Laura Chopelas- Sax / Harry Wallace- Soundman
WATCH FOR PART #4 ov …..”THE MIDDLE EAST SHOWS” … Some really Rare COMPLETE SHOWS and Exclusive pictures never published. Working on a Banking AP so you guys can get some ov this Rare Shit …and there will be much ..Archives opened ..New Releases !!!!