Xiphias Gladius (xiphias) wrote,

Things I Learned: Jessica "Decca" Mitford opened for Cyndi Lauper

So -- brief background: the Mitford sisters were six sisters of a minor aristocratic family in England, born in the early 20th century, who were celebrities partially for their style, and partially for their politics. One was a close friend of Adolph Hitler, one was a fascist, one was a novelist, one was -- actually, is -- a Duchess, one managed to actually have an uneventful enough life that she doesn't have her own Wikipedia entry, and then there was Decca Mitford -- Communist, civil-rights activist, and muckraking journalist.

I was vaguely aware that Decca Mitford is one of those people who's just plain built on too many character points, and is far too much of a Mary Sue to be believable. Fighting fascists in Spain while her sisters WERE fascists; fighting Nazis while her sisters WERE Nazis, moving to the United States to fight racism while her sisters WERE racists ... rich, beautiful, brilliant writer, wrote an expose about the American funeral industry... I kind of vaguely knew that stuff, or, at least, wouldn't have been startled by it.

But did you know that she opened for Cyndi Lauper once? It's all Kathi Kamen Goldmark's fault, of course: Goldmark was the genius behind the Rock Bottom Remainders, the band that includes Stephen King, Amy Tan, Roy Blount Jr, and Dave Barry. At Goldmark's urging, Mitford formed "Decca and the Dectones" -- a band who played covers of Beatles tunes on cowbell and kazoo.

And, yeah. There was a free concert on the roof of Virgin Records in San Francisco, for which Lauper was the headliner. And Decca and the Dectones were one of the opening acts.
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