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  • -My next guest is a legendary music journalist

  • and lifelong New Yorker.

  • For over four decades, she's been interviewing

  • the biggest artists on the planet.

  • Now she has a new book called,

  • "Nobody Ever Asked Me About the Girls,"

  • which is available now.

  • Here is Lisa Robinson.

  • Lisa, oh, my gosh, thank you so much for coming on the show.

  • It's great -- I can't believe I got you to Zoom.

  • This is so exciting. -I can't either.

  • It's only the third time I've done it,

  • but for you, absolutely.

  • Thanks for having me on.

  • -Oh, please. I love you.

  • Obviously, I've known you for a long time.

  • I will say this one thing about you that I think is true,

  • but anytime I saw you at a party or an event or something,

  • I always knew it was a good party because --

  • -Oh, thank you.

  • -That meant I was in the right place.

  • -I went to an awful lot of them,

  • so there must've been a lot of good parties.

  • -Yeah, it meant I was in the right place.

  • I go, "Okay, I'm in the right party."

  • For those who are not familiar with your work,

  • I want to give them an idea

  • of how incredible your career has been.

  • You've been a contributing editor at "Vanity Fair"

  • for over 20 years.

  • "Rolling Stone" has called you rock journalism's top insider.

  • "Washington Post" says you're a pioneering music journalist.

  • Basically anything that's happened in music

  • over the past 45 years, you've had a front-row seat.

  • Do you agree with these?

  • -The pioneering thing is hilarious

  • because it conjures up an image

  • of, like, a covered wagon going west or something.

  • I'm not that old. -Yeah, no, but I like that.

  • -I was one of the few women in the '70s

  • who managed to break into that boys club.

  • I traveled with Zeppelin, I traveled with the Stones,

  • and then it all sort of fell into place.

  • Just as Keith Richards says, "It was a lucky accident."

  • And I just started interviewing people.

  • And I think the reason I was able to have that kind of access

  • was that I wasn't a reviewer, I wasn't a critic,

  • I wasn't judging anyone.

  • I was a fan like you are.

  • And, you know, I just loved talking to them about music.

  • I mean, even with the guys, Mick Jagger,

  • I would talk about shoes.

  • We would gossip about other musicians.

  • He would ask me "What's Bowie like?

  • What's Bryan Ferry doing" when he was dating

  • Bryan Ferry's girlfriend behind his back.

  • But that kind of stuff would happen all the time,

  • and this went on for about 30 years.

  • -Yeah. -Meanwhile, I interviewed

  • hundreds of women, and nobody ever asked me about the girls.

  • Hence the title of the book.

  • And I figured, "Wait a minute. I've talked to Tina Turner,

  • Joni Mitchell, Stevie Nicks --"

  • all the way up now to Adele, Rihanna, Beyoncé, Gaga,

  • and I just thought, "I'm a woman. They're women."

  • And I wanted to tell some of their stories.

  • -Yeah, and who better to tell these stories?

  • I want to read one line from here.

  • It says, "When a man becomes successful and famous,

  • he gets more of everything.

  • When a woman gets successful and famous, she loses something."

  • What do you mean by that? -Yeah.

  • Well, I think Gaga said that, but also the idea

  • was Bonnie Raitt told me when she was married her husband

  • was always referred to as Mr. Bonnie Raitt.

  • Stevie Nicks told me

  • she couldn't bring other boyfriends around Fleetwood Mac

  • because Lindsey Buckingham would be furious.

  • And she couldn't have a child

  • because it would have broken up the band.

  • There are endless stories in this book about women

  • whose marriages and relationships fell apart

  • when they became really successful and their boyfriends

  • or their husbands couldn't deal with it.

  • Their egos just couldn't deal with it.

  • And also, a lot of women gave up their careers

  • when they became mothers.

  • There's a whole chapter on motherhood.

  • I just think that women have a tougher time in general,

  • and this whole book, to me, it's about rich, famous women

  • who have the same problems that all women have --

  • problems with relationships, with money,

  • with male record executives, with abuse.

  • You know, all these topics are covered in the book.

  • -I remember reading up in some article

  • I was reading about you that you said, like, I think

  • all of your interviews -- again, correct me if I'm wrong --

  • you used three analog tape recorders, never digital.

  • -Actually they're right behind me.

  • Yeah. I went to interview John Lennon once,

  • and the tape screwed up, the cassette.

  • This was in the '70s, of course.

  • And he was very kind.

  • He let me come back and do the interview again.

  • And ever since then, I bring three,

  • so I have this whole setup of three analog cassette recorders.

  • And in fact, the only other person I know who uses cassette,

  • I interviewed Quest and Lin-Manuel Miranda once,

  • and Lin-Manuel told me he also uses cassettes.

  • And everybody stares at it.

  • Beyoncé once looked at it and she said,

  • "Did you ever think of moving up to digital?"

  • So I got a digital tape recorder.

  • -Of course. -I have a diagram

  • as if it were done for a 5-year-old,

  • really practically with crayons of how to work it.

  • And I went to interview Lady Gaga

  • for the first time in the Beverly Hills Hotel

  • in a bungalow with the setup of the three analog tape recorders,

  • and I was so proud to bring out the digital one.

  • And guess which one didn't work.

  • -Of course. -The digital one.

  • -The digital one. Of course. -So I stick with what I know.

  • -I was wondering if I could maybe show you some stills

  • of pictures of you in the book and just tell me the first thing

  • that pops in your mind when you see these photos

  • and about these artists.

  • Like, there's you and Beyoncé.

  • -Oh, Beyoncé!

  • Well, the first thing that pops in my mind,

  • and really, this is absolutely the truth.

  • When I first started to interview her,

  • she was doing her solo album

  • and she told me about the struggles that she had had,

  • which you would not think she had had from Destiny's Child,

  • but this is my point.

  • Every one of these women go through 10 years

  • before they get to where they are.

  • And Beyoncé was dropped by a label,

  • Destiny's was dropped by a label,

  • and when she did her first solo album,

  • they told her, at the record company,

  • she didn't have a single.

  • And she said, "They were right, I had four."

  • And the other thing she said that I loved --

  • that she did that I loved, we ordered a pizza

  • when we were doing this interview and she had one slice.

  • Now, the idea of being that disciplined to have one slice,

  • I ate the entire rest of the pizza.

  • -[ Laughing ] Who has one slice of pizza?

  • -We were at a party once where they brought us a brownie,

  • and she cut it into four parts, four squares,

  • and she had one square.

  • And I said, "I can't --

  • Who could eat one square of a brownie?"

  • And she said, "It's part of my job."

  • So that's how disciplined she was.

  • -Discipline right there. -I absolutely was in awe

  • because I ate the rest of the whole thing.

  • -[ Laughs ] Good for you. Yeah, I would too.

  • How about this picture right here of Janet Jackson?

  • -Judging by my hair, I think she was around five.

  • It was in the '70s,

  • and I was interviewing the Jackson 5 a lot at that time.

  • And she was very camera shy.

  • She didn't want to pose for the camera.

  • But I interviewed her when she was five,

  • but then I interviewed her again in the '80s after "Control"

  • and "Rhythm Nation" came out.

  • And the thing that impressed me about her was

  • she had no illusions about show business.

  • She grew up in a show business family.

  • She was very close to Michael,

  • and she said to me that her brother, Michael Jackson,

  • told her, "Don't ever let bad things

  • said about you bother you.

  • Just ignore it and put it in your music."

  • And when I talked to her after "Control" came out,

  • she was very clear about the fact

  • that her father managed her --

  • and this is all in the family chapter in the book --

  • but that he worked for her, that she didn't work for him.

  • And then ultimately she fired him and hired another manager.

  • So that was what "Control" was all about.

  • -Lisa, you knocked it out of the park with this one.

  • Thank you for writing it. -Thank you.

  • -Thank you so much for coming on.

  • I miss you. I love talking to you.

  • And I can't believe I got you to Zoom.

  • This is legendary for me. I love it.

  • -This is probably the last time I'm gonna do it.

  • -[ Laughs ] Lisa Robinson, everybody.

  • Her book, "Nobody Ever Asked Me About the Girls,"

  • is available now. It's a great read.

-My next guest is a legendary music journalist

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Lisa Robinson Opens Up About the Issues Female Musicians Face

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    林宜悉 posted on 2020/12/03
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