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examiner - 7th December 2007

Deborah Harry always in fashion

Dec 7, 2007 6:00 AM (1 day ago) by Tom Lanham, The Examiner 
SAN FRANCISCO (Map, News) - She may have dubbed her latest solo album “Necessary Evil,” but Blondie supervixen Deborah Harry says she isn’t addicted to any vices these days. 

“I don’t know if I have a ‘necessary evil’ in my life at this very moment,” she says, “although shopping could probably be on the list.”

A pursuit probably made easier by one of her best friends, red-hot designer Marc Jacobs, who invited the singer to all of his shows and even created fashion lines with her. Last year, he debuted a bag called the Debbie that retailed for several thousand dollars. This year, Jacobs launched a more affordable line of Blondie shirts and totes, emblazoned with his muse’s mid-1970s likeness, with proceeds going to an arts charity.

“And I’m not involved in fashion, other than the fact that I like to wear clothes,” says Harry, a still-gorgeous 62.

“But I’ve known Marc for years — he’s been on the scene for ages. And I always go to his shows every year for fashion week in New York, because they’re so spectacular and he designs so beautifully. And I always go with a good friend of mine, so it’s kind of like an anniversary thing with me. And Marc’s been doing really well with our line of shirts and bags — he was selling ’em at his stores, and I don’t even know if they’re still available or not. But altogether, we’ve made a sizable amount of money for a couple of different charities.”

With buddies like this, who needs Macy’s? But this punk vet — who plays the Fillmore on Sunday — insists she’s never received any perks from Jacobs. “I don’t like to take advantage of my friends. He’s a very generous guy, and I suppose if I really needed something I could ask him for it. But we try to keep our friendship just that.”

Harry also takes her fashion connections in stride; she set so many trends with Blondie over the years, she regularly combs through her closet and donates the classic outfits to rock museums or charity auctions. One of the few she kept, though, is the definitive white sheath dress from the cover of “Parallel Lines,” her band’s ’78 breakthrough.

The singer is still stunned that the movement she helped launch, punk rock, is three decades old now. “It doesn’t seem that way to me,” she says. “And everybody’s so concerned with the march of time that it seems to weigh people down. Instead of just going on about their business and carrying on, everyone’s so concerned with the amount of time that’s elapsed. Einstein said that time was cyclical, but so often our thinking about time has been linear, and that’s a very negative thing.” 

That might explain why “Evil” tracks like “Deep End” and “Two Times Blue” sound like they could be old “Parallel Lines” outtakes. 

Initially, Harry financed the new set (on Seven Eleven Music) herself, then brought in the Big Apple writing/production team Super Buddha (Charles Nieland and Barb Morrison) to flesh out the songs. “So we became this fast-moving little trio,” she recalls. “I was coming up with my ideas, they were playing all the instruments themselves, so it was a very simple way to write and record. In fact, it was almost simultaneous.” 

Deborah Harry

Where: The Fillmore, 1805 Geary Blvd., San Francisco 

When: 8 p.m. Sunday

Tickets: $41.50

Contact: (415) 421-8497 or www.ticketmaster.com

Link: examiner - 7th December 2007


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