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Sister of the Week


Sally Hope

It’s St. Patrick’s Day at the Wildcat. A band from L.A. called Poets and Pornstars is playing its brand of Rolling Stones-meets-Guns N’ Roses rock. The lead singer is a British man in tight pants. The guitarist, keyboardist, and drummer also are men.

And then there’s the bassist: A girl. Sexy. Tight tank top, mini skirt, cat eyes, and Joan Jett hair. She pouts like Mick Jagger, then looks sidelong at someone in the crowd with her lips slightly parted.

“Who thinks Sally’s hot?” the lead singer screams mid-song. The room erupts in thunderous applause. Most of this crowd knows her already: When they watched her play guitar for the Titsofrenix, when they bought jeans from her at True Grit, when they attended classes with her at UCSB, or went to parties at her house in I.V.

But none of them know her like I do. I have the inside scoop, the backstage pass. I’m on every guest list. Her bandmates know me by name. I’ve been following her career from the beginning: The video of her lip-syncing to “Parents Just Don’t Understand”; the photograph of her playing violin in the bathroom at age 8 — naked. The first time she could play “Blackbird” all the way through on her acoustic guitar. Her first show as part of a rock band, opening for Blondie at the Majestic Ventura Theatre.

Yes, I’m something of a groupie. And though I’m not alone — carloads of people from S.B. show up to her shows at the Viper Room — I know I’m the most devoted. Well, me and two other people in the crowd at Wildcat: the 50-ish woman who looks a lot like me, and her white-haired husband.

That’s why I’m smiling so big on St. Patrick’s Day, when the guy next to me says, “Dude, Sally’s hot.”

Because I get to say: “I know. That’s my sister.”  — Molly Freedenberg

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