“Halloween is my favorite holiday. I love exploring all sides of my psyche and adopting an entirely new persona for one night.”
Shilah Morrow, the force behind Sin City Social Club, jump-started the resurgence of the Outlaw Country movement in Los Angeles when she launched Sweethearts of the Rodeo, her monthly country nights that ran for five years at Molly Malone’s on Fairfax.
Her Sin City Presents nights at the Mint, where she showcases a dizzying array of talented LA-area alternative-country artists and bands, as well as those passing through, have become a popular hangout for top-drawer singers, songwriters, musicians, music industry movers-and-shakers, and, most importantly, the fans.
And Sin City Samplers, her company’s gratis compilation CDs, are eagerly anticipated for their preview tracks of up-and-coming, as well as established, acts.
We caught up with “Mama Shi” recently, not an easy task, and asked her about glam witches and her favorite scary bands.
Sin City has gone national, with bases in Los Angeles, Austin and Nashville now. Which town is the scariest on Halloween?
Los Angeles! Actually, I haven’t spent Halloween in Austin yet, but I’ll get to experience it in “Nashvegas” this year because I’ll be attending a big costume bash there for the first night of the Americana Music Association conference.
I’m going as Dolly Parton, or maybe “The Juggs” if I can find someone with big enough boobs to be my other half! God help me if Wynonna or Naomi turns up!
I saw you in your glam witch costume last Halloween and it rocked! Have you been pulling out the stops like that since you were a kid growing up here?
You’re too kind! I’ve had some fun costumes over the years. My mom, who was an actress, made me a great Mae West costume when I was 9 years old. She even taught me to speak like her. Trick-or-treating was never the same after that.
What artist or band conjures Halloween the most for you?
That’s a tough one. My first thought was to say Ministry because I still have their twelve-inch single of “Halloween” but then Kiss came to mind because who doesn’t like to dress up like Kiss? And what about Gwar? Or Haunted Garage or Jane’s Addiction? Those were some fun shows back in the day.
Wow, you really know your LA rock history. What about scary bands today?
Two of my favorite new bands now are Dead Rock West and Spindrift. They both played at our Halloween party last year. I love them and all of their psychedelic-Goth-spaghetti-western goodness. If I have to pick just one I guess it would be Spindrift because they live it all year round.
Okay, now I have a serious question. Is your favorite wig shop going to survive all of the new building going on in Hollywood these days?
God, I hope so! At least one of them needs to survive. It seems like that’s all there was on Hollywood Boulevard for years; wig shops, head shops and X-rated movie theaters. Where’s a girl (or boy) to go to find a Dolly Parton wig?