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My Date with  Shilpa Ray

by Carly Sioux

Meet Shilpa 

Location: Brooklyn, NY.

Origin: New Jersey.

Occupation: Rock Star, Shilpa Ray & her Happy Hookers.

Hobbies: Hooking, ranting & writing clever Facebook updates.

How We Met: I convinced Shipa to do a photo shoot at a carnival in Williamsburg in the summer of 2009.

Interesting Facts: Shilpa Ray was born on St. Valentine’s Day and has a special fondness for Ohio.

The Dinner

I’d been dying to photograph Shilpa at Panna II, an Indian restaurant in the East Village lit up like a flaming Christmas tree with hot pepper lights that mirror Shilpa’s fierceness. Who knew that all I had to do was just ask her out on a date? We met in front of the restaurant, and in no time flat, were chatting it up like a couple of  long lost BFF’s in the warm red glow. Shilpa sipped on a Coca-Cola while recounting her Tall Tales on the Road with her Happy Hookers and shared some wisdom gleaned from her buddy Nick Cave (“Bad Ass” bonus points!). We giggled about our crushes, trash-talked our exes, and gushed over Ohio, a state for which we happen to share a mutual love, (which earned me some “I’m from Ohio” bonus points). We bonded over our trials and tribulations as retail sales whores and agreed that Postfeminism is not Katy Perry. It’s incredible how much we have in common, it was like some Thelma & Louise wet dream come true. We stayed so long, hovering over melted ice cubes, that by the time we left, we had endured two entire “Happy Birthday” performances, featuring a thundering chorus comprised of the entire Panna II waitstaff. The second round of  strobe lights and cake was our cue to hit the road.

Spilling the Beans

Shilpa Talks About Life on the Road

Beneath the Red Pepper Lights

Feminism or Bust Bonus Points!


Street Walking

After stuffing ourselves silly on sodas, curry & naan, we decided to walk it off with a leisurely stroll. I was about as Happy as a Hooker to be Street Walking with Thee Shilpa Ray. We wandered for a while, talking-music; we raved about our favorite bands, discussed those cool new girl bands writing dewy ballads about bad boys, and reminisced about our favorite 90’s bands that have come back in style. We were on a roll and were really getting each others jokes and then… I think “something” happened. I got up on a soapbox about Spin.com’s convenient comparison of Shilpa Ray to Kathleen Hannah. I went on to assert MY analogy of her music as being in the vein of Nick Cave (duh!), Jim Morrison, and Edith Piaf. Shilpa’s eyes lit up like the entrance to Panna II, as she explained that she had just watched La Vie en Rose, (a movie about the life of Edith Piaf), and very much identified with Piaf’s story. Bingo! I just scored some major “I Totally Understand You and Your Art” bonus points. By that time it was getting late and, since we are both working girls, we decided to call it a night. Our date ended with a little nightcap at Cake Shop, and then we said our goodbyes with promises of making trouble in the future!

Found Mirror Photo Opp

Bodega Flower Money $hot

The Conclusion

Pros: Is a Rock Star, is the raddest girl in Brooklyn, and laughs at my jokes.

Cons: Is a Rock Star, works a lot, and is not meant for the weak of heart.

Shilpa Ray is radiant, fierce and a force not to reckon with. She’s a bad ass and has the street creds to prove it. This is obvious to those who know her through her music, but I wonder how many are fortunate enough to know Shilpa’s soft side. Although her dating preference is for dudes, and not dudettes, my relentless perusing of Shilpa will never cease. I would hold Shilpa’s hand in Salem Texas, while we burn at the stake together for being witches bitches. I can’t wait for her to finish The Feminine Mystique so that we can compare notes.

Making Shilpa Laugh…Priceless

Good Night!

Music by DOM feat Emma Hendry

Where are the Riot Grrrls? No more Diet Grrrls!

Shilpa

Shilpa Ray might be more rant than riot, but there is no question about the fierceness she brings to her stage. Biting words about  humanity’s perversion comes with out the need to recite “Shaved Pussy Poetry.” Shilpa is first and foremost a musician, and does not require a separate category of female Artist to claim her notoriety. The sound is Voodoo Cabaret, with a stage presence reminiscent of Jim Morrison, the rawness of Edith Piaf, and the sophistication of Polly Jean Harvey. Shilpa Ray and Her Happy Hookers have some dates this week and I recommend that their music be experienced live. Check out their site for the full details!

Jay

Shilpa Ray

Happy Hookers

Shilpa Ray 5

www.myspace.com/shilparay

Photos from Death by Audio click here to see more:

http://www.flickr.com/photos/27005217@N05/sets/72157621762586471/

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