Marilyn Manson talks to Lisa Anthony about chickens, his mom, Courtney and the whole damn thing
LISA: Would you like to be sitting next to you on a plane?
MANSON: I get a lot of kids sitting next to me on a plane. They get really scared. I tell them the plane's gonna crash and they start crying.
LISA: But does it disturb you that everyone around here today has told me that you're a sweetheart?
MANSON: Well, I have two very distinct sides to me. One can be very mean; one can be very nice. I usually give back to people what they give me. If a little kid is bothering me too much by crying, I give them something to cry about. It's only fair.
LISA: You have your own set of beliefs. So what is your idea of hell and heaven?
MANSON: Hell would be married to Courtney Love. I'm not picking on Courtney - I like Courtney. I'm just being honest; it would be hell to be married to her. It's a pain in the ass just to be around her for 15 minutes. It's a pain in the ass to be around me for 15 minutes, too. If we were married it would short circuit itself. We would end up being conservative white trash people in a trailer watching the Jerry Springer Show. Really though, hell is what you make for yourself. When you fulfil your dreams, that's really hell. For me being able to perform in front of 40,000 people, that's heaven.
LISA: What goes through your mind when you're on stage? Courtney said that she thinks of 40,000 people adoring her - is it that?
MANSON: No, 'cause I like it if about half of them hate me, too. That makes me feel good also. It's too hard for me to ever describe what's going through my head. I'd like to think that when I walk away I've left those people with something that inspires them. I'd like to piss 'em off, make them happy or feel something. A lot of music you just go and see it and it's just like oatmeal, you neither hate it nor like it, it's just there. I want people to feel something.
LISA: Do you ever look at any outfit and think "hell I'd never wear that - that's far too weird for me?"
MANSON: Because people have such a perception of me and my image, I can afford a sense of irony in what I wear. I can wear something very normal and make it strange because it's on me. So I'm in quite a good position actually. At home I have a brown wig that's styled in what I would call a normal hairdo and I have a fake moustache. Sometimes I like to put those on and I wear, like, a Hard Rock Cafe T-shirt and acid wash jeans. I feel very bizarre - for me it's dressing up. It's kinda liberating.
LISA: Do you go out in that?
MANSON: Sure, I'll go to Beverly Hills and go shopping at Tiffany's or something.
LISA: What are your most unpleasant characteristics?
MANSON: All things that make me bad are the things that make me who I am or make me good in a way. Like when I was growing up, people thought I was too skinny and that's become what I am. Or people think my nose is too big so I wanna get it made bigger. I think I have always taken my weaknesses and made them into my strengths.
LISA: Who are you more like - your mom or your dad?
MANSON: I'm like my dad. I never liked him growing up because he was more of a workaholic. But I live for what I do and there's not really any other way about it. I also got my temper from him and my sense of humour.
LISA: Do your parents really keep a frozen rat in the freezer called Marilyn?
MANSON: They have got more than that by now because my mom keeps every pet that she had frozen. I just bought them two dogs. Hopefully they won't put them in the freezer - hopefully they'll live longer.
LISA: Are you happy with the way you are at the moment?
MANSON: Absolutely. I have been in that frame of mind for the past 15 years. When I was getting out of high school was when I started believing in myself and started to form opinions.
LISA: Would you change your show because of complaints?
MANSON: Absolutely not. A lot of them complain about things that don't really happen. Like killing animals.
LISA: Didn't a chicken die on stage?
MANSON: It didn't die on stage. The audience killed the chicken.
LISA: But the chicken wouldn't have been there unless you had it....
MANSON: But it would have been manslaughter, not murder.
LISA: So who put the chicken there?
MANSON: The club. I asked for a chicken dinner and they gave me a live chicken. It was a misunderstanding. I like animals, most of them. More than people alot of the time.
LISA: The sex on stage?
MANSON: Well, my peformance is very sexual but I don't think I have ever had sex on stage.
LISA: What is your biggest fear?
MANSON: My biggest fear would be losing my creativity. My little fear would be having to see Courtney naked again.
© 1999 What! Publishers Inc.