Pamela Rooke

Pamela Rooke (born 23 June 1955 in Seaford, East Sussex, England), also known as Jordan, is an English model and actress noted for her work with Vivienne Westwood and the SEX boutique in the Kings Road area of London in the mid-1970s, and for being a fixture at many of the early Sex Pistols performances. Her style and dress sense—a bleached platinum-blonde bouffant hairdo with dark raccoon-like eye make-up—made her a highly visible icon of the London punk subculture.[1] Along with Johnny Rotten, Soo Catwoman and Siouxsie Sioux, she is credited with creating the W10 London punk look.

She took the single name Jordan at age 14 in Seaford.[2] When Jordan first walked into 430 King's Road, London,[3] wearing gold stilettos, a see-through net skirt, with a white bouffant hairstyle,[4] it had just changed to SEX,[2] "but there wasn't a position at the time so I got a job in Harrods, on the third floor in a place called Way In. ... A few weeks later then got a call from Michael [Collins, the manager] asking if I could come in... Malcolm [Maclaren] had been in New York with The New York Dolls when I was hired".[2]

Rooke daily commuted two hours[5] to London from Seaford, East Sussex, on the south coast.[6] She recalled that her punk image caused problems for her:

I commuted for about two years. I had some real bad dos on the train. I had tourists trying to pay me for my photo…worse than that, mothers saying that I'm upsetting their children and debauching them and how dare I get on a train looking like that. Somebody tried to throw me off the train one day, literally out the door, so British Rail told me to go sit in first class, get out of trouble.[7]

In the late 1970s, she served as an early manager for Adam and the Ants. She recorded the track "Lou" (about Lou Reed) as a guest lead vocalist with the band for BBC Radio 1 DJ John Peel's Peel Sessions and often performed the song live with them from mid-1977 up to May 1978 when she left the band.[2] In the 1980s, she managed the band Wide Boy Awake, in which her then-husband Kevin Mooney was a guitarist. Mooney had previously been a bassist of Adam and the Ants.[8]

She made a cameo appearance in Derek Jarman's debut film Sebastiane, and played the lead role in his follow-up film Jubilee as the punk "anti-historian" Amyl Nitrate, after the drug Amyl Nitrite. She can also be seen in Julien Temple's The Great Rock and Roll Swindle wearing an "only anarchists are pretty" T-shirt and appearing on stage with the Sex Pistols during their first live television performance of "Anarchy in the U.K." in August 1976.

In 1984, after divorcing Mooney, she returned to Seaford, now breeding Burmese cats and working as a veterinary nurse.[9][10]

Notes

  1. ^ https://selvedgeyard.com/2010/10/07/the-filth-the-fashion-vivienne-westwoods-70s-sex-rag-revolution/
  2. ^ a b c d Baron, Katie (17 August 2016). "A rare interview with Jordan, punk's enigmatic frontwoman". Dazed. Retrieved 23 November 2017.
  3. ^ http://www.marieclaire.co.uk/fashion/a-brief-history-of-punk-fashion-79145
  4. ^ https://www.theguardian.com/media/2004/feb/06/broadcasting.arts
  5. ^ Seaford, UK to The Clockhouse - Google Maps
  6. ^ "Jordan commuted to London every day from Seaford, East Sussex."
  7. ^ Colegrave & Sullivan, Punk: A Life Apart, Cassell & Co, 2004, p.127.
  8. ^ 3:AM Magazine. The World's Forgotten Boy
  9. ^ https://www.theguardian.com/media/2004/feb/06/broadcasting.arts
  10. ^ https://www.thesun.co.uk/tvandshowbiz/2617307/we-hear-from-the-pioneers-of-punk-40-years-after-they-unleashed-havoc-on-polite-society/

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