Dear Constant Reader,
In preparing for Madame Burlesque, I read as many burlesque memoirs and biographies as I could get my hands on (and I must say, the library at Stately Babydolls Manor is rather extensive). One of them was Blaze Starr: My Life as Told to Huey Perry by Blaze Starr.
Blaze Starr grew up in rural West Virginia as part of a big loving family. As a teenager, she knew there was more to life than hoeing corn and running moonshine, and set out for the big city. Working as a waitress in a doughnut shop in Washington D.C., she was discovered by a sleazy producer who convinced her to strip in his club. However, he also wanted her to strip at his place, and do more… The resourceful Blaze extricated herself from that situation, but realized stripping was the career for her. She started at Baltimore’s Two O’Clock Club and was soon in demand all over the country.
She was booked at the Sho-Bar in New Orleans where she met Governor Earl K. Long, and the rest, as they say, is history. Her long affair with the governor is the stuff of legend… and a movie! “Blaze“, based on this book, tells the story of the romance between the stripper and the governor. Paul Newman, as Earl Long, completely steals the show.
Throughout her story, Blaze is completely unapologetic. Yes, she has a dynamite body and big boobs and she used them to further her career. Yes, she had a well-publicized affair with the married governor, but she loved him and planned to marry him. She is honest about some of the stormy events in her life, usually involving her losing her temper and belting someone.
The story ends with Blaze considering having her memoirs written and then doing what she loves best, performing at the newly reopened Two O’Clock Club, which she owns. The afterword is a lovely note from Blaze’s mother, who is so proud of her ambitious daughter.
More reviews to come!