Between the late '80's and early '90's, it was Voodoo DeVille's good fortune to be blessed with the delicate harmonies and drop-dead good looks of the Voodettes -- Bambi, Shampayne, and Velveeta. The girls added a vocal dimension to the group that was unique among blues bands. And damn, they sure looked fine!
By the mid-80's, Voodoo DeVille recognized that they needed something to spice up the act. Punk, Metal, and Hair bands were beginning to draw away their youthful fans. So, in 1985, they began the audition process to select the lucky few who would become the Voodettes.
The auditions were long and arduous. And frankly, some just didn't make the grade...
At the end of the day though, Bambi, Shampayne, and Velveeta stood head and shoulders above the rest (this was due primarily to the fact that, oddly, there was an unusually large contigent of midgets at the audition). Not only did they possess the sultry voices demanded by the blues and incredible good looks (did we mention that they sure looked fine?), their personalities meshed perfectly. Each of them filled a particular role which precisely compimented the others.
Bambi was the athletic one. She really knew how to move. She choreographed all the moves the Voodettes executed so flawlessly. Her years as a circus contortionist really paid off. To anyone who ever saw Bambi in action, it was clear that the likes of Paula Abdul and Janet Jackson had copped all their moves from Bambi. Unfortunately, Bambi never engaged a decent intellectual property lawyer and thus she never received the credit she was due.
Shampayne was the sophisticated one. When the girls went out to eat, they always handed the wine list to Shampayne so that she could order. She really knew her wines, as evidenced by the way she always insisted on a brand with a cork. On those few occasions when she drank from a bottle with a twist-off top (before a gig, during a gig, after a gig, driving to the next gig, during practice, and so on), she always discretely dressed it up with a paper bag (it was a nice touch). Shampayne liked her wine -- a taste she acquired early.
Finally there was Velveeta. She was the smart one. Good looks and brains -- what a combination! Velveeta handled all the finances for the girls having had those four years of advanced schooling that the other girls lacks (and you can learn a lot of math by 11th grade). Velveeta left a high paying professional position -- in which her ability to count money and make change was critical -- to join the Voodettes. Here we can see her consulting with one of her clients in her previous job.
The girls tried several looks before they pioneered that trashy, overdressed tramp look that years later Mariah Carey and Britany Spears would adopt as their own.
The Voodettes were the catalyst to a resurgence of Voodoo DeVille. Their velvet vocal stylings -- the perfect counterpoint to Pops -- and their divine good looks made them an instant hit. They toured with the boys for several years and were a hit wherever they went. They also seemed to make a lot of friends after every show. Their new friends -- mainly middle-aged men with gold neck chains driving a BMW, Porche, or Mercedes -- were constantly sending them luxury items as gifts for no apparent reason. Contrary to the popular rumor, the marital troubles suffered by several of the band members during this time had nothing to do with the Voodettes -- they were just too wholesome for that. The fact that several of the boys had to have a series of shots during this time was merely coincidental.
But alas, like all good things, the union of Voodoo DeVille and the Voodettes ultimately came to an end. Velveeta -- the smart one -- came to realize that they could no longer sustain their lifestyles on the money
they were making from the gigs. She did the math -- we told you she was smart -- and contacted her old employer, shown here to the left. He agreed to hire all three of the girls for a significant raise in pay, better hours, and less time on the tour bus (although they were required to spend a lot of time outside the bus station). It was simply an offer too good to refuse, so the girls took their leave (along with several amplifiers and guitars). The boys lost touch with them over the years although several of them swear that they saw Shampayne on a episode of Cops
. She was being led out of a double-wide trailer in Florida, ranting on about not be paid for services rendered and making threats against a young man sitting in a Camaro wearing jeans and no shirt that had something to do with using a knife to modify his manhood.