LAS VEGAS—This year's Legends of Erotica show, co-sponsored by industry veteran Bill Margold and Arrow Productions owner Raymond Pistol, got off to a slow start Friday night as by 45 minutes after the show's 8 o'clock start, only one of the slated inductees, Jill Kelly, had shown up.
Margold had announced that he wanted to delay the ceremonies until all of the inductees—Kelly, Lisa Ann, RayVeness and Mr. Marcus—could be on stage together, but with no word as to when the others would arrive, he proceeded anyway. (Dyanna Lauren's name was also mentioned as an inductee on the marquee outside Pistol's Showgirl Video on Las Vegas Boulevard, where the event took place, but there was no mention of her during the show.)
Margold first introduced dancer/performer Toni Andreas, who read a lyrical paean to porn stars in general, and Kelly in particular, declaring that their performances affect all five senses. We can hear her moans, Andreas said, imagine touching her breasts, watch her have sex, imagine smelling her aroma, and tasting her "squirt juice."
"We fantasize everything about you," Andreas concluded.
Next, Margold took the microphone to tell the crowd of roughly 75 about his experiences at the John Leslie memorial in December, noting that he had asked all of Leslie's comrades and co-workers in the audience to come on stage. He then passed out giant playing cards he'd had made up with Leslie and Jamie Gillis as "kings," and Shauna Grant as a "queen."
Certainly one of the high points of the evening, though, was when Margold passed around a donation jar for veteran performer and sexual freedom activist Nina Hartley, who must soon undergo surgery for fibroid tumors on her uterus, and will need at least two to four weeks to recover from it—and who has no health insurance to pay for it. (As one attendee put it, "I've heard so many people say that seeing Nina's performances changed their lives—and they can't kick in a lousy $5 or $10 or $25 so she can keep doing it for others?") Thankfully, when the jar finished making its rounds, it was nearly full of $1s and $5s—and Margold himself kicked in a $100 bill.
(Donations can be made online.)
Then, with no other inductees yet in sight, Margold brought on stage director Wesley Emerson, who had shot Kelly in many volumes of the classic No Man's Land series, to make Kelly's formal induction into the Legends of Erotica Hall of Fame.
"I met Jill 20 years ago," Emerson remembered, "and I fell in love with her ... and I'm still in love with her."
He noted that he had put the blond actress in "all of my movies," and Margold added that she was a favorite of the late director and porn historian Jim Holliday.
Emerson "was one of the few people who gave me a chance," Kelly responded, noting that her early days in the adult industry had been plagued with a certain amount of drama. (As "Seth Demien," she had been the girlfriend of actor Cal Jammer, who had committed suicide on her doorstep shortly after she entered the industry.)
Kelly's induction was just about completed when Lisa Ann arrived, along with veteran performer Ron Jeremy. Since the others were still missing, the chat among inductees that usually takes place at these events was impossible, so Ann simply took questions from the audience.
Ann revealed that she'd been born in Easton, Pa., and when she was old enough, had bought a one-way ticket to Los Angeles in order to enter the adult industry—her first airplane flight ever—though she admitted that she'd started stripping at age 16 with a fake ID.
"We just drove everywhere," she said. "My parents had a mobile home."
Ann also talked about her recurring role as "Serra Paylin" for Hustler—a role she'll be reprising in an upcoming video—and her work in a music video by Eminem, for which she had to shoot 22 hours straight.
During Ann's questioning, RayVeness arrived, signed her name in giant letters on the wall behind the Showgirl Video stage, and she shortly was being lauded by Jeremy, her "induction partner."
After noting that her rear end was so popular that the pair had been rear-ended in their car on the way over to the show, Jeremy traced RayVeness's history from her birth in Jamestown, N.C., through her entry into the porn industry, with then-husband Red Boan, in the early '90s; that her mother had been a singer and had encouraged RayVeness to do the same; and that she and Boan had entered the business by submitting a video they'd shot of themselves to Homegrown Video. (Later, the busty actress showed off her silk jacket from Pearl Necklace Video, the second company that shot her.)
RayVeness herself added that she'd run away from home as a child; that she and Boan had divorced in 1997, in part because he had insisted that she only have sex on camera with him or with women; and that by her own admission, she then "went wild" sexually after the divorce, doing "men, women, threeways, oral, anal—everything." She talked a bit about her mainstream acting in a TV mini-series, about her mainstream singing career, and also made note of her charity work, having raised $22,000 in 2001 for the Chatsworth (Calif.) Fire Department. She said that although she loved working in adult video, and wanted to continue to do so as long as her fans wanted her to, she had considered retiring in order to do more charity work ... and that she was in the process of opening a music school for children. She had also brought a suitcase full of clothes and promotional material—mostly ad slicks of her movies—to give away to the fans—and in short order had removed her top in order to press her ample breasts into the cement block that memorializes her induction into the Legends of Erotica. Many photos were taken.
After RayVeness had received the customary rose in a gift box (provided by Pistol), it was finally Lisa Ann's turn to be inducted—by a longtime fan of hers who only identified himself as "Joe." He and Ann had met when she was dancing in New York adult cabarets—Ann said she expected to be "on the road" dancing for probably 48 weekends out of the coming year—and he talked about how he continued to follow her career up to the present, and that the two had become close personal friends over the years.
Finally, it was Ann's turn for the cement, and the fans were clearly disappointed that she chose to imprint only her hands and a brief written message.
It was about that time that Mr. Marcus arrived, accompanied by fellow performer Lexington Steele—and in a welcome surprise, veteran performer Julian St. Jox showed up a few minutes later, and Margold welcomed all three up onto the stage. The trio posed for photos, and Marcus reminisced about his time in the industry, and how he "idolized" St. Jox.
"Marcus is a true pussy-hound," St. Jox responded.
Steele also told a story about how the three of them had been in Tokyo several years ago, and that even though none of them spoke Japanese, Marcus had nonetheless managed to pick up two local girls, neither of whom spoke any English.
We left just as Marcus was placing his hands into the cement, and Pistol had earlier noted that he'd like to take all of the imprinted cement blocks and create a sort of "Grauman's Chinese Theater of Porn"—but that's a story for another day.