the millionaire and the rentboy

here’s a song i wrote last week..
it’s about a millionaire who seeks sanctuary in a rent boy.
even though the millionaire’s married with kids ,he’s a bit bendy on the side,
and even though he’s mister moneybags,he’s unfulfilled…
and even though the rentboy’s there on the grounds of hanky panky,his real service pretty much comes down to him being warm insightful company…
i would never like to glamourise or romanticise the sex industry,though i can imagine that if navigated cleverly,it could be huge fun,even if it is surely imbued with a dark and tricky side also.


while living in new york i made friends with a very bright button who paid for a higher education by doing a few wealthy punters during his academic week.
he figured why be a barman working endless hours having no time left to study,when he could put his strikingly handsome body to work for a few hours,thereby freeing up valuable time for more important pursuits.
he had no moral issue with that,and nor do i.


i often wonder who the real prostitutes in this life are anyway.
is doing something you don’t want to do,purely for money,not an act of prostitution in itself?
and no matter what the job, is it not up to the individual, how well they dignify any task at hand…well dear reader…i ask you?
are we all not prostitutes at some point,on some level during our lives?
everyone is selling out in this life…the trick is to be in control of your own selling out process.


all my loving…
mary of the wilderness.
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24 Responses to the millionaire and the rentboy

  1. Vonnie Reyes says:

    awesome …still lovin the voice …more please..


  2. Zelle says:

    Mary, I love your sound, happy, sad, up or down, it’s lovely…..much Love, Zelle


  3. lovely voice, lovely song x


  4. John Howard says:

    Love it, Mary. Really like how you’ve put the voice so upfront, it felt like someone turning to me, as I sat on a deserted station wondering lonely as a cloud, and started talking to me, beautiful words, beautiful voice, “everyone’s got something to offer”, oh yes, my dear man.


    • thanks john…i think the vocal is real ropey…a bit hurried…i found it hard to stick with that song,yet i knew it had something,but it just felt awful intense right now….the odd thing is it’s easier to work on those sort of songs when you’re feeling happy and light,but the relentless windy cold weather here in england,along with all the usual hum drum has turned me into a total mare…..poor thomas has had a belly full of me and wants me to piss off to the coast for a few days so he can wallpaper his bedroom. hahahahahahahahaha.
      today is y’know….maybe i’ll have a lollipop and get cheery….i hope spain is alright,and you’re not missing this place too much…i know you both yearn for it sometimes… to yourself and neil. xxx


  5. John Howard says:

    Something which I hope cheers you a little, Neil is right now downloading a load of your SoundCloud tracks which he is going to burn onto a CD so we can listen to you in the car. He is such a fan, Mary. I haven’t seen him like this since 1992 when I played him k.d. lang’s Ingénue and he flipped for her. What part of the coast will you piss off to? Somewhere windswept and lashing waves, blow the cobwebs away as my gran used to say. I’ll be in Cambridgeshire in September having my new album mastered then up to Rochdale to see my folks, I’ll be staying in a swish lovely hotel in Castleton which my dad and step-mum insist on paying for, very sweet of them. It will be nice to see lush meadows again. Spain is sometimes ok, sometimes a drag, but we’re gonna stop moaning and just get on with living what is, after all, and we are lucky in this, a good life. Take care my friend, Neil sends muchos abrazos as do I, and a wee beso while we’re at it. xx


  6. hi john..i think i’ll go somewhere like brighton where there’s a dodgy old sauna and some rough trade…hahahahahahahahaha…then again i might head to ireland….sometimes i figure on heading somewhere odd like morcambe ..there’s an old art deco hotel i’ve seen on telly up there…maybe you could give me some ideas,although i fear you might suggest something civilised with high tea…..i want LOW tea….i know what you mean about the moaning…there’s only so much mileage in it,even if it is a coping mechanism up to a point….brian eno says moaning keeps blood pressure at bay.


  7. John Howard says:

    Civilised with High Tea, such a good album title!! It’s years since Neil and I visited anywhere high or low tea in the UK quite honestly. Neil suggested The Grand Hotel in Scarborough, but I guess that is fairly High Tea. Morecambe sounds fun. You can have your photo taken by the statue of Eric while you’re there. Brian Eno, what a gent, Did you see him in the recent Bowie Five Years doc? He is so laid back and charming, While Robert Fripp was wonderfully odd and off centre, Almost disturbingly so. Neil has now burnt an MC CD and, as with everything he does, has gone the whole hog and designed a booklet for it. He hopes you won’t be offended by the title he has given it – A Fag On The Go – Mary Cigarettes. He’s playing it now upstairs while I type this and it does sound very lovely. He’d like to send you a copy. Would you like that? Email me your postal address if the idea appeals. Luv. xx


  8. “a fag on the go”….hahahahahahahaha that man clearly has talent…he should be working at a broadsheet coming up with the daily headlines…he’s be priceless….i’m hugely flattered he would burn a cd of me like that …i watched that thing last night on iplayer john…i was completely charmed by robert fripp…he was having a real hoot to himself,and that classy black suit he wears?!…he cuts a huge dash…i could listen to brian eno for hours and hours…he knows how to make an interesting point in a handful of words…smart and light at the same time…i’ve heard he has a soaring temper too..not an ill spirited temper,but if someone is wasting time or being incompetent at the expense of others ,he can really light up..john cale gives some riveting anecdotes in his autobiography’what’s welsh for zen’….i know stephen hague ,and he worked with him on a james record,he said he was extremely funny…buckets of humour…
    have you heard john grants new record john?…he’s incredible…i know you’d love a song of his called ‘glacier’…great singer and incredible songs,and a good piano player.
    i’ll email my address.


  9. John Howard says:

    Now, John Grant. There’s a dilemma. I haven’t heard his new one, but I did listen to his last one after it got rip-roaring reviews and was raved about in many quarters. And, to my dismay and huge annoyance I was left completely unmoved, which moved me to tears as I knew it should have blown me away. Why? I have no idea. But I will listen to the new one, I know I am missing a lot not loving Grant. Maybe I was in the wrong mood, the wrong time. If I had been working on an album of my own then it’s possible, as that’s the time I am usually not in any place I can enjoy anything other than what I’m working on. Selfish creativity. the bitch queen.
    Yes, Fripp had a kind of sly sexuality which was riveting. I loved that bit where he said something like ‘when you hear those guys playing, you just KNOW they get erections’. I loved Carlos Alomar in that doc, what a musician, and seeing the lovely Luther with David before fame and fortune beckoned him away was great. Young Americans is still one of my favourite albums by David. I used to play it all the time in my Earl’s Court bedsit while the male hooker next door was getting 20 shades of shit knocked out of him by some client. Neil is grooving away upstairs to the wonders of Mary. x


    • i totally understand you not getting a thing that everyone is raving about,especially when your own head is ensconced in your own work…but just google or spotify a song called ‘glacier’..i’m pretty sure it will floor’s got the best chorus…..his new album is better than the first..he uses synths to great effect..proper moog style affairs …oh fripp is a horny devil…can you imagine him and toyah?…she’s an athletic lady..i bet she rides him like one of those spacehopper things. carlos alomar was amazing..i love that thing where he did the loop thing with the riff of fame……earls court square was my very first digs in london…and you know that song’can you hear me’ off young americans?…i play my own version of that on acoustic.


  10. John Howard says:

    Can You Hear Me is the track I used to play to death, Over and over again. it’s such a fantastic song and David’s vocal is stunning on it, all throaty husky, British soul-man in America. I loved that bit in the Bowie doc where he was sitting on his own listening to singers perform and singing along, high on chemicals and music and the whole Scene which he slipped into so easily and naturally. The Chameleon at Work. I’d love to hear your version of Can You Hear Me. Have you recorded it?
    I used to live right opposite The Coleherne, ’74 – ’75, next door to The Bolton’s (which I’d frequent more than The Coleherne back then as I was a little afraid of all that leather darling).


  11. yeah!..that bit of him just sitting at the back of the control room listening,and sizing it all up…it was great to see footage i hadn’t seen before….i actually asked him in new york about that record,and he told me he couldn’t remember making it….i think a lot of that was down to sleep deprivation. i love it that we both lived in earls court..i arrived there in september 1977…the coleherne scared me too.. i remember the first night walking around,and inevitably walked past it and got the come on…i hurried by like a little pussycat in my electric blue velvet jeans…little did i know that ten years later i’d be gagging for what went on in there….the funny thing with the leather is you have to be a bit frightened of it to really enjoy it…hahahahaha…i love it that we both were knee deep in that young americans album in earls court..somehow that all adds up to more than the sum of the parts…..i know that record inside out….tony visconti’s book is great for covering that album…he thought he was having a heart attack one night cause he was so overworked around the clock…you’d love that book…i read ken scott’s book recently too,and that was good.


  12. John Howard says:

    Two books for Neil’s Xmas List for Yours Truly then. We sat and listened to A Fag On The Go last night and it really sounds wonderful. Neil said you’re “music’s Joe Orton” which I liked. (What did you think of The Next Day, by the way?). Yes, the two of us, Earl’s Court hussies, eh? I used to actually shake with excitement when I left my bedsit to walk up the road to The Bolton’s. Met a fabulous G.I. there one night, Christmas ’73. Lordy. Kid In A Wild World. This is funny, having a right old natter on what is supposed to be your blog/journal. No-one’s getting a look in! “Move over, darling.” Ah, Doris. xx


  13. i LOVE joe orton .. his plays are terrific,and he was such a sweet doll…he took everything in his stride.his happy go lucky demeanour is something i think about….when things went iffy here and there,he shrugged it all off and sprang back up…his smile was so open and warm.prison only served to unlock the absurdity in him,which was the very thing that took his work to a higher level…he sat there in his cell thinking,bugger me,i’m in the clink for defacing a bloody library book,how daft and funny is that?!…imagine thinking that instead of thinking woe is me…he was no drip….so yes…hats off to joe orton.
    i thought the new bowie record was pretty good…but then all his records are..there’s always a cluster of three of four songs that are just the best…the interesting thing for me was the audience,who felt it was now safe to praise david bowie again…..when they rave about something like ziggy stardust or alladin sane,which are actually a bit pub rockish in places,they’re not just praising the record…they’re praising something else…the beauty of youth..his or theirs,and sometimes both….but now they praise him cause they thought he was dying…they got into this whole big jesus resurrection trip…the current elvisisation of him intrigues me a whole lot more than the record itself.

    i know that thing of shaking with excitement heading up the road to the bar..especially on a balmy summer evening….anything could happen….and then there’s that whole illicit feeling,that’s no longer there.
    occasionally we still head to earls court to eat in that troubadour place ,a few doors down from the’s been taken over by some very able people..they’ve kept the spirit of the place,but made it a little better..they’ve got the basement live music venue under the cafe running,but when i’m there,all i can think of is dylan dating marianne faithful there,or paul simon hanging out there in the 60’s…we saw a spice girl there once sitting eating a big plate of steamed spinach with nothing else on the plate…i love bollox like that.
    it’s the oddest thing driving through earls court with thomas…we actually met in the coleherne,but for both of us,as we sail up farnborough rd where i know you lived,or cromwell road,or talgarth road,there’s just all these ghosts….all the people we knew who died of aids suddenly spring back to life as we drive past the places they’s the strangest feeling john…and then you sail past the coleherne which is now straight and the dream ends…oddest thing.


  14. John Howard says:

    Just listened to John Grant’s Glacier on YouTube, and oh my word it is STUNNING! Truly a wonder. Thanx for opening my mind, ears and heart to this guy. I even tuned in again to Queen of Denmark and found I was liking some of that too. Grant reminds me at times of Rufus in moody piano chordal mode, similar deep breaths before taking the plunge into the next earth-shattering line, lyrical and musical. Fabulous. I will investigate further and no doubt buy one of his bloody albums. Pale Green Ghosts is probably favourite right now, if only to get a daily fix of Glacier.

    Oh my, serendipity again, Mary. The first venue I played at in London in August ’73 was The Troubadour. I started out just getting up on Open Mike nite and singing a couple of numbers, went back the next week and did the same then was approached by the manager who wanted me to do a guest nite, a half-hour spot no less, which I did, invited a chap who was interested in hearing my stuff, after which he signed me up and got me my deal with CBS a few months later and I never went back to play at The Troubadour. Ungrateful bitch.

    It’s years since I went to Earl’s Court, not since the early ’90s. I wouldn’t like it now, seeing The Coleherne so changed, The Bolton’s gone. No. But in my head are the pictures, the friends who are gone too, and there they will always stay the same.

    Yes the re-canonisation of David has been a fascinating spectacle indeed. I saw Bowie performing with The PSBs at the ’96 Brits, they did Hallo Spaceboy (the same Brits where Jarvis waggled his arse at Jacko). Neil was with me that night and when we got home to Oxfordshire the snow had reached the top of our front door. But I digress…it was interesting, nay intriguing, to see how the audience – made up of oversexed over-coked executives whose prime motivation was picking up something for the road – treated David. There was no “oh my word, it’s Bowie on stage, singing to us!”, no respect. Here he was, in their eyes a faded icon trying to rekindle his career with these also-waning starlets. Take That got a better reception when they did their farewell single How Deep Is Your Love? The audience failed to see the irony of that song title. Now, He’s Back!!!! Like Lazarus Rising. But the joke is still on them, he returned only to disappear again, the mystique intact once more. Clever boy.


  15. i loved that performance of him doing hallo spaceboy at the brits..those amazing stilettos he was wearing,and that brilliant microphone with all the wires spewing out the end of it…he looked and sounding better than anything ,but the audience were sheep following something elsewhere.
    i’m not sure if he’s back or even needs to be…the audience certainly is,but in a very hard rock cafe sort of way…the album didn’t really catch alight in sort of came flying up all over the world,and then flew right back down again….i think he understands the situation so fully,that at this time in his life, generic success would hinder the quality of his days…his priority will be to do good work and have an exquisite life,but that probably involves understanding his higher level success is different than it is for your average rockstar..they need the oxygen of hit singles,where his currency now relies on his own elvisisation….i always knew this would happen to him…i was never able to perceive of him as a mere rock star who would pitter out….he’s in the same stratosphere as marilyn monroe and elvis…he always was…i bet that was obvious to you too.

    i never knew your first london shows were at the troubadour ..that’s terrific(mine were the music machine in camden)….i used to take a break from the coleherne,and go there for a coffee and cake,and watch ones go downstairs for the folk/acoustic nights…… we both lived in bedsits in earls court,and both of us signed to cbs…i love that…i’ll never forget that 4th floor in cbs where the a&r department was…muff winwood..maurice oberstein popping by…some of my loveliest times were recording at cbs studios on whitfield street…i imagine you did some work in there too…

    i’m so glad you found that ‘glacier’ song…it totally stops me in my tracks….pale green ghosts is definitely a sparkier record…he’s so very bright…he was an interperator in hospitals and the likes..speaks fluent german,and had a deep love of language from his early youth…i just like him as a person too…sensitive, and angry too in the right way..not angry in a dull way…he does things in the melody on that title track ‘pale green ghosts’ that are so good…some weird scale he taps into that only a piano player reaches easily.

    i have to post this for anyone who maybe eves dropped on our little of my favourite songs of all time…and it’s YOU john.


  16. John Howard says:

    Yes, Bowie always was a cut above, one knew it as soon as he performed on TOTP and put his arm around Ronson. It was the same look in his eye as Garland, Liza, Elvis, Lennon had, they knew they were special. Like they’d been beamed down from planet Adore. I do believe that such stars, the legendary ones, have a tad of madness in them, a soupçon of the crazy spice, it’s what gives them that glimmer in the eye, they know something we don’t, and that something is they are Separate. I think it frightens and fascinates them, and it fascinates and intrigues us. We’re drawn but can never be quite in their world. We can have talent, we can even have loads of it, we can be admired by many, but unless we have The Crazy Gene we can’t be Stars. It’s what makes Stars so driven and at times ruthless, as we were talking about before. It made Bowie often very selfish, cruel even. to his fellow musicians when they no longer fit the bill (as with Woody, Bolder and eventually Ronno) but such Stars also know when someone will always be useful, be great to work with, have something they need to maintain their greatness, hence Bowie stuck with Alomar and in sporadic bursts, Eno and Visconti. Sadly, the littler people who have briefly been part of the firmament are left floating, kicking and screaming in cold dark space when their necessity ends. But we ignore them, feel a bit sorry for them as they die whimpering alone, but our eyes still move across the screen to the Shining Ones, we’d even be one of those Little People if we got the chance, just for a moment.

    Whitfield Street Studios, most of the Technicolour Biography tracks were recorded there. I used to go The Spaghetti House across the road for lunch between sessions, on my own usually or sometimes with Paul Phillips (it was Paul who first took me there and I fell in love with the place). If Paul and I had been given the opportunity to complete Tech Biog it would have been done at Whitfield Street Studios. And Muff Winwood, eh? He used to love a track of mine I did for CBS in 1980 called I Tune Into You, it was a prophet/synth thing, very catchy little toon, Muff was convinced it was a smash. Well, he was usually right about these things so was entitled to the occasional mistake. Tom Watkins heard it and wanted to manage me, he managed a CBS band called Grand Hotel at the time, The PSBs and Bros were mere twinkles in his eye. I was terrified of Tom. I’d just got out of a fairly stifling management situation and didn’t want to step towards another, as I saw it, all-consuming ball of energy determined to make me A Star. “You’re a very silly boy” Tom told me on the phone when Nicky Graham had informed him I didn’t want him to manage me. He was probably right. Nothing was guaranteed though, whatever happened to Grand Hotel?

    I know you’ve always loved Tony Meehan’s production of Kid In A Big World. As you know, CBS hated it. Nice when RPM gave me the opportunity to include it on the Tech Biog CD as a bonus cut.

    Anyway, darling Mary, this is YOUR blog/journal, and I’ve taken up too much space talking about myself, much to the annoyance of your devoted followers, no doubt. You do inspire devotion you know. In many people. Now did I just see a glimmer in your eye…?


  17. Lyla Koral says:

    Dear Mary
    The song you write about reminds me of a few friends of mine . One who was in Andy Warhols gang, and another femme fatale who could no longer be haunted by her past demons. Needless to say they worked in the sex industry. The woman desperately wanting to have it all in Hollywood, yet damaged by being in Saudia Arabia at a young age… Sadly she took her own life…I am just a few years older than you, and as Peggy Lee says “Is that all there is?” Love to you my dear xo Lyla on Facebook, but it is Leila


    • hi leila…i love all those warhol people…billy name..i always loved billy name’s place in things,and like the style of him in these later years…and joe dallesandro of course…he wrote to me once complimenting on a short clip of me hanging out like a hustler in the red light area of london …he said it reminded of him,and i see what he means…[the rolling stones sticky fingers album cover by warhol] it was one of the very first pieces of video art i ever did…around the summer of 1999….it never occured to me at the time that it was very warhol,but in the back of my mind it must have been there….so it was real nice to hear from joe…he was lovely..he suggested i collaborated with his wife,but of course we live in different countries,but you never know…all sorts of things can happen in this wonderful life…much love to you leila..always good to hear from you…for years and years you’ve been so encouraging,and i cherish your kindness sweetheart. xxx


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