Calgary Herald - April 7, 1990

Aaron shrugs off that `Alannah thing':

Lee Aaron is getting sick and tired of the Alannah Myles question.

That's the one where a reporter asks about rivalry between the two Toronto-based rock divas, or tries to provoke Aaron into making a snarky remark about the multi-Juno Award winning Myles.

"I've been asked that quite a few times, the Alannah thing," says Aaron. "It's almost like people want to create some type of cat fight in the press; it's very strange."

Aaron, who will be in Calgary Wednesday for a show at the Jack Singer Concert Hall, considers Myles "a nice gal" who deserves success.

"It's really silly to think of it as competition," she says. "If anything, I think women in rock empathize with each other. It's a tough business and it's even a little harder being a woman.

"There's a lot of talented people out there and the whole idea of being jealous or envious of someone's success is very high school; it's a real immature attitude."

Though she's never registered a hit on the scale of Myles' nation-shaking debut, Aaron's current album Bodyrock - her fifth on Attic Records - is a Canadian success story in its own right. The petite singer captured a new audience last fall when the video for Whatcha Do To My Body introduced a playful, kittenish Aaron to TV viewers - quite a switch from her previous "metal queen" persona.

"I think video's a very important medium and it's especially helped me on this record," she acknowledges. "But the bottom line is, if the song is not good, the greatest video in the world can't make it a hit. The musical goods have to be there. Video is just an extra tool to help it come to life."

The public's perception prior to Bodyrock, she says, was of "Lee Aaron, the amazon leather- clad vixen."

"I wanted to turn that around. I wanted people to have a more accurate representation of what I'm really about . . . to realize that I was a softer, more feminine person."

Still, she's no shrinking violet when it comes to rocking out in concert with a four-piece band. She recently played to a European TV audience of about 60 million at Italy's San Remo Festival, on a bill with such big names as Sinead O'Connor, Depeche Mode, Roxette and Van Morrison.

The event coincided with her first release in Italy, but her popularity is well established in Germany, England and other parts of Europe; 50,000 copies of Bodyrock have just been shipped to East Germany and Aaron is considering an offer to do a five-week tour of the Soviet Union.

Her Calgary date is part of her first headlining tour of Canadian "softseaters" (concert halls). With increasing popularity comes the challenge of staying incognito in public.

"I try going out with my hair in a ponytail and no makeup and these goofy glasses I have, but it still happens - people go, `Aren't you Lee Aaron?'

"I'm sure they go home and say, `God, I saw Lee Aaron today in the mall and she really didn't look very good!'" says the singer, dissolving in laughter.

LEE AARON, with Regatta at the Jack Singer Concert Hall Wednesday.

Alison Mayes

© Calgary Herald