In Her Words

Hi there! Thanks for visiting my website!

For starters, I was born in the All-American town of Roseville, California about a thousand years ago. I was born on the Day of Irreverence—November 23rd, which means I share a birthday with Harpo Marx and Billy the Kid!

I made my singing debut at the age of nine, in the Beer Garden at the Placer County Fair with Bob Ringwald (yep, Molly's dad) and his Dixieland jazz band. Much to my Mom and grandparents' amazement, I sang 27 choruses of “Hello, Dolly!” I have been doing impromptu, crazy things like that ever since.

Connie Champagne, age 12, playing guitarConnie Champagne, age 12

At Foothill Farms Junior High School in Sacramento, I did a really crazy thing—I sang a Janis Joplin song a cappella at a school assembly in front of the whole school! They could have crucified me—which they did 2 years later, for quitting cheerleading (oh! the sacrilege!) and for generally being a weirdo—but luckily, I didn't suck. Right then I was recruited by some high school guys to join their band. It seems that their lead vocalist had been exiled to live with his dad in San Francisco, via juvenile hall—he and a friend got caught robbing the house next door, leaving grape Kool-Aid stained fingerprints all over the refrigerator. I sang with the group for a while, and then their singer returned, and I was kicked out. He felt sorry for me, and came over to my house everyday, ostensibly to teach me how to play guitar. I never did play very well, but he taught me a lot about singing. His name is Eric Martin, and he went on to sing for hairband extraordinaire. Mr. Big. He was my big first love, but when punk rock happened, he wouldn't cut his hair, so we had to break up, naturally.

I high-tailed out of Sacramento, and got involved in punk bands. I had a Vox Jaguar keyboard (which I later sold to a band called The Amputees), and auditioned for Jennifer Blowdryer's band. “Too musical,” she admonished. Oh well. I went to college, and produced the first and last ever punk show at Mills College. My band, The Queers (not the famous one, sorry) opened for the Dead Kennedys—it was their first headlining gig! But, an over-zealous frat boy tried to remove the toilet from the Student Union hall, and that was it—no more punk at that refined women's college. I eventually graduated with honors, with a Bachelor's in Theater. Isn't that amazing! But, it's true.