Jeordie & Gidget Gein
Besides addressing the claims Jessicka made in 2017, it's important to also look at other things that are rumoured to have happened between Gidget Gein and Jeordie. Let's have a look.
It's been a subject of a lot of opinions since the start, whether or not Jeordie copied Gidget Gein, what the relationship between the two was and was Gidget treated fairly. In the early Twiggy Ramirez looks, there was resemblance to Gidget Gein, he has even said so himself that he felt Jeordie copied him, and now Jessicka has said it too. And it doesn't exactly help that Marilyn Manson wrote in his biography book that Jeordie sabotaged Gidget's recovery from his heroin addiction so that he would be able to replace him in Marilyn Manson. This combined with the fact that a lot of people feel like Gidget did not receive enough praise for his contribution in the band and his works after it, and he unfortunately passed away in 2008 due to a drug overdose. In some people it seems to wake a need to blame this on someone.
But what exactly went down?
This is what Jessicka said about it:
On Christmas Eve of 1993, my friend Brad Stewart aka Gidget Gein (bass player and co-founder of Marilyn Manson) was hospitalized after overdosing on heroin. While hospitalized, Brad received a message from Marilyn Manson's lawyer via FedEx that he was fired due to his drug use. Brad was replaced by Jeordie White, who Manson renamed Twiggy Ramirez. In order to cement his spot and further humiliate Brad and myself (who he thought I was having an affair with), Jeordie adopted Brad's colorful dreadlocks, moppet persona, and stripped tights with shorts look.
In this statement that is looking to accuse Jeordie of all kinds of things, it's very interesting to bring into it the heroin addiction and hospitalization. It is true, that Gidget received the message that he was fired while he was in rehab for his heroin addiction. But the way he was fired had nothing to do with Jeordie. He was not the one who fired him. But the way he was fired and his feelings about it are probably behind the comments he made later about Jeordie copying him. Can I also note here that Gidget Gein was NOT the first bass player of Marilyn Manson either, he was not the "co-founder" of Marilyn Manson, the original bass player was Olivia Newton-Bundy, who was the first member of Marilyn Manson besides Manson himself. At the time of Olivia being recruited into the group, Jeordie was already an option, but Manson didn't ask him because he already had a band called Amboog-A-Lard.
Now, the fans that remember the "Jeordie took Gidget out drinking so that he would get fired form the band for being an addict" thing. But the book Long Hard Road Out Of Hell is partly fictional and very exaggerated, it is not an accurate documentation of what went down. It's more than likely that this never happened, especially when in the book it was said with "if it's true" and "I heard." In fact, people that have been mentioned in the book have come forward stating that the things said about them are not true. Including Jessicka Addams herself and also Trent Reznor. Gidget Gein himself never confirmed this part of the story, and in an interview for Rock N Roll Experience, dated 1998, he said "pretty much none of" the things written about him in the book were true.
It's quite interesting to even bring Gidget Gein up in this, as late as 2017, since while Gidget Gein was very angry and bitter about being fired from Marilyn Manson, he did forgive the band later on and make up with Marilyn Manson, even appearing in the music video for the song (s)Aint. His artwork, In Case Of Emergency, Break Heart, was also included in the video.
In an interview in 2005, Gidget Gein explained his side of being fired from the band. He said that he had a lot of run ins with the law and drug overdoses, which lead him to being fired from the band. He said he was so angry that he fantasized about a violent revenge towards the band, but at the moment of the interview he understood why things went like they did, and he "Would have done the same if he was Manson."
So, if he was angry enough to fantasize about revenge, believed that he was unfairly treated and couldn't understand why they would fire him, it could very likely be that he was in denial about how much his drug use affected his performance in the band. And also, Marilyn Manson and Jeordie were pretty much best friends at the time and Gidget's friendship to Manson ended there. Years later he still said in an interview that he wishes he could have that friendship with Manson.
So Gidget was replaced by Jeordie as a bassist, songwriter and a friend. In this kind of a situation, feeling like Jeordie was nothing but a copy, like "How is he better than me, what does he have that I don't, who does he think he is?" would be totally understandable.
This part from the interview from Rock N Roll Experience, 1998 is a good example:
Does it make you mad when you see Marilyn Manson onstage & he has Twiggy playing a song like Cake And Sodomy which you wrote & played?
"Not anymore. At first I thought it was kinda pathetic because when he [Twiggy] joined the band he would play all the songs that I wrote and he played every song note for note, he didn't add anything to it, and I thought that was kinda weak. I thought if you're gonna have a new person in the band, at least add a little something to it instead of just, you know, copying somebody... if they wanted a copy, then why did they even replace me? They even had Twiggy dye his hair the same way, he had bright green roots and purple and black dreads when he joined the band, he wore the same clothes, even before he was in the band. Me and him were friends and we'd go out thrift shopping and I'd buy him clothes and shit like that and when he joined the band he was wearing all the clothes I'd bought him!
It doesn't really make me mad though, in a way I'm glad that I'm out of it because when I was in that band I didn't really have a voice, ya know? I always wanted to be the main song writer anyways because I always wrote lyrics and when I joined the band I wasn't even looking to join that band, I didn't even play bass, I was a guitar player, Manson asked me to play and while I learned the songs that's when I learned to play bass"
So he criticizes Jeordie for playing every song note for note like he did, but there is a pretty good explanation to that already. Jeordie joined the band in December 1993, as said by Gidget himself, he received the information on Christmas eve. The first shows Jeordie played in Marilyn Manson as Twiggy Ramirez were soon after, on new year's eve and onward. Jeordie switched over from being a guitarist in a thrash metal band called Amboog A Lard to being a bassist in Marilyn Manson. That is a jump from not only a genre to another but also from an instrument to another. It would be totally understandable to just play what the guy before you did. That's what you're supposed to do? Play the songs like they are written?
(Actually, Jeordie switched to bass already in Amboog A Lard when the former bassist Barry left the band, the story has been just simplified as he played guitar in the band for years and switched to bass very late in his time in the band, but still: When you switch over to a different genre and a different band, it takes a while to get used to how you're supposed to act on stage and what the new band's stage presence is like. And just learning the songs in general. It's unclear if he'd played bass on stage before Manson.)
And then there's the issue of the clothes. Gidget Gein criticizes Jeordie for wearing similiar clothes to him, but then admits to buying them for him and consciously influencing his stage look by going shopping with him. But the thing is, if we're going to call Jeordie out for "stealing" Gidget Gein's look, we should treat Marilyn Manson with the same comments. The whole band's stage looks were influenced by Gidget Gein, and Jeordie simply joined a band and adopted the style to fit in.
Did you contribute anything to the creative aspects of Marilyn Manson and the Spooky Kids, or did you mostly keep to yourself and play your bass lines when needed?
Gidget Gein: When I met Manson he was doing a Nine Inch Nails/Nitzer Ebb thing. I brought the dirty drugged out Glam/Metal Drag Queen vibe. I taught Manson How to wear make-up, How to dress. I got him his first tattoo for his birthday. I co-wrote all of the music. A lot of the stage ideas were mine. The whole lunchbox "thing" was mine. There's plenty more but I've banged my own horn enough.
So this whole case is pretty much one of these, depends on whose point of view you look at it from sort of cases. It's just weird that it needed to be brought up by Jessicka in 2017 when it seemed that the issue was already resolved anyway. So is this bringing Gidget into it simply an act of using a tragedy as a tool in a story to make Jeordie look worse and herself look like a virtuous friend standing up for a deceased artist who didn't get the recognition he deserved?
What about the looks then?
First, it's kind of ironic that Jessicka brought up the "stripped tights and shorts" (I take it to mean striped because that's what Gidget was known to wear) because;
1. Jessicka wore that look too. And by the looks of it, tights with shorts was a pretty common thing in the scene in 1993 as the entire Jack Off Jill wore this look.
2. It wasn't just Gidget Gein who wore it anyway, here's Marilyn Manson and the Spooky Kids when he was still in the band:
3. When Jeordie joined the band, he wore tights with shorts but they were not striped at all! It was actually Marilyn Manson who kept wearing the striped tights after Gidget was fired.
I think the following two photos sum up this clothing discussion pretty well:
While yes, Gidget Gein had dreadlocks, they weren't as long as Jeordie's, Jeordie's dreadlocks were black with a few red and yellow strands in there. The band dressed pretty randomly anyway and here you can see Pogo on a dress too, so the "Gidget wore a dress in Manson first" is also kind of a stupid argument considering that most of the time he wore this shorts thing. And look at the next photo:
Yes, Jeordie is wearing tights with shorts but so is Marilyn and Pogo. Jeordie is wearing Marilyn's shirt, as in exactly the same shirt that Marilyn wore in the previous photo. Jeordie pretty much wore this shirt on stage through the year 1994 and also in the first music videos he appeared in.
So he literally just wore whatever the rest of the band wore and since these looks were influenced by Gidget Gein, he looked kind of similiar but at the end of the day, he did exactly what anyone else in this situation would have done.
Then let's talk about the hair.
One thing that has to be pointed out at first is that before the dreadlocks, both Gidget and Jeordie had naturally very curly hair. And in the early Marilyn Manson photos Gidget doesn't have dreadlocks yet. So thinking about this, had Jeordie just kept his naturally curly hair, he would have probably gotten the same "Gidget copycat" comments.
And might as well point it out since Jessicka brought the hair issue up in her allegations, that this same goes for the comparisons to her. Had Jeordie kept his curly hair, it's likely that there would still be "Jessicka copying" complaints, as Jessicka had naturally curly hair too. AND remember that Jeordie got the dreadlocks before she did.
Then there's what Gidget said about Jeordie copying him: "He had bright green roots and purple dreadlocks when he joined the band."
Um. No he actually didn't. There's footage of Jeordie with his roots dyed green, yes. But, that video is from a trip to Disney World with Marilyn and Jessicka and at the time of filming that, Jeordie was not in the band yet. It's from the Demystifying The Devil documentary and this is said in it before the clip. So what this does it just shows that he started changing his style into the more Manson direction (he was a fan of the band) before joining the band which means the "he went overnight from this to that" is not true.
Jeordie actually didn't have dreadlocks at all yet when he joined Marilyn Manson.
It seems that the first stage of the "Twiggy Ramirez hair" was actually dark curly hair with a few yellow dreads made into them.
When Jeordie did get the dreadlocks, they were, again, black with some yellow and red in there. That is not the same look as Gidget.
So no. Jeordie White did not fire Gidget Gein, he did not make him take drugs and get fired from Marilyn Manson and he did not rip off Gidget Gein. These are rumours and opinions. Not necessarily facts.
It could be that some of the public's "Jeordie copied Gidget" opinions could be based on the way Jeordie became known as the "guy in the dress" in 1995 and fans who discovered the band later maybe didn't recognize him in the older photos as he was lacking the heavy makeup. Maybe some thought he was Gidget and then when presented with how Gidget looked like, the similarities caught their eye first. Could remember personally confusing them with each other as I got into Manson in the 2000s and I didn't know english very well yet, I bought the Get Your Gunn single and I was like okay that's probably Gidget Gein. Oh it's not?
Probably one of the reasons for the bitterness towards Jeordie was the fact that even though he didn't play bass on Portrait Of An American Family, he appeared in the promo pictures, so it kind of gives the impression that Gidget Gein was "forgotten" or that the band implied he never played on that album but Jeordie did. But Gidget is credited.
This is something that for some reason some people want to even photoshop Gidget into the POAAF era pictures in Jeordie's place to "make it right".
I don't know how people again think this stuff works, like alright if you have never played in a band you might understand things a bit differently than those who have, but do you think that Jeordie made that decision; what pictures are used in the album booklet and who appears in the pictures?
Gidget was fired from the band between the recording and the release of that album. After the recording it can take months between. So if Gidget and Manson weren't even friends at the time, it's unlikely that he would have wanted to show up for the photoshoot. Why not use an old photo then? Who would want to use an old photo of their band to market their debut album, that's where you have to make an impression! Using an outdated photo would first of all feel kind of "Is this the amount of effort we're putting into this huh?", and also, it is really not the only time that a band's recording lineup is different from the promo picture lineup.
This "Twiggy just showed up for a photoshoot and took credit for Gidget's work" is again one of these things that depend on how you look at it, but I don't know how you guys think bands work, it's not that deep. He showed up for the photoshoot because that was the lineup of the band at the time, he never said that he played on that album, the fact that you feel like that doesn't mean it's true.
One last thing about the Gidget vs Twiggy issue: I cannot for the life of me understand how some people can contradict themselves with their own thinking like this: At the same time the fact that Gidget was a heroin addict seems to make him a victim in this situation, that he couldn't help it, he did nothing wrong and was treated unfairly. But then the fact that Jeordie used drugs is used against him in these allegations and basically everything like, "yeah he was just a junkie who wore someone else's clothes". You cannot use the drug use as an argument to defend Gidget and then turn around and disregard Jeordie's input into the band. It's not a very good argument and it just shows that this opinion is solely based on emotions and not even anything real like an actual statement.
It's totally okay to just have the opinion that you prefer Gidget over Twiggy and you thought he was better, there's no reason to even explain that, it's just a matter of liking something over something else. It's cool. This is just something that seems to have people feeling a lot of feelings that cause them to interpret certain things a certain way and that is fine too but be aware of it.
You're so biased, Twiggy fan's defenses! Might be, but are you aware of the way Gidget Gein and ONLY Gidget Gein was responsible for his own life and his own drug use, somehow this is a hard pill to swallow. And that doesn't take anything away from his talent, his personality, it doesn't. It would be totally great if people would listen to the music he made after Manson and appreciate his art instead of just going on and on about how he was that guy who was fired from Manson for doing drugs. Because that's not who he was, he was a talented musician and artist with an interesting life and an absolutely awesome style.