I Blame It All On Vanity
When I saw Vanity (Denise Katrina Matthews) for the first time I knew deep down I was gay. I was 8 years old at the time, and when the videoclip of Nasty Girl came on tv, something happened to me. I didn't know there was a word for what I was feeling, but in the back of my mind I couldn't help to think it was wrong. So, I basically surpressed it. For years. Vanity was my secret fantasy. To me she was the most beautiful woman I had ever seen. In fact, I still think she is. I'm always attracted to women who kinda look like her, even though they are way out of my league.
Most people know Denise Matthews as the lead singer of Vanity 6, along with Susan Moonsie and Brenda Bennett. The group was put together by Prince, and Vanity was fashioned in the image of Prince himself (he later stated that he saw Vanity as the female version of him). Vanity eventually went solo and appeared in movies and tv-series, in fact before she met Prince she already made the incredibly campy Tanya's Island & Terror Train under the name D.D. Winters. Vanity was never the greatest singer or actress, but I would basically watch anything with her in it, even if it was autrocious (remember Never Too Young To Die or Kiss of Death?).
Apparently Vanity was a party girl and years of extensive drug abuse had taken a serious toll on her health, causing damage to the liver, eyesight and hearing, and eventually resulting in a heart attack. In 1994, that addiction led to near-fatal renal failure. She said later that Jesus Christ appeared to her at that time and offered her a second chance at life if she abandoned her Vanity persona. In 1995 she announced that she had been born again and was formally renouncing the hedonistic lifestyle of her past. All ties with the entertainment industry were abandoned, and the former ''Vanity'' subsequently established her own evangelical ministry. She told her story in a self-published autobiography, Blame It On Vanity.
So, the former wild child spent the last few decades of her life as a sober Christian evangelist, which is basically my nightmare come true. Mind you, the Christian evangelist part, not the sober one. I obviously don't want to disrespect her, but she will always be Vanity to me, my 'not so secret anymore' fantasy.