1987: Lisa DeLeeuw, Jamie Gillis, John Seeman
Podcast 61 – The Richard Pacheco Tapes

1987: Lisa DeLeeuw, Jamie Gillis, John Seeman <br />Podcast 61 – The Richard Pacheco Tapes
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Vintage audio interviews with Lisa DeLeeuw, Jamie Gillis, and John Seeman.
Conducted by Richard Pacheco.

Since we started the The Rialto Report, several people have said to us, “Wouldn’t it have been great if you could’ve spoken with these adult film stars back in the golden age itself?”

And sure, it would’ve been fun, but part of what I enjoy about our interviews is precisely the fact that many years, decades even, have passed since these people were making films. So what we hear from them now is something rather different. In other words, how have they chosen to remember the past? And how does it affect them today?

And yet, it would have been good to go back in time and speak to some of the main players. It would have been interesting to interview them when they were in the middle of the industry and dealing with the life that came with it.

And then we found out that the adult film actor Richard Pacheco had done exactly that.

Back in the day, he interviewed fellow actors, directors, and crew members, and taped these conversations that he had with them. Some of the interviews were done on film sets, others were done over the phone, and all are intimate and candid portraits that are unlike any others from the time. These conversations weren’t done by publicists seeking to aggrandize, academics trying to intellectualize, or the mainstream looking to scandalize. These were just candid conversations between people comparing notes, sharing war stories, and considering their place in the changing world of entertainment. They speak honestly, and they’re not selling anything – themselves or their latest film.

I listened to these tapes, and was particularly interested in a series of recorded phone calls that took place almost 30 years ago.

It was 1987, and the early generation of adult film performers were being confronted with a set of issues they hadn’t dealt with before: They were becoming older and replaced by newer, younger performers. AIDS was a now reality. Movies were being shot on video rather than film, which meant plummeting costs and cheaper productions. Money was in short supply for the performers. They had to start thinking of new careers, maybe outside of films. And as they aged, romantic relationships were becoming more important to them, but also more problematic because of their jobs.

This was one of the first generations that had to deal with these issues, and at times there’s a melancholy to the conversations.

On this episode of The Rialto Report we listen back to three conversations:

  • Firstly Jamie Gillis, who at the time had just moved back to New York from California, desperate for money.
  • Then we hear from Lisa DeLeeuw, who’d started to consider what was coming next in her life.
  • Finally we hear from John Seeman, who was looking back at his career and wondering if it was all worth it.

Before we hear the tapes, we also asked Richard Pacheco to tell us what he remembers about each of these three people.

This episode’s running time is 6o minutes.

________________________________________________________________________________________

Richard Pacheco aka Howie Gordon recently published his memoirs – ‘Hindsight’.

It is an excellent read, but don’t just take our word for it:

“Howie Gordon writes about life as a porn star with more honesty, integrity and humor than any other porn star, ever! You will laugh, cry, and fall in love.
I hope his book gets made into a movie, because it will be a one-of-a-kind
blockbuster.”

Annie Sprinkle, Ph.D.
Internationally Acclaimed Performance Artist
Author of Post Porn Modernist

 

Autographed copies of HINDSIGHT available at www.hindsightbook.com

 

Jamie GillisJamie Gillis on the set of Bad Girls IV

 

Jamie Gillis

 

Lisa De LeeuwLisa De Leeuw on the set of Ten Little Maidens

 

Lisa De Leeuw

 

John SeemanHowie with John Seeman

 

John Seeman

 

Howie Gordon

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38 Comments

  1. Anon · June 19, 2016 Reply

    An audio interview with Lisa DeLeeuw?!? Thank you, thank you, thank you.

    The Rialto people deliver once again. Amazing find!

    And thanks to Mr Pacheco too!!

  2. Pat · June 19, 2016 Reply

    The archeologist of adult film are back – and this one looks amazing. I’ll never tire of hearing from Dirty Ol’ Gillis…. but Lisa DeLeeuw AND John Seeman too….???????

  3. Rialto Fan · June 19, 2016 Reply

    At last you’re covering John Seeman. He seemed to have been the glue holding so much of the West Coast production scene together for years, so this is absolutely welcome.

  4. Anonymous · June 19, 2016 Reply

    Richard Pacheco’s book IS a classic so this should be a treat.

  5. Steven Otero · June 19, 2016 Reply

    It’s Sunday Meatballs in Sauce on the stove The Rialto Report on my desktop .

  6. Simon · June 19, 2016 Reply

    Great hearing the Lisa De Leeuw interview. She’s very soft spoken, a stark contrast from her usual bawdy on-screen persona. She was really something special.

    It would make happy to no end to hear a modern day interview with her, but it seems very unlikely.

  7. 42 PC · June 19, 2016 Reply

    Each person is a revelation here which is testament to Mr Pacheco’s easy relationship with his subjects. He’s a good interviewer and allows them the time to think about each answer. (His final question to John Seeman is strangely spine-tingling in its profundity).

    Lisa comes across as a strong and smart woman – but sweeter and softer than her often ballsy on screen roles. What a pleasure to listen to her laugh and reflect on the industry. And what I would give to hear a companion Rialto Report with her nowadays. She’s a special one.

  8. Finn1 · June 19, 2016 Reply

    Richard Pacheco was a fantastic interviewer. It’s a shame he didn’t conduct a recorded chat with each and every actor he worked with at the time. How amazing would that have been?

    Since it’s pretty much common knowledge that Lisa is alive and well, I suppose it’s not out of the realm of possibility she will one day appear on The Rialto Report. Fingers crossed. Speaking of Lisa. The ‘Valentino’ look alike that Lisa fell for in the film ‘Pink Champagne’ was none other than a young John ‘Buttman’ Stagliano.

  9. Bondurant · June 19, 2016 Reply

    Wow. Great concept. One of my favorite editions of the podcast.

  10. Harry · June 19, 2016 Reply

    Lyrical, beautiful, intelligent, and moving. And I never thought I’d say that about something relating to the porno industry. But it’s true. Special.

  11. Jim Stevens · June 19, 2016 Reply

    Stellar stuff, especially the interviews with Lisa and John. It’s no surprise that adult film’s most gifted actor and talented writer would ask such great, intimate questions and they would respond so openly. John’s answers and pensive tone nearly had me in tears. Any chance of Rialto taking on Howie/Richard as a third permanent interviewer? Or even an occasional one?

  12. Roy Karch · June 19, 2016 Reply

    So many roads; so many trails to pass through.
    Rialto Report keeps us in deep focus without missing a beat.
    ..thank you.

  13. Bill · June 19, 2016 Reply

    Outstanding interviews Howie, and many thanks to the Rialto Report.
    These are absolute treasures that brings back so many fond memories. What really struck me was how comfortable all three were. I had a chance to meet Lisa once and she was such a delight to be around!

  14. George Maranville · June 20, 2016 Reply

    Incredible. Wondering if Richard/Howie remembers the fanzine Batteries Not Included.

  15. Some Guy · June 20, 2016 Reply

    Very good.

    The conversation between John Seeman and Richard Pacheco is more like a short two man play (and maybe should be adapted as such?) It is probably more illuminating about the motivations, joys, and disappointments of the life of a porno actor than anything I’ve read.

    John Seeman comes across as the best friend everyone would like to have. (And Richard is, as always, entertaining and sensitive.)

  16. Dutchie · June 20, 2016 Reply

    Not trying to be picky, but I believe the interview with DeLeeuw is from 1988. She mentioned Bill Slobodian was dead, and he died in July 1988.

  17. Scott H. · June 20, 2016 Reply

    It is awesome to hear Lisa DeLeeuw… and the others are fun too.

  18. dc · June 21, 2016 Reply

    did john seeman ever find that special someone? he sounds like one of your good friends…

    • Howie Gordon (Richard Pacheco) · June 21, 2016 Reply

      dc

      Just spoke with him last week. He’s still looking, but he’s also loving the life he’s leading!

      • A-Log · July 20, 2016 Reply

        Holy crap! John Seeman’s still alive?! How is that old fella? I always pictured the guy having the nerdier roles back in the day. Does he still have what many call “The Jewish Afro”?

  19. Rob T · June 21, 2016 Reply

    I was great listen to all of those interviews. I was delighted to here Lisa DeLeeuw. It is so rare to hear anyone speak in that time period. I would love to here a current interview with her. If nothing else an update on her life currently. I would also interesting the John Seeman today and to see how thing s have gone since that interview.

  20. Rob T · June 21, 2016 Reply

    Are there any more of the hidden interview gems?

  21. AlanG · June 21, 2016 Reply

    Three great interviews with individuals who were central to the Golden Age. I was happy to hear that Lisa de Leeuw thought ‘Dixie Ray: Hollywood Star’ was one of her best efforts. I regard it as one of the top ten films of all time. It was ironic to hear the discussion of AIDS and it’s impact on the industry given the unsubstantiated reports of de Leeuw’s death from AIDS. I hope she is living in anonymity enjoying the company of the three children she says she wanted!

  22. Alf · June 23, 2016 Reply

    All due respect but in my opinion if you don’t wish to out Lisa De Leeuw presently you should not stir the pot on her past. You probably know her real identity and that she just wishes to stay out of the public eye. I don’t think it’s that big of a deal but still. Love the Rialto report always.

    • Some Guy · June 24, 2016 Reply

      Huh?!?!?

      How does a 30 year old interview ‘out’ someone in 2016?

      I just checked eBay and there are at least five old magazines for sale that feature interviews with Lisa DeLeeuw.. are these sellers guilty of ‘outing’ her as well?

      I appreciate that someone may want to be private today – but does that also mean we should all bury our heads in the sand and pretend she never existed in the first place?

    • Rob T · June 24, 2016 Reply

      If she is alive and well and want to do an interview that is fine. If she doesn’t want to do an interview that fine too. I don’t think anyone who is interested in the truth wants to invade her privacy. It could be as simple as an article saying she lives in a midwesterner state with her family and has left that life behind.

    • Dave · June 25, 2016 Reply

      “You probably know her identity and that she just wishes to stay out of the public eye”.

      Really? What gives you that impression that The Rialto Report knows this? Seems like a big assumption to me.

      It sounds like Alf knows something about Lisa’s identity and whereabouts today judging by his comments.

      And if so, is he not “stirring the pot” himself by giving away the fact that she wishes to stay out of the public eye?

    • Robyn Reed · July 4, 2016 Reply

      Wow Alf, you know she’s alive? Fantastic. Tell us more!

  23. Parker Gabriel · June 26, 2016 Reply

    One word: Transcriptions?

  24. nylonsteven · July 3, 2016 Reply

    What a great job. Howie, you seemed to have missed a second career, that of interviewer and regular contributing writer. Lisa DeLeuw, ouch! I was close to Lee Carroll for a couple of years. She adored Lisa. I told her that I had read of her death from AIDS in 1993, on my birthday no less! Made her quite upset. I met John Seeman for an interview about 5 years ago. Great guy. Somewhat humble and very generous. There are 2 people I wish you would interview, Ashley. Bree Anthony, star of Oriental Blue (1975) and Lee Carroll. Add to that Samantha Fox and Leslie Bovee.
    Thanks again

  25. Sean Elliot · July 10, 2016 Reply

    Lisa was my muse! I had reservations about becoming a porn actor. I was studying at Lee Strassburg Theatre Institute and beginning an acting career in New York in 1979. Although Lisa didn’t introduce me to porn. I was part of the famous Catskills Mountain raid on the porn industry with Lenny Katzman and his films. But I first worked with Lisa in a Chuck Vincent production called Luscious. We filmed in Puerto Rico a lot too. That was enticing:-). But I digress. Lisa was going through a tough personal time and confided in me. We spent a month together when we got back to the “city”. God, I adore her. The softest spoken emotionally there little girl in a bawdy Mae West body. We did a few more films, Mascara comes to mind.. Then I did retire from porn to continue mainstream. Not sure if it was the right choice.. Loved these people. They were real!

  26. Sean Elliot · July 10, 2016 Reply

    Lisa was my muse! I had reservations about becoming a porn actor. I was studying at Lee Strassburg Theatre Institute and beginning an acting career in New York in 1979. Although Lisa didn’t introduce me to porn. I was part of the famous Catskills Mountain raid on the porn industry with Lenny Kirtzman and his films. But I first worked with Lisa in a Chuck Vincent production which Bill Slobodian directed ( who Lisa references his death ) called Luscious. We filmed in Puerto Rico a lot too. That was enticing:-). But I digress. Lisa was going through a tough personal time and confided in me. We spent a month together when we got back to the “city”. God, I adored her. She gave me lots of confidence and guidance.The softest spoken, emotionally there little girl, in a bawdy Mae West body. We did a few more films, Mascara comes to mind.. Then I did retire from porn to continue mainstream. Not sure if it was the right choice.. Loved these people. They were real!

  27. Sean Elliot · July 10, 2016 Reply

    Didn’t mean to leave 3 paragraphs Ashley . So sorry 🙂

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