Margaret Cho's sassy humor often veers on the nasty, even the scandalous, but what's really shocking about her new CD, Cho Dependent, out next week, isn't the explicitness of tunes like “Your Dick,” “My Puss,” and “Gimme Your Seed,” or even the super-stellar list of musicians who join her on each track (Fiona Apple, Tegan and Sara, Ani DiFranco, Ben Lee, Brendan Benson, Grant Lee Phillips). No, what gets our attention on the crackling collection of tunes is Cho's big belter of a voice. Who knew?
At the intimate record release party at Here nightclub in WeHo last week (attended by pals such as Kat Von D and her co-stars from her Lifetime show, Drop Dead Diva), Cho proved the strong vox on the disc are more than fluke (or auto-tune fakery or reliance on talented collaborators), serving up a mini-live performance with Garrison Star (who joins her on “Seed”) that was bursting with both her signature deadpan humor and powerful almost Ann Wilson-like wails. Girlfriend has obviously been working on her singing in between acting and comedy gigs.
Cho also unveiled a few videos at the event, including the debut of the brilliant clip below with cameos by Lee and wifey Ione Skye, lord of LA dance/We Are The World member Ryan Heffington, burlesque/comedy chickita Selene Luna, and many more. Hubby Al Ridenour (LA Cacophony Society, Art of Bleeding) designed the shitastic props:
It might be hard to take someone crooning, “I'm so high I can't quite feel my legs/Let's get on the internet/Cruise dick on Craigslist” seriously as an music artist (that's off of “Calling In Stoned,” with Lee and Tommy Chong!), but we do, especially after seeing her perform live. Yes, artists like Tenacious D, Weird Al and maybe Mickey Avalon (whose “My Dick” seems to have inspired a couple “answer” tracks here), have done the funny rockstar thing before, but we think Cho can take things in a fresher and obviously more feminine direction.
Yup, it's time for acoustic rock to go “Asian Adjacent” (another Cho Dependent track). Katy Perry may be campy and Lady Gaga may be daring, but both seem so manufactured these days. Cho offers a funnier, more foul-mouthed alternative that won't ever go the sell-out/censored route. Depend on it.