Category Archives: The Open Door

I [Heart] Amy Lynn Lee

It may or may not be surprising to find out that both terms Kinderwhore and Riot Grrrl originated in conversations about my life between Kurt Cobain and myself. 

Kurt came up with the band name Amy Carter and the idea for a zine “I [Heart] Amy Carter”.  The band members consisted of Tammy Rae, Kathleen Hanna, and Heidi Aborgast.  

We were discussing former President Jimmy Carter who’s home state is Georgia, same as my adopted mother’s.  I told him Amy Lynn Carter and I shared not only a first name and middle initial, but we also both have red hair.  (origin for stagename Amy Lynn

In 1991 Nirvana released the song On A Plain written in reference to President Jimmy Carter’s home town of Plains, Georgia.

(Left, young Amy Lynn Carter, fourth daughter of U.S. President Jimmy Carter)

(Bottom Right, Amy Lee, January 1976 on 8th Birthday)


Sweet Sacrifice Origin

I’ve written about the origins of Evanescence in an earlier post, but here are just a few words about the songs.

Sweet Sacrifice and the duet Broken were two of the first songs I made up at 15 and told them the artist I wanted to perform it would be called Amy Lee.   

The title to Sweet Sacrifice was to tie into Pour Some Sugar On Me which I wrote with Joe Elliott of Def Leppard and to Sugar Walls which was performed by Sheena Easton. 

Sweet Sacrifice 

It’s true, we’re all a little insane.

But it’s so clear,

Now that I’m unchained.

I used what I knew at the time which was making reference to albums my brother had and I would listen to while he was not home.  His collection of albums included Aerosmith, Van Halen, Billy Squier, and ELO.  ‘The definition of Aerosmith’s Toys In the Attic (meaning insanity) influenced the first line, where Van Halen’s Unchained is mentioned in the third.

The line “Blow me away” from Sweet Sacrifice I used in another song performed by the Deftones named Change when I was 15 or 16 (’83 or ’84).  The title for Change was taken from David Bowie’s Changes, but the song itself was inspired by the ’46 movie The Big Sleep starring Humphrey Bogart, Lauren Bacall, and Martha Vickers as Carmen (pictured). 

“Vivian is spoiled, exacting, smart and quite ruthless. Carmen is a child who likes to pull wings off flies. Neither of them has anymore moral sense than a cat. Neither have I. No Sternwood ever had.”– General Sternwood

Another line from The Big Sleep inspired the song Something In Your Mouth performed by Nickelback.

“If I did, she’d just suck her thumb and look coy. (about Martha Vicker’s character Carmen)”-General Sternwood

Years later Kurt Cobain decided to cover the band Flipper’s ’84 song “Sacrifice” and Def Leppard members wrote the lineA whole lotta somethin’ you can’t sacrifice” for the ’87 song Women.

The idea for the 2006 The Open Door album started with an 1844 photograph at The Getty Museum of the same name by William Henry Fox Talbot http://www.getty.edu/art/gettyguide/artObjectDetails?artobj=71564

The change I wanted to make for the design of the album cover came in wanting it to show the image of Amy Lynn Hartzler walking out the door from the inside.