Angelyne is an American singer, actress, and model who came to prominence in 1984 after the appearance of a series of iconic billboards in and around Los Angeles, California which read only "Angelyne" and pictured her posing suggestively. These caught the attention of local media outlets, and soon she received a number of offers for film roles, magazine interviews, and television show appearances. The main trademark of her celebrity persona is a pink Corvette. Her billboards have been featured in a number of movies and television series, including the opening credits of Moonlighting, and spoofed in shows such as The Simpsons, Futurama, and BoJack Horseman.
Initially an actress and before her rise to fame, Angelyne appeared as an extra in the films Phantom of the Paradise (1974) and The Wild Party (1975). She later acquired a part in the 1977 comedy Can I Do It... 'Till I Need Glasses? before she joined her then-boyfriend's punk rock band Baby Blue which performed in clubs around Los Angeles but never became financially successful. In 1982 she released her self-titled debut album and her first posters began appearing as a part of the album's promotion. After the launch of a massive billboard campaign in February 1984, she began working on her second album. Driven to Fantasy was released in 1986. Angelyne then appeared in small parts in films such as Earth Girls Are Easy (1988), Dangerous Love (1988) and Homer and Eddie (1989).
In 2003 Angelyne became a candidate in the California governor recall election, finishing 28th in a field of 135 candidates (garnering 2,536 votes). Her slogan during the campaign was "We've had Gray, we've had Brown, now it's time for some blond and pink." Angelyne is also an artist. She began painting in 1998 and has had several art shows in Los Angeles.
Angelyne started out in the early 1970s as an actress, when she acquired work as an extra in various films. Her first appearance was in a pornographic film wherein she was shown fully clothed smoking a hookah. She later claimed that she didn't realize her scene would end up in this type of movie. In 1974, she appeared in Brian De Palma's movie Phantom of the Paradise standing in an audition line behind Jessica Harper. She performed in more films, including The Wild Party, The Frisco Kid, and her first larger part as Little Red Riding Hood in the 1977 movie Can I Do It... 'Til I Need Glasses? The same year, she joined her then-boyfriend's band Baby Blue. They performed in local clubs in L.A. and once opened along with Rubber City Rebels for The Screamers' show at the Whisky a Go Go. The punk rock club The Masque served as a rehearsal place for the band. In 1978 they released a single "Rock n' Roll Rebel" with a b-side "Fantasy Man". Only 1000 copies of the record were made and distributed in England.
The band wasn't getting much attention, so they decided to promote it by posting her picture around town. In 1979, the single "Too Much to Touch" was released under the name Angelyne, also promoted by posters and flyers.
In 1982, she released a self-titled debut album on an independent label Erika Records. The 12" picture disc contained 11 songs, including 2 versions of "Sexy Stranger", a cover of Elvis Presley's hit "Teddy Bear", and a main single "Kiss Me L.A.". The album was promoted by another series of bus-shelter posters. In July 1983, Erika Records released another Angelyne's single, "My List", accompanied by a music video.
According to Angelyne, she met wealthy adhesive-free-tape entrepreneur Hugo Maisnik (inventor of Hugo's Amazing Tape) in 1982. Maisnik had a display-printing business in Los Angeles. Describing Maisnik as "very eccentric" and a "bored prankster", he reportedly saw potential in using Angelyne's image and understood the "intricacies of the outdoor-advertising game". In February 1984, Angelyne's first billboard proclaiming "Angelyne Rocks" went up on Sunset Boulevard. Maisnik's daughter Katherine Saltzberg, wrote the one-woman play, Los Angelyne, about her experience growing up in the shadow of the Angelyne billboards.
In 1986, she released her second album, Driven to Fantasy, on her own label, Pink Kitten. An enhanced pink vinyl re-issue of the album was later released in Italy. In June 1987, an 85 feet high mural depicting Angelyne was painted on the side of a building on Hollywood and Vine. The $22,000 painting was allegedly financed by her manager. The same year, her friend Nina Hagen got her recording with Michael "Doc" Dosco, who had previously worked with Hagen on her album Nina Hagen in Ekstasy. He wrote and produced several songs for Angelyne, including "Animal Attraction", which was later featured in Julien Temple's movie Earth Girls Are Easy, where Angelyne had a cameo. The single was released in 1988 with remixes by Italian producer Pino Toma. Hagen mentioned Angelyne in her song "Super Freak Family" and her voice can be heard in the song "Pillow Talk".
In 1995, a black-and-white documentary by Robinson Devor "Angelyne" was released. Around that time she had over 200 billboards up all over Los Angeles.
In 1997, Angelyne launched her website where she offered tours around Sunset Boulevard and Hollywood. The Angelyne Dream Experience, an experimental film by Dan Kapelovitz, who also worked on her EP Beauty & the Pink, was released in 1998. The short movie with elements of psychedelia features Angelyne driving in the streets of Los Angeles, greeting her fans and talking about out-of-body experience. The same year Angelyne pursued another artistic venture and began painting self-portraits. Since that she has had several successful art exhibitions.
After being a candidate for Hollywood city council in 2002 if it were to secede from Los Angeles, she ran again in 2003, this time for a governor of California. She finished 28th in a field of 135 candidates (garnering 2,536 votes). Her slogan during the campaign was "We've had Gray, we've had Brown, now it's time for some blond and pink." Her mascot was a pink Maltese named Budda.
In July 2013, Angelyne signed a contract with designer Michael Kuluva to be a face of a limited edition T-shirt for his clothing line Tumbler and Tipsy.
- Angelyne (1982)
- Driven to Fantasy (1986)
- Beauty & the Pink (2000)
- "Rock n' Roll Rebel / Fantasy Man" (1978)
- "Too Much to Touch / Mystified" (1979)
- "Too Much to Touch / Emotional" (1981)
- "Kiss Me L.A." (1982)
- "My List / Skin Tight" (1983)
- "Flirt / Dreamin' About You" (1986)
- "Animal Attraction" (1988)
- "I'm So Lucky" (2003)
- "Heart" (2017)