When San Diego lounge scenestress Erika Davies isn't belting out jazz standards by the likes of Billie Holiday and Ella Fitzgerald or doing her version of Sinatra or Nat King Cole tunes, she's busy playing the role of seamstress for Spicy Toast, her clothing company.
"Handmade, one of a kind," she explains. "A little one-woman show run out of my home.... I'm responsible for the cutting, sewing, and designing of all my garments. I have been sewing for over six years and work with a Serger sewing machine, plus a conventional stitch machine.
"It's quite boring to sew the same thing over and over," she adds. "I do make variations of a design. I currently sell [my work] each Thursday on eBay."
EARLIEST CHILDHOOD MEMORY?
"Watching my mother's water break all over the kitchen linoleum. I almost watched my best friend enter the earth."
TRICKIEST PROBLEM PLAYING LIVE?
"Those little unexpected surprises. I remember like it was yesterday -- I stepped out to sing a little ditty, 'My Old Man's a Sailor,' and I was all sweaty. I glanced down in the middle of singing and realized I had a giant sailor shirt on, doubling as a dress, and it wasn't mine. I could see straight to the floor. That frightened me the most, seeing straight through my dress to the floor. I was ten."
"Out of the few, so far: waiting behind stage, witnessing P.O.D., and then stepping out onstage to accompany the glorious Mr. [Gregory] Page in songs reminiscent of 'happier times.' Those P.O.D. fans loved what they were hearing so very much. They threw presents our way -- toilet paper rolls, empty beer bottles, etc. It was nice."
BRUSH WITH THE FAMOUS?
"Courtney Love. Twice. Once, at Disneyland, where I got her autograph on a piece of ice cream box. Second, couple years later, onstage -- I snapped her tu-tu and was whacked in the head by a security guard."
WHAT'S IN YOUR CD PLAYER NOW?
"'With my high starched collar and my high-top shoes and my hair piled high upon my head.' Judy. Judy. Judy Garland...she lights a fire under my soul!"
TOP FOUR END-OF-THE-WORLD CDs?
1. Björk, Debut. "To remember what it was like 'before. '"
2. The Boswell Sisters, Shout Sister Shout! "Because I'll obviously have the heebie-jeebies."
3. "My new favorite CD, the one I'll discover before it's time for the world to end."
4. Desmond Dekker, Desmond Dekker. "'Take me back to Africa' says it all, I think."
WHAT DID YOU DO PROM NIGHT?
"Slept on the beach. My life changed the next morning as I wore vintage cream peep-toe high heels with a men's basketball jersey and oversized men's Hawaiian swimming trunks at breakfast."