Disney land is one of the most popular theme parks in the world and every year, millions of people are drawn to one of the parks somewhere in the world to have fun with their friends and families or to simply enjoy some time in a world that’s styled after their childhood fantasies. However, there are still a few things that we as the general public don’t really know about the original park and the secret behind what made some of these amazing theme park rides will really amaze you!
One such case is the now legendary Tiki Room on the grounds of the very first Disneyworld theme park. The Tiki Room was styled in a Polynesian setting and featured an array of 225 animatronic birds and creatures that were specific to the region as well as non-alcoholic cocktails to help sell the idea that you were in a tropical paradise for the day. However, when the creators were designing the room, they ran into a technical glitch and needed the help of a scientist who was working on creating nuclear missiles at the time to help solve the problem.
Because coordinating that many animatronic birds was no easy feat, the designers at Disney turned to Wernher von Braun to help create an early digital system to control the bird’s movements and timing. Faced with the challenge, von Braun decided to use a system that was originally created to help guide nuclear missiles and featured a 14 channel tape recorder with 1-inch tape that housed the various command controls in the form of musical cues which determined when the hydraulic systems on the animatronic birds would move and therefore synch the movements of the birds to sound effects or music. In those days, data was stored on electronic tape, rather than hard drives or cloud-based servers like today. An interesting insight into the secret world of Disney that most us probably didn’t know about!
Legendary Groupies That Made Rock and Roll History
It’s no secret that the world has been completely enamored with celebrities, as well as their lavish lifestyles, since the start of the entertainment industry. Take the ’50s and ’60s, for instance — a time in which groupies came to be. These people might have started out as fans who followed their favorite musicians and bands around in hopes to meet them but once they found their way in, they’d soon become just as iconic as their musical idols. Keep scrolling to read about the most legendary groupies in rock and roll history…
Pamela Des Barres
Today, she’s an author and magazine writer. Once upon a time, though, Pamela Des Barres was the queen of the groupies. She quickly went from babysitting for Frank Zappa’s children to getting her first taste of rock and roll.
Not only did she spend time with The Rolling Stones and The Byrds, but she was also known to have relationships with Keith Moon, Jim Morrison, and Jimmy Page. She also happens to be the inspiration behind The Beatles’ “Penny Lane,” as well as the character played by Kate Hudson in Almost Famous.
Bebe Buell, now 66 years old, started out as a singer and model before she gained notoriety as a groupie. In fact, she actually first became famous for becoming Playboy magazine’s Playmate of the Month for the November 1974 issue. It wasn’t until 1972 that she would garner attention for her highly-publicized seven-year relationship with Todd Rundgren.
After that ended, Buell was linked to various other rockstars and musicians including Mick Jagger, Iggy Pop, David Bowie, Jimmy Page, and of course — Steven Tyler with whom she had daughter Liv Tyler.
The late Anita Pallenberg was a German-Italian actress, artist, and model. Known as a style icon and “It Girl” of the ’60s and ’70s, Pallenberg captivated countless rock legends with her magnetic draw and striking appearance. In fact, she was even credited as the muse of The Rolling Stones.
She was first the romantic partner of the band’s multi-instrumentalist, Brian Jones. Later, from 1967 to 1980, she was in a relationship with Stones guitarist Keith Richards, with whom she had three children.
Julie “Tawny” Kitaen’s career all started after following a former boyfriend and his band to L.A. in the late ’70s. From there, she gained prominence as an actress with roles in films including Witchboard and Bachelor Party. Aside from that, though, Kitaen was very much involved in the music scene.
She appeared in several music videos including Whitesnake’s hit “Still of the Night” and “Here I Go Again.” She later married the band’s lead vocalist — David Coverdale — in 1989, but they parted ways a couple of years later.
The late Sable Starr became one of the first “baby groupies” during the early ’70s when she began attending concerts at the young age of 12. A notorious name in LA, Starr has had personal relationships with several iconic musicians including Mick Jagger, Rod Stewart, Alice Cooper, David Bowie, and Marc Bolan.
During an interview with Star magazine, the groupie queen revealed her early encounters with Spirit guitarist Randy California and recalled confrontations with the so-called “rival groupies.” Starr also apparently had an intimate relationship with Led Zeppelin’s leading man Robert Plant.
Born Tara Leigh Patrick, Carmen Electra first hit the scene when she met Prince who would go on to produce her self-titled debut studio album in ’93. A few years later, she began modeling and had numerous appearances in Playboy before becoming another Baywatch babe.
After her relationship ended with Chicago Bulls legend Dennis Rodman, Electra enjoyed her fair share of romance with different rock and roll stars. Not only was Electra married to Dave Navarro — the guitarist of Jane’s Addiction — but she was also said to have dated other rockers before him including Tommy Lee and Prince.
Like her friend Sable Starr, Lori Mattix was another member of the fabled “baby groupies.” By the time she was 13 years old, Mattix had already entered the world of rock and roll. Although she started out as a child model, Mattix became famous for her mysterious relationship with none other than Led Zeppelin’s founder and guitarist Jimmy Page.
Although that romance has since fizzled out, Mattix seems to be doing pretty well for herself. In fact, since November 2015, she has been a partner and buyer for the Glam Boutique in West Hollywood.
Nancy Spungen, a figure of the ’70s punk rock scene, was particularly known as the girlfriend of English Sex Pistols bassist Sid Vicious — although her life as a groupie went far beyond the punk rock star as she followed bands including Aerosmith, Bad Company, and more.
In any case, after Spungen was kicked out of college, she left for London where she met Sid. The two were together for 19 tumultuous months until it was discovered that the 20-year-old had passed inside a room at the infamous Chelsea Hotel in New York City.
Daughter of famous musician Don Everly, Erin was not only the girl featured in “Sweet Child O’ Mine” but she was also the first wife of Guns N’ Roses’ leading man — Axl Rose — although they were only married for a short length of time.
Born and raised in Los Angeles, Erin initially met Axl when she was just 19 years old. Four years after that meeting, Erin and Axl would go on to tie the knot and live together from 1990 to 1991. While their relationship might have been what we’d call short-lived, there’s no doubt that it was also a passionate one.
Raised in an elite environment, Marianne Faithfull hardly fit the stereotypical ‘groupie’ mold when she was first introduced to the world of rock and roll. After all, her father was a British Intelligence officer and professor of Italian Literature while Faithfull’s mother was the daughter of an Austro-Hungarian nobleman.
In any event, Faithfull was a singer-songwriter who eventually made her way into the arms of The Rolling Stones. While most of her affection was directed towards leading man Mick Jagger, there were rumors that Faithfull had relationships with the other members, as well. After Mick, Faithfull naturally went on to date other rockstars.
Before she became George Harrison and Eric Clapton’s muse, Pattie Boyd was one of the leading international models during the ’60s. With her striking looks and charm, Boyd helped to epitomize the British female “look” of the era. With that, modeling work followed her everywhere she went so much so that she was even featured on the cover of Vogue.
Aside from her career as a model, Boyd was also a successful photographer. Unsurprisingly, Boyd had a strong appeal with various rockers. She was married to Harrison for ten years before moving onto Clapton who wrote “Layla” for Boyd.
Born in Nicaragua, Bianca Jagger first became known for her unique flair and vibrant personality — which also happens to be what led her to a number of private gatherings and lavish parties. Bianca first met Mick Jagger at an after-party following a Stones concert.
It wasn’t long after their initial meeting that the two tied the knot, when Bianca was just four months pregnant with their first and only child. Although their marriage only lasted for a brief time, Bianca continued to remain a prominent figure in the club scene throughout the ’70s and ’80s. Today, Bianca keeps busy working on human rights campaigns.
A prominent figure in the punk and grunge scenes of the ’90s, Courtney Love first rose to fame as the lead vocalist of Hole — which the singer-songwriter formed in 1989 around the same time she met Nirvana’s leading man Kurt Cobain.
Prior to that relationship, which lasted from ’91 until Cobain’s passing in ’94, Love was involved with other rockers including Billy Corgan of The Smashing Pumpkins as well as Michael Stipe of REM. Throughout the years, Love has drawn much public attention for her uninhibited live performances and aggressive lyrics.
Chris O’Dell first entered the world of rock and roll as a humble assistant for Apple Records, a record label founded by The Beatles. Naturally, Chris became enamored with the glamorous lifestyle that came with rock music. Her stardom as a groupie began with — of course — The Beatles, all of whom she shared a deep relationship with.
In fact, “Miss O’Dell” was composed by George Harrison with Chris as the inspiration behind it. After parting ways with the iconic band, Chris then signed up for a job with The Rolling Stones.
Often referred to as the “Goddess of Pop,” Cher undoubtedly started from humble beginnings. She spent her time at the Sunset Strip attempting to win the attention of the right people in the industry before working as a housekeeper for Sonny Bono. From there, Bono not only introduced Cher to different musicians but he also eventually ended up marrying her.
Although their marriage didn’t last, Sonny and Cher built quite a successful career. The rest is pretty much history. Of course, though, Cher did have a few other relationships throughout the years with different rockers including Bon Jovi guitarist Richie Sambora.
The late Tura Satana was a Japanese American actress, vedette, and exotic dancer. With her captivating dance moves and magnetic draw, it’s no surprise that Elvis Presley — a.k.a. the King of Rock and Roll — instantly fell in love with Satana. Presley first noticed the starlet at Follies Theater in Chicago.
It was after that initial encounter that Satana and Presley would enter a whirlwind romance. Although it was quite short-lived, some would say that Tura’s relationship with Elvis automatically makes her the mother of the groupie scene.
While Cleo Odzer’s life was cut down way too soon, there’s no doubt that she lived every day to the fullest. The late groupie was first introduced to the glamorous world of rock and roll after landing a temporary music writing job for a local newspaper.
During her time on the job, Odzer became acquainted with Keith Emerson — of Emerson, Lake & Palmer. That initial meeting turned into a fully-fledged albeit brief relationship. After they separated, Odzer left the U.S. for Goa, India where she discovered a new type of environment and authored books until her passing.
A model and actress originally from Alabama, Donna D’Errico first rose to fame when she posed for Playboy as its Playmate of the Month in September 1995. A year later, D’Errico landed a starring role on Baywatch for two seasons.
Like her fellow lifeguard babes — Pamela Anderson and Carmen Electra — D’Errico was enthralled with the rock and roll lifestyle so much so that she even married Mötley Crüe’s bassist, Nikki Sixx. After 11 years of marriage, though, the two called it quits. Today, D’Errico continues to work on different acting projects…
Speaking of Nikki Sixx, next up on the list is Brandi Brandt — Sixx’s first wife. Considering that Brandt’s mom was the drummer, percussionist, and vocalist for a band called The American Girls, it comes as no surprise that Brandi felt comfortable with the rock and roll lifestyle.
Still, Brandt decided to make a name for herself in the world of modeling and acting instead. A couple of years after posing for Playboy for the first time, Brandt married Nikki. Seven years and three children later, though, the iconic model and rocker called it quits.
Bobbie Jean Brown first entered the spotlight when she won the Miss Louisiana Teen USA 1987 title and represented Louisiana in the Miss Teen USA 1987 pageant broadcast live. It wasn’t long before Brown began landing acting and modeling gigs.
During the shooting of Warrant’s “Cherry Pie” music video — which Brown appeared in — the young star met lead singer Jani Lane. The two tied the knot in ’91, had a daughter together, and called it quits in ’93. After their split, Brown was briefly engaged to Tommy Lee before he moved onto Pamela Anderson.
Often called “Sweet Sweet Connie,” Connie Hamzy is primarily known for her time as a groupie. An Arkansas native, Hamzy’s easy-going personality and contagious smile had a way of brightening up even the darkest of days.
After quickly rising to prominence in the world of rock and roll, Hamzy’s unique effect on rockstars was even mentioned in a song by Grand Funk Railroad. Since those days, Hamzy has gone on to publish a memoir called Rock Groupie: The Intimate Adventures of “Sweet Connie” from Little Rock.
Kendra Jade Rossi — an American model and actress — drew the attention of various different rockers from the very start of her career. After entering the groupie scene in her early 20s, Rossi found herself attending all the lavish parties that came with the rock and roll lifestyle.
She eventually tied the knot with musician Lukas Rossi in 2007. Since then, she’s been keeping busy as her hubby’s music manager. Aside from that, Rossi advocates for animal rights issues and even operates her own animal rescue.
Josie Stevens, now 38 years old, has been known as a notorious groupie since the ’80s, although she was never truly able to get in close with the icons like Mick Jagger. Aside from following her favorite musicians, Josie has built a highly successful career as a model, makeup artist, fashion designer, stylist, and television personality.
After years of adventures and parties, Josie opted for a more stable life. In 2008, she married guitarist and songwriter Steve Stevens. Since then, the couple has worked together, with Josie serving as her hubby’s manager.
The Mystery Girl
Now 84 years old, Barbara Gray remained anonymous for 60 years before revealing that she was indeed the mystery girl photographed with The King. Although she was only sort of a groupie for about a day, there’s no denying that she made a lasting impact on popular culture. In reality, though, Gray never wanted fame or fortune.
Nonetheless, the iconic photographs — specifically the one in which Elvis is seen smooching Gray — are now considered among the hottest shots in the history of rock and roll. Today, Gray is a happily married real-estate manager living in South Carolina.
Many of us know Heather Locklear as the blonde-haired, blue-eyed beauty that starred on hit shows like Melrose Place and Dynasty. What some of you might not be aware of, though, is that there is a whole other side to Locklear — a wild side.
In fact, the critically-acclaimed actress has been drawn to rockers since her early days in the entertainment industry. Aside from her marriage to Tommy Lee from 1986 to 1993, Locklear also had a relationship with Richie Sambora of Bon Jovi from 1994 to 2007.
Audrey Hamilton may have retreated from the public eye in recent years but back in the ’70s, when she was at her prime, she lived a thrilling life of spontaneity. Specifically speaking, Hamilton essentially became Robert Plant’s ‘road wife’ during Led Zeppelin’s 1977 US tour.
From that moment on, the two shared an intimate relationship that eventually broke down after Robert’s son suddenly passed later that year. After that, Audrey became romantically involved with Ace Frehley — the guitarist of Kiss — and ultimately had a child with him.
Kathleen Dorritie — a.k.a. Cherry Vanilla — first worked as an actress before becoming David Bowie’s publicist. It was at this point that Dorritie grew more interested in the world of rock, eventually becoming a singer-songwriter in her own right. What separates her from the rest that made this list is the fact that Dorritie didn’t only go after rockstars.
Indeed she shared a very strong friendship with artist Andy Warhol, even playing a significant role in the success of many of his projects. Still, she wouldn’t have made the list if it weren’t for her affairs with rockstars including Beatles legend, John Lennon.
Originally from Sweden, Annette Walter-Lax began her modeling career in the ’70s. Before long, though, Annette starting dating the legendary Keith Moon — drummer of The Who — after a photographer asked the blonde-haired beauty if she wanted to meet a “real drummer.”
From then on, the two were inseparable until Moon’s passing in 1978. Like so many other groupies, Annette found herself completely smitten with her beau. Still, although their four-year relationship was full of passion and love, it was also one of tragedy and turbulence.
Although she was born in Iran, Roxana Shirazi was raised in England from a very young age. When she was old enough to work and earn money, Shirazi began belly dancing and performing at various nightclubs across London. Eventually, this talent helped Shirazi gain the confidence necessary to grab the attention of rockers.
With that, Shirazi became close with various groups including Black Cherry and Guns N’ Roses. Today, Shirazi lives and writes in London, and has even published her own memoir!
Meet Morgana Welch — the founding and leading member of the tight-knit groupie circle known as “The LA Queens.” Like many others on this list, Welch began spending her time in Sunset clubs from a very young age. This made it that much easier to get in close with some of the most iconic rockstars to ever exist.
In fact, Welch and her circle were Led Zeppelin’s number one choice for company. After she took a step back from her groupie lifestyle, Welch wrote a book detailing her experiences called Laurel Canyon: The Inside Story of Rock-and-Roll’s Legendary Neighborhood.
A German native, Uschi Obermaier was already a globally recognized model before she became an influential party in the revolution and protests that occurred throughout the ’60s. Her days of rock and roll started when she met the iconic Jimi Hendrix in West Berlin and immediately sparked up a relationship with the famed rock musician.
Later on, in 1975, Obermaier joined The Rolling Stones on their world tour where she’d go on to have affairs with two of the band’s members — Mick Jagger and Keith Richards.
Today, you may recognize her from her performances in hit shows and films including Stranger Things, Beetlejuice, and Edward Scissorhands. Aside from her thriving career in the entertainment industry, though, Ryder was also a groupie herself — at least for a short while.
Throughout her dating history, Ryder has been linked to rockstars such as Jack White of The White Stripes, Dave Grohl of Nirvana and The Foo Fighters, Conor Oberst of Bright Eyes, and many more. Since 2011, however, Ryder has been in a relationship with a fashion designer named Scott Mackinlay Hahn.
Unlike many others who made this list, Lacy is somewhat of a mysterious persona when it comes to the groupie scene. She was first launched to fame for her stunning photographs in Rolling Stone magazine. The photographer at the time, Baron Wolman, had a liking for Lacy and that was evident throughout the series of pictures that he captured of the young beauty.
With all of that being said, Lacy remains an enigma to this day in that even those who knew her during the ’60s are unsure of where she is now or what she’s up to.
Born Christine Ann Frka, Miss Christine was the very first babysitter for Frank Zappa’s oldest daughter. From there, she was featured on the front cover of Zappa’s 1969 album Hot Rats in which she’s seen emerging from an empty swimming pool.
Throughout her years in the rock and roll scene, Christine was romantically linked to various different legends including Alice Cooper — who credits her with creating his stage persona — Todd Rundgren, and Russell Mael. Sadly, though, Christine passed shortly before her 23rd birthday.
Although Pamela Manning never really considered herself a groupie, you would often see her on tour with Guns N’ Roses back in the day. It turns out that the band hired the American bombshell to not only do some dance scenes while they’d play live on stage but also as a filler in some of their music videos and photoshoots.
According to Manning herself, though, being branded as a groupie negatively impacted her career as well as her personal life.
Christa Päffgen — professionally known as Nico — was a German singer-songwriter, musician, model, and actress. Although her life was brief, she made a name for herself by maximizing the powerful connections she had made around her.
Throughout her years in the industry, Nico’s personal life was also a prominent subject in the media. She was said to have had romantic relationships with stars including Iggy Pop, Jim Morrison, Jackson Browne, and even Lou Reed before her eventual passing.
A New Zealand native, Rachel Hunter first made a name for herself as a model. She would end up using this fame to get in close with different rockstars. During the late ’80s, Hunter lived with musician Kip Winger before moving on to Rod Stewart — who’s 24 years her senior.
After 16 years of marriage, from which they share two children, Hunter and Stewart called it quits. Since then, Stewart has been seen with different celebs including singer and composer Robbie Williams. Today, Hunter is the main persona of the Australian women’s fashion line, Jacqui E.
Well, if Cher is the “Goddess of Pop,” that would have to make Madonna the “Queen of Pop” — wouldn’t you think? It’s no secret that throughout the years, Madonna has lived a pretty wild and controversial life. She first got her start as a backup singer and dancer for Patrick Hernandez before going off on her own.
Aside from her undeniably successful career, Madonna’s romantic relationships have often been a prominent subject in the media. Of these romances that Madonna had with iconic musicians were Lenny Kravitz, Michael Jackson, and Tupac Shakur although there were many others.
Judy & Karen
While Judy Wong and Karen Seltenrich made this list, they’re unique from the rest of the groupies here simply due to their reputations as fashion entrepreneurs. In particular, Judy and Karen helped to ignite the styles of numerous musicians and groups.
Together, Judy and Karen quickly grew from a small partnership to celebrity status. In 1976, Seltenrich even landed herself on the cover of Rolling Stone magazine. The two powerhouses are perhaps most notable for designing clothes for The Cockettes — a hippie theater group.
Before Pamela Anderson tied the knot to Tommy Lee in 1995, she first rose to prominence as the February 1990 Playmate of the Month. Is anyone else starting to see a trend here? Anyway, Anderson’s fame continued to grow as she landed roles on hit shows including Home Improvement and Baywatch.
And of course, with this stardom came a series of relationships with different rockstars. After her break up from Tommy in ’98, Anderson went on to date Bret Michaels before marrying Kid Rock in 2006. Since her latest split, Anderson has taken a step back from her groupie days. Today, she’s a prominent activist for animal rights.