You can’t learn how to be Jenn O. Cide, the tattooed, fire-breathing sideshow performer and self-styled “professional weirdo” whose talents have been tapped by the likes of Mötley Crüe, The Killers and Eli Roth. But she can show you a few tricks.
The Las Vegas native and punk rock entrepreneur signed a deal this month with local label SquidHat Records to release two instructional DVDs giving the skinny on skills like show production and fire breathing. The first, How to Make Your Show Awesome, set for a March release, draws on Jenn’s experience as a performer, sound engineer and tour manager. It gives a multifaceted rundown of production, tackling everything from stage makeup to building a media presence.
“It’s all the stuff that performers need to know, but usually only learn after the lack of that information has bitten them in the ass,” she says.
Jenn also brings in local experts to help cover specifics, including Jordan Hoss, lighting designer for Reverend Horton Heat; Eric Wilson, live sound engineer for Penn & Teller; celebrity makeup artist Megan Wunder; and pro wrestler Sinn Bodhi, who covers stage blocking and physicality. “I’ve been in the business for 20 years, and I still learned a lot of cool tips just putting this together,” Jenn says.
That DVD will be followed by July’s How to Perform With Fire,which focuses on the legal and business trappings of playing with fire. “I decided to produce the DVDs when I realized that there’s nothing out there to help performers learn the ropes,” she says. “My friends jokingly call me ‘the oracle,’ because a lot of people ask my advice about performing, putting together events, touring … These DVDs will help people make their living doing what they love, and hopefully make their show more enjoyable.”
The DVDs will be available for purchase at major retail outlets and via streaming services including Amazon, iTunes, Hulu and Netflix. In addition to distribution, SquidHat will also handle all of the marketing, promotion and merchandise for Jenn and her talent agency, Freak Show Talent.
Of working with SquidHat, whose roster includes Vegas bands The Dirty Panties, The Gashers, Pet Tigers, Bloodcocks UK and Attack Ships on Fire, Jenn says, “They’re local guys that understand my particular brand of weirdness. They can help me take things to the next level, reaching a bunch of people through standard and underground channels... And they just care.”