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Staz Lindes on Punk Rock, Santa Monica and Keeping It Real | Behind-the-Scenes Images and Q&A

staz1Images by Carmen Daneshmandi

Staz Lindes is one of the hottest models in the game and recently did some work for us–and we love how it turned out. But there are several layers to Lindes.

Below, scope behind-these-scenes images from Staz’s shoot photographed by our homie Carmen Daneshmandi, which, in our opinion, deserve a wing in an art museum. At least a passageway.

Interspersed therein: our Q&A with Lindes about her experience modeling for Nordstrom, what her punk rock band, the Paranoyds, is up to (she sings and plays bass)–and her musical and real-talk-laden journey through life.

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stas2Nordstrom blogs: What do you remember about the shoot?

Staz Lindes: Um, probably how awesome everyone was. And how everyone knew what they wanted. It was such an easy crowd to work with. I loved the makeup, loved the hair, loved the combined collaboration. I just really liked the vibe.

Since your dad played guitar in the band, what’s the best Dire Straits song?

I actually couldn’t tell you that. I have never really listened to them. I’ve watched videos of my dad doing the classic songs, but I’m not a big Dire Straits fan, unfortunately.

staz3He didn’t force you to listen to how awesome he was?

He’s quite shy about it, really. That would be weird, right? Anyone’s dad who’s like: You have to watch this.

I feel like dads who were once high-school quarterbacks tend to bring out the varsity jacket.

Well, I’ve seen his guitars. I’ve seen the cool stuff that means he used to be in a band. But he never shoved an album down my throat. Which was cool of him.

How about a band I know you like: What’s your favorite Shannon & the Clams song?

Hard question. I like “Sleep Talk” a lot, but I really like the whole album.

staz4What’s the last concert you saw?

Well, I played yesterday. The Paranoyds played yesterday. The day before that, my brother’s band played, Sad Girl. They played with another band I had never seen: Rexx. It was a festival, and there were a few other bands playing but I didn’t see them. I think festivals are kind of the worst way to see bands you actually want to see. At this one, it was too hot, too crowded, people weren’t paying attention to the music and the security guys were mean.

staz5It’s weird when you’re at a concert and you realize the music is the last thing on some people’s minds.

This was an all-ages thing, and it was like the kids were there so they wouldn’t have to go to the mall. So they had somewhere else to hang out. It was funny. It felt like prom, though, because security were so mean for no reason. But yeah, festivals. The sound is always bad. For the most part, if you are really stoked to see a band, festivals are not the best option. I just did this road trip from New York to L.A. and stopped at all the big music studios on the way. I went to Chess, Stax, Sun Records. The whole industry is definitely people cashing in on a craze and trying to exploit it. Some people are in it for the music, but it’s mostly not about that.

What’s the story of the Paranoyds?

We’ve been playing together since high school, and it’s only in the last year that we’ve been playing shows–shows that weren’t in our laundry room or bedroom. I don’t want to put a difference between girls and boys, but there’s a lot of girl bands who just stand there. There’s a lot of guy bands like that, too. But the stuff that made me want to start singing was No Doubt and Bikini Kill, stuff where the girls are not caring about being pretty. Obviously Gwen Stefani changed that later on. But our thing is we don’t want to be cute. We’re playing because we love playing. We get sweaty and gross. It’s about having fun. And it is fun.

staz6Nordstrom is headquartered in Seattle. You should play a show here.

That would be rad, a coastal tour.

You should play with La Luz. Do you know that band?

I love La Luz! I went to high school with the bassist.

staz7Lena Simon?

Yeah. Santa Monica High School.

Do you think the West Coast is the best coast?

Yeah. I travel a lot but feel like L.A. is the best place.

Can you remember what you were listening to in elementary school?

Obsessed with No Doubt. And I got into Motown and oldies.

What about in junior high?

Super into Nirvana. Unhealthy. My room was lined with anything Nirvana-related, like wallpaper. That’s when I got super into punk music.

And in high school?

I decided punk wasn’t cool anymore, because it got scene-y and nobody knew what to do and it got emo, or whatever. I got back into oldies. Hank Williams. Bob Dylan. Folk. Blues. And I was really into Bright Eyes. I don’t like to talk about that, but in 9th grade I was pretty gross about it. Once you get into something like oldies music, like doo-wop or soul, it’s hard to get out of it, because it doesn’t get old. Once you listen to what real music was, how it felt, it’s hard to get into anything else. I’ve been trying to get into the ‘80s. I’ve been super into Devo this year. Been trying to listen to more ‘80s post-punk. Power pop. Synth stuff. I’ve been buying a lot of compilations. Not so much fixating on one band.

staz8How are you managing songwriting with your modeling career?

I carry a lyric book and have since I was eight. I’ve had really bad writer’s block since I moved to New York, though. I’m a really social person and I’m hanging out all the time. It’s a buzzy energy and it’s hard to focus.

How do you feel about modeling? What’s your general feeling about the fashion industry?

I think the thing with life is that everything good has evilness to it. There’s a lot of that in fashion and it’s obvious. I get anonymous comments on tumblr that are really hateful, and it does feel bad a lot. I’m so not a judgmental person. I’d probably judge the band T-shirt you’re wearing over your appearance. It’s hard to explain and it might be hypocritical, but when you create an image with a group of people and it’s cool, and you work together, it’s art. You have a vision and you create. That side of the industry is awesome. I love creating. Becoming new characters. The travel is amazing. The money helps me buy more broken guitars. It’s a tricky question for me because I wasn’t one of those northside Santa Monica girls getting designer clothes for Christmas. I was shopping at Ross. I’m realer than that. Too real, maybe. I try and keep my dignity. There was a long period where I was saying no to a lot of brands, even though it was for a lot of money. I won’t do shoots for alcohol or cigarettes. People want me to smoke in photographs. I’m not trying to make that look cool for anyone.

staz9–Andrew Matson