Ron Jeremy’s 10 Tips for Aspiring Musicians

You could learn a lot from a porn star…

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1. Understand what your audience likes.

This one’s famous: at some point in his career, Ron Jeremy realized that the fatter and more out of shape he became, the more money he made.  “I like to think that I’ve given confidence to millions of men across the world,” Jeremy relayed in his autobiography, Ron Jeremy: The Hardest (Working) Man In Showbiz.  “They look at themselves in the mirror and think, ‘Y’know, compared to Ron Jeremy, I’m not that bad looking at all.”

2. Understand that audiences also like things that aren’t you.

In the book, Jeremy’s recounts stories about his (usually) friendly arch-nemesis, John Holmes.  Yes, his was bigger than Ron Jeremy’s (by several inches), and he was skinny.   Which is sort of a variation on the theme: “You can have all the good-looking guys with the body-builder physiques, guys out there in the audience want to see some gigantic penis going into some cute little blonde or brunette.”

3. Don’t do drugs.

Holmes (who was loosely portrayed in Boogie Nights) died after becoming embroiled in heavy drugs and crime.  And it eventually killed his ability to perform on camera and make a living.

By sharp contrast, Ron Jeremy stayed clean, and that even includes Viagra: “The minute I need a pill to get wood, I’m going to retire from the business,” Jeremy wrote. “I don’t care how old I get.  I want my boners to be au natural.”

4. Own it, no matter what the world says.

Musicians constantly deal with derisive comments and sneers from mainstream society.  Well, it’s way worse in porn.  Ron Jeremy may have existed in the ‘Golden Age of Pornography,’ (see Boogie Nights), but that doesn’t mean society was kind to skin flicks.  Indeed, Jeremy’s sets were routinely raided in the early days based on trumped-up prostitution charges, which was just one part of society’s rather unfriendly view towards pornography.

Even these more liberated days, Jeremy is often treated more as a novelty than a serious actor.

5. Talk to your parents.  Try to convince them.

Jeremy was lucky: his parents supported his pornography career, as long as he didn’t use the family name (which is ‘Hyatt’).  But even if Ron Hyatt’s parents didn’t give their blessing, he probably would have done it anyway.

6. Gig all the time, and be willing to travel.

Ron Jeremy has done more than 2,000 films (a record), many of which required red-eye flights and 5 am wake-up calls.  “It was a large part of why I became so famous in the porn world so quickly,” Jeremy explained.  “I wanted to work.  And if that meant leaving one set at midnight and driving to LAX to catch a red-eye to New York for another movie the next morning, I’d do it.”

7. Don’t Sleep.

“My friends have accused me of having narcolepsy,” Jeremy wrote.  “While I’ll admit to occasionally falling asleep in public places, I don’t think a medical condition is to blame.  If I slowed down long enough to get a proper six hours of sleep a night, I might not suffer from spontaneous napping.”

8. Just Say ‘Yes’

Ron Jeremy is a relentless worker, and says yes — flat out — to any role in which the production has a studio and budget involved.  “I don’t want to waste time going over details,” Jeremy says.  “If a studio or network wants in, I’m happy to do whatever it is.  You want to do a reality series about Ron Jeremy cleaning his shoes?  I’ll do it.  Cruise around Sunset with some half-naked girls?  Fine.  Whatever.  I don’t care.  I’m not that picky.  I’m a performer.

“That’s what I do.  I entertain.”

9. Live what you do.

And what does Ron Jeremy do in his spare time?  Hang out at swinger’s clubs having sex, because that’s what he loves to do.  Just like artists should always be jamming and practicing offstage, even when there’s no audience (at least a big one).  “From the moment I walked into the doors of Plato’s, I knew I was home,” Jeremy wrote about his late-70s exploits at the wild New York club.  “It was a swingers’ club straight from the smuttiest edges of my imagination.”

10. Try new things, even if they scare you.

Ron Jeremy got into live sex in his 50s, despite all sorts of fears.  That includes a complete lack of control over the filming, and total leap outside his comfort zone (controlled filming in closed studios), and… his erection.  “And then there was the matter of my erection,” Jeremy relayed.  “On a porn set, I could always ask the crew to leave so that I could focus on my boner.  But what was I going to do with three hundred guys staring at me?  ‘Hey, would you mind leaving the room for a few minutes?  Thanks.””


Check out Ron Jeremy: The Hardest (Working) Man In Showbiz here.

Image of Ron Jeremy by Glenn Francis, licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported (CC BY-SA 3.0).

8 Responses

  1. Justin Mayer

    That’s one thing i have found in the music biz, no one accepts anyone as they are, which is totally crazy…

    1. Your audience doesn’t even know what they like! Studies have shown people have attention spans shorter then a gnat, are easily duped and manipulated and wowed by gimmicks and showmanship and generally fall victim to mob rules. People need other people to tell them what they like, yet are probably more adamant then ever that they are certain they know themselves. It’s scary.

    2. A shocking realization to many narcissistic dreamers.

    3. Why not exactly? People blindly and willingly take poorly tested and controversial pharmaceuticals yet think naturally growing marijuana is bad? Why do people blindly believe what their nanny tells them? Societal pressures perhaps. Perhaps the lack of drugs in today’s professional creative fields is why there is a lack of depth and creativity. Control and responsibility is the secret and staying away from some of those really potent ones can be crucial. Stop telling people what to do and what not to do and then shunning them or punishing them just simply because of their choices. The mob rules society nanny states is long overdue for a massive overhaul. Their anti drug utpoia society is pure retched hell, while they hammer and pummel over priced pharmaceuticals, legally, to anybody with a tiny boo boo. They also fail to realize that the reason so many people do drugs, is because of them and their society and instead deflect the reasoning to other things in an effort to slander those against them and perpetuate their importance.

    4. Agreed. Powerful people still seem to be selling this idea that no one wants ownership anymore, as they own everything and profit heavily from it. I prefer owning stuff, especially myself and my decisions and choices.

    5. Why? Who says a parent is automatically by default qualified to give anyone any advice? Do your due diligence, educate yourself, make your own decisions. If your parents accept, great, but accepting and loving yourself and enjoying your life and standing behind your own decisions regardless what anyone else thinks, is of much greater importance.

    6. Of utmost importance more then ever.

    7. Terrible, awful, near criminal advice. The human body is a finely crafted life-form that requires certain things to function at its top level. Also the more rundown your body becomes the more susceptible to disease and infection. It also significantly shortens your lifespan. Mess with the circadian rhythm and a waterfall of effects will eventually surface. We continually move away from a results based society and more into an appearance of working hard society. It’s shortsighted and unsustainable.

    8. Again, terrible advice. What works for one does not work for another.

    9. Again, why? Am i not able and competent to make my own choices and decisions? We really seem to be entering this automaton society where everyone else knows what everyone else should be doing and always has to make sure they tell them about it. As far as i can tell, more then ever, no one has any clue what even they themselves should be doing and hardly anyone i see is qualified to tell others what to do and how to be and what to think. Everyone operates differently. Perhaps some people need to be like that. Some people prefer a balance in their life. Michelangelo would sit and study a piece of stone for months before taking the first chisel strike. Let the master decide for themselves how to get the best results and go look in the mirror and figure your own shit out!

    It seems society is getting faster and faster and people have become obedient diligent slave robots with no mind to think for themselves anymore. It is downright frightening. I need to maintain a certain balance in my life to ensure i putting out the best results i can, if all i ever did was just music music music, id no longer want anything to do with music and id be finding something else to spend my time on. The whole specializing work all the time slave driving mentality will ultimately destroy people and society if a balance is not found.

    10. Agreed!

  2. Stefan

    love your article on Ron!
    Saw you like to travel and enjoy going to Austria- what’s your favorite spot?