1. First off thank you for taking the time to speak to the metal times.
please tell us your name and what you do for a living.
Hello my name is Audrey Queen and I am the lead singer of the Chicago hard rock band Bullet to the Heart.
2. So obviously this is an interview regarding tattoos, let's talk about your art and why it is important to you.
My very first tattoo I wanted to get something that encompassed my life moto which was peace and love with music which creates happiness. My second tattoo was more for what instruments I played that included both the treble and bass clef in a cute heart that looked like someone painted it and the paint was dripping down. My third tattoo was a couples tattoo I wanted to get with my significant other and drummer of my band. He was named after the main character in the crow, Draven. He got a crow to symbolize this and it is missing a tail feather that is on me meaning I will always have a part of him and I will always take care of that. The sleeve was not originally a sleeve but soon came to be my life all included in this piece. The Pheonix feather was for my grandmother who passed. She always rose from the ashes of any fires that tried to consume her as do I. The planchette, the moving part of a Ouija board, was for my uncle who passed from an overdose 3 years ago. I being spiritual will always search for him and it has the salt symbol on it to ward off any other spirits but his. I love Star Wars so naturally I wanted to get an obi-wan inspired lightsaber (my favorite character) with my favorite color blue. The blue dance shoes are also my favorite color and represent my dance career of 6 years from the ages of 6-12. The ribbon wrapped around the lightsaber encompasses awareness for all diseases and all mental illnesses as many are in my family. The white flowers are lily of the valley my birth month flowers. The red rose with music notes coming out of it was also for my grandmother who loved roses and music. The blue rose represents the type of flowers my mom had made for me after my first dance recital. The hummingbird was for my grandfather who passed who loved hummingbirds. Most of the females in my family who were close to him got those in memory. The satellite is another for my hubby because he is always orbiting and watching over me to make sure I am loved and safe. The biggest portion of this sleeve is the microphone plugged into my arm because that is my lifeline. I am The Queen of Darkness with the crown on it with blue sapphire one of my favorite jewels and a bullet smashed on the crown because I am bulletproof. Topped with the galaxy because I have also loved the stars and the universe. Scratched into the microphone is a peace sign to symbolize a more indie hippie side of me. This microphone is a recreation of my own microphone with blue peace sign tape at the bottom but no Shure endorsed logo (yet).
3. What made you want to get a tattoo? And how many people told you not to do it? And did it make you think twice?
The people in my family always had tattoos so naturally when I was old enough, I took my high school graduation money and got 2. There were a few people that told me not to do it in places where people could see in case of a future career, but my uncle was a very prominent sales person who had many showing tattoos, he just told me to cover them with shirts with sleeves. It's kind of made me think twice about placements but never about getting them.
4. What was your first piece? how did you pick it out and was it done professionally(where) or underground? (where)
My first piece is by my right hip and it is a peace sign heart tie dye hybrid with sheet music with music notes on it. I wanted to get something that no one had gotten before, so my mom and I searched the internet and found a sketch and took it to a tattoo shop in Joliet, Illinois where she went to get hers and picked an artist to do it.
5.were you scared about the pain or the consequences more?
I was more scared of the pain because I did not know what to expect and mom came with me so I could get it out of my system and she created a tattoo addict that day.
6. How has your art hurt or helped your career or has it hindered anything that made you wish you didn’t have it?
It has helped my career as a musician because it has helped shape my onstage persona. It has given me confidence to feel good in my own skin and show the world my "battle scars" and that it is ok to express yourself in this way.
7. Are you about a story with your pieces or are you just into cool art? In other words, does your skin tell a story
My skin tells a story. It shows the world what I am and what I have been through before.
8. Is any of it about extremity pain/pleasure or is it more expression
It is about expression.
9. Is there an and game? When do you think you will be finished?
I do not know if I will ever be truly "finished." I'll just find more art pieces that express me and I'll keep adding until the day I die.
10. What is your number one favorite tattoo and why?
My favorite has to be the microphone because it is who I am in an art piece. I am a singer who is a Queen and you will always know me by that.
11. How do you feel about getting a partner’s name or initials? Is the curse real?
I do not think the curse is real and I am actually thinking of getting my partners name on my ring finger after we get married.
12. Do you have and if so, are you willing to admit you have a barbed wire band tat?
I do not and will not ever get that tattoo.
Bullet to the Heart was formed in 2017. With passion and perseverance, four individuals came together to forge forward with their onset skills and talents to create inspiring yet powerful music. In the beginning, Draven sought to find artists with his drive and determination to sculpt an original sounding project. In his journey, he came across the confident vocal style of Audrey, known to her fans as “The Queen of Darkness” a pseudonym describing her journey to become the ruler of her own demons. Audrey was inspired by her conflicted past to seek meaning through her performance. In doing so, she brings a vision of light wherever she goes. In moving on together, they discovered the sounds of Brian Benischek, a Chicago based independent singer-songwriter, while playing together on a local bill. Brian distinguished himself with his noteworthy guitar style, and excellent songwriting skills. The bands lineup was completed by bass guitarist Tom Monroe. His skill, stage presence and style helped intertwine the bands sound. His on stage chemistry with Draven gives the band a sound musical foundation and energy.