How Eddie Money Risked Broken Arms to Cast Apollonia in ‘Shakin”
It’s not certain whether Prince’s attention was drawn to Apollonia via Eddie Money, but there’s a good chance it happened that way.
Patricia Apollonia Kotero had been working her way up the ladder as an actress before landing a role in Purple Rain in 1984 and securing her future.
However, Money – who died of cancer on Sept. 13, aged 70 – felt he’d been involved in her progression, after she’d been hired to appear in his video for “Shakin’” two years previously. “People don’t realize the first professional thing Apollonia did, she was in the ‘Shakin’’ video with me,” he once told Morning Call.
That wasn’t quite the case – her first professional credit had come in 1979 as “Girl in Bikini” in the movie La Mafia de la Frontera, and she’d gone to appear in a film called Sex Beach and an episode of CHiPs. But being chosen to play Money’s girlfriend was arguably her highest-profile role up to that point.
The casting seems to have carried a certain amount of personal risk to Money. “When I first met Apollonia, she had a boyfriend who was super jealous and a karate expert,” he told Rolling Stone last year. “I never went anywhere near the woman, but every time I turned around he was threatening to break my arms off.” It also seemed to carry a certain amount of professional risk too: “[I]if you look at that video and you see her try to dance, that woman couldn’t dance her way out of a Stevie Wonder movie,” he reflected.
Eddie Money - ‘Shakin’’
“Shakin’” is also memorable for Money’s use of a word banned from the airwaves in the line “her tits were shakin’” – which the singer said hadn’t been noticed at time of recording. “[Manager] Bill Graham was so, so pissed off at me because he said that could've been a top 5 single, and 'You and your sophomoric fucking bullshit, now I can't get it on the radio.'" Money said later. But when I talked to people, they go, 'I loved it when you said that! Wow!'" He added: “Yeah, I said it and I thought it was funny, but in the long run I wish I wouldn't have said it, because that record probably would've went double platinum. But I thought it was funny. ... I was high. I didn't give a shit. I said it. Who cares?"
For Apollonia, though, the “Shakin’” memories seem more positive. “Rest in power my friend,” she tweeted after his death was confirmed. “I am forever grateful you chose me to portray your ex-girl Rosanna, whom you wrote this song about. Thank you Eddie! Oh yeah, you let me race that chort!!! That was so funnnn!!!! Orale!!” Two years earlier she’d commented: “Eddie told me he wrote the tune about his ex girlfriend who’s Latina. Lucky me I looked the part!”