Army brat Kathleen Hetzekian moved around a lot – from her birthplace of Santa Monica to Oklahoma to Texas. At 19, she headed to New York City, where she bleached her hair blond and began calling herself “Cyrinda Foxe.” In her early teens, she developed a love for rock and roll. She listened to — and fantasized about — The Rolling Stones and The Kinks and now, in the Big Apple, she was living her dream.
Cyrinda was a regular at Max’s Kansas City, the notorious nightclub near Union Square and frequent hangout of Andy Warhol and other avant-garde artists, as well as poets and musicians. Cyrinda became fast friends with the regulars, including David Bowie, Iggy Pop and Lou Reed. Her relationship with Bowie got serious very quickly. Bowie fancied Cyrinda his “muse,” often copying her fashion style and wearing her clothes. Bowie was inspired to write The Jean Genie about Cyrinda. Just as the west coast leg of Bowie’s “Ziggy Stardust” tour began, Cyrinda discovered that she was pregnant with Bowie’s child. She, however, had the pregnancy aborted.
As her relationship with Bowie was winding down, she was just starting up with New York Dolls’ front man David Johansen. Her relationship with Johansen took on the same whirlwind pace and the couple was soon inseparable. Johansen, too, was moved to write a song for Cyrinda — this one “Looking for a Kiss.” It appeared on the Dolls’ 1973 debut album.
The Dolls shared management with Boston rockers Aerosmith and Cyrinda was introduced to lead singer Steven Tyler. Although she was attracted to Tyler, Cyrinda married David Johansen in 1977. The same year, she was featured in Andy Wahrol’s experimental film BAD. By the end of ’77, she split with Johansen and married Steven Tyler in early 1978. By the close of 1978, Cyrinda gave birth to a daughter, Mia. Tyler and Cyrinda stayed together for ten years before their marriage ended in divorce in 1987.
In 2001, Cyrinda suffered a stroke which left her partially paralyzed. Nearly tapped from medical expenses, she was bailed out by her former husband Tyler and her ex-lover Bowie. As she recovered, she married again — this time to Keith Waa, a New York musician. The ceremony was paid for by Steven Tyler.
Just a month after marrying for the third time, Cyrinda died from an inoperable brain tumor at the age of 50.