Waters is also a music fan. He collects obscure R & B and novelty songs and often uses them in his movies. He has also put out two compilation albums - A John Waters Christmas and A Date With John Waters.
A lot of the songs from John Waters movies have video clips, mostly fan made, on YouTube, so just for the fun of it I thought I'd put up video soundtracks to some of his movies, beginning with his most notorious Pink Flamingos (1972), which made a household name of Divine. It tells the story of Divine (a murderer living under the alias of Babs Johnson in a trailer park outside Baltimore). She lives with her "travelling companion" Cotton (Mary Vivien Pearce), her senile egg-obsessed mother Edie (Edith Massey) and her sexually perverse son Crackers (Danny Mills). Divine has been labelled "the filthiest person alive". But a local couple - Connie (Mink Stole) and Raymond (David Lochary) Marble - who kidnap hippy girls, have their butler rape them and then sell the babies produced to lesbian couples, reinvesting the money in sex shops and elementary school heroin rings - decide that they are filthier than Divine and challenge her to a filth-off by mailing her a year old turd.
Pink Flamingos is perhaps the world's most notorious gross out movie. Many people can't watch it. But for me its gleefully transgressive nature makes it a real feel good movie.
The Swag by Link Wray and the Wraymen
This infectious rockabilly instrumental plays over the opening titles as we see Divine's trailer for the first time with the titular birds stand in front of it.
Intoxica by The Centurions (as covered by The Vulcanos)
A surf instrumental which accompanies Divine driving into Baltimore, nearly running down a jogger and making fun of a hitchhiking soldier.
Jim Dandy by Laverne Baker
An instrumental break from this classic R & B song plays as Divine arrives in Baltimore for her shopping trip.
I'm Not a Juvenile Delinquent by Frankie Lymon & The Teenagers
Video no longer available
This song plays as Divine is shopping for meat and getting checked out by a pervert with a packet of hotdogs.
The Girl Can't Help It by Little Richard
This classic rock 'n' roll song by Little Richard, which was the title song of one of Water's favourite movies, accompanies Divine parading down a street in central Baltimore to the obvious astonishment of local residents who didn't know a movie was being made. Waters' new book Role Models contains an interview he did with Little Richard.
Ooh! Look-A There, Ain't She Pretty by Bill Haley & The Comets
This song accompanies Raymond Marble exposing himself to women in the park with a sausage tied to his penis.
Chicken Grabber by the Nitehawks
As Raymond's victims run away we hear this strange song.
Sixteen Candles by the Crests
Video no longer available.
In the original version of Pink Flamingos, this doo-wop song accompanied the mailing of the turd. For legal reasons it could not be used in the 25 Anniversary re-release, so it was replaced with...
Happy, Happy Birthday Baby by The Tune Weavers
Video no longer available.
Pink Champagne by the Tyrones
The wild birthday party scene is scored with this infectious tune.
Surfin' Bird by The Trashmen
During the party a man strips naked and flexes his asshole to the tune of this novelty classic.
Riot in Cellblock #9 by The Robins (as sung by Richard Berry)
How Much is That Doggie in the Window? by Patti Page
This cute classic provides counterpoint to the notorious scene in which Divine indulges in some impromptu dog do dining.
The Hills Have Thighs (2009)
Here is a trailer for a film which looks like it has a great bad taste sense of humour not a million miles away from that found in Waters movies. I can't wait to check it out :