Sipping on a violently green shot of spirulina juice in an aspiringly boutique Brighton Café, porn star Daisy Rock looks me directly in the eye and tells me about the 20 “super-fans” she speaks to on a daily basis. Discussing her “Scoundrels”, as she refers to them, Rock sounds somewhat like a social worker, a label she doesn’t completely reject. “I suppose it could be considered like that but I just like to add that personal touch to the Daisy Rock brand, it keeps them loyal” she says, her flow interrupted by a call from one of her “Premier Scoundrels”.
I listen as Rock speaks to her fan on the phone and it’s clear that she takes social media and fan interaction very seriously; she’s genuinely friendly and polite, but her business edge becomes clear by how efficiently she wraps up the call. I recall my surprise at how quickly she replied to my initial Insta DM requesting to meet for this interview, but having been in her company for half an hour, it’s beginning to make sense.
The combination of “a personal touch and an ambitious business mind” has been hugely successful for Rock. It has allowed her to stay ahead of the curve in the hugely competitive post-internet porn era. She proudly holds the title of being the first pornstar to do a legitimate fan fuck. “The big studios had been pretending to do them for a while but I was the first British porn star to actually fuck one of my fans on film,” she says. How did she select her amateur co-star? “It was just someone I met on a night out, he recognised me, that’s how I’ve found most of my fan-fucks, other occasions I’ll just post an add on the forum (set up by her “scoundrels”) and watch the applications flood in…”
In an eleven-year pornographic career, Rock has worked with the crème de la crème of the UK and US adult film industry, and has a host of international awards including five nominations at the AVN’s, the porn industry’s equivalent of The Oscars, always just short of cutting the mustard in the US market. In an industry where performers of similar status are known for keeping fans at arm’s length, often on the basis of personal safety, Daisy takes the opposite approach, ensuring a fan base that is both loyal and crucially, steadfastly willing to contribute financially to her ongoing success.
Sitting on an antique chaise long at her new and grandiose Brighton home, Rock tells me she made her first million by the time she was twenty four; she is vague and non-committal when I ask for more details, but remains adamant it had nothing to do with the adult entertainment industry, I later eke out that it had something to do with the domestic fishing industry. This is clearly a sore point for Daisy as we go onto talk at length about the way in which pornographers and the mainstream media present porn performers in a one-dimensional light. “As soon as you’re in front of a camera you’re just a cock-hungry cougar to your viewers and the rest of the world. Nobody wants to think of you as a Mum or a successful business woman.”
If I was surprised that Rock had not performed in her first adult film until she was thirty-nine, I was even more taken aback by her reasoning behind this. “I wanted to wait until my son was old enough to have a real say in my choice to get involved in porn. It wasn’t that I thought he’d get bullied at school or anything like that” Rock claims her son was “completely supportive… we spoke about every aspect of it at length, together. I’m a firm believer that you should own what you are and I wanted my boy to be proud of his pornstar mum…” Daisy frankly explains her choice of occupation, “I’m a slut, I always have been and porn was an obvious avenue for me to get paid to be exactly that” .
Now down the pub and 4 pints in, Rock tells me about her first trip to the 2007 AVN awards in Las Vegas. “I was totally fresh to the American side of the porn industry, every major studio was there and as a late comer at thirty nine, I wanted to make a statement. I found out there was this really cheesy wet t-shirt competition going on. The models were “Beauty pageant girls, you know, your Mandy from Ohio types” Daisy tells me doing her best impression of an innocent American teen . “So I rallied all of the British girls together, gate crashed the stage which happened to have a Jacuzzi on it, jumped in, stripped off. We started sucking each other’s tits, pissing in each other’s mouths and fucking. The crowd went completely fucking mental!” Daisy becomes even more animated as she begins repeating the story to two student nerds from Hull who overheard the conversation; hanging on her every word, their expressions both of utter awe. “I went from being a complete nobody out there [the US] to then being invited to dinners with the biggest studio executives and directors, all of which wanting to know who the “filthy Brit” was”
Success followed, and during the late noughties, Rock’s fully self-owned and run production company, was pulling in six-figure sums by the month. Through embracing a self-publishing ethos, Rock was putting to bed the myth that there was no money for the performer in the post-internet era porn.
Upon returning from the toilet, I see Daisy on the phone again. But this time it’s my phone and I find out she’s talking to my cousin. Half an hour later my cousin arrives at the pub and Daisy informs him that he is exactly her type: “Tall, dark and younger than my son”. We soon move on to Platinum Lace, Rock’s favourite Brighton lap-dancing club. Upon entering, Daisy scans the room, reminiscent of a lioness surveying the baron planes of South Sudan. Chasing rosé with the cheapest shots of Tequila on the menu and using her teeth to insert twenty-pound notes under the g-string of every girl that graces the stage, Daisy is clearly in her natural habitat and enjoying herself immensely. Two timid Arab men sitting a couple of tables from us look on, confused, curious and seemingly aroused by the whole affair.
It’s three AM and Daisy is insisting that we all go back to her place for more drinks. With Rock all over my cousin, himself two hundred pound lighter after the strip club, I attend merely to be a brotherly cock block. Having shown us her French Bulldog’s recently removed testicles that she keeps in her fridge, Rock talks openly about the incredible amounts of money she’s earned, the globetrotting her career has allowed her and the never ending sexual conquests. There’s the fifty virginities she has taken, the cop she blew to get out of a drug arrest in Florida, the plethora of celebrities – most amusingly, currently one of the UK’s most in demand Grime acts – she lists as good friends, I cant help but wonder why someone so successful is trying to impress somebody she barely knows. I can’t help but be impressed never the less, on the surface, the lifestyle appears extremely exotic but I question whether the reality I am witnessing is just a continuation of the false reality we are presented through porn. I wonder, out of all that iv witnessed and been told today, what was real? Is this affluent yet surprisingly empty home even Daisy’s? Is she leading my cousin on as part of her hugely profitable “cougar” persona? Is this all a hustle?
Sipping from a pint glass of G&T and helping herself to my chip shop chips, Rock insists that at fifty years of age she is not entering the twilight of her pornographic career but a new period of unchartered territory, perhaps one less performance lead. Having become fed up of the male dominated production side of the British porn industry taking food off her table, she is now fully embracing the DIY ethos so successfully employed by her celebrity Grime pal; Rock explains that her fan dates, quickly disclaimed as “non-sexual dates” that cost in the region of £700 per hour, are becoming more central to her business model and she’ll be looking to “aggressively expand” this area in the future.
A couple of shots later, I look at my phone and realise it’s time to go. We hug goodbye. Stumbling out of Rock’s home I walk half way down a gentrified, deserted Brighton street, before realising my cousin is nowhere to be seen…
POSTED BY @JOSHUATGIBBONS