September 25, 2009
Michelle Phillips: 'So Embarrassed -- and Mad'
Singer and actress Michelle Phillips, 65, says she's "so embarrassed -- and mad" about stepdaughter Mackenzie's recent revelations about incest with her father, John Phillips -- who was married to Michelle for eight years in the 1960s.
Sheila Weller interviewed Michelle for Vanity Fair two years ago, and called her for comment on the Mackenzie story. Michelle said she was also mad "At Oprah, at the publisher, and at Mackenzie, who should be on a psychiatrist's couch, not on TV."
In her new book, "High on Arrival," 49-year-old Mackenzie claims that she began an incestuous relationship with her father at age 19, which went on for ten years.
When asked if she thought the story was true, Michelle replied, "Is this all true? We'll never know, because she waited until John was dead," and voiced her concern about how the news will affect other members of the family, adding, "If you're going to make these accusations and they don't hurt anyone living, that's one thing. But Mackenzie has affected the lives of all her nieces and nephews, who are not going to school today and are staying home sobbing instead."
Weller also reports that an unnamed member of the "inner circle of the original Mamas and Papas" e-mailed her, saying, "If I could pull John out of his crypt and beat the crap out of him I would. What a tragic, disgusting, and disturbing piece of news."
High on Arrival is the #4 bestseller on Amazon today.
15 Facts about Mackenzie Phillips
Mackenzie's birth name is Laura Mackenzie Phillips.
Mackenzie was born November 10, 1959 in Alexandria, Virginia.
Mackenzie Phillips was first known for her role in the 1973 hit movie "American Graffiti." She began filming at age 12; she was 14 by the time it was released.
One Day at a Time
Mackenzie became a star on the 1975 sitcom "One Day at a Time," co-starring Valerie Bertinelli. As the highest paid actress on the show, Mackenzie was reportedly commanding $47,500 a week.
She says her father John shot her up with heroin for the first time.
Her drug use caused her to be fired from "One Day at a Time" in 1980. She went to rehab that year -- with her father.
Mackenzie is the half sister of Bijou Phillips, Chynna Phillips and Tamerlane Phillips.
Chynna Phillips was a member of Wilson Phillips, with Wendy Wilson and Carnie Wilson.
In September 2009, Phillips revealed to Oprah that her father, John Phillips of the '60s band the Mamas and the Papas, raped her.
Songs of the '60s
John Phillips (pictured on the left with Mama Cass Elliot and Denny Doherty) and his recording partner Scott MacKenzie co-wrote the 1960s hit "San Francisco (Be Sure to Wear Some Flowers in Your Hair)."
They also co-wrote the big 1980s hit "Kokomo" for The Beach Boys.
Mackenzie was named after Scott MacKenzie.
Phillips said her father raped her in 1979 on the eve of her wedding to Jeff Sessler, a member of the Rolling Stones entourage. She and Sessler divorced in 1981.
The Mamas and the Papas
She sang in her father's music group, The Mamas and the Papas, when the group made a comeback in the 1980s. It is during this time that she claims their sexual relationship was consensual.
In her book, "High on Arrival," Mackenzie claims her father wanted to run away with her.
"One night Dad said, 'We could just run away to a country where no one would look down on us. There are countries where this is an accepted practice. Maybe Fiji."
John Phillips died in 2001 of a heart attack at age 65.
Return to TV
Mackenzie returned to TV in the late 1990s, starring in the Disney Channel series "So Weird" as a veteran rock musician juggling motherhood and a career comeback.
Related to the Baldwins
Mackenzie is the sister-in-law of Billy Baldwin. Billy is married to her half-sister, Chynna Phillips.
In August 2008, Mackenzie was arrested at Los Angeles International Airport with drugs hidden in balloons and plastic bags. She pleaded guilty to cocaine possession and was sent back to rehab.