Ramona Muse, 28, is the singer for Ramona & the Swimsuits, performing at 3 p.m. Saturday at Summerfest on Welch Avenue in Ames’ Campustown.
Q: How did Ramona & the Swimsuits come together?
One time in Iowa City members of Leslie & The Ly’s performed in swimsuits. Leslie Hall, Kate Kennedy and I did this weird performance in a parking lot, but we didn’t want to say we were Leslie & The Ly’s. We had on bike shorts, swimsuits and high heels for some reason. A couple months later Leslie set up shows in Chicago and Minneapolis and for some reason the bars had been told a band in swimsuits was going to be opening. So basically the name came before the band. Leslie had a vision and she made it happen.
Q: Are there lessons you’ve learned from your time with Leslie & The Ly’s?
The most important thing I’ve learned is to never feel embarrassed when you’re on stage. Go with it and power through. If you show you’re embarrassed, people will know. At this point I get more nervous putting on a nice dress for a wedding than wearing tiny spandex for strangers on stage.
Q: This is running in Juice’s swimsuit issue. What do you look for in a good swimsuit?
Colors and neons and weird patterns and shapes. They’re all vintage. I sell reconstructed clothing. If you see us under a black light you’ll see mine has a stain on it. We wear the rejects. Also, low-cut bottoms for modesty and maintenance purposes.