I Had Too Much to Dream (Last Night) was originally recorded by The Electric Prunes in 1966. The Space Lady, a.k.a Susan Dietrich Schneider, was a street musician who performed in Boston and San Francisco in the 80s and 90s.
In her twenties Susan married a musician called Joel Dusany who was evading the Vietnam draft. In order to hide from the authorities and save Joel from being conscripted, the couple lived with no I.D’s and made money selling home-made paintings, collages, jewellery and poetry on the streets of San Francisco. Joel had the idea to perform songs under the moniker of The Cosmic Man, but was too nervous to play in public.
In the early 80s, now with a ten month old daughter, Susan started performing herself with an old accordion. Susan says that she was inspired by watching seagulls in the sky and wondering how they could subsist and sustain themselves. “And I just had the understanding that if you are in tune with nature…then nature will take care of you. Mother Nature does care about us.“
In 1983 Susan swapped the accordion for a battery powered Casio keyboard and began wearing a winged plastic Viking helmet with a flashing red light on top, which had been a part of Joel’s Cosmic Man costume. People on the street began calling Susan ‘The Space Lady’ and she adopted the name herself.
Susan continued performing until 2000 when at the age of of 52 she left Joel and California to go and look after her ageing parents in Colorado. Ten years later she had remarried and her new husband persuaded her to bring The Space Lady of retirement and so, at the age of 63, Susan signed with a record label for the first time and toured Europe and America – still wearing the silver winged helmet with the flashing red light on top. Although now playing indoor venues around the world, she can often still be found performing in the streets and parks of her home town.