August 18, 1995 at 04:00 AM EDT

”I hate to say this, but I’m not an alternative fan,” admits Heather DeLoach, the plump, bespectacled Bee Girl of Blind Melon’s 1993 ”No Rain” video. ”I like Soul for Real, Salt ‘N’ Pepa, TLC — omigosh! my favorite, TLC!” Now 12 years old, DeLoach is more likely to croon a Notorious B.I.G. lyric than anything by the band that transformed her into an overnight star. Still, ”Blind Melon made it happen for me,” says DeLoach. ”I don’t know how to thank them.”

While the band may have racked up over 2 million sales for their self-titled debut and performed at Woodstock II, DeLoach took equal advantage of the past two years: Her tutu-wearing turn in ”No Rain” has evolved into a veritable career, including a spot on the 1993 MTV Video Music Awards, a cameo in ”Weird Al” Yankovic’s ”Bedrock Anthem,” and small parts in the feature films I’ll Do Anything, Camp Nowhere, and A Little Princess. ”I got teased at school for the video for a little while,” says DeLoach, ”but then everybody grew out of that.”

About the only thing missing is contact with lead singer Shannon Hoon and the rest of Blind Melon, who quickly drifted from their meal ticket. ”I wish I was [still in touch with the band],” says DeLoach. ”You think, like, you’re really going to get together with them, or go out or something like that, but…well, you know.”

Given the chilled reception Soup, Blind Melon’s just-released sophomore effort, is receiving, the band might need to rethink that aloofness. But they’d better hurry: Currently between jobs (and on summer vacation before beginning seventh grade in Lake Forest, Calif.), DeLoach claims ”nothing would ever take me away from acting…but my dream is to be a marine biologist.”

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