Tuesday, July 19, 2011

The Bangles/Susanna Hoffs

The Bangles

The Bangles is an all-female band that originated from Los Angeles, California in 1980. Original members were singer and rhythm guitarist Susanna Hoffs, lead guitarist and vocalist Vicki Peterson, drummer and vocalist Debbi Peterson and bassist. As a trio the band was named The Colours, then The Supersonic Bangs and later on just as The Bangs. The band was part of the Los Angeles Paisley Underground scene, which featured groups that played a mixture of 1960s-influenced folk-rock and jangle pop with a more modern punk–ish/garage band undertone. In 1981, the threesome recorded and released a single ("Getting Out Of Hand" b/w "Call on Me") on DownKiddie Records (their own label). In 1982, Susanna Hoffs asked long time friend Patrick Hirtz to manage the new band until his departure in 1986 to pursue a career in the culinary arts. The trio was signed to Faulty Products, a label formed by Miles Copeland. Later the vocalist Annette Zilinskas joined the group, who was later replaced by Michael Steele (from The Runaways fame). A legal issue forced the band to change their name at the last minute so they dropped "The" and added the letters "les" to the end to become Bangles. Then in 1984 the band released their first album, All Over the Place in 1984 and they received more notoriety due to the fact that they were opening acts for Cyndi Lauper for her Fun Tour and also for Huey Lewis & The News. This helped attracting Prince, who wrote their first hit, Manic Monday. When they released their second album, Different Light, friction arose within the band after the music media industry began to single out Susanna Hoffs as the lead singer of the group, a result of Columbia Records releasing mostly singles on which Hoffs sang lead vocal. In fact, singing duties on the group's albums were evenly divided among all of the band's members, all of who wrote or co-wrote their songs. After the release of their third album, Everything, each of the band members went on separate ways causing the band to break up. Susanna Hoffs started her solo career. Vicki Peterson joined and contributed songs to the New Orleans band the Continental Drifters, which received rave reviews. Debbie Peterson had a short-lived career with Siobhan Maher under the name of Kindred Spirit, while Steele lived in semi-retirement in California. The band started their reunion in 1998 and officially re-formed to record a song for the soundtrack of Austin Powers: The Spy Who Shagged Me, at the behest of the film's director (and Hoffs' husband) Jay Roach. The song chosen for the album was "Get The Girl" and was released in 1999. In 2003, they released their long-awaited fourth album, Doll Revolution and in 2005 the Bangles announced the departure of Michael Steele. Steele was replaced by Abby Travis for live appearances, but Travis is not an official member of the group. In the spring of 2009, the Bangles returned to the studio to begin work on a new album. During an interview with Music Geek Media in May 2009, Debbi Peterson indicated that the album was in the early stages of production.

Bangles EP (1982)

Bangles EP is The Bangles' EP released in June, 1982. it was released in 1982 by Faulty Products and reissued in 1983 by I.R.S. Records when Faulty Products went out of business. This is the only official release which involved original bassist, Annette Zilinskas. The only single taken from this EP was The Real World, which didn't make it into the charts.


1-) The Real World.
2-) I'm in Line.
3-) Want You.
4-) Mary Street.
5-) How Is the Air Up There?

All Over the Place (1984)

All Over the Place is The Bangles' first studio album, released in May, 1984 by Columbia Records. the sound is lively and shows more Bangles collaboration and less keyboard overdubs that were used later on their more commercially successful albums. This album gave them the chance to perform as an opening act for Cyndi Lauper and Huey Lewis and the News and brought the group to the attention of Prince, who would write Manic Monday, their first hit. The album was re-released in 2008 by the Wounded Bird Records label.The album charted to #80 in the U.S. and #86 in the U.K. The following singles were taken: Hero Takes a Fall (#96 U.K.) and Going Down to Liverpool (#79 U.K., #56 U.K. 1986 re-release), which won The Bangles the BPI Award, the British equivalent of the Grammy.


1-) Hero Takes a Fall.
2-) Live.
3-) James.
4-) All About You.
5-) Dover Beach.
6-) Tell Me.
7-) Restless.
8-) Going Down to Liverpool.
9-) He's Got a Secret.
10-) Silent Treatment.
11-) More Than Meets the Eye.

Different Light (1986)

Different Light is The Bangles' second studio album, released in January, 1986 in the U.S. and on March 3, 1986 in the U.K. It is their best known album. The album's Top 40 sound was a departure from their earlier 60s-style sound. This was the first album in which bassist Michael Steele sings lead vocals on some tracks. The album was re-released in 2008 by the Wounded Bird record label. The album peaked to #2 in the U.S. (3x Platinum) and #3 in the U.K. (Platinum disc). This album spawned the following singles: Manic Monday (#2 U.S., #2 U.K.), If She Knew What She Wants (#29 U.S., #31 U.K.), Walk Like an Egyptian (#1 U.S., #3 U.K.), Walking Down Your Street (#11 U.S., #16 U.K.), and Following (#55 U.K.).


1-) Manic Monday.
2-) In a Different Light.
3-) Walking Down Your Street.
4-) Walk Like an Egyptian.
5-) Standing in the Hallway.
6-) Return Post.
7-) If She Knew What She Wants.
8-) Let It Go.
9-) September Gurls.
10-) Angels Don't Fall in Love.
11-) Following.
12-) Not Like You.

Everything (1988)

Everything is The Bangles' third studio album, released on October 18, 1988. The album was reissued by the Wounded Bird record label in 2008. The album peaked to #15 in the U.S. (Platinum disc) and #5 in the U.K. (Platinum disc). This album spawned the following singles: In Your Room (#5 U.S., #35 U.K.), Eternal Flame (#1 U.S., #1 U.K.), Be With You (#30 U.S., #23 U.K.), and I'll Set You Free (#74 U.K.).


1-) In Your Room.
2-) Complicated Girl.
3-) Bell Jar.
4-) Something to Believe In.
5-) Eternal Flame.
6-) Be With You.
7-) Glitter Years.
8-) I'll Set You Free.
9-) Watching the Sky.
10-) Some Dreams Come True.
11-) Make a Play for Her Now.
12-) Waiting for You.
13-) Crash and Burn.

Doll Revolution (2003)

Doll Revolution is The Bangles' fourth and so far last studio album, released on September 9, 2003 on Koch Records. Unlike in their days with Columbia Records, the release of this album was patchy, being released in Europe and Japan before it was released in the USA. The tracks are all (co-)composed by members of the band with the exception of "Tear Off Your Own Head" which was composed by Elvis Costello. The album charted to #62 in the U.K. The following singles were released: Tear Off Your Own Head and I Will Take Care of You, both of which charted to #79 in the U.K. as they were released as a double A side.


1-) Tear Off Your Own Head (It's a Doll Revolution).
2-) Stealing Rosemary.
3-) Something That You Said.
4-) Ask Me No Questions.
5-) The Rain Song.
6-) Nickel Romeo.
7-) Ride the Ride.
8-) I Will Take Care of You.
9-) Here Right Now.
10-) Single by Choice.
11-) Lost at Sea.
12-) Song for a Good Son.
13-) Mixed Messages.
14-) Between the Two.
15-) Grateful.

The Bangles Plus

The Bangles Plus is a self-made compilation which comprises many of the band's non album tracks such as their very first release, Getting Out of Hand, their 1987 hit cover version of Simon & Garfunkel's Hazy Shade of Winter up to their latest single 2011's, Anna Lee (Sweetheart of the Sun).


1-) Getting Out of Hand.
2-) Call On Me.
3-) I Got Nothing.
4-) Hazy Shade of Winter.
5-) I'll Set You Free (Single version).
6-) Everything I Wanted.
7-) Where Were You When I Needed You.
8-) Get the Girl.
9-) Light My Way.
10-) Anna Lee (Sweetheart of the Sun).

Susanna Hoffs

Susanna Lee Hoffs was born on January 17, 1959 in Los Angeles, California. She is an American vocalist, guitarist and actress. She is best known as a member of the all-female pop band The Bangles. She was born within a Jewish family. Her mother, Tamar Simon Hoffs, played Beatles music for Hoffs when she was a child, and she began playing the guitar in her teens. Hoffs attended Palisades High School in Pacific Palisades, Los Angeles. In 1980, she graduated from University of California, Berkeley with a Bachelor degree in Art. She eventually joined Vicki Peterson and Debbi Peterson in what would later become the pop music group The Bangles. Susanna during her time as part of The Bangles achieved huge success. In 1986, Susanna Hoffs co-wrote the song "I Need a Disguise" for the album Belinda for Belinda Carlisle, formerly of the all-girl group The Go-Go's. With increasing fame, Hoffs also appeared on the covers of numerous magazines, and the Rickenbacker guitar company issued a Susanna Hoffs model of the 350 (which she customized herself). In 1987, Hoffs starred in the film The Allnighter, which was directed by her mother Tamar Simon Hoffs, and also featured Joan Cusack and Pam Grier. After the band's break-up, shortly after the release of their third studio album, Everything, Susanna Hoffs went on with her solo career, which includes two studio albums. 2006, Hoffs teamed up with fellow Ming Tea rocker Matthew Sweet, and under the name "Sid n Susie" they recorded fifteen cover versions of classic rock songs from the 1960s and 1970s for an album titled Under the Covers, Vol. 1. The album was released in April 2006. On July 18, they appeared on Late Night with Conan O'Brien to promote the album and tour. The duo released another album Under the Covers, Vol. 2 on July 21, 2009, which included covers of songs by Fleetwood Mac, Carly Simon, Rod Stewart and more.

When You're a Boy (1991)

When You're a Boy is Susanna Hoffs debut album, released on January 29, 1991. The album peaked to #83 in the U.S. This album spawned the following singles: My Side of the Bed (#30 U.S., #44 U.K.), her cover version of Cyndi Lauper's Unconditional Love (#65 U.K.), and Only Love.


1-) My Side of the Bed.
2-) No Kind of Love.
3-) Wishing on Telstar.
4-) That's Why Girls Cry.
5-) Unconditional Love.
6-) Something New.
7-) So Much for Love.
8-) This Time.
9-) Only Love.
10-) It's Lonely Out Here.
11-) Made of Stone.
12-) Boys Keep Swinging.

Susanna Hoffs (1996)

Susanna Hoffs is Susanna Hoff's second and last studio album, released on September 24, 1996. The style of the album is more folk oriented than her earlier work. Columbia Records didn't like the change in style and the disagreement led to Hoffs being dropped by Sony and signing to London Records. The album is much more personal and deals with issues like abusive relationships, insecurities and "Weak with Love" is about the John Lennon assassination. The album was promoted by forming a band for an extensive tour. The album didn't chart. However, it did spawn one single which was All I Want (#77 U.S., #32 U.K.).


1-) Beekeepers Blues.
2-) All I Want.
3-) Enormous Wings.
4-) Falling.
5-) Darling One.
6-) King of Tragedy.
7-) Eyes of a Baby.
8-) Grand Adventure.
9-) Happy Place.
10-) Those Days Are Over.
11-) Weak with Love.
12-) To Sir with Love.
13-) Stuck in the Middle with You.