Throwback Thursday - Hard Rockin' Women From The Age Of Hair

Vixen

Vixen was founded in St Paul, MN by guitarist Jan Kuehnemund. Driven by rock star dreams, like so many before her, Kuehnemund packed up her group and headed for Hollywood. Kuehnemund soon re-tooled the lineup to include vocalist Janet Gardner, drummer, Roxy Petrucci, and bassist Share Pedersen (Ross).

Vixen quickly built their reputation playing the infamous Sunset Strip and signed a major label deal with EMI. Vixen’s first hit single, “Edge of a Broken Heart” penned by Richard Marx and Fee Waybill (The Tubes) blasted onto the Billboard charts fueled by heavy video rotation on MTV. Their self-titled freshmen LP garnered two more knee droppers with “Cryin'” and “Love made Me” both charting on the Billboard hot 100 top 40. It was the group’s live performances opening for the Scorpions, Ozzy and Bon Jovi that established Vixen as a premiere rock act to be taken seriously.

In 1990, “Rev it Up”, Vixen’s second LP produced the monster rocker “How Much Love”, scorching ballad, “Love is a Killer”‘ and the upbeat “Not a Minute Too Soon” cementing their reputation not only as formidable performers, but as hit songwriters. The group Vixen-ized their fans on worldwide tours with heavyweights Deep Purple and KISS, which fueled the international frenzy.

The undercurrents coming from the Seattle grunge scene helped strengthen the winds of change and underscored the decision to disband Vixen in late 1991. Each band member independently dabbled in various projects until 1997 Gardner and Petrucci teamed up with guitarist Gina Stile releasing “Tangerine” under the Vixen moniker. In 2002 Kuehnemund once again regrouped Vixen with Jenna Sanz-Agero (vocals), Lynn Louise Lowrey (bass) and Kat Kraft (drums). This line-up then went on to tour and release “Live and Learn” and “Extended Versions” from a live performance in Sweden.


It was 2012 when Kuehnemund reached out to Gardner, Petrucci & Ross for their long awaited reunion. Sadly, only days before officially announcing the news, Kuehnemund was diagnosed with cancer and the reunion was put on hold. Jan Kuehnemund, the founding member and lead guitar player for Vixen tragically lost her battle with cancer and passed away October 10th of 2013. Jan touched many souls and will live on through her music. - Vixen Website



Sass Jordan

Juno Award-winning artist Sass Jordan has made a living singing, performing, writing and recording music internationally for the past thirty years. She is an internationally recognized singer/songwriter who has sold over one million CDs worldwide.

Winner of Billboard’s Best Female Rock Vocalist award, the bilingual Montrealer has toured and/or worked with many music heavyweights, including Aerosmith, Alice Cooper, Cheap Trick, Van Halen, Carlos Santana and Joe Cocker.

In 1992, Jordan performed a duet with Joe Cocker for the soundtrack of the motion picture The Bodyguard, starring Whitney Houston and Kevin Costner, which sold more than 27 million copies worldwide. Her songs have been featured on numerous television shows, including Melrose Place, Party Of Five, Baywatch and Knightrider.

Also an accomplished actress, she starred in the lead role of Janis Joplin in the off-Broadway hit, “Love Janis.” Jordan has guest starred on NBC’s Sisters and was featured in the Toronto and Winnipeg productions of “The Vagina Monologues.”

In 2003, she took on judging duties on the TV ratings blockbuster, Canadian Idol – the same year she shared the stage with The Rolling Stones, AC/DC and others as part of the history-making SARS relief concert in Toronto.

She started as a young teenager in her hometown of Montreal, Quebec, and although her professional journey has led her to many different branches of entertainment, such as the stage and screen, she has never abandoned her heart, the sound and soul of music. - Sass Jordan



Joan Jett and the Blackhearts

Born Joan Larkin on September 22, 1958, in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, Joan Jett entered the music business at age 15 in the punk-pop band The Runaways. She went on to become one of the most influential women in rock; recording hits like "I Love Rock 'n' Roll"; founding Blackheart Records and producing Riot Grrrl acts Bikini Kill and L7. Her early career was portrayed in the biopic The Runaways. In 2013, Jett released the album Unvarnished.

Jett started her musical career as a teenager, forming her first serious band, the Runaways, at the age of 15. The final line-up included Jett on guitar and vocals; Sandy West on drums; Cherie Currie on lead vocals; Jackie Fox on bass guitar; and Lita Ford on guitar. The band was ahead of its time in many ways, with its hard-rock sound emerging during an era when disco music was king. They also felt dismissed by audiences and critics because of their young age and their gender; the public didn't seem to know what to do with five girls who sang about sex, rebelling, and partying. The musicians' fashion choices also alienated them from mainstream fans; Currie chose to wear lingerie on stage, and Jett often appeared in her trademark red, leather jumpsuit.

Deciding to pursue a solo career, Jett spent some time in England working with Paul Cook and Steve Jones, both former members of the legendary punk band the Sex Pistols. She then returned to Los Angeles where she worked as a producer for the first album of the L.A. punk band the Germs. She also tried acting, appearing in a film based on the story of the Runaways entitled We're All Crazy Now. Around this time, Jett met producer Kenny Laguna and songwriter Ritchie Cordell. Both men helped her with her first solo album.

At first, Jett and Laguna printed and distributed the record themselves, selling copies at Jett's shows. The record then was picked up by Boardwalk Records and re-released as Bad Reputation. Her rock-pop sound, however, didn't quite catch on. Not one to give up, Joan Jett and the Blackhearts put together another album. I Love Rock 'n' Roll became a huge hit, driven in large part to the title track, which hit the top of the pop charts in early 1982. She had two more hit singles that year with her version of Tommy James' "Crimson and Clover" and Gary Glitter's "Do You Wanna Touch Me (Oh Yeah)." - Source

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