DEADLINE Are there any acts from the Hollywood scene that you thought should have gotten more attention, but for some reason didn’t?
Gina Shock: There were a lot of good bands during that period, but one of them that really stood out to me was the Weirdos. I felt like they never got the recognition they deserved. Their songs were so catchy, and they had great melodic vocal hooks and equally memorable guitar hooks. The lyrics were smart and timely, and everyone in the band looked really good. It amazes me why they never became hugely successful. But timing is everything, and who knows how and when that will pan out.
Kathy Valentine: Good question! There were so many good bands, in many genres that were noticed. But I agree with Gina that the Weirdos are somewhat overlooked. They were a favorite. The Plimsouls should have been bigger and X should have been a household name.
DEADLINE: Do the crowds that come to see you now come for the same reasons the fans did in the beginning?
GS: I’m not coming from a fan’s perspective so I don’t know if I’m fully qualified to answer this. But I imagine it’s for the songs and the feelings they evoked when we were younger and they still do many years later.
CV: I don’t think they come for the same reason, but they probably like it for the same reason. People know who we are, they know our songs now. In the beginning, the Go-Gos were part of a scene. Musicians and fans were both super supportive of that scene. We all showed up for each other and kept it vital and alive.
DEADLINE: What’s on the concert rider now that you didn’t expect a long time ago?
CV: Kombucha. I would have thought that used to sound disgusting.
GS: Actually, it’s more what’s not on the rider these days. No more spirits, but one or two bottles of wine. No meat, mainly vegetables. We’re not spring chickens anymore, so we really watch what we put in our bodies.
DEADLINE: What is the difference between being in a band and an act with dancers?
GS: First, we are a rock band. We do not use dancers to reach our audience. We do quite well without fireworks and without elaborate stage productions. We’re just a band reaching our audience through our music. There are no distractions. When we play, the five of you look on stage, rolling up our sleeves.
CV: These 2 entities are completely different, one is a collective of trained people who perform choreographies to music. The other is a collective of trained people who play music on instruments, most likely music they composed themselves.
DEADLINE† Can you envision pulling a Rolling Stones and being on the road in the late 70’s?
GS: I would like to think that we would play into our seventies. If the Stones can do it, so can we. We still look and sound damn good. Our shows are full of energy and it’s contagious. But I’m only one vote in five, and we’ll discuss this when the time comes. Personally, I would love to be on stage when I take my last breath.
CV: No, the Stones tour with private jets and police escorts and countless staff and personnel, playing from a catalog of some 30 albums. The Go-Go’s are a lot of fun with some great songs for people to enjoy, but there’s a much more limited amount of material to choose from, and while we don’t make it hard, it’s pretty grueling and hard for us. I see it as you would think a good holiday is camping when you are young, but then get older and prefer a nice hotel by the beach.
DEADLINE Someone once said that writing about music is like dancing about architecture. Do you agree that you have experienced both sides?
CV: I’ve written about music, and it’s hard. My hats off to people who earn their living with it. But I disagree with that statement. Good writing can take a reader anywhere.
GS: I absolutely agree with Kathy, especially that good writing can take the reader anywhere and to another time and place.
DEADLINE: You can add two people to the band’s lineup, male or female. Who gets the wink?
GS: Joan Jett, because she is a very good writer and a great guitarist and performer. She would finish the picture beautifully. Another person would be Kate Pierson of the B-52’s as she could take our vocal sound to another level. The combination of her and Belinda would be great. I respect and adore them both. Can you imagine what the addition of Joan and Kate would sound like? Wow!
CV: I would invite some male energy into the band to sing, write and play. Like Johnny Marr and maybe a cool multi-instrumentalist, an unknown, any gender will do.