Archive for los angeles

Belinda + Buster: When Bill Bateman and Go-Go’s singer were ‘first couple of Hollywood’

Posted in bill bateman with tags , , , , , , , , , , on September 4, 2021 by J.J.

For a hot minute, the fertile LA punk-roots scene of the early 1980s intersected with the Teen Beat set.

That’s when Belinda Carlisle of The Go-Go’s met Bill Bateman of The Blasters.

Of course, The Go-Go’s weren’t born as MTV stars. The group started innocently enough as a punk band (on a scene boasting The Germs, Fear and, of course, X) before their hit pop songs, catapulting them off the bar-stage/friend’s-couch circuit and into, well … induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame later in 2021.

The early tales of The Go-Go’s (and many others) are recounted in John Doe’s books “Under the Big Black Sun” and “More Fun in the New World.” But Belinda herself dedicated a hunk of her 2011 autobiography, “Lips Unsealed,” to her relationship with the “cute” Blasters drummer:

Soon after I settled in, I began a two-year relationship with the Blasters’ drummer, Bill Bateman — aka Buster. We’d crossed paths at clubs and parties, but it wasn’t until Pleasant set up a situation one night at the Troubadour that Buster and I were able to talk more intimately and get to know each other. He had on a striped shift and wore a bandana around his neck. I thought he looked cute, and I liked him even more as we talked.

I thought he liked me, too. It was one of those setups where everything clicked except for one detail. I didn’t like his hair. As I told Pleasant, there was too much of it. He needed a new do.

An early promotional photo of The Blasters, featuring Bill Bateman (third from left), pre-haircut.
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Boogie with the Hook, 1992

Posted in red devils with tags , , , , on September 21, 2009 by J.J.

JohnLeeHookerAn important blurb in The Red Devils’ bio is the band’s opening slot for blues legend John Lee Hooker. That phrase — “opened for John Lee Hooker” — is Blues Credibility in Five Words or Fewer.

As far as nofightin.com can find, the Devils opened for the Hook one time, on Feb. 20, 1992, in Los Angeles.

This is a review of that show, courtesy of the Daily News of Los Angeles.

HOOKER AT HIS VERY BLUESY BEST
By Fred Shuster, Daily News Critic
Feb. 22, 1992

Judging by the amount of money changing hands outside the Variety Theatre on Thursday for tickets to the sold-out John Lee Hooker concert, you would think the latest post-punk sensation from Seattle was giving a recital.

Inside, though, it was business as usual for Hooker, who at 74 is the last of the great Delta bluesmen. Sitting center stage, face shadowed by a wide-brim hat, Hooker pounded out the one-chord boogie riffs that have been approximated by three generations of blues-rockers, from Humble Pie to Robert Cray.
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