The Go Gos

  • All female pop rock band formed in 1978 from Los Angeles California. The band members during the 80s were Belinda Carlisle (lead vocals), Charlotte Caffey (lead guitar), Jane Wiedlin (rhythm guitar), Kathy Valentine (bass guitar) and Gina Schock (drums).
  • They formed as a punk rock band and played at venues in Los Angeles. By 1979, their style evolved into a power pop/new wave sound. They recorded a demo tape, and in early 1980, they toured in England with the ska band Madness. The demo version of their single We Got the Beat was released in England, with modest success.
  • In April 1981, they were signed to a record deal. That summer, they released their debut album, Beauty and the Beat. It slowly moved up the Billboard 200 album chart, ultimately hitting #1 and remaining there for 6 weeks. A re-recorded version of We Got the Beat peaked at #2 on the Hot 100 chart. Another single, Our Lips Are Sealed, hit #20 on the chart. Rolling Stone ranks the album at #413 on its list of the 500 Greatest Albums of All Time.
  • Their second album, Vacation, was released in 1982. The title track, Vacation, was their last song to make it into the top 10.
  • Only 1 other album was released in the 80s. Titled Talk Show and released in 1984, 2 singles made it into the top 40 – Head Over Heels and Turn To You. By now, the women were dealing with conflict within the band, and by May 2015, the group disbanded. The members focused on other music endeavors.
  • In 1990, the band reformed to perform several concerts. They also recorded a cover of the song Cool Jerk that was included on a greatest hits compilation album. In 1994, they again got together to release another compilation album that included 3 newly recorded songs. In 2001, the same classic lineup released their final studio album, God Bless the Go-Go’s. One single was released, titled Unforgiven, which peaked at #22 on the Billboard Adult Top 40 chart.
  • The reformed band started touring regularly in 1999. Their farewell tour was in 2016. They have not disbanded and they intend to perform occasional shows in the future.
  • The Go-Go’s were inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in 2021.
  • Their website touts them as “The most successful all female rock band of all time.” That probably is true, though The Bangles might disagree (plus, the Bangles had a guy join the group in 2008. They were all female from 1981 until 2008). MTV certainly helped The Go Go’s achieve success, as their videos were played frequently on the network. Catch their video for Our Lips Are Sealed. 

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *