Joan Jett and The Blackhearts Bad Reputation Nation

Volume 3 Issue 1

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Joan Jett:
Your Questions Answered

As we enter the New Year, Joan Jett & The Blackhearts continue their road journey playing cities across America. During their recent gigs, the band debuted a few new songs, "Eye To Eye," "Torture" and "Wonderin'." The new material remains true to the Jett sound of crunchy guitars and cracking drums -- pure rock n' roll!

The 'odds and sods' package tentatively titled, Flashback, is slated for release later this year. The release date, originally set for the fall of '92, has been pushed back while Kenny Laguna negotiates a new record deal for the band. Once a new deal is inked, it is expected that the new label will issue Flashback with the support and backing of a major record company. The release of Flashback will also be accompanied by the longform home video compiling all of Joan's clips, along with interviews and other rare footage. The home video has been released in Japan under the title, 'The Jett Age.'

A 'best of' compilation is planned for release in France later in '93. The compilation disc will carry the hits, "I Love Rock N' Roll" and "I Hate Myself For Lovin' You" as well as fan favorites such as "Bad Reputation" and a few previously unreleased tunes. The disc is set for release in France only, but plans are being worked out to offer both the compact disc and cassette through the fan club. Details will follow in a future issue of the official fan club newsletter.

In the last official fan club newsletter, Joan asked you, the fans, to write in and ask questions that you would like to have her or the band answer. The response was overwhelming! After sorting through all you letters and cards, we gave Joan the following questions to answer for this newsletter. Keep those questions coming, Joan has promised to answer as many questions as space allows each issue.

Q: Where do you get ideas for the lyrics in your songs?

A: Real life. Either things I observe, experience, or watch others experience.

Q: What year and model is your white Gibson guitar?

A: My #1 (which never goes on the road anymore) is my baby. It's a double-cut 1968 California style. It was white when I bought it. My #1 on the road, is just your standard double-cut melody maker. Don't know the style or year, but I figure it's late 60s and we painted it white.

Q: What is you favorite guitar to play on stage?

A: With NO POSSIBILITY OF THEFT -- toss up between my first real guitar -- 1968 Blonde Les Paul Deluxe or my #1 BABY.

Q: What are some of your favorite movies?

A: Cabaret, Rocky Horror Picture Show, Wizard Of Oz and comedies and dramas.

Q: Who did Kenny Aaronson play with before the Blackhearts?

A:Bob Dylan, Billy Idol, Stray Cats.

Q: What is your favorite Elvis Presley song?

A: Too many to choose -- "All Shook Up", "Blue Suede Shoes".

Q: When you take a vacation, where do you like to go? Do you like to go to different places or just stay home and relax since part of your job is being on the road?

A: I don't think I've ever really taken a vacation per se. I end a tour in Malaysia and stay an extra week, things like that. An extra week anywhere is good!

Q: Given the chance to explore the universe, what planet or system would you want to visit?

A: Any planet where I could communicate or watch other life forms. Hopefully, they are more ethical and have more integrity and could teach me.

Q: What is the chorus to the "French Song" in English?

A: Get a French-English dictionary and look it up. Can be done.

Q: Do you wear ear plugs when performing? Have you lost any hearing after all these years of loud music?

A: Occasionally, I'll wear one plug in my left ear if I'm having problems hearing monitors, but NEVER for a whole show. No, I doubt it, but ya gotta be careful.

Q: When you're on the road, how often do you change the strings on your guitars? What gauge strings do you use and what brand?

A: Every night just about. I strum very hard. High E is .11, but I mix gauges depending on the song. In other words, it's not a standard set all the time, whatever sounds good.

Q: Have you ever considered putting out a video cassette of a live performance?

A: No. I prefer the real deal and so do most.

Q: What brand of shampoo do you use?

A: At the moment, Paul Mitchell or any environmentally sound product. No animal testing is the reason.

Q: Do you like riding motorcycles?

A: It's exhilarating, but I don't own one.

Q: Does it bother you when fans touch you while you're performing on stage?

A: Only the ones that have touched me 100's of times at many shows (they know who they are). But no, I never mind, as long as it isn't blatantly sexual. I like people to get close cause so much of the time the first row is 10 feet away.

Q: Do you have a boyfriend?

A: No privacy at all?!?! Wow! Yes, I know some boys and yes, some are friends.

Q: Do you see yourself ever getting married?

A: Marriage, to me, is more of a spiritual bond that just a ceremony. We will see.

Q: Did you finish high school?

A: I took my G.E.D. I didn't graduate, to answer the question.

Q: Would you briefly describe you home? (The type of home -- is it an apartment style, one bedroom condo, or a townhouse, free standing home with a white picket fence or a mansion with sauna, swimming pool, Jacuzzi and tennis court?

A: I have an apartment on the beach. I also have a three story home with six bedrooms, pool, grass and trees. I'd get a batting cage, but I'm always on the road.

Q: How much time a year do you spend at home?

A: It varies. If we have a new album out and tour to do, I'm gone a year, year and a half depending. I've been lucky enough to have a great career in other countries. In France, "I Love Rock N' Roll" went #1 again in November. We did short tour in France in December. We do well in Europe, Scandinavia, and South-East Asia.

Q: Each of your songs have a message. The last message anyone gives is the inscription on their tombstones. What do you want your's to say, if anything besides you name and the dates of birth and death?

A: I tried to give more than just music. I tried to give hope, motivation, and love.

Q: I read that you are into crystals. My question is, what are they and what do you do with them?

A: Crystals are a gemstone, like a ruby or diamond, so to speak. But there are people, including me, that believe these stones can retain positive or negative thoughts. And there are many different kinds of these stones besides Quartz crystal. Amethyst, Obsidian, Tigers Eye, and Agate. That's just the tip of the iceberg. But these stones work only in conjunction with spirituality. Not just Church on Sunday and Temple on Saturday, but from within. I suggest you get a book on the subject, because there's a lot of them out there.

Q: Is there anyone out currently in the music scene that you would like to work with like you did with Paul Westerberg?

A:The Lungfish, L7, Fugazi, whose ethics I really respect; a band I produced called Circus Lupus.
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