Joan Jett and The Blackhearts Bad Reputation Nation
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Music Connection Magazine - JOAN JETT

Click to enlarge When her first band the RUNAWAYS dissolved in the late 70’s, Joan Marie Jett faced a stone-cold reality that all struggling artists can relate to –– no label would touch her. So Jett started her own label and has never looked back, selling 30 million albums and garnering a clutch of top 10 singles including her monster hit, "I Love Rock and Roll," the 27th most popular single ever. JOAN JETT did not write that tune, but her unique prowess as a performer has allowed her to make a song her own. Busy as ever, Jett headlined this summer’s Warped Tour, issued a new album, SINNER, and is celebrating the 25th anniversary of her Blackheart label with the re-issue of her entire catalog.

Music Connection: This will be your fourth Music Connection cover. There was 1983, 1988, 1994 and now 2006.
Wow, that’s amazing! Thank you, Music Connection. I remember being on the cover a few times, but I had no idea it was that many, so that’s cool.

MC: You’re also celebrating the 25th anniversary of your label, BLACKHEART RECORDS; is there vindication in lasting this long?
Yes. But you have to remember, we started Blackheart out of necessity. KENNY LAGUNA [manager/co-writer/producer] sent out a tape to all the majors and the minors, and no one wanted to touch me. I’m saying, after they listened to a demo of "Bad Reputation," "Do You Wanna Touch Me (Oh Yeah)," "Crimson and Clover," and "I Love Rock and Roll." Now either that tells you that they can’t hear hits, or they don’t listen to the music that people give them –– either way it was pretty scary. We got 23 rejection letters and we saved them all! We were forced to create Blackheart because we were the only ones interested in pressing my records.

MC: What was it like starting a record label and trying to establish a new solo career at the same time? ...

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