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Girls, Girls, Girls

Being a radical feminist, it's time to shine the spotlight on some girl rockers. vixen.jpg

Today...bad girl quartet Vixen.

Vixen was formed in Minnesota in 1980 by guitarist Jan Kuehnemund while still attending high school. She moved to L.A. hiring and firing several musicians along the way. It wasn't until the late 80s that the Vixen line-up was secure, featuring singer Janet Gardner, bassist Share Pedersen and drummer Roxy Petrucci.

In a male-dominated industry, the girls in Vixen had to prove their musical chops time and time again. Gender is constructed, but in the 1980s the lines that divided the sexes were much different than today. While the girls in Vixen look beautiful in their video for "Edge of a Broken Heart," their male counterparts went on the defensive, competing for chart placement, record sales...and bigger hair.

For the ladies, hairspray, pantyhose, high heels and eye liner were acceptable. For men, a form of rebellion. The male rockers played electric guitar with ease, and used their axe skills to impress the ladies. If a woman can outplay (outwit! outlast!) a man on stage...then what was the point?

Ironically enough, Vixen played their biggest shows in support of hugely popular male acts including Bon Jovi. The girls in Vixen and Richard Marx shared a manager, which eventually led to their most popular single, "Edge of a Broken Heart."

After their self-titled debut Vixen the girls hit the recording studio for their 1990 follow-up Rev It Up. Tensions boiled over and the band broke-up. Lawsuits and reunions later, a new Vixen album hit store shelves at the end of January. Live & Learn  features a new Vixen line-up, again fronted by guitarist Jan Kuehnemund. Other members of the new Vixen are singer Jenna Sanz-Agero, bassist Lynn Louise Lowrey, and drummer Kat Kraft.

Ironically enough, while I was doing my Vixen research a story crossed the Blabbermouth newswire. During an interview on The Classic Metal Show,  Jan Kuehnemund addressed the "real" reason behind the Vixen break-up. Some people say there was a physical dispute which left original singer Janet Gardner knocked on the floor. Of course, Kuehnemund denied the account so we'll probably never know what caused the split of the greatest all-girl metal group.







Reader Comments (16)

They are probably my least favorite band of the era. I never could get into them.

March 5, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterHard Rock Hideout
I thought that Vixen were fairly ordinary. I remember hearing a demo from an all female band called Wench around 1988 and they were good. Music-wise they were maybe like Accept crossed with Metal Church. I guess they never got signed though.
March 5, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterMetal Mark
Not a band I ever rated unfortunately. Saw them at the Bowl '89 with Bon Jovi, Skid Row & Europe and they looked lost on a big stage.

Always seemed to polished and forced. I always preferred Harlow or Saraya although they were both just female fronted I think?
March 5, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterBill
I think Vixen was a great band.. definitely underrated. I think they played a major role in breaking down stereotypes in the music industry, and making it clear that women could rock too.
March 6, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterHeather
By far one of the worst groups of the genra.
(Sidenote: They were in the movie "Wildlife")

August 5, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterMarcboston
Vixen was one of the greatest all-girl bands that ever
hit the big time! No one gives them enough credit and that never ceases to irritate me. Vixen will always have their place in Rock n' Roll history and that's all there is to say! ROCK ON LADIES!!!
October 8, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterBam Bam
the greatest girl rocker of all time, 15 yr old desiree bassett watch out world.
October 14, 2007 | Unregistered Commenterdan
It's sad that they broke up after just two albums, I mean the new Vixen is also good but they were better in the late 80s.
October 15, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterRock n roll angel
Nice promo Dan, but how can a 15 y.o. be the greatest girl rocker of all time? Great talent for sure and no offense, but let her cut her teeth first. Plus fame isn't exactly all it's cracked up to be.
October 17, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterJiminez
i think vixen never really stood a chance as it was is a male dominated world (metal,rock) they did however find their nich they left their home of the united states where they shoul have done well and been supported but WERNT but they went to the U.K where they went on to make sev albums as i have heard they have or are going to release a new album i cant wait to hear these kick ass rocker chicks bust out with another album Bastian
November 12, 2007 | Unregistered Commenterbastian
if you have'nt seen the video of Desiree' jamming with Vernon Ried And Living Colour, or Watchtower w/ Andy Aledort the editor of guitar world, you have'nt met Desiree' or seen what half the world is talking about. or bassettlandscape videos.
December 27, 2007 | Unregistered Commenterdan
I thought this was going to be about the all-girl Motley Crue tribute band Girls Girls Girls,
March 4, 2008 | Unregistered Commenterpatty
they're absolutely great! wish i'd have seen them in the 80s...
May 20, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterPsycked
vixen was the best band ever.
jan, janet, roxy and share...the best lineup ever...
January 20, 2010 | Unregistered Commenterkarakteran
"i think vixen never really stood a chance as it was is a male dominated world"

STFU with that claptrap, you emasculated faggot. It wasn't the "evil straight white males" who kept them down. Get the cultural Marxist poison out of your head and stop being a sad little zombie of the Frankfurt School.
May 31, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterJohn

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