Bitch (band)

Last updated
Bitch
Also known asBetsy
Origin Los Angeles
Genres Heavy metal, glam metal, [1] [2] hard rock [1]
Years active1980–present
Labels Metal Blade Records
Associated actsAnger As Art, Abattoir, Bloodlust, the Electric Prunes, Lizzy Borden, Killen, the Boxboys
Website Betsybitch.com (unofficial information site)
MembersBetsy Bitch, Chris Cardenas, Scandall West, Angelo Espino
Past membersDavid Carruth, Robby Settles, Mark Anthony Webb, Ron Cordy, Ed McCrary, Robert Farr, Johnny Zell, Kevyn Redwine, Richard Zusman, Jett Black, Billy King, Jay Dean, Steve Kara, Steve Gaines, Dan Oliverio, Rob Alaniz

Bitch is a female-fronted American heavy metal band, formed in Los Angeles in December 1980. They gained notoriety as a result of their theatrical live performances inspired by Alice Cooper, [3] which featured sadomasochistic themes. Bitch was the first artist ever signed to Metal Blade Records. [4]

Heavy metal is a genre of rock music that developed in the late 1960s and early 1970s, largely in the United Kingdom. With roots in blues rock, psychedelic rock, and acid rock, the bands that created heavy metal developed a thick, massive sound, characterized by highly amplified distortion, extended guitar solos, emphatic beats, and overall loudness. The genre's lyrics and performance styles are sometimes associated with aggression and machismo.

Band (rock and pop) group of people who perform instrumental or vocal music

A rock band or pop band is a small musical ensemble which performs rock music, pop music or a related genre. The four-piece band is the most common configuration in rock and pop music. Before the development of the electronic keyboard, the configuration was typically two guitarists, a bassist, and a drummer. Another common formation is a vocalist who does not play an instrument, electric guitarist, bass guitarist, and a drummer. Instrumentally, these bands can be considered as trios.

Los Angeles City in California

Los Angeles, officially the City of Los Angeles and often known by its initials L.A., is the most populous city in California and the second most populous city in the United States, after New York City. With an estimated population of four million, Los Angeles is the cultural, financial, and commercial center of Southern California. The city is known for its Mediterranean climate, ethnic diversity, Hollywood and the entertainment industry, and its sprawling metropolis.

Contents

History

Bitch was formed in December 1980, and played their first show in May 1981 alongside Dante Fox (later to become Great White). Shortly after the band was formed, guitarist David Carruth met Brian Slagel, future CEO of Metal Blade Records, and the two became friends. Slagel was working on a compilation album to tie into a heavy metal fanzine he had started called The New Heavy Metal Revue, and offered to place Bitch on the compilation if they would submit a demo to him. This project would become the landmark compilation Metal Massacre (1982), which would become famous for launching the career of Metallica and for being the first album ever released by Metal Blade Records. Bitch's contribution to Metal Massacre was a demo version of "Live for the Whip", which would be rerecorded for their debut EP Damnation Alley . [5]

Brian Slagel is the founder and CEO of Metal Blade Records. Slagel is known for having initiated the Metal Massacre series of compilation albums in 1982, the first of which included the first commercial recording by Metallica. Metal Blade has since released seminal albums by Slayer, Mercyful Fate, Cannibal Corpse, Fates Warning, Amon Amarth and The Black Dahlia Murder, among others.

Metal Blade Records record label

Metal Blade Records is a heavy metal independent record label founded by Brian Slagel in 1982. The U.S. office for Metal Blade is located in Agoura Hills, California. It also has offices in Germany, Japan, Canada, and the UK. The label is distributed in the U.S. by RED Distribution, and in Canada by Sony Music Entertainment. It was distributed by Warner Bros. Records in the United States from 1988 to 1993.

<i>Metal Massacre</i> 1981 compilation album

Metal Massacre is a series of compilation albums released through Metal Blade Records. It is famous for "shedding light" on bands such as the Obsessed, Trouble, Overkill, Metal Church, Metallica, Slayer, Virgin Steele, Hellhammer, Voivod, Armored Saint, Lizzy Borden, Possessed and more.

Bitch signed for the label and released a self-financed EP titled Damnation Alley (1982). The following year, the group released their first full-length album, Be My Slave . During the tour of the album, Bitch developed their controversial and elaborate stage shows. These included sadomasochistic elements such as bondage clothing and paraphernalia, and the humiliation of a male "slave" on stage. [6] The band then became a target in the Parents Music Resource Center controversy. The Be My Slave LP was featured on talk shows and in a televised congressional hearing that took place before the United States Senate’s Committee On Commerce, Science, and Transportation on September 19, 1985. [7] Throughout this time, Bitch played regularly in Sunset Strip clubs like The Whiskey-a-Go-Go, Gazzarri's, The Roxy, and many others, sharing the bill with other metal groups such as W.A.S.P., Slayer and Armored Saint. [6]

<i>Be My Slave</i> 1983 studio album by Bitch

Be My Slave is a 1983 album by the American heavy metal band Bitch, released on the Metal Blade Records label under the genre "dominatrix metal". Be My Slave was cited by Tipper Gore, during the Parents Music Resource Center campaign against violent and sexually explicit content in the music industry and was held as an example in the hearing before the United States Senate Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation on September 19, 1985. The album was re-issued in 1989 on a single CD with the EP Damnation Alley.

Parents Music Resource Center

The Parents Music Resource Center (PMRC) was an American committee formed in 1985 with the stated goal of increasing parental control over the access of children to music deemed to have violent, drug-related or sexual themes via labeling albums with Parental Advisory stickers. The committee was founded by four women known as the "Washington Wives" – a reference to their husbands' connections with government in the Washington, D.C. area. The women who founded the PMRC are Tipper Gore, wife of Senator and later Vice President Al Gore; Susan Baker, wife of Treasury Secretary James Baker; Pam Howar, wife of Washington realtor Raymond Howar; and Sally Nevius, wife of former Washington City Council Chairman John Nevius. The PMRC eventually grew to include 22 participants before shutting down in the mid-to-late 1990s.

United States Senate Upper house of the United States Congress

The United States Senate is the upper chamber of the United States Congress, which along with the United States House of Representatives—the lower chamber—comprises the legislature of the United States. The Senate chamber is located in the north wing of the Capitol, in Washington, D.C.

Due to problems with their management, the group's follow-up album, The Bitch Is Back (1987), was not released until four years after the release of Be My Slave. [8] The Bitch is Back became the band's best-selling album due in part to the publicity created by the P.M.R.C. [4] The band even went as far as thanking Tipper Gore and the P.M.R.C. for "keeping our name in the press" in the album's liner notes. [9]

In the same year, Betsy Bitch appeared as guest vocalist on a cover of the Tubes' song "Don't Touch Me There" with Lizzy Borden for Borden's mini-album Terror Rising. The following year, for commercial reasons, the group decided to change their name to "Betsy" [4] and released a self-titled album by that name in 1988. The sound was more melodic and closer to hard rock.

The Tubes American band

The Tubes are a San Francisco-based rock band. Their eponymous 1975 debut album included the single "White Punks on Dope," while their 1983 single "She's a Beauty" was a top-10 U.S. hit and its music video was frequently played in the early days of MTV. The band also performed in the 1980 film Xanadu, singing the rock portion of the cross-genre song "Dancin'" opposite a big band.

Lizzy Borden (band) band

Lizzy Borden is an American heavy metal band formed in Los Angeles in 1983. To date, the band has charted on the Billboard 200 four times. Lizzy Borden is eponymous of the band's lead vocalist.

<i>Betsy</i> (Bitch album) album

Betsy is a studio album by Betsy Weiss and members of L.A. heavy metal band Bitch, released in 1988 on Metal Blade Records. Although the album was recorded by the same group as the previous two heavier, and S&M-themed, heavy metal albums, the band released this third album under the artist name Betsy, the name of Betsy Weiss aka "Betsy Bitch", their lead singer, and with a softer and more commercial sound. After the album the band reverted to the heavier sound and the name Bitch.

Subsequently, the band produced another EP, A Rose By Any Other Name (1989), a stopgap compilation featuring remixes of previously released songs, unfinished tracks from previous recording sessions, and a song recorded for a tentative new album that was to be entitled Bet-Z (the project was subsequently abandoned). [8] This is the last album released by Bitch to date, but the band has continued to perform on occasion ever since, with their most notable recent live appearance being in 2003 for the Bang Your Head!!! music festival; their performance of "Live For The Whip" from this appearance is included on the Best of Bang Your Head DVD (2006).

Bang Your Head!!! is a heavy metal and hard rock festival held annually in Germany.

DVD Optical disc

DVD is a digital optical disc storage format invented and developed in 1995. The medium can store any kind of digital data and is widely used for software and other computer files as well as video programs watched using DVD players. DVDs offer higher storage capacity than compact discs while having the same dimensions.

Original Bitch drummer Robby Settles died due to complications from leukemia on May 26, 2010. In the years preceding drummer Robby Settles' death, Settles and Electric Prunes guitarist Steve Kara were collaborating on a new album with a lineup featuring original member Betsy Bitch with bassist Steve Gaines of Abattoir, Bloodlust, and Anger as Art and Electric Prunes guitarists Jay Dean and Steve Kara completing the lineup. [10] The current status of the album is uncertain.

A second lineup featuring the members of Anger As Art played Germany's Keep it True Festival in April 2011 and some LA shows.

2014-present: Upcoming fourth studio album

The new lineup, now featuring Scandal West on drums and Chris Cardenas on guitar alongside Betsy and Angelo Espino, debuted at the Rainbow Bar and Grille's 42nd Anniversary Party in support of Great White on April 13, 2014. Bitch has a new format of rock with material from the Betsy album along with many of the metal classics. The band is currently working on new material for release in 2015. Upcoming shows include dates with Doro, as well as headlining a 2-day metal festival in Las Vegas.

Current line-up

Previous members

Timeline

Bitch %28band%29

Discography

EPs

Studio albums

See also

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References

  1. 1 2 Henderson, Alex. "Bitch – Bitch". AllMusic. All Media Network. Retrieved 16 July 2016.
  2. McPadden, Mike (September 24, 2015). "The Hair Metal 100: Ranking the '80s Greatest Glam Bands, Part 4". VH1. Viacom . Retrieved October 9, 2016.
  3. "Betsy Bitch interview about The history of the band". Archived from the original on 2011-07-25. Retrieved 2010-05-07.
  4. 1 2 3 Betsy Bitch interview on www.metalmaidens.com
  5. Betsybitch.com "Bitch Biography"
  6. 1 2 "Bitch biography on www.allaccessmagazine.com". Archived from the original on 2009-10-01. Retrieved 2007-11-30.
  7. Congress, Senate, Committee On Commerce, Science, and Transportation, 'Record Labeling: on Contents of Music and Lyrics of Records, 99th Cong., 1st sess., 19 September 1985, 16-17.
  8. 1 2 Betsybitch.com "Bitch Discography" Page
  9. Bitch The Bitch Is Back (1987) liner notes.
  10. Betsybitch.com "New Album--Info and Updates" Page