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A lifetime of firsts....
Few performers in the music industry today can claim the longevity and respect earned by Genya Ravan. Always a pioneer, Genya formed Goldie and the Gingerbreads in the early sixties, touring behind a string of European hits with the Stones, Kinks, Yardbirds and Hollies as the first all female rock and roll band. Later she resurfaced back in the US as the powerful voice of Ten Wheel Drive, one of the original horn jazz-fusion bands. A string of solo albums followed.
In the seventies she expanded her repertoire becoming the world's first independent female producer, with critically acclaimed records by Ronnie Spector and the Dead Boys, "Young Loud and Snotty", labeled the ultimate punk album by many reviewers. During the same period Hilly Krystal summoned Genya to head up CBGB Records.
In 2003 she received critical acclaim for her memoir, Lollipop Lounge: one of the great tales of Rock and Roll survival. She also hosts two monthly radio shows for Little Steven's Underground Garage on Sirius/XM; "Chicks and Broads" in which she covers the often forgottenmusic of female artists from the 40's to the present, as well as "Goldie's Garage" in which she continues her long career of showcasing new and unsigned bands.
As Genya celebrates the success of her February 2016 sell-out musical, Rock and Roll Refugee, she considers her next moves...Continue the story? A documentary? A film? All this while recording her next CD, due for release early summer.
We'll keep you updated here...
March 2016: Recording
We're very excited that Genya is currently recording a new album, due for release in early Summer...watch this space for details.
ALLLLLLRIGHT....a revised 2016 edition of Lollipop Lounge is finally being released.
"Brutally honest, hysterically funny, and ultimately inspirational" Amazon.com
Genya's autobiography, Lollipop Lounge: Memoirs Of A Rock And Roll Refugee, was originally released in 2005. . We didn't imagine the half of it.....did she really do that??
Buy the original from Amazon, watch this space for buying links for the revised version.
Genya Ravan's, 'Rock And Roll Refugee,' the off-Broadway play about her early life in music has stories to fill two lifetimes
"Genya came to the US as a refugee of postwar Europe, learned English listening to the radio and, before long, heard herself on it. Her life in pop and rock was the subject of a new off-Broadway show, which sold out every night during it's [February 2016] run.
Before Goldie and The Gingerbreads, the first successful all-female rock band in 1962, Genya Ravan was Genyusha Zelkovicz, a young girl fleeing Nazi-occupied Poland with her family in search of a hopeful start in America".... read the rest of the review by Playbill.com
A life story told through music: Cheesecake Girl
''Cheesecake modeling" is semi-nude modeling but you don’t show any privates. I was making $100 hours an hour – and I had a body to kill for."
Every song on Genya's 2013 album tells a part of her life story. Listen to the music, and read the stories here.
Discography...Spanning almost 55 years...say whaat!
Watch the promo video for Jerry's Pigeons, from Genya's 1978 album Urban Desire
Genya Ravan — then known as Goldie Zelkowitz — broke into the major-label music world in 1962 with the very first all-female band Goldie And The Gingerbreads.
By 1968, Goldie was looking for new challenges, which she found by forming Ten Wheel Drive, a ten-piece electric and brass jazz rock group - and re-inventing herself with a harder edge and a new name: Genya Ravan.
The world's first independent female producer
Genya's visibility as a vocalist is at times overshadowed by the huge amount of production and industry work that she took on, from promotion to A&R at various labels. Record production, which she had started doing in the mid-seventies as a full member of the downtown New York punk scene, became her main focus, eventually leading to her own label Polish Records.
Productions credits include groundbreaking punk band The Dead Boys for Sire Records, and then Ronnie Spector's Siren album for Ravan's own imprint, Polish Records, with the handle "Who Do I F*** to Get Off This Label?"
Genya at CBGBs
A mainstay of CBGBs, Genya was a frequent performer...she was a major contributor to the club in the early days, both through her productions and by just being there. At the request of Hilly Krystal, Genya headed up CBGB records.
She was played by Stana Katic in the 2013 CBGB Movie.
More about Genya at CBGBs
Genya at The Stereo Society
Genya's 2002 release For Fans Only CD includes a version of Lennon and McCartney's Don't Let Me Down, recorded with Mike Thorne and the Uptown Horns in the early nineties at the Stereo Society as part of a Beatles cover project that went unfinished. We also stream another cut from these sessions ,
I'm Down. (It wasn't as depressing as the titles sound, really.)
Listen to it here
Genya now has a noisy lead singer's presence at the Stereo Society. But don't forget that she sang background vocals on the Flowerpot Men's ton-of-bricks version of Walk On Gilded Splinters. And even plays harmonica on the BETTY holiday CD Snowbiz (thanks again).
Genya was interviewed at the Stereo Society
in New York, November 26 2001
Always raucous, she reminisces about the good old days and about new and future days: "I really learned to speak English through music! Matter of fact, I was the only one in the family that spoke English. I was able to curse and my parents never knew!..." Read on...
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