Jane Wiedlin in Philadelphia in 1988
|Birth name||Jane Marie Genevieve Wiedlin|
|Also known as||Jumping Jane Drano|
|Born||May 20, 1958 |
|Associated acts||The Go-Go's|
Jane Wiedlin (born May 20, 1958, Oconomowoc, Wisconsin) is an American musician, singer-songwriter, and actress. She is best known as the rhythm guitarist of the all-female multi-platinum New Wave band The Go-Go's in the 1980s. Wiedlin's songwriting skills and unusual voice (typically used in harmony with Belinda Carlisle) contributed to the Go-Go's signature sound.
As Wiedlin describes it, she was around "pretty much from the beginning" of the Los Angeles punk scene. "Jane Drano"—as she came to be known then—started out designing punk-style clothing sold at “Granny Takes a Trip,” a Sunset Boulevard store. She became part of a scene that spawned bands like X, The Germs and The Weirdos. She and Belinda Carlisle formed The Go-Go's as a punk band in 1978, with Margot Olaverra on bass, and Elissa Bello on drums.
Their pop punk sound didn't emerge until later, after Charlotte Caffey joined on lead guitar and keyboards, and Bello was replaced on drums by Gina Schock. After a 1980 tour in England, the band returned home, adding Kathy Valentine on bass and signing with IRS Records in April 1981. Wiedlin remained part of the Go-Go's until October 1984, when she left to pursue a solo career. Rush Hour (song) (1988) was her most successful single - having done well in both the American and British charts. The song was taken from her second album 'Fur'.
After a series of reunions during the 1990s, Wiedlin, Carlisle, Caffey, Schock, and Valentine re-formed the band again in 2000 to record God Bless The Go-Go's, their first studio album in 17 years; the album, originally titled Vision of Nowness, got its title and concept based on an idea from Wiedlin.
The Go-Go's continue to tour off-and-on.
Wiedlin has also acted in movies and provided the voice for several characters on TV and the big screen, including a one-liner role in Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home. Her other roles include Joan of Arc (with no spoken lines in English) in the time travel comedy Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure, an ill-fated singing telegram girl in the cult comedy/mystery film Clue and the White Fairy in Golan-Globus's Sleeping Beauty. She also played one of Bruce Wayne's girlfriends in an episode of The New Batman Adventures.
In a St. Petersburg Times online interview, Jane said this about her acting career in the 80s: "It turned out to be much harder than it looks, and as much as I enjoyed those experiences, I don't think I'm very good at it."
In 2000, she sang in the choir on the Frasier episode "They're Playing Our Song". In 2001, she had a regular role in MTV's Spyder Games, playing the "ex-rock chick who runs the local coffee house" where everyone hangs out.
In April 2009, Jane reconnected with director Steve Balderson for Stuck! - an homage to film noir women in prison dramas. Co-starring Karen Black, Pleasant Gehman, Susan Traylor, and cult icon Mink Stole, Stuck! was filmed in Macon, Georgia and is due for a release in 2010.
Wiedlin has done voice acting work, such as appearances on the animated program Mission Hill as Gwen, Andy's girlfriend. In 2009, Wiedlin provided the voice of the evil doll Baby Oopsie Daisy in the horror film, Demonic Toys: Personal Demons.
Wiedlin is a long-time animal rights activist, and has worked with People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals since at least 1989 when she performed as part of a "Rock Against Fur" concert in New York City. She is friends with PETA's Dan Mathews.
Wiedlin had what she called a "short but dramatic romance" with Terry Hall of the Specials during their 1980 tour in England; Hall later sent her some lyrics prompted by their relationship, inspiring Wiedlin to write "Our Lips Are Sealed", a song on which Hall has co-writer credits.
In 2005 and 2006, Wiedlin supported the fight against breast cancer by promoting and participating in "Bowling for Boobies", a fund-raising event. For 2006, Wiedlin auctioned off three positions on her team on eBay, allowing fans to bid online for a chance to participate on her team.
Wiedlin calls herself a tightlacing fan and told one tightlacing website that she has been part of the fetish scene since 1996. When Rolling Stone asked in 2000 about "those Jane Weidlin S&M Dominatrix stories that came out over the summer", Wiedlin was less straightforward:
Wiedlin currently spends half of her time living in Madison, Wisconsin with her dogs Peanut and Jeordie, and the other half working in Los Angeles. Her latest project is a comic book entitled Lady Robotika which she co-created with artist Bill Morrison. The series concerns the adventures of a woman, basically Jane herself, being abducted by aliens and turned into a cyborg superheroine, or as she puts it, "a super-rad rock chick cyborg."
|Year||Title||U.S. Hot 100||U.S. Dance||U.K. Singles|
|1983||"Cool Places" (with Sparks)||49||13||-|
|"Inside a Dream"||52||-||64|
|1990||"World on Fire"||-||-||-|