Video Of The Day – History of Early GOSSIP

For a few years in the early naughties there was no better live act than The Gossip. Coachwhips were the other band on the level, But it is in my opinion no other bands compared, and they were the two greatest live acts of the time. Let’s also remember bands like The Gories were no longer playing at this time. I thought I’d chronicle some early Gossip as the Video(s) Of The Day and I hope you enjoy it. A lot of these are “Movement” era 2003 because that’s when Gossip peaked. The last vid is some hot slop drunken house party mess shot by Virgil Porter who also shot stuff for Coachwhips.

We’ve got Kathy Mendonca on drums (who was replaced by Hannah Blilie when they went disco in the mid naughties, blew up in Europe and I personally lost interest), Nathan Howdeshell with his detuned axe and punk blues riffs, and of course Beth Ditto taking us all to church on vocals. They seemed to be a band aimed squarely at me, as they had a Riot Grrrl pedigree, they were queer/trans/body/sex positive but they played a mix of Gories-style primitive Rock n Roll mixed with Nathan’s penchant for the sound of early 80’s New York No Wave. In person even in those early days it was clear Beth Ditto had the charisma to become a star, but she was also extremely warm, friendly, funny, and down to earth. Nathan is said to be back in Arkansas these days, Kathy just had a baby and is recently married and living in Portland, and Beth is designing clothes and doing music.

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Courtney DelMar

Aside from writing about bands for 50THIRDAND3RD, CJDelMar runs the Girlsville Records imprint out of Chicago, IL. Girlsville is home to bands like Coachwhips, The Prissteens, Purple Wizard, and Mr. Airplane Man.
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