The Runaways

McDonnell - The Runaways -Cover WebsiteQueens of Noise: The Real Story of the Runaways by Evelyn McDonnell (Da Capo Press)

Evelyn McDonnell provides the complete story of the Runaways, the self-declared “Queens of Noise” – Lita Ford, Jackie Fox, Sandy West, Cherie Currie and Joan Jett – who paved the way for every girl band since from the Go-Gos to L7 to Care Bears on Fire.  Manufactured by producer and manger Kim Fowley, the Runaways’ four-year run includes tales of musical breakthroughs, drugs, violent crimes, the Sex Pistols, sexual experimentation, harassment, jail, Led Zeppelin, spandex jumpsuits, David Bowie, abortion, lawsuits, riots, and much, much more.  Fighting tooth and nail at every step to be accepted, the relentless passion of the Runaways during and beyond their time as a band remains an inspiration for musicians everywhere.

“Scrupulously researched…McDonnell has done her legwork…[and] rightly rehabilitated a pioneering band’s reputation.”
—The New York Times

“Through meticulous research and a stylistic approach that swings between academic and aggressively candid, McDonnell gives these pioneering girls the third dimension they deserve… By treating each of the musicians as an individual finding her place in a rapidly changing world, Queens of Noise provides a multilayered consideration of the Runaways, who ‘could play like the boys, without once pretending they weren’t girls.’”
—Los Angeles Times

“[T]he Runaways’ legacy as trailblazers who opened the doors for other female artists is assured. Queens of Noise is the definitive account of their pioneering career.”
—Seattle Times

“Celebrates the spirit of what could happen when listeners ignore conventional wisdom about girls-in-rock. An almost-feminist manifest… A primer of how bands come together, what they face in the jaws of trying to create arena-sized success without proper management and how it can all go wrong.”

“Reversing the curse that plagued the band’s short run, [Queens of Noise] declares: if you haven’t heard of the Runaways, that’s your problem—not theirs.”
—New York Observer

“For a grim and gritty look at the rise and fall of the band, as well as a look at sexual politics in the 70s and in the 70s rock scene, this is a fascinating book. And for fans of The Runaways, like me, this is a must have.”
—Graffiti Magazine

“This book may be the first Runaways project to successfully represent all five members of the classic lineup… Instead of a riot of conflicting opinions, McDonnell skillfully weaves a coherent narrative that looks at both sides of ‘he said, she said,’ or is often the case, ‘she said, she said.’”
—San Antonio Express News

“Brilliant, must-read.”
—The Advocate