Sunday, September 15, 2013

1979 Masque rehearsal session - B-MOVIE

This week, we begin to explore a series of tracks that have never been available for public consumption via the internet prior, the 1979 Masque rehearsal tracks, starting out first this week with B-Movie. As the listener will immediately note, while the lyrics are identical, the musical arrangement is completely altered - almost turned inside out - from the '78 Whisky version. For all sakes and purposes, the old blueprint was evidently tossed out and the band essentially re-wrote the track altogether. Far more distinctive than their earlier arrangement, B-Movie '79 is slowed down considerably and essentially anchored down by Elissa Bello's skillful tribal drums patterns, Margo's hypnotic bass lines and jagged box-pattern rhythm-guitar chords throughout. There's a darker feel to the tune than prior, and Carlisle's vocals are appropriately gritty, expressive and raw. It is worth noting that the version played in this rehearsal is essentially identical to the one performed at the Elks Lodge show on March 17th of that same year. The only thing missing from that show is Jane Wiedlin's measured 1-2-3 counts after verses 1 and 2 which gave the song an additional stabbing, punk rock hook.

Where this music came from :
For those wondering where this music came from and how it actually got here, essentially the tracks exists on this website due to contact made with Brendan Mullan, former owner of the Masque, in 1992. At the time Iraya and I were doing research for the original hardcopy MIT zine, attempting to network with others involved in the underground music community in the SF Bay area. I recall us speaking to a number of people locally - including Tim Yohannan, Penelope Houston and others - in an attempt to obtain both feedback and additional materials for the project. At the time Iraya had the brilliant idea of contacting Mullen directly, and a trade was promptly done with him, which is how we acquired a significant amount of rare recordings, including better versions of some of the material we already had. Front and center to this trade was a nine song rehearsal tape of the Masque from 1979 - no specific date is known other than the fact that Ms. Bello is drumming, so it must be during the first half of that year. Not long after the tapes were acquired, fortunately we had the foresight to transfer them onto DAT in order to preserve the quality.
It seems logical that some of these songs might've ended up on the RTTVOTGG double CD retrospective in 1994, but unfortunately at the time we had no direct contact with the band, and after hearing the songs we were surprised by the comparatively poorer audio quality of some of the earlier material from that release. I think this explanation should answer most of people's questions (if anyone has further ones feel free to comment below). So without further ado, here's B-Movie.

~Eden Felt

The Go-Go's - B-Movie (1979)

(Jane Wiedlin / Charlotte Caffey)

I want to live in a b-movie
I want to say all the corney lines
I want passion and a make believe man
I want non stop romance all the time
I'll exist on the egde of extremes
Hate or love never in between
There's no stopping me now
Feelings gonna be my reason for being
Why can't my life be
Emotion and sentimentality
Soft lights, champagne and you and me
We'll write down our scenarios
Stare into each others souls
Be a rebel just like James Dean
I won't know how to say it
But you'll know what I mean
We'll exist on the edge of extremes
Hate or love never in between
There's no stopping us now
Feelings going to be our reason for being
A handsome love to send me flowers
Midnight walks in summer showers
Living in a b-movie


  1. Hearing this material is great! It seems that there is so much music that never saw the light of day. Thanks for making this available. =)

  2. Thanks! It's awesome to hear something new! (New to me that is.)
    Quality is good for something of this age too. I look forward to hearing some of the other songs from the session!

  3. Yes, thanks for sharing this with us, John and Chris.

  4. It's amazing that this is seeing the light of day now, in 2013. Thanks for sharing guys!!!


  5. thanks chris! thanks eden!
    great blog! thanks for the hard work & dedication!
    looking forward to more

    mr kool