Today’s Friday Feature, Rockin’ Families, may have been inspired by Sunday’s Bro-Bowl, and that’s fine. We appreciate our beloved brothers. It’s just that sometimes we need to remind them of a few things: 1) Put the tour bus toilet seat down. 2) Beer is not a complex carb. 3) The sorority of sisterly bands is powerful, beautiful, and not to be forgotten.
1) The Roches – Maggie, Terre and Suzzy started as backup singers for Paul Simon. Their first album was produced by Robert Fripp and recorded in “audio verite.” It doesn’t get much more verite than “Hammond Song.”
2) Tegan and Sara – Not just sisters. Identical twin sisters. From Canada.
3) The Staple Singers -This was a full family act, straight from Chicago, with Pops and his children Cleotha, Pervis, Yvonne and little sister Mavis . Mavis and Yvonne still sing this in concert, if you’re lucky enough to catch one.
4) The Breeders – Kim and Kelley Deal’s band has been tossed about by the vicissitudes of life, band squabbles, and drug issues. They’re together again, though, and they’re touring to mark the 20th anniversary of “Last Splash.”
5) The Shangri-Las – TWO sets of sisters, Mary and Betty Weiss plus Marge and Mary Ann Ganser. (Betty often recorded but didn’t perform much early in the game.) These tough teenagers set the standard for the 1960s death disc. Lookoutlookoutlookoutlookout!
6) The Bangles – When sisters Vicki and Debbi Peterson were joined by Susanna Hoffs and Michael Steele, and they released “All Over The Place” in 1984, every girl who hadn’t already gone full Go-Gos was ready to start her own band.
7) Heart – the ur-sister band of the rock era. When record company slime tried to turn Ann and Nancy Wilson’s sisterly bond into something slimier, they released “Barracuda.”
8) Kate and Anna McGarrigle – beloved singer-songwriters, their work has been covered by a who’s who of pop and folk music. Kate died in 2010. Her children, Rufus Wainwright and Martha Wainwright, continue the family tradition.
9) The Carter Sisters – The Carters are one of country music’s founding families. Mother Maybelle’s girls Helen, June and Anita kept it on the sunny side …
10) The Angels – Another group of Jersey girls, including sisters Barbara and Phyllis Albutt. Proving once again that you can be an angel, and you can be a sister, but that doesn’t make you a pushover.