Girlschool Guitarists Jackie Chambers and Kim McAuliffe
Borstrock, Holland in 2005
FIB MUSIC: What are you up to these days? Anything you'd like to tell our readers about?
Kim McAuliffe: We played quite a few festivals including
Wacken Rocks Seaside (May 22nd and 23rd in Auric, Germany) and Hellfest (June 19th in Clisson, France)
as well as playing with Hawkwind and finish the year off in style touring
with our great mates Motorhead!
**Click Here for all of Girlschool's 2009 tour dates**
FIB MUSIC: Tell us a little about the Painted Lady days playing the clubs in South London.
Kim: When Enid (Williams) and I started out over thirty years ago we had a
called Painted Lady with another couple of girls (we couldn't find any
boys who wanted to play with girls!!) One Deirdre Cartwright who was
a bit older and a
fantastic musician who taught us a lot. She is now a respected jazz
guitarist! We'd play in pubs in south London and got quite a
FIB MUSIC: What was it like working with Kathy Valentine who later joined the Go-Gos?
Kim: I met Kathy Valentine through an advertisement she had put in Melody
Maker (UK music newspaper) and we
became friends but we didn't really do much musically.
Kim on the cover of KillerWatt magazine
FIB MUSIC: In April of 1978 you changed the name of the band to Girlschool. How did
that come about?
Kim: Denise (Dufort)used to come and see us and that's how we met. Enid
and I decided we wanted to take the band further. Deirdre (Cartright) wanted to
to go off in another direction so we needed a guitarist and drummer, of
course, Denise was perfect! Then we heard about a girl who lived the other
side of London named Kelly Johnson. We met up at my Mum and Dad's place
where I was living. Enid lives 10 doors down on the same road; she never
left and Girlschool was born!!
FIB MUSIC: The first Girlschool single, "Take It All Away" was released in December '78.
What was that first studio experience like? Any funny, cool, sucked, or brilliant moments? Feel free to
share more than one.
Kim: A friend of ours started up his own record company City
Records and asked
if we wanted to do a single. Of course we said yes and there we were one
afternoon in Soho in a dingy basement that smelled damp recording our
first single! I remember it was a really sunny day and as we came up out
of the dark cellar blinking in the sunlight there was John Peel, the
great DJ, standing there chatting to someone from the studio who then
introduced us to him! He then went on to play our single on his radio 1
FIB MUSIC: Tell us about your early days touring with Girlschool.
Kim: At that time we were touring all over the place in our old
(which we stole from my Mum and Dad!!) sleeping on our gear and having a
FIB MUSIC: How did your relationship with Motorhead come about?
Kim: One day we heard that Lemmy of Motorhead had heard our
liked it and wanted to meet us! We were a bit scared, I had their first
single, "Motorhead", and they looked a bit scary in their photos to say the
least!! He came down to a rehearsal and we clicked straight away, he
wasn't as scary as he looked!! They asked us to support them on their
first major British tour - Overkill - and the rest is history!!
Girlschool "Screaming Blue Murder"
FIB MUSIC: Later that same year you signed with Bronze Records and set out to record
"Demolition". How was it working with producer Vic Maile and whose idea was the "Headgirl" project?
Kim: Bronze Records put us with (producer) Vic Maille and we recorded our
"Emergency" and first two albums, "Demolition" and "Hit and Run" with him. We
loved Vic and it was his idea for us and Motorhead to record "Please Don't
Touch". It was one of his favourite songs and Lemmy loved it too.
FIB MUSIC: What was it like working in the studio with the Motorhead guys? Anything stand
Kim: As you can
imagine it was a lot of fun and chaos with us in the studio. Phil had
managed to break his neck so could only just about manage the tambourine!
We were on tour with them in Europe when we found out it had gone to no. 5
and sold 250,000 copies!!
FIB MUSIC: In '83 you toured with Iron Maiden, Deep Purple, the Scorpions and Blue Oyster
Cult. Share any cool stories you have from those shows.
Kim: The tour in America with The Scorpions and Iron
Maiden was the longest we've ever done - over three months!! It was great
but we all got homesick by the end!! Iron Maiden had to come back to
England for a week in the middle of the tour for some gigs and when they
came back to America Steve (Harris) brought us back some Cadbury's milk chocolate
which we had been missing!!
A Sampling of Girlschool Album Covers
"Race with the Devil" Single 1980
FIB MUSIC: In '83 you went into the studio to record "Play Dirty". What was it like working
with producers Noddy Holder and Jim Lea?
Kim: Working with Jim and Noddy was another great thrill for us.
We had the
choice of recording in Los Angeles or north London with Jim and Nod - no
contest for us!
FIB MUSIC: In 2008 Ronnie James Dio and Tony Iommi of Black Sabbath / Heaven and Hell
appeared on your album "Legacy". How was that?
Kim: When Dio and Tony Iommi
agreed to be on our album it was a great honor as you can imagine!
FIB MUSIC: In your career you had the opportunity to tour with many of Rock's greatest bands.
Who was your favorite band to share the bill with?
Kim: It's hard to say
who's been the best band to tour with but of course Motorhead is probably
our favorite; although of course Rainbow and Black Sabbath who we have
played with a lot over the years also stand out!
FIB MUSIC: You are transported back to the 80's and you have to do two things differently.
What would they be?
Kim: I don't
really think about how things could have been done differently - just look
to the future!
THE FAST 5
FIB MUSIC: What is your most disgusting habit?
Kim: Me? Disgusting habits? Don't think so!!?
FIB MUSIC: What is the most masculine thing you do?
Kim: Probably play guitar!!
FIB MUSIC: If there is a God, what is the first question you would ask
God when you arrive?
Kim: Don't know if there is a God but probably "Where were you?!"
FIB MUSIC: Greatest Rock band of all time?
Kim: Led Zeppelin
FIB MUSIC: What were you doing 40 minutes before you sat down to do this
Kim: Having a cup of tea - am now on my fourth!!