Saturday, 22 December 2007

The Debutantes and The Blades

Hey! Just a quick note to suggest you check out my blog at the moment which currently has 3 records each by The Debutantes and The Blades at Girl Garage Mayhem! Please do! You'll find out more info there - but here's the background to what I've posted. The Debutantes were an all female band from Detriot - and The Blades were a female fronted garage band from Anderton, South Carolina.

The Debutantes

New Love Today, Love is Strange, Shake a Tail Feather

Having manage to contact someone who had in their possession another record by The Debutantes and get hold of the mp3's, man I was chuffed! And as you can probably see, Jan (the former lead member) sent me some extra pictures - and woah! There are some amazing stories behind this band, which jan will hopefully post on her website when it is up along with masters from the band and videos(!!) - But till then enojy their sound! Here's what Jan sais about their tour of south east Asia

"Yes, girl bands did tour Southeast Asia because the troops loved seeing "round-eyes". That's racist, of course, but what can you tell guys in their teens and twenties? There were also some Philippino girl groups who could do American tunes even tho they spoke little English. It was dangerous there and there were a couple of casualties the powers-that-be tried to keep hush-hush. I remember an Australian group playing at an officers' club. The lead singer stepped to the mic to say goodnight and she was shot and killed -- she was right in the line of fire of an assassin who was aiming at a high-ranking officer. "

"We really got taken advantage of by the Korean booking agent. He took our passports and would not return them until he felt we had played enough dates to make it worthwhile for him to have paid our plane fares from Honolulu to Saigon. I wrote to the American Consulate and then-President Nixon but no one would acknowledge our please to come home. While we were there all of our American musical equipment was stolen and we felt it was an inside job by the agent for the black market. He then lent us a bunch of garbage equipment to finish the gig."

The Blades
I'll Shed No Tear, Moving Out, Again

After shedding out a small country's GDP for the first issue from this group from Anderson, South Carolina - I was more than happy when it came and first put needle to vinyl - I''ll Shed No Tear is just an amazing girl garage groover. Plus their second delightfully snotty output Moving Out appears as a repost from back in the day - just in case you missed it! And then there's again - I think'll you agree these are some of the best I'll ever be able to post!
Luckily I came across some history of the group from a member of rival local band The Penetrations.

"We were friendly rivals with The Blades. Anderson and Belton are about 10 miles or so apart. I spent about as much time in Anderson as I did in Belton (in the summer time anyway) helping Dad with his wholesale used car business. The Blades were the home band at the Teens-A-Go-Go club - without a doubt the most successful teen club in Anderson County in those days. I remember then it was in a long, narrow store building in the downtown area. I think most all the guys would agree that their band boasted the best-looking front person of any band around in those days! Her name was Vicki, and she was "easy on the eyes"!

The Penetrations were one of several guest bands at their club, and I think they played at our club as well. As for how often we crossed paths, likely not that many times - because if they were playing at one gig, we usually were playing at another. During early 1967 their lineup consisted of: Vicki (lead vocalist); Gary Fellers (keyboards); Bill Harper (lead guitar); Roger Chasteen (electric bass); and Joey Tiller (drums). There may have been some personnel changes for The Blades along the way, but I have no firsthand knowledge about that. I was not that well acquainted with them on a personal level, although I think some of our other band members were. They had a great '60's sound, that fact I do remember well. "

Merry X-mas and Happy Hogmany!


mhr_kara said...

i really love the 'sound' of The Debutantes. thanks for posting their music for new fans to discover. :D

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The Boy and the Cloud said...

i found out about the debutantes from the new Girl With Guitars volume and i would love to hear these tracks if you could be bothered to upload them or send them to me? it would make me extremely happy! you can reach me at krister.bladh at

vfhans said...

I am Vicki of this group The Blades. I am delighted to stumble upon this old post. I am Vicki Fellers (now Hansberger). Gary Fellers in this group is my brother.

We had great fun and made some money traveling in the Southeast with our father (as manager) and mother and the rest of the Blades from 1964 to 1969. We all lived in Anderson, SC.

Back then it was unusual to have a female lead. I believe that was mostly because not many groups had a dedicated set of parents to chaperone and therefore keep a young lady safe. :)

Be glad to supply more info. Inquire to and please put "Blades Inquiry" in subject line so I will open it. Vicki

Anonymous said...

i know this is random but i stumbled accross this post researching the blades from anderson...i stumbled accross an old framed publicity photo from the group and the number attached is long since defunct...if anyone knows how i could reach someone that this may hold more sentiment to than myself, i'd love to get it in their email is and my father now works in Belton and a meeting could be arranged to replace this item...I look forward to hopefully hearing back from the moderator or otherwise...thx....Jeremy