Deborah Harry and Shirley Manson have been friends for decades. They’ll play at the winery on July 13.
It’s no surprise to find Blondie and Garbage sharing the bill on their “Rage and Rapture” tour, which arrives at Chateau Ste. Michelle Winery on Thursday, July 13. Both started out as alternative music acts who crossed over into mainstream success. Both have compelling female lead performers, Deborah Harry in Blondie’s case, and Shirley Manson in Garbage.
And, it turns out, Harry and Manson have been friends for decades. Manson, originally from Scotland, met Harry while she was in her pre-Garbage band, Angelfish. She later gave the induction speech when Blondie was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2010.
“It was their idea to put the tour together,” said Butch Vig, Garbage’s drummer (and producer of Nirvana’s breakthrough album “Nevermind”), speaking on the phone from Los Angeles. “We were looking for something to do this summer, and thought it would be great to bring together these two iconic lead singers. It just made sense to team up and celebrate the power of the female!”
Blondie and Garbage
with special guests John Doe and Exene Cervenka, 6:30 p.m., Thursday, July 13, Chateau Amphitheatre, 14111 N.E. 145th St., Woodinville; $49.50-$89.50 (800-745-3000 or ticketmaster.com).
Blondie’s roots go back 40 years, when the group emerged from the music scene centered on New York City’s famed Lower East Side club, CBGB. The band gave a punky twist to ’60s power pop, a sound dubbed “new wave,” but drew on other musical influences as well. Blondie’s biggest hit was the disco smash “Heart of Glass.” The band also took reggae and rap to the top of the charts with “The Tide is High” and “Rapture,” respectively.
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Garbage came together in 1994, when Vig needed a break from producing. “I swear to God, by then I’d done like a thousand punk-rock records,” he said. “I was just getting tired.” Inspired by Public Enemy’s use of samples in its music, he began writing songs with two friends, Duke Erikson and Steve Marker.
They asked Manson to join them, impressed by her work in Angelfish. Having worked almost exclusively with male singers, Vig felt working with a female singer “would be interesting and fresh. We thought it was going to be a one-off project, but once Shirley joined us, we really did become a band, and thought that we were creating something really special.”
The band found chart success with songs like the sardonic “Stupid Girl,” “#1 Crush” and the lush James Bond theme “The World is Not Enough.” This July will see the release of the band’s oral history, “This is the Noise That Keeps Me Awake.”
There’s also a chance the two bands may play together during the show. “I know that Shirley’s been emailing with Debbie back and forth, and they have a bunch of ideas,” said Vig, joking, “I’ll be playing tambourine with (Blondie drummer) Clem Burke!”