“There would be no Riot Grrrls if it wasn’t for Joan, there would be no Joan if it wasn’t for Suzi, and there would be no Suzi if it wasn’t for Elvis.”
So says Toby Mamis, dissecting the lineage of two of the most famous clients of his music-management career. Mamis was publicist for Suzi Quatro in 1975, when a young teenager looking like a mini Suzi started hanging around the LA hotel where the pioneering rock bassist/singer and her entourage were staying. Mamis wound up letting Joan Larkin (she hadn’t dubbed herself Jett yet) and a male friend stay in his hotel room. They became friends. A few years later, after Jett had become a star in her own right as rhythm guitarist and songwriter for the Runaways, Mamis became the band’s manager — after they had booted Kim Fowley.
The last link of that lineage — Joan to the Grrrls — is getting honored in an album to be released June 28, Take It or Leave It– A Tribute to the Queens of Noise: The Runaways. Kathleen Hanna, “the raddest girl of all,” will perform the camp epic “Dead End Justice” with Peaches, produced by Ad-Rock of the Beastie Boys (Hanna’s husband). That’s just the most incredibly awesome track of a lineup that includes the Donnas doing “Queens of Noise” (I saw the Donnas open for Jett in New York in the mid ’90s), the Toilet Boys playing “Born to Be Bad,” the Dandy Warhols on “Cherry Bomb,” and tracks featuring Cherie Currie and Sandy West. The two-disc album’s being released by Main Man Records. I’ll take it.