Susanna Hoffs

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Susanna Hoffs
SusannaHoffsAustralia2008.jpg
Susanna Hoffs, 2008
Background information
Birth name Susanna Lee Hoffs
Born (1959-01-17) January 17, 1959 (age 55)
Los Angeles, California, USA
Origin Los Angeles, California, USA
Genres Rock, pop
Occupations Vocalist, guitarist, actress
Instruments Voice, guitar
Years active 1981–present
Associated acts The Bangles, Ming Tea, Matthew Sweet
Website

www.thebangles.com

www.susannahoffs.com
Notable instruments
Rickenbacker 325
Rickenbacker 350SH Signature Model
Taylor Susanna Hoffs Signature Model
Guild Starfire XII

Susanna Lee Hoffs (born January 17, 1959) is an American vocalist, guitarist and actress. She is best known as a member of The Bangles.

Early life[edit]

Hoffs was born on the Westside of Los Angeles, California, to a Jewish family.[1] She is the daughter of Tamar Ruth (Simon) and Joshua Allen Hoffs, a psychoanalyst.[2][3] Her mother played Beatles music for Hoffs when she was a child, and she began playing the guitar in her teens. Hoffs attended Palisades High School in Pacific Palisades, Los Angeles, graduating in 1976. While in college she worked as a production assistant and made her acting debut in the 1978 film Stony Island.[4]

In 1980, Hoffs graduated from University of California, Berkeley with a Bachelor degree in Art. When she entered Berkeley she was a fan of classic rock bands that played in large stadiums. While a student at Berkeley, she attended the final Sex Pistols show at Winterland and a Patti Smith concert. Exposure to punk rock changed her career goal from dancer to musician in a band.[5] She eventually joined Vicki Peterson and Debbi Peterson in what would later become the pop music group The Bangles.

Career with The Bangles[edit]

The Bangles' first recorded release was a self-titled EP in 1982 on the Faulty Products Label. The Bangles released their first full album All Over the Place in 1984 on Columbia Records. They had a moderate hit with the single "Hero Takes a Fall", but their commercial breakthrough came with the album Different Light in 1986, which produced the hit singles "Manic Monday" and "Walk Like an Egyptian".

In 1986, Hoffs co-wrote the song "I Need a Disguise" for the album Belinda for Belinda Carlisle, formerly of the all-girl group The Go-Go's.

With increasing fame, Hoffs also appeared on the covers of numerous magazines, and the Rickenbacker guitar company issued a Susanna Hoffs model of the 350, which she customized herself.

In 1987, Hoffs starred in the film The Allnighter, which was directed by her mother Tamar Simon Hoffs, and also featured Joan Cusack and Pam Grier. The film was critically panned, and failed at the box office. Hoffs later said: "It wasn't a great movie but the whole experience of it was great."[6]

The Bangles released their third album Everything in 1988, with their biggest-selling single "Eternal Flame", which was co-written and sung by Hoffs. The Bangles disbanded in 1990.

In the late 1990s, Hoffs contacted the other members of The Bangles with the hope of reuniting. They recorded the single "Get the Girl" for the second Austin Powers movie in 1999. Subsequently, they announced their decision to reunite full-time in 2000. Their fourth album, Doll Revolution, was released in 2003.

Solo career[edit]

Susanna Hoffs of The Bangles performing live in Sydney on 22 October 2010.

Hoffs released a solo album, When You're a Boy, in 1991, which spawned a U.S Top 40 hit with "My Side of the Bed." In the UK the single landed at #44, for only 4 weeks on chart, and the album also landed decently in Europe.

Hoffs recorded another album during 1993/1994, prior to leaving Columbia Records, but it went unreleased.

In 1996, Hoffs released her second solo album, Susanna Hoffs. Although it received much praise in the media and yielded a minor US hit and a UK hit at #33 for 2 weeks with a cover of the Lightning Seeds single "All I Want", it still was not a big commercial success.

Hoffs recorded a cover of "The Look of Love" for the soundtrack of the first Austin Powers movie Austin Powers: International Man of Mystery and a cover of the song "Alfie" for the soundtrack of the third Austin Powers in Goldmember.

Hoffs recorded a cover of the Oingo Boingo song "We Close Our Eyes" for the Buffy The Vampire Slayer soundtrack. She is also responsible for the song "Now and Then", from the 1995 film of the same name.

Hoffs also contributed a song to the film Red Roses and Petrol (written and directed by Tamar Simon Hoffs) titled "The Water is Wide." The song can be heard in the closing credits and is available on the film's soundtrack.

In February 2009, Hoffs appeared on stage at the Key Club in Los Angeles, singing with thenewno2, the "post-Bristol" psychedelic blues band led by Dhani Harrison.

In December 2011, Hoffs provided an original song for use in promoting Visit South Walton, the tourism promotion agency for Walton County, Florida (formerly identified as the Beaches of South Walton). The song, "This Is The Place", will be used in advertising and marketing the popular coastal area that comprises fifteen beach communities.

Susanna Hoffs performing at The House of Blues in Cleveland, Ohio, on August 30, 2007

Hoffs self-released her third solo album of new material (the first since her 1996's self-titled album) called Someday via Vanguard Records on July 17, 2012. The set was produced by Mitchell Froom and is influenced by the music of the 1960s.[7] American Songwriter gave Someday a rating of 4.5 out of 5 stars and described it as "easily and undeniably Hoffs’ most definitive musical statement to date."

Hoffs is mentioned in "I'd Love to Kiss the Bangles" by The Saw Doctors. Robbie Fulks wrote about her in "That Bangle Girl," which appears on his album The Very Best of Robbie Fulks.

Ming Tea[edit]

Mike Myers, Matthew Sweet, and Hoffs formed the faux British 1960s band Ming Tea after Myers' Saturday Night Live stint in the early 1990s.[8][9] They all adopted pseudonyms for the band, with Hoffs using the name Jillian Shagwell and Myers creating Austin Powers. This group made a number of club and television performances and had a minor hit with the song "BBC". Myers' then wife Robin Ruzan encouraged him to write a film based on the character.[9] The result was Austin Powers: International Man of Mystery, directed by Hoffs' husband Jay Roach. Ming Tea performed in all three Austin Powers films.

Sid n Susie[edit]

In 2006, Hoffs teamed up with fellow Ming Tea rocker Matthew Sweet; under the name "Sid n Susie," they recorded fifteen cover versions of classic rock songs from the 1960s and 1970s for an album titled Under the Covers, Vol. 1. The album was released in April 2006. On July 18, they appeared on Late Night with Conan O'Brien to promote the album and tour. The duo released another album Under the Covers, Vol. 2 on July 21, 2009, which included covers of songs by Fleetwood Mac, Carly Simon, Rod Stewart and others. In 2012 Under the Covers, Vol 3 was released.

Personal life[edit]

In 1993, Hoffs married Jay Roach, the director of the Austin Powers movies and Meet the Parents, and producer of The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy. She has two sons.[10] Roach converted to Judaism when marrying Hoffs.[1]

She is a vegetarian.[11]

Discography[edit]

Albums[edit]

Date Title US Chart Notes
Solo
1991 When You're a Boy 83  
1996 Susanna Hoffs -  
2012 Someday -  
With The Bangles
1982 Bangles -  
1984 All Over the Place 80  
1986 Different Light 2  
1988 Everything 15  
1990 Greatest Hits 97  
2003 Doll Revolution -  
2011 Sweetheart of the Sun 148  
Collaborations
2006 Under the Covers, Vol. 1 192 with Matthew Sweet
2009 Under the Covers, Vol. 2 106 with Matthew Sweet
2012 Under the Covers, Vol. 3 with Matthew Sweet

Singles[edit]

Date Title Chart Notes
US UK[12]
Solo releases
1991 "My Side of the Bed" 30 44
"Unconditional Love" - 65
"Only Love" - -
1996 "All I Want" 77 33
With The Bangles
Only charting singles are listed
1985 "Hero Takes A Fall" - 96
"Going Down To Liverpool" - 79
1986 "Manic Monday" 2 2
"If She Knew What She Wants" 29 31
"Going Down To Liverpool" - 56 UK only re-release
"Walk Like an Egyptian" 1 3
1987 "Walking Down Your Street" 11 16
"Following" - 55
"Hazy Shade Of Winter" 2 11 From the Less Than Zero Motion Picture Soundtrack
1988 "In Your Room" 5 35
1989 "Eternal Flame" 1 1
"Be With You" 30 23
"I'll Set You Free" - 74 UK only release
1990 "Walk Like an Egyptian (Remix)" - 73
2003 "Something That You Said" - 38
"I Will Take Care Of You" - 84
With Ming Tea
1997 "BBC" - - From Austin Powers: International Man of Mystery Soundtrack
2002 "Daddy Wasn't There" - - From Austin Powers in Goldmember Soundtrack
All chart data refers to the Billboard Hot 100 unless noted otherwise

DVDs and films[edit]

Year Title
1978 Stony Island
1982 The Haircut
1987 The Allnighter
1990 The Bangles — Greatest Hits: Videos (VHS)
1997 Austin Powers: International Man of Mystery
1999 Austin Powers: The Spy Who Shagged Me
2002 Austin Powers in Goldmember
2003 Doll Revolution Bonus DVD
2003 Red Roses and Petrol – soundtrack only
2005 The Bangles — Greatest Hits: Videos (DVD)

Filmography[edit]

Television
Year Title Role Notes
1986 The Bangles Live at the Syria Mosque Herself Guitar & Vocals
1989 Rock & Read (Video short) (voice)
2007 The Bangles Return to Bangleonia Herself (Video)
2012 Comedy Bang! Bang! Street Performer Episode "Ed Helms Wears a Grey Shirt & Brown Boots" (1.7)

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Teicholz, Tom (2006). "Susanna Hoffs walks like a rockstar/mom". The Jewish Journal of Greater Los Angeles. Retrieved August 15, 2010. 
  2. ^ "TAMAR SIMON ENGAGED; She Is Fiancee of Joshua A. Hoffs, A Medical Student". The New York Times. February 28, 1957. 
  3. ^ "Bangle still follows mom's directions". The Spokesman-Review (Spokane, Washington). May 15, 1987. Retrieved June 30, 2014. 
  4. ^ "Stony Island Movie". Retrieved October 22, 2012. 
  5. ^ Ragogna, Mike (September 26, 2011). "Sweetheart Of The Sun & Modern Art: Chatting With The Bangles' Susanna Hoffs and Matthew Sweet". Huffington Post. Retrieved October 9, 2011. 
  6. ^ Hunt, Chris (1991). "Susanna Hoffs interview". Chrishunt.biz. Retrieved June 30, 2014. 
  7. ^ "Susanna Hoffs « Vanguard Records Publicity". Publicity.vanguardrecords.com. July 17, 2012. Retrieved December 25, 2012. 
  8. ^ "Mike Myers". Digital Hit. Digital Hit Entertainment/ Multiplex Theatre Properties Inc. 1997–2012. Retrieved July 29, 2012. 
  9. ^ a b Abbey, Cherie D.; Hillstrom, Kevin (2004). Biography Today Performing Artists. Omnigraphics. p. 101. ISBN 078080709X. 
  10. ^ "No more manic Mondays". The Sun-Herald. September 5, 2005. Retrieved August 15, 2010. 
  11. ^ "Vegetarian Celebrities". 
  12. ^ Roberts, David (2006). British Hit Singles & Albums (19th ed.). London: Guinness World Records Limited. p. 254. ISBN 1-904994-10-5. 

External links[edit]