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1974 in New York City

Original Blondie Members:

Deborah Harry – lead vocals
Chris Stein – guitar
Clem Burke – drums
Jimmy Destri – keyboards
Gary Valentine – bass

Significant Facts About Blondie:

  • Early pioneers of punk rock and new wave music
  • Debut album was released in 1976, failed to chart in either US or UK
  • Their first #1 single, “Heart of Glass” almost wasn’t released because the label felt it was “too disco”

Getting Together:

Deborah Harry was singing in an obscure folk rock group called The Wind in the Willows in 1974 when Chris Stein invited her to join his group, The Stilettos. They, along with Clem Burke, Jimmy Destri and Gary Valentine formed what was first called Angel and the Snake.

Blondie performed in clubs around New York City, and became one of the many punk groups that were launched to national prominence from CBGB, a now-famous club in the city’s Bowery district.

Finding a Voice:

After their self-titled first album failed to chart, their second release, Plastic Letters in 1977 reached as high as #10 on the UK album chart. The group’s breakthrough came in 1978 with the release of Parallel Lines, which hit #1 in the UK and #6 in the US and produced five hit singles.

Blondie distinguished itself by progressing into new musical styles with each album, eventually covering punk, disco, new wave and hip hop.

On and Off and On:

The band disbanded in 1982. Harry pursued a solo career and appeared in a few feature films. The four founding members reunited in 1999 and the band continues to tour and record.

Current Blondie Members:

Deborah Harry – vocals
Chris Stein – guitar
Clem Burke – drums
Jimmy Destri – keyboards
Paul Carbonara – guitar
Leigh Foxx – bass
Kevin Patrick – keyboards

Essential Blondie CD:

Parallel Lines
The band's 1978 breakthrough album contains what have become some of the band's best known songs.
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